Tracy Hartman

This month we will continue to celebrate the season of Epiphany as the Scriptures shed new light on who Jesus is each week. On February 7th we will explore Jesus’ dedication in the temple in Luke 2:22-40. On February 13th, we’ll read the story of Jesus calling his first disciples. The last two weeks of the season we’ll struggle with how Jesus calls us to live. We’ll end the month with Transfiguration Sunday where Jesus will be transformed into light. Plan to join us each week as God surprises us time and time again and we see how these passages relate to us in these challenging days.

          We will also hold our first two Town Hall meetings this month.  Please continue to pray for the transition team, our congregation, and the pastor that God is preparing to call to live and serve at Suffolk Christian Church. Please participate in the meetings, your voice and your story matters! 

          Finally, you are invited to join me in West Memorial on Wednesday January 26th from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. for a presentation by the Lilly Endowment entitled: Exploring the Pandemic's Impact on Congregations: What Do We Know and What Do We Still Need to Learn? This workshop will report new findings from two recent surveys (from August and December 2021) of 4000 churches about how they and their clergy are faring and the challenges and possibilities facing faith communities. It will provide an overview of an extensive Lilly Endowment-funded research project led by Hartford Institute for Religion Research to track what the next five years will look like for faith communities, their leaders and members. Finally, it will explore ways that congregations can participate and be informed by this ongoing research and take advantage of the resources produced.

On the journey with you,
Tracy

 

 

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APRIL 2021

My Dear Friends, Easter is just around the corner! The quiet and thoughtful days of Lent are almost accomplished and we are more than eager and ready to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. This Sunday is, of course, Palm Sunday. We will have palm branches for everyone and we will "virtually" join those who lined the road into Jerusalem on that festive day, welc...

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MARCH 2021

My Dear Friends, Gradually . . . and hopefully . . . do I detect a slight improvement in life as we have known it lo these past many months?? We have been very careful, since the first of June of last year, in conducting our "in person" worship services. We have carefully added Sunday School. All of youhave been very understanding and cooperative with our restrictions, a...

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FEBRUARY 2021

My Dear Friends, I had hoped that by now, February of 2021, I would be addressing you with the great news that we had defeated The Virus and that our lives would have gotten back to "normal". That is not to be. Yet. Yes, this has in many respects been a long, dark night. Our lives have been disrupted, to say the least, and the end is not yet in sight. Thousands and thous...

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January 2021

My Dear Friends, Each year for some time now I have related the story of the Roman god Janus, from whom we get "January". The story of Janus, I think, is even more appropriate as we move into 2021. Janu the god of beginnings and transitions had two faces, one pointing forward and the other pointing toward the rear. That image of this Roman god always suggests to me tha...

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DECEMBER 2020

My Dear Friends, As I look at the calendar, I realize this is the 25th December newsletter article I have written to you! They say time flies when you're having fun, but I think we can also say that time flies whether you are having fun or not! And, I am not sure any of us would characterize our current situation as "having fun". Pandemics, health scares, restrictive mov...

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PRAYER

My Dear Friends, Have you ever noticed that exciting and challenging experiences are often also scary? That's where most of us find ourselves as we continue to deal withthe ongoing battle with The Virus. And just this weekwe were stunned by the news that now 200,000 dear souls have died of virus and related issues in the United States alone. We Christians are uniquely e...

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20/20 SPIRITUAL EYESIGHT

My Dear Friends, Each time a new year rolls around it feels like a new life opportunity, a new beginning. That is exactly where Joshua found himself when he was named as the successor to Moses. The Israelites were poised to enter the Promised Land, but their spiritual record to that point was dismal. Joshua had witnessed shameful behaviors from God's people on that long ...

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ADVENT!

My Dear Friends, If you have not already, you will soon hear and see the signs, sights, and sounds of Christmas. And I am writing this ten days before Thanksgiving! I don't think I would get much disagreement if I said that the celebration of Christmas has in too many cases become a secular event. Yes, we still have Baby Jesus and such, but the radical invasion of God Al...

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BE THANKFUL

My Dear Friends, In the month of November we have the opportunity to stop and celebrate the one holiday a year that is just about totally non-sectarian and one that folks of every persuasion can join in. Yes, Thanksgiving Day has football and the day after a wild shopping experience (if desired). But just sitting down with family and friends and sharing our stories of ble...

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PRAYERS FOR OUR BOARDS & COMMITTEES

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