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June 13, 2021 – Being Good Ancestors, Part I (Forever Stamps and Permanent Tattoos)

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.

 

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, June 13, 2021

 

PRELUDE
Prelude    Lied   Louis Viverne
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ

WELCOME
June 13, 2021
Rev. Liza B.Knapp

HYMN
Hymn  As Those of Old Their First Fruits Brought
Marc Dancer, soloist

 

READING

Psalm 90,  verses 1-13
You may listen to the psalm here, or read it aloud. If you are worshipping with a friend, we invite you to read it responsively, with one reading the italics.

Lord, you have been our dwelling place
in all generations.
Before the mountains were brought forth,
or ever you had formed the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

You turn us back to dust,
and say, “Turn back, you mortals.”
For a thousand years in your sight
are like yesterday when it is past,
or like a watch in the night.

You sweep them away; they are like a dream,
like grass that is renewed in the morning;
in the morning it flourishes and is renewed;
in the evening it fades and withers.

For we are consumed by your anger;
by your wrath we are overwhelmed.
You have set our iniquities before you,
our secret sins in the light of your countenance.

For all our days pass away under your wrath;
our years come to an end like a sigh.
The days of our life are seventy years,
or perhaps eighty, if we are strong;
even then their span is only toil and trouble;
they are soon gone, and we fly away.

Who considers the power of your anger?
Your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you.
So teach us to count our days
that we may gain a wise heart.

 

 

ANTHEM
Anthem  No Longer Mourn For Me   Shakespeare/ Charles H.H. Parry
Stephen Morris, Choral Scholar;  Yu-Mei Wei, piano

THREE READINGS ON TIME

I.
Consider the earth’s history as the old measure of the English yard, the distance from the kings nose to the tip of his outstretched hand. One stroke of a nail file on his middle finger erases human history.
(John McPhee)

II.
Most educated people are aware that we are the outcome of nearly 4,000,000,000 years of Darwinian selection, but many tend to think that humans are some help the combination. Our sun, however, is less than halfway through its lifespan. It will not be humans who watch the sun’s demise, 6 billion years from now ….
(Martin Rees, astrophysicist)

III.

Eternity is not infinity.
It is not a long time.
It does not begin at the end of time.
It does not run parallel to time.
In its entirety it always was.
In its entirety it will always be.
It is entirely always present.

(Wendell Berry,
from This Day: Collected and New Sabbath Poems)

 

 

SERMON
Forever Stamps and Permanent Tattoos
Rev. Liza Knapp

 

A PAUSE FOR MEDITATION

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars that you have established;
what are human beings, that you are mindful of them,
or mortals, that you care for them?
 (Psalm 8)

 

PRAYER OF CONFESSION

Eternal One: You give to us the gift of Time,
so that our lives may unfold
as a song, or a flower.

But often we see time as our enemy.

For hours that we have squandered,
which we might instead of savored: forgive us.
For kindness as we have postponed,
which we might instead of rendered: forgive us.
For changes we have delayed,
which we might instead of he said: forgive us.

Teach us to befriend your gift of time.

We place in your hands
not only our future, but also our past;
trusting in your everlasting love,
to bless and redeem them both.

amen.

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
June 13, 2021

  https://youtu.be/sPhLCx5kZQs
shared by Mary Dancer

 

SHARING OF GIFTS
To make a donation
to the First Church of Deerfield
(aka “The Brick Church,” aka “The Brick-less Church”),
click here.
For more ways to give, see announcements, below.

 

ANTHEM
Anthem  Du bist wie eine Blume  Robert Schumann
Christopher Gergis, Choral Scholar; Thomas Pousont, piano

 

OFFERING PRAYER

Bless these our offerings,
that they might serve your people,
and bring your healing love
to the places it is needed most.

in Christ’s name / in Love’s name,
amen

 

HYMN
Hymn   Eternal, Unchanging We Sing
Karen Smith Emerson, soloist

 

BENEDICTION
(Wendell Berry)

The seed is in the ground.
Now may we rest in hope
While darkness does its work.

Amen.

 

POSTLUDE
Postlude   Trumpet March  Jeremiah Clark
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ 

Images:
Brick Church Window, L. Knapp
Ancient Yew Tree, Church of St. Cynog, Powys, Wales – estimated age > 5000 years
Bristlecone Pine, National Forest, Madera County, California – estimated age >5000 year
Baobab Trees by starlight, photograph by Beth Moon. Baobabs may live 2000-3000 years
Walking under Baobab trees, photograph by Yasmine Arfaoui, unsplash.com

 

FURTHER EXPLORATION

For more astonishing images of ancient trees by photographer Beth Moon
click here

 

The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

July 18, 2021 – Unassimilated

The First Church of Deerfield, Massachusetts

The music for this morning’s service is pre-recorded.
Our thanks to Marc Dancer, our worship DJ, and to the recording artists, local and distant.

 

PRELUDE
Andante Tranquillo from Sonata III (Bartholdi Mendelssohn)
Tom Pousont, organ

 

 WELCOME & ANNOUNCEMENTS
Joe Durham, moderator 

 

CALL  & INVOCATION (responsive)
(from Spaciousfaith.com, adapted)

Some of us are exhausted.       We come to rest.
Some of us are curious.           We come to learn.
Some of us are hungry.           We come to be fed.
Some of us are disoriented.     We come to pray.
Some of us are broken.           We come to be healed.
All of us are beloved.             We come to love.

From east and west, from north and south,
we gather together in common prayer:
Teach us, feed us, hear us, heal us.
Grant us your peace. Amen.

 

1st READING
Paul’s Letter to the Galatians 3:26-29

In Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith. As many of you as were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to the promise. (NRSV trans.)

 

ANTHEM
In Christ there is no East or West (MCKEE)
sung by the choir of St Martin in the Fields

 

PRAYER OF CONFESSION (unison)
listen here or read below

Heart of Courage, Heart of Compassion,
you call us to love both neighbor and self;
but we confess, we are afraid to bridge the gap.
We long for unconditional love,
but we offer our own with strings attached.
We long to be included,
but we deny the subtle ways that we exclude others.
We build walls to shut out the stranger,
and so imprison ourselves as well.

Forgive our narrowness of heart.
Cast out our fear, and free us to live at peace,
both with the Other, and with our Self. Amen.

{a time for silent prayer follows}

 

2nd READING
Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians 2:11-22
read by deacon Jean Turner

 

REFLECTION
Unassimilated
Rev. Liza B. Knapp, pastor

 

ANTHEM
Ubi Caritas (Dufle)
sung by the Choir of St. John’s Elora

Where charity and love are, God is there.
Christ’s love has gathered us into one.
Let us rejoice and be pleased in Him.
Let us fear and love the living God.
And may we love each other with a sincere heart.

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
deacon Mary Dancer

 

THE DISCIPLE’S PRAYER (unison)
Our (Father / Mother / God), who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.

 

OFFERTORY ANTHEM
United We Are (Boyd/Manor)
sung by the Choirs of Deerfield Academy and The First Church of Deerfield

 

DEDICATION (responsive)

Make of these gifts, one gift —
not ours alone, but ours together.
May our shared offering be a sign
of our solidarity with one another,
and with all who, like us, are in need
of love, of compassion, of friendship.
Amen.

 

BENEDICTION
God be with you til we meet again
The First Church of Deerfield Choir

 

POSTLUDE
Lobt Gott, ihr Christen allzugleich (Walther)
Thomas Pousont, organ

 

The service is over;
Let our service begin.
The Church will now leave the building.

July 11, 2021 – The Church is in the House

 

 

ORDER OF WORSHIP

Sunday, July 11, 2021

Note about today’s music: We include today two different choral settings of the same Latin text, “Locus iste…”, which means, “This is the place that God has made.” Traditionally sung at the anniversary of the dedication of a house of worship, it seemed an appropriate choice; for today, we returned to our Brick Church Meetinghouse after more than a year’s absence.

PRELUDE 

Ein feste burg (Walther)

Tom Pousont, organ; recorded October, 2020

 

WORDS OF WELCOME

July 11, 2021

 

CALL  TO WORSHIP

Psalm 122: 1-2

I was glad when they said to me,

“Let us go to the house of the Lord!”

Our feet are standing

within your gates, O Jerusalem.

 

READING 

1st Chronicles 17: 1-15

read here

 

ANTHEM

Locus Iste (Bruckner)

performed by Tenebrae

 

“This place was made by God”

 

SERMON

The Church is in the House

Rev. Liza Knapp, pastor

 

BLESSING OF THE HOUSE

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE

July 11, 2021

Mary Dancer, deacon

 

THE DISCIPLE’S PRAYER

Our (Father / Mother / God), who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.

 

SHARED CONFESSION

Iona Community, adapted

 

Before God, with the people of God, I confess to my brokenness,

and to the ways that I have wounded myself, my neighbors, and our world.

May God forgive you, renew you, and enable you to grow in love. Amen.

 

OFFERING

In addition to tithes and offerings to the church, today we receive and bless donations of food and financial support for the Franklin County Community Meal Program. To make an online donation to the meal program, CLICK HERE and select “FCCMP” from the drop-down menu. To make an online donation to the Church, select “CHURCH DONATION.”

 

OFFERTORY ANTHEM

Locus iste (Mealor)

performed by Voces 8

 

 DEDICATION

 

We offer our grateful thanks

for this place of shelter

given to us by those who came before.

We offer our gifts

in hope that they in turn

may offer shelter.

In Christ’s/Love’s name,

Amen.

 

CHORAL BENEDICTION

First Church of Deerfield Choir

 

God be with you til we meet again

Loving arms surround, uphold you

With a shepherd’s care enfold you

God be with you til we meet again

 

 

POSTLUDE

La Rejouissance

Music for the Royal Fireworks (Handel)

Tom Pousont, organ;

Thomas Bergeron, trumpet;

recorded April, 2020

 

 

CHARGE

The service is over;

Let our service begin.

The Church will now leave the building.

 

June 27, 2021 – Being Good Ancestors, Pt III (The Prodigal’s Inheritance)

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, June 27, 2021
Whoever you are, wherever you may be on life’s journey,
you are welcome here.

 

CALL AND INVOCATION
Psalm 24, adapted

The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof;
the world, and all who dwell therein.

For God has founded it upon the seas,
and established it upon the floods.

Who shall ascend into the hill of the Holy One?
or who shall stand in God’s holy place?

Let this be the generation of them that seek You;
O Beloved, may your face shine upon us!

 

HYMN 

All Creatures of our God and King
Karen Smith Emerson, soloist; Tom Pousont, organ

 

READING & REFLECTION

Inheritance
Rev. Liza B. Knapp

 

PRAYER OF CONFESSION
Wendell Berry, adapted

It is the destruction of the world
in our own lives that drives us
half insane, and more than half.

To destroy that which we were given
in trust: how will we bear it?

It is our own bodies that we give
to be broken, our bodies
existing before and after us
in clod and cloud, worm and tree,
that we, driving or driven, despise
in our greed to live, our haste
to die. 

To have lost, wantonly,
the ancient forests, the vast grasslands
is our madness, the presence
in our very bodies of our grief.

 

(A time for silence follows)

 

 

HYMN
We cannot Own the Sunlit Skies
Sung by the virtual choir of Payton Park UCC, Belmont, MA

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
June 27, 2021
Sally Laubin

 

OFFERING

To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield  (aka “The Brick Church,” aka “The Brick-less Church”), click here

 

DOXOLOGY
Thomas Pousont, organ

 

BLESSING OF GIFTS

All good gifts around us come from you,
Creator, Wellspring, Ground of Being.
May we, your people, made of earth and clay,
become good gifts to one another;
as you intended us to be.

Bless these gifts;
bless those who give
and bless those who receive
with abundant life.

By all your holy names we pray,
Amen.

 

BENEDICTION

May the road rise up to meet you,
may the wind be always at your back,
may the sun shine warm on your face,
may the rain fall soft on your fields.

May God hold us tenderly in the palm of Her hand,
and may we hold God’s creation tenderly in ours.

 

POSTLUDE HYMN
What a wonderful world
Sung by Louis Armstrong

 

Prodigal Son by Pompeo Battoni (18th c.)

image: The Prodigal Son, by Pompeo Batoni

June 20, 2021 – Being Good Ancestors, Pt II (Legacies)

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

 

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.





ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, June 20, 2021

The First Church of Deerfield
Order of Worship for June 20, 2021

Whoever you are, wherever you may be on life’s journey, you are welcome here.

Prelude

My Lord, What a Morning
as performed by Jessye Norman (1972)

Call to Worship

This morning marks the most ancient of feasts:
the longest of days, the shortest of nights –
although elsewhere, it is the reverse.
Winter is past, and summer is here.
Summer is here, but winter is coming.
God of all seasons, of shadow and light,
be with us on this day, in this light,
as we give thanks for the turning of the year.

1st Reading

Psalm 78, verses 1-8
as read by Liza Knapp

2nd Reading

2nd Kings 2: 1-14
as read by Tim Neumann

Reflection

Legacies
Rev. Liza B. Knapp

Prayer of Confession and Hope

God of the past, present and future:
Have mercy on us

For we have repeated the errors of our ancestors.
and have invented new errors of our own
and we have passed them on,
for our children to bear.

In our grief, we turn to you
remembering your mercy
and your steadfast love
to all generations.

We ask your forgiveness and your blessing,
Bless the past, bless the present,
and bless, O God, the days to come.
Amen.

Anthem

Breaths
as performed by Sweet Honey in the Rock (1988)

Prayers of the People

June 20, 2021
Mary Dancer

Offering

We do not inherit this world from our ancestors;
we borrow it, from our children.

To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield  (aka “The Brick Church,” aka “The Brick-less Church”), click here

Dedication

Bless these gifts with your spirit,
that they may follow where it blows,
to those most in need of its refreshing touch.

Benediction

May the God of our ancestors,
bless our days and our nights,
our winter and summer,
our past, present and future.

Bless the sun in its shining,
the earth in its turning,
the seasons in their changing,
and our lives in their passing,
from generation to generation,
Amen.

Postlude

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
Etta James (1983)


June 6, 2021 (Sabbath and Healing)

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.

 

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, June 6, 2021

PRELUDE
Prelude   Salve    Sebastiàn Aguilera de Heridia
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ 

CALL TO WORSHIP

Even in the desert,
even in the wilderness,
sabbath comes.
May you keep it.
Light the candles,
say the prayers:

Welcome, sabbath.
Welcome, rest.
Enter in
and be our guest.

Jan Richardson

 

HYMN
Hymn #217 All Creatures of Our God and King  vv. 1-2
Karen Smith Emerson, soprano

 

FIRST READING
Genesis 2:1- 3 (NRSV)

Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all the work that he had done in creation.

 

REFLECTION ON THE FIRST READING
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Herschel, The Sabbath

The words: “On the seventh day God finished His work” (Genesis 2:2), seem to be a puzzle. Is it not said: “He rested on the seventh day”?…We would surely expect the Bible to tell us that on the sixth day God finished His work. Obviously, the ancient rabbis concluded, there was an act of creation on the seventh day. Just as heaven and earth were created in six days, menuha was created on the Sabbath. “After the six days of creation—what did the universe still lack? Menuha. Came the Sabbath, came menuha, and the universe was complete.” Menuha which we usually render with “rest” means here much more than withdrawal from labor and exertion, more than freedom from toil, strain or activity of any kind. Menuha is not a negative concept but something real and intrinsically positive. This must have been the view of the ancient rabbis if they believed that it took a special act of creation to bring it into being, that the universe would be incomplete without it.

ANTHEM
Anthem   Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel   African-American Spiritual

Maddalena Honablue, soprano

 

SECOND READING

Mark 2:23 – 3:6

One sabbath Jesus was going through the grainfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. The Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?”And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need of food? He entered the house of God, when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and he gave some to his companions.” Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”

Again Jesus entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. They watched him to see whether he would cure him on the sabbath, so that they might accuse him. And he said to the man who had the withered hand, “Come forward.” Then he said to them, “Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the sabbath, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. He looked around at them with anger; he was grieved at their hardness of heart and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately conspired with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.

REFLECTION ON THE SECOND READING
Healing and Sabbath
Rev. Knapp

(Mulyadi, unsplash.com)

 

 

BLESSING

Blessed are you
who bear the light
in unbearable times,
who testify
to its endurance
amid the unendurable,
who bear witness
to its persistence
when everything seems
in shadow
and grief.

— Jan Richard

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
   June 6, 2021  
shared by Mary Dancer

 

SHARING OF GIFTS
To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield (aka “The Brick Church,” aka “The Brick-less Church”),
click here
.
For more ways to give, see announcements, below.

 

OFFERING PRAYER

Bless these our offerings,
that they might serve your people,
and bring your healing love
to the places it is needed most.

in Christ’s name / in Love’s name,
amen

 

HYMN
Hymn #626  I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say
Marc Dancer, bass

 

BENEDICTION
Early Scottish Blessing

Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the Son of peace to you, forever.

 

POSTLUDE
Postlude     Tiento de Falsas     Pablo Bruna

 

 

 ***********

ANNOUNCEMENTS

From the Mission Committee

This month’s non-perishable food collection will be held Tuesday,  June 8, at the church from 1 – 1:30.  Joe and Nancy Durham will be there to receive your donation! Thank you!

The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive, open-and-affirming
congregation of the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

 

 

May 30, 2021 – “ordinary time” – (Land of Bees & Honey)

 

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, May 30, 2021

*Note: Music links marked with an asterisk may be preceded by advertisements. These ads are not part of the service and their presence does not imply endorsement by the church.

 

WELCOME
May 30, 2021
Rev. Liza B. Knapp

 

HYMN
For the Beauty of the Earth
Marc Dancer & Nancy Pond
(lyrics: hymnal #226 / tune:Dix)

 

FIRST READING
Job 12:7-10

Ask the animals, and they will teach you;
the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
ask the plants of the earth, and they will teach you.
and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
Who among all these does not know
that the hand of the LORD has done this?
In God’s hand is the life of every living thing
and the breath of every human being.

 

SECOND READING
from Winnie the Pooh by AA Milne
read by Liza

 

 

SERMON
Land of Bees and Honey
Rev. Knapp

 

ANTHEM
Honey on my Grave
performed by Red Molly

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
May 30, 2021
shared by Mary Dancer

 

PAUSE FOR MEDITATION
pollinators*

 

SHARING OF GIFTS
Today’s special offering will go to Save the Children, to support their work in caring for children in crisis at the US border. To make a donation, click here and select “Save the Children” from the drop-down menu.  For more ways to give, see announcements, below.

 

OFFERING PRAYER

We give thanks for the earth
which is your gift to us.
Teach us so to live
that we may in turn become
your gift to the earth.

Accept, we pray, our offerings,
and by your grace bless us all:
those who give,
those who receive,
and those who wait in need.

in Christ’s name / in Love’s name,
amen

 

BLESSING
God of Small Things
Rev. Knapp

 

POSTLUDE ANTHEM
I remember, I believe*
performed by
Sweet Honey in the Rock

 

 

Images:  Oculus Window, Canterbury Cathedral; Bee on Flower, photo by L.Knapp; Winnie the Pooh, illustration by E.H. Shepherd

______________

ANNOUNCEMENTS

From the Church Life and Mission Committees

From time to time the Church Life and or/ Mission Committee offer opportunities to donate to organizations outside of our regular ones.  Tim Neumann suggested that helping the unfortunate children at the border would be worthy of our assistance.  Both committees agreed, and felt that Save the Children would offer the most  help for these children as it directly advocates for the children by making their spaces as child friendly as possible, offers psychological assistance, makes sure they are properly fed, assists in locating their family, etc., etc while working with the Border Patrol.   We are offering 3 ways to donate:

  1. Through the May 23 outdoor church service
  2. Through Breeze, click on the link and choose Save the Children from the drop-down menu:  https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online
  3. Through a check to the church with  “Children at the US Border Crisis” in the memo

~~~
The Mission Committee is adding $100 from its budget towards this cause.

The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton

May 23, 2021 – Pentecost

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. This morning, for the first time in fourteen months, members of First Church of Deerfield gathered bodily for worship, on the lawn of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association in old Deerfield. We give thanks for the dual blessings of warm weather and effective vaccines that made this gathering possible, and for the many creative spirits and willing hands that helped in preparing our reunion.

For our members and friends who are unable gather in person, we offer this digital version of the morning’s service, and continue to make this pledge: whoever you are, and wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.

 

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, May 23, 2021 – PENTECOST

 

PRELUDE
Prelude   Andante   G.P Telemann
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ

CALL TO WORSHIP

Today we feel the wind beneath our wings,
Today the hidden fountain flows and plays,
Today the church draws breath at last and sings,
As every flame becomes a tongue of praise.
This is the feast of Fire, Air and Water,
Poured out and breathed and kindled into Earth.
The Earth herself awakens to her maker,
Translated out of death and into birth.
The right words come today in their right order
And every word spells freedom and release.
Today the gospel crosses every border,
All tongues are loosened by the Prince of Peace.
Today the lost are found in his translation,
Whose mother-tongue is love, in every nation.
​(Malcolm Guite, Pentecost)

HYMN
Hymn  Siyahamba
Thomas Pousont, vocals

 

READING
The Acts of the Apostles 2:1-21 (NIV)

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.  They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language?Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?”

Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.”

Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

“‘In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young people will see visions,
your elders will dream dreams.
Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
and they will prophesy.
I will show wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below,
blood and fire and billows of smoke.
The sun will be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
And everyone who calls
on the name of the Lord will be saved.

PRAYER OF INVOCATION
God of Pentecost,send your translating spirit among us. Teach us to speak in tongues of love;
so that speaking, we may be heard; and hearing, we may understand; and understanding, we may be reconciled to one another and to you. Amen.

SERMON
What just happened?
Rev. Knapp


HYMN

Hymn  Be Still, My Soul
Karen Smith Emerson, Nancy Pond, Thomas Pousont, Marc Dancer

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
May 23, 2021
shared by Mary Dancer

SHARING OF GIFTS
Today’s special offering will go to Save the Children, to support their work in caring for children in crisis at the US border. To make a donation, click here and select “Save the Children” from the drop-down menu. 

BLESSING OF THE OFFERING

As a fire spreads,
As a wind blows,
As a dove flies,
So your Spirit moves,
Disregarding the boundaries
we have set for your grace.
May our love, too,
Reach beyond our borders.

Bless these gifts we offer today,
And through them, bless
The children who come from away.
Guard them from all harm,
And speed their deliverance
Into safe and loving homes.

You have taught us,
That where our treasure is, there
Will our heart be also;
May this offering open our hearts,
To those who seek refuge.
For we remember that our ancestors, too
Were once strangers in a strange land.

In the name of Christ, in the name of Love,
And by all your holy names, we pray. Amen.

HYMN
Hymn  O For A Thousand Tongues To Sing
Karen Smith Emerson, Nancy Pond, Thomas Pousont, Marc Dancer

BENEDICTION 

Go now in peace, in love, and in joy.
To seek the signs of grace.
May your souls be refreshed by the winds of the Spirit.
May your hearts be ignited by her flame.

May your scars you bear become your story,
And may your story become your gift to the world.

RESPONSE
Benediction Response  God Be With You ‘Til We Meet Again
Karen Smith Emerson, Nancy Pond, Thomas Pousont, Marc Dancer

POSTLUDE
Postlude  Lobe den Herren   J.G. Walther

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

LET’S GET TOGETHER!  As the weather warms, new possibilities emerge for connection. The deacons are helping to arrange small, outdoor gatherings (of no more than four people) for the purpose of enjoying one another’s company and (re)discovering our common ground.  If you would like to participate in one of these gatherings, CLICK HERE to let us know you are interested, and one of the deacons will contact you.  I look forward to seeing you soon! — Pastor Liza

BE A PART OF OUR MINISTRY: If you have found spiritual sustenance at the Brick Church (or the Brickless Church!), and you would like to be part of our ministry and mission, we hope you will consider making a donation or pledge in support to the First Church of Deerfield. MAKE A PLEDGE or GIVE NOW or send check to:
The First Church of Deerfield, P.O. Box 276, 71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342)

 

The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

May 16, 2021 (Ascension)

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.

 

 

ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, May 16,  2021
7th Sunday of Eastertide / Ascension Sunday

 

PRELUDE
Premier Kyrie     François Couperin
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ

CALL TO WORSHIP
Welcome and Call to Worship
Rev. Liza B. Knapp

HYMN
Hymn #211  Crown Him with Many Crowns (Verses 1-3)
Thomas Pousont, vocalist

 

AFFIRMATION
(Each week during Eastertide, we offer an affirmation from a different part of our wider tradition. This week’s affirmation comes from the Iona Community of Scotland.)

With the whole church
we affirm that we are made in God’s image,
befriended by Christ,
empowered by the Spirit.

With people everywhere
we affirm God’s goodness at the heart of humanity,
planted more deeply than all that is wrong.

With all creation
we celebrate the miracle and wonder of life,
the unfolding purposes of God,
forever at work in ourselves and the world.

PAUSE FOR CONTEMPLATION

rest here in openness,
for a moment, or more

 

READING
The Acts of the Apostles 1:1-11
read by Liza

 

 

SERMON
Heads in the Clouds
Rev. Knapp

 

ANTHEM
Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen    African-American Spiritual  
Choral Scholar Christopher Gergis, bass

 

PRAYERS OF THE WORLD
(Rabbi Ethan Witkovsky of the Park Avenue Synagogue, NYC)

We pray that our prayers change us and the world.
We pray for the safety of Israelis and Palestinians.
We pray that both sides find a way to forge a lasting peace.
We pray that no one with the power to save life stands idly by.
Amen

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
May 16, 2021
shared by Mary Dancer

 

ANTHEM
Steal Away       African-American Spiritual 
Choral Scholar Stephen Morris, baritone

OFFERING

“If anyone has the world’s goods and sees their sibling in need, yet closes their hand, how does God’s love abide in them? Little children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and in truth.”
1st Letter of John 3:17-18

(To make a donation to the ministries of First Church of Deerfield, see Announcements below.)

 

DEDICATION

May these gifts
be a sign of our gratitude,
that you are steadfast in your love;
and a sign of our intent,
to be more steadfast in ours.
Amen.

 

HYMN
Hymn #232   Joyful, Joyful We Adore You (Verses 1,2, & 4)
Karen Smith Emerson & Joanne Potee, vocalists

BLESSING
Benediction May 16, 2021

 

POSTLUDE
Dialogue    François Couperin

 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

BIG NEWS
!!!NEXT SUNDAY!!!

PENTECOST, IN-PERSON
Outdoors at PVMA

 

Sunday. May 23rd, at 10 am
(weather permitting)

Friends, it has been over a year since we gathered in person for worship. Now, thanks to the dual blessings of warm weather and effective vaccines, we are ready at last for a reunion of our beloved community! Join us for a safely distanced, in-person, outdoor worship service, May 23rd at 10 am. (Note: a digital worship service will also be available as usual, for those unable to attend — and in case of rain!)

We will gather on the west lawn of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association. (Enter from their parking lot on Memorial Street in Old Deerfield — just follow the red balloons!) Socially-distanced seating will be provided; bring a cushion for comfort if you wish. Wear sturdy shoes and bring your cane if needed, as we will be on the grass. MASKS ARE REQUIRED. There will be no live singing at this service, but we may hum along to music specially recorded for us by Tom Pousont.

Questions? Concerns? Contact Liza or Mary D.

 

*******

 

BE A PART OF OUR MINISTRY

If you have found spiritual sustenance at the Brick Church (or the Brickless Church!), and you would like to be part of our ministry and mission, we hope you will consider making a donation or pledge in support to the First Church of Deerfield.

MAKE A PLEDGE
or
GIVE NOW

or send check to: The First Church of Deerfield, P.O. Box 276, 71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342)

 

*******

The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

May 9, 2021

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.





ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, May 9, 2021

6th Sunday of Eastertide
PRELUDE
Voluntary in G major   William Boyce
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ

 

CALL TO WORSHIP
May 9, 2021
Rev. Liza B. Knapp

 

HYMN
Come and Find the Quiet Centre
Thomas Pousont, vocalist

 

PAUSE FOR CONTEMPLATION

rest here in openness,
for a moment, or more

SERMON
Reclaiming Mother’s Day
Rev. Knapp
CONFESSION AND AFFIRMATION
(from “Creating Peace,” a Statement of Conscience passed by the General Assembly of the UUA in 2010)

 

Our faith calls us to create peace,
yet we confess that we have not done all we could
to prevent the spread of armed conflict throughout the world.

At times we have lacked the courage
to speak and act against violence and injustice;

at times we have lacked the creativity
to speak and act in constructive ways;

at times we have condemned the violence of others
without acknowledging our own complicity in violence;

too often we have allowed our disagreements
to distract us from all that we can do together.

We affirm a responsibility to speak truth to power,
especially when unjust power is exercised by our own nation.

In reverence for all life, we covenant to practice peace
at all levels of human interaction.

Amen. Shalom. Blessed Be.

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
May 9, 2021
shared by Mary Dancer

 

ANTHEM
The 23rd Psalm     Bobby McFerrin
The Deerfield Academy Chorus, directed by Thomas Pousont

 

OFFERING

“If anyone has the world’s goods and sees their sibling in need, yet closes their hand, how does God’s love abide in them? Little children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and in truth.”
1st Letter of John 3:17-18

(To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield, or to donate to our Community Meal, see Announcements below.)

DEDICATION

May these gifts
be a sign of our gratitude,
that you are steadfast in your love;
and a sign of our intent,
to be more steadfast in ours.
Amen.

Smith College Greenhouse, 2018 


ANNOUNCEMENTS



BIG NEWS
!!!SAVE THE DATE!!!

PENTECOST, IN-PERSON
Outdoors at PVMA
Sunday. May 23rd
(weather permitting)

Friends, it has been over a year since we gathered in person for worship. Now, thanks to the dual blessings of warm weather and effective vaccines, we are ready at last for a reunion of our beloved community! Join us for a safely distanced, in-person, outdoor worship service, May 23rd at 10 am. (Note: a digital worship service will also be available as usual, for those unable to attend — and in case of rain!) Stay tuned for more details….

Questions? Concerns? Contact Liza or Mary D.



From the Mission Committee

This month’s non-perishable food collection will be held next  Tuesday, May 11, at the church from 1 – 1:30.  Bette Schmitt will be there to receive your donation!

Thank you!

~~

Thank you, First Church, for your extremely generous response to our call for donations to cover this month’s Community Meal. We are no longer in need of funds and due to your generosity, we now have surplus funds, that will be held for a future good cause(s).



BE A PART OF OUR MINISTRY

If you have found spiritual sustenance at the Brick Church (or the Brickless Church!), and you would like to be part of our ministry and mission, we hope you will consider making a donation or pledge in support to the First Church of Deerfield.

MAKE A PLEDGE
or
GIVE NOW

or send check to: The First Church of Deerfield, P.O. Box 276, 71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342)



The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

May 2, 2021



ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, May 2, 2021 / 5th Sunday of Eastertide

Street art by Banksy
CALL TO WORSHIP
for May 21, 2021
Whoever we are,
wherever we may be,
we worship this morning
on sacred ground.
For there is no place so large God’s love cannot fill it,
no place is so small God’s love cannot find it,
no place so lofty God’s love cannot reach it,
no place so lowly God’s love will not abide in it.
Let us welcome God’s love,
with our own.

amen.

INTROIT & HYMN
 #646  Siyahamba
vocals by Tom Pousont

 

PAUSE FOR CONTEMPLATION
rest here in openness, for a moment, or more
READING
from the Christian scriptures
The 1st Letter of John 4:7-21

read by David, Jean, Bruce, Mary, Alain, and Ben
REFLECTION
God is Love is God is Love…
Rev. Knapp
AFFIRMATION
Each week of Eastertide, our worship includes an affirmation from a different part of our spiritual traditions. These words, from the contemporary Unitarian Universalist tradition, are an affirmation, not of common theology, but of common purpose. 
We affirm that love is our greatest purpose.
Accepting one another is the truest form of faithful living.
The search for truth is our constant star.
We pledge our hearts, minds, and hands:
To challenge injustice with courage;
To find hope in times of fear;
And to live out our values every day
as a beloved community.
Thus do we covenant with each other
and with all that is sacred in life.
ANTHEM
Shumayela
Deerfield Academy Chorus
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
May 2, 2021
shared by Mary Dancer
OFFERING“If anyone has the world’s goods and sees their sibling in need, yet closes their hand, how does God’s love abide in them? Little children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and in truth.”
1st Letter of John 3:17-18
(To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield, or to donate to our Community Meal, see Announcements below.)

ANTHEM
Ke Laolwa
(“I am led by the Spirit”)
Deerfield Academy Chorus

 

DEDICATION

May these gifts
be a sign of our gratitude,
that you are steadfast in your love;
and a sign of our intent,
to be more steadfast in ours.
Amen.

 

BLESSING

May love bless us and keep us;
may love shine upon us and be gracious unto us;
may love abide in us,
and we in love,
this day and evermore,
amen

RECESSIONAL HYMN
 #497   Send Me, Lord  Thuma Mina

Street art by Nick Walker. 


A note on today’s music:

We are pleased to welcome the members of the Deerfield Academy Chorus as our virtual guest musicians this morning. These student recently undertook a workshop under the guidance of conductor/arranger Steven Fischer, who has worked with both South African and American choirs. Today’s beautiful anthems are the fruits of that workshop.  All the hymns and songs in this morning’s service originated in South Africa, and reflect its history and spirit of ubuntu and social justice. To learn more, we invite you watch this beautiful Lesson on Ubuntu, prepared by members of the Chorus.



ANNOUNCEMENTS



A Request from the Mission Committee

The Mission Committee will again host a Community Meal on May 4 by rehiring  Brad’s Place for $325.00.  Unfortunately our MC budget lacks $197.55 to cover that sum.  We are requesting that, if possible, you send a check to The First Church of Deerfield for whatever sum you wish and in the memo line please write:  “For the Mission Committee’s Budget”.  If we receive a surplus then the extra will remain in the budget for further use.  As always, multiple thank yous for your attention and consideration to this worthy event.



BE A PART OF OUR MINISTRY

If you have found spiritual sustenance at the Brick Church (or the Brickless Church!), and you would like to be part of our ministry and mission, we hope you will consider making a donation or pledge in support to the First Church of Deerfield.

MAKE A PLEDGE
or
GIVE NOW

or send check to: The First Church of Deerfield, P.O. Box 276, 71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342)



The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.



April 25, 2021

THE FIRST CHURCH OF DEERFIELD
“The Brick Church”  / “The Brickless Church”

Good morning (or afternoon, or evening) and welcome to worship. The Brick Church Meeting House remains closed due to coronavirus response measures, and so we invite you to worship with us here — in the Brickless Church.

Whoever you are, wherever you may be (figuratively or literally), you are welcome here.



All today’s photographs were taken yesterday at Walking Cloud Farm, Shelburne Falls, MA.


ORDER OF WORSHIP
Sunday, April 25, 2021

4th Sunday of Eastertide
PRELUDE
Prelude on Amazing Grace  P. Pindar Sterns
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ

CALL TO WORSHIP
Psalm 100
Rev. Liza B Knapp

HYMN
Now the Green Blade Rises
Karen Smith Emerson, soprano & Marc Dancer, recorder

AFFIRMATION
Each week of Eastertide, our worship will include an affirmation from a different part of our spiritual traditions. Today’s is one of the best-known and best-beloved — not a creed in the usual sense of the word, but rather a profound affirmation of trust in God’s loving presence: 

Psalm 23 
(read by Liza)

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters;
he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths
for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no evil;
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff–
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.

Surely goodness and mercy shall pursue me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
forever.

PAUSE FOR CONTEMPLATION

rest here in openness,
for a moment, or more

REFLECTION
Feeding Lambs
Rev. Knapp
PRAYER

Tender Shepherd,
When we get lost — look for us.
When we are in danger — protect us.
When we are hungry — nourish us.
When our friends go astray — help us bring them home.
And if we didn’t notice they were missing — forgive us,
and teach us to keep better watch over one another.
Amen.

 

MEDITATION (IN MEMORIAM)

Still Waters
From Sally Laubin: “My cousin Paul Laubin died March 1; he was the present maker of the world famous Läubin oboe so this is a loss to the whole music world not just our family. This video was made by the CT River (you may recognize the spot) as Paul was born in Hartford Hospital which looks out over the CT River. The music is Satie (you may recognize that too) played by the Boston Pops with Alfred Genovese playing the solo on his Läubin oboe. I envision this video as a way of honoring all those we have lost during this ‘400-day Lent.’”

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
April 25, 2021

shared by Mary Dancer

OFFERING

“If anyone has the world’s goods and sees their sibling in need, yet closes their hand, how does God’s love abide in them? Little children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and in truth.”
1st Letter of John 3:17-18

(To make a donation to the First Church of Deerfield, or to donate to our Community Meal, see Announcements below.)

ANTHEM
United We Are!
FCD Choir and Deerfield Chorus

DEDICATION

May these gifts
be a sign of our gratitude,
that you are steadfast in your love;
and a sign of our intent,
to be more steadfast in ours.
Amen.

HYMN
Amazing Grace
Karen Smith Emerson, soprano & Marc Dancer, bass

BLESSING

God be with you ‘til we meet again;
by Her counsels guide, uphold you,
with Her sheep securely fold you.
God be with you,
‘til we meet again.

POSTLUDE
All Glory be to God on High  N.A. Vetter



ANNOUNCEMENTS



A Request from the Mission Committee

The Mission Committee will again host a Community Meal on May 4 by rehiring  Brad’s Place for $325.00.  Unfortunately our MC budget lacks $197.55 to cover that sum.  We are requesting that, if possible, you send a check to The First Church of Deerfield for whatever sum you wish and in the memo line please write:  “For the Mission Committee’s Budget”.  If we receive a surplus then the extra will remain in the budget for further use.  As always, multiple thank yous for your attention and consideration to this worthy event.



BE A PART OF OUR MINISTRY

If you have found spiritual sustenance at the Brick Church (or the Brickless Church!), and you would like to be part of our ministry and mission, we hope you will consider making a donation or pledge in support to the First Church of Deerfield.

MAKE A PLEDGE
or
GIVE NOW

or send check to: The First Church of Deerfield, P.O. Box 276, 71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342)



The First Church of Deerfield
an inclusive, inquisitive congregation of
the United Church of Christ
and the Unitarian Universalist Association

Rev. Liza B. Knapp, Pastor
deerfieldpastor@gmail.com
office@firstchurchofdeerfield.org.
Dr. Thomas Pousont, Director of Music Ministry
Tom Mershon, Sexton
Pat Auchard, Office Administrator
Ann Hallstein, Pastor Emerita

If you wish to make a donation in support of our ministry,
text “GIVE” to (413) 307-3730 or click below:
https://fcd.breezechms.com/give/online.

First Church in the News

under construction

Welcome to The First Church of Deerfield

Ours is a spacious faith, with room enough for questions and diversity of belief. We are a congregation of people from assorted religious backgrounds, joined not by a formal creed but by our shared purpose, to love God and neighbor. Our theology is moderate to liberal, based solidly in the traditions of our two denominations, the United Church of Christ and the Unitarian Universalist Association. As our church covenant states, “we cordially invite to our fellowship any who, while differing from us in belief, are willing to unite with us for worship and service . . . .”

Your Faith Journey Matters!

Whether searching for a faith community is a new venture for you, or you’re looking for a new church home for yourself or your entire family, our congregation welcomes you to join in the life long study of faith. Having a UCC/UUA affiliation, we are open to all, no matter where you on on your faith journey. Opportunities for adults, youth and children will assist in your lifelong process of growing in relationship with God, self, others, and all creation.

Advent at Home – 2020

ADVENT AT HOME

To help us celebrate Advent during the pandemic, our deacons have prepared a special Advent-at-Home goody bag for our members and friends. (If you are local, and don’t yet have yours, please contact us to arrange pickup or delivery! If you are farther afield, we invite you to find your own materials, and improvise!)

What’s in the bag?

Inside the bag are a variety of materials to help you celebrate Advent at home. Each Wednesday of Advent  we will send out a message inviting you to prepare for the coming Sunday’s worship with a special activity.

Preparing for Advent I – Sunday, November 29
Prepare Your Advent Candles!

One of the beloved traditions of our Advent worship is the weekly lighting of the Advent candles — symbols of hope, peace, joy, and love.  This year, we remember that the advent wreath was a tradition practiced at home, even before it became part of our church rituals. We invite you to join in this centuries-old tradition! Each week, as we worship online, let us light our candles at home — apart, yet together.

In your “Advent-at-Home” bag you will find four votive candles — three white, and one pink — one for each Sunday of Advent, representing Hope, Peace, Joy and Love.  Your Advent activity for this week is to prepare an Advent “wreath” — a special (and safe) place for the weekly lighting of the candles during Sunday worship.  Your arrangement can be as traditional or creative as you like. Then, on Sunday, be sure to have a match or lighter handy as you begin your worship at the ‘Brickless’ Church, so we can light our candles at home, together. Or, create your own ritual at home.

 

Preparing for Advent II – Sunday, December 6
Building Peace!

On the second Sunday of Advent, we light a candle for Peace. As we prepare for this Sunday, we invite you build a symbol of peace, from the pieces of origami paper in your Advent-at-Home kit. (If you don’t have a kit, you may use any square piece of paper; it is best if it is colored on one side.) You will find a clear, step-by-step video lesson here:
Origami Peace Crane Instructions

It’s easy to do — even your pastor managed to follow these instructions! When you are done, send us a photo, and we will share it in next week’s announcements! Then, perch your peace crane somewhere in your home where you will see it daily.  Let your peace crane be a reminder, that we are called not just to enjoy peace, but to build it.

 

Preparing for Advent IV – Sunday, December 13
Sharing Joy!

On the third Sunday of Advent, we light a candle for Joy. This week, we invite you to join in one of the joyful rituals
of Advent — decorating the tree!  In your Advent-at-Home kits, you will find two clear ornaments — empty, waiting to be filled by you. Open yours up, and fill it with some word or scene or token of the season (see examples below for inspiration!). Then close the ornament tight, lining up the little holes.  Thread a paperclip through the holes, and you are ready…..

….to hang your ornament on the  OUTDOOR CHRISTMAS TREE at the Brick Church!  Since we cannot invite the neighbors this year, we are spreading the cheer outside our doors with a tree on the front steps. Our Sexton/Stylist, Tom Mershon, will be setting up the tree this Saturday, so come by anytime after to see it — and add your own personal ornament to its branches!

 

 

 

 

Preparing for Advent IV – 
Welcoming Love!
This Sunday, we light a candle for love — the Love that welcomes us all. In your Advent-at-Home bag, you will find a white paper bag, and a battery-operated candle. Put them together, and you have… luminaria! You can personalize your luminaria by adding artwork or decorations, or by cutting or punching holes for the light to shine through.

On Christmas Eve, we invite you to place your luminaria in a window, where it will shine in welcome for all to see. Or — if you wish — stop by the Brick Church on  Christmas Eve, and place your luminaria on the steps by our Christmas Tree.

Worship with Us

Join us for Worship and children’s Sunday School at 10:00 a.m. on Sundays followed by Fellowship.

For more information call:
413-773-5323

 

From the North: take I-91 South to exit 25 and turn left at the end of the ramp. At the stop sign, turn left onto Routes 5 and 10 and proceed north for approximately four miles. Turn left at the “Historic Deerfield” sign onto Main Street and proceed about a half mile to the church.

From the South: take I-91 North to Massachusetts exit 24 and turn right at the end of the exit ramp. Head north on Routes 5 and 10 for five miles, turning left at the “Historic Deerfield” sign onto Main Street. The church is will be on the left after about a half a mile.