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Shenkel United Church of Christ


February 2017

SHENKEL UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST 1580 Shenkel Road Pottstown, PA 19465


Shenkel United Church of Christ’s “The NEWSLETTER” is a monthly publication prepared, edited, and mailed by the leadership and staff to all members and friends of the church. It communicates news about our life, purpose, and mission as a Church of Jesus Christ. Information related to our partnership as a member of the United Church of Christ and wider church/community outreach is included on a regular basis. The Church is located at Unionville & Shenkel Roads in North Coventry Township.

February 2017 Sun






*Sunday Music Makers:

* Thursday Choirs:

Musical Celebrations: 10:45—11:15 Youth Choir: 11:45

Chime Choir: 6:30– 7:30 PM Chancel Choir: 7:30—9:00 PM



Agape: 7 PM at Freda’s home

Lenten Planning: 5:30 PM in Social Hall















Home School Co-Op

Sewing Circle: 9:30 AM

Sunday Music Makers*

12 Sunday Music Makers* Youth Sunday School: 10:30 Homeless Drop In Shelter: 1-5 PM

19 Healing Prayers at the Gathering Sunday Music Makers*


9 Choirs*



Home School Co-Op


Stewardship Card Making Meeting: 6 PM Class: 10 AM Consistory Meeting: 6 PM

20 Home School Co-Op

21 Sewing Circle: 9:30 AM Mid-Day Dinner Club: Noon at the Ridge Restaurant

Inquirer’s Class: 10:40 AM



Youth Sunday School: 10:30

Home School Co-Op

Sunday Music Makers*

Community Meal: Noon at Christ Episcopal Church in Pottstown





23 Choirs*


1580 Shenkel Road, Pottstown PA 19465 610.326.3535 Email: CHURCH STAFF Pastor: Rev. Bonnie L. Moore Director of Music Ministry: Kaitlyn Waterson Organist: Susan Royer Office Administrator: Judy Embriani Sexton: Stacey Keim COVENANTED MINISTERS IN MISSION Rev. Wanda D. Craner, Gestalt Pastoral Care Minister and Trainer Gestalt Pastoral Care Associates Rev. Eric Confer Martens, Chaplain, The Village CONSISTORY President: Julie Zachesky Vice President: Sandy Peterman Secretary: Dave Derman Treasurer: Ken Bevan Financial Secretary: Chris Gray Assistant Financial Secretaries: Doug Allen Judy Embriani Elders: Sherri Mocarski Kim Yocom Julie Zachesky Brenda Berriker Deacons: Dave Derman Sandy Peterman Jenn Hauze MINISTERS All the members of the church

The Pastor’s Pen

Pastor Bonnie L. Moore 484.524.8280

Office Hours: Tues., Wed., Thurs. 9 AM to 1 PM

“For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light.” -Ephesians 5:8 On Christmas Day, 2000, there was a solar eclipse – an occasion where the moon passes between the sun and the earth. It strikes me as ironic that this particular astrological phenomenon, that had not occurred since 1954 and will not occur again until 2372, would have happened on December 25, the very day that Christians celebrate the coming of the Light that no darkness can overcome. Granted, the 2000 Christmas Day eclipse was only a partial eclipse; only 55% of the sun was covered at the height of the eclipse. If you were around that day, unless you heard or read about it in the news, you probably wouldn’t have noticed that it even occurred. Because… and this is the epiphany, the aha! moment for me – according to meteorologists, even if only 1% of the sunlight was able to get through to the earth, human beings would have seen no difference in brightness, because any single part of the sun shines with brightness equivalent to the entire sun. During this season of Epiphany, which runs through February 28th this year, we are challenged to remember that even when things seem very dark – when we’ve lost our health or a loved one, when we are confronted with frightening political events, when we are overwhelmed by the challenges of everyday living – the Light whose coming we celebrate every Christmas can never be overcome by darkness. Even when many things come between the source of that light and our lives so that only a little bit of light can get through, the power of that light is not diminished. That Light will always be in our midst. So let us journey through this season as children of light, keeping our eyes open for glimpses of hope and love and life in this world, and keeping our lives open to reflect the light that we find into places where Jesus’ promise needs to be heard again: “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12) Be God’s, Pastor Bonnie

Newsletter Editor: Judy Embriani

Assistant Editor: Bill Baseley


SHENKEL UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST “Flours” is a collection of pantry items or a monetary donation of your discretion to the Cluster. If a cash donation to the Cluster is made, a wheat arrangement will be placed on the altar. Food Sculptures are also gladly accepted. Altar flowers are $30.00 and bulletin dedications are $6.50.

You can also dedicate a Choir Anthem with a donation of $30. With ever-increasing costs of choral music, this sponsorship will help stretch our budget and continue to bring quality music to Shenkel. Dedicate your anthem to someone special, an event in your life, or just to the fact that you love music. Thank you for this needed contribution to Shenkel. Blue envelopes are in the Narthex for your sponsorships. There are many dates open for sponsorship and dedication during this and the upcoming months. Please complete one of the special flower/bulletin/anthem envelopes below the sign-up chart, enclose your payment, and either put it in the collection plate or in the secretary’s box by the office door. You should sign your name on the chart in the narthex by the appropriate date after you have completed your envelope.

HOLY COMMUNION Shenkel UCC celebrates the sacrament of Holy Communion at both services on the first Sunday of each month. Each time communion is served, some of the bread and nonalcoholic wine that has been consecrated at the altar will be saved in a traveling communion kit, ready to go to the homes or hospital rooms of members who were unable to be present, and would like to receive the sacrament. Please let Pastor Bonnie know if you, or someone you know, would appreciate “distance-communing” with their Shenkel Church family!

& We are in need of both ushers and readers for the 9:30 service. Please look for the signup charts and pick a Sunday/Sunday(s) that fits your schedule. You will discover the joy of participating in our worship!

AGAPE The Agape group continues to meet on the first Wednesday of each month at 7 PM at Freda Wanner's home. Our next date is Wednesday, February 1st. Our time together includes a guided meditation, and time for prayer with each other. We continue to welcome anyone to join us! If you have any questions about this group, please call Joan Palubinsky at 610-451-4849.

Healing prayers are offered on the third Sunday of each month at the Gathering. The Prayer Chain list is continually being updated. Request for prayers should be placed in the prayer box in the Narthex, or get in touch with any member of the Wholeness Committee. If anyone has a special prayer request, or is interested in ministering on the Prayer Chain, please contact Sandy Rowe at 610-323-8596 or Joan Palubinsky at 610-451-4849. Prayer requests will be carried for one month.

The Adult Sunday School Class Meets every Sunday morning in the Social Hall immediately following the Gathering Service.



December & January Consistory Highlights     

Received a thank you for our donation of $488 to the Christmas Fund Approved a church membership to the UCC Musician’s Association Received an update about our Homeless Ministry and the drop-in shelter – the ministry is being very well supported! Discussed the lighting in the parking lot Discussed possible options for updating Shenkel’s sign

Complete copies of Consistory Minutes are available from the church office upon request.

DO YOU HAVE NEWS FOR THE BULLETIN OR THE NEWSLETTER? All bulletin announcements should be at the church office by each Tuesday at noon to be included in that week’s bulletin. Newsletter articles must be submitted by February 15th to be included in the March newsletter.

ATENTION SHOPPERS! Our gift card fundraisers continue to be a BIG success! This is easy money with no extra costs or strings attached. Purchase cards for groceries that you will be buying anyway. The church receives 5% back on all cards purchased. Redner’s cards are available in $10, $20, $25, $50 and $100 denominations. Giant cards are available in all increments of $5.

RECYCLING REMINDER… We are still accepting aluminum cans at the church for recycling. Please bring aluminum cans only to church for recycling

Purchase and pick up your cards weekly between services in the narthex or, if you prefer, place your order with payment in the offering plate for delivery the following week (envelopes are in the narthex). Once again, over $2,000 was applied toward current expenses from gift cards purchased in 2016 . Let’s make 2017 an even bigger success!


Current Fund



All figures were presented in the 2016 Annual Report at the Annual Congregational Meeting on January 29th.


Copies of the Annual Report are available from the church office.

We exceeded Shenkel’s goal for our Christmas donation to the Pottstown Cluster. Over 300 pounds of brown sugar were donated to the Cluster for the Christmas food baskets that were distributed throughout the Pottstown community. Thank you to all who contributed!


MAKING MUSIC AT SHENKEL UCC…. An Update from the Choir Director:

At Shenkel U.C.C., we have several different musical ensembles in which to participate. Among them are the Chancel, Chime, and Youth Choirs, as well as the newly formed Celebration Singers. You are welcome to join us any time - the New Year is a great time to try something new! Chancel Choir (adult choir)- Rehearsals are held on Thursday evenings from 7:30-9:00 in the sanctuary at Shenkel. All are welcome and encouraged to attend (no previous choral experience is necessary)! The Chancel Choir sings every week (with a few exceptions) and leads the Christmas and Easter Cantatas. Chime Choir- Practices are held on Thursday evenings from 6:30-7:30 in the Social Room. This ensemble is open to adults and youth who are in 6th grade and older. If you enjoyed participating in the Outdoor Chime Benediction this last summer, then this group is for you!

**WANTED: CHIME CHOIR SUBSTITUTES** This is on an as-needed, per diem basis. Flag me down for further details! :-) Youth Choir- Rehearsals for this ensemble are held on Sunday afternoons from 11:45-12:45 (following Sunday School) in the sanctuary for students in 7th-12th grade. The Youth Choir also participates in the Christmas and Easter Cantatas. Celebration Singers- A newly formed group consisting of children in kindergarten through 6th grade, rehearsals for this ensemble is currently held on Sunday mornings during "Musical Celebrations" from 10:45-11:15. See below for further details: In light of Sunday School currently undergoing a bit of construction, Susan Royer and I have decided to start up a bit of musical programming for Shenkel's young singers. Musical Celebrations will meet on Sunday mornings after the 9:30 Gathering Time from 10:45-11:15. Children who attend will sing, learn to play musical instruments, and will get to play several musical games, all the while fostering their spiritual growth. Musical Celebrations is open to children in Kindergarten through 6th grade. We hope that your children will join us - it's going to be a lot of fun! (Note: this programming is not a replacement to Sunday School) Susan and I would love to see your kids there! If you have interest in any of these ensembles, please come talk to me before or after a service! I would be more than happy to answer your question In Christ, Kaitlyn 267-566-6973

Inquirer’s Class Would you like to be a part of planning for Lent and Easter this year?? Join Susan, Kaitlyn and Pastor Bonnie in the Social Hall at 5:30 on February 2 for a one hour meeting to flesh out the theme, music and other details of worship during these holy seasons! Everyone’s ideas and input will be welcome!

Are you, or do you know someone, who might be interested in becoming a member of Shenkel UCC? Invite them to join us following the Gathering (approximately 10:40 – 11:40) on Sundays February 19 and March 5 to get the “inside scoop” about Shenkel, the United Church of Christ, and to find out what membership is all about. Please let the church office or Pastor Bonnie know if you, or someone you know, are planning to attend.



The Special Offering Pottstown Cluster News The Cluster welcomes all cash and food donations between the hours of 8:30 am to 12:00 pm on Monday through Friday. We are located at 57 North Franklin Street in Pottstown. Please come to the back door off the alley. Parking spaces at the rear of the building are reserved for people dropping off donations.

for February will benefit the Camp and Retreat Scholarship Fund. This fund will continue to provide opportunities for our children and youth to be involved in church camping programs and retreats wherever and whenever available. For further information, contact the church office.

Pantry & Dry Goods: Dry Goods is accepting Personal Hygiene/Cleaning Supply Items and Clothing Items - in season, clean, new and/or gently used.

Specific items needed: tomato products, canned soup, cereal, macaroni and cheese, jelly, canned fruit, plastic bags and egg cartons, laundry detergent and all purpose cleaner (small containers), dish soap, shampoo/conditioner, paper towels, twin and queen size sheets new/used (must be clean), blankets, and comforters.

Supporting theVillage….

The Pottstown Cluster Food Bank collection at Shenkel is the 1st Sunday of each month. Please place your items in the large plastic bins in the narthex.

On Sunday, February 5, the Rev. Eric Confer Martens, Chaplain at theVillage and one of Shenkel’s Covenanted Ministers in Mission, will be leading us in worship, and sharing with us about his ministry with the children and youth he serves at theVillage. We will receive a special offering that day, per our covenant with Eric, to support theVillage and its mission: to reach the most vulnerable members of our communities to promote the healing of the spirits of children, families and communities broken by trauma including violence, neglect, addiction, poverty, mental illness, racism and other serious societal problems. Let us be generous in helping theVillage fulfill their mission!

AND...Please bring in your used cell phones and empty ink cartridges and place them in the box across from the nursery, or in the box located on the coat rack shelf across from the office. The cartridges are recycled to Staples, and the church receives credits toward the purchase of office supplies. The used cell phones are given to the police department to be distributed to abused women.

Note: Although the Rev. Wanda Craner, our other Covenanted Minister in Mission, will be preaching at Shenkel on February 12, we will wait until later this year to hear an update about her ministry with the Gestalt Pastoral Care Associates and to receive an offering for that organization.

Please know that certain items such as coffee, tea, peanut butter, sugar, artificial sweetener and baking products are always needed. Please visit: for complete information as to what is currently happening at the Cluster in the way of events and special needs. VOLUNTEERS ARE SORELY NEEDED IN MANY DIFFERENT CAPACITIES. Please consider offering your time.




The Prayer Shawl Ministry This group does not meet at any specific time, but works on the shawls at home, then the Agape group blesses them and they are stored in the Agape room until they find a "home." Please contact Joan Palubinsky (610-4514849), Pastor Bonnie, or any member of the Agape group if you know of someone you feel would enjoy receiving one of these (does not need to be a member of Shenkel). Also, anyone interested in helping to knit or crochet we would love to have you joining us! If you don't knit or crochet, yarn donations are greatly appreciated.

SHENKEL SUNDAY DROP-IN SHELTER FOR THE HOMELESS Shenkel will continue to host a Sunday homeless drop-in shelter on the second Sunday of the month here in the social hall. This is an important ministry because while the homeless have various places and programs to go to during the week and on Saturdays, there was a gap in coverage on Sunday afternoons. Shenkel UCC and Cedarville UMC have agreed to fill this gap and bring folks in from the cold. We will be hosting our homeless guests every second Sunday of the month between the hours of 1pm to 5PM. The program will run all the way through April 9th. What will you do during your shift? Here are some examples:  First and foremost, just be present. If you come out, sit quietly in the corner and doodle or crochet, that is perfectly fine. It really is that simple.  Play board games and cards  Have conversations and listen. Talk about sports. Talk about politics. Talk about anything. The sky is the limit, and the folks really appreciate being heard.  Watch TV. Now that we have a new TV system, we can watch movies, and are even looking for ways to hook up cable to watch sports/football.

Donate snacks and drinks.


Volunteers may sign up on the sheet in the narthex for a slot and/or to bring a food/drink item to share.

MID-DAY DINNER CLUB Shenkel's Mid-Day Dinner Club meets at 12 noon on the third Tuesday of each month – and you’re invited to join us! Our next event will be on Tuesday, February 21st at noon, and we will meet at the Ridge Restaurant on Route 23, just east of Route 100. Mid-Day Dinner Club is open to young-at-heart adults of any age who enjoy eating out and would like to get to know other Shenkel members a little better. If you are a “regular” and plan to come, please remember to check off your name on the plate in the narthex no later than the Sunday before the lunch so your reservation can be made on time. If you are a “newbie,” please call the church office no later than the Thursday before (or just add your name to the plate on Sunday) if you’re able to join us!

SHENKEL SEWING CIRCLE The Shenkel Sewing Circle will meet in February on Tuesday the 7th and Tuesday the 21st at 9:30 in the Church Social Hall. We are a great, chatty group of ladies; so come and warm-up your spirit with us. I always leave with a positive feeling about my day! You can bring anything you are working on or just come to see what we are about….which is enjoying each other! Margie Allen 610-326-1519

CARD MAKING CLASS The card making class meets on the third Thursday of each month at 10 AM in our social hall. The cost of the class is $8.00 which provides each participant with three beautiful cards. The next meeting date is Thursday, February 16th at 10 a.m. in the Social Hall. To insure there will be enough materials prepared for everyone, please call Connie Armbruster at 610-326-6516, if you plan to attend.


Shenkel United Church of Christ Submissions for 2017 Elected Offices In the United Church of Christ, we value the concept of “the call” of persons into various ministries in the life of the church. A call is affirmed by the church through acknowledgement of gifts for particular ministries, and the acceptance of the call as having come from God, guided by the Holy Spirit. After reviewing the qualifications and responsibilities of elected officials below, you are invited to submit names for consideration for the various elected offices. You may also submit your own name if you feel called to a particular position. All submissions must be received by the church office by March 12, 2017. Shenkel’s Nominating Committee will review all names submitted as potential candidates for the positions that need to be filled. Seeking to recruit a balanced slate of candidates, they will select persons for nomination to the various positions and invite those candidates to stand for election at the April Congregational Meeting on Sunday, April 30, 2017. You do not need to ask people whose names you submit if they are willing to serve; the Nominating Committee will do that as they finalize the slate of candidates. A Summary of the Qualifications and Responsibilities of Elected Officials In accordance with the Constitution and By-laws of Shenkel UCC, the Consistory is composed of five Deacons, five Elders, and the Pastor. These members have agreed to maintain the care and control of Shenkel Church and Cemetery as a sacred trust for the congregation. The By-laws also provide guidelines for the six members of the Board of Christian Education. Deacons and Elders –

 are active members of Shenkel UCC  may serve up to two consecutive two year terms; to be eligible for the office of Elder, it is    

recommended but not required that a person have been a Deacon for at least one term attend monthly Consistory meetings and work with other committees when needed transact the business of the church on financial as well as spiritual levels assist the Pastor in the distribution of Communion are responsible for maintaining accurate membership records

Board of Christian Education Members –  are active members of Shenkel UCC  may serve up to two consecutive two year terms  attend monthly meetings and work with other committees  provide for the educational ministry of the church  help in the recruitment of teachers and staff for Sunday School  provide leadership when choosing curriculum and activities for Sunday School and other educational ministries of the church 2017 Submissions Deacons:

Elders :

Board of Christian Education:













Please list any additional names on another page. Thank you!



Britnee Sanseverino


Barry Miller


Jesse Painter


Sandra Peterman




Anna Shenk


Nicole Miller


Doug Allen






Sherri Dushanko




Bill Sanseverino




Isheunesu Chidawu


Gary McDermit


Kathy Iezzi


COMMUNITY LUNCH BUNCH Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 11:30 AM At our next event on Thursday, March 2, 2017, we will be entertained by "The Amazing Magi." Michael L. Reist is an ordained minister who believes that God wants all of us to experience a little magic in our lives. He uses mind blowing illusions, sleight of hand, puppets, balloons and much more to bring enjoyment to his audiences. Plan to attend in order to reconnect with friends, enjoy good food and be amazed by mystifying magic. Come and bring a friend.

All participants are asked to contribute $7.00 to cover the cost of the lunch and the program. Please sign up on the sheet in the narthex, or call the Shenkel UCC church office at 610-326-3535 by the Monday prior to the program to reserve your spot. For more information please call Connie Armbruster at 484-948-8851 or Sam Wilson at 610-323-1637

During the month of February, Shenkel will be praying for these randomly selected members and friends of our congregation: 2/5

Jayden Viti David, Lynn and Kate Derman Frank and Lori Brewer Ann Hartzell


Rachel Berriker June Hartung Cameron Dushanko Sharon, Robert, Ella, Adelynn and Aaron Woodman Ray and Sandy Rowe


Eric Klein Doug and Margie Allen Carol Lykens Kay Ellis Mary Sue Moyer


Lucas Gray Kevin, Joanne, Justin, Madelyn Murphy Taylor Baker Joel and Jody Sweinhart Henry and Carolyn Bailey

Please Join Us for our 1st Monthly Community Pasta Dinner FEBRUARY 22, 2017 $6.00 per person, kids 8 and under eat free! Serving from 6:00 – 7:00 PM

Dinner will be held the fourth Wednesday of each month. Shenkel UCC, 1580 Shenkel Road, Pottstown PA 19465

Shenkel UCC Feb 17  

Shenkel UCC Newsletter Feb 17

Shenkel UCC Feb 17  

Shenkel UCC Newsletter Feb 17