For the next six months we will be worshiping not in our sanctuaries but in the social halls of both campuses. First, we will be in Massapequa social hall until the end of June, then in Miles Hall in Levittown during the summer. These settings offer an opportunity for us to try different things with worship. The atmosphere is more social and more conducive to communication between the worship leaders and the people and also allows for better communication among those in attendance. Worship can be more interactive and multi-dimensional. I encourage you to offer your own thoughts and proposals about our time with God and each other on Sundays.
I urge more of you to stay for the Gathering, our hour of study and reflection that follows worship. You don’t want to miss Larry Rugen’s presentation on the Oberammergau Passion Play this Sunday, May 5. The play is performed during the summer in Germany, only once every decade, and 2020 is the next scheduled time. On May 26 we start a series on The Biggest Lie in the History of Christianity, a recent publication by Matthew Kelly that helps us understand how our faith can be strengthened and shared in the current climate of secularism and cynicism. Thanks to Marilyn Rodahan for finding this book and to Janice Kincaid for organizing and leading our discussions.
On Sunday, May 19 the congregation will host the Rev. James Rea of Bethany Presbyterian Church in Huntington Station. Rev. Rae is a long-term pastor who has served in many different capacities in the Presbytery of Long Island. Currently, Rev. Rea is a member of the Merger Commission that provides a liaison for us with Presbytery. He will preach on the 19th and then stay for a discussion with the congregation during the Gathering hour. This will be a good opportunity for all of us to learn more about what Presbytery can do to assist us as we start out on a new congregational life.
Tuesday, May 28 at noon we are invited to the third in a series of four lunches at Sweet Hollow Church with national Presbyterian workers on the subject of regenerating congregational life in aging churches. This time we will be looking at case studies of congregations that have found successful pathways into renewed life. Rev. Flannagan always likes to know the numbers who are coming, so please tell me by May 21 if you can join us.
Finally, thank you to all those of you who made Holy Week and Easter so successful. I know there is a lot of work that goes into making these services so special and memorable, and I realize there are fewer hands than their used to be to share in the preparation, so thank you so much all you good and faithful servants!