This Week in PNEC --- December 8, 2016 - December 16, 2016 


431 Delaware Ave., Palmerton, PA18071; website

610-826-3113; FAX 610-826-5464

Alan Miller                            Gilberto Garcia Rodriguez   

Barbara Jennings             Patty Rehrig



PNEC's 2016 Closing Date will be Friday January 13, 2017

Please plan your closing so that your final 2016 remittance will be received in the Conference Office by Friday, January 13, 2017.  Receipts received after the 13th will be credited to 2017.  Do not include 2016 remittances with 2017 and make certain remittance slips are marked for either the year 2016 or 2017.  Thank you for your cooperation and support.

2017 Annual Meeting of the Penn Northeast Conference will be
Saturday, April 29, 2017, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  -
St. John's UCC,  1415 Rising Sun Road, Laurys Station, PA
Call to General Synod 31
     I am officially calling all delegates, visitors, and friends of General Synod 31 to join us in Baltimore, MD June 30 - July 4, 2017.
     As always, Synod promises to be an inspiring and engaging event. Our keynote speakers include Aaron Mair, environmentalist and the first African American president of the Sierra Club, and Glennon Doyle Melton, activist, philanthropist, and author of the best-selling Carry On, Warrior and Love Warrior.
     Preachers in worship include Amy Butler, Sr. Minister at The Riverside Church in New York; David Vasquez-Levy, President of the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley; Kimberly Kendrick, Sr. Co-Pastor at Church of the Living Water in Philadelphia; and myself.
     Consistent with our theme, "Make Glad!" - we intend to make the experience one that infuses participants with joy. We will celebrate what it is that makes the United Church of Christ one of this nation's most consistent agents for social transformation. We will seek to articulate a vision and a hope for a future in partnership with God's Holy Spirit, a future that engages us in a mission that matters.
     We will celebrate in song, dance, art, and worship what it is that our Creator shares with us each day that comes as a blessing.
     We will celebrate the rich diversity of thought, mind, body and spirit that is made evident when we come together in one place.
     This will be our first opportunity to gather at Synod with a new Purpose, Mission, and Vision statement. In a spirit of true discipleship and discernment, we will explore together what commitments to love God and neighbor, to welcome all, and to build a just world for all looks like and requires of us.
     We are a people who share core values of extravagant welcome, of continuing testament, and of changing lives. My hope and prayer is that all who join us in Baltimore will:
* feel that extravagant welcome;
* open their hearts and minds to hear the new word God is speaking to this people, in this place, at this time;
* discover who it is that we are called to serve and how it is we can partner with them to change lives and change the world.
     Bring a spirit of love, of compassion, of openness, and of hope with you. I look forward to seeing you in Baltimore. Until then, let the light of the living Christ shine in and through you, and be known to all whom you meet along the way.
See you in Baltimore,
John C. Dorhauer, General Minister & President
PNEC-UCC Penn Northeast Conference will be hosting a
Pre-Retirement Seminar sponsored by The Pension Boards United Church of Christ on
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
at Jordan United Church of Christ
1837 Church Road, Allentown.
Registration and additional information will be mailed by The Pension Boards approx. two months before the event.
The PNEC will host a day of
Education with Martha Spong
February 14th with a snow date of February 21 St. John's Fullerton
9:00AM to 3:00PM
     "Power and Place in Women's Stories" will take a deep and wondering look at the stories of the women who anoint Jesus, as well as where we figure in our own stories.
Children's Sermon for
         for Dec. 11:  (to go with Third Sunday of Advent's theme of Joy)  Items needed:  a yellow and a red M & M, then, enough  M & Ms to give each child two different-colored ones. Start  with the yellow M & M in one hand and the red one in the other.  Then start walking away from kids and accidentally drop the yellow one.  Pretend you can't find it and let kids show you where it is.  After you've retrieved, say:  I can lose this M & M because it can slip out of my hand (drop again and pick up.)  Then show kids the red M & M and swallow (or pretend to) it  whole.  Now, I can't lose the red M & M, because it is inside me.  Explain that the yellow M & M is like happiness--sometimes I have it, and sometimes I lose it , when things happen that I don't like.   But the red M & M is something believers call joy--I can't lose joy, because joy is inside me, because the Spirit of God/Jesus, is inside me.  Whether I am happy, or unhappy, I can remember that the Spirit of God is inside me, that I belong to God, and that can help me have joy, whether I feel happy or unhappy.  Then give each child two different colored M & Ms and ask them to keep one in their hand, to remind them of happiness that can be held or lost, but eat the other (CHEWING it) to remind them that God's Spirit is inside each of us whether we are happy or not.        
- Rev. David Quinn
announcement ANNOUNCEMENTS &
 Congratulations to Sharon and Joe Harfman on the birth of their first grandchild. Olivia was born on Wednesday, December 7, in Queens, NY, to Sharon's son, Adi Joseph and his wife, Chantal Fernandez. Olivia weighed 7 lbs. 10 oz. and 21 inches in length. Sharon is the pastor of Church of the Manger, Bethlehem.

Our condolences to Steve Engelhardt and his family upon the death of Steve's dad, Douglas Engelhardt, on December 3 in Paducah, KY
Service of Interest...
January 8 - 3:00PM - INSTALLATION - Licensed Minister, Henry Distler will be installed as full-time pastor at St. John's UCC, Slatington
January 15 -3:00PM - INSTALLATION - Licensed Minister Jim Stanley will be installed at St. John's UCC, Wapwallopen (as pastor at St. John's, Wapwallopen & St. Peter's (Hobbie), Wapwallopen
January 22 - 11:00AM - INSTALLATION - Rev. John Heeckt will be installed as pastor at St. John's UCC (Farmersville), Easton
UPCOMING DATES            

8 - (Thursday) - 6PM - PNEC Board of Directors - Conf. Office
12 - 10AM - Licensing/Commissioning Member in Discernment Committee - Conf. Office
13 - 9-11:30AM - Joint Conflict Resource Team - NEPS Office
14 - 12 Noon - Allentown AMC Clergy
20 - 9:30AM - Licensed/Commissioned Ministry Committee
20 - 11:45AM - Blue Mountain AMC Clergy - Villa Lentini Ristorante, Ballietsville
21 - 9AM - Ordained Church & Ministry Committee - Conf. Office
23 - PNEC OFFICE CLOSED - Christmas Holiday
      FOR THE COMPLETE LIST OF "Upcoming Dates"
A Note About Acknowledging Contributions...
bargraph-money.jpg      For itemized charitable contributions, the IRS and the courts have been enforcing the donor substantiation requirements. The receiving organization (churches for example) must provide the donor with a timely written acknowledgement for any contributions which exceed $250 for the calendar year. The written acknowledgement must be provided to the donor at the end of each calendar year and before the tax filing deadline. The letter must contain specific language identifying whether any tangible goods or services were provided to the donor for the contribution(s). Further, it is suggested that the written acknowledgement will be helpful to your parishioners even for contributions which fall below the requirement.
     Below is an example of a written acknowledgement from a church to its contributor.
   To the Parishioner:
     XXX UCC thanks you sincerely for your generous support of $$$ to the ministry of the church. Your gifts help us provide the message of Christ's kingdom throughout our community. No tangible goods or services were given in exchange for these contributions.
     This acknowledgement reflects your total charitable contributions to XXX UCC during the 20YY calendar year. A copy of your annual giving statement is included detailing your gifts. This letter should be retained for your tax files.
Yours in Christ,

Save The Dates...       


Boundary Training Workshops

October 4, 2017

8:30AM Registration

9:00AM to 3:00PM Workshop

St. John's UCC, 183 S. Broad St., Nazareth

Host Pastor:  Rev. Jeff Brinks


October 5, 2017

8:30AM Registration

9:00Am to 3:00PM Workshop

Faith UCC, 21 Faith Drive, Hazleton

Host Pastor:  Rev. Jane Hess


More information will be announced at a later date.


Crossroads Winter Semester
 includes two courses which link together nicely or can be taken alone. 

Monday nights is Discipleship with Pam Weiss, Dir. Adult Spiritual Formation at FPC Allentown, Rev. Dr. Bill Falla, Philosophy Professor at Moravian College, and Rev. Cynthia Geyer, Dir. Youth & Young Adult Ministries, Moravian Church Eastern District. These three gifted presenters will cover history and NT foundations for Discipleship, how to structure programs for teens and young adults and also a comprehensive look at congregational discipleship programs.  
Our second Winter course, My Journey/Our Journey is a closer look at our own personal spiritual formation and then how to apply that to groups that you might be leading within your congregational.  Rev. Maggie Wellert will lead this course.
More information on either of these courses is at
contact Dr. Jill Peters at with any questions.

23rd Annual Clergy Convocation

May 2-4, 2017

Double Tree by Hilton, 2400 Willow Street Pike, Lancaster

     Guest Speaker, Rev. John C. Dorhauer

    General Minister & President of the UCC

For full flyer and registration information


Save the Date... 
  PNEC Annual Youth Retreat
May 19-21, 2017
Spruce Lake
More information will be forthcoming!


For the complete list of churches who are searching for organists, choir directors sextons, pianist, etc., etc., and also churches who are giving away items, please


What's Happening in Our Churches
(PLEASE NOTE:  We love advertising the "happenings" in our churches, however the list is getting too long for this publication.)
"What's Happening in Our Churches"