This spring, Ash Wednesday falls on Valentine's Day. I can't remember that ever happening before, and it turns out that is because it has NEVER happened in my lifetime. The last time Ash Wednesday was Valentine's Day was 1945! Nevertheless, it seems appropriate for Ash Wednesday to be on Valentine's Day, for how else does Jesus show us the depth of his love if not by his journey to the cross? As Jesus himself said, "No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends..." (John 15:13-14a)

What is ironic is that whenever Ash Wednesday falls on Valentine's Day, Easter falls on April Fools' Day. But again, how appropriate! Aren't we all just fools for Christ? As Paul wrote, "We are fools for Christ's sake" (I Cor. 4:10). "For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." (I Cor. 1:18)

What a crazy plan: that to show God's infinite power, His Son would be born in a stable; that to share God's love, Jesus would be despised and rejected; that to conquer death, Christ would be put to death. Yes, in the eyes of the wise of the world, this seems like foolishness, but with the eyes of faith, it reveals all we need to know - that God is merciful and kind and his plan of salvation is greater than anything of which a human mind could conceive.

This Lent, I invite you to fall head over heels in love with the Savior who loved you enough to die for you. I invite you to go out on a limb and share this crazy faith with others. I invite you to join your brothers and sisters in Christ to worship and serve as He taught us to. Then we will be ready to revel in the joy of Easter, because we will have been made ready by our Lenten journey with Jesus.

In Christian Love,
Pastor Jean 

February 4th Bring a Can of Soup for TASK 

This Sunday we will be collecting non-perishable foods for the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen as part of the nationwide Souper Bowl of Caring. Since 1990, young people have been leading the charge and inspiring others to collect dollars and food weeks leading up to the Big Game. Teaming up with local partners, these groups give 100% of donations to local charities, changing the nation's largest weekend of football into the largest weekend of caring. We hope you will join this effort to respond to our neighbors in need.

February 4th is also Scout Sunday!

United Presbyterian Church is the charter organization of Boy Scout Troop 91, members of which will be assisting in worship on Scout Sunday, February 4, at the 11 a.m. service. Please make them welcome and thank them for all they have done for the church through their work days and projects.

Come Early or Stay Late on Sunday for our Coffee Hour

Between our Communion Services on Sunday, February 4, the Worship Ministry Team will host a coffee hour in Fellowship Hall. If you come to the Traditional 11 a.m. service, plan to come early, and if you come to E3 Service at 9:30, stay afterward for fellowship and food.
UPW - will have its meeting on Tuesday, February 6, 2018 at 10:00 am in  Fellowship Hall.  A discussion of Chapter 2, entitled "God's Will Is Relationship," of the new book  Discovering God's Will For Your Life  by Sheila Walsh will take place during this meeting. All women of the church are cordially invited to join! After the meeting that is done at Noon, those women who would like to go for lunch are invited to go to a local restaurant.

On Tuesday, January 16, 2018 Session met and took the following actions:
  • Heard a presentation by Trinity Solar representatives about the costs and benefits of putting solar panels on the church. A great deal more study will be required before arriving at any decision.
  • Passed a balanced budget with information provided by Treasurer, Pete Heberling, and Financial Secretary, Karl Peterson.
  • Approved a request from Don LaCrosse to use the Bertolet Lounge for Garden State Prison Ministry meetings on the following Saturdays: 2/3, 2/10, 2/17, 2/24, and 3/3.
  • Approved a request from Little Wolf Players to use the sanctuary for performances of "Totally Rad 80's Cabaret" on Saturday, May, 12 at 2 p.m. and at 8 p.m. with the proviso that the sound system is returned to our standard settings after each audition, rehearsal and performance. Tickets will be $15 for Adults and $5 for children 7 and under. Audition and rehearsal dates were also approved.
  • Assignments for Coffee Hour and Communion were distributed.
HomeFront Logo
February Mission Spotlight
"The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go..."  Maya Angelou
For 25 years HomeFront has been helping to break the cycle of poverty by enabling homeless families to transition to permanent housing. Last year alone, 16,236 people were helped by HomeFront with food and emergency aid. They provide a food pantry, a free clothing store, and a furniture warehouse for those who have nothing, all supplied by donations. All donations marked "mission" during the month of February will be forwarded to HomeFront. Please support this worthy cause generously.
The Survivors Senior Group will meet at the church, Fellowship Hall, on  Wed., Feb.14th at 12:00 p.m.
 to play Bunco.  We ask that you bring a bag lunch and dessert or salad to share. Drinks will be provided. 
Bunco Game

  All seniors and their friends are welcome to participate in our annual Bunco afternoon.  Please contact Rita Peterson at 259-7256 or email  if you plan to attend.  I would like to thank everyone who has saved tabs for the Ronald McDonald House this past  year and ask for your continued support of this wonderful organization.
Ash Wednesday Worship, February 14, 7 p.m.

Begin your Lenten journey by coming to the Ash Wednesday Service which will be held in the sanctuary on February 14, beginning at 7 p.m. The palms from the previous Palm Sunday are burned into ashes which are placed in a cross on the believer's forehead. This reminds us of the fickleness of the crowd that acclaimed Jesus on Sunday, yet later that week shouted, "Crucify him! Crucify him!" It also is a stark reminded of our mortality - ashes to ashes, dust to dust. There is a silver lining to Ash Wednesday, in that, as we die to self, we open ourselves to living by Christ's Spirit. The penance of Lent leads to the joy of Easter. Without repentance, Easter is just another holiday, but with it, it becomes the most holy of days, when God raises Jesus from the dead and raises us to newness of life!
UP Men
UPMen - will be meeting Saturday January 20th at the Golden Dawn Diner 9:00 am. The diner is located on
February UP Men
Whitehorse-Mercerville Road, Hamilton Twp., NJ. Any questions, please contact Jim Dixon phone 609-298-3398 or email  Come on out and meet Frosty the Snowman! It will be a breakfast to remember because Frosty, the Gingerbread Boy, AND The Muffin Man will all be enjoying Christian fellowship with the men of UPC!!!
UP Women's Book Club
    The Women's  Book  Club  will meet on  Tuesday,  the 27th  of February  in the Bertolet Lounge at  7:00 pm  to discuss  our classi
c selection, HEIDI  by Johanna Spyri which was published  in 1880.  Heidi is an inspiring  story of a 5 year old orphan who is sent  to live with her mean spirited grandfather in the Alps.  We invite  all women  of  the  church  and  their friends  who  enjoy  good  books  and  fellowship  to  join us.      Our March selection is WHAT WAS MINE by Helen Klein  Ross.
UPC's Feb. Choir
UPC's Choir just presented a splendid Christmas Cantata and will beginning working on an Easter 
Cantata by Robert Lau entitled "The Cross," an artful and sensitive creation commemorating Christ's last week on earth from his triumphal Jerusalem entry and last meal with his disciples, to his agony on the cross and glorious resurrection. The familiar scriptural narration and simply designed hymn settings are woven into a seamless choral cantata, adding heightened meaning and understanding to Jesus' final journey. Rehearsal for this cantata began on Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 7:30 pm.  There is a chair for any and all who love to make music!  Come join! Dress Rehearsal will be Saturday, March 24th at 10:00 am in the Sanctuary.  Performance will be Sunday, March 25th during the 11:00 am Worship Service and there will be NO E3 service on March 25th. 
So, please come to learn, listen, and enjoy!
Feb. Thank You

Marilyn and I would like to extend a sincere thank you to all members of our congregation for your most generous suport throughout the year as well as our holiday gift.  We are truly blest because without your help and support, we would not be able to do what we do with our music ministry! So, beside your most generous gift during this time of year, our most cherished gift is YOU!!! Bless you and again, THANK YOU!
Marilyn Machmer & Mike Mraz

Since I am unable to really talk, I just want to Say Thank you for all your prayers, concerns, phone calls, cards and treats during my 17 month unusual health journey.  I have learned to be humble as this voice issue affects 1-3% of patients with a thyroidectomy.  I didn't even consider it happening. Again I was blessed with the cancer being contained in the thyroid, so no further treatment is necessary. Thank you again for being such a great " church family" and support. 

Pat Anthony

"I never stop giving thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers," (Ephesians 1:16). It is a joy and privilege for me to be your pastor, for every day I am a recipient of your many kindnesses. I have always hoped that I would be part of a church family that is as loving and supportive as the best of families, and I have been blessed that you have fulfilled that dream for me. Thank you for your Christmas gift and thank you even more for making every day joyful like Christmas!

Jean Pinto  

February Birthdays
Birthday greetings to the members and friends whose birthdays are in February.
                     1 Cassidy Angelina Luna
            4 Thomas Bates, Katie Bloodgood; Claire Wyrwas
                     5 Mary Carpenter, Christina Walter
                     7 Irene Helsel, Mary Van Dyke
                     8 Robert Conner, Robert Germond
                     9 Matthew Machin, Katelyn Yost
                   10 Sandra Neuman
12 Julie Malpas, Courtney Stanley
16 Amanda Giordano, Colton Thibodeau
17 Stella Epp, Sam Steward  
18 Jacklyn Malpas, Laura Rose Scharnitz
                   21 Kenneth DePew, John Zelazny          
22 Karl Peterson   
                   23 Kiersten Sheehan
                   24 Christina Dickson                      
                   25 Patty Guld, Mary Jane Laux
                   26 Rodney Houck
                   27 Rick Pinto

 February Calendar of Events
Click on the link below to view our February happenings.

Computer Newsletter

- for all those ill with cancer, undergoing surgery as well as treatment for cancer including Glenda Cain; Dan Rose; Pam Rose; Scott Rose; John Borak; Sue Fleming; Bud; Mike McHugh, recovering from a post-surgical infection at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia; for those awaiting test results including John Borak and Linda Ramos; for those having surgery and in recuperation including Walt; Tina; Matt Machin; Danny & Emily; Nancy; Trudy; Pat Anthony; for those in need of improved health including Frank & Marilyn Kostar; Karen & Keith Ezzo; Dot Forconi; Tony; Gloria Gardecki; Susan Anthony; Dot Brocaloni; Walt; Mary Jane, recuperating from a heart attack as well as strength for her family who are caring for her; friends of the LaCrosse family suffering from depression; Andrea Fink, severe asthma complications; The French Family; and those having personal problems like Carly Mauer; Sarah Preston, hip replacement; Edith Owens; and Lili, patience and peace.

Comfort - for the bereaved wife (Joyce), family, and friends of Joe Davies; for the Devine family on the loss of their mother in South Carolina; for the family and friends of
Tom Dwier who passed away from ALS; for the family and friends of Betsy Balyes; Amy & family on the passing of her mother; for the bereaved family of William Bohram; and for the bereaved family of Ron Fouse (brother of Rev. Terry Fouse). 
Traveling Mercies - Thanksgiving for safe travels for Karen Machin, who returned from California after taking care of her son Matt following his surgery.

Thanksgiving - For Maeve and Kaira Pinto Singh's safe
return to Israel; for healing of Michelle from upper respiratory infection and Serenity, her cat's 14th birthday, as well as all the joy she has brought Michelle; that Bill Franz has improved and is back to church; that Billy Kocis is finished 
with chemo, and continued prayer needed for effectiveness of chemo as well as a clean PET scan.
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