GREETINGS                                                June 15, 2017

                                    GRIP, GRAB, CLUTCH, TUSSLE

I am not a viewer or fan of WWE, but I do have a passing admiration for Olympic and varsity wrestlers. These athletes train intensely, practice constantly, and mentally and spiritually prepare for competitive matches. They all have deep regard and respect for their opponents.  That couldn't have been more true for Jacob, Esau's cheating and conniving younger brother, who, on the way to seeking a hoped-for reconciliation, wound up in an overnight grappling match with none other than God.  He held his own, survived, came out limping, but also wound up blessed and destined for a godly future. (See Genesis 32:22-31)

Laid-back faith that plays it safe, that endeavours to stride through life as if in cruise control, isn't particularly fruitful, let alone spiritually healthful. An insightful book by Dan Allender was published in 1990 under the title, "The Wounded Heart". I came across this provocative and prodding excerpt recently:                                                                   
"Most assume that trust is quiet, serene, selfless dependence on God. Though there is an element of truth to that view of trust, more often than not such serene faith is a byproduct of wanting very little from God. It is frighteningly easy to appear trusting when in fact one is simply dead (in denial of the wounds, hunger, or struggle of the heart). Genuine trust involves allowing another to matter and have an impact on our lives. For that reason, many who hate and do battle with God trust God more deeply than those whose complacent faith permits an abstract and motionless stance before the Sovereign One. Those who trust God most are those whose faith permits them to risk wrestling with the Almighty over the deepest questions of life. Good hearts are captured in a divine wrestling match; fearful, doubting hearts stay clear of the mat."
What has your heart been up to, or up for lately?

In our thoughts and prayers are Judy van Duzer, Connie Kuntz, Ellen Sawesky, Diane Paton, Chris Staples and Miller Hepburn.



Sunday services
There will be no service here next Sunday.  Then from July 2nd up to and including July 23rd we will worship at Ryerson at 10am.  From July 30th to September 3rd they will worship with us here.

Summer Offering
When our congregation worships in another church, our members often find that the passing of the offering plate is an awkward experience if they are giving regularly through PAR or they would like to direct their offerings to Marshall Memorial but there are not envelopes to do so. On June 25 we will be worshipping at Bethesda and through July at Ryerson. As a trial this summer, we are going to provide you with cards denoting that givings are made through PAR, or envelopes that can be used to direct offerings to Marshall Memorial. If you prefer to support the church that we are visiting, your loose offering will go directly to them. Cards and envelopes will be available for pick-up on June 18. Please take as many as you think you will need for the five Sunday services.

Transitions Update
I know many of you are wondering just what the transitions team has been up to recently. Since this is Harry`s one year anniversary with us, I thought I'd give you a quick recap of all the work we've done as a congregation this year and where we are going from here. When we started, back in September, we created a timeline of all the activities and decisions that the Transitions Team needed to accomplish in just two short years. I am happy to say we are right on track. We began by exploring our Church identity and created the character of Regan Marshall; a 50-55 year-old in the sandwich generation at a crossroads. We delved deeper into Marshall's history during a luncheon where Harry led us through a series of reminiscences about what Marshall was like during our different pastorates. We then began the work of discerning our core values and created five: Faith Affirmed, Faith Fed and Formed, Faith Followed Through, Faith Set Free, Faith Finding Feet. We then worked through finding our motivating vision and decided on "Walking in God's Way; Serving in God's world". Most recently, in late April and May, we spent some time exploring where God might be calling us to focus our efforts in mission and outreach in the community and world around us. Responses from the congregation favoured helping people with challenges such as poverty, troubled youth, seniors in need and persons with mental illness. We will explore these possibilities further and seek to work in partnership with other area churches and local social services and community agencies. All these elements have led us to the point where we are now: almost ready to form a JNAC and begin the formal process of looking for a new minister. The transitions team is creating a ministry and mission profile that will help us to focus our search and ensure that whomever we call as our new minister will understand who we are as a church, share our values of ministry and mission and help us on our faith journey.
If anyone would like to put their name forward to be on the Joint Needs Assessment Committee, please send an email to Beth Pearson at Remember the JNAC is NOT the search committee but rather the group that writes the report for presbytery in order to begin the search process. A search committee will be convened after the JNAC report has been accepted by Presbytery.
Blessing to you all.
Leah Abbey, Chair of Transitions Committee.

Study Leave
Rev. Disher will be on study leave from Monday, June 19 through Sunday, June 25.  . In case of emergent pastoral need please contact Rev. Jeff Chalmers, Bethesda United Church, 905-902-0337,
Time out with Trees
"Time Out with Trees", an opportunity to experience guided meditation in an outdoor setting, Brockhouse Park (Fiddler's Green Rd. and Wilson St.), will recommence in July on Tuesdays at noon.  Bring a lunch along if you like.
Vacation Bible School
VBS will be Tuesday, July 4th to Friday July 7th. It is for children from SK to grade 6 and will be held at St. John's Anglican Church.  Registration forms are in the foyer or emailed from the office.
Songs at 9am

Here is a list of songs for this Sunday to "You Tube" and practice before the service.


Faith of the Heart

You Raise Me Up

My Lighthouse

Love the Lord your God

Rainbow Connection


God Is Good All The Time 

Ancaster's United Churches Celebrate Canada's 150th
On Sunday, June 25th at 10:30 a.m. Marshall Memorial will join with the congregations of Bethesda, Ryerson and Jerseyville for a combined service of worship at Bethesda Church, 584 Garner Rd W.  This gathering will celebrate the 150th Birthday of Canada through the worship, potluck picnic and games, reminiscent of an earlier day. The Marshall and Ryerson choirs will lead in traditional hymns and music. 
  • Dress casually for this service, as we will be outdoors after our time of worship.
  • Bring a food item for the potluck picnic, as well as your own beverages, plates and cutlery.
  • Don't forget your lawn chairs, and maybe some sunscreen.
  • And come ready to enjoy some fun and socializing as we participate in games together.