This Sunday - March 8, 2020
Join us for worship this Sunday as Rev. Kevin leads our 9am service with the Band and our 10:30 service with the Chancel Choir.

Please remember to bring canned goods for our monthly Living Rock Food collection!

If you are unable to make it to church, join us via Livestream on our website:  mmuc.org.

THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS
In our thoughts and prayers is Rev. √Čtienne. We also remember those who are battling cancer, the sick and the shut-ins.

PASTORAL CARE
If you are aware of someone in our congregation that would benefit from a visit or call from our Pastoral Care Team, kindly let the office know so that we can ensure that all of our member's needs are being met.

For Pastoral Care Emergencies please contact Rev. Kevin at:  905-979-1751  (please note the new phone number)

UPCOMING SERVICES
March 8, 15, 22, 29 - Two Services (9am & 10:30am) with Rev. Kevin
April 5 at 10am - Combined Communion Service
April 9 at 5am- Maundy Thursday - join us for a Potluck with a Communion Service following our meal
April 10 at 10am - Good Friday morning service

ANNOUNCEMENTS 

 

INCLEMENT WEATHER
It's that time of year when the weather can be a little tricky.  If the weather makes it unsafe for worship notices of cancellation will be made in the following ways:
-  The Church's phone message will state that church is cancelled (905-648-4631)
-   An email will be sent out to those that subscribe to our Newsletter
-   Our website  and our Social Media (Facebook, Twitter & Instagram)will be updated

LOCKING UP
Please remember, if you are the last to leave the Church Sunday morning or after a meeting/function, to ensure that all the doors have been locked properly and closed completely.  This means ensuring the Handicap bar has been released and the door has been pulled closed completely.  Once you leave the building, please give the door one last tug to ensure that it has in fact been locked completely as we have been having problems with it not being locked.  If you have any questions  or if unsure of procedure, please contact office to schedule a training session with one of our staff.

WESLEY SUNDAY DINNER
Thank you to all who volunteered to serve on March 8th for our Wesley Sunday dinner!! Please meet down at 195 Ferguson (still the same venue as last year) around 2 p.m. If you need a ride, please call  905 648 1671 to book your spot and I will pick you up at the church around 1:30.
Bakers, any flavor of cake will do and please ice them too. Also, please have them at church in the hall kitchen by 11 a.m. on Sunday, March 8th. Thank you all so much!!
I am always amazed at Marshall's willingness to serve in so many ways!

LENT
Spiritual Practices for Lent: Fast, Pray, Give Away
The Christian Development Committee has a number of opportunities for you to enhance your devotional life and prepare your hearts and minds for the Passion of Christ. It is our hope and prayer that these practices will enrich your spiritual life and your experience of Lent by drawing you closer to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour.

Read & Reflect Daily Scriptures
Attached to this newsletter, and also available in the foyer at church, is a calendar of Daily Scripture Readings for Lent. These are the Lectionary readings that Pastor Kevin will be preaching on during Lent. New this year, the calendar also includes suggestions for incorporating the traditional Lenten spiritual practices of fasting, praying and giving alms ( Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21).

Fridays have been set aside, as is traditional, for fasting. If a full fast is not practical or healthy for you (please consult your doctor if you have a medical condition that may prohibit fasting), consider 'fasting' from a favourite food or activity, something that you will definitely miss. The purpose of fasting is to redirect our attention and longing to Christ rather than to those things that are typically central to our daily lives.

Saturdays have been reserved for acts of giving and service. A few simple suggestions have been made, but you could replace those with things that are more personal for you. The purpose is to intentionally think of others during that time.

Sundays have been designated for Sabbath keeping and prayer. Perhaps this would be a time for you to spend a bit longer with the Bible or with your prayer beads or other prayer practices. Sabbath also includes slowing down and devoting time to things that are important: family, friends, solitude, and rest.

We will be reflecting on the Daily Scriptures on our Facebook Group - Members and Friends of Marshall Memorial. If you are not in our Facebook group but would like to join, please message Richard Hamilton for an invitation.

Read & Reflect Small Groups
We are offering small group opportunities for you to delve more deeply into the Scriptures that Kevin will be preaching on during Lent. Groups will meet in the Gathering Place:

1 pm Wednesday afternoons with Judy VanDuzer
7 pm Wednesday evenings with Pastor Kevin
9 am Friday mornings with Richard Hamilton

No preparation is required for the groups, and everyone is invited and encouraged to attend whenever they are able.

Lenten Prayer Beads
Our prayer focus this year is contemplating the Passion of Christ, using traditional prayers and scriptures. We are distributing prayer beads and prayers to help you order your prayer life during Lent. The beads are a tool to assist you in praying repetitively, which is central to contemplative prayer. The 'movement' of the prayers is very much like walking a labyrinth: entering and exiting through the cross with the Lord's Prayer. The repetition of the events of Christ's Passion - echoing the Good Friday Service our choir is preparing - is intended to soften our hearts toward his sacrifice for us. If prayed daily, you will gradually find your heart opening to the love of God as expressed through Jesus.

Prayer Stones
A number of people have told us how powerful they found the Lenten Prayer Stones practice from Lent 2019, and so we are offering the stones again as a prayer station in the foyer during Lent. The stones - which have already been sanctified for this purpose - and the prayer suggestions accompanying them will be available for you to pick up during Sunday services throughout Lent. We will not be bringing these stones to the cross on Good Friday - as we did last year - so they will be yours to keep!

From the Library
There are a few more new additions to the Marshall Library:
John VanDuzer's  Loonie and  Amen are now on our shelves, both wonderful collections of inspiring and very accessible meditations written in John's inimitable style -- thoughtful  and thought-provoking -- with a healthy dose of good humour, helping us understand our world in the light of Christ's teaching.  Loonie is about money and faith.   Amen is about The Lord's Prayer. In both books John connects Bible-based wisdom with today's world and all of its complexities and then shows how that connects with consciously living our faith.  And -- there are some great photos!
Along with these on the library shelf in The Gathering Place are two books especially for Lent, both highly recommended:  
First,  Wild Hope: Stories for Lent from the Vanishing by Gayle Boss.  These are beautifully written short narratives about endangered creatures around the world, connecting their lives meaningfully with our own lives and all creation.  A delightful print, created by artist David G. Klein, of each of the "vanishing" species accompanies its story.  It is, as Carl Safina remarks,  . . . the only book whose table of contents alone gave me chills.  The living world, life on planet Earth, is sacred.  Gayle Boss yearns to show us that we live in a miracle."  
The second is a book about Lent for children called  Make Room: A Child's Guide to Lent and Easter by Laura Alary. It is charmingly illustrated. This provides helpful, relevant background information for kids during a very hard-to-understand season of the Christian year.  Alary also gently offers suggestions for activities that will add meaning to the season and she provides ideas for good discussion between a parent and child or among family members. As quoted on the cover, "This is a poetic, practical and theologically wise book for children."  (L. Ann Jervis)
from Pat McKnight

Rental Facilities
Have an upcoming event and not sure where to host it?  Why not rent the Gathering Room for smaller functions or the Hall for your larger event?  Contact the office for information about rates and availability.

Seniors' Social
Please join us on Monday from 1-2:30 in the Gathering Place for a time of treats and fellowship!

From the Church Office.....
Please note the church office will be closed March 15-21.  All announcements for the March 22 bulletin and newsletter much be in to the office by March 12. 

EVENTS

Community Events
A weekend with John Dominic Crossan - Westdale United Church on Friday and Saturday, April 3 &4, 2020.  The topic is:  Human Evolution and Christian Faith...the Meaning and Challenge of Resurrection.  More information can be found on the Community Events bulletin board.

God's Mission Our Gifts Newsletter from the United Church is available here.

Horseshoe  Falls Region Council Newsletter is available here.