Click on the links below to go directly to that section of the newsletter.
Join us for worship
Acolytes Needed
Prayer List
Text Giving
Red Bird Trailers
Hearts for Mission
Pastor's Reflection
St. John's Kids
Youth Group
Adult Sunday School
Adult Bible Studies
Blessing of the Backpacks
Book Club
Divorce Care
Living Nativity
Family Promise
Women's Breakfast
RISE Sunday
RISE Sewing Project
Worship Services:
8:00 and 10:30 a.m.
  9:15 a.m.
Praise  and Worship
August 25, 2019
"Why Am I Here?"
Ruth Portzline, CLM  
Mark 2:1-12 
Monday - Friday
9:00 AM -2:00 PM     
Available at both  
9:15 and 10:30. 
We welcome all children birth through 4 years old.  The nursery is equipped with a calling system and will alert you in worship if your child needs you.
For more information about our Children or Youth Ministries, please contact Director,
David Bigam,   
If your child is in grades 3-6 and would like to be an important part of worship at
St. John's, here is your opportunity!
We are looking for acolytes for the
10:30 a.m. service.
If you are interested, please contact:
Jennifer Haas @ 215-776-1740 or at

Thursday, August 29
Sunday, September 1
  Blessing of the Backpacks
  Children & Youth Sunday School
  Fellowship, Fun and Study
Tuesday, September 3
  Book Club
  Book Club
Thursday, September 5
  Ring of Faith



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All "Ongoing Prayer Concerns"  
will be listed for 
2 weeks.  
Please submit a new prayer request card if you desire to renew the listing for 2 additional weeks.
If your contact information changes: 
address, phone, email, etc.
please notify the church office at 215-357-6998 or
You may also indicate any changes on the
sign-in sheet during worship and we'll be sure to update your information in our files.
Thank you!
  • Just go to our website
  • Click on the donate now button and register.
Once you've registered, you can either make donations by debit or credit.  
OR try  
 All you have to do is text the amount you wish to give to 215-398-1617.
You will immediately receive a one-time registration link, then just follow the prompts to complete your donation!

It's quick and secure.
The same vendor that handles electronic giving for us, Vanco Services, has state of the art encryption, so you can rest easy that your transaction is 100% safe and confidenti
If you have any questions about mobile or text giving,
email Lou Lescas at

(Click for more information)
Log in to each time you shop and help make St. John's smile!
Looking for a little inspiration during the week?  
Try an online devotional.    
(has many devotionals to choose from)
(Devotional for Women)
(Devotional for Men) 
The Grace Cafe is open Sunday mornings for fellowship and refreshments. 

Naomi Circle is collecting tabs from beverage cans for Ronald McDonald House.  You will find a container under the sign hanging on the UMW bulletin board. Please place them in a plastic bag and put it in the container. This is an ongoing collection, so keep bringing them in as you collect them.   Thank you.  
Prayer Shawl Ministry
New members of the ministry group are always welcome; lessons and guidance can be provided for beginners and those with rusty skills.

The group meets mon thly on the second Tuesday to knit or crochet together and to pray over the completed items. For more information, contact Carol Rice at 215-357-1203.

                     Prayer Shawl Blessing Service

Donations of non-perishable food for the Eastwick Food Pantry are needed now and throughout the year. Please place contributions in the shopping carts located in the narthex and fellowship hall lobby. 
Volunteers are also needed to deliver food and clothing to the Eastwick Food Bank. 
Please contact  
Lou Lescas,
 if you are available to help.  
Thank you for your support.

click to view the thank you letter
Red Bird Trailers are Open! 
9 AM - 5 PM Daily 

Donations of clothing and household furnishings are accepted   See the trailers located in the back of the
St. John's parking lot.
Our Missions Team met and identified some hands-on mission projects you may want to be a part of.
  • Habitat for Humanity - working on construction/finishing of four homes in the Morrisville Area - this fall
  • Third annual R.I.S.E. Sunday, October 6, 2019.
  • Compassion Sunday - October 27
  • One Great Day of Service - Spring 2020
You are invited to join us as we work to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those in need.

Questions?  Contact Pastor Ruth
215-357-6998, ext. 306

UMC LINKS umc logo
August 23, 2019
            I'm almost positive that this is the very first time in my life that I've taken two consecutive weeks of vacation! I wasn't sure I could handle that length of time, but so far, so good! I'm at Bear Creek Lakes in the Poconos (Jim Thorpe). Most of you are aware that I purchased a home here earlier this year. Granted, I'm spending a little bit of time doing things like writing this article or making a few church-related phone calls. But, for the most part, I'm relaxing, getting together with friends, watching the deer stroll through the back yard (so far only one bear came to visit!), going to a few local shows, museums and flea markets, sitting by the lake with my Nook, and just generally chilling with my sheltie, Ollie. August is such a good time to pull back and "vacate" for a week or two, and if you haven't had an opportunity to do that yet, I suggest you check your schedule for next week and see what you can do!
            We all run ourselves ragged; we all live life in the fast lane. One of my favorite quotes from Scripture is what Jesus said to His disciples in Mark 7:31 after a long day of meeting people's needs. He said, "Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest." Jesus knew that ALL of us need to refocus our minds and revitalize our souls on a regular basis - we need to rest and replenish physically, emotionally, and spiritually. And when you do that, be sure to do it with Jesus. Take the time to "vacate" from your normal responsibilities and tasks, and know that Christ goes with you to pour rest back into your soul.
            I hope you are having a wonderful, restful, and soul-replenishing summer! And I look forward to celebrating the unofficial "end" of summer on Labor Day weekend as we gather for Holy Communion and to pray God's blessing upon our children and youth as they prepare for a brand new school year. Join us for worship on Sunday, September 1st!
                                                  Pastor Janice

Kids Church News......

One Room Sunday School will continue through September.  
Please go directly to Fellowship Hall for Kids Church.  
9:15 Sunday School will not be available through the summer.   
We invite you to our 10:30 Sunday School.  
Beginning October 13, Kid's Church will be going directly to their classrooms.  We will only meet in Fellowship Hall the first Sunday of every month.  We will continue to use our Dig-in curriculum but without the big room.  
Help is needed in the Nursery!!!
We are looking for Sunday School Leaders and Co-Leaders for Pre-K thru 2nd and, 3rd thru 5th grade.  The more help we have, the less you will have to lead or co-lead.  Won't you please consider just one Sunday a month or every other month!  
You don't need anything except love for the children and a desire to shine with the light of Christ.  
Please contact me anytime and we can talk. 
Thank you for your consideration....
                                                                David Bigam 

Fellowship and fun for youth grades 6 thru 12.

Well some folks have replied to our questions regarding our weekly meetings! 
So, beginning in September, Youth Group will change days from Sundays to Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:00 PM.
The start has yet to be determined but I am edging towards the 18th of September.  Any of our road trips that are usually done Sunday nights such as Hayride, Progressive dinner, etc.  will still be held on Sundays but not in lieu of Youth group. 
Please stay tuned for more info as we adapt ourselves into this new routine. 
Youth Group is open to ALL 6th thru 12th grades.
Morrisville Food Bank Monday
Monday, September 9th
Please contact David Bigam.
Do Not Miss This Opportunity! 
Come and experience great Fellowship
on the 2nd Monday of every month! 
Morrisville is open to EVERYONE interested in going to help make 220 grocery bags full of food. 
Families are always welcome! 
Following this event we always head to Chick-fil-a for Milkshakes!!!!
And as always
Bring a Friend and Bring a Can!

Have you HELPED anyone today?
Have you SAID SOMETHING NICE to anyone today?

David Bigam, Director of Children and Youth Ministries

Adult Sunday School
Begins September 8
At 9 AM in the Parlor
What does Scripture tell us about the world to come? What signals will precede the end times? Dr. Jeremiah presents his hope-filled work on biblical prophecy. This epic guide is a resource for navigating today's uncertainties and embracing God's promises for the future.
The Gospel of Matthew
William Barclay
Begins Wednesday September 11 at 7 PM
Meets weekly in Grace Café
Take a deep dive into Matthew's Gospel to better understand what he wants you to know. Originally written to first century Jews, it is still relevant for us today! Barclay makes it easy to understand.
This course has a two-volume book that will be ordered for you if you prepay $32.00 by 8/30. Please place your check in white envelope and put it in Pastor Sue's mailbox.
How Happiness Happens
Max Lucado
Begins Wednesday, September 25
at 7 PM
Meets for 6 weeks in the Parlor
In a world searching for happiness, Lucado provides a personal plan for a life filled with lasting and fulfilling joy, supported by Jesus' teaching and modern research. Do you feel happy? How long has it been since you felt a level of contagious, infectious, unflappable, unstoppable happiness? Only one-third of Americans surveyed said they were happy. How can this be? We've made advancements in everything from medicine to technology, yet 66 percent of us can't find an adequate reason to check the "yes" box on the happiness questionnaire. Marketers get this. "Want to be happy?" they ask. Drive this car, wear this dress. Happiness happens when you lose the weight, get the date, find the mate, or discover your fate. It's wide, this way to happiness. Yet, for all its promise, it delivers a fragile joy; here one day, tomorrow scattered by the winds of comparison, disappointment, or unmet expectations. Max writes, "There is another option." In this book he shares the unexpected path to a lasting happiness, one that produces reliable joy in any season of life. Based on the teachings of Jesus and backed by modern research, He presents a surprising but practical way of living.
The book will be ordered for you if you prepay $9.00 by August 28. Please place check in envelope and place in Pastor Sue's mailbox.
Begins Monday, September 30 at 6:45 PM
Meets weekly in the Parlor
You were not meant to live in disillusionment and defeat. God has given you tools to live a life defined not by your trials but by your victories. This 6-week study will show you how. There is a book that will help you while viewing the video and during the discussion. The book will be ordered for you if you prepay $8.50 by 9/15. Please put check in Pastor Sue's mailbox.
Carol Campbell & Barbara Schneider
Book Payment 
In order to better keep track of payments and only order the number of books needed, payments are being centralized to one person. Please write your name and class in upper left corner of the envelope. Then drop it in Pastor Sue's mailbox next to office.
If you have not paid for the book before the cut off date, you will need to order the book on your own. We use,, or depending on who has the best price.
If you are in need of partial or full scholarship to help pay for the book, please contact Pastor Sue through the office.
Whether you are beginning Kindergarten or college, join us and have your backpack blessed for the new school year!

Next Sunday, September 1 at the 10:30 service.  
The next Book Club will be on
Tuesday, September 3
at 10:00 AM and 7 PM. 

We will meet in the Church Parlor.
Leaders: Barbara Schneider and Carol Campbell.  Everyone is welcome to join us.

Based on a true story, the book spans eighty years, two continents and several U.S. states.  You will come to love this imperfect, ordinary man, with an extraordinary helping of faith, hope, commitment and zest for living merged with a button-busting love for his adopted country.

Loss of a Spouse seminar  
August 26    
6:30-8:30 PM - Library 
St. John's Ivyland
GriefShare 13 week Sessions  
Beginning September 9th  
Mondays from 6:30-8:30. 
2019-2020 GriefShare Schedule:
  • Monday, August 26th: Coping With the Loss of a Spouse*
  • September 9-December 2, 2019:  13 Week Session
  • Monday, December 16:  Coping with Loss During the Holidays
  • January 6-April 6, 2020 (no class Presidents' Day): 13 Week Session
  • May 1-August 3, 2020 (no class Memorial Day):  13 Week Session
You may register online at
There is a $5 fee for materials.  For further information, contact Ruth Portzline or Chaplain Erin Maurer or go to

If you or someone you know has experienced separation or divorce, either recently or a long time ago, we want to invite them to this support group.
Sundays, from 6pm to 7:30pm in the Church Library
A complete schedule by topic, more details, and sign-ups are at:
Fall Session: Sept. 15 to Dec. 15, 2019  
Spring Session: Jan 26 to May 3, 2020  
  • Each rotation lasts 13 weeks but you can join or miss anytime and make up sessions during the next rotation if desired.
  • There is a one-time $35 registration fee but scholarships are available. Payment is done in class, please sign up online so we can communicate with you. (Checks payable to: St. John's UMC)
  • No Childcare offered.
  • No Class on Holiday Weekends (see schedule online).
  • Our facilitators, Sarah Floyd and Donna Hartfeil can be contacted at:
Located at:
St. John's United Methodist Church 
820 Almshouse Road 
Ivyland, PA 18974
We now meet in the church library classroom which is the first room on the left when you enter from the main parking lot which is on the left side of the church. Knock on the double doors on the side of the church. There are a few stairs up. If you cannot do stairs the leader will greet you and bring you to the handicap entrance.
Contact Information
Sarah Floyd or Donna Hartfeil
Facilitators of Divorce Care Program
Time to dust off your Christmas spirit!
St. John's Christmas gift to our community!
December 15, 2019   5 PM - 8 PM
"Drive-thru Living Nativity"
Last year over 100 members of St. John's family were involved in this wonderful event. We were all blessed to be able to give our gift of
The Drive-thru Living Nativity to our community.
Over 200 cars drove through to experience the Christmas story - complete with live animals.
We are already working on this year's event.
So, mark your calendar!!!
Sign-ups will be available soon!
If you missed this outreach opportunity
last year, please consider participating this year.
We guarantee that you will be blessed!

Our next hostings are September 8-15  
and November 10-17.  
Currently there are 4 Families being served by Family Promise with a waiting list. This ministry is definitely needed. Please consider helping. Any questions contact Sharon Byle at
In preparation we will have a training seminar this Sunday, 
August 25th from noon-2pm in Fellowship Hall.
If you are a volunteer that has not attended a training seminar or a new volunteer, this is a requirement of volunteering. Those who have attended one in the past are welcome to attend again, it is led by our local director instead of a national one, so it will be more relevant to our procedures and shorter!
Please sign up on the bulletin board outside Grace Café or  
Sharon Byle is also looking for a co-leader to assist her with this ministry. Please let her know if you would like to help.

Mark Your Calendar: 
"Women's Breakfast"  
Date:   Saturday, September 28th
Time:   9:30 - 11:30am
Place:  Fellowship Hall
Cost:    $12.00
We are planning a continental breakfast on the
above date for all St. John's women and their friends.
The breakfast will be followed by a presentation on "Labyrinths".

Alix Amar, MSS, LCSW, a social worker at Abington-Jefferson Hospice in Warminster, will speak on labyrinths and how they are effective tools for mindful meditation, self reflection and healing.  Everyone will have the opportunity to make their own 12"x12" labyrinth for personal use - no art experience necessary.   Tickets will be available Sunday, 9/1, 9/8 and 9/15 following each worship service.  Please join us and invite a friend.  This is also an opportunity to meet new St. John's friends.

Any questions, please contact:
Arlene Williams (215-355-0162) or Linda Barr (215-773-9865).
  • WHAT is R.I.S.E. Sunday? A morning of worship and hands-on mission projects with local and global impact.
  • WHAT projects are available?
    • Pillowcase Dresses for Little Dresses for Africa: Goal: Make 25 dresses and 50 sanitary kits, which are distributed in remote villages and aid in the formation of relationships with mission groups focused on clean water and primary education efforts.
    • Bagged lunches for Trenton Area Soup Kitchen: Goal: Make 1000 bagged lunches, including peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, for distribution to people experiencing food insecurity in Trenton.
    • Cutlery assembly for Trenton Area Soup Kitchen: Goal: Using plasticware, paper napkins, and adhesive bands, wrap 4,000 sets of dinnerware for use at one of the 4,800 meals supplied by TASK each week.
    • Rise Against Hunger: Goal: Assemble 13, 824 meals which will feed 37 children in developing countries for one year, through international hunger relief organization Rise Against Hunger.
  • WHEN is it and WHEN can I sign up for a project? R.I.S.E. Sunday is October 6, 2019. We will have a worship service at 9 AM, then two sessions of mission projects from 10:15 to noon. We will begin project registration on Sunday, September 1.
  • WHO can participate? EVERYONE! We will have projects for all ages and ability levels, and the nursery will be open for children age 3 and younger.
Financial support for Rise Against Hunger and other R.I.S.E. Sunday projects: Although we are seeking material donations, there are some perishable items we will need to purchase directly for the bagged lunches, and we need significant financial support for Rise Against Hunger. Here are some suggestions. You could choose to feed 1 child (through Rise Against Hunger) for a year ($124), 6 months ($62), or 1 month ($10). Donations of any amount are appreciated! Use the pink envelopes in the pew racks and designate "R.I.S.E." on the envelope. We will also be doing a communion offering in September.

Donated materials needed by 9/22: Go to the church website for specific information about these items and to sign up to donate them, or fill out the included sign-up sheet and place it in Lara Bolte's RISE Sunday/Fellowship Activities mailbox (by the church office).
Sandwich bags, easy-zip top, 100-ct. box
Brown paper lunch bags, 40-ct.
Peanut butter, 40-oz. jars
Jelly, 30-oz jars
Plastic spoons, 500-ct.
Plastic forks, 500-ct.
Plastic knives, 500-ct.
Dinner-sized paper napkins, 50-pack
Snack packs of cookies, 20-ct. box
Snack packs of chips, 32-ct. package
Juice boxes, 10-ct. package
*See sign-up sheet in Sunday's Bulletin. Please completed forms to Lara Bolte's mailbox, by the church office
*Donations needed by 9/23. Please drop them off in the box in the Narthex. Thank you for your donations!

As part of our R.I.S.E Sunday mission event, we will again be making pillowcase dresses and, new this year, we will also be making sanitary kits for young girls.
We are asking for the following supplies for these projects:
  • Pillow cases in solid colors and/or prints suitable for children
  • EXTRA WIDE double folded bias tape
  • ¼ inch elastic
  • Baby flannel fabric
  • Terri cloth fabric
  • Sew-on Velcro (not adhesive)
  • Packages of girls panties
Please consider purchasing some of these supplies
for this important mission project.
If you have any questions, please see Pastor Ruth.

Come Sing and Ring with Us!

Vocal Choirs

St. John's Vocal Choirs provide opportunities for EVERYONE to be involved in music. From young children through adults, we have a place for you in our music program. Beginning musicians and experienced singers are welcome in our Vocal Choirs.
Children grades K-5 (6) are invited to be part of the Joyful Voices. Children learn songs to present in Worship Services. The Joyful Voices usually sing on the First and Third Sunday each month. They also sing at special services through the year. REHEARSAL is after the 10:30 Worship Service each Sunday. Rehearsal will last 25-30 minutes. (Joyful Chimes rehearsal follows Joyful Voices).
Youth grades 6-12 (or older) are welcome in this choir. The Youth Choir usually presents anthems in Worship on the Second and Fourth Sunday each month. More advanced anthems are presented with the Adult Choir on occasion. REHEARSALS are on Sunday evening from 6:00-7:00 right before YOUTH GROUP (choir members are encouraged to stay for Youth Group). Prior membership in a choir is not required.... NEW MEMBERS are always welcome.
The Adult Choir presents music every week during 10:30 worship. College students are encouraged to be a member of the choir. Anyone with some music experience is welcome in the choir. There is no audition. REHEARSAL is on Thursday night at 8:00 in the Sanctuary.
Our Praise Band presents music during our 9:15 worship service. Vocalists and Instrumentalists (guitar / keyboard / percussion) are ALWAYS welcome. REHEARSAL is on Tuesday night, at 7:00, and usually lasts an hour.
Roy Nelson, Director
Ring a Joyful Sound
Handbell Choirs

St. John's Hand Bell Choirs provide opportunities for EVERYONE to be involved in music. From young children through adults, we have a place for you in our music program. Beginning musicians and experienced ringers are welcome in our Bell Choirs. We hope to expand on the gains we made last year in all of our choirs.
Children grades 2-5 (6) are welcome in the Joyful Chime Bell Choir. Children will be taught basic ringing skills and music reading. No experience in necessary. REHEARSALS take place on Sundays following 10:30 worship service. (The Bells rehearse AFTER the Joyful Voices singing choir rehearsal). We are usually finished by 12:45.
GENesis Bells is a multi-generational choir that has youth grades 6-12 & adults participating. We were very successful with this format last year, and it allowed us to play more difficult music which was a challenge for all involved. There are several open spots in this choir for ADULTS and YOUTH. REHEARSALS take place on Tuesday afternoon, from 5:45 to 6:45. We usually ring once a month, on the Second Sunday.
This Bell Choir is for ADULTS who have a desire to ring in a choir with limited playing and rehearsing. The REHEARSALS are usually on the FIRST MONDAY of each month. Playing is at Christmas, during Lent and at the end of the year. Music experience/reading is a plus, but not required.
Our advanced Bell Choir rings every month, and rehearses on Thursday nights each week. At the present time, there are no openings in this choir. However, we always need "standby" substitutes. Music experience/reading is a requirement.
Roy Nelson, Director