**In-person gatherings remain suspended until further notice due to public health concerns**

Please see below for online class
and worship offerings

May 24, 2020
Acts 1:6-14

"Looking Up"

The church office will be closed Monday, May 25th in observance of Memorial Day
Sunday School News

Homebuilders Sunday School Class
The Homebuilders Class is continuing to meet on Sunday mornings from 9:00 am to 10:00 am by conference call. All are welcome to join. To be included, contact Mike Martin either by calling 717-840-4184 or by emailing Caretaker@TwinBrookFarm.com , leaving the phone number at which you would like to be called. You will receive a phone call in the vicinity of 9:00 am. The class continues to examine lessons from the "Guide for Biblical Studies" curriculum.

Lamplighters Sunday School Class
The Lamplighters Class is planning to meet on Sunday mornings from 11:00 am until noon by zoom (video) conference. If you wish to be included and haven't received an email already, please contact Pastor Joel at pastor@yorkfirst.org , and he will forward you the link. (We will not share the login info publicly in an effort to prevent hacking). The class will be studying a series of Jesus' parables in the coming weeks - this week the parable of "the laborers in the vineyard" as told in Matthew 20:1-16.

Vine & Branches Sunday School Class
The Vine & Branches Class is continuing to meet on Sunday mornings from 9:00 am to 10:00 am by zoom (video) conference. If you wish to be included, please contact Pastor Joel at pastor@yorkfirst.org , and he will forward you the link. Meetings are often more social than study-driven, and youth and children are welcome to be present.

Children's Sunday School Class
This week we plan to incorporate a children's Sunday School lesson in the above (Vine & Branches Class) video conference, planning for 9:45 am as a start time. Parents may of course participate alongside, but the time will be tailored to children. For the zoom link and to be included, please contact Pastor Joel at pastor@yorkfirst.org . Thanks, and we look forward to this special time together!
Youth Group News

Due to health concerns and restrictions on gatherings, the Church of the Brethren Summer Youth Workcamps have been canceled. Our Youth had planned to attend one during the month of July, so this is sad news for many. Please click on the button to view the cancellation announcement:
On a brighter note, please check out this new Church of the Brethren resource that provides daily devotions for the youth. "Good News! Youth Devotional" has a new and unique offering each day with scripture, commentary, prayers, and questions to consider.
The COB National Young Adult Conference has
changed to a FREE virtual event

This event began Thursday, May 21 and will continue through May 25 (evenings only).
Please click on the button for information regarding the FREE virtual COB National Young Adult Conference…. Love in Action, Romans 12: 9-18
For those of you working with our children at church:
Please take this Child Abuse prevention Training at www.Ilookoutforchildabuse.com .

After you complete the training please print your certificate and give it to Pastor Joel to keep on file. Thank you so much for helping care for our little ones at church. Thank you!
Church of the Brethren Denominational News
Church of the Brethren Annual Conference will not be held this summer
May Church of the Brethren
Newsline Digest
Click for Friends to Remember in Prayer
and Event Announcements
Although in-person worship gatherings and events are largely suspended for a time, the church's ministry continues in many important ways. Please continue to give as you are so led, whether by mail or through online giving. Thank you.

Online Giving is safe, easy, and convenient. Sign up by going to our church website at: www.yorkfirst.org and click on the Online Giving Link or go directly to the Online Giving website at:  www.acionlinegiving.com/4706 .
For assistance setting up your account, call Donor Support at:  
         800-348-2886 – Option 2 – Online Giving
Questions? Contact Sheryl Leaman - Thank you for your support!!!!!
Upcoming Events

Soup Kitchen - Friday, June 12, 2020 - Sign up by calling Audrey Ginder, 717-755-6785 to make a casserole for the Soup Kitchen on Friday, June 12, 2020 (10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.) PLEASE contact Audrey to add your name and number of casseroles, so we can let the Soup Kitchen know how many casseroles to expect. Thank you!
Concerning the COVID-19 pandemic and church operations:

Until further notice, we will not gather here at our building on Sundays for worship together, and any other large group events are canceled or postponed until further notice. Leadership Team hasmet this month and appointed a COVID reopening team to address "when" and "how" we may resume gatherings. will be meeting during the month of May to plan our re-opening strategy. Numerous factors will contribute the plans that we decide to enact. When we do resume gatherings, please be prepared for a "soft" openings, as not all things will return to "normal" as we have known them. Nevertheless, our church - we the people of faith - remains strong and committed, and our worship and service to God will always go on.

Master Planning building project progress continuing, as we proceed into the code review stage adn bidding process in the near future.

We have every intention of continuing to provide worship, teaching, and encouragement while maintaining “physical distance” for the safety and well-being of all. The pastor and secretary continue to be available and in the office most of the week, so please feel free to call or email as you wish. We discourage in-person visits, however. Visitation to nursing homes and hospitals has been severely restricted, and until we know just how widely this virus has spread pastoral visits will be minimal.

Please recognize that your church will require funds to continue basic operation of property and facility, fulfill pledged outreach giving, and maintain staff who will continue to minister whether in-person gatherings happen or not. Online giving is a simple and easy way to support your church and those it serves during this time, and it is accessible through our church website www.yorkfirst.org. Mailing your gifts and offerings to the church office is also welcome. Thank you to all who have given generously! We have been able to maintain our many outreach commitments thus far this year, and for that we give thanks!

Look for other announcements on our website and facebook page , and as always you may read current and/or recent newsletters through our website for other updates (and past sermons if you have spare time). **Note that you do not even need a facebook account of you own to view the church's page there. If you do have a facebook account, please "like" our church's page to view updates there. The more you "like" and "comment" and "share" our content, the better it "travels" and will be seen by others. Do your part to freely spread our messages of ministry during this time. Thank you!!**

Concerning the spread of COVID-19, here is a good resource with helpful links to other sites as well: https://covid19.brethren.org/ Be careful to pay attention to public health experts, rather than every news headline or comment from your neighbors. We must act responsibly for the well-being of all, not merely ourselves. This disease is real and a genuine threat to the lives of many.

Thank you all for understanding and for your faithful participation in our life together. Stay apart from each other in body but close together in spirit. Take time to study, pray, and appreciate this time of rest that is before us. Talk to each other often, by phone especially. Please stay home and do your part to "flatten the curve." That is how we can best love one another for the time being. God's comfort and peace be with you.
Message from Camp Eder:

C AMP EDER (along with Camp Swartara) is so sorry to tell you,
due to COVID-19, we must cancel our traditional summer camp
for 2020. There will however, be other opportunities for you to enjoy our wonderful outdoor experiences. Please look for these as they come available.  

We are also sorry that our May Senior Day needed to be cancelled. Look for the milk man in August. Johnny Appleseed will be here in the fall.
Thank you for your amazing support, both financially and with prayers. We ask that they will continue.
We pray that you and your family are well and tolerating the quarantine.
Camp Eder Board and staff
Cole James Stehr was born to Justin & Casey Stehr at 4:16 am on
May 15 th in Orlando, Florida. He weighed 9 lbs 3 oz. and is 21 inches long. Congratulations to the new parents and to grandparents,
Barry & Tammy Stehr and great grandmother, Dolores Mann.

Justin & Casey’s address is: 923 Marsh Reed Dr, Winter Garden, Florida 34787
Praise be to God for this amazing gift and hold them in prayer as they begin their life together as a family of three!
A family of Ukrainian immigrants - the Burlaka family - has recently been resettled in our neighborhood through Church World Service - refugees fleeing persecution and close relatives to others whom our church has served in the past and who worship with us on occasion. They are in need of beds, clothes, towels, a small desk, and perhaps a used vehicle. Prospects for employment and housing are also need that they will have going forward, as well as transportation to ESL classes in the near future.
If you have interest in helping or can donate items, please talk to John Anderson, Witness Team chairperson, or Pastor Joel. We have committed to helping this family and they deeply appreciate any support we can offer. Thank you.
Postponed and Canceled Events
Women's Camp Retreat Canceled

72nd Annual Women's Camp Retreat scheduled for June 1 & 2, has been
canceled by SO PA District Nuture Commission due to the COVID19 uncertainties.
Vacation Bible School
has been postponed until 2021

Education Team hopes to do something special for children this summer, but it will not be a week-long VBS event.
Postponed Until 2021
Cross Keys Village, The Brethren Home Community
60th Annual Chicken BBQ, Car Show, & Auction
scheduled for Sat., August 8th
Since 2011 our Witness Team has sponsored the Cash for Causes program by selling Giant & Weis gift cards. The church receives 5% of sales to support various ministries. For 2020 the gift card sales will support The Lehman Center (Children’s Aid Society), New Community Project, Carlisle Truck Stop Ministry, and LifePath Christian Ministries (formerly York Rescue Mission). You may purchase the cards in amounts of $100, $50, $25, or $10. The cards make great gifts, especially at holidays. Consider donating cards to the Food Pantry or using them yourself any time you shop at Giant or Weis.
If you would like to support this outreach program while we are not meeting as a congregation during the Covid-19 pandemic, you can send your check to Becky Wenger, 3011 Bedford Pl, York, PA 17408. The Giant or Weis cards will be mailed to you. 
Make your check out to York First Church.
Thank you for supporting this program.
           Becky Wenger, Cash for Causes representative
Save the Date
The Lehman Center Benefit Auction benefiting Children's Aid
Society has been changed to Tuesday, June 30, 2020. 
The location is the same -
York County 4-H Center, 771 Stoverstown Road, York PA.
Diane Gibble is collecting items for the auction.
Please let her know if you have anything to donate. Thank you!

“Catch the Spirit, Build for the Future” has been chosen as the theme for our Capital Fund Campaign. Campaign visits are ongoing, and we hope you will prayerfully consider making a pledge to support our church's future.

As the campaign advances, we want to share with you two tax saving options that may be available to you as you consider your pledge to the campaign. These options are qualified charitable distributions and donation of appreciated securities.

Qualified Charitable Distribution
If you are age 70½ or older, IRS rules require you to take required minimum distributions (RMDs) each year from your tax-deferred IRA’s. This additional taxable income may push you into a higher tax bracket and may also reduce your eligibility for certain tax credits and deductions. For example, your taxable income helps determine the amount of your Social Security benefits that are subject to taxes. Keeping your taxable income level lower may also help reduce your potential exposure to higher Medicare premiums. To eliminate or reduce the impact of RMD income, you may want to consider making a qualified charitable distribution (QCD). A QCD is a direct transfer of funds from an IRA custodian, payable to a qualified charity. Amounts distributed as a QCD can be counted toward satisfying your RMD for the year and can also be excluded from your taxable income. This is not the case with a regular withdrawal from an IRA, even if you use the money to make a charitable contribution later on. In this scenario, the withdrawal would be counted as taxable income. You must be at least 70½ years old at the time you request a QCD. If you process a distribution prior to reaching age 70½, the distribution will be treated as taxable income.
Funds must be transferred directly from your IRA custodian to the qualified charity. This is accomplished by requesting your IRA custodian issue a check from your IRA payable to the charity. You can then request that the check be mailed to the charity, or forward the check to the charity yourself.

Donation of Appreciated Securities
With the stock market setting all-time record highs, many investors are holding securities in their taxable accounts that have appreciated in value. Appreciated securities are investments that have increased in value from the time they were purchased, and can take the form of publicly traded stock, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), closely held stock, or mutual funds. For example, if a stock was purchased for $30 per share and sold for $50 per share, the stock has appreciated by $20 per share. When appreciated stock is sold, the owner generally realizes capital gains equal to the appreciation and may be liable for either short-term or long-term capital gains taxes. With a charitable gift of appreciated securities, the donation you make and the deduction you get are greater than they would be if you were to sell the shares and donate the cash proceeds instead. That is because when you donate shares, you avoid paying the capital gains tax. The church will receive the full market value of the securities donated.
We encourage you to take advantage of these tax saving measures as you consider giving.
"Notes from the Console," Article 44, By Mike Frock
Germany Ran Out Of Names In The 1600s And 1700s
The Prelude this week is “Toccata in C Major,” catalogue number P.455, by Johann Pachelbel. The catalogue number is important in this case because Pachelbel wrote five pieces, all for organ, all with the title “Toccata in C Major” (catalogue numbers P.454 – P.458). So, this piece is sometimes called “Toccata in C Major No. 2.” This Sunday is Ascension Sunday. Therefore, the Offertory and Postlude are specific to that theme. The Offertory is an arrangement of the hymn “Lo, God to Heaven Ascendeth” arranged by Johann Christoph Bach (1642-1703). I will play a verse of the hymn and then the arrangement which is a fughetta in three voices. The subject is based on the first few notes of the hymn. The arrangement starts with the subject in the top voice, followed by the subject in the middle voice. The subject is then played a third time in the lowest voice on the keyboard, followed by a fourth statement of the subject in the lowest voice but played on the pedals. The subject is played for the fifth and last time in the top voice again. The Postlude is “Hear Now, the Heavens Rejoicing” by James Denton.
The following is a little information about the Bach family tree.  I recommend looking up my Facebook post from April 25 th , or going to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bach_family , both of which show a partial Bach family tree and the relations of the people mentioned in this article.  If you ever see just “Bach” by itself, you can assume that it is referring to Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750).  It is also true that if you see “J.C. Bach,” you can assume that it is referring to J.S. Bach’s son Johann Christian Bach (1735-1782).  But there is a difference between Johann Christoph and Johann Christian.  So, who is Johann Christoph?  In fact, there were four family members with the name Johann Christoph Bach.  J.S. Bach had an uncle named Johann Christoph Bach (1645-1693), a brother Johann Christoph Bach (1671-1721, shown on my Facebook post, but not on the Wikipedia page), and a son Johann Christoph Friedrich Bach (1732-1795).  But the composer of this week’s Offertory is the fourth Johann Christoph Bach who was a first cousin of J.S. Bach’s father, which makes him J.S. Bach’s first cousin once removed.  Anyway, this Johann Christoph Bach (1642-1703) was a German Baroque composer/organist and was a famous composer in his own right. 

Scripture Lesson: 1 Peter 3:8-22
Message: "Alive in the Spirit"

Pastor Joel Gibbel can be reached most mornings in the church office Monday - Thursday from 9:00 AM to noon. Afternoons and evenings are often set aside for visiting those in need, for meetings, and for other pastoral duties. Pastor Joel is also available for Pastoral Counseling by appointment.
If you need to reach the pastor outside of office hours, his home phone number is
(717)318-5442, and his cell number is (717)271-4888 . You can also email him at pastor@yorkfirst.org. Note that laws prevent hospitals from contacting a pastor without your permission when you are admitted, so you will need to let hospital staff know that you would like the hospital to contact your pastor.
Our Mission Statement:
“People dedicated to Spiritual Growth, Loving Relationship, and Sacrificial Service”
Our Vision Statement:
“To become a community of committed Christians who Love God, Share Christ, and Serve the World”