This year we are glad to report another successful Ghana mission. So far we have contributed over one hundred desks to school children in Ghana. We have also done eye care and blood screen mission which has actually saved lives of the blood pressure victims who were screened during our health mission. This year, we were fortunate to be accompanied by our District Superintendent, Rev. Dr. Cotto and his wife who witnessed some of the important work we have done and continue to do on behalf of our Church and the District.
This year we presented 4 laptops to two schools that had not seen any technology in their school for a long time: Blessed Assurance School and Hampstead Academy. Due to donations from Anne Louise Strickland and her daughter Debbie we also made a lot of pre-school students very happy by donating toys to them. We want to thank everyone for their support and prayers. Enjoy some of the pictures from our mission trip.
Our current projectors that show song lyrics, pictures, and videos on our Contemporary Worship screen are worn out and no longer work efficiently after 15 years. We have to replace them. So far we have obtained a price quote and are looking to select the best value for the price that provides for our technical needs. Our cost estimate is $13,500 including two laser projectors, two input presentation, a distribution amplifier, cable hardware, and installation.
Because we project a wide image with two screens in the Covenant Hall during worship, a digital projector for that service requires a commercial unit that throws a bright image on 55 feet forward to an 8 foot wide screen.
The further away and the wider the image the dimmer the brightness of the image that appears on the screen. To be able to accommodate this, as with our current projectors, we need a unit that produces a strong bright light. Technology has improved over the years so our words and images should appear brighter than what we have right now. To compound this situation the projectors we have right now are on their last leg. They break down from time to time and Dave King has to send them to Kansas to have them repaired and it takes 3 months to get them back. The person who repairs them has said he is having a hard time repairing them lately because the parts are scarce, so they need to be replaced.
The good news is that we have received 5000 dollars from George Walker Trust from the Lehigh Valley foundation. We also have 2000 dollars that can be matched, and another 104 dollars raised by the VBS class, and another donation of 500. So we are half way there. By the way, the projector in the Covenant Hall is not only used for Worship on Sundays. It is used for Vacation Bible School and other church events like showing pictures when we celebrate wedding anniversaries of our members. We show mission events and events like our journey to Israel, which was great. We also use that room and use the projector when we have community events during the year. Last year we hosted the Homeless Summit for Monroe County and the presenters had PowerPoint slides to share with the audience. So this is a very important and urgent need for our church.
We are asking everyone to pray about this need, that our congregation will raise the rest of the funds required to cover the cost. Everyone can help in some way to help replace these old projectors. Last Sunday our children who had enjoyed a wonderful VBS wanted to share what they learned with the congregation but the projectors did not work. Our children need this to learn about God, our Church needs this worship the Lord, our congregation needs this for our spiritual growth and fellowship, and our community needs it when we are called upon to lend our space for such Community Events.
If you would like to contribute in any way by helping to raise funds or if you would like to contribute funds toward it, you can write a check to “Mt. Pocono UMC” with “Projector” in the memo line. You can give cash in an envelope with a designation “Projector” on the envelope. You can give through the automatic withdrawal and notifying the church about your contribution to the projector. You can also give online through our church website https://www.mtpoconoumc.org through our PayPal Account.
We want to thank everyone in advance for their prayers and willingness to contribute toward these projectors. We appreciate all your help and support.
God richly bless you,
As schools get ready to start a new academic year, our church will once again sponsor backpack blessings for our school children and teachers.
The following items are needed:
These school supplies will be distributed, with prayers, on Sunday, August 27th. Please drop your items in the Collection Box in the Welcome Center. God bless you as you make a difference in a child's life.
Spring is in the air! We hear birds chirping, the air is fresh and crisp, and the flowers are blooming. Spring is in the air, inviting us to the new life that God offers. For those of us who stayed indoors throughout the winter, we are being beckoned to step out into the new season.
For us Christians, new life is very noticeable during Easter. We celebrate the Risen Christ, who burst forth with new life 2,000 years ago. The season of Easter is God’s invitation to trust in the new life God offers. This is what the Bible calls “eternal life.” It begins here and now but it is also a future where we live in the presence of God forever. Spring is God’s transforming power allowing new life to burst forth from the ground when daffodils bloom and all the other flowers like the lilies, tulips and hyacinths blossom. It is the new life God offers through Jesus Christ. It is the belief that all things can be made new in the springtime.
By the time you read this, Lent will be almost over, and Palm Sunday, Holy Week, and Easter will be on the horizon.
For every Christian, the Resurrection is the most important miracle in our faith. Paul says without the Resurrection, Christians have no hope and they are to be pitied.
So, what difference does the Resurrection make? Well, the Resurrection gives us the hope for a future with God. The Resurrection is the one assurance that our sins are forgiven and that Jesus paid the price for our sins on the cross, and He was raised up from the dead. The Resurrection assures us that God will be with us in this life and the one to come. This is the promise of Easter.
However, we cannot go to Easter without Holy Week. The victory of Easter starts from Holy Week when Jesus went through the agony of pain and suffering and death to bring us this hope.
The Season of Lent is upon us again. Lent is the season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. It is a time during which we remember when Jesus fasted for forty days and forty nights in the wilderness. Lent is a time of repentance, fasting, and preparation for Easter.
It is also a time of self-reflection and spiritual examination. During the Season of Lent Christians are called upon to give up something for Lent. It is a way for all of us to learn to live without some of the comforts of life as we draw closer to God. So, many Christians fast during Lent. Fasting is a spiritual practice of giving up food or any other basic necessities like money to support good causes.
Here in our church we use our Lenten Folders, which allow us to save up some funds during Lent to help the church continue its ministry to the poor and needy in our society. It helps us to see how blessed we are and allow God to bless other people through our kind and generous acts.
Nowadays we not only give up something for Lent but we take something up for Lent. This is a reminder for us to go back and engage in the spiritual disciplines that have fallen by the wayside. We are encouraged to take up spiritual disciplines such as daily prayer and devotion, Bible reading and a genuine activity such as volunteering in the church or community. It is also a time for those who are not active in the church to return to weekly worship and fellowship.
We Need Love - 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
One of the famous scripture passages in the Bible is 1 Corinthians 13. It is what we call “The Love Passage.” When I get the opportunity to do weddings even those who are not believers often have an idea about this passage, and they request it for their reading. Since it is very popular I made sure I have a sermon crafted just in case I have to give one. Here is how the scripture passage goes:
“Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, and it does not boast, it is not proud, it is not self- seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrong. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always preserves, love never fails.” It ends by saying, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
Some pastors have recommended an exercise for all of us to do. Instead of “love,” put in your name. For example, “Kofi is patient, he does not boast, he is not proud. He is not rude, he is not selfseeking, he is not easily angered, and he keeps no record of wrongs. Kofi does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. He always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always and preserves. Kofi never fails.” Most of us cannot get past the first statement. When I did the exercise I realized I have to work hard to live up to the life of love as the scripture suggests.
The Bible says God is love and Jesus Christ is the epitome of Love. He demonstrated his love in every turn and event in his life.
It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord. The reason being God has been very good to us throughout the past year and has now given us something special: a brand new year. A new year is a gift of time to do some wonderful things. Whatever we choose to do with this wonderful time is up to us. For some of us, we have to resolve to do better: to be better husbands, better wives, better fathers, better role models, better parents, better stewards and so on and so forth. For some of us, we will resolve to have a better lifestyle: plan good healthy habits like eating well, exercising and having an overall balanced life.
For some, we will resolve to have a closer relationship with God and improve our spiritual life. For example, we may resolve to pray more, attend church regularly and be involved in what God is doing in our world.
The most important thing for all of us is to resolve to make this new year better than the past years. How are we going to live our lives with this new gift that God has given to us? The answer is God is the One who holds the future. In Jeremiah 31:17 the Bible says, “ ‘There is hope for your future,’ says the Lord.”
I would like to thank all of you for your prayers and financial support this past year. Your support allowed us to continue sharing the love of Christ with people far and near. I want to thank all of you for helping us do our part of the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ here in Mt. Pocono.