Trinity United Church
Sunday, January 9th
First after Epiphany
“Connection not Perfection”
Prelude: “Welcome Home Video” CLICK HERE
Welcome to Trinity United Church in Port Coquitlam, BC.
We are so grateful that you have chosen to spend some time with us, we are glad you are here.
If you are joining us on YouTube, please check out our website at ucpoco.ca. We would also appreciate if you would subscribe to our channel, and like and share our service. Those buttons are right below the video, and it does make a difference when you interact with our account.
2022 is the 60th Anniversary year of the United Church Women (UCW). Our worship today will reflect UCW stories and song and pictures. Many have had a part in organizing this worship service. Special thank to Betty Radford Turcott, Judy Johnson, Zoe Sanborn, Joan Leston, Jo-Ann Dahms, Syd and Wayne Sawyer, and Wendy and Dave Squires.
Acknowledgement of Territory:
We acknowledge and respect the Kwikwetlem First Nation peoples on whose traditional territory our Trinity United Church stands. We work and live, in hope of right relationship and reconciliation.
Call to Worship:
Let us praise God, our guide and our help. In thanksgiving let us gather to celebrate the good news of God in our history, the presence of God in our midst, and the hope of God's blessing in our future.
Hymn: “You Servants of God” VU 342 CLICK HERE
God of time and eternity, we offer our thanksgiving that you have led us through the years.
We rejoice in your love.
We offer our prayers of gratitude.
Be with us as we celebrate your foodness and your mercy to us in the past.
Stay with us as we live in this time and place.
Be our guide into the unknown future.
Psalm 71: “” VU 789
Hymn: “Praise the Lord with the Sound of Trumpets” VU 245 CLICK HERE
Reading: Joan Leston
Selections from the book of Joel 2
Hymn: “God of the Bible” MV 28 CLICK HERE
Message: Joy Galea
So, where were you in 1962?
In 1962, the UCW - United Church Women - came into being. Me, I was in grade 10 - a teenager, an Intermediate CGIT girl, a choir singer, and an almost driver. The formation of this oganization that has so much influenced my adult life was not a big deal then.
But it was. The joining of the Women's Missionary Society and the Women's Association into the United Church Women was a big deal. Women across the United Church had long worked to find a way to bring these two groups together without losing the focus of either one.
For 60 years the working out of that idea has been ongoing.
2022 marks the 60th Anniversary of the UCW! As the reading from Joel states, "Surely the Lord has done great things."
At an anniversary we always look back on our story. It is a time to remember and honour the great history and traditions of this community of faithful people. It is a time to recognize and remember the guidance of God through all the years that have led us to this time and place. It is a time to give God thanks for the faith and the courage, the hope and the vision, of those who were here in the early development of the United Church Women.
Here, at Trinity, United Church Women began at a meeting held on Jan 18, 1962. There were 73 women in attendance and the outing was presided over by Rev Art Griffin. The first president was Irene Newson and Pearl Griffin was honourary president. The new organization stated its' purpose: "To unite all women of the congregation for the total mission of the Church, and to provide a medium though which we may express our loyalty and devotion to Jesus Christ in Christian witness, study, fellowship, and service."
As the founders and initiators of this organization looked about them they no doubt saw a world that was far from ideal. There would be doubts in their minds and in their hearts. They were standing on the edge of a new adventure and they could not know what the future had in store. But they too looked back on a past, ona journey made in the presence of God.
The Luke passage - the story of Mary and Martha - has often been used to set the role of women in the church - the workers as set against the thinkers. But the role Jesus suggests is for both. As our purpose states to express our loyalty and devotion to Jesus Christ in Christian witness, study, fellowship, and service. All parts matter.
The balance of each of these parts is constantly shifting and sometimes one becomes very dominant. All are part of the UCW and the work done by this organization.
This year as we celebrate 60 years, we look back on some highlights.
In 1962, there were five units at Trinity - Ruth, Rebecca, Ester, Dorcas, and Deborah. Then later in 1962 the Naomi and Rachel units were added.
When I came home in 1978, there were 4 units - Ruth, Esther, Rachel, Deborah. The others had been disbanded and members absorbed into these 4. The Sarah unit began in 1979. The Mary unit formed in the middle 1980s. Then the Friendship group in 2015. Each of these groups provided "mentors, sisters, and friends" as the words of Carol Etzler's song, "Standing Before Us" say.
At the beginning of worship today we saw a collection of UCW pictures. Sometimes these photos move too quickly to identify all those pictured and sometimes the times and places are easily remembered. Shown among these photos are pictures of logos of the National Gatherings of UCS - 25 years in Waterloo, at 35 in Hamilton, at 40 in Winnipeg, at 45 in Cornerbrook, NFLD, at 50 in Acaster, Ont, and at 55 in Vancouver. This 60th Anniversary event is slated to happen in July 2022 in North Sidney, Nova Scotia.
In our midst we have 3 women who have been in the UCW since 1962. These charter members are Marie Coulter (Esters), Ruth MacDonald (Deborahs), and Elaine Stead (Rachels). We honour their dedication to the work and fellowship of UCW at Trinity.
Today our world is changing and whatever normal might be is certainly unclear. Still the UCW is a supporting, instigating, encouraging presence. There is solidarity expressed by researching and resourcing our many activities.
What of the future? The people of God will continue. Many things will change as they have changed since the time of the prophet, Joel.
The changes in the 60 years of United Church Women are awsome (in the true meaning of that word). Most of the changes to church and UCW are surface changes - like paint and plaster, hats and gloves, words and melodies. The great truths of our faith will continue. The love and the guidance of God will continue, and the message of hope will be shared.
We honour those gone before us:
"Standing before us
Making us strong
Sharing their wisdom
To help us along - "
from Standing Before Us by Carole Etzley
This is the chorus to Standing Before Us by Carole Etzler and closely expresses looking back and forward.
Someday, in the future, those yet unborn, will look back and say -
"Surely the Lord has done great things."
May it be so.
Special Music: David Rogers
Offering: show Leaders Bookmark picture
Your offering, your financial gifts, your gifts of time and skill are what make our ministry possible. If you are not already on Pre-Authorized Remittance (PAR), we invite you to participate in our ministry by making a financial gift, either by sending a cheque to the church office or by clicking the "online giving" on our website.
We have been gifted with much so we give!!
God of gift and giftedness, hear our prayers and receive our offering.
Our offering is a reflection of our "glad and generous hearts".
By your blessing and our labours may our offering be transformed into:-
Food for the hungry
Drink for the thirsty
Clothing for the naked
Community for the lonely
And through our ministries, may your good news be heard, your peace be felt and your love known. Amen.
*From Called to be the Church 2020, Loving Our Neighbours
Prayers of the People:
God of our mothers and fathers, we thank you for the courage and faith of these women 60 years ago and today, who strive to live out the UCW purpose.
We honour them for the sacrifices they made.
We celebrate the joy that they felt.
We give thanks for the faith that sustained them.
Be with us as we carry on the great traditions that they have passed on to us.
Help us to hold on to that which is true and faithful.
Give us the courage to let go fo those things that hold us back.
Give us the energy to take on new challenges and opportunities.
Grant that we may pass this legacy on to those who follow.
May we and they say with those of old, "Surely the Lord has done great things". Amen
VU 916 : The Disciples’ Prayer: A Paraphrase
Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life-giver,
Source of all that is and that shall be.
Father and Mother of us all,
Loving God, in whom is heaven:
The hallowing of your name echo
through the universe!
The way of your justice be followed
by peoples of the world!
Your heavenly will be done
by all created beings!
Your commonwealth of peace and freedom
sustain our hope and come on earth.
With the bread we need for today, feed us.
In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us.
In times of temptation and test, strengthen us.
From trials too great to endure, spare us.
From the grip of all that is evil, free us.
For you reign in the glory of the power that is love,
Now and for ever. Amen.
Hymn: “It's a Song of Praise to the Maker” MV 30 CLICK HERE
Blessing, the UCW Prayer:
And now, go with us, Lord
Into the days ahead,
Strengthen us for peace.
Give us wisdom, keep us humble,
and may we live and work together,
and so striving,
build a new and better world for tomorrow.