Paid for by your OCWM Contributions| November 23, 2022

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Message to the Conference

Greetings Members and Friends of Penn Central Conference,

I thank my God for every remembrance of you, always in every one of my prayers for all of you, praying with joy for your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work in you will continue to complete it until the day of Jesus Christ. Phil 1:3-6

In this season of gratitude, I want to take a moment to offer a heartfelt thanks for all of the pastors and local church leaders who have kept things going in our congregations during this lengthy season of the COVID-19 pandemic. As we all learn how to live and work with COVID still around us, it is important to acknowledge all it took from leaders to get us this far.


In so many fields there is a high burnout rate among leaders right now, and we are finding that church is no exception. Your Conference Minister, Rev. Dr. Carrie Call, and I see this across our 174 churches in a variety of ways. The UCC’s Council of Conference Ministers (Carrie is a member) and the Alliance of Associate Conference Ministers (Nora is a member) shared a joint letter urging congregations to extend a gift of time to their pastors in whatever creative ways might work for your unique setting. The resources mentioned in the letter can be found here. (It might be a good time to discuss ways all leaders might take a sabbath rest from work.)


As we think about all of the things we are grateful for this week, I encourage you to include a discussion of this letter at your next leadership meeting. Carrie and I are scheduling preaching engagements for the new year. However, we also encourage you to look within your own congregation and think about one of your own that could bring a message one Sunday morning, or your musicians who could lead a hymn sing or offer a service of meaningful music paired with scripture for meditation. Be creative! And share your ideas with us here at the conference! We love to hear about life and worship in the local congregations.




Rev. Dr. Nora Foust

Associate Conference Minister

Penn Central Conference

Scheduling notes:

December 18 - Trinity UCC, Lewistown - Rev. Dr. Nora Foust preaching

December 18 - Grace UCC, Lebanon - Rev. Rick Luciotti preaching

Printable eNews are available. Pastors and secretaries, please feel free to share with your congregation members that don't get this weekly email. Download and print this PDF with the weekly message to the conference, prayers for Penn Central and brief list of events.

Prayers for Penn Central Conference


Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. Ephesians 6:18 (NLT)

This week, we pray for each other as we continue to live into God's calling...

Trinity UCC, Hanover

Colonial Park UCC, Harrisburg

Penbrook UCC, Harrisburg

St. Thomas UCC, Harrisburg

Local Church

25th Anniversary Organ Concert and Art Exhibit to Usher in

Sestercentennial at Himmel’s Church

Dan Dorty, accompanist for Men in Harmony and the Susquehanna Chorale, will present an organ concert on Sunday evening, November 27 at 7:00 p.m. at Himmel’s Church, on Covered Bridge and Schwaben Creek Road, Dornsife. The event will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the installation of the Patrick J. Murphy Associates Pipe Organ. A brief demonstration of the organ and variations on hymns will comprise the majority of the concert.

In 1818, when the stone edifice was built, the remaining money left over from the construction in the amount of $800 was used to purchase a pipe organ built by Christian Dieffenbach. That organ had eight stops and a 51 note manual. It was used until 1953 and was destroyed in a fire in 1959. Himmel’s Church became known as the “organ church” in the 1800s because it was one of few churches that had an organ at the time. With the construction of a new building in 1960 an electric organ was purchased and used until 1997. When older members were asked about their memories of Himmel’s, one of the most common responses was that they remembered Charles Herbie Rebuck, the sextant, operating the bellows for the organist.  Fond memories prompted the wish to purchase a pipe organ which was realized 25 years ago. The Patrick Murphy pipe organ has multiple options for great, swell and pedal.

In addition to the organ concert, the event will also feature a small art exhibit of locally done paintings and artwork of the various buildings that have existed over the 250 years of Himmel’s existence and be the kick off for the 2023 sestercentennial celebration. A love offering will be taken after the service using a replica of the “Klingelsack,” the wooden handled pole with a metal ring with an attached cloth bag and bell that was used during early church services to collect the offering. 

To make the event even more memorable and to usher in the Advent season, cookies baked from heirloom family recipes, will be served following the concert in the adult Sunday school room where the art exhibit can also be viewed. The public is invited to attend this special event. 

Available Free, May Be Picked Up At Trinity UCC, 2340 State St., East Petersburg, PA:

32 Used Blue Children and Youth Choir Robes, some white yokes to go with them and assorted metal crosses

34 Used Cranberry Adult Choir Robes plus one with a broken zipper, some Cranberry and White Stoles (stoles mostly badly stained)

Trinity UCC

2340 State St.

East Petersburg, PA 17520

Contact Michael or Dina Slechta

Association Events

November 27 - Ordination Service for Allyssa Boyer - St. Paul's UCC, Mechanicsburg - 3:00PM

December 4 - Ecclesiastical Council for Julia Brown - 3:00PM

Outdoor Ministries

ADVENT DAY APART at The Wittel Farm

December 3

We don’t like to wait for anything, and especially Christmas. With all its secular attraction, this holiday is often a focus on over-indulgence, and too often neglected is the best gift of all… one worth our waiting. You are invited to The Wittel Farm for a day apart from the busyness of life for prayer and contemplation as we journey toward the celebration of Christmas. $15 registration includes lunch.

More Information -

Clergy Events

Fall MEFs (10AM hybrid, 6PM Zoom)

January 17 - "Grief and Loss" with Rev. Dr. Joel Hummel

10:00AM hybrid - register here

6:00PM Zoom Only - register here

Spring 2023 dates and topics to be announced soon!

Boundary Training - POSTPONED

November 30 (new date) - "The Ministerial Code: A Way of Being" with Rev. Dr. Nora Foust

10:00AM hybrid - register here

6:00PM Zoom - register here

UCC National Setting

UCC Webinars

These webinars are designed to help you enhance your local church ministries. Most are free to attend. Check out the calendar here.

“Introduction to Christian Contemplative Practices” with Matt Carriker

NOV 17, 2022 | 12:00PM -

Becoming a Creation Justice Church

NOV 17, 2022 | 3:30PM - 4:30PM

Celebration of Harvest and Ministry in Yunnan Province, China

NOV 30, 2022 | 8:00PM - 9:00PM

World AIDS Day 2022 Interfaith Service

DEC 1, 2022 | 1:00PM - 3:00PM

World AIDS Day of Prayer and Remembrance

DEC 1, 2022 | 3:30PM - 4:30PM

Global H.O.P.E. Blue Christmas Service

DEC 5, 2022 | 3:00PM - 4:00PM

Gift Giving and Worker Justice

DEC 7, 2022 | 2:00PM - 3:00PM

Engaging Christian Contemplative Practices

What does “contemplation” mean? When we “contemplate” an idea, contemplation implies something deeper than thinking only. In contemplation, we start from a place of mystery and an acceptance of not knowing. This is often called the “mystical” dimension of faith, which shares a root with the word “mystery”. Spiritual truths often begin as a mystery because there is much we must spiritually unlearn, including many beliefs that no longer serve us. As we release fear’s grip and open our minds and hearts, new revelations are revealed to us. We shall talk more about these foundations over the course of our “Engaging Christian Contemplative Practices” gatherings

Six virtual 90-minute evening sessions on these 2023 dates (with one optional in-person meeting in Mass.): January 18, February 1, February 15, March 1, March 15, March 29

"Making All Things New"

General Synod 2023


"Making All Things New” will be the theme of the 34th biennial General Synod of the United Church of Christ, scheduled for June 30–July 4, 2023, in Indianapolis.


Delegates and visitors will meet June 30 through July 4 at the Indianapolis Convention Center.


For the full press release, click here.

From our friends and partners

Abuse Prevention Considerations: Keeping Your Ministry Safe

Wednesday, November 30, 2022 @ 2pm EST

Featuring: Christy Schiller – Vice President of Account Services, Praesidium.

Failure to discover a sex offender can affect those in your care, your reputation, financial stability, and trust within the community. Join us on November 30th at 2 p.m. EST to learn about targeted solutions that will strengthen your ministry’s abuse prevention efforts. Register here

Pennsylvania Academy of Ministry (PAM)

Beginning January 2023:

Jews and the American Civil Rights Movement, January 11–February 15, 2023. Wednesdays, 7–8:30pm via Zoom. Instructor, Rabbi Jack Paskoff. Ideal for lay and clergy leaders.


Church History To the Reformation, Jan 10–Feb 14, 2023. Weeknights via Zoom. Instructor, the Rev. Matt Deal. Ideal for lay and clergy leaders.


Information and Registration: 

Faith and Money Network has two opportunities starting in January for deeper study, reflection and community:

The next Money, Faith and You online group will begin meeting Wednesday, Jan. 11. This group meets weekly via online video conference for six weeks to study some of today’s leading thinkers on faith and money and reflect on our own faith and money journeys. Learn more and  sign up.

A new cohort of Household Practices Covenant Groups will also begin in January. Covenant Groups meet monthly to work through the seven household practices outlined in the sabbath economics framework developed by Ched Myers and Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministries. A Faith and Money Network facilitator leads an online group (via video conference) of six to ten people who have have already completed a Sabbath Economics Workshop or a Money, Faith and You study group and commit to meeting monthly and supporting one another in discerning how to put Sabbath economics to work in their daily lives. Learn more and sign up.

Eden Seminary Events

NEXT Steps: Re-imagining Your Elderhood

NEXT Steps introduces participants to theological, philosophical, and psychological concepts of vocation and aging. The Spring 2023 semester is set to be a clergy only cohort. It is a gathering for adults contemplating or entering retirement, and for those who are recently retired.

Rev. Beth Long-Higgins, Rev. Steve Lawler, and Jill Schantz would like to invite you to an optional brief orientation to the course and introduction to the instructors on January 10, 2023, at 5:30 CST/6:30 EST. 

Employment Opportunities

Part time music director

Dreisbach UCC, Lewisburg, is looking for a music director beginning in January 2023. Dreisbach enjoys a diverse collection of music in its services including both contemporary and traditional. We have a small adult choir, a bell choir, and a praise band. We are looking for someone who can work approximately 3-6 hours per week. Position responsibilities include leading and directing the adult choir in rehearsal and worship, leading the praise band, directing the bell choir, and picking music for all ensembles.

Appropriate clearances are required. Qualified applicants should send their resume, cover letter, and references to: Dreisbach United Church of Christ, 875 Dreisbach Church Road, Lewisburg, PA. 17837, or email to

Organist and piano accompanist

Dreisbach UCC, Lewisburg, is looking for an organist and piano accompanist beginning in January 2023. Dreisbach enjoys a diverse collection of music in its services including both contemporary and traditional. Dreisbach has an Allen digital organ that was installed in 1997. The organ has 2 manuals, a midi system, and a recording system. We are looking for someone who can work approximately 3-6 hours per week. Position responsibilities include accompanying the worship service and the choir, working with the pastor to choose music for the worship services, and reporting organ and piano repair and tuning needs to the consistory.

Appropriate clearances are required. Qualified applicants should send their resume, cover letter, and references to: Dreisbach United Church of Christ, 875 Dreisbach Church Road, Lewisurg, PA. 17837, or email to

Starview United Church of Christ has a Director of Music position open. This position involves 1 Sunday morning worship service, special liturgical services throughout the year, and direction of the church choirs. The estimated time per week is a 6 hours, which naturally, will vary depending on the church season and number of services planned. Compensation is negotiable. Resumes may be emailed to: or mailed to 4832 N. Sherman St. Ext., Mount Wolf, PA 17347.

For additional contact information to address specific questions with the Worship Committee Chairperson or the pastor, please call 717-266-4248.

Starview United Church of Christ is located approximately 6 miles off of I-83 at Exit 24 and 6 miles north of the Galleria Mall on Rt. 24 (Mt. Zion Exit off of Rt. 30).

UCC National Positions:

Global Ministries

Area Executive, Southern Asia Office Extended Search: Open Until Filled

OPTIC - Philanthropy

Generosity Officer (Southern Region) Close date: 11/30/22

Generosity Officer (Western Region) Close date: 11/30/22

Generosity Officer (Middle Atlantic) Close date: 11/30/22

Generosity Officer (West Central) Close date: 11/30/22

Open and Affirming Coalition of the UCC Executive Director

The ED position implements the strategic goals and objectives of the Coalition and provides direction and leadership toward the achievement of the organization’s mission and vision. Reporting to the Leadership Team (the Board of Directors), the ED manages the Coalition staff and provides effective and impactful leadership to this national non-profit. The Executive Director will vision and implement a movement that is energized, provides a full spectrum of advocacy and care, and promotes the mission and vision of the Coalition. The ED should have experience in working with diverse populations and lead the mission of the coalition with a commitment to intersectionality, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Learn more and apply here.

Shiloh UCC, York
Family and Children Ministry Coordinator

Part-time Position Summary: Nurture and develop a caring Christian community where children and youth have a meaningful and fun relationship with other youth and adults; have an opportunity to grow in God’s grace; develop the spiritual and personal resources necessary for life’s journey and develop a loving relationship with God, themselves and others. Learn more here.
Accompanist Position Available
We are searching for an Accompanist to bring their gifts to our church where we appreciate a blend of contemporary and traditional music.

General Responsibilities:
In support of the vision of the church, this year-round, part time, salaried position will provide music for worship and other events in a manner that enhances the spirit of worship and enriches the congregation's appreciation of music.

The current music ministry of HPUCC consists of one volunteer choir, as well as instrumental and vocal soloists.

For more information, please call the church at 717-397-9791 or email: If interested, please mail or email resume to: Hamilton Park United Church of Christ, Attn: Search, 1210 Maple Ave., Lancaster, PA 17603

Hospice & Community Care

Chaplain- Home Hospice/Inpatient Unit

Per Diem (as needed)


Works in collaboration with the Home Hospice team and Palliative Medicine Consultants assessing and addressing spiritual care needs of patients and caregivers. Qualifications include board certification w/APC or NACC (or ability to be certified within 5 years of hire). M.Div. or equivalent from an accredited theological institution. Accredited training and a minimum of 4 units of CPE required. Must be able to complete 6-8 weeks of a FT, day shift orientation.


Rev. Dr. Carrie Call, Ph.D.

Conference Minister


Phone: 717-433-3196

Rev. Dr. Nora Driver Foust

Associate Conference Minister 


Phone: 717-433-2587

Rev. Rick Luciotti

Coordinator of Care to Clergy & Clergy Families


Phone: 717-433-6306


C. Paul Keller

Office Manager


Phone: 717-652-1560

If you have future eNews stories, please send them to C. Paul Keller
Contact information: C. Paul Keller | email: | phone: 717-652-1560
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