Paid for by your OCWM Contributions| May 19, 2021
Message to the Conference
Members and friends of Penn Central Conference -
Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers; but their delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law they meditate day and night.  They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper. (Psalm 1:1-3)
General Synod 33, July 11-18, 2021

This is a General Synod year in the United Church of Christ and there may never be a better time for your entire congregation to join the national setting for this event!! All parts of General Synod 33 will be online, just as so much of life has been lately. As I sit with this theme scripture, I think about these “they” and wonder how exactly I might “delight in the law of the Lord.” Each time I think about it, I find myself wondering through scriptures that inform my living, hoping that the fruit I see is real.

I want to use this message as invitation to each and every member of the UCC to join the whole church for part of this church-wide conversation. Perhaps your small group will read the resolutions and have discussion throughout your congregation about these possible statements from the national setting. How might the local church or individual member engage the implementation or rejection of these resolutions?

Another way to join the wider church will be the 3 main worship services. While registration is needed, these services will be streamed for free. Local churches could join for watch parties in church yards or social halls, or members can join in worship from their homes. The opening worship will be on Sunday, July 11th at 5pm, the mid-week service on Wednesday, July 14th at 8pm and the closing worship will be at 6pm on Sunday, July 18th.

Workshops will also be available for purchase to the whole church in single on-demand offerings or bundles.

The most important thing that each member of the church can do is pray for this gathering. Each of the Penn Central associations have elected delegates that will attend online from home most of the week and will gather at the Hilton DoubleTree in Lancaster for the majority of the business sessions on Friday and Saturday. Holding our delegates, as well as those from the other 32 Conferences, in prayer connects us in ways that make real the hope “that they may all be one.”

You can follow General Synod news at Join the conversation and take this opportunity to check your roots, examine your fruits and know that in love, children of God will always prosper.


Rev. Nora Foust
Associate Conference Minister
Penn Central Conference
General Synod 33
"Rooted In Love"
July 11 – 18, 2021
Important links below

The 59th Annual Meeting of Penn Central Conference
June 12, 2021
"Called to Covenant"

Registration is now open!
Click here to read more.

See documents as they are uploaded on the PCC website.
Submit budget questions in advance here:

Special Meetings to discuss bylaws changes that will be voted on:
June 1st 10:00AM register here
June 1st 7:00PM register here
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.
Scheduling notes:

May 23 - St. Paul's UCC, Selinsgrove - Rev. Dr. Carrie Call preaching
May 23 - Zion UCC, Arendtsville - Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola preaching
May 30 - Peace UCC, Denver - Rev. Nora Foust preaching
June 6 - Zion UCC, York - Rev. Dr. Carrie Call preaching
June 6 - Salem UCC, Harrisburg - Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola preaching
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...

Zion UCC, Marietta
St. John's UCC, Markelsville
Maytown Reformed UCC, Maytown
St. James UCC, Littlestown
Penn Central Conference is once again accepting applications for the PCC Innovation Grants which is for PCC churches who are looking for funding for a bold & innovative approach to ministry. Application can be found here, please email completed forms to Paul.
COVID-19 Resources

Penn Central Conference has added a special section on our website for COVID-19 resources, including the times and links for Zoom meetings. Find them here:

PCC Virtual Choir

The latest virtual choir anthem is available now!
Be the Church is a recent composition by Rev. Scott Siciliano who serves as Minister of Worship and the Arts at Colonial Park UCC in Harrisburg, PA.  Scott arranged his piece for the Virtual Choir, and it is our Pentecost offering. The song addresses both the hurt that the church has caused to people who have been marginalized and also our commitment to truly be a healing, inclusive loving church.  It is appropriate for Pentecost as well as most other Sundays.  
For the first time we have sign singing on the video, and we invite you to enjoy that way of experiencing music.
You can view the video on the Conference's Youtube channel, at the following link:
Our last piece of the 2020-2021 Virtual Choir Season will be prepared for worship at the Penn Central Conference Annual meeting.  If you are interested in joining us, contact Julie Holm at or call (814)349-5515.  
Because of copyright issues, most pieces of our Christmas cantata will be removed from YouTube and no longer available for download as of June 1. If you want to download it for future use in your church, it is still available at 
From the PCC Creation Justice Team

Has your church considered creating a Pollinator Garden this spring? This is a very practical and productive hands-on project that individuals and churches can do. Pollinator gardens actively and constructively contribute to the health of our own immediate environment, and provide food and shelter for the bees and other insects.  We do a lot of talking about “policies” and “legislation” with regard to climate change. But this is an action where for folks can get their fingernails dirty and make a tangible contribution!  The gardens of native shrubs and flowers provide food, water and nesting sights for our pollinators on which our food supply depends, and build appreciation for God's interconnected creation and community. Penn State Extension has a Pollinator Garden Certification Program that outlines how to begin planning and creating your pollinator garden in four steps and includes many helpful resources. Check HERE for getting started ideas.

For inspiration check out the Church of the Apostles UCC, Waynesboro Pollinator and Wildlife Habitat and Monarch Waystation - beautiful pictures and story.
PCC Creation Justice Team Meeting
May 19, 6:00PM

Rev. Matt Lenahan, from The Growing Project at the Wittel Farm in Elizabethtown will join us for the very first part of our meeting. So tune into Zoom to learn how our Outdoor Ministry Partners grow many acres acres of vegetables using regenerative farming to feed the hungry in Lancaster County.  

Outdoor Ministries

The 2021 summer camp schedule is set! There are camps for all ages and interests at both Kirchenwald and Nawakwa. Check out what is offered online. There is an early-bird registration discount if you register before April 3. Also, if you attend the Open House, you can get an additional discount. Full brochure here. Special PCC discounts available on camp registrations! Read more here.

Calling all high school kids, college-age young adults, and adults interested in working at camp this summer! Lutheran Camping Corporation is recruiting now for this summer's camp season. Learn more here.

This will be a week of summer camp dedicated to carrying on the memorable and special experiences at Hartman Center. It will be a week for folks from Penn Central Conference and friends of Hartman Center to come together and celebrate outdoor ministry with familiar faces and through familiar traditions. There are a variety of camp options ranging from coming for a single day to staying the whole week, from bringing your own food to eating all the meals provided! The Conference has scholarships available - please reach out for more info.

Check out the all new Outdoor Ministries page on the PCC website here!
And a history of Hartman Center is hosted on the PCC website here.
Mercersburg Society Presents
2021 Mercersburg Convocation
Polarization and Reconciliation: Hints From the Mercersburg Tradition
Jun 7 & 8, 2021

Learn more here.

 On Saturday, June 5 at 7:00 p.m. Christ Church United Church of Christ in Elizabethtown will host Br. Stefan Andre Waligur in concert. This is a benefit concert to support the new Community of Peace in Louisa, VA near Charlottesville. The concert offers original songs and chants for peace and justice, stories and poetry from the Celtic tradition, and opportunity for shared sacred silence. Br. Stefan is a monk in the Benedictine tradition who has offered retreats and concerts across the country and around the world. His music has been described by famed jazz musician Wynton Marsalis as “very beautiful and uplifting” and by Krista Tippett, host of On Being as “just beautiful” and again by author Brian McLaren as “a soulful gift.” Phyllis Tickle says Br. Stefan’s music is “absolutely breathtaking” and Parker Palmer writes that it is “a fascinating blend of traditions. I urge people to listen to this music.” 
Continuing Education in Theology – Open to all MIDs and Authorized Ministers
PCC Staff have been thinking a lot about theology and liturgy. You are invited to join us for a deeper discussion of our worship elements. We have designed a number of discussions for a registration required, limited-size continuing education opportunity. Twelve hours of theology credits will be offered.
Do you spend much time thinking about the theology behind the elements of the liturgy? What does an assurance of pardon really mean when pastors offer these words following a congregational prayer of confession? Did anyone really confess anything? How do we know? And what about communion - what happens when we speak the prayer of consecration and words of institution?
Register and join us for deeper discussion and community learning!
Theology of Liturgy (Evening): May 27th, and June 3rd, 10th, and 17th
           Thursdays from 6:30 – 8:00 PM
           Limit 10 (minimum 6) Registration
Lectionary Discussion Group continues - using a new Zoom link starting May 4th! Join other clergy on Tuesdays at 1:00PM to discuss the lectionary passages. NEW Zoom link here.
Book Reviews
This month's reviews by Rev. Ken Trauger 
“John 8:32 reads, ‘You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free’. …is…(a) moral statement…that breaks through the confusion and chaos of our lives”. This first paragraph of the book will not disappoint you with a theology and abundant information on our country. Because of the truth, you need to be free, honest, responsible, neighbors, more productive and contributing citizen. I went deeper with understanding my faith work for justice and peace.
“Race is a Story” begins with this title of chapter one. “The New Jim Crow and Restorative Justice” is the title of chapter eight.  Another chapter is on ‘Repentance Means More Than Just Saying You’re Sorry’.
Jim Wallis will retire from his ministry at Sojourners to be a professor at Georgetown University. He, his wife and two sons have live in an impoverished Washington D.C. area for decades. 
UCC Webinars

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

TikTok Ministry: Faith, in the World May 25, 3:30PM - 4:30PM

The State of Seminary Education June 1, 3:30PM - 4:30PM

UCC Musicians Association Conference 2021
July 8-10, 2021

Join us online for workshops, worship services, a wonderful concert, vendors and networking. We will be virtually hosted by the First Church of Christ, Congregational, UCC in the historic town of Glastonbury, Connecticut. From Thursday evening through the Saturday 4 pm closing worship service, we provide a plethora of activities that will enhance your music skills and give you resources and ideas for new ways of expressing God's Spirit in these pandemic times. We also provide glimpses of the historic scenery around the church in Glastonbury, which you would have enjoyed if you had come in person as originally planned. Join us instead online for a mental reset and spiritual refreshment with a taste of Connecticut. Learn more here.
From our Partners & Friends:
The Pennsylvania Academy of Ministry at Lancaster Seminary announces:

Bivocational Ministry for Congregations and Pastors, taught by the Rev. Dr. Darryl W. Stephens, Wednesday nights, 7–8:30pm, May 26–June 30, via Zoom. Generous grant funding allows us to offer this 2.5 CEU class for $100 per participant (or $50 for auditors, no credit). Registration and instructions for payment:
Is your congregation considering a part-time pastor? Are you considering a career in ministry alongside a secular job? This class is appropriate for lay leaders and clergy alike. We will explore what it means to be bivocational in ministry. We will study the example of Paul as tentmaker and discuss challenges facing the church today. Students taking this class for CEUs will develop a covenant of expectations between congregation and pastor for successful ministry in a changing world.

Also upcoming:
Ministry Job Search Toolkit: Bivocational and Beyond, instructor TBA, July–August 2021. Grant funding allows us to offer this 2.5 CEU class for $100 per participant (or $50 for auditors, no CEUs).
May 16 is Seminary Sunday at Lancaster Seminary, a day when our faculty, students and staff visit (this year it'll be virtual visits) congregations to either preach, teach or simply say a few words about LTS and the importance of educating the next generation of leaders to serve the church. The pastor decides the level of involvement and are invited to email their interest / availability to our Admissions Team at, which is organizing the outreach this year.
Mt. Gretna Tabernacle
Ecumenical Program
Friday Nights in June - 7:00PM

"GOD'S PRESENCE" is the common theme for Friday night worship services
during June at the historic Mt. Gretna Tabernacle. For speakers and more info, check out the full flyer here.

Parking GPS Address: 41 Boulevard St., Mt. Gretna, PA 17064
Save the Date! June 13th is ERHS Heritage Sunday
The Evangelical and Reformed Historical Society looks forward to partnering with you in celebrating the continuing legacy of our historic E and R churches throughout the Penn Central Conference on Sunday, June 13th. Additional details are forthcoming. In the meantime, you can always visit us at and follow us on Facebook @erhistoricalsoc and Instagram @erhistoricalsociety
The National Council of Churches has been part of a Jewish, Christian, and Muslim coalition called Faiths4Vaccines for the past several months. Among our goals is helping houses of worship become vaccination sites by connecting them with partners such as local and state health departments and/or pharmacies. 
Employment Opportunities

The Lebanon Valley Home, a continuing care retirement community affiliated with United Church of Christ Homes, is seeking a compassionate and resident focused team member for the position of Chaplain. This position is Part Time (15 hours per week).
The primary duty of the Chaplain is to provide spiritual support and comfort for the residents of the facility in coordination with the resident’s home congregation.

The chaplain will communicate a caring friendship with a tolerant attitude for multiple cultural traditions and a wide range of spiritual beliefs. The chaplain will offer encouragement and support to clergy and churches as they continue to minister to the needs of their members.
The chaplain will be available to offer comfort to the individual as well as the family. During difficult times, sensitivity and compassion are requisite for the spiritual support needed by all involved; the resident, family, and staff.
Providing comfort for the dying is a key part of the Chaplain's job as well as coordinating and conducting regularly scheduled religious services for residents.

Requirements – Must be an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ with a minimum of one year experience in a pastoral ministry as well as one unit Clinical Pastoral Education.
A resume and letter of interest should be submitted to:
Meredith Schell Fields
Executive Director
The Lebanon Valley Home
550 East Main Street
Annville PA, 17003
Fax (717) 867-7060
PT Church Office Administrator - Christ UCC, Elizabethtown, an ONA congregation, looking for PT Church Office Administrator—28 hrs/wk. The Office Administrator should have skills, education, and experience in church office administration which includes web site construction, word processing, office management, and inter-personal relationships. Send application letter, résumé, and two references to or mail to: Christ Church UCC, 247 So. Market Street, Elizabethtown, PA 17022 by May 13, 2021
Trinity United Church of Christ in Waynesboro, Pa. is looking for a Director of Faith Formation and Programming. The position is part-time (20-25 hours per week) and is open beginning August 1st, 2021. The Director position will be responsible for developing programs for youth, adults and children from pre-school age through fifth grade. The Director will engage children with exciting and relevant opportunities for learning, serving, and growing towards a meaningful relationship with God. Director will be responsible for providing leadership and effective communication for youth and adult Sunday School classes and other Christian Formation offerings (such as Vacation Bible School, book studies, outdoor education, etc.). The Director will engage all ages with exciting and relevant opportunities for learning, serving, and growing towards a meaningful relationship with God. Full description here.
PT Director of Music - Christ Church UCC, an ONA congregation in Elizabethtown, PA seeks a candidate to lead worship through music and oversee the church’s music program. The candidate will possess strong skills in music, leadership, cooperation, organization, and recruitment. A music degree or equivalent experience, broad knowledge of church music, and a willingness to grow the music program are required. Salary up to $19,975 depending on background and experience.
The responsibilities include:
  • Director of Music (Approx. 3-5 hours required/week)
Oversee and coordinate the overall music ministry of six choirs
Meet regularly with pastors to plan worship
Coordinate special music for worship services
  • Chancel Choir Director (Approx. 10 hours required/week)
Direct the adult choir (not during summer)
A letter of application, resumé and two references can be sent to by May 27, 2021.
PT Musician Position - We're looking for someone to assist with the casual service at St. Thomas UCC in Linglestown. This person would help to plan worship, coordinate musicians, and lead the music for Sunday services by playing (keyboard or guitar) and singing. This is a paid, part-time position; for more information, contact Dan Schmidt (
Rev. Dr. Carrie Call, Ph.D.
Conference Minister
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 12

Rev. Nora Driver Foust
Associate Conference Minister 
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex.13

Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola, Ph.D.
Associate Conference Minister
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 15

Rev. Dr. Ronnette Comfort-Butler
Facilitator of Care to Clergy & Clergy Families
phone: 717-719-1895
Anne Rankin
Outdoor Ministries Liaison
phone: 717-945-4585
C. Paul Keller
Office Manager
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 14
If you have future eNews stories, please send them to C. Paul Keller
Contact information: C. Paul Keller | email: | phone: 717-652-1560