Paid for by your OCWM Contributions| June 23, 2021
Message to the Conference
Members and friends of Penn Central Conference -

“But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31 NLT

It has been quite a year and a half, hasn't it? In 2019, I bet no one ever in their wildest imagination would have thought that we would be quarantined to our homes, only to be allowed to emerge when going to the grocery store, work, or emergencies. But it happened, and it was dreadful. But there is hope; there was always hope. I chose the passage from Isaiah because it was something that I read daily throughout the pandemic to remind me of that hope.

In this passage, God speaks through Isaiah to the Israelites, letting them know that their captivity is finally over and they can look forward to returning to their homes. But the walk that they will endure is long. From Babylon to Jerusalem, it is approximately 700 miles. Imagine for a moment walking from New York City to Atlanta, Georgia. That is a lot of steps for sure. Would any of us have the strength to make the trek? Would you be able to do it and not faint or grow weary?

Isaiah 40:31 is a verse that talks about strength, and renewed strength, gaining new strength. Can we walk without becoming faint or run without becoming weary through and beyond this pandemic of 2020/2021? I believe we can by placing our trust in our God. We can look at the pandemic in two ways, negatively, or perhaps we lift and acknowledge the positive things that came out of this dreadful year and a half. I read this poem by Kitty O'Meara, and it brought me to the realization that there were many blessings in this time of Covid.
"And the people stayed home"
Kitty O'Meara

And the people stayed home.
And read books and listened, and rested and exercised,
and made art and played games,
and learned new ways of being and were still.
And listened more deeply.
Some meditated, some prayed, and some danced.
Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently.
And the people healed.
And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless and heartless ways the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again,
they grieved their losses, and made new choices,
and dreamed new images,
and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully,
as they had been healed.

We have endured captivity and suffering, but there is hope that through our trust and love of God, we will now have a renewed strength and hopefully a renewed mindset to live our lives differently, better together as one body.

With many blessings,
Rev. Dr. Ronnette Comfort-Butler
Coordinator of Clergy Care
Penn Central Conference
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:

June 25 - July 4 - Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola on vacation
June 27 - Starview UCC, Mt. Wolf - Rev. Dr. Carrie Call preaching
June 27 - St. John's UCC, Boalsburg - Rev. Nora Foust preaching
July 4 - Starview UCC, Mt. Wolf - Rev. Nora Foust preaching
General Synod 33
"Rooted In Love"
July 11 – 18, 2021
Important links below

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...

Incarnation UCC, Newport
Elias UCC, Newmanstown
Trinity UCC, Palmyra
Jacob's (Reeds Station) UCC, Paxinos
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:
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.
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. Full brochure here. Special PCC discounts available on camp registrations! Read 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.
Penn Central Conference Lectionary Discussion Group - This group is open to all clergy, meets weekly on Tuesdays at 1:00PM to discuss upcoming lectionary passages. Us this Zoom link here.
Northern Cluster Pig Roast and Concert
June 27
On Sunday, June 27, beginning at 5pm, the Northern Cluster of UCC Churches will host a free pig-roast and concert at MYO Park in Millersburg. The Seger Family from Shamokin will share the Gospel in Bluegrass, Southern Gospel, and Country-style music. Bring a covered-dish to share, and a lawn chair. A free-will offering will be received. All are welcome – come join us for great food, music, and fellowship! FYI we will keep things safe by having a single serving line, and the servers will all wear gloves.
Chapel Hill UCC, Lemoyne

Chapel Hill will be hosting an
open house on
Join us for our 10 AM worship service.
Afterwards plan on staying and enjoying a Farm Show milk shake from the Dairymen’s Assoc. vendor truck and a
delicious sandwich from the
Bucky’s Festival Food truck.
We will have games available and will be giving tours of our new facility.
This is a community event!
Everyone is welcome.

Chapel Hill Church
1019 Mumma Road
Lemoyne, PA 17043
Go Green Sunday
August 8, 2021
Mt. Zion UCC, York
St. Thomas UCC, Harrisburg
15th Annual Blueberry Sale
Order deadline June 30, 2021
Book Reviews
This month's reviews by Carole Hoover
by Lisa Wingate

Narrated by Rill, the oldest of five children, this book, although fiction, alludes to the factual Tennessee Children’s Home Society which was in existence for many years. The story begins in 1939 in Memphis, Tennessee as the five children live aboard a shanty boat with their parents. When their father has to take their mother to the hospital for the delivery of a pregnancy with complications, the police come and forcibly remove the children to take them to an orphanage, a facility of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society. There, along with many other children, they are treated cruelly and their names are changed, so as not to be traced, and they are put up for adoption. Alongside Rill's story is the present day story of Avery, a wealthy, young female lawyer in South Carolina, who meets a woman in a nursing home who calls Avery by another name and claims a cherished bracelet originally belonging to Avery's grandmother is hers. By times a sad story, the book shows how keeping hope alive is essential to the characters’ well-being.
by Donald Miller

This book gives a fresh and original perspective on life, love, and redemption and has a unique way of looking at faith and spirituality. Mr. Miller talks about his life's journey through childhood, teens, college and into adulthood and what he learned from various people and situations that helped him to cement his faith and beliefs. He sees Christianity-versus-Christian Spirituality as "getting someone to believe what I do-versus-talking about Jesus and the spirituality that goes along with a relationship with Him." One particular quote that you may want to consider is "I don't think any church has ever been relevant to culture and the human struggle unless it believed in Jesus and the power of the gospel. If the supposed new church believes in trendy music and cool web pages, then it is not relevant to culture either. It is just another another tool of Satan to get people to be passionate about nothing."
UCC Webinars

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

Synod Storytelling June 24, 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Sharing Leadership in UCC Community June 29. 3:30PM - 4:30 PM

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:

The Pennsylvania Academy of Ministry at Lancaster Seminary is proud to offer "The Minister’s Job-Hunting Field Guide: Bivocational and Beyond," Tuesdays, 6:30–8pm EDT, July 6–August 10, 2021, via Zoom. Generous grant funding allows us to offer this 2.5 CEU class for $100 per participant registered by July 1.
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
Lancaster Theological Seminary

How has the Church made it this far? What are the current realities we church people need to know? Want some ideas for how to move forward? Looking for foundational, biblical hope for the future?
You're invited to join us for a special, free webinar
A New Day Dawning: Leading the Church Toward the Light.
Featuring presentations by Lancaster Seminary faculty including: Melvin Baber, Lee Barrett, Nathan Baxter, Greg Carey, Kathy Harvey-Nelson, Vanessa Lovelace, Julia O'Brien, Larry Peers, David Rowe, Myka Kennedy Stephens, Anne Thayer, Catherine Williams, and me. We'll also have time to begin important conversations!
Join us online
7-10 p.m. ET
Register here
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 (
 The Administrative Assistant is an employee of St. Paul's United Church of Christ, hired by Consistory, working under the supervision of the Pastor and Consistory.
· The Administrative Assistant is responsible for assuring the timely and accurate completion of all assignments to effectively meet the needs of the church.
· This on-site hourly position is responsible for providing administrative support services to St. Paul's for 35 hours per week.
· The Administrative Assistant provides support for a variety of people such as the Director of Music, Director of Christian Education / Youth Pastor, various committees and members of St. Paul's, prioritizing the work of the Pastor. Read more here...
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