Classes for All Ages (see below)


In the Sanctuary and Online


September 18, 2022


Galatians 3:23-4:7 


“Belonging to Christ”


This Week

Prayer Requests

and Calendar

Sunday School News

Children's Ministry Schedule

Online Giving

Upcoming Events

COB News

Last Week

Contacting the Pastor 

Happening This Week

Children of God, Heirs of God's Promise

Disciplinarian or Loving Father?

This week in worship, we continue a message series based on the book of Galatians, a letter commending the grace of God to the churches and reminding them of of their identity and belonging found in Christ through faith. We'll consider the usefulness of "the law" in comparison to the love of God made visible in Christ Jesus to truly make us whole.

We will also have a time giving "faith markers" (Bibles and books) to children and youth within our congregation. The children's (JAM) choir will also be singing. Come and join us for worship this week as we sing, pray, and receive words of instruction and inspiration. As people of Christ, let us gather and recall our first love, the God who called us and has made us whole. 10:30 AM in the Sanctuary as always.

A meeting will follow the service for all who wish to be part of our Christmas Musical this December. See below for more information. 

Live Stream Worship

Although most of us gather in person, our worship services are available via YouTube for those who wish to join that way. Click the link below shortly before the service begins at 10:30 AM on Sunday to join with us in worship.

The video will be available to view after the worship hour in case you miss the 10:30 AM time or wish to watch it again. DVD copies of the services are available in the church lounge any weekday, in case you are not able to view online.

Click here to view the bulletin for this Sunday.

This Sunday's Bulletin


Sunday, September 18

9:00 am Sunday School

10:30 am Worship Service – Faith Markers Presentation – Sanctuary

12:00 pm Musical Planning Meeting – Sanctuary

Tuesday, September 20

9:30 am Ladies Bible Study - Lounge

 4:00 pm Food Pantry Open (4:00 pm to 5:30pm)

6:45 pm Worship Design Team – Lounge/Multi-purpose room

Wednesday, September 21

9:00 am Staff Meeting – Multi Purpose Room


Thursday, September 22

7:30 pm Choir Practice – Sanctuary


Sunday, September 25

9:00 am Sunday School

10:30 am Worship Service – Sanctuary

2:00 pm Deacon Meeting – Rm. 154

Church Calendar

Click on this button to view the full calendar

Click for Friends to Remember in Prayer

Prayer Requests
Additions and updates for prayer list or calendar of events are welcome by contacting the church office.
Special note for all Ministry Teams: Please notify the church office with any upcoming meetings or events for your team so we can add these dates to the calendar.
Sunday School News

Children's Sunday School Classes

Sunday mornings at 9:00 AM in Rooms 151, 152, and 155. Children grades PreK (age 4) and up will have class lessons, with singing included as well. Children ages 3-4 and younger are welcome to attend nursery care.


Youth Sunday School Membership Class

Sunday mornings at 9:00 AM in the Youth Room 149

Teachers are Pastor Joel and Dave Witkovsky. We'll be following the "Heart, Soul, and Mind" curriculum. This class is for youth in grades 6-12. Consistent attendance for this important class series is encouraged - hope to see you all on Sunday!

Vine and Branches Sunday School Class

Sunday mornings at 9:00 AM in Room 154. The class will be studying the "Guide for Biblical Studies" curriculum, this fall's series entitled "God's Exceptional Choice."


Lamplighters Sunday School Class

Sunday mornings at 9:00 AM in Room 145. The class is studying Max Lucado's "Begin Again."


Homebuilders Sunday School Class

Sunday mornings at 8:00 AM by conference call, holding class remotely. To join, contact Mike Martin at 717-840-4184 or and leave a phone number. The class studies lessons from the "Guide for Biblical Studies" curriculum. 

Children's Ministry Schedule
Online Giving

Online Giving is safe, easy, and convenient. Sign up by going to our church website at: and click on the Online Giving Link or go directly to the Online Giving website at:

For assistance setting up your account,

call Donor Support at:  800-348-2886 – Option 2 – Online Giving Questions? Contact Sheryl Leaman - Thank you for your support!

Church Website
Online Giving
Upcoming Events


Sunday September 18 - Faith Markers during worship service, Youth trip to Antietam

Sunday October 2 - Love Feast 

Sunday October 9 - Congregational Forum



“Christmas from Scratch” is a children's musical we plan to  perform on December 3rd, 2022. Anyone ages 3 or 4 and up are invited to participate. If you and or your child is interested in participating please meet after church on Sept. 18th for some pizza in the gathering area. We will eat and have a brief meeting to discuss practice dates and times. The CDC preschool children will be invited to join us as well to sing in the choir.

There are speaking AND non-speaking roles. Parts will be assigned so you will NOT have to audition. Please bring ALL potential schedulingconflicts with you to this meeting. We are looking forward to working with everyone.

If you are not able to attend the meeting and would like to be in the musical, please let Rebecca Wolf or Diane Gibble know.

Ladies Bible Study will begin a new study. All ladies are welcome. We will "brainstorm" on Tuesday, September 20th at 9:30 a.m. in the Church Lounge. Put your thinking caps on and let us know a study that would interest you. Mary Esther Anderson and Kim Witkovsky will be tag-teaching this session. So, if you are available on Tuesdays mornings, please think about joining this wonderful group of ladies, who share life's struggles with the help of the Holy scriptures for healing, helping with sadness, grief; and sharing joy in each of our lives. Bring a friend, neighbor, or relative.  

Brethren Disaster Relief Auction will be live this year and held at Lebanon Valley Expo, 80 Rocherty Road, Lebanon, PA 17042

Friday, Sept. 23th and Saturday, Sept. 24th

Auction booklets with complete information are located in the church lobby. Please click on the button to view the events for both days.

Schedule for the BDRA


October 15th, 10:00 am - 3 pm, Meal Served 11am - 3pm, Auction 10:30 am

Join us a day of Family Fun!

Outdoor Event, Barrel Train Rides, Hay Rides, Silent Auction, Kid's Activities, Pork Meal cooked overnight inground brick pits, Craft Vendors, Eder made Apple Butter, Yard Sale Vendors

How can you help? Over 100 volunteers are needed to serve an hour or two (or more),

donations needed for live auction, be a vendor, sponsor an item for fund raising meal

Please click on button for all the information for volunteering, vendor, and sponsorship information. This information can also be found on the bulletin board in the gathering area.

More Information


Friday, October 14, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. (Doors open at 6:00 p.m.)

Held at Out Door Country Club, 1157 Detwiler Drive, York, PA 17404

Join us in Love, Faith & Courage for Life, and hear about what God is doing in the York community through Human Life Services! Please note: $10.00 suggested donation to register for individuals not sponsoring a table.

Dinner will be followed by our Keynote Speaker: Mr. Scott Klusendorff. Scott is the President of Life Training Institute and the author of The Case for Life: Equipping Christians to Engage the Culture. 

Contact us at or 717-854-7615 for

updates about this year’s banquet. We look forward to having you join us!

Church of the Brethren Denominational News

2022 Annual Conference Wrap-Up DVD is available to borrow in the church office. There will be a sign up sheet in the office to take the DVD.

You may want to contact the church office to make sure the DVD is available for pick up.

Denominational news and information is always available by visiting

August/September issue of the Southern PA District Newsletter

Church of the Brethren

Newsline Digest - September 2022

Newsline Digest 
Notice of Annual Corp. Meeting

The Brethren Home Foundation

Notice of Annual Corporation Meeting

September 17, 2022

Please click on button to view the notice.


You are invited to see what is new to The First Church Library!

Click on the button to "check out" new books added to the library.

First Church Library


Please don’t think we “STUTTER-STUTTER”.

A Sale is what we have today,

So, step right up and don’t delay!

What used to be a Five-dollar pint,

Is now three dollars for a great big bite.

Half pints that sold for three,

Are now one dollar, and almost free.

So, get yours now, while the sale is on,

Because if you wait, they’ll be ALL gone!



on until Oct., 9th or until all gone.

Pint - $3  Half- $1

Contact Kathy Kovacs at

717 -309-0678 or email 


SEEKING CHRISTMAS TREE ORNAMENT “IDEAS” FOR CAMP EDER CHRISTMAS TREE.  Christmas season is fast approaching, and as many of you know as a congregation, we participate in Camp Eder’s Festival of Trees every Christmas season. Each year, Kathy Kovacs finds an idea for a Christmas ornament to decorate our tree. This year, she is asking that YOU get involved and help HER with an IDEA for a Christmas Ornament. All Ages are invited to participate. Kathy will pick from the winning idea. This idea will be used to make the ornaments for the tree. Each of you will have an opportunity to decorate you own ornament, as we have done in the past. This tree will go on display at Camp Eder and be judged with other trees for the 2022 Christmas season. So, let’s make Christmas magic this year with someone’s creative idea.


Pass on your idea to Kathy at 717-309-0678 or email her at  

On Sept. 21 it will be Alyssa Johnson's 13th birthday (she's living with John and Diane Gibble). To make her birthday a special one we would like to have a card shower for her. Please mail birthday cards to: Alyssa Johnson c/o Diane Gibble, 7213 Yellow Church Road, Seven Valleys, PA 17360. This is a great way to make her feel loved by her church family. 

Since 2011 our Witness Team has sponsored the Cash for Causes program by selling Giant & Weis gift cards. The church receives 5% of sales to support various ministries. For 2022 the gift card sales will support The Lehman Center (Children’s Aid Society), New Community Project, Carlisle Truck Stop Ministry, and LifePath Christian Ministries (formerly York Rescue Mission). You may purchase the cards in amounts of $100, $50, $25, or $10. The cards make great gifts, especially at holidays. Consider donating cards to the Food Pantry or using them yourself any time you shop at Giant or Weis.

Please contact Becky Wenger to participate, in person or by sending a check to Becky Wenger, 3011 Bedford Pl, York, PA 17408. The Giant or Weis cards will be mailed to you. Make your check payable to York First Church.

Lehman Center "Wish List"
Items for donation to the Lehman Center are being collected in the basket in the
Gathering Area. Due to changes in the food pantry operations, these must be collected separately from food pantry supplies. Here are some items that are needed at Lehman Center.
Instant pudding (chocolate, banana)
Instant jello (orange, blue, green, grape, cherry)
Can fruit (pears, pineapples, fruit cocktail)
Applesauce (individual or jar)
Can vegetables (lima beans, peas, green beans)
Baby food - all stages
Baby snacks

Concerning the COVID-19 pandemic and church operations:


We recommend that you exercise special precaution and be vigilant for any symptoms that you might experience. If you do have any, we strongly encourage you to contact your physician and take a covid test. The recent church policy has been that face coverings for our gatherings are optional for all attendees. We will continue to gather in person to worship fully. Please be aware of those around you that are most vulnerable to disease and operate out of regard for the well-being of all.


Worship will be live streamed on our YouTube channel and recorded each Sunday morning at 10:30 AM indefinitely for those who are unable to be present, but it is not intended to replace physical attendance long-term.


Thank you all for understanding and for your faithful participation in our life together. Please do your part to prevent the spread of contagious disease as a holy expression of loving our neighbors as ourselves.

Elizabethtown College’s Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies presents:

Moravian Soundscapes: Hearing New Histories of Early America

What: Presentation by Dr. Sarah Eyerly

When: Thursday, September 22, 2022 at 7pm; free and open to the public

Where: Bucher Meetinghouse, Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies at Elizabethtown College. Use GPS: 450 Campus Road, Elizabethtown, PA 17022. This will bring you directly to the parking lot just outside the doors of the fully accessible Young Center.

Dr. Sarah Eyerly will speak on the musical practices of eighteenth-century Moravian communities in eastern Pennsylvania. The sonic histories of these religious communities provide new insights into the ways that music and sound functioned as a site of cultural encounter between German missionaries and Indigenous communities in early America, demonstrating the rich and multifaceted meanings that eighteenth-century music and religious history hold for contemporary Americans.

Sarah Eyerly is the Curtis Mayes Orpheus Professor of Musicology at Florida State University and director of the early music program at FSU. Her book, Moravian Soundscapes: A Sonic History of the Moravian Missions in Early America, was recently published by Indiana University Press. See this and more info at the Young Center website:



Galatians 2:15-21


“Saved by the Faith of Christ” 


Pastor Joel Gibbel can be reached most mornings in the church office Monday - Friday from 9:00 AM to noon, and usually well into the afternoon as well. Afternoons and evenings may be set aside for visiting those in need, for meetings, and for other pastoral duties. Pastor Joel is also available for pastoral counseling by appointment.

If you need to reach the pastor outside of office hours, his home phone number is

(717) 318-5442, and his mobile number is (717) 271-4888 . You can also email him at Note that laws prevent hospitals from contacting a pastor without your permission when you are admitted, so you will need to let hospital staff know that you would like the hospital to contact your pastor.

Our Mission Statement:
“People dedicated to Spiritual Growth, Loving Relationship, and Sacrificial Service”
Our Vision Statement:
“To become a community of committed Christians who Love God, Share Christ, and Serve the World”