LAMPLIGHTER -  April  2017 
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Congregational Church of Soquel

April 2017

Dear Friends in Faith:
 Arriving at Sunrise: That’s the theme of our Easter Celebration and the destination of our hearts as we enter Holy Week 2017. In fact, sunrise is on the itinerary. We’ll be meeting at 6:30 am on Capitola Beach, April 16, Easter Sunday Morning. Our Youth group will lead the way as we welcome God’s good news. Later in the morning, at 9:30, we’ll continue the celebration at church with music, word and welcome. We hope that you will be a part of it all and bring your family and friends.

 As we gather on the beach at sunrise, we’ll also be seeking meaning. Easter is indeed a point of arrival for which we all rejoice, but an experience not alway easy to explain. Our respective journey’s bring different points of views. Perhaps it’s the endless range of interpretations that makes Easter such a special gathering. Below, I’ve assembled a collection of quotes that help capture the rich festival of meaning the day represents.
Observe the earth, it might be the best teacher of resurrection we have:
Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in springtime. Martin Luther
Look to the wisdom of women. After all, they were the first witnesses to resurrection:
When the women told the disciples that Jesus has left the stone-sealed tomb,
the disciples found it nearly impossible that it was not all over. The truth was, it was just beginning. Madeline L’Engle
The best thing I’ve heard lately is the writer Barbara Johnson’s saying that we’re Easter people living in a Good Friday World. I don’t have the right personality for Good Friday, for the crucifixion: I’d like to skip ahead to the resurrection. In fact, I’d like to skip ahead to the vision one of the kids in our Sunday school, who drew a picture the tomb: ever lasting life and a basket full of chocolates. Now you’re talking. But I believe in the resurrection, in Jesus’, and in ours. The trees, so stark and gray last month, suddenly, went up in flames, but instead like in blossoms and leaves—poof!  Anne Lamott
Not a question of “then and there,” but “here and now!”:
The Gospel of Easter is very clear: we need to go back there, to see Jesus risen, and to become witnesses of his Resurrection. This is not to go back in time; it is not a kind of nostalgia. It is returning to our first love, in order to receive the fire which Jesus has kindled in the world and to bring that fire to all people. Pope Francis
For me the most radical demand of Christian faith lies in summoning the courage to say yes to the present risen-ness of Jesus Christ.
Brennan Manning
Easter is not really about coming to an understanding, but arriving at a choice:
Every religious tradition is rooted in mysteries I don't pretend to understand, including claims about what happens after we die. But this I know for sure: as long as we're alive, choosing resurrection is always worth the risk. Parker Palmer
“Empty” and “Full.” Both words work at Easter:
The power of the resurrection means that nothing but the tomb is meant to be empty. Beth Moore
Yes, Easter is a matter of life and death, but not necessarily in that order:
Christ has not only spoken to us by his life but has also spoken for us by his death. Soren Kierkegaard
We live and die; Christ died and lived! John Stott
If you are a Buddhist, inspire yourself by thinking of the bodhisattva. If you are a Christian, think of the Christ, who came not to be served by others but to serve them in joy, in peace, and in generosity. These are not mere words, but acts, which go all the way, right up to their last breath. Even their death is a gift, and resurrection is born from this kind of death.
Jean-Yves Leloup
There is not room for Death,
Nor atom that his might could render void:
Thou - Thou art Being and Breath,
And what Thou art may never be destroyed.
Emily Bronte
If you’re in a quandary about Easter, try singing, it just might explain everything:
Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song. Pope John Paul II
Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia! Charles Wesley
Peace and Happy Easter,
Mark Fountain


Palm Sunday Special

April 9th during Worship and Fellowship:
Join in the excitement of our children as they lead us with palms waving from Worship to Fellowship and Second Sunday Brunch. But more importantly, join with the crowd who followed Jesus in his triumphal entry into Jerusalem as we begin this Holy Week. This is a special event for the whole church as our Lenten journey concludes.

Message from Your Ministry Associate:
I have been enjoying this journey of Lent with you especially in our Monday night study, but soon it will conclude with Holy Week – a week like no other in history – that takes us from triumph to betrayal, from agony to glory along our faith path to God’s amazing culmination. As we begin with Palm Sunday, I hope you will plan to join us for a special presentation from our Youth and Sunday school children. They will lead us from Worship to Jerusalem as Jesus leads us onward. Later In the week, we gather for our Maundy Thursday Communion Service and the Lord’s Last Supper. A moving time of reflection and revelation. From there to the glorious dawning of a new age, as Jesus can’t be conquered by death, and gives to us the gift of New Life. Our Easter Sunrise service will point the way and our Special Easter Worship Service will confirm that God is in our midst. Don’t miss any of it!!

Looking ahead I am also working with our Missions Team to welcome and house two NACCC missionaries, Symphony John and Nina Castillo who will be visiting our area May 30 – June 7. We will be sponsoring a meal for them during Fellowship on Christian Education Sunday, June 4th.   They have incredible stories to share of what God is doing through difficult circumstances in their country. I am looking for volunteers who would be able to house them while they are here and also who might take them around and show them the sights. Let me know if you can help with their needs. God has so much to reveal to us as we learn and grow together.   

Blessings to you as we share the journey.      
Rev. Patti
We had a great council meeting where everyone shared all that is going on at our wonderful church.  I am continually amazed by how hard everyone works to take care of our church and neighbors.  I want to thank everyone for all they do.  I especially want to thank Laura Hamby for all she does for us.  As everyone knows she has been covering the office until we were able to hire our new office manager.  She has also agreed to train her.  Thank you, Laura, for everything.  You are a blessing to all of us.  Also, welcome Sandy Batausa!

I, along with our team, had the privilege of accepting the Above and Beyond award for our church at a Second Harvest award dinner in February.  It was a proud moment for all of us.  I was touched not only by all our church does to support Second Harvest and their work, but all that our community does.  It was a beautiful evening.

Our NACCC Annual Meeting and Conference 2017 is being held in Demorest, Georgia June 24 – 27.  Our hosts, Piedmont College and Demorest Federated Church, welcome us with the theme, Dreaming, Talking and Acting.  We will be treated to meaningful Bible and Congregational lectures.  There will also be many wonderful workshops led by experts in their fields.  Meeting on the same campus, NAPH/HOPE and the AMC will come together in worship and host a meal packaging mission event.
These are just a few highlights of what you will experience if you choose to attend the conference.  It is a beautiful opportunity to meet fellow Congregationalists from all over our country.    Prices have never been better.  I have information I can share with you if you are interested.  Rhonda Guerrero, Reverend Patti and I will be attending the meeting this year along with our NACCC Moderator, Laura Hamby.  I hope you can join us!

A special thank you to Reverend Mark and Reverend Patti for all the wonderful experiences and services they have provided for us during this time of Lent. 
I wish everyone a blessed Easter!
With God’s Blessings,
Cindy Boram
 We always have lots of fun in church school.   The youth made over $200 selling plants.  Thank you, Gloria, Cindy and Deb for all you did to make this special sale happen.  Great job, students!
We were blessed by a special visit by Reverend Patti where she explained to us how we can participate in the special Palm Sunday activities and service.  We just love waving palms!    Thank you, Reverend Patti!

Our Middle School/High School class will be leading the special Sunrise Service Easter morning at Capitola Beach with their teachers Emily and Alison.  Thank you, also, to Laura for her help.  I know it will be a beautiful service.  Teacher Joan and I will teach a combined class on Easter morning.  Thank you to Learning and Worship for providing our Easter eggs.
God’s Blessing to all,
Cindy Boram
Learning Coordinator
Spring is here!  We finish the season of Lent, and move to the glorious promise of Easter.  As I write this, I am happily looking forward to a wonderful Palm Sunday event at our church:  Our youth will be “taking us back in time” to experience what it was like when Jesus made his triumphant entry into Jerusalem. And then there is the youth Easter Sunrise Service at the Capitola beach – if you can drag yourself out of bed, it is well worth the experience!   Or for you late risers, you can enjoy the comfort of the main church with our wonderful church music.  There are so many ways to be involved with our church, and they are all uplifting and rewarding.  Learning and Worship is where we coordinate these many activities.  But we all contribute to making it feel magical.  Thank you to all of you, for participating in these events, and contributing to the youth programs.  Also thank you for being a part of our church, in any capacity – it’s good to see you and share God’s love among us!  Next month I’ll update you on the rest of our work.
  ~ Gloria Wells
Despite the past two days of rainy weather, by calendar standards, Spring has Sprung!
Perhaps you've already suspected that fact while sauntering by the choir room on the way to church each Sunday.  The Choir is hard at work on celebratory pieces for Easter Sunday service, falling on April 16th this year.  Working up to Easter Sunday service, as usual, the Choir will sing for Palm Sunday service on April 9th.  The Ensemble, directed by June Fountain will be singing a thoughtful selection for Maunday Thursday service on April 13th beginning at 7:30 p.m.  We hope you'll join us for any and all events. 
Backtracking for a moment, I hope you enjoyed the vast array of music presented during our recent advent season here at Congregational Church of Soquel.  From an inter generational evening of CAROLS, COOKIES & COCOA around the Soquel Village, to solos, duets and trios and even harp/piano duets with Leah and guest folk harpist Alexandra Romanoff on Christmas Eve, the 2016 Christmas season at CCS was an eventful time of year.  Christmas Day which fell on Sunday this past year, found a good, healthy crowd of members and friends celebrating the season in comfy, festive clothes through verse and plentiful songs.
On the horizon, and in the works is hopefully a program of inviting guest student musicians from the UCSC music department to play once a month on Second Sunday during the offertory.  Following the service, we hope our musical guests will join us for our Second Sunday Brunch.  I am coordinating this effort as a unique and mutually beneficial opportunity for both our congregation and performance music majors.  Will keep you posted on this worthwhile endeavor. 
Speaking of guest musicians, it's that time of year where I am avidly seeking church family and friends who wish to share their musical talents with our church during the 12 weeks of summer when the choir is on hiatus.  Please contact me directly if you are interested or know someone who you think might be. 
Musically yours,
Juli Sanderson
Music Team Coordinator
Taking a little time off after our Christmas progressive dinner and gift exchange, we are back!  We've had a game night, hosted Taco Sunday and been roller skating!  Thanks for your support of Taco Sunday!  We'll do it again in May!  We are encouraging each other to participate in community service projects with our church. That is a work in progress!  In the meantime, under the direction of Emily and Alison, we'll be leading the Easter Sunrise Celebration at Capitola Beach! We are looking forward to Sunday Night Youth Fellowships, Church Work Day, Taco Sunday, Bowling, the Human Race and more!
- Laura, Emily, and the SYF Team
At our second meeting of 2017 we had many items to discuss.  First the good news, per our Financial Secretary, Rick Peretto & our Treasurer, Lynette Hamby, our finances are in pretty good shape.  People are paying their pledges in a timely manner and our spending is not exceeding our income through February 2017.  This is a good time to thank all of you for your continued financial support..
Now for the not so good news, not horrible, but we need to pay attention to these matters;
1-The buildings on our campus really need to be power washed and painted.
2-We have termites in Faith Building and in West Building.
3-We are looking into getting lights installed on the Main Street end of our parking lot. Solar panels on light poles is what we are thinking about.
4-Putting in new "dry" landscaping on the Soquel Drive part of our campus, replacing the lawn area.
We are working with the 150th Anniversary Committee to secure some funds for these projects.  Stay tuned for further updates.  We are gathering bids and information to get these projects started.
Please mark your calendars now for May 6th, which is the All Church Work Day. Many hands make light work. All areas of our campus need some attention.  There is a hot dog lunch served and door prizes for everyone.  Lots of FUN.
The Trustees are pleased to welcome our new Office Manager, Sandy Batausa.  Please come in and introduce yourself and welcome Sandy.
At this point we need to say Thank You to Steve Gullickson who very quitely goes around fixing           things like the vanity in the Women's Bathroom in Parrish Hall and cleaning up in the old garden area behind the storage shed.  Also, a big Thank You to Laura Hamby who gives so much of her time, talent, energy and life to our church.  She has been our fill-in Office Manager since Thanksgiving of 2016 and she is training Sandy.
The dishwasher in Parrish Hall kitchen, which is approximately 40 years old was not holding its heat.  This has been looked at, cleaned and repaired all thanks again to Steve Gullilckson, who brought this to our attention, then contacted the repair people and had it worked on and then it was paid for by the Board of Fellowship--Thank You!!
The Board of Trustees is a hard working and thoughtful committee and I appreciate all the work you do.  We also greatly all the support from our church family.
Joyce Trybom
Thanks to all who have volunteered their time to participate in the Winter Shelter Project the first week in April.  Hot meals will be served to 40 – 50 people each night.  We will be teaming with volunteers from Twin Lakes and the Unitarian church. 
 Our April Mission of the Month/Easter Offering will support Santa Cruz Hospice and Children’s Hospice & Palliative Care Coalition.  The services they provide to our community are priceless! If you would like the help, drop your donation (of any amount) in the offering plate or send to the church office.  Please make your check payable to Congregational Church of Soquel and mark it clearly for Hospice. 
It’s not too late to support The Human Race (Saturday, May 13) by signing up online to participate in the race or to support someone you know who will be racing.  Thanks to all who donated to our February Mission of the Month in support of this event.  Donations will provide seed money for A Taste of Soquel, benefiting Second Harvest Food Bank.
Save the Date:  We are looking forward to hosting missionaries from the Philippines
May 30 – June 7. Stayed tuned for more information on how you can help.
Missions Sunday is scheduled for Sunday, October 15.  Our guest speakers will be from
Survivors Healing Center in Santa Cruz.
With gratitude for your generosity and support,
Dorothy Nicholson and Laurel Jarnagan, Co-Chairs

Two very successful and well-attended Second Sunday Brunches were held on February 12th and March 12th.  Thank you to all church members for your generous donations!  These funds help with various kitchen purchases, some repairs and church campus up-grades.
Speaking of repairs:  Hobart Service came out to inspect our 50+ year old commercial dishwasher. A much-needed de-scaling was done to remove most of the mineral build-up.
Mark your calendar for a special youth program and Second Sunday Brunch on Palm Sunday, April 9th.
Respectfully submitted,
Kathy & Steve Gullickson
Judy & Rick Peretto
The Board of Deacons last met on March 15th.  We were happy to hear in Reverend Mark Fountains’ Report to the Board that a new Office Manager is on board.  Welcome Sandy Batausa! Thank you Mark for this good news and for continuing to keep the Deacons up to speed on other Lenten activities.  Robin Gordon and I just completed another successful “Hand to Hand” food sort at Second Harvest Food Bank today. It was heart warming to see all of  you participating in this activity.  Thanks everyone!
Our Board continues to communicate with Friends and Members. We are always on the look out for anyone who needs a note of encouragement. Please let us know of anyone we might be missing.  If needed, we can extend Communion Services to you directly.  On that note, Communion Services in Church will be on Sunday April 2, 2017 and Maundy Thursday April 13, 2017.
The Deacons would like to thank all of you who support Caregiving.  Our Prayer Band and Email Prayer Loop continue to reach out in prayer for all of those in need.  Give us a heads up to where and when we when we can help you.
 Bill Abraham
Scripture verse:  Romans 12:12 NIV
"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."
Since Feb. 26th there have been 21 Prayer Band calls and updates, including those that were private.
The postponed Prayer Meeting was held on March 9th and covered 66 concerns.
The next Prayer Meeting will be April 6th.  Visitors are always welcome.  Call Cay at 475-5802 for details.
Cay Melendy,  Coordinator
By Library Committee member Katharine Burke
Look great and feel great with 12 Keys to Enjoying a Healthy Life Now by Joyce Meyer.  Like the title promises, the book has 12 pointers for getting healthy, staying healthy and preventing many common health problems.

 Some of the principles are “Let God do the Heavy Lifting;” “Right Vision;” and “Make it Easy.”
Both men and women can learn from this book.  Parents can teach their children to eat right and exercise their bodies and spirits.
Look for this book in the church library.  There are also many other books members can borrow from the library.  Parents please accompany small children for the early reader books.  Thanks.


 Learning Ways Christian Preschool Classes

Best Friends are so thankful for wonderful people who have participated in our Learning Ways classroom! 
BIG Thank-yous and BIG  hugs for:
Story Teller Dan ~ Grandma Robin ~ Nana Abraham ~ Grandma Patti ~ Grandma Kitchy ~ Grandma Dorothy ~ Mommy Malaka ~ Mommy Amy
Our Best Friends look forward to seeing each and every one of you. You mean so much to them!

"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth." 3 John 1:4

Happy Spring Everyone!
Teacher Beth and Teacher Mar

Minister’s Website:
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Congregational Church of Soquel Facebook 

Church Office:  (831) 475-2867
Congregational Church of Soquel
4951 Soquel Drive, Soquel, California  95073

2 Sunday

8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship
11:00 am 150th Committee Meeting

3 Monday
8:30 am Alice Circle at IHOP
7:00 pm  Lenten Study in Parrish Hall

6 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

9 PALM Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship & Second Sunday Brunch
Intergenerational Program

11:00 am Learning & Worship Meeting
Mon, Tues, Wed, Fri

13 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall
7:30 pm Maundy Thursday Service

16 EASTER Sunday
Easter Sunrise Celebration @Capitola Beach
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am
Easter Worship Service with special music by the Chancel Choir
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship
12:30 pm Lydia Circle in Parrish Hall

17 Monday
12:30 pm Lydia Circle in Parrish Hall

18 Tuesday
7:00 Trustees Meeting

19 Wednesday
6:15 pm Deacons Meeting

20 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

23 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship

22 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

23 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship
11:00 am Church Council Mtg
4:30-6:30 pm SYF Fellowship & Dinner

Lamplighter Reports Due

27 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

30 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship

4 Thursday

10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

7 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship &Taco Sunday

Soquel Youth Fellowship Bowling

8 Monday
8:30 am Alice Circle at IHOP

11 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

13 Saturday
8:00 am Human Race

14 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship 
Happy Mother's Day

15 Monday
12:30 pm Lydia Circle in Parrish Hall

16 Tuesday
7:00 pm Trustees Meeting

17 Wednesday
6:15 pm Deacons Meeting

18 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

21 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship & Special Event

11:00 am Learning & Worship Meeting (TBA)
4:30 pm SYF Fellowship

25 Thursday
10:00 am Craft Group in Parrish Hall

28 Sunday
8:30 am Choir Practice
9:30 am Life & Worship
9:30 am Learning Classes
10:30 am Fellowship
11:00 am Church Council Mtg

Lamplighter Reports Due


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