2021-10-16 Weekly E-News

This Sunday is World Food Day.

Any Non-Perishable Food contributions to the Food Bank would be gratefully received.

They can be placed on the Communion table as you enter the Sanctuary. 


Portland United Church

Our service on October 17 will be led by Rev. Kathy Walton and on October 24, Licensed Lay Worship Leader Charlotte Hoy will lead the service.

Our long-time treasurer, Duncan Pickard, is planning to retire as treasurer for Portland United Church at the end of December.  This is a really critical position for the Church and if you would like to volunteer or you know of someone who would like to volunteer as treasurer, please let either Annette in the Church office or I (hansen.downer@gmail.com) know.  Thanks to Duncan from all the church community for your incredibly insightful and valuable service over the years – you will be missed, but we look forward to seeing you in Church each Sunday.

As a reminder, we have been asked to redirect our funds going to DIG to the Community Flex Fund at the Country Roads Community Health Centre. As a reminder, due to changes in government policies over the past few years and increased community dental services, the need to funding for dental work has been reduced significantly.  The UCW recently heard a presentation on some of the results of funding to the Community Flex Fund and they were very impressive.  We will convert DIG donations from the church to the Community Flex Fund starting November 1.  If you donate by PAR and you are not comfortable with that change, please contact Norma Cummings and your donations can continue to be donated to DIG.

At the PUC Council meeting on Thursday, October 7, the Board unanimously agreed with a proposal from the Cemetery Committee to proceed with the purchase and installation of a Columbarium for the cemetery.  We anticipate that it will be installed next summer.  A Columbarium is a free-standing unit with niches for funeral urns to be stored.  Demand for monuments as grave markers has decreased by over 60% in the last 4-5 years as more and more people utilize cremation.  While the cost of a unit to store 2 urns appears more expensive, it is substantially less expensive in total when compared to a standard gravesite with a monument when all the costs are considered.  We want to ensure that our cemetery is prepared for the shift in demand and the initial Columbarium will have 16 niches with each niche storing 2 urns.  Blaine Tackaberry has done a substantial amount of work and planning for this change, and he has identified that we have enough room in the cemetery to add several more Columbariums as the initial niches are purchased.

The Profile Committee has submitted the changes requested by Wayne Harris to the Regional Council and they will be reviewed later in October.  The changes were primarily to add additional information to the profile and the overall recommendation was not changed.

Thanks to Norma Cummings for arranging all the Licensed Lay Worship Leaders and ministers for our Sunday Services.  Norma is now planning for  Christmas and we are suggesting a 4 PM Service on Christmas Eve with Rev. Kathy Walton, pending agreement from Elgin to worship at 7 PM.  There will be a joint service on Sunday, December 26 with the worship leader to be determined.

Hansen Downer

Chair, PUC Council


Prayer Request

One of our newest members, Min Min, has asked us to pray for Catherine Morgan. Catherine is a close friend of Min’s. She was just given the news that she has pancreatic cancer. We would want Min, her friend and their families to know we are praying for them.

Thank you to each of you. As prayer warriors, we all understand that prayer is key to peace. Blessings to each of you


Devotional Thought – October 16, 2021

Have you ever really thought about what it means when you hear someone say, ‘you have a choice’? As I was preparing to share with you, my beloved people, I had a choice to make – will I be totally goofy with my thought process and talk about my most delicious brand of instant coffee or will I stick to sharing how much I like dark roast over a mild, mellow taste? Or should I choose to relate to you how tough a week it was, or how beautiful my Thanksgiving Day was sharing with friends and family? Or should I…? Choices – we make them every day. And today is no exception!

My oldest daughter is an educator. And this morning as I bounced my idea of choices off her, she led me down another path about choices. Every choice we make, brings about a result. We trust that most choices we make will bring the desired result – exercise and healthy eating brings a smile when you step on the scale; planning a family vacation brings happiness as you prepare to spend time together; Bible study and prayer brings you into a closer relationship with God.

But there are also sometimes the opposite effects – when your choice brought about a downward spiral in your life, or your relationship fell apart, or your speeding made you poorer in the pocket! And you can fill in these situations for yourself – when your choice left you with disappointment, heartache, other hard choices.

Most choices we make really remind us of this truth – CHOOSE WISELY! I don’t say this lightly. God made us this way. Wanting us to have free choice is what makes us human. We are not forced to love our Creator; we are given a choice. And Scripture reminds us when we read in Joshua 24: Choose you this day whom you will serve! As for me, I will serve the Lord!

Choices change the path of your journey. Your path at this time may be rugged, filled with potholes, and just about as crazy as a jigsaw puzzle. Just remember this truth – God will make a way when there seems to be no way! Choose Christ and Holy Spirit will guide your choices. Praise be to God!

Peace and love to each of you,

Liz Church

Pastoral Care Coordinator

Elgin/Portland Pastoral Charge


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