2021-11-20 Weekly E-News

Official Board Meeting

“This is notice that a meeting of the Official Board of the Elgin-Portland Pastoral charged is called for Tuesday, November 30th at 7 pm via Zoom/teleconferencing.  Send items for the agenda to: arlyce.schiebout@icloud.com  or by phone to 613 326 0049.  Agenda and virtual coordinates will be sent out just as soon as possible.”Stay wellArlyce Schiebout

Elgin United Church

Elgin United’s on-line auction is almost here. We have great selection of items thanks to the generosity of individuals and businesses in our community.  Don’t be left out, bidding is open November 24th to December 1st, on Elgin United’s Facebook page.  Check us out, you won’t be disappointed.

Advent worship officially begins November 28th. Rev. Kathy Walton will be leading worship for the Sundays of Hope, Peace, Love and Joy. We would love to see you and welcome you worshipping with us. COVID protocols are in place. Blessings.

Clint Halladay

Chair, EUC Council 

Portland United Church

The service on Sunday, November 21 will be led by Liz Church and we look forward to you joining us in church.  In addition to the musical accompaniment will be provided by Morgan Wright, the Portland Pealers Hand Bell Team will be providing 2 songs.

On Wednesday, November 17, the PUC Council discussed the option of requiring vaccination cards for those attending church.  The current increase in COVID cases in Ontario has been linked in several publications to the use of vaccination cards in restaurants and elsewhere to remove capacity limits.  Your council believes that the most prudent approach is to continue with masks and social distancing with limited capacity rather than requiring vaccination cards to eliminate capacity constraints.  The council also strongly believe that we should not turn away people who wish to worship.  Please remember that apart from families and social groups, everyone is required to wear a mask and social distance in the church.  If you have 3 or more people in your family or social group, you are required to sit in a side pew or the pew in front of the rear wall of the sanctuary.  If you have 2 people in your family or social group, you may sit in one half of the center pews, BUT there can only be one person sitting six feet away on the other side of the ribbon divider in the middle of the center pews.  In other words, we CANNOT sit four people in one row of the center pews.  There is additional seating in the front pews and in the choir loft where we can sit 2 people per row socially distanced or families or social groups.  As we approach Christmas, we will probably have overflow beyond the church capacity of ~40 people depending on the number of families and social groups. The overflow congregation members will be asked to be seated in the Friendship Hall or in the basement.  They will be able to hear the audio from the service in both locations.

In parallel with that discussion, the Council agreed to leave the hymn books in the pews since the COVID virus only lasts a few days on those types of surfaces.  We will also ensure that there are hymn books in the two overflow areas but limited by available hymn books.  Please be cautious when sharing books during the service since there is a slight possibility of COVID contamination of a book during the hour-long service.

The PUC Council has received a grant to purchase a new camera for Livestreaming our services.  Once we receive the camera and have our new high speed internet service installed, we will resume livestreaming our services for people to enjoy in the comfort of their homes if they wish.  Hopefully, that will commence early in QI 2022.

Recently the Profile Committee was requested to make some modifications to their proposal that was approved at the joint Congregational meeting on August 22.  Even though the committee had been disbanded after the vote on August 22, they got together again, addressed all the required changes, and resubmitted a modified report.  At the Nov. 17 PUC Council meeting, we were notified that EOORC’s Regional Minister for Pastoral Relations, Whit Strong, informed the Profile Committee that their report has been rejected.  The PUC Council agreed to defer any further action required to the Official Board since the Profile Committee is an OB responsibility.  The PUC Council would like to express our sincere thanks to the 8-member Profile Committee for their incredible focus and work developing a mutually agreed report after 16 consecutive weeks of ZOOM meetings during the first quarter of this year.  Once completed, the Profile Committee presented their report and received approval from the PUC Council twice, the EUC Council twice, and the Official Board twice.   Subsequently, the Profile Committee presented the approved report to the joint congregational meeting on August 22 where it was also approved.  The PUC Council is extremely disappointed with the update from the Regional Minister for Pastoral Relations.

Hansen Downer

Chair, PUC Council


“ Again this year we are offering Poinsettias to be purchased in memory of a loved one. These lovely plants will be placed at the front of the Church for our Christmas service and can be taken home by you afterward. These are red Poinsettias with white pine added and are priced at $17.00 this includes tax. For those interested there will be a list on the bulletin board to sign up or call Joan Horsfall at 613-272-2977 by December 5th. “

Joan Horsfall

Christmas Tourtieres

Pre-Order your Christmas Tourtieres Before November 25th.

Portland United Church UCW $18.00

To Order:  Call Connie @613-220-7914 or Sheila @613-272-3531

Portland Food Bank

This year the Build a Mountain of Food for the Portland Food Bank will be held on Saturday, December 4, 2021 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon in front of the Royal Bank in Portland.

Currently the Portland Food Bank assists between 18 to 20 families (approximately 34 adults and 14 children) on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month as well as providing Christmas hampers for our clients and for family in need in our community.

Volunteers at the Food Bank are asking for your support and generosity to make this campaign a huge success: spread the word, come and visit us in Front of the Royal Bank, and donate food or money. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Norma Cummings (613-359-0151) or Louise Martin (613-359-5397).

Thank you and we look forward to seeing you on December 4th, 2021.

Louise Martin


Portland Food Bank

Tel.: 613-359-5397

Brink Productions presents

Wright & Lowe

Emmanuel Heritage Centre

Hwy 15, Portland

7 pm, Saturday, Nov. 20th, 2021

or call 613-359-5168

Devotional Thought – November 20, 2021

It’s coming, like it or not! All you need to do is walk outside your house, walk around the block, walk into a store and you know! It’s everywhere. And no matter how you try to hide, it finds you.

But for a few days, you forget about it and go about your daily business, pretending you don’t have time, you don’t care, and for sure, you will not get caught up in it. It’s only another day, and it too shall pass. So, you ignore it! Until the employees at work start to prepare to celebrate, until the church starts the decorating, until the advertisements on TV drive you crazy, and the dreaded Hallmark Christmas movies are on every channel.

Every year I have the same conversation with myself – I am going to focus on the true meaning of Christmas – I will not be sucked into the commercialism of this special day. No one needs to go into debt, no one needs to do without, no one needs to feel sad because his/her family have no means to provide for their children. I won’t stress about getting the perfect gift, I won’t give a gift, just because someone gave one to me.

But then it happens – “Ah, my granddaughter would love this Roblox game! My grandson can use a gas card! My daughter mentioned she would really like a new Yoga mat! My granddaughter has suddenly become interested in make-up!

And the list starts to form, first in your head, then on paper, and then it’s in NOTES on your phone, and then you start your search and before long, you have completely forgotten your plan to simplify Christmas and bring back the real meaning of this special day!

I write this devotional not so much for anyone in particular but just to remind myself of how easily we stray. We worry and fret. And the Greatest Gift lies dormant, put aside, to be picked up after the season has passed!

As you prepare this year, do your best to keep Christ in Christmas! Share with family and friends! Give unto others! And for the Love of God, CELEBRATE. Go on – have a Big Birthday Party – CHRIST, THE SAVIOUR, IS BORN!

Liz Church

Pastoral Care Coordinator

Elgin/Portland Pastoral Charge

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