2023-02-04 Weekly E News

Elgin United Church

Rev. Nancy Clarke makes a return engagement this Sunday, February 5th. Welcome Rev. Nancy.

February is known as the “blah” month. Please pray for all who are experiencing poor health, loss or other troubles.

Elgin is updating the congregant contact information. If your address, telephone or email information has changed during 2022, please contact Pat Greehorn or Clinton Halladay.

A friendly smile and cheerful hello is very important as worshippers enter our sanctuary. Please sign up to take a turn as greeter.

EUC Council meets via Zoom at 7 pm February 7th.

There is a Community Improvement Plan for Villages open house at the Elgin Municipal Complex at 5 pm February 9th.

St Luke’s is hosting a luncheon at the Elgin Municipal Complex this month, I’ll get you the details.

Elgin Council

Portland United Church

We are set for July 8 with County Road44 and August 19 with Mary’s Merry Minstrels concerts.

Lap Quilt Sewing group is meeting Wed  Feb 8 9.30 a.m. All are welcome

Bob Leblanc is heading up the breakfast on February 18th downstairs in the church from 8:00 – 11:00 am.  Supplies are being purchased but we could use some help.  Please contact Connie at 614-220-7914 or Bob at bobandmj@live.ca if you can lend a hand.  $12.00 per person. Bacon, scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausage, pancakes, and syrup.  Coffee or Tea


February 21, 2023, Pancake Supper, Lombardy Agricultural Hall,

4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Free Will Donation. 

All proceeds raise will be divided between The Lombardy Agricultural Society and the Smiths Falls site of the Perth & Smiths Falls District Hospital Foundation.


A Chance for You to Support

The Review Mirror recently published an article about an upcoming hockey game, being held to raise funds for the Ottawa Hospital relating to Pancreatic Cancer.

Many will recognize the name, Sindy Hooper, an amazing lady, who, through surmounting obstacles in her own life, and in battling pancreatic cancer herself, was able to complete Ironman competitions, marathons and 3 world championship triathlons.

Sindy will be there to drop the puck at 2:00 pm for a game between the Beaver Blasters and the Athens Aeros Alumni.

Date: Sunday February 12, 2023

Time: 2:00-3:00pm

Location: Center 76, 1 Main St W, Athens Ontario K0E 1B0

Tickets: $10 cash sold at the door. Kids under 5 enter for free. ATM machine is available at the rink

Check it out at: tohf.crowdchange.co/29804

Take time in your day to be inspired and to support.


Liz Church offers warmhearted thanks to all those who have prayed for her and her son, Chris.

Chris is now out of hospital and continues to recuperate and improve.

Broken ribs take time. All other injuries are mending as well.

As a community of believers, you are amazing. Praise be to God.

Portland Council

Rural Ministry Town Hall Meetings

We are always looking for ways to increase our ministry into the community. The United Church is providing Town Hall Meetings and these are available to all. There is no cost involved, except for investment of time. They are held via ZOOM on the last Monday of each month. There will be energizing discussions of the joys and challenges of Rural Ministry. Current needs and how to meet them will most assuredly be one of the main topics. The dates are as follows:

EDGE’s Rural Ministry Town Halls start in January 2023 and run from 3:30-4:30pm Eastern. Register once to get the Zoom link to attend each of them:

  • January 30
  • February 27
  • March 27
  • April 24
  • May 29
  • June 26
  • July 31
  • August 28
  • September 25
  • October 30
  • November 27

Rural Ministry Town Halls are free for anyone who would like to attend.

Email edge@united-church.ca for more information.


This would be a great time to rediscover your place in the building of God’s Church in your community.

Join us and be amazed.

Lori Houle

EDGE: A Network for Ministry Development / Réseau pour le développement des ministères

The United Church of Canada / L’Église Unie du Canada


Free Online National Change Conference – Whole Hearted – February 24th, 2023

Join thousands of students all over Canada this February FOR A FREE ONLINE EXPERIENCE like not other! Change Conference inspires and empowers students to live for Jesus and make a difference in the world.  Go to Changeconference.com to register.


Worshiplude 2023

Worshiplude is a winter worship and fellowship event for youth and young adults (ages 10+) hosted by the Eastern Ontario Outaouais Region (EOOR) of the United Church of Canada that coincides with Winterlude in Ottawa.  It’s been happening for over 20 years!

Worship + Winterlude = Worshiplude. Groups plan and lead their own activities during the day and gather Saturday night for a collective worship and dinner.


Worshiplude is for youth and young adults ages 10 + and their leaders.


$10 per participant. Cash or cheque (payable to EOOR – Worshiplude 2023).  Payment is required upon arrival at Rideau Park United Church.

What’s for Dinner:

Pizza (Vegetarian, Pepperoni, Cheese & GF), Drinks, Veggies and Dip, Fruit and Dessert.


Rideau Park United Church (2203 Alta Vista Dr, Ottawa, ON K1H 7L9)


Friday, February 3

  • Groups arrive in Ottawa
  • Stay with Host Churches

Saturday, Feb. 4 – Rideau Park United Church

  • 4:30pm Worship Starts
  • 5:30pm Dinner
  • 7pm Alt Spaces Events

Sunday Feb. 5

  • Attend your host churches Sunday Worship and then head home.

What are the best parts of  Worshiplude?

One word: Beavertails!

Seriously though, Worshiplude gives youth and young adults a chance to experience Winterlude in Ottawa. The city comes alive to celebrate winter and offers experiences only available when it’s cold out – like skating/walking on the Rideau Canal a Unesco World Heritage site.  But the real heart of the Worshiplude weekend happens on Saturday night. We gather together at Rideau Park United Church to share a unique worship experience, eat dinner together and explore Alt Spaces with friends old and new. Worshiplude creates moments and it is in these moments that we build and strengthen our faith as the body of Christ that is the Youth and Young Adults of the United Church of Canada.

What are the Alt Spaces Events?

Alt Spaces are pop-up spaces throughout Rideau Park United Church where Worshiplude participants have the opportunity to share, engage and have fun.

This year:

Open Mic – bring your instruments and collaborate or borrow one of our frame drums to beat out a tune or maybe a ukulele to strum and stroll.

Improv & Paper Bag Theatre – Are you up for the challenge?

Hungry Hungry Humans – like Hungry Hungry Hippos…only LIFE SIZE.

Peace Forest – Meditation Space

Art Hub – crafty creations

Fiber and Threads – Weave, Knit, Crochet, Embroidery enthusiasts

Nice Ink – Tattoo space (it’s washable)

Boardgames and Hang – relax and charge your phone!

Candlelight Labyrinth

Plus a few surprises!

Can you Host an Alt Space?

Hosts are needed to help set-up and lead Alt Spaces.  You are not required to stay in the Alt Space the entire night. Set-up the space, host participants, float around and enjoy.


Please fill out the Youth Group Registration Form HERE.

Let us know you’re coming, even if you are not staying overnight.  We need numbers for food.

Registration deadline for Overnight Groups, Monday, Jan 30th.

Final Numbers for Dinner by Friday, Feb. 3rd.

Require Accommodations:

If you require accommodations for your group, you will be assigned a Host United Church in Ottawa. We ask that host churches offer breakfast/snacks each morning and offer opportunity to participate in Sunday morning worship when/if possible. Youth group leaders will be provided with contact information for their host church and asked to make arrangements/communicate with them directly for arrival times, keys, building access codes etc.

Don’t Require Accommodations:

If you do not require accommodations or are traveling for the day only please plan to be a Rideau Park United Church for worship service and activities starting at 4pm.  Worship is at 4:30pm

EOOR YAYA Travel Support

All EOOR Youth and Young Adult groups have access to funds towards the cost of travel to Worshiplude.  Please contact Dana for further details.


Contact Dana Ducette, Minister, Youth and Young Adults EOOR

dducette@united-church.ca or 613-608-8411


Devotional Thought, February 4, 2023

Last Sunday, as I slowly woke up and saw the beauty of whiteness outside my window, I began to think: What if Norma Wrightly cannot travel to our community, if Liz is stuck in Perth and we have no pianist at Portland, if Morgan is snowed in down there in Sand Lake, if the roads are not cleared, if, if, …..!

I emerged from my bedroom, looking for the Email that said church was cancelled. When that failed to appear, my ‘Pastor Overdrive’ kicked in. As I sat down at the computer, I asked God to give me thoughts that I could share with the congregation, should it be necessary. Quickly looking up the Order of Service and referencing the Scripture for the day God spoke to me and I would like to share my revelation with you, in this reflection.

Since I was young, my body’s reaction to stress has always been the same – and everyone around me can see it! I have probably never written an exam at school without this tell-tale sign. When I first became a bus operator, the sign was there. And this past week, after my son was hospitalized, there it was again, telling everyone who saw me: ”She is stressed!” I could try and tell you that I’m not stressed, but you will see it. It shows itself on my face – in a big, ugly cold sore!

Now, remember to keep that a secret. I wouldn’t want everyone to know my weakness.

And then I got to thinking about the Scripture passage of The Beatitudes in Matthew 5. What tell-tale signs were given to those first followers of Jesus? Here, where He started His ministry, Jesus spells out truths beyond comprehension for many.

No matter what word we use for Blessed, the world will think us foolish to say we are blessed, or fortunate in the midst of grief, suffering, poverty. The world’s measuring stick sees it as weakness and yet we read here that we are given wisdom and power, if we believe.

That is most unexpected – the way God works. We have been given clarity through the Spirit of God. We break into the world and have such privileges as being able to offer comfort, healing, feeding those less fortunate, providing love to the unlovable. A ‘fortunate’ or ‘blessed’ way of life, present circumstances included!

How blessed we really are – we have been given spiritual sight, eyes to see. For us, and all who believe, the future is certain and this knowledge transforms our present.

Something as simple as a ‘big, ugly cold sore’, as a reminder, has guided me many times and allowed me to focus on my spiritual life. It is not always easy, but of this I am sure: ‘Whatever the future holds, I’m in His hands.’

Praise be to God.

Blessings and peace.

Liz Church

Pastoral Care Director

Elgin/Portland Pastoral Charge

A Life Rooted in God’s Love