2024-2-10 Weekly E-News

Elgin Portland United Church

Our prayer list is still growing.  Please keep the Pastoral Care Director, Liz Church, or Clint Halladay updated.  We keep all who are experiencing trauma, loss, illness, melancholy or other misfortune, and all caregivers, in our prayers.

We offer our sympathy to Lois, Susan, and Lynne on the death of their Mother Betty Halliday.  A celebration of Life will take place in April.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Gary Petro on Feb 16th. May his day be more enjoyable than he could ever imagine.

Happy Valentine’s wishes to all.

Were you startled by the bright orb that appeared in the sky this week?  Fear not, I hear it’s called the “sun”.  So nice to finally see it again after several weeks of cloudy, dull days.

The YAHBC will meet this month on Thursday the 15th of February at 9 am at the Junction Restaurant as usual.  Please let Clint or Ted know by whatever means you are comfortable with by noon on Wednesday the 14th. if you are coming.  Looking forward to seeing you there……….Ted


Council ACM’s and Official Board AGM.

 Sunday, February 18th is the date for all 3 meetings.

 The Plan is that Portland will have their meeting right after their service. Elgin will have their meeting right after their service.

That leaves the Official Board.  Elgin figures no more than 30 minutes for their meeting.  Then we will take a break for lunch which the Portland members of the O.B. have been invited to and then we will have a short O.B. AGM. The only business at that meeting will be approving the reports and the budget which is in the reports.

Ted A/Chair Official Board.

Elgin United Church

Prayer List:

June Smith is settling in and enjoying the social interaction at Van Horne Manor in Smiths Falls.

Marian Cooper is in Smiths Falls Hospital recovering from an angina episode. As of this writing, she was scheduled to go to Kingston on Thursday for tests and treatment if required. We will share any news when received.

Joanne McLean underwent open heart valve replacement and bypass surgery in Kingston on Wednesday. The surgery went well, and she was resting comfortably in the ICU Wednesday evening.

Bradley Edwards – Please keep  Bradley and his family in your prayers. Sonny and Becky are staying at a hotel near CHEO, which, with both being self-employed, is a significant financial impact.  Please  consider a donation to help offset their costs. You can donate directly, through the church or through GoFundMe at https://gofund.me/ff20a414.

Elgin United Church Council

Portland United Church

Prayer List:

Sheila Campbell,  Kay Seward, and Bradley Edwards is still in the hospital.

Monday Bible Reading Group at Portland UC (6:30)

This week’s discussions will be on our daily Bible readings covering Romans 13-16 and Mark 1-6. All are welcome to join in our discussions and fellowship. James 4:8 “Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”  Everybody welcome. For info: ccjimbarton@gmail.com or 613-328-4089.

Thank you to all who joined us on  Saturday, February 3rd between 12:00 noon and 3:00 p.m for an Open House in the Gathering Place at Portland United Church to celebrate Kathleen Seward’s 90th birthday.  Thanks to all for the delicious food that was catered by the UCW.

As always, you are invited to drop in weekly to Chit Chat, downstairs between 10:30 and 12:00 noon.

Recently, we have heard from Iurii, and he sends his greetings to all of the wonderful people he has met. He wants everyone to know that he has made it to Poland, and is currently working. Unfortunately the risks were too great for his family to travel to see him at Christmas, but he remains hopeful they will be able to connect in the spring. Let’s continue to pray for peace and reconciliation.  Pauline French.

Farmers Breakfast will be held on February 17th from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. at Portland United Church.  Adults are $12.00 per plate and Children under 12 are $5.00 per plate.

March 12th UCW Meeting at 1:30 p.m.

Portland United Church Council

Devotional Reflection

February 10, 2024

Today, for about 3 hours I had this instrument of terror staring me in the face. I was on a Zoom meeting. One of the participants had on the shelf behind him, a metronome. This was the instrument of terror I am talking about.

As my imagination took flight, I could hear this – tick, tock, tick, tock, tick, tock. Back and forth, in my head. Sometimes slow, but most times fast, chasing my thoughts as they spiralled out of control.

But then, in my head, I remembered the metronome I owned had  a silent button on it. So, I could still follow the beat, but the silence was appreciated. I continued to watch as beat after beat played – and then I fell into rhythm with it. My pulse slowed and I began to be in perfect harmony with the tick, tock, tick tock, tick, tock.

That is my life, on many days. Busy, busy, in sync with all around me. Then, without any warning, the beat is louder and less comforting.

And today, as I share with you, I focus on what song I am playing. Is this song being played in rhythm or have I just let it totally fall into disarray? I try to speed up the rhythm but to no avail. I try to even out the beats, but alas, still no song.

And then I remember the quietness and I switch that button in my mind to the rhythmic pulse of the gentle voice of God, speaking to me, leading me.

The song starts to take shape, the rhythm slows – tick, tock, tick, tock. And I am carried away to the presence to the Most High God.

We are moving into a time in the Christian calendar when we will focus on the reality of God’s gift and what it means for us.

I focus on the life of Jesus, His short ministry. I wonder if He had days like me, when He just wanted everything to hurry forward. There was so much to accomplish. And then we read about those moments He set aside time to talk with Father and keep perspective on the events that were about to happen.

I don’t know about you, but life seems to rush by. So much to see and do. And time ticks away. Know that you are in good company. Do all you can, take a moment to breathe and set your metronome on silent – follow the beat of your heart as you listen for the gentle sounds of God leading you into an exquisite song of praise and thankfulness. Be renewed as you lift your song to Him.

Be blessed and refreshed this day.


Liz Church, Director of Pastoral Care

Elgin/Portland Pastoral Charge