From the Backcountry ...

North Greenwich Congregational Church

Pastor’s Weekly Update

January 19, 2018

 Joan of Arc at Rouen, France

Joan of Arc at Rouen, France

From the Backcountry …

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”  Romans 12:12

 For those with French descent, like myself, January 19 brings an element of sadness.  On this day  in 1419, the starving people of the besieged town of Rouen surrendered to the merciless King Henry V of Britain.  But we need not despair too long, however. These circumstances gave rise to a resistance inspired by the gallant Joan of Arc.  It would take eighteen years after her burning at the stake, but eventually the magnificent “city of a hundred spires” returned to French hands … assuring any who face adversity:  “This too will pass.  It may pass like a kidney stone, but it will indeed pass!”

Sunday,  January 21    Morning Worship  10:30 a.m.

Lectionary Readings:  Jonah 3: 1-5;  Mark 1: 14-20

Text:  “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.”  Mark 1:17                         

Sermon:  “Fish out of Water”

Tease:   The metaphor of “fishing” is appropriate for Jesus to use as he teaches his disciples about discipleship.  Most of them had first-hand knowledge of what was involved with the job of fishing.  But what implications does this image have for those of us who now experience fishing only as a recreational pastime, if at all?  What are we actually being summoned to do?  Though my list of suggestions will not be exhaustive, it promises to get us thinking about what it may mean to follow Jesus and his directive into this new year.

Annual Meeting – Sunday,  January 28  following worship

We will have a working lunch as we review the  various year end reports and approve the 2018 operating budget.  Please bring cold cuts, a side dish or dessert to share.  Sandwich rolls and beverages will be provided. 

Celtic Blessing for the New Year

May the strength of the wind and the light of the sun,

The softness of the rain and the mystery of the moon reach you and fill you.


May beauty delight you and happiness uplift you.

May wonder fulfill you and love surround you.

May your step be steady and your arm be strong.

May your heart be peaceful and your word be true.

May you seek to learn

May you learn to seek.

May you live to love.

And may you love to live… always and forever.


See You Sunday,