CCH Congregator Weekly March 17, 2017

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This past week in worship we considered some of the most difficult obstacles to achieving inner joy–fear, anger and sadness. In Pastor Mark's sermon he shared some of the stories from "The Book of Joy" of how the Dalai Lama and Bishop Tutu have dealt with tough times in their lives–and they have lived through very difficult periods of history. Each of them was able to maintain their inner peace while working for a more positive society due their ability to keep a healthy perspective on life. You can learn more about this in their book, or you can listen to Pastor Mark's sermon on-line. And be sure to join us for a prayer for perspective.

This Week's Prayer Assignment–A Prayer for Perspective

This week's prayer assignment is a prayer for perspective. First, find a quiet place for your prayers and set aside 10 minutes each day to practice. Sit comfortably with your feet flat, or with crossed legs on the floor if you prefer. Close your eyes and begin by focusing on your breath. While breathing you may pray the Easter Orthodox Jesus prayer (Pastor Mark's version) with your breath. While breathing in think to yourself "Jesus Christ, brother of mine," and while breathing out, "Be present with me, here and now."

After you have calmed your mind then think of a problem that is bothering you. Then imagine that a friend of yours has this same problem. What advice would you give him/her?

Next think about how this problem will look in the future–in a week, or a year, or ten years. Will it really matter? What good may come out of this in the future?

Next, imagine how your problem looks in God's eyes. How does if fit in the grand scheme of life? After you imagine the problem from these perspectives, then offer the problem to God in prayer. Continue to focus on your breathing and remaining calm until the ten minutes is up. After you open your eyes, write in your prayer journal what you learned about this problem.

"The Book of Joy," by the Dalai Lama, Bishop Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams is our source book for this series. It also contains many prayer practices including the ones we will be using in the Lenten series at church.

Pastor Mark's Sunday sermon from this past week can be found at "Joy's Obstacles."


Annual Benefit Auction
March 25, 2017, 6:00 PM

Join us for our Annual Benefit Auction
at the beautiful Northport Yacht Club!

Free Childcare Available at the Church During the Auction


Our theme is a Hawaiian Luau, and it's sure to be the party of the year! Tropical attire is highly recommended. We will have both a live auction and silent auction for an amazing range of goods and services. Extra invitations are available in the office if you would like to invite friends or family. It's not too late to donate your professional services, sky miles, vacation condos, sports tickets or artwork. Contact the church office as soon as possible to contribute. You purchase tickets at church or email the church office. Dinner tickets are $65.

Joys and Concerns

Our prayers are with the Weiger's family on the passing of Jeff's father, Ed Weigers.

Worship Calendar

March 19: The Way of Joy and Installation/Ordination of committee members
"Joy's Blessings" is the title of Pastor Mark's sermon about the qualities that manifest our inner joy: humility, humor and gratitude. We will also continue to being our service with Taize chants. We will also install our officers and committee, as well as ordain our new Deacons.

March 26: The Way of Joy
On March 26 we welcome the Rev. Dr. William (Doc) Spencer to our pulpit as a guest preacher. Doc Spencer is also the representative to the Suffolk legislator from the local district. Pastor Mark will lead us in our contemplative Lenten prayer and David Broome will guide us in a meditative chant.

Pastor Mark's Sermons
on CCH Website

Pastor Mark's sermons have returned to the website of The Congregational Church of Huntington, United Church of Christ. If you miss a Sunday, or want to rehear the message, you can go to the church website,, and look for the sermon's page. The most recent sermons are also on the front page of the website. Be sure to share the link with friends who can't make it to church.

Pastor's Book Group

A Buddhist monk, a Protestant Bishop and a secular Jew walk into a bar and…actually in this case they walk into a Buddhist retreat center and they laugh a lot, but it isn’t a joke.
In celebration of the Dalia Lama’s 80th birthday he invited Bishop Desmond Tutu to his home. They arranged it with the writer Douglas Abrams and a film crew to spend nine days together discussing their lives, the meaning of all lives and the nature of joy. The result is “The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World.” Our book this month is a joyful exploration of the nature of true happiness. The story of the encounter between these two spiritual legends also includes about 40 pages of suggested meditations and prayer practices. This book is also the inspiration for ourLent sermon series, “The Way of Joy.”

The discussion group will meet on Wednesday, March 29, 7:30 PM at a place to be announced.

Community Announcements

Danielle Francios seeks research participants

"Exciting opportunity! Researchers at Long Island University – Post are looking for parents of children age 8-17 and children age 11-17 to participate in a study about conflict over technology use! Interested parents, please go to this link with your teen to learn more and participate:

You could win a $50 gift card!"

Nursing Home Clothing Drive

Maddie Bunting, a high school senior, is leading a clothing drive for low income residents of a local nursing home. She is collecting sweat pants, drawstring pants, pull-over tops, and gently used sneakers for the residents. There is a collection box in the church hallway.

Soles 4 Souls

During the month of March our Outreach Ministry will once again participate in the Soles 4 Souls shoe collection soponsored by the Northport/E. Northport Rotary.  Last year CCH collected 125 pairs of men's, women's and children's shoes, boots, sneakers and sandals.  We are excited to be part of such a meaningful program.  A pair of shoes may mean an adult can go to work or a child can walk to school.  Locally 20,000 pairs were given to Soles 4 Souls last year.  We want any gently used footwear.  Tie together, rubberband or put each pair in a plastic bag and place in the contribution box.  For more information go to  Let's top 125!  Thank you for your support.   

Volunteers Needed

Northport Food Pantry
We collect food for the Northport Food pantry each week at our church. Please place donations in the box by the church office.

Peace and Plenty Food Outreach:  You are invited to help make sandwiches and prepare snacks for children in Huntington. Peace and Plenty will meets on Mondays at 6:30 PM. They are also in need of donations of lunch meats and cheeses, fruit and healthy snacks.

Cooks Needed for the Peace & Plenty program
We're looking for a few volunteers who can help us send the Tri CYA trays of
cooked food such as baked ziti, chicken and rice, pasta with meatballs or meat sauce, etc. Most children at the Tri CYA receive free breakfast and lunch at school during the school year and rely on the Tri CYA  for at least one nutritious meal. We try to support
that effort with some substantial dishes, beyond sandwiches.  Some of the food may also be sent to individuals unable to get out to food pantries and living with food
If you would like to help  please contact Anne:

Upcoming Events

Sunday, March 19

Worship Service and Church School at 10:00 AM

Fellowship Hour at 11:00 AM: Peragallo Family

Monday, March 20

Peace & Plenty Lunch Program at 6:30 PM

Thursday, March 23

Bell Choir at 6:30 PM

Choir Rehearsal at 7:30 PM

Saturday, March 25

Annual Benefit Auction

Northport Yacht Club at 6:00 PM

Sunday, March 26

Worship Service and Church School at 10:00 AM

Fellowship Hour at 11:00 AM: Grayson & Prentiss

Confirmation Class at 11:30 AM

Monday, March 27

Peace & Plenty Lunch Program at 6:30 PM

Wednesday, March 29

Pastor’s Book Club at 7:30 PM

Thursday, March 30

Bell Choir at 6:30 PM

Choir Rehearsal at 7:30 PM

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The Congregational Church of Huntington

30 Washington Drive

Centerport, NY 11721

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