Sunday Mornings at 10 am
• Coffee hour after each worship.
• Communion the first Sunday of the month ~ the first Sunday is also FAMILY Sunday.
* During the cold months, worship is in the Chapel,
By God's Grace, West Parish Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, is committed to nurturing and celebrating God's love in our lives, in the Church family, the community and in the world.
Poems by Richard Blanco, Music by Tom Davis
Saturday, February 17 at 7:30 pm (Snow Date February 18)
"ONE TODAY" (2013 Presidential Inauguration poem)
and three poems from the new collection, "Boundaries",
and surprise extras
composed for a chorus of local singers, strings, and guest musicians
Anna Sysko, Justin Bondesen, Riley Kern, Gail Dorr, Simon Smith,
Aranka Matolscy, and Wendy Youmans
Richard Blanco will introduce each piece
Suggested donation at the door of $10
A RECEPTION FOR ARTISTS OF ALL DISCIPLINES WILL PRECEDE THE CONCERT
HOSTED BY BAAM (BETHEL AREA ARTS AND MUSIC)
West Parish Congregational United Church of Christ of Bethel
Is Looking to Hire A Christian Education Coordinator
Christian Education and Family Life are vital parts of a church community. The West Parish Congregational United Church of Christ of Bethel wishes to hire a Christian Education Coordinator to work with the minister and the Christian Education Committee to coordinate programs for youth and families and outreach into the community. The work is for 40 hours a month with 2 weeks annual vacation. Sunday mornings and some Sunday afternoons are required but other hours are flexible. Starting pay is commensurate with your experience. Activities would include working with students and teachers to help develop and coordinate youth, family and intergenerational programs. Our goal is to nurture positive relationships, enrich the lives of youth and adults, build community and provide for opportunities for social and spiritual development, service and leadership – all framed by God’s love. Applicants should work well with people of all ages and have experience with Christian Education programs. The job is available immediately.
For more information (including a more detailed job description) please contact Rev. Tim LeConey, at
Please send a letter of interest, resume and contact information for 3 references electronically or mailed to: Rev. Tim LeConey, West Parish Congregational United Church of Christ, PO Box 23, Bethel, ME 04217.
*Check out Jane's incredible photos of WPCC LIFE: https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/sredir?uname=103492811860763079395&target=ALBUM&id=6057576616211211617&authkey=Gv1sRgCKGx4J3TpqrLeg&feat=email
*Also West Parish Congregational Church, UCC is on facebook ~ we're easy to reach!
*Pastor Tim's first Sunday with us
Rev. Dr. Tim LeConey, the youngest of five children, grew up in southern New Jersey in an American Baptist church and went to Drew University in Madison, NJ. While working at Camp Oceanwood in Ocean Park, Maine, during his college years, he met his future wife, Mary, and discovered a call to ministry. Tim attended Andover Newton Theological School and received a Master of Divinity in 2000, the same year that he was ordained as a minister in the United Church of Christ. Tim served as Associate Pastor of the First Congregational Church of Essex Junction, Vermont, for five years and then Pastor of the First Congregational Church of Fryeburg, Maine, for ten years. In 2013, Tim graduated from Bangor Seminary with a doctorate in ministry. Mary is an Occupational Therapist with Androscoggin Home Health plus being with NH's Visiting Nurse program. Tim and Mary have three children: Liam, 20, will attend the University of Maine at Farmington; Ben, 17, is a senior at Fryeburg Academy. Evan, 13, is an 8th grader at Molly Ockett Middle School. Tim enjoys hiking, nordic skiing, running, reading, listening to music, and singing.
The Pastor's Perspective (SUMMER IS THE 2ND PERSPECTIVE, FOLLOWING THIS SPRING ENTRY)
Happy Spring! One of the hardest things for people in the United Church of Christ to do is to know how to share our faith with others. This evangelism thing just doesn't come easy to us. In a book called The Unofficial Handbook of the United Church of Christ, Quinn Caldwell and Curtis Preston share some tips on some approaches we can take: "Sharing the gospel with others is a natural part of exercising a mature faith. In fact, Jesus commanded his followers to do this, making it an important part of the life of faith (Matthew 28:18-20). Still, UCCers tend to be rather shy evangelists. While "evangelism" has become a negative word for some people, sharing the story of salvation in Jesus Christ is still the most rewarding way to live out one's faith. It is also a discipline that takes practice.
Look for the opening. Regular daily conversations offer lots of chances to talk about your faith. Listen for open-ended comments, such as, "I wonder why life is like that," or, "Sometimes life seems so hard." When possible, offer a response from a Christian perspective. Begin sentences with phrases such as, "I've come to think..." or, "I don't have the perfect answer, but I believe…." Be yourself.
Expressing your faith should be natural and the same as other types of daily conversation. Avoid suddenly switching your tone of voice or vocabulary. Also, don't try to impress the other person with your knowledge. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide you. Watch for a chance to take the conversation deeper. Carefully gauge the other person's response. Observe his or her facial expression, verbal tone, and body language. If he or she seems to be closing down, set the topic aside and wait for another time. If he or she keys in and perks up, be prepared to continue.
Open up. Human beings are attracted to each other by our strengths but we bond because of our weaknesses. Key to sharing your faith is the willingness to be honest about your own life's struggles. This will communicate safety, which for many people is critical. Follow up. Offer to continue the conversation later and arrange a time. At this point, the conversation will have become personally valuable to you. Allowing the person to see your commitment to your faith alongside your continuing questions will reassure him or her of your sincerity.
Offer to share your faith community with the other person. Most people join a church afer being invited by a friend. When the time is right, invite the person to attend with you. Tell the person what makes it special to you. Try to maintain the relationship regardless of what the person does. Be prepared for the other person to shut down around faith talk, decline your invitation to attend church, or even appear to avoid you. The most effective way to communicate that you're a follower of Jesus Christ is through your actions; continue to live naturally and with integrity. Watch for another opportunity to open the subject later on. This is good advice and may God bless us in our attempts to share with others what is so important to us. Have a good month and see you in church! Pastor Tim
Welcome to...summer? The calendar says it's almost June though it feels more like early April. In June, we celebrate Pentecost (June 4th), Youth Sunday/Confirmation Sunday (June 11th), and Father's Day (June 18th). How about a story to tie all of those together?
One of the things that has truly been a blessing for me is to watch our youngest son, Evan, flourish at Telstar High School and in the Bethel community. He has become a local musical celebrity. In fact, when I meet people I don't know around town, I say "I'm Evan LeConey's dad"...and they know who I am. (Just kidding....but not far from the truth!) It is special to me because I had a very different experience when I was Evan's age and my father, an American Baptist pastor, moved the family to a new town and church on the New Jersey coast. I went to a large public high school and struggled to make friends and fit in. It was a difficult time and I ended up transferring to a small private Quaker school, Atlantic Friends School. Throughout that time there was one place where I felt I could be myself and was surrounded by people who cared about me--our church. It was a second family to me. I was baptized there and loved being part of the youth group. I took piano lessons with the church organist and we played duets in church together. It was a safe haven for me. On June 11th, Evan, along with Gaelan and Marta, will have the opportunity to be confirmed and become a member of this church if he/they choose to. Here they have the same welcoming, supportive faith community that I had. Here they have musical mentors and the chance to share their gifs. Here they have an extended family of uncles, aunts, and grandparents. This is the beauty of the church and what it can be for people of all ages.... but especially youth. As we celebrate Pentecost, the birthday of the church, let us do all that we can to encourage more local children, youth, and their families to find a safe, welcoming, nurturing second home with our church community. God bless and be with you and your family, have a wonderful summer, and see you in church! Tim
Check back soon for information from Patricia Boyle-Wight about our Youth and Family Ministries
Church Office Hours:
Thurs. & Fri., 9:30 - 4:30
Summer Hours: Thurs. 9:30 - 3:30
We are a church dedicated to extending Jesus' welcome to every person. Our mood is hopeful, our spirit is uplifting. As we gather to sing hymns from our rich heritage, to pray for healing of people and the earth, and to hear an inspiring message from our pastor, we are thankful for our legacy and for Christ's call to lovingly serve God and neighbor. In response to that call, we cheerfully support both global and local outreach to people in need.
West Parish Congregational Church was organized in 1796, and is the oldest continuing institution in the Town of Bethel, after the town itself. The current historic meetinghouse building on Church Street was originally built in 1847.
Reverend Dr. Tim LeConey, Minister
207-824-2688 Pastor's Office
Christian Education Coordinator for Youth and Family Ministry ~ Ms. Patricia Boyle-Wight
Associate Pastor of Outreach ~ Rev. Robert Ross Ph.D., M.Div.
Grace-Street Ministry, Portland, Maine
207-824-2689 Church Office