Come be amazed! Discover, think, feel, and find a generous welcome here! We are a block off the Lake. Here we value thoughtful service expressed in candor and faithfulness. We are the Marblehead First United Church of Christ.  Lets get to know each other,  worship, and visit a bit over a cup of coffee. 
 
                                 Join us Sunday at 10:30 a.m.
Today is
  
 
 
 

 
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Calendar

  • Handicap accessible restrooms are located in the basement. Elevator is available.

  • Candy made by the ladies of the church is available for purchase.

  • December 16, Sunday. Deadline for ordering your poinsettias at $8.75 each. Sign-up is on the bulletin board in the narthex.

  • December 16, Sunday, after worship. There will be a presumably short congregational meeting to vote on our 2019 budget.

  • December 24, Monday, 7:30 p.m. Carols by Candlelight Christmas Eve service.

  • Church Office Phone 419-798-4612 Rev. Kay’s Home Phone 419-333-0433

  • Email: mooneyfarm@cros.net. You are welcome to call Rev. Kay at the church or at home anytime.

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Caravan of Faith and Trust

A Sermon

Advent 2018


Dodge made their Caravan from 1992-2007 – Many of us had or have a van! It took the whole family on a trip. It could travel 120 miles in an hour and a half. That is a long shot difference for Joseph to walk 120 miles taking a couple weeks, unless of course he was taking his pregnant wife on a donkey in the last of the nine months. That is a different story.

 
Imagine riding a donkey when you are seven or eight months pregnant. Most people today would not take a 1.5 hour trip in a car in the ninth month, muchless a multi-month donkey-back trip. Of course they could have taken the 90 mile shorter trip through Samaria, but then the racial dissonance between Judea and Samaria would have made it difficult if not unwholesome. I mean, there were not hotels or hospices. People could not depend on staying at people's homes along the way, as the Jewish law expected, the law of hospitality.

 
The environment of the desert and arid land in most of the Middle East is harsh. For a traveler, access to water and food was a matter of life and death. Most settlements were built near available water or wells. The traveler needed to have access to the water. Yet, it was also important for the settled community to have protection. As a result, strict codes of conduct developed to govern such encounters. These conventions of biblical hospitality also applied equally to the desert dwellers who lived in tents as they followed the grazing herds (today called Bedouins). They were obligated to provide for travelers that stopped at their tents, and under these customs could expect some protection from hostile actions from the "stranger."

 
Would that we could feel the Biblical obligation
to provide protection
for the “caravan” of our time!!!!

 
The mileage from Jerusalem to Nazareth is approximately 120 miles! The most direct route would be about 90 miles, however this would be through Samaria. This was an area between Jerusalem and the Galilee area to the north. The Jews and the Samaritans maintained a general distrust if not animosity. IT WAS SAFER TO GO AROUND the extra 30 miles.

 
Safer because under Jewish law, the host was obliged to provide the traveler with food, water, and shelter. For instance, Abraham welcomed three such "strangers" (Gen 18:1-8) into his tent. He eagerly ran to meet them and lavishly welcomed them. Abraham’s words and actions, including bowing to the ground, seem exaggerated. However, this was typical of Biblical/historical/contemporary hospitality. He provided them with water to wash their dusty feet and a place to rest.

 
Travel through Samaria was to be avoided because of the mountainous conditions and the racial distrust and disrespect, or general “dissing” of the “other.”

 
So we, of Biblical heritage and knowledge, have seen this before. Traveling in caravans for safety sake. Safe from the marauding thief, the hungry lion, or the desert snake.

 
Now at Christmas time we remember the “caravan.” Mary and Joseph went in a caravan to Jerusalem. The astrologers, we call the “Wisemen,” were in a caravan. The shepherds followed a star in a “caravan.” Caravans of people descended on Jerusalem to be counted in the census. Then Mary Joseph and baby “caravan” to Egypt, walking the hundreds of desert miles from Jerusalem, through the Sinai desert, to Egypt, longing for safety from Pilot's death threats, and first-born murders.

 
In our year of the census for 2020, we too seek clarity on who is the citizen and the alien among us, stopping the caravan at the border. We seek to know who is to be counted as resident.

 
Advent beings a new year, We light candles and prepare for the living Christ, baby in our midst, vulnerable, soon to “caravan” to Egypt for fear of his life. We honor our heritage, our faith by welcoming the Christ in our life, in our midst, in our land!

 
Now we can hope to see this living Christ in our own caravan of life:  safely as a resident or among the faithful who identify with this stranger in a strange land.

 
Let us “caravan” with this baby Jesus, to Egypt and back, to church and back, to Marblehead and back.

 
Let us take the journey with Jesus, in our physical lives and our spiritual lives.

 
Amen

 

 
  Handicap accessible restrooms are located in the basement. Elevator is available.


        We look forward to visitors! We have a regular congregation of the faithful. While we welcome vacationers, tourists, summer people, or new or old residents are invited to come to worship any and all Sundays.


         We have a traditional worship service in a beautiful, historic building, where God is still speaking and ALL are welcome! Just come any Sunday morning at 10:30. Communion on the second Sunday of each month (first Sunday in October) is open to all Christians. Coffee hour follows every worship service.

We have more people in the summer than the winter because we have a lot of people spend their vacations here, then they join us for worship.

      You can expect traditional Protestant worship. During worship, at the time of prayers, you may hear members expessing their request for prayers. You may say something or not as you choose.

      We sing three hymns and hear a good and timely message. This is a church that expects the exposition of the Word to be applied to the condition of the world.




OUR CONGREGATION’S MISSION STATEMENT
The avowed purpose of this church shall be to worship God, to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and to celebrate the sacraments; to realize Christian fellowship and the unity within this church and the church universal; to render loving service toward humankind; and to strive for righteousness, justice and peace.


First United Church of Christ
802 Prairie St. 
Marblehead, Ohio
419-798-4612  
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2 minute VIDEO about One Great Hour of Sharing
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Pray for Palestine! We hope you are inclined to prayers for our missioners and the church at large. Follow this link to inform your prayers. Settle yourself in a chair, and focus yourself on prayers. Then click this paragraph. Pray Away!
Questions about the web site. Contact Bob Quillen. www.quillz.us

Church at the Lake

 

Bucket list below!

     With hurricanes, fires and global warming - we are doing a small church's part.
First UCC has assembled buckets and 20 personal care kits to the Northwest Ohio Association Annual Gathering at Genoa. The UCC will distribute these kits to victims of hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods.  
     Thrivent Financial donated funds for contents of the buckets and church members paid for the personal care kits.  Judie Sagendorf did the shopping for the items and oversaw the assembly of the kits and buckets.   Thanks, Judie!
 
 
    You can still help! The need didn't go away!  See phone above.