Religion news and notes


Feast of the Rosary: Our Lady of Ephesus House of Prayer invites all to celebrate the Feast of the Rosary on Sunday, starting with a gathering at 1:30 p.m., followed by a Rosary Procession at 2 p.m., with services finishing up at 4:30 p.m. with a Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. A potluck follows the Mass. For directions or information, visit or call 802-896-6000.

Missa Gaia

Brattleboro: The community of St. Michael's Episcopal Church invites all to join them on Sunday at 10:15 a.m. for the Feast of St. Francis, and the celebratory Missa Gaia of Paul Winter. The Missa Gaia brings together choirs, instruments, and the voices of of wolf, whale, and loon, and will be directed by Susan Dedell, with special guests Steve Rice, percussion; Don Baldini, bass; and Bruce Diehl, soprano sax. The music will bethe central element for this unique and joyful service, and everyone is welcome. The Missa Gaia was premiered in 1980 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, where it has become a yearly event that is attended by over 5,000 people. Director Susan Dedell undertook the work with the Brattleboro Concert Choir in 2013, and has fielded requests ever since for a repeat. "I echo the words of Paul Winter, who suggested that the word 'sacred' means a sense of connectedness with the Universe. St. Francis himself saw the Divine equally present in every created object, an idea that was radically different from most of the church in those days. This music brings that idea to vivid life with the power of percussion, the soaring voices of the choirs, and the unbelievably evocative songs of our fellow animals." For further information about this event, contact 802-254-6048. St. Michael's Episcopal Church is located at the corner of Bradley Avenue and Putney Road and is fully accessible. Later that day, there will be a Blessing of the Animals at 1:30 p.m. on the Brattleboro Common. In the event of rain, this event will be held at the Church, across the street and one block north from the Common. Everyone in the region is encouraged to bring dogs, cats, alpacas, goats, snakes, rabbits and/or whoever your animal companion is to this celebration in honor of St. Francis' love for animals. You can also bring a picture if your animal is not comfortable in groups of people and pets. All animal-loving people are invited — with or without their animals!

Consider the queries

Putney: Friends (Quakers) have developed the Queries to assist us to consider prayerfully the true source of spiritual strength and the extent to which the conduct of our lives gives witness to our Christian faith. In Putney Meeting, it is our practice to consider a set of Queries and Advises each month. These may then lead to spoken ministry out of the worship or private reflection within the worship. In October, we will reflect on our relations with others in our daily work, let us manifest the spirit of justice and understanding and thus give a living witness to the Truth. Do you respect the value of all useful work, whether paid or unpaid, whether physical or intellectual, whether performed in the home or in the larger community? Does your daily work use means and serve goals, which are consistent with the teachings of Jesus? Are you honest and trustworthy in all business transactions, prompt and just in payment of debts? By counsel and example, do you encourage young people to enter vocations, which will serve society? Putney Friends Meeting meets at 8:30 and 10:30 every Sunday morning. Childcare is available at 10:30. For more information visit or call Carol Forsythe at 802-257-5805.

On a journey

Brattleboro: All are welcome at Centre Congregational Church on Sunday when Reverend Bert Marshall will be leading the service. His meditation is entitled, "We Are People On a Journey." Scripture references are Habakkuk 1:1-5, and 2:1-5, and Luke: 5-10. This Sunday is World Communion Sunday and all present are invited to share in the Bread and Cup. Also, the annual Neighbors in Need offering will be taken. The Adult Class will meet from 9 to 9:30 a.m. in the church library, now reading "The Meaning of Human Existence," by Edward O. Wilson. Sunday School for children begins at 9 a.m. followed by Faith in Action for the school aged crowd. Child care for younger children is provided from 9 a.m. through the service. During the summer and early fall, flowers on our altar are gifts from the gardeners in our midst. If you would like to make a flower offering please notify the church office at 802-254-4730. The community is invited to a performance by the Bread and Puppet Theatre out of Glover. The performance, entitled " Underneath the Above," will be held at Centre Church on Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m. A $10 donation is suggested but no one will be turned away. This show is described as "Show No. 1, inspired by the forthcoming elections in the greatest country in the history of the world." Please join us for this event. For more information, call

Living by faith

Bellows Falls: The focus of Sunday Service at First Baptist Church of Bellows Falls is "Look at the proud! Their spirit is not right in them, but the righteous live by their faith." This scripture from the prophet Habakkuk who speaks to a world that is torn. But the Lord reminds us that the experience of strife will pass and we must cling to our faith in order to receive the ample blessings of true life. The ability to find serenity in the presence of God, especially in times of tribulation, is one of our Lord's greatest gifts to us. The title of this Sunday's sermon is "In the Lions' Den." Pastors office hours are 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturdays followed by Bible Study from 3 to 4 p.m. We welcome all to join us for worship, music and community. The Sunday Service begins at 10 a.m. Sunday school for High School aged youth begins at 9:40 a.m. Sunday School for all other age groups begins following the children's time. Child care is also provided following the children's time. For more information, contact Pastors Steven and Terri at 802-463-3220. Located at 9 Church Street, American Baptists serve others as "the hands and feet of Jesus."

Master serving slaves

Brattleboro: Sunday service at Trinity Lutheran Church features the Gospel and how it dspeaks of how surprising it would be if a master served his slaves their evening meal. Yet this is exactly what happens each Sunday when Christ serves us at his table of mercy. Come to worship, and strengthen your faith in the power of this surprising food. Trinity offers a half hour worship service at 8:30 a.m. and a traditional service at 10:30 a.m., with a coffee hour following the later service. Sunday School for all ages and an Adult Forum begin at 9 am. This Sunday, the 10:30 a.m. service will be held outside, in the outdoor chapel behind the church, weather permitting. Trinity Lutheran Church is located at 161 Western Ave., across from Holton Home and is an Open and Affirming congregation. For more information, visit or call the church office at 802-254-4220.

A community of healing

West Brattleboro: All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, at the West Village Meeting House, invites all to worship on Sunday at 10 a.m. This Sunday's theme is "What does it mean to be a community of healing?" with sample responses gleaned from the UU Soul Matters sharing circle, from ASC leaders in our congregation, and featuring a special presentation by Patty Dunn, program coordinator at Brattleboro Area Hospice. Elizabeth Lewis coordinates the service. All Souls at the West Village Meeting House is a Welcoming Congregation and a Green Sanctuary. All Souls is located at 29 South Street across the road up from the West Brattleboro fire station and village green. For more information or directions, please call the office at 802-254-9377, e-mail or visit Office hours are Monady from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to noon.

'Living as if ..."

Jamaica: The Jamaica Community Church welcomes all visitors to join as the congregation gathers at 10 a.m. on Sunday. The Rev. Norma Drosky will preach on "Living As If ... " based on Lamentations 3:19-26 and Luke 17:5-10. God can use us to serve as messengers of God's love. We serve when we love those who persecutes us; we serve when we love our enemies; and we serve when we love our neighbors as ourselves. As followers of Christ we are called to live as if the realm of God existed right here in our very neighborhood. Jamaica Community Church is located "In the Heart of Jamaica" at 7 Depot St. For more information, email, leave a message at 802-874-7019 or find Jamaica Community Church Jamaica VT on Facebook.

Apple pies and fellowship

Saxtons River: This Sunday Christ's Church once again welcomes Rev. Janice Chilek as our guest worship leader. The Service will be held in the sanctuary at our regular 10 a.m. time. All are invited to visit with Rev. Chilek following the service during coffee and light refreshments. On Thursday, Oct. 6, the Women's Fellowship will be meeting in the Church Dining Room at 9 a.m. to prepare apple pies for freezing and for selling at our 60th Annual Christmas Stocking Bazaar, which will be held on Nov. 12. It is a special time of fellowship as the pies are prepared. All are welcome to our services and events. For more information, call 802-869-2340 or visit

Cosmos Sunday

Guilford: Guilford Community Church UCC will complete its Season of Creation at tomorrow's 10 a.m. service celebrating the Cosmos, Christ and the mystical communion of all beings. This new season of the church year is celebrated around the world and across denominations during the four Sundays that precede St. Francis of Assisi Day on Oct. 4. The three-year cycle allows us to go deeper into the joy and challenges of living responsively and joyfully as part of God's creation. The beautiful scripture readings are taken from the poetry of James Clive, from Proverbs 22, John 6 and St. Francis and St. Clare. Music for the day will include hymns and two anthems for the Celebration of St Francis: "Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon" and "Make Me an Instrument of Peace," under the direction of Peter Amidon. Anyone wishing to sing in the choir should arrive by 8:55 a.m. The Children's story is the story of St. Francis and the Wolf and the Sunday School lessons will focus on how we can bless each other. Guilford Community Church, an Open and Affirming Congregation of the United Church of Christ, is fully handicapped accessible and committed to providing hearing assistance and ASL interpretation, if given notice ahead. The church is located one mile south of Exit 1 on Route 5 just in back of the Guilford Country Store. For more information call, 802-257-2776, visit or find Guilford Community Church on Facebook.

Christian Initiation

Brattleboro: Saturday mass at St. Michael Roman Catholic Parish at 47 Walnut Street is at 4 p.m.; Sunday, at 8 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.; Tuesdays at 5:15 p.m.; Wednesdays at 8:45 p.m.; and Thursdays and Fridays at 7:3 a.m. The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults Program at will begin on Oct. 5 at 6:30 p.m. You may be interested in this program if you wish to join the Catholic Church or return after many years. If you'd like more information, please call the rectory at 257-5101.

The present time

Dummerston: Sunday's 9:30 a.m. service at Dummerston Congregational Church will be under the leadership of Rev. Anthony Acheson, who will preach on the subject "Living in the Present Time." His scripture will be excerpts from Matthew 6:25-34. This is communion Sunday, and communion at this church is open to anyone who wishes to partake. In lieu of Sunday School, all children are invited to come downstairs at 9:30 to the kitchen area for the annual "Bake a Pie with Bess" Sunday. Each child will create their own apple pie, and these will be baked and the child can then take it home. Everything is provided, just make sure the children come by 9:30 as time is short. The special Deacon's offering will be for Neighbors In Need an information and a special envelope will be available in the weekly bulletin. Next Sunday, Oct. 9, is "Apple Pie Sunday" and a shortened service, including our very own "Apple Pie Festival Hymn" will be led by the Deacons. Sale of the approximately 1,500 apple pies begins at 10 a.m. Dummerston Congregational Church is a Green Justice and open and affirming congregation and everyone is welcome to attend.

Why these Ten?

Brattleboro: We all know them — the Ten Commandments — the moral law revealed to Moses centuries ago on Mount Horeb. We know the "letter" of the commandments, but how deeply have we grasped the "spirit" of these sacred laws. The commandments are about more than outward conduct. They apply to the thoughts that we hold in the depths of our hearts. What do we love? What do we put first in our lives? Who or what has fathered us? What are we really made of? And why should we care about these people we share the world with? Who are they to us? The commandments actually help us answer these questions as discover more of their underlying meaning. "The spiritual sense of truth must be gained before Truth can be understood." (Mary Baker Eddy, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures"). Please join us Sunday morning as we delve into the spiritual sense of the Ten Commandments. Worship for adults and Sunday School for children and teens both meet at 10:45 a.m. at the Christian Science Church at 57 Putney Road. For more details, please call 802-254-5117.

The best seat in the house

West Brattleboro: The Sunday worship service at First Congregational Church, 880 Western Ave., an Open and Affirming Congregation of the United Church of Christ, features Interim Pastor Jeremy Kirk's final Sunday with us before he begins his permanent call in West Dover. The sermon will be "The Best Seat in the House," based on 2 Timothy 2:8-15 and Luke 18. Organist Bill McKim's prelude is "Prelude and Fugue in G Major," by J. Krebs. The offertory is "Offrande," by F. Peeters, and the Postlude, "Toccata in E Minor," by J. Pachelbel. Our choir will offer "Come, Thou Font of Every Blessing," arranged by R. Thygerson. Congregational hymns will be "In the Midst of New Dimensions," "We Are One in the Spirit," and "God Be With You." We will take up the Neighbors in Need offering this Sunday. Communion will be served. Sunday morning worship is at 10 a.m. There is a fellowship hour following worship. For those with disabilities there is a ramp leading to the sanctuary level as well as large print bulletins and hymns. There is an on-going collection of canned fruit and vegetables, soups, tuna fish, peanut butter and pasta for the local food shelf. For a ride to worship call 802-254-4522. The church's email is and our website Telephone is 802-254-9767. The church office is open Wednesday and Friday 1 to 5 p.m.

Increasing our faith

Newfane: The First Congregational Church of Newfane will meet for morning worship at 10 a.m. on Sunday. The Rev. Rob Hamm's meditation is titled "Increase Our Faith," with scripture from Luke 17:5-10. Congregational hymns are "I Come With Joy," "Come, Share the Lord," and "Lord of the Dance." The prelude "My Faith Looks Up to Thee," arranged by Ashford, and the postlude "Allegretto," by Johan Scholze, will be played by Alice Gausch. The choir will sing the offertory anthem "The Church Within Us," by Schneider/Hustad. Our mission for the month of October is Our Church's Wider Mission. We continue to collect donations of canned goods and non-perishable foods for the Townshend Food Shelf. Donations for the food shelf may be brought to the church and left in the basket in the Narthex. Events for the upcoming week include on Monday, Al-Anon meets at 7:30 p.m., and on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. we begin set up the Deli for Heritage Festival. On Thursday, Handbells practice starts at 4:15 p.m., Stewardship Committee meets at 5:30 p.m. and Choir practice begins at 6:30 p.m. On Friday morning, Oct. 7, Heritage Festival set-up begins at 9 a.m. Volunteers are welcome and needed; many hands make light work. Please call the church office at 802-365-4079 or visit the church website at for more information. Everyone is welcome!

World Communion

Towshend: The Townshend Church's Sunday service will be at 10 a.m., "World Communion Sunday." Rev. Vernon Stanley will provide the sermon. The text will include selected verses from John 6. Please stay for our fellowship hour immediately following the service. All are welcome. The Townshend Church is an ABC and UCC congregation guided by its lay members.


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