Your remarkable response to the 2014 year-end appeal 2014 allowed us to complete the repair of the Carriage House (under budget). In addition to paying ongoing bills with your year-end donations, we continue to set aside reserves for roof replacement, for vehicle replacement and for other anticipated and for unexpected needs for church campus maintenance. This year’s upcoming need is to make necessary repairs to the rear wall of the Church which has bowed out from the foundation. It is non-supporting wall but it requires strengthening and reattachment to secure the structure. Like us, the Church is aging.
Our season on Grindstone has come to a close. We look back on a very successful, week-long 125th Anniversary celebration that culminated in a luncheon in the Church courtyard. The History Committee did an outstanding job and we have the permanent timeline in the rear vestibule of the Church to mark this special anniversary. We are thankful for the leadership of our Summer Minister, Rev. Jeff McArn who celebrated his tenth anniversary as our Summer Minister. We are also rewarded with the additional spiritual leadership of Art Couch, Charlie Moehs, Rex Ennis and Rev.Joe DeGroot. Visiting ministers Dr. Khalid Sindu and Rev. Tom Mousin provided additional richness to our services. Book Study was initiated with a weekly discussion of McLaren’s Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road. The Sunday School program for our youngsters continued under the leadership of Jeri Couch and Lindsey Bogacz.
We particularly cherished the attendance of visiting friends, neighbors and relatives at church services and at the annual Turkey Dinner which set records for attendance this year. Wonderful liturgical music was presented throughout the summer by our organist, Joan Flint and the talented islanders that she recruited.
It is said that ‘Mission is the love of God manifested through works’. Each year the congregation selects one domestic mission and one foreign mission. In 2015, we raised over $1,200 for scholarship aid to a Haitian student of Nursing. During the August mission we raised $1,600 to expand the services of our Saturday free medical clinic that is offered through the goodness of its leaders Dr. Charlie Moehs and Nurse Mary Taylor and through our other volunteers, Drs. Bruce Baird and Theresa Stoltz. Your gifts will have touched many lives as we provide medical support for people in Haiti and Grindstone Island this coming year. Your generosity is appreciated.
We ask that you continue your generosity by including the Grindstone Island Church in your remembrances with an annual gift because, without your year-end gifts, the church cannot continue and thrive. Weekly collections do not meet the church’s overall expenses. Year-end donations are necessary to meet the needs of our church and of its facilities so that it can continue to be part of the “Unbroken Circle” that ties our unique community together.
Luke 12:33-34 “Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
We are a unique and diverse congregation. Our strength is in our unified love of God and in our love for each other. With your support, we can look forward to many summers of worship, fellowship and reaching out to communities near and far. Until we gather once more at our most beautiful river...may the peace of the Lord be with you all.
Rev. Jeff McArn, Summer Minister, Betsy Fitter, Chair of Church Council, Ken Deedy, Church Treasurer