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Volume 13 Issue 5 MAY 22, 2008


Beginning with the September 25 issue the
Epistle will be available on line at our church web REGISTRATION BEGINS!
site, The decision to take this ac- Fairport Community Vacation Bible School is
tion comes from a concern about the rising costs of excited to announce the start of registration! Fairport
continuing to publish in the way we have been doing Vacation Bible School is a weeklong Fairport tradi-
it for years. tion (August 4- 8) where children from all denomina-
The cost of paper has gone up considerably tions come together to be reminded that Jesus loves
and we use approximately 2500 pieces of paper for each and every one of us! FCVBS is a fun filled
each issue. This is a total of 27,500 pieces of paper week of Music, Games, Crafts and much more! Look
for a year’s worth of Epistle’s. for registration forms at your church or at the Fairport
Another cost is the cost of copying. While Public Library. Registration will continue through
we get a certain amount of copies with our contract, June 30; first come first serve! (see page 5)
we pay for extras and we always have extras.

Each time the copier flashes it is a copy and so for There will be some paper copies available in
an issue of the Epistle there would be eighteen Fellowship Hall and the church office to be picked
flashes for nine pages. up either on Sunday or during the week. There are
The cost of mailing each month (11 months) also a limited number of shut ins who will receive
is approximately $65 for a total cost of $715 per their copies by mail.
year. As we seek to be faithful in the use of our re-
sources, it is clear that going on line will save money Remember this will all begin with the September 25
in the long run as well as make the Epistle available issue. In the meantime you will continue receiving
to many others who may not be part of our church your monthly issue of the Epistle by snail mail.
family. This will increase our outreach.
We also realize that there are those members who do (
not have access to an on-line edition.
June 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, 2008
Sunday Worship at 9:30 AM

Fellowship Time and Christian Education follow

Wednesday Eucharist at Noon
(with the exception of June 4)

The gospel of Matthew is concerned with discipleship. Jesus calls us to make disciples of all
nations. We are also called to live the life of discipleship which means to make sure that our words
and our actions coincide. During the summer months we will be seeking to understand just what
this might mean for us.
June 1: The Eucharist June 8
Deuteronomy 11:18-21, 26-28 Hosea 5:15-6:6
Psalm 31:1-5, 19-24 Psalm 50:7-15
Romans 1:16-17; 3:22b-28 Romans 4:13-25
Matthew 7:21-29 Matthew 9:9-13, 18-26
“Hearing and Acting” “Persistence”

June 15: Senior Recognition

Exodus 19:2-8a
Psalm 100
Romans 5:1-8
Matthew 9:35-10:8
Kelly Weidman preaching

June 22 June 29
Jeremiah 20:7-13 Jeremiah 28:5-9
Psalm 69:7-10, 16-18 Psalm 89:1-4, 15-18
Romans 6:1b-11 Romans 6:12-23
Matthew 10:24-39 Matthew 10:40-42
“Who do you Trust?” “Hospitality”

Adult Education Update

Sunday morning classes will take a break for the summer and will resume on Sept. 7. Wednesday
morning classes will continue studying Proverbs and Parables through June. This Bible study is
held from 11 – noon.

First Congregational United Church of Christ

26 East Church Street Fairport NY 14450
The Alban Institute is a kind of “think tank” for churches. They hold workshops, publish books and jour-
nals and seek to work with churches and pastors to be more effective in the work of the gospel. Their presi-
dent is James P. Wind and in a recent article entitled “Crunching the Numbers”, he has some very interest-
ing things to say about church life in the United States. His comments concern a survey done by the re-
spected “Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life”, entitled U.S. Religious Landscape Survey 2008.
When the results of the survey came out certain phrases were picked up by the media: “many Americans
switch faith identity”, “constant membership turnover”, “a quantum leap in the rate of change”,
“churn, churn, churn.”
Yet, beyond these catch phrases there is much in the survey to think about.
“First, America remains stunningly Christian, at least in terms of religious self-identification. Of
those polled, 78.4 percent identified themselves that way. After more than a century of modernity,
secularism, higher education, enlightenment, and new religions, the vast majority still see themselves
in some way Christian.”
The phrase “in some way” is interesting. Wind says:
“The survey documents the amazing variety of ways that Christians understand and practice their
faith. ….According to the surveyors, the biggest chunk of American Christianity is Protestantism,
which makes up 51.3 percent of the adult population. So Protestants are still the religious majority in
our society, but just barely so. Yet, we shouldn’t get too content here because “The Protestant majority
has declined in relative size from the 60 to 65 percent level often noted by surveys taken during the
1970’s and 1980’s.Steady decline has been Protestantism’s overall trajectory from the 1990’s on.”
Age is another factor here. Dr. Wind tells us:
“62 percent of those 70 and older are Protestant, while only 43 percent of those aged 18 to 29 identify
themselves that way. Unless major and unanticipated changes take place, this survey may be the last
one to paint a picture of American religious life before Protestants experience a historic shift and be-
come a minority movement in the land they once claimed to shape.”
I’m not trying to make you feel depressed. These are objective facts, or at least as objective as any survey
can give. One response might be to throw up our hands and give up. Such a response is not what is called
for. The Church in the sense of the “One holy, catholic and apostolic church” is not going to die. We have
our Lord’s word on that. On the local level, though, we need to be cognizant of these changes and chal-
lenges. Here is one more piece of information which has implications for us.
“One of the findings that has generated the earliest buzz is the dramatic growth of what the re-
searchers call the fourth largest religious tradition in America.”
Perhaps you might think this is Islam or Buddhism or some other non Western religion. You would be
wrong! Mainline Protestants and that would be us account for 18.1% while 16% is considered unaffiliated.
This group includes a small of group of atheists and agnostics, but 12.1% identify themselves as “nothing
in particular.”
How might we as a church reach out to a growing group of “nothing in particular” and help them find
something in particular? Let’s talk about it.
Your pastor,

Tindra Marin Forgensi was born on
CHURCH!! March 31, 2008 in Moab, Utah. She is the
daughter of Max and Erin Forgensi and the
As part of our on-going fund raising efforts,
granddaughter of Sally and Piero Forgensi.
First Church is participating in the Xerox Congratulations!
Classic held this year from August 11-17 at
Congratulations also go out to Karl and
Irondequoit Country Club. Here is what hap- Nicole Cedarleaf on the birth of their daugh-
pens. You buy a ticket to the classic by ter Ava Grace Cedarleaf , born April 28,
sending in an order form which you will 2008. She is the granddaughter of Jean and
find in this issue of the Epistle or in Fellow- John Cedarleaf and the sister of Gunnar.
ship Hall or the church office; send it in
and receive your tickets and First Church
will get 100% of the cost of the tickets.
The cost of a weekly grounds pass is The weather is nice, the sun is shining, and
$25. We get the whole $25. There are no it’s almost our favorite Fairport weekend –
strings attached. This is a charity event and Canal Days! The youth group will again be
we are considered a charity, so we benefit. raising money for the Mission Trip with Ca-
Check out the enclosures in this issue for nal Days Parking at our church. Parking is
more information and act today. You can still only $5! We appreciate your support of
also find the forms to order tickets on our this fundraiser. (Don’t worry - We won’t
web site ( at the bottom of charge for parking during church!). Please
the “About Us” page. You will have a great contact Melissa Tieslink (377-5617) if you
time watching great golf and your church will have any questions or concerns.
benefit. What could be better?

Thank you to everyone who has supported our youth mission trip fundraisers!!

Martha Bowman, St. John’s Home Bertha Agor Memorial Nursery School
Barbara Cobb, Fairport Baptist Home has openings available for their 3 and 4 year
Geraldine Stearns, Perinton Manor old classes. For more information, please
contact Ginger Field, 377-9806.


Family News
Preschoolers & Elementary Students Church School Takes
Invited To Visit Vacation
For Summer
“God’s Big Backyard “ Church school classes will take a
vacation for the summer and will resume
Aug. 4 – 8 on Sunday, September 7.
The annual Fairport Community Vacation
Bible School program will be held from 9 a.m. -
noon on August 4 – 8 in participating churches
Children’s Chapel Offered
(including ours!) on Church Street in the village
During the Summer
of Fairport. Following the theme, “God’s Big
Backyard,” children will learn how rewarding Children’s Chapel will be offered
service can be. They will explore how to serve all summer except for Sunday, July 6 and
family, friends, neighbors, the community and Sunday, August 31.
Jesus while enjoying interactive Bible stories, fun
crafts and snacks. Student registration forms
and volunteer forms are available in Fellowship Canal Days Parking
Hall. Registration closes on June 30. Mission Trip
Volunteers are needed for some key positions to Fundraiser – June 6 – 8
make this year’s program a success. Needed are: a Everyone going on the Mission
registered nurse (This person needs to be on site Trip should sign up to work at Canal Days
Parking on June 6th through 8th. This is our
the week of August 4 – 8); a craft leader or a team
biggest Mission Trip fundraiser of the year.
of craft leaders (This is someone excited about de-
We have five shifts available: Friday eve-
signing and organizing crafts in the weeks leading
ning, Saturday & Sunday mornings, and
up to VBS, as well as supervising craft groups dur-
Saturday & Sunday afternoons. It will be a
ing VBS); and a registrar (This person will receive
lot of fun. Note: If you’re planning on tak-
and organize all student registration forms. A back-
ing the SAT on June 7th, do NOT sign up
ground in Microsoft Excel is helpful. This person
for the Saturday morning shift. The
does NOT need to be available during the VBS
sign-up sheets are posted on the Youth
week). Interested? Please contact Heather Moore
Group bulletin board in Fellowship Hall.
by email at or by
Please contact Melissa Tieslink (377-5617)
phone at 585-259-0122 to get involved with this
if you have any questions.
wonderful ministry!

The Epistle is printed once a month
By the First Congregational United
Church of Christ, 26 East Church St.,
Fairport, New York 14450

Office Phone: 585-223-0224

Fax: 585- 223-4264
Pastor’s Phone 585-223-8172
Office Hours: M-F 9:00-3:30

Church Service 9:30AM

Sunday School: 10:50AM

Pastor: Rev. Dr. John Cedarleaf

Christian Ed. & Family Ministries:
Kelly Weidman & Karen Hamill
Admin. Asst: Cathy Kinton
Church Moderator: Hank Ralston
Organist: Beatrice Benedict
Choir Director: James C. Jefferis
Business Administrator: Sue Brooks
Epistle Editor: Bill Lindsay
Wedding Coordinator: Sue Bickel

First Congregational United Church of Christ NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION

26 East Church Street
Fairport NY 14450
Address Service Requested

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