Why Lent?

A man died. He was known for his wild living. When his will was read, it was discovered that he had willed his farm to the devil. The courts, deliberating on such a ridiculous set of circumstances, decided that the best way to carry out his wishes was to let the farm grow up in weeds and briars, to allow the houses and barns to remain unpainted and to rot, and to permit the soil to erode and wash away. The court said, “The best way to let Satan have it is to do nothing with it.”

Isn’t that the truth with an individual life? Isn’t it true of your life? All that is needed for a life to go downhill spiritually is for a person to neglect his or her spiritual side, the most important side. You don’t even have to make a great declaration about your future intentions. All you have to do is stop taking care of your spiritual life to see how quickly your spiritual home collapses, your spiritual roots decay, and the weeds of sin prosper. The Lenten season is an opportunity to renew your spiritual life.

The season of Lent is a season of preparation for Easter. During Lent we remember an important part of Jesus’ life when he dwelt fasting in the desert for forty days, and was tempted by the devil. Where Adam and Eve gave in to the serpent’s temptation, Jesus does not: even in self-denial, Jesus is victorious over temptation. And late in Lent, during Holy Week and especially on Good Friday, we remember Jesus’ suffering and death to save us. The day is so much brighter when you have been through the darkness. To see the light of Jesus Christ’s resurrection on Easter, you have to acknowledge the suffering of his crucifixion that precedes it.

In Lent, we are attentive to the parts of Jesus’ life—his self-control, his patience, his faithfulness even in suffering—and we hope to gain these attributes as his disciples. I have found a yearly observance of Lent helpful in this respect.

In Lent we might give up something, do a specific prayer discipline, or change something to push ourselves spiritually. But the point is not just self-improvement or self-denial. The point is also to feel a little discomfort, a little pain, and by that to be constantly reminded of the love of our Savior Jesus Christ, who denied himself for our salvation.

If you observe Lent with giving up something or add a new spiritual devotion, use what you have given up or added to become closer with Jesus. If Lent is not about improving your relationship with Jesus Christ, it really is a waste of time. Don’t let Satan help you forget that Jesus died for you yes even you.

Grace & Peace,

Pastor Bob

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Small Groups

Sunday School. Sunday mornings 9:00 AM. Open to all youth pre-k through high school. Please contact Robin Stolarcyk if you can help or would like more information.

Christian Fellowship Class. Sunday mornings 9:00 AM. Room B6.  Please join us. Leader: Shirley Prentice.

Pastor’s Study & Prayer Group: Sunday mornings 11:30 AM, Room B6. Everyone is welcome to join.  Questions contact Pastor Bob (910) 260-0551 or 648-4326.  No Class 4th Sunday’s, join us for Pot Luck Luncheon in fellowship hall.

Unity Circle: Ladies Group, 2nd Monday of every month 11:00 AM. All ladies are invited to join. Contact Bev Hamm at 723-2864 for more information. (Some dates the ladies have luncheons at 12:00 so please contact Bev if you are new to the group & don’t have a schedule.) No meetings in January, February, July & August.

Youth Group meets Monday evenings in the loft. All youth 5th – 12th Grade are invited to attend. Please join us in the loft at 6:30 PM. Leader: David Black, 648-5444.

Monday Evening Ladies Book Study Group: Monday evenings at 6:30 pm. In the Disciple Room (B4). Contact Karen MacKenzie for more information.

Rachel Circle: Ladies Group, 3rd Tuesday of every month 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM in the Frazer Room (B18). All ladies are invited to join. Contact Marita Root for more information.

Tuesday Women’s Group: Join us in Tuesday’s at 12:45, Disciple Room (B4).  A time of Bible Study, friendship, good food, & great conversation. Contact Carol Krizan or Pat Winters for more information.

Knitting for the Lord: Tuesday, evenings, 6:00 – 7:00 PM, Room B2. Contact Sue Alcott or Lynne Masland for more information.

Choir. Thursdays 4:00 – 5:00 PM.  Everyone is welcome to join. Contact Carla Fako for more information.

Please contact the church office, 648-4339 if you need contact information for the leaders or would like more information about the groups. 

WordGirls: Wednesdays, 9:15 – 11:15 a.m.  Questions contact Amy O’Brien. This group meets outside the church building but welcomes any ladies that would like to join. Please contact the church office for Amy’s contact information for locations of meetings.

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March Mission: Church World Service (CWS) donors & congregations provide thousands of CWS Blankets each year. These blankets can be a vital resource for someone needing a little support, warmth & encouragement. Last year, over 174,000 CWS Blankets & Kits were distributed throughout the world. The Unity Circle will be setting up tables to accept donations in the Narthex & Coffee Hour on March 24th & March 31st.  Questions?  Contact Bev Hamm 723-2864. Please donate to this worthy cause! 

Help us decorate our Sanctuary for Easter – Order your Easter Tulips. $7.00 each in memory or in honor of a loved one. Deadline for tulip orders is April 15th. Get your order form from the order forms section on this website or contact the church office 648-4339 to get one by email. Thank you for your support! Have a Blessed & Wonderful Easter with your family & friends!!

Special Lenten Services: 

Sunday, April 14th—Palm Sunday Worship, Palms procession & Passion reading with elements.

April 18th, 7:00 PM – Maundy Thursday Worship Service here  at Chenango Bridge UMC. Please join us!

April 19th, 7:00 PM. Tenebrae/Good Friday Worship Service: North Fenton UMC, 5984 State Rd 79, Chenango Forks, NY 13746. Please join us!

Saturday, April 20th, 10 AM, Here at Chenango Bridge UMC – Stations of the Cross. Please join us!

Sunday, April 21st—Easter Worship, Sunday, – Christ Has Risen – Please join us to Celebrate!

Ogden Hillcrest UMC: A series of short and different Lenten worship services, Wednesday evenings 7 PM, March 13—April 10th (For more information see the flyer in the back of the Narthex or the bulletin board outside the church office). Each week we will celebrate communion. All are welcome! 1061 Chenango St, Binghamton 13901; 723-2637; 

Annual Oneonta/Binghamton Lenten Communion and Breakfast. Saturday, April 13th with coffee hour starting at 7:15 at Central United Methodist Church, 17 Nanticoke Ave, Endicott, NY; State Highway 26 near The Cider Mill, off Exit 67 North from State Highway 17 or State Highway 26 coming south from Whitney Point. Worship and Communion will begin at 8:00 am. Breakfast & Meeting to follow. Please contact Knud Hansen if you are attending so they have enough food. (contact church office for Knud’s contact information). Deadline: April 10th. For other questions contact; David Barnes, Coordinator, contact church office for David’s contact information.

If you drop off items to the CRC room please leave your name & contact information for the ladies. Thank you for your help & assistance.

Church Women United: Spring Fling (Annual Meeting) Wed., April 3, 10-Noon. First Congregational Church, 30 Main St., Binghamton, NY. Chairperson: Phyllis Martin.

Church Women United: May Friendship Day, Sat., May 4, 11 AM – 1 PM, Choconut Center UMC. Lewis & Airport Roads, Binghamton, NY. Chairpersons: Beverly Emmett & Gloria Benedetto. Theme: The Time is Now—Agree to Differ”

“LET’S GET READY TO RUMMAGE!!! We’re planning to have the sale around June 8th.  Anyone interested in being on the committee, please contact Jill Lyon at 204-0032.”

Pot Luck Luncheon Following the Worship Service the 4th Sunday of each month. Please bring a dish to pass & join us in fellowship hall for the luncheon!

Audio & Video Volunteers are Needed: Training will be provided. Please contact the church office; 648-4339 or Mike Howard (contact the church office for Mike’s contact information)  if you would be able to help. 

Coffee Hour: Volunteers Needed! Nothing fancy just light refreshments & coffee needed. Sign up sheet by the refreshments. Thank you in advance for your help.

Coupons to Care: Our program has helped many families, individuals & organizations. Please save your coupons. Put them in Sharon Quackenbush or Karen Hojsik’s mailbox. Help feed our neighbors through food banks and emergency requests. Shoppers are needed. For more information please contact Sharon Quackenbush, Karen Hojsik or Joyce Neumann.

Trustees Project Board in the back of the Narthex for those of you that may want to sign up for projects or may wish to contribute to a project. Please contact Hudda Aswad if you have any questions. Thank you.

Liturgists Needed: If you are thinking about it, but feel you can’t do a whole month, don’t let that get in the way. We can work around schedules. It is a nice way to participate in the service & serve both the Lord and the congregation. Everything you need is provided each week. Penny can email you the readings ahead of time, if you prefer. Talk to the other liturgists and get their perspective.  Please consider giving it a try!!  Thanks. Pam Wasley.

Wi-Fi Access at Church: If you would like access to wireless at the church please contact Mike Howard at: Thank you

Reminder: 1st United Methodist Church of Chenango Bridge / Maines GiveBack Program: For every twenty (20) dollars spent, God’s church receives $1.00. Obtain your application of a Maines membership card from the church secretary Monday – Thursday 8 AM – 1 PM or you may request it by email from the church office as well at or you may get one from our forms & applications tab above. Our Maines account is “Chenango Bridge UMC” in order to receive the proper credit.

Fund Raiser for First United Methodist Church of Chenango Bridge.     Present this advertisement (below) and 10% of all work done will be donated to the church. For all questions and appointments please contact Quality Steam Cleaning. (You may also find this coupon in the back of the church or contact the church office.

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