“Living A Grateful Life”

Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising
God with a loud voice… Then Jesus said to him, “Get up and
go on your
way; your faith has made you well.
Luke 17: 15, 19

What would happen if we let thankfulness change our lives?  On Thanksgiving, we
traditionally acknowledge the good things in life.  We count our blessings and remember that God has taken care of us for another year.  Families and friends and congregations gather together and celebrate with abundant meals as we kick-off the holiday season.

For many, this is a very happy and meaningful time during which we are reminded of so many reasons to be grateful.  It is also an opportunity to ponder the powerful potential of living each and every day of the year as transformed people centered in a spirit of gratitude.

We learn something about this from the Gospel story of the ten lepers found in Luke 17:11-19.  From this passage, it is clear that all ten lepers are healed and rejoice because of the miracle.  But nine of the ten choose to follow the basic law and cultural expectation: They go to show themselves to the priests.  One of the ten is overwhelmed with gratitude for this incredible healing.  He was so moved by the experience that he couldn’t just continue on with his life as it had been before he contracted the disease.  This moment was not just the end of a difficult period of his life.  It was a transformational experience that caused him to reevaluate everything.  So, he paused.  He separated himself from the small band of healed people, and he alone chose a different path.  He began glorifying God as he ran back, and fell at Jesus’ feet offering his gratitude.

Clearly, the real healing miracle in the story is not the cleansing of ten lepers but the transformation of the one who makes the intentional choice to glorify God.  It is this action that prompts Jesus to declare, “Your faith has made you well.”

Many of us know the joy of physical, emotional or spiritual healing after a devastating chapter in our lives.  Typically, we react like the majority of those healed in the Gospel story. We acknowledge the gift of healing or blessing when it comes.  Thankfulness is our response.  But then, we move forward as custom and culture dictate.  We are certainly grateful.  But that gratitude is grounded in our desire to get back to living life the way it used to be.

But what would it be like if we turned around and chose to live life differently?  How might our faith be invigorated if we embraced a daily life of gratitude in which every encounter and every interaction of each day was blanketed in thankfulness?  What might it mean to live our lives motivated by thanksgiving?  Can you imagine gratitude as not only a response to an experience of surprising joy or unanticipated blessing but as a way of life?  Perhaps as we choose to live our lives centered in gratitude we will live a life in the fullness of Jesus’ proclamation, “Your faith has made you well.”

Grace & Peace,

Pastor Bob

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


Small Groups

Sunday School. Sunday mornings 9:00 AM. Open to all youth pre-k through high school. Robin Stolarcyk is looking for volunteers to help. Please contact Robin 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 for more information.

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.

WordGirls: Wednesdays, 9:15 – 11:15 a.m.  All ladies are welcome to join. Questions contact Amy O’Brien.

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

Please contact the church office if you need contact information for the leaders at 648-4339. 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


Chenango Bridge UMC ~ Church Charge Conference: November 17th, 10 AM at Whitney Point United Methodist Church, 7311 Collins St. Whitney Point, NY  13862. Everyone is invited & encouraged to attend!

We’ve Launched Night to Shine! Friday, February 8, 2019, 6-9 PM. This will be hosted by an estimated 700 churches around the world simultaneously. Our location is Chenango Valley High School. We are proud to be an official host church for the 2019 Night to Shine, sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation. Night to Shine is an unforgettable prom night experience, centered on God’s love, for people with special needs, ages 14 and older. To Refer a Guest, Volunteer or Donate, please eMail  All volunteers over 18 will need to pass a bacjkground check. To learn more check out Please get your application form from our forms & applications tab above on this website. Questions please contact the church office at 607-648-4339.

Community Thanksgiving Service: Sunday, November 18th, 5:00 PM at St. Francis of Assisi has been moved to Odgen-Hillcrest UMC, 1061 Chenango St., Binghamton, New York 13901. Please join us!

Special Christmas Services: 

Sunday, Dec. 16th, 10 AM: Choir Christmas Cantata & Children’s Christmas Program

Friday, Dec. 21st, 7 PM: Longest Night Service

Monday, Dec. 24th, 7 PM: Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Christmas Cookie Bake Sale: December 1 from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM: We will be asking for cookie donations in November.  All kinds of cookies are needed, but if you have a special holiday favorite, please consider baking it. Contact Pam Wasley if you would be able to help bake cookies at 238-1835.

December Mission:  We will be supporting Chenango Valley families with gifts at Christmas-  details to follow!

Thank you to a Generous Congregation:  We sent a team of 14 to Southern Tier Mobil Pack, 4 Large Boxes to Soldiers, 42 Redbird Shoeboxes,  and 36 Thanksgiving baskets to the Community!

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

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

Volunteers requested: We will be providing dinners for the Men’s  Rescue Mission at 5 PM every 4th Wednesday.  Please join us as we cook and serve!   Questions?  contact Karen and Wes MacKenzie (contact the church office 648-4339 for Karen’s contact information).

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 would like to volunteer to be a liturgist please contact Pam Wasley or the church office 648-4339. If you cannot do a month at a time, that is fine. We will fill in the weeks around what you can do.

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.

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 advertistment (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.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment