Posts by Ken Loyer

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Jesus Our Healer

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's going to be an exciting weekend at Spry! On Sunday we'll receive new members into our church family, celebrate another baptism, and recognize people from our church who are graduating this year from high school or post-secondary education. We're also having a church picnic on Sunday from 12:15 to 3:00 at the field by The Link Comm...

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More Miracles of Jesus

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday is Mother's Day, and we thank God for all moms and those who are like moms to us! On Sunday we'll have a photo booth in the lobby. After worship, grab a prop and strike a pose for pictures with your mom and the whole family - no age limits! In worship we continue our Marvel series. This Sunday, we'll hear the words of Jesu...

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A Marvel Miracle of Giving

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy May! May is such a great month, with beautiful weather and much to look forward to. I'm excited about all that this month has in store! I'd like to encourage you to participate in our Marvel reading plan. This is an excellent resource to help us go deeper and grow in faith. Each week in the bulletin we include an insert with th...

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The One Thing Before Every Miracle of Jesus

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Today and tomorrow we are having our spring yard sale! You can find just about anything there. Thousands of items are for sale, plus soup, sandwiches, and baked goods. All proceeds support mission work locally, nationally, and internationally. Hours are Friday 8-6 and Saturday 8-1. We celebrate all that God is doing in and through our...

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Marvel at the Easter Message

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is the biggest weekend all year for our church and for all who follow Jesus! What an exciting time to be the church together. This week is what we call Holy Week because it's the week leading up to Easter. We have our Maundy Thursday service tonight, April 18, at 7pm and our Good Friday service April 19 at 7pm. Each of these speci...

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Palm Sunday

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you've been enjoying the beautiful weather we've had this week. Soon we'll see even more of it! This Sunday is Palm Sunday, the day we remember Jesus' entry into Jerusalem where he was greeted with shouts of praises by people waving palm branches. The palms were signs of his victory, and what Jesus would go on to do in Jerusale...

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Choose Your Path

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's already April--one of my favorite months of the year! Earlier this week we got a taste of the beautiful spring weather that's up ahead. I love this time of year. We are on a journey, not just toward the amazing weather of spring, but also toward Easter. On Sunday we continue our journey toward the annual celebration of the most i...

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Special Edition

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, The Lord is doing amazing things in and through our congregation! It's a joy to serve Jesus with you. As we keep moving forward in ministry together, we value your input. Below are instructions for completing a survey that will help us further discern where we are as a church and how we can faithfully pursue God's calling together. Th...

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Spring!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy spring! It might not look or feel like spring yet, but we're now officially in a new season. Soon we'll see all the wonderful signs of spring: sunshine, warmer temperatures, flowers, and more. So much to look forward to! This Sunday we continue our Journey series with a message about recalculating. Sometimes in life we need to d...

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Unexpected Blessings

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you're enjoying the nice weather we've had the last few days. This morning I'm taking our son Zeke on a preschool field trip to Nixon Park. I love this time of year. On Sunday we continue our series called "The Journey." The message will focus on how we can learn to see God's presence in the unexpected. In it, we'll show a clip...

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The Journey Begins

Isaacs Youth Center Day .JPG

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we begin a series called "The Journey." For each of us, life is a journey. There are grueling climbs, majestic views, unexpected turns, and wilderness experiences. To find our way in life, it's about putting one foot in front of the other and choosing which path to follow. This worship series will take us on a journey with ...

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Grace, Even When

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we conclude our series about the power of God's grace with a message that I hope you all will hear and consider. One of the most amazing aspects of grace is the promise of God's presence and power for us when all else fails, even in the face of death. That promise is reflected in these words of Scripture: "For I am convince...

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God is Able

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Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, On Wednesday Molly and I spent part of the afternoon playing with our kids in the snow. We had fun making piles of snow into different things. We used some piles of snow to make a small igloo. Our igloo won't last long, and a good bit of it has already melted, but we enjoyed building something with the snow. Do you know that God is ab...

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Light Switch or Dimmer Switch?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Are you more like a light switch or a dimmer switch? What a strange question, right? Well, in worship this Sunday the question will make sense, I promise! It's actually a really important question and it gets at something each of us should consider. I hope to see you Sunday! Ken ...

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Scout Sunday and Splash Kids Valentine's Hearts

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday is going to be a great day at our church. We begin a new worship series called "Grace Changes Everything." It is Scout Sunday, so we will have representatives from Pack 50 and Troop 50 involved in our worship services in a variety of ways. And, our SPLASH Kids will be spreading love by handing out valentine hearts they made...

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This Weekend at Spry Church

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, How exciting to see all that God is doing in our church! To accommodate our growing crowds on Sunday mornings, we ask that those of you who are physically able please park in our lower lots (lots 2, 3, or 4) on an ongoing basis whenever possible. That allows us to keep spots in lot 1 available for our guests, those with limited mobilit...

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New Members, Baptisms, and More

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is going to be a great Sunday at Spry Church! We are receiving 10 new adult members (plus kids) into our church family. We will celebrate 3 baptisms. And, we are having a retirement brunch for our longtime Administrative Assistant Mary Hughes, starting at 12:30. Food and refreshments will be provided, and you are all invited to th...

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Won't Be Winter Forever

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, "Winter will not last forever." That's what I keep telling myself! I hope you are staying warm during this chilly weather. It looks like another snowy weekend. Use good judgment about whether you come out on Sunday morning. It would take an extraordinary amount of snow for us to cancel worship, so we are still on for Sunday - if neces...

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God is at Work

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Now that it's starting to feel like January, I hope you are staying warm! I think of a song sung by my high school choir called "Blow, Blow Thou Winter Wind." That wind has certainly been blowing. I also think about the warmth we know by gathering together in God's house for worship. In worship we encounter the Lord who renews our str...

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The Freedom We All Need

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, HappyNew Year! I hope you and your family have had a good start to 2019. I believe 2019 is going to be another exciting year for our church, as the Holy Spirit continues to move among us. I look back at 2018 and thank God for all that we have to celebrate in our life together - so many signs of the Lord using our church to change lives...

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God's Gift of Joy

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you and your family have had a wonderfulChristmas! Thank you for the cards and gifts. As I opened each one, I prayed for the sender by name. Thank you for your kindness and thoughtfulness. I pray for God's abundant blessings to be upon you this Christmas season and remain with you in all that lies ahead. Thank you to everyone w...

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Merry Christmas!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Merry Christmas from the Spry Church staff! May you be strengthened and encouraged by the gift of God's love and peace in Jesus Christ our Lord. Today's update includes some special information about this weekend and Christmas Eve at our church, so please read all the way to the end! Here's another picture...what a fun-loving group!...

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Beautiful Music This Sunday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is going to be a wonderful weekend at Spry Church! We are getting closer to Christmas and all that this special season means to us. Last week in worship I shared a reading in my message that spoke about how we can prepare for Christmas well. Several people asked where they could find those words, and in addition to posting the rea...

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Sounds of the Season and More

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you for your prayers for Molly and our family as she was hospitalized again this week. I will share an update at the end of the email below for those who would like to know more. Truly we have been sustained and strengthened by your prayers - thank you so much. God is faithful. Tonight is our annual Sounds of the Season concert ...

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A Season of Anticipation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you all for your prayers and many expressions of love and support in response to Molly's unexpected emergency hospitalization this week. We are so grateful that she is now home resting and recovering. Thank you for being such a caring church family. I plan to share a little more in my message on Sunday, including a reflection on ...

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Faith Harvest Sunday

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday begins one of my favorite weeks of the year, Thanksgiving week! I love Thanksgiving. One reason is because of the delicious food, of course. :) The main reason I love Thanksgiving is because it's a time when we focus on giving thanks. This fall at Spry Church we've been encouraging people to cultivate gratitude by using ou...

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Changing Seasons, Unchanging Hope

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you've been enjoying the fall weather. I love this time of year! The changing colors on the leaves move me to praise the God who created them to display such beauty, reflecting God's glory. There's a passage in Isaiah that describes the trees themselves as praising God (they "clap their hands" in praise of God). Our next Commun...

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There is Hope

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, As I continue to think about the tragedy in Pittsburgh, which is now reportedly the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in American history, I can't help but wonder what kind of society we are becoming. There's much good in the world, to be sure, but there is obviously a great deal that has gone wrong. Our world needs healing and hope. We ne...

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Friday Forecast

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We are following the weather forecast closely and will make a decision about Trunk or Treat today. If we need to change the plans, as is looking likely, we will share an update via the Spry Church Facebook page as well as other ways. We will do all we can to have it, but rain will definitely affect our plans. Stay tuned! Either way, I...

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Get Ready!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Our largest community outreach event is coming soon...Friday, October 26th - Trunk or Treat, 6:30-8:30pm! Join us for a safe alternative to trick or treat with lots of fun for the whole family! Dress up and collect candy, take photos with superheroes, and enjoy free hot drinks, a bonfire and s'mores, door prizes, an outdoor movie (new ...

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Fall Festival and Grand Opening @ The Link!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, On Saturday, we have 2 special events at church and we'd love to see you and your friends there: from 2-5 is our Fall Festival and Grand Opening Celebration at The Link Community Youth Center (65 School St.)! Join us for free games, refreshments, and fun for all ages. From 2-3:15 I'll be at the splat station, where you can throw a wet ...

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Called to Serve

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we continue our "Deeply Committed" series by looking at the topic of service. We are all called to serve. One of the great things about service is that each one of us can serve, no matter our age or stage in life. There is power even in small acts of love. During worship I'll share a little more about a truly inspiring per...

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Yard Sale, Movie, and More

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a big weekend at Spry Church! We have our Fall Missions Yard Sale today (Friday 8-6) and tomorrow (Saturday 8-1). All proceeds support mission work to enrich lives and extend the love of Jesus locally, nationally, and internationally. We hope you'll come and support this great community event! Tonight (Friday) is our final Out...

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Prayer Campaign Starts This Sunday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, On Sunday we continue our worship series called "Deeply Committed." We will be launching aspecial prayer campaign. I'll explain more in worship - you won't want to miss this! This Saturday, September 22, there will be an outstanding FREE event for parents or grandparents of teens or pre-teens, youth, and any who work with teens or pre...

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Extreme Weather Response Efforts

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We join together to pray for those in the path of Hurricane Florence, Hurricane Helene, and Tropical Storm Isaac as well as those responding locally and globally. Here are ways to help via UMCOR (United Methodist Committee On Relief):https://www.umcor.org/umcor/resources/news-stories/2018/august/umcor-responds-to-current-disasters-arou...

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Special Sunday - Books 4 Kids!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I'm writing earlier than usual this week because I have special news to share with you. Please take a moment to read this message. On Monday several teachers from our church shared on Facebook about a campaign to sponsor children in their classrooms so that all their students can get books to keep, read, and love at home. Without such...

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The Meaning of Our Labor

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I'm so excited to be back with you in worship this Sunday! We kick off a new series on the prophet Micah. This weekend we'll take a look at the meaning of our labor - a timely message for Labor Day weekend. Join us as we consider what the Lord requires of us. I'll share with you a simple prayer that can transform how you view your dai...

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Thank you, Spry Church

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you for your prayers for our family after the death of Molly's grandmother Norma. We are so grateful for the love and support of our church family. It has been said that faith doesn't make life easier; faith makes us stronger. I know that to be true. Suffering, death, grief, and other challenges are part of life for all of us. Th...

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An Invitation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Over the last several months we've been working on a Welcome Video for our church. These days the internet is like the front door of a church - many people read about a church online before coming and what they see likely determines whether they choose to come or not. Because reaching new people is such an important part of our mission...

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This Weekend at Spry...Exciting Times!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Outdoor movie night is TONIGHT! The fun starts at 7:30 with free snacks and refreshments. Bring a chair or blanket, and join us for the hit movie Paddington 2! It's a film people of all ages can enjoy. Also, remember to invite a friend - a neighbor, co-worker, family member, etc. This is a great opportunity for us to connect with our c...

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Who Are We?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday is going to be a great time of worship! We will receive 7 new adult members and celebrate 2 adult baptisms. The message will deal with the question, "Who are we, really?" Have you ever wondered that? Are you just what you do (your job, your role, etc.), or is your identity rooted in something deeper? These are important qu...

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Flood Buckets

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, With all the rain we've had this week, flooding is a problem in some areas throughout York County. Here's a special announcement about a way that we can help: Mission Central is a resource center for disaster response and mission outreach located in Mechanicsburg and led by the Susquehanna Conference of the United Methodist Church. Mi...

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Your Extraordinary Generosity

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you for your extraordinary generosity! In so many ways, you are such a generous church. One recent example is our Summer Missions Offering. The combination of the VBS offering and other designated gifts set a Summer Missions Offering record last week in support of "The Shoe That Grows." As a result, we far exceeded our goal of 10...

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Picnic and Carnival This Sunday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We've had an AMAZING week at Vacation Bible School 2018! Thank you so much for your support - donations, volunteers, and especially prayers. The kids have learned about the adventure of a lifetime in following Jesus. I heard a number of comments from parents, grandparents, and kids alike saying how much they appreciated our church offe...

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Fireworks and Summer Fun

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you had a great 4th of July! Molly, the kids, and I went to a Phillies baseball game - they played the Orioles of all teams, which means, of course, the Phillies won. It's been a rough season for us Oriole fans. But there's always next year. :) Vacation Bible School 2018 starts this Sunday! It goes from Sunday through Thursday ...

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Community Youth Center

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, There's a fun, community event tonight that some of you might be interested in: Freedom Fireworks at York Township Park, starting at dusk and followed by the movie Moana. Members from our church's Outreach Team will be handing out glow sticks, wrist bands, and pens - look for the table with our Spry Church banner! Concessions will be a...

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Serving Jesus by Serving Others

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you for your support of our Serve the City Food Run last Sunday! We served over 160 hot meals, plus (I believe) about 200 bagged meals. This is a great way for us as a church to serve Jesus by serving others. I believe Jesus has special concern for those so often overlooked by society, including the poor, the sick, the lonely, an...

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This Weekend at Spry

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I've heard from a number of you that last Sunday's message spoke to you. Thank you for the feedback. I hope that this week you've applied these 3 principles to any challenges before you: (1) don't be discouraged, (2) get involved, and (3) trust God. Looking ahead to this weekend, we have some great opportunities in store for us to con...

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Annual Conference

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, As this update is sent to you, I am in Hershey for what we United Methodists call Annual Conference. This is a yearly gathering of pastors and lay people from the 860+ churches in the Susquehanna Conference, which encompasses most of central and parts of northeastern Pennsylvania. This week, from Thursday through Saturday over 1,000 pa...

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What God Wants and What We Want

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you have been enjoying this weather! How beautiful. This, too, was beautiful: our worship of God last week. In worship last Sunday, we recognized and prayed for 8 graduates, 14 youth publicly professed their faith in Jesus and were confirmed as full members of the church, we invited people to come forward to be prayed for perso...

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Pentecost Means Power

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We have exciting plans for this weekend, and I hope you'll join us! This Sunday is Pentecost, the day we remember and celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the early disciples of Jesus and the birthday of the worldwide Christian Church. We encourage people to wear red to church because the color red represents the fire of the ...

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Signs of New Life

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I want to share how thankful I am for you, Spry Church. Last week in worship we heard a powerful testimony shared by someone from our church family. Many, including me, were moved to tears by her words. As she shared about her journey through some very difficult times, she said: "This church saved my life." Anyone there to hear her sto...

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Call to Prayer

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you are enjoying this beautiful weather! This week I'm sending out my update early because I want to remind you about an event scheduled for tomorrow. Thursday, May 3 is National Day of Prayer. Our Sanctuary will be open for a prayer vigil from 6am to 6pm. We will provide prayer guides with written prayers for you to reflect on ...

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Yard Sale, Music, and More

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This weekend is our spring yard sale: Friday 8am to 6pm, Saturday 8am to 1pm. There will be thousands of items for sale, including food. My favorite is the chicken corn soup. :) This is a great event for our church and community, and all proceeds support mission work locally, nationally, and internationally. Elisabeth von Trapp, from ...

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Spring Yard Sale is Coming!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We are gearing up for our spring yard sale, which takes place April 27-28. The hours are Friday, April 27 from 8am-6pm and Saturday, April 28 from 8am-1pm. This is a great event for our church and community, and all proceeds support mission work locally, nationally, and internationally. Elizabeth von Trapp, from the family whose story...

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Community Connections

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Exciting news! This year our Easter Missions Offering supports the work of Covenant House York for homeless teens and victims of human trafficking in our community. The offering totals $2,023 - thank you for your generosity! Your giving makes a difference. Also, lot 4 (by our soon-to-open Community Youth Center) was paved this week an...

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Still Easter

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy Easter! Easter has come, but it hasn't gone. We are now almost a week into The Great 50 Days (or Eastertide), the period between Easter Sunday and Pentecost. It's an important reminder that Easter is not just one day on the calendar; it's a season. And, as our own Mitch Hescox likes to remind us, we are Easter people. That means ...

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Holy Week and Easter

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We're anticipating a joy-filled Easter at Spry Church and we want you to be a part of it. Could you bring friends and family to hear the amazing news we all have to share? Our worship times are -Holy Thursday with Communion and optional footwashing, March 29 at 7 pm (Sanctuary) -Good Friday, March 30 at 7 pm (Sanctuary) -Easter Eve...

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Palm Sunday and Holy Week

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, What a way to mark the official start of spring, with 12 plus inches of snow! Well, we are not going to let the weather stop us. Our Easter Egg Extravaganza will go on in spite of the "spring" snowstorm! This Saturday, March 24, at 11am is the time and our church is the place. We will have a short program in Fellowship Hall followed by...

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More People, More Parking

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you are having a good week. Here's some news for our church to celebrate: over the next 2 Sundays, we will receive 17 new members (plus children)! We also have 14 youth going through Confirmation, and they will be received as full members of our church on May 20. Praise God! It's great to see the progress being made on the expa...

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Spring Forward

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Saturday night daylight saving time begins. Remember to turn your clocks ahead one hour. Time to spring forward! Are you interested in missions work? Our church is sending a team to Guatemala July 7-14, and there is room for you! The trip is open to everyone from high school students to adults, and it will involve a maintenance o...

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March is Here!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's March! I'm so excited about the warmer weather that should be coming our way soon. We have some special events planned for this month, including the wedding shower for Pastor Luke and Becky! Please join us this Sunday, March 4 at 2:00 as we celebrate their upcoming marriage. To view their registry at Crate and Barrel or at Bed, B...

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Anticipation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy Friday! What a strange week it's been in terms of weather. That warm weather earlier in the week was amazing--a taste of what is coming. I can hardly wait! Did you know that every time we gather in worship it is a taste of what is coming? Worship is a foretaste of the completion of the kingdom of God where there will be endless ...

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Full Steam Ahead

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Good news! On Tuesday night our plans for parking expansion received unanimous approval from York Township. That means we have permission to extend lot 1 with 32 paved spots and a second access point via Circle Ct. that will relieve congestion during busy times. Thank you, Lord! This process has taken longer than anticipated due to fac...

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Dreaming Great Dreams

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Tonight is the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics. I greatly enjoy watching the Olympics. I like how this unique event brings together people from so many different countries. I am inspired by the athletes and their personal stories of sacrifice, hard work, and overcoming adversity in pursuit of their dreams. Watching the athletes...

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Special Days

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy Groundhog Day! I must admit I have never really understood why we celebrate Groundhog Day, but I do remember watching a funny movie about it featuring Bill Murray. :) One special day that is more widely understood is Valentine's Day, February 14th. Some children from our church have made Valentine cards to remember our shut-ins....

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Forward in Faith

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It was wonderful having the York Township Elementary School Principal, Marcus Bouchillon, with us in worship last Sunday. His comments about the impact of your giving to support local children in need were informative and inspiring. Because of you and the good work of the York Township staff, together we are able to meet the basic need...

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Call and Covenant

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We're getting ready for our next Community and Church Meal, Tuesday January 23 from 5-6:30pm. Join us for a time of delicious food (a variety of soups, salad, bread, and dessert) and a chance to share in conversation with people from our church and community. Have you ever considered how many stories in the Bible deal with food? Jesus ...

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We're Having a Heat Wave

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, How about this weather? We're having a heat wave! :) On Sunday we continue our year-long journey through the Bible called "Explore the Bible 2018."This time our worship will focus on an absolutely critical part of the biblical narrative, one that is repeatedly played out and confirmed in various ways still today. It's a very important...

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In the Beginning

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy New Year! Today is the 12th and final day of the Christmas season. (Think of the song about the 12 Days of Christmas: "On the first day of Christmas....") Christmas is such an extraordinary and far-reaching holiday that it can't be confined to a single day, so there is an entire season with 12 days to celebrate the wonder that Go...

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Christmas Edition

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This weekly update has lots of important information, so please be sure to read it all. Thank you! I'd also like to thank you, Spry Church, for your generosity. This holiday season, you have provided thousands of meals and hundreds of gifts to families and children through our Joy in Serving ministry. That's amazing! What a wonderful ...

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Special Edition

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, The staff of Spry Church would like to wish you and your family a merry Christmas! Check out this picture for a really cool shot. :) This Sunday we'll continue our "Coming Soon" December worship series. We'll look at what one of my favorite Christmas movies, Home Alone, can teach us about the true Christmas story.The message will...

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Sounds of the Season

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Tonight our church is hosting the "Sounds of the Season" concert by Dallastown Strings, starting at 7pm. This is always a beautiful concert and a festive environment. It's a wonderful opportunity for us to welcome and connect with people from our community. Cookies and punch will follow in Fellowship Hall with a brass ensemble providin...

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Coming Soon, part 1

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, With December now upon us, it's that time of year for shopping, wrapping presents, baking cookies, and all the other fun things we do to get ready for Christmas gatherings with family and friends. As our children grow up we want to teach them that Christmas is Jesus' birthday, and that Jesus calls us to care about others, particularl...

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a short week due to Thanksgiving, and it's also one of my favorite weeks of the whole year! I love Thanksgiving--not just because of delicious food like stuffing and GRAVY. :) This week is a great opportunity for us to slow down, count our blessings, and be thankful. Don't forget our Gratitude Challenge: each day this week wri...

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Give Thanks

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday is our Faith Harvest Sunday. Join us for a special Thanksgiving-themed worship at our normal times: 9am (traditional), 9:45am (contemporary), and 11am (contemporary). As part of worship this weekend we invite you to bring canned food donations for our Food Bank. Through our Food Bank, we serve on average over 20 families ...

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Veteran Recognition Sunday

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Tomorrow is Veterans Day. Have you thanked a Veteran lately? We're going to recognize our Veterans and thank them for their service. During each worship time on Sunday, we'll show our appreciation to all those who have served or are serving in our nation's armed forces. Recently I read a disturbing statistic: approximately 18-22 Vete...

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Fall Back

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, We had an amazing time at Trunk or Treat 2017! A huge thanks to everyone who made it our most successful ever. Beautiful trunks full of candy with their owners in costume, s'mores and drinks, and hayrides--it was intergenerational ministry at its best! Check out pictures at our Facebook page and scrolling before worship. Spry Church ...

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Connecting with God and with our neighbors

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we start a worship series called "Holiness."I need it, you need it, and God provides it. Yet what exactly is holiness, and more importantly, what difference can it make in our lives today?Join us for a new series about one of the most significant concepts in the whole Bible. Along the way we'll learn about something that ...

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Hungry?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a special edition of my weekly update, and I'm sending it out early because I'd like to invite you to our Community and Church Dinner on Wednesday, October 18 from 5-6pm. Come anytime during that hour for a free, delicious meal including a variety of homemade soups, bread, salad, and dessert. Everyone is welcome! And by everyo...

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The Joy of Sowing Generously

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Have you ever wondered how to increase your impact? How can you use your time, abilities, and resources to make a difference? I often think about those questions, and chances are you have thought about them, too. This Sunday's message is about the power of generosity and the difference your giving makes. I'm excited to describe the ...

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Working for God

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I want to take this opportunity to address a tragic situation that I learned about earlier this week. Several people from our church family work in the Boiling Springs School District. During our Wednesday Prayer Service, someone mentioned the recent loss of one of the high school students in that district. After we prayed for that s...

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Yard Sale and Movie Night!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a big weekend at our church! We hold our fall yard sale on Friday (8am-6pm) and Saturday (8am-1pm). You'll find lots of treasures and delicious food/baked goods. All proceeds go to mission projects locally and around the world. Stop by and support a great cause! Do you remember the days of drive-in movies? Tonight we're also...

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Leaving Your Mark

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, As I prepare for Sunday worship, I've been thinking about what it means to leave your mark. That's the theme for our final week in the series on Nehemiah. Have you ever wondered, "How can I make a difference? How can I leave my mark?" Chances are that you have. They're questions worth pondering. We'll explore those questions in wors...

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How Do You Respond to Opposition?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I'm excited to gather with you on Sunday! There's nothing like being in the presence of God together. We have a special opportunity this Sunday in worship to hear from Kasey and Esther Smith, missionaries in Guatemala through Servants. They serve at Villa Nueva (New Life) Children's Home, one of our mission partners. They'll be shar...

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Problems and Solutions

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Sometimes it seems like the bad news keeps coming. As we continue to pray for those affected by Hurricane Harvey, let's also pray for those affected by or in the path of Irma.Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers. This Sunday we continue our study of Nehemiah. His story in the Bible is a remarkable story of rebuilding and finding hope...

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Disaster Response

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Like many of you, I am heartbroken by the images and stories coming out of the Houston area as a result of Hurricane/Tropical Storm Harvey. In times like this we need to come together and help those in need any way that we can. What can we do? Pray for those whose lives have been impacted. Pray also for the response teams, disaster...

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Call to Prayer and Fasting

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Jesus says, "Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing" (John 15:4-5). How strong is your connection...

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What Comes Next?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It seems like summer has just begun, and now it's almost over. I hope you've had a chance to enjoy time with family and friends this summer.Molly, the kids, and I were able to get away for several days this week. We returned last night from a trip to the lake with my parents, sisters, and their children. Soon Annie begins kindergarten!...

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Big Weekend at Spry Church!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you have been enjoying this weather--cooler than usual for this time of year. Earlier this week our familyspent a couple hours at the pool and had a great time. This is going to be a fun weekend at Spry Church! Tonight starting at 7:30 we have a movie night featuring free school supplies, snacks, drawings, and "The Lego Batman ...

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Storm Shelters

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This week while I was visiting with someone, the conversation turned to the topic of a storm that she had heard about on the news. Her words stood out to me for two reasons. One reason was because of the name of the storm, Tropical Storm Emily. Ihappen to have a sister named Emily--she's pretty calm, so I don't normally associate her w...

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In the Storm and in the Calm

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Two weeks ago in my e-note I listed upcoming activities planned for the rest of summer 2017. I'll also include that list below at the end of this message as a reminder--you and your family and friends are invited to join us! On Sunday we continue our series called "Weathering Life's Storms." This week in worship we'll focus on a sto...

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VBS pictures and Coming Up Next

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you're having a great week! We had an amazing time atVBS 2017 culminating with VBS Sunday and the picnic and carnival. In addition to having a good crowd at 9am worship, our Sanctuary was packed at 11am with over 220 people including dozens and dozens of kids proudly wearing their capes and masks as God's heroes! Here are some p...

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Make Spry Church your summer destination!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Make Spry Church your summer destination! We have lots of fun activities planned for the rest of summer 2017, and you and your family and friendsare invited to join us! There's something for everyone: *July 16 from 12-2pm - VBS picnic and carnival for people of all ages, not just kids (including indoor seating for those who prefer air...

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Pray Together Sunday

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Earlier this week 5 people from our church left for a mission trip to Guatemala. They are joining people from other churches to serve at the Villa Nueva (New Life) Children's Home from July 6-15. Will you join me in praying for them? Our team consists of Lindsay Barshinger, Bev Castriota, Dan and Lizzie Gunter, and Chris Kenna. You c...

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Really, Jesus?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you are having a great week! This evening at church is Game Night starting at 7pm. Everyone is welcome. Please bring a snack to share. Drinks will be provided. Come join us for fun and fellowship! Feel free to bring your favorite board game. And watch out, some of the church ladies have been known to get carried away with laug...

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Connections

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you are having a great week! Tonight at York Township Park (25 Oak Street) is the Freedom Fireworks event. This is a fun, freecommunity event that brings hundreds of people to the park for fireworks and a movie. Among those there will be a group from our church's Community Outreach Team! If you go be sure to look for them--the...

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Unconditional Love

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Like many of you, I heard reports of the shootings in Virginia and San Francisco that took place earlier this week. It is tragic to see such senseless violence, and I pray for all affected. In these troubling and uncertain times, unconditional love is what this world needs more than anything else.And, unconditional love is what we as...

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3 essential questions

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Do you like movies? If so, join us tonight for Outdoor Movie Nightstarting at 7:30 as we watch the Disney hit movie Moana. We'll have free food, a VBS preview, and more! Bring your blankets and chairs, and bring a friend--all are welcome. It's a movie that people of all ages can enjoy. I love our outdoor movie nights; they're a bit l...

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Not the End, But Just the Beginning

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's the time of year for graduation ceremonies.In fact, anumber of youth from our church graduate tonight. Congratulations to all our graduates from high school, college, and any other level!We are proud of you! (By the way, we will honor graduates in worship on June 11, Graduation Recognition Sunday. If you know of someone from our...

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Who is the Holy Spirit?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we begin a teaching series about one of the least understood aspects of the Christian faith, the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. In worship when we say the Apostles' Creed we affirm, "I believe in the Holy Spirit." Yet how can we understand the Holy Spirit? The work of the Spirit is often thought us as "inspirational," but it'...

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Special Announcement

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Join us this Sunday for a special worship celebration at 9 am or 11 am, and then our Celebration Picnic starting at 12:30! All are welcome! Whether you indicated via RSVP or not, we hope you will come. (The RSVP system was designed to give us a rough idea of attendance, not an exact number.) The church will provide hot dogs, rolls, and...

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Mother's Day!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we celebrate Moms! Join us in worship for a message about one of the mothers in the Bible, someone whose struggle with doubt and faith is one that we can all identify with in our own journeys through life. We'll learn about how we can approach our doubts in the light of God's promises. We'll also celebrate the fact that mot...

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Annual Conference

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings! As you read this, I am in Hershey, "the Sweetest Place on Earth," at Annual Conference 2017. This gathering, which meets from Thursday through Saturday, brings together pastors and church members from the nearly 900 United Methodist congregations in what we call the Susquehanna Conference (named after the river) in central a...

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Yard Sale

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Jesus says, "Behold, I make all things new" (Revelation 21:5). We see evidence of Jesus' resurrection power as we, and our world, continue to be transformed and made new in Christ. Praise the Lord! When it comes to God's work of making things new, one example I think of might surprise you: our missions yard sales. We do two each year,...

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Easter 2017 Recap

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy Easter--Christ is Risen! We had a beautiful Easter weekend at Spry Church. I'd like to thank everyone who helped make it possible: musicians, volunteers, staff, and all who came to our various times of worship. Many of you commented on how attending one or several of our Holy Week worship services drew you into the Easter story a...

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Holy Week

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings to you during this special week! We call this "Holy Week" because it is a week set apart (holy) to help us prepare for Easter. During this week, we commemorate all that Jesus our Lord has done for us in the Last Supper, his betrayal, his suffering and death, and ultimately his resurrection. I invite you to worship with us not...

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Can Our Failures Be Redeemed?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's neat to see the progress toward our expanded parking lot 1. This week demolition has begun on the building at CircleCt.Here's a picture: Soon the building will be down and the hole will be filled in. Then, after the required time of settling, it will be available for parking. Our plan is to have the land paved in order to expand ...

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Upcoming Events

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you again for the cards and prayers in response to my grandfather's death. My family and I greatly appreciate your support. Over the last week I've thought a lot about how my grandpa has influenced me. I'm so grateful for him and for all those who in one way or another have helped shape my life. Never underestimate the impact for...

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Life is a Precious Gift

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's been a difficult week for my family as my grandpa, Bruce Knisley, passed away on Monday. Thank you for your prayers and support, which mean so very much to me and my family. My grandfather lived a good and full life. He followed Jesus faithfully and maintained throughout his life a strong personal commitment to serving others, esp...

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The Cross and Power

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I don't think I remember a snow storm getting as much attention as the one we saw earlier this week. People everywhere were talking about the coming storm--at the store, on TV and radio, and on the internet. It was the dominant story for days. Our kids certainly loved seeing all the snow! During Lent we focus our attention on one of t...

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Spring Forward

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This weekend it's time to spring forward--remember to turn your clocks ahead one hour on Saturday night. Hopefully signs of spring weather will soon follow! You can register for our March Madness challenge by going to espn.com/bracket. Our group name is Spry Church. You don't have to know much at all, or even anything, about college b...

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The Most Important Season of the Year

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I'd like to begin by addressing a serious situation here in our community. As some of you may know, the York Jewish Community Center was evacuated on Monday of this week due to threats of violence. Similar threats were made to the JCC in Harrisburg and to JCCs in other states. We stand against violence and hate, and we stand against an...

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Anticipation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you are enjoying this spring-like weather! It gives us a foretaste of what is to come. On the subject of seasons, we are about to begin what is the most important season of the year for us as Christians: the season of Lent. Lent is the Christian season of confession and preparation before Easter. This is a 40-day period (not in...

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Thank you!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you! Last week in my e-note I asked you to make a special effort to attend church so we could connect with the Scouts and their families on Scout Sunday and could welcome them as we worshiped God together. Many of you did that, and again I want to say thanks. I heard a number of positive comments from Scouts, their leaders, and t...

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Special Things This Sunday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Last week I brought up the subject of snow in my e-note, and what do you know? Now we have snow! So this week I can't wait to mention 72 degree weather with nice blue skies to see what happens. :) Just kidding--but spring is coming! We have two special things going on this Sunday, and I hope you'll join us in worship. First, in both o...

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Goodness

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Someone asked me the other day if I would like to see it snow soon. I know our kids sure would! Although it has been a rather mild winter so far, we still can't grow fruit in the ground in this climate like we can during other times of the year. But some fruit is always in season, and it's certainly that way for the fruit of the Spiri...

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Kindness

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, In our Thrive series, we've been focusing on the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. As we believe and trust in Jesus, the Holy Spirit works in our lives to produce these qualities. I can only speak for myself in saying that when it comes to these virtues I am...

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Special Announcement This Sunday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings! Lately I've been reminded of one of the many reasons why I'm honored to be your pastor: your generous giving to help others whether around the corner or around the world. In so many ways, you give of your resources, your time, and your abilities and passions to bless others--and by doing so you also honor God. This Sunday i...

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The Gift of Peace

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! You can find those words, or words much like them, at the start of nearly every epistle or letter in the New Testament. The Apostle Paul, for example, frequently began his letters with the greeting "grace and peace." Those words hold great meaning for us as God's peo...

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Happy New Year

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Happy New Year! Now that we're almost a week into 2017, that "new year" feel may have already started to wear off in some ways. One thing I love about following Jesus is that he is making all things new (see Revelation 21:5). We don't have to wait until the calendar year ends to find a fresh start. With Jesus, each day is a new beginni...

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Merry Christmas

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Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This time the message is not just from me; it's from our Spry Church staff! Join us for worship this Sunday, Dec. 18, as we get closer to Christmas. Also, remember our special service times for next week: Christmas Eve at 5, 7, and 9 pm; and Christmas Day worship at 10 am (a combined service with no Sunday School). Blessings!Ken, Lin...

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Immanuel

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is another big weekend at our church! We have our Sounds of the Season Concert tonight (Friday) at 7 pm, presented by the Dallastown High School and Middle School string ensembles. Invite family and friends to join us as beautiful sounds of strings fill the Sanctuary with Christmas music. Following the concert a brass ensemble wil...

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Jesus Sets Us Free

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I love the season of Advent as we get ready for Christmas. Yes, it's busy. Yes, the streets and stores are often crowded. But there is a sense of excitement and anticipation in the air that's almost palpable. Inwardly, we long for something more, and that longing is deep. This Sunday we continue our Advent series called "Sent: Deliver...

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The Good Life

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a big weekend at our church! We have our Faith Harvest Sunday on Nov. 20. This special Thanksgiving-themed service will include the presentation of piggy banks stuffed with money for our Christmas missions offering as well as donations of non-perishable food for our Food Bank. Bring your piggy and/or food donations, and let's g...

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For the Healing of Our Nation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings! Today is Veterans Day, a time to honor and thank all who have served in the United States Armed Forces. Veterans exemplify the virtues of service and sacrifice. They understand what it means to come together with other Americans, even across political and cultural differences, to serve our country and work for the common goo...

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The Ultimate Hope

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, How does an extra hour of sleep sound? This Saturday night, remember to set your clocks back one hour as daylight saving time ends. Trunk or Treat 2016 was a huge success! Thanks to everyone who donated or volunteered, and thanks to everyone for coming. You can see pictures on our church Facebook page or as part of the scrolling annou...

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This Friday!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Friday night is our Trunk or Treat from 7 to 9 pm. Join us for free candy, snacks, drinks, s'mores, hayrides and more - all are welcome! Here is an invitation for you to copy and paste on social media as a way of inviting your friends: Come Friday, Oct 28th 7-9 pm for Trunk or Treat at Spry Church (50 School St., York)! There wi...

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Two Questions You Must Answer

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Last weekend we focused on the Holy Spirit in worship. It was a powerful morning of services! We ended each worship service inviting people to come forward for anointing and prayer for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Hundreds came forward for prayer and anointing. I encouraged you to begin each day inviting the Spirit to fill, empow...

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A Message That Brings People Together

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, It's great to be back in York after our family enjoyed some time away last week. I'm excited to see you all again as we gather in worship on Sunday! We are at a time in our nation's life when many of us, myself included, have begun to grow weary from the nearly constant barrage of divisive rhetoric associated with the upcoming electio...

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X-Files, Part 2

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, On Sunday we continue our sermon series about searching for truth. This series addresses some of the big questions raised by people of faith, as well as those of no faith--questions about life's ultimate purpose and about our place in this world. I encourage you not only to come, but also to reach out and invite a friend. The issues we...

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Big Weekend at Spry Church!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is a big weekend at our church! We have our Fall Missions Yard Sale on Friday, Sept. 23 (8 am to 6 pm) and Saturday, Sept. 24 (8 am to 1 pm). You can find some treasures here for very low prices, and all for a great cause. All proceeds support mission work locally, nationally, and internationally. Also, we're hosting a movie nigh...

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Amazing Grace

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Grace...it's a word we hear often, but what does it actually mean? This Sunday's sermon is about the power of grace for your life and my life today. Hint: grace is much more than just what we say before eating our meals. Join us as together we thank God for grace! We also have a special video planned for worship on Sunday. It features s...

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Special Announcements

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Greetings! Normally I send out an E-Note on Friday, but this week I am writing earlier than usual to inform you of two recent changes in the life of our congregation.First, as those of you who were with us in worship last Sunday heard from Pastor Dave, he has decided to retire so he can spend more time with his family. Here is his farewe...

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Picture This

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Hello! I have some exciting news to share with you about our plans for the community youth center. On Thursday we received these professional renderings showing what it will look like: It's wonderful to see theplans coming together! I'd liketo thank Mike Jones and St. Onge Company for donating the drawings. Don't they look great? Now we...

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All Lives Have Equal Value

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, For two days last week, Pastor Dave, Laurie, Chris, and I had the privilege of attending the Global Leadership Summit (http://www.willowcreekglobalsummit.com/), an annual event held outside Chicago and simulcast in hundreds of satellite locations around the world like the one we went to in York. This event features presentations by pro...

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The Race Marked Out For US

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,I have enjoyed watching the Rio Olympics so far. What an amazing spectacle! This Sunday during our 9 am and 11 am worship, we continue our series called "CrossTraining: The Gospel and the Olympics." The message this weekend will deal with the importance of perseverance and endurance for our journeys in life. This is a critical topic, an...

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Goals and Dreams

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, In just one week, one of my favorite events will begin: the Olympics! I am a fan of the Olympics for many reasons, and not just because I enjoy watching sports. I also enjoy watching the Olympics because I love to travel and to learn about different countries and cultures, and I love watching people pursue their goals and dreams. I tak...

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Jesus is Our Peace

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, These are difficult and tense times in the life of our nation and world. We see many signs of unrest and divisions, political and otherwise. In the midst of it all, I think it's very important that we remember these two things: people need Jesus, and people need the church. Jesus is our peace. Jesus is our hope. Jesus alone is our Sav...

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Praise the Lord!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,It's been an amazing week of VBS! We've had an outstanding team of volunteers and a record-setting number of participants--over 100 kids! There were even appearances made by our SPLASH kids ministry mascot, the dolphin. Yes, it's been quite a week! Aside from the silliness of the mascot (and speaking of silliness, you should have seen m...

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Great Things at Spry Church!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Great things are happening at our church! We are gearing up for Vacation Bible School 2016, which runs from July 11-15 each night (Monday through Friday from 6:15 to 8:30 pm). We'll also celebrate VBS Sunday in 11 am worship on July 17 followed by our community carnival featuring games, food, and fun for all ages. So far, 59 kids have ...

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Friendship Matters

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,That last word in my greeting is one that gets used often in our society--friends. We speak of having good friends, Facebook friends, and even best friends. What is a friend? What are the characteristics of true friendship? What does it mean to build genuine friendships, the kind of friendships that God made us to enjoy? We'll be address...

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Community Youth Center

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Exciting news! In my message last week I shared our plans for establishing a community youth center located on our church campus. I've heard a number of positive responses, and I'm very encouraged by them. I believe that now is the time for us to do something more to reach out to the youth of our community, particularly since our communi...

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Responding to Tragedy as People of Hope

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,By now we've all heard about the horrific violence in Orlando--another mass shooting, this one claiming the lives of nearly 50 people and injuring even more. How should we respond to such a tragedy? That's a question I've pondered this week, as you probably have, too. I certainly don't have all the answers, but I know that first and for...

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We Can Do More Together

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Greetings! As you read this, I am at the 2016 Annual Conference at Messiah College near Harrisburg. This gathering meets every summer and consists of about 1,000 people, a combination of lay people and pastors from United Methodist congregations throughout central PA. We gather for 3 days of worship, reports, conference business, fellows...

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Make Spry Church Your Summer Destination

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,It's June already...can you believe it? We have some great events planned at church this summer, and we hope you'll make Spry Church your destination for lots of summertime fun! By the way, if you haven't received a copy of our June newsletter, pick one up on Sunday at the Welcome Center. The newsletter has all kinds of useful informatio...

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Lord, make us one!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,On Sunday we're wrapping up our series called "Asking Tough Questions." This week we'll look at the question, "Why do Christians disagree about so many things?" It's a question you've probably thought of before, as I know I have. What I've found is that the things that unite Christians are far greater than whatever might divide us. Still...

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Was Jesus' Resurrection Real?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Greetings! I have some friends who recently went through the experience of building a house. They didn't build it themselves, but they were involved in the planning. When building a house, or any building for that matter, it is critical to lay a solid foundation. The quality of the foundation will go a long way in determining the quality...

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Come, Holy Spirit!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This is going to be an exciting Sunday at Spry Church! We will receive 18 new members into our church family18! That number includes 7 youth who will join the church through confirmation, which is a word that means "with firmness." The purpose of confirmation is to establish a firm spiritual foundation on which young people (typically ...

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How Can We Overcome Fear?

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I'm so proud of our church! What a wonderful celebration we had last Sunday with our Bishop. Those of you who were there heard him call our church one of the most vital and thriving churches in the entire Susquehanna Annual Conference! (If you missed the message or would like to hear it again, you can listen to it at SpryChurch.com; un...

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The Bishop is Coming!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday in worship we have the special privilege of hosting our Bishop, Jeremiah Park. Bishop Park will preach in both our 9 am and 11 am services (we will continue our "Asking Tough Questions" series at the 5 pm service as I preach on the question, "Does religion do more harm than good?"). I strongly encourage you to join us. You...

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Spring Yard Sale

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Hello! This is a big weekend for us at church because it's the weekend of our annual Spring Yard Sale. Hours are Friday 8 am to 6 pm, and Saturday 8 am to 1 pm. This is a fun event that serves our community and raises funds for mission work. In fact, every penny raised will support mission work locally, nationally, and internationally....

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Faith and Science

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I hope you're enjoying this beautiful weather--it's been worth the wait! The Bible declares that we can see signs of God's glory in our world. For many years now I've appreciated the words of the song "This is My Father's World" by Maltbie D. Babcock: This is my Father's world, and to my listening earsall nature sings, and round me ri...

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Suffering, Evil, and the Goodness of God

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Last Sunday we held our inaugural 5 pm worship--with 54 people in attendance, our Sunday night worship has gotten off to a great start! Thank you to everyone who came, who volunteered, and who helped us spread the word by inviting others. Please join me in supporting this new service! I believe that in significant ways it can help us a...

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April Fool's Day...But This is No Joke!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings on this April Fool's Day! Annie has had lots of fun playing April Fool's jokes on me already, and she couldn't even wait until April 1st so she started early. This Sunday is going to be a special day in the life of our church, and I'm not joking about that! It's going to be special for several reasons. First, we continue our...

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I Am the Resurrection and the Life

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings during this Holy Week in the name of Jesus our Lord! (Please see below for important instructions about parking on Easter morning.) We call this Holy Week because it is the week leading up to Easter and the week when we recall the last week of Jesus' life on earth. So much that is absolutely crucial to our faith happened duri...

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I Am the Way, the Truth, and the Life

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, People often say that life is a journey. We are on a journey during this season of Lent, a journey that will take us to the cross of Jesus Christ, to the empty tomb, and beyond. On this journey, we have been exploring the "I Am" sayings of Jesus as our guide to a deeper understanding of who Jesus is for us today. The "I Am" saying for ...

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I Am the Vine

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Isn't this weather lovely? Recently I heard someone say, "I could live in a world that had weather like this each day!" Both literally and figuratively, for each of us there are days when the sun shines brightly and then there are days when the storms come. That is simply how life works. However, the deep truth of the Gospel tells us ...

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I Am the Bread of Life

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, God is doing great things through our church, and it's very exciting to see! I've heard more positive feedback about our current sermon series than I have about any other series over the last 6 years. Clearly, these "I Am" statements of Jesus still speak powerfully today. This Sunday we turn to the statement "I Am the Bread of Life" (...

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I Am the Light of the world

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Molly and I want to thank you again for your prayers for Zeke. He is doing much better, and we are so very grateful. We thank God for the love and support of this church family. The care of a loving church family is one of God's greatest gifts; we have experienced this gift in so many ways through you, the people of Spry Church, and it...

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Knowing the Great "I Am"

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday falls on a day when many people will be thinking about love, Valentine's Day. Of course, there are different kinds of loves (one helpful resource on the nature of love from a Christian perspective is The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis). On a day when our society focuses on the romantic aspect of love, how fitting it will be for u...

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Caring for Our Bodies

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, This Sunday we finish our series on living a life of purpose. The message this weekend is about caring for our bodies. Psalm 139 says in prayer to God, "I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made" (v. 14). Those words apply to each one of us, as we are all unique and beloved creations of God! Join us for a service of prayer...

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Praying Always

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Who's ready for spring? Seriously, what a storm we had--one for the record books. In our household, we've taken advantage of all the snow ice cream we could eat! It is Annie's favorite food, I think. Since the snow forced us to cancel worship last week, I have decided to use the same theme for Jan. 31 that we had planned for Jan. 24. ...

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SNOW!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, SNOW! Now that I have your attention, here is what you need to know in the event of inclement weather. Unless you hear otherwise, we are still going by our normal Sunday schedule. Obviously, use good judgment about whether to venture out or not. If we alter our Sunday schedule (for example, the cancellation of one service, or cancellat...

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Making Friends Out of Strangers

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Lately I've been thinking about the significance of community. We are individuals, of course, but life in this world is about more than just our individual pursuits. Human life is communal in nature. Community can include family, friends, work colleagues, neighbors, and others. Certainly community can, and does, include the church! On...

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Exciting News!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I have great news: our small elevator/lift (technically, it is a "Vertical Platform Lift") has been officially approved by the state and is now ready for use! Please note that you will need to press and hold the button until you reach your desired floor (in that way it is different from a typical hotel elevator, for example). To illust...

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Happy New Year

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Thank you to everyone who helped with our Candlelight Christmas Eve worship! We had a total of 430 people attend our 3 services (last year, we had 308 attend our 2 services). Many of those who came were first-time visitors. We are following up with people to thank them for coming and invite them back. All who came were warmly welcomed,...

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Christmas Eve

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Christmas 2015 is almost here! I want to thank everyone who will be helping us make our Candlelight Christmas Eve services a very special time of worshiping Jesus our Lord and sharing his light with our community. Between parking attendants, greeters, bulletin folders, ushers, musicians, readers, sound technicians, our video team, and ...

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God is Faithful

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, One of my favorite Christmas carols is "Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming." That carol refers to how the prophet Isaiah foretold the birth of Jesus, the promised Messiah. Isaiah lived 800 years before Jesus was born. It is amazing to think about how, so many years after Isaiah's words, Jesus was born and God's promise through Isaiah was per...

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God is Jealous

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Are you getting ready for Christmas? Do you have all your shopping done and gifts wrapped? All the decorations hung, and all the plans in place? There is so much to do! Don't forget the most important preparation of all, which is the preparation of our hearts to celebrate the long-awaited coming of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, into our ...

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God is Dangerous

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, As Christmas approaches, we are in a time of waiting and preparation; the church calls this time "Advent." In the world around us, there are many words associated with the weeks leading up to Christmas--words like "wrapping paper," "gift card," "parties," "recipes," and one of my favorite phrases from years ago when I was a student, "C...

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Give Thanks

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, As we approach Thanksgiving Day, I'd like to share with you what is on my mind about this time of year. First, I am so thankful for you, our church family! You are a blessing to this community, and to Molly, me, and our kiddos. We thank God for you. Jesus is using you to make a difference for the Kingdom of God in Spry and beyond! Sec...

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Faith Harvest

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Greetings! It's almost Thanksgiving--can you believe it? This Sunday in worship, we will have a special celebration that we are calling Faith Harvest Sunday. We will hear beautiful music, receive new members into our church family, and share in a message about God's harvest that will include a tangible reminder of what it means for us ...

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See

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, "I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living" (Psalm 27:13). Those words express a deep and abiding belief in one of the foundational promises of God--that we will see God's goodness in our own day, here and now. How do we see God's goodness in our world today? That's a question we will co...

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Scent

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, God is doing exciting things in and through our church! What a joy it is to see God's blessings abound as we continue to follow Jesus together by connecting, serving, and growing here in Spry and beyond. This Sunday we continue our series called "Come to Your Senses." The theme for Sunday is the sense of smell. Our daily lives involve...

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Trunk or Treat!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, One of the most fun-filled events of the year at our church happens today...Trunk or Treat! Join us for candy, hot apple cider and hot chocolate, s'mores, hay rides, and more tonight from 7-9. And, yes, there will be costumes! Annie has managed to keep our family costumes a secret this year. Come find out what all the hype is about, an...

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Touch and Know That the Lord is Good

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, The beauty of fall has been on full display this week with this lovely weather! We have been out playing in the leaves--making big piles and then jumping in them. This Sunday we continue our series called "Come to Your Senses." The theme for Sunday is the sense of touch. What tangible objects in your life represent the presence and lo...

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Come to Your Senses

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, I love this time of year! What wonderful gifts fall brings us: the chill in the air at morning and night, the pleasant and sunny afternoons, the beautiful colors and the changing leaves, and all that along with baseball playoffs, mid-season football games, and the start of basketball season coming right around the corner! Ever since I ...

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Wise for Salvation

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,Paul tells Timothy to continue in what he has learned "because you know from whom you learned it." In other words, Paul was saying that Timothy could trust the teaching of the wise people in his life. We've all been blessed with wise people in our lives, people who teach and model the ways of God. I'm so thankful for the wise people God ...

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Mobilize Your Faith

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends,In one of the most remarkable passages of the Bible, Jesus says that whatever we do to those in need we do to Jesus himself (see Matthew 25:31-46). That idea holds true for circumstances both around the corner and around the world. In our world today, a migrant crisis continues to affect the lives of hundreds of thousands of people who h...

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Don't Miss It!

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Don't miss it! Our biggest event in decades is our community block party this Friday and Saturday 9/25 and 26! For more information, check out www.SpryChurch.com. It's going to be a blast, and I hope you'll join us! A big thank you to everyone whose help has made this event possible. On Sunday we continue our series on vision. We'll b...

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Elevator and Block Party

Dear Spry Church Family and Friends, Exciting things are happening at our church! The work has begun on our elevator, as you'll see when you enter the narthex. This is a big step for our church--something the congregation had discussed for many years; and now that dream of making our facility more accessible to all of God's children is becoming a reality, thanks to your g...

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Celebration Sunday

Dear Church Family and Friends, Greetings! Every time we gather together in worship it is intended to be a celebration--a celebration of God's goodness and love, and a celebration of the joy we know in following Jesus together. This Sunday is going to be a special celebration in both our 9 and 11 am worship services. In fact, we're calling it Celebration Sunday. We have ...

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Church Approves Name Change

Church approves name change...

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