Author Archives: admin

Weekly Taize Service for Lent

You are invited into a simple, meditative prayer service with Taizé chants as part of your Lenten journey. The first of these pre-recorded services is now available; new services will be added each Wednesday through March 31, 2021. The services will be 30-35 minutes. Author, educator and spiritual director Kate Young Wilder will be our host. The services will be posted on the website at www.neumc.org/taize-lent

The First Sunday in Lent 2/21/21

Welcome to the first Sunday of the Lenten Season, 2021. Lent is a forty – day potential season of spiritual preparation for the seasons of Easter and Pentecost. It is a time of reflection,
confession and self – examination. It is also the time when we redouble our human efforts, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to draw closer to God in Christ Jesus. Here at Chilmark Community Church, apart from our Sunday Worship, I have circulated prayers of petition along with Pray Chart with suggested items for reflect and pray for during this Season. I am encouraging you to spend some special quiet time with God in the privacy of your own home. Jesus, we are told by St. Mark, got up early in the morning before daybreak and, “Went out to a quiet place and there, prayed ” (Mark 1:35). Sabbath time is time in quiet with God! I invite you to do all you can to make this Lenten Season a holy time of spiritual renewal. Let us strive to be in a new spiritual place, nearer to God on the road of life by the time this Lenten Season is ended and we arrive at Easter Tide.
Thanks for worshiping with us today.
Sincerely,
Ernest Belisle
(Pastor
A psalm of David, regarding
the time Nathan the prophet came to him after
David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.
1
Have mercy on me, O God,
because of your unfailing love.
Because of your great compassion,
blot out the stain of my sins.
2
Wash me clean from my guilt.
Purify me from my sin.
3
For I recognize my rebellion;
it haunts me day and night.
4
Against you, and you alone, have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your sight.
You will be proved right in what you say,
and your judgment against me is just.
5
For I was born a sinner—
yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.
6
But you desire honesty from the womb,
teaching me wisdom even there.
7
Purify me from my sins,
and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8
Oh, give me back my joy again;
you have broken me—
now let me rejoice.
9
Don’t keep looking at my sins.
Remove the stain of my guilt.
10
Create in me a clean heart, O God.
Renew a loyal spirit within me.
11
Do not banish me from your presence,
and don’t take your Holy Spirit
from me.
12
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and make me willing to obey you.
13
Then I will teach your ways to rebels,
and they will return to you.
14
Forgive me for shedding blood, O God who saves;
then I will joyfully sing of your forgiveness.
15
Unseal my lips, O Lord,
that my mouth may praise you.
16
You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one.
You do not want a burnt offering.
17
The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit.
You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O
God.
The Gospel Reading is from Mark 1:9-
15
The Baptism and Temptation of Jesus
9
One day Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee, and John
baptized him in the Jordan River.
10
As Jesus came up out
of the water, he saw the heavens splitting apart and the
Holy Spirit descending on him
like a dove.
11
And a voice
from heaven said, “You are my dearly loved Son, and you
bring me great joy.”
12
The Spirit then compelled Jesus to go into the
wilderness,
13
where he was tempted by Satan for forty
days. He was out among the wild animals, and angels
took care of him.
14
Later on, after John was arrested, Jesus went into
Galilee, where he preached God’s Good News.
15
“The
time promised by God has come at last!”
he
announced.
“The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your
sins and believe the Good News!”

Feb. 14,2021 Transfiguration Sunday

Today is the Sunday before Ash Wednesday (Lent begins on Ash Wednesday) and we are reflecting on the Transfiguration of Jesus. Scholars down through the ages have discussed
extensively the Transfiguration event. Nearly  everyone begins by admitting that they are not sure of exactly what took place. Please note that only the synoptic Gospels – Mark 9:2-9,
Luke 9:28 – 36 and Matthew 17:1-8 and the second letter of Peter, 1:16-18 record the event.
What is the transfiguration story trying to teach/tell us?
Is it trying to tell Christians about the unique Messiahship of Jesus? Is it trying to focus our attention on the disciples who found it hard to believe that Jesus was the Messiah? Is it trying to do both? Or, after all, is it trying to strengthen the faith of the disciples for the road of crucifixion and suffering that was ahead? Even if we resolve these issues of the purpose of the story, the event itself still remains strange. Elijah and Moses carry such great symbolic weight in Jewish tradition and culture that the purpose of their appearance on the mountaintop with Jesus is far from clear. And then, of course, there is the presence of the “cloud,” the “shining garment” of Jesus, and
those “three dwellings” Peter speaks out about. What does the presence of these elements add to this remarkable and mysterious event? In today’s world we do not like to hear about mysterious things – but yes, there is still mystery and mysterious things, even in today’s world there are things we cannot explain by hard cold scientific and logical evidence.
Is there anything mysterious that has ever taken place in your life? What was it! How did you feel?
Your brother in Christ,
Ernest Belisle
(Pastor)

 

Welcome February 7, 2020

February 7, 2021
Fifth Sunday after Epiphany
WORSHIP SERVICE OF PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING
Rev. Ernest Belisle, Pastor
Thought for the week God calls Christians, not to be effective and happy, not to be successful and powerful, and not to be wealthy and influential; God calls us only to be faithful, the others are a plus. Please re read each day this inventory.
(Adopted from Lectionary Worship Work book, Series II, Year B, by Wayne H. Keller)
Welcome to Chilmark Community Church of Mather’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. Our Church family is happy to have you worshiping God with us today. Today we continue our readings from the Gospel according to Saint Mark. Mark continues his rush description of the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. The passage we read is a  continuation the second half of a carefully formed  unit that began at Mark 1:14 – 15, with John the Baptizer’s ministry that came to an end with John ’ s arrest and
the beginning of Jesus ministry with , “Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God.” Today’s reading is a summary and conclusion of  this section of Mark with verse
39, “ he [Jesus] went throughout Galilee, proclaiming the Good News in their synagogues and casting out demons.”
This summary draws the introduction of Jesus’ ministry to its
close. Please note that all of the key elements of Jesus’ ministry are presented within the unit: a) his preaching (v. 15), b) his call of others to join him in ministry (vs. 16 – 20), c) his teaching ministry (vs. 21 – 22), d) his ministry of exorcism (vs. 23-28), e) his healing ministry (vs. 29 -34), and f) his prayer ministry (periods of prayerful communion with God, v. 35). Jesus used every method to bring the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in
heaven . Paul said that Jesus, “became all things to all people” for the sake of the Good News of God.
Do you think that the church today still has or needs all these elements of Jesus’ ministry for its sake of ministering to the world? If not, then which would you take out and which would you include, and why? Thanks for worshiping with us. We trust
you will be blessed
!
Sincerely,
Ernest Belisle
(Pastor)

January 31,2021 Welcome

Welcome to Chilmark Community Church of Mather’s Vineyard, MA. Our Church family is happy you are worshiping with us.
Today’s readings from both the Jewish and Christian Scriptures speak to us of change. Mark tells us that on the Sabbath Day the Rabbi Jesus went to the synagogue and the people were
astonished because he “ taught as one having authority and not like the scribes.” Mark continues by pointing out that there was a man with an unclean spirit among the worshipers
who cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth?
Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.’ But Jesus rebuked him, saying, ‘Be silent, and
come out of him! ’
And the unclean spirit, throwing him into convulsions and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. All who were present were amazed, and they kept on asking one another,
‘What is this? A new teaching – with authority!’ At once Jesus’ fame began to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee.” Jesus did many things that were new and different. This was certainly a change from the ordinary!
 What would you have said and done if this happened in your church? I am sure each of you would have reacted differently: some would have been happy for the man, some would have avoided dealing with the issue, some (like the scribes) would have become disgusted that this man was present and some would have totally rebelled against Jesus. Avoidance and being afraid of dealing with ministering to certain kinds of persons is a sign of insecurity and a lack of  faith in God. When the children of Israel were afraid Moses told them that God would send
another leader like him (Moses) to teach them and show them what God’s will was for them. Are you overly concerned and afraid if you feel you are not in charge and control? Let us be
sure of one thing: God is calling us to ministering in all kinds of different ways and to all kinds of different persons. Remember the story of Jonah from last week. Jonah was called to go to
minister to the worst enemy of God’s people, Israel!
Be blessed as you worship the great God of challenge!
Sincerely,
Ernest Belisle
(Pastor)

January 24

Welcome!
The Pastor and members of Chilmark Community
Church welcome you to today’s worship . Thanks
for allowing God to lead you to this place!
Our Bible readings for the day are from the book of
Jonah in the Jewish Scriptures and the gospel of St
Mark in the Christian Scriptures. The story of Jonah
is fascinating: the man whom God sent to change
the wicked people of Nineveh did not want to go,
so he tried to run away from God by taking a ship
going in the opposite direction. A violent storm arose and the ship was about to sink. Somehow Jonah knew that this was because he was disobeying God and confessed it to the captain and sailors who threw him overboard to rid the ship of his curse. H e was then swallowed by a big fish that vomited
him on the beach of Nineveh. Jonah went on to preach to the people and the people repented ; when the people repented
Jonah became angry with God because they repented.
What an intriguing story!  What is the meaning of the story?
Where is the “prophecy” in the book and the story?
The gospel reading tells of the beginning of Jesus’ ministry:
“after John was arrested Jesus came preaching the Good News of God to all, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent and believe the Good News.’”
Both readings are about missions and bringing God’s Good News to the lost and the least. May God speak to us all
through these readings !
Sincerely,
Ernest Belisle
(Pastor)

 

Jan.17,2020

Welcome
The pastor and members of Chilmark Community
Church of Mather’s Vineyard , Massachusetts,
welcome you to today’s worship service. Thanks for
listening to God’ call to come and worship with us
today!
Today’s Gospel Reading tells of Jesus’ call of his first
disciples. It is the beginning of Jesus’ public
ministry. Jesus did what every other Rabbi in his day
did: he called disciples. Our reading prompt
s us to remember that even today, for those promoting any
teaching, church or ideology to succeed, it needs men and women who are dedicated and committed to its cause. During the course of the last twenty years, we have seen Al Qaeda
, ISIS and many other radical groups follow this principle.
The question for us is: how can we create communities of peace, compassion and good will like the “Beloved Community” as Martin Luther King Jr. envision? As we inaugurate a new President, we need to ask ourselves, how can we strive to work together heal the many divisions on our country?
May Almighty God guide and keep us!
Sincerely,
Ernest Belisle ,
Pastor

Bishop Devadhar’s Christmas Message

 

Image

Dec. 23, 2020

Beloved in Christ:

Greetings in the precious name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Charles Wesley’s hymn, “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” is based on Luke’s account of the angel’s announcement of good news to shepherds— shepherds, who had no formal education or social standing, who were terrified by the appearance of the angel, shepherds who upon receiving the angel’s message went with haste to Bethlehem to see what had taken place.

When they arrived they found Mary, Joseph, and the baby. They made known what was told to them by the angel, and all who heard were amazed. Mary treasured and pondered their words in her heart, and the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God. (Luke 2:16-20)

Due to COVID-19 and other challenges, Christmas celebrations will be different in many ways this year: no big parties, fewer family members at the table, limited travel, different ways of doing Christmas Eve candlelight services. Some have lost family members and/or friends throughout this year.

In “Celebrating in the Pandemic,” Anne Lamott writes: “The meaning of this pandemic is that we are all vulnerable and connected. We are in this together, spanning the globe, Buddhists, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, pagans, Christians, atheists. This is so much bigger than the virus, because love and caring are bigger than anything – even, or especially, suffering.” (Anne Lamott, “Celebrating in the Pandemic,” National Geographic, December 2020, p. 20).

In the midst of all this, angels — messengers of God, continue to descend upon our lives.

I experienced such an event when I was serving a local church and received a call from a parishioner stating there had been a gun accident in their neighborhood. When I arrived at the house of the accident, the husband and son were understandably distraught.

The husband had been getting ready to go hunting and did not realize the gun’s safety was not on. It fired accidentally as he was saying goodbye, and his wife was killed on the spot. You can imagine the deep pain and helplessness.

Honestly, I did not know how to simultaneously comfort the grieving husband and teen-aged son. Immediately, a voice whispered to me, “Call one of the saints of the church who is also a trusted leader.” I called this person who worked in the guidance office of the local high school. In minutes, two guidance counselors arrived and began working as a team to help this family.

Recently I was deeply moved by a news story of a Jewish doctor who had treated a COVID-19 patient who was covered with Nazi tattoos.

Naturally, this doctor’s faith and compassion were tested! Though I leave you to reach your own decision on this transformational story, as far as I am concerned, angels of God were silently whispering to Dr. Nichols about what to do and how to respond.

Angels come to us in various forms:  as an enemy seeking forgiveness and help, as a child speaking truth, as a person with different skin color or accent from our own, as someone whose theology is diametrically opposed to ours. Are we able to listen to them even though they prick our conscience, disrupt our comfort, or make us afraid?

Beloved in Christ, may we hear again the angel’s message.  May our holy listening lead to holy action, so through us or in spite of us, God may be glorified and praised!

Prema joins me in wishing you and your loved ones a Merry Christmas!

In Christ’s love,


Bishop Sudarshana Devadhar

Prayer

God, as the shepherds of old
we make the journey
to see the thing that has taken place
the thing that has been made known to us.

We make haste to find the one
about whom the angels sing —
the one who came
the one who still comes
as good news to
the lonely and the hollow,
the heartbroken and the angry,
the homeless and the hungry,
the poor and the affluent,
the hopeless and the fearful,
all made in your image.

God, like the angel who said,
“Do not be afraid: for see —
I am bringing you good news of great joy,”
like the angel who spoke to shepherds,
let us announce the good news
write it on a card,
email it to a hurting soul,
pray it with a grief-stricken neighbor
sing it into fear,
love it into the unlovely,
like the angel,
let us make it known!

Through the love of God
the grace of Jesus the Christ
and in the power of the Holy Spirit,
so may we hear and tell
what has been made known to us
and sing with the angels,
Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace!
AMEN.

 

Pastor’s greeting for 4th Sunday in Advent

Welcome to Chilmark Community Church.
We are happy God has led you to be with us.
Today is the fourth and last Sunday in
Advent. It is the Sunday before Christmas Day
– the Day of our Lor d’s Nativity. Our reading for the Psalm    and the Gospel both rejoice in the steadfast love of God for
his people. In t he Gospel reading, Mary rejoiced
and gave thanks for what God was doing through her.
She was troubled and perplexed when she learned
what was going to happen to her. She pondered, in
her heart, what sort of greeting the angel brought . Gabriel then said to her: “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. You will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor, David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom, there will be no end”.
(1:30 – 33)
During the months of October and November we spoke about BLESSINGS. I asked you to name the BLESSING God has given you. God gives gift s of BLESSING so we may use then
for God and for others. As we use our BLESSINGS for
God and others they grow and we are given even more
blessed in the process. The gifts of God ’s BLISSINGS
change our society and civilization. God is the first gift giver and the greatest gift giver. John 3:16  tells us that “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son.” St. Paul points out that it was “God who first gave, even while we were yet sinners.” It is God who gave us life. It is God who gave us the galaxies and the universe. It is God who gave us our mothers and our fathers, our children and grandchildren. God gave us all that we have
and are. Like Mary , are we willing, for God’s sake , to go beyond ourselves and to be used for the sake of the love of God ?
Christmas is a time of love and gift giving! Our p hysical gifts are symbols of our spiritual BLESSING and GIFT OF LOVE .
Christm as reminds us that it was God who first gave of God’s self. God gave Jesus, God’s only Son, and Jesus, in turn, gave himself and his life for us on a cross because he so loved us.
A BLESSED Christmas of LOVE to you and yours,
Ernest Belisle, Pastor