*WORSHIP RETURNS TO 11 A.M. ON SEPTEMBER 10TH* 

This is an exciting time for Hiram Christian Church.  We have joyfully affirmed by acclamation the calling of REV. CHRIS MCCREIGHT as our new settled pastor.   We welcome CHRIS into the fellowship of a vibrant, faithful body as we step ahead in our faith journey.

And who are we, as we travel this faith road together?  Why is it important that we are present and witnessing on this little corner of the world?  Several church members share their perspectives.

HCC is important to me because. . . “It provides the Christian community and calling, what David Gellatly described God as, ‘The good in me that communes with the good in you.’  The church does and has reached internationally including the Hiram College class of 1913, fully one half of whom entered the mission field after graduation.”  David Dade 

“As children our parents came to Hiram Christian Church as we were growing up.  There is a lot of our family history in this church.  And now we feel like everyone in this church is our family.  Hiram Church has such a loving community surrounding it.  We feel extremely loved and blessed to be a part of this church family.”  Debbie and Lavon Moore 

“Hiram Christian Church is a respectful community of practices and traditions which grace many supported connections and outreaches, truly one of my favorite parts.  It is a place about valued actions and learnings.  The church takes seriously its responsibility to provide opportunities for everyone; serving the values it holds for each individual. It provides a reminder about how important a smile, a gesture, playing a favorite tune, sending a card/email, or looking someone in the eye and saying ‘We missed you’ can be.”  Drew Hinkle

“HCC to me is family.  It is the family that when I am among its members I am reminded that my caring and concern is a much larger palette than just my immediate family.  My Church family is the group in which I take time each week to refocus my attention away from ‘selfish’ interests and instead concentrate more on my brothers and sisters in God’s kingdom. After being with my Church family, I feel strengthened to persist in going about daily living with God’s direction in mind, no matter what is faced each day.  For that I am most thankful.”  Betty Schriver

“HCC is important to me because of the support the community offers, especially the adult elective group.  The church community has comforted me, fed me, helped me grow spiritually, and most of all, modeled the life I would like to live.   I’ve watched couples model strong marriages, parents model great parenting skills, members model strength in adversity and great generosity.  I am pushed to go beyond my comfort zone to reach out to the world beyond Hiram by the community we live in.”   Rosanne Factor

We have made a covenant with REV. MCCREIGHT that we will walk with him on this journey of faith and witness.  Now we must make a commitment of our finances as well that in the year ahead we will enthusiastically support our mission and ministry.  So we are asking that you make a pledge.  The insert in this newsletter highlights in word and picture the many ways we “reach out to our community and world with the transforming love of God for ALL people and all of creation.”  Read it carefully.  Think about why Hiram Christian Church is important to you, and respond with a pledge.

IN THE LIFE OF THE CONGREGATION…We offer our prayers and support for the family and friends of CAROLL BRODE, sister of BARB PANCOST BROOKS.  Caroll passed away on July 24th…We offer prayers for the FOX family.  Ken, Evonne and family mourn the loss of KEN’s father on August 3rd, just months after Ken’s mother’s passing…We offer our sympathy and support for the SENEFF family who lost their son DREW in a motorcycle accident.  DREW had many friends in the community…We offer prayers for RACHEL DAUM, granddaughter of Damaris and Ken, who has returned from Mexico, but then struggled with illness…Also for KATHY BRUNTS, sister of DAVE STUTZMAN and for HAZEL BROWN, aunt of CHARLENE MOSS…We offer prayers and support for EMILY MUNCY and ZACH ALEXOVICH, grandchildren of BARB PANCOST BROOKS.  Their father has passed away…Continued prayers for BERNICE SMITH who says thank you for sending her a card and that she misses coming to church.

FROM YOUR MODERATOR…It has been a momentous 2 months for Hiram Christian Church. First, the Search committee finished negotiations with a candidate and we presented CHRIS MCCREIGHT to the Board on July 16th for question/answer time and a vote to present him to the congregation.  On August 13th, CHRIS preached a wonderful sermon, answered questions from the congregation and was unanimously voted by acclamation to be called as the new settled Pastor. The next few months as we await his start date in October will go quickly.

At the board meeting on the 20th, we discussed some needed repairs around the church and voted to have LAVON MOORE make some repairs to the ramp. We would like to start a team to work with our trustee maintenance guys to prioritize needed repairs and costs involved.  Jane Moody presented our pledge drive, we had a good financial report. A nominating committee for 2018 officers was formed: KRISTEN POOL, chair, EMLISS RICKS and MARCIA MUSTER to assist. If you wish to change your position or become an officer, please see one of these.  CATHY RICKS gave an update on Sunday worship during September and October. The board and moderator recognized her tremendous efforts in organizing this. A few other issues were discussed.   LARRY CATES has suggested we see if there is interest in taking some road trips as a congregation. If you would be interested in planning and participating in such group activities, please make a note on your registration slip on Sunday.                Margaret

DAMARIS AS KATIE LUTHER… On Sunday, September 10, worship service will return to 11:00 a.m.  In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation (1517), Damaris Peters Pike will present “Katie:  My Life with Martin Luther.”

THANK YOUS… Thanks to SANDY COFFMAN. SANDY worked long and hard to get the chairs replaced in Fellowship Hall. She and her cohorts, JOYCE HUNTER and NANCY SCHAUER worked hard to make this happen. MARY SIMPSON, our custodian was a big help too. It looks so nice. JOYCE and SANDY also organized the medical supply closet. I think there were 12 walkers stuffed in the room along with many other pieces of equipment. We will not be taking any medical equipment at the present time. If you need to borrow something contact SANDY. SANDY also runs the Lunch Bunch on Wednesdays and Thursdays. This is an important weekly activity for the elderly in our community. All the guests value the social outlet, nice meals and SANDY’s nurturing hospitality.

Thanks to the Pastor Search Committee for all their hard work and wisdom in finding a new minister for our church. We are all excited for this new beginning with CHRIS MCCREIGHT as our new minister. We welcome CHRIS, JEN and LINDEN.

A “Thank you” was received from Foods Resource Bank for our recent donation of $800 towards their Guatemala Quetzaltenango project impacting 12 Maya-Quiche communities in the dry, highly deforested mountains and in other areas deeply affected by the 36 year civil war. The program focuses on sustained change in crop diversification, soil and water management, reforestation, nutritional education and reduced malnutrition levels.  Empowering small farmers to provide food for their families makes a big impact on reducing world hunger.

HIRAM/ MANTUA CROP HUNGER WALK…Plans are underway for our annual CROP walk.  Mark your calendars for October 1, and plan on joining us.  This year, the walk will begin and end at Hiram Christian Church.  The route around Hiram has yet to be determined, and we’d like help in planning to make this a spectacular experience.  At the same time we will raise money for Church World Service- feeding the hungry around the world.  How can you help?  Volunteer to distribute literature, hang posters, and recruit walkers.  Help to plan the walk. Set up a station along the route with snacks, educational display, hobby, etc. etc.  Donate food and/or help in the kitchen.  Walk!  Recruit walkers!  Opportunities abound.  Please call or email NANCY SCHAUER (330-569-7416) (dnsofhiram@gmail.com).  You can also contact your church office/minister.  Let’s make this a great day!

2017-2018 CHURCH DIRECTORY…Anita will soon begin work on our 2017-2018 HCC Directory.  If there have been any changes to your contact information, please let her know as soon as possible at secretary@hiramcc.org, 330-569-7697 or drop her a note in the mail slot in the office door.  The directory is only as good as the information provided to the office.  Please help make the directory a useful tool to keep our church family in touch with one another.  Thank you.

CHOIR PRACTICE RESUMES…Choir will gather together once again beginning September 6th at 7 p.m. Make a joyful noise to the Lord, Psalm 100:1.

COMING EVENTS:

Sept. 3:        Labor Day Day of Labor

Sept. 4:        Labor Day (office closed in observance)

Sept. 6:        Choir practice resumes, 7 p.m.

Sept. 8:        Little Village Open House 6-8 p.m., All are welcome
Sept. 10:      Worship returns to 11 a.m., In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the                      Protestant Reformation (1517), Damaris Peters Pike will present “Katie:                        My Life with Martin Luther.” Food cupboard collection.

Sept. 15:      Kiwanis Spaghetti Dinner & in our Fellowship Hall, Bake Sale benefitting

the  Garrettsville-Nelson Children’s Weekend Meals, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

Sept. 16:      FREE clothing give-away, Mantua Center School basement, 9 a.m. – noon

Oct. 1:          CROP walk 

FREE CLOTHING GIVEAWAY… at Mantua Center School in the basement level at SR 82 and Mantua Center Rd in Mantua. Clothing, shoes, linens, toys for adults, teens, children and babies.  Everything is FREE. The next give-away is September 16 from 9 a.m. to noon!

SUMMER WORSHIP SCHEDULE… Summer worship schedule runs from the Sunday after Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend.  Worship returns to 11 a.m. on 9/10!