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September Newsletter

Commissioned to Put Our Faith into Practice

And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:17-20


Our purpose as a church, since Jesus set this all in motion, is two-fold: gathered worship and mission. Here in Matthew 28, after the disciples again saw the risen Jesus, they worshipped Him. I find it significant that these disciples – who have shared life with Jesus these last three years, here fall prostrate in worship of their risen Lord. This wasn’t' something they did every day.


The Magi fell down and worshipped when they found the infant king (Matt 2:11). The women, after encountering the angel at the empty tomb, when they then met the risen Jesus for the first time, fell at His feet and worshipped Him (Matt 28:9). The one time these disciples did worship Jesus was in the boat after He stilled a violent storm with just a word (Matt 14:33). There is something about recognizing Jesus for who He is – for all He has accomplished in atoning for our sin and securing our salvation – as well as simply recognizing that this man is in fact our holy God-in-the-flesh – that moves us to spontaneous worship and adoration.

We gather weekly for worship to personally encounter His presence, open our hearts to Him in prayer and in worship, as well as learn of Him in His Word and fellowship with other believers. We learn here that it is in the midst of worship that Jesus commissions us to continue His mission as we go through life on earth. All that we do, Church, is with an eye to making still more disciples.


Whether this is what we do in Sunday school, or in conversations afterward, at home with our family, or at work, school, or wherever we go in this life – Christ has commissioned us to put our faith into practice. Specifically, to live and speak in ways that point others to the Savior, as well as to help believers grow in Christ-likeness. This commissioning will lead us to pray for wisdom, discernment, Holy Spirit empowerment, as well as the needs of those we encounter day-to-day. Our commission draws us back to worship, which then thrusts us back out into ministry as we live each day for Jesus, our glorious Savior.

Because He lives,

Dave Meckley, Pastor

Debriefing Held on Vacation Bible School

On Sunday, July 28, Joy Nelson met with those who helped with this year’s Vacation Bible School to discuss what went well and what we would like to improve or change for next year. Joy started off the meeting by saying she failed to put posters up promoting VBS, and suggested VBS staff appoint someone more familiar with the Loysburg community to post fliers to promote VBS for next summer. Volunteers also discussed when to have the first VBS 2020 meeting and agreed that January would be ideal, but no later than the end of February. That way we will have time to gather supplies/donations for more extensive crafts, etc.


Several changes/improvements were suggested, including making sure that all activity station volunteers ask age-appropriate questions that connect with the age group’s curriculum, rather than asking a standard question to all age groups. We want each age group to have a comprehensive understanding of what their lesson is and when each station can reinforce the night’s lesson with questions and activities, greater understanding should be achieved. With that being said, everyone agreed the rotations worked well and the age groups also worked well, so we plan to keep those for next year’s VBS. However, it was suggested that we consider doing a traveling story, with one person telling the story to each age group, which might help with the consistency problem.


We also discussed the possibility of doing the opening and closing each night in the sanctuary, rather than in the fellowship area, and having each age group sit in a specific pew(s) to help leaders and students find their groups more quickly each night so they can begin rotating once the opening is over and also leave in a more organized manner at the end of the night.


We could use the projector for the song lyrics and use the sound system to play the music over the speakers. Volunteers also suggested we have something tangible from the VBS curriculum that students can take home with them, such as the “field guide” booklets from this year’s “In the Wild” curriculum. It was suggested we have a set time all volunteers need to be at the church each night so that all teachers/helpers can meet together for group prayer each night and also have closing prayer and debriefing time to discuss what worked and didn’t work. The point was also made that each age group’s leader/teacher needs to have an assistant each night and if for some reason they don’t, they need to know in advance that they won’t have an assistant so they can plan accordingly.

It was also suggested we do all rotations upstairs in the sanctuary and three Sunday school rooms with the possibility of sectioning off the sanctuary so group leaders can have a “home base” to meet with their students and house their lesson supplies. We also discussed the church’s and Sunday school’s budget for Bible school and the possibility of doing a fundraiser if we need to for more extensive supplies, activities, etc.


Joy closed the meeting with prayer. Any other suggestions/comments are welcome. Talk to Joy in person or email at Thanks!

—Respectfully submitted by Joy Nelson

Bible Study to Resume

Bible Study with Pastor Dave will resume Sunday, Sept. 8, at 6 p.m. in church basement copy room. We will be studying John 6:1ff.

Bible Study

Choir to Begin Work on Christmas Musical


“Holding On To Christmas,” arranged by Marty Parks, has been selected for presentation at St. John’s annual Christmas program on Dec. 15. The choir will begin rehearsing the heartwarming musical on Monday, Sept. 16, at 6:30 p.m. sharp.


“Anyone interested in singing with regular choir members for the Christmas program are invited to join us on the 16th,” said Barb Thomas, choir director and accompanist. “Several extra copies have been ordered — perhaps one has your name!” she added. Holding On To Christmas is a warm invitation to relive cherished memories of Christmas that come to our minds and hearts each year, to hold close those who make our lives special, and most important, to celebrate the Savior born so long ago on that first Christmas night in Bethlehem.


The Children's Christmas Program will be combined with the choir's cantata as part of St. John's Reformed Church family tradition. The middle/high school classes will serve as greeters, ushers, and will lead our closing candle-light service. Refreshments are served following the program in the downstairs fellowship hall. The sights, sounds and smells of Christmas will fill our hearts for this wonderful celebration! Please plan to attend.

Sept. Food Bank Items

The Northern Bedford Food Pantry is requesting sugar, flour and cereals for the month of September. Garden produce is also welcome if you have late harvests to share.


Sandy Ibarra to Speak at Salad Supper Sept 26


St. Johns' Womens Guild will hold its annual salad supper on Thursday, Sept. 26, at 6:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall.


Guild President Peggy Ritchey said, “Please come and bring a favorite salad, (desserts are also welcome). Bring friends and family and enjoy a time of food and fellowship.”


The speaker will be Sandy Ibarra, a member of the Victory Fellowship Church in Bedford. She and her husband, Red, met in high school and have been together ever since. Sandy accepts pulpit calls to many area churches and is busy leading Bible studies. Before retiring Sandy was employed at Allegheny Lutheran Social Ministries and at Bedford County Children and Youth.

Scenes from our August 4 Picnic

Photos by Kim Rodgers

9-happy smiles.jpg
Salad Supper
8-scramble mass.jpg
9-girls swing.jpg
8-Kid choir.jpg

50 Take Part in Prayer Walk for Local Schools


Over 50 people from the community, including most of the Southern Cove Ministerium, gathered at the Northern Bedford County High School for a Prayer Walk on Tuesday, Aug. 20, at 6 p.m. This was the eve of the start of the new school year. Pastor Darwin Steele opened with a brief devotion on the call of Isaiah in Isaiah 6, relating it to God's call on each of us to be His witness, His intercessor in this moment. Following an opening prayer by Pastor Steele, participants walked throughout the campus praying for students, teachers, administration, staff, school board members, extracurricular activities and other related topics.


Some suggested prayer points included:

•Pray that Jesus Christ will continue to be lifted up in this community.

•Pray for peace and comfort for students just entering school and those moving from one school to another.

•Pray for teachers and guidance counselors as they present lessons, and deal with all kinds of student issues.

•May God grant wisdom, clarity and good health.

•Pray for bus drivers, safe travels to and from school, and respect from the students who ride.

•Pray for custodians and cafeteria workers, that they may be blessed in their service and treated with deserved respect.

•Pray for God's presence to surround this campus, providing safety from outside forces for the students, and all school personnel.

•Pray for churches and Christian students and faculty to have a positive effect

‘Beautiful Feet’ Topic of 4-Cs Women’s Retreat


The Ladies Fellowship of the 4-Cs Allegheny Fellowship will hold its annual Fall Retreat Friday evening and Saturday, Oct. 25 and 26, at Sequanota Conference Center and Camp, Boswell, Somerset County. The deadline to register is Oct. 1. A registration form is on the back of this page.


The theme for the retreat is “Beautiful Feet.” The scriptural text comes from Romans 10:15: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”


“Take a look at your feet,” said Barb Thomas, fellowship leader. “Do you have perfectly polished toes and attractive arches? Do you have crooked toes and bunions?”


The fellowship leader continued:


“Regardless of the look of your feet, God declares them beautiful! Your feet take you many places in your daily walk. Maybe you are running in all directions to keep up with family, work and obligations. Maybe your feet are weary and ache to rest. We fill a lot of shoes in our lifetime and make a few wrong steps along the way. At this retreat we will take a good look at God's grace guided by the Holy Spirit and Deb Bruma's ladies Bible study, “Beautiful Feet.” He walks beside us and forgives our sins. He gives us clear direction and purpose. He gives us beautiful feet to carry the Good News to all the world! Please join us. Be prepared to be ‘swept off your feet’ in love with our Savior. Bring a friend and jump in with both feet!”


For more information call Barb Thomas at 814-766-2507 or Myra Whysong-Krentz at 814-276-3494.


Full package for the retreat includes overnight lodging, snacks and brunch at a cost of $60.00. (Two ladies to a room, private bath, please designate roommate, both need to name each other! Bedding and towels are provided. All on one floor, no stairs!) Single rooms are extra, if available. ($80.00 each total package).


The cost for Saturday only is $25.00 (Please come by 8:00 a.m. if possible)


Directions to Sequanota: Traveling from North, East and South: From the intersection of Routes 30 and 985 in Jennerstown, travel west one mile on US Rt. 30. Turn right on Kline Mill Road. Follow signs to Sequanota.


From West: Travel east on US 30 2.5 miles from Laurel Hill Summit. Turn left on Willison Road. Turn left at stop sign and follow signs to Sequanota

Retreat Registration Form


Fill out form below, cut it out and mail before Oct.1, the deadline to register. Keep the bottom of the page for travel directions (on the back). Make checks payable to Myra Whysong–Krentz and memo “Women’s Conference.” Mail completed form, questions and payment for desired package to:


Myra Whysong-Krentz                                           More info – Barb Thomas

156 Pavia Road                                                                           814-766-2507

Imler, Pa. 16655                                                                                or

                                                                                                   Myra Whysong-Krentz


Fall Retreat registration, Oct. 25/26, 2019







City____________________ State______________ Zip______________




Please check one:


Full Package $60 _____________Saturday Package $25__________




Total Amount Enclosed_____________ [Add $20 for single (If available)]


Any Allergies?_______ To what?_______________________


Christina Lunardini Again Deployed to Middle East

Christina Lunardini, daughter of Deb Bowser, has begun her fifth deployment with the Army in the Middle East.


A Chief Warrant Officer 3, she will be on active duty for nine months in the Arab nation of Kuwait. She served two previous deployments in Kuwait, one in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.


In addition to her mother, she leaves behind her husband Steve of Washington, PA, and her daughter, Kaitlyn Ritchey of State College.

Sub Sale
Anchor 1
Sandwich Sale

Homewood Auxiliary to Meet for Brunch


The Homewood Auxiliary will hold its fall meeting Thursday, Sept. 19, in the Givler Cultural Center. This time the auxiliary will be having a brunch meeting instead of a luncheon meeting, and the hours will be 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.


The meeting will kick off the annual auxiliary membership drive.


The program will feature demonstrations of new therapy equipment that the auxiliary has purchased for Homewood. The guest speaker will be Lisa Defibaugh, executive director of the Martinsburg site.


Reservations are required and someone in the guild will be designated to count the number from St. John’s who plan to attend. and call in the reservations by Sept. 14.



Sub Sale Set for Sept. 26

The auxiliary will sponsor a sub sale on Thursday, Sept. 26. The 12-inch subs will contain ham, turkey and cheese with lettuce, onions and tomatoes and pickles (packaged separately) and Italian dressing. The subs will be fresh made and ready for pick-up or delivery on Sept. 26. Orders should be in by Sept. 13. Again, an auxiliary member from St. John’s will be announced in the near future as the person to receive orders. The subs will sell for $6.50 each.


Homewood’s annual fall bazaar as been scheduled for the first Thursday and Friday in October, Oct. 3 and 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A yard sale will accompany it.



Good Weather, Good Attendance for Church Picnic


A pleasant sunny day prevailed on Aug. 4 for the church picnic at the Woodbury Community Center pavilions. As can be seen in the photos on the preceding pages there were fun activities after a worship service led by Pastor Meckley and a sumptuous meal. Games including a ball game organized by Dick and Beth Clark and a peanut scramble for both children and adults. Both the adult and children’s choir sang.



Who We Are


              This month’s Jottings features Lori and Joel Garman and sons

              Cameron and Cayden of 1763 Salemville Road, New Enterprise.

              Each month one member or family from St. John’s is asked to

              write about themselves so that we all may get to know each other better.

Joel is the son of Josephine and the late George Garman Jr. and was born March 22, 1970. He graduated from Northern Bedford High School in 1988 and then went to trade school after high school. He has lived all of his life in the New Enterprise area and is employed by the New Enterprise Stone & Lime Co.


Lori is the daughter of Harold and the late Gloria Y. Weyandt. She was born Nov. 9, 1971. She graduated from Central High School in 1990.


Joel and Lori met on a blind date in 1992. They married on June 24, 1998. They have two sons, Cameron David, 18, who just graduated on May 30, 2019, from Northern Bedford High School, and Cayden Lee, 13, who is in Grade 8 at NB. Cameron is beginning studies at the Bedford County Campus of Allegany College of Maryland, pursuing a degree in forestry and a career as a logger or forester.


Lori is employed as a CNA (certified nursing assistant) at Homewood at Martinsburg, where she has worked for 11 years. She currently is in LPN (licensed practical nurse) school (fingers crossed!).


Lori became a part of St. John’s church back in 2007 when her mother passed away suddenly and St. John’s members “treated me like family,” Lori said. “The pastor at that time officiated my mother’s funeral service.”


“I’m very proud that recently my boys became a part of such a blessed church family,” their mother added.



Love Inc to Hold Sandwich Sale Sept. 19th

Love in the name of Christ (Love INC) will hold a ham and cheese sandwich sale on Thursday Sept. 19. Pre-orders must be made by Thursday Sept. 12, and sandwiches may be picked up by 10 a.m. on the 19th.


Sandwiches are on a 5-inch Kaiser roll served with a bag of chips for $5.


Love INC’s annual Pastor/Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast will be held Sept. 28 at Real Life Church at 8:30 a.m. Invitations will be sent.

Anchor 3

Chris, Chelsea Kurtz Welcome Daughter


Chris and Chelsea Kurtz of Ore Hill are the parents of a healthy baby girl born at 10:44 a.m. Tuesday, July 30, 2019, at Conemaugh Nason Medical Center.


Winifred Romaine weighed 7 lbs. 10 oz. and was 19 inches long. Henry, 2, is delighted with his little sister.


Grandparents are Doug and Jami Kurtz and Scott and Sherri Steward, all of Roaring Spring

Pastor, PeggyAnne Welcome Grandchild


Leah Anne Dunne was born to Charis and Tony Dunne at 2:08 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, in Scottsdale, AZ.


Leah weighed 6 lbs. 5 oz. and is 18-1/2 inches long. Her brother, Cillian loves his little sister, and she is enchanted with him. Grandmama PeggyAnne Meckley is there to help the family in this time of adjustment while Grandpa Dave Meckley holds down the fort at Loysburg, where he has been St. John’s pastor since August of 2012. 


Guild Holds Outdoor Meeting with Food & Fun


A wonderful evening was had by all at Mava Cottle's campfire Thursday, Aug. 8. Brenda Colyer began with a thoughtful message about having a thankful heart in spite of difficult circumstances or unpleasant situations. We can always find something to be grateful for. Brenda urged us to share ways God helps us through challenges, and what we are thankful for. She offered prayer and blessing on our food and fellowship.


President Peggy Ritchey held a brief guild meeting. She requested an earlier date for our annual salad supper to accommodate our speaker. It will be on Thursday, Sept. 26, at the church. Peggy then distributed coupons guild members will sell for $5 each that enable the buyer to purchase items at Boscov's on Wednesday, Oct. 16, at 25% off. The guild can keep each $5 received for coupon sales. The “Friends Helping Friends” program at Boscov’s will include free refreshments, and a drawing to win prizes. The store will be open from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. In addition to local coupon sales, the guild will set up a table to sell coupons to customers entering the store. All profit will benefit the Women's Guild to be used to support its various ministries throughout the year.


Barb Thomas handed out registration forms for the 4-C's Allegheny Ladies Fellowship Fall Retreat.


The committee for the meeting — Mava, Brenda and Julie Russell — served a delicious picnic supper of sloppy joes, beans, salads, fresh fruit, beets, desserts and ice tea. Beverly Smith supplied corn on the cob.


After the meal Mava presented a short skit, told a couple stories, and organized a type of bingo for an abundant assortment of prizes. Present were Beth Clark, Mava Cottle, Beth and Jeff Cottle, Brenda Colyer, Jeanne Detwiler, Linda Henderhan, Pastor Dave and PeggyAnne Meckley, Connie Ochoa with Malachi, Ivy and Solomon, Joel and Peggy Ritchey, Julie and Greggie Russell, Beverly Smith, Sandy Styer, and Barb and John Thomas.


The next guild meeting will be held at the church on Friday, Sept. 13, at 6:30 p.m. Jane England/Jean Wakefield will present a program. Kim Ritchey, Tina Gojeski and Beverly Smith are the hostesses. Ladies of all ages are invited to attend.

Respectfully submitted, Barb Thomas, assistant secretary

New ‘Our Daily Bread’ Quarter Begins Sept. 1


Persons are encouraged to pick up a copy of Our Daily Bread for September, October and November from the welcome table. The quarterly booklet provides a devotional guide for each day. The publisher says “Our Daily Bread is written to help persons grow in their relationship with Jesus.” The booklets are provided by the Women’s Guild.



Next Twp. Recycle Days Are Fri. & Sat., Sept. 13, 14

The Bedford County recycle trailer bins will be at the South Woodbury Township Building Friday and Saturday, Sept. 7 and 8. Help is available for unloading recyclables from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.


Paper items accepted include newspapers, magazines, office paper, junk mail and flattened cardboard. Also accepted will be No. 1 and No. 2 plastic bottles and jars; aluminum and bimetal cans; and glass bottles and jars, both clear and colored (rinsed, lids off).


Persons must sort their recyclables and deposit them in the proper bin. Plastic bottles and jars must be separated according to those designated as No. 1 and those marked No. 2. At St. John’s we recycle! The collection cans are in the kitchen area.

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