Note to all — starting this coming Sunday, March 8, our Sunday service time changes to the new time — 9:30 AM.    Just in time to celebrate this announcement, Christian Robison has taken some additional sky video footage of our church in winter showing the new doors and new sign.  He has combined it with the previous footage he took into a new production.    Check it out.  It is beautiful to see and hear.

Lenten/Easter Series to Explore the Names of Jesus

Looking forward to Easter
Looking forward to Easter


Many of us have several names that are used for us in different circles.   My father had a nickname that was totally unrelated to his real name but only his boyhood acquaintances called him by that appellation. A man in my previous church seemed to have two first names and was known pretty equally by either. Further he did not care which one was used.

Have you ever thought about all the different names used in the Bible to refer to Jesus? Some, like Jesus, Emmanuel, Son of Man and Word seem to be prescribed names.   Many, if not most, are terms descriptive of his actions toward us such as Good Shepherd, Prophet, The Way and The Vine. Others are most like titles such as Messiah or Christ, Lord and King of Kings. But for sure each one is in Scripture to teach us something about our Lord.

Easter is fun for children
Easter is fun for children

During Lent and on Easter this year we will be exploring the meaning for us of seven such names.   The title of our message series is “Names of Jesus That Instruct and Inspire.”   Actually we will cover more than the seven in the process.

This Sunday, March 1, we will be back in the sanctuary for worship.  And don’t forget, starting March 8, the same day as daylight savings time, our Sunday service time will change from 9 AM to 9:30 AM.   We trust the change will make it a little easier for everyone to enjoy worship at Copper Hill Church. Here is the listing. Names in parentheses will also be explained in that message.

Names of Jesus That Instruct and Inspire
Key Verses: God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Philippians 2:9-11 NRSV
Theme song:
Date Message Scripture
March 1
I am the Gate (Door) (Way)
(Good Shepherd)
John 10:1-10
March 8Fellowship Sunday The Messiah (Christ) Acts 2:22-41
March 15 The Word (Light, One and Only) John 1:1-18
March 22 Jesus, Our Pioneer (Son of Man) Hebrews 2:1-12
March 29
Palm Sunday
Receive members
Prince of Peace (King) Isaiah 9:6
Zechariah 9:9-12
Luke 19:28-44
April 2
Maundy Thurs
The Lamb of God (Son of God) John 1:19-36
April 5 Easter
with Easter egg hunt &
Fellowship Sunday
Jesus is Lord (Son of God) John 20:1-29Acts 9:1-19



How do we minister to new attenders?

Here is a thoughtful article that forces us to be real about how we think as a church family.   It forces us to examine our motivation for outreach.   It guides us toward seeking to genuinely minister to the needs of newcomers as opposed to hoping they can meet our needs.


Winter weather cancels service today

Due to bitter weather with wind chills below zero, snowy roads from last night’s snow and an unplowed parking lot as of early this morning, we are canceling worship service for Feb. 15, 2015 at Copper Hill UM Church.   We encourage you to have a home worship service.   We encourage you to read a Bible passage such as John 3:1-21 (Jesus and Nicodemus) or John 10:1-18 (Jesus , the good shepherd) or Luke 19:1-9 (story of Zacchaeus meeting Jesus).


Come in the side entrance or the kitchen entrance this Sunday.
Come in the side entrance or the kitchen entrance this Sunday.

Services moving to the Fellowship Hall for this Sunday

Due to the bitter cold weather predicted for this weekend and the fact that several of our steps to keep our sanctuary warmer are still in process, we will meet in our fellowship hall this Sunday and on Ash Wednesday evening.   Predictions for Sunday Feb. 22 are not as severe so we hope to move back to the sanctuary then as our new door project (another of our planned steps) is completed and fully operational.  Steps currently underway are an additional layer of storm windows which is nearly invisible and goes on the inside, and further investigation of the cycling and functioning of the electric heat.

Sunday Morning Service Time to Change


Our sign will be changed to reflect the new service time of 9:30 AM
Our sign will be changed to reflect the new service time of 9:30 AM

After discussion and prayer, the church council unanimously voted to change the time of the Sunday morning worship service at Copper Hill United Methodist from 9 AM to 9:30 AM beginning 8 March, 2015 which is the beginning of daylight savings time.    The idea was first proposed by young adult ladies meeting over tea at the parsonage.   JoAnne brought the suggestion to the council in January and the council felt that a wider airing of the concept was needed.   A general discussion of the idea was held after service on Feb. 1 and we discovered that there was widespread agreement that such a change would be a good idea, making attendance easier for parents with children, for elder seniors and most likely more attractive to visitors as well.   From a historical perspective, Robert reminded us that the new time of 9:30 AM is actually the time at which Copper Hill historically had services. The earlier time was begun about 15 years ago to accommodate a schedule change at West Granby.  So we are returning to our roots.

Winter Picnic This Saturday!

Last year we had so much fun at the winter picnic.  It was such a great idea — turning up the heat in the fellowship hall, serving a picnic menu, and dressing in summer clothes to drive away the winter blues.  It also turned out to be a great inter-generational event as the relay games chosen included all ages.

Invitation Card for Winter Picnic
Invitation Card for Winter Picnic



Advantages of smaller churches

In our world today, we often think right away that bigger is better.  But when it comes to churches, there are many people who prefer smaller churches and there are many good reasons for it.    I saw another good article about this today.   Here is the link.

I recently read a book chapter with the same theme.  One additional advantage that stuck in my mind from that book is the opportunity that small churches have for interaction that is not possible in large church settings.  Pastors can even ask the congregation for questions and comments.   Or the pastor can have the congregation actually respond to questions rather than just using rhetorical ones.    Both of these suggestions increase dialogue in a way that is unique to smaller churches.

Finding Spiritual Certainty to be February Message Theme

Do you feel uncertain about your faith?  Do you wonder if you can really be a disciple of Jesus?    Doubts are a common part of our human journey.  But God desires that we feel spiritually assured of his love and enjoy a sense of certainty in our relationship with Jesus Christ.   Peter wrote to first century believers in order to bring them spiritual assurance.  During February we will benefit from his insights for us as we dig into 2 Peter chapter 1.

There are some chapters or even parts of chapters in the Bible that just stand out as instructors for our faith.   They inform; they inspire; they provide insights disproportionately for their size.    The disciple finds himself or herself going back to those same sections over and over again for answers, encouragement and enlightenment.    Some are in the Psalms as you might expect.  I nominate Psalms 1, 22, 23,  32, 100, 103, and 119 for starters.   In the New Testament, a few of my nominations would be  John 1:1-8;  The Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7);  Jesus’ three parables about lost things (Luke 15);  The Pentecost story (Acts 2);   some chapters from Paul’s writings (Romans  3, 6, 8, 12,  1 Corinthians 13,  2 Corinthians 4-6,   Ephesians 2, Philippians 3:7 – 4:13);  the faith chapter (Hebrews 11); and  from Peter – 2 Peter 1.   During the month of February, our message focus will be from this last gold-mine of a chapter, 2 Peter 1.

I invite you to lay some of your doubts to rest by worshiping with us in February for this message series.

Finding Spiritual Certainty
Theme Verse:   His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us.   2 Peter 1:3 NIV
Date Message title Scripture passage Hymns & choruses
Feb. 1
Rock Solid Faith 2 Peter 1:1-4 To God Be the Glory     UMH #98
I Sing the Almighty Power of God UMH 152
Feb. 8
Growing Edges 2 Peter 1:5-11 Leaning on the Everlasting Arms UMH 133
Blessed Jesus, at Thy Word UMH 596
Feb. 15 How Valuable is a Reminder 2 Peter 1:12-15 Praise the Lord Who Reigns Above UMH 96
I Love to Tell the Story UMH #156
Books of New Testament Chorus
Feb. 22
First Sunday of Lent
Four Confirmations of Our Faith 2 Peter 1:16-2:3 Wonderful Words of Life UMH 600
Thy Word UMH 601
Books of New Testament Chorus