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United Church of Christ
National Site

285 West National Drive
Newark, Ohio 43055
(740) 323-2407


Pastor's message

2018 July message

Dear members and friends of St. John’s: I would like to share some of my favorite quotes about summer and picnics from brainyquote.com.

“Among the delights of summer were picnics to the woods.” - Georg Brandes

“Nothing’s better than a picnic.” - Zooey Deschanel

“If ants are such busy workers, how come they find time to go to all the picnics?” - Marie Dressler

“Most families like to spend time bonding over meals out, picnics in the country, maybe weekend camping trips.” Holly Branson

“Undoubtedly, church fish fries and picnics help build social cohesion. It was my first real exposure to a sustained religious community at my dad’s church.” - J.D. Vance

Recently, I gave a sermon about connecting with God and God’s creation through the five senses. As a child, I was delighted to hear, see, smell, taste and touch summer at family picnics in our big backyard, or bringing a basket to the park.

My appetite was always better in the summer. One Fourth of July we visited an aunt and uncle in Pennsylvania and had corn on the cob and freshly picked blueberries on their big picnic table.

On Sunday, July 22nd, we are inviting you, our members and friends, to pack your baskets and invite family members and friends to worship at St. John’s. Both the 8:00 and 10:30 services will be outdoors in the parking lot. A picnic will follow the late service.

A tent will be set up, and a grill will be available. Bring your appetites and your favorite summer games to set up in our big backyard.

St. John’s has always been known as a place of warmth and hospitality. This is a great opportunity to connect with our religious community by bonding over a meal.

More importantly, it is an opportunity to connect with God who “set all the boundaries of the earth” and “made both summer and winter.” (Psalm 74:17).

“For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.” (Psalm 107:9)

Nothing’s better than a church picnic!

In Christ’s love,

Rev. Mark

Rev. Mark Katrick