Pastor Joyce's sermons

Prayer for the Week

August 18, 2019


Protect us, loving Parent, from our self-righteousness,       

      That can grow into the very fiber of our being;              

Break down the barriers we build between us, 

    For they destroy what it means to be human.

When our way becomes lonely and uncertain

      Give us the grace to move forward.                          

In the name of the One who embodied your grace,

Even Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.


Thoughts for the Week

August 11, 2019


The beginning of thought is in disagreement – not only with others but within ourselves.

Eric Hoffer



Truth does not become more true by virtue of the fact that the entire world agrees with it, nor less so even if the whole world disagrees with it.


Jewish philosopher


You [man] are fool enough, it seems, to war with me [woman] when for your faithful ally, you might win me easily. 

Aristophanes from Lysistrata

(450-380 BCE)


Our Congregation


Prayer is a way we gain strength from God as we face life's burdens and concerns as well as joys. Please use the e-mail link to have your name, your concerns or your joys added to our prayer list. Prayer requests are confidential, known to God and the pastor. licensed

Pray for Jeni Pedzinski serving young tribal women in Thailand who are at risk for human trafficking.   

     Jeni serves on the leadership team at the New Life Center Foundation (NLCF) in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Established in 1987, the New Life Center serves young ethnic minority (tribal) women who are at risk for, or survivors of, human trafficking, forced labor and sexual abuse. NLCF residents are provided with shelter, educa-tion, vocational and life skills training and legal assist-ance. Special therapeutic activities for survivors include comprehensive art, dance and music therapy and individual counseling. With degrees in development and Christian theology, Jeni provides administrative support, Christian discipleship and financial literacy training to NLCF staff and program beneficiaries. In collaboration with the NLCF's senior staff, she writes grants, oversees the monitoring and evaluation of program outcomes and assists with public relations.

       Jeni writes - I continue to work full-time to support the local staff on the front lines of trafficking prevention and after-care for survivors of exploitation and trauma. It is my great joy to work alongside these capable, committed women. Showing compassion by turning toward (not away) and reaching out to those who are hurting is our costly privilege.

United Church of Christ

Global Ministries



4   Jeffrey Mensendiek, Japan - Luke 12:13-21
11 Ricardo Mayol, Guatemala - Luke 12:32-40
18 Rosie McArdle, Pohnpei - Luke 12:49-56
25 Violeta Rocha, El Salvador - Luke 13:10-17

American Baptists Churches

International Ministries 

International Ministries, also known as the American Baptist Foreign Mission Society, works cross-culturally to invite people to become disciples of Jesus Christ and to proclaim, through both word and deed, God's reign of justice, peace and abundant life for all creation.

Pray for Gordon Hwang, serving in Japan, recovering from a heart attack. 

Gordon and Lee Ann are serving in Yokohama, Japan. Gordon exercises gifts of service and hospitality. He hosts a weekly fellowship meeting in their home. Lee Ann works full-time as an English conversation teacher for junior and senior high students at Soshin Girls’ School. She also has opportunities to make connections with students in two clubs, through the foreign exchange programs, speaking in chapel and with their home-fellowship meetings. 


       He writes - Heart Attack. The chest pain would not stop! I felt the first pain walking from the bus stop toward home. Tired, I briefly rested in the bedroom. However, needing help now, I got out of bed. I barely got out the words, “I am having a heart attack!” before blacking out briefly and falling on my left shoulder. 

         Amazingly, Lee Ann and Miki were home and called for an ambulance immediately. In the midst of the pain and shock, I had no fear. The Lord gave me complete peace to endure each step. For example, I prayed silently, “I am ready for the Lord Jesus to take me home, but if it is His will, I would like to continue serving my family and our Japanese friends.” 


         I had learned God’s word, the Holy Bible, is my strength. So, Psalm 23 gave me deep, enduring strength. Miki wrote it on a poster for me. I had a friend, Reegan, tape it up on the ceiling above my hospital bed. At night, I read the words repeatedly and the chest pain would subside. 

         Healing. In addition, this Psalm is special to me because I first heard it while my Dad was on his deathbed, dying from cancer. His Christian hospice nurse recited it with our family while holding hands around Dad’s bed. This was the first time I remember weeping while hearing God’s word. I was a non-Christian then, still the touching words gave me comfort. Now, in my most desperate hour, the same words returned to comfort me again! God’s healing is in His comfort. He heals my spirit through the comfort of his word. Therefore, He heals me both in body and in spirit! 



Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer.

Rom. 12:12 NRSV