Welcome to the Hurley Reformed Church's web page. We invite you to come and join us in worship and fellowship in Christ's name.

Our mission is to serve Christ by serving our community and the world, inviting all people to share God's love.

Through our worship, education, fellowship and service we are to nurture God's people in their faith, develop their gifts of the Spirit and equip them to go forth and share the gospel of God's love in Christ Jesus.

To assure that this fellowship remains a vital force in our daily lives and in our community we faithfully commit the time, talent and treasures that God has entrusted to us.

 

Sunday's Bulletin

 Sunday's Bulletin is available here:  April 5, 2020

 

CoVid 19 Updates and Building Closure

By order of the Consistory of the Hurley Reformed Church, the building is closed until the coronavirus state of emergency is over.  Only essential workers (as defined by the state of emergency) are allowed in the building.  Be well and stay safe.

 Sunday Services continue as they have for the last two weeks.  Additional options for Sunday worship include using Zoom.  Contact Dorothy at admin@hurleyreformedchurch.org or Rev. Bill at pastor@hurleyreformedchurch.org for an invitation to use Zoom.

If you need anything, contact Rev Bill or the office and leave a message.

 

CoVid 19 Updates and Zoom

                 So far it has been three weeks since the declaration of an emergency and everything started getting different. For us it began with the announcement that Kingston Schools were closed on Friday, and then it began snowballing from there. Now we are officially entering the second week in which we are under an order for all who are nonessential workers to work from home, and people are told that unless it is necessary to stay at home.

                I’ll be honest I have already see the cracks start to show in us abiding by this. People are getting cabin fever at a level that I have not seen. People whose lives are at risk for health and age reasons are going out and about to pop in and stop by. I understand the need to get out and socialize. Being with the kids and not getting a break for almost three weeks has been.. stressing. The reality is that this is not normal and the fact that protecting ourselves and others through staying at home is very difficult and can feel very isolating.

                This Sunday is Palm Sunday. And because of the virus we will not worship and have palms in the normal way. But we will have palm crosses which have been sanitized, and if you would like one as Lisa Longto circulates through the parking lot nod and let her know to leave one on your wiper.

                Next Thursday is Maundy Thursday, and Friday is Good Friday. I am working on a few options for us to worship on these holy days and yet keep safe. Unfortunately, this Holy Week is going to be different and new, and it is going to be a time of raw emotion for us. But it is also a chance for us to set the weight of our world in God’s very capable hands.

                And then there is Easter. And here in lies the greatest struggle. Normally we would go visit family and friends. We would watch children run around to and fro hunting for plastic eggs filled with goodies. On a normal Easter we would have a Sunrise Service and a regular service, with a brunch in the middle. We would enter the sanctuary to the beauty and smells of dozens of spring flowers, who remind us of the new life which comes through the resurrection.

                Easter is going to be different. The flowers will be in the sanctuary and the list of memorials will be placed in the bulletin. A picture will be posted on the website and Facebook so that you all can see them. If you purchased flowers they will be available for pick up at the main church door and can be picked up by driving up to the table. Please remain in your car and they will be brought to you. They will have had their bases sanitized.

                Another wrinkle is that we will be celebrating the Lord’s Supper. We will be using prepackaged individual elements. The ushers will distribute them if you feel comfortable please signal to them how many you need. Also if you are not comfortable please signal that to the ushers as well.

                Last Sunday we tested out worship with Zoom. If you are interested in joining together in worship online please email Dorothy at admin@hurleyreformedchurch.org and we will send you the invitation. Also with so many churches not worshiping I would like you to feel free to share and invite others to join us either in the parking lot or on Zoom.

               

Blessings to you all, stay safe, stay connected and stay faithful,

 

Rev. Bill

Some Thoughts and an Update

 

Sisters and Brothers, I would like to say thank you. For the grace that has been shown, for the patience as we seek to be together in worship and spiritually while maintaining a safe social distance. This is not easy and the end is coming at some point but not as soon as any of us would like and prefer. One of the hardest parts of this is that we are different people, different ages, backgrounds and ethnic backgrounds. We all have anxieties and worries. And we in the state of New York are just the residents of one of the fifty states. There are people in other states who are facing very different sets of circumstances.

This much has been all too apparent as I have spoken with family over the last few weeks. Each one of my siblings lives in a different state and each state is moving at a different speed. You might think that since that with three of us being ministers serving congregations there might be commonality, and there is but there is also much difference. Add to that that my brother is the administrator for another church and my little sister is the children’s ministries coordinator and what it adds us to is that there are five different experiences of congregations in the midst of the current pandemic.

But this doesn’t just affect churches. Sara was just letting me know of how hard this was hitting a friend of ours. He is a small business owner who runs a coffee shop in Michigan. I’m sure that all of you know of a person who is similarly hard hit by the restrictions as well as fear of the virus.

                One of the hardest things is that we are also approaching Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Easter. We are coming close to the celebration of the Resurrection of our Lord and things do not show signs of letting up. So that you know we are working on ways in which worship might be both meaningful as well as existing within the constraints of our current reality. It is a time when family gathers together to share fun and meals. And yet there is the current reality.

                As a parent I have already had to field the question of what this means for Easter baskets and the like. I hope that I answered Liam’s question well enough but the reality is that I also hope that he and Barb have the grace to understand that Sara and I are trying. The current situation is testing us. It is testing the grace which we offer to one another. It is testing our humanity as we are challenged to care for and put others first and not our own wants and desires.

                Worship this Holy Week will likely look a bit different. But we are working to make it meaningful. It is challenging, but the church has weathered challenges before. Hopefully as our reality for Holy Week gets clearer I will be able pass the plan along. But until then keep the faith, keep in contact while keeping a social distance, and most of all trust in God. I hope to see you all Sunday.

 

Blessings,

Rev. Bill

Sunday, March 29, 2020 Service and Bulletin

Gather and  worship with us from your car!.

Service will be at 10:00 am; broadcast over the radio;  Sit in your car; tune your radio and worship.

Here is this week's bulletin.

March 29, 2020

 Print it and bring it with you.

Thank you for your cooperation during this interesting time!

 

On Covid-19

 These are pretty extraordinary times. Monday the Consistory and I worked at ways in which we could worship together and manage our exposure.  But then the week progressed and steadily seemed to gather steam. Yesterday we learned that our county and then our country were in a state of emergency. Thursday night those of us with children in the Kingston School district were made aware that school was cancelled because of a potential exposure. Then the entire district closed later in the day. Nursing homes bit by bit shut their doors to visitors.

As you know by now worship on March 15 is cancelled. The tech committee and I are working on solutions so that we can honor the strong recommendations to not gather together on groups and still gather together in some way for worship. In the meantime I am still available for pastoral care either by email or by calling the church office number. The church building will be closed to the public but still will operate. We will work hard to restore worship even if it is online. Please look for an informational letter with further details once our plan has been set up and put in place.

As this current situation progresses let us take precautions and be safe. But let us also lift one another up in prayer. Let us pray for those already affected by the Covid-19 virus, both those who are already experiencing symptoms but also those who are living in fear over exposure. Let us pray for those who have lost family or are living in fear for a loved one. Pray for our leaders whether Democrat or Republican as they see to guide us through this emergency. Take time to pray for the doctors, nurses, police, fire and all those in caring or service professions who are daily exposed to this and yet continue to serve.

This whole week I have had two pieces of comfort rolling through my head. The first is the 23rd Psalm. In its opening line we are reminded that no matter what comes, tornadoes, hurricanes, wild animal or Covid-19 we have a shepherd watching over us. Trust in him, lean on him, go to him in prayer for others and for comfort.

Lastly this is not the first or the last trial the church has faced. We have historic statements of faith that teach us how faithful people before us found comfort. The last piece rolling through my head is the first question and answer of the Heidelberg Catechism.

Q. What is your only comfort in life and in death?
A. That I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and in death—to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood, and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven; in fact, all things must work together for my salvation. Because I belong to him, Christ, by his Holy Spirit, assures me of eternal life and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready from now on to live for him.

Blessings as we seek to navigate this, as we seek to be the church through trying times.

Rev. Bill

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