Two Cents Worth, 11/11/18

The poor should not be expected to be burdened with more responsibility than they can handle. Those who can bear the burden with greater ease would do well to exhibit the level of responsibility they expect others to carry out.

Sermon: Two Cents Worth

Scripture Text: Mark 12: 38-44

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Date: Sunday November 11, 2018

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Walking Clocks, 11/4/18

Jesus says the greatest commandment is to love God and to love our neighbors.  But is our ability to carry out our primary purpose troubled by a dominant culture defined by hastiness?  How can we best share the Brethren way of peace when everyone is in such a hurry?

Sermon Title: Walking Clocks

Scripture: Mark 12: 28-34

Guest Speaker: Joe Brewer

Date: November 4, 2018

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Our Land, Our Earth, Our History!

With Award Winning Singer/Songwriter Barry Cloyd

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2018

11:00 a.m. following worship service in the sanctuary

A concert celebrating the environment and God’s creation

Sponsored by the Environment Passion Group

Potluck luncheon to follow at noon in the Fellowship Hall

Free Will Offering

Barry Cloyd is a Midwestern based, full-time touring singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who performs more than 125 shows of all types per year.  In addition to a concert schedule, he has been the resident stringed instrumentalist/vocalist on The Spirit of Peoria Paddlewheel Riverboat for 18 years, traveling the inland waterways.  Barry also has created and toured dozens of edu-tainment programs which focus on our own history with music. He has shared the stage & recorded with many stars of the Blues and Americana worlds including members of Buddy Guy’s Band, The Byrds, Stephen Still’s, EmmyLou Harris’, The Oak Ridge Boys, John Denver’s and Dan Fogelberg’s Bands.  Barry is also a recording artist with 10 CD’s, the last of which, the all original “Southland”, won an award for best Americana album in 2016 which resulted in his tracks “Spirit Dance” and “Know This River” being placed on radio stations in more than 45 countries worldwide.

www.barrycloyd.com

The Wine We Choose, 8/19/18

Sermon Title: The Wine We Choose

Scripture: Proverbs 9:1-6; Ephesians 5:15-20

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Date: Sunday August 19, 2018

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From the Pastor’s Desk, June 2018

The following post was taken from the CCOB Newsletter, Volume 2018, Issue #6. 

We must loathe lukewarm people. This message is found throughout scripture. Those who are violent are better off, even if initially they do evil. We cannot expect anything from souls who are slumbering; from those who do good – or think they do good – by abstaining from evil. A heart that is on fire, even if it bewilders us at times, is equipped to serve. God freely chooses his saints from among the great sinners, but never from among those who are lukewarm – from those who do not risk anything.

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CCOB Celebrates Earth Day 2018

The following post was taken from the CCOB Newsletter, Volume 2018, Issue #5

“God of heaven and earth, the work of your hands is made known in your bountiful creation and in those who faithfully live their lives in your grace. Today we especially remember those we have mentioned trusting your promise of everlasting life and love. Be present with us this day as we mark their lives through the planting of this tree. May this tree speak the power of your life in our midst, deeply rooted and ever growing in all creation, through Jesus Christ. Amen.” —Kevin Kessler

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Camp Emmanuel Special Offering

The following post is a Mission Moment prepared by Martha Harr for our service on July 1, 2018. 

Do you ever get tired of turning on the news to hear about all of the bad things that are going on in the world? Sometimes, it would just be nice to tune in and find that EVERY SINGLE NEWS STORY for the day was focused on only happy, good things that are happening!

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Educational Bee Summit Workshop to be Held at Canton Church of the Brethren, June 20

Bee Workshop

As part of its year-long focus on dignity and the environment, the Canton Church of the Brethren is offering a Bee Summit/Workshop by local beekeeper Greg Mathis on Wednesday, June 20 at 5:30 p.m. at the church located at 269 E. Chestnut in Canton.  The event is free and open to anyone interested in learning more about bees, bees impact on our world, or the art of beekeeping.

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From the Pastor’s Desk: April-May 2018

The following post was taken from The April-May edition of The Canton Chronicle, Volume 2018, Issue #4. 

In our backyard are two crabapple trees. One has pink blooms and the other white. Usually I would contend that the one with pink blooms exudes more beauty. But this year was different. The one with white blooms was gorgeous to the point of being nearly radiant. Interestingly, though, the radiance was short-lived. On about Monday or Tuesday the blooms were at peak. By Saturday not a bloom was left on the tree. Beauty is fleeting.

Continue reading “From the Pastor’s Desk: April-May 2018”

Canton Provides Polo with Rain Barrel

This year, Polo Church of the Brethren is creating a community garden. However, the organizers realized that a water source was needed. Luckily, Canton Church of the Brethren was working on a rain barrel project, which initiated a conversation between Canton COB and Polo COB. These conversations lead to Canton COB donating a rain barrel to Polo COB’s community garden project. Pastor Kevin Kessler of Canton COB said “A community garden is a valuable ministry. We, at Canton, are glad for the opportunity to share in a sister congregation’s efforts. As congregations, we are not entities unto ourselves. Together we make a difference.

 

DE Ponderings: May 2018

The following post was taken from The Reflector, a publication of the IL/WI Church of the Brethren Newsletter May 2018: Volume 15/Issue 4. 

Neal F. Fisher, president emeritus of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, offers these thoughts in an article in The Christian Century:

What morality, we might ask, does one culture or social group create that another with equal authority could not revoke? On what basis should my personal perceptions make a universal claim? The issue here is not to challenge universal moral claims. The point, rather, is that many of those who make universal claims disavow any reasonable basis for explaining how that claim can be made,” 

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Noah Over Nachos, 4/15/18

This “Ponder Play” entitled “Noah Over Nachos” was performed at the Canton Church of the Brethren on April 15, 2018. It was written by Carol Davis and performed by Martha Harr, Robin Henry and Joe Brewer. This play was the 2 of a 3 part performance as part of our congregation’s yearlong emphasis on the environment.

Creation with Coffee, 4/8/18

This “Ponder Play” entitled “Creation with Coffee” was performed at the Canton Church of the Brethren on April 8, 2018.  It was written by Carol Davis and performed by Martha Harr, Robin Henry and Kevin Kessler. This play was the first of a 3 part performance as part of our congregation’s yearlong emphasis on the environment.

From the Pastor’s Desk: March 2018

I have an appreciation for the classics in literature. I like the author Thomas Hardy. I’ve slogged through War and Peace and can’t tell you much about the giant novel except there are too many characters of which to keep track. Les Miserable offers great lessons about grace. I had to read The Scarlet Letter twice, the second time very slowly, to understand the full magnitude of a wonderfully written and emotionally entwining work of art. And I’m presently enjoying Daniel DeFoe’s Robinson Crusoe.

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Your Giving Matters: Amazon Smile

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price (.5%) to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

On your first visit to AmazonSmile smile.amazon.com, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. We will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make will result in a donation to Canton Church of the Brethren.

Remember, shop locally, but when shopping online through Amazon, remember AmazonSmile, and donate to Canton Church of the Brethren.

Leading the Way: Ecology Theology Worship Services at Canton COB

April services will prove that our Canton Church of the Brethren is a “happening” place to be! Benefiting from the culminating project Carol Davis has created for her Bethany Theological Seminary class, Ecological Theology and Christian Responsibility course, the CCOB congregants will have the opportunity to experience the fruit of her labors.

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Leadership Team Issues Call to Christ-like Discourse

Taken from the Brethren Newsline March 23, 2018

The Leadership Team of the Church of the Brethren has issued a letter calling for Christ-like discourse at this time in the life of the church. The Leadership Team of the denomination includes the general secretary, the Annual Conference officers, a representative of the Council of District Executives, and the director of the Annual Conference office.

Here is the full text of the letter from the Leadership Team:

 

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‘Lukewarm No More’ calls for repentance and action on gun violence

The following article is taken from the Church of the Brethren Newsline, March 13, 2018 (Link to the Brethren Newsline webpage here)

The Mission and Ministry Board of the Church of the Brethren adopted a statement on gun violence at its spring meetings held at the denomination’s General Offices in Elgin, Ill., on March 9-12. The statement was initiated by staff of Global Mission and Service, and quotes from the Bible and previous Annual Conference statements in its call to the wider church.

“Our sister churches pray for us as an American church in a time of violence, as we undergo repeated acts of mass shootings, and they express love and concern for us,” said Jay Wittmeyer, executive director of Global Mission and Service, who recently returned from a trip to the emerging Brethren body in Venezuela. He noted the scripture’s call for Christians not to lose their “saltiness.” In Venezuela, that may mean considering how the church may be “salt of the earth” in that country’s economic crisis. Here in the US, he commented, “if we have continued gun violence and we have ready access to guns, and mass shootings, and children are unsafe in schools, don’t we have to ask the question whether the church has lost its saltiness?”

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Easter Cantata: Praise to the Lamb, 3/25/18

The Canton Church of the Brethren is please to present a special Easter Cantata service, Praise to the Lamb by Stan Pethel.

This service will be held on Palm SundayMarch 25, 2018 at 9:30 am at the Canton Church of the Brethren.

Come hear the Story of Holy Week in song. 

Please, invite your friends, family, and especially young people to attend this service. 

This service will feature

  • Carol Davis – Director
  • Pam Willison – Accompanist
  • The Canton Church of the Brethren Choir
  • Special Guests – Tammy Weaver, Sara Mathis, Greg Mathis, and Trygve Meade
  • Martha Harr – Narrator

…and will include a Special Children’s Story Moment that even the adults will enjoy!

Let us know if you have any question or need any accomodations.  Or you can visit our  “First Time?” page for more information.

From the Pastor’s Desk, February 2018

The following article was taken from the Canton Chronicle Vol. 2018 #2 issue written by Pastor Kevin Kessler and edited by Martha Harr

So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another. Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not make room for the devil. Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labor and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you. (Ephesians 4:25-32 NRSV)

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A Pastoral Letter for a Time of Grief and Fear

The following post was taken from the Church of the Brethren email service Newsline. Subscribe online by visiting the following webpage: http://cob.convio.net/site/MessageViewer?em_id=37179.0&dlv_id=45238

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Savor & Serve, 2/18/18

Jesus meets us in the midst of our grief and weeps with us, but then helps us to move forward with and into life.
Sermon Title: Savor and Serve
Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler
Date: Sunday September 18, 2018
Scripture: John 11: 28-37

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This Sunday: Savor and Serve, 2/18/18

Jesus meets us in the midst of our grief and weeps with us, but then helps us to move forward with and into life.
Sermon Title: Savor and Serve
Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler
Date: Sunday September 18, 2018
Scripture: John 11: 28-37
First time at Canton COB?  Visit our webpage for information and let us know if you have any questions.

Continue reading “This Sunday: Savor and Serve, 2/18/18”

Dorothy Day Offertory Thought, 2/11/18

The following excerpt was taken during the offertory thought of our worship service on Sunday February 11, 2018. 

The well-known social activist Dorothy Day has said: “The sense of futility is one of the greatest evils of the day.…People say, “What can one person do? What is the sense of our small effort?” They cannot see that we can only lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time; we can be responsible only for the one action of the present moment.”

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Deeper Sight: 2/11/18

Blindness occurs or remains when we are unable or unwilling to receive the support or direction or help of others. Sight is experienced at the moment when selfishness or stubbornness is set aside. Sight opens the door for faith.

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Sermon: Deeper Sight

Date: Sunday February 11, 2018, 9:30-10:30am

Scripture: John 9: 1-41

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This Sunday:Deeper Sight, 2/11/18

Blindness occurs or remains when we are unable or unwilling to receive the support or direction or help of others. Sight is experienced at the moment when selfishness or stubbornness is set aside. Sight opens the door for faith.

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Sermon: Deeper Sight

Date: Sunday February 11, 2018, 9:30-10:30am

Scripture: John 9: 1-41

*For more information about the Canton COB see our First Time page.

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Beyond Limits, 2/4/18

Jesus meets us at our most vulnerable points in life and offers us life beyond the limits we place upon ourselves. The abundant life Jesus offers then reaches beyond the limits of our lives to impact the world.

Sermon Title: Beyond Limits

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Scripture: John 4: 1-42

Date: Sunday February 4, 2018

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This Sunday: Beyond Limits, 2/4/18

Jesus meets us at our most vulnerable points in life and offers us life beyond the limits we place upon ourselves. The abundant life Jesus offers then reaches beyond the limits of our lives to impact the world.

Continue reading “This Sunday: Beyond Limits, 2/4/18”

DE Ponderings, January 2018

The following article was taken from Volume 15 Issue 1 of  ¨The Reflector¨ a publication of the IL/WI District Church of the Brethren.

Last week I caught up on a few chores at home that I´ve been neglecting, one of which was cleaning an old stereo system. The components of the system were all separate, so I carefully removed each one from the stereo cabinet. When cleaning the 5-disc CD player, I tilted it in such a manner that 2 CDs slid out the front. I finished cleaning, replaced the components in the cabinet, turned on the CD player, opened the drawer, and found 3 more CDs. After removing them I pushed the button to close the drawer. All was not well. The drawer did not close completely; it remained about a third of the way open. I could not get the drawer to close no matter what I tried.

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GFI Grant supports gardens and gardeners

The following article was taken from the Church of Brethren Newsline on January 26, 2018. You can subscribe to the Newsline by clicking the link here.

The Global Food Initiative (GFI) of the Church of the Brethren has made several grants in recent months. The grants support a Going to the Garden retreat, an aquaponics system in Haiti, two community gardens in Spain, and a feeding ministry in Mexico.

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