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.

Continue reading “From the Pastor’s Desk: March 2018”

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.

Continue reading “Leading the Way: Ecology Theology Worship Services at Canton COB”

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:

 

Continue reading “Leadership Team Issues Call to Christ-like Discourse”

‘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?”

Continue reading “‘Lukewarm No More’ calls for repentance and action on gun violence”

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)

Continue reading “From the Pastor’s Desk, February 2018”

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

Continue reading “A Pastoral Letter for a Time of Grief and Fear”

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

Continue reading “Savor & Serve, 2/18/18”

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.”

Continue reading “Dorothy Day Offertory Thought, 2/11/18”

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

Continue reading “Deeper Sight: 2/11/18”

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.

Continue reading “This Sunday:Deeper Sight, 2/11/18”

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

Continue reading “Beyond Limits, 2/4/18”

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.

Continue reading “DE Ponderings, January 2018”

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.

Continue reading “GFI Grant supports gardens and gardeners”

This Sunday, 1/21/18: Follow Me

Join us this Sunday, January 21st as Robin Henry will join us speaking from Mark 1:14-20 when Jesus called his first disciples. We will also hear a poetry reading from Martha Harr with worship being led by Harrold Rose. Hope you can join us!

Date: Sunday January 21, 2018

Speaker: Robin Henry

Sermon: Follow Me

Worship Leader: Harrold Rose

Poetry Reading: Martha Harr

Scripture: Mark 1:14-20

Continue reading “This Sunday, 1/21/18: Follow Me”

Dignity Passion Update, January 2018

Ministry & Education

If you would like to check up on what this Dignity Passion Group has been doing, you will need to check out the previous blogpost on our church website; Their trip to the Anshai Emeth Jewish Center in Peoria. The visit was the culmination of the 3-part study on Buddhism, Islam, and Judaism. We want to thank this Passion Group for offering such a rich, educational opportunity to broaden our horizons.

Continue reading “Dignity Passion Update, January 2018”

From the Pastor’s Desk, January 2018

¨It is a mistake to sharpen our minds by narrowing them. It is a mistake to look to the Bible to close a discussion; the Bible seeks to open one…. The Bible is no oracle to be consulted for specific advice on specific problems; rather, it is a wellspring of wisdom about the ambiguity, inevitability, and insolubility of the human situation…. The Bible makes us comfortable with struggle but uneasy in success…. [The Bible is a signpost, not a hitching post].¨ –William Sloane Coffin, The Courage to Love (San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1982), 7-8

Continue reading “From the Pastor’s Desk, January 2018”

Joint Cantata Service with Trinity Lutheran, 12/10/17

Please enjoy this joint Cantata Church service with Trinity Lutheran and Pastor Micah Garnett.  Music was led by Carol Davis with Pam Willison accompanying.

The event was warmly appreciated, so much so that a member of the Trinity congregation expressed: “Our two congregations should do this again, and join together for a picnic this summer.”

Read more about this service here: Combined Worship Service and Cantata

It’s Not a Miracle, 1/14/18

Date: Sunday January 14, 2018

Speaker: Kevin Kessler

Worship Leader: Robin Henry

Sermon: It’s Not a Miracle

Scripture: John 2:1-11

Special Music by Pam Willison

Continue reading “It’s Not a Miracle, 1/14/18”

Broadening Our Horizons

On Friday, Oct. 27, 2017, a group of 11 people (Ed Carper, Brenda Carper, Carol Davis, Jackie Davis, Tammy Kessler, Kevin Kessler, Caryl Harrison, Nels Henry, Robin Henry, Harold Rose, Martha Harr) from the Canton Church of the Brethren visited the Anshai
Emeth Jewish Center in Peoria, IL, as part of the study of Judaism.

The evening included conversation with Rabbi Bryna Milkow (between Pastor Kevin and Jackie Davis in picture), seeing the Torah scroll,viewing various items displayed throughout the building (e.g., shofars, shawls), experiencing a Friday evening Shabbat service, and enjoying oneg (a time of fellowship after worship).

“The evening was delightful,” reports Pastor Kessler. “We were welcomed by our Jewish neighbors, shown hospitality, and enriched with a great learning experience.”

While Judaism and Christianity have distinct understandings and values, we have learned that we hold much in common as well. That we can respect our differences and serve together in our commonality is truly a blessing.

This Sunday, 1/14/18: It’s Not a Miracle

Join us this Sunday at the Canton Church of the Brethren.  Pastor Kevin will be speaking from John 2: 1- 11 (the wedding at Cana) and we will hear special music by Pam Willison. Look forward to seeing you there!

Date: Sunday January 14, 2018

Speaker: Kevin Kessler

Worship Leader: Robin Henry

Sermon: It’s Not a Miracle

Scripture: John 2:1-11

Special Music by Pam Willison

Continue reading “This Sunday, 1/14/18: It’s Not a Miracle”

Brethren Leaders Endorse Christmas Letter Regarding Federal Budget

This article is taken from the Brethren Newsline, December 21, 2017

Church of the Brethren general secretary David Steele and Office of Public Witness director Nathan Hosler have given endorsement to a Christmas letter to Vice President Mike Pence “to protect the humanitarian, diplomatic, and peacebuilding budget in the FY19 budget” of the federal government.

The letter was organized by Search for Common Ground ( www.sfcg.org ) and was hand-delivered to the Vice President’s office on Wednesday, Dec. 20. It was copied by e-mail to other government officials at the White House, USAID, the State Department, and Congress as key decision makers in the budget development process.

Continue reading “Brethren Leaders Endorse Christmas Letter Regarding Federal Budget”

Christmas Cantata: A Service of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love

Trinity Lutheran Church and the Canton Church of the Brethren are celebrating Christian unity with a joint worship service and Christmas cantata on Sunday, Dec. 10 at 9:00am! The blended service will feature worship traditions from both Lutheran and Brethren perspectives, along with the celebration of Holy Communion. A fellowship and discussion time follows the service, and coffee and cookies will be served.

Continue reading “Christmas Cantata: A Service of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love”

The Big Clean!

Hey, everyone!

Come and share in the big clean, a few hours of working together to make our church building sparkle!

Date: December 8, 2017

Time: 2:00pm to 6:00 pm

Spend a few minutes or all 4-hours or any time you have available; many hands make light work.

Please call 309-647-4828 or email cantoncob@gmail.com with any questions. Hope to see you there!

Living in Exile, 11/26/17

Please enjoy this special message from Pastor Kevin Kessler entitled “Living in Exile.” We also included the children’s story and giving message.

Sermon: Living in Exile

Speaker: Pastor Kevin Kessler

Scripture: Jeremiah 29:1, 4-14

Date: Sunday November 26, 2017

Continue reading “Living in Exile, 11/26/17”

Illinois and Wisconsin District Conference Proclaims Good News

This article was taken from the Church of the Brethren Newsline on November 17, 2017. It was written by the District Executive minister and Canton Church of the Brethren Pastor Kevin Kessler.  

The Illinois and Wisconsin District Conference on Nov. 3-4 was held at York Center Church of the Brethren in Lombard, Ill., on the theme, “Don’t Be Afraid, I Bring You Good News” based on Luke 2:10. The conference was capably led by moderator Allegra Hess, a member of the York Center congregation.

Continue reading “Illinois and Wisconsin District Conference Proclaims Good News”

2017 Shoebox Information

It´s not too late to contribute to this year´s Operation Christmas Child!

We’ve added a prayer card to each box for you as well as a picture of a child or a group of children who have received shoeboxes and a page that says God Love You in many languages; they can find their own there. In your bulletins for today and next week there is an insert for ¨How to Pack Your Shoebox¨ for a trip around the world.

A ¨wow¨ gift is best to add. This is a larger gift for example, a stuffed animal, a doll, or a car a little larger than a Matchbox car. Then get a few things listed in the brochure to round out the box.

Continue reading “2017 Shoebox Information”

A Great Multitude, 11/12/17

Message: A Great Multitude

Speaker: Kevin Kessler

Date: November 12, 2017

Scripture: Revelation 7:9 “After this I beheld, and see, a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations and kindreds.”