Back to home page A Year in the Life of the
United Methodist Church of Red Bank

The liturgical year begins with Advent, celebrated on on the fourth Sunday before Christmas. We have traditionally observed Advent with the lighting of the Advent wreath at each service. This year we had a Hanging of the Greens potluck dinner followed by an hour of work decorating the sanctuary and singing Christmas carols and hymns. Our choir offers a special candlelight service in December, and our Christmas Eve services are by candlelight as well.

Our church has been part of Red Bank's New Year's Eve First Night celebrations for several years. It's a cozy place to spend the evening and see a number of performers all in one place, and you can't beat the convenience of the parking! February is the traditional time for our high school youth group, the God Squad, to hold its big spaghetti dinner fund-raiser.

In March we celebrate Youth Sunday. Our youth direct all portions of the service and our 3rd graders receive their Bibles. Our Scholastic Assistance Committee is well known for their Corned Beef Dinner, held annually in March.

In the spring we move into the Lenten season. During Lent we have often offered mid-week services of different types. This year we had musical performances alternating with Taizé music services, acknowledging the pilgrimage some of our youth are making this summer to the ecumenical worship center in Taizé, France. We observed Holy Week this year with a choir concert on Palm Sunday, a labyrinth walk of meditation, a Maundy Thursday service, an observance of the Stations of the Cross on Good Friday, an Easter Vigil on Saturday, and Easter services on Sunday. Our church programs this Lenten season featured artwork by one of our high school members.

In June we welcome our newest members, our 8th grade Confirmation Class. We have often celebrated the end of the choirs' formal season with a Choir Fest Sunday. Another church tradition in June is our Ice Cream Social, featuring songs of a particular theme, such as Broadway tunes. Our Scholastic Assistance Committee awards its annual scholarships to our youth headed to college.

During summer we continue to worship, moving our post-service fellowship from inside to our back porch. The choir discards its robes, and anyone is welcome to join them in rehearsal prior to the day's service. Our children enjoy Vacation Bible School during the summer, and family and friends come for the Friday night celebration of their week.

In September the Sunday School year begins again. Our youth come together again in their groups and parents begin taking turns cooking dinner for them each Wednesday night. During October we participate in the annual Crop Walk— walking, sponsoring walkers, and providing refreshment along the walkers' journey. Our liturgical year culminates with Christ the King Sunday, and we begin a new liturgical year the next week.

Throughout the year, God moves with us in our individual faith journeys. We have all ventured here at different times, drawn for different reasons. Our lives are busy, yet we each find a need to be within the greater church family and to worship together, sometimes in sorrow, often in celebration, always in appreciation for all the God has given us.

We hope you will visit us and see if this church family might be part of your life as well.

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