The Journal Register (Medina, NY)

February 15, 2013

Bound by Faith

By Jim Krencik
Medina Journal-Register

Medina Journal-Register — MEDINA — It took a bit more work to get the customary lunches on the table, but getting local churches together during the lenten season is not an issue at all.

The Medina Area Association of Churches began its weekly Lenten Luncheons with parishioners from multiple flocks joining for fellowship, food, music and reflections on their shared faith.

Some participating churches marked the start of Lent with pancakes on Tuesday or ashes on Wednesday, but each came together at First Presbyterian Church Thursday for an ecumenical tradition that began more than a generation ago.

“It’s our way of celebrating,” Orren Roberts, a lifelong member of First Presbyterian Church, said. “It’s right on Main Street, convenient and a good, healthy meal.”

It also gave church

members the opportunity to welcome one another to their own special events — whether its the weekly fish fries at Knowlesville United Methodist Church or the World Day of Prayer celebration in Medina.

MAAC Treasurer Barb Hancock, who attends St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church, said she has been coming to the luncheons for more than thirty years. She enjoys the fellowship that comes when different churches gather.

“Our different churches work well together,” Hancock said. “We all get together, make new friends.”

First Presbyterian Reverend Alfreda Morse provided the opening message and reflection for the weekly series, which continues at noon on each Thursday until Easter.

Along with leading a cross-church chorus on “Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me” and “Edelweiss,” Morse delivered a message of faith renewed.

“Help us to understand your message anew,” Morse prayed.

Members of all churches and anyone else interesting in participating is welcome.

“It’s a good time to meet for informal worship,” Morse said. “There aren’t many chances for the community to come together like this.”

First Presbyterian members also prepared the food for the opening lunch — chicken a la king, peas, cranberry sauce and a ice cream/cookie desert. It wasn’t easy, as new health department requirements increased the work need to create the pleasant lunch.

“They were here every day this week, had to cook everything he had,” Morse said.

Lenten Luncheons Schedule All luncheons are held at Medina First Presbyterian Church at noon on Thursdays. Feb. 21 -- Calvary Tabernacle Church Feb. 28 -- Medina United Methodist Church March 7 -- First Baptist Church March 14 -- St. Peter Lutheran Church March 21 -- Millville/Knowlesville United Methodist Church

Contact reporter Jim Krencik at 798-1400, ext. 6327.