Join us on Sunday, May 10 to experience this missionary's life through her own words. Emily was a humble, quiet, dedicated, intelligent lady who heard the call to the mission field in her teens. This service will acquaint the congregation with an Emily few of us really knew--a real inspiration! She was evacuated in 1960 from the Congo for her safety. Come hear more......
A musical remembrance will mark the first anniversary of the death of Rev. Dr. C. David Hess. The event will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 7, at the church. David, the church’s longest serving pastor, died at 64 after a brief battle with advanced lung cancer. A talented musician himself, David directed the church choir and was an active member of the Rochester Eastman Chorus. The church’s new choir director, Edo Frenkel, new church organist Oliver Hagen, and cellist Alexa Ciciretti will perform. All three are graduate students at Eastman School of Music
Anyone wishing will have an opportunity to share a memory of David. A sign-up sheet to do so is in the Fellowship Hall to reserve speaking time and to help streamline the service, but no one should feel silenced by a failure to sign up. Beloved by his congregation, David gave them one last gift in his dying days as he emailed messages of courage, faith, and humor from his Wilmot Cancer Center bed. Those emails and a transcription of David’s final sermon, “Dealing with Uncertainty,” will be available in a magazine format for a $5 contribution at the remembrance. CDs of his sermons will also be available for a free will offering.
The following day, Ginny Chase will make pulled pork sandwiches with David’s famous barbecue sauce for Sunday coffee hour following church. Please use this first weekend in March to remember and honor David and to move into the future still loved by and loving him.
Ash Wednesday Service
7:OO P.M. Wednesday February 18th - come and share in a service of Repentance, Humility and Spiritual Renewal, known as Ash Wednesday. We will share in song, scripture and prayer to begin the 40 days of Lent. Lent is an opportunity to reflect on our commitment to Christ, and to seek God in a more intentional way. We will spend time reflecting and praying to prepare our hearts for Christ's death and resurrection. We will also reflect on the meaning of Ash Wednesday, and remember the past 200 years of faith at WHBC so we can move forward to what God has planned for us in the future.
Hope to see You there!
2015 Annual Meeting
Members enjoyed a potluck dinner before the annual meeting held Sunday, Jan. 18. The congregation elected new officers and board members and approved a 2015 budget that allocated 16 percent for outreach and 17 percent for worship and education.
Roll Call Meeting - Then & Now
We held an old-fashioned roll call meeting Saturday, Jan. 17, as part of our ongoing bicentennial celebration. In the past, the church annual meeting was an all-day affair that started with attendance. As the roll was called, each person stood to testify, pray, read a scripture, or request a hymn. Absent members sent letters. Once the roll call was completed, the congregation shared dinner and then met for the afternoon business meeting.
We acknowledged our ancestors’ superior stamina and held our reenactment the day before the 2015 annual meeting. We started with lunch – and ended with the roll call that took an hour and a half to complete. Other concessions to the 21st century: Snowbirds sent email messages, not letters, and we read from the church directory, not its aging, heavy roll book.
Join us for the monthly events culminating with our Open House and Banquet, Sept. 20, 2015.
Jan. 17 – Noon - Roll Call & Hymn sing
Feb. 18 – 7 p.m. Ash Wednesday service
March 7 – Afternoon recital in memory of Rev. David Hess.
March 15 – 2 p.m. The Henrietta Historical Society visits for presentation on Elizabeth McFarlane Memorial Class.
April 18 – Choral Festival
May 10 - During Sunday worship, Mama Emile, the story of the late Emily Keyes's life as a missionary in Africa will be presented in a readers' theater using her own words from her poems and formal and informal letters home from the field.
June 14 – Sunday School Picnic at Martin Road Park following worship
July (Date TBD) – Ice Cream Social with neighbor churches
August – Creation of Time Capsule (photos, stories, etc.)
Sept. 20 – Open House/banquet celebration.
The Bicentennial calendar of events has been posted on the Bicentennial Page. Keep watching for updates!
You can also enjoy our history unfold on the Our History page.
Roll Call Meeting
An old-fashioned roll call meeting will be held at noon Saturday, Jan. 17 at the church. The afternoon will begin with a lunch of subs, homemade soups, and brownies, with the roll call to follow. A roll call really is a fellowship event that improves with attendance, so please come.
In our church's past, the annual church meeting was a daylong event that started with a roll call meeting. (Dinner followed and then the actual business meeting.) The roll call meeting was meant to call all members together and give them an opportunity to encourage and exhort their fellow believers. The clerks's roll was called, and as each person's name was read, that person would stand. They could pray, testify, read a passage of scripture, or request the singing of a hymn. Absent members would send their greetings by letter to be as present as possible.
We will read from the church directory, so please be present when your name is called. Share a song, a prayer, a verse, or a testimony with the congregation. (Remember how much we loved singing hymns that Sunday Rev. Bill Reynolds let us select them?)
Dear snowbirds, please send us greetings to be read aloud. We miss you and would love to hear a warm word from you. (Wind chill factor is minus 20 as I write.) Just drop us a lines by return email.
Hopefully, the roll call will unite our hearts and prepare us for the annual meeting the next day, Sunday, January 18.
Thank you for marking your calendars! We so look forward to seeing you.
Christmas Eve Service
Luminaries lit the walk to this year’s candlelight Christmas Eve service that for the first time featured the Festival of the Nine Lessons of Christmas. Nine short scripture readings telling the fall of man, God’s promise of a Messiah, and Christ’s birth alternated with congregational and choir singing. The choir sang both “Ave Maria” and the Hallelujah Chorus of “Handel’s Messiah.” Everyone sang “Silent Night” as the light passed from hand to hand.
2014 Annual Christmas Party