Religion News in Brief


Sunday, Aug. 3

St. Peter's Episcopal Church worship

BENNINGTON -- The Rev. Justin Lanier will preside as St. Peter's Episcopal Church will celebrates the Holy Eucharist using the Book of Common Prayer on Aug. 3, the eighth Sunday after Pentecost. At 8 a.m., the Rev. Justin Lanier will use Rite I. The church will celebrate Eucharist with music and singing using the contemporary language of Rite II at the 10 a.m. service. The Gospel for the day will be Matthew 14:13-21. The laying on of hands for healing follows the service.

Contemplative prayer will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 6. On Thursday, Aug. 7, Lanier will celebrate morning prayer at 10 a.m. All are welcome. A potluck supper is scheduled for Aug. 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. Bring a dish to share.

A field trip is planned for the Church School, on Saturday, Aug. 16, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Sunday, Aug. 17, the regular monthly meeting of the vestry will follow the 10 a.m. service.

Rector's Bible Study will be held on Sunday, Aug. 31, following the 10 a.m. service.

St. Peter's invites people of all faiths or those in search of faith to join them in their service of Christ and of each other. The facility on Pleasant Street is wheelchair accessible. For more information, visit or call 802-442-2911.

'God as Confidant' at the Federated Church

EAST ARLINGTON -- On this first Sunday of the month, an invitation to the Communion table and the service of worship at 10 a.m. at the Federated Church of East Arlington on Ice Pond Road is extended to one and all. Everyone is encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to help fill the shelves of the Arlington Food Shelf which serves people in Arlington, Sandgate and Sunderland.

As the we continue to explore the various images of God that capture our imaginations and help give form to our beliefs, this week's service will explore the role of God as the one whom our forebears poured out their hearts and confided their most secret thoughts, pains and aspirations. Many of us still treasure that image of God. The church will celebrate this vision through Scripture, prayer, song and the message from the Rev. Kathy Clark. The choir will be led and accompanied by Mary Edwards. Following the service there will be a time of fellowship and refreshment in Bailey Hall.

Make plans to attend Norman's Attic on Saturday, Aug. 9. Bring your appetites to the chicken barbecue to be held on the lawn across from the Federated Church from noon to 2 p.m. The menu for this meal that sold out last year includes barbecue chicken, corn on the cob, coleslaw, cookies, ice tea and lemonade. The cost of tickets is $12 at the door or $11 advance purchase. To get tickets, call the church office at 802-375-2548. There will also be a large church-wide tag sale on Aug. 9 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Methodist Church building on the corner of Ice Pond Road and Pleasant Street in East Arlington. There will be with a wide range of books, antiques, household items and many treasures available at bargain prices. Both events will happen rain or shine.

This year's Arlington/Sandgate/Sunderland Summer Lunch Program has only a few weeks to go, running through Aug. 19. Donations of individually packaged snack items to be included in the weekly bags of lunch fixings continued to be needed throughout the summer. Ideas for items include goldfish, pretzels, raisins and crackers or monetary donations may be made to purchase such items. Boxes to gather these items are located at both St. James' Church and the Federated Church. All are invited to visit the new Summer Lunch Program website at and check out the program's Facebook page.

Senior meals are served on Tuesdays and Thursdays at noon in Bailey Hall. The Federated Church of East Arlington is a local church in covenant and connection with the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church. Its mission is "To welcome all, follow Jesus Christ together, and live God's Word with compassionate service." For additional information, visit the church website at or like the church on Facebook or call 802-375-2548

Worship at Second Congregational

BENNINGTON -- All are welcome to join in worship and fellowship at Second Congregational Church, UCC, on Hillside Street this Sunday morning at 10 a.m. In this season of picnics, the church will look at the story of the great feeding of the 5,000 from Matthew's gospel. The Rev. Mary Lee-Clark's sermon is titled, "Blessing and Breaking," in preparation for the Service of Holy Communion, to which all are invited.

A time of fellowship and refreshment follows in Webster Hall.

On Wednesday, Aug. 6, the monthly fellowship luncheon will be held at noon in Webster Hall. Come and join friends for sandwiches, salad, dessert as well as conversation. If you need a ride to the luncheon, sign up on the list attached to the bulletin board in the front of Webster Hall this Sunday.

Second Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, is located at 115 Hillside St. and welcomes all people of faith or in search of faith, without regard to age, race, sex, economic condition, disability, or sexual orientation. Its building is wheelchair-accessible, and hearing-assistance devices are available. For more information, call the church office at 442-2559 or visit our website at

North Bennington Congregational Church not meeting in August

NORTH BENNINGTON -- The North Bennington Congregational Church will not hold worship services during the month of August. All are encouraged to find alternative worship opportunities for the month. The church will start up again on September 7 with Rally Sunday and the beginning of Sunday School. They invite newcomers for Sunday School classes from pre-school to grade 8.

Jewish Film Series continues

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- Once again, Congregation Beth Israel will hold a Jewish Film Series during the summer. Although the films are still to be determined, the theme will be Jewish-French films. Doors open at 11:11 for a brunch of bagels, lox, and coffee, with the film to follow. The remaining films will be shown on Sundays: Aug. 3 and Aug. 31. All events are free and open to all interested.


Host of ‘Coffee with Sister Vassa'

to speak at New Skete Monastery

CAMBRIDGE, N.Y. -- Sister Doctor Vassa Larin will be the guest speaker at the New Skete Monastery Annual Pilgrimage, to be held on Saturday, Aug. 9. The public is encouraged to attend this free event.

Sister Vassa Larin is the host of "Coffee with Sister Vassa," a YouTube podcast. Despite Sister Vassa's extensive academic background -- she did her undergraduate work in the United States and her Master's and Doctoral degrees in Germany -- her videos are relaxed, easy to follow, and quite humorous at times.

Born in Nyack, N.Y., Sister Vassa is a nun of the Russian Orthodox Church, author of many articles and a monograph on Byzantine liturgy and theology, and an outspoken public intellectual. She is an independent researcher at the Department of Historical Theology, University of Vienna in Austria. Her presentation is titled "Mystery and History: Two Pillars of Tradition." Other pilgrimage highlights include a talk on New Skete's monastic life by Sister Rebecca, a discussion on iconography by Sister Cecelia, and a presentation on the New Skete Chapel Community. The day's program also will include a tour of Holy Wisdom Temple, a Greek and Lebanese food booth, and a photo exhibit of New Skete life. The monks' and nuns' gift shops will be available throughout the day, as will cheesecakes made in the Nuns of New Skete's kitchens.

In addition to the celebration of Matins and the Divine Liturgy on Saturday morning, a late afternoon Healing Service with Anointing and the Saturday evening Vigil will be held.

A poster with a complete schedule of the pilgrimage's services and events and lodging information can be downloaded at or at

New Skete, since 1979 a monastic community within the Orthodox Church in America, was established in 1966 by a small group of Byzantine-Rite Franciscan monks. The Monks are renowned for their breeding of German Shepherd Dogs and their training of all breeds. In 1969, seven Poor Clare nuns from Indiana, inspired by the vision of contemporary monastic life, settled near the Monks and joined New Skete. The Nuns of New Skete have been baking their world-famous cheesecakes for over 35 years. 1983 saw the addition of a third monastery when eight dedicated parish members expressed their desire to live in accordance with the monastic way of life and formed the Companions of New Skete.

Meditation and Shambhala class

NORTH BENNINGTON -- Tibetan Buddhist Meditation and Shambhala teachings will be offered by Maggie Bernstein, a retired psychologist, on the first and third Thursday of every month at 7:30 p.m. at the "Left Bank" at 5 Bank St. For more info, call 802-447-7065.

Organ recital at Sacred Heart St. Francis

BENNINGTON -- On Sunday, Aug. 10, at 3 p.m., Donald McMahon will perform a recital at the estey-Resig organ at Sacred Heart Saint Francis de Sales Church, 238 West Main St. The organ, an instrument of some 1,438 pipes, will sparkle and resound throughout the church with the music of Bach, Couperin, Frescobaldi, Locklair and others. There is no admission charge. All facilities are accessible to those with special needs, and parking is available.

Ninth annual Rock, Rattle and Drum pow-wow

ADAMS, Mass. -- The 9th annual Rock, Rattle and Drum pow wow will take place Aug. 9 and 10 at Bowe Field, Adams Agricultural Fairgrounds. Tickets are available at the gate for $8 per adult, $5 for seniors and children 11 to 17. Children 10 and under are free. Tickets available in advance at 413-443-2481. After nine years of celebratory dance, song and drumming, this years pow wow will explode in another weekend of American Indian music, dance, education, entertainment, arts and crafts vendors and cultural festivities. The theme this year is "Living in Harmony, Fulfilling our destiny."

Everyone, native and non-native, is welcome. This special event is about building and celebrating community and respecting the culture, history, and the traditions of our First Nations People. A portion of the proceeds are being distributed to the Adams Lions, Eve's Fund and One Spirit/ Bring canned food for a local food pantry.

Jewish genealogy

workshop offered

BENNINGTON -- A Jewish genealogy workshop will be offered Tuesdays, Aug. 12 and Aug. 19, from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. Congregation Beth El Board Member Ellie Roden is conducting a Jewish Genealogy presentation and workshop. In the first session on Aug. 12, Ellie will tell her story about becoming interested in her family history and the discoveries she made in her 12 years of research. She will also share information, tools and tips for those want to do their own research. The second gathering will be a work session during which Ellie will offer guidance and problemsolving to participants working on their own laptops. These two sessions will be just a beginning point. For those who want to continue on with research, she will gladly schedule more sessions.

The workshop will meet in the Richard and Pamela Ader Social Hall at Congregation Beth El, 107 Adams St. This workshop is free and open to the public; Beth El encourages and gratefully accepts donations from those who are able to give. For more details, call Ellie at 802-464-5265.

Congregation Beth El High Holiday schedule

BENNINGTON -- Congregation Beth El has released its High Holiday schedule for the Hebrew year 5775 -- 2014.

Services will take place in the Ada and Paul Paresky Sanctuary.

* Erev Rosh Hashanah -- Wednesday, Sept. 24

7 to 8:30 p.m. - Evening Service

* Rosh Hashanah I - Thursday, Sept. 25

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Main Service

11 a.m. to noon - Family Service

Tashlich immediately following Kiddush

* Rosh Hashanah II - Friday, Sept. 26

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Main Service

* Shabbat Shuvah - Saturday, Sept. 27

10 a.m. to noon - Morning Service

* Kol Nidre - Friday, Oct. 3

7 to 9 p.m. - Evening Service

* Yom Kippur - Saturday, Oct. 4

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Main Service

11 a.m. to noon - Family Service

5:30 to 6 p.m. - Book of Jonah Study

6 to 6:30 p.m. - Yizkor

6:30 to 7 p.m. - Neilah

7 p.m. - Community Break-Fast

The congregation encourages beginning this season of awe with acts of giving. Help them collect the following supplies for distribution at the Kitchen Cupboard Food Pantry: diapers, dental products and small containers of laundry detergent and dish soap.

Congregation Beth El is located at 107 Adams St. Phone: 802-442-9645. Website:


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