Religion News in Brief


Saturday, April 12

Easter egg hunt at Chapel on the Green

WEST ARLINGTON -- The Chapel on the Green, United Methodist Church, in West Arlington will hold an Easter egg hunt at 10 a.m. for children 1 to 11.

After the Easter egg hunt, the community is invited to enjoy soup, sandwich, and dessert at the church. The free lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The church is located on Route 313 west at the covered bridge in West Arlington. Easter Sunday worship service is at 6 p.m. All are invited to attend.

Sunday, April 13

Palm Sunday and Holy Week in North Bennington

NORTH BENNINGTON -- The North Bennington Congregational Church welcomes all to its 11 a.m. worship service led by the Rev. Penny Rich Smith on this Palm/Passion Sunday. The sermon, "The Unfolding Passion," will be based on Psalm 118:24-29, Matthew 21:1-11 and excerpts from Matthew 26 and 27. There will be a children's time, after which Sunday School classes will meet for pre-school through grade 8.

Following the service, everyone is invited to stay for coffee hour and a time of fellowship. The church is located at 8 Bank St. in North Bennington and is wheelchair accessible from the back door at the parsonage driveway. For more information, call the church office at 442-5161.

* Holy Week Events:

Thursday -- Maundy Thursday Taize/Tenebrae Service at First Congregational Church, Williamstown, Mass., at 7 p.m. (next to Williams College).

Friday -- Good Friday, watch for meditation services in the area.

Sunday, April 20 -- Easter Worship Celebration at 11 a.m. There will be an ecumenical Sunrise Service at Lake Paran, starting at 6 a.m.

Sunday and Holy Week at Second Congregational Church

BENNINGTON -- Holy Week begins at Second Congregational Church, UCC, on Hillside Street with worship this Palm/Passion Sunday morning at 10 a.m.

The service will begin with palms and hosannas and the Palm Sunday reading and then move into the Passion story, weaving together the story of the last week of Jesus' life with his ongoing passion for us and the earth. Following a Time for the Children in All of Us, children up through grade 5 are dismissed for Godly Play, and nursery care is provided throughout worship. The middle- and high-school class will be at the Kitchen Cupboard food pantry for their monthly work project.

A time of fellowship and refreshment for the whole church family follows in Webster Hall.

Second Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, 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

Holy Week at St. Peter's

BENNINGTON -- The Rev. Justin Lanier will preside as St. Peter's Episcopal Church celebrates the Holy Eucharist using the Book of Common Prayer on April 13, Palm Sunday. The 8 a.m. Eucharist is celebrated at the high altar without music in the traditional language of Rite I. At 10 a.m., the Holy Eucharist will be celebrated with music and singing using Rite II, the contemporary language service. The Gospel for the day will be Matthew 26: 14-27:66. The laying on of hands for healing follows the service. A Palm Sunday service will also be held at Fillmore Pond starting at 3 p.m.

John Terauds, who has accepted the position of music director at St. Peter's, will begin his ministry here on this day at the 10 a.m. service. All are welcome to his first liturgy here and for his welcoming party afterwards.

During Holy Week, contemplative prayer will be held on Monday, April 14, from 5 to 5:45 p.m.; on Tuesday, April 15, from 9:30 to 10 a.m.; on Wednesday, April 16, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.

On Thursday, April 17, Lanier will celebrate the Holy Eucharist with the Maundy Thursday Liturgy at 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. On Good Friday, April 18, a three-hour service ending with Stations of the Cross will be celebrated. On Holy Saturday, April 19, noonday prayer will be held. All are welcome.

Safe church will be held at St. Peter's on Saturday, May 24, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Bike Blessing is set for Sunday, May 25, at the municipal parking lot across from the church.

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 church and hall, located on Pleasant Street, are wheelchair accessible. For more information, visit or call 802-442-2911.

Tuesday, April 15

Passover 2nd Night Community Seder

BENNINGTON -- On Tuesday, April 15, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Congregation Beth El will hold a Passover Seder on the second night of Passover. Participants will explore traditional and contemporary connections to the Exodus from slavery. Bring a vegetarian Kosher for Passover dish to share with the community. In order to help with the cost of the food and drink that will be provided, the following will be charged: Adults: $10; Children: $5; Family Cap: $20 If you are planning to attend, RSVP and send your payment by Wednesday, April 9, to Call 802-442-9645 for questions. Located at 107 Adams St.

Taize service in Bennington

BENNINGTON -- As a musical offering for Holy Week, the adult choir of Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales Church. accompanied by an instrumental ensemble comprised of area musicians, will offer its annual Taize service of Silent Prayer, Song and Adoration of the Cross in the Tradition of Taize on Tuesday, April 15, at 7 p.m.

Taize is a village in France that is home to an ecumenical community of brothers who have committed their lives to prayer and serving the poor throughout the world.

Founded in 1940, the community provided shelter for those fleeing the terror of Nazi occupation. Everyone is warmly invited to attend the service. All facilities at the church are accessible to those with special needs, and convenient parking is available.

Holy Week

Holy weekend services at Missionary Alliance Church

BENNINGTON -- Missionary Alliance Church, 198 Crescent Blvd., will hold a Good Friday service on April 18, beginning at 7 p.m. Other area churches will be present for special music, message, and Communion, explaining the meaning of the cross of Christ. The Easter Sunday service on April 20 will begin at 10 a.m., celebrating the risen Christ.

Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales Holy Week and Easter schedule

BENNINGTON -- Palm Sunday Masses at Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales will be offered on Saturday, April 12, at 4 p.m., and on Sunday, April 13, at 8 and 10 a.m.

During Holy Week, daily Mass will be celebrated Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, April 14-16 at 8 a.m. On Monday, April 14, Family Stations of the Cross will be prayed at 6 p.m.; on Tuesday, April 15, the Taize Prayer Service begins at 7 p.m.; on Wednesday, April 16, Confessions will be heard from 6:30 to 8 p.m.; on Holy Thursday, April 17, the Mass of the Lord's Supper will be offered at 7 p.m., followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until Midnight; on Good Friday, April 18, the Stations of the Cross will be prayed at 12:15 p.m., and the Celebration of the Lord's Passion begins at 7 p.m.

Easter Vigil Mass will be celebrated on Holy Saturday, April 19, at 8 p.m. On Easter Sunday, April 20, Masses will be celebrated at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church is located at 238 Main Street in Bennington. Please visit us online at

St. John the Baptist Holy Week and Easter schedule

NORTH BENNINGTON -- Palm Sunday Masses at St. John the Baptist will be offered on Saturday, April 12 at 4:30 p.m., and on Sunday, April 13, at 9 and 11 a.m.

During Holy Week, daily Mass will be celebrated Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, April 14 to 16, at 9 a.m. On Wednesday, April 16, confessions will be heard from 6:30 to 8 p.m.; on Holy Thursday, April 17, morning prayer is at 9 a.m. The Mass of the Lord's Supper will be offered at 7 p.m., followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament; on Good Friday, April 18, Morning Prayer is at 9 a.m. The celebration of the Lord's Passion will be offered at 7 p.m.

On Holy Saturday, April 19, morning prayer will be at 9 a.m, and the Easter Vigil Mass will begin at 8 p.m. On Easter Sunday, April 20, Masses will be celebrated at 9 and 11 a.m.

St. John the Baptist Catholic Church is located on Houghton Street in North Bennington. Please visit us on the web at

Maundy Thursday and Easter Service at First Baptist Church

BENNINGTON -- On Thursday, April 17, Maundy Thursday services will start with a potluck covered dish supper at 6 p.m., followed by a Lenten communion service at 6:45 p.m. at First Baptist Church located at 601 Main St.

Dessert will be provided by the church. On Easter Sunday, First Baptist's Interim Pastor Tom Hiltsley and organist Charles Olegar will be joined by trumpeter Thomas Neeson and timpanist Robert Vacca, (both from Sage City Symphony), in festive music for the prelude and postlude, as well as during the hymns.

Easter services begin at 9:30 a.m. Following the service will be an Easter brunch (participants are asked to bring a breakfast dish to share) and a Children's Easter egg hunt at 10:45 a.m. For more information, call 802-422-2105.

Holy Week Services at First Baptist Church in Hoosick Falls

HOOSICK FALLS, N.Y. -- The public is invited to attend the following services being held at the First Baptist Church, 80 Main St. Hoosick Falls during Holy Week.

* Thursday, April 17, Maundy Thursday service with Communion at 7:30 p.m.

* Sunday, April 20, Easter, 6:30 a.m. Easter Sunrise Service, Maple Grove Cemetery. At 10:15 a.m. traditional Easter worship, followed by fellowship in the church hall.

Holy Week at the Federated Church of East Arlington

EAST ARLINGTON -- All people of faith or in search of faith are warmly invited to the Palm/Passion Sunday service of worship at the Federated Church of East Arlington on Ice Pond Road at 10 a.m. on April 13.

The service will begin with palms for all. This is the final week of the Lenten food drive to which people are encouraged to add their non-perishable food items. The children will help bless the mountain of food gathered for the Arlington Food Shelf. All children 3 to 10 will then proceed to Bailey Hall for church school. The service will continue with a unique recounting of Jesus' trial, crucifixion and burial as told in Matthew 27:11-54. The Rev. Kathy Clark will offer three short reflections at key parts of the story and music will also play an important role.

Following the service, there will be a time of fellowship and refreshment for everyone to enjoy in Bailey Hall and then anyone interested is invited to help transport the food gathered around the block to the Arlington Food Shelf, where guided tours of this service-providing facility will also be offered.

Maundy Thursday on April 17 will be observed first with a simple soup and bread supper in Bailey Hall at 6 p.m. which will end with a service of footwashing. At 7 p.m. there will be a service of worship remembering Jesus' final meal with his disciples with a celebration of the Sacrament of Holy Communion. The evening will end with the Tenebrae Service in which the familiar story of Jesus' last hours is recounted amid candlelight that is slowly extinguished. The Federated Church Choir, under the direction of Mary Edwards, will offer special music.

The Federated Church sanctuary will be open on Good Friday, April 18, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for quiet prayer and reflection and written materials in observance of the day will be available. There will be an Easter Egg Hunt for children 1 to 7 on Saturday, April 19, at 9 a.m., sharp, followed by refreshments, awarding of prizes and a visit by the Easter bunny who will be available to pose with children for pictures. Children are asked to bring a basket or bag to gather eggs.

Looking ahead to Easter Sunday, April 20, there will be a 6 a.m. sunrise service on the east facing lawn of the Mack corporate headquarters at the intersection of Route 313 and Warm Brook Road to which all are invited. Following the service there will be a continental breakfast served in Bailey Hall on Ice Pond Road. The Easter service of worship will be held at 10 a.m. at the Federated Church. Following the service there will be a coffee hour to which everyone is encouraged to bring a goodie to share.

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, like the church on Facebook, or call the office at 802-375-2548.

Holy Week schedule at St. James

ARLINGTON -- St. James' Episcopal Church has announced the schedule of services for Holy Week.

You are most cordially invited to enter upon the Paschal Mystery by taking part in the observance of any or all of the Holy Week services at St. James' Episcopal Church. There is a printed guide for each service for those who are visiting. Everyone is welcome to participate.

* Sunday, April 13: The Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday: "From Laud and Honor to Trial and Tribulation," Holy Eucharist at 8 a.m., Rite I (quiet and contemplative) and Rite II at 10 a.m. with procession of palms, choir, congregational singing and dramatic reading of the Passion narrative.

* Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday Evenings of Holy Week, 7 p.m. Holy Eucharist.

* Maundy Thursday, April 17, 7 p.m., foot washing, Holy Eucharist, and stripping of the altar. 8:30 p.m.: The Watch in the Garden begins and continues throughout the night in Holy Silence. The Church will be open throughout the night for meditation and prayer.

* Good Friday, April 18, 7 p.m.: Good Friday Liturgy including the veneration of the Cross, followed by Holy Silence.

* Holy Saturday, April 19, 9 a.m., Holy Saturday Liturgy, followed by holy silence.

* The Great Vigil of Easter, April 19, 8 p.m.: "From Darkness to Light, From Death to Life." Lighting of the fire; the Paschal Candle; the first Eucharist of Easter; organ music and congregational singing.

* Easter Sunday, April 20: "The Day of Resurrection." Holy Eucharist at 8 a.m., Rite I (quiet and contemplative) and Festive Rite II at 10 a.m. with organ music, choir, and congregational singing.

Festive receptions hosted by the parishioners of St. James' will follow the Saturday evening celebration of the Great Vigil and the 10 a.m. service on Easter Sunday service. All are welcome to attend and celebrate the miracle of Easter. Full-text service leaflets are provided at all services.

A pamphlet, "Commentary on Holy Week" by the Rev. Scott B. Neal, Rector of St. James' Episcopal Church, is available free upon request. The informal commentary includes historical and liturgical information about Holy Week from the Sunday of the Passion/Palm Sunday through The Great Vigil of Easter.

For additional information about Holy Week services or any other services at St. James' Episcopal Church, call the St. James Parish Office at 802 375-9952; send an e-mail to or visit our website at

Zion Episcopal Church Holy Week and Easter services

MANCHESTER -- Zion Episcopal Church, in Manchester Center, invites the community to Holy Week and Easter services and events. Morning prayer will be said each weekday morning at 9 a. m. On Thursday, April 17, there will be a lamb supper at 5:30 p.m. followed at 7 p. m. by the Maundy Thursday service of Holy Eucharist, foot washing, and the stripping of the altar.

The Good Friday liturgy begins at noon and lasts about one hour. Easter services will begin with a Sunrise Service on Mount Equinox (weather permitting). Sunderland gates on Skyline Drive open at 5:30 a. m. for a 6 a. m. service. Easter services continue at Zion Church at 8 and 10 a. m. with an Easter egg hunt following the 10 a.m. service.

Zion Episcopal Church is located at 5167 Main St./Route 7A north, between Gringo Jack's and Ye Olde Tavern. For more information, call Zion at 802-362-1987, email, or visit

Holy Week Services at All Saints Church

HOOSICK, N.Y. -- All Saints Church invites the community to join in their celebration of Holy Week. Observances begin on April 13 with Palm Sunday, also known as the Sunday of the Passion. The service starts at 9:30 a.m. and includes distribution of palms as well as Holy Eucharist.

The church will observe Maundy Thursday on April 17 with a Eucharist service and the stripping of the altar, beginning at 7 p.m. A solemn, contemplative service commemorating Good Friday will be held on the evening of April 18 at 7 p.m. At 9:30 a.m. on Easter Sunday, April 20, the parish at All Saints will celebrate with a Eucharist service. Immediately following the service, there will be an Easter egg hunt for the children, as well as refreshments and fellowship for the adults.

The usual 9 a.m. morning prayer which precedes weekly Eucharist services will not be held on Easter Sunday, but will resume on April 27. All Saints Episcopal Church is a warm and welcoming community of believers. The year 2014 marks the 150th anniversary of the church building, located on Route 7 in Hoosick, just west of the light. For more information, visit

Easter Sunday

Resurrection Sunday Sunrise Service

NORTH BENNINGTON -- A Resurrection Sunday Sunrise Service Will be held on Sunday, April 20, between 6 and 7 a.m. at Lake Paran on Houghton Lane. This is a community event open to all who wish to attend. Come and join with us as we celebrate our Risen Lord and Savior.


Third Annual Easter egg hunt

ARLINGTON -- Arlington Community Church is sponsoring the community Easter egg hunt for kids ages 2 to 10, on Saturday, April 19 at Arlington Recreation Park. We will be meeting at the Lion's Pavilion at 1 p.m. Come enjoy the free fun sponsored by Arlington Community Church. For more information contact Pastor Tim Snyder at 518-677-2504 or

'Native American Animal Spirits' at Grafton Library

GRAFTON. N.Y. -- Storyteller Gil Payette will present "Native American Animal Spirits," on Friday, April 18, at 6:30 p.m. In this fun and informative program, Payette will weave together his teaching and storytelling skills to give us a glimpse of how Native Americans understand spiritual and sacred animal power.

Some Native American languages had no word for "animal." These life forms were considered extended family -- brothers, sisters, cousins -- each one unique unto itself, a symbol of power, of the soul, a creative element with a spiritual purpose. Special prizes will be given.

Adams parish to celebrate the canonization of its namesake

ADAMS, Mass. -- Each year since 2000, the Catholic Church has celebrated the Feast of the Divine Mercy, also known as Divine Mercy Sunday, on the Sunday following Easter. The Feast commemorates a series of revelations which (Catholics believe) a Polish nun, Sr. Maria Faustina Kowalska, received from Jesus Christ during the 1930s.

Traditionally, the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy at Eden Hill in Stockbridge has been the focus for celebration of the Feast in Berkshire County. But this year, Blessed John Paul II ("BJP") Parish in Adams will be vying for that honor when the Feast takes place on April 27.

BJP parishioners will be celebrating the Feast with particular fervor this year because it coincides with the canonization of both Pope John Paul II (who served 1978-2005), for whom their parish is named, as well as Pope John III (who served 1958-1963), at the Vatican that same day. Canonization is the process by which the Catholic Church officially declares certain deceased individuals to be saints, and worthy of emulation. As a result of John Paul II's formal elevation to sainthood, therefore, BJP Parish will also be getting a name change. That is to say, the Parish will now become St. John Paul II Parish.

BJP Parish will kick of the celebrations at 3 p.m. on Good Friday (April 18th) at St. Stanislaus Kostka Mission church with a Divine Mercy Chaplet novena (a series of public prayers held at the same time over nine successive days). On Divine Mercy Sunday itself, BJP Parish will hold Mass at each of its two church locations: i.e., one at St. Stanislaus Kostka church at 8 a. m. and the other at the former Notre Dame Church.

At each Mass, the parish will unveil artworks commemorating both of the popes being canonized on that day, along with new prayers submitted by parishioners and a song composed by Parish music director Mary Verdi highlighting the Parish's namesake.

A coffee-and-cake social will be held following each Mass.

Finally, BJP Parish's celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday celebration will conclude with a Benediction and Chaplet service at St. Stanislaus Kostka church at 3 p.m.

Recital to feature baritone and organist/pianist

BENNINGTON -- On Sunday, May 4, at 3 p.m., baritone Michael Kovage and Donald McMahon, organist and pianist, will perform a recital at Sacred Heart Saint Francis de Sales Church at 238 West Main St. The program will include compositions by Aaron Copland, Maurice Ravel, Ralph Vaughan-Williams, Charles Ives, Ludwig van Beethoven, Claude Debussy, Nicolas-Jacques Lemmens, and others. All facilities at the church are accessible to those with special needs, and convenient parking is available. Admission is free.

Dorset Church rummage sale

DORSET -- It's time to start collecting your donations for the Dorset Church rummage sale, which will be held on Saturday, April 26. This is the time to clean out those things you no longer use or need: clean, serviceable spring and summer clothing, jewelry, purses, kitchen and household items, houseplants, tools, sports gear, garden equipment, small appliances, and books will be accepted at the church on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, April 22, to 24, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Larger items such as furniture, tables, chairs, etc., may be accepted by approval. Contact Sandi Hedman at 802-362-1459 or to discuss.

No computers, TVs, stereos or large appliances will be accepted -- organizers of this church rummage sale suggest you contact Habitat for Humanity at 802-367-1000 about donating these items to their "Shires Re-Sale Store."

Williams Gospel Choir: ‘You Made a Way'

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- The Williams College Department of Music presents the Williams Gospel Choir on Saturday, April 26, at 7 p.m. in Chapin Hall on the Williams campus. This free event is open to the public.

The Williams Gospel Choir's spring concert in Chapin Hall as a sponsored group of the music department is titled "You Made A Way." The concert features gospel hits such as "You Made A Way," "If It Wasn't For Your Grace," and "Victory." Joining the Williams Gospel Choir are the Allegrettos of the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

For new listeners, a spokesperson for the choir offers an apt description and mission statement of the Williams Gospel Choir: "When it comes to Gospel Choir I believe that our audiences and members can expect to be touched by the songs we sing because each of the songs in their own exudes a thirst for and reverence for spiritual fulfillment. We sing to lift people up, to inspire them and touch them with our music in ways that genres apart from Gospel can't. We are open to all audiences and hope to encourage people to allow music to become a healing and divine part of their lives. We believe that our voices are meant to serve the purpose of spreading a ministry of love and by singing, we are allowed to minister vocally. Singing gives us hope and strength and we hope that our audiences can experience these same feats through listening."

Snacks and refreshments will be served at the end of the concert. For more information:; concert hotline: 413-597-3146. Chapin Hall is located at 54 Chapin Hall Drive on the Williams College campus.


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