Thankfulness around town and county

This Sunday before Thanksgiving (November 24) we will join with several other churches in the greater Waterford-Lovettsville metroplex in using a shared liturgy for our worship service. All eight participating churches will use the same prayers, hymns, scriptures, and even the same bulletins. The service focuses on thanksgiving as an act of worshiping God. (This is as opposed to the open-ended, un-targeted thanksgiving offered in our cultural holiday.) We give thanks to God our Maker, Provider, Redeemer, and Friend.

This is the first time we’ve done this, and we hope it will raise people’s spirits. It’s a way to focus on thankfulness, and also to recognize that we are part of a larger Christian community in the area. We’ll have 3 Lutheran congregations, 3 United Methodist congregations, 1 United Church of Christ congregation, and us, the Presbyterians.

Naturally, we hope you can join us! Regardless, we pray for you to know the blessings of God, so your heart will be filled with gratitude. May it be so, not only for the Thanksgiving holiday, but every day.

This Week @ CPC – 3/3/2019

Worship: March 3 at 11:00 AM

Sermon Title: An Historical Review of Days to Come
 Transfiguration Sunday is one of those odd church days. It’s the story of Jesus going up on the mountain with Peter, James, and John, and while they are there, Jesus is transformed to appear in glory and is found to be talking with Moses and Elijah who left the earth respectively some 14 and 8 centuries previously. An intentional cloud comes over the scene declaring Jesus to be the chosen Son. Then it’s all back to normal. We mark the day every year just before the start of Lent. It is a mysterious story, leaving as many questions as answers. Western culture isn’t really fond of mystery, preferring to quantify and qualify life in an effort to bring it under some measure of control. Our God, however, refuses to submit to that longing.

For those who like to read ahead, please see Luke 9:28-36


Sunday, March 3
Adult Sunday School (10AM)
Worship (11AM)
Fellowship M-N (12:15PM)
Youth Fellowship (4PM)

Monday, March 4
Waterford Community Yoga (7PM)

Tuesday, March 5
WFR HOA (6:30PM)
Operations Meeting (7PM)

Wednesday, March 6
Girl Scouts (4:30)
Ash Wednesday Supper & Service (6PM-7PM)
Choir Practice (7PM)
AA Meeting (8PM)

Thursday, March 7
Book Club (7:30PM)


Adult Sunday School
Sundays: 10AM – 11AM
Led by Leif Larsen, the Winter 2019 Adult Sunday School is held at 10AM in the parlor. The group is studying William Barclay’s “Commentary on The Gospel of John, Vol. II.”

Youth Sunday School
Sundays: 11:15AM – Noon
Youth Sunday School takes place during worship, after the passing of the peace. Ages range from 2 to 13. 

Ash Wednesday Observance
Wednesday, March 6: 6:00PM – 7:00PM
The season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, March 6, and we will mark the day with a simple supper and service of worship at 6:00-7:00 p.m. The service will include scripture, prayers, reflections on Lenten disciplines, and the imposition of ashes.

High School Youth Lock-In
Friday, March 29 – Saturday, March 30, 2019
Youth will participate in fun, food, fellowship and spiritual enrichment and camp out overnight at the church.  CPC youth that invite a friend will receive a prize. Drop-off will take place at 6 PM on Friday, March 29 and pick-up at 4 PM on Saturday, March 30. For more information and to reserve your spot, contact Russ MehlErin Pierce, or Kristin Mazlum.  Cost is FREE, but we need reservations by March 24.

Coming Soon: Inquirers Class
If you are interested in learning more about Catoctin Presbyterian Church or the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), or if you have thoughts about maybe becoming a member of the congregation, our Inquirers Class is just what you need. There’s no obligation in taking the class, but it is a requirement for becoming an enrolled active member. We are making plans for a class to start soon, so contact Pastor David to let him know you want in!

Annual Congregational Meeting and Luncheon – January 27, 2019

The annual meeting of the congregation will be held after worship on Sunday, January 27, 2019. We will begin with a potluck luncheon. The meeting proper will include a review of our ministry in 2018 and a look at our mission for the coming year. The annual meeting brings the opportunity for members to bring any business to the attention of the body that is not handled at other meetings. If you have business that you want us to discuss or if you have any questions, please contact Pastor David Douthett or Clerk of Session Sue Douglas before the meeting.

For the potluck, if you need a suggestion, last names starting A-L can bring a main dish and M-Z can bring a salad or dessert.

Active members of the congregation are encouraged to take part in the annual meeting as one of the privileges and responsibilities of membership. Guests and friends of the church who are not active members are welcome to both the luncheon and the meeting.

Advent & Christmas Happenings

Here are some ways Catoctin is marking Advent and Christmas.

Mission projects

We have several opportunities this season to share from the abundance God has given us. Giving to those in need is a good spiritual practice, fulfilling the call of God’s law, the prophets, Jesus, and the New Testament letters.

  • Warming Tree for the Loudoun Holiday Coalition – Bring new hats, scarves, gloves, and mittens for folks who don’t have cold-weather gear. Put them on the Christmas tree in the fellowship hall. This is wrapping up this week.
  • Grocery Gift Cards for Loudoun Hunger Relief – There’s a red collection box on the table in the fellowship hall for your $10 gift cards for any local grocery store. These will help folks with food insecurity through the holidays.
  • Christmas Joy Offering for the Presbyterian Church (USA) – This special offering for our denomination helps current and retired church workers in their time of need and also  helps develop our future leaders at Presbyterian-related racial ethnic schools and colleges. Click here for more information. We will collect this offering in worship on December 17 and 24.

Besides our usual fellowship time after worship services, we have a couple special events coming up.

  • Christmas Cookie Exchange -On  Sunday, December 8, bring some of your favorite Christmas cookies to share with everyone for after-service fellowship. It’s a fun way to enjoy each other’s holiday traditions and some sweetness for the season!
  • Men’s Christmas Breakfast – Sunday, December 16, 8:00 a.m.  Come, and God rest ye merry, gentlemen! We will celebrate Christ’s birth, the dawn of God’s reign on earth, with food, fellowship, and glad tidings of good news! Food will be provided by a few of the brothers, so you only need to bring yourself and good cheer!
  • Women’s Christmas Luncheon – Sunday, December 16, 12:30 p.m. It’s the annual PWOC Christmas luncheon for women of the congregation and their friends. We’ll sing Christmas carols and tell the Christmas story.  Please bring a salad or casserole to share. Also, bring a nonperishable food item as a gift to Jesus as he is found at Loudoun Hunger Relief.
Advent Worship

We continue to mark the days of Advent in our worship services by lighting the Advent candles. We started our decorating with just the Advent wreath, but now the greens are up. What will come next?

See our previous post about Advent and this year’s themes.

Christmas Eve Service – 7:00 p.m., December 24

This year’s Christmas Eve service will be a traditional service of lessons and carols, patterned after the liturgy from the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at King’s College, Cambridge. Ours will likely be a little less formal. The lessons cover the whole arc of the story of God’s salvation for us, interspersed with Christmas carols and anthems by the choir. Pastor David will have a wee Christmas message, too. Of course, it’s all done in the candlelight. We hope to see you with your friends and family as we celebrate God’s faithfulness and love made manifest in the birth of Jesus Christ.

Parents’ Night Out – Christmas Edition

CPC is hosting a Parents’ Night Out on Friday, December 15, from 5:00-9:00 p.m. We’ll watch the kids while you take some time for Christmas shopping, or dinner out, or a date, or a long nap, or whatever you want to do with your evening!

Here’s the deal:

• It’s open to kids from age 3 years (must be potty trained) up to 5th grade.
• Limited to 40 children, so register soon!
• The evening includes pizza, fruit, veggies, water, crafts, games, Christmas story, and a movie. Bring a blanket/sleeping bag and pillow for comfy movie watching.
• The cost is $20 for one child, $10 for each additional sibling. Proceeds go to CPC Sunday School program.
• Email for a registration form and further instructions. Registration closes December 12.


Pastor Going to Stare at the Sun

Pastor David will be taking two weeks vacation at the end of August. He and Molly will be traveling to Colorado to see family and taking a side trip to Torrington, Wyoming, to see the total solar eclipse on August 21. They have their groovy eclipse glasses, so they’ll be safe. They’ll be staying at a Presbyterian church there, as rooms were booked and sold out six months ago. Continue reading “Pastor Going to Stare at the Sun”

Holy Week 2017 – April 9-16

This is Holy Week, the high holy days for Christians around the globe. Here’s a quick summary of our activities for this week.

April 9 – Palm Sunday/Passion Sunday

Worship will include both the procession of the palms and the procession of the cross. Continue reading “Holy Week 2017 – April 9-16”