Rev. Linda J. Miles

Grace and peace to you in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

2018 was a bittersweet year. It had many joyful times celebrating birth and growth and some times of stress and sadness when members were very ill and we had to say farewell to some beloved members and friends. We prayed for the sick and grieving, celebrated marriages, confirmed and welcomed new members. We cared for our building and went through personnel changes. Here are some of the highlights for me and perhaps you can add some of your own.

Perhaps the greatest accomplishment of the year was the installation of a fire alarm system in the sanctuary and the parsonage that is monitored by S&F and connected by a phone system to the A. B. Shaw Fire Department in Claverack. Kudos to all who helped to set up a system to protect our historic building and to those who donated money and obtained grants to help fund its installation and maintenance.

There were several special events worth noting as well. I officiated at 9 funeral services. We celebrated 8 infant baptisms this year. There were 2 lovely marriages in our beautiful sanctuary in July and October. We had a special Stewardship Sunday where we were reminded of our responsibilities and ways to share our time, talent, and treasure. In September we had a wonderful worship service and picnic at the Claverack Town Park. In October, Olivia VanAlphen headed up a fantastic Fall Festival party for kids. Our 58th Annual Christmas Bazaar headed up by Kim Plass on the third Saturday in November was another busy day of service and fellowship following a year of preparations by the many booth workers. In December we went caroling and the Reindeer Run team delivered cookies to some unable to be at church. Our Bible Study group studied the epistles of John and World Religions. We shared our buildings with many local groups for rehearsals, bible studies, celebrations, and meetings. Our building Committee worked hard to keep up with the needs of the building to serve all these events and the women’s group reached out many times to serve the families of those who were ill or bereaved. Thanks to all those who generously served the church and with the community in the past year. Special thanks to our staff, Andrea who provides the impressive arrangements of music for our worship, Lloyd who leads the bell choir and chairs the Mission Committee, Snookie and the whole fantastic Sunday School team, Julianne, administrative assistant who goes above and beyond to help things run smoothly, and Alyssa, our new custodian whose energy and enthusiasm helps us in so many ways to keep the building looking spiffy

We know that 2019 will bring its own joys and challenges. Please pray with me that we may be faithful disciples of Christ as we gratefully acknowledge the privilege of worshipping and serving God together at the Reformed Dutch Church of Claverack.

Pastor Linda Miles

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