Castile United Church of Christ

4 Washington Street, Castile, NY 14427

“Meals & Missions”

DECEMBER Meals & Mission’s Christmas Party is Thursday, December 13, 2018 at 12:00 PM


2018 ‘Meals & Missions’

     We, at the Castile United Church of Christ are trying to increase the community’s awareness of one of our outreach programs. It is called, “Meals & Missions”. This is a Community Luncheon served on the 2nd Thursday of each month from  12:00 – 2:00 PM at the Castile United Church of Christ’s Dining Hall. The new mission componant is to encourage ALL of us to give back from the blessings we have received.


Gather at 12:00 PM

 For more information contact the Castile UCC Women’s Fellowship Group at 493-2840.

November, 2018 ‘Meals & Missions”


Focus: Homelessness

Project: “Hats for the Homeless“

 “Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.”   Proverbs 14:31


John Carroll was a young man with a mission. He gathered a group of friends together during the holiday season. They would wander through New York City and distribute toasty gloves, scarves, and hats to the chilly homeless folks they found. John died in 1998, but his friends and family were determined not to let his generosity die with him. Instead, they founded “Hats for the Homeless”. Then they sat down and started knitting!

At the end of the year, they handed out their warm, knit-with-love treasures to homeless citizens at St. Francis Xavier’s Soup Kitchen on West 15th Street.

Think, for a moment, how cold you get in the winter. Feel the chill of the bracing wind on your face. Feel the numbness in your fingers and toes that can turn to pain when you must be outside too long. Now imagine that same numbness, pain, chilled-to-the-bone feeling being a daily reality and a nightly nightmare for the homeless.



October Focus: Chemo Care Bags

“I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13

Learning that you have cancer is a difficult experience. Cancer can’t be explained away. No amount of Christian clichés will decrease its power. Even with cancer, an uncertain future, and a complete lack of control it is possible to experience the grace of Christ’s love.

Here are some suggestions for coping with a cancer diagnosis posted by Mayo Clinic Staff

Get the facts about your cancer diagnosis      Try to obtain as much basic, useful information about your cancer diagnosis as you need in order to make decisions about your care. Write down your questions and concerns.

Keep the lines of communication open  Maintain honest, two-way communication with your loved ones, doctors and others after your cancer diagnosis. If you and others express emotions honestly, you can all gain strength from each other.

Anticipate possible physical changes                  Now — after your cancer diagnosis and before you begin treatment — is the best time to plan for changes. Ask your doctor what changes you should anticipate. Also consider how treatment will impact your daily activities. Ask your doctor whether you can expect to continue your normal routine.

Maintain a healthy lifestyle                                      Choose a healthy diet consisting of a variety of foods and get adequate rest in order to help you manage the stress and fatigue of the cancer and its treatment. It can improve your energy level.

Let friends and family help you                                    Often friends and family can run errands, provide transportation, prepare meals and help with household chores. Learn to accept their help. A cancer diagnosis affects the entire family.

Review your goals and priorities                  Determine what’s really important in your life. Find time for the activities that are most important to you and give you meaning. Cancer affects all of your relationships.

Try to maintain your normal lifestyle                            Maintain your normal lifestyle, but be open to modifying it as necessary. Take one day at a time.

Talk to other people with cancer                          Other survivors can share their experiences and give you insight into what you can expect during treatment.

Fight stigmas                                                                          Some old stigmas about cancer still exist. Your friends may wonder if your cancer is contagious. Co-workers may doubt you’re healthy enough to do your job, and some may withdraw for fear of saying the wrong thing.

 September’s Focus: “Love in Action” Small gift bags for the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Dept.

September’s Focus: Sherriff Thank you bags


Romans 12:9-13 (NIV)

“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”

What are some practical ways to love others?

Jesus, you see, modeled this perfectly for His followers, including us. When Jesus’ disciples had become preoccupied with who was the greatest among them, Jesus told them that “whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be a slave to all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life—a ransom for many”

Here’s yet another example. In his Gospel, John wrote that Jesus knew precisely who He was and what His mission was. Accordingly, “He got up from supper, laid aside His robe, took a towel, and tied it around Himself. Next, He poured water into a basin and began to wash

His disciples’ feet and to dry them with the towel tied around Him” (John 13:4-5). When He had completed the task, He said to His disciples, “I have given you an example that you also should do just as I have done for you” (v. 15). The words we have cited from John and from James echo Jesus’ own words and actions. What have you done recently to show love to God and to others?

We were able to pack 18 Sheriff ‘Thank You’ Bags. Items included were: gum, snacks, lens cleaners, kleenex, wet ones, candy, coffee/beverage packets, pens, glue sticks, etc.



August’s Focus: Foster Care

     Background and History

The placement of children in foster care homes is a concept that goes as far back as the Torah and Bible, which refers to caring for dependent children as a duty under law. The Quran carried on this tradition of caring for orphans and widows. Early Christian church records indicate orphaned children lived with widows who were paid by the church.

Foster Care in the United States

English Poor Laws in the 1500s allowed for the placement of poor children into indentured service until they became adults. This practice was imported to the United States and marked the beginning of placing children into foster homes. Even though indentured service permitted exploitation, it was an improvement over almshouses where children didn’t learn a trade and were exposed to unsanitary conditions and abusive caretakers.

At this time, children were placed into these homes because their parents or guardians were deceased rather than because they had been abused in their home, as child abuse was largely socially accepted and legal. Today, foster children are usually removed from a home due to abuse rather than because they were orphaned.

In 1853, Charles Loring Brace, a minister, founded the Children’s Aid Society in New York City. Brace saw many immigrant children sleeping in the streets. Mr. Brace started the Orphan Train Movement were over 150,000 orphaned children in New York City were sent by train to farms across the country, primarily in the Midwest. Once sent to the farms, some children were treated with love and respect, while others were treated as slaves, were abused, and were often required to work long hours. Nevertheless, as the emphasis was on giving abandoned and abused children a family life, Brace’s system became the foundation for today’s foster care system.

Foster homes in New York City in the 1800s were often abusive. In 1807, an 8-year-old orphan named Mary Ellen Wilson received daily whippings and beatings at her foster home. There was no organization to protect abused children, so the attorneys for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) took on her case. Her attorneys argued that laws protecting animals from abuse shouldn’t be greater than laws protecting children. Mary Ellen Wilson’s case went to court and the foster mom was convicted of assault.

In the early 1900s, social agencies began to pay and supervise foster parents. In addition, services were provided to birth families to enable the child to reunify or return home. Foster parents began to be seen as an integral part of a team effort to provide for dependent children.

Foster Care in the United States Today

Today, children in foster care can be placed in several different types of foster homes. One type is the single foster family of one or more parents who cares for up to six foster children in their home with their own biological or adopted children. Another type is the group home. Historically, group foster homes were rife with abuse of children. Currently, they are better regulated and monitored than in the past.

The third is called kinship care. Kinship care is when foster children to be placed in the home of a relative or person who knew the child. The kinship foster care provider receives the emotional and financial support a foster parent would receive from a foster care agency.

July’s Focus: “Everything is Connected”

“Everything is Connected”

Today, we are talking about how ALL things are connected. What we do now, whether it is good or bad, will have an effect upon people who are born after us. This teaching encourages us to do good and to act in caring and loving ways.

It is like the domino effect. If we pass love on to someone else and then they, in turn, pass it on to someone else and they in turn pass it on to someone else, etc. Look at what happens, what effect it would have.


Jesus began a “domino” effect that never ends. Generations of people have followed Jesus and helped to change the world with their loving actions. Jesus hopes that we to will be like these people, so that through simple acts of love we can make a difference in someone’s life. Perhaps, then, what we do will affect people like these dominos.

I would like each of you to take one of these stones. These stones, which were once part of some of the huge rocks at Letchworth State Park, which has been there for generations of time. Place it in your hand and be aware that you are holding something that has been in God’s creation for hundreds and thousands of years. Remember that with Jesus, you are connected to the past and to the future and that what you are doing now MAKES a huge difference.


Our July Mission Project was gift bags for veterans who reside at the Batavia VA. These bags were filled with items such as lotion, deodorant, shampoo, socks, toothpaste, tooth brushes, CD’s, DVD’s, and a hand painted wooden plague that shows a cross in the center.

Women’s Fellowship also sent out cards & $25.00 Wal Mart Cards to our military personal on our list.

If you have a family member who is currently serving in the military please let us know. We would like to reach out to them in appreciation.


June’s Focus: Guest Speaker from Wyoming County Office of the Aging on Alzheimer’s

June, 2018 ‘Meals & Missions”

Thank you to Guest Speaker, Jaime McGrath from Wyoming County Office of the Aging for her presentation on Alzheimer’s.

“If I Get Dementia”

by Rachael Wonderlin

If I get dementia, I’d like my family to hang this wish list up on the wall where I live.

If I get dementia, I want my friends and family to embrace my reality. If I think my spouse is still alive, or if I think we’re visiting my parents for

If I get dementia, I don’t want to be treated like a child. Talk to me like the adult that I am

If I get dementia, I still want to enjoy the things that I’ve always enjoyed. Help me find a way to exercise, read, and visit with friends.

If I get dementia, ask me to tell you a story from my past.

If I get dementia, and I become agitated, take the time to figure out what is bothering me.

If I get dementia, treat me the way that you would want to be treated.

If I get dementia, don’t talk about me as if I’m not in the room.

If I get dementia, don’t feel guilty if you cannot care for me 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s not your fault, and you’ve done your best. Find someone who can help you or choose a great new place for me to live.

If I get dementia, and I live in a dementia care community, please visit me often.

If I get dementia, don’t act frustrated if I mix up names, events, or places. Take a deep breath. It’s not my fault.

If I get dementia, make sure I always have my favorite music playing within earshot.

If I get dementia, and I like to pick up items and carry them around, help me return those items to their original places.

If I get dementia, don’t exclude me from parties and family gatherings.

If I get dementia, know that I still like receiving hugs or handshakes.

If I get dementia, remember that I am still the person you know and love.

Submitted by Mary Reagan


Alzheimer’s is a brain disease that causes a slow decline in memory, thinking and reasoning skills.


There are 10 warning signs and symptoms.


  1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life

One of the most common signs of Alzheimer’s is memory loss, especially forgetting recently learned information.

  1. Challenges in planning or solving problems

Some people may experience changes in their ability to develop and follow a plan or work with numbers, trouble following a familiar recipe or keeping track of monthly bills.

  1. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work, leisure

People with Alzheimer’s often find it hard to complete daily tasks, have trouble driving to a familiar location, managing a budget at work or remembering the rules of a favorite game.

  1. Confusion with time or place

People with Alzheimer’s can lose track of dates, seasons and the passage of time. Sometimes they may forget where they are or how they got there.

  1.  Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships

For some people, having vision problems is a sign of Alzheimer’s. They may have difficulty reading, judging distance and determining color or contrast, which may cause problems with driving.

  1. New problems with words in speaking or writing

People with Alzheimer’s may have trouble following or joining a conversation. They may stop in the middle of a conversation and have no idea how to continue or they may repeat themselves. They may struggle with vocabulary, have problems finding the right word or call things by the wrong name (e.g., calling a “watch” a “hand-clock”).

  1.  Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps

A person with Alzheimer’s may put things in unusual places or lose things and be unable to go back over their steps to find them again. Sometimes, they may accuse others of stealing.

  1.  Decreased or poor judgement

People with Alzheimer’s may experience changes in judgment or decision-making when dealing with money, by giving large amounts to telemarketers. They may pay less attention to grooming or keeping themselves clean.

  1.  Withdrawal from work or social activities

A person may start to remove themselves from hobbies, social activities, work projects or sports.
10. Changes in mood and personality

They become confused, suspicious, depressed, fearful or anxious. They may be easily upset at home, at work, with friends or in places where they are out of their comfort zone.


May’s Focus: Light House Station – Maternity Home in Warsaw, NY

“Lean on Me”

I grew up on a farm where hard work was the norm. Muscles cramped, and chores seemed endless. When we needed a break we often leaned against the closet fence. It propped us up while we drank cold water, wiped our faces, and wondered how much longer it was until quitting time. Just like those fences, good friends support us during trying times. We can depend on them to always be there – firm, steadfast, secure. That’s what Aaron and Hur did for Moses. When Moses grew weary, they held up his Hands so that they “Remained steady till sunset.” They stayed with him, never wavering, until he completed his task of making sure the Israelites were victorious. Examples like these and other men and women of the Bible prompt me to ask, Do I allow others to lean on me when they’re weak? As God’s family we can ask ourselves, Do we offer a place for people to catch their breath before they move on? Do we provide a moment of respite when they think their task will never end? We can resolve to prop one another up when life gets tough.

                                                      Reprinted from April 2018 Upper Room

April’s Focus

“The End of the Road Is but a Bend in the Road”

by Helen Steiner Rice

When we feel we have nothing left to give
And we are sure that the “song has ended”–
When our day seems over and the shadows fall
And the darkness of night has descended,

Where can we go to find the strength
To valiantly keep on trying,
Where can we find the hand that will dry
The tears that the heart is crying—

There’s but one place to go and that is to God
And, dropping all pretense and pride,
We can pour out our problem without restraint
And gain strength with Him at our side–

And together we stand at life’s crossroads
And view what we think is the end,
But God has a much bigger vision
And he tells us it’s only a bend–

For the road goes on and is smoother,
And the “pause in the song” is a “rest,”
And the part that’s unsung and unfinished
Is the sweetest and richest and best–

So rest and relax and grow stronger,
Let go and let God share your load,
Your work is not finished or ended,
You’ve just come to “a bend in the road.”






March’s Focus: Peace – It is in Giving that we Receive

It is in giving that we receive

The Story Behind the Peace Prayer of St. Francis

The anonymous text that is usually called the Prayer of Saint Francis (or Peace Prayer, or Simple Prayer for Peace, or Make Me an Instrument of Your Peace) is a widely known Christian prayer for peace. It is often associated with the Saint Francis of Assisi (c. 1182 – 1226), but it is entirely absent from his writings, the prayer in its present form has not been traced back further than 1912.

Its first known occurrence was in French, in a small spiritual magazine called The Little Bell), published by a Catholic Church organization in Paris named La Ligue de la Sainte-Messe (The League of the Holy Mass). The author’s name was not given, although it may have been the founder of La Ligue, Father Esther Bouquerel.

The prayer was heavily publicized during both World War I and World War II. It has been frequently set to music by notable songwriters and quoted by prominent leaders, and its broadly inclusive language has found appeal with diverse faiths encouraging service to others. Young Francis grew up in opulence and adored a life of finery and fun. But throughout his youth, he was confronted with poverty and it began to slowly and profoundly affect his worldview. He often gave away his money to the beggars looking for alms. Francis’ father, however, was not please. After he renounced his father and his fortune, Francis lived as a beggar in the countryside. I believe it is the message that is important, not how it came to be. Peace is what is important and reaching out to our fellow man.

Sometimes Christians are called to turn the world upside down. To bring the exact opposite of what we find in our world. St. Francis’ prayer asks for strength to give of ourselves to meet the needs of others. He recognizes that it “is in giving that we receive”, that as we give of ourselves, we receive the peace and blessing of our risen Lord Jesus.

The Prayer of St. Francis

Lord make me an instrument of your peace

Where there is hatred, Let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, Joy.

O Master grant that I may never seek,

so much to be consoled, As to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved, as to love with all my soul.
For it is in giving that we receive,
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
And it is in dying that we are

born to eternal life


 Febrauary’s Focus: Faith, Hope & Love…

Faith, Hope, and Love?

We have all used these words, but do we understand how unique the biblical meanings of these terms differ from the way the world views them?

The Bible often describes faith, hope, and love in ways that are different than worldly ideas of these terms.

The Bible has a great deal of teaching on each of these three words, and the New Testament often places them within the same context.

Let’s look at how each of these terms is unique when compared to worldly understanding.

FAITH MEANING (according to Wikipedia)

Faith is confidence or trust in a particular system of religious belief, in which faith may equate to confidence based on some perceived degree of warrant. faith must be a determined vital act of will, not a culling and extolling of “ancient proofs”.

Faith is often thought of as something that requires blind trust because no evidence exists to confirm it. This is not how the Bible defines faith. Rather, the biblical definition is a confident trust or belief in God that is often based on recognizing God’s nature and His promises. He trusts in the impossible—in spite of the fact that no one has ever observed such a thing.


HOPE MEANING (according to Wikipedia)

Hope is an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one’s life or the world at large. As a verb, its definitions include: “expect with confidence” and “to cherish a desire with anticipation”.

The Christian’s hope is “an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast,” because it is rooted in the completed work of Jesus Christ who paid for all of our sins on the Cross (Hebrews 6:19–20). Worldly thinking produces hopelessness. Manmade religions promote their own versions of paradise that can only be attained through human effort.


LOVE MEANING (according to Wikipedia)

Love encompasses a variety of different emotional and mental states, typically strongly and positively experienced, ranging from the deepest
interpersonal affection to the simplest pleasure. An example of this range of meanings is that the love of a mother differs from the love of a spouse differs from the love of food. Most commonly, love refers to a feeling of strong attraction and emotional attachment.[1] Love can also be a virtue representing human kindness, compassion, and affection—”the unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another”.[2] It may also describe compassionate and affectionate actions towards other humans, one’s self or animals.[3]

Ancient Greek philosophers identified four forms of love: essentially, familial love (in Greek, storge), friendly love (philia), romantic love (eros), and divine love (agape). Love has additional religious or spiritual meaning. This diversity of uses and meanings combined with the complexity of the feelings involved makes love unusually difficult to consistently define, compared to other emotional states.

Love in its various forms acts as a major facilitator of interpersonal relationships and, owing to its central psychological importance, is one of the most common themes in the creative arts.[6]

Love is also misunderstood in our world. It has been distorted, redefined, and perverted so that all manner of vices are described as love. The Bible describes true love as being self-sacrificial rather than self-seeking. It seeks what is best for others rather than self and is based on God, who is love (1 John 4:8). True love is appropriately defined in one of the Bible’s most famous passages:

For God… so loved the world… that He gave… His… only begotten Son,…. that whoever believes in Him… should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

Do we recognize the unique significance that faith, hope, and love should have in our lives? If we look for the deeper meanings of Faith, Hope and Love we should also consider what these three words should mean as we reach out to others.


January :  Seeds of Kindness

Seeds of Kindness Lesson Instructions