ACTION & ADVOCACY
We believe an engaged faith is an important part of spiritual development. The Social Action Committee and other Central members find many ways to put their faith into action and advocacy.
Cynthia's Boutique - accepts donations of clothing, linens, shoes, backpacks, jewelry and children's supplies every Thursday from 10 a.m. - noon or during office hours (please call ahead for a large drop-offs). To volunteer, please contact Charlotte McGorry.
Hunger: From the Crop Walk to raise funds for world and local hunger to our partnership for hunger advocacy with Bread for the World, hunger relief is a focus of Central. Our Food Pantry serves about 40 families each month on the third Saturday. We are open from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. We also send about 50 bags of groceries each month to individuals in senior housing. We continue to look for volunteers to help staff the food pantry. We collect non-perishable food items for the Food Pantry on first Sunday of each month.
Poverty: We support poverty initiatives through both educational events and our annual collections of warm clothing for the children of Community Services for Children. Our Fair Trade Coffee Project emphasizes the importance of fair wages for farming. We sell coffee, tea, and chocolate on the first Sunday of each month.
Homelessness: We are part of the Bethlehem Emergency Shelter system and provide shelter December through March for women on Saturday nights through Sunday morning in Benigna Auditorium. We continue to support our Moravian transitional shelter, Moravian Open Door, in New York City, as well as local efforts at New Bethany and Victory House.
Nepali Moravian Outreach – We have established a partnership with Moravian ministers in Kathmandu, Nepal. Central members have visited and continue to offer financial and other support to this growing mission.
Tanzania Outreach – Our well-established mission work with Sikonge and neighboring congregations in Western Tanzania continues. This year we raised funds for the purchase and installation of water pumps in several communities there.
CARING FOR OUR CONGREGATION
There are many ways that we try to touch the lives of our members, and many ways that you can get involved. Consider helping to care for our members through sending a birthday card (Birthday Greeters), joining us for Christmas caroling to shut-ins and retirement homes, visitation ministries, delivering the pulpit flowers, or joining our prayer chain. We have regular fellowship gatherings after church organized by the Church Family Life committee such as picnics, Birthday socials, seasonal parties, etc. We are a caring church and we hope that you will join us in sharing Christ’s love!
GROUPS AT CENTRAL
Many members volunteer and get involved in a variety of committees, boards, fellowship groups and social action organizations at Central Church. Wherever you are in your faith journey, there is a place for you in one of Central’s groups.
BIRTHDAY GREETERS: Help us send birthday greetings to Central members. Contact Shirley Trumbauer to sign up.
BLOOD BANK: Our Blood Bank is affiliated with the Miller Keystone Blood Center; we are always looking for more donors. Contact Craig Mosebach for details.
BRASS ENSEMBLES: The Central Brass Ensemble is made up of brass musicians in our congregation. Directed by Caitlin Heckman, this group plays for worship services throughout the year. The Bethlehem Area Moravian Trombone Choir, under the direction of Don Kemmerer, was founded in 1754 and is made up of trombonists from many Lehigh Valley Moravian Churches; the group plays for memorial and worship services throughout the year. Contact Becky Owens, Director of Music, for more information.
BUSY WORKERS’ SOCIETY: This group meets weekly, on Wednesday mornings at 9:30 a.m. in the lower level of the Chapel, to prepare crafts that will be sold at several sales during the year. They have also started a Wed. evening group! Profits from sales go to Moravian causes as well as local charities. If you can cut and paste, and enjoy a good time while working for the church, there is a place for you with this group. Contact Jacqueline Adams.
CANDLEMAKERS: The Candlemakers meet in the church office, lower level, each Tuesday at 9 a.m. in September to make thousands of beeswax candles; some are used for Central’s Christmas Eve services and others are sold to churches, schools and civic organizations. Candlemaking experience is not required; we will train you. For more information, please contact Bobb Carson.
CANDLETRIMMERS: This group gathers each Monday evening in the Sanctuary at 7 p.m. in October to trim (decorate) beeswax candles with red paper frills for the Christmas Eve services. No experience is necessary; on-the-job training is provided. Contact Judy Thomas or Jeff Griffis.
CD MINISTRY: The Church office provides compact disc (CD) recordings of the 11 a.m. Sunday services to members and friends of Central Church who are homebound, in health care facilities, or who live at a distance. Please contact the Church office if you would like to receive a CD.
CENTRAL CONCERT SERIES USHER CORPS: This group of men and women assists at the various concerts held in both the Sanctuary and Old Chapel at Central Church. Please contact Becky Owens at the Church office if you are interested in helping.
CENTRAL MORAVIAN CHURCH CHOIR: Steeped in a rich musical heritage, this 45 member non-auditioned choir, consisting mostly of volunteers, sings for Sunday morning worship services, special services and singstundes, and performs for concerts throughout the year. Under the direction of Becky Owens, the Choir has recorded three CDs. Please contact Becky Owens at the Church office for membership information.
CHAPEL CHOIR: The Chapel Choir provides choral music once or twice a month for the 9 a.m. worship service held in the Old Chapel of Central Moravian Church and is directed by Richard Miller, organist of the 9 a.m. service. Please contact Richard Miller at the Church office.
CHRISTIAN EDUCATION: In order to share our faith and foster spiritual development, our Christian Education committee meets monthly to plan and review programming for all ages of church school, adult education, youth ministry and confirmation instruction. Members of the committee serve three-year terms; for more information please contact Pat Herman
CHURCH FAMILY LIFE: The Church Family Life committee meets quarterly to plan fellowship activities, such as picnics, potlucks, caroling, and parties, for our entire Church family. We invite new members with creative ideas and a willingness to organize events. Contact Elissa Derbak for more information.
COMENIUS: Comenius is a study group that comes together every other Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. in the Christian Education building, conference room to focus on a new understanding of Christianity through book studies and discussion. Recent readings have included books by Marcus Borg, Karen Armstrong, and John Shelby Spong. Please contact AnneMarie Whildin for more information. Comenius Sunday meets at 9 a.m. on Sunday mornings in the C.E. library room to watch and discuss videos on similar topics; contact Willard Martin for information.
COMMUNICATIONS: The Communications committee oversees the internal and external communications and publications of Central Moravian Church such as the website, press releases, e-mail communications, and printed materials for visitors. as a way of promoting our activities. We welcome suggestions and encourage those with related skills to join us; contact Ann Raines for more information.
FOOD PANTRY: Central’s Food Pantry has been in operation for about 20 years. Volunteers are needed to run the Food Pantry on the third Saturday morning of each month, as well as to purchase food, pack bags of food for pick-up or delivery, and deliver food to residents of Moravian House. Non-perishable food is collected on the 1st Sunday of the month from the congregation, and monetary donations are always welcome. Please contact Food Pantry Director, David Wickmann or the church office for information.
FRIENDSHIP BIBLE CLASS: The Friendship Bible Class has been pursuing Bible study and discussion on Sunday mornings (in the Church office conference room) at 10 a.m. since January 6, 1936! For more information about Friendship Bible Class, please call Howard Cox.
HEALTH & WELLNESS: Our Health & Wellness Committee is part of the Lehigh Valley Moravian Health & Wellness group. We provide monthly blood pressure screenings after church; we also check and restock the church first aid kits. Please contact Jan Christensen.
HISTORY: The History Committee is charged with preserving and promoting the history of the Central Church congregation, from its founding in 1741 to the present specifically looking at archives, collections, historic preservation, and outreach. Please call Diane Shaw if you have an interest in the history of the church.
HOSPITALITY: The Hospitality Committee’s purpose is to make all the members of our church family and our guests feel welcome. The committee organizes receptions following memorial services, new members’ receptions and other church events. Please contact Pam Larimer or Beth Boyer to help.
KNITTING GROUP: “Knitting into the Mystery” meets on the third Wednesday (except July and August) in the Church office conference room at 12:30 p.m. and is open to all knitters, experienced or novice. We enjoy a sharing time as well as meditative knitting time. The prayer shawls are donated to the Busy Workers’ Prayer Shawl Ministry. Contact Dorothy Stutzenberger for more information.
LADIES’ SEWING SOCIETY: The Ladies’ Sewing Society was established in 1861 by Polly Heckewelder for Civil War relief work. After Polly died, the Sewing Society created the first “Polly” doll. Everything about the Polly doll is handmade except for her ribbons and her shoes, and she has been featured in magazines and PBS’ Antiques Roadshow. Profits from the sale of the dolls go to the Church and other missionary causes. The group meets Tuesday mornings at 9 a.m. in the Church Office and welcomes new members. Please call Mary Brown for more information.
MEMBERSHIP: The Membership Committee’s purpose is to welcome and embrace new members, and encourage the involvement of all members through faithful worship, service and fellowship. Please contact Bill Sachs for more information.
MEN’S BIBLE STUDY: Men’s Bible Study is a free-spirited, discussion-oriented Bible Study group that meets every Wednesday at 6:45 a.m. in the lower level of the Christian Education building. The worst thing about the Men’s Bible Study is the pre-dawn appointed hour; the best thing is you get a free glass of juice, a donut, and a blessed cup of coffee! For more information contact Gordon Sommers.
MEN’S AND WOMEN’S CHOIRS: Throughout the year, a Men’s Choir and a Women’s Choir provide special music at various services. Rehearsals are minimal and informal. Please contact Becky Owens for more information.
MORAVIAN WOMEN: A planned program of study, prayer and service help Moravian Women grow in Christ and in his service. Membership is open to all women and is divided into small groups (circles) that meet monthly from September through June. Meeting times vary, so a member may select a circle that fits her schedule. For more information, please contact Maria Prochnau.
MUSIC COMMITTEE: Our main goal is to oversee and enhance the worship experience through music, and to provide music as a method of evangelism for both the congregation and the larger community. We stand as a living example of our Moravian heritage with a variety of innovative musical offerings. For more information, please contact Llyena Boylan.
NOMINATING COMMITTEE: The Nominating Committee is responsible for preparing a slate of nominees to be presented for election at the annual Church Council, including Elders, Trustees; representatives to various committees; Bethlehem Area Moravians (BAM) Board; and delegates to Synods. The Nominating Committee receives suggestions from members and also considers the names of church members who have exhibited certain gifts and talents that would be useful in the greater work of the church. Please contact an Elder or a Trustee for more information, or if you have an individual to suggest for consideration.
PARENTS’ GROUP: The Parents’ Group, another option for adult Christian education, meets on Sunday mornings at 10 a.m. in the C.E. building’s Parlor. It is an informal gathering for fellowship and conversation, and open to parents of children of all ages. Please contact Mary Shields for more information.
PEANUT MAKERS: Peanut Makers began in 1969 as a fundraising project for a fellowship circle and, since then, they have roasted over 23,000 lbs of peanuts and 26,000 lbs. of cashews, with profits distributed to many church-related projects. For cooking schedule or to place an order, please call Jean Jackson.
PRAYER MINISTRY: The Prayer Ministry responds to the needs of individuals and concerns through intercessory prayer. We utilize both telephone and e-mail prayer chains to pass along information from someone requesting prayers. If you would like to be included in the prayer chain, or are seeking prayers for yourself or a loved one, please contact the church office.
PULPIT FLOWER COMMITTEE: Each Sunday after services, members of this committee divide the flowers from the Old Chapel and Sanctuary for delivery to members, friends and neighbors who are hospitalized, in nursing homes, homebound, etc. If you would like to help deliver or make bouquets or if you know of someone who would benefit from the flowers, please contact Cheryl Tubio or look for her in the Sacristy (east end of the Sanctuary) after church.
PUTZ: A cherished tradition since 1937, the Putz retells the story of Christ’s birth through narration and music, with lights illuminating each miniature scene. Central operates the Putz from the day after Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve with many volunteers needed to help greet visitors and host the putz during shifts Thursday - Sunday. We also need volunteers to help us gather the moss in early November and to construct the Putz before Thanksgiving, and those with technical skills of sounds, lighting, etc. Please contact Will Schwab for more information.
SACRISTANS: The Sacristans, a corps of men and women, help prepare the sanctuary for worship, assist members and visitors as they enter and exit the church, help with the administration of sacraments, decorate the church for special holidays, serve Lovefeast, distribute candles at Christmas Eve services, and assist at other special services as needed (such as weddings). For more information, you may contact Tim Brady, Beth Boyer or Ann Raines.
SOCIAL ACTION COMMITTEE: The Social Action Committee meets to engage the congregation in issues of justice and advocacy, poverty and hunger assistance, and education around a variety of timely topics, such as environmental awareness. We continue to work with our church partners (Food Pantry, Cynthia's Boutique, Women's Shelter, Refugee Resettlement Committee, Fair Trade coffee Project, etc.) as well as community partners (New Bethany, Victory House, Bread for the World, Crop Walk, etc.) to carry out this ministry. For more information, please contact Joan Carson or Janice Ostock.
STAR & CANDLE SHOPPE: The Star & Candle Shoppe is a Christmas season retail shop located in the lower level of the C.E. building. The Shoppe sells folded Moravian stars, beeswax candles, and crafts from about a dozen vendors. Revenue from the Star & Candle Shoppe is used to support ongoing local and international projects, such as the Christopher Scott Seifert Fund for Christian Education. The Shoppe is open during Putz hours (Thanksgiving Friday - New Year’s Eve) and we always welcome volunteers! Contact Shelly Watson for more details.
STEWARDSHIP COMMITTEE: In the fall, the committee organizes a stewardship campaign to encourage members to pledge their spiritual and financial support to Central Church. The committee works with other committees, especially the Budget & Finance Committee, to develop realistic envelope-giving goals and effective ways to present our message such as through newsletter articles. For more information, please contact Sharon Upton.
TWENTY MINUTE SOCIETY: The Twenty Minute Society was founded in 1894 as a secret group of 20 women who gathered to sew clothing & bed linens for Moravian ministers and their families and Moravian missionaries. Group members were (and remain to this day) anonymous in order to respect the privacy of donors and recipients. Sewing is no longer part of the meeting agenda; instead the group’s contributions are financial in nature. While the Society‘s primary purpose is to help Moravians (ministers, Seminary students and members) in need, it does, on occasion, contribute to other needy causes, such as church-related disaster relief and mission projects.
USHERS: The ushers are men and women (including young men & women from middle school and senior high) who assist with taking the collection during Church and Chapel services. During the Christmas season, some of the ushers act as fire watchers for candle services. This is a volunteer group, and we welcome newcomers! Please contact the church office for more information.