The vast parking lot was beginning to fill up when we arrived. As we made our way into the sanctuary, the word “Grandiose” came to mind. There was a conglomeration of instruments including a gorgeous grand piano, an organ, and a flute accompanying a moderate sized choir. It made me pause for a moment in the entrance way just so I could take it all in. There was such reverence and skill displayed as they gave their very best offering of worship to the Lord, playing a mix of contemporary and traditional songs.
Founded in 1945, East Glenville Community Church is a member (since 1965) of the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference (www.ccccusa.com). The congregation is diverse in age, ethnicities and backgrounds. They are committed to the basic truths of the Word, but allow for differences on the more “minor” topics. This allows for UNITY and helps prevent unnecessary divisions. One such area that has tended to divide Christians is the area of baptism, and this morning they were having an infant baptism and Pastor Brad explained how EGCC allows for diversity in this ordinance.
It was the first day of Advent and the Christmas season was in full swing. The song “Emmanuel” set the tone for the advent candle lighting and the entire service. During the announcements, it was exciting to hear about their upcoming living nativity. I ended up returning on Thursday night to attend this, and it was simply marvelous. Live sheep, goats, donkeys and an amazing cast of people who made the birth of Jesus really come to life. This was followed by a time of Christmas carols and an array of desserts. The best part was I got to sit and talk with Pastor Brad Bradford, who graciously took the time to meet with me. It was exciting to hear his heart and passion to serve the people at EGCC.
Special music is a great part of the Sunday service here. This is something not seen often in our church journeys. It was such a blessing to hear an instrumental piece … a flute solo accompanied with the grand piano. Also, during the offering, a young woman sang and played the piano beautifully as we worshiped God with our giving. Pastor Brad encouraged us to give, reminding everyone that God does not love us any more or less based on our giving.
Pastor Brad’s message was entitled “Song of a Faithful Heart”, based on Luke 1:11-20; 57-64. Waiting is bearable when we know something will happen. But what how can we sing a faithful song when feel like we are on the edge of hopelessness? Just like the angel appearing to Mary in the Scriptures, God often shows up when we least expect it … in His perfecting timing. We need to be patient and trust that God hears and sees our condition. God is doing something in our lives while we are waiting. The God who knows the number of hairs on your head ALWAYS keeps His promises. We can expect His presence in our lives. Just ask Him to show you and HE will!
East Glenville Community Church has so many ways to serve our Lord including a drama team, an orchestra team, media team, sound team, worship team, worship choir and a chime choir. I especially loved hearing about their “Praise Gang”, a children’s choir for Kindergarten up to and including 8th grade. The Praise Gang has monthly opportunities to participate in the Sunday morning worship service, as well as other special musical events.
EGCC knows the importance of missions and outreach. They partner with several mission agencies and also send out their own people. Some of their affiliations include City Mission of Schenectady, Mekeel Christian School and Capital District Youth for Christ. They also have their very own Christian preschool. ECGG offers transportation to their services and have volunteers assist with providing meals for families with illnesses or other special circumstances. Once a month they serve meals and offer worship services at the City Mission of Schenectady, and approximately 4-5 times a year, they have Sunday afternoon worship at the Baptist Health Nursing Center.
There is so much more at East Glenville Community Church than I could pen in this blog. Visit their informative website to find out more. Or better yet, stop in to visit them for a Sunday morning service. Be prepared to pause as you enter the sanctuary just to take it all in. Selah!
Church Website – www.egcchurch.org
By Donna Hansen Munafo