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Cape Elizabeth
United Methodist Church
280 Ocean House Road
Cape Elizabeth, ME 04107



Pastor: Ruth Morrison

Sunday Worship
8 a.m. in the small chapel

10 a.m. in the sanctuary
(with child care
and Sunday School)

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Upcoming events 2016

Sunday, Oct. 9: Adult Education class discussions on Pope Francis' book "The Holy Year of Mercy", 9 a.m. in the Sunshine Room, led by Jim Young and Jack Mitchell.

Tuesday, Oct. 11: Prayer Gathering in the chapel, a time of individual and group prayers. Open to the public, 10 a.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 11: Judy's Pantry, 3-5 p.m. in the Sunshine Room

Sunday, Oct. 16: Adult Education class discussions on Pope Francis' book "The Holy Year of Mercy", 9 a.m. in the Sunshine Room, led by Jim Young and Jack Mitchell.

Tuesday, Oct. 18: Prayer Gathering in the chapel, a time of individual and group prayers. Open to the public, 10 a.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 18: Judy's Pantry, 3-5 p.m. in the Sunshine Room

Sunday, Oct. 23: Adult Education class discussions on Pope Francis' book "The Holy Year of Mercy", 9 a.m. in the Sunshine Room, led by Jim Young and Jack Mitchell.

Tuesday, Oct. 25: Prayer Gathering in the chapel, a time of individual and group prayers. Open to the public, 10 a.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 25: Judy's Pantry, 3-5 p.m. in the Sunshine Room

Sunday, Oct. 30: Adult Education class discussions on Pope Francis' book "The Holy Year of Mercy", 9 a.m. in the Sunshine Room, led by Jim Young and Jack Mitchell.

Sunday, Oct. 30: Harvest Song, a musical event for the community at the historic Spurwink Church, 2 p.m. The event is sponsored by our church and will include a traditional Hymn Sing, vocal and instrumental performances and a talk on the history of the Spurwink Church. Seating is limited, so come early. A goodwill offering will be taken for Judy's Pantry.

Tuesday, Nov. 1: Prayer Gathering in the chapel, a time of individual and group prayers. Open to the public, 10 a.m.

Tuesday, Nov. 1: Judy's Pantry, 3-5 p.m. in the Sunshine Room

Saturday, Nov. 5: Public Supper at the church, 4:30-6 p.m. Casseroles, beans, breads, salads and pies.


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Harvest Song

October 7th, 2016, by Ted Haider


Inspirational afternoon of music

Join us on Sunday, Oct. 30 at 2 p.m. for Harvest Song, an afternoon of fellowship with the community through the inspiration of music. This special event, hosted by our church, will be held at the historic Spurwink Church on Route 77.

Seating is limited, so please plan to arrive early.

The Spurwink Church gathering will include a traditional Hymn Sing along with vocal and instrumental performances. Steve Hill will provide a history of the Spurwink Church while asking those in attendance to share their own memories of events in the church.

The public is invited to join us. Invite family and friends!

A goodwill offering will be taken for Judy’s Pantry. A member of the congregation donated money to pay for rental fees at the church, so all money collected during the offering will go directly to Judy’s Pantry, which supports 30-35 families in Cape Elizabeth each week with fresh produce and an assortment of non-perishable items.


Animal Blessing

October 6th, 2016, by Ted Haider


Ruth’s Animal Farewell

The Rev. Ruth Morrison performed her final Blessing of the Animals on Oct. 2, honoring the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi. Ruth will be retiring in June.

Thank you to Mark Braun for providing this wonderful collection of photos from the blessing, held in the church’s Outdoor Chapel.


Ruth started her annual blessing of the animals in 2005 for the Cape Elizabeth United Methodist Church. But her animal blessings date back to the 1980s when she combined the blessing with Rogation Sunday at the Goodwins Mills United Methodist Church. Rogation Sunday was an annual blessing of farm fields and crops.


The Goodwins Mills blessing included dogs, cats, gerbils, cockatiels, parakeets and chickens inside the church and cows and horses looking in from the outside.


The Cape Elizabeth blessings have largely been for dogs. But for the past three years, Church Treasurer Jim Tammaro has kept the mix of animals lively by bringing Sugar the goat. This year, Sugar even decided to participate by standing on benches intended for use by humans.



This year’s blessing was the first event held in the Outdoor Chapel since its renovation in September as an Eagle Scout project by Preston Stewart.


Click here for more images of the Animal Blessing Continue reading »

Eagle Scout Project

September 30th, 2016, by Ted Haider

The Rev. Ruth Morrison and Preston Stewart stand in the renovated Outdoor Chapel with (left to right) Scout Master AJ Di Ninno, Eagle Scout Peter Di Ninno, Tim Stewart (Preston’s father) and Scout Thomas Rodda.

Thank you, Preston and Troop 30

It didn’t go exactly to his meticulous plans, but Preston Stewart’s Eagle Scout Leadership Project is complete and now the church and Cape Elizabeth community will benefit from his diligence.

A renovation of the church’s Outdoor Chapel was Preston’s project. Over two weekends in September,  the chapel went from a scene of disrepair and over-growth to one that is now welcoming to anyone who wants to worship in a serene setting or just to reflect among the natural sounds of Robinson Woods.


Preston goes over his plans with Troop 30 Scout Master AJ Di Ninno

The project, with the help of scouts and leaders from Cape Elizabeth’s Troop 30, included the spreading of mulch over new landscaping fabric, the reconstruction of benches — using stumps from a tree recently cut down at the back of the church parking lot — and the construction of a pulpit at the front of the chapel.


A bird bath sits at the rear of the Outdoor Chapel and a new pulpit at the front

“I picked the project because the church is a community, one I’m part of, one I’m familiar with,” Preston said. “I knew that the church’s congregation would be really excited about the outdoor sanctuary being renovated.”


The mulch for the Outdoor Chapel floor was donated by L P Murray and Sons and the landscaping fabric was donated by Lowe’s. The lumber for the benches and pulpit was sold to Preston by Rufus Deering Lumber at a discount rate.


Because of the shape and size of the landscaping fabric, Preston had to alter his original plan to make everything fit.

“We figured it would be easier to arrange the fabric in a rectangular shape rather than cutting it in an oval shape,” Preston said. “Once the rectangle was cut out, I decided to angle the benches on one side of the trail to give a better view of the podium. Although it didn’t match my original plan, I couldn’t be happier about the final product.”


One page of Preston’s detailed plans for the renovation of the Outdoor Chapel

The original Outdoor Chapel was constructed in 1994 as John Hoskins’ Eagle Scout project and then renovated for a first time in 2005 for an Eagle Scout project by Matt Braun.


The Outdoor Chapel will be used for a first time during the Oct. 2 Animal Blessing by the Rev. Ruth Morrison. It will be used again on Oct. 15 for the outdoor wedding of Nancy Ricker’s granddaughter.


The Outdoor Chapel is essentially complete, but another coat of sealer will be brushed on the benches after the Animal Blessing and wedding.


Thank you to all the church members who contributed sandwiches, chips and drinks for lunches for Preston and his fellow scouts and Troop 30 leaders over the two weekends of renovating the Outdoor Chapel.

Scroll down to the Sept. 22 Facebook posting for more details on how Preston’s Outdoor Chapel project began.

Classical Concert

September 26th, 2016, by Ted Haider

Mark Braun (right) with Duo Terlano — Johannes Dietrich and Marie-Aline Cadieux

Evening of soothing delight

The husband-wife team of Duo Terlano graciously performed a free concert in the church’s sanctuary on Sept. 24, filling the evening with the refined tones of violin and cello and an education of how classical works can be so masterfully performed.

Both college professors of music, Johannes Dietrich and Marie-Aline Cadieux stopped in Cape Elizabeth for the performance as a favor to our church’s Mark Braun. Marie-Aline is the daughter of Mark’s first piano teacher when he was in the fourth grade in Minneapolis. Mark and Marie-Aline only got in touch for the first time earlier this year and the afternoon before Saturday’s performance was the first time they had met.


The stop in Cape Elizabeth was part of a busy trip up the East Coast for Johannes and Marie-Aline. They performed before elementary school students in Newark, New Jersey on Thursday and performed again before students on Friday in Laconia, New Hampshire. After the performance at our church, they were on their way to a Sunday concert at a church in Camden, Maine.


For the concert at our church, they performed eight pieces from the Baroque, Classical and Romantic periods. But just as rewarding, they took the time to provide explanations of how each piece was to be played, a little background on the composer and even how different bows can produce entirely different sounds.


During introductions, Mark explained his newfound relationship with Johannes and Marie-Aline and Marie responded by saying, “I’m an only child and it now feels as if I have a brother.”


The group’s name, Duo Terlano, comes from the northern Italian town in which Johannes and Marie-Aline celebrated their first wedding anniversary. They live in Pennsylvania.

Johannes is the Newton and Adelaide Burgner Professor in Instrumental Music at Lebanon Valley College and he teaches conducting, string methods, applied violin and viola, and coaches chamber music ensembles. He also directs the college’s symphony orchestra.

Marie-Aline is a Professor of Music at Kutztown University and performs regularly as a member of Duo Terlano, the Allentown, Pa.-based chamber ensemble SATORI, and in her own recitals. Both Johannes and Marie-Aline have performed across the United States and in Europe.


Thank you to Duo Terlano for such a wonderful performance and to Mark for making the connection that brought them to our church.


Remodeling outdoor chapel

September 22nd, 2016, by Ted Haider

Preston Stewart (left) works with one of the Scout leaders on transporting a tree stump to the Outdoor Chapel to be used for constructing a bench.

Preston Stewart’s Eagle Scout project

Work is under way on Preston Stewart’s Eagle Scout Leadership project to remodel the Outdoor Chapel. Last weekend, Preston and fellow scouts and friends from Troop 30 cleaned up the grounds, spread a tarp barrier and then spread mulch to cover the entire area.


Work will continue this weekend with new benches and a pulpit being constructed. The bases of the benches will be stumps from a tree recently cut down at the back of the church parking lot.


The project will be finished for the Oct. 2 Animal Blessing and for the outdoor marriage of Nancy Ricker’s granddaughter on Oct. 15.


Matt Braun (right) speaks with Scout leaders from Troop 30.

The Outdoor Chapel was created in 1994 as John Hoskins’ Eagle Scout project. It was remodeled for a first time in 2005 as Matt Braun’s Eagle Scout project.


Thank you to members of the church who made sandwiches for the scouts while they worked on the Outdoor Chapel.




It was not all work for everyone.

Welcome Back Sunday

September 9th, 2016, by Ted Haider


Join us on Sept. 11

Sunday, Sept. 11 will be Welcome Back Sunday at our church with the return of the choir from its summer break, the beginning of Sunday School, and the start of a new series for the Adult Education class.

Services will be held at 8 a.m. in the chapel and 10 a.m. in the sanctuary. The Adult Education class will take place at 9 a.m. in the Sunshine Room and Sunday School will take place during the 10 a.m. service.

The Adult Education class, led by the Rev. Jim Young and Jack Mitchell, will focus on Pope Francis’ book, “Year of Mercy.” The Sept. 11 discussion will be the first of eight sessions looking at the pope’s book. All classes will take place on Sundays at 9 a.m. and are open to the public.

During the Sept. 11 10 a.m. service, there will be a slide presentation of photos taken by church members, looking back at what everyone did over the summer.

And when you enter the church, please pick up and wear your name tag — the Hospitality Team as redone the name tags with clips instead of pins, making it easier to identify who we are.

Please join us on Sept. 11.


Lou Lou’s Day Care

September 2nd, 2016, by Ted Haider


Church’s new tenant open for business

Lou Lou’s Day Care opened its doors for business on Thursday, Sept. 1 with eight young children under the supervision of Laura Fourre.

Lou Lou’s replaced the World of Wonders Nursery School, which closed in June.

Lou Lou’s is run by Laura and her husband Joe.

If you are in the church during the week, stop in and say hello.

Judy’s Pantry

September 2nd, 2016, by Ted Haider


Fruitful times in the Sunshine Room

With the height of the fresh produce season and a band of volunteers to process and display it all, Judy’s Pantry is enjoying its final weeks of summer.


So far this season, the Pantry has received 1,860 pounds of produce from Cape Elizabeth farms, community gardens and local residents.


The Pantry is serving 44 households with about 20-25 coming each week. Coordinator Nancy Miles recently was told by one of the Pantry’s visitors how much better he has felt this summer with meals prepared with produce from the Pantry.


The Pantry has moved its storage of products from the lower floor of the parsonage to the back classroom behind the Narthex. The space became available when the World of Wonders Nursery School closed in June and the new tenant, Lou Lou’s Day Care, didn’t need the third room WOW had used.


Also in the Pantry’s new storage area is a refrigerator/freezer to store perishable items. The refrigerator was purchased recently with money given in the name of Nancy Johnson.


Even with the fresh produce it receives from farms and the non-perishable items it receives bimonthly from Wayside, the Pantry still needs our help with donations of non-perishable items, such as soups, peanut butter, tuna fish, pasta and pasta sauce, cereal and canned fruits. Leave your donations in the shopping cart in the Narthex or in the back hall near the chapel.

Thank you!



Special recognition

August 10th, 2016, by Ted Haider

matt aWARD

National award for Matt Braun

Congratulations to our church’s Matt Braun who over the weekend was presented the National Leadership Conference’s Young People in Recovery Advocate award. The presentation took place at the conference’s national gathering in Denver.

The award included $1,000 from which Matt will donate $500 to a not-for-profit organization.

The national Young People in Recovery program is a “grassroots organization focused on person-to-person service for young people in, or seeking, recovery” from drug or alcohol addiction.

The award was presented in honor of Charlie Mayr, who was the chief communications officer for Actavis Generics, a partner with Young People in Recovery. Mayr passed away in January at the age of 59 after an inspirational battle with cancer. The award stated “Charlie’s legacy and passion was always leaving people, organizations and the world he touched in a much better place than he found it.”

The award Matt received was based on an individual “demonstrating exceptional personal commitment, dedication and passion for advancing themselves — whether in their own recovery, advancing Young People in Recovery, or any other pursuit.

The winner of the award was selected by Charlie Mayr’s three children based on “who they felt best represented Charlie’s spirit.

Congratulations, Matt, for being that person.

Members of our church and others in the Casco Bay Cluster of United Methodist churches heard Matt’s emotional and inspirational story of his 6 1/2-year recovery from addiction during a Lenten service in March at the Thornton Heights UMC.




Church Picnic

August 3rd, 2016, by Ted Haider


Perfect evening at Higgins Beach

Thank you to Jack and Boodie Mitchell for hosting a church picnic at their summer home at Higgins Beach. The weather was perfect and the food and fellowship made for a delightful evening, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean from Jack and Boodie’s little slice of heaven on earth.