Month: December 2022

Christmas Eve at Derry Church


2:30 pm: Worship includes Lessons and Carols and communion, with holiday music presented by the Derry Brass. Arrive early to enjoy their Christmas carol prelude beginning at 2:15 pm.

5:00 pm: A candlelight service of Lessons and Carols featuring participation by children and music for the entire family to enjoy. 

7:30 pm: A traditional Christmas Eve candlelight service of Lessons and Carols, with music presented by the Derry Ringers handbell choir and the Sanctuary Choir. Prelude and live stream begin at 7:15 pm. 

Click here to view and download the Christmas Eve bulletin

Click here to join the 5 pm live stream

Click here to join the 7:30 pm live stream

Child care available at 5 pm and 7:30 pm. The lounge adjacent to the Sanctuary offers a candle-free worship zone and a space where young families can move about freely.

On Sunday, Dec 25 worship at 10:30 am in the Sanctuary or live stream. The prelude is a Christmas carol sing that begins at 10:20 am. Enjoy Christmas breakfast cooked by Charlie Koch and friends from 9-10:30 am in Fellowship Hall: your donation benefits mission trips in 2023. 

Dec 2022 Financial Snapshot

Cash Flow – Operating Fund as of 11/30/22

      ACTUAL        BUDGETED
Income YTD:     $1,191,212       $1,145,833
Expenses YTD:        1,023,500         1,186,110
Surplus/(Deficit) YTD:           167,712           (40,277)

Notes from the treasurer:

  • Contributions are about $74K ahead of 2021 and $40K ahead of estimated contributions through November.
  • Building and grounds is about $46K below budget. We do expect to roll some of this into 2023.
  • Some personnel expenses are backloaded.

Derry Church Piano Committee Recommendation and Invitation

Recently a committee was created to consider if Derry Church needs a new piano for the Sanctuary to better support worship services and music programs. The committee is chaired by Dick Hann and includes Janice Click Holl, Mary Lemons, Dan Dorty, Greg Taylor, Bruce McKinney, and Randy Aires.

Our current Sanctuary piano, a 6 foot 7 inch Yamaha, was generously donated by Margaret Bachman in 2006. It is a good piano that was designed for a living room and not a space the size of our Sanctuary.  If we decide to move forward with a new piano, the Yamaha will be moved to the Chapel where it will really shine in that intimate space.

The committee looked at several options (new and used) and after visiting a Steinway store in November with Shelly Moorman-Stahlman and world renowned pianist Ruth Slenczynska, they unanimously recommended a 2019 Model D Steinway. This 9-foot instrument is designed for use in a larger space and will provide a fuller sound to better support congregational singing, choral anthems, soloists and musical performances. Click here to learn more.

This piano is a unique a first-class instrument. It will be one of, if not the, best piano in central Pennsylvania churches and concert halls. It’s a piano that will attract top musicians for Arts Alive concerts and more.

The committee recommends that the piano, if purchased, be dedicated as the Lee Ann Taylor Memorial Piano. Lee Ann was passionate about music, especially piano, and greatly contributed to music at Derry as an accompanist, bell ringer, and volunteer choir director.

A final decision to purchase the piano has not been made. We have the opportunity to try the new piano in our Sanctuary and to hear feedback from the congregation. At the 10:30 am service on Sunday, Jan 8 you’ll see two pianos on the chancel: our Yamaha and the new Steinway. We’ll sing hymns using both pianos so we can determine the difference between the two, and hear the pianos for preludes, a postlude, and accompanying Amy Yovanovich for anthems.

Come back at 4 pm Sunday, Jan 8 for a recital by Dan Stokes, Dan Dorty, Mary Lemons, and others as they play a range of musical styles and give the piano a workout. Your feedback is welcome and appreciated. Should the way be clear to proceed with the purchase, a fundraising campaign will begin with the goal of raising the total purchase cost of $150,000.

If you have questions about the Steinway, or why it is being recommended, please reach out to Dan Dorty or Dick Hann.

Thank You for Gifts to PW’s Thank Offering!

THANK YOU to all who supported this year’s Thank Offering of $2,688! Derry Church’s Presbyterian Women thanks you for your gifts. 

On Christmas Day, take a moment to remember and pray for all the females who are victims of exploitation locally, statewide, nationally as well as internationally. The 25th of every month is Orange Day, and an orange ribbon will make a great accent to your red and green attire on Christmas.

Epiphany is Coming… and so are Star Gifts!

Come to church at 10:30 am on Epiphany Sunday, Jan 1 to worship and to choose a star gift for 2023! Baskets of stars will be at the Chapel and Sanctuary entrances. Choose a star gift and reflect on that word for the coming year. Take it home and hang it up where you can see it every day. Ponder what significance this word might have in your life, and how God might be speaking to you through that simple message.

Blood Drive Report

The Central Pennsylvania Blood Bank reports these figures from Derry’s blood drive on Sunday, Dec 11: 

  • 36 people registered to donate.
  • 30 units of blood were collected: these are great percentages!
  • Derry Church donors helped to save up to 90 lives

Thanks to everyone who participated in some way to make the blood drive a success.

Congregational Meeting on Jan 1

The Session has called a special congregational meeting for Sunday, January 1, 2023 following the 10:30 am worship service to elect Jennifer Toth Reed as a Deacon, Class of 2025. She has been nominated to fill the position vacated by Bill McGregor.

Worship at Country Meadows


Pastor Stephen will lead worship with communion, prayers, and a meditation. A time for fellowship follows the service.

Thank You, Cookie Bakers and Helpers!

Thanks to everyone who made the 2022 Cookie Walk and Jumbles Shop such a success: bakers, people setting up, selling and cleaning up, and all those who purchased cookies.

Bakers, pick up your cookie containers on the shelf above the coat rack in the Narthex through Sunday, Dec 18. Any remaining containers will be donated to Jubilee Ministries.

Ice Cream Gift Cards are Perfect for Gift-Giving — and Supporting Our Preschool!

Looking for that perfect stocking stuffer, teacher gift or coach thank-you? Consider Fox Meadows Creamery Gift Cards! Your purchase of gift cards in any amount will benefit Derry Discovery Days Preschool.

Fox Meadows Creamery in Ephrata offers farm fresh ice cream and dairy treats as well as delicious lunch items. It has won Best Ice Cream of Lancaster for many years. Discovery Days will earn 25% of all gift card sales now through Dec 15.

To purchase gift cards, send Laura Cox an email that includes how many gift cards and their dollar value. Make checks payable to Derry Presbyterian Church notated “Creamery Gift Cards” and return to Laura Cox’s mailbox by Thursday, Dec 15. Your gift cards will be available for pick up later that week at the church.

GriefShare Support Group Begins


GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who walk alongside people through one of life’s most difficult experiences, offering support to those who are dealing with the loss of a loved ones from death.

Each GriefShare session is organized in two parts. During the first 30-40 minutes of the meeting, the group views a video seminar featuring top experts on grief and recovery subjects. These videos are produced in an interesting-to-watch television magazine format featuring expert interviews, real-life case studies, dramatic reenactments and on-location video. Following the video, participants spend time discussing what was presented on that week’s video seminar and what is going on in each other’s lives.

This session continues weekly through April 5. Those interested may begin attending the GriefShare group at any time. Each session is self-contained, and any missed weeks can be joined when the next 13-week cycle is offered.

Register by contacting the church office (717-533-9667). No cost to attend. Child care is not available.

Join a Mission Trip to the Dominican Republic in June 2023

Make your plans now to join Derry members and friends from June 10-18, 2023, as they return to the Dominican Republic with Bridges to Community to build a new home and to do Bible school activities. Those aged 14 or 15 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian.

All participants are advised to be fully vaccinated prior to the trip. Cost of the trip is $1,500. An application, obtained at, and full payment to Derry are due by March 5, 2023. Oak Fund grants to cover up to half the cost are available.

Sign up on the Mission and Peace bulletin board in the Narthex near the nursery. For more information, contact Pete Feil (717-566-8250).