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"After Sunday worship I feel refreshed and ready to start a new week. Worship calms me and makes me want to be a more giving and forgiving person."


 "I am here to share my soul, body, and mind with our bigger family who shares our worship to God and the entire universe.  This is my worship experience at church."


Worship at FCC Essex follows a traditional liturgy, but God still speaks to the world today from these ancient words and rituals as if they were new.  Music and spirit and art and words and silence center us and inform us.  Our style of worship brings comfort, soothes the spirit, challenges the mind, strengthens our love of each other, and empowers us for doing good in the world.

We share our church home with Ivoryton Congregational Church.  In the summer, both congregations worship together at 9:00 on Sunday.

Other special services of worship are celebrated throughout the year during Advent (Christmas) and Lent, as well as ecumenical events with other churches in Essex and within the UCC.




August 19, 2018

Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time



1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14

Psalm 111 or
Ephesians 5:15-20
John 6:51-58

Reflection On 2 Samuel 11:26-12:13a

Most people, if asked about Israel's famous king, Solomon, will remember him for his wisdom, a gift God gave him after he asked not for riches or wealth or long life but for help with governing the people wisely and well. Of course, God was so pleased with his request that Solomon received all the other things, too, a happy turn of events for the new king.

As a young man ("I am only a child"--probably about 20 years old, according to The Oxford Annotated Bible), Solomon must have felt overwhelmed by both his sudden power and his weighty responsibilities. His success gave him pause rather than moving him to exultation. His father David, the greatest of Israel's kings (there's a lot to live up to!), had placed him on the throne rather than his brother Adonijah, the "rightful" heir.

A number of enemies also had to be eliminated to establish Solomon's firm grip on the monarchy, and ultimately, a peaceful kingdom. In fact, today's passage is a golden moment in an otherwise bloody and certainly instructive narrative of infidelity, violence, and sin. The path to the throne wasn't pretty for Solomon, and it was far from Israel's finest moment.

Read the scriptures and this entire reflection here.