News

Newsletter – Spring 2022

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… We’re Back!!!

I want to thank everyone who participated in our Zoom Annual Meeting. After thoughtful discussion, the members in attendance voted to reopen our church to in person services on April 10th, Palm Sunday. There are going to be safety parameters in place to do our due diligence in keeping people as safe as possible. See separate reopening letter which is part of this mailing.

I talked in the annual President’s Message about rebuilding “community” within the church. 75 years ago, our founding members knew how to create community, which they did so beautifully and which we inherited when we became the caretakers of our church family. The welcoming atmosphere in our building could be felt by anyone who entered. After 2 years of being apart, we are faced with the task of rebuilding that energy in a new way. We will need each and every person not only in our membership but also in our circle of friends and supporters to remember the time when they first walked through the doors and felt the healing, the sense of family and understanding they felt when they arrived. Our philosophy about energy and mission to be of service to others is palpable! We need everyone to be those human faces of the energy we share with others. We share our spiritual gifts, we share our understanding of our relationship with Divine Source, all as we share our time with each other. We have been through a time which forced us to turn away from others and focus on “What do I need to do for me?” How can we get back to “What can I do to serve others?” The first ingredient is show up. We can listen. Some families have suffered unspeakable losses of family members, job situations– life as they knew it. We can lend our healing energy. Every person is like an instrument in an orchestra, creating the sounds of one-ness with each other and our God Source. Please be a part of our rebuilding! We have the love and support of generations of members who have graduated to the Spirit side of life and who are cheering us on as we reopen. It’s up to us now to be their hands and their voices in this rebuilding process.

A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds. I can’t say enough about the generosity of those who understand our church has had ongoing expenses to cover as we waited for the right time for reopening as safely as possible. To those “Good Stewards” I express my sincere gratitude.

If any members have an interest in helping with the quarterly release of the email edition of our newsletter and related information, please let me know and I will share it with David Byrd-Fournier who is currently the volunteer for this job. We need someone to assist him with this task. Many hands make light work! Thank you!!

Namaste.

OUR REOPENING WISH LIST If anyone would care to help us prepare for reopening, we’d appreciate donations of Microban Sanitizing Spray, hand sanitizer, N95 masks, disposable gloves (latex or latex free) or anything else you think may help us keep a safe environment inside our church, we would be so very appreciative.

REOPENING CLEANING DAY We are scheduling a cleaning day for Saturday, April 2nd at 11 AM. N 95 masks will be required. We will be cleaning and preparing the church for our reopening on April 10th. Come help get everything “spiffed up” for our church’s “family reunion” (so to speak) as we get back to our weekly service!

OUR HOURS FOR SPRING QUARTER As we reopen on April 10th, we will be on our WINTER services schedule, which is 2 PM Healing Service, 2:30 PM Worship Service. The following Sunday is our Easter Service, which we hold at 10:30 AM only. April 24th is also on the WINTER schedule for services. In May, we move to our SUMMER services schedule. That schedule is 6:30 PM Healing Service, 7:00 PM Worship Service. These service times continue to the end of September.

IN PERSON MEETINGS ARE BACK AT THE CHURCH In May we have an in-person Board Meeting on Sunday May 1st at 5 PM before the Healing Service at 6:30 PM. Our May Membership Meeting will be held at 5 PM on the 22nd.

LOOKING FOR A RECOMMENDATION FOR A CPA The church is still looking for a CPA or Bookkeeper to assist our Treasurer with our annual reporting and ledger review duties. If you have a recommendation, contact Rev. Laura, Treasurer Shawn Steive or any other Board member.

OUR AMENDED BYLAWS ARE AVAILABLE TO MEMBERS IN GOOD STANDING At our Annual Meeting, the amendments to the Bylaws needed to recognize our Divine Studies Program and types of Membership related to Seminarians were ratified. A copy of our most current Bylaws is always posted on the bulletin board outside the office. All Members in Good Standing are entitled to have a personal copy. Please ask any Board member for a copy if you would like to have one. It’s not too late to pay your 2022 dues and be reinstated as a Member in Good Standing if you so desire. Again, see any Board member. Dues for the year are still $15.00.

DIVINE STUDIES CERTIFICATION PROGRAMS ARE UP AND RUNNING A reminder that we have begun classes and have open enrollment for our certification programs! A milestone for our church! If you would like a handbook for the classes and programs please email our Registrar, Rev. Sandra Spyker. Her email is sjsteger1@cs.com You can also email Rev. Laura at percheronhitch6@yahoo.com Our programs include Minister, Celebrant Minister (for those more interested in a Ministry outside of the church setting) Energy Worker (Healing modalities), Teacher and Mediumship. The first year, all students have 10 required “Core Classes” or Basic Unfoldment classes. We are also accepting Ordination by Sanction/transfer of certificate applications. All of this can be discussed with Rev Spyker. This might be the perfect opportunity to begin working on your path to getting the education you need for certifications from our church. We will need certified workers for the continued success of our mission to serve our community with a metaphysically based philosophy, including sharing of our spiritual gifts of healing, mediumship, teaching and preaching. We also accept Retreat students who simply wish to take Seminary level classes for their own enjoyment. These classes are intensive! They are in depth, serious classes to prepare students for the Ministry in whatever form you wish it to take. Long ago, one of our founders said “We must hit them with the same stick they hit us with!” What does that mean? Back then (in the 40’s) other denominations used to dismiss our church and its workers as not well educated about religion as a whole and therefore not properly trained! The “stick” was education! Knowing our stuff and being able to hold our own in conversations about the Bible, its interpretation as well as the principles and demonstration of healing and mediumship. This is exactly that.

WHAT IS AVAILABLE EVERY WEEK? We are, of course, still providing weekly written sermons on line on our web site and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting points for the week) on the church Facebook page leading up to our reopening on April 10th. Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information regarding any other aspects of re-opening. You can also always call or email Rev. Laura or any Board member. We are not restarting Psychic Saturdays at this point; we will probably offer a readings event which can be done outside or in the Sanctuary with masking and open doors and windows as the weather improves. Stay tuned.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling. In our church, that can mean two things. Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church. Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling when you feel you need a private half hour reading. Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service. Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see. Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or via video meet up. Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services. Ask about our flier outlining these services.

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister.

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com. To contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com Our email quarterly bulletins are now coming out on the church email account. Please add firstspiritualchurch@gmail.com to your contact list of you receive quarterly mailing via email.


Newsletter – Winter 2021

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… 

Who would have ever thought we would still be navigating the troubled waters Covid has brought to our world after all this time! But I am encouraged that the vaccination rate continues to rise as people make the personal decision to guard their lives and health as much as possible in that way. We are still working to visualize the church again open and holding the light for others, which has been our mission since 1947.

We just celebrated All Soul’s Day on Nov. 1st. That is the day we honor and send our love to everyone in the spirit side of life who we have loved and lost on the physical plane. One of those is our own Pat Caulfield. Godspeed to you, Pat, on your soul’s progression! So many families are sadly facing another holiday season with empty chairs at their tables. Not just on All Soul’s Day but any time you stop, take a breath and see them in your mind’s eye. You can send them your love and thanks for sharing this physical life with you. Thankfully, the beauty of our religion teaches us that love never dies. Our loved ones often send us signs, messages and dreams of their continued love and care for us who are left behind here on the material plane.

Every time I go to our church building, I can feel the same love and support from the generations of members who came before us. They are helping to hold the energy until we can return. I had a “sign” recently after a phone call from someone who wanted to talk about how much they missed being at church. In my email inbox was an unsolicited political ad from a candidate from another state named Dean Phillips! Most of you may remember Rev. Dean Phillips (who graduated to spirit many years ago) was a long time Pastor of our church and the first one I knew when I joined in the mid 80’s. I knew right away this was a nod and a wink that Rev. Dean was helping us “win” the battle to reopen safely. All of those who came before us have our backs!

Namaste.

CHURCH OPENING STATUS At the Zoom meeting of the membership on Oct. 18th the members present voted to remain closed due to continued the surge of the Covid Delta Variance and break through cases in Bay, Midland and Saginaw Counties. We will revisit in the Annual Membership Meeting held at 4 PM January 16th. for possible reopening The First weekend of February. Zoom meeting ID and password to be sent to all members in good standing prior to the meeting by 30 days. We will also hold our annual Board elections and discuss the proposed Bylaw revisions to reflect our new Seminary program. Remember your dues for 2022 ($15.00) must be paid to vote in the Annual Meeting. Dues can be sent to the church: 906 N. Chilson St. Bay City, MI. 49706 or to the Treasurer’s home: Shawn Steive, 412 Fillmore Pl. Bay City 48708. The church is made out to the First Spiritual Church of Bay City. THANK YOU for continuing to support your church as members! Our collective energy has accomplished many wonderful things through the years and now it is as important as ever to keep that energy going. It is a living, breathing current of pure love. Being apart is hard…lending our good energy to seeing us reopen is easy. If you are currently a Member in Good Standing, you will receive in this mailing a Zoom meeting invitation to the Annual Meeting in January. If you feel you should have gotten it but did not, contact Rev. Laura and you will get a copy.

WHAT’S THE ENERGY OF 2022? As we look ahead at the New Year, what is the new energy we will be stepping into? 2+0+2+2= 6. 6 energy is all about Duty, Responsibility, Service, Caretaking. We will be feeling the urge to step out of our self centric mindset that has been so much a part of the Covid cloud energetically hanging over our heads and once again get that nudge to help someone else. How can we be that helping hand for someone who is struggling with the “stuff” life has handed them? You can’t overlook the heavy emphasis the 2’s in the year 2022. This triple 2 energy dictates HOW we fulfill the urgings/promptings of a 6 year: through the feminine energy of love, bridge building, partnership with others and helping to calm the troubled waters of conflict between those around us. This is going to be such a change from the last two years! The isolation of the Covid months caused some of us to sort of forget how to bring people together and be of service, because everything going on around us screamed, “Keep your distance! Stay home!!” Now we have to strike a balance between the two concepts. One foot is resting in self care/protection, one is resting in the new 6 energy of duty, responsibility and service to others. This might be tricky to master…and time for regular meditation and prayer for guidance and insight as to how to find our way.

LOOKING FOR A RECOMMENDATION FOR A CPA The church is looking for a CPA someone knows and trusts to assist with our bookkeeping and 1099 tax reporting. If you have a recommendation, contact Rev. Laura on FB messaging or her email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com

MILESTONE DIVINE STUDIES CERTIFICATION PROGRAM IS UP AND RUNNING A reminder that we have begun classes and have open enrollment for our certification programs! A milestone for our church! If you would like a handbook for the classes and programs please email our Registrar, Rev. Sandra Spyker. Her email is sjsteger1@cs.com Our programs include Minister, Celebrant Minister (for those more interested in a Ministry outside of the church setting) Energy Worker (Healing modalities), Teacher and Mediumship. The first year, all students have 10 required “Core Classes” or Basic Unfoldment classes. We are also accepting Ordination by Sanction/transfer of certificate applications. All of this can be discussed with Rev Spyker. If you wish a Student Handbook for the programs, etc., email Rev. Laura at percheronhitch6@yahoo.com This might be the perfect opportunity to begin working on your own path to getting the education you need for certifications from our church. We will need certified workers for the continued success of our mission to serve our community with a metaphysically based philosophy, including sharing of our spiritual gifts of healing, mediumship, teaching and preaching. We also accept Retreat students who simply wish to take Seminary level classes for their own enjoyment. These classes are intensive! They are in depth, serious classes to prepare students for the Ministry in whatever form you wish it to take. Long ago, one of our founders said “We must hit them with the same stick they hit us with!” What does that mean? Back then (in the 40’s) other denominations used to dismiss our church and its workers as not well educated about religion as a whole and therefore not properly trained! The “stick” was education! Knowing our stuff and being able to hold our own in conversations about the Bible, its interpretation as well as the principles and demonstration of healing and mediumship. This is exactly that.

HELP WANTED When we do go back to in-person services, we will be needing some replacements for one of our veteran volunteers. Pat Caulfield, Hostess of our church, sadly passed away last summer after a courageous battle with cancer. Such tremendous shoes to fill! A big thank you to Starr Henning, who volunteered to head a Hostess Committee, but she will be needing help! Care to help out? Many hands make light work! This is a weekly position. While we may never replace her baked goods in any one person’s skill set, they are tasked with being sure church is stocked with TP, paper towel, soap, coffee and paper products by notifying Rev. Laura or Treasurer Shawn Stieve when new stores are needed. They are responsible for serving of food and coffee after church, setting up for coffee service and snacks and putting things away afterward, and keeping the rest rooms in good order. Our church provides the coffee, tea and related additives. Snacks have been donations made by church members, which we will announce a need for whenever the supply gets low.

The details of these Hostess Committee positions can be discussed with Rev. Laura. For Pat, this was her ministry..she wore an apron instead of a robe, but she was no less ministering to everyone who enjoyed the love she put into everything she did for our congregation. This is now a calling for some new people looking to make a difference in our church.

WHAT IS AVAILABLE EVERY WEEK? We are, of course, still providing weekly written sermons on line on our web site and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting points for the week) on the church Facebook page. Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information regarding re-opening. You can also always call or email Rev. Laura or any Board member. If anyone does not have access to the internet and wants a sermon to read, get a message to Rev. Laura for assistance.

A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds. In spite of having no services at all for 20 months, our deficit is still very small, thanks to the generosity of our members and friends.

HEALING REQUESTS– Our healing channels are available for adding names to their personal healing lists. Leave a request on our Facebook page or via private messaging on Facebook until we are together in the church and they can be placed in the Healing Chest for weekly prayer.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling. In our church, that can mean two things. Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church. Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling when you feel you need a private half hour reading. Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service. Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see. Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or via video meet up. Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services. Ask about our flier outlining these services.

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister.

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com. To contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com


Newsletter – Fall 2021

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… 

At the Zoom meeting of the membership on July 19th the members present voted to remain closed due to the surge of the Covid Delta Variance and the High Risk status of Bay County, Midland County and Extremely High Risk status of Saginaw County. We will revisit in a membership meeting held October 18th for possible reopening Nov. 7th. Zoom meeting ID and password to be sent to all members in good standing prior to the meeting by 30 days. The opinion of the members present, especially in the minds of those we rely on to put on the worship services, was that they were not willing to participate in person where either they themselves or their family members could possibly become exposed to this new strain of Covid.

The Board has decided to go forward with the commencement of our church Seminary classes! We may have to start on Zoom, but again, we will assess as we move forward. Registration will begin Sept. 1st. Interested people not looking at any certifications are welcome to sign up for classes on their own.. Classes begin on Monday, Sept. 27th. If you would like a handbook for the classes and programs please email our Registrar, Rev. Sandra Spyker. Her email is sjsteger1@cs.com Our programs include Minister, Celebrant Minister (for those more interested in a Ministry outside of the church setting) Energy Worker (Healing modalities), Teacher and Mediumship. The first year, all students have 10 required “Core Classes” or Basic Unfoldment classes. We are also accepting Ordination by Sanction/transfer of certificate applications. All of this can be discussed with Rev Spyker. If you wish a Student Handbook for the programs, etc., email Rev. Laura at percheronhitch6@yahoo.com This might be the perfect opportunity to begin working on your own path to getting the education you need for certifications from our church. We will need certified workers for the continued success of our mission to serve our community with a metaphysically based philosophy, including sharing of our spiritual gifts of healing, mediumship, teaching and preaching. We also accept Retreat students who simply wish to take Seminary level classes for their own enjoyment.

We have members who are in need of healing! Absent healing is a powerful thing! Send your healing thoughts and prayers to these on our most recent church family list: Lois Anton, Pat Caulfield, Norma Stagray and of course, our church as a whole-that it might reopen soon, in perfect ways. Additions to this list are welcome-email or message Rev. Laura on Facebook.

We have open positions in our volunteer roster. See this newsletter. Some of our regulars are retiring and we need replacements for our weekly service duties. Not all Ministers wear robes!

Thank you for your patience and continued good energies during our Covid closing. We keep “seeing” in our mind’s eye the spikes in cases going down, vaccine rates going up and all those who are sick in the hospitals healed and restored to perfect health.

Namaste.

WHAT IS AVAILABLE EVERY WEEK? We are, of course, still providing weekly written sermons on line and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting points for the week) on the church Facebook page. Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information regarding re-opening. You can also always call or email Rev. Laura or any Board member. If anyone does not have access to the internet and wants a sermon to read, get a message to Rev. Laura for assistance.

A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds. In spite of having no services at all for 17 months, our deficit was very small for 2020-21, thanks to the generosity of our members and friends.

HELP WANTED When we do go back to in-person services, we will be needing some replacements for two of our veteran volunteers. Norma Stagray is retiring as Chief Usher. That is a weekly responsibility, beginning aprox. 45 minutes before the service with assembling the bulletins and getting the sanctuary ready with lit candles and water. They take up the collection during the service and assist the Liturgist if something is needed (like billet collection) during the service. Afterwards, for about 45 minutes they are tasked with straightening the pews, getting things put away and turned off in the Sanctuary and assisting in getting the building closed up for the week. As our Ministerial training gets underway, the Chief Usher supervises the students who may be Ushering as part of their external practicums.

Pat Caulfield will also be unable to continue as the Hostess of our church. This is a weekly position. While we may never replace her baked goods in anyone else’s skill set, they are tasked with being sure church is stocked with TP, paper towel, soap, coffee and paper products by notifying Rev. Laura or Treasurer Shawn Stieve when new stores are needed. They are responsible for serving of food and coffee after church, setting up for coffee service and snacks and putting things away afterward, and keeping the rest rooms in good order.

The details of both positions can be discussed with Rev. Laura. These positions can be shared! More than one person can share the responsibilities with others.

HEALING REQUESTS– Our healing channels are available for adding names to their personal healing lists. Leave a request on our Facebook page or via private messaging on Facebook until we are together in the church and they can be placed in the Healing Chest for weekly prayer.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling. In our church, that can mean two things. Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church. Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling when you feel you need a private half hour reading. Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service. Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see. Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or

via video meet up. Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services. Ask about our flier outlining these services.

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister.

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com. To contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.c


Newsletter – Summer 2021

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… 

As we get closer to more people getting vaccinated, we get closer to being able to be together. So, first and foremost, keep an eye on the Facebook page for any decision on reopening by the Board of Trustees. We will also notify everyone on our mailing list. The Board will meet before the membership meeting (ZOOM on June 13th at 7 PM) and talk about the possibility of opening in August if things continue the current trend. We have to see if summer months bring a spike if too many people who are unvaccinated and unmasked begin to attend large gatherings. See this newsletter for more details.

The Board has decided to go forward with the commencement of our church Seminary classes! We may have to start on Zoom, but again, we will assess as we move forward. Registration will begin August 1st. Interested people not looking at any certifications are welcome to sign up for classes on their own.. Classes begin on Monday, Sept. 27th. If you would like a handbook for the classes and programs please email our Registrar, Rev. Sandra Spyker. Her email is sjsteger1@cs.com Our programs include Minister, Celebrant Minister (for those more interested in a Ministry outside of the church setting) Energy Worker (Healing modalities), Teacher and Mediumship. The first year, all students have 10 required “Core Classes” or Basic Unfoldment classes. We are also accepting Ordination by Sanction applications. For some already working in their chosen field, there may be some consideration for grandfathering out of some classes. All of this can be discussed with Rev Spyker.

OUR JUNE 13TH MEMBERSHIP MEETING One of the things we will discuss is the Operations Manual for the church building and our events. Although the membership is not required to ratify it, only Board approval, there was a request that members be able to see it. It’s 56 pages long. We can email it to those on the email list who want to see it before the meeting and would have to mail it to those who do not have email. That would be expensive. So, if you are a member in good standing (dues paid for 2021) and would like a pre-meeting copy of the manual, message Rev. Laura on the First Spiritual Church of Bay City Facebook page or you can also email, text or call any board member for a copy. To get your copy to you, we would prefer email, but if you don’t have email but know someone who would let you have it sent to them for you to have, that would help us tremendously. At the meeting the manual will be summarized. We will also discuss reopening, Seminary classes starting, and any other business to come before the membership.

For those of you who might have wanted to attend the Membership meeting but are unsure of the Zoom format, don’t fear the Zoom! Whether you have a computer or not, you can always participate on the phone, as a conference call. The invitation/announcement of any Zoom meeting comes with dial in access number with meeting ID and numerical password.

It’S NOT TOO LATE TO PAY YOUR 2021 DUES! Dues can be paid to the church by mail: 906 N. Chilson St. B.C. 48706 or to Rev. Laura MacLachlan, who can make deposits for the church, at 4606 Sutton Rd. Dryden, 48706 or to Treasurer Shawn Stieve at 412 Fillmore Pl. Bay City, MI. 48708.

UPDATE ON SERVICES AT CHURCH Thankfully, vaccines are at about 50+% for Michigan, though the recent spike in cases was a set back for our congregation being together again. As Summer unfolds, we are hoping to see the light at the end of the tunnel for in person services, perhaps by August barring any more spikes in the area. We are, of course, still providing weekly written sermons on line and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting points for the week) on the church Facebook page. Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information regarding re-opening. You can also always call or email Rev. Laura or any Board member. If anyone does not have access to the internet and wants a sermon to read, get a message to Rev. Laura for assistance.

A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds. In spite of having no services at all for 14 months, our deficit was very small for 2020, thanks to the generosity of our members and friends.

HEALING REQUESTS– Our healing channels are available for adding names to their personal healing lists. Leave a request on our Facebook page or via private messaging on Facebook.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling. In our church, that can mean two things. Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church. Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling when you feel you need a private half hour reading. Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service. Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see. Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or via video meet up. Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services. Ask about our flier outlining these services.

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister.

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com. To contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com


Newsletter – Spring 2021

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… 

As we get closer to more people getting vaccinated, we get closer to being able to be together.  So, first and foremost, keep an eye on the Facebook page for any decision on reopening by the Board of Trustees.  We will also notify everyone on our mailing list.

A special thanks to Don Middleton of Bay City, our snow plow professional.  He’s been donating his services to keep our church from looking “abandoned” during the winter.  If you know him or see him, a thank you would be lovely to say to him for all of us!

Another thank you goes out to all of our guest Ministers who donated their sermons from across the country—and the world– during our shut down.  They are amazing Metaphysicians who might not be able to share their work with us if not for the ability to submit them in writing.  Our horizons are broader because of them.  Fresh takes on our Metaphysical beliefs are food for the soul’s journey!  In every seemingly disastrous turn of events, there have been pearls in the oysters we have been able to enjoy.

As we enter this Lenten season, a time of preparation for a new Spiritual Awakening, we have all been visiting our personal Gardens of Gethsemane during this strange time in our history.  The chief take away is one of the moments some Biblical scholars say was one of the potential instances where the Master Jesus achieved Christ Consciousness.  It was when he prayed that “If this cup cannot be taken from me, Thy will be done.” So many things have been out of our hands this past year.  Trying to strong arm our desired outcomes has, for the most part, been futile. It is in that moment that we are offered the same chance to simply open our hand to Divine Source in trust and say, “Thy will be done.”  You are affirming “It is what it is.  I will detach and remain in a state of centered calm.  I will act when I can, I will listen for guidance and inspiration.”  Remember the phrase which says, “Of myself I cannot.  With God (energy) all things are possible.”  That is a statement acknowledging that Divine Order is at work whether we can see it or not. God energy, which is perfection, is always in motion in every situation.  Our idea of perfect outcomes in any scenario is such a limited perspective on the “rest of the story!”  So… wise, evolved souls don’t push to manifest their idea of specific outcomes, they simply stay in the flow of Divine Mind and wait for perfect outcomes to be made clear and apparent.  Then they act.  Nothing drives home the lesson of patience and remaining in the flow of Divine Love and Order like a Covid pandemic! Every twist and turn in the story is a potential life lesson for somebody.  

This January marked my 20th anniversary as Pastor of the church; the 23rd as President.  Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined a year of no church services, Psychic Saturdays, all the things we have shared at our church as part of our spiritual lives.  Crazy, right?  But look at the other hidden, unexpected gifts we received!  First and foremost, our guides have had time with us to offer us possibilities in our daily meditations we may not have taken the time to explore before.  Technology has shown us other ways to create oneness with our families, friends and one another.  Zoom immerged on our horizon!!  We were offered, by participating in healing groups on different platforms,  times we could contribute healing energy for those we love.  There may have been times we spontaneously channeled something someone in distress really needed to hear to help them over a personal hump.  We discovered that even though we couldn’t share space with each other personally, we remained part of a group consciousness which did the work of Lightbearers in this time of stillness. We have been challenged to find ways to be actively involved in the unseen metaphysical energy work we have talked so much about for decades.  We were given the gift of time and focus to do that.  We were asked a huge question in the last 12 months.  Who did you come here to be?

No question, we love our time together!  A church family of like minded spirits is where we go to have others mirror back to us our beliefs and our joys in the beauty of our religion.  We recharge our batteries in the energy of “our tribe”!  But even when it’s not possible, the bonds are still there.  Like seeds waiting under the snow cover, when the renewal time of our spiritual spring arrives, we will once again bloom together.

Namaste.

OUR ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING/ELECTIONS  were held on Jan. 24th via Zoom.  Rev. Laura was re-elected to a three year term as President, Cori Denay a three year term as Secretary and Rev. Susan Wright a three year term as Trustee.    We discussed the hold up with the launch of the new Seminary.  The State of Michigan is still unwilling to approve the name we have submitted or tweaked and submitted to fit their criteria going on 4 or 5 times.  Rev. Bob as our Resident Agent for the state as well as our attorney wrote a beautiful letter which sited cases and laws that should bolster our position.  We await their glacier like response.  It’s looking like our Ministerial Program might not have a name separate from the name of our church, but Rev. Laura has since written to our State Senator’s office for assistance in the best course of action.  Stay tuned.  

For those of you who might have wanted to attend the Membership meeting but are unsure of the Zoom format, don’t fear the Zoom!  Whether you have a computer or not, you can always participate on the phone, as a conference call.  The invitation/announcement of any Zoom meeting comes with dial in access number with meeting ID and numerical password.  We had 9 members present for our Annual Meeting.  We would have loved to have had more.  The Zoom format, as an emergency measure due to the Covid restrictions, was first approved by the Board of Trustees as a safety precaution, later ratified at the previous membership meeting, also held on Zoom.  

It’S NOT TOO LATE TO PAY YOUR 2021 DUES!  Dues can be paid to the church by mail:  906 N. Chilson St. B.C. 48706 or to Rev. Laura MacLachlan, who can make deposits for the church, at  4606 Sutton Rd. Dryden, 48706 or to Treasurer Shawn Stieve at 412 Fillmore Pl. Bay City, MI. 48708.   

UPDATE ON SERVICES AT CHURCH  Thankfully, vaccines are soon going to supposedly be more plentiful for people so we can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel for in person services.  When we can determine how and when to resume weekly indoor services and adhere to the safe guidelines, we will once again enjoy worshipping together as a congregation.  We are still providing weekly written sermons on line and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting points for the week) on the Facebook page.  Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information.  You can also always call or email Rev. Laura.  If anyone does not have access to the internet and wants a sermon to read, get a message to Rev. Laura for assistance.

If you are thinking about sending our church a donation to assist with the upkeep of the building while we have no income stream from weekly services, we would greatly appreciate it.  A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds.  In spite of having no services at all for 9 months last year, our deficit was very small, thanks to the generosity of our members and friends.

HEALING REQUESTS-  Our healing channels are available for adding names to their personal healing lists.  Leave a request on our Facebook page or via private messaging on Facebook.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling.  In our church, that can mean two things.  Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church.  Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling   when you feel you need a private half hour reading.  Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service.  Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see.   Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or via video meet up.  Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services.  Ask about our flier outlining these services. 

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister. 

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com.  To  contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com


Newsletter – Winter 2020

 “LET’S WALK THIS  SPIRITUAL JOURNEY TOGETHER” 

From the Pastor’s Desk… 

The Gift of Christmas in 2020

There are so many memes on social media depicting 2020 as, at the very least, a dumpster fire.  You want to laugh and cry at the same time.  So many lives lost, so many empty seats at the holiday tables around the world, so much division and hatred just within our own country.

But along comes the energy of Christmas.  The birth of the indwelling Christ and its state of consciousness you can open to as a way to live more seamlessly on the Earth Plane.   It’s a time of newness for our country, too. And most importantly, a time when we have on the horizon better treatments and anticipated vaccines for Covid that might just help us turn the corner on this pandemic.  

There are so many places to add positive energy.  There are so many reasons to express gratitude.  Now, for added support, the energy of the birth of Christ Consciousness and awareness of our true spiritual nature as potential enlightened ones is building as we near the Advent “time of preparation for a new spiritual awakening.”

I invite you to step away from anxiety over things that don’t matter.  Shall we get back to our spiritual roots?  Revisit the babe in the manger of our hearts?    Can we work on staying in the flow of Divine Mind, Divine love and order?  Are we willing to let the things of the material plane recede to their proper perspective?  Meditations at Christmastime can be very profound on a very personal level.  For me, in the evenings when I have the tree lights on, I turn the other lights off and just go into such an incredible meditative state it’s amazing.  I hope you will find the true gifts of Christmas in that or any other sacred space you create for yourself.

2021..a “5” year!  We will be moving into a year where we feel a need for more personal freedom to try new things, dream new dreams, and free ourselves from limitations.  Because 2021 has double 2 energy influencing it, the freedom you see will work out much better if you don’t chase people out of your life but find ways to build loving partnerships with them.  The 1 in 2021 reminds us we are still on a singular journey in many respects.  The change we feel compelled to seek will still always start with ourselves first.  For spiritual growth, it’s often the last place we look.

I leave you once again with the last paragraph of the fall quarter.  “The sight of our unused church building makes me sad every time I think about it.  Generations of members have worshipped God together there every Sunday.  How could we have anticipated this?  How could we have known when the building took physical form in the 70’s that we would have to “socially distance” to be safe?  But we are connected as one heart and one mind as Divine Spiritual Metaphysicians.  We can hold the energy.  

Please, I urge you to visit our new web site and read the beautiful sermons our Ministers, Lay Workers and guest Ministers have been submitting all this time.  They will help heal the void you might be feeling inside.  That energy is within us, not just in a particular building.  Allow yourself the gift of getting into that flow of healing insight.”

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and blessings in abundance to everyone!

Namaste.

OUR ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING/ELECTIONS  At the Zoom Membership meeting held on Oct. 27th a vote was taken to allow our Annual Meeting to be held virtually via Zoom.  We can’t risk an in-person meeting at the church with the required guidelines for less than 10 people with social distancing.  IF YOU DON”T HAVE INTERNET ACCESS, there is a phone number to access the meeting without video.  This information will go out in writing to all members prior to the meeting notice mandated in the bylaws.  ALSO NOTE:  You must be a 2021 “member in good standing” to vote at the annual meeting.  This means your dues ($15.00)  must be paid before the meeting.  Dues can be paid to the church by mail:  906 N. Chilson St. B.C. 48706 or to Rev. Laura MacLachlan, who can make deposits for the church, at  4606 Sutton Rd. Dryden, 48706 or to Treasurer Shawn Stieve at 412 Fillmore Pl. Bay City, MI. 48708.   Cards will be issued and mailed as dues come in.

UPDATE ON SERVICES AT CHURCH  With the newest surge in cases in and around mid Michigan, the Board has so far been unable to see our way clear to resume worship services in our church.  When we can determine how and when to resume weekly indoor services and adhere to the safe guidelines, we will notify everyone on our mailing list.  We are still providing weekly written sermons on line and Responsive Readings (great weekly meditation starting pints for the week) on the Facebook page.  Facebook is still the most instant venue for up to the minute information.  You can also always call or email Rev. Laura.  If anyone does not have access to the internet and wants a sermon to read, get a message to Rev. Laura for assistance.

If you are thinking about sending our church a donation to assist with the upkeep of the building while we have no income stream from weekly services, we would greatly appreciate it.  Contact  Rev. Laura for ways to help.  A big THANK YOU to all those who have kept our church and its needs in your minds.

NEW SEMINARY STILL ON THE HORIZON .  We are having issues with getting the name registered with the State of Michigan, which has been like trying to build a house on shifting sands.  Stay tuned!  We hope to have the name registered very soon, enrollment after that and online classes in January.  There will eventually be in-person classes, but for now, the “Core” curriculum for all Certificate /Ordination programs will start on line.  The new programs will include Minister, Celebrant Minister, Teacher, Mediumship, Energy Worker and “Retreat” status for those who just wish to take classes for fun.  We will be posting and making available more materials as the story unfolds.

OTHER NEWS  We have had several wonderful donations which allowed us to make the fall tithe to the Good Samaritan Family Shelter in Bay City.  We also purchased a dehumidifier for the church building to stay ahead of the humid air we sometimes have to deal with in the building.  

We are hoping to offer video sermons in the new year.  The platform and format to be determined.  

REGULARLY SCHEDULED CLASSES AND WORKSHOPS–  Are on hold at this time.  If a Teacher is able to offer class on a video group basis, we will contact class members with the necessary information.

HEALING REQUESTS-  Our healing channels are available for adding names to their personal healing lists.  Leave a request on our Facebook page or via private messaging on Facebook.

OUR MINISTERS OFFER COUNSELING, SPECIAL SERVICES

Our Ministers are available for personal counseling.  In our church, that can mean two things.  Pastoral Counseling is available for your life challenges and relationships like at any other church.  Additionally, we offer Spiritual Counseling   when you feel you need a private half hour reading.  Pastoral Counseling is a part of our ministry and is a free service.  Private readings are paid to the Minister you choose to ask and cost $60-$75 depending on the person you wish to see.    Contact Rev. Laura for individual contact information for readings done over the phone or via video meet up.  Both types of assistance require appointments that can be made with that person. Our Ministers are also available for weddings and other special services.  Ask about our flier outlining these services. 

These services are limited during Covid restrictions and are done at the personal comfort level of the individual Minister. 

OUR WEBSITE-For more information on any of our events, our church or our staff, please visit our website at www. firstspiritualchurchofbaycity.com.  To  contact Rev. Laura, Private Message her on Facebook or email percheronhitch6@yahoo.com



Announcement – April 17, 2020

CORONA VIRUS CONTAINMENT UPDATE

Bay County is under a State of Emergency until May 12th. We are now closed until the board can revisit the situation after May 12th at which point we will  see if that status changes and it might be safe to open.  Stay safe and healthy!


Announcement – March 23, 2020

CORONA VIRUS CONTAINMENT UPDATE

With today’s directive from the MI. Governor, we are to shelter in place for 3 weeks.  This means, unfortunately, that the hoped for re-opening for Easter Sunday can’t take place.  The Easter sermon by Rev. Joy Fletcher Thompson will be on the website that week instead.  The Board will reassess as this virus management continues to evolve.  So, stay tuned… keep safe and send healing out into the world every chance you get!


Announcement – March 18, 2020

CORONA VIRUS CONTAINMENT MESSAGE

To all of our members and friends of the First Spiritual Church of Bay City

At the March 15th meeting of the Board of Trustees, it was decided that, out of concern for the spread of the Corona Virus which has come to Bay City and Michigan very rapidly, that we close until at least April 12th, Easter Sunday.

Before that Sunday, we will re-evaluate the situation. We will consider the “curve” of cases in Bay City and surrounding communities.  We will check with the State of Michigan and its mandates for limitations on gatherings.  Then we will reassess.  We have a congregation which included vulnerable adults or those who care for vulnerable adults.  Every factor will be considered before we reopen.  If we do reopen for Easter Sunday, the service will be at 10:30 AM. with no separate Healing Service.

This means there will be no Guides and Teachers Meditation Class on 3/19.  There is no Rev. Donna Fitzgerald Weekend on 3/27 and 3/28.  The Memorial Service for Rev. Joan Anderson has been postponed by her family.  Psychic Saturday on 4/4 is cancelled, as is the Development class on 4/5.

We will be posting weekly sermons on our web site at bcfirstspiritualchurch.com written by the scheduled speakers for each week.  Our web site and our Facebook page (the one with the blue origami bird logo) will be our fast “message boards”.  You can also contact Rev. Laura by calling the church number 989-686-6300 and following the instructions.

This move is unprecedented in our 73 year history.  Never have we been confronted with the need to close our doors.  However, it is the prudent thing to do at this time. All around us, people are practicing “social distancing”- sheltering at home, schools and many businesses are closed.  Safety for everyone we love is Job 1.

As Divine Spiritual Metaphysicians, it is a call for all hands on deck!  Meditation is key- not only for your own family and friends, but for our planet and all our fellow Children of God.  As sparks of the same Divine Source, we resonate with the White Light of Christ Consciousness.  We can become one with that consciousness and direct it out throughout planet Earth for healing and transmutation. We consider the nature of “scientific prayer” as taught by the New Thought Movement.  We do not beg for healing, which only calls in to us the lack of it.  We express gratitude for the healing that is already taking place within that light which permeates our planet and everyone/everything on it.  We give thanks for the highest and best outcomes for everyone touched by this disease.  We visualize this light filling and surrounding the scientists and the doctors, filling them with wisdom and inspiration as they work on patient care and the discovery of vaccines and treatments for all people.  We see it delivering love and support to those in nursing homes, hospitals, homeless shelters- all those who fear they are alone or unloved.  We see Divine Order being at work whether we can see it or not.

So, until we can be together again, I bid you “so long for now.”  Be safe.  Be well.  Keep us updated on Facebook or messaging if you need to be added to our healing lists.  Prayer work and daily meditation continues.

Yours in Spiritual Service,

Rev. Laura MacLachlan

Pastor/President