News Archives

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  • August - 2018
    • NYC Bus Trip is November 17

      Save the date for Derry’s annual day trip to New York City sponsored by the Sanctuary Choir. Enjoy a day on your own to shop, sightsee or go to a show. More details coming soon.

    • Terrific Tuesday Dinners Return Sept 11

      Derry’s weekly Tuesday evening meal is served 5-6:15 pm in Fellowship Hall beginning September 11. Salad, a hot entree, beverage and dessert is offered for $3 per person. Since most choirs rehearse on Tuesday evenings, the meal makes it easy for families to eat together while balancing schedules. You don’t have to be in a choir to come to the meal: it’s open to all. Consider staying for evening worship that begins 6:45 pm in the Chapel. Would you be interested in helping the kitchen crew? Early and late shifts are available. Contact Loretta Chubb for more information (717-533-9667).

    • Thank You, VBS Volunteers!

      “God's Everyday Heroes" Vacation Bible School is winding down - just one more day remains on the schedule with a musical program in the Sanctuary at 12:45 pm Friday to conclude the festivities. A big shout-out to the dedicated team of volunteers who shared the love of Jesus Christ with more than 80 young children all week long. Special thanks to coordinators Nicola Burke and M.E. Steelman and to church staff Pastor Stephen, Teresa Hutcheson and Loretta Chubb. Look on social media tomorrow for a group photo of Derry’s 2018 VBS volunteers. More photos available now on Facebook.

    • Buz is Back: Aug 26-Sept 23

      From August 26 through September 23, Buz Myers will lead the adult Issues Class in a study of “How We Got the Bible: The Formation, Transmission, and Translation of the Christian Bible.” Join the class 9:15 -10 am in Room 7. Rev. Charles (Buz) Myers, Ph.D. is an ordained Presbyterian minister who teaches in the Religious Studies Department at Gettysburg College.

      While some people assume that the Bible we use today merely fell out of heaven in its present form, nothing could be further from the truth.  In fact, the Christian Bible stands at the end of a long process of selection, transmission, and translation. Why were some books excluded and others included in the canon of the Bible? How were these writings passed down through the centuries? And why are there so many different translations of the Bible into English? These and other questions will be addressed in this five-part series. 

      August 26: The Formation of the Hebrew Canon
      September 2: The Formation of the New Testament 
      September 9: The Transmission of the Christian Bible  
      September 16: The Translation of the Bible into English
      September 23: The Making of the New Revised Standard Version Bible   

    • Derry Seniors Learn About Hershey's Bygone Era on Sept 18

      Join the Derry Seniors at 10 am Tuesday, September 18 as Hershey native Susan Mittan née Gumpher, volunteer and board member for the Hershey-Derry Twp. Historical Society, presents a general history of the area. Plenty of time will be allowed for comments and questions. Free. Lunch follows in Fellowship Hall ($3/person).

    • Aesop's Fables at First United Methodist on Aug 18

      9-11 am Saturday, August 18 at First United Methodist Church of Hershey, featuring the Popcorn Hat Players from Gamut Theatre Group. Enjoy the antics of Aesop's characters and learn the moral of each story. Breakfast begins 9 am in the social Hall, program begins at 10 am in the Sanctuary. Free. RSVP by August 15.

    • Pancake Breakfast Postponed
      The August 26 fundraiser breakfast supporting scholarship students in Sargodha, Pakistan has been postponed. We'll let you know when it has been rescheduled. Meanwhile you can support the Sargodha scholarship fund by picking up, filling and returning these small banks by September 9. Thanks, Derry!
    • Support VBS Mission Projects

      Our Vacation Bible School children have been sharing with local missions this week. You're invited to add to what they've collected by bringing items listed below when you come to worship on Sunday, August 12: 

      Canned/nonperishable foods for the Hershey Food Bank

      Items for Love INC's Personal Care Closet 
      • Feminine hygiene products
      • Body Wash
      • Laundry detergent – standard size or pods
      • Toilet paper
      • Band- aids
      • Tissues
      • Dish soap
      • Household cleaner
      • Shaving cream/disposable razors
      • Deodorant - men’s and women’s
      • Toothpaste - family size
      Children’s Books for the Community Check-up Center and Christ Lutheran Church, Harrisburg
      • Educational activity books for children in preschool through 2nd grade
      • New or very gently used reading books
      School Kits for Refugees (Church World Service)
      Items needed to make one school kit:
      • One pair of blunt metal scissors (rounded tip)
      • Three 70-count spiral notebooks or notebooks totaling 200-210 pages (no loose-leaf or filler paper)
      • One 30-centimeter ruler (12”
      • One hand-held pencil sharpener
      • One large erasers
      • Six new pencils with erasers
      • One box of 24 crayons (only 24)
      • Backpack

      Donations for back to school clothes for children at Christ Lutheran Church, Harrisburg. Make checks payable to "DPC" notated VBS Mission

    • Fleece Fabric Needed for Blanket-Making on Sept 2

      All it takes to make one warm and cozy blanket is two pieces of fleece fabric cut in two-yard lengths. Drop off coordinating fabric in the church office, then join the fun 9-10 am on Sunday, September 2 as Derry friends gather around tables in room 7 to make knotted fleece blankets for those in need. Thanks, Derry!

    • Celebrate Teresa's 20 Years of Service on August 12

      Our church secretary, Teresa Hutcheson, joined the staff on August 13, 1998... on Sunday, August 12 we'll celebrate and recognize her 20 years of service at both worship services. You're invited to bring a card on Sunday, drop one in the mail, or stop by during the week to say thanks to Teresa for her many years of dedicated support and service to the staff and congregation.

    • Books, Free to a Good Home

      Stop by the table in the atrium library between August 12 and 19 to look over the selection of books that has been cleaned from the stacks of our church library. See any you like for yourself or a friend or family member? Help yourself! Any books that remain at the end of the week will be sent to the book sale at Princeton Theological Seminary this fall.

    • Baptisms on July 29

      Congratulations to Dave and Madeline Simmons on the baptisms of their sons Colin and Leo, who were baptized on Sunday, July 29. Welcome to the family!

    • Puppet Ministry Does the Sneaker Dance

      Not to be outdone by Pastor Stephen, our puppet ministry accepted the challenge to make their own dancing sneaker video on behalf of Love INC of Greater Hershey's sneaker drive! 

    • Art in the Grove to Showcase Derry Artists & Craftsmen Aug 14

      Art in the Grove on Tuesday, August 14 will feature a gallery of works made by Derry Church members and friends. You're invited to drop off paintings, photography, poetry, ceramics and other creations in room 5 from Sunday, August 12 through Tuesday afternoon, August 14. Even better (but not required) if you can come to Art in the Grove so participants can meet the artists, ask questions and learn. Works will be available to take home when the program ends at 8:30 pm.

    • All-You-Can-Eat Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser on Aug 26

      We've cooked up another way you can help Derry Church fund scholarships for students in Sargodha, Pakistan: an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast on Sunday, August 26! Stop in Fellowship Hall between 8:15-10:15 am for Charlie Koch's delicious hotcakes and sausage, bacon, juice and coffee. $5/person but you're welcome to drop a little extra at the payment table so more students can receive a good education in a school overseen by the Presbyterian Education Board.

    • Celebrating Debbie Hough on Aug 19

      A retirement celebration and opportunity to give thanks for Debbie’s ministry at Derry will be held on Sunday, August 19. Save the date as we look forward to a special presentation in worship and a birthday celebration for her during post-worship fellowship. At 3:30 pm, come back for a special program and tea in her honor. Send cards to Suzie Gloeckler, 15 Bonnywick Drive, Harrisburg, PA 17111.

    • Are You a Good Facilitator?

      DivorceCare is a recovery support group where a person can find help and healing from a separation and divorce. The primary role of facilitators (there are two at Derry) is to create an atmosphere of warmth, caring and trust in the discussion group. Group facilitators also encourage discussion of each week's teaching video and allow each participant time for personal sharing. If this is a ministry you would be interested in helping to lead, please contact Loretta Blaydon (717-599-5425) or Marie Buffaloe.

    • "Highland Cathedral" in Highland Cathedral!

      Sean McCarthy had the opportunity to play his arrangement of the bagpipe tune “Highland Cathedral” on the Rieger organ at St. Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, the “High Kirk” of the Church of Scotland, while on an organ study leave. 

    • Try Evening Worship on Tuesdays

      When it’s difficult for you to make it to Sunday morning worship, remember that Derry Church offers an informal Tuesday evening praise and communion service every week from 6:45-7:30 pm in the Chapel. Come as you are! 

  • July - 2018
    • Covenant with Animals Worship Service: Aug 28

      6:45-7:30 pm Tuesday, August 28 on the front lawn, weather permitting. In celebration of all of God’s creatures and their presence in our lives, Derry Church offers its annual worship service that includes prayers of thanksgiving for the gift of animals. Animals on leash, in a kennel, or otherwise controlled are invited to attend along with their owners. Worshipers can also bring photographs of their pets. The service will include praise songs and hymns and hands-on prayers for the animals and people with whom they live. Dress casual. Child care available in the nursery. Worshipers are invited to bring donations for the Humane Society as an outreach to those who help care for animals in need of help and homes.

    • Summer Blood Drive Report

      Thanks to all the Derry members and friends of Ryan Holp who came out in support of the blood drive on July 22. In total, 36 pints were collected and the Central Pennsylvania Blood Bank was delighted. See you in December for the annual Jim Cooper blood drive!

    • Nominees for the Committee to Select Derry's First Associate Pastor for Youth & Family Ministries
      The 2018 Nominating Committee presents the following nominees to serve on the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC). These nominees represent the heritage and future of Derry and are invested in the programs for children, youth, and families at Derry Presbyterian Church:

      Nicola Burke has been the co-chair of our VBS program for the past few years and has been the co-leader of our Pilgrim Fellowship along with Debbie Hough. Nicola also has children in the youth group and Pilgrim Fellowship. She will bring knowledge and concern for elementary age programming and fellowship at Derry.  

      Chris Cooper is the veteran of the committee after serving on the PNC to call Pastor Stephen. Chris has daughters active in the youth group, Pilgrim Fellowship and Sunday school. Chris will bring experience of the process to the committee and first-hand knowledge of the importance of programming for children and youth.

      Elizabeth Gawron is a member of the Christian Education Committee and works part-time with children’s ministries at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. She is an art educator who has been leading our new Art in the Grove program. Liz will bring a creative and educational perspective to the committee.

      Bob Gavazzi is a long-time member and has had three children participate in children and youth programming at Derry. Two of his children are active now in our youth group. He will bring knowledge and passion for the needs of youth to the committee.

      Jack Keene has served as the chair of the Christian Education Committee and now serves on the Adult Education Committee. He has a long history of working with children and youth programming at Derry. Jack will bring an important understanding of history to the committee.

      Courtney McKinney-Whitaker is the mother of a young child getting ready to start KIWI and is well acquainted with pastoral searches from the church side and the pastor and family side. She has experience helping to write and edit church information forms and pastor information forms. She will bring a unique perspective of the process to the committee and how a new pastor might partner with our current staff.

      Stephanie Patton has two daughters who have grown up through Derry’s ministries for children. They have participated in choirs, Sunday Funday, puppets, and fellowship groups. Stephanie has been an active parent leader in these groups. She will bring knowledge of Derry’s current programs and new ideas for the future to make sure all children and youth have a place at Derry. 

      Mike Reed is a deacon whose two daughters and a son are growing up at Derry. Mike knows the role Sunday School, confirmation, and fellowship group plays in faith formation. Mike will bring knowledge of Derry’s culture and programming for all ages to the committee.

      Sara Woodburyis an active member of Derry with a young son just beginning to be active in the life of the church. Sara has taken on various leadership roles in the church and is skilled at bringing individuals together to form an effective team. She knows the church well and how to present it effectively to pastoral candidates. Sara will bring organization, passion, and energy to the committee and the perspective of a parent of a young child eager to get more involved at Derry. 
    • Carlisle Presbytery Seeks a Treasurer

      Carlisle Presbytery's current treasurer, Larry Van Hise, is moving and needs to step away from these duties. 

      The presbytery’s treasurer is responsible for:
      • Coordinating presbytery finances with the bookkeeper, executive presbyter, and administration committee
      • Tracking presbytery investments and bank accounts
      • Approving vouchers and signing checks
      • Preparing and verifying treasurer’s reports for presbytery meetings and committee chairs
      • Preparing and verifying the annual financial report
      • Preparing and verifying the annual presbytery budget in coordination with the administration committee
      The term is for five years and there is no restriction on number of terms.

      Those interested in serving in this position are invited to send a letter of interest, including relevant experience, by mail or email to: 
      The Rev. Anthony Lorenz
      First Presbyterian Church
      2A North Hanover Street
      Carlisle, PA 17013

      Questions? Contact Tony Lorenz, chair of the nominating committee.
    • Restore Your Faith, Fortify Your Mind, Revitalize Your Life: Sept 22

      8:30 am - 2 pm Saturday, September 22 at Second Presbyterian Church, Carlisle. Congregations across Carlisle Presbytery are invited to come for a morning, come for the afternoon, or come for the day to "Refresh" featuring workshops, learning labs, a keynote by NEXT Church director Rev. Jessica Tate, plus youth programs, Hearts & Minds bookstore, spirituality center and a FREE LUNCH! Read more and register now. Hosted by the Education Committee of Carlisle Presbytery.

    • HVAC Update #8

      As we end the seventh month of on-site construction for the complete upgrade and replacement of our heating and air conditioning systems, I’m happy to say everything is installed and working. Fewer than ten items remain on the punch list. We will work out the rest of these issues over the next few months as we continue to test and adjust the systems and learn to get the most out of the energy-saving control system. The other good news is the project has stayed on schedule and has not much impacted the life of the church.

    • DivorceCare Support Group Begins Sept 6

      6-8 pm Thursdays from September 6 to November 29 in room 2. DivorceCare is a 12-week support group that helps adults recover from the pain and separation of divorce. This non-denominational program features biblical teaching, small group discussion and video seminars led by renowned experts on divorce and recovery topics. Also included is a workbook to help participants explore topics in depth. There is no cost to attend. Advance registration requested (717-533-9667).

    • Have You Borrowed a Book from the Church Library?

      Under the guidance of Debbie Hough and a team of volunteers, the church library is getting an extreme makeover with cleaning and sorting under way. If you possess a book from the church library, please return it now so it can be properly catalogued. You can borrow it again this fall when the sorting is complete. If you've misplaced a church book, please contact the church office(717-533-9667) so we can remove it from our records. 


    • Presbyterian Women Summer Updates
      • Thanks to all who contributed to the last Boxtops4Education collection totaling $86. Next anticipated mailing date will be October 15, so continue to drop off in the PW mission basket or mailbox.
      • The summer gathering of PW in Carlisle Presbytery will Saturday, August 18 at Second Presbyterian Church, Carlisle. Registration begins 9:15 am. The morning program, "God's Promise: I Am with You" is your chance to check out the new Bible study in a presentation by Gracie Payne, candidate for ordination. The afternoon program, "Journaling the Bible," will be presented by Sally Sulcove. Check out her blog. A light lunch will be served for a small donation. Contact Doris Feilto carpool.  
    • The Sneaker Dance

      With apologies to Charlie Chaplin and his iconic bread roll dance, we present Pastor Stephen Mckinney-Whitaker in his own interpretation created on behalf of Love INC of Greater Hershey's 2018 sneaker drive. Big shout-out and thanks to Mary Lemons for providing the piano accompaniment.

      Love INC has a record-breaking number of students registered to receive sneakers this year: more than 460 children! To date 150 pairs of sneakers are still needed and 30+ volunteer spots need to be filled. Learn more.

      Derry Presbyterian Church is just one of many sneaker collection locations in town.

    • Scout Troop 200 has a New Trailer!

      This new trailer, which is being used to transport Scout gear and equipment to activity sites, has been purchased with donations from Troop 200 Scouters. The Troop thanks those persons for their generosity and support of scouting. The Troop plans to have Scout decals placed on the outside and shelving installed inside.

    • Sign Up for the Corn Roast!

      The annual picnic featuring fresh corn roasted over hot coals is just a month away. Mark your calendars for Thursday, August 23, then plan to arrive at the Alexander’s farm in Hummelstown by 5:30 pm. RSVP online or return forms available at the insert rack and in Sunday bulletins by Sunday, August 19. $2.50 adults, $2 ages 5-12 payable at the picnic. Bring a salad or dessert to serve eight. Need directions? Call the church office: 717-533-9667.

    • Wear Orange on July 25

      Orange Day on Wednesday, July 25 is an opportunity to show support for those who are working to end the exploitation of women and children. Victims of labor and sex trafficking are often subject to debt bondage. Many are trapped in a cycle of debt because of having to pay for all living expenses in addition to initial transportation expenses. Fines for not meeting quotas and/or “bad” behavior can used to increase debt.

    • July 2018 Financial Snapshot
      Cash Flow - Operating Fund as of 6/30/18
        Actual        Budgeted
      Income YTD 669,921        621,707
      Expenses YTD 641,201        630,858
      Surplus (Deficit) YTD   28,720          (9,151)

      Expenses are over budget due to unexpected repairs and some expenses being front loaded. Contributions are also above budget for the first half of 2018, resulting in a $28,720 surplus for the first half of the year. Questions? Contact Steven Guenther.

    • Family Promise Dinners Needed Aug 5-11
      • Nicolette has been working hard at Fed Ex and is building a bank account so that she and her kids can move into a place of their own.
      • Kristina’s family recently found an affordable rental home and has submitted an application. They are waiting to hear if it was approved.
      • Brianna is intent on getting back on her feet. She has five interviews scheduled next week.
      These are the stories of current Family Promise residents, each determined to make it on their own. You can welcome and support these families by providing an evening meal or by volunteering to drive the van Sunday-Saturday, August 5-11. Sign up to deliver meals or to drive the van using last name Promise  and password DerryContact Jane Robertsonfor additional information. Thanks, Derry!
    • How Did We Get the Bible? Find Out from Buz Myers

      Five-Week Series begins 9:15 am Sunday, August 26 in room 7C

      While some people assume that the Bible we use today merely fell out of heaven in its present form, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the Christian Bible stands at the end of a long process of selection, transmission, and translation. But what books were excluded, and why were others included in the canon of the Bible?  How were these writings passed down through the centuries? And why are there so many different translations of the Bible into English? These and other questions will be addressed by the Rev. Dr. Charles D. Myers, as we will look at exactly how we came to have the Bible that we know and love.
    • Supper Clubs Return This Fall

      It's time to sign up for Supper Clubs set for Sunday, September 9 and Sunday, October 14. Contact Amy Backenstose (call or text 717-319-3193) or sign up on Sundays after 10:30 am worship. A child-friendly dinner is being planned for September 9 so families with children can socialize and share a meal with other families with kids.

    • Thanks, Lori!

      You're receiving this week’s eNewsletter thanks to the efforts of Lori Klucker, who serves on the Communications & Technology Committee.


    • Chicken BBQ & Auction: July 27-28

      Chicken BBQ & Auction:  July 27-28 at Londonderry Village, Palmyra. Servant Stage Company Backwoods Bluegrass Band "I'll Fly Away" will perform under the tent at 7 pm Friday. Auction begins at 9 am Saturday, and chicken dinners are available 11 am - 1 pm. Check the complete schedule at

    • Check out the Art Wall!

      Watch this wall in the Narthex in coming weeks as "Art in the Grove" participants add circles that feature Derry Church highlights from the past year. Join the fun 5:30-8:30 pm Tuesdays in Fellowship Hall through August 21.

    • Introducing Our Transitional Children's Coordinator

      M.E. Steelman has served as Chair of the Christian Education Committee. She makes her own transition in coming weeks: on August 1 she begins serving as Derry's Transitional Children's Coordinator. New chair of the Christian Education Committee is elder Christy Elliott. 

      Meet M.E.Steelman
      I am beyond excited to serve the children and families of Derry as the Transitional Children's Ministry Coordinator. Working with children has been my passion for as long as I can remember. Early on I spent years babysitting and working as a camp counselor. I then went to Elizabethtown College and became a secondary math teacher. For six years I worked in the Cornwall Lebanon School District as both a middle school and high school math teacher and also the head field hockey coach. In 2007 I was blessed to become a mom and have loved the last 11 years as Pete and I have added to our family and now have four happy, fun and energetic children.  

      While I am no longer in the secondary classroom, I haven't really left the teaching world. I have spent the last 11 years tutoring middle school and high school students, teaching preschool age children, organizing various fundraisers for Derry Preschool, co-coordinating Derry's VBS and Art in the Grove programs, serving on a number of church committees and coaching our children's sports teams. 

      I am  excited to take all of that I have learned and use my teaching background to create, teach, lead and guide the children of Derry as they further connect with our Lord. 

    • Congregational Meeting on July 29

      The Session has called a congregational meeting on Sunday, July 29 following the10:30 am worship for the purpose of creating a new Associate Pastor position and electing an Associate Pastor Nominating Committee.

    • Greetings from Montreat, NC

      This crew left on Saturday for a week at the Montreat Youth Conference! Keep them in your prayers as they end the week and reture home on July 14.

    • Looking Ahead: Fall 2018
      In just a few short weeks, fall programming gets under way at Derry Church. Mark your calendars now for these upcoming events:

      Buz is Back: The Rev. Dr. Charles “Buz” Myers, ordained Presbyterian minister and Associate Professor, Religious Studies at Gettysburg College, begins a five-week series at 9 am Sunday, August 26 in room 7C. Don’t miss this popular Issues Class lecturer!

      DivorceCare: 13-week support group returns at 6 pm Thursdays, September 6-November 29 in room 2.

      Rally Day: The church school year gets under way 9 am Sunday, September 9. This year's Sunday Funday theme is based on the book, "The Kindness Quilt" by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace.

      Terrific Tuesday: Choir rehearsals -- with dinner available to all from 5-6:15 pm -- resume Tuesdays beginning September 11. Enjoy an entree, salad, beverage and dessert for $3 per person.

      Derry Seniors: The new program year gets under way at 10 am Tuesday, September 18 with Susan Gumpher nee Mittan presenting "Hershey's Bygone Era."

      Arts Alive: The first concert of the 2018-19 series will be held 4 pm Sunday, October 7 in the Sanctuary. Tracy Dietrich and Cindy Wittenberg, the musicians of “Silver, Wood and Ivory" return to Derry Church for an ethereal afternoon concert.

    • Corn Roast Volunteers Needed

      Volunteers are needed to help set up and clean up at the annual Corn Roast on Thursday, August 23. Contact the church office if you can spare some time in the afternoon to set up tables and chairs or in the evening for cleanup and tear down duty.

    • VBS Reminder

      Dozens of children have already signed up for “God's Everyday Heroes” Vacation Bible School. The program will be held 9 am - 12 pm Monday-Friday, August 6-10 at Derry Church. Monday, July 23 is the last day to sign up. Registration forms are available online and at church. One form per child. $10 per child/$40 family maximum. Make checks payable to Derry Church, notated “VBS.” Class sizes are limited.

    • Prayers Needed?

      If you or someone you know would appreciate being added to the church's prayer list, there are three ways to make it happen. Call the church office (717-533-9667), send an email to church secretary Teresa Hutcheson, or on Sunday morning, fill out a prayer request available in the pew racks and hand it to an usher during the first hymn. The usher will hand it to the pastor at a convenient point in the worship service.

      If the prayer concern is of a personal nature, you can request "staff only" prayers. You can count on prayer from the church staff even when those names are not included in the enews or printed prayer list updated each week and available from the information desk in the Narthex and the lower level atrium). Thank you for taking time to let the church office know when someone is in need of prayer... we also appreciate knowing when someone's name can be removed from the prayer list. 

    • Find Derry Church on Social Media

      Derry Church is active across several social media channels. is the place to see the most current photos and find out about events and other news items of interest. “Like” us and join more than 800 other friends of Derry Church.

      You can also follow Derry Church on InstagramTwitter and Choose your favorites to keep up with all that’s happening at the church. If you want to look at any of these platforms later, you can find them easily using the social media icons at the bottom of every page on

      If you use the Waze navigation app on your smart phone, look for Derry's ad as you drive near the church.

    • Heading to Montreat

      Derry’s senior high youth leave on Saturday for the week-long Montreat Youth Conference. This year's theme is "Lift Every Voice." This unique gathering brings young people from all over the country for a week of study, worship, and recreation. Activities include morning energizers, music, keynote, small group meetings, afternoon recreation activities, and evening worship. Keep in your prayers Abby Han, Lizzie Pease, Amanda Ruch, Hannah Arnold, Allyson DeBerry, Megan Mehaffie, Natalie Taylor, Keely Schrum, Hunter Arnold, Tony O’Shea, and leaders Keri Keck and Steven Guenther.

    • June 2018 Session Highlights
      • The Session approved baptismal instruction and baptism for Colin and Leonardo Simmons, sons of Derry member Madeline Simmons and her husband, David, on July 29, 2018. Adult baptism of Tammy Burkhart was approved for July 3, 2018 at the Tuesday evening service.
      • Steven Guenther shared the treasurer’s report which noted that income and expenses are in line with budgeted figures. Through the end of May we have received 47.6% of our budgeted income.
      • Pastor Marie reviewed her request for a three-month sabbatical to be taken in three separate time periods in 2019. She will be taking time to learn ways to strengthen our interfaith ties with local partners, spend time on her own spiritual enrichment, explore current trends in adult education, and improve her use of technology to enhance and organize ministry files and connections. The request was approved, exact dates to follow.
      • Pastor Stephen reviewed the Three for Three during which he noted several upcoming events which Derry will attend for community outreach including the National Night Out on August 7 and Derry Township's annual teacher appreciation luncheon on August 21.
      • The Session considered and approved a request from Pack 200 to permit girls to join the Cub Scout program. Female scouts would be in separate dens with female scout leaders. The request permits both girls’ and boys’ dens to be under one charter for Pack 200.
      • At the request of the Personnel Committee, Session approved the hiring of ME Steelman as the Transitional Children’s Coordinator, and two Derry Discovery Days aides: Amber Allen and Pam van Wyk. In addition, Session approved new terms of employment for Jackie Lerch as she moves toward her part-time, 20-hour/week position.
      • A congregational meeting will be held on July 29 to approve creating the position of Associate Pastor for Youth and Family Ministry at Derry Church and to elect a nominating committee who will begin the search for this candidate.
      • Building & Grounds presented a Capital Procurement Requisition to enhance church security. The request includes installing an electronic lock on the rear sanctuary entrance door, adding cameras (one in the rear sanctuary entrance to monitor the door and a second camera on the chapel in the courtyard) and purchasing six additional panic buttons. The cost of these upgrades is $7,647 which will be financed through the dedicated Capital Facilities Fund. Session approved the request.
      • Credit card authorization was approved for Steven Guenther.
      • Stewardship & Finance requested permission to start a building fund to handle expenses for Derry’s upcoming 300th anniversary celebration. The request was approved.
      • Youth requests for a Youth Paint Night fundraiser on January 5, 2019 and van use for fall trips were approved.
      • Kelly Mehaffie presented a request for approval of a proposed Enrichment Program for Derry Discovery Days. The program would incorporate literacy, math, art, and STEM/science connections in line with the PA Early Learning Standards for Preschool Students. Considerations such as staffing and expenses were discussed. Session voted to approve this new educational opportunity for the preschool.
      • The Session discussed Debbie Hough’s upcoming retirement celebration, approving the program on August 19 and several ways of honoring Debbie’s many years as Director of Christian Education.
    • Join the Discussion: Elder Care

      1 pm Wednesday, July 11 in Room 2, join a discussion on ways we can better reach out and share our care with our oldest members. The group that has been leading this effort is Derry's Care ‘N Share team, who make regular contacts and visit with elderly members of our church family. Contact Pastor Marie if you’d like to participate but can’t attend this mid-day meeting.

    • Grantville Family Night on July 30

      5:30 -7:30 pm Monday, July 30, meet at the sports field near the back-of-the-track housing and chapel where we serve meals to the track workers. Bring salad or dessert to share at this picnic supper. Enjoy fellowship and sports with racetrack workers & their families. All ages welcome! You may have participated in prior years as this is has been a popular Mission Week activity. Contact Marilyn Koch or Karen Leader.

    • Newly Baptized

      Congratulations to Tammy Burkhart, who was baptized in worship on Tuesday evening, July 3. Welcome to the church family! Our next baptisms are set for Sunday, July 29.

    • Hymnal Update

  • June - 2018
    • Baptisms on June 24

      Derry Church celebrated with these families whose children were baptized on Sunday, June 24: Owen James, son of Sara & Bruce Matthews, Franklin Cole, son of Jackie & Matthew Lerch, and Grace Evelyn, daughter of ME & Pete Steelman. Congratulations to all!

    • HVAC Update #7

      June ends over a year of planning and construction of Derry Church's new HVAC system. All the mechanical systems are now installed and operational. We are working on a reasonable punch list of items to be completed and fine-tuning some parts of the system. The computer-based control program is being put in place that will allow us to monitor and adjust operation of the systems in the most efficient manner, helping us to save money in the long run. We now have air conditioning in the kitchen and the Chapel so it's comfortable all year round for everyone who's here to work and worship. 

    • Derry Discovery Days Updates
      • Derry Discovery Days is hiring for the 2018-19 school year! Our preschool seeks a teacher for our Lady Bug (toddler) class. All candidates must have previous experience with children. EOE. For more information contact Kelly Mehaffie, Director.
      • Discovery Days is pleased to announce two new additions to the staff, pictured below. Derry member Pam van Wyk (left) will be a teacher aide in the Butterfly (4-year-old) class, and Amber Allen will be a teacher aide in the Busy Bee (3-year-old) class. Welcome!

    • Serve Breakfast on Saturday, June 30

      Join Derry Church volunteers to serve breakfast to the people of the Allison Hill community. Meet at the Common Ground Cafe at the Unitarian Church on 16th & Market, Harrisburg at 8:30 am Saturday, June 30. At this "Gather the Spirit" monthly breakfast program, you'll serve the meal, then sit down across the table for food and conversation and get to know our Harrisburg neighbors. RSVP to Karen Leader.

    • Can You Spare Your Fryer?

      Loretta Chubb, our Hospitality Coordinator, is in need of a fryer for a special church school recipe. If you would be willing to let her borrow your fryer from August 8-15, please contact Loretta or call the church office (717-533-9667). Thanks, Derry!

    • People Mover Serves Ages 60+ in Derry Twp

      Do you have a relative, friend or neighbor at least 60 years of age who lives in Derry Twp and needs transportation to places within the township? People Mover, run by volunteers, provides free transportation to doctor's offices, the  Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Mohler Senior  Center, banks, churches, drug  stores and beauty shops within Derry Twp Monday through Friday. For more information, call 717-533-3642.

    • Pediatric CPR & First Aid Certification Class: Aug 28

      9 am Tuesday August 28 in Room 7. Anyone interested in attending is invited to join Derry Discovery Days staff for training and certification. Cost is $45 per person: contact Kelly Mehaffie for more information and to RSVP.

    • Softball Team Update

      Tonight is the final game in the regular church softball season: come out and support the team at 9 pm Thursday, June 28. Bring your favorite portable chair and enjoy some summer softball: games played at Veteran's Park, off Elmerton Avenue in Susquehanna Township. Playoffs begin in July. See more photos on Facebook.

    • Discover Derry Church This Summer

      The three-week summer series of New Member Discovery Classes will be held 8-10 am Sundays, July 29, August 5 and 12 in Room 2 on the lower level. Classes will be repeated Wednesdays from 6-8 pm on August 1 and 8. Meet the church staff and leaders and find out more about the mission and ministry of Derry Church and how you can get involved. Those who decide to join will be received as members at the 10:30 am service on Sunday, August 12. Register by Wednesday, July 25 (717-533-9667).

    • Time to Renew - and Save!

      Presbyterians Today is our denomination’s award-winning monthly magazine. Each issue includes inspiring mission stories, stimulating theological articles and news about the people and churches across the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Copies of the magazine can be found in the atrium library and at the Information Center. Join Derry’s group subscription rate, only $9.95 for six issues when we maintain ten or more subscribers. That’s a savings of half off the $19.95 cost for a one-year individual subscription. To add or renew a subscription, make checks payable to Derry Presbyterian Church for $9.95, notated “Presbyterians Today.” Return checks by July 1 by mail to the church or place in the manila envelope in Rev. Marie Buffaloe’s mailbox. Please DO NOT place payment in the offering plate.

    • 15th Annual Independence Day Celebration: July 3

      7:30 pm Monday, July 3 on the front lawn of Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. The public is invited to “An American Salute,” a performance by the Hershey Symphony Orchestra. This group of accomplished musicians is one of the nation’s largest volunteer orchestras with more than 80 members. Admission and parking are free. Food and beverages will be available for purchase starting at 6 pm. Bring your own lawn chairs and blankets. The first half of the concert will feature a range of Broadway and movie selections. For the second half, the orchestra will perform several patriotic selections that celebrate America and pay special tribute to those who have served in the armed forces. Rain date: July 4.

    • June 2018 Financial Snapshot
      Cash Flow - Operating Fund as of 5/31/18
        Actual        Budgeted
      Income YTD 597,687         518,089
      Expenses YTD 559,757         527,121
      Surplus (Deficit) YTD   37,930           (9,032)


      Contributions to the general fund are $91.5k over budget and $78.6k over 2017. Committee expenses are generally in line with expectations. Questions? Contact Steven Guenther

    • Ryan Holp Memorial Blood Drive: July 22

      8:30 am - 12 pm Sunday, July 22 in Fellowship Hall. Sign up for a time slot on July 8 or 15... walk-ins welcome, too! A form of ID is required from all who wish to donate. 

    • Summer Social for New Members: July 29

      3-5 pm Sunday, July 29 in Fellowship Hall for all who have joined Derry Church in the past 12 months and those who have signed up to attend the summer series of new member classes. Enjoy make-your-own ice cream sundaes, reconnect and get to know others and find out ways you can be involved. RSVP to Rev. Marie Buffaloe by Sunday, July 22.

    • Dates Available to Host Post-Worship Fellowship

      July 1, August 26 and September 2 are available for anyone interested in providing refreshments following the 10:30 am service. Please contact Patty Gingrich for more information.

    • Stated Clerk Issues Statement on Separated Immigrant Families

      Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assembly Stated Clerk the Rev. J. Herbert Nelson, II, issued a statement from the denomination’s 223rd General Assembly condemning the Trump administration’s new policy of separating young children from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. 

      “What has this nation become?” Nelson queried. “How have we wandered so far from Jesus’ kind admonition, “‘Let the little children come to me…’” He also criticized the Justice Department’s stated use of separate detention of parents and their children as a “deterrant” to immigration and accused the administration of selective use of scripture, saying the citing of Romans 13:1 to obey the law (presumably whatever the law says), while ignoring the higher scriptural demand that “love is the fulfilling of the law” (Romans 13:10) is a blatant misuse of the biblical message.
    • Co-Moderators Elected at General Assembly in St. Louis

      It took commissioners at the 223rd General Assembly four ballots Saturday evening to elect an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher and a mid-council executive as the Presbyterian Church (USA)’s second-ever co-moderators. Vilmarie Cintrón-Olivieri of the Presbytery of Tropical Florida and the Rev. Cindy Kohlmann of the presbyteries of Boston and Northern New England gained their victory at 9:01 p.m. Central Time over two pairs of challengers – the Rev. Eliana Maxim of the Presbytery of Seattle and the Rev. Bertram Johnson of the Presbytery of New York City, also standing as co-moderator candidates, and Chantal Atnip, a ruling elder at Pine Street Presbyterian Church who stood for moderator, and the Rev. Ken Hockenberry, her vice-moderator running mate from the Presbytery of Chicago. Read more.

    • Orange Day is Monday, June 25

      ECPAT-USA is the leading anti-trafficking policy organization in the US. It's part of an international network of organizations in 93 countries all working to end commercial exploitation of children through legislative advocacy, youth education, community education, and private sector engagement. Wear orange on the 25th to show support for this and other groups working to end exploitation of women and children.

    • Dads and Tots of Derry Church

      These Derry dads and tots took time out for a photo op after worship on Father's Day. L-R: Michael Farbaniec and son Benjamin; Joe Owsley and son Adam; Shaun Minnich and daughters Genevieve and Josefine; and Luke Gawron and son Kazmir.

    • Welcome Derry's Newest Member!

      Congratulations to Lauren Reed, Derry's newest member! A member of the 2017-18 confirmation class, Lauren was confirmed on Sunday, June 10.

    • Sunday Afternoon Hymn Sing: July 8

      3 pm Sunday, July 8, meet in the lobby at the Hershey Plaza apartments to sing familiar hymns with Derry Church friends. You may even see some familiar Derry faces among the residents! All ages welcome.

    • PW Thanks & Updates
      • Thanks to all who contributed to the PW Birthday Offering: $2,052 was received!
      • Thanks to everyone who contributed items for 50 hygiene bags that were delivered to the Domestic Violence Center in Harrisburg.  
      • Thanks to Helen Mayer and Lillian Shade who sewed the cloth bags.
    • Paper Towel Tubes Needed

      For Vacation Bible School in August. Tubes are being collected in the designated basket in the lower level mission closet through July 31. Thanks, Derry!

    • Engage: Jazz Worship + Food Trucks!

      Engage worship returns next month with a jazz-themed service! Dress casual and join us for worship at 5 pm Saturday, July 21 in the Sanctuary featuring jazzy arrangements of favorite hymns plus soloists and instrumental arrangements, and a meditation by Pastor Stephen. Following the service, food trucks from Upohar Ethnic Cuisines and Soul Burrito will be on site for anyone who would like to purchase dinner. Dessert will also be available for purchase. Bring lawn chairs or blankets or eat in Fellowship Hall... then test your skill at games set up outdoors. Don't miss this summer worship event!

    • BBQ & Concert Benefits Love Inc: July 21

      4-8:30 pm Saturday, July 21 at Cassel Vineyards of Hershey, 80 Shetland Drive. Your $10 ticket includes a free wine tasting (optional), choice of special menu item from Bazing Swine BBQ or Grappling Crab Shack (additional food available for purchase), and outdoor concert double-feature with Trace Morgan and Modern Blue. To purchase tickets, contact Love INC of Greater Hershey: 717-835-0101.

    • Lunch & Learn About Acupuncture

      12 pm Thursday, June 21 at Londonderry Village’s Di Matteo Worship Center, Ann Kirby will provide an overview of acupuncture, its history, how it works and its various applications. She is a 2015 graduate of the Finger Lakes School of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine at NYCC in Seneca Falls, New York. Returning home to Central PA, Ann uses her knowledge to offer a new aspect of medical care to the area. The Lunch ‘N Learn series is open to the public and requires a reservation be made no later than a week prior to the event by calling 717-687-2521 ext. 3009. Brown bag lunches are available for purchase and must be requested at the time of reservation. You are also welcome to bring your own lunch during the discussion or just come and listen to the speaker.

    • Corn Roast! Save the Date: Aug 23

      Derry Church's annual corn roast and picnic will be held at Alexander’s farm in Hummelstown on Thursday, August 23. Save the date!

    • Record-Setting 10th Annual Mission Golf Outing

      On Saturday, June 2, a record 112 golfers participated in the 10th Annual Mission Classic golf outing benefiting the Hershey Food Bank and Community Outreach. For what was a potentially very wet day, it turned out to be sunny and warm. Derry Church was well represented and even won a few contests. A total of $6,750 was raised: thanks to everyone who supported this event. 

    • Coin Return on June 17

      Remember to bring your  Change 4 Children  coins with you to church on Sunday to be collected at the end of morning worship. Your coins support Alliance for Children Everywhere in Zambia. Its Family Preservation Program's monthly food distribution includes soap and talking about personal hygiene, food safety, and protecting children from infections as well as food.  When a cholera epidemic broke out in Lusaka, no staffers knew the status of the program's participants due to the government's ban on public meetings. When the outbreak subsided, they learned none of the families were tragically affected due to those health safety talks at the six distribution centers.  

      Do you have foreign coins that you no longer need? Please bag them separately and they’ll be donated to UNICEF’s Change For Good by Derry member and American Airlines pilot Brian Montgomery. When you return coins, please make sure that your bag is free of paper clips, guitar picks, stray bits of metal, buttons, and anything that isn’t legal tender: these items clog the coin sorting machine. The next collection will be in September, so keep on gathering those coins.
    • Read with Pastor Stephen this Summer

      You’re invited to join Pastor Stephen and Derry friends in reading Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor by Yossi Klein Halevi. In this taut and provocative book, Halevi addresses his Palestinian neighbors, empathizing with Palestinian suffering and longing for reconciliation as he explores how the conflict looks through Israeli eyes. Halevi recognizes that he and his neighbor don't understand each other's stories at all. His letters are an attempt to explain who he is, and how he understands himself, to his Palestinian neighbor.

      Read one chapter each week beginning June 11, then visit this facebook group for online discussion on the book with prompts participants can comment on and share thoughts. Read and interact at your own pace and schedule. 

      This is a great book to consider how we are in relationship with people of difference and how we may not understand our own neighbors’ stories at all. In times of polarization and division, this book about a place around the world may shine light on our own lives filled with difference.

      Contact Pastor Stephen for more information.
    • Art in the Grove Begins June 12!
      Fellowship Hall will be transformed into an artist studio on Tuesday evenings from June 12 through August 21 and you're invited! Here’s what you can expect: 
      • 5:30-6 pm Bring a picnic to enjoy and relax and visit with friends and family... take a walk or spend time outdoors.
      • 6-7 pm Structured activities will vary from week to week, allowing participants to reflect on that week’s message. On June 12, expect an artsy icebreaker activity. On June 19, Liz Gawron will present her collage work.
      • 7- 8:30 pm Work in the open studio on creative reflection using the materials offered. The studio will be open from 6-8:30 pm.

      These gatherings are not just for artists, but for everyone. Art in the Grove has the potential to bring together people of all ages and walks of life, building a respectful, creative community that fosters spiritual understanding and growth. Please RSVP (not required, but greatly appreciated).

    • Backpacks & School Supplies Needed by June 24

      During the church school hour (9-10 am) on Sunday, June 24, we'll be assembling schooI kits for Church World Service in support of refugees, our June mission focus. Here are items needed to assemble one school kit... please drop in the designated basket in the mission closet: 

      • One child's backpack
      • One pair of blunt metal scissors (rounded tip) 
      • Three 70-count spiral notebooks or notebooks totaling 200-210 pages (no loose leaf or filler paper)
      • One 30-centimeter ruler (12")
      • One hand-held pencil sharpener
      • One large eraser
      • Six new pencils with erasers
      • One box of 24 crayons (only 24)
    • A "Giant" Thank-You from Discovery Days

      Thanks to all who supported Derry Discovery Days Preschool in the Giant A+ School Rewards program. Those who linked their bonus cards earned our preschool $1,333 for the 2017-18 school year! Your donation is important to help us improve our  program and equipment. Thanks, Derry! 

    • Funeral Volunteers and Cookies Needed

      Please contact Loretta Chubb to help setup, serve or cleanup at the reception following the 2 pm Friday, June 15 memorial service for Rev. George Evans. Bakers, please drop off cookies by Thursday evening. Thanks, Derry!

    • Men's Pickup Basketball Moves to Wednesdays

      Tuesday evening men's pickup basketball is moving to Wednesdays beginning June 13. New players welcome to join the fun at 7:30 pm in Fellowship Hall.

    • Moses and the Freedom Fanatics

      The cast and musicians of "Moses and the Freedom Fanatics" presented a fantastic retelling of the Old Testament story of Moses and the Exodus on Sunday, June 3. Great job, everyone!

    • Moms and Tots of Derry Church

      Many moms of Derry Church gathered on Sunday for this photo op with their children born in the past year (or two). Isn't it great to see all these brand-new Presbyterians and their moms? First row: Liz & Kazmir Gawron. Second row: Becca & Benjamin Farbaniec, Madeline & Leo Simmons, Jackie & Frankie Lerch, Sara & Hudson Bartz, Frances & Ophelia Mohler. Third row: Sara & Owen Matthews, Amy & Georgia Backenstose, M.E. & Grace Steelman, Kathryn & Jett Siegrist, Elia & Fiona Bentley, and Valerie & Josefine Minnich.

    • Thanks for a Great Church Picnic!

      Fellowship Hall and the church inside and out were busy places after worship on Sunday as hundreds enjoyed good food and fellowship. Thanks to coordinator Lauren Talhelm and to the Worship & Spiritual Life Committee led by Al Porter for fantastic organization and planning, and to hospitality coordinator Loretta Chubb for invaluable kitchen prep and assistance. Thanks to Boy Scout Troop 200 scouts and leaders for building and overseeing the rope bridge and swing and cooking monkey bread over the campfire. Thank you to everyone who gave a helping hand: the setup and cleanup crews, the food servers, the ice cream scoopers, the hot dog grillers and kitchen prep crew, the game players and face painters, and to the many behind-the-scenes workers who helped to make the day a great success! See photos on Facebook.

    • Sneaker Drive Savings at Reebok

      The Reebok Outlet Store at the Tanger Outlets in Hershey is partnering with Love INC to provide an additional 20% off any store promotion for the duration of the Lace Up with Love INC sneaker drive (now through August 7). To be eligible for this additional discount, sneaker drive purchases must be deposited in the collection box at the store. NOTE: sneaker donations DO NOT have to be purchased at Reebok. All other donations may be placed in collection boxes at church.

  • May - 2018
    • Welcome Derry's Newest Members!

      On Sunday Derry Church welcomed seven new members. Read more about them in the insert available at the Information Center in the Narthex. Next new member class begins on Sunday, July 29.

    • Baptism on May 27

      Congratulations to Sarah and Ryan Bartz on the baptism of their son Hudson Matthew, who was baptized on Sunday at the outdoor font. Welcome to the family!

    • 2018 VBS Registration & Volunteer Signup

      This year’s Vacation Bible School theme is “God's Everyday Heroes.” VBS will be held August 6-10 from 9 am - 12 pm. Children ages 4 through 5th grade are invited to join us for a fun-filled week of stories, music, crafts, games and snacks.

      Registration forms will be available beginning Sunday, June 3 in the Narthex. Registration continues through July 23.

      Many volunteers are needed as leaders in our classrooms, to help with snacks and registration, and to have fun in our story, craft and recreation rooms. Anyone in 6th grade and older is welcome to join the fun. Sign up using volunteer forms available in the Narthex.

      All volunteers 18 and older will need to provide their clearances: Child Abuse from the PA Dept. of Human Services, Criminal History Record from the PA State Police and if you have not lived in the state of PA for the last 10 consecutive years you will need the Federal Criminal History Record.

      Email or call the church (717-533-9667) with any questions or concerns. We hope you will join us for Derry’s 2018 Vacation Bible School!

    • May 2018 Session Highlights
      • Elders met with all Youth Confirmands to review their faith statements and approve them for Confirmation as Derry Church members. In addition, the Session received eight new adult members and their families on May 27.
      • Steven Guenther shared the Treasurer’s report which noted that contributions to the general fund are strong. Most committee expenses are in line with expectations. At the request of the Treasurer, the Session approved entering into a contract with Boyer & Ritter to perform the yearly financial review in an amount not to exceed $6,700.
      • On behalf of the Parking Task Force, Gregg Robertson shared data collected from a survey of our parking areas which determined that the demand for parking spaces is exceeding the capacity of our lots. Currently, the Task Force is asking those who are able to park in the more remote spaces and at Highpoint Mansion. This will free up spaces closer to the building for visitors and those with mobility issues.
      • Pastor Stephen reviewed the for Three and noted that a hymn sing at the Hershey Plaza Apartments will be held on July 8.
      • ME Steelman presented the Christian Education committee’s proposal for “Art in the Grove.”  This new program will run from June 12 - August 21 in Fellowship Hall and will allow for creative fellowship and spiritual growth through the arts. After hearing the presentation, the Session approved the initiative at a cost not to exceed $7,500 funded through the Futures Fund dedicated account. Session will review the program in September.
      • At the request of the Worship & Spiritual Life Committee, Session approved a Food Truck Fest (4 to 5 food trucks to participate) following the Jazz Engage service scheduled for July 21, 2018. The Session also approved the request to set the price to purchase a new Glory to God hymnal at $25.
      • The Session approved the renewal of tuition aid assistance for Christopher Houtz through the Brong Scholarship dedicated account in the amount of $6,000 for his 2018-19 school year at Princeton Theological Seminary.
      • Members of the Staffing Model Task Force presented and reviewed their recommendations at two meetings on May 9 and 16.  The four recommendations were: (1) obtain new bids for custodial services and establish a new schedule of cleaning needs; (2) commit long-term to an Associate Pastor for Congregational Life and Care; (3) Call an Associate Pastor for Youth and Family Ministry; and (4) change the full-time Youth Director position to a part-time Director of Youth and Young Adults. After thoughtful discussion and deliberation, the Session voted to approve the recommendations.
    • On June 10, Learn More About What it Means to be Presbyterian

      If you’ve ever wondered, “Who Are We, Presbyterians?” this class has answers for you. Join Pastor Marie at 9:15 am Sunday, June 10 in the Lounge to watch a video on the history and mission of the Presbyterian church and discuss our unique gifts. It’s a great class for newer members and visitors -- and everyone interested in learning more about Derry Church and what it means to be Presbyterian.

    • Parking: We Need Your Help!

      Our Session has formed a Parking Task Force to evaluate the parking situation at Derry Church and develop recommendations. Parking was near or over capacity at the 10:30 service on the first three Sundays in May. Several cars were observed cruising the lot and leaving, unable to find a parking space. 

      If you don’t mind a short walk, you can help by using one of two alternative parking areas available on Sunday mornings at the 10:30 service:

      1. Spaces to the right side and behind the Penn State Print Shop across East Derry Road from the church
      2. The Hershey Trust parking lot on East Mansion Road adjacent to the golf course.

      Thanks, Derry, for helping us to open spaces closer to the church for those less able.

    • Sunday, June 3: Dress Casual + Wear Your Nametag

      This Sunday, dress comfortably so you’ll be ready for the church picnic immediately following the 10:30 am service. Please wear your nametag throughout the picnic! Enjoy lunch indoors in Fellowship Hall or outside in the courtyard and front lawn, weather permitting. Bring a blanket or lawn chairs if you wish, though chairs and tables will be set up inside and out.

    • Derry Discovery Days is Hiring!

      Derry Discovery Days Preschool is hiring for the 2018-19 school year! The preschool seeks an aide for our Butterfly 4’s class, a teacher for our afternoon Butterfly 4’s class, and a teacher for our Lady Bug 1’s class. Candidates must have previous experience with children. EOE. Read more... send resumes to Kelly Mehaffie, Director.

    • Women Invited to Learn About Fasting: June 13

      7-9 pm Wednesday, June 13 at Hadee Mosque, 245 Division Street Harrisburg. The women of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community invite the women of different faiths and communities to a discussion on “Benefit of Fasting as prescribed by our Faith.” The program will consider reasons behind fasting, its purpose in their lives and and spiritual uplift received as a result of fasting. You'll learn perspectives from three different faith views. A late supper will be served. Please use the Shamokin St entrance. RSVP to

    • Fifth Annual Lace Up with Love INC Sneaker Drive

      June 3 through August 7, you’re invited to purchase a new pair of sneakers (name brands preferred) for a child in need (grades K-12) in the Lower Dauphin and Derry Township school districts. Sneakers will be distributed by Love INC of Greater Hershey in mid-August so students will have a new pair in time for the start of the school year. Athletic sneakers for boys and girls, children’s size 12 through women’s size 11/Men’s size 15 are needed, as well as NEW socks (low cut and mid-calf,). Monetary donations are also welcome and appreciated, and can be made online or brought to the Love INC office across the street from Derry Church. Drop off sneakers in the designated basket in the atrium mission closet. More info by calling Love INC: 717-835-0101.

    • Congratulations, Confirmands!

      Derry’s 2017-18 confirmation class was received on Pentecost Sunday, May 20 at the 10:30 am worship service. L-R, row 1: Jacob Taylor, Anika Hosenfeld, Emma Taylor, Gavin Yutesler, Austin Pease, Matthew Giampetro. Row 2: Justin Yutesler, Hattie Gavazzi, Allison Cooper, Amelia Stagg, Megan Mehaffie, Micah Clary, Jonah Clary.  See more photos on Facebook.

    • Congratulations 2018 Graduates!

      Congratulations to our 2018 high school graduates! (L-R) Keely Schrum, Gillian Miller and Tony O'Shea. These students were recognized in worship on Sunday, May 20 and received handmade dorm blankets blessed by Derry's Shawl Ministry.

    • HVAC Update #6

      The Chapel is the only part of the church that is without air conditioning at this point in the HVAC project. All the major construction has moved to the chapel and youth room end of the building. The boiler that supplies heat for the church was shut down on May 19 to allow for installation of two high-efficiency gas boilers with water flow pumps and a computer monitored control system. This shutdown will last approximately two weeks. The last two fan coil units in the Chapel will be installed along with heating and air conditioning controls. One new item being added is a large ducted dehumidifier and fresh air supply for the youth room and quilter room area. We still have another month or two for 100% completion and testing/balancing of control systems. Thanks to the committee for their diligence, and everyone for their patience.

    • Moses and the Freedom Fanatics on June 3

      A fully staged, costumed production of Moses and the Freedom Fanatics will be presented at the 10:30 am worship service on Sunday, June 3 in the Sanctuary. This musical takes us back to the Old Testament as the children in Derry’s Music & Arts program bring the story of the Exodus to life. The musical is directed by Dr. Sean McCarthy. Derry’s annual church picnic follows the musical. The 8 am worship service will be held as usual in the Chapel.

    • Art in the Grove Starts June 12!

      A new summer arts program will be held weekly on Tuesday evenings from 5:30-8:30 pm June 12 through August 21 in Fellowship Hall. Our Christian Education Committee invites all ages to experience the arts in ways that allow for creative fellowship and spiritual growth. Art experiences will range from artist presentations to collaborative art projects to artistic sharing sessions. Bring a picnic dinner, then enjoy time to learn more about the theme of the month and participate in creative studio activities. Read more next week in the June "Connect" newsletter.

    • Sign Up for Supper Clubs on June 24

      One more fellowship opportunity happens on June 24, and you’re invited! Join church friends new and old over supper in one another’s homes with a group of seven or eight. Families with young children are encouraged to sign up for a special family club that will most likely meet at the church. We are looking for host homes (provide the table setting and entree) and participants who will bring side dishes and dessert. Sign up online or call the church office (717-533-9667). Questions? Contact Amy Backenstose. We hope you will join the fun.

    • Supplies for School Kits Needed by June 17

      Next month we'll be assembling schooI kits for Church World Service in support of refugees, our June mission focus. Here are items needed to assemble one school kit... please drop in the designated basket in the mission closet by Sunday, June 17: 

      • One pair of blunt metal scissors (rounded tip) 
      • Three 70-count spiral notebooks or notebooks totaling 200-210 pages (no loose leaf or filler paper)
      • One 30-centimeter ruler (12")
      • One hand-held pencil sharpener
      • One large eraser
      • Six new pencils with erasers
      • One box of 24 crayons (only 24)
    • Orange Day is Friday, May 25

      In India, when a person hears sounds of domestic violence, they are asked to ring their neighbor's doorbell.  This interrupts the action, gives a chance for calming down, makes a rescue possible, and encourages perpetrator to rethink his actions. Wear orange or an orange ribbon tomorrow to show support for these and others who are working to end exploitation of women and children.