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A Celebration of the Life of Janice Daley – June 22, 1952 – May 20, 2017

City Island resident Janice Daley passed away on Saturday, May 20 at the young age of 64.  Janice was born in Kansas City, Missouri on June 22, 1952.  She spent her childhood in Kansas City then moved to New York City at the age of 12.  Janice began working as a legal secretary in Manhattan and continued until her retirement.

Janice had one daughter from her first marriage and a second daughter from her second marriage.  Janice was a life-long lover of music, it was a big part of her life.  Janice was a gentle, kind-hearted soul who was deeply loved by everyone who knew her.

Janice is survived by her mother, Joyce Clevenger of City Island; her daughter Kimberly and husband Daniel Manzo of Plainfield , New Jersey; and her daughter Lauren Daley of Toms River, New Jersey, as well as her granddaughter Alexis Daley of Toms River, New Jersey.

Janice’s memorial service will be held at The Park on Sunday, June 11 at 2:30 pm. 

Sunday Preview for May 28 from The Rev. Kaji Douša

Dear Church:

The Spirit of the Lord is upon us! This week, we delve into this text from Luke 4:14-21:

When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:
‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’
And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he began to say to them, ‘Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’
We will be exploring the idea of God’s calling in our lives on this very special Sunday.

Join us at 10:30 am as we covenant with Stephenie Stovall with her ordination vows. At 11:00 am, we will continue with our Sunday service and baptize Charlotte Darsie as she continues the Darsie family’s generations of servant leadership in our congregation. Dr. Tony McNeill and the choir will continue their wonderful music leadership in worship. Finally, as part of our postlude, Saya Callner’s Japanese choir will offer a very special choral offering.

The Spirit of the Lord is doing something very exciting at the Park, indeed! You should bring a friend to share in the joy.


SoulFood Fellowship on May 28


Sunday, May 28, SoulFood Fellowship, 12:45 pm, Room A

SoulFood Fellowships provide an opportunity to meet once a month for Bible study, conversation, prayer, and fellowship with others.

A Celebration of the Life of Ima Jean Kidd

Kidd-Ima-JeanMarch 31, 1927 – May 1, 2017

An event to celebrate the life of Ima Jean is being planned by her neighbors at 15900 Riverside Drive West, New York, NY 10032 (near W. 159th St.).  The event will occur in the social hall of the building she shared with an amazing group of people for 58 years.

Here are the details:

WHAT:     Celebrate the life of Ima Jean Kidd
WHEN:    Monday evening, May 22, 7 p.m.
WHERE:  15900 Riverside Drive West, NY, NY

Members and friends from The Park and elsewhere are cordially invited.  Feel free to bring food and beverages to contribute to the festive reception afterward.  If you’re unable to attend, and want to share a story about Ima Jean, please send it to Ann Megyas at

If you’ve never been to Ima Jean’s building, here are some suggestions:

1) Click the address above to view the location in Google Maps.
2) By subway, take the No. 1 train and exit at the W. 157th St. station. Walk north on Broadway to W. 158th St., walk west to Riverside Drive.  Turn right and walk north to 15900.
3) An alternate route is a bit shorter:  Walk west from Broadway on W. 158th St., and turn right at the second street named Riverside Drive.  Keep walking northward, and eventually you will pass a row of brownstones on your left, and then just before you reach the Bronx 6 bus stop, there will be a black fence on your left with an opening to stairs going down to a terrace along the back side (east side) of 15900.  Keep walking southward on the terrace, and you will come to an entry to the lobby. If you get discouraged, the 24-hr.-doorman phone is 212-928-1694
4) One can also get to that neighborhood by taking the A train to the W. 168th St. station.  At that point you might want to take a taxi to 15900 Riverside Drive.  It’s a bit of a walk.
5) Buses that go near that area are the M3, M4, M5, and Bronx 6.
6) Take a car service or taxi to 15900 Riverside Dr.

A memorial service is also being arranged for Ima Jean by Park Avenue Christian Church, 1010 Park Ave., NY, NY.  The date for the Park service is tentatively set for Sunday afternoon, July 16, 2017. Further Details will be published at a later time.

Sunday Service Preview for March 21

Dear Church:
In our text for this week, John 14:15-21, Jesus says this:

‘If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, who will give you another Advocate, to be with you for ever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know the Spirit, because Spirit abides with you, and Spirit will be in you.

‘I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.’

How do we love Jesus? How do we follow him? What does the Advocate do that we can’t?

What about when we feel abandoned?

We will explore all of this and much more in our time of worship on Sunday. Don’t forget to bring a friend.


StillSpeaking Devotional: “Donna of the Night” by The Rev. Kaji Douša

Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord
    who minister by night in the house of the Lord.
Lift up your hands in the sanctuary
    and praise the Lord. – Psalm 134

It is no secret that she is my shero. With puppy-like, sometimes covetous devotion I have followed her and wanted to be a version of her since we first met years ago.

She is a “minister [of the] night in the house of the Lord.”

For so long I have read this Psalm as a concise justification for my preference for somewhat charismatic worship. See, I’d argue, this is just the scriptural condemnation of frozen chosen worship I’ve been seeking!  “Lift up your hands in the sanctuary!”

Several hours with my shero last week taught me something quite different about Psalm 134. As I watched her systematically dismantle the moral justifications officials with a major role in the deportation of immigrants tendered to explain their actions, I learned even more from her fearless ministry.

At the end of the meeting, after the debrief and the planning, I returned to the safety of my home. She, however, returned to her sanctuary. And she went on to “minister by night.” For her sanctuary serves as a refuge of last resort for people who cannot bring themselves to be deported. Her sanctuary, you see, is not just a place where people come to sing and debate where their arms should go when they sing. Her sanctuary serves “by night,” too, as sanctuary becomes more than just a word or a space. Sanctuary, for the people of Judson Memorial Church in New York City and so many other places across this country, is an offering, a way of life.

May we all find ways to make the hands we lift so useful.


O God, by the grace of your Holy Spirit, we lift our hands to be sanctuary by day and by night. Amen.

The “StillSpeaking Daily Devotional” series is produced by The United Church of Christ. The original article is here

“My Way” by The Rev. Kaji Douša, May 14, 2017

What does it mean to know Jesus?

Part of it is revering him. Understanding that he is beyond your capacity to understand. Trusting that Jesus means more for and to you than anything else could be. Wondering about what he did in his life that you could learn from. And deciding to follow him above all else.

Or maybe it’s as simple as knowing that he’s the one you’re meant to be like but never will be while knowing that he will never, ever hold that against you. Keeping that knowledge in place without using it as an excuse is called “humility”. And we have to “humble” ourselves “to be exalted”.

So do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God. Believe in Jesus. See the dwelling place of the Most High as having a home for you.

Wherever God is: that is your place.

Wherever you are: the Way will meet you.

Wherever you go, you will end up with God, who was with you every step of the way, anyway.

From Pastor Kaji’s blog:

Mother’s Day

mothers day

Sunday marks the celebration of an important secular holiday: Mother’s Day. While it doesn’t make its way into a holy feast day, it does make its way into many of our hearts, sometimes in very complex ways. We will ask a prayer on all the people who mother – as a verb.

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