The Hurley Reformed Church

The Spire Newsletter

August - 2008








Early this month (August) I will journey back to my hometown of Clinton, Iowa to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Community Reformed Church.  My family was among the charter members.  I remember the fun of ‘work nights’ as we transformed the unadorned shell for the building little by little into a beautiful little church.  I remember baby-sitting many of the youngsters.  I remember the 1st pastor with his ’55 Ford. I remember occasions I was invited to preach when I was home to visit my family.  I remember so many wonderful people who took an interest in me and were prayer warriors on my behalf as I journeyed through college and seminary.

                What I remember so vividly wasn’t just the heritage they left for those who came after, but the future they believed in.  There’s a great poem written by Norman Macleod entitled ‘Trust in God’ that saw us through the early days of that new congregation, and are words that speak to our situation here in Hurley as we near the end of the search process.  The poem goes like this:

                Courage, Brother, do not stumble, Though your path be dark as night;

                There’s a star to guide the humble; Trust in God and do the right.

                Let the road be rough and dreary, And its end far out of sight,

                Foot it bravely, strong or wary; Trust in God and do the right.

                Perish policy and cunning,  Perish all that fears the light;

                Whether losing, whether winning,  Trust in God and do the right.

                Trust no party, sect or faction, Trust no leaders in the fight;

                But in every word and action, Trust in God and do the right.

                Simply rule and safest guiding, Inward peace and inward might,

                Star upon our path abiding; Trust in God and do the right.

                Some will hate you, some will love you, Some will flatter, some will slight;

                Cease from man, and look above you, Trust in God and do the right.

What great words to live by.  They will help us leave a great heritage to those who follow us, and they will guide the future as we live into it day by day.

Pastor Bob



3rd   -  Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost/Communion

                 Scripture: Matthew 6:25-33

                 Meditation: “Stop Flying Around When You Don’t Have To”

10th -     Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost

                 Jennifer Bendelius will be with us again as our worship leader and preacher.

 17th -      Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost

                 Scripture: 2 Kings 6:1-7

                  Message: “Flounders and Axe-heads - Some Things Are Too Good Not To Be True!”

 24th   -    Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost

                  Scripture: James 1: 17-27

                  Message: “Pondering God’s Good Gifts.”

  31st  -      Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost

                    Scripture:  Genesis 45: 1-13

                    Message: “Making Peace with Your Past.”



Burgess Visit to “Burchetts Green Parish” in England

The Burgess Family had the occasion to visit England in late June, early July.  Coty Burgess rowed in the “Henley Royal Regatta” as a member of an 8 man shell with the Salisbury School in Connecticut.  The Henley Regatta is a 5 day international regatta held in Henley, England every summer.   This year was the first in 18 years that Coty’s school has entered and competed in the regatta.  It was quite an event!

During our trip we were able to visit Hurley England and the “Burchetts Green Parish” which is our sister church in England.  It was wonderful to see our “June Spire” on the table in the church.  We also met Joan Dilley who many of our church members have also met.  She showed us the “kneeling pad” that she embroidered this year, which is placed among others on the kneeling spot in the front of the church.   We were disappointed that we were not able to attend a service with them during our stay.  They currently do not have a minister and share church services with other churches in the area. 

Joan did ask us to pass along a hello to her “Hurley Friends” who she still exchanges Christmas cards with every year.

I did take quite a few pictures and will bring them to the church to be posted on the bulletin boards.  I will also post their “Parish News.”  It was wonderful to be able to visit our “sister church” in Hurley England.  It is truly a lovely spot and one that we will remember with fondness. 

                                          Kim, Jay, Morgan and Coty Burgess


Hurley Heritage Society Events

August 9 - Hurley Heritage Society will host a book signing and reading by Matthew J. Spireng from noon to 3 PM at the Hurley Museum, 52 Main St., Hurley, NY. He will read from his book of poems, Young Farmer, at 1:30 PM. Books will be available for sale.

August 16 - Hurley Corn Festival will be held by the Hurley Heritage Society at the Hurley Church, from 10 AM - 4 PM. Craft and antique vendors, craft demonstrations, music, corn muffin bake off, corn chowder corn on the cob, food and readings by poet, Matthew J. Spireng. 

August 30 - The 3rd Ulster Militia Regiment will be encamped on the grounds of the Hurley Heritage Society's Museum, 10AM - 3 PM. The public is invited to see demonstrations of colonial cooking, to attend a presentation about 18th century medicine and to visit with our American Native friends. The Museum and Museum Shop will be opened.

August 31- Hurley Heritage Society will offer a guided walking tour of the historic landmark district.  The tour begins at the Museum, at 2:00PM. Adults are $3 and children under 12 are free.

  For information call 338- 1661.     



Consistory Corner for Aug 08 Spire

• Candidate recommendation was received from the Search Committee and we are reviewing the feasibility of a Call.

• Sincere THANKS to everyone involved in Stone House Day, for all
your hard work!

• Our furnace passed inspection, now we await the savings!

• We are scrambling to pay the Classis Dues each quarter.

 Just a reminder, if you have not paid your dues yet, they are $82.70 per member.



A Good Day

 Jim Craven

July 12 was Stone House Day and it was a good one. Thanks to the many volunteers we were able to cover all the houses and events we have become accustomed to and to add a few new features.  

Three additional houses were added to the tour, the C. Kool house, formally owned by town historian Olive Clearwater and currently owned by Sam and Nadja Scoggins, the Elmendorf house previously owned by Sly and Ruth Lord now owned by Jim Decker and the Roosa house previously owned by Rev. Amos and now owned by Barbara Paul. The new owners are very interested in historic preservation and we are looking forward to the next tour. 

The big change this year was the cafeteria. For the first time in memory the cafeteria sales exceeded the ticket sales. We can credit Chef Russ Glass for two new items, a pulled chicken BBQ sandwich and a chef salad. Both quickly sold out. Supporting the record sales were a group of volunteers that worked Friday to prepare and Saturday to serve.  Also, the home bakers that provided the desserts. There were many positive comments and second servings of pie.  

Cafeteria sales were 75% above last year.  However, tour ticket sales were disappointing.  The cost of fuel may be the reason. Overall the total sales were typical of recent Stone House Days.   

In addition to the crafters, re-enactors, bake sales and Grannys Garrett, Lonnie Kulick provided three musical programs and Deborah Zuill added audience participation to her Sojourner Truth play.  

Next year will be the 400th anniversary of the discovery of the Hudson River.  We expect an increase in tourism and we are working to get Stone House Day on the Explore New York 400 calendar. 


Property and Maintenance: Stay 'cool'

The church purchased a brand new air conditioner for the Dutch/Stickley room. We tried to use an old clunker AC unit in there before which didn't work at all.  Join the choir or another organization that uses that room and you'll be cool (well, more cool than you already are).

You may see some digging going on along the wall of the church facing Stewarts.   That will be for the start of the columbarium.   Please watch your step if you are venturing on the lawn near there.

Stay cool,   Joe and Gretchen.



 To my many friends

in the Hurley Reformed Church,

            Thanks for your prayers that guided me through my hip problem and for the many cards I received that made my recovery much brighter.  God’s prayers were answered.

                                                Clarence Jansen





            The pricing for the niches, and the perpetual care, has been finalized by the committee as well as the forms to be used.

            The stone type for the base and top of the wall, for the columbarium, has been selected and the paver stone for the columbarium patio has also been selected and these materials are to be presented to the consistory at a special meeting for their approval.

             The columbarium committee is meeting again on July 22, with Bill Robertson of the Creter Co., to hopefully place the down payment for the columbarium.          

            Hopefully construction can start by the end of August.  

We Thank You, 

Columbarium committee



July 15, 2008

Dear Mr. Craven and Committee Members,

I work for a local home health care agency, and decided to drive my elderly client, 92, to the event.  She is a New Englander by birth and loves old barns and homes and American history. 

She loved the event and told me she felt like she was in a dream.

What a nice surprise also to view the Paul Farm house.  I’ve lived here many years and have always wondered what it looked like inside.

Everything was well coordinated, everyone treated us royally, and a special thanks to the ladies and men who worked in the kitchen and served us a nice lunch in a quiet atmosphere.

A special thank you, to the person(s) who had a water cooler on the sidewalk, for the touring passerby group.  Very Thoughtful.      

We will be back next year again.  We’re also planning to attend the Corn Festival.

       Most sincerely,

Nancy Hughes & Peg Gummere




David, Leon and Lily would like to thank the ENTIRE congregation of the Hurley Reformed Church for thoughts, and especially your prayers, during our very difficult time.

Della was a Grand Lady and we know she now rests in the arms of Christ.






            Not all visitors sign in at the Spy House, but of the more than 200 Stone House Day folks who did register, at least seven other States, and eight foreign countries were represented among the guests who attended this year.  The Spy House register goes back decades.

            Countries and numbers were Nicaragua (1), Peru (1), Taiwan (92), Austria (3), France (2), Japan (2), Mexico (1), Swaziland (1).

            Besides New York, sightseers came from Maine, Vermont, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Oregon, New Jersey and Rhode Island.

            We assume that some came because they were visiting relatives or friends who suggested a visit to Hurley might be interesting.


Congratulations to Mrs. Gay Gravina, the winner of this year’s Ohio Star quilt and two pillow - the 20th one we have completed.

            Thank you to our small group of faithful quilters who come every Monday to cut and sew and a very special thank you to all of you who, year after year, have contributed to our quilt project.

            We meet every Monday morning (September to April) and would love to have you join us.

The Hurley Quilters




     The ‘Country Fair’ on Stone House Day was a HUGE success!  A ‘Big Thanks’ to the following who so willing participated and the results:

Bake Table - $327.50

      Joyce Pinckney and Faye Jansen

 Crafts - $177.00   

       Dolores Wolven and Dolores Wyncoop

  Grandma’s Garrett - $163.30

        Kathy Jansen, Shirley Ruth,   Helen Sgroi (Set up),  Anna McGinnis

  Jewelry - $154.10

          Friedel Borst, Joyce Sweeney, Grace Kakas

   Tiles, Tee Shirts -     $137.10

           Virginia Dumas, Carol Schwabacher

    GRAND TOTAL -  $959.00



Shirley Ruth




SPIRE ARTICLE DEADLINES are the 20th of each Month.  Anything received after that date will have to be placed in following edition.   We appreciate your assistance in this matter. 

Thank you



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