Sunday, November 25, 2007

Readings from the First Sunday in Advent

Readings from the First Sunday in Advent, Year A (Dec. 2)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Photos of Thanksgiving Dinner

The Thanksgiving Dinner, held at the New Utrecht Reformed Church Parish House tonight, served 80 people, including many needy families in Bensonhurst. The Dinner began with a prayer by the church's minister, Rev. Terry Troia, executive director of Project Hospitality. Turkey, ravioli, meatballs and pumpkin pie were served at the Dinner!

Photos by Vincent La Marca

The Rev. Terry Troia, executive director of Project Hospitality, giving the prayer at the beginning of tonight's Thanksgiving Dinner.

Music and dancing!

The Rev. Robert Petersen proving music at tonight's Dinner.

Serving up turkey!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Free community concerts in a historic setting; upcoming: 'Holiday with the Pops'




Brian P. Worsdale conducts the ISO Symphonic Band in the Parish House of the New Utrecht Reformed Church in Bensonhurst during another of the musical programs he has arranged as music coordinator for the Friends of Historic New Utrecht. The program, which attracted over 150 people for "Abracadabra", a spirited evening of musical film favorites, was one of a series of free community events planned by Mr. Worsdale, the band's founder. The next program, "Holiday with the Pops," features the North Shore Pops Concert Band, Eric Albinder conducting, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m. Parking is in the historic church compound, at 18th Ave. and 84th St., with bus and subway lines nearby.

Light refreshments will be served.

The Parish House, known for its acoustics, has been home to many musical programs while the main church building, next door, undergoes a $2 million repair and restoration. The New Utrecht Reformed Church was founded in 1677. The building undergoing repair opened its doors in 1828.

Both the main church building and the Parish House are known for their magnificent stained-glass windows and architecture. The pastor is the Rev. Terry Troia.

The Friends of Historic New Utrecht provides cultural and educational activities for residents of the community, including hundreds of young people who attend historically-oriented programs each year, many of them New York City high school students.

The concert series is supported, in part, by public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, NYC Department of Youth and Community Development and the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

Additional information on the free community programs and on the history of Brooklyn's earliest days, before the borough got its name, is available at 718-256-7173 and at and

pr services donated by bhprEspeciallyForChurches November 2007

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Cemetery care - with an education in History and Science, old headstones an "educational treasure"

Student members of Kiwanis Key Clubs from three high schools in Brooklyn - Fort Hamilton, James Madison and New Utrecht - stand in a cemetery dating back to 1654 where they cut grass, raked leaves and in other ways prepared the landmark property for the winter ahead. With their club motto "Caring - Our Way of Life," about 30 students put their words into action assisting the New Utrecht Reformed Church in Bensonhurst and the Friends of Historic New Utrecht to maintain the site, at the corner of 16th Ave. and 85th St.

Friends president Robert Buonvino says before the students began work they were given a "little history lesson" about the founders of New Utrecht, many of whom are buried in the cemetery along with soldiers of the Civil War and the American Revolution. They also got into science, Mr. Buonvino said, as when the students saw first-hand how headstones of differing composition erode in different ways, as from acid rain.

One of the objectives of the historical organization, he said, is to raise a seven-ton obelisk, over 14 feet long, knocked down during Hurricane Floyd in 1999. A memorial to two doctors who gave their lives treating patients during the yellow fever epidemic in 1857, it damaged nearby headstones as it shook the ground when it was toppled by a large tree.

"The Key Clubs are essential to our maintaining the grounds," Mr. Buonvino said, "and the students learn a lot about history and science as we examine the headstones that tell many stories of their own. For all us today, especially teachers, they are an 'educational treasure'."

The cemetery is owned by the New Utrecht Reformed Church, which dates from 1677. Its current building, on 18th Ave. and 84th Street, is undergoing a $2 million restoration and repair. Persons interested in finding out more about the earliest days of Brooklyn, before it got its name, are invited to call (718) 256-7173 and to log onto and

pr services donated by bhEspeciallyForChurches November 2007

Proper 29 (34), Year C

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Proper 28 (33)/Thanksgiving, Year C

Readings from Proper 28 (33), Year C (Nov. 18) or Thanksgiving Day, Year C (Nov. 22)

Proper 27 (32), Year C

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Words from Wes: New York City

The Rev. Wesley Granberg-Michaelson writes on his visit to New York last weekend. Mentioned are several churches in the New York area, including New Utrecht Reformed Church. His column is also at the website of the Regional Synod of New York.

Brooklyn church thrift sale to benefit $2 million restoration

BROOKLYN - The New Utrecht Reformed Church, at 18th Ave. and 84th St. in Bensonhurst, has a thrift sale Saturday, Nov. 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with proceeds going toward the $2 million restoration of a Brooklyn landmark. Recently scaffolding was removed from outside the church building as extensive repair and restoration continues. The sale will be held next door, in the Parish House, with ample free parking in the church lot. Subway and bus lines are nearby.

"As always, we'll have an abundance of new and gently used items," a church leader, Rose Lood of Bay Ridge, said. "And every penny will go toward the restoration."

The church building dates from 1828, and was closed in December of 2003 for repair.

The New Utrecht Reformed Church was founded in 1677. The structure undergoing restoration stands a few blocks from where the original church building was located.

The church, with the Rev. Terry Troia of Staten Island as pastor, is within the Reformed Church in America (RCA).

Items for sale will include clothes, costume jewelry, electronics, picture frames, CDs, glassware, dishes, books and toys.

Mrs. Lood says, "As always, there will be bargains galore!" Hot dogs and egg salad with coffee, tea and other drinks will be available for lunch.

Persons interested in learning more about the early history of Brooklyn and buildings in the New Utrecht historic complex are invited to call (718) 256-7173 or (718) 234-9268. They also may log onto and Information also can be obtained by sending an e-mail to

pr services donated by bhprEspeciallyForChurches November 2007