Sunday Services at 10:00am
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Death Category

January 6, 2021 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

In memoriam: Eva Say

In September of 1997, I found myself on a Sunday morning in a Glastonbury church that was meeting at Academy School on Main Street. I was there as part of a parachurch youth ministry called Musicon, a ministry made up a number of junior high students from around the state, along with eight staff members, including me. That weekend we were on tour, performing a musical that we had learned over the summer. And by God's providence, that morning our tour led us to NewLife Christian Fellowship, a young church whose friendliness left an indelible impression on me. Four months later, I began working there as the youth pastor, a position I served in for four and a half years. And 24 years later, I am still blessed to be a part of this wonderful church. One of the things I learned early on at NewLife was that about a quarter of the people there belonged to one family....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death

May 23, 2017 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Rest in peace, Beverly Winful

I first met Beverly Winful in the summer of 1996. I had been hired by South United Methodist Church in Manchester to be their Summer Youth Director, and that July I was taking six junior high students to Camp Aldersgate in North Scituate, Rhode Island. All of the youth leaders and teens had climbed into the 15 passenger van when all of a sudden a woman I did not know climbed into the van. She announced to me that she was Carl’s mother, and that she would be coming on the trip too. As a 20 year-old, newly hired youth director, I didn’t think it was my place to object....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Death, Family

April 18, 2017 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Live like you were dying

I work best with a deadline. In college, I was notorious for knowing how long it would take to write a paper, and then waiting until the last possible moment to start the paper. Inevitably, I would finish with minutes to spare. Even when it comes to preparing sermons, I do a lot of work during the week, but it’s when I sit down with my draft on Saturday evening that my brain kicks into high gear and everything comes together. For some reason, it’s the pressure that brings out the best in me. But the truth is that I, along with you, and everyone else, have the ultimate deadline looming....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Discipleship, Death

December 13, 2016 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Rest in peace, Nancy Butler

This past Saturday, I attended the funeral service for Nancy Butler, a pastoral colleague who pastored Riverfront Family Church, a church which was recently located in Glastonbury but now meets in Hartford. I first met Nancy in 1999, when I was the youth pastor at NewLife and she was looking for a youth group for her daughter, Liza. Our paths crossed again in 2005, when she hosted a regional Emergent conversation (for those who remember the Emergent movement). Soon after that meeting, she started Riverfront Family Church, and on occasion we would meet for coffee and to catch up. While we had our theological differences, I appreciated Nancy’s love for Jesus and enthusiasm for building a church community that would be welcoming to everyone....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Discipleship, Death, Nancy Butler

January 13, 2015 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Funerals > Parties

This Saturday at 10 AM at NewLife is the Celebration of Life service for Phil Vaglica, who along with his wife Roberta was a part of our church for about the last six years. If you live in the area, I hope you will be able to join us as we share memories and celebrate the life of this man of God who faithfully loved and served our church from the moment he began attending. Whenever I attend a funeral or memorial service, the verse that always comes to mind is Ecclesiastes 7:2: “It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart.” It’s a curious statement at first glance; after all, most people don’t scan the obituaries looking for a good funeral to attend over the weekend. But there is a great deal of wisdom in this verse. Consider three ways in which going to a funeral is better than going to a party:...Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Death, Phil Vaglica

March 18, 2014 by Jim Quigley 0 comments

Guest blogger: Jim Quigley

I have really appreciated the sermon series on suffering and hearing all the testimonies in regards to how my brothers and sisters in Christ are undergoing, enduring, or have persevered through sufferings and trials. It has served as a glorious reminder that God can allow our suffering to happen and then use it to conform us more into the likeness of His Son, Jesus Christ. This series has also showed that God can use our suffering in order to comfort and encourage others who are also undergoing trials and tribulations. It paints a beautiful image of how the Church is to be united as one body, working together to serve and help one another in our times of need....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Death, hope

May 28, 2013 by Eric Stillman 1 comments

Hope and the death of a child

Kneeling beside the lifeless body of a 4 month-old boy in a hospital room last Friday morning, praying through tears alongside a heartbroken mother and father, I was overwhelmed by two realities. The first was how desperately I wished that God in His mercy would breathe His breath of life back into Henry, snatch Him back from the grave and bring glory to Himself. The second was just how utterly hopeless this situation would be if Jesus had not conquered death. In that place of inexpressible sorrow, I found myself clinging to the risen Jesus like a rope that could pull me and Henry‘s parents, Michael & Sarah, out of the chasm that threatened to swallow us up. How do you recover from the loss of a child so young and so innocent? Apart from the hope that is found in Jesus, I have no idea....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: hope, Death of a child

May 21, 2013 by Eric Stillman 0 comments

Oklahoma and the house of mourning

‘œIt is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart.‘ (Ecclesiastes 7:2) Another week, another tragedy on planet Earth. Yesterday, a tornado ripped through Oklahoma, killing at least 24 individuals, including 9 children, and leaving behind a trail of destruction. Each week, it feels like another senseless tragedy shakes us to the core of our being ‘" sometimes nearby, sometimes at a safe distance, but each one heartbreaking to witness....Keep Reading

Posted in: Death Tags: Death, Suffering