Church Life Weekly Newsletter

Find pdf files of Church Life newsletters at the bottom of this page.


Mission statement:  Grace United Methodist Church is a family of faith striving to share God’s love with all people.

Good Morning Friends and Members of Grace United Methodist Church,

Pastor Penny is away at the Annual Conference and will be on vacation the following week (June 16th).  Pastor returns to us on June 23rd and will be celebrating Amistad Sunday. 

Pastor Penny has invited a time traveler from 1841 (Herself as Katherine Turner) to share her personal experience of getting to know the Amistad Africans in the New Haven Jail (1839 until they won the case before the Supreme Court, defended by John Quincy Adams, past President).  Her testimony tells the African’s story while also sharing the impact knowing them had on her spiritual life.

Pastor Penny is on the Board of Discovering Amistad, an organization that uses the 129′ replica of the tall ship Amistad as a floating classroom to teach the lessons of the 1839 Amistad Uprising to advance racial and social justice today. 

Your experience will be greatly enhanced by seeing the movie “Amistad” and also the website:

Please consider making the trip to Mystic Seaport in Conn. to celebrate Juneteenth and tour the ship.  Wednesday June 19, 3-5pm

There will be a special offering on June 23 to support Discovering Amistad.


Pastor Penny Van Riper Gadzini

NURSERY SCHOOL.  On Sunday, June 2, Grace Church celebrated 53 years of Grace Methodist Nursery School during their church service, followed by a beautiful reception in the gymnasium.  Past and present teachers were invited to be part of the festivities.  The Nursery School Committee presented long time employees Director, Diane Panzarino, Secretary, Grace Porti and Treasurer, Peggy Robinson with bouquets of flowers and the teachers received carnations. The Committee would like to thank the following church members for all of their help with the beautiful reception that was held in the gym afterward, Bob and Theresa DiSalvo, Pat and Walter McKnight, Debbielee Thomsen and Anthony Heyward and his boys from My Brother’s Keeper.  It was a wonderful celebration for the many years that Grace Methodist Nursery School served our community and its young children.  Unfortunately, due to free Universal Pre-K in the public schools, the Nursery School will be closing at the end of this year.  Please open the attached files for some pictures from the reception.                        Kim Neri

Camperships and Scholarships.  Congratulations to Jaxson Baptichon, Jared Baptichon, Timothy Neri, and Janah Whittaker-Roth who received camp awards for their upcoming attendance at Quinipet.  Congratulations to Stephanie Neri, David Earl Boyd, Josiah Whittaker, and Luke Lopez who received educational scholarships. Thank you to the Education Committee, which includes Pat Eshun, Lenore Kurz and Kim Neri.  Thank you as well to Bill Hartmann, Treasurer of the Trustees and Eileen Robertson, Church Secretary.  We are looking forward to hearing all about the summer camp and college experiences that the recipients will have!



celebrates his 101st Birthday, May 21, 2024.

We all wish Dick a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY.  He loves his Church.  Dick was there every Sunday greeting, ushering and counting.  On weekdays he could be seen picking up litter around the church and helping wherever he could.  A very special man. 



We look forward to welcoming our new pastor Rev. Eumin Kim around July 1st.

Rev. Eumin Kim has served various congregations in McLean, VA; New Haven, CT; Poughkeepsie, NY; Lagrangeville, NY; Maspeth, NY, and is currently at the Community United Methodist Church of Jackson Heights.  Eumin is happily married to Prumeh Lee and has two children, Yeari and Eli.  In his free time, Eumin loves playing sports and lives vicariously through rooting for his favorite sports teams.  (Information taken from the NY Annual Conference.)

Prayer List

Richard (Dick) Tiedge, ♥Family of Rowenna Boyd (mother of Earl Boyd), ♥Vivian (4 months old) Peeples and sister Emilia (4 years old) Peeples (granddaughters of Debbie Nicosia), ♥Rev. Carl Borden, Rev. Dorothy Sith Borden, George and Teddy Borden and Roberto Gallimore (friends of Debbielee Thomsen), ♥Manny Kurz, ♥Jasmin Whittaker, ♥Emma Donnelly, ♥Cecil and Carol Walker (friends of Barbara Woodford), ♥Veronica Stone (friend of Margo Morrison), ♥Everon Palmer (son of Enid Simpson), ♥Eugene (Gene) O’Brien, ♥Hedy Kling, ♥Carol Whyte, ♥Winston Scarlett (brother-in-law of Maudlyn Scarlett), ♥David Biegler, ♥Michael Ciampi (friend of Kim Neri), ♥Michael Kurz, ♥Walter McKnight, ♥Vin Dowling, ♥Suella Fredrick (friend of Lorna McKenzie), ♥Juliana Bonds (sister of Eleanor Phillip), ♥Garvin Phillip (nephew of Eleanor Phillip), ♥Elaine Treske, ♥Marilyn Eller (sister of Elaine Treske), ♥Charles Zipperlen, ♥Jim Poch, ♥All our Military men and women, ♥Barbara Siegl, ♥All UMW in Rehabilitation and Nursing Homes, ♥Castells Family (family of Elaine Treske), ♥Iris Molina, ♥Olga Molina (sister of Iris Molina), ♥Milly Molina (sister of Iris Molina), ♥Evelyn Neber (friend of Elaine Treske).  

Note:  Prayer List names will continue to be listed for two weeks.  After that period of time, the names will be removed unless you call us with current information.  – Death in family, – New entry 

News of Friends and Members.  Emilia Peeples (Debbie Nicosia’s four-year-old granddaughter) underwent Open Heart Surgery on June 5.  I spoke with Debbie and she wanted us to know that Emilia’s surgery was successful and she is doing well.  She thanks everyone for sending positive thoughts and prayers.

Sunday School 

My name is Janet Stone and I am writing to invite your child to join us for in-person Church School each Sunday.  Church School is where students will learn about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit and how to live a Christian life.  We learn Bible stories and we learn how to use those stories to help us be better people.  All PreK-8th Grade students are welcome.  Children start out in Church at 10:00 with their families and are sent to Church School following the Children’s Sermon.  Please note that on the first Sunday of the month, children are directed to the Education Building first and then return to the church building in order to be with their family for communion. I am looking forward to a fun-filled Church School year!  Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns.     Janet Stone

May 19, 2024:

Today’s Bible story is about a woman who was widowed named Tabitha (Acts 9:36-43).  Her Greek  name was Dorcas.  Tabitha made beautiful clothing for the poorest women in her town, Joppa.  In the Bible, women were completely dependent on men for their survival.  If a woman’s husband died, the woman’s life took a drastic turn for the worst.  Women were not allowed to own property, so if the husband died, they would be at the mercy of others to be able to live.  Tabitha somehow had the resources to sew for others less fortunate.  Unfortunately, Tabitha became very ill and died.  When the other disciples heard about Tabitha’s death, they sent for Peter.  Peter rushed right over and went upstairs where Tabitha’s body lay.  Many community members were there, crying and showing one another tunics and other clothing Tabitha had made.  The presence of the community showed how dedicated Tabitha was to loving and serving others.  Peter asked the people to leave the room, and he knelt down and prayed.  Peter then commanded Tabitha to get up, and she opened her eyes and sat up.  Her friends were astounded and overjoyed at the same time.  One of the acts of love in this story is praying for one another, as Peter did for Tabitha.  Tabitha showed love through service not only with her sewing, but also by performing other “good works and compassionate acts on behalf of those in need” (verse 36).  The community also showed love for Tabitha in their efforts to bring Peter to town to pray for her.  Through this story, we can help children to know that the exchange of loving gestures is part of being in the community of believers.

Please note that  May 19th was the last Church School class for this school year.  We will resume again on the Sunday after Labor Day weekend. Enjoy the summer!     Janet Stone



June 02 – Everett Fitch

June 09 – Debbie Nicosia

June 16 – Marisa Pershad (Team 1)

June 23 – Marisa Pershad

June 30 – Debbie Nicosia


MISSIONS – January/April/July/October 2024


UMCOR SUNDAY – March 10, 2024

EASTERMarch 31, 2024






CHRISTMAS EVE – December 24, 2024 (Tuesday)

CHRISTMAS DAY – December 25, 2024


REMINDER.  Please remember to put your Envelope Number on your checks, your donation envelope or include with your Venmo or Zelle.  Thank you.

United Women in Faith hosted Coffee Hour May 19 and recognized the Grace Church Women in Ministry.  We had a good time of fellowship, flowers, and food. Please see the attached list of Women in Ministry.  It is good for us to learn each other’s names as we answer God’s call. UWF is open to all the women in the church. We would love to have you join us!

GRACE METHODIST NURSERY SCHOOL.  Grace Methodist Nursery School, a nurturing early childhood center which has dedicated itself to “celebrating children and childhood” in Valley Stream for 53 years will be closing its doors after the 2023-2024 school year.  Many factors including decreasing enrollment affected by the implementation of UPK in Valley Stream have caused us to make this very difficult decision.  For 53 years GMNS proudly provided a variety of early children programs to the young children of the community and their families. 

During its 53 year tenure GMNS has been blessed with a dedicated team of faculty members whose professionalism and devotion have contributed to its long standing success.  GMNS is grateful for the support and loyalty of the Grace United Methodist Church family throughout the years.  Diane Panzarino, Director

Nursery Room in the Undercroft.  The United Women in Faith are working to re-open the Nursery in the undercroft so that parents of children aged 2 months through 3 years will have the option of using the Nursery services during Sunday morning worship.  On Saturday, March 2 we emptied the nursery for a deep clean including the furniture, blankets, and toys.  We thank Narendra Pershad for cleaning the carpet.  Thank you to the many volunteers who helped with the Nursery cleaning.  We want to give a special shout-out to My Brother’s Keeper for washing the walls.  It did my heart good to see the tremendous outpouring of support.  The next step is getting volunteers to staff the nursery during the church service on a rotating basis.  Two people are needed each Sunday.  If you are interested in volunteering in the nursery on a rotating basis, please contact Katherine Perkins:  Thank you!

Coffee  Hour. We are looking for Volunteers for June 9, 23 and 30.  Please sign up on the sign-up sheet at Coffee Hour or call the Church Office (516/825-1182) or speak with Bob.  Thank you in advance for volunteering!

News of Friends and Members.  Everyone was enjoying the Valley Stream Memorial Day Parade. In the photo are Johanny, Debbielee, Reverend Hooker, Rosario, Pat and Diane.

UWF Career Day and Luncheon postponed to the fall. It was brought to our attention during the Church Council meeting that May 25 is Memorial Day weekend. We will postpone our Career Day and Luncheon Event to the Fall. United Women in Faith looks forward to hosting it then.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to our annual diaper drive during the month of May. With your participation, we were able to deliver two carloads of diapers, wipes, baby food, and other products needed by mothers in need. Although the diaper drive is officially over, please consider keeping these mothers and their children in mind when contributing to any food drive you might participate in. Thank you so much!


HELP – The Thrift Shop continues to provide inexpensive articles for sale to the community thanks to the many donations we receive.  Keep them coming!  It is also providing revenue to support the church.  Three of our volunteers are moving which leaves us very short of help.  In order to continue volunteers are needed.  We meet Thursday at 10 am to sort through donations and prepare for Saturday.  We are open Saturday from 10am-2pm.  Even a two hour commitment would be appreciated from either 10am – 12pm or 12pm to 2pm on Saturday.  This is a time of fellowship as well as a commitment to our church and our community. Please contact Eileen at the church office if you are able to volunteer. Thank you!            –Thrift Shop Ministry Team


This Special Sunday is a denomination wide celebration intended to raise awareness that even in a world plagued by war and terror, violence and destruction, people of faith have a clear call to build peace with justice.  As United Methodists, our yearning for peace must move us to act.

The United Methodist Social Principles call us to love our enemies, seek justice, and serve as reconcilers of conflict.  We insist that the first moral duty of all nations is to work together to resolve by peaceful means every dispute that arises between or among them.

The United Methodist Church, with its historic commitment to peace and justice, can and should provide leadership to this social transformation.  The General Board of Church and Society Church holds a non-governmental, consultative status with the United Nations.  This status allows us to participate in UN meetings, consultations and conferences.  We recognize and renew our call for social transformation, for the quest to open the doors of opportunity for all, to distribute resources more equitably, and to provide better care for persons in need.  Churches are encouraged to donate through their local churches.  Special envelopes are located in the Narthex.

An offering is taken on this Special Sunday to support programs and ministries to educate, equip and mobilize actions in support of identified Economic, Health, and Gender Justice Priorities.  Last year, your generosity delivered $144 thousand towards these ministries:

  • Fifty percent of the funds collected on Peace with Justice Sunday remain in the Annual Conference to develop and strengthen social justice ministries within the local conference.  Our Book of Discipline (paragraph 629) requires each Annual Conference have a conference board of Church and Society (or its equivalent) and a Peace with Justice Coordinator.  The conference coordinator works to provide educational resources, building and sustaining relationships, and help mobilize networks to engage in social advocacy and action. 
  • Fifty percent of the donations collected fund national and international peacemaking ministries and grants.  We achieve peace with justice efforts by working with the World Council of Churches, interfaith and ecumenical bodies, and secular organizations for social-justice policies and programs that seek the wholeness of shalom for all of God’s people.  Three different grants are created and made available to United Methodist congregations and organizations that support Ethnic/Minority Local Church ministries, and programs related to the Peace with Justice Sunday.  One of the wonderful aspects of The United Methodist Church is that we can do so much more together than we ever could do on our own.  Your generosity provides funding to strengthen and foster just, equitable and durable solutions to the root causes of conflict.

Where You Can Volunteer

Liturgist or Reader – Contact Pat Eshun

Sunday School – Contact Janet Stone

Evangelism – Contact Andrea Owen-Boyd

Thrift Shop – Contact Andrea Owen-Boyd or Maudlyn Scarlett

Music – Leave a message for the Music Ministry Office (516/825-1940)

Missions – Contact Katherine Perkins

Worship – Contact Kim Neri or Carol Provenzano

Acolytes – Contact Tim Neri or or Mike Provenzano

Ushers – Contact Mike Provenzano or Carol Provenzano

Counting Team – Contact Marisa Pershad  or Eileen Robertson

Hospitality – Contact Bob DiSalvo

Greeters – Contact Naomi Brown or Carol Provenzano

(Please call Eileen if you need contact information – 516/825-1182)

Weekly Meetings and Rehearsals

Please note whether meetings are in-person at the church or via Zoom. Thank you.

*Every Sunday – Choir Rehearsal 8AM/Church

*Every Sunday – Church School 10AM/start in Church (except 1st Sunday of the month start 10AM/Education Building)

                             Church School will resume Sunday, September 8, 2024

*Every Second Sunday of the month  – Healing Prayer Service after Church/Chapel

*Fourth Sunday of every month – United Women in Faith

*Every Wednesday – Bible Study 7:30PM-8:30PM/Zoom (Same Zoom Link every week)

*Every Thursday – Westminster Ringers 7PM/Church

*Every Saturday – Prayer Meeting 8AM/Zoom (Same Zoom Link every week)

*Every Saturday – Thrift Shop 10AM-2PM 

Upcoming Events

*Sunday, December 8, 2024 – Christmas Concert


Upcoming Meetings

*Sunday, June 9, 2024 – Church Council Meeting after Church

NOTE:  All of our Grace Church Services will use the same link that we have been using.   Other meetings such as Bible Study have their own link.


Church Life Weekly Newsletter pdf Files