June 2024

Centenary United Methodist Church

LAUREL, DE • 302-875-3983

In a World where you can Bee anything

…………………... Bee Kind………………….

Thoughts from Rev. Dean Perdue, Pastor

We Believe!


I was listening to the radio station The Bridge, and one of my favorite groups came over the air. It was the group Newsong singing the song, We Believe. I have been a fan of this group for some time and remember them in concert in Salisbury right after the album Love Revolution came out in 1997. We Believe appeared on the album Restart and reminds us that the one foundation of our faith is we believe. The song captures the desperation of the times we live.

In this time of desperation

When all we know is doubt and fear

There is only one foundation

We believe, we believe


It truly seems that we are living in a time of desperation, doubt, and fear. There is so much division in this world we live, and it is helpful to be reminded of the one foundation that unifies, not divide us, as Christians we can believe. One of the old hymns of the church says, the church’s one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord, she is his new creation. During this time of broken generation we should be reminded that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. We can stand firm in our belief that God is still on God’s throne.


So let our faith be more than Athens

Greater than the songs we sing

And in our weakness and temptations

We believe

We believe


We believe in God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. We believe in the crucifixion, that Jesus conquered death, the resurrection, the accension, and we believe Jesus Christ is coming back again. This is the very foundation of our faith. Maybe we as Christians should focus more on the things that unite us than the things that tend to divide us. Maybe we can hear the words of a Newsong lyric, there is only one foundation, we believe, we believe!



Chancel Choir News by Director Joy Slavens

The choir has completed another year of providing wonderful music for our church family and the community. Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday the choir lifted their voices by singing songs that led us to the cross, and to the empty tomb with a resounding He’s Alive on Easter Sunday.

On May 26 we will be focusing on Memorial Day by having our choir, and our ensemble, minister to us with patriotic selections. The service begins at 9:50.

Centenary Praise Team is leading worship each Sunday. Thanks to each member for their faithfulness in serving God in this capacity. The Praise Team strives to bring everyone to a place of worship through the ministry of music.

As the Director, I’d like to thank each choir member for an outstanding year!

The choir has outdone themselves in learning many new selections. I am blessed beyond measure to work with this tremendous group of people. It is all about learning, laughing, praying, and working together as a team.

If you’d like to be a part of the music ministry, please talk to Karen, Linda, or myself. Choir returns in September with the first practice being on Wednesday, September 4 at 7:00 p.m. in the choir room.



submitted by Jerry Lynch

As always, the Trustees are working behind the scenes to keep our beautiful church running smoothly and looking fantastic.

For those who want to attend events downstairs, a new chair lift has been installed from the main floor to partner with the one that leads to the downstairs. Let us know if this helps out.

The Trustees are in the process of cleaning out items that are no longer needed such as chairs, lamps, etc. that you may be interested in. We will be displaying the items in the Welcome Center area. Please let Jerry Lynch know if you’re interested in something.

At our May meeting, the Trustees will be reviewing parking lot plans received from the Nanticoke Water Shed. Here’s something you may be excited about…the Trustees are in the process of getting estimates to install a canopy over both the ramp and the sidewalk leading up to our main entrance.


Our family wishes to express our deepest appreciation to the members and friends of Centenary UMC for their prayers, cards, food, and other acts of kindness when our beloved Carol Mae Whaley passed away. Pastor Dean, a sincere thank you for your visits and prayers.

God Bless,

Carol Mae Whaley Family


Centenary Family,

We can’t thank you enough for all of your prayers & support during this season. Your gift cards helped us pay our bills & keep food on the table. Your prayers & friendship reminded us of God’s love & that we are never alone. Thank you again for everything!

God Bless you,

Kevin , Carol, Michael, Sarah, Julie & Everly (The Proud Family)



The Women’s Group has continued to meet on a regular basis. We also continue to provide the school nurse with 12 snack bags for students needing something for the weekends. Thank you to the ladies who did the cute Easter bags with a note that said, “No bunny loves you s’more than Jesus” and contained items to make a s’more.

At our last meeting, we decided to have a Spring Fling (light dinner) on Monday, May 13th at 6 pm. We will have finger food and snacks and enjoy a time of fellowship. Please RSVP to Ann if you are able to attend. We will then break for the summer (June and July at least) before meeting again. You never know when a fun activity or ministry opportunity will arise. Please watch bulletins for announcements and feel free to join us.




The Worship Committee meets on a quarterly basis to discuss each season of the church and the several facets involved with planning weekly worship services. At our last meeting, we discussed the changes involved with our sound/video on Sundays and special occasions since our beloved Bob Jones went home to the Lord. An incredibly special thanks to Jaysen Frame for assisting Frank Littleton with the transition. Frank is doing an amazing job and is training a couple of our members who may be able to assist.

We continue to offer music on Sunday evenings at 6 pm with gospel music and short a message. The music varies each week, and we invite all of you to join us! The schedule at this point is as follows:




In reviewing our first quarter of the year, our weekly offerings are down a little from what we need to meet our projected budget. However, our expenses are also down just a little so far. I am asking all committees to please watch their expenses as we progress through the year. It is anticipated that utilities such as electric and gas, etc. will continue to rise. We will also be coming into the grass cutting season which will add to expenses. Financial reports are provided to the Church Council each month and the Finance Committee (Ralph Todd, Chair) monitors those reports. Just a reminder to all – if you make donations to any ministry, the checks need to be made payable to Centenary UMC. You can then designate in your notation the ministry such as Good News, Missions, Women’s Group, etc. The donation is then credited to your chosen location. If you have any questions, contact Ann Lee.

PHOTO Directory Coming!

Smile and say cheese!! The new picture directory is coming to Centenary and since it will all be

completed in house, there are many, many jobs – hopefully, one you’d like to do – that are necessary to have a concise, beautiful directory.

Even though this newsletter is coming out after the committee’s first meeting, do not hesitate to call the office or Patty Eskridge (302.448.0995) if you didn’t/couldn’t attend, to sign up to share your services.

Jobs ranging from scheduling photo appointments, to proofreading, to assembly of the directory, to name just a very few are all waiting.

If you are unavailable for a job, don’t worry, we still need your smiling face and info so make sure you sign up for that.

Look for the directory by the fall which will be here before you know it!

Patty Eskridge 302.448.0995


Centenary Ensemble News

As you know the ensemble is more than just musicians we have formed a bond of friendship/and fellowship with each other. We inspire and pray for each other and strive to praise GOD with our music. We are hard at work all year. Not only are we practicing together one day a week, but you may also see us gathering on an early Saturday morning to smooth out music or even make a last-minute change. If you happen to call one of us at home and say, hey, what are you doing? You will more than likely hear practicing. Each member has committed themselves to a certain amount of personal practice time. Why am I sharing this, well because it is important sometimes to know what goes on “behind the scenes.” I feel that our commitment to GOD and to the group is one to be proud of.

When you read this you may have already heard that on May 19th we were invited to play at Grace Tabernacle of Deliverance here at 5 points in Laurel. It took prayer first to make this commitment because although we have come a long way, this is something we were not sure we were ready for. Leaving it in GOD’s hands we all said yes. Jeff brought the message and your Centenary Ensemble brought the music. Hello, Sunday Night Gospel, we may finally be ready. I am given the praises to GOD early for this opportunity that we can glorify him by using the gifts he has given us.

We seek to glorify GOD in all we do and this is why we do what we love.

Ladies this is for you!!!

The church has pre-purchased 20 tickets at a significant discount and we are excited to gather with women and worship together. At the kickoff meeting we had a zoom meeting with Jennifer and she is so excited to come all the way to Delaware again this year. I have two tickets paid for and 8 more spoken for. Prayerfully consider attending this wonderful event. Tickets will need to be paid for by June 30th.

The second wonderful news about this event is there is a bible study that we will get to use for free. I am planning to start this mid-August so that the last week of the study will fall the week after the event. I will give everyone a schedule of the dates and times by the end of June.

Cheri Watts


Possible Christmas Play? Are you interested?

I have an interest in doing a production for Christmas. Is anyone out there interested in doing a Christmas play? My thoughts are using the gym on a Saturday night. We would need sound, music, stage scenes, props, and costumes and of course actors and actresses. Let’s do it up big!!! However, to do it up big would mean a commitment. My thoughts on this are we meet once a week to just read over the play and start memorizing lines. Then we would move to the stage and work on the actual acting. Scene building and costumes would need to begin as well. I think if we started in September and performed first or second Saturday in December we would have plenty of time to get comfortable with the lines.

The play I found is called “THROUGH HEAVEN’S EYES’ by Carey Green. The play has 12 speaking parts, angels, and a small group for music. Extras that would not have a spoken part and of course all the important parts behind the scenes. Please let me know if you’re interested.


Cheri Watts


Are You Interested in “The Walk to Emmaus?”

The “Walk to Emmaus” is a spiritual renewal program intended to strengthen the local church through the development of Christian disciples and leaders.

The “Walk to Emmaus Weekend” is not a physical “walk,” but instead a “spiritual walk.” The 3-day weekend is a once in a lifetime experience where participants experience the love of Christ through servant leadership, while deepening their Christian understanding and their personal relationship with Christ. The Walk is held at the Riverview Retreat Center at Camp Pecometh, with hotel style accommodations (2 persons per room). Men and women attend separate weekends, which

are held in the Spring and Fall each year, so space and availability are limited. The “Emmaus Community,” (those who have attended a walk), seeks to challenge and support one another in faithful living, and strengthen people as disciples of Jesus Christ, and as active members of the body of Christ in our church.

The fall 2024 dates for the “Walk to Emmaus,” are:

Men’s Walk: October 24 – 27, 2024

Women’s Walk : November 7 – 10, 2024.

The fall dates for the young adult (age 15–24) “Chrysalis” version are:

Girl’s Chrysalis: September 19 - 22, 2024

Boy’s Chrysalis: October 10 - 13, 2024

If you are interested in submitting an application, please contact Jill or Ralph Todd, (phone 302-841-9587) or Pastor Dean. Further decisions will be made prayerfully, based on submitted applications for the program, and availability of the opportunity for participation in the upcoming “Walks.”


Save the Date!

Upcoming Events

June 5th Bible Study Begins! Wednesdays @ 6:30 led by Tom Slavens, all invited.

June 29th Shorebirds Game!, Game at 7:05, Cost is $23 pp- food voucher, fireworks & the game!

August 9th Trap Pond Outdoor adventure! Hiking, Fishing, Boating Family event! Light meal provided

September 8th- Church Picinic ( in the dining room) Bring a covered Dish! Hamburgers & Hots will be provided! Afterwards, games can be enjoyed.

September 21st- Fall Block Party! New Zion & Vital Church have agreed to partner with us again! Volunteers are always needed!





Friendly Sunshine Sunday School Class News

Our first class meeting for this year took place in Centenary’s dining room on Feb 17th at 5:30. Over 30 class members attended our pizza, salad, and dessert dinner. A tentative schedule of events for the upcoming year was discussed and voted on along with other class business.

Our lady’s night out dinner took place on April 27th in the Church dining room. Almost 30 class members attended this event which had the men cooking dinner for the ladies and cleaning up!

Was fun for all. We served soup , salad, shrimp, chicken, baked potatoes, and string beans. For dessert we served ice cream with a chocolate chip cookie. After dinner we had a class meeting.

If you are looking for an Adult Sunday School Class, come and join us Sunday mornings at 9am!

Upcoming Schedule of events:

July 19- Bus Trip to Sight & Sound

July 26- Class Dinner- time and place TBD

August ? -Class Picinic- steamed Crabs/Chicken

September 28th- Fish Fry

November 16- Covered dish dinner and auction

November 30- decorate Church for Christmas

December 14- Class Christmas Dinner

December 31- New Years Eve Dinner



 Sight & Sound 

Friday July 19th, 2024


Ensure your seat at the show!

Must be paid in Full by June 30th!

Contact Tom Riggin 302-858-8364

Doug Marvil 302-875-9427

Bus leaves Church promptly at 10am –

Bus returns to Church approx. 10:30pm