Archive for the ‘ACE Event’ Category

2018 Spring Speaker Series Crucial Communications: Finding Common Ground

Wednesday, February 21st, 2018

Sponsored by CCOT Adult Christian Education Committee

Crucial Communications: Finding Common Ground 
The Congregational Church of Topsfield is pleased to announce a series centered around the theme of how we communicate in an atmosphere where tensions run high. This series of speakers addresses pathways to better understanding of how we convey ideas to others and, at the same time, show we are receptive to understanding their point of view. It highlights past historical events that offer insight into our present era.

A recap from Rev. Don Remick’s presentation on Sunday, February 18th, 2018 addressing the difficulties presented when fellow Christians hold strong opposing views can be viewed at the following links.

View Churches Alive powerpoint presentation here.

View Simon Sinek TED talk video here.

View Michael Jr “Know Your Why” YouTube video here.

Additional information:



Make It Safe Behavioral Covenant elements

The Transforming and Transformed Church of the emerging era 2018

Speaker Series listing continued:

Pure Heart, the Faith of a Father and Son
in the War for a More Perfect Union
William Quigley
Sunday April 8 11 a.m. Emerson Center
author, historian and faculty member of Governor’s Academy. His book tells the true story of a prominent Philadelphia minister. wrongfully forgotten by history, whose success in holding his fractious congregation together during the Civil War parallels Lincoln’s saving of the nation.
It is also the story of the heroism of the minister’s son in a storied Union regiment. Now and again the author proposes we are at similar crossroads in America today with partisan politics, religious polarization and racial tribalism running amok. Is it again time for “the better angels of nature,” that Lincoln hoped to invoke, to once more appear?

What Divides Us and Is There Anything We Can Do?
Dr. T. Richard Snyder
Sunday, April 15 11 a.m. Emerson Center
is an ordained Presbyterian minister and Professor Emeritus of Theology and Ethics and former academic dean of New York Theological Seminary. For many years he has been a leader of the Restorative Justice movement in Maine seeking to bring healing to those harmed, rehabilitation for offenders, and re-establishing broken relationships. He is the author of three books and numerous articles on social justice and is completing a new book tentatively entitled, “Those People: Overcoming Our Divisions.”
Dr. Snyder will also address this theme in his sermon as guest preacher.

How Media and the Press Have Changed Since the
Elimination of the “Fairness Doctrine.”
Marc Holmes
Sunday, April 29 11 a.m. Emerson Center
producer, media expert and radio host, will address the changes in the media since the elimination of the “fairness doctrine” in the 1980’s.
He will highlight the changes that have resulted in our current political polarization as conveyed by an unbalanced media.

This series is a free offering in the hope of facilitating a more peaceful society.

Lenten Series:
The Challenge of Paul. DVD lessons beginning Feb 25th

The Adult Christian Education will begin a Lenten Series on Sun. Feb. 25th and continuing through March 18th. The series is centered around “The Challenges of Paul”. This will be based on a video series with study discussion presented by Dominic Crossan. This series will approach the discussion via video lessons and address the following:
Sun. Feb. 25: In search of the Historical Paul: an appealing or appalling apostle.

Sun. Mar. 4: How to read a Pauline letter.

Sun. Mar. 11: The Romanization of a Radical

Sun. Mar. 18: Jewish Covenant versus Roman Empire

Also, ACE will begin a new book study on Tues. Feb. 27th at 7:30 p.m. in the parlor.

The title of the book for this session is Convictions by Marcus Borg. If you are interested in joining this group please email Steve Whelan

Beyond Immigration Policy: Religion, Race, Culture, Economy?!

Friday, March 17th, 2017

Sat. April 8th, 2017           Registration:  9:30 a.m.             Event Time:  10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Congregational Church of Topsfield- Emerson Center – Fellowship Hall

9 East Common St.  Topsfield, MA.

Presentation and Panel Discussions with:

Presentations and panel discussions with:

Elsabel Rincon: “Historical, Cultural, and Economic Aspects of the US Immigrant Experience”

Eman Lasheen: “A Syrian Refugee Story”

Tom Warren: “RIM Caregiving: Visiting ICE Detainees”

Raheel Raza: “Islamophobia and Political Correctness”

Complimentary soup lunch.

Sponsored by the Congregational Church of Topsfield

Public Welcome

FMI 978-887-2101 x 11

Presentation After the Service Sunday, March 19th

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

Please join members of the Adult Christian Education and Mission team in welcoming Nancy and Ron Rucker to CCoT Sunday, March 19th. They will be offering a presentation about the Rural Preventures project in India after the worship service in the Emerson Center parlor.

Nancy and Ron Rucker have been retired for a number of years and have traveled extensively during this period.  During their working careers, Nancy was an archivist at the local historical museum in Middlebury and Ron was College Librarian at Middlebury College.  They have lived in Middlebury since 1976 and prior to that in Ithaca, New York.

Nancy and Ron traveled for several weeks in India in 2009, at the urging of our good friend Robert Granner who divides his time between Middlebury and Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu State.  We visited Mr. Granner at his home near Kodaikanal and he took us to some of the locations, including Poombarai, which are the focus of the health and educational initiatives of Rural Pre-Ventures Charitable Trust.  It was at his suggestion that we became involved in founding the American support arm in 2012.



ACE Speaker Event- Sunday, November 20

Thursday, November 3rd, 2016

The Adult Education committee is pleased to announce an after service session on Sunday November 20, 2016 with Mary MacDonald and her spouse, Karl Ackerman.  They offer at their home in Topsfield two services for long-term-caregivers and people across the lifespan living with illness and disability: A monthly Sunday Stroll and Memory Café in their wheelchair-accessible gardens (April – October), and a 2-hour Guided Respite Retreat (offered year-round, by appointment with Mary).  A survivor of a difficult dementia-care journey, Mary became a certified Life Coach, Group Leader, and Kripalu Yoga Teacher and founded MaryMac Missions and Rest.Stop.Ranch in 2010 (,  She holds a Master’s degree in Pastoral Ministry from Boston College and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Rochester with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology.

Please mark your calendars for November 20th and join us as we learn from this interesting and dedicated couple about an important subject affecting many of us.  ACE

Contact:  Steve Whelan –