Member Highlight
John Paylor Esq

Member Highlight - John Paylor Esq

Since 2018, John has served as Treasurer for Berwyn UM Church. As he said, ‘I always had an interest in finance,’ so he asked to serve on the Finance Committee when there was a need for support of the financial work of the congregation. At that time, we began to use a company called Church Shield to manage bookkeeping and accounts payable. John was able and willing to become the main contact with the bookkeeping service to support Barbara Stockler, who has also been a skilled member of the Finance Team and was our main bank contact. (The church banks with Customers Bank, Phoenixville.) The rest is ‘treasurer history.’ 

One of John’s accomplishments was establishing a new, comprehensive, and unified chart of accounts, so that we have as clear as possible a picture of operating, restricted and pass-through accounts. This is second only to his massive effort to successfully manage our application for the CARES ACT loan, which was ultimately forgiven. This allowed the Church and Nursery School to realize about $90,000 in funding that helped us navigate the tough days ofthe pandemic. John’s tireless work with the bank and required paperwork allowed the process to unfold for us smoothly.  

John will be stepping down as Treasurer and from the Leadership Team shortly, and in preparation, new arrangements are being made. But in the meantime, deep thanks are due to John for his faithful, detailed, meticulous, and prayerful service on behalf of the finance ministry of the congregation. 


This post was orignally published in the October 2022 of the Lighted Cross. Please use the links below to view the full newsletter.

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Published: December 06, 2023

As the festive season approaches, many of us relish in the familiar traditions that accompany it - the twinkling lights, the scent of pine, and the beloved stories that warm our hearts year after year. But have you ever paused to consider the profound wisdom nestled within these timeless tales? Consider the transformational journey of Ebenezer Scrooge in "A Christmas Carol" and the biblical tale of the rich man and Lazarus. Both stories underscore the fleeting nature of time, the profound impact of our actions and attitudes towards others, and the essential importance of treasuring traditions and memories. Scrooge's tale, in particular, resonates with many. He is a man burdened by his past, detached from the present, and terrified of the future. His story serves as a potent reminder of the chains we often bind ourselves with - chains of regret, fear, and complacency. But just as Scrooge learns, these chains can be cast aside, and our spirits can be set free. Just as the Christmas season brings transformation and renewal, we too can undergo our own personal transformations. But first, we must recognize the chains that hold us back. Are they chains of the past, holding us hostage to regret and past mistakes? Are they chains of the present, born from our current circumstances or struggles? Or perhaps they are chains of the future, our fears of the unknown holding us back from reaching our full potential. Recognizing these chains is the first step towards breaking free. But we don't have to do it alone. The promise of the Christmas season and the presence of the Holy Spirit offer us hope and help. By allowing ourselves to see these chains for what they truly are, we make the first move towards a more liberated, joyous life. In the spirit of the season, let's choose to confront these chains. Let's take that step out of our comfort zones and embrace the freedom that comes with transformation. Let's pay tribute to the power of Christmas classics that not only entertain us but also inspire and teach us profound life lessons. The tales we tell during this season aren't just stories; they are timeless wisdom passed down through generations. They remind us of the power of transformation, the beauty of tradition, and the possibility of a future unchained. As we celebrate the holiday season, let's remember to also celebrate our journey towards breaking free from our chains. The path to freedom and hope may be challenging, but it's a journey worth embarking on. After all, Christmas isn't just about the festivities; it's also about hope, transformation, and newfound freedom. So let's embrace the spirit of the season and begin our journey towards unchaining ourselves. Remember, no matter how far down you've fallen or how tightly the chains bind you, there is always room for an in-breaking of the supernatural. With faith and determination, we can all find our own Christmas Carol-style transformation this festive season. Let's step into this holiday season with hope, ready to unchain ourselves and embrace the joy that comes with true freedom.

Unwrapping Loneliness: Navigating The Shadows Of Isolation During The Holiday Season

Published: December 11, 2023

In exploring the holiday season's profound impact on loneliness, we acknowledge the shadows many grapple with as warmth and joy are traditionally associated with this time of year. Drawing inspiration from a recent sermon and the classic tale of "A Christmas Carol," we illuminate the challenges of isolation during the festivities. The first section, titled "The Ghosts of Christmas Past," delves into the heightened sense of loneliness experienced by some amidst the holiday cheer, particularly exacerbated by the global pandemic. The subsequent segment, "Understanding How Past Experiences Shape Our Present," emphasizes our histories' crucial role in influencing our approach to the season and relationships. Finally, "Overcoming Loneliness: The Importance of Persistence and Invitation" explores the transformative power of persistent connection, as Scrooge's nephew exemplifies in the beloved Christmas story. Through these reflections, we encourage communities to come together, support one another, and extend persistent invitations, fostering a shared celebration of renewal, hope, and togetherness during this particular time.