NEW MEMBER CLASSES
If you are interested in joining First Congregational Church Dr. Donehoo would like to meet with you after the 10:15 worship service on October 16 and 23 in the library. At these sessions you will get to know the pastors, meet the staff, and learn about FCC ministries and programs. Each session will last no more than an hour. We will even feed you lunch. Child care will be provided if you let us know you need it. New members will be received on October 30.
JUST FOR FUN
Bible MAD GABS
Say these phrases quickly and see if you can figure out the Bible passage it says.
Wears He Irv Eigth (Where is your faith - Luke 8:25)
Now try these:
- Lettuce Fax Horizon Gee Sis
- Hem Aches Meal Eyed Owning Ream Pass Chores
- Chose If Fan Mare He
Answers to the Mad Gabs
- Let us fix our eyes on Jesus - Hebrews 12:2
- He made me lie down in green pastures Psalm 23:2
- Joseph and Mary Mt. 1:18
Writers in the Storm
Group Leader: Gina Orazi Green
Come and share:
- The characters you have created
- Poems you have penned
- Plots that you have proofed
- Journals you have journeyed through
- Sing your sonnets and short stories
- Time: 6:30 - 8:30 pm
- When: Oct. 11 & Oct. 25
- Where: Conference Room
Come and bring the thoughts that you have put down on paper. We will listen, offer positive thoughts and be a sounding board for your words in our writer's workshop.
It's Haunted House time for the Youth Group
The junior high and senior high youth group will venture off to the haunted house sponsored by the Turners on Friday, October 21st immediately following FROG Friday. It will be a spooktacular evening. Invite your friends to join us for this fun outing. Sign-up on the bulletin board in the hall.
A great big thank you goes to Cathy Jurgens for taking on the responsibility of changing the church sign each week.
- Jordan Elizabeth Kawa was born on September 9th to parents Jeff and Angel Kawa and great-grandparents Ellen and Doug McDonald.
From October 2nd through the 30th adults at First Congregational Church UCC will have these opportunities for spiritual and personal growth. Each class begins at 9:15 AM & ends at 10:00 AM. Child care will be provided.
Why the Right Gets It Wrong
and the Left Doesn't Get It
Jim Wallis has written a new vision for faith and politics in America in his book, God's Politics (2005). This book asks many critical questions for our community of faith: Why can't we talk about religion and politics? Is there a politics of God? What are we for? How should your faith influence your politics? What is a religious voter to do? When did Jesus become Pro-War? When did Jesus become Pro-Rich? What does the Bible say about poverty? What scandalizes God? Wallis' book asks us to explore our, and our nation's, responsibility for the poor and marginalized, racial justice, war & its ravages, human rights, love, justice, reconciliation, and community. Carl Flaks will facilitate this adult education group October 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd, & 30th. His broad background and "on the ground" community action bring a special perspective to this topic. His gifts as a person and a teacher make him uniquely qualified to bring this book to life. Copies of the book will be available for purchase at the first session. Two copies will be available for shared check out. Participants are encouraged to read a portion of the book before each session.
Facilitator: Carl Flaks
Footsteps of Peter and Paul:
An In-depth Study of the Book of Acts
Christians have often idealized the early church, believing it was some sort of golden era when followers of Jesus were better at discipleship than we are today. A close examination of the book of Acts reveals just the opposite. Here is a church rife with conflict, confusion, strong personalities, not a few scalawags, and enough questions to cross a preacher's eyes. In short, within the book of Acts we find ourselves and our own issues. This class will be a verse-by-verse exploration of this foundational document for church life and practice. Come enter the world of Peter and Paul and other First-century Christians. You'll find plenty of familiar faces.
Facilitator: Paris Donehoo
**Coming in November...
Finding God in Our Daily Lives
Footsteps of Peter and Paul: A Study of the book of Acts (continued)
10/01 Deborah Sell
10/03 Taylor Powers
10/06 Helen Castle
10/06 Reese Schmitendorf
10/09 Christopher Leberecht
10/10 Grant Powell
10/12 Barbara Burton-Halfpenny
10/14 Lauren Powers
10/15 Erin McMinn
10/17 Janet Aldred
10/19 Vaughn Pedersen
10/21 Connie Reuter
10/22 David Widder
10/22 Mark Brictson
10/22 Robert Stackowiak
10/23 Alyssa Steffen
10/24 Desiree Dahlstrom
10/24 Aiden Garcia
10/27 Molly Brictson
10/27 Lucas Brictson
10/28 Matthew Halfpenny
10/29 Marion Danner
10/30 Grace Ann Aldred
10/31 Michael Stackowiak
- Betty Jones is at St. Joseph Hospital being treated for an infection.
- Linda Dahl had surgery at St. Joseph Hospital. After an overnight stay she is home and recuperating well.
- Kathy Turnquist had outpatient surgery at a clinic in Arlington Heights. She is home and doing fine.
- Jackie Sanderson fell and broke her shoulder. She is slowly recuperating at home.
- George Yanakis, Sandy Dalton's brother, passed away.
- Mike Flood's mother is in hospice care.
Sister to Sister
The next meeting of our Sister to Sister group will be on Thursday, October 13th at 7p.m. in the library. We are looking forward to a presentation by Rowena Swan on the Gems of the world. Rowena has a large collection of gems that she will be sharing with us and tell their story. Feel free to bring your gems to share too. We meet on the second Thursday night of EVERY month so mark your calendar and plan to join this group.
Damaris is a women's fellowship group that meets each month to go to dinner together. Damaris meets on the fourth Thursday of each month. The October Damaris meeting will be on Thursday, October 27th at 6:30 p.m. at Panera Bread in South Elgin. For more information please contact Lois or Lee Ellsworth.
The informational session about our Confirmation program will be held on Wednesday, September 28th at 7:30 p.m. in our library. This meeting is an orientation session for parents as well as students. The first regular class will be on October 5th and continue every other Wednesday night 7:30 - 9:00 p.m. If you have any questions about the program or know someone who would like to be a part of our program please contact Pastor Lois.
Our first session of FROG Friday was a hopping success with lots of kids and youth helpers too. This year our stories are focusing on the Parables of Jesus. During our first session the children learned about the Rich Young Man from Matthew 19:16-24. They also heard the story of the Quiltmaker's Gift which is based on this story.
Our next FROG Friday will be on Friday, October 21st. Once again, we will gather at 6p.m. for a pizza dinner, story, music, crafts and games. We conclude at 8:30 p.m. Please spread the word and invite your friends to join in the fun.
MEET YOUR CONGREGATIONAL ASSOCIATES
Last month you were introduced to our new Congregational Associate program whereby FCC will call upon the skills of ordained, licensed, and commissioned ministers in our midst to enhance our ministry together. This month, meet our first two Congregational Associates. They were approved for these positions by the Church Council on August 16th.
Pat Lindquist is an ordained United Church of Christ minister and has been called as Congregational Associate for Spirituality and Wellness. Pat's duties will include:
- Providing consultation and leadership for the spiritual growth of the church, including, but not limited to, such activities as retreats, adult education programs, and ChristCare group leadership.
- Encouraging, developing, and promoting opportunities and educational resources for mental, physical, and emotional wellness within the membership of the church.
John Kauffman is a licensed minister in the United Church of Christ and has been called as Congregational Associate for Small Group Ministries. John's duties will include:
- Facilitating the ongoing support, encouragement, and accountability of ChristCare group leaders.
- Recruiting and training new ChristCare group leaders as well as publicizing ChristCare ministry in the church and community.
- Providing leadership to one or more ChristCare groups.
In addition, at the discretion and direction of Dr. Donehoo, both Pat and John will assist in worship, pastoral care, and visioning for the benefit of the church. Neither will receive remuneration for their work. We welcome their efforts among us and look forward to their insights and leadership.
If the FCC building looks a little more shiny these days it's because of the efforts of some wonderful volunteers who have been applying soap and water to places that haven't seen any for a long time. A big thank you goes out to the Lewis family, Dale & Betty Ells, Mich & Mary Ellen Barbezat, and Deb Leberecht. In addition, Catherine Gotham's cleaning service has been interviewed by Dr. Donehoo and approved by the Church Council on September 20. She has already begun her duties here. Ms. Gotham will work part-time to provide the cleaning services we require. We are still in need of a part-time "handy-man" to look after the building on Sundays and do general maintenance around our facilities. If you know anyone who would be interested, please contact the church office.
The ChristCare Boutique has scheduled two sessions for late Fall: Sunday, November 13th, and Sunday, December 4th. More information will be forthcoming so "stay tuned."
Mark and Mary Hartwig
Church Women United
Church Women United is sponsoring a trip to visit the Hindu Temple in Bartlett on October 7th. The group will meet at 9:45 a.m. in the city parking lot behind Templo Calvario and then car pool to Bartlett. This should be a very interesting tour. It will take about two hours. Participants will be asked to remove their shoes so slipper socks are recommended. If you'd like to join the tour group please call Ann Schneck.
We Walk Because They Walk - Elgin CROP WALK
Millions of people around the world walk long distances every day to get water, to bring home food, to find safe shelter, to find food for livestock, to school, to farm distant fields, to take goods to market and to find medical care.
The Elgin area crop walk seeks to reduce hunger and bring basic health care to countries around the world. Through Church World Services the CROP WALK aids these basic needs, and 25% of everything raised stays in the community to help alleviate hunger through local food pantries.
The Elgin CROP WALK will begin at the 1st Methodist Church on Sunday, October 16, 2005 at 1:00 pm. A 5 mile and 1 mile walk are available. Watch for details posted at church or contact Mary Hewitt at 847-741-3576 for more information.
Take a stand against hunger in Elgin and the world. Join the CROP WALK or sponsor a CROPWALKER.
Illinois Brass Band Concert
The Elgin Area Historical Society is sponsoring the award winning Illinois Brass Band in concert at First Congregational Church on Saturday, October 22nd at 7pm. Hear the sounds of yesterday and today. Music of the original Elgin National Watch Company Band will be featured. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students. Children under 5 will be admitted free. Tickets may be obtained from Carl Flaks, or at the Old Main Museum at 360 Park St (Weds-Sat 12-4pm), or at the door. Mark your calendar now for an enjoyable musical performance.
I have long been aware of the UCC Ministry for Peace and Justice. Last fall I read an article in the denomination newspaper about Peace Poles. I thought this would be a good way for FCC to demonstrate its commitment to peace. Through the generosity of FCC members, funds were donated to purchase a Peace Pole. We were able to purchase a pentagon shaped copper pole. The inscription May Peace Prevail on Earth is on the pole in Arabic, English, Hebrew, Lao and Spanish. These languages represent five of the cultures present in Elgin. If you would like to learn more about Peace Poles you may do so at www.peacepole.com.
Since the Peace Pole has been installed, several people have asked if further donations are being accepted. We will gladly accept any additional donations as we want to landscape the area around the pole to make it even more beautiful. Donations can be handed in to the office, or in the collection plate. Please mark your memo line with Peace Pole Landscaping.
We're off to the Wilderness.
The junior high and senior high youth groups will be going to the Awilderness@ for a weekend of fun and group building on October 8th and 9th. That is, the Wilderness Lodge in Wisconsin Dells. We are excited that 27 people have signed up to be a part of this fun fall weekend in the dells. Our weekend will include lots of time at the indoor water park and fun and games in our Aentertainment cabin!@ We will be leaving Elgin at 9 a.m. on Saturday, October 8th and returning late afternoon on October 9th.
Dine with Nine
Last Call! Many people have responded to our call to join a Dine With Nine Group. Groups will be formed in the next few weeks. If you want to be in a group, but haven=t responded yet please call Lois (or drop off a form) to be added to a group. Each group will consist of eight or nine adults. The group takes turns meeting for dinner in each other=s homes. We also have a restaurant dining group. For the home groups, the hostess decides on the menu for the evening and lets the other guest know what to bring. Following dinner there is time for games, discussion, movies, or whatever. This is a great way to get to know the people you worship with each Sunday.
We have ordered a beautiful fall evening with a bright moon for our annual fall gathering at Randall Oaks Park. This year Fall Fest will be held on Sunday, October 23rd at 4p.m. We'll gather at shelter two (the back shelter) at 3:45 for a hayride. Don't be late because the hay wagon will leave promptly at 4:00. Following our hayride we=ll return to the shelter for a hot dog roast and picnic supper. Everyone is asked to bring a dish to pass and your own beverage (pop, hot chocolate, etc) We will provide water to drink. We'll conclude our evening by roasting marshmallows around the campfire. Maybe Paris will even entertain us with some of his silly campfire songs. So, come and bring some friends for some great fall fun. The cost is $5 per person. Please complete the registration form and turn it in as soon as possible. Space is limited.
Acolytes For October
10/02 Marissa Lewellyn & Taylor Powers
10/09 Tianna Louaillier & Alex Halfpenny
10/16 Samantha Kottmeier & Maggie Powers
10/23 Dennis Turnquist & Keaton Fahnestock
10/30 Phillip Brictson & Nicole Lewellyn
Over the past two weeks, I'm certain all of us have seen the stories and video of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina that devastated the Gulf Coast and New Orleans. I have been moved to tears at the human suffering of the poor in New Orleans and have prayed with all of the rest of you that God will ease their pain. I have also been extremely impressed with the innate goodness of the American people who have given of their time as well as their treasure ($700 million to date).
One thing struck me about the relief efforts, however. The first organizations, other than the Red Cross, to have a presence in the devastated areas were the churches. People of faith from all over this country rolled up their sleeves and got to work. They collected money, clothes, water, food, loaded trucks and drove them to the affected areas at risk to their own safety. Many even opened their homes in order to house displaced people. Why did we do all this? There are many reasons, but one is above all others, we saw people hurting and tried to help. It's who we are. It's what we do. It's our mission.
Our lives have been blessed to have the resources with which to help not only the people affected by the hurricanes in our own country, but also the victims of the tsunami last winter, and countless other causes throughout the year. We are generous people and good stewards of the gifts that God has given us.
Later this month we will begin our annual stewardship drive in order to raise the funds needed to support the church for the next year. I consider it a privilege to be able to give to my church, to further the teachings of Jesus, to help others, and to worship God in a pleasant place surrounded by my "family." I have seen many changes in my 20+ years at FCC. I still have a sense of excitement about the direction in which we are headed.
As we approach the stewardship drive, please take time to reflect on the blessings you have received this past year, and about the programs that you and your family members have participated in and enjoyed. Please prayerfully consider your pledge of support.
May the peace of Christ be with each of you.
Ministry of Stewardship