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Congregational United Church of Christ 
August 2020 Newsletter 

After giving some thought to a message for August, the good fortune came along to receive a message shared by Rev Lorraine, our Association Conference Minister. That message is included with this newsletter, it shares and reflects the current place we find ourselves.
As we head into August and look toward fall here are some thoughts:
--Worship will continue as virtual, via Zoom, for the coming months, possibly through the remainder of the year. This will be reviewed as changes that may allow opening would potentially occur. We continue to welcome and encourage our entire church family to attend worship via Zoom online or by phone contact.  Each weeks bulletin is attached with the link to Zoom ( just click on that) and sent to the current email list we have, please email the church if you are not receiving this, or contact Mary Dunn, 987 2478 with questions about the phone in option – we miss you if you haven’t been able to join us.
--We are exploring what any type of Christian Education may look going forward, see note elsewhere regarding volunteers, and are open to suggestions anyone may have. 
--Pasty Sale, we will hold off having a Sept pasty sale, and will be setting a plan for a possible way that a sale might be held in the coming months. Please stay tuned!
--The Church Council gratefully acknowledges the contribution from the Rummage Sale from the Women’s Fellowship.
--Outdoor worship was held on August 26th, thank you Jim Bennett for planning for the Park Shelter.
--We continue to be blessed to have Pastor Bev Davis as our supply Pastor, she has agreed to be with us through the remainder of this year. The Church Council has begun a series of meetings with Rev Lorraine to help begin discernment to move our congregation forward, we appreciate her help with this very important step.

Stay safely engaged,
Please contact any of your Council members with questions or thoughts, 
Jim Bennett, Bill Buckingham, Mary Dunn, Linda Griffiths, Betty Hogan, Dick Josh, Chuck Tennessen, Trudy Tibbits, Diann Wenger.

Wisconsin Conference United Church of Christ 

God is Waiting Everywhere by Rev. Lorraine Ceniceros 

At the end of February, most of us had no idea of the changes that would soon be rolling toward us, making us adjust our way of living and how we are in relationship with the world outside of our individual family units. We were hearing news of a virus that seemed like it was happening in other countries but silently, slowly, moving toward the United States. By early March those of us who could work from home were adjusting to the work at-home routine. Those in our community who did not have that choice or opportunity were continuing to go to work to help support our lives and the economy or were filing for unemployment. 

In the midst of this, congregations were informed our sanctuaries where we physically gather to give and receive comfort in the times of need and distress would not be available to us because of the risk of contagion. We did our best to shelter at home. Pastors and lay leaders quickly adapted as they worked to provide worshipful experiences and gathering times over electronics. Our way of gathering changed, enabling us to stay connected as we sought to give and receive comfort in this time of need. We experienced shaky video and electronic glitches. We experienced blank screens and barking dogs. We were welcomed into each other's homes as we experienced come-as-you-are worship. Grace was given to learn and grow as clergy stepped into the uncomfortable and unknown world, at least for them, of preaching to a screen and providing pastoral care over the telephone. 

For a time such as this, we adapted and changed. Some congregations grew in numbers as family members and others in the community joined them online for worship. Some who do not have reliable internet access or the ability to electronically connect had to rely on the beleaguered U.S. Postal service to send and receive their spiritual sustenance. We adapted and changed to meet the challenge at hand. 

We reminded ourselves the church was not closed; only the buildings were closed. Churches and their congregations continued to, with safety measures in place, live out their mission for the surrounding communities. Food pantries continued to actively provide for those who were and are still are experiencing food insecurity. The church, not contained by a building, were faithful in bringing God's comfort to her people. everywhere." If God is waiting anywhere, God is waiting everywhere; in our vehicles, in our parking lots, in our homes and yes, even in front of a computer. 

At the printing of this, the future is still unknown. We don't know when it will be safe to come together in our buildings and we will need to take great care when we do begin to congregate in such a way. What we do know is God is with us however we gather, whether it is virtually or in a park. God is with us, and the sanctuary surrounds us wherever we are. 

Blessings on this journey, 

Lorraine 

Evalena and  Clifford Anderson
Jill Griffiths                           Maxine Tibbits      
Mildred Stephenson              Joyce Buckingham
Kandy Keuler   
                     Wanda and Fritz Aschliman  
            
Community Meal:   August meal date is Weds August 26th, the plan Is to continue offering the meal as curbside only (Maiden St entrance) with reservation requested. Pick up time will be between 5 and 6pm. Please contact Pat Johnston 987 2259 or Mary Dunn 987 2478 to request a meal, or share a name of a person or family that would welcome a meal. Also, please share that meal delivery is available to those unable to pick up.  Thank you for your continued support of our community meal, volunteers and donations always welcome, please contact Dick Josh or Mary Dunn. 
August Readers:
     2nd Jessie Potterton   
   9th Bill Buckingham  
16th Juli Schult      
       23rd Karen Tennessen
30th Trudy Tibbits  
   
September Readers:
                   6th Karen Tennessen                   
13th Trudy Tibbits     
20th Larry McNeil      
27th Deb Ivey         
 
October Readers:
    4th Linda Griffiths        
   11th Julia Marr             
            18th Bill Buckingham              
  25th Kandy Keuler  
    
 
THANK YOU
 
to everyone who helped with the 2020 UCC Rummage Sale!!
This year’s sale raised over $1660!  That is the most we have earned in several years.  Women’s Fellowship organizes the sale and donates the proceeds to the church General Fund. 
A special thank you to Karen Tennessen for her overall coordination and Diann Wenger for her help collecting donations.
AND a huge thank you to:
--the set-up crew,
--the workers during the sale days,
--the clean-up crew,
--those who donated items to sell (there was an amazing selection this year)!
--those who made donations of sanitizer, masks, cleaning supplies, etc.
And anyone else that assisted with the success of the sale.
 
As Karen said,
“Great Work Everyone!  Real Teamwork!”
The church now has our own zoom account!!  Our zoom link will now be the same every week, so you will want to flag this in your email so you have it.  I can resend at anytime and will every week if it will be helpful reminder.  For the people who call in from your phones you will not need a new number every week. 
  1. Online Directions
    1. A few minutes before the start of the service, follow this link:  
      1. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83542580749?pwd=UzI0aExjOWkxaER4VUxyeUtoTnhhQT09
    2. We are trying zoom with the church's zoom account this week. While we don't think you'll have to enter anything further if you're logging in online, we do have a password and you may need to enter this:  695602
    3. Press # when asked for participant ID
    4. If given the option, click "join by computer audio," otherwise you should automatically be connected
OR
2. Phone Directions
  1. Dial:  +1 312 626 6799
  2. Enter this meeting ID:  835 4258 0749
  3. Enter this password if asked for the password:  695602
  • When asked for participant number, enter #
  • Connection is made
If you are interested in tithing, there are two options:
1. Send a check to the church
2. Contact Marla Martin (
marlad.martin54@gmail.com) for a payment form where a tithe can be made monthly and automatically.
If you have questions, contact Marla Martin.
Council Meeting 7/14/2020
Members present:  Dick Josh, Chuck Tenenssen, Bill Buckingham, Pastor Lorraine Ceniceros, Mary Dunn, Betty Hogan, Trudy Tibbits, 
Marla Martin, Linda Griffiths, and Jim Bennett
Absent:  Diann Wenger
Call to order – President Dick Josh and welcome Pastor Lorraine
Opening Prayer & Thoughts – Pastor Lorraine
Pastoral Report:
  • Pastor Lorraine talked about the future with church
  • Pastor Bev has signed a contract to continue with us through the end of the year.
  • She is working on a plant to get to know the congregation better.
Financial Report:
  • Alliant Energy bill has been taken off the budget plan.
  • Women’s Fellowship rummage sale money will be going directly into the general church fund.
  • Motion to accept the financial report was made by Jim Bennett & by 2nd Bill Buckingham.
Bills Payable:
  • Motion to accept by Jim Bennett & 2nd by Trudy Tibbits.
Council Minutes:
  • Council minutes were approved and motion to accept by Chuck Tennessen & 2nd by Jim Bennett.
COMMITTEE REPORTS
Youth Group:
  • Honor Society youth and instructor would provide help with pasty sales and earn points or money. Will discuss later.  
 Worship:
  • Motion made to not return to sanctuary, in person church, for worship until the end of year. This will be revisited if attendance numbers improve.  Will continue with virtual worship.  Motion was accepted by Chuck Tennessen and 2nd by Bill Buckingham.
 Pasty Sale:
  • The possibility of check on grant money
 Building and Grounds:
  • Got the sign plate for the new sign.
  • Computer board for heating systems is in.
Mission:
  • Community Meal: July 22 with curbside & reservations
 Women’s Fellowship:
  • Did a GREAT JOB for the rummage sale
Memorial Fund:
  • Current balance: $27,147.46
 Other Business w/Pastor Lorraine:
  • Discussed with us on getting ready to prepare searching for a pastor.
  • Use Lorraine as a resource.
  • Will meet with Pastor Lorraine on July 27 & Aug 24 at 7pm in the chapel.
 Motion to adjourn the meeting was made & accepted by Trudy Tibbits and 2nd by Jim Bennett.  Meeting adjourned
 
Respectfully Submitted by
Mary Dunn  
Sorry this was late being sent out.  We were having technical difficulties.
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