Tower Notes –February 2014

Tower Notes –February 2014
Living Out Our Faith Through Mission, Worship, and Discipleship for 168 years.
First Congregational United Church of Christ
An Open and Affirming Church
54 South Jackson Street, Janesville, Wisconsin 53548
Telephone: (608) 752-8716
E-Mail: [email protected]
Like us on Facebook: First Congregational Church, UCC Janesville
Important Dates
Next Tower Notes:
Articles due ~ Feb 24th
Mail/email ~ Feb 27th
What’s Inside
President’s Message.….pg 1-2
Worship………….……pg 2
Thank You(s) 3
Discipleship Page…… 4
ECHO……………....…pg 4
Christian Education… 5
Consistory Notes....… 6
President’s Message
Thank you to everyone for joining us in worship on January 12th as we said
our “good byes” to Pastor Wes and his family. His service with our church
has now ended and his service with Sarasota now begins!
Consistory met two days later on January 14th. Following the suggestion
from Association Pastor Rev. Kent Ulery, the Interim Search committee is
the current Consistory. We did need to clarify that it is the current
Consistory, as there will be a change of members following the Annual
meeting on February 2nd, 2014.
On Saturday, January 25, 2014 the Interim Search committee met to make
decisions. We are working on the process to narrow the field. This is also a
process that requires some confidentiality, so we ask that you continue to place your trust and prayers in
our decisions. We openly will share information when appropriate. We also continue to be in contact with
Pastor Kent as we work through this process. Remember that we need to be prayerful, persistent, patient,
and … playful!
Our 168th Annual Meeting will follow the church service on February 2nd, 2014. Please contact Becky in
the office if you would like a copy of the annual report. We express our most sincere thanks to David
Bagley as he steps down from the role of Treasurer. David has spent countless hours watching over our
finances. We are incredibly grateful.
Special thanks to Becky as she is doing so much to ensure we are running seamlessly until we have an
Interim Pastor in place. We also thank Bill Weiss for filling our spiritual needs on a weekly basis.
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The cover of our Annual Report could not be more appropriate …
We are the church together!
Serving beside you in body, mind, and spirit,
Gee Gee Jannene
Worship in February 2014
February 2, 2014:
Annual church meeting and Communion
Patty Piek-Groth
February 9, 2014:
Camp Sunday
Patty Henrichs
Christian Education
February 16, 2014:
Pat Scott
February 23, 2014:
Hopkins Baptism
Jeremy Bleiler
Thank you to our Ushers in February: Warren Myers, Dave & Jean Schollmeier, Ruth Robinson
Adult Fellowship Evening
The next Adult Fellowship party is Friday, February 14 at 6:00. The potluck
will be in the Upper Chapel. Wear red, bring red food (or least put it in a red
container!) and chocolate. Any questions, see Gary or Karen Teubert.
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February BIRTHDAYS, Happy Day to All!
1 Joann Rost
2 Gale Rundle
2 Erin Stalker
4 Ted Bidwell
Andrea McCabe
Olivia Swenson
Willa Bagley
Julie Budrow
Kayla Hartung
Diane Henrichs
Jean Schollmeier
Katherine Bagley
Josh Grossen
February ANNIVERSARIES, Congratulations:
Charlie & Evie Wanninger
20 Richard & Joan Benner
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Dear Friends,
A heartfelt thank you for the wonderful conclusion to our ministry last
Sunday. I so appreciate the gift of the New Interpreters Bible Commentary.
It is a perfect gift and I will think of you each Sunday as I read this resource
to prepare my sermons. Thank you to all those who helped make the
celebration so meaningful. You are a special congregation and will always
hold a place in my heart. Thank you for the countless hugs and well wishes as we embark on the
next chapter of our ministry. I will continue to hold you in prayer as you move into this time of
transition. Thank you to the staff, it was a privilege to work with you every day. And thank you to
Gee Gee for all her tireless effort over the last month in making preparations for this transition. Thank
you also to the Sunday School children who made t-shirts for Ethan and Olivia and a beautiful coffee
mug with pictures of baptisms and Story for All Ages. A few folks asked me about contact
information. My email will remain the same: [email protected]
Or for those who like handwritten communication the best address right now is the church:
First Congregational UCC 1031 S. Euclid Ave. Sarasota, FL 34237
May God's love and strength surround you always.
With great hope,
Wes, Gina, Ethan, and Olivia
Dear Children of First Congregational UCC Janesville,
Thank you so much for the wonderful card you signed and for the coffee mug with photos of all the great times
at 1st Cong. I will miss each of you and our story time on Sunday.
Thank you for the t-shirts for Ethan and Olivia.
It was a joy to know each of you and, remember, you always have a friend in Florida.
God's blessings,
Pastor Wes, Gina, Ethan, and Olivia
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As we are fed at Christ’s table we go out to feed others.
Below are some suggestions for how you can help fill a grocery bag.
ECHO February Needs
Spaghetti sauce
Spaghetti O’s
Mac’n Cheese
Canned meats
Soup & crackers
Peanut butter & jelly
Pork’n beans
Toilet paper
Laundry soap (dry)
Diapers (4-6)
Life is an echo,
what you send out,
you get back!
The next meal on Sat. Feb. 1 will have a menu of ham slices , mashed potatoes with gravy, fresh mixed
vegetables, dinner rolls, fruit, coffee cakes with frozen yogurt or ice cream, coffee, and crystal light
fruit punch. The attendance at the community meals
varies from 40 to 60 with last month of 40. We continue
to advertise in the food event column in the Gazette for
that weekend and in the Messenger for the Sunday before
the Saturday meal. There is no cost for those ads.
Our community meal fund balance is over $2000, and this month we are going to purchase ham slices
from Best Events or Woodmans. It will be cooked and thick sliced. I will let you know the ham price
next month.
Thank you to all who continue to volunteer and make financial contributions. The community meal
was one of Wes' priorities.
Jim Hay
First Congregational United Church of Christ is blessed with scholarship funds for members of our
congregation who are pursuing higher education. Active membership in First
Congregational UCC is a common requirement for all scholarships.
Scholarship application forms are available on the church website or from the church office.
Applications and supporting information is due to the church office by
March 23, 2014. Please contact Becky Kingsbury in the church office at
(608) 752-8716 or email her at [email protected] with your questions.
A reminder that our church is scheduled to help with the Wilson School Breakfast Program the
week of February 24 – 28. Any questions or to volunteer, please contact Dave Schollmeier at
[email protected] or 754-4878.
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Sunday School and Youth Group News
Camp Sunday- Feb. 9th
Please join us during worship on February 9th to hear about some of the
exciting opportunities awaiting you at our wonderful local UCC Church
camps at Pilgrim Center on Green Lake and Moon Beach in St. Germain.
There are camps for all ages and interests to explore faith and fun surrounded
by the beauty of God’s creation.
Visit for the 2014 camp schedule and registration information.
There are camp scholarship opportunities available through our church and
the UCCI Board. Please contact Jamie Dieckhoff at [email protected] or
752-8716 x206 for more information.
Congrats to all who have completed the Ten Commandments Challenge so far: Carter
Dieckhoff, Claire Dieckhoff, Jayden Murwin, Jazlyn Murwin, and Joey Swenson. It’s not too late
for all PK-8th grade students to earn their pins. Just see Jamie Dieckhoff once you have memorized
your goal number of commandments (any translation): PK=2, K=3, 1st-2nd=4, 3rd-5th=6, 6th-8th=10
February 2nd SPARK: Woman at the Well
Annual Meeting following worship
February 9th Camp Sunday during worship
SPARK: A Storm
February 16th SPARK: The Centurion’s Servant
February 23rd SPARK: Jesus Blesses the Children
We have some really exciting events scheduled for the upcoming months:
On Sunday, Feb. 9th, we will have a special Culver’s outing at 1:30 p.m. where
we can share a treat and some fellowship.
Mark your calendars now for the 3rd Annual Chili Cook Off Youth Group
fundraiser planned for March 2nd. We welcome all chili entries, and all are
invited to eat and vote. Who will walk away with this year’s honor?
It’s almost Youth Lounge Makeover time! On March 23rd and 30th the Youth
Group will gather to update the Youth Lounge. All are invited to visit to witness
this transformation.
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Consistory Highlights: January 14, 2014 – 7PM
Bill Weiss attended the meeting and shared information about the duties he will help with while
serving as the pulpit supply pastor until an interim pastor is selected. Discussed and agreed to
additional duties Becky Kingsbury and Monica Stanley will be responsible for during this
transition period. David Bagley planned to meet with Monica and Finance Ministry members to
finalize the budget prior to the listening session on Jan. 19 th. Consistory agreed that the interim
pastor selection committee would be the current Consistory members and developed a plan for
the next steps in that process. Finance will move forward with the computer networking project
as part of the capital campaign.
Mark your calendars for the next Meals on Wheels: February 24 – 28 and
March 3 – 7. For information about helping out, contact Nancy Stabb at 563-1411.
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This is a thank you note from Darlene Becker for the card and gift card.
Dear Friends,
What a wonderful surprise when I received your card.
My sincere thank you for the gift card.
I enjoyed my many years of doing the payroll.
Thanks again for your thoughtfulness.
Sincerely, Darlene
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Library Views and Reviews
One of our more intriguing recent donations, this book explores both universal storylines and human
experiences, related to the Gospel. Early on, Buechner reminds us that the good News of the Resurrection
follows the bad news of the crucifixion. Discussing tragedy, he refers to the story of King Lear, who went
through storm, battle, and the death of his one faithful daughter before finding peace just before his death. He
becomes truly human after a life of foolish mistakes and suffering. Comedy, of course, Buechner defines in the
classical sense, as joy after a crisis. The fairy tale analogy is characterized by the plight of a hero who must
undergo great challenges successfully to win the prize, and live happily ever after. Alas, if life were so simple!!
The Library of Congress catalogues this book under “Preaching”. However, since it is such a readable and
entertaining treatment of this theology, I have given it the “230” Dewey category.
Come in to the library and see the new acquisitions, many of which are on the display shelves facing the office.
Mary Hunt
Church Librarian
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G.I.F.T.S. opportunities
This winter we will have two nights to serve the homeless men in the "God Is Faithful Temporary
Shelter" with a good warm supper, night supervision, and breakfast at the Janesville Wesleyan
Church (967 Benton Ave). The dates are Friday, February 28 and Wednesday, March 19. Faith
Lutheran and the Wesleyans will cover the other nights in those two weeks. Sign-up sheets will be
available soon. Watch for more information in church announcements and the bulletin as the
dates draw near, and/or contact me at 754-0337 or [email protected]
Last week we got a thank you letter from GIFTS, signed by Stephanie Burton, Exec Director. It
thanks us for donating $264.02 that shows our wonderful expression of caring and compassion.
Diane Henrichs
Four times a year we receive These Days Daily Devotions for Living by
Faith. They are placed on the counter in the Fireside Room and
disappear quickly. Parish Care is wondering if the 15 copies we receive
are enough, or if more members would like a copy. If you would like to
reserve your copy, please let Becky Kingsbury or Pat Scott know. A
$5.00 contribution would be appreciated, but not at all necessary. The
next copy will be available in mid-March.
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