Weekly Newsletter
Gilead Congregational Church, UCC
Week of July 12th - July 18th        

Meetings and Services
this Week:

 Wednesday, July 12th:
-6:00 p.m. Summer Potluck & Prayer on the Gathering Terrace
Saturday, July 15th:
-4:30 - 6:30 p.m. Chicken BBQ to Support the Karahja Famiy at St. Peter's Church 
Sunday, July 16th: 
-9:00 a.m.Worship Service  
-Summer Sunday School

Tuesday, July 11th:   
-7:30 p.m. AA Meeting    
About Us:

Reverend Dr. Denise M. Esslinger 
Minister of Mission and Faith Formation:
Stephanie Haines 
Minister of Music:
Bruce Gale
Administrative Assistant:
Sally Fritsche  

Worship: 8:30 AM
Worship w/Sunday School:  10:00 AM
Summer Worship: 
9:00 AM 

Gathered:  1748
Meeting House:  1838
Fellowship Hall:  2008


We are an Open & Affirming Church 

Ministry Quicklinks:
More About Us


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Summer Potluck & Prayer Gatherings
Please plan to join us this evening and on Wednesday evenings July 26th, August 9th and 23rd for our summer Potluck and Prayer gatherings.  We'll meet on the Gathering Terrace at 6 p.m.  Our Deacons will grill up hamburgers and hot dogs and have lemonade and ice tea to share.  Please bring a side dish or dessert to share.  After dinner, we'll close our evening with a brief time of worship and prayer.  All are welcome!    

Summer Picnics at the Hebron Library
Please join us for complimentary "Summer Picnics" at the Douglas Library in Hebron, 22 Main Street. Enjoy a delicious lunch at 11:30 a.m. in the library community room along with a surprise visit from a guest "Mystery Reader". Following lunch, a special library summer reading event will be hosted by the Douglas Library at 1 p.m. Picnics are provided courtesy of local Hebron restaurants and volunteers. The dates are as follows: July 13th, picnic provided by Gina Marie's, "Animal Embassy" will be the featured library event where library patrons can meet and learn about live Animal Ambassadors., July 20th,  picnic provided by Georgia's Restaurant, "Fun with Rhythm" will be the featured library event with  a drum circle for children 5 and up with their adult, July 27th, picnic provided by Something Simple CafĂ©, "Reptiles and Amphibians" will be the featured library event and lastly,  August 3rd, picnics provided by Fenn Again's Restaurant, with "Storycrafters" as the featured library event. All are welcome to enjoy!  
Meals with Glen
During this time, we want to surround Glen Hadley with our love and care. One way to do this is to sign up for a "Meal with Glen. You can sign up for a day to take a meal to Glen to stay and share with him, you can invite him over to your home for a meal, or you can take him out.

We are using  SignUp.com (the leading online SignUp and reminder tool) to organize these meals.

Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:
1) Click this link to see our SignUp on SignUp.com: http://signup.com/go/GVWqbuF
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact Phyllis Kurz (860-228-2469) and she can sign you up manually.
Chicken BBQ to Support Karahja Family  
St. Peter's Episcopal Church, located at 30 Church Street, will be donating a percentage of the profits from their upcoming chicken BBQ to the Karahja family.  The Chicken BBQ is this Saturday, July 15th from 4:30-6:30. Cost is $13 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under. The menu includes:
1/2 bar-b-qued chicken
Corn on the cob
Pasta salad
Cole slaw
Assorted beverages
Dessert table

Ted's Hot Dog Cart Supports Clean Water 
Where can you buy lunch for $2.50 and support a good cause at the same time?  Stop by the hot dog cart in front of Ted's IGA Super Market between 11:30am and 3:00 p.m. this Saturday, July 15th. Buy a hot dog, chips and soda for $2.50 and support Sarah Cohen in her efforts to raise money to drill a well in the Republic of South Sudan. The fundraiser is one of several Sarah is organizing in her multi-year effort to raise $15,000 to provide clean drinking water to a village in a peaceful region of the still heavily divided nation.  Wells make it possible for Sudanese women and girls to get an education, rather than having to walk up to eight hours a day to collect dirty river water.  The wells provide a pipeline out of poverty and increase life expectancy in local villages, since people living near the wells are at a much lower risk of dysentery and other waterborne illnesses.  So far, Sarah has raised $3,000. Sarah hopes to see you Saturday. For more information on the fundraising project, visit smcwaterproject.wixsite.com/fundraising or email Sarah at smc.waterproject@gmail.com.  Thanks for your support!!
Back to School Drive - July 15th to August 13th
Help to send children back to school with a healthy start! 
The Children's Subcommittee of our Board of Missions is hoping to provide our local food bank, HIHS, as well as RHAM High School with much needed back to school supplies. Please consider donating any items below or making a donation. For a $25 donation you can sponsor a young person to go back to school with a fully stocked back pack!

Collection bins to place your donations will be available outside the Sanctuary. If you are making a monetary donation please make checks payable to Gilead Congregational Church with "Blessing of the Backpacks" in the memo. Your specifically labeled check can be placed in the offering plate during worship service.
School Supplies Needed:
  • heavy duty, zip-up, 3-Ring Binders (large)
  • sturdy backpacks for teens
  • earbuds
  • flash drives
  • scientific calculators (with sin, cos, tan buttons)
  • graphing calculators (TI-84 Plus CE)
  • 24 pack crayons
  • 12 pack colored pencils
  • 12 pack colored markers - fine tip
  • pens (red, black, blue)
  • dry erase markers
  • pencil cap erasers
  • pack of glue sticks
  • high lighters (varied colors)
  • sturdy plastic folders with pockets
  • 3 ring binder (one inch)
  • 3 ring binder (D-ring 3 inches)
  • dividers for 3-ring binders
  • zipper pouches to hold pens, pencils, etc.
  • spiral, single subject notebooks
  • wide ruled composition books
  • lined notebook paper
  • graph paper
  • contained pencil sharpeners
  • 3 X 5 index cards
  • ruler
  • agenda books 
Healthy Non-Perishable Snacks needed:   
  • snack-size fruit cups  
  • raisins 
  • pretzels  
  • microwave popcorn
  • trail mix 
  • granola bars
  • whole grain crackers
Items can be placed in the designated bins outside the Sanctuary through August 13th. Thank you so much for your support!
On August 27th we'll be having our annual "Blessing of the Backpacks". We will be offering our prayers as we send off our young people, teachers and school professionals for the new school year ahead. We hope you will join us!

Capital Projects Survey Summary
Thanks to the 88 people who completed the Trustees recent request for input on capital projects at our church.  In the survey, folks were asked to rank in priority order the projects. Below are the results with projects listed in priority order:
            51 voted this as one of their top two priorities  (22 made it #1)
            11 voted it as their bottom two priorities (3 made it #5)
            44 voted this as one of their top two priorities (26 made it #1)
            31 voted it as their bottom two priorities (18 made it #5)
            40 voted this as one of their top two priorities (24 made it #1)
            25 voted this as their bottom two priorities (15 made it #5)
            26 voted this as one of their top two priorities (13 made it #1)
            35 voted this as their bottom two priorities (14 made it #5)
            10 voted this as one of their top two priorities (1 made it #1)
            61 voted this as their bottom two priorities (32 made it #5)
Other projects mentioned included:  air conditioning (with the Sanctuary noted as a priority), enlarging Sally's office, a LCD projector for the Sanctuary, the driveway at the Parsonage, properly paving and curbing our parking lot, and moving the oil tanks to outside behind the Fellowship Hall so we wouldn't have to replace or repair the pumps.  
Given this input, the Trustees are developing a 3+ year plan.  In 2017, the Trustees are planning to begin the work needed on the Parish House, which includes the replacement of some windows, repairing the chimney, electrical upgrades and work on the lolli columns.  
Other smaller projects to be addressed in 2017 include: working on improving parking at the church, and addressing the stability and painting of the gazebo.  There are also issues with the driveway at the Parsonage that is leading to water in the basement that has the potential to cause long term damage which will be evaluated.  
In future years, the Trustees are looking to address the organ and the purchase of the land if it becomes available.  Currently, our well has been passing water tests and will continue to be closely monitored. The gazebo may also need additional attention.   
If you have any questions about this survey or about the Long Term Capital Plan please speak with Pastor Denise, Ned Ellis, Jerry Lukowski or Steve Weir who are members of the Long Term Capital Improvements sub-commitee of our Board of Trustees.

Manchester Area Conference of Churches (MACC) Offers Catering 
MACC offers catering in order to support its Soup Kitchen and a free culinary training program for the homeless in order to get them placed in restaurants for work. The website is www.maccchefs.org. The food is phenomenal and prices very reasonable. They will be opening a restaurant in the fall where the Landmark restaurant was on Main St in Manchester.
Summer Music
During the summer, our Choir is off. If you are willing to share a musical gift during one of our summer services, please contact Bruce Gale, our Minister of Music, at bgale@snet.net.
Silver Lake Summer Conference 
Silver Lake has announced its offerings for the summer 2016 conference season and registration is open.   The Silver Lake summer brochure is now available underneath the name tags and is also available online at www.silverlakect.org along with the downloads of forms needed for registration. 

Also, our Women's Fellowship is once again offering to pay the $150 deposit for any young people in the congregation who would like to attend Silver Lake. Please speak with Karen Voghel (860-649-2939) if you are interested in taking advantage of our Women's Fellowship generous offer.
Willing Weeders for Church Grounds  
Our Trustees are looking for folks who are willing to help weed around the church during the upcoming summer months to keep our church grounds looking great.  We  have 2 weeks available for weeding around the Church. Those weeks are:

August 13th
September 3rd

There is a sign up sheet underneath the name tags or you may contact the Church Office at 860-228-3077 to volunteer.  Weeding takes about an hour.  Please consider signing up for one of these weeks.  If you have any questions, please speak with Steve Weir, chairperson of our Board of Trustees.  Thank you!   
Garden Swap 
Our Annual Garden Swap has begun! Please bring in any extra produce from your gardens to the Fellowship Hall on Sunday to share. Any leftovers will be taken to Hebron Interfaith Human Services for their distribution.  Questions can go to Paul Miller and Bruce Langevin. 
Announcing 2017 Vacation Bible School 
Hero Central: Discover Your Strength in God
"Do good! Seek peace and go after it!" - Psalm 34: 14b
Vacation Bible School (VBS) is an Ecumenical Program Sponsored by the Churches of Hebron, CT and open to all children entering Kindergarten through Fifth grade. VBS will be held Monday, July 24th  through Friday, July 28th  from 9:00 am to 12:30 pm at the Gilead Congregational Church.
At Hero Central, children will meet Captain Shield and Flame, the Red panda. After a high-energy opening assembly, children will experience an interactive Bible lesson followed by a variety of activities, crafts, music and recreation as well as a tasty treat in our snack zone.  Participants will also be able to contribute to our "Christmas in July" mission project, providing for the needs of local children in the Department of Children and Families care and in partnership with the Connecticut Covenant to Care Program.
Cost is $30.00 per child. The fee will cover class materials, daily snack, crafts, and outdoor recreation. Scholarships are available.
Please make checks payable to Gilead Congregational Church and include a completed registration form. Registration forms can be found underneath the nametags, outside of the Sanctuary. Please mail checks and registration form to Gilead Congregational Church/ VBS, 672 Gilead Street, Hebron, CT 06248. To register online, go to http://cokesburyvbs.com/hebroncommunityvbs. We hope you will join us!

Summer Greeters Needed  
Summer is here and we are all enjoying the long, warm days.  However, we still wish to greet everyone as they come to worship on Sunday mornings for our 9:00 a.m. service. Greeting is easy and everyone is invited to be a greeter!  Simply arrive at 8:45 a.m., stand at the end of the hallway as you enter from the parking lot, and welcome everyone as they arrive.  If you would like to be a summer greeter, please sign up on the sheet under the name tags.  Thank you!

3rd Annual Gilead Golf Open - August 14th
WANTED...Individuals who are interested in having a good time and wanting to further support the Missions and Ministries of our Church.  NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY.  For the nominal fee of only $100.00, you will enjoy a continental breakfast, bag lunch, an all you can eat  buffet dinner featuring prime rib and chicken marsala plus eighteen holes of golf with a cart...SUCH A DEAL....entry forms are available on the table beneath the name tags or from any committee member....don't  delay, sign up today for a full day of fun and camaraderie. The date is Monday, August 14th.
Coffee Hour Sign Up 
Members of the Fellowship Committee are asking members and friends to sign up for co-hosting coffee hour on Sunday mornings. Please consider serving as a host.  You can sign up to host a coffee hour on the sign up underneath the name tags.  If you can serve as a host or have any questions, please contact Leslie Brand at 860-742-5555.  Thank you! 
Thank Yous
To my Friends at the Gilead Church, 
Your support, compassion and warm welcome as I try to rebuild my life without Michael is most appreciated.
I'm especially grateful to "Helping Hands" and particularly to Mark Tierney for the household projects. Mark put in long hours building a new ramp to the shed - s truly professional job - and he returned to power wash the decks!
In gratitude,
Marge Dill
Dear Gilead Church,
Thank you so much for the prayer shawl. It is very pretty and was nice of you to be thinking of me.
Maddy Freer
Dear Gilead Congregational Church,
Thank you so much for my prayer shawl. Leaving high school is so exciting and yet so scary at the same time, but now I will have a piece of home to curl up with when I find myself homesick. Thank you for the shawl, and for being a great spiritual home where I could grow as a person. It means so, so much to me.
Shannon Williams 
Upcoming Sunday Worship Servers 
Ushers for this Sunday:  Diane Dixon and Ginny Grabowski
Ushers for next week: Margot and Joe Sheehan
Deacon of the Day for this Sunday: Katie McClaine    
Deacon of the Day for next week: Jon Kimball
Liturgist: Ginny Miller    
Coffee Hour Host for this Sunday: Karen Cohen  
Coffee Hour Host for next week: To be determined
Greeter for this Sunday: Penny Besmond
Greeter for next week: Joe Sheehan
Summer Sunday School Teachers for Sunday: PreK/K: Nancy Thorpe
                                                                   Grades 1 - 3: Sarah Cohen
Summer Sunday School Teachers for next week: PreK/K: MaryBeth Aker
                                                                       Grades 1 - 3: Jenna Langevin


Scripture Reading and Prayer for the Week
Matthew 10: 40-42                           

Welcoming God, be with us and renew our vision, so we may see the world as you intend it to be.  May our lives show your love in the way we welcome others.  Amen.

Contact Info
Sally Fritsche
Administrative Assistant
672 Gilead St
Hebron, Ct   06248
Office Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 8:00 a.m. until noon (Parish House)