New Life Church
Weekly Update
November 24, 2021
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THANKSGIVING EVE WORSHIP

We have much to be thankful for – not the least of which is being able to gather in-person this year for this service! TONIGHT, Wednesday, November 24 at 6:30 p.m., take an opportunity to stop and Thank the Lord! We will thank the Lord for people, places, and things – singing, praying and listening together. Our service will also be livestreamed on our Facebook Live page. Then stay after worship for some of Felicia Jones’ yummy pies! Also, don’t forget to add your leaf to our Gratitude Tree in the Community Room!

Collection for St. Mark's Food Pantry
We will be holding a drive for St. Mark's Food Pantry and gathering the collections to place around the altar as a Harvest Offering. Pastor Heather will call for the offerings during the Thanksgiving Eve service, and then they'll remain there through the end of November and can be added to. Barb Zimmerman said the items needed by St. Mark's are:
Ramen noodles, toothpaste, toothbrushes, bar soap, laundry pods, toilet paper, chicken noodle soup, and saltine and graham crackers.
Join us for Traditional Worship at 8:15 a.m. and Praise Band Worship at 9:30 a.m. this Sunday, November 28th. The 9:30 a.m. service is also livestreamed on Facebook Live. The message for the first Sunday of Advent will be "Promise Fulfilled."
PLAN TO JOIN US TO CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS

We hope you’ll join us for these many ways to welcome the Christ child!

Sundays in Advent – Pastor Heather will be doing a sermon series entitled “The Promise Fulfilled” looking at all the ways Jesus’ coming was foretold throughout the ages – and what that means for us today!
Wednesdays in Advent – come each Wednesday for dinner at 5:30pm and then plan to stay for a reflective brief worship service at 6:30pm. These will be renewing times in this busy season!
Breakfast with Santa event on Saturday, December 4 8:30-11:00am (see more information in this email.)

Longest Night Service – Tuesday, December 21st at 6:30 p.m.– in person at St. Stephen’s (Monona) or live streamed.

Christmas Eve Worship
5:00pm – a family-friendly service with an impromptu pageant, favorite Christmas carols, candles, and glowsticks!
7:00pm – a candlelight service filled with all your favorite Christmas songs
Holy Communion served at both services – all are welcome! The 7:00pm service will be live-streamed on our Facebook page as well.

Sunday December 26
There will be ONE service at 9:30am this festive morning. Come join us for a service of Lessons and Carols as we hear the greatest story ever told!
"Receive"
We will continue to offer worship via Facebook Live at 9:30 am on Sundays - please join us on our Facebook page for this opportunity! If you have trouble joining the Facebook Live, the worship videos will be available by each Monday on New Life's Youtube Channel.

Thank you to all who have been participating in our weekly worship!

If you missed last week's service, here is a link to it:
How to Access Worship
 
Our 9:30 am service will always be live streamed and available via our Facebook page so if you’re out of town and can’t attend in-person, you can always worship with us! Please also share this as a resource with others – it’s available anytime, not just when we’re live – as well as on our YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4F48R7NG-hzy-2EOk0EG-g) and website beginning on Monday mornings.
 
Certainly, we’d love to have you come and worship with us in-person anytime it’s possible: 
Traditional Worship Service at 8:15 a.m.
Praise Worship Service at 9:30 a.m.

Masks required inside for worship
Masks In Our Building
 
Your Council had previously made the decision to extend masks in our building through the end of the year, but since Dane County also decided to extend this mandate that supersedes our decision. We will continue to mask and distance through this holiday season. Thank you for your care of each other!
CHRISTMAS DECORATING

Come hang some garland, decorate trees, and generally beautify our church for the Advent and Christmas seasons! The first Sunday of Advent is November 28 - we'll need lots of hands Saturday, November 27 at 10:30 am to Deck the Halls (and Worship Center and Community Room…)! SIGN UP HERE or let the Office know if you can help!
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WEDNESDAY DINNERS

There will not be a dinner served tonight on Thanksgiving Eve. Our next Wednesday Night Dinner on December 1st will be hosted by Melissa Bizeau. If you'd like to help host a dinner, please see the sign-up sheet by the kitchen serving window to choose a week. We still need someone to volunteer for December 15th.
DO YOU LIKE BREAKFAST?

Enjoy delicious breakfasts on the first Sunday of the month! The next breakfast will be on December 5th from 9-11 a.m. It will be hosted by the "Elves" after Breakfast with Santa. Thanks to those who signed up to prepare meals for the rest of this year.

WE NEED PEOPLE TO SIGN UP FOR NEXT YEAR ALREADY! The first Breakfast of 2022 will be on January 2nd!

If you'd like to consider signing up beginning in January 2022, we'd love to have your help! It could be a couple of families/friends, a small group you meet with, even a whole ministry team! It's fun and easy to do, and we can help you with the details.

Contact us in the church office to let us know.
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CHILDREN & YOUTH POSITION

We are excited to say that we have received a very good response to our job posting and had excellent interviews and in-person visits from the candidates in the last couple of weeks!

We'd like to hear from you about this vital position for our church. If you have any questions or comments, talk to Pastor Heather.

As we look for the person God has for us, we would still like to offer gatherings for our children and youth. If you’d be interested in helping with New Life Kids during the 9:30am service and/or a youth gathering to be held after the 9:30am service, please let Pastor Heather know! Thank you for your prayers as we search for the right person to further this vital part of our ministry!
Reconciling In Christ Welcome Statement
WE NEED YOUR INPUT!
 
Our Welcome Statement – an intentional welcome to LGBTQIA+ and Transgendered people as well as a commitment to racial equity and justice – has been approved by the Church Council and now comes to you for conversation! Please take this 30-second survey about the statement, and if you would like to discuss this further or thank our Team (Terri Beck-Engel, Jillene Fisch, Sandy Kowal, Margo McBain, Wayne and Barb Meyer, Noah Peck, and Barb Zimmerman), please come to a Listening Session this Sunday, November 21 after both services. We will also offer another Listening Session on Sunday December 12. We will vote as a community on this statement at our Annual Meeting on January 30th.

To read the Welcome Statement and vote in the survey, please click here.
Fe's Specialties LLC

"We Bake With Love"
Our own Felicia Jones is starting up a brand new business, and we'd like to help her get the word out about her scrumptious pies and goodies! See the flyer below and go to her website for prices and to place an order with her - Selections and Prices Available Online!

Felicia will also be featuring her pies on Thanksgiving Eve for us! Get your taste buds ready and prepare for your holiday with quality desserts!
ORDER CHRISTMAS POINSETTIAS

We are offering the opportunity for you to order a Christmas Poinsettia (or more than one!) that will be placed up front in the worship center to adorn the altar stage for Christmas Eve service.

We will be placing one large order with Felly's Flowers, to be delivered to the church at the same time a couple of days before Christmas Eve. The deadline for you to submit your order and get payment to us will be Monday, November 29th.

There are a few ways for you to order: 1) Click here or on the graphic above for the Google.doc sign-up order form; 2) Sign up on the hard copy sheet on the Welcome Table; 3) Contact the church office; or, 4) Contact Jan Wilson, who will coordinate our order and ensure placement of the poinsettias on the altar stage.

The plants can be tagged in honor or memory of a loved one. They'll also be marked on the back with a label of your name so that you may take your poinsettia home with you following the service on December 26th or come get it the week after Christmas.

The colors and prices are listed on the order form. Payment may be made by check to New Life Church and placed in the offering bowl or mailed to the church office, or posted online (VANCO).  Please help us beautify our worship center with these colorful plants for Christmas!
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES

Bring your strengths & skills to help at New Life!
~ Sound Board (Operate sound & video equipment)
 ~ Altar Care (Worship set-up & supplies)
~ Coffee Server (Make pots & serve coffee)
~ Teller/Counter (2-person team to count offerings)
~ Welcome Team (Greet & guide people as they enter worship)
For info on these opportunities, call the church office—223-9337.

We especially NEED new people to help with A/V & Sound Board—no experience needed, we’ll train you and it’s FUN! Just let us know if you're interested and we'll connect you with that team.

Look for the Google doc form to sign up each month for Welcome Team!

Here is a click-on link to sign up for the month of DECEMBER!

Helpers on Thanksgiving Eve: Gretchen Lennberg, Barb Zimmerman, Bruce Newell, Connie Losse, Jennifer Waterman and Tom Olson.
"Give"
Your Offering
Thanks for your support to meet our financial obligations. Consider giving online, if you don't already. You can select a one-time or recurring donation. It's very easy to do - please click the box below to get started.
If you would prefer to mail in your donations, they can be sent to the address at New Life: 7564 Cottage Grove Road, Madison, WI, 53718.
GIVING NEEDS

The last 20 months has been an unprecedented journey that no one could have anticipated. Given all the changes and unknowns we’ve experienced, your congregation is weathering the storm quite well financially – thanks to you! However, we are currently operating a bit behind where we anticipated we’d be on giving by about 15%. The Finance Team and Council have responded to that shortfall by refinancing our mortgage, which will create more cash flow starting in October. We have also kept an eye on expenses without hindering our ministry. We felt it was our duty to also let you know that this shortfall exists so that you might feel the need to respond if you’re able. If you haven’t increased your giving in a while, now may be the time to do so. We all want St. Matthew New Life to thrive in serving the gospel and our giving enables that to happen more and more. Thank you as always for all the ways you give to this ministry!

Don’t forget our online option and automated giving! Just go to our Vanco page where you can log in to your account. Once you’ve logged in, it should take you to your giving detail. If you click “Edit” you can edit amount, frequency, and account. Once you've signed up to give electronically, please let the office know if you no longer need offering envelopes and we can have those discontinued for you.
 
Thank you!

Social Purpose Team is here just for you
Please know that if you are experiencing any financial need (rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries, medical, unemployment/furlough, etc.), you only need to let Pastor Heather know. This information will be kept confidential to her and our financial officers (treasurer and bookkeeper). 

And of course, if you would like to give to this fund, please submit checks with "Social Purpose Fund" in the memo or give online to that fund. Again, thank you New Life for your caring and sharing!
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WAYS TO PARTNER

We have established a partnership with the Nehemiah Center, which means that we will be looking for and offering ways for you to connect with their leadership in our area serving communities of color. As the months go along, we will highlight ways that you can personally and with your family grow this partnership alongside what we’re doing as a congregation.

This month, we’re asking for donations of any size diapers in small packages. You can bring these to the church entryway and we will deliver them to Nehemiah directly. Thank you!

Other ways you and your family can partner: support black-owned businesses (click here for a list), visit www.lirs.org to support refugees, visit www.ldr.org to help with disaster response around the nation, or www.elca.org to find another way to give back to people in need.
Shop with an Elf!
The gift-giving season can’t come soon enough, and our annual “Breakfast with Santa” on Dec. 4 will be the best yet! Linda Sime will provide breakfast, Jillene Fisch will oversee Shop with an Elf, Cheryll Steinke will help as Santa's Elf to greet children, and Janice Newell will guide kids around our "North Pole."

We will provide our guests with personalized shopping—kids can shop for their parents (with elvish assistance!), and parents can shop for their kids. All purchases will be by donation only.

We hope you can join us in making this a super-fun and festive event, which is posted on our Facebook Events page - please share it!

If you can help volunteer in a role or duty, please click here and fill your name in the Sign-Up Genius form. We NEED helpers!!

We started collecting items the first weekend in November. Bring any items you'd like to, that you think might make nice gift items for someone, in new or close to new condition, i.e., purses, scarves, jewelry, ties, books, toys, games, etc. We really NEED more items and are gathering these new or very gently used items (in the northwest corner of the Re-Creation Center) and we also will need gift bags of various sizes plus tissue paper.

Would you consider being a shopkeeper, or an "elf" to help children shop? You could manage the “book store” or the “jewelry store”—it all depends on what donations come in. We also need gift wrappers too!
If you have questions or would like to help in some way, please contact Jillene Fisch at jillenes_beans@yahoo.com (best) or 608-692-8265.
TEEN GIFT DRIVE

It's that time again! The annual New Life Teen Gift Drive to gather gifts for middle and high school students in our area. We will once again be working with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Dane County to distribute the gifts we collect. The now familiar Gift Box will be set up at church on December 1st through Sunday December 12th.  We do have a few gift ideas but the best approach is to have your closest teen tell you what would be best!

Teen gift ideas: Paint by numbers, card or board games, Bluetooth speaker, Hydroflask stickers, LED photo clip lights, headphones, sweaters, nail polish, socks, Carhartt winter hats, gloves, spa-like face masks. 
OR gift cards to places like Amazon, Walmart, Target, etc.
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Women's Bible Study

The Women's Bible Study group meets 9-11 a.m. on Thursdays. We're studying the Biblical Book of Daniel. For more info, contact Betty Sundbakken or the church office. All are welcome to join in with the discussions.
COMMON THREADS

Ginny Olson and Gail Kriel have started up a Common Threads group again, that anyone is welcome to participate in. You'll learn how to knit or crochet, or if you have experience could work on your own project as well as make prayer shawls and blankets for the prayer shawl ministry.

Sessions take place at Ginny's studio on the second Tuesday evenings of the month from 6:30-8:30 pm and the fourth Tuesday mornings of the month from 9:30-11:30 am.

To sign up and for more information, please email Ginny Olson by clicking here. Also, if you have any yarn you'd like to bring in to the church, the group would welcome that.

PLEASE NOTE: On the table near the entrance to the Community Room there are Prayer Shawls available for anyone who needs/wants one for comfort. These beautiful shawls were made by the Common Threads group, and they would like people to have them.
This Sunday and This Week at New Life
November 28, 2021:
First Sunday of Advent

8:15 a.m. Traditional worship service
9:30 a.m. Praise Band Worship Service and Worship Online via Facebook Live
9:30 a.m. New Life Kids Message in worship
Upcoming Schedule of Events This Week

Wednesday, November 24
6:30 p.m. Thanksgiving Eve service (pie & coffee in Community Room after)
Kickoff of Food Pantry collections

Thursday, November 25 - THANKSGIVING DAY (OFFICE CLOSED)
Friday, November 26 - OFFICE CLOSED

Saturday, November 27
9:00-10:00 a.m. Praise Band Rehearsal (Worship Center)
10:30 a.m. Decorating for Advent

Tuesday, November 30
6:00 -7:00 p.m. Social Purpose Team meeting (via Zoom)
Please keep the following in your prayers this week:

Donna Butler's daughter Michelle along with her sister Beverly and the family of her late cousin Simon, Boyd Fleming, Felicia Jones & family, Johnnie Jones, Michele Kiefer, Dave Kolmodin, Gail Kriel, Trish Krueger, Hailey Lennberg, Laurie Neuendorf, Jade Peck, Stephanie Peck's friend Jessie, Kishia Peters, Alvina Phillips,
Vern Richmond, Jeremy Showers, Bobby Spridco, Bill Sterud, Darrick Thompson, Shirley Theel, and Carolee Zick.

If you would like to be included on our prayer list, please contact the church office. Permission is required from the individual for us to print their name. Individuals will be on the list for one month unless requested. Please let us know if there is someone to be added, or if someone has improved or healed and can be taken off the list.

608.223.9337  phone/voicemail


Email: newlifelc@newlifelc.com

Office hours are Monday through Thursday mornings.
Please feel free to contact staff members of New Life via email or by calling the office. Contacts are listed here.

New Life Staff:
Rev. Heather Hayward, Pastor

(VACANT) Youth Education Coordinator

Kathy Scholl, Office Assistant

Nancy Schmidt, Bookkeeper

Shakia "Queen" Turner, Property Manager
Shane Peters, Custodian

ELCA South-Central Wisconsin Synod website:
New Life Church Council:
Brian Coel
Jim DePass
Rick Krueger
Joe Milanese, Vice President
Kathy Nelson, President
Janice Newell, Secretary
Shawn Peters
Linda Sime
MacKenzie Swanson
Jan Wilson
Ken Wundrow, Treasurer