New Life Church
Weekly Update
December 1, 2021
Second Sunday of Advent

Join us for Traditional Worship at 8:15 a.m. and Praise Band Worship at 9:30 a.m. this Sunday, December 5th. The 9:30 a.m. service is also livestreamed on Facebook Live. The message for the Second Sunday of Advent continues our look at the "Promise Fulfilled" through Malachi 3:1-4
"The Refining Fire."

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

Sundays in Advent – Pastor Heather is 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! Listen to the voices of prophets in this season of waiting and watching!
Wednesdays in Advent – come each Wednesday for dinner at 5:30pm and then stay for a reflective brief worship service at 6:30pm focused on “The Gifts of Advent.” This week we look at the gift of patience – through song, Word, poetry, and prayer. Come join us for these renewing times in this busy season!

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!
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 ( 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

Tis the season…for snow and nasty weather! In the case of inclement weather, please check our website for event cancellations, but worship will never be cancelled. If you can safely get here, we will worship together. Please always use your best judgement on traveling on slippery roads. If you’re wondering about an event, please contact the office in advance.

Our next Wednesday Night Dinner TONIGHT, 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.

Enjoy delicious breakfasts on the first Sunday of the month! The next breakfast will be THIS SUNDAY, December 5th from 9-11 a.m. The food will already be on hand from the Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, but

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.

On behalf of the food pantry I wish to thank New Life for being so generous with food. When Louise and I took it to the pantry we filled up three grocery carts with the bags and had to put stuff on the table. The food pantry volunteer that helped us get the food into the pantry was very impressed with the generous donation. These gifts will assist us in feeding many people for the month of December and forward. Once again, thank you for this generous donation of almost 300 pounds of food.

~Barb Zimmerman ~

We are still in process of the discernment for choosing who will be our next Youth Education Coordinator for New Life Church.

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
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 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.

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! Or click on the graphic below. We NEED HELP at 8:00 a.m. THIS SUNDAY!
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.

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!


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 to support refugees, visit to help with disaster response around the nation, or 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!! The areas we still need to fill are: Cooking, Clean-Ups, and Shopping 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.
If you have questions or would like to help in some way, please contact Jillene Fisch at (best) or 608-692-8265.

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.

Questions? Contact Kathy Michaelis at
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.

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
December 5, 2021:
Second 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, December 1
5:30-6 p.m. Dinner in Community Room
6:30-7 p.m. Worship (Worship Center) - "The gift of patience"
7:30-9:00 p.m. - Shawn's MCF Band Rehearsal (Re-Creation Center)

Thursday, December 2
9:00-11:00 a.m. Women's Bible Study (led by Betty Sundbakken) (Classroom A)
5:30-8:00 p.m. Cub Scouts Pack 145 (Community Room)

Friday, December 3 - Preps for Breakfast with Santa (food drop-offs, event set-up)

Saturday, December 4
8:30-11:00 a.m. Breakfast with Santa - Pets in the Stable - Shop with an Elf
1:00-2:00 p.m. Praise Band Rehearsal (Worship Center)

Monday, December 6
10:00 a.m. - Noon - Gift Cards Distribution (Social Purpose Fund)
7:00-8:00 p.m. Silver Eagles Youth Group (led by Erbs) (Re-Creation Center)

Tuesday, December 7
6:30-7:30 p.m. Finance Team meeting
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


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