Pastor’s Corner
We are approaching the end of Lent. It has been a journey during which we examined the conventional relationships we have with God in our individual lives and in the life of the church. Sometimes we celebrated those covenants, and sometimes we mourned because we have failed to live into all the covenants. We can be happy with Abraham’s covenant to be faithful and produce generations of young people. We get a bit restless when we hear commands to walk in the way of the Lord forsaking those things which we elevate to equality with God. We like our sacred cows. We don’t like it when they are skewered.

Now we ready ourselves for Holy Week with its joys and apparently crushing defeats. When Jesus is hanging on the cross it looks as if the Romans, the rich, and the Pharisees have achieved a final victory over this preacher from the countryside with his strange ideas: that the only Lord the people should worship is God not Caesar, that it is easier for a rich person to go through the eye of a needle than to get to heaven, and that sins could be forgiven outside the Temple. He was dangerous to the civil and religious authorities with his ideas of a loving God not bound by strict rules, rather he served the rule of love given to him by his Father.

Yes, when Jesus was raised from the dead he defeated death and could rightly ask, “Death where is your sting? Where is your victory?” Today we rejoice that Jesus leads us through all the dark valleys of death in our lives defeating the many deaths we face. Many of us struggle with darkness of: debt, fear for our safety or the safety of our children, upside down mortgages, jobs given to robots, jobs moved elsewhere in the country or overseas, marriages that have grown stale, divorce, children who have moved away and forgotten their parents, neighbors who don’t look like you and don’t speak English. We pray yet nothing changes. We hold onto so many dark valleys and so many deaths.

As Jesus took his first steps outside the tomb, Creation rejoiced. Hopelessness was banished. Fear of your neighbor was replaced with a hearty welcome for the stranger. Marriage was transformed to a bond between two loving people who lived under the love of the Living God. The ruling government was no longer the ruler of your life. Life belongs only to God and the Kingdom of God. As the prophet Micah had said so many years before, “He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”

This Easter Sunday ask yourself where are the places of death in your life. With the risen Christ, banish those deaths and replace them with hope, love, justice and humility. The Kingdom of love will gain a foothold in your life and you will begin to walk with Jesus as a lamp for your feet.

Peace and grace,
Upcoming Easter Services
Maundy Thursday Service (March 29) at Ebenezer at 7:00 p.m. with communion

Good Friday Service (March 30) at St. John’s UCC at 1:00 p.m. with communion

Easter Sunday Service (April 1) at 8:45 a.m. at Ebenezer, 10:15 a.m. at St. John's UCC

(there is no Easter breakfast)
ChurchTrac Software
Ebenezer has purchased a software that will allow the office to better record member giving, keep an accurate directory, manage invoices, create an online calendar, and more!

With this new software comes the ability for all EUCC members listed in the directory to update their personal (and family) profile AND view their giving statement at ANY time!

To do this, simply follow the instructions below:

  1. Go to: https://churchtraconline.com/member_access.php?church=9208494331
  2. Enter the email address listed in the EUCC directory (aka the one that you got this newsletter sent to!)
  3. First time visitors, click 'I do not have a passcode'
  4. You will see a number pop up for you to type in (SAVE that number!)
  5. An email will be sent to you asking for your code - enter the number you got from step 4
  6. You should be in!

If you have any troubles with this process, please contact Jackie.
Notes from the Music Corner ...
As we culminate the Lenten season with the resurrection on Easter, the music for worship will depict all the events beginning with Ebenezer Brass’ Palm Sunday offering entitled "The Road to Jerusalem." The music depicts Christ’s faithful, steady journey leading to the events of Holy Week. We will welcome St. John’s Chancel Choir for the Maundy Thursday worship. Easter will be heralded with joyous music from the Confirmation instrumentalists and dual ringers on the bell tree. All of the scripture becomes personal for each of us with the robust congregational singing of all the Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Easter hymns. Ebenezer Brass will get in the ‘swing’ of the shared ministry by ringing for St. John’s worship on April 22.

On March 4, Rev. Rust, a former Interim Pastor, invited Karen Cmejla to play the bell tree and solo at the UCC church she is now serving in Lake Geneva. In August, Karen was invited to offer music at a United Methodist church in Janesville which is served by Will Jewson. Will’s wife, Diana, had been a bell choir leader in the Fond du Lac area before moving to Janesville. The bell music was enthusiastically and warmly received by both congregations. On April 24, Karen has been invited to play for a surprise 80th birthday. Thank you to Karen for the dedication and enthusiasm she extends with her musical message!

Several years ago Mark Schubert offered recorder solos and hymn accompaniments for worship at Ebenezer. The recorder instrument is a medieval wind instrument, an early version of the flute. On Saturday, April 7, at 1:00 p.m. Mark will be part of an 11 member group, "Renard Consort," that will present a one hour recorder program at the Chilton Public Library. Many in the group are retired music professors. They will be playing 5 different sizes of recorders. The music will range from Renaissance to 20th Century ("Deep Purple," and "Moonlight Serenade"). The library overlooks the river, making it an ideal setting to listen to this unique kind of music, so consider coming to the library on April 7.   
Mission Education Committee News
The Mission Committee will not be having a rummage sale this spring, but hopes to have one this fall. Please continue to bring in your items for the sale. Also, we can use new or gently used Christmas items for the Cookie Walk in December. Thank you!
Sunday School
There will not be any Sunday School classes on Easter Sunday, April 1. We wish you all a very blessed and happy Easter!

Please note that the last day of Sunday School for this school year will be Sunday, May 13 (Mother's Day).
Adult Education
The Wired Word Bible study is offered Tuesday mornings from 10:00 a.m. until about 11:30 a.m. We take on an issue in the news and look at it from a theological point of view. Bible passages are provided for your reflection and study. There is no prerequisite Bible knowledge for this class. We have lots of fun and our discussions always end up going to individual experiences and opinions based upon the Bible and lived faith. Everyone is welcome to drop in and have fun.

Thursday evenings bring an entirely different Bible study. We use the ‘My Confirmation’ book as a guide for the discussions, but we almost always venture into basic questions about the Bible and its use in services and daily life. This class, that meets from 6:30—8:00 p.m., is ideal for people who would like to brush up on their Bible knowledge. Yes, the Bible can be engaging and interesting.
Ebenezer Church Council
Meeting Minutes March 18, 2018
Opening 
The meeting of the Ebenezer Church Council was called to order at 8:02 a.m. by Kelly Brown. The meeting was suspended for the church service at 8:45 am. The meeting resumed at 10:05 a.m.  

Present 
Kelly Brown, Colleen Marx, Kari Meyers, Vern Gasch, Andy Hofmeister, Dale Hintz, and Pastor Mike. Absent: Jamie Plate. 

Approval of Agenda 
Kari Meyers made a motion to approve the agenda. Dale Hintz seconded. 

Approval of Minutes 
The February 2018 meeting minutes were previously approved via email. 

Finance Report:  
Our February revenue was $9,847.47 Our February expenditures were $7,892.44. The Equity as of February 28th was $101,750.12. Our balance as of February 28th was $300,135.35. Our stocks went down to $31,727.85.  
Vern Gasch made a motion to accept February’s financial reports. Dale Hintz seconded. The motion carried. Vern Gasch made a motion to accept the March bill list. Kelly Brown seconded. The motion carried. 

Minister’s Report: 
Attendance each Sunday is an average of 72 persons. Giving is an average of $1,993.00 weekly. Since the shared ministry started, the average attendance increased slightly as well as the weekly giving amount has increased. Pastor Mike has a call agreement for things such as vacation time and sick time which will be reviewed.
 
Committee Reports:
Christian Education and Music: Confirmation is May 6, 2018, at Ebenezer. There will be no Easter Breakfast this year. Maundy Thursday is at 7 p.m. at Ebenezer. Good Friday service is at St. John’s at 1:00 p.m. Communion will be served at both. Sunday school attendance has increased but giving by the students is down.
  
Evangelism: No new news. 

Mission: Rummage sale will be postponed until fall this year. More updates to come. 

Property: Vern Gasch and Dale Hintz will be the council representatives. No new news on property purchase however the council hopes to start negotiations again. 

Stewardship: No new news. 

Membership: No new news. 

Continuing Business: 
  • Braille System Update: No new news. 
  • Church Security: No new news. Will continue discussion and brainstorming regarding upgrading our church security. 

Shared ministry: Ken Lisowe and Karen Cmejla have volunteered to be on the oversight committee. Please contact them or any council member with any questions or concerns. The Sunday school staff has indicated there is some rushing to start Sunday school after service. Question was raised as to whether the service could be shortened by 15 minutes for a smoother transition. In addition, it was discussed this might give Pastor Mike more time to greet congregation after the service before he must go to St. John's. 

Spanish Ministry: The council is reviewing the lease and will be updating it accordingly. 

Church software: ChurchTrac software was purchased and is being used. 

Constant contact: Has been purchased and is being used. 

Direct deposit update: Elaine and Jill are now receiving direct deposit of their salary. 

Snow removal, salting and shoveling sidewalks: Not done by plow service. Will discuss further with Don Pingel. 

New Business: 
  • A wheelchair has been donated by Andy Hofmeister and family. 
  • Chilton Fire Department: Fire Pup program donation. Ebenezer will designate $150 to the program. 
  • Janitor: Donna Pingel has agreed to perform the Janitor duties until Don Pingel can return. 

**The next Church Council Meeting will be on April 15, 2018, at 8 a.m.**

Adjournment 
Andy Hofmeister made the motion to adjourn the meeting. Vern Gasch seconded. Meeting was adjourned at 10:27 a.m.

Minutes submitted by: 
Colleen Marx 
Approved by: The Church Council via email. 
April Confirmation Readers

April 1 (Easter): Emily Roehrig
April 8: (no reader scheduled)
April 15: Max Miller
April 22: Patrick Marx
April 29: Noah Brown
Tod ~ Katy 
Lorraine ~ Da’Nisha 
Arlene ~ Larry 
Shelly ~ Brian 
Pat ~ Laura 
Pat ~ Rod 
David ~ Gracie 
Janine ~ Linda 
Scott ~ Jim
Pastor Susan ~ Alice 
Edith ~ Vern 
Ron
Due to privacy laws, last names cannot be printed on the prayer list because the Eagle goes on the church website which can be viewed by anyone on the Internet. 

If you want someone added or removed, please contact the church office. Thank you.
Judie Giebel: 4/1
Dexter Sattler: 4/1
Serenity Kubichka: 4/3
Zach Platner: 4/3
Kevin Lau: 4/5
Rosemary Daun: 4/10
Callie Woelfel: 4/10
Jason Wagner: 4/11
Kari Meyers: 4/14
Jamie Plate: 4/15
Frank Cmejla: 4/16
Colleen Marx: 4/18
Meghan Adamietz: 4/20
Addison Brown: 4/20
Sheri Van Beek: 4/21
Sophia Bechlem: 4/22
Lela Rona: 4/23
James Gleason: 4/26

May God bless your years and may you continue to bless Ebenezer!
March 18, 2018: Baptism of Oliver Porsche
Please note that the church office will be closed:

Monday, April 2 (there IS Confirmation Class)
Monday, April 30
Tuesday, May 1
Monday, May 28
Ebenezer Pastor Hours:
Monday 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Tuesday 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Wednesday 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Thursday 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
(920) 849-4331

St. John's Pastor Hours:
Monday 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Tuesday 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Thursday 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
2111 Church St
New Holstein, WI 53061
(920) 898-4259

Pastor's Cell Phone: 920-286-1956
From Memorial Day - Labor Day, Jackie will be in the church office Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Difficulty Hearing??? Don’t forget the Hearing Loop for anyone with hearing aids or the head phones available at the entrance to the sanctuary.  
Follow Ebenezer UCC Chilton on Facebook to be sure you're getting the latest news!
  • A 2018 Flower Chart has been posted outside the office. Please remember to notify Jackie if you sign up. 
  • A pew card for those that give electronically is available for placement in the offering plates on Sunday morning. 
  • Handbell practice: Ebenezer Brass practices at 6:30 p.m. New Ringer’s Always Welcome! 
  • Although previously scheduled as a night off, there WILL BE Confirmation class on Monday, April 2.
  • The Chilton American Legion Auxiliary is hosting a Spaghetti Supper on Tuesday, April 3, at St. Martin Lutheran Church from 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. See the flyer and the letter on the board for details!
  • On Saturday, April 7, at 1:00 p.m. Mark Schubert will be part of an 11 member group, "Renard Consort," that will present a one hour recorder program at the Chilton Public Library.
  • Faith Alliance Church Women’s Breakaway is on Saturday, April 7, at Chilton High School.
  • You are invited to the 56th Annual Meeting of the Northeast Association of the Wisconsin Conference of the United Church of Christ on Saturday, April 28, from 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at Union Congregational United Church of Christ (716 Madison Street, Green Bay).
  • The Calumet County ADRC needs volunteers! See the press release or visit the link to see all the ways you can help! 
  • The March/April Upper Room devotional guide is available in the Narthex book rack. Help yourself!  
  • Please remember that all items placed in the Blessing Box should be able to withstand cold temperatures (i.e. no glass), and please no food items until we have warmer temperatures. 
Newsletter Articles are due to the office on the 3rd Tuesday of the month (unless posted otherwise); be sure to check the calendar for the month’s due date.

Weekly Bulletin Announcements are due in the office on Tuesday mornings. Please also share any pictures for inclusion!

All items should be sent to ebenezeroffice@yahoo.com