January 2019
Grace United Church of Christ
visit our website at graceucckohler.org
920.452.6795 • graceucckohler@gmail.com
500 School Street • Kohler, Wisconsin 53044
Rev Beth Petzke, Pastor
Cell: 920-371-8018 • rev.beth.petzke@gmail.com

Happy New Year! A new year is upon us which means two things to me. First, it begins the liturgical season of Epiphany and second, it is time for New Year’s resolutions. For me, this is an interesting time to hold in tension the sacred and the secular.

Epiphany is our moving from darkness to light – in our faith, in our lives, out in the world – literally and metaphorically. We move from long nights of darkness as we work toward longer days of light. But this can also be said of our culture, which encourages us to have New Year’s resolutions. To move from those things we wish to turn away from, to be more intentional. There are the usual resolutions like eating healthy, exercising, losing weight, making better decisions, saving more money, etc. But this same principle can be applied to our faith life as well. What can we turn away from, and say yes to in our faith?
Perhaps we can take some examples from the past few months. There are a number of you who have chosen to share your talents with the church instead of hiding them. You have shared your interests and conversations which have led to exciting new ministries here like Thai Chi classes. A special Blue Christmas service for those who find Christmas time particularly difficult.
Perhaps it’s bringing back traditions of old in a new way like the Christmas Walk.
When we move from the dark to the light, when we spread the good news, when we share the gifts and passions we have, when we talk to one another and support each other, when we are open to new possibilities and consider who we are as Grace United Church of Christ, we become “the church” at its very best. In this new year, I look forward to hearing from you, to working with you, challenging and supporting each another, and loving one another, as we – together – work to be the church God has called us to be!

Thanks be to God!
Pastor Beth
The 2019 calendars are open for to sign up to help with the work of the church through time, talent and treasure
Please remember that if you are admitted to the hospital and would like a visit from Pastor Beth, please contact her directly. Her contact information is in a number of places including the weekly bulletin, Grace Notes , and the answering machine at church. Between HIPPA and the busyness of the staff, oftentimes the calls are overlooked.
As we begin a new year, I wish to extend my gratitude:
-To the search committee for their diligent and faithful work on behalf of the church, as well as their hospitality in helping me to get acclimated in the beginning.
-The church council, for their faithful work on behalf of all the members. There is much work that happens throughout the week, not only on Sunday mornings. Thank you to each of them as we continue to learn together about the traditions of Grace, giving thanks for our history while looking forward as God calls us to be Grace UCC.
-Curt Joa for his faithful work with the young people. Not only singing, but playing of bells, and writing of music.
-The Sunday School teachers and helpers. Your love of children and the commitment to teach them the core stories of our faith are a gift to us all.
-Audrey for your dedication and love of music to enhance our worship with the direction of the choir.
-Choir for your devotion to practice music each week and enhance our worship.
-Jeff for his dedication to approximately 30 years of service as our custodian. Thank you for your service and best wishes in your retirement.
Mary Ann for her ability to go with the flow and provide beautiful music.
-Marsha for her easy-going spirit and dedicated work ethic that consistently provide us with administrative support that visually enhances our communications and helps us to strive to move forward to the Glory of God in all things.
-All those serving on committees, for giving your time to reach beyond your comfort zone and give of yourself to support the ministries of Grace Church.
 I am overwhelmed when I think about all the ways this congregation is a blessing to me, to each other, and to the wider community. May God continue to bless each one as we look into the new year with light, expectation, hope, and love.
Pastor Beth
Thank you to those who remembered or honored loved ones by gifting greens & poinsettias to decoration our worship space this year.
Wreathes given by: Bev Kramer, Barbara Ruppel, Gerald & Sandy Mueller, Rosemary & Wayne Lohse, Bob & Vicki Mavis, Dave & Linda Billmann

Poinsettias in Memory of: Rev George Mohr by Dorothy, all families who are without loved ones this year by the Teaters Family, Beth’s mom by Rev Beth & Dan Petzke, Tim Vandercamp by Lynn Green, and Perdita Dramm, Lucille Toebe, Carol Becker, Carol Murphy, Mary Lois Williams by the Heidi & Kurt Becker family (2).

Poinsettias given in honor of: This family of faith from Rev Beth & Dan Petzke and
The Groth Family by Karen, Orville & Gloria Valenstein, Bev Kramer, Chuck & Ann Ebert, Rosemary & Wayne Lohse (2) and Henry & Margy Horneck.

Thank you to Janet Carter for sponsoring altar flowers on Jan 6 in memory of Herbert Carter.
I’d like to wish everyone at Grace UCC a very Merry Christmas. I would like to thank you all for the support and prayers you have given Helping Kids Ministries throughout 2018. I’d like to thank Pastor Petzke and Laurie Joa for all their help and support throughout the year. With all your generous donations, financial support, and prayers we all have made a difference in the lives of many kids and their families. So far this school year we have helped 4 families with food during the summer, 93 kids received backpacks filled with school supplies and hygiene products, 23 kids received clothing, 24 kids received winter apparel, 12 kids received hygiene bags, 9 families receive food backpacks every 2 weeks, and 10 families received Thanksgiving and Christmas food boxes. Together with God’s helping hand we all made this possible. God has truly blessed our church and members with so many special gifts – His gift of kindness, His gift of compassion, and His gift of love for others. May our Lord and Savior richly bless everyone with good health, happiness, and lots of love in 2019. From the bottom of my heart I thank you all. 
God’s richest blessings, Kathy Rowe – Helping Kids Ministries
There are a number of things that just ‘happen’ here at Grace. For those who give of their time and talent to make things happen – whether anonymously or whether I may have accidentally not included, please know that we are thankful for your generosity! Please let Pastor Beth know if there are any errors or omissions. 
In case of inclement weather, cancellations for events or worship at Grace will be posted on WISN channel 12, on our Facebook page, and by email.

We are currently looking for a resource to do snow removal starting Jan. 2019 at Church and the parsonage property. If you can help with any suggestion for this job, please leave a message or call at the Church. Or contact any Church Council member or Property Committee member. Thank you. 

Contributions intended to be included on 2018 statements need to be at the church office by noon on December 31, 2018. Thank you for your help in this matter.

The church office will be closed from December 26 through December 31.  Pastor Beth will not be in the office during this time, for pastoral emergencies please contact her directly at 920-371-8018 or by email rev.beth.petzke@gmail.com.

New custodian hired!  The Church Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Mike Rolloff as our new church custodian effective Jan 1, 2019. Thank you to Jeff Schultz who has faithfully served as custodian for many years. We wish Jeff well and send best wishes for his retirement. Please extend your gratitude to both gentlemen as you are able.

2018 Annual Reports are due in the church office no later than January 10 th , 2019
Reports are needed from chairs of the following committees: Christian Education, Evangelism, Investment, Memorial, Ministry Matters, Missions, Music & Arts, Property, and Stewardship. Reports not submitted on time will not be included in the Annual Report booklet.

2019 Offering Envelopes are available to pick up in the lounge.  Please help by delivering envelope boxes to family members, friends, and neighbors. If you would like to receive envelopes or if you prefer not to receive offering envelopes, please contact the church office.

Help is needed to take down the greens on January 7 th at 9am. Please join us if you can.

Tai Chi Classes on Mondays at 5:30pm in the sanctuary. Tai Chi is an ancient Chinese tradition that is practiced as a graceful form of exercise. It involves a series of movements performed in a slow and focused and is accompanied with deep breathing. This gentle form of exercise can help maintain strength, flexibility, and balance. It is often called ‘meditation in motion’. All are welcome! You are invited to wear comfortable, loose clothing. Donations are welcome. Feel free to bring a friend. 

Did you know that Texas Roadhouse offers a Sunday bulletin program to support local churches . On Sundays between 11am and 9:30pm, guests that come into the Sheboygan Texas Roadhouse location can have 10% of their total food purchases back to the church! Simply present a current copy of your church’s bulletin to your server. So if you go out for lunch or dinner on Sundays, consider patronizing Texas Roadhouse.
Giving of Time,
Talent and Treasure

There are many ways to participate in the life of the church. Here are a few immediate needs:

2 Ushers are needed for the 2nd Sunday of the month at 10am worship.

1 liturgist is needed 3rd Sunday of the month at 10am worship.

Please contact the church office if you are willing to serve in either of those capacities. Thank you!
New Member Class to be Held at Grace

Grace will be hosting a new member class on January 17 at 6pm for friends and visitors who are interested in learning more about Grace Church. Please contact Pastor Beth or the church office if you're interested or if you know of someone we should be sure to invite.
Sunday January 27 following 10am worship
The songs of our faith are such an important part of worship. Hymns of comfort and assurance of God's presence, hymns of joy and celebration of all that it is to be the community of God. Throughout all seasons of life, the songs of our faith are present offering melody and sentiment when words are not enough. Please call, email or drop a note to Pastor Beth of the church office. What is your favorite hymn?
Thanks go out to all who attended the 2019 Budget meeting of the congregation in early December 2018. With a shortfall to meet the expenses of the current budget projected, we remain hopeful that with renewed commitment and increase in numbers, Grace will be up for the challenge to grow in 2019 --- as has been realized with new members joining the family of Grace and with new faces comes new energy. It has been a very satisfying year - not without its challenges true but we stand strong together with faith in the future of Grace.  

Sandy Rabe, Interim President
The giving tree was a heartwarming success thanks to your generosity! Knowing that your gifts enhanced the holiday for those in need warms the heart. The Missions Committee thanks you for your contributions to our December Mission-of-the-Month. The giving tree will remain up as our January Mission-of-the-Month will be hats and mittens for children of all ages!
Bring them to church and hang them on the tree and we’ll see that they find a good home! We are grateful for your continued support.

-The Missions Committee
Special thanks to the teachers, parents, and families for their support and encouragement on our Christmas program "Sleepover at the Stable". Thank you for talents shared by Molly Montgomery, Amanda Rabe, Curt Joa, and Mary Ann Bichler for their leadership and musical expertise, to Mary Feist (Mom of Debbie Feist Sawyer) owner of the beautiful animal costumes loaned to us, and to Sandy Rabe for her direction and passion for the Christian Education program at Grace. Enjoy the memories from the program.
In an effort to celebrate and record our history, please forward any photos of Grace church events to the church office. 
Click here for the
Grace Church is an accepting community of faith, committed to growth through change.
-Core values statement written on Saturday, May 13, 2017
Grace United Church of Christ
Office: (920)452-6795 graceucckohler@gmail.com
Rev Beth Petzke, pastor rev.beth.petzke@gmail.com
(920)371-8018
Grace UCC 1998