By the Way
SEPTEMBER 2020

Larry's Notes
Transitional Lay Minister

Many thanks to all of you for your well wishes on my new position as “transitional lay minister.” Two words come to mind for starters, administration, and creation. In my first week, along with the service planning duties and meetings, I was able to visit by phone with many church members and I’ll be getting to all of you soon. My niece, Rev. Jessica Scholten recorded a communion service for us, so starting on September 6 you can have your bread and wine ready to go and share in the Lord’s Supper. Mary Emily Anhalt of Congregational Life and I are going to start planning some meditation walking groups, and some small two-week evening webinars and/or bible studies with guest speakers on a monthly basis—what are some topics you would be interested in? We will also start featuring a member interview on a monthly basis in the service, and spoiler alert—Mary Roach and Carol Berger from Evangelism have new members joining soon.

Musically, I’ve been researching some studies on safe small ensemble groups and you will be seeing some more music in our virtual worship services.
What are your ideas? Let’s have a strong start this Fall with programming.

I used this poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning a few weeks ago in a sermon:

Earth's crammed with heaven, 
And every common bush afire with God, 
But only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round and pluck blackberries.

This is an alliteration to Moses and the burning bush. For me it’s about seeing the Holy in everything around us. We must choose to see it—especially in what we perceive to be the common and the ordinary. Here is just one example, the Saturday cleanup of our incredible church rummage sale. We needed to get left over rummage to Goodwill, without batting an eye, Emily Miller said her parents had a moving truck and within minutes we were packing! Thanks to Steve and Mary Emily Miller for this fabulous donation. We also had four very heavy pieces to lift and get on the truck and we were short some manpower but our neighbor to the north was out walking his dogs and I asked if he could help, he was more than happy to and the job was done. We need to ask, and we need to expect answers. Small things to some but for those of us trying to figure out how this was going to happen—manna from Heaven!

Keep the faith, keep in touch.
Peace,
Larry Dieffenbach
Transitional Lay Minister/Director of Music, Organist

WE ACCEPT, EMBRACE AND AFFIRM THE DIGNITY AND WORTH OF EVERY PERSON, AS WE ARE ALL CREATED IN GOD'S IMAGE.
What's Happening at Church...

Get involved and join a group, an event, or a LHC initiative.
Explore / Belong / Learn

Worship Service - Sundays, 9:30 am - Tune-in to our YouTube Channel
Virtual Fellowship - Sundays, 10:30 am - via Zoom
Bible Study - Wednesdays, 10 am - via Zoom
Queen of Hearts Raffle - POSTPONED
Men of LHC Monthly Breakfast - Saturday, Sept. 12, 8:30 am via Zoom
Church Council Meeting - Monday, Sept. 14, 7 pm via Zoom
A Book & A Prayer Book Club - Thursday, Sept. 17, 7 pm via Zoom
Sisters in Spirit (SiS) General Meeting - Sunday, Sept. 20, 11 am via Zoom
Friday Night at the Movies - POSTPONED
BTW Deadline - Monday, Sept. 21

CHURCH OFFICE HOURS - Monday through Thursday, 9 am to 3 pm, 630.584.4013
Joyful Search Continues...

Transitional Lay Minister
The Covid 19 virus has impacted everyone and has changed how many things are done...often creating innovative solutions. Your Search Committee has been successful in an innovative solution...selecting Larry Dieffenbach as our Transitional Lay Minister.

As a committee we often spoke of the contribution Larry had made to the Church; he was approached early on by a member to consider a more significant leadership role in our time of “Covid and Construction.” After continued discussion and serious thought by Larry, he accepted our proposal and won quick confirmation by Council. Larry brings 17 years of service and commitment to Little Home Church. He has proven his ability to lead in a variety of roles including music, fund raising, and evangelism. He has been a positive and consistent force at Little Home Church, we are fortunate to have Larry to lead us through this time of change.

Your Search Team will continue the process of identifying a new Pastor to be called in 2021. Please contact any of our team directly for more information or to provide feedback and input.

Blessings,
Bob Kaska

Moderator's Message
Carol Berger

"And behold, I purpose to build a house unto the name of the Lord my God." I Kings 5:5

Throughout this coming year as Moderator, and because we will be celebrating our 150th Anniversary in 2021, I thought it might be of interest to our church members and friends of the church to learn more about our history. For the next 12 months, I will take you on a Little Home Church historical ride knowing GOD for the last 150 years has always watched over us. We pray for His continued guidance.

Until 1850, the Wayne Township was entirely agriculture with a single exception, the Wayne Center. Change, however, was on the way, and would gather momentum in the decades ahead. Mr. Dunham built an inn, a store, a house, (east of the railroad tracks) and a public road, known today as Army Trail Rd. The new LHC founders and trustees also wanted a building, so they convinced a landowner in the village to sell a half acre to build the house of worship. And so, it began.

Upon completion, shortly thereafter however, a fire destroyed the building. The trustees were forced once again to solicit additional funds, and the carpenters began rebuilding against additional odds. The cost of this new structure was $2,020.00. The belfry also was erected pointing high against the blue skies of autumn, and money for the bell was donated by the village shoemaker, Hiram Adams. We owe much gratitude to Robert Carswell, a thirty-four-year-old bachelor who shouldered much responsibility in both the spiritual and physical beginnings of the new church. Praise Be to GOD! And so, the FIRST annual meeting, January 3, 1872, was held, in spite of lean finances and meager manpower. We have been blessed with our early determined settlers, as we are today with our current and active congregation.

Throughout history, our congregation has ministered to the wider community, as did our early settlers, in Christ's name, for His Glory and the expansion of His Kingdom. We have been and will continue to be, true believers. Thanks Be to GOD!

Peace in the name of our Lord,
Carol Berger
Sisters in Spirit
Catching Up
Late summer greetings from SiS! At our August Zoom meeting we discussed the many benefits of our annual rummage sale, the highlight this year being the joy of working together (at a distance!) after so many months of being apart. We also heard updates from Karissa about Outreach activities and from Mary Emily about Congregational Life connections.

We spent most of our meeting talking excitedly about our Christmas Bazaar, scheduled for November 21. Several ideas were offered: paper white bulb kits, pine cone wreaths, greeting cards, and 'scrubbies' (a homemade cleaning tool). We also talked about limiting our food offerings to popular items from last year and items that would ‘hold’, such as fudge, peanut brittle, spiced nuts, truffles, jams, relish, and chocolate sauce. We will not be making cookies this year.

During the rummage sale, an entire room in the Guild House was devoted to seasonal items, 90% of which were Christmas related. We saved everything not sold and will offer items for sale at the bazaar. Numerous mugs, partial sets of china and a few platters are available and Larry suggested that they might be combined with a homemade food item as Christa did last year with her mini loaves of bread. Something to think about!

Finally, the Illinois Conference will NOT be hosting a women’s retreat this fall. Mark your calendars for October 1-2, 2021 and we will hope for an in person gathering.

That’s it for SiS. Our next meeting will be via Zoom on Sunday, September 20 at 11 am.

Keep your masks on when out and about!

Anne Bouchard
Facilities
A Huge Thank You!

Our first 'Pitch-In' Day was a huge success! I am humbled by all the help provided. Thank you to everyone who gave their time and talent! Our next Pitch-In Day is scheduled for October 24. We hope to see you then!

Kit DeWitt
Facilities Ministry Chair
Technology S.O.S.
We Can Help

As we continue to do our worship services via YouTube videos, meetings and even Fellowship via Zoom video conferencing, we are relying more and more on technology. Some of our members and friends might be intimidated by this. If you have a tablet or computer we can get you where you need to be. Should you need ANY help at all with technology please reach out to the Church Office. We can arrange for someone to come and help you!
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Evangelism
Rummage Meets Evangelism!
The sale was a great way to showcase the Church. Many people asked questions about our history and faith. I visited at length with a few people who had a strong interest in knowing more about LHC.

Per our By Laws, the Evangelism Ministry or the Pastor can bring in new members. We will soon have a date to accept the four individuals who completed New Member classes earlier this spring. In your everyday lives keep in mind the good that LHC does and the fact that we are open and active if not in person. Whom do you know who feels isolated and might need a community or a greater purpose? I am happy to connect with anyone who might need the gift of the Little Home Church. 

Don't hesitate to reach out to me or to give out my contact information. Stay safe and well!

Mary Roach, Evangelism Ministry Chair

Christian Education
Nurture Your Mind
These days since so much of our lives have shifted to online learning, why not check out the UCC's YouTube channel! There are some great webinars and discussions to be found there as well as some nice music to get inspired by. There are two video series in particular I'd like to draw your attention to. One is called "Tuesdays for Nurture" where leaders in our denomination "faithfully focus on education for the people of God." And the other is called "Science for the Road Ahead." Like our own LHC channel, you can subscribe to the UCC's YouTube Channel to be notified when new videos are posted or just to have a way to easily find the series I mentioned. Take a break from all those exercise videos you're doing on YouTube and take time to nurture your mind and your faith.

September marks the start of our Fall Sunday School curriculum, Seasons of the Spirit. More information will be coming on that when I figure out how to access the material!

Respectfully,
Jane Shelton, Christian Education Ministry Chair
Woman walking cross country and trail in autumn forest
Congregational Life
Planting An Idea...?
Ideas for Walking/Meditation Groups for LHC members and their friends...

This is just some seed planting! Let’s stay fluid and have ideas flow and then nail this down. While the weather is still fine and we all need to lose some quarantine pounds. How about starting some safe-distanced outdoor walking groups? Let’s have three groups to start:

Mild Walk – Meet in church courtyard and do a lap or two or three around School Street
Moderate Walk – Meet at the church courtyard and walk east to one of the trails before the railroad tracks maybe a mile or so one way and a mile back.
Advanced Walk – Meet at church courtyard and do five or six miles on one of the trails.

What do we need?

A leader for each group. You would organize the times, the locations (it would be fun to meet in different places), be sure everyone brings their own water and snack, and keep everyone safe distanced, and co-ordinate an email or text chain to set future dates, locations, rain dates etc.

Members to volunteer to walk and bring friends.

Your ideas – send to Larry or Mary Emily.

We can provide a devotional or meditation or you can create your own.

On your mark, get set, GO!

Larry Dieffenbach and Mary Emily Anhalt, Congregational Life Ministry Chair

outreach ministry logo
Outreach
Update
Our Outreach work is never done, and that is particularly true during a pandemic! Another wonderful outcome of our wildly successful rummage sale was that we were able to make a sizable donation of interview clothes to Bridges Communities. Bridges has an “Interview Boutique” that takes new and gently used interview clothing for their clients to “shop” in preparation for job interviews.

As many of you remember, in our Janual survey, we identified three major components to drive Outreach’s mission: narrowing our identified organizations, increasing member-driven outreach opportunities, and supporting our area veterans. One way that we are living this mission is that Outreach is in the process of forming a partnership between Fox Valley Hands of Hope and Midwest Shelter for Homeless Veterans. FVHH offers grief counseling services and is looking to expand its focus to veteran’s affairs. Our role is to help both organizations build this partnership in any way they need to continue to support our area veterans.

In the area of member-driven opportunities, Anne Bouchard has been supporting the Northwest DuPage United Crop Hunger Walk. The walk helps to end hunger in our surrounding communities. The walk will take place on Sunday, October 18. If you would like to donate or walk, please go to this link:
This year is obviously like no other due to the pandemic: let’s do what we can to help end hunger in our county!

Peace and light,
Karissa James
Outreach Ministry Chair
A Book & A Prayer
LHC Book Club
Meets 3rd Thursday, 7 pm
NEXT Meeting is September 17

This month we are reading The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho. The Alchemist is the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found. From his home in Spain he journeys to the markets of Tangiers and across the Egyptian desert to a fateful encounter with the alchemist.
 
Our group will meet for a book discussion via Zoom on Thursday, September 17 at 7 pm, and we’d love to have you join us! The Zoom meeting details are as follows:

Meeting ID: 891 0088 0154
password: bookclub
Stewardship
What's Your Definition?
How do you describe Stewardship? In our bylaws, the task of the Stewardship Ministry is to “encourage members to give of themselves in fellowship, time, talent and resources in support of the church and its programs.” On a more personal basis, I think a good description might be “Stewardship is a response we make in gratitude to God for what has been given to us. It is an intentional, planned, proportional giving of our time, talent, and treasure.”

No matter how we describe stewardship, I believe the essence of what supports its importance in our lives is Love. Love of God and the Church, Love of Family and Friends, Love of our Communities and in helping those in need. It is this Love that is reflected by:
—Nearly 40 members and friends devoting countless hours (days) to conduct a tremendous Rummage Sale and all those who made donations of sale items.
—The many volunteers who work tirelessly to produce our weekly worship service so we can still feel connected as a church during these times of no large group meetings.
—Members of the congregation who are taking an active role in connecting with more senior members to check on their well-being.
—Members who are responding to Pitch-In days to keep the church grounds looking neat.
—Our Joyful Joyful We Restore Thee Committee after years of planning and collecting donations being able to say “We are starting construction this month.”
—All the other activities and member participation that are too numerous to list here.

It’s easy to conclude that the members of our congregation have risen to the challenge of good stewardship and that bodes well for our future. We are currently planning the launch of our Annual Stewardship Pledge Drive, which is our most important activity that specifically provides the financial resources necessary to keep Little Home Church a vibrant part of our lives. We are setting the ambitious goal of obtaining 100% participation from all our active members and I hope as each of us look not only at what we have achieved over the years as a congregation but the bright future we have as we enter our 150th year, that we are all inspired to being an active participant in providing the financial resources needed for our future.

Respectfully,
Peter Connolly, Stewardship Ministry Chair
Virtual Sunday Fellowship
via ZOOM

Gather 'virtually' with us on Sundays beginning at 10:30 am. We will gather online for a few minutes of saying hello and checking in. The space will be open for an hour. Feel free to pop in anytime during that time.

Meeting ID: 827 7414 6480
password: parishhall
Wednesday Bible Study
Virtually...

We continue have resumed the weekly Wednesday morning Bible Study via Zoom. Pastor Ron has graciously agreed to lead it. They continue to study the I & II Letters of Peter. NO preparation is necessary. It begins at 10 am.
Meeting ID: 814 1245 7155
password: biblestudy
Joyful As Ever!
Bids Are Coming In

Hello from your 'Joyful' Capital Campaign Team. We have been busy preparing for the beginning of Phase 1 of our much-awaited 'Joyful, Joyful' Restoration and Renovation project! Bids have been received and we are working closely with architect, Lisa Sharp to choose a contractor. We anticipate construction will begin in September. Hallelujah!

Thank you to everyone who is continuing with pledge payments toward the campaign. To date, we have commitments of $1,525,038 and have collected $643,393. At just over 1/3 of the way through our campaign, this is a tremendous accomplishment. We are humbled by this response and honored by the trust you have placed in our team.
 
The Joyful Team will update the congregation via a virtual Zoom meeting in the very near future. We will provide an FAQ list prior to the meeting and we would also like to hear from you. Please submit any questions about the project to either Anne Bouchard or the Church Office. We will tackle all questions received by Wednesday, September 9.

As usual, please direct any questions or concerns to me or any member of the Joyful Team:
Anne Bouchard, Greg Hege, Bob Kaska, Kathleen Sullivan Kaska, Susannah Lesswing, and Andrea Redmond. Facilities Chairperson Kit DeWitt has joined the team as well as our Moderator, Carol Berger.

Anne Bouchard, Chair
Flowers, Fellowship,
Ushers & Pulpit Associate
With temporary suspension of our worship services we are tabling our need for ushers, and fellowship. If you'd like to provide flowers to dress up our altar table for our YouTube worship services we'd love it! You would need to get the flowers here by the Tuesday of that week so they're there when we film.
Happy September Birthdays!
Sept. 2 - Kit Dewitt
Sept. 3 - Greta & Nora Burkoth
Sept. 5 - Elizabeth Berger, Charles Bouchard
Sept. 6 - Sandi Harper, Madden Neukirch
Sept. 11 - Diane Hochstetter
Sept. 14 - Joyce Cox, Scott Hochstetter
Sept. 15 - Jane Shelton
Sept. 17 - Brandi Moore
Sept. 21 - Bremmer Miller
Sept. 27 - Olivia Bouchard, Dave Poole
Sept. 28 - Maddie DaRin
Sept. 30 - Katherine Brito
Love & Prayers
To those recently ill or hospitalized...
Kathi Abell, Jeff Schramuk, Meg Withall

Congratulations to...
Riley and Kelly Hansen on the birth of Dylan Paul on August 24. Dylan weighed 7 lbs. 13 oz. and was 20" long. The new family is doing well.


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Church Leadership
THANK YOU TO OUR CHURCH STAFF, COUNCIL, AND ALL VOLUNTEERS

Pastor Emeritus - Rev. Ronald Purser
Director of Music/Organist - Larry Dieffenbach
Office Manager - Lori Prang
Custodian - Geraldine Fields

BTW Editors
Lori Prang and Kathleen Sullivan Kaska

Graphic Design
Kathleen Sullivan Kaska
CHURCH COUNCIL

Moderator - Carol Berger
Moderator-elect - Bob Kaska
Christian Education - Jane Shelton
Congregational Life - Mary Emily Anhalt
Evangelism - Mary Roach
Facilities - Kit Dewitt
Outreach - Karissa James
Stewardship - Peter Connolly
Worship & Spiritual Growth - Samantha Prang
Members at Large - Chuck McDonough and Jennifer Harmon
Financial Treasurer - Susi Winquist
Financial Secretary - Ann McLaughlin
Clerk - Kristen Thornton
Thank you for continuing to remember Little Home Church by the Wayside.
Your support is greatly needed and appreciated.
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