Ministry Headlines

First Congregational Church in Winchester, UCC
Autumn 2019 Vol. 66, No. 5
In This Issue
Spiritual Reflections
The Insufficiency of Everything Attainable
Deepening Our Spiritual Lives: An Invitation

Ministry Updates
The State of the CommUnion Update
Leadership Team
Environmental Ministry and Justice
Music and Worship Arts
Adult Faith Exploration
Meet Our Newest Members!

Opportunities to Serve

Autumn Events at a Glance
Spiritual Reflections
The Insufficiency of Everything Attainable
Editor's Note: Rev. Will offered a weekly blog over the summer. This is one of his latest posts. Keep on the lookout for more!

The theologian Karl Rahner wrote about “the torment of the insufficiency of everything attainable.” This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t strive for success, victory, expertise, accomplishment and achievement in this life. It means that we should hold them lightly knowing that even the greatest of these will not satisfy.  Read more...
Deepening Our Spiritual Lives: An Invitation
As autumn beckons, we find ourselves once again drawn to the wonder of our changing seasons. We are awakened to the reality that life itself is change and movement. We are invited to learn new lessons, to grow in our consciousness, and to take on new understandings life offers us.  Read more...
Ministry Updates
The Next Five Years at FCCW Begin Now!
As your Lead Pastor, I offered a State of the Communion Address at our Annual Meeting last May. In that address I challenged the congregation to begin thinking seriously and strategically about the coming 5 years and what steps we needed to take to be brave and bold in making plans for the future. Read more...
The Leadership Team Looks Ahead
The Leadership Team (LT) is looking forward to the 2019-2020 church year and to resuming its work in support of the congregation and FCCW’s hard-working ministries. Read more...
Environmental Ministry and Justice Fall Update
As people of faith, informed and shaped by scientific investigation and wonder, scripture directs our attention to the sacredness of God’s good creation. Like the astronaut, John Glenn, traveling high in the heavens, we marvel at the sheer beauty and majesty of our planetary home. Read more...
Music Opportunities This Fall
We have many opportunities for making and sharing music, and you are invited to join us in these fun, spirited, moving, challenging, and prayer-filled endeavors. Read more...
From Jesus to Christ  Film Series
Beginning Sept 29
Continuing in our series about the three religions that share Abraham as an ancestor – Christianity, Judaism and Islam, this fall the Adult Faith Exploration Ministry offers a look at our Christian roots. Frontline's, “From Jesus to Christ: The First Christians” is a historical documentary that tells the epic story of the rise of Christianity. Read more...
Dwelling Place Serving Opportunities
September 21, October 19, and November 16
We are looking for 4 -5 volunteers to prepare and serve a meal for about 30 people at the Dwelling Place on three upcoming Saturdays.  Read more...
Meet Our Newest Members!

Karen Bellacosa
I was born and lived in England until my late-20s when I came to the United States via Canada. I moved to Winchester 17 years ago with my three children who are now all lovely young adults whom I am very proud of. Being outside in nature is very important to me; so having the Fells on my doorstep is a wonderful gift. I am very happy to become a part of this community.
Shannon and Ben Gibson
Shannon and Ben were raised in Texas and moved to Woburn one year ago for Ben’s new job. They have two children, Elizabeth, age 3, and Anderson, age 9 months. In their free time, they enjoy being outdoors, watching movies, and traveling together. 
Erin and Eric Nordstrom
Eric was raised in Melrose and grew up very active in the First United Methodist Church on Main St. Erin grew up in Greenwich, CT, and has been in the Boston area since graduating from Babson in 2005. Eric and Erin moved to Winchester in 2014 and are raising two, soon to be three daughters. Avery is 2.5 years old and Maddie is 9 months and stole your hearts as the screaming Baby Jesus in the pageant last year. Baby #3 is due this August and we look forward to raising the three girls in the FCCW church family.
Nancy and Tom O’Connor
Tom and Nancy live in Somerville with their three boys Tommy, 8; Will, 6 and Charlie who is 3. Tom grew up in Lexington, MA, and Nancy spent her childhood in Hartford, CT, before meeting in Boston after college. When they are not chasing after their very active boys, Tom is an avid golfer, sports fan, and live music buff. Nancy spends her free time reading, doing yoga, and volunteering at the boys’ school.
Jane Ring Frank
Jane Ring Frank was born into a Jewish and Catholic household in Los Angeles, CA, where she attended Presbyterian and Christian Science schools. She moved to Boston in 1991 and became the Director of Music at Arlington Street Church (U.U.) in Boston’s Back Bay. It was there that she met Stephen Cole and his very young daughter, Anne Frances. In 1998, she became the Director of Chapel Music at the Episcopal Divinity School in Harvard Square and made her way to FCC in 2003, where she has continuously and joyfully served as Minister of Music. She loves the study of religion and religious practices! She and Stephen look forward to their daughter’s marriage this September.
Joani and Ed Valeriano 
Joani and Ed Valeriano moved to Winchester with their sons, Gavin (11) and Rory (10) in 2017. Prior to settling in Winchester, the Valeriano's lived in Jersey City (Ed's hometown) and Basel, Switzerland. In their free time, they like to bike, garden, play tennis, practice yoga, and travel. They look forward to joining the FCCW congregation.
Opportunities to Serve
Autumn Events at a Glance

Sept 14
Youth Outdoor Church Serving Opportunity

Sept 15

Sept 17

Sept 21
Community Organizations Fair on the Common

Sept 22

Sept 29
Outdoor Church Serving Opportunity


Oct 6

Oct 18
Ripley Chapel Re-Dedication

Oct 19

Oct 20
Blessing of the Animals/Jazz Worship on the Common

Oct 22
Diving Yoga in Ripley Chapel

Oct 26

Oct 27
Healing Circle in Ripley Chapel


Nov 2
Progressive Dinner

Nov 3

Nov 15
Ripley Presents: Atwater-Donnelly Trio

Nov 16

Nov 17

Nov 23
Thanksgiving Baskets Food Drive

Nov 24
Turkey Drive for Pilgrim Church
What's Your Team Up To?

The Spire is published seasonally, six times per year: Fall (Sept-Nov), Advent/Christmas (Dec), Winter (Jan-Feb), Lent/Easter (Mar-Apr), Spring (May-June) and Summer (July-Aug).

The Spire features ministries updates and seasonal spiritual content. Please send your team updates to  Nancy Kneiss. Please note that content may be gently edited for length and clarity, and will appear on our website. Upcoming events and weekly email blast requests should be sent to  Sarah Marino, our Office Manager, at by Thursday at 9:00 AM. Thank you!

-Nancy Kneiss, Editor