This Week at The Congregational Church
November 29, 2020
This Week's Thanksgiving Message: "Over The River and Through The Woods" 
This Week's Service: What is it that gets you over the river? How do you survive the dark and sometimes scary woods? The vision of grandma's house and your love and trust in her. It drives you forward. It narrows the distance between your present circumstances and your desired destination. His first Advent - in a stable in Bethlehem - released Hope into the world. His second Advent - is the Hope in which we trust and rest in living in a world just as fragile as it was when He first appeared.

SCRIPTURE LESSON:  Jeremiah 33:1-11
Scripture Reading by Bill Deysher, Deacon
GREETERS : Libby and Gil Regan
USHERS: Dorothy Robertson
Deacon Of The Month For November is Libby Regan
NOTICE OF CHANGE! THANKSGIVING DAY WORSHIP SERVICE!
There will be no service at the church on Thanksgiving morning. We are trying to eliminate all gatherings at the church with the exception of Sunday morning worship and our three monthly board meetings. The rise in COVID cases and deaths make it necessary to protect our church family in this way. 

ONLINE ON THANKSGIVING DAY! There will be a brand new service streamed online Thanksgiving morning at 10 a.m. Pastor Jim's Thanksgiving message will be "When I'm Worried". Billie Thatcher will sing "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come", "For the Beauty of the Earth", and the Rosemary Clooney hit "Count Your Blessings". Invite your friends to make this Thanksgiving Service part of their holiday celebration.
THE ALTAR FLOWERS AND BULLETINS:

The Altar Flowers and Bulletins are given by Jack and Annelle Baird in honor of their late son Brett's birthday. The floral centerpiece on the altar is given by Doug and Jan Moe in loving memory of Doug and Agnes Moe.
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SPECIAL THANK YOU to everyone who signed up to support our altar flowers and our worship bulletins. Those who signed up have been contacted concerning their wishes. We will be taking the flowers to Hospice or sending them home with the donors.
Music Ministry This Week
Our vocal soloists this week will be Victoria Sexton and Billie Thatcher.  Victoria, from Tampa, Florida has been with us before and has an exceptional voice and talent. Victoria will sing "O Little Town of Bethlehem", "Ave Maria" and "Do You Hear What I Hear?".  Billie Thatcher will help us begin the Advent season with "O Come, O Come Emmanuel", "The Solid Rock" and "O Come, all Ye Faithful". Harriet Dawson will play the Memorial Chimes and Kevin O'Connell will accompany on keyboards.

Read More About "Victoria Sexton"
Holy Communion
HOLY COMMUNION. The sacrament of the Lord's Supper will be celebrated next Sunday, December 6th. This will be our Advent Communion.
*** Movie Night Cancelled!
All movie nights are cancelled until the current up surge in the pandemic has lessened.
Worship Services
WE WANT YOU SAFE AT OUR WORSHIP SERVICES.  Join us each Sunday at 10 a.m. in our sanctuary. Temperatures will be checked, social distancing will be observed, masks are required and every possible step will be taken to keep everyone safe. Your cooperation is essential to keeping our church family safe. If you have health issues that make you more vulnerable to COVID-19 please watch from home. God is wherever you are and we are always joined in spirit. The service will be similar to the one we have been using online. 
Reservations will need to be made by calling the church office (M-W-F from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.).
November Birthdays
(2)Eloise Warner, (3) Kerm Pentecost, (4) Nancy Lampitoc, (6) Steve Feustel and Fred Norris, (8) Gary Nankervis, (17) Beth Feustel, (19) Larry Landermann, (24) Shirley Boothroyd and Jim Broz, (26) Dorothy Landermann and Bob Howard, (29) Gary Twist.

(If we missed your birthday, please, let us know. We will add you to the list.)
November Mission Projects
The Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Fund. This amazing program gives scholarships to deserving high school seniors for academic achievement and exemplary volunteer service. Our church supports this effort and always encourages our members to attend the awards breakfast in January. This coming January, unlike other years, the breakfast will be challenged by the COVID-19 virus. We will be having a social distanced breakfast on January 11th in our Fellowship Hall. Information and tickets will be available soon. Half of the Mission Offering in November will support the MLK program and half will support our own Infant and Toddler Pantry.  

END OF THE YEAR GIVING. After a difficult year the giving during the month of December is more important than ever. There are several tax advantages available as you close out your finances for 2020. Donate long-term appreciated stock. No one pays tax and you get a charitable deduction up to 30% of your adjusted gross income. You can carry the deduction forward for up to five additional years. Transfer up to $100,000 directly from your IRA to First Congregational Church without paing income tax. You should contact your tax advisor or accountant for advise on giving opportunities.

YEAR END REPORTS. Officers, Boards, and Committees should be preparing annual reports to be turned in to the church office by the first week of the new year.

CHRISTMAS EVE CANDLELIGHT SERVICE.  Make your reservation now to attend this beautiful service.  Harriet Dawson, Billie Thatcher, Kevin O'Connell and Dawn Pendley will provide wonderful Christmas music. There are only 90 seats for this COVID restricted service so don't be disappointed. December 24th at 7 p.m. Reserve your seats now with Mary by calling the church office.

CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS.  Thank you to everyone who assisted in getting our beautiful grounds and building ready for the Christmas season.
INFANT AND TODDLER PANTRY
YOUR INFANT AND TODDLER PANTRY. We continue to work together with many community churches and organizations to meet the needs of children in our area. Diapers, clothing, blankets, port-a-cribs, toys, baby food, formula, help with car seats and more are available through our pantry. Your financial support has made all this happen for nearly 12 years. This all volunteer ministry is the centerpiece of our mission program. Consider getting some of your friends and neighbors together and having a Baby Shower to support the Infant and Toddler Pantry.  

CHILDREN'S LITERACY PROGRAM. We are currently giving out children's books to the families visiting our Infant and Toddler Pantry. We recently received a shipment of new Bibles in English and in Spanish to give to families who come to our Pantry ministry. Each child will receive a book as part of their Christmas gift bag this year. We are looking forward to the current health crisis slowing so that we can have story time for the children.

INFANT AND TODDLER PANTRY CHRISTMAS BAGS. Each year we distribute colorful gift bags to our members and friends and ask you to fill them with surprises for the children who come to our pantry for help throughout the year. If you have not picked up your bag they are available after service or from the church office during the week. We are looking for a nice toy (about $15 value), a pair of pajamas and a Christmas book. If you can help it will make a child happy this Christmas. We are now collecting bags and distribution begins on November 21st.
Pastoral Care
Contact Pastor Jim Keough on his cell 352-250-6160 or email: RevJim46@aol.com. If you are ill or going to the hospital please let us know. We want to pray for you and be of service.
Important Notice: Hospitals and Rehab Centers are limiting the visitation that can take place at their facilities. Clergy, including your pastor, are limited in their calling during the coronavirus crisis. Therefore, visitation will be limited to critical situations. Please be sure to check the "Prayer Request" section of our church website and pray for your church friends and their concerns. If you have someone you would like added to the list contact the pastor or the church office.
Church Memorial Garden
One of the decisions we all need to make, unless we intend to stick our family with the chore, is where we wish our earthly remains to be placed after our death. Since we have this beautiful property, and it is where we have worked and worshiped together, a Memorial Garden on site seems to be appropriate. The Walk of Faith area between our buildings with it's lovely fountain will be a grand location. Each burial site will be marked by an engraved granite marker (name, date of birth and death). The fee of $500 will cover the marker, engraving, internment of the cremains, a perpetual care fund amount, and memorial service. If you are interested call the church office to set up an appointment. You will receive a complete set of guidelines and the opportunity to select your plot.
If you cannot attend services at the church you can follow us online. Invite your friends, family members and neighbors to worship with us online

Accessing our live stream worship service on Sundays
Please note: You do not need a Facebook account
to access our live stream broadcasts. No sign up necessary!

From your computer, smartphone or tablet, go to our website, www.thecongregationalchurch.org (using your browser of choice: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc.) (Give yourself a few minutes before the service to get set up.)

Click on the Facebook LIVE logo to go directly to our LIVE Service.
The broadcast will begin automatically.

If you would like to get a reminder of an upcoming Live event on Facebook,
click follow (optional).

Don't forget to SHARE the video stream with your friends when it begins.
Accessing our live stream worship service ANYTIME!
If you missed the LIVE broadcast,simply scroll down the home page (thecongregationalchurch.org) to the little block that says "Sunday Worship Service" and click. It will take you directly to the latest recorded service.
If you need the Bulletin to follow along with the service, CLICK HERE. 
BUILDING FUND AND GENERAL FUND GIVING! 
Two factors have begun to have an effect on our church giving. First of all the "seasonal residents" have now made their pilgrimage to the north country. This creates a drop off in giving each year. This year we have had this problem compounded by the COVID-19 closing of church facilities and programs. It was not as pronounced at first, however, the longer this situation continues the more people forget we must support the church for it to continue to provide ministry and service at the levels people expect. Your continued support of the Building Fund and the General Fund is "Essential". There will not be government funds available to bail us out. Your stepped up support during this time will be a blessing. 
Mail your gifts to: 
The Congregational Church,
P. O. Box 804,
Summerfield, Florida 34492. 

Or Give Online… Click the Donate button on our website, Then select the fund you wish to donate to.

Thank you!!!
OUR DAILY BREAD daily devotional guides are available on the literature table in the narthex of the church. The books are printed in regular and large print editions. Feel free to take extra copies to give to friends and family.
                                
THE WALK OF FAITH - We continue to place Brick Pavers in both the Veterans Area at the flag poles and around the beautiful fountain area. Make a gift to the Building Fund of $100 and have a brick placed in honor/memory of a loved one or a veteran. You can place a brick in the fountain area walk-way to celebrate an event, memorialize a family member, or simply place your name on a brick to show your support for our church. Mail your check with "Brick Paver" in the memo section to the church along with the information you would like on your brick. There are three lines with 15 characters per line available on each brick. Contact the church office for more information.
                 
Thought for the Week
“Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” – Charles Dickens

Contact the Church Office 352-693-4545.  The Welcome center table has a supply of cards to register your prayer requests. Our church website also has a prayer request section for your use. Your prayer requests are listed on the church web site and sent out by email to church members and friends.

Please pray for a Catherine, friend of Heidi Allen, who is in the hospital with a TGA - transient global amnesia. Catherine doesn't have any family close by and the prayers of our church family will be a blessing.

Pray for Steve Feustel. Steve is back home after a recent stay at the Leesburg Hospital. He is having some in home rehab and your continued prayers for he and Beth are appreciated.

Please pray for Dawn Payzant. Dawn has attended our services many times and is a good friend of Nancy Doggett. Dawn lives in Nova Scotia. She is currently suffering from an advancing case of Parkinson's Disease. This dear lady needs our encouragement and prayers. If you want to send a card or note (2 US stamps needed for Canada) her address is: Dawn Payzant, 1058 Albany New Road, Caledonia, Nova Scotia, BOT1B0 Canada. Her birthday is coming up on 12/28.

Please pray for Ruth Ann "Pinky" Bigley. Pinky's mother, Eleanor, passed away this morning, 11/16/20. Pinky just sang for our service yesterday morning. Eleanor would have been 90 in two weeks. Our prayers are with Pinky and her family. If you want to send a card or note to Pinky her address is: 6034 Delphina Loop, The Villages, FL 32163.

Pray for Carole Masters, Jim Keough's Administrative Assistant for many years in Michigan, who had a bad fall and broke her arm just below the shoulder. Pray for healing and relief from pain.

Pray for Jerry Starkweather whose brother, Don, just recently passed away.
Please pray for Nancy Cowell. She had a bad fall. Please pray for a healing and pain relief.

Pray for Helga York. Helga and Bill York have been part of our church family for many years. They moved to New Hampshire some time ago but have kept in contact and remained interested in our church. Bill passed away after a long and valiant battle with several health issues on Sunday, November 8th. After a long and beautiful marriage Helga needs our prayers and support. You can send a card or note to: Helga York, 2 Golan Drive, Londonderry, New Hampshire, 03053.

Please say a prayer for Dottie Landermann. Dottie's surgery was canceled. Please keep Dottie in your prayers.

Pray for Nancy Doggett. Nancy had successful cancer surgery and is about to begin radiation therapy.

Please pray for Pauline Brannigan. Pauline in the daughter of Judie Parker, a long time part of The Congregational Church family. Pauline recently had successful surgery for a melanoma on her leg. Thank you for your prayers.

Please pray for Mike Howard. Mike is recuperating in rehab after a surgical procedure on his arm.

Please pray for Leslie Adams. Leslie is one of our church family and leads our Infant and Toddler Pantry. Leslie had successful cancer surgery and is now recuperating at home.

Please continue to pray for Paul Fortin as he had shoulder surgery on 10/23 and is at home recuperating and will begin outpatient rehab shortly.

Please pray for Janice Nystrom. Janice is the wife of our Board of Trustees chairperson, Carl Nystrom. Janice had a recent hospital stay at The Villages Hospital and will recuperate at home.
Jim & Ann Denholm ask for prayers for their friend Tony Mont. Tony, from York, Maine, has been struggling with mini strokes and the cause has continued to elude the doctors. Pray for Tony and his wife, Darrah, as they continue work through this difficult time together.

Please continue to pray for Cory and Bonnie Pearson's friend Gail Meloni as she begins treatments for lung cancer.

Please pray for Kevin Hensley and all our returning armed service personnel who have been exposed to various diseases from the "burn pits" during their military deployments. Pray that the bills before congress will pass and bring these heroes relief. Pray for H.R. 1381 The Burn Pit Registry Enhancement Act and H.R. 4574 The Veterans Right to Breathe Act passage.

Please pray for Cathy Reitmyer's niece, Renee. Renee has been diagnosed with bladder cancer. She is only 37 years old and has 4 young children.

Please pray for Billie Thatcher's sister, Mary Lou Kovacs. Mary Lou is suffering with severe memory issues. Pray for her and husband Ron.

Please pray for Frank Szczepanski. Frank is having lung infection treatments that will last up to 24 months. The side effects from the medications have caused him to lose his hearing which will not likely return. Also pray for his wife, Vi, as they struggle through this difficult time together.

Please pray for Pam Sabo. Pam has been dealing with blurriness in her eye resulting from a slight stroke in the eye.

Please pray for Ruth McGuy. Ruth, a long time member of our church, had surgery recently in Massachusetts. She will be having radiation treatments in a few weeks. Ruth's address is 6 Mary Avenue, Seekonk, MA 02771.

A close friend of Bob and Harriet Dawson, Ernie Groves, suffered a stroke on 9/25.  He is alert and communicative, however, he is unable to walk and lacks balance.  Ernie is in the hospital's Rehab Facility for extensive therapy to learn to walk again. Please pray for Ernie and family.

Update on Ann Ellenwood, neighbor of Virginia Hampton. She finished chemo in August and starts radiation today, 9/29, 6 weeks 5 times a week. Unfortunately she’s having to reside in a hotel room due to rains wetting her ceilings during a roof replacement which caused mold. Continued prayers are requested during this trying time as if the COVID-19 wasn’t enough already.

Janet Moe has asked for prayers for her Dad, Ken Bradeen. Ken just turned 99 years old and was doing well until a fall which caused an ankle fracture and some other injuries. Pray for Ken and family.

Please pray for the sister-in-law of my friend Sue Aulgur in Michigan. Her name is Marie France. She is 81 years old and is very frail with lung cancer. Marie's husband, Bill, Sue's brother has dementia and this further complicates the situation.  Pray for this family, please.

Sally Gillies, a friend and from Michigan, is having procedures and treatments for stage 3 cancer. Please pray for Sally to have strength, hope and healing.

Please pray for Tami Blaze. Tami has worked in our Infant & Toddler Pantry. She has been bravely battling health issues for several years.

Please pray for Pam Albright. Pam, age 50, is an elementary school teacher in Michigan. Pam is in the hospital on a ventilator battling COVID-19.

Please pray for Michelle Mindak Makas. Michelle had cancer surgery recently in New Orleans and is now back home in Florida recuperating.

Pray for Bob Mitchell, Annelle Baird's cousin, who has been diagnosed with cancer and is receiving treatments. He is 87 years old and lives in Lexington, KY.

Continue to pray for Cathy Reitmyer as she is recovering from heart issues.  Please pray for Cathy and her Mom (Rose).

Pray for Shirley Boothroyd. Shirley is a member of our Mission Board and is recovering from a recent surgery.

Pray for Carolyn Baker. She is having pain in her hip and is receiving treatment.

Please pray for Bennie Exum's son, David, who suffers from pulmonary fibrosis.

Pray for Jerry Starkweather's long time friend, Les Hartzman, who was diagnosed with lung cancer and is going through chemo and radiation.

Please pray for Jean Gorney. Jean had a fall at home and broke her left shoulder along with several other painful injuries. Pray for her and husband Bob as she recovers.

Pray for Danny Bethard. Danny is Libby Regan's nephew and he had a mass successfully removed from one of his kidneys and is now having chemo. Thank you for your prayers and keep praying!

Pray for Sandy Hoffmann. She is suffering with terrible headaches. Pray for relief from the pain.
Biff McBee is asking for prayer for a good friend, Bob Huizing. Bob is dealing with cancer and the start of chemotherapy. Also, pray for Bob's wife Ginny as she seeks to help him through this.

Please pray for Leslie Tate, she is the wife of Otto Souder. She is battling cancer and other health issues. Leslie is scheduled for surgery soon and your continued prayers will help. She and Otto are most grateful for your prayers and concern. Also son, Scott, in Maryville, TN, has MS and recently fell and fractured his sternum. If you want to send a note of encouragement: Leslie Tate, 13670 SE 97th Terrace Rd., Summerfield, Florida 34491.

Prayers are needed for Louise Tucker, the sister of Jean Gorney, who has been suffering due to a stroke and liver problems..

Please pray for Bev Huey, a friend of Cathy Reitmyer, who has been diagnosed with kidney failure and had a recent heart procedure.

Pray for the necessary reforms to be brought about that will establish unity and justice for all citizens of our country. May economic justice, police reform and an end to racism be established.

Pray for the families of the police officers and individuals who have been killed in the recent violence in our country. Pray for the store and business owners who have lost everything to the senseless violence of the last few weeks.

Pray for peace to return to the cities and towns of our country. Pray to stop the violence, looting and hatred. Give our leaders the wisdom to take the actions necessary to restore order.

Please pray for Cathy Kivitt, the sister-in-law of Charles and Kathy Kivitt, she is battling cancer and other health issues. Pray for healing, comfort and strength.

Please pray for Roger Marvin. He has been placed in Hospice care where he fell and broke his hip. He and his wife, Shirley, need our prayers.

Pray for the many people around the world who are suffering from the coronavirus. Pray to stop the spread of this virus, halt the panic, heal the many children and elderly it is afflicting.
The children who visit our Infant and Toddler Pantry and their families.

Pray for the success of our new church programs: The Memorial Garden, and The Infant and Toddler Literacy Program. Thank you.

If you have a prayer request contact Dawn Keough at: Nana6bn5g@aol.com or call the pastor at 352-250-6160.

“The best we can hope for in this life is a knothole peek at the shining realities ahead. Yet a glimpse is enough. It’s enough to convince our hearts that whatever sufferings and sorrows currently assail us aren’t worthy of comparison to that which waits over the horizon.” ~ Joni Eareckson Tada
“Truth offends everyone outside its definitions. But the irony of truth is that the greater its potential for offense, the greater its potential for giving hope.” ~ David Jeremiah
15421 S US Hwy 301
Summerfield, FL 34491

Mailing Address: 
The Congregational Church,
P. O. Box 804,
Summerfield, Florida 34492
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for more information:
Church Office: (352) 693-4545
Reverend Jim: (352) 250-6160