Weekly Newsletter
Gilead Congregational Church, UCC
Week of February 20th - February 26th         
Meetings and Services
this Week:

Wednesday, February 20th:
-9:30 a.m. Wednesday Morning Book Discussion
-6:00 p.m. Confirmation Class
-7:00 p.m. Choir

Wednesday, February 20th to Saturday, February 23rd: 
-Church Painting Project

Thursday, February 21st:
-7:00 p.m. Trustees

Friday, February 22nd:
-6:30 p.m. Game Night in the Fellowship Hall
-7:00 p.m. Youth Group Game/Movie Night at AHM

Sunday, February 24th: 
-8:30 a.m. Worship Service 
-10:00 a.m. Worship Service
-Sunday School 
-Coffee Hour

Tuesday, February 26th:    
-11:15 a.m. Bible Study in the Parish House
-7:30 p.m. AA Meeting  

About Us:

Reverend Dr. Denise M. Esslinger 
Minister of Mission and Faith Formation:
Stephanie Haines 
Minister of Music:
Bruce Gale
Administrative Assistant:
Sally Fritsche  

Worship: 8:30 AM
Worship w/Sunday School:  10:00 AM
Summer Worship: 
9:00 AM 

Gathered:  1748
Meeting House:  1838
Fellowship Hall:  2008


We are an Open & Affirming Church 

Ministry Quicklinks:
More About Us


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Youth Group Game/Movie Night at AHM 
Friday, February 22nd
This Friday, February 22nd members of the GCC Youth Group and friends will meet at AHM Youth & Family Services (25 Pendleton Drive, Hebron) for a time of fellowship from 7:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. Please bring a snack or drink to share. We will have games and a selection of PG or G movies, but feel free to bring some too.  Hope to see you there!  Call or email Mrs. Cohen with questions. ( twstuff99@gmail.com  or 860-228-5188/860-455-6459).  
Pizza & Game Night
Friday, February 22nd
The Fellowship Committee invites the congregation to enjoy pizza and games this Friday, February 22nd at 6:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall.  Pizza, salad, and coffee will be provided. Please bring a snack, dessert, or drink to share along with any favorite games to play.  Minute to Win It games will be set up and ready to go for those who like fast paced fun!  A sign-up sheet is available under the name tags in the hallway.  Please contact Annette Langevin (860-228-1313) if you would like to attend. 

Confirmation Class Bake Sale
Sunday,  February 24th
Our Confirmation Class will be helping with our potluck coffee hour this Sunday, February 24th and hosting a bake sale too. They invite you to come and purchase some delicious home made treats and support them in their mission project.  Their mission project is to educate middle school students at RHAM MS about the negative impact of substance abuse.  They will do this by sharing facts about the consequences of substance abuse in Easter eggs, which will also contain candy.  We look forward to seeing you at coffee hour!
Church Painting Project
Sunday, February 17th-Saturday, February 23rd
It's hard to believe, but it's been 10 years since our church's building addition and renovations were completed.  Due to some issues with the concrete, which has impacted the flooring, the Trustees will be doing some remediation work and replacing the flooring in March. Before this is done, Gilead Helping Hands, the Trustees, along with other volunteers will be painting the Fellowship Hall and adjacent hallways.  Can you help?  If you can give two hours  (or more) to help paint sometime between today and Saturday, February 23rd, it would be greatly appreciated. It will be an all church effort and many hands will make it happen!  Please  contact Mark Tierney at  860-841-3214 or via e-mail at mark.tierney2@pw.utc.com if you are able to help. 
Faith and Film Series
Friday, March 1st 
Join us on Friday, March 1st at 6:00 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall for our Faith and Film Series. We will gather for a potluck supper followed by watching and discussing a mystery film. Come and be surprised.  It will be rated PG.  Bring a dish to share and join us!

Mardi Gras Brunch and One Worship Service at 10:00 am
Sunday, March 3rd
The Youth Group will be preparing and serving an all Church Mardi Gras brunch on Sunday, March 3rd. This is the last Sunday before the beginning of Lent, so we invite you to come and eat and enjoy some eggs, sausage, baked French toast, fruit and fellowship before the Lenten journey begins. The brunch will begin following the 10:00 a.m. worship service.  A free will offering will be received.  All proceeds from the breakfast will benefit the 2020 Youth Group Mission Trip.  Also, there will be one worship service at 10:00 a.m. this day. The Modern Riffs will be with us at this service. All are welcome! Please join us! 
New Members Gatherings 
Sunday, March 3rd or Sunday, March 10th 
Our Deacons will be hosting two gatherings for persons who are interested in exploring membership with the Gilead Church on Sunday, March 3rd at 11:30 a.m. and again on Saturday, March 10th at 10:00 a.m. These gatherings will be a time to meet others and to learn more about our church. Those interested in exploring membership need only attend one of the gatherings. New members will be joining during the 10 a.m. worship service on Sunday, March 31st. If you have any questions, please speak with one of our Deacons or with Rev. Esslinger.     
Lenten Dinner Circles  
"Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it."   Heb. 13:2
The angel sightings in the halls of Gilead Church have been too many to count.  Lenten Dinner Circles will offer an opportunity to get to know some of them by enjoying a meal together.
Dinner circles are generally comprised of eight (8) people.  Four couples; three couples and two singles, or any combination totaling 8.   The time and place depends on the group.  Options may include a Sunday brunch, an evening meal, pizza ordered in.  
A sign-up sheet is below.  A question and answer sheet to clarify many of the questions you may have is available on the table underneath the name tags over at the church.  You can also contact Jean Dejewski (harborrest@gmail.com) or Margot Sheehan (margotsheehan44@gmail.com) who are helping to get the Dinner Circles started.
This year, instead of asking what can I give up for Lent?   How about asking, how can I deepen my relationships with God and others?  Join us!

Dinner Circle Registration
Are you interested in:
_____Having a children's table available
_____Having an adult only evening
Where would you like to have dinner?
_____Participants' Homes
Are there any food allergies or food preferences that would be important for your fellow mates to know?
What days of the week work best for you?
Would you be willing to lead a dinner circle?  _____yes    _____no

Decaf Coffee Collection during the Month of March  
We are collecting cans of decaf coffee (Folgers Decaf has been suggested) for use throughout the year for our coffee hours. Please bring a can to worship with you during the month of March and place it in the basket outside the Sanctuary. Coffee will be collected through Sunday, March 31st.  
Offering a Word of Peace
It's been our tradition at the Gilead Church to sing the response "Go in Peace" following our Benediction.  This response offers up the prayer that the peace of God be with us always.  In an effort to be a welcoming and hospitable congregation, our Deacons are inviting everyone to share a word with someone near you following the singing of this response.  It could be a simple "Go in peace" or "God be with you".  We hope this time might allow you to meet someone new or to connect with a well known friend.  If you have any questions or any feedback, please speak with any one of our Deacons or with Pastor Denise.  
Sunday School Mission Project
" The Oak Inside the Acorn  is the story of the miracle inside each of us. For within every child is the special person God created,  just waiting to grow ."
Dear Families,

The theme for our Sunday School program this year is, "Precious In God's Sight". During upcoming Sunday School classes, we will be reading the book The Oak Inside the Acorn and exploring how young people are precious children of God, dearly loved and wonderfully made with unique gifts and talents. What's more, children will explore and develop their own personal mission project using those special gifts and talents to be an expression of God's love and hope to their community and beyond.

We need your help! Please support your child's mission project by brainstorming along with them how they can use their talents to bless others and helping them with their project. It should be something that "speaks" to them and that they are passionate about. Examples might include:
  • Making and selling dog biscuits to support an animal shelter
  • Playing their instrument for the senior center
  • Making cards & sending them to brighten someone's day
  • Tutoring another child
Young people are invited to bring an offering to class every Sunday. Funds that are collected this year will support these mission projects and small scholarships are available if your child's project needs funding.

We also hope you will share a photo of your child's mission efforts which we will share in a special video presentation during our year end celebration, Children's Sunday, on June 9, 2019. Photos and questions regarding the mission projects can be sent to Stephanie Haines at stephanie.haines@hotmail.com .
All Sunday School Mission Projects should be completed by  - APRIL 28th.   Thank you for your support!  
Organ Dedication and Thank You Concert
Thank you to all who attended the Organ Dedication/Thank You Concert on Saturday. Thanks also for the beautiful flowers. I am so fortunate to be the Minister of Music at the Gilead Church.  
-Bruce Gale
Silver Lake Summer Camp
Silver Lake has announced its offerings for the summer 2019 conference season. B rochures are available underneath the name tags and one is hanging on the bulletin board. Details and registration are also available at www.silverlakect.org along with downloads of the forms needed for registration.  Also, our Women's Fellowship has once again agreed to pay the $150 deposit for any young person from our congregation who would like to attend Silver Lake. Please speak with Karen Voghel (860-508-3326) if you would like to take our Women's Fellowship up on their offer.
2019 Usher Sign Up 
We are in need of ushers for our 10 a.m. service in 2019.  To sign up, please contact Phyllis Kurz (860-228-2469) or you can signup online:
1) Click this link on SignUp.com: http://signup.com/go/ezSYDT
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.
3) Sign up! It's easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact Phyllis (860-228-2469) and she can sign you up manually.

Ash Wednesday Service
Wednesday, March 6th
On Wednesday, March 6th at 7:00 p.m. we will have a service of worship in our Sanctuary.  The service will include a time for reflecting on our intentions for this season along with the imposition of ashes and the sharing of Communion.  Also, from noon to 1:00 p.m. on this day, Hebron Clergy, including Rev. Esslinger, will be at the pavilion at Veteran's Memorial Park distributing ashes to the community.   
Wednesday Morning Book Discussion Group
The Wednesday Morning Book Discussion Group is currently discussing "Educated" by Tara Westover. This book is the story of the author's journey to become educated beginning with life in a family living apart from mainstream society. It takes her to her first formal education experience at age 17 and then on to higher education.  The group meets on Wednesday mornings from 9:30 - 11:00 a.m. at the home of Judy Brown and Deena Watson (130 Charles Lane). If you have any questions about this group, please contact Sandy Hooker (860-228-9856). All are welcome!
4th Annual Soup Tasting/Recipe Swap
Sunday, March 10th
The Fellowship Committee invites the congregation to share their favorite crock of soup on Sunday, March 10th, following the 10:00am service.   Please include a recipe when dropping off soup so copies can be made.  A light coffee hour will also be provided.  All are welcome!  Sign up under the name tags if you can bring soup.  See Annette Langevin with any questions. 
Camden James Condren was born on February 16th.  He's 5lbs 4 oz and 19 inches. Parents are Amanda and James Condren and brother is Austin. 
Thank You
Thank you for all the Valentines Day cards from the Sunday school classes and others in the church community. It brightened up my day and made me feel close to my church family. 
-Glen Hadley
Sunday School Cancellation Policy  
If inclement weather should happen and forces cancellation of Sunday School, our Sunday School Superintendents will contact Sunday School teachers. Parents please check your personal e-mail or web sites  www.nbcconnecticut.com  or  www.wfsb.com  for cancellation information.  If Gilead Church is not listed there will be Sunday School.  Worship will never be cancelled as Pastor Denise lives so close to the church.  Please, however, use your discretion and always stay safe !    
Upcoming Sunday Worship Servers 
Ushers for this Sunday:  Candice Smith and Brian Lemire
Ushers for next week: Sandy and Jack Hooker
Deacon of the Day for this morning: Bill Cox
Deacon of the Day for next week: Amy Huhn
Liturgist:  David Kline        Acolyte: Marcus Parker
Call to Worship: Sydney Parker
Coffee Hour Hosts for this morning: Potluck with Confirmation Class hosting and selling baked goods to raise money for their mission project.
Coffee Hour Hosts for next week: All Church Mardi Gras Brunch
Greeters for this morning: Janet and Dave Kline
Greeter for next week: Bonnie Tarbox
Scripture Reading and Prayer for the Week
Matthew 5: 1-14

Hope of the poor, friend of the persecuted, advocate of the suffering, O God, we praise you, for you have been our help. Turn our tears to laughter and give us what we need to love.  Then, keep us faithful that we may never be satisfied until all have what they need.  May all people receive your blessings, through Jesus Christ, who died and rose again, and in whose name we pray.  Amen.


Contact Info
Sally Fritsche
Administrative Assistant
672 Gilead St
Hebron, Ct   06248
Office Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 8:00 a.m. until noon (Parish House)