Weekly Update,December 12, 2018

Sunday, December 16 

Notice of Special Meeting of the Congregation
Members and Friends of The First Congregational Church of Chatham, MA:
A special meeting of the Congregation of this Church will take place following the Regular 10 AM Worship Service on Sunday, December 16, 2018. 
You are cordially invited to attend, and if you are either an Active or Associate Member, to vote on motions brought at the meeting.

 The agenda for the meeting will be:
  1. Call to Order and Opening Prayer
  2. To bring up to date the status of the pre-commitment figures for the Building Project and to announce the best estimate of the cost of the project; and to vote on the initiation of a formal Capital Campaign.
  3. Transaction of other business to properly come before the meeting
  4. Adjournment and Closing prayer.
Judith Doe, Clerk

Pastor's Message

     We currently find ourselves in the midst of a very busy Advent season. The Cookie Express and annual Christmas concerts have passed, but our Advent worship on Wednesday evenings at 6:00 pm continue as well as the Advent course that I am leading on Thursday mornings at 9:30 am.

     Our morning worship this coming Sunday will be filled with beautiful music. The Carillon Handbell Choir, under the direction of Marilyn Sink, will offer some beautiful music for our Advent worship. In addition to these ringers we welcome Bo Ericsson, the former Principal Cellist of the Cape Symphony Orchestra. Bo will play several beautiful movements from two of Johann Sebastian Bach's unaccompanied cello suites.

    And following Sunday's worship there will be a critical meeting of the congregation in the sanctuary. Information regarding the details of this meeting are presented in this email above my message. I hope that all of you will make every effort to attend this meeting where we will make some important decisions about the future of First Congregational Church's structure and accessibility. I look forward to seeing you all then!

Tonight, December 12 at 6:00pm

  Wednesday Evening Advent Service

Evening Prayer Service
with Joe Marchio  

Thursday Morning Advent Series with Joe

"The History and Meaning of Advent"
Thursdays, December 6, 13, 20

     9:30 to 10:30 in the parlor  
  (Please note that it begins at 9:30, not 10 am as previously listed)                                       
Youth Trip to see "Black Nativity"

Our youth enjoyed a wonderful, festive time in Boston exploring Downtown Crossing and attending a very moving performance if Langston Hughes' Black Nativity.  It is so important that they experience a spiritual life outside of our four walls, and even better venturing over the bridge!

This Sunday in Church School and J2A - 
We'll be rehearsing for the Nativity Play.
Help needed for the Nativity Play:
  • Assisting with the children at the rehearsals on  12/16
  • Sitting with the children on 12/23
  • Re-organizing costumes and cleaning up following worship on 12/23 from 11-12
Save the Date!  Confirmation Retreat for 9th and 10th graders - March 8th and 9th at Ironwoods UCC Camp and Maple Sugaring Farm in Rhode Island.

Cookie Express was a Gonzo Success!
Thank you, everybody!  All the details aren't in quite yet, but it looks like we'll net at least $2,500... that's up 25% from our all-time record of $2,000.  We did take an 8% price increase this year but as you can see- most of this year's increase came because we had more cookies, more customers, and more workers.
That means we can help more people.  Proceeds will go to help victims of this summer's hurricanes Florence and Michael, and also the California wild fires.  
This project takes a lot of work, but it's also a lot of fun.  Seeing the room set up, ready for the people standing out in the cold who can't wait to eat the goodies you've made, is a joyful experience.  We have some members (like Margaret Eldredge) who have been working Cookie Express for over 40 years and other members (like Deb Watson) who have just found our church in the last few months.  Our customers are the same way; for some it's a tradition and for others, a great discovery.  This is everything a Missions project should be!
We have a lot of people to thank, starting with all the bakers and volunteers.  We asked for more workers this year and you responded.  We had plenty of people to re-stock the plates, count the money, wash the dishes, and generally try to keep up.  On both Friday and Saturday, we had plenty of people to plate, set up the room, and sell even though we were busier than ever. We needed you, and we're grateful you were there.
Special thanks to:
Evelyn Nostrand, Judy Nichols and Joan Nelson- the committee
Nat and Joy Wordell, Doug Nichols, Mary Lou Foley, Pat Caswell and Evelyn Ambriscoe- all of whom took on special tasks 
The Chatham Candy Manor, Chatham Perk and the Chatham Bakery, who donated goodies for sale
All the bakers,  All the workers,  All the customers
Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Alison Kaar, Missions Committee

 It takes a lot of work to get the room set up!  Judy Nichols getting the tablecloths prepared for heavy traffic


Nat Wordell using his artist's skill to arrange the plates before the sale.

CPR Training

Sunday's CPR training was led by Chatham fire fighter, Bill Field
This training is considered a "by-stander training" which differentiates somewhat from a medical personnel training.  It was well attended, with folks in all age brackets - two teens attended the session.  He covered compressions, CPR and choking (child, adult and infant) and the AED.   Participants will receive a card in the mail.  

Attention Shoppers!
Support our church 
by shopping at Amazon Smile!

First Congregational Church is participating in Amazon "Smile". Go to this link to do  all you Amazon shopping and the church will receive a small donation each time you shop. Send the link to your family and friends who shop on Amazon!
Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.
AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. Same products, same prices, same service.

Attention Ministry and
 Committee Chairs....
Time to start thinking about Annual Reports!  
It's that time of year again...
Please email your annual report to the 
office by December 14th...earlier if possible.
Microsoft Word files, rather than pdfs,  are preferred so 
they can be more easily edited if necessary.
Thank You!
Eunice Geist is staying with  her  son in North
Carolina until sometime
in January
Here is her address:
303 Lochside Drive
Cary, NC  27518

Dorothy Paine has moved to Abington
 to be closer to family

Save the Date!

First Night Lasagna Dinner
First Congregational Church of Chatham
Monday, December 31 ~~ 4 - 7pm


Lasagna ~ Salad~ Rolls
Dessert ~ Beverage

Children's menu ~ 10 and under

Chicken Tenders ~ Mac n' Cheese
Salad ~ Dessert ~ Beverage

When: Thursday, December 13
Time: 5:30-8 PM
Watch Live on Cable Channels 98 & 99

If you want to support this year's Telethon for Hope, click this link to make a donation . On behalf of all we serve, thank you for giving the gift of hope to our clients this holiday season. 

The Digital Nativity

You may enjoy this clever video that Debbie Swenson shared of how the news of the  nativity spread if it had taken place in the 'digital age"



Mark Your Calendar- Important Dates!
Friday, December 14 - Annual Reports due to Mary Lou
Sunday, December 16 - Special Congregational Meeting after Worship
                                       (Vision 2020/Capital Fund)
Sunday, January 13 - Annual Meeting of the Congregation

Prayer List 

Addison Pratt
Anne Follett
Barbara Howard
Betty Blair
Betty Barber Rorabaugh
Bill Schwalm
Beth Eldredge
Bob Harned
Bud Heidebur
Del Archibald
Emily Garfunkel
Emily King
Eunice Geist
Glenn Bryant
Harriet Larsen

Hugh Jones
JoAnn Mets
John Emison
Laurie Hill
Marge Lubelczyk
Matthew Hamilton
Michelle Crean
Michael LaCava
Michael Wheeler
Mun Long
Nicholas Tucker
Richard Howard
Robin Wilkins
Stuart Patterson
Ted & Mary Ann Fritsch