Wisconsin Conference Life Newsletter
May 31, 2018 
What Do you DO in Lay Academy? A Glimpse into Faith Foundations

Perhaps you are pondering signing up for the transformative learning community we call Lay Academy but are wondering to yourself, what exactly do you DO in Lay Academy? Here is a snapshot from the April 2018 session, which was titled "Christian History: The Church, It's Mission."
After a weekend of conversation about Christian History and theology of mission inspired by diverse readings, first person accounts, scripture passages and conversations among their peers, participants were provided with two options for deeper personal reflection on what they had learned. One of these options was:
Annual Meeting: It's Not Too Late!

It's not too late to sign up for Annual Meeting! Join us as we explore Why Are We Afraid? The Winds and Waves of Race and Privilege.

Online registration runs through June 3, and you can register on-site after that. Be aware, however, that you will need to arrange for meal tickets ahead of time with Green Lake Conference Center, as they have revised their policy around the sale of meal tickets and will not be preparing extra food in case of "walk-ins." Also, the Conference Center is sold out for hotel rooms on Friday night. You may be able to arrange for lodging at Pilgrim Center by calling Marion at Center 920-748-6750.
Complete Annual Meeting information
Is Your Church Insurance Up-to-Date?
by Franz Rigert

Last week fire engulfed the oldest Lutheran Church in Milwaukee, a devastating loss for the congregation of Trinity Evangelical Missouri Synod. As you may know, we in the Wisconsin Conference have suffered several major church fires just in the past few decades, most recently the total loss of the Plymouth UCC church in Eau Claire. Fortunately, no one was injured AND the congregation was insured by the United Church of Christ Insurance Board. The coverage was comprehensive, and Keuler Insurance (our agent for the Wisconsin Conference) responded immediately and provided excellent service.
Great Lakes Regional Youth Event
Registration deadline: June 15, 2018

It's only held once every four years, and this year is IT!

Come celebrate the ways in which young people shape our denomination and world by allowing them to grow their passions, discover new skills, and lift their voices. We are excited. We are energized. And we are hopeful that this year we will flood the campus with students from across the entire Great Lakes Region.
More information
Explore UCC Polity
for congregations, new members, committees and more

Use this adaptable curriculum with your small group, search committee,conference board, new member calls, confirmation program, and more.

Each learning session includes a facilitator guide, video, resources, and activities to help folks explore the unique history, governance structure,and theological commitments of the UCC. You can access all the lessons and resources through this site, as well as download any files you need.
Brown Deer's Legacy Will Live On
Congregational United Church of Christ, Brown Deer, held its final service of worship on Pentecost Sunday, May 20, 2018. The Southeast Association invited others to join the remaining members to celebrate the congregation's 58 years of Christian witness, and Conference Minister Rev. Franz Rigert joined in. Here is Franz's account of the service:

In the afternoon we shared in the closing worship service for Brown Deer UCC. Pastor Greg Young reflected on many memories, the choir (including several that returned for the final service) sang with passion and we gave thanks for the strong, progressive voice of this beloved congregation. The Good News ... their legacy will live on! New Life Community Church, led by Pastor Jarton Davis, will settle into the building, becoming the first predominantly African American congregation in Brown Deer. We are forging a beautiful partnership for future ministry.

The Brown Deer congregation was incorporated in 1960 with charter members from North Shore Congregational and Plymouth Congregational churches. The Milwaukee Association of Congregational Churches welcomed Brown Deer's 45 members in January, 1961. The congregation later elected to join the United Church of Christ.

Their first full-time minister, Rev. William C. Bishop, preached his first sermon on Easter Sunday, 1961. Services were held at St Martin's Episcopal Church until the new building at 64th Street and Dean Road was completed in July 1963.

Since 2002 the congregation has shared its building with Faith in Christ Hmong Alliance. Rev. Greg Young has served as pastor since 2009.
Tom and Debbie Payden Revs. Debbie and Tom Payden are Retiring

First Congregational UCC of South Milwaukee invites all to the retirement celebration for Tom and Debbie Payden, June 24, 2018. The Paydens have been at the church since 1983, and Debbie served as the Wisconsin Conference Lay Academy Director from August 2011 to June 2014. The couple also serves on the Local Arrangements Committee for General Synod 2019.
View invitation

Conference Transitions

Searching Churches
  • First Congregational Church in La Crosse is seeking to fill a 3/4 time Christian Education position. Details
To see all searching churches, click here.

The Conference Transitions feature appears monthly in the Wisconsin Conference Life. Please share your transition information, including church anniversaries, with the newsletter editor by emailing Nola.
This newsletter is made possible by contributions to Our Church's Wider Mission Basic Support.

The Wisconsin Conference UCC is an Open and Affirming Conference, and an Immigrant Welcoming Conference.

Wisconsin Conference United Church of Christ
4459 Gray Road | DeForest, WI  53532

In This Issue
Annual Meeting 2018
Church Insurance
UCC Polity
Payden retirement
Conference Transitions
Church Spotlight

This Southwest Association church is led by pastor Denise Cole. The church was formed in 1867 and has been faithfully serving its community ever since. 

Check the Conference calendar for upcoming events.
Quick Links

Is your church considering an Open and Affirming Process? The Wisconsin Conference has a committee to help!  Please feel free to use us as resources for your discussions and preparations. Contact Laura McLeod of the Wisconsin Conference UCC Committee on Ministry with LGBTQ Persons.

Also: check out the Facebook page for ONA churches
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Let us know! If you have something you'd like considered for publication in
Wisconsin Conference Life, email Nola at the Wisconsin Conference.