Wisconsin Conference Life Newsletter
Oct. 27, 2017
Joanne Thomson image No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
by Rev. Joanne Thomson

A few weeks ago my Saturday errands took me to Target, where in the parking lot I saw a young mother struggling to get her toddler, the car seat, and packages into her car.  I remember very well what that felt like, so I went over to help her with the complicated logistics of getting baby and stuff into the back seat.  She smiled and thanked me, and I smiled back and said you're welcome, and I felt pretty darn good as I headed to where I was parked.
But as I walked by her car, I saw, beneath the Wisconsin license plate, a collection of bumper stickers that made it very clear that the owner of the car had great contempt for certain kinds of people; people, in fact, like me.  I felt like I'd been punched, and to tell you the honest truth, my first unfiltered thought was that I wished I hadn't helped her.  Someone who felt that way about people like me did not deserve my kindness.
Platteville Church Raises Money for Puerto Rico Relief

First Congregational UCC in Platteville turned their planned family friendly fellowship evening into a fundraiser that is sending more than $3,300 to Disaster Ministries for 
Creation Care Team Update

Thank you to all who responded to the Wisconsin Conference Creation Care Team's survey of Wisconsin Conference congregations. We learned a lot about the care of creation efforts of our conference and are deeply appreciative for all the excellent and helpful information which will help our team focus its efforts. We heard from almost half of the congregations in our state (99 out of 220), which is a really excellent response rate.
Trillions for the Military: Will that Make Us More Secure?
Thursday, November 9 at 7 PM
Anderson Auditorium in the Predolin Center at Edgewood College,

will speak on "Trillions for the Military: Will That Make Us Secure?" All are welcome. No fee.

As a guest of the Afghan Peace Volunteers, Kelly has frequently visited Kabul, Afghanistan, and she has spoken about her experiences there.  She has argued extensively, in talks and writing, against the futility of US militarism and the potential for nonviolent resistance to war and injustice.

Kelly's appearance has been planned by the Ecumenical Peace Working Group. It is being hosted by the Edgewood College COR General Education Program.
Get Involved with the Bethlehem Partnership
by Bonnie Van Overbeke, Bethlehem Partnership chair

The Southwest Association's Bethlehem Partnership invites pastors and church leaders to come to the Trost Center and learn more about how your congregation could get involved in this Partnership.

This event will be held on November 15, 2017, from 10:00am to 2:00pm. Lunch will be provided. (If you are from one of the churches in the Northwest Association and distance is an issue, please let us know; we are willing to consider a second location for this event.)
Please RSVP by November 1 to Susan Taylor at the Conference Office either by email ( staylor@wcucc.org) or by phone (608-846-7880) and include the number of people attending from your church so we can have sufficient materials and food for lunch.

Health Insurance Rates for 2018

The Wisconsin Conference Board of Directors has set health insurance rates for 2018. The percentage of insurance costs incurred by each congregation for participating insurees will rise from 61% in 2017 to 66% in 2018  The per capita cost for congregations be lowered from $16.25 to $15.25 in 2018. This represents a $1.00 reduction in per capita over 2017. The subsidy for retiree supplemental health insurance will be 10% in 2018, down from 15% in 2017. These changes reflect an increasing difficulty in sustaining our shared cost system.
See rates
November Youth Events
Registration Deadlines Oct. 28 and Nov. 9!

The registration deadline for two great youth events is almost here!

  • The Youth Faith Formation Retreat, Nov. 10-12, 2017, at Moon Beach, ends registration on Saturday, November  28. 
    Register now!
  • The Knock Knock Middle School Retreat (Nov. 17-19, 2017, at Pilgrim Center) has a registration deadline of November 9: register here
Boundary Training
December 9, 2017
First Congregational UCC, Oshkosh

Wisconsin Conference UCC ministers are required to renew their boundary training every four years. On December 9, the Northeast Association is hosting a boundary training to help ministers meet this need. Can't attend this session? An additional boundary training will be held next June at Green Lake Conference Center.
Pentacost image from Picture the Bible Picture the Bible Workshop
First Congregational Church, River Falls
January 27, 2018

Picture the Bible engages learners and leaders in conversations that take Bible stories seriously and connects them to peoples' lives in the world. Picture the Bible is a set of 36 images depicting 36 individual Bible stories. The images and related resources offer a creative approach to Bible study for learners of all ages. Picture the Bible adapts to a wide variety of settings, including: graded classrooms, inter-generational learning experiences, teen groups, and worship.

This workshop is designed for pastors, Christian educators, and lay church leaders and volunteers. The workshop will: 
  • Outline a theological and developmental foundation for biblical literacy and interpretation
  • Introduce Picture the Bible resources
  • Offer strategies for facilitating conversations at the intersection of life and faith
  • Be interactive, inspiring, engaging, and practical
  • Provide a time of fellowship and sharing
  • Include a luncheon

More information

Rethinking Veterans Day
November 8, 2017
Plymouth UCC, Burlington

Chicago Theological Seminary will be at Plymouth UCC in Burlington, Wisconsin, on November 8th. Professor Zach Moon and UCC's Stephen Boyd will be co-facilitating a workshop titled ReThinking Veterans Day. The morning will critically examine the role of church in working with the military, vets, and families. The afternoon will conclude with worship. The event is free and lunchwill be provided to all. This event is supported by the Brown Endowment of the United Church Fund.
Conference Transitions

Searching Churches
  • United Church of Christ Congregational, in Osseo, is searching for a part time pastor. More information
To see all searching churches, click here.

New Calls
  • Laura Crow has been licensed to serve Zwingli UCC in Paoli, effective October. 16, 2017
Installations and Ordinations
  • Rev. Kent Cormack was installed at First Congregational UCC, La Crosse, on October 22, 2017
  • Rev. Kristal Klemme was ordained and installed at First Congregational UCC, Plymouth, on October 22, 2017
  • First Congregational UCC, Hartland, celebrated its 175th anniversary on October 15, 2017
Good Tidings
  • Plymouth Congregational UCC, Burlington, is now an Open and Affirming congregation, effective October 13, 2017
In Memoriam
  • Betty Martens, stepmother of Wisconsin Conference UCC Finance Director Vicki Graff, passed away on October 16, 2017. Obituary

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.

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

In This Issue
Church aids disaster relief
Creation Care Team
Trillions for the Military Event
Join the Bethlehem Partnership event
Health insurance rates
November youth events
Boundary training
Picture the Bible workshop
Rethinking Veterans Day
Conference Transitions

Check the Conference calendar for upcoming events.
SARON UCC in Sheboygan Falls has a set of Deagon hanging organ chimes available for BEST OFFER.

If interested or if you have any questions, please call the church office at  920-467-6202 .
Quick Links

rainbow comma image
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
Got News?
Let us know! If you have something you'd like considered for publication in
Wisconsin Conference Life, email Nola at the Wisconsin Conference.