Vacation Week Connection

Well, well, well, isn’t this a beautiful day!  Do we dare hope that winter is behind us and we can enjoy a long Spring season?   That would be wonderful!  In the meantime, please read through this weekly connection and see what is happening here at your church.

Are you planning now to be at church on Sunday?  Plan now to be with us at 10:00 and get the week ahead started with your church family!  As you know, Pastor Kevin is away and Ben Ruhl will be speaking for the next 2 Sundays.  Here is a little bio for Ben and his wife, Olivia. 

 

Ben and Olivia Ruhl are both in their final year at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Ben is the pastoral intern at Pepperell Christian Fellowship in Pepperell, Massachusetts, and Olivia serves at CareNet Crisis Pregnancy Center in Nashua, New Hampshire. They are both excitedly approaching the end of their degrees and looking forward to seeing what is next on their journey together.

Kids Connection continues with caring volunteers in place to help out with the younger ones during worship on Sunday mornings. 

Also on Sunday, we will have our Under 40 group meet following worship in the Nursery.  We’ll have more chairs and better audio for the video portion so we can have a great conversation while keeping the little ones with us! 

Wednesday March 1: The Sanctuary will be open from 6-7 for quiet reflection as we enter into the season of Lent, a time we prepare our hearts and minds for the events of Christ’s last days. This day, referred to as Ash Wednesday begins the time when Christians around the world devote 6 weeks to fasting or taking on new spiritual practices in order to fully embrace the observances of The Last Supper, Good Friday, and Resurrection Sunday as they approach.  This quiet time of reflection will be marked by listening to music, scripture readings, prayers, and moments of silence.  Come for just a few moments, or stay for the whole hour.

Last week the WISH group had the delight of hearing all about BLOOM, the new Teen Challenge home for younger girls.  The work they do is amazing! Today Marie S. brought in a wonderful article about Teen Challenge that was in the Sunday Globe.  I have posted that on the bulletin board near the Welcome Center.  Take a minute and read it!  Also, posted there is a flyer regarding a fundraiser for BLOOM happening on March 11th from 2-4 at the Wareham Marriott.  This is a Chocolate Garden Party – tickets are $25.00.  We have several people already attending.  Let me know if you are interested and we can be sure that you are seated with the UCN table!

Young Life for all high schoolers will start up again on Monday evening, March 6th at 7:27 up on the top floor.  Please speak to Meg if you have any questions.

Don’t forget…if you want to honor a special person or occasion in your life, you can provide the altar flowers for $30.  See the sign-up outside of the kitchen.  Following worship, you are welcome to take the flowers with you or drop them off to someone who would welcome them.

Looking Ahead:
March 12th – Communion  Sunday and Council Meeting following worship
March 18th – WISH Work Bee

Please remember to keep our Easter Sunrise Service and Breakfast in your prayers over the next month or 2.  What an opportunity to meet some of our neighbors and share Easter together!  There will be more details on this in the coming weeks.  Plan now to help out!

I have received several emails reminding me of the persecution of Christians around the world.  Please take a look at the Voice of the Martyrs website or pick up one of their magazines from the Resource Table for some stories that should prompt you to remember these folks in prayer.

Pastor & Sharon are away on a well-deserved vacation.  Please remember to pray for them as they travel and get some time for rest and renewal.

Serving Sunday:
Greeters:  George & Buki
Ushers:
Kids:  Shannon, Meg, Barbara, Melanie
Coffeetime:  Please come by early to help set up, bring a treat to share, or stay following worship to help clean up! 

I think that is enough for now – please let the office know if there is something we can help you with! 

Post-Valentines Connection!

Hi everyone,  Hope you are having a good day!  We’ve had a little bit of everything this week, but I hear rumors of 50 degrees on Sunday!  On to SPRING! Here are the things to keep in mind over the next days and weeks.

 

Saturday morning at 9:00 is the annual waffle breakfast at our WISH Gathering.  All ladies are invited!  We will be enjoying breakfast together and then hearing from the director of BLOOM which is the new home for young girls in the Teen Challenge program.  We have a long history of support with Teen Challenge in Providence and we are looking forward to learning more about the BLOOM program.  If you regularly attend WISH, please check your email for updates from Cindy!  We would love to see some new faces so if you would like to enjoy a morning out with a great breakfast, come by Veno Hall around 9:00. And ladies, feel free to bring a friend!

 

As Pastor mentioned last Sunday, he will be away this Sunday and Sharon will be preaching.  Our worship service begins at 10:00am and I hope to see you there.  I have a preview of Sharon’s message and I think it is going to be a great message that will be an encouragement for all of us.  Please try and be here!  Support Pastor Kevin in his absence by coming to church and supporting Sharon!  Kids Connection and Nursery are in place.  Coffee time follows in Veno Hall.

NEWS FROM MEG!

Our annual Family Date Time will take place this Sunday February 19th.  We’ll meet for lunch at the Papa Gino’s in the Walpole Mall.  From there there’s fun for all ages in the mall via the arcade, play area, and sweet treats in the Barnes & Noble Cafe.  This is a great time for families to have their own special group date in honor of Valentine’s Day, to kick off school vacation week! Please RSVP to Meg’s email (faithfulmeg@yahoo.com) by the end of the night on Friday so we know who to expect! 

 

Our next Under 40 Discussion Group will meet Feb. 26 after church in the Nursery so parents can attend with their little ones! The experiment worked fairly well this past week, so with some minor tweaks, we’ll be trying again! 


Just a reminder about winter weather considerations: 
If there are any schedule changes, it will be communicated on WCVB channel 5, Facebook, email, and with a voice message recording if you call the church office.  If Norwood Public Schools are closed for weather on a Wednesday, the Open Door meal is canceled. 

You don’t have to worry about missing out on getting spiritually fed! Don’t forget that everyone at UCN can have access to thousands of Christian Bible Study, conference sessions, youth and kids material to warm your heart in the cold through our Right Now Media subscription! If you need help activating your account, Meg is more than glad to help (Faithfulmeg@yahoo.com

 

Moms & Tots will get together on February 23rd at 11:00am at Meg’s home in Foxboro.  Please speak to Meg if you have any questions.

 

Also, from time to time I like to remind everyone that we have a CARE Team and a caring Pastor who like to be aware of any one in the congregation who is ill or having a difficult time in any way.  We certainly try to be respectful of privacy but if there is something you feel the Pastor or office should be aware of, please be in touch.  We assure you that all matters will be kept confidential.  Thanks for your help with this matter.

 
Serving on Sunday:
Greeter:  Steve Carter
Ushers:  Russ & Donna Wood
Kids: Marie, Meg,Roger, Janna
Coffeetime:  Please consider coming by early to help set up, bringing a treat to share, or staying after for set-up! 

 
That is all for now – see you Sunday!  And ladies – see you at the breakfast 🙂

Pre-Valentine’s Connection!

Hi everyone, It seems like winter is finally catching up to us!  Don’t lose heart –  we have lots of things happening at church to keep your mind off the weather… and we do indeed change those clocks 4 weeks from Saturday!  In the meantime,. make note of the things below that pertain to you.

Saturday:The Women’s Book Study will be POSTPONED until a later date! 

Saturday: Moms & Tots will meet at Meg’s home at 11:00am – see details below

Saturday: WYLD Life Middle School Club meets at 7:00PM – see details below

Sunday morning worship begins at 10:00.  Great music, time for prayer and praises, an encouraging message from Pastor Kevin and a time for coffee to follow.  Meg has her Kids Connection volunteers in place for kids of all ages.  We will be looking for you!

The “Under 40” discussion group meets at 11:30 downstairs in the Council Room.  Pick up your coffee and snack on your way.

Don’t forget…Tuesday is Valentine’s Day!

LADIES!  Keep an eye on your email for updates from Cindy regarding the WISH Gathering on February 18th.  We will be enjoying our annual waffle breakfast and hearing from the director of BLOOM which is the new Teen Challenge residence for young girls.  Mark your calendar and plan to be here for this fun time!

This month’s Moms & Tots groups will be Feb 11th and 23rd 11am at Meg’s home in Foxboro.

Wyld Life Middle School Club:  This great gathering is taking place earlier in the month taking February Vacation into account.  It will be taking place Saturday Feb. 11 at 7pm at a family home in Walpole- contact Meg for additional info.  This is an awesome experience for all in grades 6-8 to have a “wyld” (The YL is for Young Life) night of fun and making new friends!

Our Under 40 Discussion Group will meet following worship on February 12th, this change reflected the schedules of many of the participants.  We’ll also try to meet again on the 26th.

Our annual Family Date Time will take place Sunday February 19th.  We’ll meet for lunch at the Papa Gino’s in the Walpole Mall.  From there there’s fun for all ages in the mall via the arcade, play area, and sweet treats in the Barnes & Noble Cafe.  This is a great time for families to have their own special group date in honor of Valentine’s Day, to kick off school vacation week!

The Kids Team has been working towards starting a program we’re calling “Care Buddies”, where one adult is paired as a buddy for one child who’s connected to our church.  We need 2-3 more people to finally get this program off the ground!

Adult Care buddies send holiday and birthday cards, as well as occasional notes if a family hasn’t been able to attend church for a number of weeks.  They would commit to praying regularly for their buddy, and check in with the family occasionally for prayer requests.  Lastly, one or two times a year they would try to attend a sporting event, concert, school/club presentation, church meal/event, or go on an outing with another care buddy pairing to get some face time together.

This concept is vital to helping kids and families stay connected to our church families through the busy seasons of life.  Please contact Meg faithfulmeg@yahoo.com if you’d be interested in helping with this important effort!

Serving on Sunday:
Greeter:  Bob Russell
Ushers:  Bev Alty, Marie Pierre-Louis
Kids:  Meg, Angela, Scott, Jenna
Coffee time: Please help out with set-up, snack & clean-up as you are able

I think that is all for now – please be in touch with the church office if you have any concerns or questions!

First Connection of February!

Hope you are enjoying your week!  Sometimes I have lots of news for you to keep in mind.  This is one of those weeks – be sure and make note of those things that you are interested in!  None of them will interfere with Super Bowl viewing 🙂

Sunday morning worship begins at 10:00.  I hope you find our worship service an encouraging time that prepares you for the week ahead.  We try to create that  through great music – from our Praise Team, choir and congregation,  a time for you to share your praises and concerns, and Pastor’s timely message as he continues with his series from “The Story”.  Please read First Samuel Chapter 6, verse 19  through Chapter 7 verse 2 in preparation.  Our Kids Connection is in place for little ones.  Nursery care is provided.  Coffee time follows in Veno Hall.  We’ll be looking for you at 10:00!

As you should be aware, Faith Seeds is a ministry that several of our women are involved in.  We would like to add to that number!   At this start of a new year perhaps you are looking for a place where you can volunteer some time and make a difference.  Faith Seeds may fit that need.  This is a ministry to incarcerated women.  These women are interested in taking Bible Correspondence classes to either grow their faith or they have little faith experience and they are looking to learn more.  This is where we step in.   The main office of Faith Seeds sends the initial lesson to an  inmate.  Once a woman has completed that lesson, it is returned for “correction.”  Don’t let this scare you!  You do not need to be a Biblical scholar!  The majority of the time, our job is to simply encourage the women, let them know they are answering questions well and give them some positive comments.  We do not sign our name to anything – we remain anonymous in the eyes of these women.  But we are not anonymous to God and this is a ministry that I think He has blessed greatly.  We would love to have other women join us.  There are no dues, meetings or committees!  You do need a pen, a quiet place to work and your Bible.  Each lesson takes maybe 10 minutes to correct – some of them even less than that.  But this is time well spent and truthfully You will be encouraged from these women.  You can take as many or as few lessons to work on as you would like.    Some weeks we receive no lessons to do – other weeks we receive quite a few.  I prepare the lessons as I receive them so when you get a lesson, your part literally takes a very brief amount of time.  Interested in learning more, please speak to me or Deb Eagles.  Thanks for considering this!

NEWS FROM MEG

Wyld Life Middle School Club:  This great gathering is taking place earlier in the month taking February Vacation into account.  It will be taking place Saturday Feb. 11 at 7pm at a family home in Walpole- contact Meg for additional info.  This is an awesome experience for all in grades 6-8 to have a “wyld” (The YL is for Young Life) night of fun and making new friends!

Our Under 40 Discussion Group will meet following worship on February 12th, this change reflected the schedules of many of the participants.  We’ll also try to meet again on the 26th.

Our annual Family Date Time will take place Sunday February 19th.  We’ll meet for lunch at the Papa Gino’s in the Walpole Mall.  From there there’s fun for all ages in the mall via the arcade, play area, and sweet treats in the Barnes & Noble Cafe.  This is a great time for families to have their own special group date in honor of Valentine’s Day, to kick off school vacation week!

If you are on a ministry group and have announcements you would like to see on our social media, or on the announcement slides before worship please send all of the content to Meg my emailing her faithfulmeg@yahoo.com.  If you have pictures of life and ministry here at the church you think would be great to share online please send them to Meg as well!  Please be sure you have permission from the people in the photos (or parents of kids) before you pass them along!  We want to keep our online presence fresh and exciting, and we need everyone’s help to do that well!

Looking far ahead…We received approval to have an Easter Sunrise Service at 6:30am on the town square across from the church!  Easter falls on April 16th this year.  Following the service we will be inviting everyone to come across the street and enjoy breakfast here in Veno Hall.  Please keep this in your prayers and on your schedule!  We will be looking for quite a bit of help for breakfast and other areas.  More details to follow.

Check out the bulletin boards for details on “Facing Darkness” – a movie from Samaritans Purse being shown in theaters on March 30th only.  This is the true story of Dr. Kent Brantly who was infected with the ebola virus while serving in West Africa.  A story of faith and a miracle as Dr. Brantly was healed.  As of now, the only place to view this movie locally is in Natick – subject to change as more theaters are added.

Be sure and look at the Resource table and racks for January updates from Samaritans Purse and Our Daily Bread.  Both have timely stories that will resonate with you!

Copies of the ANNUAL REPORT are available in the Welcome Center and Veno Hall.  If you were not here last week, pick up a copy and see what has happened during 2016.

Please let our office know if you have had any changes to your contact information.  We like to keep that as up top date as possible and would like to be aware of any changes.  Thanks!

Serving on Sunday:
Ushers/Greeters:  Dot Cotter, Marie Schuhmacher, Rich Carter, Steve Carter
Kids:  Meg, Deb Sirkowski
Coffee Set-up:  Laurie Ahern
Coffee Clean-up:  Cindy Rudolph, Barbara Sweeny
Snacks:  Penny, Roger, Joe, Janna

 

As mentioned last week, we need more folks to step in and help out with setting up and cleaning up coffee time.  Not hard to do – directions available in the kitchen and/or ask someone on Sunday!

That’s all for now – hope to see you on Sunday!