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All Saints/Stewardship Sunday

"One of the things I love about the lives of the saints is that hardly any of them followed the rules.  They all departed from what the rules of their own time were, in their pursuit of the radical practice of the life of Jesus in their world." 

~ Diana Butler Bass

This Sunday we will have the unique opportunity to celebrate All Saints Sunday and Stewardship Sunday. Most of the time we honor the saints on one Sunday and take another Sunday to encourage people to be good stewards of the gifts they have been given. When the Board of Stewardship was planning the Stewardship campaign, it seemed natural to me to combine these two Sundays. 

 

 

Posted on October 28, 2014 at 10:21 am in Featured Content.

The Blessings of our Animals!

If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.

~ Francis of Assisi

Posted on October 21, 2014 at 9:47 am in Featured Content.

Madison Area CROP Hunger Walk

Samantha Rickner will be part of a team of volunteers from Madison West Key Club that will be assisting with the Madison Area CROP Walk this Sunday, October 19. Here is an article she wrote explaining CROP and Church World Service


~ Jeff Rabe

Posted on October 14, 2014 at 10:05 am in Featured Content.

Open and Affirming Sunday: Let's Celebrate!

The saying "timing is everything" is certainly true for First Congregational this Sunday. The second Day in October is the Sunday we celebrate being an Open and Affirming (ONA) congregation. This year we celebrate 22 years of being ONA. The decision twenty-two years ago was not done in haste, but following 3-4 years of study and education.

Posted on October 7, 2014 at 9:58 am in Featured Content.

World Communion Sunday

World Communion Sunday is a celebration observed by several Christian denominations, taking place on the first Sunday of every October, that promotes Christian unity and ecumenical cooperation. The tradition originated in the Shadyside Presbyterian Church, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1933, and was adopted throughout the US Presbyterian Church in 1936, and subsequently spread to other denominations. In 1940, the Federal Council of Churches (now the National Council of Churches), led by Jesse Moren Bader, endorsed World Communion Sunday and began to promote it to Christian churches worldwide.

Posted on September 30, 2014 at 10:32 am in Featured Content.

The Prison Ministry Project and Solitary Confinement

At noon on October 1 at the State Street entrance to the Capitol, the Prison Ministry Project will help lead a rally to reduce the abuses of solitary confinement in Wisconsin prisons.

This not a theoretical or public policy issue, as our colleague Kate Edwards points out,

for some inmates it is a matter of life and death. I hope you can join us at the Capitol.

~ Jerry Hancock

 

Posted on September 23, 2014 at 9:23 am in Featured Content.

Embracing Spiritual Awakening: Diana Butler Bass on the Dynamic of Experiential Faith

The Adult Education committee will be offering a five-session series this fall titled "Embracing Spiritual Awakening." The class will begin promptly at 8:45am and end by 9:45am. Best-selling author, speaker, scholar, and "cultural observer" Diana Butler Bass explores what Christianity may look like "beyond religion and beyond the church". 

Posted on September 9, 2014 at 9:53 am in Featured Content.

Around the Table

I grew up in a church tradition that taught that there are two official sacraments in the church: Baptism and Holy Communion. I will always remember the phrase from my confirmation class:  “Sacraments are outward and visible signs of an inward and spiritual grace.”

 

Posted on August 26, 2014 at 10:29 am in Featured Content.

Where do we go NOW?

These are exciting times for First Congregational. We are now half-way through our Reach and Renew Campaign. We have already been able to accomplish many projects/programs that would not have been possible without the R&R Campaign. We have a new heating system throughout the building. We have air conditioning in the Sanctuary. We have started painting the exterior of the building. The Youth Room has been given a face-lift, and Membership Renewal has been working hard to keep people engaged in the life of the church.

 

Posted on August 12, 2014 at 10:10 am in Featured Content.

An Open Letter on Child Refugees

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The Council of Conference Ministers of the United Church of Christ and the Collegium of Officers offer this open letter to the church in response to the flood of child refugees coming to the United States from Central America. We write it in solidarity with our sister churches in the Southern California/Nevada Conference, the Southwest Conference, and the South Central Conference whose boundaries are coterminous with our neighbors to the South.

Posted on July 29, 2014 at 9:34 am in Featured Content.

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