The First Congregational Church of Greenwich

Meetinghouse Monthly

August 1, 2002         Patty Kolb, Editor        http://www.fccog.org


The Pastors’ Column
The view from my porch...

Dear Friends,
Sitting on my porch and looking across at Binney Park, I realize that the soft greens and pastels of early summer have become the more intense, darker greens of the height of our summer season. July 4th and Sidewalk Sales Days are past, a wonderful season of Day Camp is almost over, days are actually getting shorter and thunderstorms seem to be a possibility each afternoon.
Looking ahead into August we have a number of important activities to anticipate. Two top the list: preparations for the auction and a special weekend with a Central American flavor. It is wonderful that so many of you have offered to help with the Auction to Benefit the Endowment (see the special flyer in this issue) which we are also calling Auction 2002. We have a committee of 17 already in place with many who have volunteered to do the extra jobs, from telephone calls to pick-up truck runs. The list of donated items is also growing. There will be something for everyone from vacations in Vermont and Maine to hand-crocheted afghans, clown-directed children’s birthday parties to antique furniture. On Homecoming Sunday, our front lawn will be a fair with silent auction bidding stations interspersed with booths from several of our church activities. Mix that with hotdogs and hamburgers, music, a pet parade and lemonade and this will be a very special day. At 12:30 we will hold a live auction of twenty items. We still need many donations to make this endeavor a success. Our goal is to raise $25,000. I sincerely hope that you will read the auction flyer with care and let us know this month what you would like to contribute. And, by the way, we hope to have a special area of children’s items with low bid amounts.
Before we get to September, we have a special week and Sunday service in August. This summer three young people from Honduras have been in the United States sponsored by First Church and by Pilgrim Lodge, our UCC conference center in Maine, where they have worked as members of the camp staff. Originally they were slated to visit us before going to camp. Visa tie-ups changed their schedules so that they needed to go directly to Maine when they arrived in June. Now they will have a chance to visit us from August 20-27. Josue Rivera, Ana Carolina Reyes and Jose German Lopez will take part in the worship services on August 24. They will be visiting New York City with members of the College Pilgrim Fellowship. There will be a potluck picnic for supper for them on Wednesday night, August 21, in the Memory Garden. Sign up by calling the church office. These young people have been very active with the churches of AIEH and the Evangelical and Reformed Church of Honduras, our mission partners. They have acted as hosts and translators for our young people when we have gone to Honduras.
The church may be on summer office hours but we are clearly not on vacation. I hope you will join us for worship at the beach or in the Meetinghouse or stop by the church office and bring us up to date on your summer adventures.
Grace & Peace,

August Worship Schedule

Sunday, August 4
8 am at Greenwich Point
10 am in the Meetinghouse
Dr. Thomas L. Stiers
“God’s Invitation to Community”

Sunday, August 11
8 am at Greenwich Point
10 am in the Meetinghouse
Dr. Thomas L. Stiers
“A Basket of Summer Fruit”

Sunday, August 18
8 am at Greenwich Point
10 am in the Meetinghouse
Cliff Anderson
“ The Outcasts of Israel”

Sunday, August 25
8 am at Greenwich Point
10 am in the Meetinghouse
Rev. Sally Colegrove

First Church Enfowment
Benefit Auction
Homecoming Sunday, September 15
11:30 am
This is the Big One

A Homecoming Sunday to Remember

Help raise $25,000

A Chance to Help the Future of First Church

An Auction to Benefit Our Endowment

On Homecoming Sunday this year we will have a wonderful, new, special event. During our annual Homecoming Picnic we will have a Silent and Live Auction for the Endowment. This economic year has been difficult on our endowment funds, so we thought we would give this important resource of our church a little help. Our endowment helps to pay the bills for buildings and programs. It is also our insurance against a very rainy day. So we need to take care of the Endowment Fund and have a little fun as we do.

We need donations: what do you have that you would be willing to give to the Auction? Examples: a nice painting, an antique chair or desk, a piece of crystal or silver, a small boat. What do you have that you would be willing to provide for the auction: six batches of cookies, five hours of babysitting, a dinner on your boat, a catered party for ten, lessons in fishing, boating, writing, Spanish? What do you have that you would be willing to share with the auction: a week at your ski house, a week at your summer cabin, use of your Yankees' box seats, theater series tickets? There are many ways to help out!

We also need your help as we prepare. If you would be willing to work on the auction with a team of three of our deacons and three of our trustees, along with Sally Colegrove and Aaron Sinay, please get in touch with Sally at 637-1791 ext. 15. This is a limited commitment volunteer job that we hope will have a large return. If you can't help us prepare, then prepare yourself for a great time by buying tickets to the Homecoming Picnic, on sale the last Sunday in August, and then coming to the picnic and auction as a bidder. See you there!

Please remember

First Church
First Sunday
Food Drive
Sunday, August 4
Please bring:
canned fruit/vegetables,
cereal, Jello.

Considering College?

The good colleges are getting fussier as more and more quality students apply. Where do you fit in? Talk with our own Mary Leinbach, an experienced and respected college consultant. Her $200 charge goes to the First Church College Loan Fund and is tax deductible.
You can reach her at 531-9434.

Gardeners Needed!

One of our budget cutbacks this year has been in the area of landscaping. Our beautiful gardens are now being tended by volunteers, an effort spear-headed by Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees Barbara Norrgard. Can you spare an hour here or there to lend a hand? If so, please call Barbara at 637-3703. Thanks!

Photo Directory Update
A Reference and a Keepsake...The First Church Photo Directory

It's the Cliff's Notes to who's who at First Church … the visual reference guide to Coffee Hour, fellowship groups, committee rosters, church staff and more. It's the First Church Photo Directory…back after ten years!

It's a lot easier to be a welcoming church when we know the people around us. That's why First Church is publishing a pictorial membership directory of singles, couples and families this fall with the help of Olan Mills Photography, a mainstay in the church directory business. Participants receive a free directory and 8x10 portrait, plus an opportunity to purchase additional prints for personal use or gift giving.

Early Bird and Regular Appointments

Stop by the Photo Directory table at Coffee Hour on the following dates. A special Early Bird session is available in August for families whose children go away to school, or for folks who plan to be away after October 16.
Coffee Hour Signup: August 4
For appointments on August 16-17

Coffee Hour Signup: September 15, 22 & 29
For appointments beginning October 17

Questions? Call the Church Office at 637-1791 and leave a message for the Photo Directory Coordinator.

Good to Know…

  • Digital technology allows you to view and choose your portrait right away, so only one appointment is needed.
  • Transportation or mail-in arrangements can be made for members in special circumstances.
  • You'll get a brochure with more details and helpful hints when you make your appointment.

The Photo Directory will be a useful resource for us to get to know each other better, and a wonderful keepsake for years to come. Take advantage of this special opportunity!

Covering Mailing Costs

If you receive Meetinghouse Monthly and Minute but do not support the church through a pledge, please consider a yearly contribution of $50 to cover the costs of mailing. If you do not wish to receive the Meetinghouse Monthly or Minute, please notify Mary Babbidge at 637-1791 x 31.

People, Places & Things

Community (Soup) Kitchen
Mid-Summer Update

There are no shortages of clients this summer at the Yerwood Center’s Community Kitchen which serves two meals daily 365 days a year. First Church prepares and serves the luncheon meal on the first Monday of each month. Although we feed a few more clients during the cooler winter months, we’re serving 70-80 men, women and children this summer.

Since January, the Waggaman family, the Fifth Grade Church Schoolers, the Pastors’ Class, the 20-30’s Group, the SPF and the Wellness Committee have assumed these monthly chores which are one tangible evidence of our church’s outreach activities. For the rest of the year, other groups have signed up for the chili-making - the Christian Outreach Committee, The Rummage Room volunteers and the Assing and Anibal families. Many thanks go to the Lamie family who has volunteered to help those groups do the major grocery shopping for the chili, salad and fruit offerings. Prudent shopping keeps the tab under $175 per month. Some groups donate the groceries and one church family underwrites much of the annual costs. Please call us if you want to share in the “purpose and fun” of this project. It’s a time-limited (1-3 hours) activity and a great way to learn the ins/outs of our wonderful new church kitchen. We need group commitments (5-7 people is ideal) for 2003, starting in January. If you want to participate, we always need extra individuals to round out the monthly group.

Our favorite recounting of a “soup kitchen experience” came to us just recently. Inge Thalheim organized a group to cook for the meal served on July 1. She recruited two of her grandsons (ages 10 and 11) to help. Inge reports, “I took them on Monday to the Center to see for themselves who was eating their chili. They were invited to eat there. They enjoyed a delicious meal. It was a happy experience for us all.” Convinced?
Mary Bausch, Cooking Coordinator (622-0309)
Bill Penwell, Serving Coordinator (622-1792)

Save the Date
Annual All-Church Retreat

The Annual All-Church Retreat at Silver Lake Conference Center will be held on October 11-13, the Columbus Day weekend. Join us for a relaxed weekend with First Church members and friends of all ages. Carve pumpkins, sing around a campfire, try the High Ropes Challenge course or the Field Challenges, walk in the autumn woods, talk, play, worship and make new friends. Reservations will begin at the Homecoming Picnic.

Confirmation Class - 2003
Calling all rising high school freshmen!!

This is your year for Confirmation Class. The Confirmation Class of 2003 will meet on Tuesday evenings from 7-8 pm. There will be two retreat weekends, a service project, great discussions and a chance to look at your beliefs and doubts in a group of friends. Please make sure that Sally Colegrove has your name on the list. Confirmation opening materials and Fall schedules will be mailed in early September.

Rummage Room Thanks

We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to anonymous donors for giving a much-needed cash register to The Rummage Room. You have made a great difference!

A reminder to our customers...we will be closed from August 3 until September 3 when we will have our Grand Re-opening. We stopped taking donations on July 24--please hold onto your great donations until we return. We have some great projects planned during the summer to make our shop even better!

Checked Our Web Site?

Have you seen our website recently? It is now updated several times per week with sermon reprints, the latest issue of Meetinghouse Monthly and Meetinghouse Minute. If you listen to the radio broadcast of the service, you can find the bulletin and calendar on the website each Sunday. The address is www.fccog.org

From the Parish Nurse

Summertime is a season for catching up . . .for resting, relaxation and recreation. Sometimes the summer can be as exhausting as the “busy months” that lead up to or follow this out-of-doors, and hot, season.

With longer daylight hours, more activity is crammed into early morning or evening hours, beyond the long workday. Time management studies show that the number of hours in a “usual or routine” work week frequently exceeds 50 hours/week for many individuals. Tiredness and fatigue certainly can increase as we spend extra hours at our labors, and at home,just getting ready to take time off from our usual work schedule. In addition, hot weather temperatures can significantly slow the already-fatigued bodies that we take on vacation.

Life is about balance and values. Our Creator engineered our bodies to have periods of rest to recuperate, build bone and to repair worn tissue. There are body processes that must have “down time” in order to prepare the mechanism to function at peak capacity when the individual is awake. Granted, disciplining the body as athletes do can increase endurance. Yet, even for the best of athletes, let’s say a professional baseball pitcher, rest is a requirement for optimal functioning. Using Holy Scripture as a guide for use of our physical and mental resources, familiar verses from Ecclesiastes 3 offer practical and spiritual direction: “ . . .for everything, there is a season . . . Also, “ . . .everyone should eat and drink and enjoy themselves in return for all their labors -- it is a gift from God.”

As Americans, most of us have not achieved a good balance between labor and rest in our lives. Evidence of this fact is clearly seen in the incidence of serious illnesses such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and cancer much earlier in our lives than our grandparents. Research findings clearly show the development of these conditions continues to increase; and, each of these disorders are related to stress - overexertion with less than adequate rest. Together, these conditions cause the greatest number of deaths each year in the United States. If not death, then disability that costs American taxpayers billions of dollars in health care expenses.

Even more distressing to consider is the availability of a new medication called Modafinil, trade name, Provigil that can keep one “ . . .focused, alert and capable of dealing with complex problems as the well rested” for better than 24 hours (reference Greenwich Time, 7/9/02). With this drug, developed to treat narcolepsy and other sleep disorders, there is deep concern about the ramifications of having a preparation that can stretch time commitments even further than we routinely do today.

A principle law of physics still remains the same: matter, when stretched, doesn’t have the depth or capacity that it once did. In other words, you can only stretch an elastic band just so far before it loses its original flexibility and function.

Hopefully, in these last few weeks of summer, while there is yet an opportunity . . . take time to unwind, time to relax and renew your body and mind, time to refresh your inner spirit. And invite someone you care about to join you!

Dee Coover, R.N.,
Parish Nurse
Available at First Church
Sunday & Wednesday
8:30 am to 3:30 pm
Tuesday 8 am to 12:30 pm
203-637-1791 x21

August Calendar

Special Events
16 and 17 9:00 AMChurch Photo Directory Appointments, Aud.
Committee Meetings
6         7:30 PM Stephen Ministers,  TLS Office
12        1:00 PM Stephen Ministers, Lounge
13        7:30 PM Parish Life, Sally’s house
14        6:00 PM Mudge Pond Fellowship Picnic, Sally’s house,
                  Open to all
15        7:30 PM Committee for Auction 2002, Sally’s house
Weekly Events
Sunday    9:00 AM Chancel Choir rehearsal, Meetinghouse

First Church Memory Quilt

Wouldn’t it be great to see your family’s name on a Memorable First Church Quilt?!?

If you are able to sew a straight seam either by hand or on your sewing machine, you qualify to make one of the simple blocks which we will assemble and quilt to create a

Future Heirloom!

Your family’s name will appear on the center strip of your block. Even if you are not a sewer, ask Aunt Mimi or grandmother Anna to sew a block for you. If you are an avid sewer, offer to whip up a few extra blocks for your non-sewing friends.
The Kettle Quilters will have fabric and expert advice for you every Monday in Room 203 (near the kitchen) from 9:30-11:30 am.

Quilt blocks should be left at the Church office by

Tuesday, October 1, 2002

All Cotton: stripes, checks, plaids, small scale calico prints, either your own fabric or fabric available on Mondays at First Church in Room 203.

Colors: Muted tones, dark and medium in green, blue, soft reds/burgundy, brown/beige
Do Not Use: bright or primary colors such as Kelly green, yellow, fire engine red, royal blue, shocking pink or purple.
Each block should contain:
2 strips of the same dark shade, 2’ x 8’;
2 strips of the same medium shade, 2’ x 8’;
1 strip of the same off-white, natural or light beige for the center strip, 2’ x 8’ (your name will be written on this one.)
Sewing Instructions:
Cut strips 2 inches wide, 8 inches long. Join strips with a 1/4 inch seam either by hand or by machine. Press seams from the center out toward the darker fabrics. finished block will measure 8” x 8”. The darkest shade should be on the outside, the center strip should be off-white or beige. Use laundry pen to sign your name clearly. The Kettle Quilters will have pens available.

Questions ?

Ginny Breismeister, 637-2461
Beth Rollins, 637-9551
Inge Thalheim, 637-9614
Barbara Van Buren, 637-2373

August Birthdays

1  Claire Osgood             11 Robert May              21 Madelyn Perez
   Iris Hietala                 Michael Whitcomb           Keith Atkins
   Lindy Freeman                Kevin Hoffman           22 George Thomson
2  Tommy Starkweather           Albert Pappas              Richard Geismar
   Alan Toy                     Adam Hanbury-Brown         Libby Standish
   Robin Pruner                 Afif El-Solh               Xiao-Ke Gao
   Eric Dinmore              12 William Cordner            Janetta Heokstra
   Dick Trask                   Arthur Delmhorst           Christina Tholen
   H. Ford Dickie               C. Rob Perelli-Minetti     April Sandlock
   Peter Dodd                   Catherine De Villiers      Hannah Bacon
3  Peter Wall                13 Margaret DeReimer          Cristian Perez
   Richard Peebles           14 Susan Eveland           23 Lloyd Cooke
   Bob Riley                    Gregory Dempsey            Jocelyn Buggy
   Peter Briggs                 Mary Costanza Hileman   24 George Fisk
   Christopher Koppenheffer     Alan Schay                 Jacques Bulterman
   Rima Zaitoon                 Elaine Smith               Allison Reams
   Margaret Reed                Eliza Farriss              Catherine Garlid
   Nicholas Barbar              Eli Rose                   Marilyn Derr
   Kimberly Rogers           15 Lynn Carnegie              Amanda Sweet
   Hannah Koorbusch             Eric Blasberg           25 Jane Ives
  4Karen Sadik-Khan             Daniel Jones               Evelyn Lonski
   Sarah Lauridsen              Gretchen Stiers            Peter Garlid
   Martha Stolley               Heather Stiers Dorn        Michael Horn
   Mary Fike                    Clayton Hardman            Catherine Horn
   Michael Lovely            16 Franklin Lang              Lindsey Waggaman
  5Bill Bausch                  John Davidson              Lauren Pruner
   Sara Stewart                 Jason Koob                 Kristen Sotzing
   Jeffrey Low                  Timothy Richmond           Mirjam Hoekstra
   Samuel Glendon               Lynn Friend                Natalie Anibal
   Hans VanRhyn                 Dave Erickson           26 Howard Truss
   Michelle Arader           17 Elizabeth Moore            Rick Woodman
   Julia Wilfert                Emily Moore                Annette Bergh
  6Richard Fraser               Mark Gaulocher             Jahn Singh Sood
   Allison Chapman           18 Betsy Pearson           27 Mary Ann Chidsey
   Nadia Barbar                 John Seel                  Irene Pappas
   Mabel Brown                  James Welch                Gary Berner
  7Jenny Liebowitz              Mildred Mulhall            Sarah Gordon
   Walker Brady              19 Stephen Boudreau, Jr.   28 William Sawyer
   Ingeburg Boehm-Bezing        Lucy Jinishian             Emily Harris
   Marti Easton                 Carol Wister               Eliza Sadler
   Audrey Thalheim              Sharon Paris               Tom Mahoney
   Robert Stafford              Mark Kendrick              Harrison Oztemel
  8Ken Kolb                     Alexander Moore            Ben Wurst
   Marissa Anne Goff            Lilly Farriss              Ryan Stafford
   Riley McHugh              20 Glenn Hascher           29 Janet Blasberg
  9Hans Plickert                Trevor Dinmore             Thomas Kutzen
   Stephen Bonsal               Carolyn Anderson           Maximillian Altznauer
   Wendy Reynolds                                       30 Jane Howland
   Sandra Wilson                                           Claire Reed
   Christina Ciofarri                                      Bruce Atkins
   Lucia Hoffman                                           Andrew Gregor
 10Margaret Morrison                                       Chris Hartwell
   Richard Lewis                                           YoYo Zang-Bonnet
   Susan Craig                                             Alexander Pugliese
   Charlie Van Roden                                       Brittany Miller
                                                        31 Charles Koob
                                                           Brandon Hallowell
                                                           Brady Farriss

The copy deadline for the Meetinghouse Monthly is the 15th of the previous month. The issue should arrive in homes by the first Sunday of the month. Deadline for the Meetinghouse Minute is the first of the month, to arrive in homes by the third Sunday of the month.