|Ministry & Personnel Update to the Congregation:
Through these challenging times as we all deal with the restrictions that COVID-19 has brought to us, we wanted to let you know that your M&P Committee is still there supporting and caring for wonderful staff.
We have had two wonderful ministers join our First Team - Harry and Bruce - they have brought so much to our congregation already. Harry’s inspirational words on Sunday and leading our worship. Bruce has been busy caring for our congregation. We feel very blessed to have these two gentlemen amongst us. It has been challenging for them as they carry out their tasks in a much different way. Thank you Harry and Bruce for all that you have done for us and will continue to do for us.
The rest of our Team has been working so hard to keep things going at the church in spite of all the restrictions. Jay, Kathleen and Sheena have been working diligently with the Safe Start Team to ensure that anyone who uses our facilities will be safe. Kathleen has been very creative getting music to us and leading our worship when needed ... we have so enjoyed this. Jay and Craig have kept very busy ensuring that our building is clean and disinfected. Sheena has been that friendly voice on the phone and welcoming anyone who enters our building - keeping things running. A special thank you to each of you for all that do for us and meeting the challenges head on that COVID-19 has brought us.
I think that the congregation of First should feel very proud that during this time of closures and shut downs we have been able to continue to pay our valuable staff.
M&P continues to work quietly in the background supporting our wonderful staff. We are also there for the congregation if they have concerns with our staff.
Blessings to each of you - please stay safe, wear a mask and be kind.
Joanne MacPhail, Nola Mott, Joan Lapp, Marg Dickson, Suzanne Armstrong, Joan Westcott - your M&P Team.
A Reminder: November 30 is the year-end for UCW. Anyone wanting to donate in the year 2020 needs to have their cheque in by Monday, November 30. They can be sent to the church (16 William St. W., Waterloo N2L 1J3) or to myself (55 John St.E., Waterloo N2J 1E9). Thank you.
White Gift Offerings
The traditions of offering White Gifts date back to 1904 in the Methodist tradition. Gifts are wrapped in white so that no one can judge the cost or value of the gift and all gifts are distributed without the recipients knowing who has given them. We at First United have usually celebrated White Gift Sunday on the second Sunday of Advent by bringing gifts that go to people in our community who need them.
This year is very different. We will not be gathering for worship and therefore cannot collect your gifts in person, however, there are those in our community that need our support more than ever.
The Outreach committee would like to suggest that for your white gift, you make a financial donation to one of the following:
House of Friendship Family Outreach Program – helps families with children aged 17 and under to prevent and reduce the effects of poverty.
Food Bank of Waterloo Region – Collects and distributes food for many community agencies that distribute it to those in need. Last year, 33,355 individuals were served by the Community Food Assistance Network
Thank you all for your continued generosity to each other and our community!
Your Outreach Committee,
Marilyn Gerriet, Eric and Kathy Saunders, Mike Savage and Cathie Stewart Savage
Online Ministry Support
Thank you to all those who have contributed to the Online Ministry Fund. Currently we have raised $12,660 of approximately $24 000 needed.
These initial funds will allow us to purchase the equipment to record our online services now and livestream when we are back to in-person worship.
The equipment can also be used to enhance our music programs and concerts by allowing us to stream events such as Noon Hour Concerts, even if we can't meet in person. In fact, First United has been given the opportunity to facilitate a sponsorship from the Musicians' Union to cover the cost of a technician and musicians for the 2021 Noon Hour Concert season if we can livestream these concerts.
I encourage you to give to the Online Ministry Fund to allow this growth of our worship and music programs.
Please send a cheque to the church office or an e-transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org indicating it is for the Online Ministry Fund.
Worship in Coming Weeks
Sunday, November 29 at 10:30 am – Advent 1 and Communion
Sunday, December 6 at 10:30 am – Advent II White Gift
The ways you can join:
You can go to firstunitedchurch.ca for the service, First United Facebook page, or First United Youtube Channel.
If you would be interested in leading a worship service or in participating in some way please let me know at email@example.com.
Let's get together after church this week on Zoom! This is a chance to have friendly "coffee time" with others in our church and check in with one another. The Zoom will start at 11:15 (or so). Thanks to Muriel for hosting us.
Join Zoom Meeting
+1 647 374 4685 Canada
+1 647 558 0588 Canada
Meeting ID: 894 2610 0259
Midweek Advent Prayer and Reflection will be offered by Rev. Disher in the chapel Wednesday, December 2, December 9, and December 16 at 11 a.m. If you choose to come, you need to contact the office to register (only 5 spots available) and provide your contact information.
On the morning of the study you will be asked to respond to a COVID-19 questionnaire and sign a one-time waiver at the church. Sanitizing your hands, wearing a mask and staying at least 2 metres apart are all required as part of the COVID-19 protocols in place for Waterloo Region.
Caring Community by Zoom Thursday, December 17 at 2:00 pm.
Offered by the Pastoral Care Committee. More details to follow.
For Pastoral Care needs please call the church office (519-745-8487) or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For our Minister of Pastoral Care, Bruce Sweet call 519-579-8483 (home) or 519-580-3899 (cell) or email at email@example.com.
Have you heard the plea from the Little Library?