1 NORTH CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH W. Twelve Mile Road, Farmington Hills, MI Phone: (248) Fax: (248) Website: northcongregationalchurch.org Address Service Requested Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage P.A.I.D. Farmington Hills, MI Permit No. 107 North September, 2018 Congregational Vol. 39 Church No. 9 ORTH EWS W. Twelve Mile Road, Farmington Hills, Michigan (248) Fax: (248) Church Website: northcongregationalchurch.org God is Love: Pass it On! 1 John 4: JOINT BOARD MEETING As we begin a new year of worship and service, ALL the members of ALL church boards and committees are encouraged to come to a half-hour joint board meeting. At this session we ll talk about the theme for this coming year, how to integrate it into each board s work, and some of the church-wide projects that are planned. In addition, important, updated information about board and committee resources will be shared. THIS MEETING IS FOR ALL NEW AND CONTINUING BOARD AND COMMITTEE MEMBERS! As we begin to plan our shared work on the ministries of the church, this is an important way to see how what each group does fits into the overall mission of the church. Please RSVP! See you Wednesday September 12th at 7:00 p.m. in Fellowship Hall! Rev. Mimi Biedron We are gathered for worship of God and service to humanity.
2 From the Minister... It only takes a spark to get a fire going, And soon all those around can warm up in its glowing; That s how it is with God s love, once you ve experienced it; You spread his love to ev ry one, you want to pass it on. What I did on my summer Sabbatical: meditated and prayed and read. Swam and boated. Spent time with family and friends. Travelled to Alabama to tour important civil rights sites. I found so much food for thought, and you ll hear many of those thoughts in sermons, conversations, and ministry planning this coming year. God is always speaking and acting in our world, and we re called and equipped by God to partner with others in the world as we live out and share the good news. Which relates to our theme for this program year: GOD IS LOVE: PASS IT ON! Many of you have probably sung the campfire song, Pass it On quoted above. It makes me think of church camp and bonfires and the strong bond of sharing, as we sang it together and felt the tug of the Spirit on our hearts. We ll be learning that song this year, and thinking about how we are called to live in alignment with our core theological understanding: that God is love. And we will also be working on the ways that we can share that love, in words and actions, in actively reaching out in grace, reconciliation, and compassion to those who need to know this good news, so that the whole world can come ablaze with God s love. With the changing of the calendar and the seasons come all the Fall activities, from football to apple picking, North Church swings into many familiar and some new programs, from Rally Sunday to Mission Month. We ll be thinking in planning and doing all of these things of the ways we can affirm that God is love, and pass that on. I invite you to find your places of fellowship, love, and service, so that we can work together to light up the world with the Good News! I wish for you, my friend, this happiness that I ve found. You can depend on Him, it matters not where you re bound; I ll shout it from the mountain top Praise God!- I want my world to know: The Lord of Love has come to me, I want to pass it on. ( Pass it On, by Kurt F. Kaiser) Rev. Mary E. Biedron Missions Month Missions Month Begins September 16, For four Sundays, beginning September 16, 2018, the Diaconate will highlight several missions that are supported by you, the members of North Congregational Church. On September 16, Lynn Komasara will bring us news from Starr Commonwealth, located in Albion, MI, whose mission is creating positive environments where children and families flourish. On September 23, our own Judy Campbell and Meghan Webster will tell us about the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches, and what it means to be a member of that association and support its services. On September 30, we will hear from Todd Lippa who will update us on the local C.A.R.E.S. program, to which many of you have donated food, clothing and time. CARES is located in Farmington Hills and provides comprehensive support services for individuals and families in our area. And finally, on October 7, Susan Smith will tell us about Days for Girls, International, which increases access to menstrual care and education that help to shatter stigma and humiliation for women and girls. Several members of our church have helped out with sewing projects that have benefitted this organization. It is hoped that each of these speakers will help us all understand the importance of both financial and hands on support for places and people that need our help. Don t miss this opportunity to learn more about four of the many missions we support through your generosity! Liane Jensen
3 Church World Service Hygiene Kits As a fitting end to our focus on missions, following the service on October7, we will be packing Church World Service Hygiene Kits. In April, you helped us achieve our goal of 40 Hygiene Kits, which we exceeded. Fifty Hygiene Kits were delivered to a collection center in Lansing, where they will be distributed when and where needed. We know that CWS Hygiene kits have been sent to the fire devasted areas in California, recently. In April, you took home a zip lock bag with instructions and packed the whole kit yourself. This time, we are going to collect individual items needed and will pack the kits together, after church during coffee hour. We have some leftover donations (100 toothbrushes!!) from the spring but we need your help in adding to what we have to make the completed kits. Over the four mission Sundays, if we set 50 kits as our goal, we are asking you (if you are able) to bring in the following: Items: Number needed: Regular size bars of soap 45 Hand towels 45 Washcloths 36 Nail clippers (either large or small removed from package) 45 Wide tooth combs (removed from package) 47 Band aids (standard size) 453 Anything extra will be saved for our next packing of Hygiene Kits in the spring. We re looking forward to seeing and greeting each of you in church during this time. For more information about Hygiene Kits, go to Thank you for your amazing generosity in the past! Watch for the Hygiene Kit Totals on our bulletin board in Fellowship Hall as we log the number of kits we have packed as a church community, since the Spring of 2018! Liane Jensen School Supplies Donations School Supplies for Crossroads Take advantage of the back-to-school sales! Bring your school supplies in and drop them off on the table in the Link, or in the Missions Room. Donations of basic school supplies pens, pencils, notebooks, folders, coloring supplies, etc. will be taken down to Crossroads for distribution to the children in their programs. Monetary Donations for Indian Trails Mission and Farmington Schools We are collecting monetary donations for the Indian Trails mission instead of collecting school supplies to be shipped to them. In the past we spent about $ per year to purchase boxes and ship our donations to the Indian Trails mission in Arizona. In discussions with the leadership of the mission they feel that those funds will be put to better use by making a direct donation to the Indian Trails mission so they can purchase their school supplies locally. The mission will be able to get more supplies for our dollar and they will get exactly the supplies they need for their children. The Farmington Schools program for homeless students (Farmington Area Support Team FAST) has also requested that we make monetary donations or donations of food gift cards instead of school supplies. The last two years they have been consolidating and reconfiguring their facilities with redistricting. FAST does not have a stable location to store and distribute the rather bulky school supplies. Please make out checks to North Congregational Church and put Indian Trails, FAST or both on the memo line. You may also donate from your checking account or with a credit card online through NorthCongregationChurch.org choose Online Giving in the Member s Corner, use the Missions line and specify the charity you d like to donate to. Thank you for your continued support as we take collections in August and September for each of these worthy causes supporting children s educational needs in Farmington Hills, Detroit and the American southwest/northern Mexico.
4 CROSSROADS Hygiene Kits While you re traveling this summer, please remember our need for hygiene items to take to CROSSROADS on Sunday, October 21st. The items needed are: Full size soap, and travel sized deodorant, toothpaste, shampoo, hair conditioner, also toothbrushes, hand sanitizers shaving cream, razors and Kleenex. Please place them in the Missions Room, in Pilgrim Hall. The youth, and others, will pack these kits on Sunday, October 14th. We d like to take as many with us as possible. Thank you in advance for your unceasing generosity to all of our Crossroads projects. South Oakland Shelter The week of August 19 th North Congregational, Trinity in the Woods Episcopal Church, St. Gerald Catholic Church and the Muslim Community Mosque hosted about thirty-five guests in our building who are in the South Oakland Shelter program working towards sustainable housing solutions. These men, women and children spent every evening, overnight and morning with us sharing meals, activities and fellowship. Many thanks need to go out to the volunteers who put in nearly a thousand hours working to make our guests feel comfortable and welcome. We d also like to thank the following groups and organizations who provided meals or otherwise helped us provide for our guests: City of Farmington Hills Senior Services Transportation, Farmington Family YMCA, Pine Hill Congregational Church, the North Congregational Women s Fellowship, Meadowbrook Congregational Church, Culinary Team Payne, Farmington High School athletic teams, the St. Gerald Knights of Columbus, the Indian Catholic Association, Great Harvest Bread Company, Busch s Fresh Food Markets and Two Men and a Truck of Farmington Hills. Thank you! Danny Hawkins, North Congregational coordinator for S.O.S. / OPEN HOUSE Sunday, September 9 We will be welcoming the Chancel Choir and our Sunday school back from summer vacation on Rally Sunday, with a worship service followed by the Rally Day Picnic. Sign up to be part of this fun afternoon with hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill, potluck sides and an ice cream cart! Back by popular demand, there will be a Bounce House! Check out the sign up sheet outside Fellowship Hall if you d like to bring a dish to share*; if you can t bring a dish, don t worry! Come and enjoy an afternoon of food, fun and North Church friends of all ages. This year we are combining Rally Sunday with an open house, inviting our neighbors to join us. Invite a friend or neighbor to come and learn more about our church! *Note: Please refrain from using tree nuts or peanuts in your recipes, so that everyone can enjoy them. The Chancel Choir Wants You! We know that you d like to join the Choir, but you just haven t gotten around to it, right? Well, with the fall season starting soon, this would be the perfect time! We rehearse on Sunday mornings at 8:45 a.m., and sing on Sundays, September through June, as well as for special services. If you are interested in making a special contribution to worship at North Church, contact Laurie Meeker at 586/ , or join us at our first rehearsal on September 2nd We will be singing our first anthem on Rally Sunday, September 9th.
5 Sunday School cont d. September 9, 2018, Rally Sunday, begins a new year in our Sunday School. We are looking forward to welcoming our students back from summer vacation, and grateful for everyone who helped out in Summer Sunday School. Classes and teachers for program year are as follows: Nursery: Julie Verdun; Helper: Abby Turner Toddler: Jane Meredith; Helper: Kendall Murray Preschool - 2nd Grade: Judy Campbell Grades 3-6: Lisa and Jeff Rockwell Grades 7-12: Jeremy Maurer the Living Christmas Card and the Christmas Pageant. Following the church service, parents are asked to pick up younger students from their classrooms; older students can meet their parents in coffee hour. Should you have any questions or concerns about Sunday School or our Christian Education program, please talk to Rev. Mimi Biedron or Margaret Plummer, chair of the Board of Christian Fellowship and Education. See you in Sunday School!! SHARE YOUR Would like to receive information via ? Let us know by ing so that we can add you! Again this year we are using Deep Blue, a curriculum for children which includes adventure, exciting stories, science experiments, arts and crafts, animated video storytelling, and active games - all combined into a living faith experience that will help children discover what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ today! Learn more about the scope and sequence of this curriculum on the Deep Blue website, Because of allergies, we ll avoid foods and crafts containing any kind of tree nuts or peanuts; parents are encouraged to fill out the Sunday School registration form to indicate any allergies or other special considerations. Also an important reminder: if your student has a cell phone, an ipod or other electronic device, he/she should leave it with you or plan to put it in the electronic box during class to avoid distractions. Sunday School students in Preschool and up should come to the worship service each morning (Babies and Toddlers can go directly to their classrooms at 10:25), and then go to their classes during the second hymn. At the end of the morning classes, Toddler through 6th grade will gather in the Music Room for a short time of singing, collection of the Sunday School offering and celebration of birthdays. At this time, students will prepare for songs to be presented in church, as well as other specials such as Bible Presentation Sunday, September 16 Following a long-standing North Church custom, on September 16, we will present students in our Sunday School, who have not yet received one, with their own Bibles. This gift is a full New Revised Standard Version Bible, with maps, helps, and q&a s aimed at younger students. The presentation will take place in the morning worship service before the middle hymn; students who cannot be present will receive their copies during children s worship time in Sunday School on a later date. If you know of a student who hasn t received a Bible, please let Rev. Biedron know and we will gladly present her/him with a Bible! Five Year Financial Audit The church has its financial books reviewed every year (with a full audit every fifth year for years ending in 2 and 7) by the accounting firm of Janz and Knight, PLC. Copies of the 2017 Audit report are available for your review. Please contact Danny Hawkins - - to borrow a copy.
6 September Activities Flick Chicks Thursday, September 6th is the date for our monthly movie and dinner. We will meet during Coffee Hour on Sunday, September 2nd to decide the movie and time. The movie will be at Regal Crown Theater on Haggerty Road, north of 14 Mile. All women are invited to attend the movie and/ or just the dinner, at Applebee s, if that works better for your schedule. If you have any questions, please contact Carol Turner. Men s Breakfast CLUB Wednesday Ladies Lunch Group Join us each Wednesday for lunch at 11:30 a.m. Reservations are needed, all women of the church are welcome! September 5: Scrambler Marie s September 12: Applebee s (Haggerty Rd.) September 19: Ginopolis September 26: Olive Garden A group of North Church men meet for breakfast at Moe s on Ten every other Tuesday morning at 9:00 o clock. Their meeting dates are September 11th and 25th. If you eat and are interested in a little lively conversation, please contact Steve Lange at Book Group - Wednesday, September 12th at 1:00 p.m., in the library For our summer reading, we've picked two novels set during World War II. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah and Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly. Information about these books, the group and ideas or suggestions for other reading are found on the "North Congregational Church Book Group" face book page. This is a private group, with a public profile; it's open to North Church members and friends. Click and join this group on the page, and we'll add you! Everyone is welcome, even if you haven t finished the book! Come join the conversation. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 21ST Hi Everyone! It s that time again, for North Church to be thinking about collecting hygiene items, baking cookies, and serving lunch at Crossroads Soup Kitchen. North Congregational Church will be working with the Muslim Community Mosque at Crossroads on Sunday, October 21st. I was recently at Crossroads with the U of M group, and we served 584 lunches for the day. It was surprising to see how many little children came for a meal. The past few summers Crossroads has been offering a summer lunch program for children during the week. serving about 50 children each day. We are seeing many more families coming to Crossroads on Sundays for a meal, and I do wonder if that is in part related to the summer lunch program at Crossroads. I recently spoke with one of the volunteers who teaches a parenting class every Tuesday at Crossroads. She said they have had a wonderful response to some of the classes and support groups offered to parents by the counselors at Crossroads. Consider taking a tour of Crossroads with Sister Liz on October 21st if you come down to work for the day. It s exciting to see how some of our benevolence funds are changing the lives of those we ll be serving on the 21st. We will be making 1000 turkey and roast beef sandwiches, cooking beef chili, and serving it all with our homemade cookies. Please bring your cookies, packaged 2 per baggie, either to church during the week of Oct 14th, or directly to Crossroads if you are working that day. Also, bring in your hotel sized shampoos, conditioners and soaps from your travels
7 this summer. We ll add those to any toothbrushes, toothpaste, razors, full sized soaps and other toiletries you might purchase, and have the PF assemble hygiene kits for men and women on October 14th. Unfortunately, I will not be able to attend Crossroads with NCC in October. We pick the soup kitchen dates for the next year every October 1st. After we had chosen our 2018 dates last year, Steve and I were able to sign up for a river cruise in Europe. Unfortunately, it will be during our time at Crossroads. This will be the first time in over 20 years that I will not be at Crossroads while North Church is serving the meal. I m sad that I won t be there, however, I m excited that there will be some new leadership opportunities for others. I will make sure that all of the food is ordered at GFS and Aunt Millie's for you to assemble the sandwiches and soup. We ll need to figure out a few people that can pick up the groceries at GFS and take it to Crossroads (we re having Aunt Millie s deliver the bread). I ll make sure to connect with Afroz Khan from the mosque, and coordinate their volunteer numbers with ours. We will need someone to make sure that all of the hygiene items that are packed by the PF get down to Crossroads. Also, someone will need to pick up the cookies at church, and take them down for the day. I ve spoken with Sister Liz, and she assured me that there will be lots of support from the soup kitchen managers that day. Chili is an easy soup to make. I will be glad to go over specifics with someone who would be willing to man the paddle at the soup cauldron. Please look for the signup sheets soon. We ll have a few more categories on the sign up sheets, so that all tasks are assigned for the preparation for our day at Crossroads, as well as working the morning and afternoon shifts. EIGHTH ANNUAL If you haven't already entered the date in your phone for the Annual Women's Retreat now is the time. You won't want to miss out on the fellowship, devotions, new experiences and the new program. Friday, November 9 Saturday, November 10, 2018 Howell Nature Conference Center Howell, MI Bedrooms are shared with at least one other person. A big plus all bedrooms have their own restroom. The 3 delicious meals are catered. No cooking or cleaning up! It is time to SAVE THE DATE. The retreat is for women of all ages and we welcome everyone. The October newsletter will have more details. Registration begins Sunday, October 7th! Sara Lange
8 Chancel Flower Orders Would you like to donate flowers to beautify our sanctuary for Sunday morning worship? It s a wonderful opportunity to remember a loved one, acknowledge a special event, or celebrate a birthday or anniversary. The cost of an arrangement is $47.00; please make checks payable to North Congregational Church Flower Fund. A list of available dates may be found on the Table outside the Plymouth/Bradford room and/or Fellowship Hall. Please cross the date you ve chosen off the list, fill out an order form completely (including whether you will be taking your flowers home with you), and leave your order and check on Debbie s desk in the church office. We are limited to one arrangement each Sunday. We cannot accept orders for chancel flowers on December 16th, 23rd and 30th when the sanctuary and/ or the Plymouth/Bradford Room will be filled with Christmas poinsettias; Palm Sunday, April 14, when we special order an arrangement; or on Easter Sunday, April 21st, when beautiful spring plants will grace the chancel. You Should Call the Office... When you need to speak with the minister. When a new baby/child arrives. When you move, change your land line or cell phone number(s), or address(es). When a member of your family is admitted to the hospital. Hospitals do not call us unless specifically asked to by the patient or family. When a member of your family leaves for college, we d like to have their address and phone number. Travelers and Snow Birds... Please let us know of your travel plans if you are going to be away long enough to forward your mail. If we have your temporary address or address, you will receive your mail and newsletter sooner, and the church will save the money on return postage. Thanks! S E P T E M B E R LAY READERS September 2 - Tim Sirovy September 9 - Mary Voisin September 16 - Nancy Wilking September 23 - Carolyn Payne September 30 - Mark Payne COFFEE HOUR HOSTS September 2 Sara Lange, Jeff Rockwell September 9 Veronica Noye, Julianne Noye September 16 Brandon Webster, Miranda Webster September 23 Pete Shand, Art Lanier September 30 Sandy Greer, Jack Cooper Diaconate Benevolences for the month of September Crossroads - Cash Donation, Indian Trails Mission, Metropolitan Christian Council - Meals for Shut-ins South Oakland Shelter (S.O.S.) October Newsletter GREETERS Would you like to be a North Church greeter on Sunday morning for the worship service? If so, please call Audrey Poese at 248/ September 2 Roy and Donna Nordman September 9 Paul and Linda Cooper, Cindy and Keira Vails September 16 Art, Pat and Sage Lanier September 23 Bev Stief, Asma Tapert September 30 Al and Audrey Poese Congratulations to Zyenelly Sanchez and Victor Jose Lopez, who were married in Howell, MI., by Rev. Dr. Mary E. Biedron on Friday, August 17, Newsletter articles are needed by the 15th of each month. Please your article to Debbie at Thanks!
9 September Calendar (Current version of our calendar can be found on our web site: northcongregationalchurch.org) September 2, Sunday 10:30 a.m. Worship, Nursery/Toddler Care Lay Reader: Tim Sirovy; Soloist: Gregory Stinson 11:30 a.m. Coffee Hour - Plymouth/Bradford Room September 3, Monday - Labor Day Office Closed September 5, Wednesday 11:30 a.m. Wednesday Ladies Lunch Group - Scrambler Marie s September 6, Thursday Flick Chicks - Movie / Dinner September 9, Rally Sunday / Open House 8:45 a.m. Chancel Choir Rehearsal 10:30 a.m. Worship, Children s Message, Sunday School, High School Class Lay Reader: Mary Voisin 12:00 p.m. Rally Day Picnic - Open House Christian Fellowship and Education Meeting September 11, Tuesday 9:00 a.m. Men s Breakfast CLUB - Moe s on Ten 7:00 p.m. Chancel Bell Rehearsal September 12, Wednesday 11:30 a.m. Wednesday Ladies Lunch Group - Applebee s 1:00 p.m. Book Group - Library 7:00 p.m. Joint Board Orientation - Fellowship Hall 7:30 p.m. Trustee Meeting - Room 3 7:30 p.m. Diaconate Meeting - Plymouth Room September 16, Sunday 8:45 a.m. Chancel Choir Rehearsal 10:30 a.m. Worship, Sunday School, Bible Presentation, High School Class Guest Speaker: Lynn Komasara - Starr Commonwealth Lay Reader: Nancy Wilking September 18, Tuesday 7:00 p.m. Chancel Bell Rehearsal September 19, Wednesday 11:30 a.m. Wednesday Ladies Lunch Group - Ginopolis Consent Agenda minutes/reports are due September 23, Sunday 8:45 a.m. Chancel Choir Rehearsal 10:30 a.m. Worship, Sunday School, High School Class Guest Speakers: Judy Campbell and Meghan Webster - NACCC Lay Reader: Carolyn Payne September 24, Monday 7:00 p.m. Executive Council Meeting - Rm. 3 September 25, Tuesday 9:00 a.m. Men s Breakfast CLUB - Moe s on Ten 7:00 p.m. Chancel Bell Rehearsal September 26, Wednesday 11:30 a.m. Wednesday Ladies Lunch Group - Olive Garden September 30, Sunday 8:45 a.m. Chancel Choir Rehearsal 10:30 a.m. Worship, Children s Message, Sunday School, High School Class Guest Speaker: Todd Lippa - C.A.R.E.S. Lay Reader: Mark Payne