I am so thankful to God, my family, the Church family and friends for all the blessings this year. I hope everyone has been touched by God’s love. The children and youth bring so much joy to our Church and their families are very supportive. I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas!
Holiday Sundays are November 26th, December 24th, December 31st, March 25th, April 1st and May 27th. No classes or breakfast on these dates.
Family Sundays are December 17th (Christmas Pageant), February 4th and March 11th. No classes or breakfast on these dates.
Newsletters for November/December have been distributed.
For any questions, concerns, ideas please contact Caprice Bachelder at 508-331-7791 or email at email@example.com
…the ladies are finishing up crafts and preparations for their annual “Holiday Bazaar” being held on Saturday, November 11th from 9:00 am until 2:00 pm. Among the many wonderful handcrafted items featured at our Craft Tables are lovely hats and scarves, lap robes, items for babies and children, kitchen & household items and home and holiday décor – and also a special “Pet Corner” – with Joy Risatti, Lisa Pollock and Barbara Herbert. Beautifully decorated wreaths, arrangements – and even Berry Bowls this year can be found on our “Greens Table” hosted by Doris Sarantopoulos and Clare Panni and a special section of Craft Supplies under the direction of Katie and Maddy Thiem.
Welcome back our famous “Center Table” with Jan Noyes and Maryann Sullivan. Enjoy delicious Baked Goods with Susan O’Connor, Nancy Daub, Joyce Phinney and Bonnie Hodgdon, browse the Jewelry Table – hosted by Jan Doody and Marna Sampognaro and enjoy breakfast AND lunch at our popular snack bar under the direction of the “Woessner Ladies”!! (Elaine Heath, Jean Fountain, Joanne Cole and of course, Alice, to make sure everything is done just right!)
The ever-popular Tag Sale will continue to attract our shoppers, as well…with Carol Clark, Jane Ellis, Joyce Puchalsky, Deb Phelps and Nicole Gould to assist you! Back by popular demand will be the “Theme Baskets” with Rebecca Badgley and Sharon Smith – and a new section has been added this year – a Christmas Auction Raffle (which we expect to be immensely popular!) with Taylor and Amanda Badgley.
Be sure to mark your calendar – and please plan to come and spend some time with us that day – and bring a friend! Looking forward to seeing you there!!
Donations of baked goods are very much appreciated, and can be dropped off on Friday, November 10th (or early on that Sat. morning). If you are unable deliver to the church – please contact Susan O’Connor (978-249-3881) to arrange for pick-up.
Thanks again in helping to support our Women’s Fellowship Group – see you at the Holiday Bazaar!!
Community Meal Nov. 3, Doors open at 5:00 and the meal is served at 5:30. Always fun to eat or help serve! This month we are having Chicken Pot Pie, green salad, cranberry and of course a surprise dessert! This meal is being sponsored by Noels Nursery and the Athol Credit Union. Call the church office 978-249-6202 to reserve your place !
December Special! – Oh yes, plan ahead for the Dec. 1- Community Meal! December always brings the Carol Sing with Lis Leal and Al & Bonnie Benjamin leading the traditional carols. Stay tuned – there are always surprises!
Food Bank – The Salvation Army continues to be in need of nonperishable foods as well as personal care items. If you are able to add an item each month it would be a great help to our local support of this food bank. Thank you to Ginny Cobbett for continuing this ministry!
Soup & Song Nov. 10 – Support North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy by attending the semi-annual Soup and Song Event. This will be at the Orange Elks Club from 5:30 – 8:00. There will be good food and entertainment as usual – with a new twist!
Advent Mission Outreach – Seems like a long way off, but the “White ‘SOCK’ Christmas” Project will continue this year to support the Worcester Fellowship and the efforts of our confirmation class as they are part of the ministry in November. Remember that they must be white – bring them anytime with a label. They will go under the giving tree in Fellowship Hall during advent.
The annual AOTV Auction is December 2 & 3 on AOTV cable channel 13. The mission outreach task force has made a donation in support of the Community Calendar that provides free event announcements from our church and other non-profit organizations in our community on both AOTV and WVAO 105.9FM, Athol. You will even see and hear some local talent from our church!
Are you interested in exploring what it means to be a member of the Athol Congregational Church, UCC? Meet with the pastor and a diaconate member in the pastors’ office immediately after worship on Sunday, November 19th and Sunday, December 3rd. The class will be from 11:30-12:30 on the 19th and 11:30 – 1 p.m. on December 3rd.
I had tears in my eyes when I saw this picture of trucks pulling boats lined up as far as the eye could see on the highway to Houston, intent on saving people they had never met, and likely would never see again. We have also been inspired by the stories of heroic rescues—-people with disparate lives coming together to snatch their neighbors from the torrents of water, or to dive into swirling whirlpools to save someone’s beloved pet or of mattress stores owners sending their semis out to brave the deep and inviting displaced people to sleep on the brand new mattresses in the showroom of the store.
It is heartening to see, in the midst of a world gone crazy! Four hurricanes have churned through, one after another: Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria have ripped through the Caribbean, Florida, Texas, southeastern US. and now Puerto Rico. The destruction is unimaginable. And Mexico is hit with two earthquakes, and over 200 are dead and the count is still rising. Our hearts break for the people who have lost loved ones, and for the families who have lost all their worldly goods.
What can we do? First of all, know that God is present with us in our trouble and people who care are working day and night to bring succor to those in need. Secondly, we can pray for those close and those far who are suffering. Third, we can give our gifts of money. Instead of sending goods, money is so much more effective in getting the help that is needed to the place it is needed. And fourth, though there are many things we can’t control about natural disasters, we can commit ourselves to taking better care of God’s creation, so we can ameliorate this kind of devastation. We can encourage better management of our coastlines and riverbeds, so that the natural barriers to floods, like marshes and wetlands can do their work. We can reduce our carbon footprint, and encourage others to do the same, since the rising global temperature is feeding the fury of the hurricanes. Finally, out of humility and desire to serve God in Christ, we can spend time asking God “What can I do?” “What can we do?” in response to all this. Is there something we need to learn? Can we open our hearts to new wisdom about how to live together for Christ and consequently, for and with each other?