Eyes to see
The theme for our Lenten Journey this year is quite simple: Eyes to see.
So much of the time, our eyes are spent watching screens.
When we watch screens, there is little person-to-person interaction.
When I walk down the street near my house,
many people do not make eye contact.
They purposefully look away or look down.
When we are given the gift of having eyes to see,
we begin to see the world as God sees it.
Our heart opens and we begin to love the world as God loves it.
Because we begin to look around.
We leave that which weighs us down (our baggage)
and walk more freely, more lightly, more joyfully.
Even after jettisoning our own baggage,
we can be weighed down by this world in which we live.
However, God does not leave us. Rather, God gathers us together.
When we are together, our world is brighter, more colorful, more peaceful.
When God gives us eyes to see,
our simple story of restoration is enough.
We no longer look to compare ourselves with others. We are enough.
Sometimes, our eyesight becomes foggy, damaged, constricted.
Then, we dare turn to Jesus once more and ask for the gift to see more clearly.
This can happen over and over. We dare to begin again.
When we are stuck in our routines, encountering Jesus is risky
because it means that our old ways of thinking, of behaving, of seeing might have to die. But what is born?
Healing, joy which is deeper than pain, and compassion for those suffering.
When we have eyes to see, we live into the wonder of new possibilities.
We open ourselves up to being resurrected.
How You Can Help Earthquake Victims in Turkey and Syria
God of the whole world, hear us as we pray for lives lost and communities shattered by earthquakes and aftershocks in Turkey and Syria. Be present, O Lord, our Good Shepherd, to bring comfort, relief, shelter, and human kindness. In our prayers and with our gifts, and through all those who bring aid, let us testify that Light still shines, and darkness and dust shall not overcome it. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.
We have all seen the horrific images from Turkey and Syria, where a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit early Monday. As of February 17th, the death toll has risen above 43,000. Tens of thousands have been injured. This earthquake has affected millions.
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (https://pda.pcusa.org/) is already on the scene, through its established global partner GOPA-DERD. They are acting first on immediate needs, distributing winterization items (blankets, mattresses), food items, and medicines. You can support PDA’s response directly by going here on their website or by clicking the button below. And this Sunday, in all of our churches, we encourage your prayers for the people of Turkey and Syria.
“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.”
Video Devotional: He Came Not to Be Served, but to Serve
Jesus modeled a servant’s heart when he said he “came not to be served, but to serve.” Pilgrims on our recent Bethel Bible Series Holy Land Pilgrimage modeled this in an important way that helped define a wonderful trip. Soli Deo Gloria!
We exist as a congregation to know Jesus Christ and to make Him known:
- To proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ so all may come to know and love Him;
- To nurture His people in joyful faith, fellowship, and commitment; and
- To demonstrate His way of love in service to the world.
We use the Connector to share news of the coming week and beyond, the activities that involve a wide range of ages and interests at FPC.
News and Announcements
We saw our fair share of weather this week! Two snow days. One of which was on Ash Wednesday. Pastor Glen was faithfully outside providing “slide-thru” ashes that Wednesday. If you would like to receive ashes, please arrive to Church, this Sunday, at 9:40 AM.
Also because of the weather we missed one of the two MIF Committee listening sessions. Where FPC members and friends can come and share their church memories from various eras of the Church. This is an important step as we go through the process of calling a Pastor.
The next MIF Committee listening session is set for this Sunday, February 26, following the worship service. A light brunch will be served. Since the February 22 listening session was canceled due to weather a second date will be available. More details to come soon!
Please plan on being present at one of these events, no reason to attend both. All voices need to be heard!
Penny War to help build a home for a family in need
This Sunday is the last day in the Lobby! Put your spare change in the bucket of your favorite house or houses that the children of FPC have created. All Funds collected will be donated to the Student Ministry Guatemala Mission Trip to help build a home for a family in need.
SAVE THE DATE – 2023 VBS Announced:
June 25-27 from 5:30-7:30 PM – More info to come!
Nursery is open
Nursery Age 2 and Under – Room 200
The Nursery is available on Sundays from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m. It is staffed by church volunteers who love children and want to share God’s love with them.
New 3-4-year-old Kingdom Kids Sunday School
3-4-year-old Kingdom Kids now have their own Sunday School class from 9-9:50 am on Sunday, in the Kingdom Kids room.
4k-Kindergarteners will still be upstairs.
Are you familiar with FPC’s FOOF wall?
Are you familiar with FPC’s FOOF wall? It’s not just a funny name! Take a walk down to the children’s education wing, and there you will see photos of many of our church members, staff and volunteers. This is our FOOF wall – the Faces Of Our Family.
The FOOF wall is more than just a collection of photos. It helps our members recognize and get to know each other. It’s a useful tool for church leaders and staff. It’s a great connection mechanism within our congregation. And we need your help to make our FOOF wall current again!
Many of the photos on the FOOF wall were taken years ago while putting together our church directory. Most of us look very different today! Some of us have gotten married or had babies over the past few years. Some of us may be new to the church, and did not have an opportunity to submit a picture for our wall. So we would appreciate your assistance as we update the “faces of our family.”
Do you have a family photo that you used for your Christmas card this year? Or perhaps a picture taken over the holidays? Please take a moment to send the picture to us by clicking the button below. Thank you!
Upcoming Music in Worship
February 26 – FPC Choir
March 5 – Ying Wang, pianist, and Audrey Manning, vocals
March 12 – FPC Choir
Coming Events | Feb. 26 – Mar. 18, 2023
Sundays, Now-March 26 – 9-9:45AM – Lenten Bible Study: Deep Dive into John 4: 1-26
Pastor Glen along with retired Pastor Susan, will be leading all who choose to take a deep dive into Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan Woman at the Well. She does not hold back. And neither does he. Jesus forms a unique relationship with her. How might we deepen our own relationship with “the Mystery at the heart of our existence that we call God?”
We hope you’ll join us in the Chapel
This Sunday – 11:15-12:30PM – GEMS*/History
The MIF Committee is inviting All FPC members and friends to an event in which we will dig through our church memories for GEMS* from various eras which will help the MIF Committee answer these important questions:
- Who are we?
- What are our strengths?
Downstairs in Fellowship Hall, a light brunch will be served. All voices need to be heard.
*Generational Engagement; Memorable stories
Each Sunday of Lent – 11 AM – Prayer Circle
After each Sunday morning worship service in Lent, the Deacons, Pastors Ben and Glen invite this body of Christ into the Chapel for a prayer circle. We will be praying for any individual needs that arise as well as for any joys and concerns within our church-specifically the Mission Study Process that FPC is going through. Please plan on attending one or more of these holy moments.
Sundays at 9 AM – Graceland Student Ministry
7th-12th Graders, join us each week for a time of connection, Bible discussion, and prayer.
Sundays at 9 AM – Sunday School for 4K-Adults
Sundays – During Service – Kingdom Kids
During the worship service kids can leave the worship service after the Children’s Moment and need to be picked up in room 202 after the service is over.
We offer Kingdom Kids for 3-year olds – kindergarten. Kingdom Kids offers a fun, unique time for children to explore their faith and form positive relationships with peers.
Mondays, Now-March 27 from 1-2:30 PM – The Light Team Meeting
The Light Team is comprised of women who want a chance to meet for fellowship and Bible study. We pray for each other and those in our church family and community. When possible, we extend ourselves in projects to help others. There is no homework and we include humor and laughter! We meet in the Gathering Place on Mondays at 1:00 – 2:30 PM. All are welcome to attend any or all of our sessions. Light Team’s current five week series for “The Longing in Me” by Sheila Walsh is running every Monday from now until March 27, with the exception of March 6, there is a break on that Monday.
Wednesdays, Now – May 24 from 8:30-10:00 AM – Women’s Community Bible Study
The Wednesday Morning Women’s Bible Study Group is made up of women from the surrounding community at large. All are welcome. This season we are exploring “How Much More” by Lisa Harper. Meet us on Wednesdays 8:30 -10:00 AM in the Conference Room, entering through the west side Education Wing doors. Contact Beth Stellmacher for more info: firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be off Wednesdays, March 22.
Wednesdays from 7:00-8:15 PM – Graceland Student Ministry
7th-12th Graders, join the fun upstairs in the Youth Room for a time of connection, games, message, meaningful small group discussion with students your same grade, and prayer.
Sunday, March 5 – 9 AM-10 AM – Donut Breakfast
Fellowship Ministry is offering a Donut Breakfast before Sunday Worship on Sunday, March 5 in Fellowship Hall. All are welcome!
Sunday, March 12 – 4K/Kindergarten Bible Presentations
Our 4K/Kindergarten Bible Presentations will be on March 12. Contact Christa Schmeelk if your 4k/Kindergarten has yet to receive a Jesus Story Book Bible.
Friday, March 17 – Noon-5PM – WEB Blood Drive
Click the banner below to sign-up!
Save the Date | More Info to come
Sunday, March 19 – 2 PM – Organ Recital
Please mark your calendars! FPC will host an organ recital on Sunday, March 19, 2023, at 2 PM featuring highly regarded organist Dr. Andrew Schaeffer, Director of Music at the Luther Memorial Church in Madison. The recital will be dedicated to the life and service of Pat Ronspiez. Pat served as our organist for 46 years. She also played piano and accordion.
Our church features an historic 1890 Schuelke organ built in Milwaukee and rebuilt by Wahl Organ Builders of Appleton in 1992. You can read about our historic organ here.
A Chicago native, Schaeffer holds degrees from St. Olaf College, Yale University and a doctoral degree from the University of Oklahoma. Andrew’s responsibilities include playing organ for Sunday services, directing the children, youth and adult choirs, various instrumental ensembles and overseeing the general music ministry of the congregation. He has been at Luther Memorial since 2018. Schaeffer is also editor-at-large of The Diapason, a nationally published organ and church music magazine.
A free will offering will be collected at the recital. FPC will donate 90% of the free will offerings to the Waunakee High School Music Department’s grand piano purchase. The remaining 10% will go towards our church missions.
Thursday, March 23 – Network 56 Pres House Service Project
Sunday, April 9 – 8 AM and 10 AM – Easter Worship Services
FPC will host two worship services on Sunday, April 9th for Easter. One at 8 am and another at 10 am. There will be no Children’s Sunday School, Graceland, or Kingdom Kids as volunteers will be spending Easter with their families.
Opportunities to Serve
How does Moses make his coffee? … He brews!
Be like Moses – join FPC’s coffee hour volunteers! Sign up using the button below, scan the QR code on the flyer in the lobby, or email email@example.com
Check out other volunteer opportunities by clicking the button below.
Shelter From The Storm Ministries Needs Volunteers
Shelter From The Storm Ministries (SFTSM), located in Sun Prairie, is currently in need of crews that can clean rooms and prepare them for their next residents. Shelter from the Storm Ministries currently has three rooms vacant and is in the process of interviewing new families to move in and welcome. A crew of four (4) people volunteering to clean one room usually takes 2-4 hours. SFTSM is extremely flexible on dates/times. For any questions or to sign up, please contact Pastor Kent Van Horn from Shelter From The Storm Ministries at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at (608) 535-0067.
Thank you! Your FPC Mission Team
Vocalists and Instrumentalists (Piano, too!)
We are looking for musicians for the summer services!! You are welcome to sing/play a special song or two, no matter what your skill level is. We have open dates throughout the summer and would like to fill those withstudents and adults from our congregation whenever possible. If you’d like to sing or play an instrument at a Sunday service, please contact Sam Robinson email@example.com 608-949-9450. “Make a Joyful Noise Unto the Lord!!”
Stephen Ministry at FPC: Providing God’s Care to Hurting People
What is this ministry about?
Extensively trained and supervised Stephen Minister Caregivers provide high-quality, one-on-one confidential Christian care to anyone in need. They provide weekly visits and ongoing support as long as the care receiver needs. Should the care receiver have needs that are beyond the scope of a Stephen Minister Caregiver, they are referred to professional caregivers.
What kind of care is offered from a Stephen Minister?
- CRISIS CARE – For people experiencing change(s) that significantly challenge their ability to cope.
- FOLLOW-UP CARE – After the crisis event.
- CHRONIC CARE – For a person whose situation is unlikely to change.
- PREVENTIVE CARE – Providing care before a crisis occurs.
- SUPPORTIVE CARE – Care for the caregiver.
How can I find out more about this ministry?
Call the church office at 608-949-9445, or reach out to a pastor or deacon. Stephen Minister Caregivers don’t replace the care of pastors and deacons. They carry it a step further.
Want to receive an email notification when the weekly Connector is updated? Sign up here!
Connect with the Connector!
In an effort to streamline the process for submitting requests for event announcements in the Connector or spoken during the worship service, Communications has developed this easy-to-use online form to share all of your important information.
Click the link below to check out the form and if you have any feedback or questions, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Connector is available in print at the Connection Corner in the Lobby for those who would like a printed copy.
The Connector comes out at 4 PM every Friday. The deadline for submissions is noon, the Wednesday prior.