Our congregation is part of the United Church of Christ, but we have independence and autonomy in how our local church works: we own our own building, call our own minister, and decide on the structure of our church governance. Our governing body, the Church Council, is made up of our pastor, the chairs of our six core ministries, a member-at-large, and our officers: a moderator (chair of the council), treasurer, and secretary. The Church Council of Ministries meets monthly to help us discern our direction and priorities. Representatives of other groups, or individual members, are welcome to attend council meetings and bring items to the moderator for council discussion. Our six core ministries are:
This ministry selects curricula and recruits teachers for our Sunday school classes; oversees the nursery and youth ministry, including our youth groups for junior high/middle school and senior high students; and works to provide occasional adult education offerings.
This ministry seeks to strengthen the lives, relationships, and spirituality of congregants by offering meaningful ways to connect with each other beyond worship, at all stages of life. They offer care for members and friends through our Stephen Ministry and Care Team; they recruit hosts for coffee hour and help with receptions; they welcome new members; and they offer a variety of social events such as potlucks, dinners out, small groups, and social outings.
“Food and fellowship are a huge part of our congregation, from our potluck dinners to our Christmas Cookie Coffee Hours to our annual Chili cook-offs. Some of my favorite memories at First Congregational are getting to know new friends over lunch, or laughing together in the kitchen as we get ready for coffee hour.” – Theresa H., Community Life member
This ministry educates the congregation about the sharing of time, treasure, and talents, and coordinates the annual stewardship campaign. As part of this, they are responsible for choosing our stewardship theme each year, arranging testimonials, and sharing financial needs and goals with the congregation through presentations and mailings.
Missions and Social Action
This ministry provides financial help to those in need; identifies needs and issues to address, educates the congregation and encourages them to engage in this work; and provides direction and support to those in the congregation who coordinate it. The ministry seeks to support the weak and help the afflicted while honoring all people. Some of the work that the MSA Ministry has done includes supporting a refugee family in conjunction with World Relief; the Green Team, which identified concrete ways for our congregation to reduce our impact on the earth; and the year-long Matthew 25 Challenge, which helped us find ways to fulfill this verse in real-life.
Each October, an intergenerational group of families, couples and friends join with other communities of faith for the CROP Hunger Walk. We walk to help fight hunger: money we raise goes toward hunger-relief programs in our area as well as around the world.
This ministry is responsible for personnel, building and grounds, and financial management. They help us to maintain our church home, both physically and financially, by managing investments and endowments and overseeing large and small projects. The trustees work closely with our church council and our administrative staff to make sure our leases and contracts are up-to-date, and needed repairs happen in a timely fashion.
This ministry is responsible for fulfilling the following from our church vision statement: “to hold worship services…that refresh us, engage us, and enable us to go out into the world to do God’s work, while serving others.” The Worship Ministry is responsible for worship planning, communion, special services, the music program, ushers, greeters, and liturgists.