ABOUT US

A MESSAGE FROM OUR PASTOR

                                            

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,


The season of winter continues to offer challenges as we move carefully and ward off colds and flu.  Jan. 1 marked the death of a faithful and talented member of our church family, Judy Spinella.  On Jan. 13 we were host to a remembrance that like her life will be remembered for the artistry of beauty and the meaning behind the sharing of God’s gifts with others.


The commencement of Lent on Ash Wednesday falls on St. Valentine’s Day.  Easter 2018 will be April Fools’ Day.  I cannot remember when, if ever this intersection has happened. Can you?


Worship in February begins with our guest, Rev Catherine Cadieux leading us on YOUTH SUNDAY and celebrating the Sacrament of Holy Communion.  Feb. 11th will focus on the Transfiguration of Jesus and on Ash Wednesday we will hold a service at 6:00 pm.  As Lent continues we will study the gospel of Mark during the final Sundays of February.


A highlight for us will take place on Feb. 24th when our leadership will travel to Concord for the annual PREPARED TO SERVE event sponsored by the NH Conference of the United Church of Christ.  We are blessed to have an opportunity to discover ways to enhance our faith and grow the church with other NH churches.


As your interim pastor I am pleased to announce some initiatives to help us prepare for God’s future.   The Pastor Parish Relations Committee (PPRC) has begun to work by using a manual to study the expectations and responsibilities we place on the pastor and the parish and to demonstrate ways to celebrate, process conflicts and make decisions.


The past six years has brought many things to light about the church and its leadership.  I am encouraging the Executive Committee and the Council to explore ways we can understand and evaluate the partnership of ministry that can exist between a pastor and a parish.  Goal setting is vital to our wellbeing but first we need to be honest with ourselves by fostering direct communication and being open to experimentation and using our imagination.  Some changes that may bring growth have to take place.


We are pursuing the creation of two work spaces within the current church office.  This initiative has been on my mind for over a year so I am gratified to see us moving forward with creating useable space for the pastor and the secretary.  I will continue to help you explore our worship experiences together.  Music is a key ingredient and I will move away from our hymnal to new songs.  While tradition will remain central, exploring worship as a participatory experience is important.  Keeping our database up to date, developing an engaging website and offering educational and community building activities are all on my “radar” as the interim continues. 

                                                 

           May the peace of Christ be with us all, Pastor Christine


Pastor Christine Boardman

Who is UCC

The United Church of Christ (UCC) is a distinct and diverse community of Christians that come together as one church to join faith and action.  With over 5,000 churches and nearly one million members across the U.S., the UCC serves God in the co-creation of a just and sustainable world.  The UCC is a church of firsts, a church of extravagant welcome, and a church where "…they may all be one" (John 17:21).


The Church of Firsts

Since 1957, the United Church of Christ has been the church of firsts, weaving God’s message of hope and extravagant welcome with action for justice and peace. Together, we live out our faith in ways that effect change in our communities.  The UCC's many "firsts" mean that we have inherited a tradition of acting upon the demands of our faith.  When we read in Galatians: "There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus"—a demand is made upon us. And so we were the first historically white denomination to ordain an African-American, the first to ordain a woman, the first to ordain an openly gay man, and the first Christian church to affirm the right of same-gender couples to marry. We were in the forefront of the anti-slavery movement and the Civil Rights movement.  Our response to the demands of our faith is woven into the history of our country.


A Church of Extravagant Welcome

Today, we continue to change lives throughout the world. We work alongside more than 200 mission partners. We labor ceaselessly to fight injustice, in the United States and abroad. We instill our vision into our youth and young adults, forging leaders who will imagine new dreams. And we sustain and develop church leaders, pastors, and our local churches to live their faith in exciting new ways.  We believe in a God that is still speaking, a God that is all-loving and inclusive.  We are a church that welcomes and accepts everyone as they are, where your mind is nourished as much as your soul.


We are a church where Jesus the healer meets Jesus the revolutionary, and where together, we grow a just and peaceful world.

MEET OUR STAFF

PAT KINGSBURY

Office Administrator

TRACEY MARTIN

Treasurer

VICTOR PRATT

Custodian

KEANE SOUTHARD

Music Director

Covenant

FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH OF WALPOLE, UCC


Our Congregational Covenant


We seek to create and nurture a caring, safe, and supportive atmosphere that facilitates the growth of a strong Christian community.  These covenants are promises to each other, not rules, but descriptions of expected behavior, not changes of personality.


Covenants are ways of being in community at church, but also a model we can take home with us and out into the world.  These promises guide us in sharing information with each other, setting priorities, making decisions, addressing complaints and resolving conflicts.


With this our Covenant, we commit ourselves to:


  •          Support and love one another, as Jesus commanded. “Just as I have loved you, you should love one another.”  (John 13: 34)
  •          Forgive one another again and again.  (Matthew 18: 21-22)
  •          Seek resolution to conflict by first addressing the person directly with whom there is a problem, then if necessary involving witnesses, and third going to the congregation’s leaders.  (Matthew 18: 15-17)
  •          Interrupt gossip, neither accepting nor sharing rumors, even when such is masked as a concern.
  •          Always assume in others the best possible intentions and motivations, not the worst.
  •          Treat others as you wish to be treated.
  •          Seek what is best for the whole congregation, not only our immediate circle.
  •          Agree to disagree with love and respect.


Covenant:  a contract or agreement. In the Bible, an agreement between God and his people, in which God makes promises to his people and, usually, requires certain conduct from them. In the Old Testament, God made agreements with Noah, Abraham, and Moses.