First Congregational Church: Wallingford

23 South Main Street Wallingford, Connecticut 06492

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"Let all that you do be done in love." 1Corinthians16:14




* Diaconate
Christian Education
*Family Life
*Prayer Shawl
* Scholarship
* Missions
* Stewardship
* Holy Joe's Cafe



Who We Are



Our 10:00 a.m. Sunday worship service is broadcast on Comcast cable public access for Wallingford, CT channel 18:

Sunday, 3:30 PM
Monday, 1:30 PM
Monday, 2:00 AM
Thursday, 1:30 PM
Saturday, noon

Adult Study:

Wednesdays at 9:00 a.m.


Established 1675
Telephone: (203) 265-1691
FAX: (203) 265-0693 
Church E-Mail:

Sunday Services 8:00 a.m. Communion Service
10:00 a.m. Morning Worship, Church School & Nursery
2:00 p.m.

Ashlar Village

Wednesday Service 8:00 a.m. Morning Prayer
8:30 a.m. Bible Study

Welcome to the First Congregational Church of Wallingford website. To visitors, members, regular attendees and friends, we extend a warm welcome and our hope that you will find this website and the information it offers concerning the church, its ministries, activities, staff and outreach both easy to use and helpful. If you have Acrobat Reader, you can read our church newsletter. The Church's Monthly calendar of activities is also available. We welcome your comments and suggestions.


Welcome to the First Congregational Church of Wallingford. To all our visitors we extend a warm welcome and our hope that you will find this church, its ministries and activities nourishing and helpful to you on your life journey. Please click here for more information.

Directions to the Church

The Christmas Season at First Church

Tuesday, December 20 —A Quiet Christmas - 7:00 p.m.
A service of prayer, music, candle lighting, and reflection for those seeking a quiet Christmas worship in the midst of personal loss, stress, or changing life circumstances.
Co-sponsored with Masonicare Home Health and Hospice.

Thursday, December 22 – Ashlar Village — Lessons and Carols - 7:30 p.m.
An Ecumenical Christmas Worship Service in the Henry & Edythe Knapp Auditorium.

Friday, December 23 — Christmas at Beaumont’s Farm - 7:00 p.m.
945 East Center Street, Wallingford, CT
Experience a live nativity worship service complete with animals! Dress warmly.

Saturday, December 24 — Christmas Eve
Come together one and all in the Christmas Spirit.
Join us for worship on this sacred night!
Don’t forget to bring the ribbons chain pieces you have been gathering throughout Advent!
6:00 p.m. Worship – A Service of Story and Song
A family friendly worship service celebrating the birth of the Christ Child.
10:30 p.m. — Christmas in Song
Join our Minister of Music and the many talented voices of our congregation for this “prelude” to
our 11:00 p.m. worship service. Be inspired as we offer this gift of music to each of you.
11:00 p.m. Worship – Candlelight Service &
Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper
In the tradition of old New England, the Sanctuary will be lit with candlelight
as the Lord’s Supper is celebrated and midnight approaches.
Sunday, December 25 — Christmas Day
10:00 a.m. Worship
Come as you are on this Christmas Sunday to celebrate the new born King!
Sunday, January 1, 2017 — New Year’s Day and Bell Sunday
We resume our regular worship schedule.
Bring a bell to the 10:00 a.m. worship service as we ring in the New Year!


Reverend Kathy Cunliffe Selected as
New Senior Minister!

The number eighteen proved to be quite significant for our church this month, as on Sunday, September 18, members of the congregation voted to call The Reverend Kathleen (Kathy) Cunliffe as the 18th Senior Minister in the history of the First Congregational Church of Wallingford.

Welcome, Reverend Kathy!

The Search Committee for a Senior Minister is Kayla Perkowski, Connor Filkins, Sarah Mather, Patrick Broun, Amy Torre, Tony Corso, Christine Dorsey, Thilo Koepher, Heidi Bonassar, Bob Westervelt and Debbie Voelker. Susan Phipps, as Assistant Moderator, will serve ex officio.



Dear Fellow Church Member,

As of last week, we are two thirds of the way toward accomplishing our pledge goal. If you are
reading this letter and have made your pledge of financial support this year, please accept our most sincere
thank you, thank you, thank you!

If you have made your decision but have not yet sent in your pledge form, we would appreciate it if you
would put that form near the top of what is no doubt a large pile of things to do this time of year. The
Trustees are formulating a final budget, and it would be helpful to have your pledge. However, that is a
gentle request and certainly not a requirement, and any time that you can see your way clear to make
your pledge is certainly the right time.

To those who are still up in the air as to whether you will make a pledge, we make a special plea. No
doubt you are being swamped with requests for donations, as are we all.

We consider our request to be unique, because any donation you make to your church will benefit you
directly. The First Congregational Church of Wallingford is your faith home right in your town. And
because of that, you know exactly where, when and how every dollar of your money will be spent.

Okay, enough said. Let us conclude by wishing each and every one of our fellow faith family members a
joyous Christmas season. And may 2017 bring you good health and true happiness.

Steve Knight, on behalf of the members of the Stewardship Committee:
Bernie Annunziata, Jill Banatoski, Steve Perkowski, Martha Smith, Glenn Whitehouse, Jean

Please make your pledge for the 2017 Church Budget.

Youth Group News

Youth Group is going to continue, without
interruption, under the leadership of Lorraine
Westervelt until the youth minister position is
filled. Since she’s been involved with the youth
group for eight years and a teacher for many
years, she has the experience to make youth
group fun and meaningful. Adult Resources will
be needed to drive, chaperone and more. Please
see Lorraine if you are available to help.

High School Youth Group
every Sunday from
6:00 - 8

High School Youth Group: January 8, 15
and 29; 6:00-8:00pm (HS youth will attend the
annual meeting on the 22nd.) The Winter Lock-I
is February 4-5 with grinder prep in the
morning - 6 pm Saturday through noon on Sunday.
Resource adults are needed for the overnight
– see Lorraine. The high school youth
group Winter Retreat to Ivoryton, CT is
scheduled for February 24-26.

Middle School Youth Group
Meets every S
8unday from 4:00 - 6:00PM

Middle School Youth Group: Sunday
evenings: January 8, 15 and 29; 4:00-6:00pm.
The Winter Lock-In is January 20-21
starting at 6 pm on Friday night and ending at
9 am on Saturday morning. The cost is $5 per
person and permission slips will be distributed
on January 8th. Resource adults are needed for
the overnight. If you can help, please see


The Bawa Health Initiative
For the Village of Bawa, Cameroon, Africa

The Board of Community and World Service has not lost sight of the great need for medical and health assistance in Africa. Dr. Dennis J. Richardson along with Dr. Blaise Dondji, and Reverend Margaret B. Jay have undertaken the mission of helping the village of Bawa by:

Providing primary health care to the residents of Bawa (we have begun the building of the Health Care Clinic). See our Web or Facebook page for more pictures. See Blaise Dondji's interview (click here) done by Oral Ofori in the Studios of WPAA Public Access in Wallingford, CT.


Continuing Clinic Construction w/ Roof (your continuing financial gifts do help, but more $$ are needed to complete this valuable project. Please help us! Adopt a Room)

• Reducing the prevalence of infectious diseases
• Supplying clean drinking water to all residents
• Educating the general public about infectious diseases in the developing world

For further information (this is our latest Newsletter) on this wonderful project,
and also see the NEW BAWA Health Initiative web site. You may contact Rev. Margaret Jay by calling the church office at 203-265-1691 and leaving a message. You may also mail donations to: Bawa Health Initiative, Inc., P.O. Box 432, Wallingford, CT 06492. With your continued support, we can make a difference in the village of Bawa in Cameroon.

We are also on Facebook (search for BAWA Health Initiative page).


In 140 characters or less, how would
you describe the First Congregational Church of Wallingford to an interested stranger?

Among the responses shared:
Our church is not only the foundation for our beliefs in the Lord, but also the sanctuary for our people, our family. In one simple, but powerful word our church is HOME.

High on a hill in Wallingford, there is a pointy church, with warm, inviting, giving families, that welcome with generous loving arms all those who come to us.

The First Congregational Church is a warm inviting place that reaches out to the community with an abundance of support.


Holy Joe's Cafe

Holy Joe's Cafe is a Coffee House Ministry – United Church of Christ military chaplains have found an old way to invite soldiers in Kuwait and Afghanistan into a safe and informal place where they can receive spiritual care and good coffee. We also have a Facebook page (click here).

“Holy cow, Holy Joe’s, what a blessing!” says Chaplain Jeff Hawkins.

“We’ve just received your latest shipment of coffee sent to Afghanistan as part of Resolute
Support. It’s a huge hit and tremendous morale-booster for two reasons. First, it’s a simple
taste of home that shows the soldiers in an amazingly practical and powerful way that they
are not forgotten… Second, because the coffee is served up by Chaplains and Chaplain’s
Assistants throughout the combat zone as they perform their “Ministry of Presence”. It’s a
natural bridge-builder to talk and begin to meet soldiers better relational, emotional, and
spiritual needs. We are so grateful to Holy Joe’s Café – First Congregational Church and
their generous partners for the impact they provide!”



The Prayer Shawl Ministry is a dedicated group of women who knit shawls and prayers together for those in need of healing. "Part of the journey of prayer and faith is to recognize that we may never know how our love and care will touch or change another person's life. Instead, we are invited to offer others our compassion and let whatever needs to happen, happen. There is an old saying: Our hands are God's hands." Through the shawl-knitting ministry we can learn to trust the truth that God works through us when we care for our friends and strangers alike.

The instructions for both Prayer Shawls, as well as numerous patterns for baby blankets, exist on our website

If you have a need for a Prayer Shawl for a friend, family member or for yourself, please do not hesitate to contact the ministry (Kathryn Janis) through the office (265-1691). If you are not connected to First Congregational Church in Wallingford, CT please follow this link for a Prayer Shawl Ministry in your area. Click here.

If you have created a Prayer Shawl or Baptismal Blanket, please drop it off at the church office ~ there will be a sign-in sheet to identify who made the shawl, the color of the shawl, if it is intended for someone or if it is meant to be used by the ministry in the general shawl cache. There will be a Prayer Shawl basket for new shawls and blankets that need to be blessed at the church office.

The next Prayer Shawl Ministry meeting will be January 16, 2017.


Upper Room Devotional Booklets are in the Narthex literature rack in both regular and large print editions.


We would also like to assemble an "All Church" email list. If you are a church member, please send us an email. Send to:


Have you been e-spired? If you would like to receive your Spire as an email document...let us know. Email
and say yes! To the e-spired…Thank you.


Soul Boosters

God enters the human heart by its own ways: He enters the wise through wisdom. He enters the simple through simplicity.
Oscar Romero in The Violence of Love

To Practice This Thought: Contemplate the ways God might enter your heart. Then make room.


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