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, Spire. The Church's Monthly calendar of activities is also available. We welcome your comments and suggestions.



In the New Year — 2015 ...
POSTPONED CONCERT of FILM music to benefit the completion of the
building of the SOPHINE AWOUNKE HEALTH CENTER in BAWA CAMEROON. (See will be held on February 27, 2015 at 7 p.m. It promises to be more extravagant and exciting than the one previously planned. You never know who will appear!!

BHI Clinic


Call to the Annual Meeting
January 25, 2015
To the members of The First Congregational Church of Wallingford,
Connecticut: Notice is hereby given of the 339th Annual Meeting of
the Church to be held Sunday, January 25, 2015 at 12:30 p.m., in
Congregational Hall, for the following purposes:
1. To receive Annual Reports from Ministers, Officeholders, Boards,
Committees, and Organizations of the Church;
2. To act upon any business arising from such reports;
3. To receive a report from the 20/20 Vision Committee;
4. To act upon the Proposed Goal for 2015;
5. To act upon the Proposed Budget for 2015;
6. To acknowledge and receive Rev. Dean Warburton’s letter of
7. To receive “Search and Call” recommendations from Church
8. To receive the Report of the Nominating Committee;
9. To elect Officeholders, Board and Committee Members for 2015;
10. To act upon such other matters as may properly come before the
- Katherine Filkins, Church Clerk

2015 Books and Beyond

January 27th The Invention of Wings (Sue Monk Kidd)

Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a
voice in the world—and it is now the newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection. Hetty “Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The
Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid. We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty five years, as both strive for a life of their own,
dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love.

This exquisitely written novel is a triumph of storytelling that looks with unswerving eyes at a
devastating wound in American history, through women whose struggles for liberation, empowerment, and expression will leave no reader unmoved.

February 24th Heaven Is For Real (Todd Burpo)

March 31st Faith Under Fire: An Army Chaplain's Memoir (Roger Benimoff w Eve Conant)

April 28th Me Before You (Jojo Moyes)

May 26th [Book Group will Select at January 27 Gathering]

January Super bowl Soups and Grinders
For the month of January the Sr. High youth will be
selling grinders and Cook time soups. Everyone will
be able to buy soups, salads, and grinders during
coffee hour, soups are $8.00 each and grinders or
salads will be sold for $6.00 each. All proceeds will
go towards this year's mission trip to Sunbury, PA.

First Congregational Church of Wallingford’s 3rd Annual Wine Tasting Event

Please join us for an afternoon of wine tasting and wonderful hors d’ oeuvres at the First Congregational Church of Wallingford’s 3rd Annual Wine Tasting Event on Sunday, March 15, 2015 from 4 to 7PM. Great raffle items and door prizes!

J. Christian’s Restaurant
9 N. Main Street
Wallingford, CT
March 15, 2015
4:00 PM – 7:00 PM
$40 each or
$70 per couple

Proceeds benefit the 2015 Youth Group Mission trip to Sunbury, PA

Tickets can be purchased at:First Congregational Church 4 S. Main Street, Wallingford, CT

Or call Frank at 203-530-7816

Wine Tasting

Blessed to be a Blessing

Click here for Steward information

Thank you for your support of the ministries,
programs and mission of our congregation.
While we continue to receive pledges for 2015,
we are not yet at our goal. Every pledge and every gift matters.

Our latest update:
Church Support:
Total pledged: $257,022.
Average Amount pledged: $1,381
Mission Support:
Total pledged: $24,045

To reach our 2015 Goals - $353,700 for church support and $35,000. for mission support -
we need the support of all of our church members and friends. Prayerfully consider your
support of our 2015 ministry goals.

Please make your pledge for the 2015 Church Budget.

Youth Group News

Sr. High Youth
every Sunday from
5:00 - 7:00PM
Jr. High Youth
Meets every S
unday from 5:00 - 7:00PM

The two youth groups
will meet every Sunday starting at 5:00 p.m.
and finishing at 7:00 p.m., beginning with a
meal together, and then age appropriate
programing for each group.

Jr. High youth group Winter Lock-in
On January 24th the Jr. High Youth will have our first
Lock-in of the 2015 season. The lock-in will start at 6pm
on Saturday and end at 9am Sunday morning. The cost of
this event will be $5.00 per person. We have dinner and
breakfast. The theme is “What About Me!!!!” permission
slips will be handed out the week of January 4th.

Sr. High youth group Winter Lock-in

On January 31st we will have our first Lock-in of the 2015 season.
The lock-in will start at 6pm on Saturday and end at 12pm Sunday Afternoon. We
have dinner and breakfast. The theme is “FEED ME!!!!” permission slips will be handed
out the week of January 4th. We will be making grinders and putting soup orders
together for pick up on February 1st.

Mission Trip 2015

We will be traveling to Sunbury, PA, for the Sr. High Youth Group Mission Trip. It will be held on the week of July 11th to July 18th. If you would like to go, please send in a deposit of $50.00 to secure a spot. There are only 5 spots available so don’t hesitate. They will fill up fast!

lenn Root, Minister for Children and Youth.


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 Joe's Cafe / First Congregational Church, UCC has been selected to represent the Northeast Region of the United Church of Christ at the General Synod in Tampa, Florida based on our Coffee House Ministry supporting deployed Chaplains and their Troops.

Read the entire article on the UCC website. Click here.
Read the CT Conf. article about Rev. Sholtes. Click here.

Help Support the Ministry of UCC Chaplain
Nancy Johnson– Sabedra Chaplain

Nancy Johnson-Sabedra, a member of Saint Anthony Park United Church of Christ, is currently serving as the chaplain for the Unit Ministry Team (UMT) for the 85th Combat Operation Stress Control (COSC) unit. The 85th COSC is deployed into nine teams with the task of preventing and treating combat stress of United States soldiers throughout the area of operations in Afghanistan. Much of her time is spent with battlefield units - on the road visiting and supporting UMT chaplains and the men and women they serve. As the UMT for the 85th COSC, Chaplain Johnson- Sabedra has a responsibility for the spiritual care, morale and welfare of all the soldiers in the unit. Chaplain Johnson-Sabedra needs our help. The coffee ministry of Holy Joes Café, by providing a safe space and a “good” cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate is an invaluable partner in dealing with combat stress and providing pastoral care to our service men and women. Your donations and support are needed and appreciated in this important mission. Thank you!

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 19, 2015.


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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