Feb. 18th – First Sunday in Lent

Here is the bulletin for Sunday 2/18. Thanks to Dan Borchers, guest minister, for leading worship on this First Sunday in Lent while the Hollisters are away.

Worship is at 10:00 a.m.


PRELUDE “If You But Trust in God to Guide You” (arr. John Behnke)

One: After he was baptized by John, Jesus went by himself to the
wilderness where he was tempted.
All: Forty days in the desert, Jesus was tempted to become
relevant, spectacular, and powerful.
Today, we begin a journey with Jesus through the season of Lent,
which brings us to face some of our own weaknesses and
Let us worship God and walk the journey together, seeking the
Spirit as our guide and companion along the way.

*HYMN # 193 “In the Cross of Christ I Glory”

One: We who are quick to identify wrongdoing in others are called to
confess our own sin. We who are swayed by outward appearances
are challenged to look into our own hearts. We who stumble in self-
created shadows are invited into the light that reveals, in order to be
restored to wholeness.

O God of justice, we have wandered from the path you set for us.
We have pursued our own ideas as if they were superior to your
truth. We live with secrets which we fear to be known. We are
afraid to face evil, to confront those we label enemies, to deal with
issues of life and death. We have been rigid and legalistic. We
have blamed others for our own failures. Turn us around so we
can accept your forgiveness, live more positively in the future,
and truly rejoice in your good news. Amen.


May the peace of God be with you. And also with you.

(Children through 8th grade may go to their classes at this time.)

To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust;
do not let me be put to shame;
do not let my enemies exult over me.
Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame;
let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
Make me to know your ways,
O LORD; teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my
for you I wait all day long.
Be mindful of your mercy, O LORD, and of your steadfast love, for they
have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me, for your
goodness’ sake, O LORD!
Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his
All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.

ANTHEM “I Lift Up my Soul” (Ps25) (Stephen DeCesare)

Offertory: “Durch Adams Fall Ist Ganz Verderbt” (F.W. Zachau)
*Doxology (sung)
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise God all creatures here below:
Praise God above, you heavenly host.
Praise Father, Son & Holy Ghost. Amen.
*Prayer of Dedication

*HYMN # 581 “Lead Us from Death to Life”

In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized
by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water,
he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on
him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved;

with you I am well pleased.” And the Spirit immediately drove him out
into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by
Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the
good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom
of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”

SERMON “From Wilderness to City” The Rev. Dan Borchers


*HYMN # 613 “O Holy City, Seen of John”


*POSTLUDE “Rondo” (John Bull)


Posted in Worship | Comments Off on Feb. 18th – First Sunday in Lent

News from FCC – posted Feb. 11th, 2018

Sunday, Feb. 11th – “Evolution Sunday”

10:00 am Worship –  Pastor Jim will preach on “What Kind of God Would Create the Flu?”  Larry Bartol and Luis Luina will provide special music (singing “Gentle Arms of Eden” by Dave Carter and “Make You Feel My Love by Bob Dylan).

For more info about “Evolution Weekend,” see this link.

High School Youth “Paint-A-Brick”  Following worship, High School youth are invited to “leave their mark” on the Youth Room by painting a brick on the Youth Room wall. A pizza lunch will be provided.  Gathering concludes at 12:30 pm. Jim Johnson, coordinator.

Church Volleyball  Both FCC Teams will play at 12:30 pm versus Zion Evangelical Covenant teams.  Games held at Sheb. Falls YMCA.

Tuesday, Feb. 13th – is “Shrove Tuesday” (last day in Epiphany before Lent begins). Pastor Jim will lead a simple communion service in the Chapel at 11:30am. All are welcome.

Weds. Feb. 14th @ 7:00 p.m. – Join us for an Ash Wednesday Service as we begin the Lenten season with a service of “Holden Evening Prayer” in the sanctuary at 7:00 o’clock.  This is a lovely “vespers-style” service, led by our choir – a nice way to enter the season of Lent – the weeks of preparation and introspection leading up to Easter (on April 1st).

Thursday Women’s Group focuses on “Mindfulness”  The group is reading “The Energy of Prayer – How to Deepen Your Spiritual Practice” by Thich Nhat Hanh.  On Feb. 8th, we will look at the “Meditation and Healing.”  Group meets every Thursday from 9:15-10:15 am in the church lounge. All are welcome.

 Thanks to all who contributed to SOUPER BOWL OF CARING campaign last Sunday Through your generosity, we were able to donate $237 to the Sheboygan Co. Food Bank.  

Sunday, February 18th, we welcome guest minister, the Rev. Dan Borchers, FCC member, who will preach and lead worship. Pastors are on vacation from Tues. afternoon (2/13) thru Monday 2/19.  Those desiring pastoral care may call the office during this time to get contact info for ministers on-call (Rev. Richard Manny and Rev. Dave Wernecke)

Love Bowls – Sun. Feb. 18th to benefit Fresh Meals on Wheels of Sheb. Co. Held at South High from 10:00 am – 3:00 p.m.  Purchase a Mexican bowl or plate, enjoy soups from over 70 local restaurants, delight in a variety of entertainment.  

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on News from FCC – posted Feb. 11th, 2018

Snowy day – but worship will be held Feb. 4, 2018

Pastors will lead worship at 10 a.m. with sacrament of Holy Communion. All are welcome. Drive safely.

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on Snowy day – but worship will be held Feb. 4, 2018

Ordination of Beth Petzke – Sunday, Jan. 14th, 2018 at 3:00 P.M.

We are delighted to host the ordination for Beth Petzke, on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 14th at 3pm. Beth has been called to serve (and has already begun serving) as Interim Pastor for St. Marks’ UCC (Cleveland) and St. James UCC (Spring Valley).

Ordination happens only once for a clergy person – at the time of their first call – usually in their home church. Installation is the ritual of covenanting with each congregation to serve as pastor/teacher. We celebrate with Beth and invite all members and friends to attend this service and a soup supper that will follow.

Preparing the sanctuary:

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on Ordination of Beth Petzke – Sunday, Jan. 14th, 2018 at 3:00 P.M.

Christmas Eve worship 3:45 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on Christmas Eve worship 3:45 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

E-Post for 12/21/17

Weekly E-post to members & friends of First Congregational Church, Sheboygan.

We’re on Facebook: www.facebook.com/fccsheboygan

Pastors: Revs. Jim & Julia Hollister

Sent: Thurs. Dec. 21, 2017

  Sunday, Dec. 24th Worship at 10:00 am  Join us as we celebrate the coming of Christ.  We will sing Christmas carols and and celebrate the baptism of Jaxon Tillman. Pastor Jim will offer a kid-friendly sermon. There is child care for toddlers and younger. Older children will remain in worship.


  Candlelight Christmas Eve Worship Services at 4:00 and 9:00 pm.

  • Early evening brings the 4:00 pm Worship Service of Carols and Candles. Youth will share their musical talents staring at prelude starting by 3:45 pm. Pastor Jim will share Christmas reflections with children.  The Choir will sing some selections from the Christmas cantata along with instrumentalists. There will be childcare for age 3 and younger.

  • The traditional Christmas Eve service begins at 9:00 pm. Pastor Julia will offer some readings from “Kneeling in Bethlehem” by Ann Weems. Jeff Britton, Lisa Koepsell, Darren Opel and Bill Born will provide special music – vocals, piano, trumpet and organ.

Christmas Giving Tree Thanks to all who contributed!  We were able to give 180 presents to 17 families along with $100 food/gift cards for each family. Many thanks to Roxanne Akstulewicz, Carol Dussault, Nancy Engberg, Penny Fish, Carla Vorpahl and numerous SASD social workers for their help with the sorting and delivering of the presents and “warm woolies” to the elementary schools.


Sunday School Christmas Program We had a wonderful Christmas pageant last Sunday (12/17).  Thanks to Adrienne Barrett and Pastor Jim for taking photos – link to Google photos here: Christmas Pageant 2017


New Washer and Dryer for Somali Family Thanks to a grant from Christian Service Board, one of the Somali families has received a new washer and dryer this past week.  John and Patty Aker, through the Laundry Love ministry, had been helping the family with their weekly laundry since their arrival last May.


Scholarship Money Available for college and graduate students. Applicants must be a member of this church or a member of a church family.  Application forms are available on church website, in the narthex literature rack or the church office.  Application deadline is Sat., Dec. 31st. Office open Fri., Dec. 30th, 7:30am-1pm.

2018 Contribution Envelopes are available in the narthex for those who requested them. If you would like weekly envelopes, please contact Suzy in the church office.  Note that we also have generic envelopes in the pew racks at all times.

Church Volleyball League in Jan/Feb – Thanks to Erin Bremser for her willingness to coordinate our church’s involvement! Games will be played between 12:30 – 2:30 pm on Sunday afternoons – Jan. 7th through Feb. 25th  at the Sheb. Falls YMCA.  Open to adults (& youth age 14 and older)!  If you are interested in playing on our church team(s), please contact Erin by Dec. 23rd at ebremser@mac.com.


Beth Petzke’s Ordination Service and Supper – Sun. Jan. 14th We look forward to hosting an ordination worship service at 3pm in the FCC sanctuary as Beth becomes an ordained pastor and teacher in the United Church of Christ.  Following the service, a soup supper will be served in Lucas Hall.  If you would like to help with hospitality (serving, clean-up) or would like to donate a crockpot of soup or a pan of bars, please contact Pastor Julia.


SNOW EMERGENCY PROTOCOLS – Announcements about any cancellations (worship, small groups, other events) due to bad weather will be made on the following three platforms: Website (fccsheboygan.org), FCC Facebook page, and main Telephone Voicemail message.


Can we end childhood poverty in Wisconsin? The WI Council of Churches and other groups are leading this initiative. Click here for more info.

Posted in Children, E-posts, Music, Programs, Worship | Comments Off on E-Post for 12/21/17

All activities cancelled for Dec. 13th

Wed. 12/13/17

All church activities for tonight are cancelled due to SNOW. Sorry for any inconvenience. 

No “Journeys” class (7th & 8th grade), no supper for youth, and no Confirmation Class. Stay warm and dry!

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on All activities cancelled for Dec. 13th

Christmas Pageant – Sunday, Dec. 17th

Join us this Sunday (12/17) at 10:00 a.m. for our Annual Children’s Christmas Pageant. Children pre-K thru 8th grade will lead the service and tell the story of Jesus’ birth through drama and song.

Posted in Children | Comments Off on Christmas Pageant – Sunday, Dec. 17th

If we have to cancel due to inclement weather…

SNOW EMERGENCY PROTOCOLS – In the event of any cancellations (worship, small groups, other events) due to snow, notice will be posted via the following 3 platforms:
1) this Website (fccsheboygan.org),
2)our FCC Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/fccsheboygan/) and
3) our Telephone Voicemail (920.457.4818)


Posted in Facilities, Fellowship, Programs, Worship | Comments Off on If we have to cancel due to inclement weather…

E-post for 11-16-17

Weekly E-post to members & friends of First Congregational Church, Sheboygan.

We’re on Facebook: www.facebook.com/fccsheboygan

Pastors: Revs. Jim & Julia Hollister

Sent: Thursday, Nov 16, 2017

“Art for Malawi” – Sat. Nov. 18th (9am – 3pm) and Sun. Nov. 19th (11am – 2pm)

The proceeds from the sale will help fund an ongoing series of professional development workshops for the Lakeland Univ. graduates who recently returned to Malawi as well as the building of a Children’s Reading Garden in Lilongwe. Come support this wonderful outreach ministry.

Winter Farmer’s MarketSat. Nov. 18th from 9am to 1pm in Lucas Hall


Sunday, Nov. 19th – Thanksgiving Sunday

  • 9:00 am Adult Forum – Pastor Jim will share his experience of a Vipassana Meditation course last summer in Menomonie, WI (10.5 days including 9 days of silence).

  • Sunday School Teacher’s Meeting for fall and winter teachers held at 9:00 am in classroom #2.

  • 10:00 am Worship – Pastor Julia will preach on “Risking Living” based on the Parable of the Talents – Matthew 25:14-30.  The Choir will sing “God is Seen” (American Folk Tale).  We will be celebrating the sacrament of baptism with Mai-Linh Morgan (on her birthday!).


 Thanksgiving Eve Worship and Pie Feast – Weds. Nov. 22nd at 7 p.m. Join us for worship in the sanctuary with a short sermon and great music. The choir will sing. We’ll conclude with a “pie feast” in Lucas Hall! Donated pies are appreciated – drop them off in the kitchen prior to the service.


 STEWARDSHIP –  “Journey to Generosity: The Way of Jesus”… Pledge cards for calendar/fiscal year 2018 are available in the narthex and pew racks. Time & Talent forms (green) are in the blue “Welcome Pads.”  We count on your support to fund our ministry and outreach; your estimates of giving help us to draw up a budget for 2016.  To date, we have received 90  pledges (7 new pledges!) for $193,800. Thanks for your support!

We celebrate with Beth Petzke as she has been called as the Interim Minister at St. James UCC in Newton and St. Mark’s UCC in Cleveland (following the long-time pastorate of Rev. Bill Kesting).  We are excited to announce that we will be hosting a Service of Ordination on Sun. Jan. 14th at 3pm in the FCC sanctuary!  Stay tuned for details.

 Pilgrim Preschool Poinsettia & Greenery Sale (benefits Pilgrim Preschool). Decorate your home for Christmas with Poinsettias, Wreaths, Door Swags & Hanging Baskets.  We now only offer purchasing of Vouchers (certificates)—this allows you to pick out your own plants at the greenhouse instead of picking them up at FCC. Vouchers are used like cash at the floral store. Place your order in the narthex (lobby) by this Sunday – vouchers will be available on Thurs., Nov. 30th in church office. See info & price sheet on the Pilgrim display table.

Advent Soup Lunch – Sun., Nov. 26th   The whole church family is invited to attend an afternoon gathering for fun, fellowship and good food following worship on Sun. Nov. 26th.  Event will begin with a simple soup lunch.  While the adults decorate the sanctuary and narthex, children will have the opportunity to create some special ornaments to hang on the sanctuary trees.  Come enjoy a time of fellowship and holiday preparation.

Christmas Giving /Mitten Tree  The church is providing a way to give to families in need during the holiday season.  There will be a “giving tree” located in the narthex.

1.Gifts for Families in Need.  People are invited to take 1-2 of the gift tags off the tree.  Each gift tag will list a suggested gift and the age and gender of the recipient.  You are encouraged to purchase the gift, wrap it, firmly attach the colored gift tag to the outside of package and place it under the tree by Sunday, Dec.17th.  Each gift will be under $25. The recipients will be children/youth selected through the Social Work Dept. of the Sheboygan School District.

2.Food Cards for Families in Need We are also asking for donations of $ to purchase food cards for each of the Giving Tree families.  You may make a check payable to FCC – memo: giving tree cards.

3.Warm Woollies for Families in Need. You are also encouraged to bring in new winter hats, mittens, gloves, scarves and socks and place them on the tree to be given out through the SASD elementary schools.


Donate New or “Gently Used” Toys for Grant School “Friends and Families” Program   Tracy Steger is coordinating a collection of toys, games, puzzles, electronics, stuffed animals, sports equipment, teen stuff, and baby items for families in need at Grant School. Place items in marked barrel in coat roam or drop them off at Grant before Wednesday, December 6th.

Plans are Underway for the Christmas Pageant – Sun. Dec. 17th An email and letter went out to all of the Sunday School families this past week with song sheets and music links and information about costuming for the Christmas pageant. Please email Pastor Julia if you have questions.

Open House at Sheboygan County Interfaith Organization – Tues., Nov. 28th Bridgeway & Beyond sponsored by Thrivent Financial. Enjoy an open house and learn about this dynamic residential transitional program helping single mothers with children.  Tour SCIO and Bridgeway, ask questions and enjoy Soups and Stews, Salads, Rolls and Desserts catered by Czech Please Catering.  Join us at 1251 Geele Ave., Sheboygan from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm or 4:00 – 7:00 pm. All donations received in person or online at connect.thrivent.com/east-wi-upper-mi-tmn on Giving Tuesday will be matched by Thrivent, up to $10,000!

Janet Ross’  Weavings SaleSun. Dec. 10th Following worship in Lucas Hall, a PEO group will be hosting a sale of Janet Ross’ loom weavings.  The prices will start at $25 but donations above minimum price will support the college scholarships (through PEO – Philanthropic Educational Organization). Purchase a weaving and help a woman attend college.

Ongoing Study Groups…

·   The Wednesday Morning Study Group is reading the book: WHAT CHRISTIANS CAN LEARN FROM OTHER RELIGIONS by J. Philip Wogaman. All are welcome, 6:45a-7:45a in the lounge.

·   Thursday Women’s Group Book Study – “Jesus Before Christianity” Join us on Nov. 30th as we conclude our discussion. Group meets from 9:15-10:15 am in the church lounge. Pastor Julia, leader.

Posted in E-posts | Comments Off on E-post for 11-16-17