Sunday August 26, 2018

Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Worship Service 9:00 a.m., Meetinghouse

Rev. Theresa Borchetta Preaching

Scripture Lesson: John 6:56-69


Summer Worship is each Sunday at 9am in the Meetinghouse through September 9.

On September 16 we return to two services, at 8am and 10am

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Camp Totokett 2018

There are months of planning to make a mission like Camp Totokett even happen, never mind successful. Although it was our 23rd year, every year is different and unique. This year we hosted 43 campers from the greater New Haven area. Our 43 high school mentors were kind, compassionate, nurturing and made the week fun. Last year we added a new population to our roster of campers and now have children from refugee families as well. This adds another layer of diversity to our camp. This camp offers all of us involved an opportunity to leave a world of conflict and discord and embrace diversity, connectedness and cooperation. The goal is simple, love! We love our campers whose lives can be harsh. We love our high school mentors who give freely of their time and energy. We love our adult staff who work long days in the hot sun to make sure everyone is kept safe emotionally and physically.

One of our campers who will be aging out this year, told us he sleeps with his Camp Totokett t-shirt every night because he loves camp so much. He said he cannot wait until the next year to get a new one because each year he outgrows his T-shirt.

One day we hosted a dance party and all our campers, high school mentors, and a few brave adult staff danced. They danced with all their heart and soul and with much joy. I stood back and watched as they raised their hands to the music. Some mentors danced with campers on their backs, and everyone just laughed, smiled and jumped up and down. While it made me happy to watch it also made me a little sad. Why can’t this reflect our world today? People of all different races, ethnicities, and backgrounds coming together to show their love, and have good clean fun together. To these youth it did not matter the color of your skin or where you were born. They all got to know each other on a human level and realized we had so much in common and could learn from one another as well.

I realize there is a recipe that makes Camp Totokett a special place to be...
You start with compassionate adults who have a love and passion for the camp and the children

You add in a little pinch of history, so everyone appreciates the past and how the camp has evolved over the years.
You mix in scenery that is beautiful and magical.
You mix in high school students who are willing to give of their hearts and souls to the campers.
You add in college students who love the camp so much they keep giving of their time year after year, often putting their jobs aside for the week to devote themselves to the children.
You stir in a whole bunch of fun like fishing, swimming, nature hikes, kayaking, art, cross -fit, dance parties, pizza truck, and basketball.
You add a big dose of hot, delicious meals prepared by chefs with love

And what do you have? A camp that will transform lives, and serve as an example to us all of what it means to love unconditionally, embrace diversity, and understand the importance of fun in our lives.


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Thank you from Julia Novaco

Dear FCCB,

I just wanted to take the time to THANK EVERYONE from FCCB for everything you’ve all done and been for me. The celebration, hugs, well wishes and love are and always will be treasured and appreciated. I truly wish the very best for the church and will be around now as a member to see the church through this interim time. This church needs to be reminded that it’s not just a place to worship. It’s a place where people become family and friends. Where you look out for each other and protect one another from the evils of the world. FCCB is and always will be so much more than just a church to me. It’s my second family. A place where my children are growing up in the faith of God. So please continue to be all of these things and more to each other and all that come through the doors. You will always hold a special place in my heart.


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New Church Office Hours

Monday: 9am-12pm Receptionist
Tues. – Thurs.: 9am-1pm Betsy White
Friday: 9am-12pm Betsy White

New office email:

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Intergenerational Activities

Tuesday, September 18 Pie Making with Mrs. Titcomb - 6:00-8:00pm
We will be making several pies, one take home if you wish and the others to donate to the community dining room.

Saturday, October 20 Food Gift Love - 5:00-8:00pm
We will make giftable homemade treats to give away. Our hope is to give these gifts to those who are home bound.

Tuesday, October 30 Tai Chi - 6:00-8:00pm
If you're looking for a way to reduce stress, consider tai chi (TIE-CHEE). Originally developed for self-defense, tai chi has evolved into a graceful form of exercise that's now used for stress reduction and a variety of other health conditions. Often described as meditation in motion, tai chi promotes serenity through gentle, flowing movements

Sunday, November 4 Ronald McDonald House –12pm
We will cook several meals for the families to store for the week as they go back and forth to the hospital. Go to the website for Ronald McDonald House New Haven at the top is a short video describing their mission.

Tuesday, November 13 Thanksgiving Baskets For Food Pantry - 5:00-8:00pm
This is the 12th year doing this project. We will put together baskets and turkey’s for home delivery by the Branford Food Pantry. Our goal is between 80-100 baskets and turkeys

Tuesday, December 4 Painting Night - 5:30-8:00pm
The folks from Fired Up will come over and run a painting night. The painting will be pre-determined. They supply all materials. There will be slight fee for this evening (TBA)

Tuesday, December 11 Gingerbread Making Night Extreme - 6:00-8:00pm
The folks from the Christmas fair will be helping our youth decorate gingerbread houses!!

Note: We are working with the folks from Sanctuary Kitchen to have an intergenerational cooking event in Pilgrim Hall. They will do a cooking demonstration by refuge Chefs and then we eat together. (DATE TBA)



We have a new approach for all to participate in during the coffee hour after the 10:00 AM service where we’ll greet each other, share a cup of coffee and meet new friends.

Each month, a group will be asked to donate a snack or treat and when possible serve coffee. In September, all those whose last names begin with an A or B, are asked to bring a snack or treat and serve one Sunday in September.

In October, those members whose last names begin with a C or D, are asked to bring a snack or treat and serve coffee one Sunday during the month. That means you are asked to bring food and serve coffee only once during the year!

John has the coffee ready for us each Sunday. Each month supplies will be available in the kitchen: milk, half & half, sugar and juice for the children.

In September, last name begins with A or B, send me an email if you can serve one Sunday during the month. or call 203-483-8039. We’re counting on everyone.

If you have any questions, email or call me.

Deanna O'Connell

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We will begin our next confirmation class this fall. There will be an informational meeting on September 16th at 4:00pm.  If you are not sure about joining the class, I would recommend coming to the meeting in order to receive information about the program.    I would also be happy to answer any questions you might have or meet with you individually.

I truly am excited about what this year’s class will offer. I only wish every child chose to go through confirmation. It is a great place to help our youth with their faith development, and to provide a safe atmosphere for them to share and become critical thinkers. In other words I highly recommend participating in this program even if they ultimately decide not to be confirmed.

The Rev. Theresa Borchetta


Book Group

I hope everyone is enjoying the second half of the summer.
The Book group will meet again in September. As a reminder, here are the books we have chosen for the remainder of the year:
September 5-Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner
October 3-The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin
November 7-Ethan Frome by Elizabeth Wharton
December 5-Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
January 8-Biography or memoir of your choice

Please join us for our first meeting on September 5, whether or not you have finished the September book.
Barbara Colley


Our weekly worship service is recorded and replayed on
Channel 18 for Comcast customers,
Channel 6004 for Frontier customers
at 5:30pm on Sundays.


For Our Prayers This Week


We give thanks for......
The new ministry of Betsy White as she begins her tenure as administrative assistant.
The Yankees who gained a game on the Red Sox.

We pray for.....
All those emotionally and physically preparing for the new school year.
Our earth and waters as weather patterns become more extreme,
with high temperatures, fires, droughts, earthquakes and floods

We grieve with.....
The loss of innocence of our children in the realm of social media.
The people and lands that have been destroyed by the California wildfires

Ongoing prayers for…
Grace Chaplin (Paul’s mom), Judy Whittaker, Cory Martens (Kelly Marten’s brother), Rick Barker, Jeff Buggee, Jim Bolan, Betsy & Peter Boynton, Rick Buggee, Edward DeFrancesco, Dormer Family, Robert & Margaret Gehm (parents of Nancy Gehm), Martha Hickman (Lil Sakai’s mom), Alison Hobbie (Betsy Gay’s daughter), John D. Kelly (Mindy Yester’s brother), Ethel Marchesseault (Linda’s mother), The Family of Sharon Reynolds, Sylvia O’Brien, Debbie Pearl (friend of Lil Sakai), George Spear, and Lou Wells.


Looking Ahead

September 2: Holy Communion

September 15, 9am: Men’s Group Organizational Meeting
Pilgrim Hall (men 17 years old and above)

September 16: Homecoming Sunday, return to 8am & 10am Worship,
Blessing of the Backpacks, Sunday School, Coffeehouse
Following 10am Worship in Pilgrim Hall with musician Jim Paradise, Craft Table, Face Painting, Hair Braiding, Press-on Tattoos. Confirmation Meeting, 6pm

Life Among the Believers

Sunday, August 26 – Fresh Salad Collection
9:00 am Worship Service Meetinghouse

Monday, August 27

Tuesday, August 28
10:00 am Staff Meeting Russel Room
7:00 pm HR Board Meeting Russel Room

Wednesday, August 29
8:30 am WIC All Purpose Room

Thursday, August 30
8:30 am WIC All Purpose Room
10:30 am CDC – Happy Feet Pilgrim Hall
6:30 pm Summer Jazz Series Town Green

Friday, August 31

Saturday, September 1

Sunday, September 2 – Communion
9:00 am Worship Service Meetinghouse
10:00 am CE Board Meeting Russel Room

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Sanctuary Flowers

The 2018 Sanctuary Flower chart has now been placed on the bulletin board where the board minutes used to be located, outside of the Russel Room.

Please come and fill in the dates!

A $35 donation to the flower fund is suggested.




Check Out The Church Facebook Page

This is a public page for everyone to be able to see everything going on at OUR church.

Please be reminded that this page is open to the public and therefore no pictures should be shared of children unless the parents are asked specifically. The FCCB Youth Ministries CLOSED GROUP is where pictures including children can be posted.

Click the link below to be brought right to the page and like it! And be sure to share with your friends.


Amazon Smiles Donations

PLEASE shop at, and First Congregational Church can receive donations from AmazonSmile.

StartWithaSmile at for your purchases and Amazon donates to First Congregational Church.

Information Regarding The eSpire

• The deadline for an article to be published in the weekly e-spire is 12pm on Tuesdays.
• There is no longer a monthly paper spire. Those who have requested a paper copy now receive a copy of the weekly e-spire in the mail.
• The e-spire is only mailed out weekly if it can be done in a timely fashion.

Are You Connected?

Make sure you get all emails and updates from First Congregational Church. It’s easy and automatic to sign up for our email list – just go to and there is a sign-up form. Don’t miss another issue!

The eSpire is now available on our website at

Grocery Cards

Grocery Cards will now only be sold after worship on Sundays.

 Big Y  Stop and Shop  Shop Rite 

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