Thanksgiving Celebration this Sunday 🎶🦃

 TWO Services this Sunday ~
November 19 at 9 am & 11 am ~

Thanksgiving Sunday featuring special guest musicians from the Sarasota Orchestra and our amazing choir at both services.


9:00 a.m. ~ in the sanctuary ~  Come, ye thankful people, come as we lift up our gratitude, prayers and praise to the One whose love knows us fully.  Pastor Wes will preach on Psalm 100.  All are welcome.

11:00 a.m. ~ in the sanctuary and online ~  Come, ye thankful people, come as we lift up gratitude, prayers and praise to the One whose love knows us fully.  We will celebrate 9 new members joining the church. Pastor Wes will preach on Psalm 100.  All are welcome.

Stewardship 2024: I’m so excited….

We continued our Stewardship Season with a wonderful testimony from Harold Mezile, Vice Moderator.  Please click here to listen to Harold’s powerful words of thanksgiving.  

So far, we have received 110 pledge cards for almost $340,000.  We are over halfway to our goal.  If you have not submitted your pledge card of intention of giving, please do so this Sunday.  With deep gratitude and thanksgiving for you.  

For our online viewers, we encourage you to stream on YouTube directly.  YouTube offers a GREAT experience for participating in the service.  You are welcome to continue to watch on Facebook right now.  Please note that our website is taking the feed from YouTube, so going directly to the platform will help.

Click Here to Watch on Facebook

Pastor Wes’s morning meditations ~  You can click here to read.


Upcoming Celebrations of Life:

Bill Moore ~ Saturday, November 18 at 1 pm ~ Sanctuary and online
Millie Small ~ Saturday, December 2 at 10:30 am ~ Chapel
Lorraine E. Matthews ~ Saturday, December 16 at 10 am ~ Sanctuary and online

Phyliss Collins, Lovette Harper and Wes Curry on hospice care. 

Prayers for Gib Mitchell, Tom Briggs, Carrie Metzger, Al Cady, Sherry Mange, Lloyd Kalisak, Jeff Smith, Kika Landers, Melissa Hill, Betty Farrar, Carol Brickner, Linda Campbell, Lainey Pitt, Jan Andersen, MaryLou Starcher, Deb Polhman,  Linda Campbell, Lee Brockmann, Pam Ganch-Boyth, Chuck Shipman, Sue LaRosa, Nydia Muniz-Smith, Maria Duprez’s daughter Yvonne, Chuck Shipman’s granddaughter (Barbara), Julia Detoff, Dick Sparrow, Kitty Miller, Michael Carone, John Hilficker, Helaine Eckstein,  Dr. Robert Bryant, Roger Weiss, Connie Schaefer, and who all continue to recover. 


90 Plus Wise Birthday
11/23 ~ James Moody

If you missed the wonderful Artful Prayer Session led by Lindsey Huddleston, you can click here to participate!

Thank you to Lindsey and our wonderful Artful Prayer Group.


NEXT UCC MEN’S BREAKFAST ON NOVEMBER 18 ~ The UCC Men’s breakfast series continues on Saturday, November 18 and all the men of the congregation, new and longtime members, are invited to join for breakfast in Syster Hall then.  Coffee will be on at 8 am and breakfast served at 8:30 am. After breakfast, Jim Butterworth will present a short and informative program about our neighbor, Alta Vista Elementary School.  You may register by Thursday, November 16 by calling Sherry at the church office at 941-953-7044.  We hope to see you there!

Author’s Sunday on November 19 ~ we will celebrate the authors of our church.  If you have written a book, please contact Dale Moore.  We are encouraging authors to bring copies of your books to sell ~ makes a GREAT Christmas present.  We give thanks for all those who share their creativity with others.

We still need some Salvation Army Christmas Angels! There are 19 gift tags left for children and seniors.  Let’s have 100% participation so no one is left out.  Tags will be available in Syster Hall after both services this Sunday, November 19.  Hope to see you there.  If you are unable to collect a tag in person, please contact Sandy Smith at 941-260-8337, 340-227-5121, or via email.  

Remember gifts are due at the church by Sunday, December 3. 

We also have gift tags for 10 individuals at the Pines who we want to share God’s love with this season. These tags will be available after worship as well. 


Christmas Light Tour ~ back by popular demand ~ Len and Drue Murray will host the annual Christmas light bus tour on Tuesday, December 12 meet at 5:30 pm and Thursday, December 14 at 5:30 pm.  Sign up sheets are in the narthex.  Space is limited.


Sorella Duo, cello and piano ~ Candlelight Christmas Concert ~ Friday, November 24th @ 7 p.m. ~Reed Chapel and Music Center at First Congregational UCC  

Limited Seating ~ Advanced tickets only ~ $20.00 each.  Tickets available on Sunday mornings and through the church office.  

Embracing their Italian heritage, Sorella (meaning sister), Natalie and Rebecca Helm have enjoyed performing together since they were young children.  Both sisters are currently working as professional musicians.  Natalie is the principal cellist for the Sarasota Orchestra and Founder of Upward Notes, Inc.  Rebecca, pianist, is the Director and Founder of Go-Go Allegro Music School in Boston.  This concert has become a tradition to launch your holidays in peace.   


Come one, come all to the annual Women’s Association’s Christmas luncheon on Tuesday, December 5, at 11:30 am. We will fill and wrap Christmas boxes for shut-in seniors (male and female) in our community. Our goal this year is to fill and wrap 100 shoe boxes that will be distributed to the residents of Orchard Place and to Meals on Wheels. To put us all in a holiday mood, we will also have a Christmas sing-along. Cost for lunch is $12.00. All are welcome. Please sign up to attend after Sunday worship or call the church office at 941-953-7044. Bring empty shoe boxes and items to fill them to the church narthex. Questions? Call Connie Toops, (941) 379-2373, or via email.  Lists of what to contribute are available at the church.  


December 10 ~ A Christmas Like None Other ~ A time of reflection, renewal, and resting in God’s love.  Whether you find yourself grieving, longing, hurting, or just not in the “spirit of the season”, join Pastor Wes at 12:30 pm in the Oasis Center for a time of quietness and stepping outside the hustle and bustle of the season. 


PRAYER SHAWLS Calling all knitters and crocheters!  The next gathering of the Prayer Shawl Ministry Group will be on Tuesday Dec 5th from 2-3:30p.m. at Carol Hagglund’s house. Contact Carol (813-767-3782) for the address.
Contact Lindsey Huddleston (630-338-9294) for more information.

Refreshments will be served.

Sacred Conversations on Race ~ gathers at 3 pm in the Oasis Center and on Zoom on the following date:
December 13 at 3 pm:  “My road trip through the whitest towns in America” – TED Talk by Rich Benjamin.

We will not meet on December 27 as we observe the Christmas holiday.

All are welcome!  You can join either in person in the Oasis Center or on Zoom.  Please see Jim Crumel for more information.



The Racial Justice Mission Group invites you on a day trip to visit the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum of Florida in St Pete on Friday Dec 1.   You can read about the museum on its website. (  The free church bus is available on a first come-first served basis.  Others will carpool. Bus riders will meet at the church at 10:45am and leave at 11am.. The bus will return to the church by  4:30pm. The group will meet for lunch in St Pete before the docent-led tour.  The museum cost of $10/person can be paid on arrival.  To register for lunch and the museum tour, sign up for the bus, or for more information, text or call Lindsey Huddleston at 630-338-9294 by Monday Nov. 20.

SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, Dec 7 – @ 5:00 – 7:30pm – Kwanzaa community celebration at the Betty J. Johnson Library.

RSVP to Lois Wilkins with your plans to attend.

A celebration of the principles of Kwanzaa, celebrating African-American’s through story, art, and wisdom, and community connections.  All are welcome!!



Wednesday, November 15
Wednesday Bible Study, 11 am, Oasis Center and Zoom
Choir Rehearsal, 7 pm, Chapel

Thursday, November 16
Green Team, 10 am, Oasis Center

Saturday, November 18
Men’s Breakfast, 8 am, Syster Hall
Celebration of Life Bill Moore, 1 pm, Sanctuary and online

Sunday, November 19 ~ Thanksgiving Sunday
Early Worship, 9 am, sanctuary
Sunday Worship, 11 am, sanctuary and online
Fellowship, noon, Syster Hall

Monday, November 20
Christianity for the Rest of Us Book Conversation, 4 pm, Oasis and Zoom

Church campus will be closed Thursday, November 23rd and Friday, November 24 in observance of Thanksgiving.  






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