1 May 2013 Volume 13, Issue 5 I just finished reading First Impressions: Creating WOW Experiences in Your Church, a book about church hospitality. Author Mark Waltz poses the question: Will your guests experience in your church be worth getting out of bed? He reminds us that our competition is not the local Catholic Church or even the UCC church down the road. Rather, the competition includes restaurants, malls, golf courses, amusement parks, and even warm and cozy beds. Many of these places offer WOW experiences with which we must compete. What s the difference between ho-hum and WOW? I shop at Home Depot not Menards. Why? Because of a ho-hum experience I had at Menards and a WOW experience I had at Home Depot. I had to replace the flange under my toilet. Since I don t like wandering through big box stores looking for things, I entered Menards and immediately found a clerk. I explained what I was looking for. The clerk, with a wave of his arm, said, It s over there by the sinks. After 20 minutes of searching (following those vague directions), I got in my car and went across the street to Home Depot. At Home Depot, I explained again what I was looking for. The clerk said, Here, follow me. I ll take you to it. Not only did he take me to the exact place I needed to be, he then asked me questions, directing me to the flange I needed. Then he made sure I knew how to take the old one out and put the new one in. He was so nice and helpful that I didn t have the heart to tell him I wasn t doing the actual labor. Dad was. However, I left thinking WOW! That experience earned my devotion. Mark Waltz writes about the importance of first impressions which are really lasting impressions. Did you know that guests to our church decide within 15 minutes of entering our building if they will return or not? That decision is based upon the experience they receive from us when they enter our building. Waltz encourages us to offer WOW experiences, a going beyond what s expected approach, an offering of our best in service to the other based upon the example set by our Lord. WOW experiences are remembered and help the guest return. More importantly, WOW experiences come from a servant heart that wants to share God s love with all. Waltz encourages us to look for ways to offer WOW experiences at Roberts. Some of his suggestions include Meet guests and members in the parking lot with an open umbrella on rainy days. Have an umbrella stand next to each entrance with umbrellas for the taking when rain comes during worship. Have greeters at every entrance of the church. Offer warm cookies and coffee to be taken into the sanctuary during worship. Have designated guest parking spots (near the entrance) and seating spots (in the back of church). In other words, save the best spots for our guests not ourselves! Your ideas for a WOW? I d love to hear them. In the tradition of biblical hospitality, WOW hospitality is a responsibility that belongs to all. As one biblical writer put it, Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. (Hebrews 12:2) Shalom, Pastor Melinda
2 Page 2 A Wing and A Prayer Our quarterly date to pack food for Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) is Saturday, June 8, 9-11 a.m. at the Eagan location We are organizing this as a member-guest event, so all who sign up are encouraged to bring a friend (someone who does not belong to our church). Once again, we have 15 spots that we have committed to fill. Monetary donations are always needed. In early May, I will pass out tubes of FREE M&M s the catch is that after you eat the M&M s, you need to return the tube to me filled with quarters! One tube holds $14.00 enough to produce 63 life-saving meals to hungry children. Of course, you could fill your tube with dollars too! Sign up by contacting Carol Morgen at or or on the clipboard at church. It s that time again..the Board of Deacons will once again be sponsoring the annual Roberts Good Neighbor Days Pancake Breakfast! Saturday, June 1, :00 a.m. In an effort to get ourselves out into the community, we have moved the location of the breakfast back to the Roberts Park Building. We are looking for volunteers to help with cooking, serving, cleaning up, etc. Sign-up sheets will be circulating at church SOON! Please sign up to help with this fun event! A Pastoral Relations Committee has been formed, and at this time consists of some of the members of the Search Committee. The purpose of the committee is to act as a liaison between the congregation and Pastor Melinda, and to give support to Pastor Melinda in her transition to our church. The group met in April, and will meet again on May 22. Thereafter, quarterly meetings will be planned. If there are any joys or concerns you would like the committee to discuss, please talk to Pastor Melinda, Lori Jurek, or another member of the Search Committee. Pastor Melinda will facilitate the first of our monthly Community Book Discussions on Tuesday, May 14 th. The group will meet at the Hazel Macklin Community Library from 6:45-8:00 p.m. For our first book, we will read and discuss Ishmael (see description below) by Daniel Quinn. A discussion kit has been reserved at the Hazel Macklin Community Library with a limited number of books. You are encouraged to pick up your copy as soon as possible. To help with physical arrangements, please consider registering in advance at the library or by calling Roberts UCC at Think about inviting a friend or neighbor to join you at this member-guest event. Future discussions will occur on the 2 nd Tuesday of each month.
3 Volume 13, Issue 4 Page 3 Women s Fellowship Notes from our April 4, 2013 meeting We had 10 present for our meeting at the Roberts Park Building. We held our Spring Rummage Sale at the Park Building. We had a good crowd and took in over $ for the sale and the lunch we served. Thanks to everyone who donated, worked and purchased. Our Fall rummage sale will be held on August 23 rd and 24 th. Please keep this in mind as you do your spring and summer cleaning. We take clean clothing, kitchen items, decorating items, sheets and blankets, books, tapes and knickknacks. We do NOT take furniture. Thanks to Dick Colbeth, Lowell Johnson and Bill Snoeyenbos for helping set up, take down and deliver the leftovers to Goodwill. The Women s Fellowship is asking for donations of fabric to be used in making quilts. If you have any you would like to donate, please drop off at the church. Thanks in advance. Our next meeting will be on May 2, 2013, at 3pm with Judy providing devotions. As always, the Music is varied. The Meal is free. Everyone is welcome. Please invite a friend to join you for this evening of fun, food and fellowship! May 16 th 5:30pm Fellowship Hall We have a full schedule of participants eager to share their music with us this month. Many of them are newcomers that we are thrilled to welcome and eager to hear from! This event is held monthly, generally on the 3 rd Thursday, so there is an ongoing need for volunteers. This is a wonderful opportunity to share your gifts, time and talents for a short-term commitment. For those wishing to participate in the sharing of their music, please contact Terry McKinley or For those wishing to help plan, prepare & serve a meal, please contact Lori Jurek or Please mark your calendars and plan on attending the Food for Thought discussion group. The topic of conversation varies each session. Please watch church bulletins or the weekly News and Notes for more information regarding future topics. The purpose of this group is to build relationships as we share thoughts, hopes, dreams, cares and concerns with each other. Ideas and/or questions can be directed to Terry McKinley at or May 7th and 21st 7pm The Barnboard 517 Cherry Lane Roberts
4 Page 4 A Wing and A Prayer Sunday School Lessons for May: May 5: An angel frees Peter from jail May 12: Lydia is converted May 19: AWARDS SUNDAY 8:45 a.m. UPCOMING EVENTS: Please return any Heifer Project Banks that may still be at home! Awards Sunday will be held May 19, 2013 during Sunday School (8:45 a.m. 9:45 a.m.) Vacation Bible School will be held August 4 8, 2013 in the evening. Please watch for details! Rally Sunday will be September 8, Submitted by: Kelly Hetrick Jim Chaplin will be spearheading an effort this year to start a UCC Century Garden at church. It is still in the planning stage but he would any help in any aspect of gardening From building raised beds and hauling soil, to tilling, planting, watering, weeding and harvesting. All are welcome to commune with God while working for our church and community. All produce will be donated to the food shelf. Roberts Congregational United Church of Christ Treasurer Report March 2013 March 2013 Year to date General Fund Contributions $13, $32, Mortgage Fund Contributions $ 7, $17, Fund Raisers $ 0.00 $0.00 Expenses $18, $48, Loan Payment $ 8, $26, Shortage/Surplus ($ 5,548.00) ($16,037.37) Electronic giving is included above, there are 10 members are giving electronically with $985 going to the mortgage fund and $510 to the general fund. Shortage above for the year was covered by reserves on hand. See annual report for details about 2012 numbers and budget for 2013 ********************************************************************* Paving Fund Balance 02/28/13 $28, Donations March $ 2, Balance 03/31/13 $31, Paving fund donations are separate of the general and mortgage funds. Estimate of cost to pave the parking lot is $52,000. Margie Ricci Treasurer
5 Volume 13, Issue 4 Page 5 The April meeting reflection was from the book called Jesus in Blue Jeans by Laurie Beth Jones; a devotion called He Lived the Answer. Before you read, close your eyes and think of some major issues facing our world today What little things can you do to ease the burdens or work toward solutions? How would your actions potentially inspire action in others. Remember those issues as you read this excerpt: He Lived the Answer: The German poet Rainer Maria Rilke coined the expression, Live the question. I enjoyed using the phrase myself for a while. But as I contemplated how that phrase applied to Jesus, it became clear to me that Jesus didn t live the questions he lived the answer. What if each one of us took a moment and looked at ourselves and realized, In this difficult situation, I will live the answer? When Jesus encountered a sick or a discontented person he did not linger in philosophical discussions about how and why the person reached that state. Instead, he became the answer-and showed him or her how he or she could become part of the answer, too. Your faith has made you well Reach out your hand Rise up and walk Lazarus, come forth All of these were highly interactive exchanges about becoming the answer. - Matthew 9:22; Mark 3:5, Luke 5:22, John 11:43. Minute to Win-It Games at the April RUCCY Meeting There s no party like a Christian Party!! A statue of Jesus that had been damaged during the German bombing raids during World War II was fully intact except for its hands, which had been broken off during an attack. A passerby placed a sign at the base of the statue that read, We are his hands. As a Christian I have often heard the question, If God is so loving, why does he allow children to starve to death in Africa? I believe part of the answer is God doesn t allow it we do. It has been my observation that the people who have chosen to involve themselves in solving the earth s ills waste little time or energy on blaming God. They have decided to not live the question but to live the answer. My father goes on working and so do I. John 5:17 Jesus lived the answer. UPCOMING EVENTS: May 3 (Friday) Youth overnight at church followed by clean up day on Saturday. Bring gloves, rakes, etc. May 19 (Sunday) RUCCY meeting after church with lunch August 21-24: MISSION WEEK! We will be doing local mission work on the 21, 22, 24 and a fun day on the 24. Mark your calendars and join us in the fun of serving. Details will be available soon.
6 Volume 13, Issue 4 Page 6 Beginning in May, not only can you buy Scrip cards from local retailers like Kwik Trip, Family Fresh and Holiday, but NOW you can also shop hundreds of national retailers as well! For more information - check out the display at church or contact Kendra in the church office.
7 Volume 13, Issue 4 Page 7 MAY :00pm Women s Fellowship 4:30pm Community Dinner 6:30pm Council 7:00pm Deacons 8:45am Sunday School 10:00am Worship 11:00am Radical Hospitality 4:30pm FPU 6:30 pm Christian Education 7:30am - 9am Pastor Melinda at Chamber Java Jumpstart 7:00pm Food for Thought 9:00 am Chamber Ambassadors at Roberts UCC 6:30 pm Community Book Discussion at Hazel Mackin Library 8:45am Sunday School 10:00am Worship SCRIP orders Due 10:00am Pastor Melinda at American Heritage 5:30pm Music and A Meal 7:00 pm Trustees 11:00am Radical Hospitality 4:30pm FPU 8:45am Sunday School Awards Sunday 10:00am Worship Strengthen the Church Offering MISSION 4:1 Timecard turn in RUCCY Meeting 4:30pm FPU 7:00pm Food for Thought 6:30pm Pastoral Relations Committee 10:00am Worship 4:30pm FPU
8 Non-Profit 1001 Birch Drive PO Box 116 Roberts WI Phone: Website: Permit #1 Roberts, WI 4023 ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED To conserve natural resources and church funds, the Trustees decided at their April meeting that the monthly newsletter will be available for pick-up at church, via , and on the church website. Should you still desire to have a hard copy mailed to you rather than picking it up at church or online, please notify the church office no later than May 15. Call between 8am and 12pm Monday through Friday or if you wish to continue receiving a hard copy by mail!
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