On Pumpkin Festival Weekend, October 25-26, the congregation will worship on Saturday evening at 5pm Saturday INSTEAD OF on Sunday morning. All visitors are cordially invited to join us for a special Halloween-themed service. Everyone is invited to wear a costume; children will trick-or-treat then go to Kids Club for Halloween activities.
Studying the Book of Job
Pastor Dennis Johnson will lead a seven-session adult education course on the book of Job, beginning September 23. The series will run on Tuesday nights, from 7:00 to 8:15 at the church. Titled “The Every Person: Job and the Life of Faith,” topics will include an Introduction to Job the Book and the Person, An Ancient Story of Every Person, Job’s Impatience, When Familiar Answers Fail, Closing Arguments, The Voice of the Whirlwind, and Life Within Our Limits.
The book of Job cuts straight to the heart of what it means to be human. It is the most profound exploration of the life of faith ever written, and wrestles with some of life’s most perplexing questions: Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do good things happen to bad people? Is there a correspondence between sin and suffering, obedience and blessing? Can God be trusted? Why should we serve God if there are no guarantees?
There was never a time when the book of Job was not relevant, but it is especially relevant in a post-9/11 world. This is not because the book of Job has changed, but because we have. We may be more ready to listen now, less certain of our own answers. Perhaps every generation has an experience that makes this possible. In any case, when Job asks, “Why?” we, too, strain to hear any answers. And if answers are not forthcoming, then we, like Job, at least need to know how to live without them.
The book of Job takes a deep journey into human suffering. It has been called, at the least, “challenging.” It is one of the most difficult books as well as one of the most important books of the Bible. During this study we will try to meet that challenge.
A $5 donation is requested to help cover the cost of materials. Please call the church office at 815-895-2706 for more details or to request a scholarship. You don’t need to “know the Bible” to attend this series. This is adult education: another step in a lifetime of learning, and all “inquiring minds” are welcome.
Parking is available behind the building.
On Sunday, September 7 the Federated congregation celebrated Rally Day. The morning began with 10:00 am worship. During the service the congregation celebrated their safe journeys and reunion with “water communion” – sharing water collected from summer activities and travels. Rally Day is the start of the fall Sunday School program known as Kids’ Club and there were lots of children attending. Nursery care was available for the youngest little ones.
Following the service, the Board of Religious Education hosted games and activities for all ages. Topping off the morning was a potluck in Dutton Hall. The Board of Membership and Fellowship providee beverages; members and friends brought a dish to share and their own table service.
A god time was had by all.
A Fall & Winter Clothing Sale will be held on Friday & Saturday, Sept. 26-27. A variety of used warm clothing will be available including pants, shirts, sweaters, sweatshirts, coats, jackets, hats, scarves, gloves, boots and shoes. Hours on Friday are 9am – 5pm. Hours Saturday are 9am – 1pm. Prices will be very reasonable.
Summer worship activities at our church:
June 1: We share flower communion and the sacrament of communion.
June 8: Pentecost, the church’s founding birthday, is celebrated. (Wear red symbolizing the flames of the Holy Spirit).
June 15: Pentecost continues (please wear red again!) as we observe Education Sunday and the awarding of college scholarships. The Father’s Day sermon that day is based on the movie, “Field of Dreams.” Its title is “Want to Make a Grown Man Cry?”
June 22: Kids Club car wash during worship. All proceeds go to our summer camp fund. Last year we sent 17 of our children.
June 29: “Retirement/Redirection Sunday.” We will honor those who have retired from their jobs, their vocations on this special day.
All through the summer we will have special music. Please make some room for us in your summer schedule. We are always a better church when you are present!
The annual Sue Lyon Book Sale was held June 5 – 7. Used books filled Dutton Hall on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning. Proceeds went to fund the church ministries.
Our Spring “Salad Supper for The Girls” was held Wednesday, May 14, at 6:00 pm. A delicious assortment of salads was enjoyed and three lucky ladies won plants to add to their gardens. After dinner, the Sycamore High School Jazz Choir entertained us with a wonderful assortment of music.
Pastors Amy and Dennis led a three-week discussion on Hinduism from April 22 to May 6 at 7pm in the chapel. There were presentations and stimulating discussions.
Our annual Thrift Sale was held on Saturday, May 3 from 9 am to 3 pm. Clothing for all ages, household items, toys and games were available. We also had a “Garden Party” sale with various plants (weather permitting) and garden accessories available.
New this year was a Kids’ Club Bake Sale to help our kids go to church camp this summer.
Proceeds from the Thrift Sale go toward funding the School Supply Backpack Project. In the past twelve years, we have helped many hundreds of needy local school children start school with a new backpack full of school supplies.
Palm Sunday, April 13. Special music and palms for everyone. Library Open House.
Maundy Thursday, April 17. 7 pm Worship Service with choir cantata, “Song of the Shadows” by Pamela and Joseph M. Martin. The music follows the journey from Palm Sunday to the crucifixion on Good Friday and portrays beautifully the passion and turmoil of the season. As the mood darkens so does the sanctuary as candles are put out through the tenebrae service and the lights are dimmed.
Good Friday, April 18. Tenebrae service at First Congregational Church of DeKalb; Pastors Amy and Dennis are participating.
Easter Sunday, April 20. Special celebration of word and music featuring the handbell choir, chancel choir and women’s ensemble. Easter Egg Hunts for all ages will follow the service.