June 24, 2001

Table of Contents

Family Camp

Vice Moderator - Cindy Payette

DLLines - Beginnings

Board Member Listing

FCC Welcomes 15 Members from Covenant Class

Search Committee Update

God at Work - Make a Joyful Noise

Veggietown Values Vacation Bible School Coming Soon

Whitmore Piano Rebuilt

Summer Soloists

In Brief/ Our Church Family

Family Camp ­ August 10--13, 2001

All members of the First Congregational Church Family are invited to spend the weekend at Family Camp.

Located approximately two hours from Wauwatosa (near Wautoma in Waushara County), Camp Lucerne on Lake Lucerne is the perfect place for summertime fun and relaxation. Most camp activities center around the lake, which is spring fed, clean and private. Bring your swim suits, sand toys and fishing gear. The camp provides canoes, funyaks, paddle boats and tow boats ­ start training now for the Second Annual Water Olympics!

There is plenty of fun away from the lake as well. The field in our camp area is the perfect spot for football, kickball, frisbee, softball ... and the always popular Crazy Olympics. Tennis, archery, and basketball are other sport options. Or, ask Stuart Vander Velde and Scott Donaldson about rollerblades and scooters on the paved paths.

Accommodations at Camp Lucerne are in multi-room "Ridgewood" lodges. Each has six bedrooms, a living room with fireplace, kitchen or kitchenette, and bathrooms. Approximately 50 people can sleep in these cabins (give or take a few babies in cribs or kids bunking on the floor). If we have more campers - and we hope we do - we have reserved 2 rustic "Dellwood" cabins which have electricity but no running water and sleep 6--8 on camp beds. Former PF campers know these cabins are lots of fun for middle and high school age kids.

All meals will be served in the new dining facility, except of course, our famous Saturday night corn roast. Rain or shine, it's the best meal of the summer.

Campfire Circle is the center of music and fellowship. Bring your musical instruments and join in the FCC Family Camp Band. Plan an act for the Campfire Variety Show. Brush up your best ghost stories. Prepare to laugh at G-rated jokes. Share a vespers thought. There is something for everyone at Family Camp and YOU will make it even more fun.

Contact the church office (258-7375) for registration forms which include pricing information. Call Cathy or Gary Kebbekus at 475-1634 with any questions. Registration form and $100 deposit are due in the church office by July 8, 2001. *

by Cathy Kebbekus

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Cindy Payette Elected Vice Moderator

First Congregational Church recently elected Cindy Payette to the position of Vice Moderator. Those members who know Cindy recognize that she brings to this position a contagious positive attitude about the future of the Church, leadership experience within the Church, an unconditional love for this Church family, and a history of leading by example.

Cindy joined FCC in 1980 when she returned to Wauwatosa with her daughter Carrie. "As a single parent, I was embraced by this Church which became a second home and family to us at a time when we really needed one," said Cindy. She has wanted to give back to the church ever since and has done just that. Cindy has served on the Nominating Committee (2 terms), the Board of Deacons, Search Committee, Music Committee (chair), Board of Christian Education (chair), Church Council, and the Long-Range Planning Committee. She has also taught Sunday School classes (gr. 3/4, 5/6, and 7/8), Covenant Class for two years, and regularly helps with funeral receptions, with Church dinners, and with other miscellaneous tasks around the church.

Cindy is a teacher by profession, working at McKinley Elementary School in Wauwatosa with the third graders. Her daughter Carrie, who also remains very active in the church, married FCC member Nick Sgarlata. They are expecting their second child in October, much to the delight of the proud grandmother.

Cindy said that she accepted this position in the Church with great humility, but hopes to serve with the support of many. "The past months have made people more willing to be involved. Many people want to move forward through this time of healing in our Church," said Cindy. "I think it is a very positive time."

Impressed with the wisdom, experience, and calming influence of Dr. Lobb, Cindy believes his leadership will help provide healing in the Church. "Hopefully, the Search Committee will be close to finding a new minister in the next year and I also look forward to that time." With an appreciation for the history and tradition of this Church, Cindy believes there is a need and a place for that tradition in today's world.

Other than her family, this Church family is Cindy's 'number one outlet' and an integral part of her life. Certainly the members here are great benefactors of the dedication and commitment she offers. *


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DLLines -


No matter how well it is planned, there is always something traumatic about moving. There are always more boxes to pack than we had thought, more stuff that we have, but can't remember accumulating, or why we got it, and more time to get settled than we have either the strength, or patience, to handle well.

You'd think that, by now, after about a dozen moves, this would not be an issue, but it is. Add to that the fact that our move is across town, so little is thrown out, and until June 30, I have my foot in two positions, and you can see or sense that this has been trying. As usual, in most clergy circumstances, it is the spouse who shoulders an inordinate amount of work in any such change.

The positive side of all this is that our reception by all of you has been great. We have loved your warmth and acceptance, cherished the response to the worship services, and welcomed the fellowship of coffee hours, a pig roast, assorted board and committee meetings and/or picnics, and rejoiced at the communications of support and good wishes we have received. It has been a tiring time, but also an exciting and exhilarating experience.

Now, each of us knows that one robin doesn't make a spring. I am not so naive as to assume that, for however much time we have together, things will always be this encouraging, but for now, it sure is nice.

Each of you should rejoice in the staff that is part of this Church. Kathy and Chris have become good teachers and valued friends. Already, I have heard of how Kathy's faithful and loyal leadership is appreciated by many.

I have known of Chris Rygh's gifts for a while, but the testimonies of the young

people these last two weeks surely echo anything I had known or heard.

The entire office staff has been helpful and wonderfully kind, as I learn all these new ways of operation, and Rani . . . well, what greater words could be said than "Rani is simply Rani." No wonder she is so loved in this place.

So, I am grateful at this time. I think the next months will be exciting times, and I will be very happy , indeed, if this congregation remains happy, upbeat, optimistic and welcoming for whomever your next Senior Minister will be.

To God be the glory, but thank you, dear friends, for your part in making a couple of old fire horses happy to run again because we heard the alarm ring.

Have a great summer! Enjoy the more relaxed time with family and friends, and we'll see you in church either during summer or after Labor Day. *

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2001--2002 Board Members


Dick Koch

Vice Moderator

Cindy Payette


Diane Houriet

Assistant Treasurer

Jim Walsh

Church Clerk

Sally Boyle


Laura Anderson
Tom Gold
De McDermott
John O'Meara
Rod Schmidt
Carrie Sgarlata
Marty Vander Velde
Nancy Fisher
Joan Halvorson
Paul Schulze


Marj Fowler
Jane Jacobson
Nancy Vander Velde
Harry Holz
Bill Rose*
Sharon Petrie
George Wells

Congregational Care

Margaret Christopherson
Dick Clark
Ruth Dunham
Sally Wells
Cathy Schmidt*
Elaine Wieand
Carol Buran
Jennifer Breitzmann
Carrie Laubenheimer

Christian Education

Carla Cummings*
Carolyn Sullivan
Laura Taylor
Bill Donaldson
Barb Holtz
Scott Wittig
Nancy Harmon
Nancy Quinn
Julie Smith


Joe Berte
Traci Elliott
Margaret Brown
Barbara Dunham
Doris Nolinske
Lucy Miyazaki
John Sgarlata
Jennifer Wareham
Mark Faby
Denise O'Meara


Lois Ashley
Mary Berger
Sally Boyle
Lissa Edens
Gary Kebbekus
Susie Daigneau*
Jim D'Ambrisi
Beth Kelling
David Wareham
Doug Sawyer
Jane Boyd
Cheryl Hokenson
Sharon Raymond
Beej Wakefield


Maurie Daigneau
Steve Russ*
Char Schweitzer
Ed Gibson
Bob Ornst
Marc Blazich
Mark Lemke


Hugh Hudson
Chris Mason
Richard Raymond*
Tom Jarchow
David Moore
Bill Edens
Charlie Wakefield

*denotes chairperson

Committee members will be listed in the next issue
of the Columns.

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First Congregational Church Proudly Welcomes Fifteen Members of the 2001 Covenant Class

Nathan Eggert is the son of Leigh and Mary Eggert. A resident of Hales Corners, Nathan completed his studies at Whitnall Middle School this year and will attend Whitnall High School in the fall. He's spent a great deal of time at the church watching his parents serve, but now looks forward to finding ways he can be a difference maker at First Church.

Katrina Esser is the daughter of Brian and Lori Esser whom she credits with helping her grow in her faith. Katrina has a rare confidence when it comes to talking about spiritual things with her peers. She hopes to use some of her talents helping in the area of church fellowship.

Rachel Halvorson is the daughter of Alan and Julie Halvorson. Rachel has the spiritual gift of teaching and hopes to use that this fall by serving on the Sunday School staff. She will enter Wauwatosa East in the fall.

Parker Hoerz is the son of Doug Hoerz and Nancy Hoerz. This spring, Parker served as the photo journalist for the student trip to Honduras. A number of his photos were featured in the atrium after the team returned. Parker has participated in PF and contributed a number of volunteer hours to the church while a student at Longfellow Middle School.

Lesley Hudson is the daughter of Hugh and Carol Hudson. She is involved in PF and has attended a number of state PF rallies. She's contributed many hours to our childcare ministry and looks forward to finding opportunities to give back to the Sunday School some of what she's received from her teachers.

Kramer Kelling is the son of Jeff and Beth Kelling. For his entire life, Kramer has been attending First Church functions and watching his parents share their time. Kramer's been a regular at Family Camp, PF and Sunday morning worship. He looks forward to making some of his own contributions in the year ahead.

Wills Quinn is the son of Bill and Nancy Quinn. In addition to leading a normal life as an eighth grader this year, Wills completed requirements for Covenant Class, volunteered many hours of service to the church, and he has nearly finished work on his Eagle Scout award.

Kira-Lynn Reeves is the daughter of Mike and Peggy-Lynn Reeves. A former "baby Jesus," Kira is a particularly thoughtful student. She uses her spiritual gift of encouragement not only to affirm her peers, but also those who are older and younger.

Alex Regner is the son of Eric and Tammy Regner. Besides contributing a number of volunteer hours to the church, Alex has also been a regular at PF, served as a substitute acolyte and helped with youth fundraisers. When not at church, he travels extensively around the upper Midwest as a competitive hockey player.

Katie Rowbottom is the daughter of Mark and Sue Rowbottom. A regular at 11:00 Sunday school, Katie has served as a teaching assistant for the past two years, and looks forward to sharing more of her energies in the year ahead. Katie will attend Wauwatosa East High School in the fall.

Tom Schalmo is the son of Bill and Janet Schalmo. A perceptive student, Tom has benefited spiritually he says, from time with his family and class time with Mrs. Simpson. Tom has the spiritual gift of administration and looks forward to finding a place in the church where he can make a contribution.

Ryan Schowalter is the son of Dan and Diane Schowalter. Ryan is a student at the Prairie School of Racine. He participates weekly in PF and brought down the house with a performance at this year's PF Variety Show. Ryan served as a student missionary this spring in Honduras.

Laura Schultz is the daughter of Kevin and Joan Schultz whom she credits for much of her spiritual nurture. Laura will be a student at Brookfield East and looks forward to the possibility of working with younger children on Sunday mornings.

Andrea Wehr is the daughter of Richard and Patti Wehr. As a member of her school's art club, Andrea used her talent as a painter to brighten the hallways at school this year. "Somehow," she said, "I would like to find a way to share my art with our church."

Lindsay Wittig is the daughter of Scott and Carol Wittig. She's played key roles in several of the PF Christmas productions and, along with her parents, is a regular at Family Camp. Besides attending weekly PF meetings, Lindsay also finds time to play competitive soccer, and she contributes many hours to our church's childcare ministry. *

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Search Committee Update

Recommendation forms for Senior Minister are available in the church office. Any/all members of FCC are invited and encouraged to submit recommendation forms.

If you are submitting a name, the Search Committee recommends that you contact the person beforehand and secure his or her permission to have a candidacy considered. It may also be helpful for the "recommender" to review the results of our Focus Group survey and share a summary of those results with the candidate.

Ministers from any background or denomination are welcome to apply.

The Search Committee is represented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches in Lansing, Michigan; informal meetings were to be held with several potential candidates.

The process is moving forward, so don't delay. Your help is welcomed!

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God at Work ­ Make a Joyful Noise

This was not only the theme but also the tone of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Wisconsin Congregational Association (WCA) held April 27-28 in the Meetinghouse of the Community Congregational Church of Kewaunee. First Congregational Church was well represented with Rev. Chris Rygh, Rev. Kathy and Larry Rust, Mary York ­ Moderator, Merrill York ­ Workshop Presenter, Jane Jacobson ­ 2001 Delegate and Editor of the WCA Newsletter, and John and Eunice Erdahl - dedicated attendees of these meetings! Sixteen of 23 active churches were represented out of a total of 36 member churches from Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan.

Friday night's Business Meeting was informative with reports, proposed amendments to the Articles of Association, the presentation of the slate of new officers and a proposed deficit budget. Only 15 of the 36 member churches presently contribute financially to the WCA. Although the budget was passed as proposed, it was stressed that the WCA needs to begin a strong financial campaign of its members in order to maintain WCA programming. Youth camps and rallies are a major part of WCA programming. Fees charged for the camps do not cover costs, but because the benefit of the camp and rally experience is felt to be so important for our youth, the WCA has covered the difference willingly. Member churches will be encouraged to contribute $3 per member to the WCA beginning with the summer 2001 campaign. (FCC contributed $2000 to the WCA last year, the largest amount by far of any member church. Total contributions were $5615.) A brochure is also being developed to send out with the campaign fund-raising letter. Copies of the brochure will be available at FCC within the next month.

Immediately following the Business Meeting, the Rev. Cynthia Bacon of Burlington, Iowa shared a study she is conducting regarding the possibility, feasibility and/or advisability of producing a new Congregational Hymnal. The information was very interesting and it is hoped that when her study is complete, she will share it with all member churches. The evening appropriately ended with an up-lifting Hymn Sing!

Saturday morning 4 workshops were presented, each given twice. Topics were 1) Exciting Summer Worship for Children, 2) Christian Education Ideas that work using Rotation Curriculum, 3) Planning ideas for church calendars ­ Zero Based Programming, and 4) Moderators Workshop for past, present, and future Moderators to share ideas and concerns. Attendance was overflowing, enthusiasm high and everyone came away with exciting ideas to share with their home churches. The morning ended with worship, communion and the commissioning of officers for the up-coming year.

The WCA was founded in 1968 for the purpose of providing programs, resources and fellowship for member churches. It is a free association of members providing forums for our ministers and lay members to engage in meaningful discussions pertinent to Congregational Churches, to seek and share ideas, and to enjoy fellowship. All of these goals were met in spades at this 2001 Annual Meeting. Join us next year! *

Jane Jacobson

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VeggieTown Values Vacation Bible School is Coming Soon

August 6-10, First Congregational Church will be presenting Vacation Bible School from 9:00 to 11:30 a.m.

Ready for year two? First Church will again offer VeggieTown Values on the Job! This popular two-year VBS curriculum is based on the video series, VeggieTales. In VeggieTown, kids build Christian values by learning about God's Word. They are encouraged to use sound Christian values at home, at play, at church and at school, as well as in their future! In this experiential approach to learning, kids visit various sites during the VeggieTown Job Fair to learn how to do God's work now and in the future. Returning coordinators, Julie Smith, Kari Leon, Laura Taylor and Claudia Scholl agree, "This is a great week for kids!"

The learning experiences are based on a passage in I Corinthians, "Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." Kids will be challenged to use their God-given abilities to glorify his name. They will also discover that they all were created unique and special and that whatever interests they have can be utilized and energized in honoring the Creator and Father who loves them. Sometimes kids think that to really glorify God they must grow up to be pastors or missionaries. Through the use of daily Bible stories and prayer, God will lead the way in showing kids how to route their own paths in ways that will glorify God.

VeggieTown is a community much like our own. In the center of the town is Job Fair, celebrating all the different talents, interests and abilities everyone in the community has to offer. Each day, kids visit different job sites in the town to explore God's Word, apply it to real-life dilemmas and practice what they learn. They will work with Squad Leaders, Site Leaders and fun characters like Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber.

The cost is $10 for your first child and $5 for each additional child for children ages 4 through those who have completed fourth grade.

This is also a great opportunity for parents to get involved as volunteers. Many volunteers are still needed in a wide variety of areas to make this work. There are plenty of opportunities designed for those who aren't able to commit large amounts of time.

Registration forms for children and volunteers are available from the church office, where you may also direct further questions,
414-258-7375. *

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Whitmore Piano Rebuilt for Choir Room

The renovation of the music rehearsal facilities was completed several months ago. That is, all was completed except the return of the piano in the choir room.

A number of years ago, the family of Jean Whitmore donated their lovely Steinway Grand piano to our church. It has served us well over the years. But the years had exacted their toll. It was determined that the piano should be rebuilt as a part of the renovation project. The Pickle Piano Company of Chicago, the same firm that rebuilt the piano in the sanctuary, was selected to do the work.

Last month, the piano returned home. As a result of the work, its value has tripled! It is once again the exquisite instrument it was prior to World War II. Be sure to visit the choir room and see this wonderful instrument. *

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Summer Soloists

July 1 Eleanor Quint

July 8 Kelly Fadeski

July 15 Kathleen Sonnentag

July 22 Quartet

Diane Houriet
Nan Cleveland
Patricia Kostreva
Marj Fowler

July 29 Scott Dekok

August 5 Gary Back

August 12 Roger Jacobi

August 19 Sherman Leatherberry

August 26 Patricia Kostreva

September 2 Quartet

James LaBelle
Charmaine LaBelle
Dean Fowler
Marj Fowler

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In Brief

Fifth Wednesday Men's Golf

On the fifth Wednesday of May, twelve men of the church gathered for fellowship and fun at Currie Park golf course for a 9-hole scramble. Prize sponsors included: Golf Galaxy, The Chancery, and Jitterzz. We had winners for long drive, closest-to-the-pin, and long putt. Last fall the event ended with all three teams shooting even par. This year the teams finished -1, +1 and +4 versus par. The next fifth Wednesday scramble is scheduled for August 29. Let the church office know of your interest in participating.

Focus Results Are In

The Senior Minister Search Committee completed their Focus Group interviews this spring and have tallied the results of the surveys. The results of the surveys appeared in an abbreviated form in the June edition of the Columns. You may get your own copy of the complete survey results by stopping by the church office or calling the church office at 414-258-7375.

Blood Pressure Clinic Needs Volunteers

Would you like to volunteer your service at the monthly blood pressure clinic? Three one-hour classes will be given in July in which you can learn according to the American Heart Association's blood pressure standards. Sessions will be planned according to your availability. Please leave a message with the church office, 258-7375. Michelle Jackson, Parish Nurse, will return your call.

Thank You, Kevin Miyazaki

for taking all the Covenant Class and Children's Sunday pictures. Your time and talent are appreciated!


The deadline for submitting articles for the next issue of the Columns is

Monday, July 16

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Congregational Columns

Editor, Beth Linscott

Communications Committee

Mary York - Chairperson

Nancy Fisher, Joan Halvorson, De McDermott


Rev. Douglas Lobb, Senior Minister

Rev. Kathryn Rust, Associate Minister

Rev. Chris Rygh, Associate Minister

Rev. Dr. Charles Goldsmith, Minister of Pastoral Care

Rani Gusho, Administrator

Lee Jacobi, Director of Music

Betty Dethmers, Organist

Michelle Jackson, Parish Nurse

Sally Boyle, Secretary

Nancy Grundle, Secretary

Anne Callen, Secretary

Charles Nelson, Administrator, Congregational Home, Inc.

Rev. Norman S. Ream, Minister Emeritus


Vol. 10, Issue 6