Jacksonville Congregational United Church of Christ
Welcome to the Congregational United Church of Christ of Jacksonville PDF Print E-mail

9:30 a.m. - Children's Christian Education

& Soul Search (Adult Christian Education)
Worship service is at 10:45!
We are Open and Affirming and ALL are welcome!

SACK LUNCHES: Every Saturday and Sunday, between 12:15 and 1:00 p.m, our church gives to "those in need" a lunch usually consisting of a sandwich, cookies, and chips or pretzels plus water and fruit. If you would like to help please call the church and offer to make a donation of money or ingredients or time in the making and serving.


PAStors note 7/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Friday, 11 July 2014 16:50


pastor 4069cDear friends,

Throughout this newsletter, you will read of the many activities and goals of Congregational UCC as we endeavor to live out Christ’s call to each of us and as a faith community. I know that the summer is also a time of vacations and catching up with family and friends and relaxing. I hope for all of us that we can both engage is something that deepens our relationship to God and neighbor AND take a break.

Even God rested on the 7th day of creation and God put in place a Sabbath, so that every worker had a chance to rest and celebrate life. Whether using your time for the mundane but necessary tasks like laundry or relaxing on the beaches of Michigan, whether you gather with us at our Peace Cross + Gen gatherings these Wednesday evenings (5:45 to 7:00, simple meal served) or marvel at the sunset, know that God is with you and honors your efforts at renewal.

On a personal note, Kate is doing poorly. While there is no apparent physical reason for her decline, she is getting increasingly weak. Currently, she isn’t really eating or moving, all of which contributes to a decrease in mobility. Perhaps this rapid decline has a neurologic cause or is a life-sapping symptom of previously diagnosed issues.

Regardless of cause, Kate’s condition is challenging to all of us. I ask for your understanding and open-heartedness as we all try to navigate these difficult waters. Prayers for her well-being and for our care-giving are appreciated. I want to give a big thank you to all those who have helped us out. Your kindness has touched me deeply.

Wishing us all God’s peace,


Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:24
july calendar PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Friday, 11 July 2014 16:55



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July 2 -   5:45 to 7 Peace Cross + Gen Gatherings

July 4 –   Office Closed

July 7  - 6:30 Peace Prayers

                7:00 Faith Ministry

July 8  - 5:30 Stewardship Ministry Team

July 9 -  4:30 Relationship Ministry Team @ Mallorys

5:45 to 7 Peace Cross + Gen Gatherings (meal and conversation)

July 10 – 2:30 Justice and Witness @ Mary’s

July 15 – 6:00 Vision Coordinating Team

July 16 - 5:45 to 7 Peace Cross + Gen Gatherings

July 17 6:00-9:00 Pack the House at The Frozen Penguin

July 23 - 5:45 to 7 Peace Cross + Gen Gatherings

July 30 - 5:45 to 7 Peace Cross + Gen Gatherings

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:34
our caps PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Wednesday, 16 July 2014 15:05


Our Caps,Your Cause

We have applied and been accepted into the new “Our Caps Your Cause” program provided by Prairie Farms.  

On Prairie Farms white or flavored milk in gallon or half gallon sizes, you will find a sticker located on top of each cap. Peel back the sticker to find a unique code that can be redeemed at http://www.prairiefarms.com/our-caps-your-cause.aspx. When prompted to choose an organization, select The Congregational Church, UCC. If you would rather, simply collect and then drop off your caps at the church office. Every cap entered or collected will generate 5 cents towards our cause. After 1,000 caps are entered, we receive a check from Prairie Farms.

With your help and participation in “Our Caps Your Cause”, you will be supporting our organization’s mission along with a local business.

“Prairie Farms farm families and employees take a lot of pride in giving back to the communities we are a part of,” Michelle Fluty, Prairie Farms Program Coordinator, said. 

If you have any questions about the program and how you can get involved, contact Michael Bendorf at 217.710.0430 or via email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Drink Prairie Farms Milk and Give to what Mooves You!       

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:18
address changes PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:34

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Make sure to let the office know at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  if your contact information changes. We don't want you to miss out on any news.

narrative PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Friday, 11 July 2014 17:00


Narrative Lectionary

On the Sundays from September through Pentecost (May or June) each year the texts follow the sweep of the biblical story, from Creation through the early Christian church. Per the organizers of the lectionary, “the texts show the breadth and variety of voices within Scripture. They invite people to hear the stories of Abraham and Sarah, Moses and the prophets, Jesus, and Paul. Listening to the many different voices within Scripture enriches preaching and the life of faith.”This past year, we have been following the Narrative Lectionary,  a four-year cycle of readings, with one year devoted to one of the Gospels. This pattern is similar to the 3 year Revised Common Lectionary (RCL), that has each of the 3 years follow either Matthew, Mark or Luke, with John featured on the major holidays. The theology of John was never explored in context but, due to its prominent placement in the lectionary, was often the major theological voice heard.

While biblical scholars and professors at Luther Seminary put the lectionary together, the Narrative Lectionary has an ever-increasing number of congregations in many denominations using it. From online chats and resources, there are many UCC, PCUSA and ELCA congregations using it, as well as many other denominations. What attracted us to the Narrative Lectionary is its efforts to increase biblical literacy.

Many people don’t know the old stories, the ones often called Sunday School stories. Many of us who take the Bible seriously but not literally do not know as many of the stories that informed the faith of Jesus or the authors of the New Testament books. [The stories have merit on their own but the formative impact on Jesus provides a significant motivation to know or understand the Hebrew Scriptures.

This past year, we had a chance to really engage John. I learned an incredible amount and was often highly challenged to understand John in John’s context and to make connections to our own. Had we been in the RCL, we would have heard many of the John stories that immediately preceded Jesus’ death after the resurrection. To me, that doesn’t make as much sense, certainly not from a hearing the story as it was written perspective, as journeying with Jesus to the cross, much as the way the author tells it.

We have received some feedback from its use. The majority of the comments have been positive and are mostly along the lines of learning much more about the Bible, and having a much greater understanding of the various books, esp. John, who, left to my own devices (which the RCL makes easy as it gives 4 choices of texts), I sometimes pass over.

The two negative comments were that we were out of step with the churches following the RCL and that we should always have a gospel reading. The first comment is true, although there is great variance in what would be read or preached on with 4 texts to choose from. And, as we did with the Narrative Lectionary, we felt free to go off the lectionary to address the needs of the congregation or to emphasize what we believed to be important.

The second critique would be applicable to any time in the RCL we choose to preach from the Hebrew Scriptures or the Epistle reading too. However, to me, especially as the comment was made shortly after 4 months in the Hebrew Scriptures, points to a longing to have part of our Christian testament read too. This longing is easy to address. In September when the cycle resumes with Genesis, we will pair, as a general rule, a Gospel text. The emphasis will continue to be on gaining the deeper knowledge of the Hebrew Scriptures.



Liturgical Readings


July 6:      Matthew 14:13-33

   Feeding the Multitude


July 13:    Matthew 8 23-27  

  Calms the Storm


July 20:    Matthew 8:28-34     



July 27:    Matthew 19:13-15

  Jesus and the Children


Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:45
music ministry PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Wednesday, 16 July 2014 15:15




Music Ministry  

Schedule of Pianists


July 6 - Terri Benz

July 13 - Sherri Mitchell

July 20 - Stephanie Soltermann

July 27 - Stephanie Soltermann


August 3 - Terri Benz

August 10 - Sherri Mitchell

August 17 - Stephanie Soltermann

August 31 - TBA


email newsletter PDF Print E-mail
Written by Cindy Fawkes   
Wednesday, 16 July 2014 15:27

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Last Updated on Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:19
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