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February 2021
Welcome to the FCCWH February newsletter!  
January Recap
In-Person Worship
This month we continued to have in-person Worship Services.  These were made possible through careful planning and following health guidelines set by the city and state.  The main guidelines were:
  1. Masks were required while at the service.
  2. Upon arrival there was a short questionnaire before being ushered to an assigned space.
  3. Pre-registration so that we can maximize the number of people that can attend.  Find the form here.
Online Resources
As we have in person services we are still posting sermons online for those that are not feeling well or are not comfortable worshipping in person. Videos are available online on both the church website and FCCWH YouTube Channel.  

We are also live streaming the services via Zoom.  If you would like to watch the sermon live, follow the link on the homepage of our website.

Communion services are now online.  If you would like kits to participate from home, they are available for pick-up at in-person services or you can contact Cathy in the church office to make other arrangements.

Below are all the links you'll need to access content that has been posted online.  We will continue to post new material as it is available.
Homepage (link for Live Stream)
Recordings - YouTube
Recordings - Church Website
Online Giving - Church Website
Zoom Meetings
Pastor Carl continued holding Zoom meetings for people to keep in touch while in-person meetings are suspended.  Currently he is hosting:
 
Bible Study & Sermon Review
(based on that week's sermon) 

Tuesdays from 6:30-7:10pm

and

Open Office Hours
Wednesdays from 2:00-4:00pm

Information about joining is sent out by Pastor Carl, if you are not receiving it and would like to attend, or, would like to meet one-on-one instead, email him directly at revcarl@fccwesthaven.org.
February Updates
Mission Update
The Mission Emphasis for the month of February is Heifer International Project.

Heifer International's mission is to work with communities to end world hunger and poverty and to care for the Earth. They empower families to turn hunger and poverty into hope and prosperity – but the approach is more than just giving them a handout. Heifer links communities and helps bring sustainable agriculture and commerce to areas with a long history of poverty. 

The goal of every Heifer project is to help families achieve self-reliance. This is done this by providing them the tools they need to sustain themselves, and it is thanks to the generosity of donors like you.

Isaiah 49:10 - They shall not hunger nor thirst; neither shall the heat nor sun shall strike them: for he who has mercy on them will lead them, even by the springs of water he will guide them. 
 

Small brown Mission envelopes will be available at in-person services. Please note Monthly Mission Emphasis-WHEAT in the memo/note on any mailed checks or online contributions,

Thank you from the Mission Committee
A Note from the Board of Trustees:
Dear Church Family,

I hope you all had a very blessed and safe Christmas and New Year. As we enter 2021 the Trustees are committing to invest in our building and our Pastor's vision of outreach and internal growth. We will be working on updating the Sunday School rooms, moving our festival equipment so it's more easily accessible, repairing the ceiling and floors in the Education Wing stairwells and second floor, and restoring the beautiful windows in the Sanctuary.

We have an ambitious agenda but believe in the Pastor's plan to rejuvenate our church and reignite its connection with the broader community. I'm excited to get to work on these projects. 

I would like to thank everyone involved with keeping the congregation safe as we bring back in-person worship. We have a solid group of volunteers who make sure our policies are followed. I hope you all will consider joining us, but if you are not comfortable, don't forget the service is recorded and posted on YouTube, and streamed live on Zoom.

I look forward to seeing you at the remote Annual Meeting. God bless, and stay safe.

Chris
Chairman, Board of Trustees
A Note From Christian Education:
As we adapt and continue to grow in the COVID-19 world we have been thinking of some of the things that we all enjoyed before normal wasn’t normal anymore. One of those things is Chapel. On the first Sunday of every month the children would gather for approximately 20 minutes in the Chapel and have mini church service. This will be returning in March, a little different than what we are used to. We will be meeting in the Parlor rather than the Chapel, socially distanced, no guest presenters, and the service will be altered. As we put the final details together for Chapel service an e-mail will be sent to the Sunday School families with details on how it will all work.

Another event that we all missed last year was Vacation Bible School (VBS). We are committed to hosting VBS this summer and we are in the very beginning stages of how the week long event will play out. It will certainly be different than what we are all used to but the Board of Christian Education and the Interim Christian Education Director are committed to a week long faith based, friendship making good time. Stay tuned for more information.

Sunday School takes place both online via Zoom and in person. Attendance has been great and we continue to follow the safe church protocols of socially distancing, wearing masks and checking in upon arrival at church. One change we have made is how everyone enters the building. Everyone is to come up the ramp on the Campbell Avenue side of the building (yes, that includes Sunday School families). After check in the children will head upstairs to their classrooms and the parents will be escorted to the sanctuary for service. Once Sunday School and service are over parents/guardians will meet their children outside the Campbell Avenue doors. If you are not receiving the weekly information about Sunday School please reach out to Kirsten Vargo. We hope you will join us.
As we continue to teach our children to pray and how important it is in their faith journey. Please talk to your children and tell them that it is ok to pray wherever they are, it shouldn’t be limited to just church. To continue to encourage our children (adults too) to pray each day here is a monthly calendar of ideas to help everyone pray.
If you have any questions regarding Sunday School, children’s programs or how we are navigating our programs during COVID-19, please do not hesitate to reach out to Kirsten Vargo, Interim Christian Education Director at kvargo@fccwesthaven.org.
Candle of Honor
If you would like to request a Candle of Honor dedication while services are suspended, contact Barbara Brown at 203-430-0298 or bbrown19@snet.net.  The suggested donation it $5.  Dedications are shared in the monthly newsletter as well as on the church website, Facebook page, and Instagram.
A note for WH members & friends:
The West Haven Health Department has notified us that residents 75 years of age or older are now eligible to sign up for COVID-19 vaccination.

For additional information, contact the City of West Haven Health Department or visit their website here.

General Phone - 203-937-3660
COVID Hotline - 203-937-3530
COVID Email - covid19@westhaven-ct.gov
 
Contact Information
While there is limited in-person office coverage the best way to get in touch is via email.  The general church office email address is: office@fccwesthaven.org

If anyone would like to reach out to Pastor Carl directly, his email is:
revcarl@fccwesthaven.org

If anyone has questions about Christian Education (CE) programs, Kirsten Vargo, Interim CE Director, can be reached at:
kvargo@fccwesthaven.org

Ruth Costa, Chair of Deacons, can be reached at:
sccrmm247@aol.com
As always, feel free to contact me about anything regarding social media - Have any suggestions or comments? Questions about how to access specific content? Send them in!  You can reply to this email, send a message to pr@fccwesthaven.org, or click the Email button below.
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Recordings of past sermons are available on both on our website as well as the YouTube channel.
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