The North Canaan Congregational Church November 2008


This year we will be joining our community churches for a "Church Fair Day" on Saturday, November 22 from 10am - 3pm. The churches that will be participating are:
*St. Joseph's Church - at the Bitterman Center - 2 Daisy Hill Road, Canaan
*Canaan United Methodist Church - Rt. 44/W. Main St., Canaan
*NCCC - Pilgrim House - 30 Granite Avenue, Canaan
The same great fairs, all in one day!!
Please start collecting tag sale items for the white elephant sale. (Please note: All items must be clean and in working order. No televisions, exercise equipment or furniture, please.) We will also accept clothing for the Children's Clothing Exchange, Baked Goods for the Bake Sale and Gift Basket donations for the Teacup Auction. Items may be dropped off at the Pilgrim House during office hours; Mon., Tues., and Thurs., 9:30-2:30.
We need help with set-up and clean-up, waitresses and more! You may call Tammy MacDonald, Fair Chairperson at 824-9834 or the church office at 824-7232, if you can lend a hand. Thank You!

It takes an entire church to make the Calico Fair a success.

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Fishes & Loaves Food Pantry is open every Wednesday of the month 9:15am - 11:00am AND 4pm - 5:00pm at PH.

The Children's Clothing Exchange is open every Wednesday of the month 9am - 11:30am at PH.

Prayer Shawl Gathering: The Prayer Shawl Ministry will meet on the second Sunday of each month following worship.

Reminder: Daylight savings time is Sunday, November 2. Please remember to turn your clocks BACK on Saturday night!

Faith Without Bounds Worship Service: Sunday, November 2nd, 4pm at PH.

Deacons Meeting: Monday, November 3rd, 7pm at PH.

Trustees Meeting: Monday, November 10th, 7pm at PH.

Christian Ed. Meeting: Date to be announced.

Deadline for Spire articles: Monday, November 17th.

Calico Fair: Saturday, November 22, 10am - 3pm at PH.

Thanksgiving Day: Thursday, November 27. Community Dinner at Pilgrim House, 12pm-2pm.

2 Serena Swiderski
3 Shirley Schmitt
8 Kyle Considine
9 Larry Carlson
Sally Ford
13 Alicia Storrs 15 Ned Gow
17 Michele Wohlfert
29 Jane Place Prokop


Pilgrim House Usage for November: Every Monday 7pm-8pm; Sunday, November 2nd, Prayer Service, 4pm; Saturday, November 22, Calico Fair, 10am-3pm; Sunday, November 23, Youth Groups 12-4pm; Thursday, November 27, Harvest Celebration Thanksgiving Community Dinner, 12-2pm.

PLEASE NOTE: Pilgrim House will not be available for use from November 17 - November 24.

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Sunday school classes are going very well. Our next session begins on November 23. It has been difficult finding teachers for our two Sunday school classes, so for the next session we will combine the two classes. Team teachers will be Melissa Adam, Michele Bosworth and JoEllen Niedeck. Floaters will be Stacey Curtis, Stacey Dodge and Melissa Gandolfo. Nursery care will be provided by Youth for Christ volunteers. Christina Rogers will create a schedule.
If you would like to teach, substitute or be a "floater", please speak to Michele Bosworth.


The Junior Youth Group participated in the CROP Walk this year, handing out water and orange slices at the halfway point. Thank you to Nancy Brenner for helping me with this event. Jesse MacDonald, Ryan Bosworth and Steven Bosworth came to help. We were very proud of the youth for their bravery and perseverance for sticking it out while fighting off the swarms of mosquitoes we encountered! After the walk we enjoyed ice cream sundaes at McDonald's. The Junior Youth Group raised $245 for CROP! Great job! Thank you to all who participated, helped and sponsored this awesome mission!

Our October event has been postponed until November 2. We will visit the corn maze at Ellsworth Farm in Sharon. Please bring $5.00 and a bag lunch. We will eat lunch following worship and head to Sharon. Nancy Brenner will be helping me with this event, also. Please be sure you have a signed permission slip. We will call parents when we return to Pilgrim House so they may pick up their child/ren.

Our November event will be November 23. Please bring a bag lunch and join us at Pilgrim House following worship to bake cookies for the Fishes & Loaves Food Pantry Thanksgiving food baskets. We will bake and decorate sugar cookies and wrap them individually for the food baskets. When we are finished with baking and clean up, we will have a "sundae bar" and you can make your own sundae! Parents will be called for pick up at Pilgrim House when we are done.

Looking ahead: We will go caroling at Geer! Stay tuned for more details!

Michele Bosworth
Sunday School Coordinator

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Our first rehearsal will be Sunday, November 2, after worship.
We'll be rehearsing again, briefly after worship on November 9 and 16. We'll sing during worship on November 23, Thanksgiving Sunday.

On November 30, we'll start rehearsing to sing on Sunday, December 21.
All children and youth are welcome to join us!

Beth Bartholomew and Michele Bosworth


Our first event for the season was to head down to HVRHS to participate in the annual CROP walk on September 28th. This happened to be the 25th year here in the Northwest Corner. Thank you to Corinne Hammond, Barb Ghi, and Sally Pollard for walking with us. We had 13 people participate at this event and we all walked 5 miles. Thank you to all of our church and community sponsors. The Teens made thank you cards during S. School on October 12th to mail to our sponsors. The teens are very grateful to Barb Ghi for helping us to make beautiful cards with her Stamping Up kit.
Thank you to Cassidy Considine, Katherine Funkhouser and their friend, for donating their money under YFC N. Canaan Congregational Church. Together YFC raised $290.00 for the CROP walk.
Our Youth for Christ teens enjoyed a fun time of Kayaking and Pontoon boating on Sunday October 5th during worship. Special thanks to Stacey Dodge for hosting us at Lakeville Lake, and to Corinne Hammond and Joe and Melissa Gulotta for their help as well. We had 14 people all together at this event.
On October 11th Karen, Katie, Robyn and her friend, and Erin Bartomioli as well as Christina, Kaleigh, and Garrett Rogers went apple picking at Hedgerow Farms in West Cornwall. We would like to thank Dave Cain of Hedgerow Farms for letting us gather apples and borrow his apple press. All of this was in preparation for our October 12th event of making homemade cider and doughnuts at the Pilgrim house.
Looking ahead our upcoming November events: November 2nd- YFC chaperoned by Christina Rogers and Melissa Gandolfo will go to Ellsworth Farms in Sharon CT to the Corn Maze. The cost will be $8.00 per person. So mark your calendars and don't forget your permission slips.
On November 23rd- We will be assisting the Junior Youth group with baking cookies for Fishes and Loaves for an added treat to hand out in their holiday food distribution. After we bake and clean up we will all enjoy making our own Ice cream sundaes.

Christina Rogers

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This years Pageant will be on Sunday, December 14th during worship.
This year we are going to be having a new Christmas pageant. We will still have the children dressed up in the costumes and the Nativity scene. The Pageant is called the Symbols of Christmas by Elizabeth Hayes. This year the children, teens, choir and our audience will all have a part. In case you're wondering, the audience will be helping us by singing a Christmas hymn. PRACTICES will be every Sunday during Sunday school starting November 2nd- December 7th. The teens will not be staying in the service on Nov. 2nd or Dec. 7th so that they can practice with the Sunday school. Please mark your calendars and come to all the practices you can; we do have a new song to learn.

Hope to see you there!
Christina Rogers


The Christian Education Committee met on Sunday, October 19 following worship at the church. In attendance were JoEllen Niedeck - chair, Michele Bosworth, Barbara Ghi and Christina Rogers. Welcome to Barbara Ghi, who has just joined the CE Committee. During the meeting, JoEllen and Christina cleaned the toys in the nursery.

A decision was made regarding the children's Christmas pageant. A new pageant was chosen and Christina Rogers will be in charge of rehearsals. Pageant Sunday will be held on December 14.

CE discussed Covenant to Care for Children's Christmas needs. Two families will be sponsored by our church. Melissa Adam is our church liaison for CtC. Please see separate article in this edition of the Spire.

Items for discussion also included CPR classes, teachers and Calico Fair. The first CPR class was held and nine people attended. Classes will be combined during the next session of Sunday school, beginning Nov. 23. On Saturday, November 23, Michele Bosworth will open a children's room at the Calico Fair from 10am-noon. Michele Wohlfert has volunteered to help. There will be free crafts and games, and face painting for $1.00.

Our next meeting will be scheduled for a Sunday in November following worship and will be announced at a later date.

Respectfully submitted, Michele Bosworth, CE Secretary

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The acolytes are youth who light the candles before worship on Sunday.
The word acolyte means "bringing light."

On the 2nd through 5th Sundays of the month, the acolyte lights the two candles on the communion table (with the cross) after the worship service has started, during the "Organ Meditation/Lighting of the Candles."
On the 1st Sunday of the month, the acolyte lights the candles in the two big candleholders in back of the choir loft BEFORE the worship service begins.

Date Acolyte
10/26 Alexis Ghi
11/2 Megan Baldesseri
11/9 Konnor Curtis
11/16 Haley Gulotta
11/23 Ryan Bosworth
11/30 Jesse MacDonald
12/7 Steven Bosworth
12/14 Caitlyn Cecchinato-Flint
12/21 Alexis Ghi
12/28 Megan Baldesseri

Note to parents: Please switch with someone if you are unable to be there on your scheduled date and please call the office to let us know (824-7232.)


Elizabeth “Buffy” May, beloved longtime member or our church, died on October 3, 2008 at the age of 96. A memorial service will be held at our church the weekend of the Thanksgiving holiday at a time to be announced. Relatives and friends are invited to attend.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Buffy’s memory can be made to the North Canaan Volunteer Ambulance, PO Box 178, Canaan, CT 06018.

Let us keep Buffy’s granddaughter, Shannon May Vernali, and all of their extended family members in our prayers.

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The trustees met on Monday, October 13th at the Pilgrim House. All trustees were in attendance and we had a very productive meeting. Although we are one member short of a full board, those on the board are a great group. I encourage church members to consider serving as a trustee this upcoming year as it is a very enlightening and fruitful experience.

After an opening prayer and a review of the minutes we addressed the treasurer's report. As anyone who follows the stock market knows, this has been a challenging time for investments. Our church's investments are not an exception, and although we are not as exposed as some to large losses, we did see a drop in our investments. Fortunately, we have good minds at work here in our church and our losses were minimal.

We then moved to the reports for the church and the Pilgrim House. There were several windows in the church sanctuary that had cracks and also two at the Pilgrim House that were damaged. These windows have now been replaced. The roof on the back of the church over the coffee hour room was reported in poor condition and we have been looking into several options for replacement. We are getting estimates from local contractors for standard shingle replacement and also looking into the possibility of replacing the roof with a photovoltaic laminate system which would produce electricity for our church. Although this option would be more expensive we thought that we should at least give it a good look. Regardless of what we decide, we will need to come to the church for the okay to spend the money. Please be praying that we get some good prices and make the right decisions.

We also now have two new appraisals for the Pilgrim House property. The UCC had requested that we have updated appraisals so that they can provide us with accurate information on a potential capital campaign for building expansion.

We then started work on the budget. We have received budget requests from the other boards and committees and we will now begin the process of creating next year's budget. For those who have been involved in the process, you know how challenging it can be. Please pray for us as we make the decisions necessary to accomplish this. I encourage all church members to give careful consideration to what the stewardship committee has to say this year as our church depends on the faithful giving of its members.

We finished up the meeting with a review of the annual manual.

Respectfully submitted,
Glenn Rogers
Chair, trustees

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Our interim minister search committee has met several times this month. Using the UCC reference material as our guide, we have been able to work our way through the process of preparing for potential candidates for interim minister here at our church.

We have received two profiles from potential interim ministers and over the past few weeks have reviewed their profiles and checked their references. We also created a list of approximately ten "core questions"; these are general questions which we would ask any candidate during an interview. Questions will cover the basics; the candidate's experience level, their beliefs in how they would best serve our needs, and how they plan on utilizing the 30 hour position here at our church. We will also come up with several candidate specific questions which we will derive from the candidate's profile. These questions will be more personal in nature and will give us insight into the candidate's character and ability to fit with our congregation.

The two potential candidates have been scheduled for interviews. We hope to have interviewed both candidates and unless more profiles are received possibly have a recommendation for the church council by the middle or end of November.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of this committee for their dedication to our church. It is not easy to fit "yet another commitment" into our busy schedules, but this group has been flexible and willing to give their time and expertise to our church. Installing the right interim minister quickly is a challenge, but one which this committee is up to.

Respectfully submitted,
Glenn Rogers


Bible Study is still being held on Wednesdays at Geer Village! Everyone is welcome to attend Bible Study on Wednesday afternoons from 3-4 PM. No Bible expertise required!

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The deacons met on October 6th. The 2009 budget has been submitted to the trustees. We talked about what to do to get our mission statement more "out there" and decided at this time to talk about it further in the spring. We approved the purchase of Advent devotions and declined Advent calendars for adults. A few issues/concerns were discussed which were brought to the deacons by members of the congregation. The board will continue to keep eyes and ears open to any concerns that may affect the spiritual vitality of our church. Plans have been made for pulpit supply through most of November. Thank you to Sally Greco for all your hard work on this duty! Lastly, school fundraising at church was brought to the table. Concerns are that most people can not afford to buy, especially when more than one child sells, and that it takes away from the fellowship of coffee hour. On the other hand, these same fundraisers teach children "safe selling" habits by suggesting that they ask family, friends, close neighbors and church members. Also, fundraising seems busiest in the fall when school has just started. It doesn't seem to be a problem all of the time. The deacons would like feedback from the congregation on this matter. Should the children be allowed to bring their fundraisers to church, or should fundraising be discouraged? Please let any deacon know your opinion. Thank you.

Respectfully submitted,
Tammy MacDonald


The following pastors have graciously accepted our invitation to guest preach for us:

October 26 Rev. Alvord Beardslee
November 2 Rev. Eileen Epperson
November 9 Rev. Eileen Epperson
November 16 Rev. Cyril Wismar
November 23 Rev. Kate Bartos

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We will be collecting donations for Fishes and Loaves on Sunday, October 5.
Focus foods are foods for Thanksgiving Dinner.
All donations of non-perishable foods are appreciated.

Thank You

“We would like to thank the church for the gift certificate. It worked out very nicely, because it was our 55th anniversary and we had something to celebrate. We not only had one meal, but had two.
Thank you again.
Elihu & Doreen Carlson”


Fishes & Loaves Food Pantry is open every Wednesday of the month 9:15am - 11:00am AND 4pm - 5:00pm at Pilgrim House.


Dear North Canaan Congregation,
I have started my second year at Clark now. I am almost midway through the first semester and things are going great. I like my classes for the most part and I am enjoying being with everyone on campus. My professors are all very helpful. I love German class!
I have a new work study position this year. I am a volunteer liaison for the culture and immigrant agencies that Clark students may be interested in. So what that really means is that I am trying to make a better connection between Clark students and volunteer organizations in Worcester. I have been working a lot with an agency called Centrolasamericans. It is a center that has programs for the Latin American Culture in Worcester. I am really enjoying being off campus and meeting people in the Worcester community.
I want to thank you for the financial aid. The money is always very helpful. The Church has always been so supportive. Thank you very much! I will see the congregation soon.
Lila Milukas

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The Children's Clothing Exchange is holding its annual Coat Drive! Donations of women's and children's winter items will be accepted, including winter coats, boots, snow-pants, hats, gloves/mittens and scarves. Items must be CLEAN and in good condition. Donations of other fall/winter items will also be gratefully accepted!

Donations may be dropped off at the Pilgrim House, 30 Granite Avenue, Canaan, CT. Drop off times: M, T, TH 9:30-2:30 and W 9:00-12:00. For more info please call (860) 824-7232.



Sponsored by the Northwest Corner Church Women United.

Both men and women are invited to this non-denominational service.

"God's Wisdom Sets Us Free" whether we are bound by our own human failing or by prison walls. All of us need to change as we grow.

Articles of clean, gently used, winter clothing brought to the service will be distributed to recently released prisoners.


12-2 PM
Pilgrim House

Rev. Rosalie Richards and members of Christ Episcopal Church, Canaan, will be coordinating this Thanksgiving Dinner. There will be a Free-will Offering, donations are greatly appreciated. To say how many will be attending, and for more information, please call Christ Church at 824-7410.

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Our church’s “adopted” social worker, John Kuzmech, from the Department of Children and Families has presented two families in need that our church would like to sponsor this Christmas.

The first family is a two-parent family with five children. Both parents work full time; however, they work at low paying jobs and are struggling financially. The family does not have any money left over for extras. Dad takes the children fishing and they love it; they go fishing because it doesn't cost anything. Mom & Dad have engaged in counseling and parenting services to learn how to handle their large family and the cultural difference they are experiencing since moving to Torrington from New York. Both adults had tough childhoods but they are hands-on parents, splitting the care taking responsibilities. The parents are committed to their children and their marriage, but they have been under a lot of stress. Mother's brother recently passed away and all of their savings went to his funeral expenses. Their children are Ashley, 11, Destiny, 9, Dariannallys, 7, Daniel, 4 and Achilles, 2. John reports the children are very polite well behaved. John will get back to us with the children’s sizes and wants/needs.

The second family is a single father and his son Logan who is 13. They live in a rural part of Thomaston in a very run down house, and the boy has old and ragged clothing. The Dad is very financially strapped. The boy wears size 14-16 boys’ pants and boy’s extra-large or adult-medium shirts. He loves cargo pants and fatigues and camouflage pants. Also, for this family, if anyone has these items; the family could use a “gently used” chair and couch from somebody in the congregation. DCF has a truck and can pick up any large items. The family could also use a set of twin sheets. Any food would be welcome—they love ramen noodles and pasta, chicken and beef, cereals. Wal-mart gift certificates are also great.

Anything at all we can do as a church will be much appreciated by these two families, and will certainly make their holiday season brighter! Our hope is that members of the Congregation would like to choose and purchase one item for either family, and that together we can make a difference!

Any questions, please call Melissa Adam, our liaison for Covenant to Care, at 824-0712.

Respectfully submitted,
Melissa Adam

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We received the following letter from the Busy Farmers 4-H Club:

“The Busy Farmers 4-H Club would like to thank you for allowing us to use the church again this year for our Annual Jack Brown 4-H Fair. We appreciate your continued support.

This fair allows us to have a practice run through before we go to our much larger county fair, and it gives us a chance to find out what we can do better with our animals for next time. It is also a time for us to visit with other 4-Her’s, friends and the public. We also have a lot of fun.

This year was our largest fair ever. We had dairy cattle, chickens, dogs, llama, rabbits, beef cattle and a pony. We had a record number of exhibitors and spectators.

Our Jack Brown 4-H Fair is run by us 4-Her’s, and many volunteers from tractor driving judge, to cattle judge, to cooks, to clean up crew. It is an opportunity for us to all work together to make a memorable day.

All of the proceeds from the fair go directly back to Busy Farmer 4-H members that attend college.

Thank you again for allowing us to have this wonderful opportunity and experience at your church. You are greatly appreciated.

The Busy Farmers”
(and it was signed by each member)


Reminder: Daylight savings time is Sunday, November 2. Please remember to turn your clocks BACK on Saturday night!

Deadline for articles for the next edition of the Spire is Monday, November 17th.