Strengthen the Church Special UCC Offering

How can you give?

  • A special offering will be taken during worship on Sunday June 5th, 2022
  • You can also give online by clicking the green “Give Online” button.
  • You can also mail in your donation to:
    First Congregational UCC
    2201 7th Avenue
    Moline, IL 61265
  • Special One Strengthen the Church offering envelopes will be available on Sunday June 5th, 2022.

What is Strengthen the Church Offering?

The Strengthen the Church (STC) Offering reflects the shared commitment of people across the United Church of Christ to cooperatively build up the UCC. Conferences and
the national setting equally share the gifts given by members and friends through their local congregations. The funds raised support leadership development, new churches, youth ministry, and innovation in existing congregations. By your generosity to this offering, you build up the Body of Christ.

UCC Offerings

In addition to Our Church’s Wider Mission (Basic Support), the United Church of Christ has 4 Special Mission Offerings (SMOs). These offerings exist to allow congregations and individuals to meet people at points of critical need in their lives. Though many options exist for direct, individual support of these needs, the SMOs allow a common witness and make a collective positive impact. Our church has identified four areas where these critical human needs exist:

  • One Great Hour of Sharing—in places lacking health and educational resources and/or where disaster has struck;
  • Neighbors in Need—within systems of injustice which oppress daily life and opportunity;
  • Strengthen the Church—in the nurture of youth and congregations just beginning their lives of faith;
  • The Christmas Fund—in the lives of church leaders without sufficient resources to live with dignity;

We believe these SMOs collectively serve to lift people closer to the abundance and wholeness to which Jesus Christ has called us to work together to bring about. Join the other 1,000 churches that have made the decision to become 5 for 5 congregations, supporting OCWM and all four of the Special Mission Offerings.

June is PRIDE month!

FCC Moline Open and Affirming Committee is proud to announce our sponsorship of Pride Party, Pride Parade & 5K at Bass Street Landing June 12th and 18th.

As a Partner In Pride sponsor, we are collaborating with Edwards and Hope UCC Open and Affirming Congregations to support our LGBTQ community as it celebrates Pride.  As a Partner in Pride sponsor our local ONA churches will have a physical presence at the Pride Parade & Pride Party, sharing a booth to make our extravagant welcome known to our community.  If you are interested in participating in the Pride Parade or at the vendor booth at the Pride Party, contact the office 309-762-0787.

Pride 5K: Walk, Run, & Roll | Sunday June 12th, 8 am

The Project is proud to present Pride 5K: Run, Walk, & Roll on June 12, 2022 at Bass Street Landing in downtown Moline.

Pride Parade | Saturday June 18th, 4 pm

The Pride Parade begins on Saturday June 18th at 4 pm and will lead directly into the Pride Party.

QC Pride is excited to announce that our Annual QC UNITY Pride Parade will be held on Saturday, June 18, 2022, at 4:00 P.M. Parade will start at the TaxSlayer and will head east on River Drive, turning right (south) on 17th Street, turning right (west) on 5th Avenue, then turning right (north) on 12th Street. 

Pride Party | Saturday June 18th, 5 pm – 10:30 pm

Immediately following the parade is the Pride Party at Bass Street Landing from 5-10:30 pm.  Presented by The Project, there will be vendors and performances.  5-6 p.m. – Youth Drag Show sponsored by Clock, Inc.; 6:30-8:30 p.m. – Live Music by Been There Done That; 9-11 p.m. – Drag Performances.

We will be hosting a vendor booth. Contact the office to sign up!

ONA Sunday | Sunday June 26th

On Sunday June 26th we will be celebrating ONA (Open and Affirming) Sunday.

To view our Open and Affirming Covenant Click Here!

Red Wagon Preschool Wear Order Form

You can order Red Wagon Preschool wear below. Deadline to order is July 5th, 2022.

BLING BLING!!! Get your Red Wagon Merch!

Red Wagon is building up their fund for Red Rubberized mulch. This year their goal is $2000 to put towards a very expensive project. Order your merch and show it off on Sunday, August 21st, 2022 for Blessing of the Backpacks and Red Wagon Celebration. 

All apparel is red with a black logo printed on the front.

FCC Hosts Blood Drive in May

Did you know that ImpactLife (the former IHMV Blood Center) is the sole provider of 100% of all blood products at Unity Point Trinity and the Genesis Health Systems in the Quad Cities as well has hospitals in Henry County? It also provides blood to both Iowa City and Peoria.

On Friday, May 20 from 1 – 5:30 pm, a mobile blood donor bus will be located in the FCC parking lot. Last year’s FCC blood drive had 20 donors which we hope to surpass this year.

You can register below, click the link & then follow the directions to schedule your appointment. Or you can register by contacting Susi Llewellyn at susanL1232@hotmail.com and she will give you a call to get your registered.

A few requirements:

  • Masks and appointment required
  • Feel healthy the day of appointment
  • Eat before donating and bring a photo ID
  • Youth 17 or over are eligible with parental consent
  • Last donation was prior to 3/25/22

Vacation Bible School: June 13th -16th

9 am – 11 am

Pre-K through 1st Grade

Vacation Bible School is back! Come roll with God at our Food Truck Party! Please mark your calendars for the week of June 13. Parents, if you could join us at 11 am for Kona Ice on the last day, Thursday, June 16. Let’s kick off summer with a party!!!

Click here to read the latest VBS Update.

Registration is now closed.

Volunteers Needed!

No good program can happen without volunteers and hard work. Where do you fit in? Email these Leaders who would love your help!

If you are interested in volunteering, contact a member of Faith Formation (CE) Board: Abby Stickell, Desiree Grace, Kara Waletzko, Michele Duckett or Lindsey Spies know where you can step in.

Sponsor a Camper

If you would like to sponsor a VBS Camper click the link below. A $25/student donation is suggested. Thank you for your generosity.

To Sponsor a Camper Click the button.

Women’s Pool Party | July 13th, 2022, 2 pm

The women of the church are invited to a pool party at the home of Bob And Karen Reed. RSVP to Karen Reed or Shirley Morton.

New Women’s Bible Study

There will be a new women’s Bible study on Wednesday nights at 5:30 pm, in The Gathering Place.  This group was formerly known as “Bad Girls of the Bible”.  For more information please contact Carol Freeman. The Bible Study will be starting on April 27th.

Monday May 2nd, 7 pm – QC Ukulele Club Concert Sponsored by Women’s Connection 

QC Ukulele Club Concert May 2nd 7 pm

The Quad City Ukulele Club will be performing for all ages on Monday, May 2, 7pm, in the large dining room.  This will be an audience participation event, including sing alongs and more.  Music from the 50’s, 60’s and beyond.  Light refreshments will be served following the performance. Our own, Bob Reed, will be part of the group that evening. For more information,  please contact Shirley Morton.

May 9th, 11 am, Women’s Connection – Lunch at Mama B’s

The women of the church and their guests are invited to lunch together at Mama B’s on Monday, May 9th at 11am.  Beth Bealer will hold spaces for all those who make reservations by May 5th.  The menu, specials, and directions to their location can be seen on their website.   201 W 2nd Ave, Coal Valley, 309-524-3080. Reservations may be made by text or phone to Shirley Morton. Let’s get to know each other a little better. 

May 15th | Following Worship | Gathering Place
Women’s Connection Informative Meeting | Organizing a Children’s Bazaar

Guest Speakers from the Eldridge Methodist Church will be sharing about how to involve our church members in a holiday project that teaches our children and children of the community that it is ‘more blessed to give than to receive.’ Contact Barb Guss for more information.

FCC Compass
(a look at where we are)

Thanks to all of you who joined us last Sunday (April 3rd) for our congregational meeting and discussion.  The following is an update of what happened and what our next steps together will be.

At the meeting the congregation approved the new leadership structure as our model until the next annual meeting.  If you are unsure of what that is, check it out here (LINK). You also approved an endowment drawdown of $130,000 to cover our 2022 deficit.

Nearly 70 people joined us for lunch following worship.  That group had a great discussion about where we are on the congregational life cycle.  You can find that here (CONGREGATION) (LEADERS) It was agreed that we are at a crossroads and need to decide if:

  1.  It is time to recognize that this congregation is slowly declining and not sustainable in the long term if we continue business as usual.  We may choose to continue as usual until we can’t and then shut down.
  2. Or whether this congregation has the energy to literally start over.  

The immediate agreement was that drastic changes were needed if this congregation is going to survive into the future – but you want to try.  Our discussion then morphed into the pros and cons of such a restart.  Those are listed below.  

***********

Our congregation needs to provide ministry that is important and relevant to the larger community in order to survive and live out our mission as disciples of Christ.  The group believes the best way to do this is a congregational restart.  The group made a list of the pros and cons of such a restart.

CONS

  • This will be hard with our older population and the amount of energy required
  • We will potentially lose some of the good things we love
  • It will be hard and time consuming
  • Members may not have the time to devote to the work (conflicts with other family activities for example)
  • Members may not want or be able to make this work a priority
  • The building and its cost will need to be dealt with 
  • Concern that we may not be able to move through the inevitable conflict to find synergy and alignment in how to move forward
  • The discomfort of change
  • It will require a hard look inward at our relationships, ministry, finances, etc.
  • Fear of the unknown
  • There will be loss
  • People will second guess leadership when it gets difficult
  • Potential negative impact on staff

PROS

  • Process could improve our internal communication
  • Increase staff engagement
  • It is an opportunity to shake off past “garbage”
  • Brings potential for growth
  • Teach us how to better manage conflict
  • God is with us
  • It gives us a fresh start
  • Opportunity to revitalize our facility and bring the community in
  • Potential improves recruitment
  • There may be financial resources available to help
  • Provides an opportunity for more synergy in the congregation
  • Opportunity to develop and maintain a clear mission in our community
  • Process brings more people together, hear everyone’s opinions

More information on next steps will be communicated soon.  The leadership circle appreciates your feedback.  Email Jeff Newcomb – jeff.newcomb@fccmoline.org or call the church office and we will put you in touch.

Leadership Circle

Spring Cleaning of the Church Plaza and Island Flower Beds | April 9th | 9 am – 12 pm

We invite you all to help rake, trim, weed and remove last year’s growth from our flower beds on Saturday April 9th, from 9 am to noon. Bring your pruning shears, leaf rakes, and garden rakes. We will weed and fluff the existing mulch, but we will not apply new mulch, so no wheelbarrows needed.

If it’s raining on the morning of the 9th, we will postpone this clean up.

If you are one of the volunteer island caretakers this would be a great time to work on your island and get some help. We will have a pick up truck on hand to haul away plant materials. If you’d like to caretake an island or have questions about this event, contact Steve Schippers at 309-207-2252.

At noon, Building and Finance will provide a light lunch of brats, chips, and potato salad. Please bring your favorite beverage!

Maundy Thursday | Thursday, April 14th | 6:30pm

This Holy Week we are partnering with Hope UCC For Maundy Thursday & Good Friday Services. Maundy Thursday will be hosted here FCC and Good Friday will be hosted at Hope UCC. See link below for Hope UCC’s Good Friday Service.

Good Friday | Friday, April 15th | 6:30pm

Join us for a joint Good Friday worship service at Hope UCC – Moline. www.hopeuccqc.org/home2.html

Easter Sunday | Sunday, April 17th| 10:00am

With Easter Lilies adorning the sanctuary, with music from the Campanella Ringers and Chancel Choir, we celebrate the power of life, love and hope over the forces of death, fear, and despair.  Christ is Risen! Christ is Risen Indeed!

Following Worship on the front lawn (weather permitting): Easter Egg Hunt!

Attention all kids! Bring your brothers, sisters, cousins, and friends to find all the prize-filled Easter eggs after church on Easter!!!


Mid-Week Lenten Worship

Lenten theme – “Full to the Brim” 

What fills us up and what empties us out? What can we add and/or give up to better our connection with God? Journey to live fully and discover God’s dream for us. Gather for a soup supper in the Large Dining Room at 5:45 pm and worship begins at 6 pm around the dinner table. (All ages)

March 9th, 5:45 pm Large Dining Room: Mid-Week Lenten Worship

March 16th, 5:45 pm Large Dining Room: Mid-Week Lenten Worship

March 23rd, 5:45 pm Large Dining Room: Mid-Week Lenten Worship

March 30th, 5:45 pm Large Dining Room: Mid-Week Lenten Worship

April 6th, 5:45 pm Large Dining Room: Mid-Week Lenten Worship

Season of Lent

Greetings to you in the name of our brother Jesus and our God who loves us beyond measure.  

As I write this it is 45 degrees outside and the birds are chirping through my open office window.  While I know more snow is likely headed our way, I am filled with gratitude for this respite from the cold and darkness of winter.  It is impossible to not feel grateful for this gift.  It fills my soul.

Perhaps that is what we most want. To be full. To be full of God’s love and grace.  To be full of hope for ourselves, our loved ones, this congregation.  To be full of gratitude for all the ways we are already blessed.  To be full of faith in our future together. To be full to the brim.

This Lent we are invited into a radically different Lent. As the enclosed lenten devotional suggests, Lent is an invitation to a more full life, to be authentically who we are, to counter scarcity at every turn, to pour out more grace wherever it is needed. And this is an invitation that extends past Sunday worship. To support you and your family in your own sacred time during Lent, we have enclosed a Full to the Brim devotional providing prayer, poetry, art and reflections designed to strengthen and stretch you, shaping you into a more faithful disciple.

In addition, we hope you and your family will join us on Wednesday evenings for a Full to the Brim worship experience. It will be so good to be together midweek again. More information on these midweek services can be found in this mailing.

I pray you answer this radical lenten invitation with a few hours for you and God each week so that when Easter does come again, you are ready to cry out “Hallelujah” for the ways God has filled you beyond measure during Lent (and on that note, you will find also enclosed an envelope through which you may support in memoriam, lilies for the sanctuary on Easter Sunday).

This Lent, may you trust fully that you belong to God. May you increase your capacity to receive and give grace. May you discover the expansive life God dreams for you.