First Congregational Church
(United Church of Christ)
Rev. Toby Jones, Pastor

101 State Street
Charlevoix, MI 49720

Weekly Newsletter August 26, 2020

First Congregational U.C.C. Charlevoix –

Weekly Newsletter August 26, 2020

Welcome to our weekly newsletter!

Special Music- Sunday August 30, 2020 

John Warstler is pleased to announce that there was enough continued interest in his first CD, Solace & Grace that he was persuaded to press it for a third time.  This CD of traditional hymns will be presented in a new more environmentally friendly packaging, but the music will not have changed.  With all of his CD’s we hope you hear easy listening music consisting of decent guitar playing on great vintage instruments. It is John’s hope that the music can put your mind and heart in a good place. On his CD’s you will hear  the true voices of each guitar, much like what you would hear if you listened to him playing in your living room. The only difference is that there is more than one of John on each track. His arrangements on the various tracks are all original and this recording process allowed John to do what he does best, backup another player. In this instance, John accompanies himself. Some of the tracks have very sparse backing tracks of guitar and mandolin, while other are more akin to guitar duets. 

David Bowen is a multi-instrumental musician and balladeer whose performances have been heard from coast to coast across the United States, Canada, and Ireland. He is a two-time medalist for his guitar accompaniment in the prestigious Fleadh Cheoill All-Ireland World Music Championship competitions.  David is also an experienced piano accompanist for ceili band and contra dance ensembles, and is an award-winning old time banjo player.

Sunday August 30, 2020 at 10:00 am – Weather Permitting 

This event will be recorded for future viewing. Social distancing is required and there will be markers in the lawn for individual groups. Please bring your lawn chairs and umbrellas. Don’t forget your mask!
Google RSVP is required for contact tracing. Please only submit your form once. In an effort to cut back on the possibility of waste, in the event outdoor worship is cancelled, there will only be a limited number of printed bulletins available each Sunday. Digital worship bulletins are available HERE as a PDF and we encourage you to use your phone or tablet to follow along during the service. There will also be QR codes printed for use on Sunday. You simply use your smart phone to scan the code and it will take you to the bulletin! 

Sunday Worship RSVP Form

If you have questions, please contact the church office at or 231-547-9122 Monday – Thursday from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm.

A few important reminders…

First, though we are beginning to meet together for worship (outside at this time) and to host a few small committee meetings on the porch (again, outside), we need everyone to understand and respect the fact that the church building is still not open for business. Leah and Toby are here working Mondays through Thursdays, but we are still asking all of our church family to refrain from coming into the building. In the first few days of this week alone, we have had folks walk in the building to use the restroom, to go into the sanctuary to play the piano, and other errands that simply cannot be resumed at this time. Thank you for respecting the current status of the building and know that we will inform the entire congregation when we can re-open the building for regular use.

Second, Leah has been doing terrific work for us, and since the Covid-19 outbreak, she has done a significant amount of extra work to keep us all informed and moving forward. She has also been instrumental in making Toby’s transition smooth and seamless. That being said, we need to be reminded of her working hours and of the times when we ought not to contact her so that she can have uninterrupted personal time at home.

Leah’s office hours are Monday through Thursday 9:00 am to 3:30 pm. During those times, if you call the office (231-547-9122) you can speak to her directly, and if you email her at those times ( she will generally respond to you within an hour or two. If you want to reach her after hours or on the weekend, simply call the church and leave a message or email her. She will respond as soon as possible when she returns to the office on Monday morning. Thank you for respecting her boundaries and for not calling or texting her cell phone outside of office hours. Great job, Leah!

Looking Ahead…

In the month of September, our worship services will focus on celebrating our gifts – our individual gifts, our gifts as a congregation, and our gifts as a part of the larger Charlevoix community. In addition to Toby’s sermons, you’ll be hearing from a handful of fellow church members about their gifts and how using them in the context of church and community has deepened their sense of joy and purpose. Stewardship is not just about money; it is about taking all the gifts God has given us and using them to make the world a better place. We hope you will make every effort to be with us all four of the Sundays in September as we celebrate together!