First Congregational Church
164 Deer Hill Ave.
Danbury, CT 06810
Phone:(203) 744-6177

This Sunday - April 15, 2018, Jazz Sunday & Prayer Shawl Sunday

From Reverend Pat Kriss

“Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit,
and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either.”
― Elizabeth Zimmermann

“It is pure potential. Every ball or skein of yarn holds something inside it,
and the great mystery of what that might be can be almost spiritual” ― Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

There are many things that churches do for the community that are very obvious: serving as a place for a homeless shelter; source of inspiring music and song; a place that dispenses charitable support or gathers together food for the hungry. But there also are the quiet acts of love that almost no one ever sees. That is precisely what our Prayer Shawl Ministry is all about. The sound of Christian love is as quiet as the click of knitting needles tapping away in the lap of someone sitting home on a family evening.

The Prayer Shawl Ministry in which First Church participates is one that had its origins at Hartford Seminary. This year – 2018 – is the 20th Anniversary of the founding of the Prayer Shawl Ministry. Janet Severi Bristow, one of the two founders of the Ministry, in 1998 wrote this explanation:

"Shawls ... made for centuries universal and embracing, 
symbolic of an inclusive, unconditionally loving, God.
They wrap, enfold, comfort, cover, give solace,
mother, hug, shelter and beautify.
Those who have received these shawls have been 
uplifted and affirmed, as if given wings to 
fly above their troubles..."

I can think of few things that represent God’s embrace more fittingly than to be wrapped in the love of a shawl at critical moments in life. As the Shawl Ministry site says: “Shawls can be used for: undergoing medical procedures; as a comfort after a loss or in times of stress; during bereavement; prayer or meditation; commitment or marriage ceremonies; birthing, nursing a baby; bridal shower or wedding gift; leading ritual … rites of passage; during an illness and recovery; ministering to others; graduation, birthday, anniversary, ordination, , or just at life’s critical moments.”

On this upcoming Jazz Sunday, we pause to thank all those who are our knitters/crocheters of the prayer shawls we dispense during the year. We pause this Sunday to bless each of the shawls, their makers and their recipients. And we pause to encourage others to consider supporting this quiet blessing with a little time of their own spent with needle in hand. On this Sunday, if you have someone hurting in your life who could benefit from the caress of a prayer shawl, we will be dispensing some of them.

Come join us this Sunday as we knit together cool music and beautiful “acts of yarn” that our children will bring forth for blessing. See you then. – Pastor Pat Kriss

From Jim Moriarty, Director of Music

It was a treat to have Heidi and Jean sing a Handel duet composition, and also lead us musically at Sunday’s service. Thank you. This Sunday is our monthly Jazz Sunday.

For another treat, the Madrigal group consisting of 12 auditioned singers from the Danbury Music Centre will be presenting a free concert Saturday evening at the DMC. This ensemble, led by Joyce Flannigan a former Ridgefield High School music teacher and known for her direction of the yearly musicals, sings a variety of acapella music. A Parking garage is available behind the DMC building which is the old Library on Main St.

I have recently been listing quotes related to music by musicians and other well-known people. Let me know what you think of this week’s quote - one that makes me smile.

“Music with dinner is an insult both to the cook and the violinist.”

-G.K. Chesterton (May 29, 1874 – June, 1936) “...was an English writer, poet, philosopher, dramatist, lay theologian, biographer and literary and art critic” Wikipedia

Jim Moriarty

Youth Group:  Our newly formed Youth Group has decided to meet every other Tuesday at   6 pm on the 3rd floor.  See Pastor Pat or Jay Duhamel for more info.

Deer Hill Thrift Shop:

Great merchandise, low prices, very friendly staff. Volunteers urgently needed, especially on Saturdays.  Please call the church office if you can help. Hours:  Friday and Saturday, 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Bible Study - Our next session will be on Monday, April 23rd at 5:30 PM in the parlor off Annie Hall with food available, too. Even if you did not come before, please come and join us (call the church office before the next session so you can be sent the bible passage for that week).  Open to all!

Children’s Community Chorus  has begun and meets every Tuesday at 4:30 pm. Open to All Children – Elementary & Middle School Age – no charge, non-religious, limited enrollment. To sign up or for more or call the church office.

Join the Choir!  Singers are always welcome to join the choir - see Jim Moriarty after worship

To submit article ideas for the website or Facebook, contact Greg Pings:

Help is needed for Coffee Hour - Everything is provided, however, if you would like to bring your own treats, we’re happy to reimburse you for what you spend.  Please contact the church office if you can help.  Thank you.  (203-744-6177)

The Letter Carriers will be collecting non-perishable food items (canned soups, juices, past, cereal, rice) on Saturday, May 12 to help families in need in our community.  You can help by placing your food donations at your mailbox onMay 12 before your carrier arrives.  The food will be delivered to area food banks.

Renewal House Breakfast - Wednesday, May 2 at 7:30 a.m. at Western CT State University - First Church will again host a table.  Sign-up in Annie Hall or call MaryAnn. “Rebuilding older lives by restoring independence.”  Founded in 1998 Renewal House has helped more than 100 formerly homeless seniors in the Greater Danbury area obtain and sustain safe, appropriate housing.

E-Tidings Date: 
Thursday, April 12, 2018


First Congregational Church
164 Deer Hill Ave.
Danbury, CT 06810
Est. 1696

Phone: (203) 744-6177

Office Hours:
Monday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Tuesday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Wednesday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Thursday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Thrift Shop Hours:
Friday 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Saturday 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Sunday Worship:
Sunday    10 a.m.–11 a.m.