Who we are. What we do.

The main focus the group has is outreach through mission and mission through outreach. We are a busy bunch of folks.  Never a dull moment.  Always pushing and moving and shaking.  To give you an idea of what we do, we have the following, excerpted from the latest annual report.

Ongoing / Proposed Projects:

  • Connections: A bi-monthly newsletter serving the congregation and bringing His word into our community.
  • Family Film Series
  • Coffee House / Open Mic
  • Cookbook / Fellowship Dinners (Fat Tuesday Gumbo Dinner, Easter Dinner at Church...etc)
  • Website Development / Provide email and internet access for church family
  • Youth Garden (Harvest Party)
  • Pledge Drive
  • Seminars and Classes: Family Resource Lecture Series, Baking Classes, Master Gardening..etc
  • Shared Interfaith Events
  • Fun(d) Raisers
  • Member Tracking and Attracting

Subcommittee Development:(written as of 7/2008)

1. Church PR: Coordinate publicity for the church's programming. Develop Press releases, flyers, mailers, act as liaison with community groups, calendars and others.

2. Events: Plan Open Mic (Coffee House) and other events. Coordination and scheduling . Family Film Series, Men's Coffee Group (6:30 AM, Monday mornings), Fellowship gatherings, Praise Band

3. Church Recordings: Move current sound system to improve accessibility and quality. Create a sound recording library, with services available for borrowing by shut-ins or other interested parties. In 2008 the SOC group received a grant from Presbytery to purchase equipment. Other fund raisers are planned as we re-build the church's "Sound Ministry.

4. Special Programs for children and youth groups: Brainstorm ideas for this group inside and outside the church.

5. Heritage Cookbook: Develop additional content for cookbook, brainstorm ideas for format/design. Projected completion date: April, 2009.

6. Website Development: SOC has developed a web presence for the United Church and looks toward continuing improvements with content and add to another avenue to communicate God's word. In 2008 internet access was brought into the church.

7. Hospitality Committee: Work closely with all committees to develop events to recognize important contributions, gifts, people.

Emphasis: (written as of 11/07)

Currently the Stewardship and Outreach Council (SOC) has been working to develop the church's ability to communicate with each other and the greater community. There is recognition that at variety methods must be used in conjunction to improve communication. In November the SOC established a web presence for the church (www@unitedchurch12834.org). This communications tool is vital to the goals of the committee as we strive to gather, organize and post information about the church and it's programs. Other methods involve more traditional approaches but encompass a marketing sensibility. Concepts like "branding" and others are being explored by the council and it is our belief that much can be accomplished if we continue to work hard and have an open mind about how we see ourselves.

The SOC  is currently drafting a plan for Session approval that will provide internet access in the church. This plan sprung from the need to expand the churches ability to organize calendars, improve communications, and provide additional services to our church family. Internet access will also improve information gathering for the Monthly News Letter and weekly bulletins. These services will also help visiting pastors or Lay readers to prepare their programs, contact members and improve access to a variety of resources on the web. Possibly the most exciting and useful outcome would be to heighten our flexibility and responsiveness between Committee groups. Collaboration between committees is vital but has been difficult in the past and with a very easy learning curve, members will be able to communicate from their homes, the church or even while out of town.

The Stewardship and Outreach Council will continue its work focusing on these and other categories

Congregational Life:
Small Groups - organize, recruit for and help facilitate bible studies, team prayer... etc. Membership and Leadership Training - Taking inventory of people's spiritual gifts and talents and get them involved. Fellowship - Events that bring our church family together:  Men's Fellowship, Women's Fellowship, Youth Fellowship, and Family Fellowship.

Outreach: Membership Growth - developing and administering a plan for growth. Public Events - Performances of our own and other groups at the church. External Communications - Posters, Press Releases. Seminars and Classes - Parenting Forums, shared events (interfaith). Hosting - For AA groups or others that help people through addiction-related issues. And so much more.

Stewardship: The meaning involves how the precious gifts that God has given to all are used and cared for. The good steward is someone who is doing the best he can with the things that God has given him. The reality shows up in how a person reacts in situations and how much they are willing to sacrifice to retain their responsibility. (credit: ChristianNet)

Our loving God, we thank you for the heritage of worship, work and witness into which we have entered, and of which we are part, at the United Church of Greenwich; for all who pioneered the church here and all who have been its ministers, leaders and members through its story of over 40 years.  We pray now for the process of reflection and planning for the future in which we are engaged.Guide us by your Holy Spirit. Amen. (adapted from: Amersham Free Church)

Conclusion: The Church is in transition. We all have a responsibility to find the path that God has intended for us and to use these gifts to help strengthen our church within the community and beyond. The Stewardship and Outreach Council needs to continue to build upon the talents and spiritual gifts of our church family. Please consider the gift that He has given you and we will fill our church with light and love.

- Jeff