The Days of Grace
Grace United Church of Christ
GRACE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST
100 FOURTH STREET
HANOVER, PA 17331
Web site: http://graceucchanover.com
Church Office Hours
Mon.-Thurs. 8:00 A.M – 4:00 P.M.
Interim Pastor: Rev. Robin S. Keating
Visitation Pastor: Rev. Melissa A. Eicholtz
Organist/Choir Director: Harold E. Heller
Modern Service Worship Director: Amy Fawks
Modern Service Music Coordinator: Kathy Trimmer
Secretary/Bookkeeper: Linda DeMaio
Sextons: Sandy Puterbaugh & Faye Myers
Modern Service 9:00 AM – 9:45 AM
Church School 9:45 AM – 10:30 AM
Traditional Worship Service 10:45 AM
Rev. Keating’s Cell Phone: 336-250-9554
Rev. Keating’s e-mail address:
Rev. Eicholtz's Cell Phone: 717-739-6126
Rev. Eicholtz's email:
Info/Prayer/Bible Study Line
717-632-1819, access 86212#
Grace Church Office e-mail address:
Newsletter e-mail: (deadline is 15th of the month)
9:00–9:45 AM Modern Worship Service
9:45-10:30 AM Church School for All Ages
10:45-11:45 AM Traditional Worship Service
2018 contribution envelopes
are available in the large transcript.
Annual reports are due no later than Monday,
January 8, 2018.
January 28, 2018
A Word From Pastor Robin Keating…
There was once a man who didn't believe in the incarnation or the
spiritual meaning of Christmas, and was skeptical about God. He
and his family lived in a farm community. His wife was a devout
One snowy Christmas Eve she was taking the kids to the
Christmas Eve service at church. She pleaded with him to come,
but he firmly refused. He ridiculed the idea of the incarnation of
Christ. After they left, the winds grew stronger and the snow
turned into a blizzard. As he looked out the window, all he saw
was a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire
for the evening.
Suddenly he heard the loud honking of a flock of geese. Again,
looking outside, he saw the flock in front of his barn, being
buffeted by the snow and wind. He had compassion for them
and wanted to help them. He thought to himself, "The barn
would be a great place for them to stay! It's warm and safe.
Surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm.”
Putting on his winter apparel, he went outside. He opened
the barn doors and attempted to direct the geese into the barn.
Starting to get frustrated, he went over and tried to shoo them,
running after them, and chasing them toward the barn. They
only got scared and scattered into every direction except
toward the barn.
Feeling totally frustrated, he exclaimed, "Why don't they
follow me! Can't they see this is the only place where they
can survive the storm! How can I possibly get them into the
one place to save them. If only I could become like one of
them — then I could save them.”
He stood silently for a moment as the words that he just said
reverberated back to himself in his mind: "If only I could
become like one of them — then I could save them." He
thought about his own skepticism about God and the
incarnation of Christ. As the winds and blinding snow abated,
his heart became quiet and pondered this thought. He
understood what Christmas was all about. He knew why
Christ had come.
As our Christmas season continues through to Epiphany
(January 6) may we ponder in our hearts and minds the
true meaning of the coming of Christ as a babe in a manger.
And how every day he whispers the words “I love you.”
May you and all your loved ones have a blessed Christmas
Season and New Year.
December 2017 Consistory Digest
There were 16 members present including Pastor Keating and
General pledge for November 2017: $14,014.00 (4 Sundays)
General pledge for November 2016: $10,751.05 (4 Sundays)
YTD 2017 income: $189,824.38
YTD 2017 expenses: $234,570.97
YTD shortage: $44,746.59
Checking account balances
Resource: $ 4,676.00
The Consistory voted to adopt the proposed 2018 Budget.
Carol Spangler-Solomon reported the Memorial Fund
Committee met on Wednesday, November 15, 2017, and
ordered a beautiful red Memorial Book to be placed on top
of the cabinet in the Narthex. The Friendship Sunday
School Class donated the Memorial Book in memory of
classmate Frederick Rummel, who passed away August
17, 2017. A big thank you to the committee members who
did an exceptional, expedient, thorough job – Betsy Eyler,
Rev. Dick Benner, Patti Miller, and Carol Spangler-Solomon,
The Nominating Committee reported there are still two
openings for the 2018 Consistory.
The Worship and Music Committee reported plans have been
made for the December 24 combined service at 10:00 AM.
The next combined service will be February 11 to be held in
Amy Fawks reported there has been discussion of whether the
Modern Service should also record the number of views the
service gets online. The Modern Service is considering a new
mounted camera and electrical needs for the service. They are
also considering moving the screen switch to the tech desk,
adding a clip-on wireless microphone for Pastor Robin, and
adding a mounted camera to stream the service with controls in
the tech desk.
Amy Fawks reported the Search Committee has received a lot
of profiles of pastoral candidates who were right out of seminary.
The Committee has had conversations with two people and is
currently seeing one person. The Committee will meet again in
a few weeks.
Ken Wenger reported Sharing God’s Grace donations:
November 2017 donations: $370.00
Total YTD donations: $3,805.40
Volunteer hours: November 2017 Total YTD
Church 61.75 500.25
Community 97.5 655.5
Our 2017 goal is $5,000. As of October 31 we have given
$3,805.40. We have been given a challenge by our angel for
November and December. Each dollar given in offering for
the project will be matched dollar for dollar up to the $5,000
goal. For November $370 will be matched. Up to $1200 will
be matched for December.
Dan Trimmer reported a few padded chairs will be placed in the
sanctuary where the pew on the pulpit side was removed. This
will permit family members to sit with people who may be in
Prepared by Craig Bixler December 14, 2017
Annual Meeting – 28 January
The annual meeting will be held on Sunday, January 28,
2018, in the sanctuary immediately following the traditional
service. Reports will be available from the many groups here at
Grace at the time of the meeting.
One of the main purposes of the annual meeting is to approve
the budget for next year. A request from previous meetings was
to have the proposed budget available prior to the meeting. You
will find the proposed 2018 budget in this newsletter. The
consistory has done the very best to control expenses and the
growth of the budget. However, nearly 90 percent of the budget
is made up of fixed expenses that cannot be lowered without
making significant changes. We are blessed in having significant
funds in reserve to meet any budgetary shortfalls and the
consistory has made the decision to fund this budget by using
those reserve funds. However, that can only be done for a limited
number of years. It is the hope of all that when a new, permanent
minister is called, membership will rebound, along with giving, so
we do not face these shortfalls in years to come. If this does not
happen, we will need to make some serious decisions in the years
The request was also made to have as much financial information
available prior to the meeting. This is difficult only because the
final statements from the banks do not come until shortly before
the meeting. However, monthly financial statements are available
throughout the year and can be found in the newsletter. By
reviewing these you can easily keep track of how we are spending
our money and what income we have.
A second order of business for the annual meeting is to elect new
members to consistory. We have three seats available for three-
year terms and one seat to complete an unexpired one-year term.
Ken Wenger has agreed to fill the one-year seat and Judy Rummel
and Vicki Arnold have volunteered to each fill a three-year seat.
That leaves one three-year seat open. Please consider serving and
if you are so inclined, contact Carol Spangler-Solomon or Mike
Special thanks to Jed Beall, Jenn Weaver, and Stephanie McIllwee
who will be leaving consistory after years of service. They have all
been excellent members and done their very best to help Grace
church continue to serve God and our fellow man. They will be
Please place the date for the meeting on your calendar and plan to
I am sure all of you are curious about the state of the search for a
new minister. The committee has been working throughout the past
months to find the right person for Grace. Numerous applications
have been reviewed and several candidates have been interviewed
in person. The next step for the committee will be to gather
further information on the strongest candidates, which is what is
happening now. When a finalist is identified, there will need to be
negotiation with that finalist regarding salary and benefits. Upon
an agreement regarding these terms, the finalist will be presented to
the congregation for a trial sermon and subsequent vote of approval.
While we are not there yet, we are moving closer to these final steps.
When Bruce retired, we were told to expect to take two years to
find a permanent pastor. Unless there are unforeseen
circumstances, we are well within the timeline to meet that
Church Policy Updates
The consistory is in the process of developing policies to cover a
number of different areas in the church. Not everyone will agree
with every sentence of every policy presented, and the process will
take time and effort. However, it is an important step in our
transition to a new minister. These policies will give our new
minister clear direction in making future decisions that reflect our
To sponsor flowers or bulletins for worship services, please contact
the church office 632-1146 for open dates.
HANOVER HAS TALENT
IS ALMOST HERE!
Hanover Has Talent
Sunday, February 3, 2018
Applications available from Grace UCC
our website: graceucchanover.com
or contact Jenn at firstname.lastname@example.org
Proceeds benefit the Hanover Area Council of Churches Changing Lives Shelter.
The Gettysburg Association now has a website: www.gapccucc.org
Other websites you may find of interest are;
Penn Central Conference:
National United Church of Christ: www.ucc.org.
If you want to know what is happening in the UCC, these three sites can be checked for local and national events and activities.
Valet Service Volunteers Needed
Due to health reasons, some current volunteers needed to resign
from valet service. Volunteers are needed from 10:20 – 10:40 AM
on Sunday morning to assist persons at the elevator and
occasionally park a car. You would be scheduled every
4 to 5 weeks depending on the number of volunteers. Without
a sufficient number of volunteers, Grace will not be able to
continue this service. To volunteer or for more information,
please contact Linda Bixler 717-632-5606.
"This Week at Grace"
Corby Myers updates the “This Week at Grace” email and the
church website. If you would like publicity on the “This Week
at Grace” page or other church publication, please fill out the
Grace Publicity Request page at
http://graceucchanover.com/?page_id=2743 on the church
website. You can also find a link in the “This Week at Grace”
email. You can either print the request form or or email it.
While a form may sound a bit formal, it does help you to
share the information that we need for your publicity.
Sewing Group – January 9
The Sewing Group will once again be meeting in the second
Tuesday of each month, September through June to assemble bed
pads. More hands are always welcome.
Attention members and friends of Grace as you are doing your
cleaning of drawers and closets, the bed pad ministry could use
clean, threadbare sheets and pillow cases to continue their work
in service of the need for the community.
Thank you to all the team workers who so willing popped in to help
with the chocolate goodies. If my figures are correct, you worked a
total of 268 combined hours. Wow! Give yourselves a hand.
I won't know the total profit for a few days. I'm sure it's a sell out.
As of now, only 11 boxes are left.
The one-day bus trip was well worth the effort. The knowledge in
the museum was endless and inspiring. Profit was $738.00.
Future plans are for a bus trip to the new ark Encounter in Kentucky
and a one-day Washington trip to the new Bible museum, This is a
difficult one to get in, but we do have a connection. We are leaning
towards April for these trips.
Also on the list is our annual yard sale. If you are gathering items,
remember: nothing goes in the shed until our Nativity is put away
Respectfully, Mary Jane
Prayer Line and Bible Study
A few changes have come to our Prayer/Bible Study Line. Patti
Miller will be recording the message on Tuesdays and Fridays.
She will, of course, update any changes to the prayer requests
both days, and then on Tuesdays, she will present a short Bible
Study and prayer. On Fridays, she will briefly introduce
Pastor’s Keating’s focus for the following Sunday and then read
the poem for that Sunday. We hope that you find these
messages uplifting and valuable.
To access the message, dial 1-717-632-1819 and then enter the
access code: 86212. If you have any questions or concerns, please
give Patti a call at 1-717-451-1913
(TWIC-TEENS WORKING IN CHRIST)
The Youth Group meets on Sunday mornings from 9:45AM to
10:30AM. All youth, 5th grade and older are invited to join us.
Leaders are Janet Black, Jenn Weaver, and Amy Fawks (will lead
Plum Creek is also looking for folks who sew to make laundry bags
(standard size or king size pillowcases can be used) and soakers.
For anyone who is interested, Pauline has the directions for both of
Community Aid Collections
Please remember to donate gently used and in good condition
clothing to this great effort. The bin is located at the end of our
parking lot. For more information, please contact the Church
Grace WISE Mental Health Awareness
The Grace WISE Mental Health Awareness group announces their
meeting schedule for the rest of the calendar year.
Program for each meeting will be announced when information is
available. All are welcome to join this supportive group in an
effort to promote awareness and foster understanding of mental
health issues that affect so many folks today. We are a
nonjudgmental, loving group who care. Light refreshments will
be served. For more information please contact the Church Office
at 717-632-1146. Stop in and see what we are all about. Bring a
Sharing God's Grace
Hanover Council of Churches which provides many (actually 18)
necessary services to individuals and families in the greater
Hanover area including is our project for this year: PAL lunch
7 days a week, Year-round shelter providing temporary housing
and assistance in getting a fresh start, Clothing Bank for those
in need. Our 2017 goal is $5,000. We have been given a
challenge by our angel for November and December. Each
dollar given in offering for the project will be matched dollar
for dollar up to the $5,000 goal. Contributions may be made
during the final hymn of the last Sunday of the month
(Dec 24 & 31) in the house at the front of the sanctuary.
Checks should be made payable to Grace UCC with PAL lunch
or HACC in the memo line.
Thank you to both the Consistory and the congregation for your
generosity. Your gift is greatly appreciated.
We are scheduled for PAL lunch the third Saturday each month. Help
is always needed and accepted. If you would like to volunteer to help
at PAL lunch on the 3rd Sat of the month, please contact:
Craig Bixler 632-5606
COUNCIL OF CHURCHES
The Clothing Bank needs your help!
Salad Dressing, Pineapple, Coffee (no flavored) & creamer,
Hot Chocolate, Scalloped Potatoes
Men’s Socks, Warm gloves (all sizes – no knit)
Child Pull-Ups (4/5), Wipes
CHANGING LIVES SHELTER
Sweats M/F-M/L/XL, Warm gloves (all sizes – no knit),
Blankets (no crochet)
All single serving please!
Entrees, Pudding, Cereal, Fruit Cups,
We always have a need for old towels that can be cut up and used as
cleaning rags! Please mark your bag “RAGS” to avoid any confusion
with your donation.
SERVING IN JANUARY
Head usher: Mike Bankert, Carroll Miller
January 7: Consistory – Communion
January 14: Mike Mummert, Cooper Heindl
Kris Benner, Tony Heindl
Vance Hagarman, Faye Myers
January 21 & 28:
Ken Wenger, Mary Jane Fuhrman,
Kim Aumen, Steve Hershey
Earl Fuhrman, Jessica Staub
January 7: Craig Bixler – Assisting Elder
January 14: Jenn Weaver & Confirmand
January 21: Craig Bixler
January 28: Donna Bankert
Calling All Readers: Please Help!
We are looking for some people to help with lectoring.
If you can help please leave a message in the office or on my
answering machine! Thanks for your help.
Faye Myers (717-632-6361)
January 7: Consistory – Communion
January 14: Kris Benner
January 21: Kris Benner
January 28: Paul & Leslie Grote
YOUTH CHURCH ASSISTANTS
If you are interested in helping, please contact
Tina Hagarman 633-5309.
Acolyte & Reader
January 7: Max Wisensale
January 14: Vance Hagarman
January 21: Vance Hagarman
January 28: Colby Bealing
Please consider helping with this Ministry that cares for
our young ones during Worship Service.
January 7: Nancy Bankert, Joyce Wagner
January 14: Becky Plunkert, Joann Sites
January 21: Joleen Fennell, Allison Myers
January 28: Sherry Lawrence, Faye Myers
COFFEE HOUR HOSTS
January 7: Brad & Vicky Arnold
January 14: Melissa & John Storm
January 21: Holly & Chris Smith
January 28: Congregational Meeting – No Coffee Hour
We are grateful to Janet Black for coordinating the Coffee Hour
effort and the good folks who take their weekly turn.
If you are interested in providing refreshments for the modern service,
Pam Kreitz 717-476-9511.