Led by God to work for a just world for all
Dear Plymouth friends,

The older I get, the more I marvel at Mary and her response to her unexpected, unintended pregnancy. There is much in Luke's story of that time to ponder, but two things stand out for me right now. First, Mary went to her cousin Elizabeth "in haste." We don't know what was in Mary's mind, but surely she must have hoped for support and comfort, which I believe she found in abundance at Elizabeth's home. The second notable moment is, of course, Mary's song, "The Magnificat." How amazing to me that at this moment of upheaval and wonder, Mary dramatically lifted up the pressing needs of others.

Mary's story reminds me of ways we can respond to those who need comfort and relief from pain today. One such way is provided by the "Loops of Love" group here at Plymouth. These knitters create prayer shawls that are available for anyone who feels the need to be encircled by warmth and deep love in times of struggle, loss, or other difficult passage. Just as Elizabeth surely wrapped Mary in a loving embrace, so these prayer shawls offer comfort. Most of us in the group have them ourselves, and I use mine daily. It is such a blessing to be enfolded, literally, by the tangible manifestation of love.

The prayer shawls can be given to people you know that are in need of such blessing, and they are free for the asking. We plan to soon have a basket in the commons for the shawls, but until then, please just ask Barb Rawling, Cathy Bublitz, or any other knitter about getting one for yourself or a loved one. As we knit, we often think of our dear Carolyn Zeidler, who founded the group many years ago as a member of Kenwood UMC. We have lost her, but the hope she demonstrated throughout her life continues to shine. It is fitting that this Sunday, we will light the candle of hope in the advent wreath, and we will remember that hope overcomes even our deepest sorrows. The light overcomes the darkness.

Yours in faith,
Suzy Clarkson Holstein


PS: We're grateful for the 128 households in our church community who pledged this past week. Together we've committed over $288,490 to the work of our congregation in 2019! If you haven't had a chance to pledge yet, please make a pledge online or fill out a pledge card on Sunday.
Spaghetti & Stars
Friday, Dec 7 @ 6:00

Come out and join us for Plymouth Family Night at the UWM Planetarium this Friday, December 7.

Our evening will include a pasta dinner created by Leanne and the CE Committee followed by a 1-hour guided star-gazing viewing at UWM's Manfred Olson Planetarium.

We will gather for dinner at 6:00 pm in Graham Chapel. This will give us all a chance to relax and talk before walking over to the Planetarium. The show starts promptly at 8:15 and lasts about an hour.

**We are planning to walk as a group from Plymouth to the planetarium, but people can also drive over too.**

Please RSVP to Crystal in the church office at plymouthchurchmke@gmail.com by 4:30 pm on Thursday 12/6.


NOTE: Shir Hadash is having a Chanukah party with a Lil Rev concert in the Reception Hall on Friday evening so parking will be crowded.
ABHM Offering this Sunday, December 9

120 UCC people from 12 congregations had a wonderful event at America's Black Holocaust Museum on Sunday afternoon, Oct. 21. 

And now we at Plymouth have another special opportunity. We are going to collect an offering to raise money to help the museum fully re-open and maintain an important physical presence in Milwaukee. And the money we raise will be increased by 2 different matching grants. First, $4,000 has been raised which will match the first $4,000 raised in UCC churches. Second, an individual has told the museum that until the end of this year - 2018 - he will match any gifts to the museum from anyone up to $100,000. That means if a UCC church gives $500, it will be matched from the $4,000 that has been raised. And if we do it by the end of 2018, that $1,000 will be matched from that individual's promise to the museum, thus making that original $500 now $2,000.

Here at Plymouth, we will collect that offering during worship this Sunday, December 9. [An envelope was mailed out for you to use if you can't be with us in worship that day.] If you donate by check, make it out to Plymouth UCC and please be sure to put ABHM in the memo line. To donate online, click here.

We hope that all are able to give generously. The museum is an important Milwaukee institution, and having it open again and relating to the public will help it continue to tell a story which must be told. Thank you for all you are able to do!
Poinsettia Time!

It's that time of year, when we offer the opportunity for our members to order poinsettias to bring the beauty of the season to all here at Plymouth.  You may select to purchase poinsettias for the sanctuary and/or donate funds for the Christmas decorations (wreaths, garlands, and tree) that we use here at Plymouth during Advent and Christmas.

Order online here.
Advent Activities for All Ages Workshop this Sunday, Dec. 9th

As we begin the season of Advent, consider taking time as a family to get in the spirit this Sunday, December 9, 

In the Reception Hall after worship, we will have stations where you can decorate some cookies (both to eat and to share), make some Christmas tree ornaments, and construct an evergreen door swag.

All ages are welcome but we ask that parents accompany children to help. Spend a little time or a lot.
Dor Rohlfing's Memorial Service

Please join us to celebrate the life of Dor Rohling on Saturday, Dec. 15th, at 11am.  A reception at Plymouth will follow the service.  

If you would like to join the chancel choir for Dor's service, they'll be rehearsing Sunday morning after worship in the choir room (optional) and also gathering at 10:15am in the sanctuary on the day of the memorial service.
Shoe Collection for Haiti - now until December 16

We are again collecting new and gently used shoes to ship to Haiti.  It's only a two week collection - last day to donate is Sunday, December 16.  

Please NO winter boots. 

 Go to SustainTheFuture.global to see the video and photos from the last trip.
Plymouth Chorale Concert
December 15 @ 3:00 pm and 16 @ 7:00 pm

Sending Christmas Cards

If you'd like to send a card or letter to Steven Klebar for the Holidays, or his Birthday, January 25th, he is always delighted to hear from Plymouth members and their families about what is going on in the life of the Church and in your own life. It keeps him grounded and hopeful.

You can write to Steven (letters and cards only-no money, no gifts, etc.) at:

Steven A Klebar
#496849
Fox Lake Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 200
Fox Lake, WI 53933

Thank you all so much for providing your love, support and care to the Klebars all these past years.

~~~~~~~~~~

We also request Holiday cards for another friend of Plymouth.

Isaac Sawyer #13516-089
F.C.I. Florence
PO Box 6000
Florence, CO  81226
Holden Vespers @ 6:30
Tuesday, Dec. 18

Jesus Christ, you are the light of the world; the light no darkness can overcome;
Stay with us now, for it is evening, and the day is almost over.
Let your light scatter the darkness, and shine within your people here.

These are the opening lines of the Holden Evening Prayer, a brief and very special vesper service that Plymouth will hold twice this Advent, December 4 and 18 at 6:30 p.m. I hope that you will be able to participate at least once. If you do, I think you will want to return a second time.

There is the music. There is the story--the story of a people long living under repression but nevertheless keeping faith in a promise of redemption. There is the timing. Lighting candles one week at a time, opening little doors one day at a time, Advent seems like it should be a time of quiet anticipation. There is doing it at this time in our lives, in our world. The service raises a prayer at once ancient and yet so very contemporary: a world in darkness hoping for the light.  (Read the full description by Joey Sprague here.)

Come enjoy a brief escape from the rush and the chatter, come re-center yourself and find peace and hope in remembering and reconnecting together. Come participate in one or both of the Holden Evening Prayer services at Plymouth on two Tuesdays in December, the 4th and the 18th, 6:30-7:00 p.m. in the Graham Chapel (upstairs).

May the Spirit of Love be our guide and path, for all of our days. Amen.
The Coffee House has one more show in December
Christmas Eve Pageant @ 4:00 pm

All children are invited to participate in our 4:00 pm Christmas Eve Pageant. The only rehearsal is the dress rehearsal that will take the place of Sunday School on December 23rd.

If you have visiting child relatives who would like to participate, non-speaking actors may join as long as costumes are available.

We need both speaking parts and beasts of the field & extras of all kinds. Those interested in speaking parts should contact Chuck Lawton at charles.lawton@gmail.com.
On-going Food Drive

In the spirit of giving please, donate some food to the Friedens Food Pantry.

Some suggestions, but not limited to: canned vegetables or fruit, oatmeal, canned chicken, crackers, whole grain cereal, whole grain pasta, brown rice, beans, canola oil, spices for baking, tomato sauce, tuna, nuts, etc.

Help make someone's day a little brighter.
Birthdays
Doug Guinn 12/9
John Weise 12/10
Shannon Dardis 12/11
Sasha-rae Williams 12/11
Randy Torkelson 12/12

Prayers
- Alison (and the rest of the Rohlfing family) as they mourn the passing of Dor Rohlfing on Monday
- Becca Sommers as she mourns the unexpected death of her mother
- Dick Siebring has moved to EastCastle
- Jane, neighbor of Jim and Emilie Aubert, is in hospice with breast cancer

Upcoming Events

Saturday, December 8
- Plymouth Chorale rehearsal - 9:30am

Sunday, December 9
- Worship - Rev. Andrew Warner preaching - 9:30am
- Advent Activities for All Ages workshop - 10:30am
- Provide meal for Pathfinders (at Holton Drop-in) - 2:30pm

Monday, December 10
- Meal for St. Ben's
- Stewards meeting 7:00pm

Tuesday, December 11
- Serve meal at Cathedral Center - 6:30pm

Wednesday, December 12
- Chancel Choir rehearsal - 6:45pm
- Plymouth Chorale rehearsal - 8:00pm

Thursday, December 13
- Jericho Walk outside ICE building - 310 E. Knapp - 9:00 to 9:30am

Saturday, December 15
- Memorial Service for Dor Rohlfing followed by reception - 11:00am
- Plymouth Chorale concert - 3:00pm
- City of Festivals Men's Chorus Concert - 7:30pm

Sunday, December 16
- Worship - Rev. Andrew Warner preaching - 9:30am
- Arts Series Supporting Social Justice: White Privilege
- Adult Ed: Doctrine of Discovery (2/5)
- Provide meal for Pathfinders (at Holton Drop-in) - 2:30pm
- City of Festivals Men's Chorus Concert - 3:00pm
- Plymouth Chorale concert - 7:00pm
- Sarah Circle hosted by Lynn Ewing - 7:00pm

Tuesday, December 18
- Loops of Love knitting/crocheting group - 1:30pm
- Holden Vespers - Graham Chapel - 6:30pm
- Church Council meeting at Plymouth - 7:00pm

Wednesday, December 19
- Bell Choir rehearsal - 6:30pm

Thursday, December 20
- Jericho Walk outside ICE building - 310 E. Knapp - 9:00 to 9:30am
 
Saturday, December 22
- The Coffee House: Living Activism Benefit night (benefiting Frank Zeilder Center for Public Discussion) - doors open at 7:30pm



Open Up Church Calendar for a Full List
 Plymouth Church UCC | 414-964-1513 | Email
 
Church Office Hours: Mon & Wed 9:30-4:30 | Tues 9:30-12:30 | Fri 9:30-3:30
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