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February 21, 2019


Dear Members and Friends of CCDC:

This past Sunday at the close of worship, we recited the CCDC Covenant as we usually do.  Instead of the new CCDC Covenant approved and adopted by our congregation in June 2016, we used the covenant printed on the back panel of the hymnals in the pews. As this week has unfolded, I have found myself reciting the two new “promises” that we added to our covenant in 2016: “to become more faithful to the life and teachings of Jesus Christ”; and “to restore and protect all of God’s creation.”  These lines have been reinserting and insinuating themselves into my life and psyche ever since Sunday. Why?  What’s going on?

The first of the new additions to our Covenant that are haunting me may be explained by the after worship discussion of Sunday’s sermon. Those gathered considered differences between the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) and the Sermon on the Plain (Luke 6:17-49) and tried to discern what the sermons are saying to us today.  Some of us were looking for reassuring answers, while others sought to better understand the context in which the sermons were delivered; others wanted to zero in on just one aspect of the sermons, while others wanted to consider the sermons in their entirety! My take away from Reverend Crocker’s sermon and the discussion afterwards was Christ’s challenge to church leaders of his day, and to us today.  Christ’s vision of what we need to do does not often jibe with what we want to do and how we want to do it. There are no simple answers in Christ’s teachings, and the path of discipleship is demanding and difficult.

The strength and power of the second of the covenantal addition’s call to me is wrapped up in the visioning work the Board of Elders has undertaken. Since August, Elders have been discussing a vision of CCDC as it heads into the future—where are we going, how are we going to get there, and are our visions consistent with CCDC’s mission and covenant. The Elders still have work to do to clarify their vision, but I can tell you the process is as engaging—at times enlightening—and as challenging as any in which I have participated.  Elders are looking closely at our Church Capital, which we define as our People, our Programs, and our Place.  Who are we, what do we do, and how does our building shape and support us?  These are the questions with which we’ve been grappling.

Please know that your Board of Elders is working hard to steer a straight and sure course.  Know too that we look forward to sharing our vision with you and moving boldly forward to meet the challenges and to continue to be a relevant and meaningful community of the faithful.  Together we can discern God’s will for us and hold true to Christ’s directives for us. 

Faithfully yours,

Judy Cs. 

Happening This Week at CCDC
Sunday, Feb. 24:    Chancel Choir - 9:00 AM
                              Worship - Rob Grabill, preaching - 10:00 AM
                              Occasional Choir - after coffee hour
                              Our Whole Lives - 6:00 PM - Rand Room
Monday:                 Board of Deacons for Stewardship - 7:00 PM
Wednesday:            Staff Meeting - 10:30 AM - Hamilton Library
                              Community Bible Study - 6:15 PM - CCDC
                              LISTEN Community Dinner
Thursday:               Board of Deacons for Congregational Life - 1:30 PM
                               Meditation Group - 4:00 PM - Masland Chapel
                               Handbell Choir - 5:15 PM
                               Chancel Choir - 7:00 PM
                               Dartmouth Student Group - 8:00 PM
Sunday, March 3:     Chancel Choir - 9:00 AM
                               Worship – Mandy Lape-Freeberg, preaching - 10:00 AM
                               Blood Pressure Clinic - during coffee hour
                               Occasional Choir Rehearsal - after coffee hour
Dominican Republic Trip Blog
Rob has been faithfully posting updates from the Dominican Republic on the trip's official blog page - which can be found HERE.  There are lots of photos of the good (and fun!) work the team is doing at Altagracia School.  Please take a few minutes to read about their activities and see the beautiful photos (many of which will surely be posted on the bulletin board when the team returns!)  

Contact Jan Assmus ( or 603-643-3644) to sign up.
Click HERE to sign up or contact Kendra in the church office.

Contact Barbara Hall ( or 603-643-3668) to sign up.

2018 Women's Mini-Retreat - Saturday, March 9

We've been invited to join the women of the Norwich Congregational Church for their late-winter mini-retreat entitled "Hands to Work and Hearts to God: Creativity and the Soul."  At this retreat, we will have the opportunity to explore how our hands move and create to bring us closer to God and to one another. You may bring work of your own (knitting?  crochet?  quilting? beading?), or you may want to learn about a new skill, or you may want to participate in a group project that will be shared at church. We'll gather on March 9 from 9 am to 3 pm.  Depending on numbers, we will meet at Mary Brownlow's house:  288 Beaver Meadow Road in Norwich, or at the Norwich church.  Just bring yourselves, a Bible and any hand work that is meaningful to you.   Lunch will be provided.  Please RSVP to the NCC church office by March 1, so that we can made an accurate assessment of where to meet and how much food to prepare. If you have any questions, please speak to Mandy. 

Wednesday Evening Community Bible Study

Concludes Wed. February 27 at CCDC - 6:15 PM

This week's theme is:  "Epilogue and Closing" and covers pages 81-90.  If you do not have a book, there are some still available in the church office or Kendra can email you the scanned pages.

 Lent Book Study
Wednesdays during Lent
We will be reading "Stand Up!  How to Get Involved, Speak Out, and Win in a World on Fire" by Gordon Whitman.  Books ($12.50 each) will be ordered soon, please let Kendra know if you would like one.

February 15-23 -         Dominican Republic Mission Trip
February 16-23 -         Habitat for Humanity Mission Trip
February 23 -               Prepared to Serve - 8:00-4:00 - Pembroke

March 6 -                      Ash Wednesday
March 9 -                      Women's Retreat at Norwich Church - 9:00AM-3:00PM
March 15 -                    March Madness
March 21 -                    Widows' Group Spring Luncheon - 11:30 AM - Kendal
March 22-24 -             William Sloane Coffin Weekend - United Church of Strafford
March 24 -                    Ives Organ Recital - Adrian Houeck - 4:00 PM

April 21 -                       Easter Sunday - worship at 9:00 AM & 11:00 AM
April 27 -                       Gordon Rankin Installation - 1:30 PM - First Cong'l Ch, Wolfeboro

May 19 -                        Ives Organ Recital - Christa Rakich - 4:00 PM

Click HERE for our Google calendar.
Please contact Kendra in the church office if you would like
to submit a CCDC-related event for our online calendar.

Mandy Lape-Freeberg - Senior Pastor (

Rob Grabill - Associate Pastor (

Ernie Drown - Director of Music (

Rita Severinghaus – Parish Nurse (

 Kendra Olson-Dow - Church Administrator (

Ken Gagnon - Custodian (

Finance Office – (

If you are experiencing a pastoral emergency, please contact one of our pastors:

Mandy Lape-Freeberg (603-748-1431) or Rob Grabill (603-443-0218)

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