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Of the two primary styles of congregational worship used today—traditional and contemporary—a blend of the two is the most “U.C.C.” and the worship style we use at Church of Peace. Blended worship (using the best of traditional and contemporary worship elements) is not only an effective model for inspiration within the church family, it is a powerful demonstration of Christian inclusivity where the diversity of the body of Christ is acknowledged and celebrated. (cf. Mk 10:13-16, I Cor. 12, and Eph. 4)
Given that a congregation’s worship life is the primary place where the church family encounters our Living God together, we have unique opportunities and responsibilities for planning this time. Our goals are to help worshipers:
- experience the love and good will of God, and
- connect their faith with their everyday lives.
Since the worshiping community is a mixture of young and old, long-time members and newcomers, with a wide range of experiences, preferences, and aptitudes, we incorporate worship elements that reflect this diversity and enable us to engage and inspire the whole church family.
Church member and Lay Academy graduate, Ray Beilke, is the current leader of this discussion group. We meet on Monday evenings during the school year from 6:30-7:30. Attendance varies from 6-12, and there’s always room for more. Ray uses a thoughtful curriculum to guide the discussions.
Several times a year different organizations within the church host intergenerational events open to visitors and guests, as well. Events in recent years include:
- Family Fun Nights (often featuring pizza, a hayride, and bonfire)
- Day trips to Chicago (architectural tour and river cruise), Milwaukee (Harley-Davidson and The Domes), Green Bay (National Train Museum and Botanical Gardens), and West Bend (Cedar Community)
- Day Camp at Pilgrim Center
- Mission Trips to Joplin, Missouri and Henderson Community, Kentucky
- Rafting on the Peshtigo River
- Outdoor Worship Service and Church Picnic
- The Turkey Dinner (April)
- The Autumn Festival (October)
- Ladies Aid Rummage Sales (May and October)
- Christmas Caroling to grieving or homebound people
The league, coordinated by the YMCA, runs from May to mid-August and is open to church-connected people from the area. This year’s COP team (2015) was again coached by Brian Poirier and had a great time together, culminating with a tournament win of the consolation bracket—the top of the bottom.
Loaves & Fishes (L & F) is a nationwide network of community-based organizations whose vision is to end hunger in our communities. Our L & F mission is to provide food and leadership in the community by uniting and mobilizing local resources.
Church of Peace has been the “home base” host of L & F in Fond du Lac since 2007. We partner with many other churches and organizations to provide about 300 meals on Mondays and Wednesdays to individuals and families in need. Each meal is prepared and served by a different group of 20-40 volunteers. People of Church of Peace serve the meals 3-4 times per year, on a rotating basis. Look for COP hosting dates in the church calendar.
As an expression of God’s love for our community, we host and stock an much-used emergency food pantry to help individuals and families through tough times. Ongoing church and community support are strong, and occasional food drives keep it well supplied. The Schultz family keeps it organized and running smoothly.
Many of our neighbors need occasional, emergency help keeping a roof over their heads and their utilities connected. Our assistance program works with area landlords and utilities to ensure that people are truly helped and the funds are well spent. This assistance program is primarily funded by our monthly Communion Offerings.
Church World Service (CWS) is our primary ecumenical partner for addressing issues of global Christian concern. CWS—“Fighting hunger and poverty. Promoting peace and justice.”—has worked for nearly seven decades with one goal: building a world where there is enough for all. With CWS, we affirm the power of individuals and communities to take ownership of their future, helping them create solutions they can maintain and build upon. (see www.cwsglobal.org) Church of Peace participates in periodic fundraisers to promote and strengthen CWS’s mission of compassion.
If you are interested in supporting the ministries of Church of Peace, you can arrange for monetary donations to be automatically deducted from your checking account. Call the church office for more information (920.921.8215).