2023 Advent Workshop

Advent Workshop

Sunday, December 3rd

“Advent” means coming or arrival. Rather than just waiting for Christmas to get here, we use the season of Advent to prepare for Christ’s coming. Advent begins this year on Sunday, December 3rd and we will kick off the season with our annual Advent workshop following worship.

Open to all ages, this event will feature crafts, activities, and Kevin’s famous chili lunch. Brenda has designed some great crafts once again, including a beautiful coaster suitable for gift-giving and an Ugly Christmas Sweater ornament. New this year is the option to decorate an Advent Yule Log for your home. And of course, as always, we’ll have Loni’s cut-out cookies to decorate (and eat!).

Returning this year is our Socks of Love project that was initiated last year. Filling a sock for persons in our community who are experiencing homelessness is one way to show our love and share our bounty with neighbors in need. Each pair of warm wool socks is filled with travel-size toiletries and other necessities for those who struggle with basic needs. Last year we filled 48 socks—this year can we do more? Our socks will go to St John’s shelter.

Please join us for this all-church celebration.

The Season of Advent


Join us as we prepare our hearts during this Advent season for the coming of Christ—Emmanuel, God With Us. Our Sundays will follow the ancient rhythm of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love as we light candles on our Advent wreath and focus our attention on God’s promises for us.

The Psalm readings for this season invite us to see the brokenness of the world as it is, with a growing hunger crisis made worse by climate crisis and violent conflicts around the world that disrupt food systems, force migration, and disproportionately impact marginalized communities. The Psalms also remind us that we can trust in God’s promises of restoration of the world. We stand together in hope, peace, joy, and love to keep us grounded in these promises.

The four Sundays of Advent welcome us into prayer and reflection as we wait in anticipation for the One who brings hope, peace, joy, and love to this broken world.

May Christ’s light bring us on the path toward justice and righteousness for all.

2023 Christmas Toy Shop

Christmas Toy Shop

This year our Toy Shop, that benefits Pantry guests, will be held on Tuesday, December 12th. Please consider donating toys to support our cause.

Toys are needed for ages 2 through 18 years old and should be dropped off before Sunday, December 10th. Toys for teenagers are especially needed. Please place your unwrapped donations in the toy chest that’s at the bottom of the Sanctuary stairs.

And for those who’re not interested in shopping, you can contribute with a monetary gift by selecting the Pantry Toy Shop Fund through our online giving portal or send a check to the office at 200 S. Ashland Avenue, 54302 and note Toy Shop in the memo line.

As guests arrive for the Pantry between 10am and noon, they’ll receive a slip of paper to shop the toy shop. We’re in need of 3-4 of Santa’s elves to be personal shoppers for our guests. Personal shoppers will assist our guests to choose from the age-appropriate selection of toys. If you’re able to help as a personal shopper elf, please call Jane Bies at 920-621-6400.

Thank you for your support and for helping us make a Merrier Christmas for those in need!

Youth Group 2023 Lock-in

Youth Group

It’s time once again for our Annual Youth Group Lock-in! This annual tradition started many, many years ago with the task of wrapping Christmas gifts for Tank Elementary School families that our church adopts for Christmas each year.

Christmas Baskets

The Christmas Prayer Basket campaign, supported by the Outreach Committee, selects three families to adopt each year from nearby Tank Elementary School. We obtain wish lists for the children and adults in each family and those wishes are placed in three separate baskets on the table in the back of the Narthex. Congregation members select from the tags and return gifts unwrapped to the church by Thursday, December 14th. And the following night of the 15th is when our Youth Group gathers in the Memorial Room to wrap the dozens on dozens of presents generously donated by our members.

Although the primary purpose for the youth getting together is to wrap all those presents, the larger picture is having our youth connect with the local community and with those who’re less fortunate than us. Our youth focus on seeing those who are sometimes forgotten and unseen during the busy hustle and bustle of the Holiday season. The lock-in is the fun part of it but moreover youth draw a connection to how fortunate we are to be blessed in so many ways. It’s easy to take for granted our blessings and there’s no better time of year than Christmas to reflect, remember and give thanks for all those blessings.

We gather at 6:30 on Friday, December 15th to wrap, retire to the youth group room for our sleepover and return home the following morning after breakfast. It’s a memorable and rewarding experience for all who participate. If you’d like to know more or get involved in this year’s lock-in, please contact Joel Morien at ce@firstpresgreenbay.org. And thank you to all our members who will generously donate those gifts for the youth to wrap!

In Our Church Library

Hostage Bound Hostage Free Bookcover

From Mike Melton —

During a recent Christian Education meeting I offered to put in a recommendation for a good book someone might want to check out in our church library.  I was perusing the shelves when I saw it; Hostage Bound Hostage Free by Ben & Carol Weir.  I remember when I got my copy of this concise book back in the early nineties because I purchased it at a Presbytery meeting where the Weirs were speaking.  

If you’re not familiar with their story, Ben had been a Presbyterian pastor in Beirut, Lebanon for over thirty years but was kidnapped off the streets by Shiite extremists in front of his wife Carol on May 8th, 1984.  Ben was a captive for over a year and the book’s chapters alternate between Ben’s horrifying ordeal with his faith sustaining him and Carol’s increasingly more public campaign seeking government action for his release.  Just a modest couple in a whirlwind of madness. Now I see all the news of Hamas and Israel.  I hear the shock and despair in the victim’s voices.  We see people kidnapped and the tears of their families.  As Christians, we pray for all these suffering today knowing their stories are yet to be told, but we can read the Weir’s story now. I recommend you read it and pray that God gives us the heart to grow ever more compassionate.      

2023 Blue Christmas

Blue Christmas

December 19th at 6pm

For any of us who have experienced loss or are in the midst of struggles, the holidays can be a particularly painful time, stirring up grief in acute ways. As a result, churches of every denomination and style have adopted the practice of a “Blue Christmas” service. We continue this tradition with a Blue Christmas service on Tuesday, December 19th at 6:00pm in the sanctuary.

This time of worship is designed to provide space for prayer, reflection, and remembrance in the midst of the holiday hustle and bustle. It will include special music, candle lighting, and the sacrament of holy communion. All are welcome to join us for this contemplative service of worship. A dessert reception will follow in the Fellowship Room. Invite a friend or neighbor!

2023 Christmas Eve Worship Service

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve is on Sunday, December 24th and all are invited to join us for a special service of worship at 6:00pm in the sanctuary.

We are thrilled that our organist Michael Raught is pulling together a choir to sing several pieces in the service. This group will practice after worship in the choir room on December 3rd and 17th, and all are welcome to join.

The Christmas Eve service will feature special choral music, an extended message for the children present, and candle lighting. While we can’t promise the full-fledged pageants of old, we do hope to recreate the nativity scene with costumed characters and familiar carols. Bring your family and friends for a special evening together.

Annual 2024 Ski Trip

Annual Ski Trip

The snow has begun to fly so the time has come to have some fun on the slopes at our annual Ski Trip! This year we’ll once again be joined by our friends from First United Presbyterian Church of DePere.

And, although primarily coordinated with Youth Group, the ski trip is considered a family event so all are welcome to join!

Our ski destination is Ski Brule and we’ll be checking in on Friday, January 26th, checking out Saturday, January 27th at the Chicaugon Lake Inn

We will need a minimum of 20 skiers to take advantage of the Ski Brule group discount so spread the word to family, friends and neighbors. The more the merrier!

We hope to see you on the slopes!

December 2023 Rundown

Monthly Rundown

Church Chix Socials

The Chix had an amazing social in November when we dined at Luigi’s Italian Bistro. We had 11 Chix that attended. The waitress was phenomenal and the food was absolutely delicious! Our December social is planned for Thursday, December 7th at 6pm at Old Mexico Cantina & Grill located at 11884 Velp Avenue in Suamico. To RSVP there’s a sign up sheet on the bulletin board or email office@firstpresgreenbay.org.

Trunk-or-Treat was so Sweet!

We had 11 trunks participate in this year’s Trunk-or-Treat and Jane Bies kept count and said we had 200 kids! They were lined up and ready as soon as we opened our trunks at 4pm and kept right on coming until 5pm. Church provided hot chocolate to keep the trunk hosts warm. Michele Erickson came to the rescue of many of us who ran out of candy, as she had lots to share! Check out our photo Gallery!

Thanksgiving Worship Service & Dinner Celebration

We Gathered Together! Our joint service of thanksgiving was held on Saturday, November 18th at First United Presbyterian Church in De Pere. Sixteen voices in our combined choir shared a lovely seasonal anthem. The service was followed by a delicious turkey dinner for everyone present, and the dessert table was overflowing with treats from our congregation. Check out our photo gallery!

Rundowns will publish with our Connections issue on a monthly or bimonthly basis. To submit rundowns for consideration contact us at communications@firstpresgreenbay.org by the 15th of the month to be included in the following month’s publication. And, as always, we look forward to receiving your Rundown of what’s been Happening Now!

Worship Service November 26, 2023

On this Thanksgiving Sunday, we’re pleased to have some members of our Confirmation class doing a reader’s theater skit in worship called “What We’re Thankful For.” Our scripture focus will be on Deuteronomy 8: 7-18 https://bit.ly/47ovwye and several different members of the church will offer reflections on gratitude in their own lives.