Green Steeple Messenger-Nov 2019


Last year our church stewardship theme was Responding to God’s Love, We Reach Out to Serve the Needs of Our Church, Our Community, and Our World.    This year we will build on that theme by Reaching Beyond with Faith and Joy.  Reaching beyond requires us to move into the unknown, to stretch ourselves beyond what we have done before. This can be unsettling but also exciting as we realize that we can do more, reach more, than we had previously thought possible.

In 2020 we will embark on a new way of doing ministry together.  After much work, discussion, and prayer we will officially change our church governance structure from the Four Boards, Advisory Council, and many committees to a Unified Governing Board with Ministry Teams for all of our many ministries.  This requires us to be flexible, creative, and committed as we make this transition. This will entail reaching beyond our usual patterns and habits to think and work in new ways.

All of this reaching beyond is done with faith and joy.  We reach beyond with faith that God is guiding and sustaining us.  We reach beyond with joy that, in Christ, we are empowered to serve God and share God’s love with the world.  Our ministries are made possible by God’s grace and the support of our members and friends.  I thank you for your prayers, your time, your care, and your financial support of our work together.  Please join us on November 17 when we will pledge our support for the upcoming year.

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Karen A. Mendes, Pastor

Newsletter Deadline for Dec. is Nov. 15th      



The Congregational Care Committee of the First Baptist Church Diaconate reports that there are currently 11 on the Homebound Members & Friends list. In September, 7 “known visits” were made to 2 homebound members and no “known calls” were made to  homebound members and friends. 

Other Members and Friends had 1 visit by 1 member and friend.

The committee invites you to help with this ministry.

Please contact Ray when you visit or call a homebound member and friend or call 802-864-7179.                  


Sermons and Texts

Nov. 03 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

            All Saints Day Service

        Scripture: Luke 6:20-31

         Sermon: The Lives of the Saints

Nov. 10 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

         Scripture: Luke 19:1-10

         Sermon: Seeking and Finding

Nov. 17 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

                   Pledge Sunday

         Scripture: Isaiah 65:17-25

         Sermon: Creating Joy

Nov. 24 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

               Thanksgiving Sunday

                Combined Worship

         Scripture: John 6:25-35

         Sermon: Bread of Heaven

Nov 10 – All Boards

Nov 17 – Pledge Sunday

     Dopp Organ Recital (new date)

Nov 18 – Advisory Council

Nov 24 –Thanksgiving Sunday

               Combined Worship

Nov 30 – Greening of the Church    Dec 01 – Advent Craft Workshop

Dec 07 – Don Dalton’s 100th                                   Birthday celebration 2-4pm

Dec 08 – Christmas Pageant                               All Boards                                 

Dec 15 – Christmas Pageant       

               Soup Supper                      Dec 16 – Advisory Council

Dec 22 – Christmas Sunday

Dec 24 – Christmas Eve Services              

Dec 29 – Christmas Caroling

New and Returning Study      and Fellowship Groups

There is more to Church than Sunday mornings! 

Weekday Bible Study – Mondays at 11:30am. We are studying the Old Testament book of Exodus.  Please join us and feel free to bring your lunch.

Young Adults – Third Sunday of the Month at 11am – College students and young adults are invited for pizza and good conversation.

Baptism Class – Sundays, beginning in late January – This will be a class for youth and adults seeking baptism.  For more information, speak with Rev. Mendes.

THE FALL BOOK GROUP is reading Original Blessings by Danielle Shroyer which began on Monday, Nov. 4th at 6:30pm.  This challenging book encourages us to rethink our ideas about sin, Jesus, and blessings.  Books can be purchased on line.  For more information or for help procuring a book, contact Rev. Mendes at 864-6515 or


Calling all angels, shepherds, magi, Holy Families, directors, and crew!  We will soon be choosing our pageant for this year and finalizing practice times.  The pageant cast will be composed of people of all ages and it will be part of our worship service on Dec. 15.  Please speak with Rev. Mendes or Jeneve Joslin, Director of Christian Education, if you are interested in participating in any capacity


November 24 is Thanksgiving Sunday at First Baptist.  This is another opportunity to feed our community!  Please plan to bring appropriate Thanksgiving food items or cash donations to the Processional.  These foods and money will be used to feed those among us who need a little extra help and/or have a lot of mouths to feed!  If you are aware of folks who can benefit from a food basket and turkey, please speak to Joan Taylor.

ELECTRONIC GIVING IS NOW POSSIBLE through a Donate button on our church website:

http// and through a smartphone app called GIVEPLUS. Donations can be set for one time only or to be recurring. The cost to the church for this service is $10 a month and small transactions fees of 2.75% for debit/credit cards or 1.00% for ACH.  These fees can be offset by adding that amount to your gift. Our ministries depend on the generous gifts of our members and friends.  Thank you for your participation in sharing the love of God in our community and our world.

GREEN STEEPLE         WEEKLY NEWS                             

On Thursdays, look for an email from First Baptist letting you know about upcoming events and opportunities.  This will give you a first look at the Sunday bulletin announcements and provide a way for us to communicate beyond the monthly newsletter.  If you have information you would like included in the email and bulletin, please get it to Marie at – by Wednesday.

We invite you to donate flowers for Sunday worship.  Please sign up on the flower chart in back of the narthex for any Sunday of your choice.


Check it out – New green sign-up chartfor “Greeters & Feeders” in the Narthex.  We are offering two opportunities to serve on Sunday mornings by asking for both greeters and providers of snacks. Store-bought cookies are fine! Feel free to sign up for both or one or the other on the round table in the narthex. 

A BIG thank you to all that helped with meals for ANEW Place the week of Sept. 22nd – 28th:  Gail Holmes, Fern Sparks, Ed Bigelow, Ginger Calder, Peg Randall, Cindy & David Little, Joan Taylor and Betty Capponi.              

~ Betty Capponi, Mission Outreach


The American Baptist Women’s Ministries is seeking funds for the Overland White Cross.  The First Crow Baptist Church of Lodge Grass, Montana will be the recipient.  A sign-up poster is available in the Narthex.  As in the past, we will buy a Walmart card.  The deadline to sign up will be December 1st.

We are invited to be prayer partners

with the brothers and sister of our sister church in Puerto Rico, the Primera Iglesia Bautista deMayaguez. 

Those interested will be paired up with a person from Mayaguez.  You can connect via email, text, snail mail, or Facebook.  This is an opportunity for all ages to further the bonds between our communities.  Sign up in the Narthex.


October has been a joyful time in Church School! We have spent time together exploring Noah’s Ark in our classrooms and as a multi-age group! We also participated in a Pumpkin Carving Youth Event with four other Burlington Churches!

For November, our Bible Story is Baby Moses. In addition to exploring and discussing the story of Baby Moses, students will be learning about the art of weaving, basket making and blanket making. Younger students will make colorful baskets using paper and other materials and older students will be making reed weaving baskets. Both groups will also be learning how to make no-sew fleece blankets. Older students will have the opportunity to participate in a drama storytelling of

the Story of Baby Moses and share their basket making skills in a Second Hour Forum on Thanksgiving Sunday, Nov. 24th.  We need some volunteers this month! Please email Jeneve Joslin at if you could lend a supportive hand in Church School on 11/3, 11/10 and or 11/17.

Updates from the Cooperative                                                 Christian Ministry at UVM

I continue to represent FBC on the board. We are planning for the upcoming academic year. 

Our church will be providing the November 5th dinner this year. We are looking for 4 or 5 volunteers to contribute a portion of our First Baptist Dinner for UVM students as part of our Cooperative Christian ministry on campus.  We provide one meal a year for approximately 13-15 students. The dinner is held at the interfaith center on Redstone campus.  Please consider making chilis, vegan main dishes or side dishes. I will be there at 5pm to greet you when you drop off your food.  Please consider staying for the hour dinner to converse with our local students.  Please speak to Joan Taylor or Beth Gamache.

I am also looking for two volunteers to serve on the board with me. We are one of six denominations represented on the Cooperative Christian Ministry Board. We meet monthly, a Tuesday evening 5:30 to 7:00. All the other churches have the 3 representatives per the bylaws. Please speak to me for any further questions.  I look forward to having fellow FBC members serve with me.

Thank you, Beth (343-2650)    


The Unified Governing Board is comprised of the Church officers, the Pastor, and representatives from 4 Governance Committees (Staff Relations, Finance, Property and TPF) and the 3 Ministry Areas.  It will meet monthly in the place of our current Board and Advisory Council meetings. This Unified Governing Board structure will officially begin in February 2020 after the Annual Meeting in January 2020.  Portions of our current Bylaws will remain in effect until we have sufficient experience with the new structure to make any adjustments.                                                     

The Ministry Teams will be responsible for much of what we do together.  These teams are open to anyone who wants to participate and they run the gamut of teaching Church School to cooking soup to calling on the homebound.  The teams do not have set terms of service nor do they require monthly meetings. If you feel called to lead a Ministry Team, please speak to one of our current Board Chairs; Joan Taylor, Lois Lynch, Jim Calder, Mark Paulsen, and Marie Morton. 

    Our Ministry Teams and

          Leaders for 2020

In February 2020 we will officially transition from our current Four Boards structure to a Unified Governing Board.  In the new structure our ministries will be facilitated by teams of people working together. Below is a list of the Ministry Teams and their team leaders.  Some teams are for short term projects and others are ongoing. Please consider to which teams God may be calling you.  You can reach out to the team leader for more information.


ABC Mission – (Joan Taylor and Nancy Tracy)

ANEW Place – Betty Capponi

FUMC Soup Suppers –

Nancy Danforth

Cooperative Campus Ministries –         Beth Gamache

Sister Church Initiative –

Karen Mendes

Marathon Pasta Supper –

 Marie Morton

Public Relations –


Welcoming – Pat Boyden

Visitation – Ray Sherrod

Communion – Cindy Little

Prayer Chain – Mark Paulsen

New Member Services –

Karen Mendes

Prayer Topics – Marie Morton

Sanctuary Decorations –

Mark Paulsen

Ushering – Andy Farrington

         Mark Paulsen

         Frank Swasey

Security – Andy Farrington

Property (Fix It/Clean It) –                           Andy Farrington


Church School- Jeneve Joslin

Special Events – Lois Lynch

Youth Ministry – Jeneve Joslin    (interim)

Adult Christian Education –        

Jeneva Burroughs (interim) 

Library & Educational Resources-        Jeneva Burroughs

Stewardship – Stu Burroughs