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Dear Sisters, Brothers, and Friends, One month ago, Russian forces invaded Ukraine. In the stories and images which ceaselessly stream from this deeply embattled yet resilient country, we see both humanity’s best. And humanity’s worst. We see enlightened leadership grounded in hope. And despotic leadership fueled by fear. We witness brutal attacks. And unspeakable courage. We are aggrieved by the millions so ruthlessly displaced. And inspired by the compassion of neighbors both within and beyond Ukraine’s...

This is a strange time. A time when pandemic numbers, at least here in the United States, are improving and things are relaxing… at least for now. And, yet a time fraught with images of Russia’s ravaging assault on Ukraine and of the now over 3 million displaced people pouring primarily into Poland. A time when we can see, sense, even smell the earth coming back to life as winter’s grip slowly slips. And, yet a time...

Last week, I broke my brand new car. Well, part of it, anyway. I’m not really a “new car guy.” It’s been the better part of two decades since the last time I purchased a new vehicle. So, when I invested in a new car this year, I promised myself I’d take excellent care of it.I’ve been choosing my parking spots intentionally – no tight spaces, no messy trees, no chance of grocery cart dings or...

What’s on your Christmas season wish list? I’m not talking about your Christmas gift wish list…I’m talking about those events and traditions you’re hoping for this month. Cookie-baking with the kids? Decorating the tree? Watching holiday movies? Christmas caroling with old friends? And maybe there are others too… more in the “feelings and experiences” category… those deep down, often unspoken, almost too-vulnerable-to-name wishes most of us carry around about this time of year… for us...

Rehearsals for the 106th annual Winnetka Congregational Church Christmas Pageant on December 12th have already begun. As preparations for this beloved event gain steam, I’ve found myself reflecting on why we’re so committed to doing everything we do here intergenerationally – to remaining open to hearing God’s grace expressed through voices of all ages. A story that keeps coming up for me is one about a particular fifth grader.She’s a natural introvert, known for her...

We’ve been talking a lot about being an “open house” at Winnetka Congregational Church. I really love this metaphor for our church. The other day, I was thinking about why it seems so right for us, and a sound came to mind.Yes, a sound.The sound of a slamming screen door. Now, I realize for some people, that is an incredibly annoying sound. But for me, it’s a good one. A sound that brings me joy. Maybe...

Multifaith solidarity is something our congregation has been committed to for a long time. One of the ways we’ve lived that out is by offering our sanctuary to Congregation Hakafa to use on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. We’ve done this since 2016 and were privileged to do it again this year on September 6-7 for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. And on September 15-16 for Yom Kippur, the “day of atonement.”Because of the...

I want to just start by saying, if you and your family don’t go to church, this is not meant to feel like a “should” in any way. We all have enough “shoulds” in our lives, right? I have a lot of friends who haven’t made religion a part of their lives. And I understand why - these days churches don’t have such a great reputation. Mostly seen as judgmental, exclusive, mind-numbing, too often churches can also...

On June 19, WCC was a sponsor of HEROS' (Healing Everyday Racism in Our Schools) Juneteenth community education event at Winnetka's Village Green "Hidden Stories of the North Shore: Call to Action." The purpose of the event was to bring light to the hidden history of racial discrimination in our own backyard, to raise awareness of HERO's work and to inspire friends and neighbors to get involved. It was a beautiful warm summer morning. Hidden stories of...