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July 2024

We are a Christian community of people who are reaching out to our neighbors, 
at home and abroad, sharing our faith and our resources.


Central Square Congregational Church, UCC, of Bridgewater, Massachusetts is an open and affirming
church. No matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.


From the Desk of Rev. Beth

Rev. Elizabeth Stotts, Pastor


On the liturgical calendar, the time between Pentecost (May) and Advent (late November) is called the “Season of Creation” or the “Season After Pentecost” or “Ordinary Time”. During this season we explore stories of our faith and all the ways God moves through creation. It is a season of growth, both in the natural world and within our own hearts. As the earth flourishes with life, we too can cultivate new passions, strengthen our faith, and deepen our connections with one another.


In the midst of picnics, vacations, trips to the beach, and lazy afternoons spent under the shade of a tree, let us not forget the importance of nurturing our souls. This season offers us the gift of time – time to reflect, time to pray, and time to listen to the whispers of our innermost selves. It is a season to rekindle our relationship with the divine and to seek guidance on the paths that lie ahead.



As we gather in worship and in fellowship this summer, let us do so with open hearts and minds, ready to embrace the opportunities for growth and transformation that lie before us. Let us find inspiration in the beauty of creation and in the stories of those who have walked before us, their lives a testament to the power of faith and resilience.


May this season of renewal fill you with hope and joy, and may you emerge from it refreshed and invigorated, ready to embark on the next chapter of your journey with a renewed sense of purpose and determination.


Rev. Beth

The office will be closed JULY 10-26 while our Office Manager is out on medical leave.


Beginning July 30, the summer hours are expected to resume:

Tue - Wed - Thu, 9am - 1pm


Please also remember that Rev. Beth is on sabbatical July 1 - August 5.


Sunday Worship will continue to be livestreamed from the Sanctuary at 10 a.m. for the month of July.

Use the link on the homepage of www.csccucc.org to access Sunday worship, or visit our Facebook page. Past worship services are also available in both places.


August 11 - September 1 Worship

Sunday worship on August 11, 18, 25, and Sept 1 will be outdoors at the picnic table and the front lawn. Important things to know:
• These services will be in person only.
• These services will begin at 9AM. (It gets too hot starting at 10.)
• Feel free to bring your breakfast!



NEXT CABINET MEETING is Wednesday, August 21, 7pm




Do you need a meal, a call, spiritual care, or even just a prayer or a chat?

Contact the Pastor, a Deacon, or a member of our Care Team.


To contact Rev. Beth, call the church office at 508-697-6016 or email her at csccpastor at hotmail.com. 


CSCC Deacons
Deb Sorgman – debsorgman at gmail . com

Anne Malmquist - amalmquist at comcast . net

Savannah Wells, Jr. Deacon

CSCC Care Team
Carol Chaffee  *  Bev Mitchell  *  Rev. Beth Stotts  *  Nina Gabel-Jorgensen

Contact the church office if you need us!


The Bridgewater Food Pantry, hosted and supported by CSCC, is open Thursdays, 10am-1pm, and the first Mondays of the month, 6-7:30pm (except holidays). All Bridgewater residents who are in need of food are welcome.

If you are a Bridgewater resident unable to come to the food pantry, but are in need of food, please contact the church office by email (office@csccucc.com) or phone (508-697-6016) and arrangements will be made for you.


CSCC Team Leadership 2024-25

Spiritual/Congregational Engagement Team Leaders:
Carol Chaffee, Linda Chipman, Deb Sorgman, Eric Stotts


Property & Finance Team Leaders:
Dave Hanson, John Sharland [one open position]


Community Engagement Team Leaders:
Heather Ciaramitaro, Diane Glass, Terry Reynolds



We continue to make it easier than ever to contribute to CSCC. The church accepts donations via Venmo! Aim your phone camera below, or use the Venmo app to send your donation to @cscc-ucc


Did you know that Venmo has lower fees to the church than Paypal? So if you can't decide which one to use, choose Venmo.




Coins for Kids Church : July 7


Don’t forget to bring your spare change for the Coins for Kids Church collection, the first Sunday of the month! This helps to pay for Kids Church supplies and teaching materials. Just put your coins in a baggie or envelope and mark it “Kids Church”, and put it in the collection plate on Sundays.

Summer Fellowship Time

Our after-worship fellowship time of coffee, desserts, and conversations is suspended for the summer. Perhaps some Sunday a pop-up time of cold drinks and treats will happen with some simple planning and preparation. If anyone would like to help on a particular Sunday, please let me know and we can make that happen. I can be reached through the church office or the thrift shop personnel.

Thank you to everyone who helped with fellowship time this past year. Your willing hands before, during,  and after fellowship time made the job so much easier. 
Connie Chandler


Care TEAM Corner-Doing God’s work for the church

Today, as I write this, has been a day about TEAM, being a TEAM, playing on a TEAM, working together like a TEAM, taking one for the TEAM, TEAM building 101.
Our TEAM is CSCC. Being on a TEAM takes time, commitment, hard work, and more, much more.

Can you be a regular player, or maybe pinch hit every so often? Our TEAM needs all of us to play the game.

Please consider joining me on the Church Fair TEAM, a great and successful way for our church to raise funds, have fun together, become a closer church family, BE A TEAM. IT’S FUN…… REALLY!!!!!!
Carol Chaffee

Who Doesn’t Love A Parade?

Let our CSCC pride show forth as we join together on our church float.  You can help decorate the float, you can show up to march in front or behind the float.  You can ride on the float.  All ages welcome. You can be you! Last year, I did a do-si-do with the police chief, while on the parade route.

We’ll meet behind Harrington Hall, Grove Street, in the parking lot about 9 AM on July 4th.  See you then.
Carol Chaffee

The church building will also be open during the parade for the public’s access to restrooms.

Central Closet Thrift Shop will be closed 
July 1 thru July 13

The shop will reopen July 17th at 10am.

Our summer hours will be 
Wednesday 10-1 and FRIDAY 10-1 

(we will be closed on Saturdays for the months of July and August.)


We are currently accepting new or gently used summer clothing, footwear, pocketbooks, jewelry, glassware, household items, toys, books, DVDs, and CDs. July is the last month to donate summer merchandise. 

We ask all to save your donations during our summer vacation and drop them off on or after July 17th during shop hours.

Starting August 1st, donations of Fall merchandise will be accepted. Please limit donations to 20 items per visit. 

Thanks to all for supporting us in our mission to help the church. We have been successful thanks to all of you.

Connie, Sandy, Jane, Lynn, & Gail


Central closet thrift shop will be hosting a multi family yard sale on August 17th, 9-2

Tables will be rented to interested parties for $25, at a first-come basis. This sale will be on the front lawn of the church, right on Central Square. Lots of traffic and  lots of foot traffic. Should be the perfect spot for anyone wanting to have a sale!

Rain date August 24th. For more information, contact Connie Chandler,  CGChandler7 at hotmail.com; or Lynn Pietras, lsypie at aol.com, or the church office.

Rev. Beth will be on sabbatical July 1 - August 5. 


We are pleased to welcome Pastor Anine de Grood, MID to our Sunday services in Rev. Beth’s absence.

Originally from the Netherlands, Anine grew up atheist but found a religious connection in the practice of classical dance from India. After moving to the US with her Indian husband Kuldeep in 2002, she was active in Unitarian Universalist churches for several years before slowly converting to Christianity and joining the UCC. Now she is a passionate preacher of Jesus’ message of love and inclusion, and a Member in Discernment in the United Church of Christ. Anine has a Masters in Social Anthropology from the University of Amsterdam and a Masters in Divinity from Boston University, and is currently the student minister at United Parish of Auburndale and at Agape Spiritual Community. She has two children, Naomi (18) and Oliver (15), and she teaches piano and Indian dance part-time.

This summer, Pastor Anine will offer reflections based on a song she wrote about the life and teachings of Jesus. On July 7 we will start with Jesus’ birth and baptism, and on August 4 we will end with how we remember Jesus and his teachings by breaking bread together. Over the course of five Sundays, the reflections will include several highlights of Jesus’ ministry, and every time Anine will teach new lines of her song that we will sing together. Come join us!

Annual Meeting Voting Results

At the annual meeting, held Sunday, June 9, the following items were voted on:

• The proposal to combine the Congregational Engagement and Spiritual Engagement Teams, for a trial period of one year, was approved.

• The annual report was accepted.
• The proposed budget for the 2024-25 fiscal year was approved as presented.

• The slate of officer and Team leader nominees was approved as follows:


Moderator: Anne Malmquist
Clerk: Nina Gabel-Jorgensen
Treasurer: David Sheibley
Asst. Treasurer: Philip Chaffee
Financial Secretary: Judy Pino


Congregational & Spiritual Engagement Team:
Carol Chaffee
Linda Chipman
Deb Sorgman
Eric Stotts


Community Engagement Team:
Heather Ciaramitaro
Diane Glass
Terry Reynolds
Property & Finance Team:
David Hanson
John Sharland
[still one open seat]



Fundraising Plan
 Central Square Congregational Church, UCC (Draft, Jan. 2024)

(Reprinted from the February Steeple Sounds)


The Property & Finance Team was charged by Cabinet to prepare a Fundraising Plan that would be used annually to make up any budget deficit. In turn, the Team asked for volunteers to write a plan. Lynn Pietras and Sandy Kuipers volunteered. It is important to note that with few exceptions, the success of this plan depends on volunteers from the congregation stepping up to carry out the efforts. Anticipated dollar amounts raised for each of these efforts is not included at this time, and until some experience in each effort is realized. This is a living document in that some items are one time and some items will prove to be not worth the effort.  
The following are ideas to raise money to support the work of the church:
• Sanctuary rental for weddings (current charge is $500 for non-members)
• Hilliards fundraising candy bars (already being sold)
• On-line sales
• Food sales, for example, during Lent clam chowder and corn chowder
• Dinners
• Brick walkway funded by engraved brick sales
• Yard sales, spring or summer
• Raffles (mystery Items) (All games of chance to be approved by Cabinet in advance)
• Cookbooks
• Restaurant coupon books
• Music concerts
• Calendar with pictures of church activities, members, Kids Church
• Silent movie with pianist
• Silent auction
• Art auction using outside company that provides the art pieces and runs the auction
• Gourmet popcorn
• Cookie dough
• T-Shirts
• Pizza 
• Coffee beans
• Wrapping paper
• Game night


Contact John Sharland or David Hanson, or the church office, if you are interested in participating in any of these projects, or if you have an idea of your own for a fundraiser. 

The following report was inadvertently omitted from the Annual Report draft. It was offered verbally during the Annual Meeting, and approved to be added to the Annual Report.

Report of the Church Delegate

I have been our delegate to the wider church for about 20 years now. The delegate attends ecclesiastical councils, ordinations, and installations for new pastors seeking standing in the Pilgrim Association, and the Spring and Fall meetings of the Association, and is expected to also attend the annual meeting of the Southern New England Conference. While it would be nice to attend this year’s Conference Annual Meeting, being held at my alma mater, UMass/Amherst, in June, I did not register because I have decided to resign as your local church delegate.

This 20-year experience has been the greatest joy for me, deepening my faith, expanding my knowledge of the wider church and listening to some of the most powerful sermons by nationally-recognized pastors. Listening to Statement of Faith papers, given by candidates for ordination at ecclesiastical councils, and then voting to grant standing in the Pilgrim Association, has been the most profound event for me as a delegate, over and over again.

Being a local church delegate also put me into the “pool” of candidates at the conference level to be chosen as a delegate to General Synod and I was elected to that position, attending the 2019 and 2021 General Synods in Baltimore and Milwaukee, respectively. The conference pays all expenses for these trips.

If need be, our church will pay expenses for such things as attending the conference annual meeting, which recently has been held at the DCU Center in Worcester.

I would be more than happy to discuss this role and its reward with anyone who feels the call to become our next delegate.
With gratitude for your 20 years of re-electing me your delegate, I am,
Sincerely yours,
John Sharland

Empty Nest, Empty Heart? 
by Sheri Turner

I’ve been a mother since 1997. Honestly, raising children and doing a good job by them has mattered more to me than anything else has in my life. Raising children who are confident, kind, giving, responsible critical thinkers who are loving, open-minded and hard working has been my purpose for 26 years.

Thank goodness I have had such a wonderful partner to help me do it. He is intelligent, loving, open-minded, kind, funny, pragmatic and the most ethical person I know. Truly a wonderful father and partner.

I have been truly blessed to be a small part of my family’s journey through this life. So where am I going with this? Truth is, I’m not sure. I have enjoyed the journey to create a loving family, but now what? I mean, I know I’ll always be their mother, but now that I believe that I have successfully contributed to the development of three strong-minded individuals who are independent and successful in their own right, what do I do now?

I have been very sad since completing my mission. I mean, I wouldn’t want it any other way, but what do you do when you’ve accomplished your purpose? Lest I sound too proud and arrogant, I am not saying I did a perfect job. Of course I worry about things, and truthfully probably always will. However my children are definitely authentically themselves. Whatever decisions they make are their own. They never have been carbon copies of their parents. Sometimes that made things more difficult, but their thoughts and actions are genuinely their own. 

That means accepting that they will forge their own paths as they see fit. I am so proud of all three of them for being capable of that. I’m sad too though. Sad that my time with them grows short. Sad that they no longer need my assistance like they once did.
But I’m hopeful too. Hopeful that something God has yet to share with me will fill the space that has been left in my heart where taking care of my children used to reside. I am hoping I am ready when God’s call comes, whether it is a still small voice or loud as thunder.



 CSCC Cabinet Meeting – Minutes
June 19, 2024 at 7pm

Location: Sheibley’s due to heat and lack of AC at Fellowship hall 


The meeting was called to order at 7:00 by Anne Malmquist, Moderator. 


Cabinet members in attendance : 
Anne Malmquist, Moderator 
Rev. Beth Stotts, Pastor 
David Sheibley, Treasurer 
Philip Chaffee, Assistant Treasurer 
Nina Gabel-Jorgensen, Clerk 
John Sharland, Property and Finance Team 
Terry Reynolds, Community Engagement Team 
Carol Chaffee, Congregational Engagement Team 

Others in Attendance: 
Diane Sheibley, Communications Coordinator 
Connie Chandler 
Jenne Foronjy, Office Manager 
Deb Thompson, North River Collaborative 
Marie Grable, North River Collaborative 


Rental Agreement Signing 
Agreement to rent Meeting room and Kitchen access for 2024-2025 Academic School year with North River Collaborative. Signing of agreement by Marie Grable (North River Collaborative) and John Sharland (Property and Finance Team) 
$1500 a month, 10 months. 
Dave Sheibley has the Agreement for filing. 
North River Collaborative attendees left the meeting. 


Diane Sheibley took attendance. Quorum was met. 


Rev. Beth opened the meeting with a devotion and a prayer.


May Minutes 
The meeting minutes from the May meeting were presented and reviewed. Anne Malmquist motioned to accept the minutes as written Carol Chaffee and Reverend Beth Stotts seconded. The minutes were approved as written. 


Pastor’s Report – Rev. Beth Stotts 
Elaine Henrickson - Still reaching out to Rev. Beth for help leaving Memory Care. Struggles to remember more than a month in the past. 
RB will begin leading 5 wishes program at the senior center. Advanced Care Planning. 
As part of W.I.S.E. program there will be a field trip on 6/23 to see Inside Out 2 with discussion following the viewing. So far 5 people have signed up. 
The Pastor filling in for Reverend Beth will have her bio in Steeple Sounds. 


Treasurer’s Report – Dave Sheibley 
May another good month. May 2024 $$ YTD higher than previous two years. End year not further behind than budgeted. Nothing unusual.


Community Engagement Team – Terry Reynolds and Connie Chandler 
Changed Harry Potter event name to “Magical”. Terry heard from Heather, who is excited to be on the committee. 246% increase in need for Bridgewater residents for the Food Pantry. Number of households 174. 


Congregational Engagement Team – Carol Chaffee 
Parade July 4th. It will be announced in the email. Picnic on communion Sunday was a success. Carol will propose a September date. Feedback was great. 


Property & Finance Team – John Sharland 
Boiler - Energy Kinetics working on the estimate. They needed 2 to 3 years of oil consumption data from Dave to size the boiler appropriately. No other estimates yet. Should probably seek another estimate. 


Spiritual Engagement Team - Carol Chaffee 
Added to calendar 


Welcomed new team members 


Discussion regarding the upcoming church calendar took place. Please refer to the calendar on the church website for details. 


The meeting adjourned at 8:55 pm 



For the current CSCC calendar of events, click here: CALENDAR


Church Administration
Pastor: Rev. Elizabeth Stotts, csccpastor at hotmail.com

Office Manager: Jenne Foronjy, office@csccucc.com
Minister of Music: Julia Scott Carey 

Director of Video Evangelism: Paul Holmes
Treasurer:  David Sheibley 

Communications Coordinator: Diane Sheibley

Kids Church Director: Eric Stotts

Office email: office@csccucc.com
Office telephone:  (508) 697-6016
Website:  www.csccucc.org
Facebook pages: facebook.com/csccuccbridgewaterma (main page),
facebook.com/groups/801550253194149 (youth page)

Instagram: @centralsquarechurch 

Venmo: @cscc-ucc

Steeple Sounds submissions deadline is the 15th of the month prior to publication.


Amazon Shopping!

Shopping on Amazon and feeling generous? Check out the CSCC Wish List, and drop an item in your cart for us! CLICK HERE to take a peek at our Amazon wish list. (Whether you buy these items at Amazon or at other stores, this is what we need!)