643 Abe Road (Hwy 47), Lac du Flambeau, WI 54538    email:  nicea325@frontier.com    phone:  715-588-7150




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Church USA



of Northern








August 2019



The summer has been moving along rapidly and before we realize it, it shall be over.  But for the past two or three months we have been thoroughly enjoying the presence of our “snowbirds” at our services of worship.  The sanctuary rings with all those additional voices (some of whom I know Sam Shugar would love to have in choir) making the sound of our music so enriching, moving and worshipful.  The services are very warm and inspiring---certainly for me at least, and a significant amount of good flows forth from this little faith community not only in the worship, but in the energy and work that supports many worthwhile programs.  In a month or two, this will change again, as it has for Carolyn and me over the past thirteen years.  The “snowbirds” will depart, but I know they will continue to manifest, in their lives and work, the living proclamation of God’s love as we shall as well here in the Northwoods.  We may be geographically separated, but we are always faithfully united.  This is part of that which makes the Christian faith so significant, so relevant, and so rewarding.


This is what makes this congregation so unique, so special, in my view, at least---a God who is loving, challenging, and rewarding at one and the same time---being experienced and shared in and out of the church---for the church is not just this building, the church is you!  There are many, however, too many who claim the faith but reflect in their lives and actions a different God, a God who does not care, who does not get involved, a God who is always above and beyond, out there, up there.  A God who would just give the universe a spin and then go and do something else, a God who wouldn’t seek a relationship with us or challenge us, a God unconcerned about what we do and how we do it.

That may be the God of many church people’s preferences, but that is not the God of the prophets, the God of Israel, the God of the Christian faith: A God not only out there, but also down here, right here.  Not only beyond us, but also within us, closer than our next breath.  Not only the sovereign creator of the universe, but also our lover, our mother, our father.  A God who seeks us out.  A God yearning for a relationship with us.  A God who somehow seems to require our company in order to be complete.  A God who will not leave us alone. A God who is interested in what we do and how we do it.  A God to whom it matters what we worship and what we follow and what we commit ourselves to.


We have seen, and we continue to see in our corrupt world, people hurt.  We have observed personal promotion at the expense of others’ well-being.  We have bowed before the altar of the market, endorsing whatever fattens our accounts.  We have broken commitments and followed wayward paths and have worshipped gods of our own making.  We have been unfaithful with our time, our talent, our resources.  Getting and gaining, having and holding are what count.  Giving and losing, reaching out or letting go are simply not in fashion.  We have tried to lock God in the basement, far away from the rooms in which we live.  We’ll take God out when we need something---whether it’s a warm feeling on Christmas Eve or a good-luck charm when we go under the surgeon’s knife.  We want God to play on our terms and that usually means out of sight, out of mind.  We want God to do what we want, when we want it.

But the locked-up God, the God at our beck and call, the God formed in our own image does not exist.  We live at a time and in a place very different from ancient Israel.  We are a people very different from the people of that day.  Yet we are the same in that God would be entirely justified in giving up on us, faithless as we so often are.  In spite of us, our God wipes the slate clean and starts again.  In spite of us¸ the relationship is renewed and is always renewable.  In spite of us, we are restored in our identity as children of God---not as masters of God, but children of God.  With a faithful love stronger than death, God has claimed us as children.  In that relentless love, we find resources, strength and courage to give ourselves to people and things that really matter.  While we here, in this community of faith are far from perfect, I give thanks and praise, experience joy and happiness, that we are doing things that matter in the mind and to the heart of our God.  Let us keep the faith, do the work, and experience the joy and love together.


As Always,

Pax et caritas tecum.

Bill Anderson




The Moderator, Dr. Anderson, determined there was a quorum and called the regularly scheduled Session meeting to order with an opening prayer at 10:00 AM on Friday, July 12, 2019.


Dr. Anderson advised the committee that current Clerk of the Session, Judy Allen, has asked to step down and that he has asked Kathy LaBarge to take her place.  Kathy has accepted the position.


Treasurer, Gary Beier, presented financial information and after some discussion the budget was accepted.  Gary’s term as treasurer will be ending this year and Elder Raduege has agreed to be the new treasurer.


The Session suggested that a committee be formed to explore how we can increase our membership which has been declining over the last several years.  There was also discussion on how to get the Church website updated.


The next scheduled Session meeting is Friday, August 9, 2019 at 10 AM.


There was no further business to come before the Session, so there was a motion to adjourn.  Dr. Anderson said a closing prayer and the meeting was adjourned at 11:35 AM.



Kathy LaBarge, Clerk





July 7, 2019: the Radueges     

July 14, 2019:  Delma Erikson

July 21, 2019:  the Millers

July 28, 2019:  the Petermans

Thank you all for your time, hard work and contribution to the fellowship.


            Jack Miller                               August 3

            Esther Meyer                          August 3

            Marie Peterman                      August 12

            Charles Granger                     August 16

            Carol Gelwicks                       August 17

            Diane Bridgeforth                   August 19

            John Spellmeyer                     August 21


            Tom and Carol Gelwicks            August 1

            Mark and Jo Mayeau              August 6

            Dr. Bill and Fran Raduege            August 24

            Charles and Ellen Granger            August 26

            Ries and Pat Behling              August 28

            Jerry and Linda Lockwood            August 29



The Choir Corner


As I drifted off to slumber land a few evenings ago, my mind traveled to a time long past when I was in grade school.  One of my teachers was trying to interest her class in the art of music.  She chose to introduce us to a “ditty” that a few of us may recall; viz., MacNamara’s Band.  She commissioned us to bring pots, pans, lids, wooden spoons and other kitchen paraphernalia to accompany the song instrumentally.  The song goes:


“My name is MacNamara, I’m the leader of the band.

Although we’re few in number, we’re the finest in the land.

Hennessy Tennessee toodles the flute and the music is something grand,

A credit to ole Ireland is MacNamara’s band.

The drums go bang, the cymbals clang and the horns they blaze away,” etc., etc.


I awoke next morning with this in my head:


My name is Samuel Shugar, I’m the director of our choir.

Although we’re few in number we vow to never tire.

Clarke, Gallagher, and Erikson they get us way up high,

While Bill and Owen form the base to keep them with us nigh.

The middle fills with Nancy, Shirley, and Jan,

While Tracy provides the twinkled keys to complete our little clan.

We have no drums nor cymbals, but our voices are loud and clear.

We strive to fill you with a joy that remains throughout the year.


This from your wacky musical director with his ever present invitation to come join us.


The choral selections for August are (conditions permitting):

August 4 – God So Loved the World


August 11 – I feel the Spirit


August 18 – For the Joy of Music


August 25 – Great is Thy Faithfulness



Sam Shugar, Music Director




Aug.  4, 2019

18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Hosea 11: 1-11; Ps. 107: 1-9, 43; Col. 3: 1-11;  Luke 12: 13-21

Aug. 11, 2019

19th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Isa. 1:1, 10-20; Ps. 50: 1-8, 22-23; Heb. 11: 1-3, 8-16;  Luke 12: 32-40

Aug. 18, 2019

20th  Sunday in Ordinary Time

Isa. 5: 1-7;; Ps. 80: 1-2, 8-19; Heb. 11: 29-12:2;  Luke 12: 49-56

Aug.  25, 2019

21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

Jer. 1: 4-10; Ps. 71: 1-6; Heb. 12: 18-29;  Luke 13: 10-17

            These readings are suggested by the Presbyterian Planning Calendar and may be changed depending on the topic of the sermon.  Liturgists will be called each week to tell them what the readings will be.


Liturgists for the month of August will be:

Aug. 4:

Aug. 11:

Aug. 18: Ginny Stiles

Aug. 25: Marie Peterman

Ushers for the month of July will be:

Aug. 4:

Aug. 11: 

Aug. 18:

Aug. 25:


As you can see, we are in serious need of Liturgists and Ushers.  Please sign up for Liturgist and Ushers in the Fellowship Hall.  Your participation is urgently needed and greatly appreciated.  Thank you for your help.


The ladies of the church met on July 18th for a Salad Luncheon and Style Show.  The luncheon featured many beautiful salads and desserts with about 30 women in attendance.  A style show featuring fashions from the Attic Boutique followed the luncheon and was enjoyed by all who attended.  Many thanks to Barbara Schneider and Shirlee Gallagher and her committee for organizing this fun event.




The Lunch Bunch will meet on Monday, August 12th.  Please sign up on the sign-up sheet in Fellowship Hall if you plan to attend.  Any ???, contact Barbara Metz, 715-358-0116.




The Deacons did not meet in July, yet their work continues.  Each week the Prayer Chain is informed of prayer requests from members and friends.  It is gratifying to see those that have been on the chain return to us in full health.


We continue to prepare for each communion service and see the change in the parakeets as the church year passes.  We are grateful for the continuing support for the Deacon’s fund and are fulfilling the proposed budget.  Thank you very much.


Our next meeting will be in September when we will begin to plan for our fall and winter duties.  Have you thought about Christmas yet?  Advent is just around the corner.


A word of thanks to the people that planned the wonderful events of the summer.  The “Who done it” in June and the fun filled Luncheon and Style Show from the Attic.  Fellowship is a very important part of our spiritual life that is nurtured by such events.  And thank you to those who provide for our coffee hour, serve as liturgists and ushers.


Edi Spellmeyer, Moderator



Faith community across time

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also…run with perseverance the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1, NRSV).  Inspired by this, Paul Hammer writes in The Word Among Us: “In the Bible, faith is never a matter simply for an isolated individual.  It involves a community of persons that stretches back into the past, embraces people in the present and anticipates a fellowship in the future.  Faith involves a ‘cloud of witnesses’ to God’s continuing faithfulness.”



As people of God and servants of our Lord Jesus Christ, we believe our mission to be the building of a strong fellowship, ministering to the spiritual and physical needs of the church, the community, and the world, fulfilling our Lord’s command to “love our neighbors”.