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All the Latest News from
First United Protestant Church of Hilo!

Ask from Pastor Chris
On Sunday December 27th, which is the last Sunday before the new year, I will be preaching on Psalm 148.  Psalm 148 is a psalm of praise, one where psalmist calls upon all of creation, including the seen and unseen, to join in praise of God.  To join in praise for God's order of creation, the wonder of it, and the life that creation has taken on to be what it was created to be.  It is a sort of praise that takes place when we open our eyes to perceive God's splendor beneath our normal human perception: the intricacies of snowflakes, the noise of the ocean, the resilience of the human body, the vastness of the galaxy, and so on. 
 
The psalm is really an invitation that invites readers to reflect on the praise that is owed to God, for creation, for life, for the wonder and mystery of it.
 
What I would like to ask is if you would be willing to be part of the worship service for that day?  My idea is to create one worship video, and if you are willing, ask you to share in 1-2 minutes what you are giving God praise for over this past year, or maybe just in general if you would like.  If you would like to help, I'd just ask that you dig a little deeper than just giving praise for family.  What more might there be to give praise for?  I will then put all those videos together as part of the worship service that day after I preach on the text.  It is a way of rounding out the year by giving praise to God!
 
Are you willing to help?  If so I would like to try to record you sometime from the 14th to 23rd.  You can schedule a time to stop by the church, or shoot the video yourself using a cellphone and then email it to me or send it to me via Dropbox.  
 
Thanks for your consideration!  Praise God!

-Rev. Christopher Czarnecki
Quick Note Regarding
Our Worship Services
As some of you may you know, we have been experiencing some video and audio issues in the recording of our worship services which has made it hard to see and hear at times.  We have made a couple of attempts to correct those issues, but those corrections have in most cases created some other issue that we have had to problem solve.  Since we do not have someone within the congregation or on staff with technical knowledge we have largely been unable to solve these issues. 

The good news is that we had someone out at the church last week with technical knowledge who worked with the worship team to troubleshoot those issues and offer solutions.  The church is in the process of ordering some video/audio equipment that should fix the problems we have been having and enhance the quality and sound of our worship videos.  In the coming weeks we will begin working with the equipment and our hope is to offer you a better worshiping experience while we are apart.

We want to offer thanks to all those who have been watching the worship services and offering feedback during this time.  We are now closer to a solution because of you!!

-Rev. Christopher Czarnecki
Sunday Worship Services
The first Sunday of every month, which is our Communion Sunday, we have worship together on Zoom at 10:00am.  Every other Sunday during the month we offer a prerecorded worship service that is shared on our church's website and YouTube Channel.  If you are receiving the weekly e-newsletter updates, on Sunday morning you will receive an email with the video of our worship service.  Our previous worship services can be viewed online anytime at our YouTube Channel by clicking on the button below.
Printable Order of Worship
Hymns & Music Inserts
YouTube Channel
Upcoming Sermons
Here is a list of upcoming sermon titles and scriptures:

December 13, 2020
"Finding Joy Through Change"
Scripture: Isaiah 61:1-4; 8-11 (NRSV)
Preacher: Rev. Christopher Czarnecki
Third Sunday of Advent

December 20, 2020
"With God All Things Are Possible"
Scripture: Luke 1:26-38 (NRSV)
Preacher: Rev. Christopher Czarnecki
Fourth Sunday of Advent

December 24, 2020
"Christmas Eve Candlelight Service"
Scriptures: Isaiah 9:2-7; Psalm 96;
Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14
5:00pm via Zoom

December 27, 2020
"Praise the Lord!"
Scripture: Psalm 148 (CEB)
Preacher: Rev. Christopher Czarnecki
Weekly Giving Report
As part of our commitment to stewardship we want to share the level of giving that is happening each week to support the work and ministry of the church.  For the week ending 12/05/2020 the church received tithes and donations totaling $300.00  If you would like more information about how to give during this time or how to begin making an ongoing stewardship pledge please contact the church office.
Volunteer Needed On Worship Team
The worship team at First United Protestant Church is looking for a volunteer to help with the new video and audio components that are going to used soon during the recording of our worship services on Fridays.  The job entails learning to operate the camcorder and listening to the recording through a set of headphones to make sure you can hear the sound.  We normally record worship on Fridays from 9:00am to 11:00am on Friday mornings.  If you would be interested in serving the church in this way please contact Pastor Chris at revchrisfupc@gmail.com
Christmas Letter from
UCC President Rev. John C. Dorhauer

Dear Friends in Christ,  

As Christmas 2020 approaches, I begin my letter to the church with lament.   

So many of the rich traditions that have made this holiday celebration so meaningful to me through the years will have to be abandoned this year. No visit to California to spend some time with my daughter and her spouse. No drive to Chicago to visit with my son, his spouse and our two beautiful grandchildren. The days we spend with both of them are the highlight of our Christmas celebrations.

There will be no candlelight service on Christmas Eve at our home church. I will not hear that powerful soprano voice sing “O, Holy Night.” I will not hold aloft my candle in the dimly lit sanctuary while singing “Silent Night” with my faith family. I will not gather in the fellowship hall for eggnog and cookies before heading home to set out the presents and fill the stockings.

I will sit at our Christmas table with my wife and our son who lives with us, while missing the raucous laughter of cousins and uncles and aunts and nieces and nephews, and Mom.

I lament all of that.  To continue reading click here...

Christmas Eve Candlelight Service
5:00pm December 24th
On Thursday December 24th we will have our annual Christmas Eve Service on Zoom at 5:00pm.  Join us for a time of singing, listening, prayer, and solace.  If you would like to participate in this year's Christmas Eve Service or provide a gift of music please contact Pastor Chris at revchrisfupc@gmail.com.   We are in need of liturgy readers for this evening!

So far we have the following gifts of music as part of our worship service that evening:
Richard & Bonnie Alger:  Christmas medley of
O Tannenbaum, Mele Kalikimaka, and Angels We Have Heard on High.
Joanne Pocsidio:  In the Bleak Midwinter
Phoebe Wyatt:  Christmas Poem
Michael Springer:  Silent Night


Join Us On Zoom:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82592129814?pwd=cWNYZkpNQkJpSUdCT2Y4Ukc2YjhQUT09

Meeting ID: 825 9212 9814
Passcode: 558642
By Phone: 1-253-215-8782
Have You Heard of AlohaSafe Alert?
AlohaSafe Alert is a free, voluntary new service that helps slow the spread of COVID-19. It is the State of Hawaii’s official exposure notification app and has been developed in partnership with the Hawaii State Department of Health.  Download the AlohaSafe Alert app to get COVID-19 exposure notifications and help keep Hawaii safe and healthy – all while maintaining your privacy.  Check out their website to find out how it works and to download the app on your electronic device.
Faith Based Articles Worth Reading
Giving While We Are Apart
 
We offer four ways you can donate or tithe to the church during this time:

1. You can mail in a donation directly to the church office at:

           First United Protestant Church of Hilo
           1350 Waianuenue Ave.
           Hilo, Hi 96720

2. By setting up First United Protestant Church as a payee through your online banking bill pay.  When you make a payment we will receive your donation as a check through the mail.

3. Making a one-time or reoccurring donation using a debit or credit card through our Facebook Page by clicking the "Donate" button.  The donate button on our Facebook Page also allows you to raise money for the church by creating a fundraiser on holidays, birthdays, or during special times of the year such as Giving Tuesday.

4. Making a one-time or reoccurring donation using a debit or credit card at our secure PayPal site.  A small 2.2% + $0.30 fee is taken out of each donation we receive that is made through PayPal.  Our secure PayPal site also allows you to choose what ministry you would like your donation to go to.  Click on the donate button below to go to our PayPal site.

5.  Our new ChurchTrac program offers multiple ways to give online.  You can set up a one-time or re-occurring automatic deduction from your checking account.  You can make a one-time or reoccurring donation using a debit or credit card.  Or you can setup text giving through your mobile phone.  If you are using ChurchTrac for the first time you will have to set up a User ID and Password.

COVID-19 Resources
for our Local Hawaii County Area
Announcements:
  • If you need to reach Pastor Chris during this time you can email him at revchrisfupc@gmail.com or contact him by cell at (314)402-8167.  He will return messages according to their urgency at the earliest possible time.  His days off have transitioned to Saturdays and Sundays during this time.  Please reserve any phone calls on these days to matters that are urgent.  Non-urgent matters may be sent by email.
  • Due to the health risks Covid-19 presents and the complexities in providing a safe space for people to gather at the church, our in-person public worship services held each Sunday will continue to be suspended until further notice.  Please contract the church office or visit our website if you need additional information on how to worship with us during this time.
  • If you would like a hard copy of the Pastor Chris’s sermon mailed to you, please contact Pastor Chris or the church office.
Sunday December 13th - Third Sunday of Advent
Sunday December 20th - Church Council Meeting at 9:00am via Zoom
Sunday December 20th - Fourth Sunday of Advent & UCC Christmas Fund Offering
Thursday December 24th - Christmas Eve Candlelight Service 5:00pm via Zoom
Friday December 25th - Christmas Day - Church Office Closed
Thursday December 31st - New Year's Eve
Friday January 1st - New Year's Day - Church Office Closed
First United Protestant Church of Hilo is a Congregationalist Church that was founded in 1868 and is part of the greater United Church of Christ.

Vision: Our vision is to welcome and love the diversity of all God’s People. To serve and support others through action and social justice. To be a community of faith which encourages spiritual growth through the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.

Mission: Our mission is to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ by working together to overcome the barriers that exclude and divide people, so that God’s inclusive love may be known. To commit ourselves to where faithful action and outreach is needed both locally and around the world, so that others may experience peace and healing. To share in meaningful worship through uplifting music and fellowship. To offer Christian education through study, meditation, and prayer. It is our desire to walk with others on their spiritual journey as they are inspired and empowered to live as Jesus did: full of faith, hope, possibility, and love.
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https://www.fupchurch.org/
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Hilo, HI 96720

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First United Protestant Church of Hilo · 1350 Waianuenue Ave · Hilo, HI 96720-1230 · USA

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