Listen to Pastor Brian's Sermons
When available, Pastor Brian's sermons are posted on our website by Thursday each week. Sermons are available on The Pastor's Page™.
You may also view our 10:30 AM Facebook Live Service each week – click here.
Capital Campaign for the Truss Project
Many of you know that we are currently working on a major project to replace damaged trusses above the sanctuary, replacing the roof and ceiling as well in the process. The project will likely cost around $300,000 in total. We have had good news, in that insurance will be paying for part of the project; however; we will likely still have to pay between $100,000 and $200,000 ourselves. This will be paid for by a combination of donations from a capital campaign, draw down of the endowment, and possible loans depending on the total cost to the church. Below are several ways we are asking people to consider donating towards this project.
$50,000 Direct Donation Goal for 2020: We have set a goal of raising $50,000 in donations before the end of 2020. This goal has already been started off by a very generous matching grant of $25,000 put forth by several families in the church. Between now and the end of the year, if we raise $25,000 in donations, then the families behind the grant will match those donations with an additional $25,000 donation for a total of $50,000. The grant has been given in memory of both Sharon Parkison and Anna Mary Sullivan, and in honor of Martha Stevens. Please consider giving towards this goal and having your gift generously doubled.
Multi-year Gifts: There are often cases where people wish to donate towards a project, but wish to do so over several years. Even though we will need funds to pay for the project within the next 6 months, any gifts given later on would also be very helpful. We will need to draw down the endowment or possibly take out a loan to pay for the project and any gifts given over the next several years can help offset this. If you wish to give a gift like this, please tell our treasurer Melissa Baumbarger (email) or Pastor Brian (email) if you prefer. Knowing about such gifts will also help the consistory and the church make decisions about funding.
Legacy Gifts: Several church members over the years have chosen to donate to the church from their estates. This is a generous way to remember the church and ensure that it continues for future generations. For those considering giving such gifts we have an excellent resource in the church, Gloria Hurwitz (email@example.com), who can help with questions and planning. Gloria works as the Vice President of Advancement for United Church Homes and has a great deal of experience in setting up legacy gifts of different types.
Update – Sanctuary Trussing Project
We are continuing on with the Truss Replacement Project and making progress. I had hoped to have more information about our insurance claim for you by this time, but we are still waiting to hear about a reward amount; however, it looks as if they will pay for somewhere between a third to half of the project cost. We will be awarding contracts to the general contractor, paint contractor, and carpet contractor hopefully by November 9th, and construction should start by November 15th.
Update – Matching Grant
As many of you know, we have set a minimum fundraising goal of $50,000 for the Truss Replacement Project, to be raised by the end of the year. Several families have created a $25,000 matching grant that will match the first $25,000 given and bring us to our $50,000 goal. In addition to the $25,000 in grant money, we have so far raised $20,399, and so we need to only raise an additional $4,601 to receive the full matching grant and meet our $50,000 goal. Of course, if we exceed our goal that would be very helpful as well. All money we raise will decrease the amount we have to draw from our endowment, and decrease the chances of us having to take out a loan for the project. Thank you to all who have given so far.
Operation Christmas Child
It’s that time again – time for the Samaritan’s Purse shoeboxes! If you need a shoebox or two to fill, please contact Pastor Brian to arrange to pick them up. The drop off period at Beaver Church will be from November 15th through November 21st. Please arrange with Pastor Brian to drop off the completed shoeboxes to him between those dates. The shoebox may be the only gift a child receives. Boxes are packed for either boys or girls, ages 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14 years old. Susan Saddler will deliver them all to a collection station as she has done in the past, once they have been gathered together at the church.
Cookieless Cookie Walk
Because of the pandemic we are not going to be able to hold our annual cookie walk. However, Martha is not one for letting a fundraising opportunity go by, and so she has come up with the Cookieless Cookie Walk. For those of us that would usually spend money to bake cookies for the cookie walk, Martha is asking that we send what money we would normally spend to the church instead. For me that sounds like a great deal, and I won’t have to bake 50 dozen cookies. All money sent to the church for the Cookieless Cookie Walk will go towards the truss project fundraiser. Simply put “Cookie Walk” on your check or on a note with your donation.
Thank You From Alec Pfaff
Alec Pfaff, Ed and Jenny’s grandson, was this year’s recipient of the church’s Greene Memorial scholarship. Normally Alec would have come to a church service to receive the award and thank the congregation, but because of the pandemic he was unable to do that. He has written to the church and wanted to thank the congregation and let us know that he has started at Sinclair Community College. May we all say a prayer and wish him success in this new chapter of his life.
I am happy to say that we have received two people into membership at Beaver Church. On 10/25 Rev. Charlie Williams joined the church, and on 11/1 Ellie Rauls joined through confirmation.
Virtual Book Study – Everybody Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People – October 15, 22, 29, and November 4 – 7:00 PM, via ZOOM
We will have a new book study that will be four weeks in length on Thursday evenings, starting on Thursday October 15th, and ending on Thursday November 4th. We will meet all nights at 7PM over Zoom, and the information for the Zoom meeting will be sent out via the all-church email list each Thursday. The book we are reading is Everybody Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People by Bob Goff. It is a fairly well-known book and you can pick up a copy perhaps at the library or at some bookstores, and certainly on Amazon; the ISBN number is (0718078136). “What happens when we give away love like we're made of it? In his entertaining and inspiring follow- up to Love Does, Bob Goff takes readers on a journey into the secret of living without fear, constraint, or worry. This liberated existence we all long for is as simple to say as it is difficult to do: we are called to love everybody, always – even when it’s really difficult. Driven by Bob’s trademark storytelling, Everybody, Always reveals the lessons Bob learned--often the hard way--about what it means to love without inhibition, insecurity, or restriction. From finding the right friends to discovering the upside of failure, Everybody Always points the way to embodying love by doing the unexpected, the intimidating, the seemingly impossible. Whether losing his shoes while skydiving solo or befriending a Ugandan witch doctor, Bob steps into life with a no-limits embrace of others that is as infectious as it is extraordinarily ordinary. Everybody Always reveals how we can do the same.”
- October 15th – Prologue, Chapters 1-6;
- October 22nd – Chapters 7-12;
- October 29th – Chapters 13-18;
- November 4th – Chapters 19-24, Epilogue
Communicating During The Pandemic
As we continue to not meet in person for the time being it is important for us to still be able to communicate. It is also important for the church to be able to send information to the members. We will be continuing the newsletter, and there is also always a copy of the newsletter on the church website www.beaverucc.org. Day to day communication will be primarily sent out via our “all church email list”. You are encouraged to please become part of this list if you are not already. To add your address to the list, please send your email address to Pastor Brian or call or text him at (937) 469-1383 to give him your email address. Updates will also be placed on the church’s Facebook page.
Decline in Offerings
We are unfortunately now in month eight of not being able to worship in our sanctuary on Sundays. First it was the Coronavirus, and then it was the structural integrity of the sanctuary itself. These are things I would have never planned for, and they have kept me up at night. See my Pastor’s Peace on anxiety for more info on that. During this time, we have continued to meet via Facebook, Zoom, and with outdoor drive-in services, and that will need to continue until at least March because of construction, let alone the Coronavirus. In this time people have continued to be very generous and supportive of the church, both in volunteerism and financially. Many have continued their offerings, and have donated generously to the building repair project. This, of course, has been a Godsend because even though we are not physically meeting in the same way, we still have many of the same obligations we had before, for staff, utilities, insurance, etc.
We have been fortunate this year and offerings have been able to cover expenses; however, in the last several months our offerings have been in decline. In September the church received about 80% of the usual offerings, and in October it was 60%. Perhaps this is just a temporary decline, and I understand that there are many possible reasons for this. I also understand that not everyone is able to donate at the level they have in the past because of economic difficulties related to the pandemic. On a separate note, if you are struggling, we do have some funds in Benevolence, so please reach out to me. I am mainly writing about this because I believe one of my duties as the pastor is to keep the congregation informed about the health of the church. If I didn’t do that, I really wouldn’t be doing my job.
No matter what the future holds, I am confident that Beaver Church will persevere. I am also very grateful for all those who continue to support the church. The only thing I ask right now is that if you are someone who has intended to donate but has merely forgotten or gotten out of the habit, as I have with many things in this strange time, that you please consider giving to the church again as we work to plan the year ahead. This time will not last forever, and I have faith that things will return to normal. Together with God, I am confident that we will worship again in our sanctuary, and yet again be able to share God’s love in person as we have done for so many years.
Neighbors In Need Offering
Whoops, we forgot! The Neighbors in Need offering is usually received on the first Sunday of October on World Wide Communion Sunday but somehow that event slipped by without our saying anything. The good news is we can still receive it now. Neighbors in Need is one of our four special denominational offerings we collect each year, and is an offering designed to help local churches advance their ministries. My personal story about this is: When Stuart and I were the Interims in Las Vegas the church decided to start a food pantry to supplement an already existing bread distribution that they had been doing for many years. We applied to the Neighbors in Need Committee for funds to implement the pantry and received a grant of $500. With that grant we were able to go to the local food bank and buy the food we needed. That along with donations from the members of the church got us started. That program continued for at least 10 years until the church sold its property and moved to another location. I encourage you to contribute to this offering to help other local churches reach out to neighbors who are in need. Gail Wells
Tuesday Evening Social Hour via Zoom - Tuesdays - 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
We will continue to have our weekly virtual social hour every Tuesday from 7:00-8:00pm. We connect via Zoom, a popular app that works on laptops, smartphones, iPads, computers with a camera and microphone, or you can even call in on a regular phone. It is free to download a client and more information can be found at the www.zoom.us website. The information for the meeting will be sent out via the all-church email list every Tuesday. If you are not on the all-church email list, send your email to Pastor Brian and he can add you. We will continue the social hour every Tuesday at 7:00pm until things return to normal circumstances more or less.
Visits From Pastor Brian
Due to an increase in the infection rates of COVID-19 for our area, and an abundance of caution, Pastor Brian will not be doing regular visits to people in their homes. This is a continuation of his current policy on visits. Pastor Brian, will however, do visits in emergency cases such as hospital visits. If that is required please contact Pastor Brian to let him know.
Worshipping on Facebook
The church has continued to cancel in-person worship for June, and we will be continuing to have worship online each Sunday at 10:30am through Facebook. It should be noted that even when we start to meet in person again, we will be continuing the online service as well, and will make it a permanent part of our worship. For those that are familiar with Facebook, you will just need to go to our Facebook page, which you can search for as “Beaver United Church of Christ.” For those not setup on Facebook, it is very easy to acquire a Facebook account. All you need to do is go to www.facebook.com and follow the instructions for setting up a new account. Once in Facebook, search for our church. Alternatively, if you go to our website www.beaverucc.org there is also a link to our Facebook page that you can click on.
Once on the church’s Facebook page there will be a live stream video that you might have to scroll down a bit to see. You can enlarge it by clicking on the enlarge button on the lower right hand of the video. You will be able to make comments during the video, which we will use for instance during joys and concerns. Once the service is over you will also be able to view the video afterwards on our Facebook page as well. When we have communion, if you have bread and wine or juice with, I will consecrate it through Facebook, so that we can all partake of communion together. After each service a link to the video will be sent out via email and placed on our webpage. You do not need a Facebook account to view the video from this link. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Pastor Brian about this on his cell phone: 937-469-1383.
Joys And Concerns
We will be continuing our joys and concerns during our online service at 10:30 AM and our 9:00 AM drive-in service. To be included each week, please email your joys and concerns to Pastor Brian before each Sunday. There is also the ability to make comments during the service and we will use that as well for joys and concerns.
Sadly, since the last newsletter, the cases of COVID-19 and deaths have just continued to rise steadily. Montgomery County in particular has seen a large increase and is a level 3 out of 4 for COVID-19 risk according to the state’s new system. In addition we cannot currently use our sanctuary because of a structural issue with one of the major trusses supporting the roof. Because of these issues the consistory has decided that we will not be resuming indoor in-person services for the foreseeable future. Once we have the truss issue repaired, and once the COVID-19 infections start to come down, then we will look to restart indoor in-person services. In the meantime we will be continuing our 10:30am Facebook service, and our new 9:00am drive-in service every Sunday. We hope to see you at one or both of these services.
Giving To Beaver Church During The Pandemic
All of us have been impacted in so many ways by the Coronavirus pandemic. Many have been struggling financially, and for those of you who have, please contact Pastor Brian and we can assist you from our benevolence fund. For those that are able to continue to give your offerings to the church and wish to, you can either send checks to the church at “1960 Dayton-Xenia Rd. Beavercreek, OH 45434”, or if you wish, you can go to our website www.beaverucc.org and use the yellow donate button in the upper right hand corner of the webpage to donate online via credit or debit card. We also have a box for your offerings available at the 9:00am drive-in service. If you wish to give in person and cannot make it to the 9:00am drive-in service, please contact Pastor Brian to arrange a time to meet. We are very grateful for continued offerings during this period, as we are still paying staff and taking care of other bills and obligations.
Items For The Kids
Jeannette, our fabulous children’s moment leader, will be putting some things together for the kids which will be sent in the mail for Easter. If you wish to have your children receive something from Jeannette, or any other care package items we send to the kids, please email Pastor Brian with your address and the number of kids who would like to receive things at that address.
Financial Health of Beaver Church
In the midst of all of the challenges facing us during this pandemic, people have had many questions about how the church is doing in this time. People have of course asked about the well-being of other church members, the staff, and the overall health of the church. One question that has come up several times is how the church is financially. This is a valid question in that we find ourselves in a completely different environment not only for the church but for its members as well. Thankfully the church’s members have continued to generously donate to the mission of this congregation. We have also applied for and received a Federal PPP loan/grant that will help cover some of our payroll costs. All of this together means that as long as we don’t see a significant drop in current offerings, then the church should remain financially healthy for the remainder of the year. Most importantly, all of this is possible only because of the generosity of our members to give to our ministry, and as always this is greatly appreciated by all who call Beaver Church their home.
Fundraisers Postponed or Possibly Canceled
We have many wonderful fundraisers at Beaver Church throughout the year. These help the church financially and also offer goods that the community has come to appreciate over the years. Unfortunately, most of these fundraisers involve bringing large numbers of the general public into our building to interact with our members. Given the state of the pandemic, such activities would not currently be prudent. We have thus decided to postpone all fundraisers this year until a time when it is deemed safe to have them. With the future unknown, there is a possibility that some or all of these fundraisers might be canceled altogether such as our Spring Chicken and Noodle Dinner that was scheduled in March. We will continue to monitor the situation and communicate to the church when we might hold any of our 2020 fundraisers.