"I will put my teaching in their minds and write it on their hearts..."
Jeremiah 31:33

January 13 - 20, 2023

You can find brief descriptions of these weekly programs on our website:

SUNDAY Morning, 10 am Zoom Worship

https://zoom.us/j/97010988439 Password: betogether

SUNDAY , 12 noon Zoom Bible Study  


MONDAY - FRIDAY, 8 am Morning Devotion


WEDNESDAY Eve., 6:00 pm Midweek Inhale Spiritual Practices


Happening This Week


January 13,

10:00 a.m.

Sunday Morning Worship!

(We'll be receiving new members: Ty Scullion, Sam Tetzlaff, Vickie & Peter Mueller, Brian Falbo, and Lynn Lodahl. Let's give them a warm welcome in worship together!

(in person and on zoom as always)


Password: betogether

Sunday, January 15th

Younger Youth Meeting 5:30 - 6:45 pm

Younger youth (12 and under) meet to have play games, do a craft, eat pizza and explore a Bible Story. Spread the word, bring friends, and let's have a blast together! Typically we'll meet on the 2nd Sunday of each month, but we're on the 3rd Sunday in January because the 1st Sunday was New Year's Day.

Meetings This Week

Green/EcoJustice Team Tuesday, January 17 at 6:30 pm (in person & Zoom) Zoom uses the Sunday Worship link and password.

NION Thursday, January 19 at 6:30 pm (Zoom only) Zoom uses the Sunday worship link and password.

McFarland UCC Annual Meeting, 1/22/23, 10:30 am

The McFarland UCC Annual Meeting recapping the 2022 year and moving forward into 2023 will be conducted in person and via Zoom on Sunday, January 22, 2023. The worship service on January 22 will be abbreviated. We’ll sing a couple of songs, pray together, have a brief message, and end by 10:30 am so we can start the Annual Meeting immediately after worship.

ALL are encouraged to attend the Annual Meeting (in-person or via Zoom) so you can hear about all the activities that occurred in 2022 from representatives of our committees and ministry teams. Participation in the Annual Meeting also gives everyone an opportunity to learn about the financial management of our church and who will be leading us in 2023.

In order to conduct the business of our congregation, we are required by our governing documents to have a quorum of members in order to vote on the items that require approval, including minutes from the 2022 Annual Meeting, proposed revisions to our Governing Documents, the 2023 Budget, and Leadership Positions. Note that while everyone is welcome to attend and participate in the meeting,

only members can vote either in person or via Zoom.

All Annual Meeting information is available on the MUCC website under the the Annual Meeting tab. Hard copies of Annual Meeting information is available in the Fellowship space.

Opportunites and Things Coming Up


Year End Statements

Year End statements will be either emailed or mailed early next week (Jan. 15-21). If there are any questions, please contact the Financial Secretaries at finsec@mcfarlanducc.org

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Monday, January 16, 2023

Just thought I'd (Pastor Bryan) share a number of quotes from Martin Luther King, Jr. to remind us all of his amazing life, faith, and witness. Here are some in no particular order that I find powerful and provocative. I have not changed the language to make it more gender inclusive, but I have no doubt that if Dr. King spoke today his language would be inclusive.

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."


“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”


“Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.”


“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”


“You can kill the dreamer, but you can’t kill the dream.”


“Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude.”


“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”


“I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. That is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.”


“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

“Nonviolence is absolute commitment to the way of love. Love is not emotional bash; it is not empty sentimentalism. It is the active outpouring of one's whole being into the being of another.”

“I am convinced that love is the most durable power in the world. It is not an expression of impractical idealism, but of practical realism. Far from being the pious injunction of a Utopian dreamer, love is an absolute necessity for the survival of our civilization. To return hate for hate does nothing but intensify the existence of evil in the universe. Someone must have sense enough and religion enough to cut off the chain of hate and evil, and this can only be done through love.”

“Let no man pull you so low as to hate him.”

“There are some things so dear, some things so precious, some things so eternally true, that they are worth dying for. And I submit to you that if a man has not discovered something that he will die for, he isn’t fit to live.”

A Few Words From Pastor Bryan

The photo you see to the left here was taken just a few days ago at a university graduation ceremony in Haiti. The photo is of my young friend Alex Riquel. I have known Alex since he was in elementary school. Just this last week, despite all the interruptions in Haiti because of political and gang violence in recent years, Alex got his college degree. I'm so proud of him and happy for him I just had to share this good news with you.

As most of you know, I have been working with grassroots organizations in Haiti for over 30 years, and I helped found the educational organization called SPARE (Sponsorship Program Aiding Relationships and Education). In Haiti, only 1% of the population ever receives any university level education at all, let alone achieving a degree. SPARE has now seen well over 30 students graduate from a University or technical school. This is the program through which our church (And Martha Olsen & Sheryl Rowe) is sponsoring our young female student Deusline.

In Haiti, SPARE is now run by one of the program's graduates--a remarkable young man named Wilson Pierre. Yesterday I received this message from Wilson along with Alex's photograph and the video you'll see at the bottom of the page. (at the end of the clip Alex is the tall guy without the glasses in the far side of the video). Wilson wrote;

Today we had the privilege of attending the graduation ceremony of our dear graduate Alexis Jean Riquel in electrical engineering at Haiti Tech, one of the best professional schools in the whole country. We congratulate Alexis for the efforts made during his difficult years despite the political and economic situation of the country. We wish him the best of all and success in whatever he comes across. In addition, we thank Haïti Alliés and their sponsors for their support for years.

When I watched the brief video taken at the graduation ceremony, I burst into tears and had the best cry (tears of joy and gratitude) I've had in a long long time. I really can't tell you what joy it brings me to see what has evolved in and through this fragile little program among some of the most materially impoverished people on the planet. It is a minor miracle that Alex was able to survive extreme malnutrition and violence, complete his education, and become the young man he is. To see these desperately poor and vulnerable kids escape possible starvation through the school's meal program, receive a solid education, have a chance to live a life of dignity and make a contribution to the world by developing their own God-given gifts and capacities--well it brings me so much joy I can't really explain it. The poet, priest, and activist Daniel Berrigan said it well in a brief poem of his called "When I Hear Bread Breaking."

When I Hear Bread Breaking

By Daniel Berrigan

“When I hear bread breaking,

I see something else;

it seems to me as though God

never meant us to do anything else.

So beautiful a sound;

the crust breaks up like manna

and falls all over everything and then we eat;

bread gets inside humans.

It turns into what the experts call “formal glory of God,”

but don’t let that worry you.

Sometime in your life,

hope that you might see one starved man,

the look on his face when the bread finally arrives.

Hope you might have baked it or bought it–or even kneaded it yourself.

For that look on his face,

for your hands meeting his across a piece of bread,

you might be willing to lose a lot or suffer a lot–or die a little, even.

To see the look on Alex's face as he graduated with a degree in electrical engineering is worth just about anything to me. What a gift it is to be human. To have opportunities to share and focus our time, resources, and energy on behalf of others (as well as ourselves), and to see God make beautiful things happen for others at least in part through our efforts. It just doesn't get any better than that. As Daniel Berrigan put it, "It seems to me as though God never meant us to do anything else."

Thanks for letting me share this joy with you, and thanks for being a congregation committed to serving others and doing our best to make this world more loving and just. God willing, in about 6 short years we'll see a video of Deusline throwing her cap into the air. What joy.

Pastor Bryan

5710 Anthony St.
McFarland WI 53558
Pastor Bryan Sirchio
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