2018 Special Events
On March 17, 2018, we once again gathered together to pack up 20 Easter Baskets for one of LSSI's Head Start Programs. This annual event is probably our most fun as we imagine the kids' excitement at unwrapping their Easter Baskets full of goodies. Since this was our last Easter Basket gift to LSSI before we close, it helped us remember the joy we have been able to give to the kids and our hope is that we will be able to continue this event at other churches we will all attend next year. And, as always for this event, a special thanks to Thrivent's Care Grant which allows us to make this event the success that it is.
2017 Special Events
On January 29, 2017, we welcomed Wanda Jackson to our UBF family of faith. We hope others in our community will come experience worship here to see what one little church can accomplish.
On April 1, 2017 we enjoyed our 7th Annual World Hunger Spaghetti Dinner, sponsored by our Outreach Team, with volunteers throughout UBF. We served 80+ meals. Once again, with the support of a Thrivent Cares Grant of $250, along with donations from Jimmy Johns (all the bread) and a special rate of S&T Provisions for our meatballs, we were able to send all our ticket money along with generous donations from donors and our World Hunger Piggy Banks totaling $1,100+ to assist the Metropolitan Chicago Synod toward making their goal of $1,000,000 to be sent to the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. And, we had a great time socializing together for this event.
On Sunday, April 9, we gathered to make up 36 Easter Baskets for LSSI's Head Start children. We do this every year, again with the assistance of a Thrivent Cares Grant of $250 along with donations from members of UBF. We have a great time filling these baskets with love and sending them off with a blessing knowing we will be bringing smiles to the faces of the children who will be receiving these baskets for Easter.
On May 21, Elliot Thomas Osborne was baptized and Todd & Elizabeth Osborne affirmed their baptisms at our worship service. This service has special significance for the Osborne family as our Baptismal font was donated in memory of Elliot's great-grandparents, Thomas & Louise Osborne.
On Sunday, July 16, we packed up 54 book bags for LSSI's Head Start programs. Then on Sunday, July 23, we blessed the packed book bags in preparation for their delivery to the children. Our goal this year was 35, and once again, thanks to a $250 Thrivent grant and the generosity of members and friends, we were able to exceed our goal. These events help us continually remember that as members of United By Faith, we are "blessed to be a blessing."
On November 12, 2017, UBF held a special Thanksgiving dinner to collect money for Rags of Honor, an organization that assists Veterans with locating jobs and training. We were able to collect over $200 for this organization. Thanks to Sue, Tammy, and Leslie Riesling who chaired this event and then drove up north to Rags of Honor to give them the check.
Our final social ministry event of 2017 was our annual LSSI Coat Drive. This year we committed to providing 30 coats and boots to LSSI's North Austin Head Start classroom. Thanks to the generosity of Thrivent, who provided us with a $250 debit card as part of their Thrivent Cares program, and to the generosity of our members, member's friends and family, we not only provided the coats and boots but added hats and gloves. In addition, we collected gently used coats that were shared with LSSI and Life For Christ. And we were fortunate to have some money left over from this drive that we were also able to give $125 to Life For Christ to assist with their annual coat drive. God has incredibly blessed us and we feel blessed to be able to share our gifts with others.
2016 Special UBF Events
On February 7, 2016, we installed Pastor Carl Rabbe as Pastor of United By Faith Lutheran Church after a long call process. We look forward to a forward-moving future here at UBF with him at our helm and hope for a successful missional process to come out of our strategic vision after we have had an opportunity to really get to know one another and develop relationships with each other and those in our community.
Every year at Easter, UBF assembles Easter Baskets for LSSI. These baskets are distributed to Head Start programs and foster kids who might otherwise not receive an Easter basket. On Saturday, March 19, 2016, thanks to a Thrivent Cares grant of $250, we were able to assemble 40 Easter Baskets to LSSI.
Our 6th Annual World Hunger Spaghetti Dinner was held on April 9, and was another huge success. We served 91 guests plus 5 carry-out meals. We were able to send a check to the Metropolitan Chicago Synod, for the ELCA World Hunger Fund of $1,160, with assistance from Thrivent. A BIG thanks goes out to everyone who made this event possible.
Thanks to another Thrivent Cares grant of $250 and the generosity of UBF folks, we were able to assemble 36 book bags for LSSI -- 26 for Kindergartners and 10 for Grades 1-5. A group of us assembled the bags on Sunday, July 21 after church, and then we blessed the book bags and prayed for the children who will be receiving them hoping for a great year in school.
On Sunday, October 9, we were delighted to welcome the family of Brecken Utesch to United By Faith for Brecken's Baptism. The Utesch family are Haven For Tots parents and UBF wishes them a joyous life with Brecken.
On Sunday, October 24, thanks to another Thrivent Cares $250 grant, we hosted an October Fest Luncheon attended by 38 folks, followed by a wonderful piano concert given by our ever-so-talented musician, Eric Carlson. Monies gathered from this luncheon will go to our Pastor's Discretionary Fund. This fund is used to assist folks in need, and come to our Pastor requesting assistance for food, gas, and even assistance for car repairs. This fund allows Pastor Rabbe to assist them immediately and in total confidence. Once again, we thank Thrivent for their generosity. Because we had additional monies left from this grant, we decided to maximize the donations for this fund, by hosting a second dinner. On November 13, we will have a Thanksgiving meal immediately following church and the monies gathered from this dinner will also go to Pastor's Discretionary Fund. More details will follow next month.
During the month of December, and once again thanks to another Thrivent Cares $250 grant, we did a joint coat drive to assist LSSI with gathering coats for one of their Headstart programs and worked with Life For Christ Church, who is sharing our space on Sundays, to do an adult winter wear and coat drive. Our goal was to gather 32 new coats for the kids, and thanks to the incredible generosity of members, family and friends, we were able to deliver 50 coats and 59 pairs of mittens and gloves, along with some hats to LSSI. We also gathered coats for Life For Christ and in addition, were able to present them with a check for $175 to purchase additional coats for their drive. On Sunday, December 4, we blessed these coats as they keep these children and adults warm through the winter.
On Saturday, December 3, 40 folks attended our WELCA ladies annual Christmas Luncheon, and a good time was had by all. We shared a wonderful lunch, had great table conversation, followed by wonderful entertainment, complete with dancing and a sing-along. We sure know how to have a good time at UBF, hope you'll join us next year.