"That they all may be one."

John 17:21

"President's Corner"

Mimi Llamas is President of the Church Council

From the President’s corner...

Is it Spring yet??  I feel like it has been winter for a very long time now.  I think we are all more than ready to see winter take its exit. It won’t be long now.  Plans are already underway for the Lenten and eventually Easter season.  That’s a sure sign of Spring!!

We have had a super busy February. Dodging the snow and ice was a challenge, but we were only forced to cancel our church services once!!  We really dodged a couple of bullets!! February 3rd, we celebrated the Retirement and 60 years of Ordination of Pastor Herb Schafale with a special service and marvelous reception.  We were blessed to have Pastor Herb with us for a very long time, but like all wonderful things, the time was right for him to spend full time with his amazing family.  Blessings to you Pastor Herb.  You will always have a special place in our hearts.

Then we had a “whodunit” to solve at our annual Valentine Dinner presented by the Fine Arts Committee.  This was a new program for us and for all the comments, a huge success.  The food was dynamite and we found out that one of our own beloved members managed to push the St. Paul Bell over on to our “famous St Paul Author” (Daniel Steele).  It all was a hoot and we had a great time.  I’m not going to give away the identity of the “killer”.  She is still among us!!!

On February 23, we hosted the Illinois South Day of Discipleship.  I serve on the Conference Gathering Team and when we were discussing where to have our annual Day of Discipleship, I volunteered for us to host the event.  I have such total confidence in our congregation’s ability to pull off such an event with complete class!  And you all came through.  I was glowing all day Saturday with pride in our Church.  It was an interesting program, not “real exciting” by a lot of standards, but the information was so very valuable to leaders of the church.  We heard from 4 specialists in UCC Resources.  Legal Counsel, Pension Board, Office of Philanthropy and MESA (Ministerial Excellence, Support and Authorization).  It was really very informative.  The best part though was the way the church came through.  Dave Hoffmann headed up a team in the kitchen to prepare a fantastic lunch.  Sue Hoffmann organized volunteers to help throughout the day.  Rick Haar spent hours prior to the event organizing sound, power point programs for all the speakers, and our AMAZING STAFF made our church look clean, sparkling and inviting to all our guest.  I had so many compliments I was almost embarrassed!  Wow we’re good!!!   Of course, now they want all events at St. Paul!!!    Seriously though, I want all of you to know and be proud of how this church rallies around programs that are important.

As we move into March, we will begin our Lenten season.  There will be a Shrove dinner on March 5th, and Ash Wednesday Services on March 6 at noon and 7.  Then we will begin our Lenten Noon Services and Lunch on March 13th.  There will be 5 of those wonderful Wednesday Lenten services/lunches.  Make time in your schedules to attend as many as you are able.  They are really very special.  As in the past, they will be held in Heritage Hall.

Well it was a great month and March will be even better.  We are approaching Spring and time for renewal.  The sun will be shining more and we all can hopefully start wearing coats that don’t wear us down just walking across the parking lot.  Join me in the sprit of excitement as we look forward to a great new season here at St. Paul!!!


Mimi Llamas, Church Council President