The Education & Fellowship Ministry Team coordinates the activities that bring our congregation together.  Developing opportunities for growing in our faith — conducting a ministry of education and action engaging all ages by expanding our outreach to students and young adults, revitalizing our Christian education for children and youth, continuing and expanding adult program. Members of the Education & Fellowship Ministry Team include lay members to represent the various activities we oversee. This year the Education & Fellowship Minstry Team includes: Anne O’Conner ‘17, Lucy Page ’17, Kay Sherman ’17, Leon Aalberts ’18, Charles Fox ’18, Anne Short ’19, Elayne Murphy ’19, Carrie Bond ‘19.

Organization

The following subgroups are part of the Education & Fellowship Ministry Team:

  • Second Hour @ the Meetinghouse

2nd Hour@theMeetinghouse is a contemporary approach to a tradition begun almost 250 years ago in 1765 when our church was established in Williamstown.  At that time, the church building — the town’s meetinghouse — was at the center of the spiritual, educational, and social life of the community. Second Hour events follow our service of worship most Sundays and present opportunities for our entire community to participate in activities designed to increase understanding of and stimulate thinking about spiritual, local, national, and global issues and concerns. These events often feature local academics or activists. For more about this program, click here.

  • Christian Education Team

The Christian Education Team is responsible for coordinating programs for children, youth, and adults.  In addition to traditional child centered education projects, the Christian Ed Team organizes social events for underserved members of our local youth population, such as the Rainbow Dance for LGBTQ teens in Northern Berkshire County.  Book discussion groups are arranged for adults occasionally, often spurring new initiatives, such as last year’s discussion of “Soil, Not Oil“; which evolved into a project aimed at teaching people how to reduce their carbon footprint and increase their enjoyment of locally grown food, called In My Backyard.  Of course, the Christian Ed Team is active in helping to organize the Conversations@theMeetinghouse (see above).

  • Membership & Parish Life

There is lots of good food and good fellowship in and around the Church, thanks to many opportunities and reasons to get together.  The year starts with Round Robin Dinners in winter.  Souper Sundays, and congregational lunches are monthly events from September through December.  Coffee Hour, with food and drink offerings between the service and the “Second Hour at the Meetinghouse program”.   Receptions, The Children’s Fair, and the Great Pie Palooza offer our members abundant chances to share food and fellowship.  In summer, evening get-togethers, such as the Tuesday picnics at the Clark Art Museum see FCC members gathering with potluck contributions, so we could eat together and enjoy the music in the beautiful surroundings.

After the lengthy and thorough self-assessment, undertaken during the spring and early summer of 2011,  we were presented with new challenges.   I am very grateful to the members of the cluster who were willing to take on unanticipated responsibilities during the year and who were willing to pitch in when new initiatives were designed in order to fulfill the cluster’s enhanced obligations.