Faith Congregational Church, a vibrant, inclusive Christian community working for social justice through service to God, each other and our neighbors.
Welcome to the Faith Congregational Church website. You will find exciting videos, articles, and information designed to lift your spirit and feed your desire for helpful information. Faith Church is a diverse worship community, an inclusive, justice-minded and unapologetic about our faith and our witness. We celebrate diversity, we celebrate community and we celebrate Jesus Christ. It’s that simple, but be clear that there is so much more.
We invite you to explore the many ways we seek to be a faithful church in these challenging days. Ask us your questions, we like questions. Our church may be old, in fact, it is the oldest predominately black church in the city of Hartford, but our thinking is not old at all. We are affiliated with the United Church of Christ, the first mainline church in America to speak out against slavery, the first mainline church to ordain a woman and the first church to ordain a gay person into ministry in our nation. We stand on the side of justice because we want to always seek to be on the right side of history and besides that to do what we believe Jesus our elder brother and head of the church commands.
If you are in the Greater Hartford area, come worship with us. Whoever you are, you are very welcome at Faith. Now explore the website fully, come back to it often and know that we seek your prayers as we go forward in faith.
Who We Are – Where We Are Going – What We Believe!
We Celebrate Diversity
We are a church that welcomes all (and we do mean all)! No matter who you are and where you may be on life’s journey, you are welcome at Faith Congregational Church. We work toward celebrating all people, young and old, Black, Brown, and White, gay and straight, rich and poor; whomever God sends we will seek to embrace.
We Celebrate Community
We are a church faith community that embraces the wider community and seeks to serve in ways we can. Faith Church is a place where the community can come to talk, to work, to grow. We will be part of the solution, seeking to address community concerns. We will work for justice, not just us.
We Celebrate Jesus
We will celebrate the presence of Jesus Christ in our lives. We will never apologize for our love of Jesus Christ but will celebrate the faith of others and even those with no faith. For us, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. We will invite others to know Jesus and will share the love of Christ whenever and wherever we can.
Monday – Wednesday 9:00 – noon 860-547-0820
Blind Bartimaeus Receives His Sight
46 Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (which means “son of Timaeus”), was sitting by the roadside begging. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”
So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.
51 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.
The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.”
52 “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
El ciego Bartimeo es sanado
46 Entonces llegaron* a Jericó. Y cuando salía de Jericó con sus discípulos y una gran multitud, un mendigo ciego llamado Bartimeo, el hijo de Timeo, estaba sentado junto al camino. 47 Y cuando oyó que era Jesús el Nazareno, comenzó a gritar y a decir: ¡Jesús, Hijo de David, ten misericordia de mí! 48 Y muchos lo reprendían para que se callara, pero él gritaba mucho más: ¡Hijo de David, ten misericordia de mí! 49 Y Jesús se detuvo y dijo: Llamadle. Y llamaron* al ciego, diciéndole: ¡Anímate! Levántate, que te llama. 50 Y arrojando su manto, se levantó de un salto y fue a Jesús. 51 Y dirigiéndose a él, Jesús le dijo: ¿Qué deseas que haga por ti? Y el ciego le respondió: Raboní, que recobre la vista. 52 Y Jesús le dijo: Vete, tu fe te ha sanado. Y al instante recobró la vista, y le seguía por el camino.
From the Pastor’s Study
Dear Faith Family and Friends:
Need a ride to church? See Deacon Pam Walters for details and to schedule a pickup.
Want a CD of the service? See Bruce MacCullagh.
Know someone in need as we move into the holiday season? Leave a message for Pastor Steve, or with Patricia Gray or Deacon Pam.
Need stewardship envelopes? See Alice Lumpkin, Olga Callender or Barbara Wiggins -or contribute online using the “Donate” button.
Want to learn more about the Bible? Bible study on Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. or Sunday morning at 9 a.m.
Want to sing praises? Just come to choir rehearsal on Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m.
Need more information? Call the church office 860-547-0820 Monday through Wednesday mornings. Sunday service begins at 10 am.
- Our Daily Bread
- The Strength and Power of Prayer
- Bible Verses About Prayer
- Guideposts: The Power of Prayer
- James 5:16b
- The Power of Prayer: Enhance Your Life
- What Happens to Your Brain When You Pray?
- Prayers About Gun Violence
- Put the Power in Prayer
- Strength and Power in Prayer
Regular Events @ Faith Church
MEN OF FAITH Men’s Ministry Monday evenings @ 5:30 p.m. Bible Study, Food and Fellowship! All men are welcome. Call Deacon Al Strother or church office for more information. Next meeting: November 12, 2018.
Don’t forget, GIRL SCOUT TROOP 10003 meets on 2nd and 4th Sundays from 1 – 2:30 pm. We are really proud of our girls.
There is a seat for you on Tuesday at Bible study. We start at 7 pm. Great group, great conversation, and great learning!
The CHOIR could use your voice! It’s a great way to serve at Faith Church. Wayne Dixon is waiting. Choir rehearsal on Wednesday evenings 7 pm.
Sunday School for children has started for the fall. Join us. Volunteer for one Sunday per month. We look forward to seeing you and your children.
Nursery Staffed for Sunday Services
A reminder: the nursery is available when your child is restless or unhappy during service. You may not mind your child’s crying, but others would like to hear the service.
Would you like to volunteer? We need Sunday School teachers for the fall, a historian, liturgists and just maybe you can think of ways that you too can help! See Pastor Steve or Patricia Hollis for details.
Remember our Sick and Shut-ins. Don’t forget to send a prayer, card or note. If you don’t see someone, why not call and see how they are doing?
Deacon Mamie Barnum @ home
Gladys Aldes @ home
Special Events @ Faith Church
In more than twenty years of running diversity-training and cultural-competency workshops for American companies, the academic and educator Robin DiAngelo has noticed that white people are sensationally, histrionically bad at discussing racism. Like waves on sand, their reactions form predictable patterns: they will insist that they “were taught to treat everyone the same,” that they are “color-blind,” that they “don’t care if you are pink, purple, or polka-dotted.” They will point to friends and family members of color, a history of civil-rights activism, or a more “salient” issue, such as class or gender. They will shout and bluster. They will cry. In 2011, DiAngelo coined the term “white fragility” to describe the disbelieving defensiveness that white people exhibit when their ideas about race and racism are challenged—and particularly when they feel implicated in white supremacy. Why, she wondered, did her feedback prompt such resistance, as if the mention of racism were more offensive than the fact or practice of it?
Read the entire article here. Read the book and join the discussion at Faith Church on two Thursday evenings in November – November 8th and 15th at 7pm. For more information, email Earl Gardner.
Barbara Beeching: The Origins of the Black Middle Class in Hartford
“I found that 90 percent of the blacks in Hartford in the mid-1860s had been born in the North, and something like 75 to 85 percent had been born in Connecticut … they were real Yankees,” she says. “I made up my mind to dig deeper and to explore the effects of abolition on these already established communities.”
@ Our Conference
I am keenly aware of the challenges that you face as a pastoral leader in these times. I am so grateful for your faithfulness to the Gospel and to the ways in which you seek to live the love and justice of Jesus.
You may have seen that Sojourner’s Magazine published a resource that you might find helpful as well. It is a compilation of 100 sermons and you will recognize many of the pastors who have contributed. Two CTUCC pastors, the Rev. Kari Nicewander and the Rev. George Harris are among those who have made contributions: https://sojo.net/100sermons
As you lead and as you find your way please know that the Conference staff is holding you in our prayers and stands ready to continue to find ways to provide resources and support on this critical issue of justice.
@ Our Community
Leaf Collection Begins – Week of November 4th
Please Do Not Rake/Blow
Please Join Us for a Construction Career Fair
Date: November 13, 2018 Time: 5-7PM
Location: The Studio at Billings Forge
563 Broad Street Hartford, CT 06106
Bring your resume and come prepared to apply to apprenticeship programs with
the Greater Hartford-New Britain Building & Construction Trades Council and their
Affiliates 12-15 Construction Trade Apprenticeship Opportunities
■ 18 years +
■ Hartford Resident (Preference for Frog
Hollow and Upper Albany Residents)
■ High School Diploma or GED
■ Valid Connecticut Driver’s License
■ Reliable Transportation
■ Able to Read and Write English
■ Able to Pass a Drug Test
■ Physically Fit to do the Work
Are You Looking for a Job?
Job Corps is recruiting. recruiting.jobcore.gov or (800) 733-JOBS 
The City of Hartford is currently hiring. Click HERE for more information.
The next Council meeting will be held on Monday, November 13th at 7 PM, preceded at 6 PM by public comments. All meetings are held in Council Chambers in Hartford City Hall, 550 Main Street, 2nd Floor.
Board of Education Meetings
November 20 – SMSA
December 18 – SMSA
January 15, 2019 – Bulkeley High School
November 7 – Betances
December 4 – Betances
January 8, 2019 – Central Office (960 Main St)
All workshops are held on the first Tuesday of each month at 5:30pm., and regular meetings held on the third Tuesday of each month at 5:30pm. Workshops will not be held in July and August. *Meeting dates/locations subject to change.
Thursday, November 29, 2018
253 High St.
There is plenty of parking in the vicinity. Officers will be on sight to assist and escort you inside HPD.
Coming Soon! CRT will be soliciting contractors to support its statewide Weatherization Assistance Program to help make nearly 700 homes more energy efficient across Connecticut. Get details on CRT’s website: http://bit.ly/CRTrfps
The Community Renewal Team (CRT) manages the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) contract by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and the supplemental weatherization barrier removal contract to provide weatherization services to income-eligible residents in Connecticut.
To help fulfill this contract, and to provide much-needed weatherization services that will help people make their homes more comfortable and energy efficient, CRT will soon be seeking Requests for Proposals (RFPs) from qualified and licensed HVAC, weatherization, and environmental contractors throughout Connecticut to support the implementation of its Weatherization Assistance Program to serve nearly 700 homes across the state.
Like Jazz? Want to Keep Up With What’s Happening?
You can add the Hartford Jazz Society’s events to your calendar automatically HERE.
ICYMI: Who are the artists of Open Studio Hartford? You’ll have two weekends to meet them
Open Studio Hartford, an annual extravaganza that lets local artists showcase their work and allows art lovers to buy one-of-a-kind creations, is expanding this year from one weekend to two — from Nov. 3 and 4 and Nov. 10 and 11 — in studios and venues all over the city.
Cynthia Bulaong, Open Studio Hartford coordinator and executive director, says that expanding the event was essential.
“People were constantly requesting us to expand since there wasn’t enough time to see everything. We are hoping that visitors have more time to relax, spend the time seeing the things they want to, and still get around to see and discover the rest,” Bulaong says.
“There’s no doubt that visiting more than 20 venues featuring nearly 400 artists is too much for one weekend.”
The Travelers Chorale will be performing their annual holiday show on December 6, 2018 at 7:30 p.m. at the Bushnell in Mortensen Hall. Admission is free, and they welcome your non-perishable food donation to local food banks. Can you find Patricia Gray in this picture? (Hint: she’s on the left side near the back!)
African American Literature Book Club – New Members Welcome Hartford Public Library
Want to see Hamilton at the Bushnell?
There will be a lottery for Hamilton with limited $10 tickets available for all public performances. Details on the lottery will be announced closer to the engagement. Join The Bushnell eClub for updates/details on the lottery and other information.
IMPORTANT CONSUMER ALERT: Bushnell.org or tickets.com is the ONLY official ticketing site for The Bushnell and its December 2018 engagement of HAMILTON. If you want to be assured your tickets are valid and that you pay the face value price, you must purchase through bushnell.org or tickets.com. The Bushnell is not affiliated nor do we cooperate with any resellers and can’t confirm the validity or stand behind tickets purchased from broker/reseller sites. The Bushnell cannot authorize third party Will Call ticket pick up.
For more information, click here.
CT NOW for events
Live in Hartford? Get Your Free Tickets Today!
Hartford residents who are Hartford Public Library cardholders can now reserve up to 2 free tickets to plays at Hartford Stage as part of our new partnership.
Each of the seven branches of Hartford Public Library will have a two-ticket pass per eligible show. Patrons can check online to see where passes are available, but they must ask for them in person at any of the seven Library locations.
Once you have reserved the tickets at a Library branch, you must confirm the seats by calling the box office at Hartford Stage, 860-527-5151.
Faith is celebrating its 200th anniversary. Every Month is Faith History Month Because Faith History IS American History
Born in Struggle, 1819-1860: Movements for change
According to the Hartford Black History Project, ” Congregated housing could be a locus for community building, but certainly another was the Black Church. Pioneering in this respect is the Talcott Street Congregational Church, which was located at the corner of Talcott and Market Streets, near an early Black community on Front Street. While this “African Church” as it was called in mid-century, may have been Hartford’s oldest Black Church by several years, the Park Street community may have been older. The original location of this church is today marked by a bronze plaque.”
They continue, “The Talcott Street Church was founded by the African Religious Society (precursor to Faith Congregational Church) and soon contributed to the formation of the Black community in Hartford. It did so by becoming a center for abolitionist and social activity in the Black Community. In its basement was Hartford’s first Black school, and not surprisingly, from this church community arose many of the leaders who would eventually shape the community’s future.”
“The Talcott Street Church was central to a racially-based riot in 1835. We use the term “race riot” today, but things are not really that simple. First of all, it is the consensus of modern science that there is no such thing as “race.” This is because our genetic inheritance is part of a broad spectrum of traits, so that it is impossible to sort people into neat categories. For example, there are all shades of skin color found among Black siblings, not just because of descent from a white ancestor, but because people of African descent have greater genetic diversity than any other people. The notion of “race” was socially constructed by the ruling class at a time when the essential quality of all living things was assumed to be “preformed” in a microscopic or ideal model contained in their seeds, so that their “essence” is somewhat independent of appearances. The type from which humans arise was called the “homunculus,” and from there it was but a small step to suggest that some “homunculi” are essentially superior to others,” they explain.
“…[A]nother notable Hartford Black abolitionist, J. W. C. Pennington, had started as a slave in Maryland. He fled as a young man to Connecticut because slavery had been abolished here, and he eventually became a minister at the Talcott Street Church. He studied at Yale and also later during a stay at the University of Heidelberg, Germany. Pennington was an abolitionist lecturer, and as a representative of the Connecticut Anti-Slavery Society and Union Mission Society, he spoke throughout the Northeast and in Europe.”
Read more Faith Church history HERE.
Want to go to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture?
Our own Pennington Bible is on loan to the museum and on exhibit.
Same-day timed entry passes are available online beginning at 6:30 a.m. ET daily until they run out. Same-day passes are not available via phone. CHECK SAME-DAY AVAILABILITY
Advance timed entry passes for individuals are released monthly. Advance timed entry passes for individuals are released on the first Wednesday of each month. The next day for passes to be released will be November 7. Passes go very quickly when released.
Every Month is Women’s History Month Because Women’s History IS Everyone’s History
“If one could characterize in a single phrase the contribution of Black women to America, I think it would be ‘survival with dignity against incredible odds’…” – Pauli Murray, “Black Women-A Heroic Tradition and a Challenge” (1977)
She was an African-American civil rights activist, who was arrested for refusing to move to the back of the bus in Petersburg, Va. 15 years before Rosa Parks; and she organized restaurant sit-ins in Washington, D.C. 20 years before the Greensboro sit-ins. She was one of the most important thinkers and legal scholars of the 20th century, serving as a bridge between the civil rights and women’s rights movements.
She was a co-founder of the National Organization for Women, a feminist icon ahead of her time who challenged race and gender discrimination in legal, societal, academic and religious circles. And yet today, not many would recognize the name of the Rev. Dr. Pauli Murray – let alone her indelible impact on American law, civil rights and women’s rights. As a black, queer, feminist woman, Pauli Murray has been almost completely erased from the narrative. It is time she was recognized.
Murray’s life and her remarkable accomplishments are coming back into focus as the National Trust for Historic Preservation considers designating the Pauli Murray childhood home at 906 Carroll Street in Durham, N.C. as National Historic Landmark. The modest structure built in 1898 by Murray’s maternal grandfather, Robert George Fitzgerald – a Union Civil War veteran, will be restored and serve as the home of the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice.
Every Month is Black History Month Because Black History IS American History
Health Care for All is Justice for All
Medicare / Medicaid
Did you know that the open enrollment period for Medicare is from October 15 – December 7? For more information about Medicare, click HERE. At the official Medicare website, if you are on Medicare you can compare plans and make decisions about your coverage. If you belong to AARP, they provide information HERE. If you don’t qualify for Medicare, you might qualify for Medicaid. Click HERE for more information about our HUSKY health plans.
Are You Eating Breakfast?
According to the website WEbMD, the basic formula for breakfast is to pair carbs with proteins. The carbs give your body energy to get started and your brain the fuel it needs to take on the day. Protein gives you staying power and helps you feel full until your next meal.
“Eating breakfast helps keep your blood sugar steadier throughout the day, whether you have diabetes or not. For people with normal glucose test results, this might help you avoid insulin resistance, which can lead to diabetes. Drops and spikes in your blood sugar can also affect your mood, making you more nervous, grumpy, or angry,” they write. If you have diabetes, “Don’t skip breakfast,” says Osama Hamdy, MD, PhD, with the Joslin Diabetes Center. He says when people with diabetes miss their morning meal, they’re more likely to get low blood sugar, also called hypoglycemia. Read more HERE. Get high protein low carb recipes HERE. Get breakfast burrito recipes HERE.
Are Your Meds Raising Your Blood Sugar?
If you have diabetes, you probably know some of the things that cause your glucose to go up. Like a meal with too many carbohydrates, or not enough exercise. But other medicines you might take to keep yourself healthy can cause a spike, too. Here are some possibilities:
- Drugs that treat high blood pressure, such as beta-blockers and thiazide diuretics
- Statins to lower cholesterol
- Adrenaline for severe allergic reactions
- High doses of asthma medicines
Check with your doctor about all medications you take, both prescription and over the counter. Don’t forget supplements, too! Read the entire article here.
How to be Happier – Every Day!
- Surround yourself with nurturing family and friends
- Remember, your job is NOT your family
- Count your blessings
- Live each day as it comes
- Learn to forgive
- Get some exercise
As of September 8, 2018, there have been 18 murders in Hartford, a 10% drop from this time last year. For current crime statistics, click here. There were 29 homicides in Hartford in 2017, up from 14 in 2016. Twenty-three involved firearms. To see a map showing the locations of Hartford homicides, click here.
No other developed nation comes close to the rate of US gun violence. Americans own an estimated 265 million guns, more than one gun for every adult.
America’s Other Family Separation Crisis
Sending a mother to prison can have a devastating effect on her children. Why, then, do we lock so many women up?
By Sarah Stillman writing in Newyorker.com
She writes, “America imprisons women in astonishing numbers. The population of women in state prisons has increased by more than eight hundred per cent in the past four decades. The number of women in local jails is fourteen times higher than it was in the nineteen-seventies; most of these women haven’t been convicted of a crime but are too poor to post bail while awaiting trial. The majority have been charged with low-level, nonviolent offenses, such as drug possession, shoplifting, and parole violations. The result is that more than a quarter of a million children in the U.S. have a mother in jail. One in nine black children has a parent who is, or has been, incarcerated.”
Stillman states, “Earlier this year, hundreds of thousands of people protested America’s policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the southern border. Laura Bush denounced the practice as “cruel,” and Senator Jeff Flake called it “un-American.” In May, Kirstjen Nielsen, the Homeland Security Secretary, defended the separations by noting how often the same thing happens to families in the criminal-justice system. “In the United States, we call that law enforcement,” she said.”
Stillman sets out the health and social consequences of incarcerating mothers. “For the children of incarcerated parents, the toll can be profound. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has shown that these children have an increased risk of mental health conditions, including anxiety and depression. In adulthood, they have higher rates of asthma, migraines, high cholesterol, and H.I.V./aids, and are more likely to use illicit or prescription drugs. The economic effects are equally devastating. Adolescent boys with an incarcerated mother are twenty-five percent more likely to drop out of school, and have a higher chance of ending up incarcerated themselves.”
Read the entire article HERE.
Where do people go when they get out of prison?
Oklahoma now has the highest incarceration rate in the U.S., unseating Louisiana from its long-held position as “the world’s prison capital.” By comparison, states like Massachusetts and New York appear progressive, but even these states lock people up at higher rates than nearly every other country on earth.
A new report from the Prison Policy Initiative, States of Incarceration: The Global Context 2018, compares U.S. states to 166 countries on incarceration, illustrating how every U.S. state relies too heavily on prisons and jails to respond to crime. A companion report released today compares states to countries in their incarceration of women. Read the entire article here.
Watch Beto O’Rourke on NFL protests
Watch President Obama’s Mandela Day speech
Watch Oprah’s Golden Globes speech
Watch President Obama’s farewell speech.