First Baptist Church Staff

  • Rev. Karen Mendes - Pastor
  • Pastor Thee Say - Karen Baptist Community Pastor
  • Marie Morton - Administrative Assistant
  • Adam Schneider - Organist
  • Anna Roy - Chancel Choir Director
  • Rowan Oberbrunner - Children's Choir Director
  • Steve Perkins - Instrumental Group Director
  • Chris Brault - Sexton

Officers of First Baptist

  • Sarah Dopp - Moderator
  • Mark Paulsen - Assistant Moderator
  • Vacant - Clerk
  • Beth Gamache - Assistant Clerk
  • Chris Thompson - Treasurer
  • Bill McCormick - Assistant Treasurer
  • Ginger Calder - Financial Secretary
  • Barbara Farrington - Asst. Financial Secretary
  • Sarah Dopp - Historian
  • Andy Farrington - Parliamentarian

Green Steeple, Grateful People, Growing In Faith, Proclaiming God's Love

  • March 2019 Newsletter


    First Baptist Church

    81 Saint Paul Street Ste. 1, Burlington, VT.   05401

    VOLUME LX1V NO. 3                                                                         March 1, 2019


    First Baptist Church Staff

    Rev. Karen A.Mendes.……………………………..Pastor 

    Marie Morton………………….Administative Assistant

    Steve Perkins…………Instrumental Group Director        

    Adam Schneider……………………………Organist

    Anna Roy………………….Chancel Choir Director Rowan Oberbrunner… . . Children’s Choir Director                                                            

    Chris Brault…….……………………………Sexton

                   Officers of First Baptist

    Sarah Dopp.…………………………….Moderator

    Mark Paulsen…………………Assistant Moderator


    Beth Gamache……. ………………Assistant Clerk

    Chris Thompson…………………………Treasurer

    Bill McCormick….……………Assistant Treasurer

    Stu Burroughs………..Interim Financial Secretary

    Jeneva Burroughs…..Interim Asst. Financial Sec’y

    Sarah Dopp ……………………………..Historian

    Andy Farrington….……………….Parliamentarian

    Sunday Morning Worship Service 9:45

    Office Phone: (802) 864-6515

    Conference/Kitchen Phone:

    (802) 864-4721

    Office Hours: Mon., Tues., Wed., Fri.

    9:00 AM to 1:00 PM; Thurs. 9am-3pm

    Email address:

    Web Site Address:

    Visit us on Facebook

    First Baptist Church, Burlington, Vt.

    Newsletter Deadline for April is March 15th    


    The Congregational Care Committee of the First Baptist Church Diaconate reports that there are currently 5 on the Homebound Members & Friends list. In January, 7 “known visits” were made to 2 homebound members and 1 “known call” was made to homebound members and friends. Also, 1 call was made to 1 other member. The committee invites you to help with this ministry.

    Please contact Ray when you visit or call a homebound member and friend @864-7179/                               WORSHIP SCHEDULE

    Sermons and Texts                                 

    Mar. 03 – Rev. Karen A Mendes                  Scripture: Luke 9:28-42a           

             Sermon: Transfigurations

    Mar. 10 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

             Scripture: Deut. 26:1-11

                             Luke 4:1-13

             Sermon: In the Wilderness

    Mar. 17 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

             Scripture: Gen. 15:1-12, 17-18

             Sermon: Setting Out

    Mar. 24 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes                 Scripture: Isaiah 55:1-9                        Sermon: Provisions

    Mar. 31 – Rev. Karen A. Mendes

             Scripture: Luke 15:1-3. 11b-32

             Sermon: The Lost

                     PRAYER TOPIC                                     Sarah Dopp                                              “Covenants”

    Covenants are formal agreements among people, solemn promises, pledges of mutual support and assistance. The concept, while used in real estate, law and other fields, is also a staple of the Abrahamic faiths. God made numerous covenants with his chosen people in the old testament.  In the Sermon on the Mount, Christ defined himself as the new covenant. In our congregation, we have had a church covenant at least since 1872.  We read our covenant every few months to reinforce our commitments to each other and to God.  May we pray for resolve in keeping these covenant promises.

    Our Monday Bible Study meets at 11:30am.  We are studying the Book of Genesis.  Please join us and feel free to bring your lunch.  For more information, please email Rev. Mendes at: or call the church office at 864-6515

        WINTER BOOK GROUP       The Active Life by Parker Palmer

    The Winter Book Group is reading The Active Life by Parker Palmer.  This classic book articulates a vital, down-to-earth spirituality for people who live busy, active lives.  Parker Palmer is a wonderful writer and the Founder of the Center for Courage & Renewal.  Our group is meeting on Mondays at 6:30pm through March 11th. The book can be ordered online or speak with Rev. Mendes for a copy.


    We are updating our Newsletter mailing list and we need your help!  Please call or email the church office if you would like to continue to receive a paper newsletter through the mail. Starting in March, we will be sending the newsletter electronically via email using our Green Steeple Weekly email address list.  If you have not been receiving the Green Steeple Weekly, please contact us with your email address.  Our phone number is 802-864-6515 and our email address is  We are happy to mail paper copies of the newsletter to everyone who wants one.  Please let us know so that we can keep you on the list. There is a sign-up in the narthex.                                                                     

    AS A FAITH COMMUNITY we hold each other in prayer constantly, but we also highlight individuals when specific challenges come into their lives.  You can help the office by alerting them ( if people need to be added, and also if an individual no longer needs to be on the special list.  This applies both to the list in the Sunday bulletin and to the prayer chain, managed by Mark Paulsen (


    On Thursdays, look for an email from First Baptist letting you know about upcoming events and opportunities.  This will give you a first look at the Sunday bulletin announcements and provide a way for us to communicate beyond the monthly newsletter.  If you have information you would like included in the email and bulletin, please get it to Marie at – by Wednesday.


    Our Pictoral Directory is available in printed form from the church office, but it is also available online! Members and friends of First Baptist who email addressed are included in the directory can access the directory through their smartphone or computer. For smartphones, the app is Instant Church Directory.                        For computers, go to:  In both cases you will be directed on how to set up a password, etc.  Only those who are included in the directory will be able to access it.  Contact the church office if you have any questions. To update your photo or address, email:

    Church Greeting and Refreshments

    We are offering two opportunities to serve on Sunday mornings by asking for both greeters and providers of snacks.  Feel free to sign up for both or only one or the other.


                                                       Don Dalton is not able to move to Cathedral Square as originally planned.  Another placement is being sought.  Meanwhile, he remains at Burlington Health & Rehab, but now on the 5th floor.  His daughter, Cheryl, says he is really in need of regular visitors.  They should be brief visits, but anyone who could help would be very appreciated.


    Preview of Coming Attractions

    Here’s a list of what’s happening during Second Hour at FBC –       March 3 -April 14

    March 3, 17, 24, 31, April 14 and 28  Lenten series:   The God We Can Know:  Exploring the “I AM” Statements of Jesus

    Written and filmed by Methodist minister Rev. Rob Fuquay, the DVD filmed in the Holy Land, and his book features seven chapters and 6 DVD sessions centered around the six “I AM” statements of Jesus. Each 2nd Hour Session explores one of the “I Am” statements.        Rev. Fuquay’s concept is that the “I AM” statements are a way of knowing God and ourselves. Each session will include a film, discussion of the chapter and reflection questions included in the book.

    Sessions continue as follows:

    March 3I Am The Bread of Life March 17 – I Am the Light of the World                                      March 24 – I Am the Good    Shepherd                                             March 31I Am the True Vine      April 14 – I Am the Way the Truth and the Life                                      April 28I Am the Resurrection and the Life.  

    Books and ebooks are available on line from several sources. Prices vary from about $10.00 – $8.00.   Christian Ed purchased the DVD and has ordered a few copies of the book from Cokesbury at $7.99. We expect delivery this week so speak with Lois if you want a paperback copy. There will be a couple of books available without cost.  Though the series can be meaningful without reading the book, it is always a deeper experience if one reads along with the series. Please consider attending this Lenten experience. All adults and youth are invited.


    At the Annual Meeting, we voted to establish a Designated Fund for Missions, using as seed money, $10,000 from the Undesignated Funds of our Permanent Fund.  As this Fund grows, the proceeds from it will be available for mission projects; either support for current missions or for a new mission idea.  Individuals are invited to contribute to this Fund so that its impact can grow.

    GOVERNANCE UPDATE…The Governance Working Group continues to support our boards and committees in their transitions to Ministry Teams and a proposed Unified Governing Board.  To give us an idea of how a Unified Governing Board would work, representatives from the boards and the committees will meet together on  April 7 and again on October 13 in lieu of the usual board meetings and Advisory Council meeting.

    Representative to the JUMP

    Board of Directors

                                                          The Mission Outreach Board is looking for a person who would be interested in representing our church on the JUMP board of directors.  They meet once a month, the third Thursday of the month at 12:30 – 2:00pm.  While they encourage committee membership, it is not required.  Speak to a Mission Outreach Board member or Rev. Mendes if you are interested.

    The America for Christ Offering

     “Rebuilding, Restoring, Renewing Puerto Rico” continues to be an effort led by the American Baptist Home Mission Society and the ABHMS is promoting the America for Christ offering during March. You’ll see our Mission Outreach Board members providing information throughout the

    month including a chart which requests a reasonable $900. There are many, many ways our donations will uplift national programs for people and places. The ministries supported by ABHMS include American Baptist colleges, children’s homes, national missionaries, prisoner re-entry ministries, volunteer mobilization ministries, immigration and refugee resettlement and more – all undergirded by the America For Christ offering. If you have a special national missionary or mission field you wish your AFC offering to go, just designate on the “for_________” place on your check. You can send your donation directly to: America for Christ care of: ABHMS, 1075 First Ave., King of Prussia, PA 19406. (this is a new address). Please tell a Mission Outreach Board member if you send your check directly to PA so it can be credited to our church goal. From your check for the America for Christ offering, twenty-nine percent (29%) is taken off the top for the VNH region if you send through our church and give the offering during the Sunday morning worship service. It’s your choice. Thank you for giving to this important, special offering and watch the chart grow!             ~Nancy Tracy

    Feb. 25 – Mar. 11- Book Group – 6:30  Mar. 3 –  Transfiguration Sunday

                    Multigenerational Service                     w/ Instrumental Ensemble

    Mar. 8-9 –ABCVNH Annual                                 Gathering

    Mar. 10 – Administrative Sunday

    Mar. 17 –1st UMC – Milk & Soup

    Mar. 18 – Advisory Council – 6:30

    Mar. 24-30 – ANEW Place Meals

    April 7 – Unified Governing Board

    April 14 – Palm Sunday                 April 18 – Maundy Thursday Service

    April 21 – Easter Sunday Service

                     Easter Sunrise Service- 6am

                     1st UMC – Milk & Soup

    April 29 – May 3 – Rev. Mendes at

                     ABCUSA Women Pastors                             Colloquium

    May 12 – Administrative Sunday

    May 18 – Spring Clean-Up – 9am

    May 19 – 1st UMC – Milk & Soup

    May 20 – Advisory Council – 6:30

    May 25 – Marathon Pasta Supper

    June 2 – Music Appreciation Sunday

                  Administrative Sunday

    June 9 – Pentecost Sunday

                  CE Appreciation Sunday

    June 17 – Advisory Council – 6:30

    Don’t forget to turn your clocks

    AHEAD 1 hour for Sunday,

    March 10th!

    CONGREGATIONAL MEETING:     There will be a brief meeting following worship on March 10th.  The Nominating Committee will be bringing several more names for church positions, for your action.


    Last month we asked for someone to temporarily “adopt” a parishioner’s cat.  Lois and Mike Lynch stepped up.  We also asked people to help with cleaning out Margaret Shaub’s apartment.  Jill Soter, Beth Vuley and Sarah Dopp have worked multiple times.  Thanks to all these folks for being of practical help to their fellow church members.