Groundhog Band Celebrates 30th Birthday with Joyful Noise

February 4th was FCC Bristol’s 30th Annual Groundhog Day Celebration. Masterfully conducted by our own Maestro, H. Bennett Burnham, 20 musicians led the congregation in praising the Lord with a joyful song. Strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion — accompanied by Director of Music Nikita Sabinski — were played by members and friends of the congregation, ranging in age from at least aged 9 to some in their 80s.

The words of Psalm 92 were proclaimed: “O LORD . . . at the works of your hands I sing for joy” and the musicians raised their instruments. And the gathered worshipers raised their voices. And the old, rousing favorites rang out through the sanctuary: ”Lord, I Want to Be a Christian,” “Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken,” “Holy, Holy, Holy,” “My Faith Looks Up to Thee,” “America the Beautiful,” “Joyful, Joyful,” culminating in a hand-clapping rendition of “O When the Saints Go Marching In.”

Worship closed with the Prayer of Dedication which challenged us all: ”Help us to see and appreciate the diversity, beauty and transformative powers of all music and the arts as they lift our spirits and send us on our way rejoicing.”

Bringing the Light to Christmas Eve

This year, the Christmas Eve worship service filled hearts with the light of the coming celebration of the birth of the Messiah. The congregation shared in the singing of the old Christmas carols.

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Soukup told the children the story of the shepherd Hannah, with her trusted sheepdog Gideon, who saw the stars in the sky that led Hannah and the other shepherds to the manger where the new Messiah had been born. Meanwhile, back in the fields, Gideon, the rest of the sheep, and Shadow the Wolf, had their own Christmas enlightenment, learning to listen to each other and better understand what each cherished. 

After sharing Communion, Cara Massey sang a solo “O Holy Night” in the darkened sanctuary as the Deacons lighted each parishioner’s candle, bringing the light of Christmas into the world. After the congregation sang “Silent Night,” Rev. Soukup blessed all with wise words, urging those present to go out and carry on the work of Christmas — which was to spread the beauty of Christmas. MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL.

Cookie Walk Brought Out the Elves

Cookies . . . Cookies . . . Everywhere COOKIES! On Saturday, December 16, Bristol’s Annual Cookie Walk attracted a huge clientele. Church members generously brought their hundreds and hundreds of home-baked cookies to support this fundraiser. 

And, sneaking in on the night before were a gathering of special Christmas Elves who baked and decorated cookies all night long. At least that is what I heard . . .

A Choral Christmas Gift . . . followed by Potluck

On Sunday, December 17, the children of the Church School Choir and the members of the Adult Choir joined their talents to give us a rousing choral presentation of Clement Clarke Moore’s “A Visit from Saint Nicholas,” better known as “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”

Following this special worship service, the congregation joined in a Fellowship Potluck luncheon. Members brought delicious dishes and the Fellowship Committee and Deacons cooked up a feast which was enjoyed by everyone.


Come and join us for an evening of entertainment and inspiration. The movie is set in the 1970s and tells the story of a charismatic street preacher who challenges a pastor of a dying traditional church and his congregation to their very core. What unfolds is a counterculture movement that becomes the greatest spiritual awakening in American history.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to watch this inspiring movie with your friends and family. We hope to see you there!