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Welcome to First Congregational Church of Western Springs

We are people of extravagant welcome. Whether you are young or old, gay or straight, single or partnered, happy or sad, confused or inspired, street smart or college-educated, whether you can’t pay your bills or have more than enough to share—no matter who  you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome to join us as we worship and praise the God who welcomes us all.







Dear Friends in Faith,

It's that time of year when the church calendar fills in, the exuberant voices of our preschoolers return to the hallways, and I am reminded again of how delighted I am to serve as one of your pastors.  This is a remarkable and vibrant church, and I consider it a blessing to serve with you in Christ’s name.

This year has been a wonderful year.  We began and completed a successful capital campaign, and again, I'm amazed by your generosity.  In March, we ordained Meredith Onion into Christian ministry.  This summer, we sang our favorite hymns together to open worship, and at the end of August, more than 50 members of our church rode their bikes from one ripening field to another to celebrate our 12-year partnership for food sustainability with the Foods Resource Bank.

In addition to sharing many happy occasions together, we also stood by each other in moments of great sadness.   Several long-time members of our church passed away, leaving a void that we will feel for a long time to come.  One of the things I think we do best here is care for each other….We come together and attempt to lessen the pain for those we love.  Often that comes in the way of bringing meals, or showing up (by the hundreds) to celebrate a life, or serving coffee at a memorial reception.  As Christians, this is what we are called to do…To rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15).  It warms my heart greatly when we do this with and for each other.

As members of this church, we are also called to care for our church. ”….promising so far as in us lies to share its work, sustain its worship, love its members and seek its unity, purity and increase.”  (from our church covenant)

In that spirit, I hope you will thoughtfully consider your 2015 annual pledge to the church and complete a 2015 pledge form and bring it with you to worship on October 12.  Our generosity today is what builds a firm foundation for 2015. (Click here to view our preliminary budget for 2015.)  My prayer and hope is that we will greet the New Year from a position of continued financial health, so that we can sustain our many programs and ministries that not only serve our congregation, but serve many people around the world.

Two of the things we hope to do with your support include:

  • Grow our mission giving by 3% ­ or more if we are able.
  • Provide a moderate cost-of-living increase to our valued and talented staff.

Before we know it, we will be lifting our voices in the candlelight of Christmas Eve singing "Oh Come All Ye Faithful,” and that night I will ­ as I do every year ­ give God thanks for all that He has done with this wonderful congregation.  I am excited about what our future holds.

Thank you in advance for your continued, loving support of this congregation and its ministries.  And, as always, please contact  me should you have any questions.

Peace and blessings,

Rich Kirchherr


If you'd like to make a pledge online using PayPal, see our PayPal icon on the right side of our home page.



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