Ben Salem United Church of Christ - Lehighton, PA

Email the committee:
Current Projects

Strengthen the Church Offering – November 25
Please join us in planting the seeds needed to grow and sustain our denomination
by making a gift to the Strengthen the Church Offering. The offering supports the
expansion of ministry and growth of UCC local congregations. Your support of this
offering will help the UCC fulfill on its commitment to creating a just world for all by
investing in new ministries and practices that meet the emerging needs of local
communities. Please be generous!


Ben Salem will host the Feed a Neighbor meal at Zion’s UCC in Lehighton on Thursday,
November 29th beginning at 5 p.m. Up to 100 deserving people enjoy a hot meal prepared
for them at this event. Volunteers are needed to setup, serve, and clean up. We are
usually done by 6:45 p.m. Please call Bernice Steigerwalt at 386-5418 if you can help.
Thank you.


Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Campaign

October 7th - November 18th

We will be collecting filled shoeboxes again this year in support of Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas

Child. Boxes and idea suggestions are available in the Narthex.

• No toothpaste or candy due to customs regulations!
• Recommended donation: $9.00/box (No cash!)
• Make one check payable to Ben Salem UCC and place your donation in box in
Narthex. Be sure to mark it “Shoeboxes”.
• Or donate online at where you can print a label
and track your box on it’s journey.
• Boxes are available in the Narthex or you may use plastic shoebox

Deadline for boxes to be filled and returned is Sunday, November 18.
“Every shoebox gift is an excellent resource for evangelism and discipleship, which leads to the
multiplication of new believers and churches around the world



The last quarter mission project for 2018, is the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s
Disease. This foundation, started by actor, Michael J. Fox after he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, has been at the forefront of funding research projects to aid in the development of medicines and treatments that will bring a cure to end this disease.  With its goal to finding a cure for Parkinson’s Disease, the foundation takes part in countless case studies that help in different ways including: Translating genetic findings into real treatments; with Researching methods to develop vaccines that will cure Parkinson’s; Developing newer, more effective drugs to replace the current standard drug of dopamine, including inhaled drugs that produce the needed effect more quickly than oral drugs, and Working with the FDA and major drug companies to effectively speed up the approval process for newer treatments Because research funding plays a major role in where monies donated are allocated, to date, over  $800 million has been spent on cutting-edge research projects, $100 million in 2017 alone. For each dollar donated to the Fox Foundation, 88 cents go to research. Charity Navigator gives the Fox Foundation a four-star rating. All of us know someone, even some members of our congregation, who suffer with Parkinson’s Disease. Please help us help them by donating to the Michael J. Fox Foundation from October 1 through the end of the year. Mark your mission envelops with FOX if you wish to donate. Thank you for your generosity.


Feed a Neighbor 
Thursday, November 29th
Zion UCC, Lehighton
5 PM



The Confirmation Class will be collecting items to assemble Hygiene Kits to send to areas

devastated by the hurricanes.  Donations of the following new items are appreciated and

can be placed in the bin in the Narthex.


·         1 Bar of Soap (original packaging) ·         1 Toothbrush (original packaging) ·         10 Standard Band Aids  

1 Hand Towel – 15”x28” up to 16”x32” (no larger) – no fingertip, bath, dish, or microfiber

·         1 Washcloth

·         1 Wide Tooth Comb

·         1 Fingernail/Toenail Clipper




            Our summer mission project for 2018 will be the St. Peter’s Community Resource Center in Weissport.  St. Peter’s Center offers social and life-enhancing programs to needy individuals in the Carbon County area.  These include assisting with referral services, providing space for other nonprofit organizations to operate, such as Al Anon, and the Penn State Extension Service, and distributing basic toiletry items to qualifying Lehighton residents on the 4 Saturday of each month.  In addition to monetary donations to this project, there will be a box on the mission table in the narthex to collect toiletry items such as toilet paper, soap, toothbrushes/toothpastes, and tissues.  Please be generous in helping us to support this very worthy local mission that will run through September 30.  Mark your mission envelopes with “ST. PETER’S” to designate your donation.


                Also in July, our yearly donations to Child Sponsorship are due.  For many years, Ben Salem has supported 2 children from 3 world countries through this vital mission.  If you are interested in donating, please mark your mission envelope Child Sponsorship.


Please also note upcoming opportunities to volunteer:


                The Food Bank is in need of volunteers to help with distributing food to needy families in our congregation and local area.  It distributes 6-8 times per year on a Saturday morning, and takes only a ½ hour of your time to help on that day.  If you are able and available earlier, we could use volunteers to shop for groceries and/or sort the items given to each familyDonations of food items can be put in the Food Bank box next to the credenza in the narthex.  A ”tear off”  list gives suggestions for what items are needed for our distributions.  Contact LaVaun Shanton to help.


                Ben Salem will host Family Promise during the week of September 9-16.   Volunteers are always needed to donate and serve meals, stay for fellowship, or sleepover with the families.  Contact Karen Hayman to volunteer your time.


                The Feed a Neighbor meal at Zions UCC in Lehighton has been rescheduled and will be sponsored by Ben Salem on Thursday, July 26 at 5:00.  Help is always needed to serve the meal.  In November, we served over 100 people who appreciated and thanked us for being there for them.  Contact Bernice Steigerwalt to participate.   As always, we thank you for your constant support of our mission efforts.

Support Our Heroes! – A collection is being taken to help our people serving in the military.   Items being collected are listed on the box located in the narthex!

Neighbors in Need Sunday- October 7

Neighbors in Need offering will be received on World Communion Sunday, October 7.  This offering supports the UCC’s ministries of justice and compassion throughout the United States.  Two-thirds of the offering is used by the UCC’s Justice and Witness Ministries to fund a wide array of local and national justice initiatives, advocacy efforts, and direct service projects.  Through, our national Justice and Witness Ministries office offers resources, news updates, and action alerts on a broad spectrum of justice issues.  Working with members of the UCC Justice and Peace Action Network (a network of thousands of UCC justice and peace advocates), Justice and Witness continues its strong policy advocacy work on issues such as the federal budget, voting rights, immigration, health care, hate crimes, civil liberties, and environmental justice.  Neighbors in Need also supports our American Indian neighbors of the UCC.  One-third of the offering supports UCC’s Council for American Indian Ministries (CAIM).  Historically, forebears of the UCC established churches and worked with Lakota, Dakota, Nakota, Mandan, Hidatsa, Arickara, and Hocak in North and South Dakota, Wisconsin, and northern Nebraska.  Today there are 20 UCC congregations on reservations and one urban, multi-tribal UCC congregation in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  These churches and their pastors are supported by CAIM.  CAIM is also an invaluable resource for more than 1,000 individuals from dozens of other tribes and nations who are members of other UCC congregations in the U.S.   Please give generously!

Prayer ChainThe Prayer Chain is a way for anyone to request prayer for a specific need….
[or thanksgiving or joy].   To have our Prayer Chain pray for you: Contact Betty Nothstein at 570-386-5644.  Please call Betty if you would like to be called with others’ prayer requests as part of the Prayer Chain.
Called to CareTrained volunteers from our church are available to assist the Pastor in visiting shut-in or hospitalized church members who are no longer able to attend regular worship services or participate in church functions.  If you would like a “Called to Care” volunteer to visit you, please contact the Pastor at the Church Office (570) 386-3870.   We are looking for more volunteers for this Committee! If you are interested in sharing God’s love with shut-in members of our congregation, please contact Pastor McGowan. 
The next Called to Care meeting will be held on April 12 at 10 AM.
Prayer Shawl Ministry:The Prayer Shawl Committee is in need of helpers to make prayer shawls.  If you can knit or crochet and would like to help, please contact coordinators Betty Nothstein at 570-386-5644 or Barbara Snowberger at 570-386-2112 for more information.  If a prayer shawl is needed, please contact Betty or Barbara.


A smaller red clothing bin has replaced the two bins we previously had by the
old Social Hall.  Please feel free to donate clothing or shoes that you no longer need