Our Mission Board has run highly successful short-term projects for specific issues such as child sponsorship, clean water, and fair trade products. We participate annually in the UCC national and worldwide relief programs, and Church World Service.
Locally, our church supports the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf and the Colchester Food Shelf, the Committee on Temporary Shelter, the Joint Urban Ministry Project, and Habitat for Humanity, to name a few. A brochure listing all our many projects is available in the back of the sanctuary.
MBCC also spearheads the Colchester Summer Lunch Program (CSLP), which supplies nutritious lunches to school-age children in Colchester on a weekly basis during summer vacation. The CSLP has been going strong for over ten years! In 2008, we fed 83 children in Colchester, delivering enough food for healthy lunches and snacks each week all summer long. To sign up for the CSLP, simply leave your name, phone number, and number of kids on the church voicemail: 658-9155. Because this is a program run by volunteers, it may take a few days for someone to return your call.
A complete program of Christian education is offered for all ages. Childcare is available for young children each Sunday, supervised by adults and youth in loving, caring, and safe setting. Copies of our Safe Church policy are available in the church office. Childcare begins immediately after the "Children's Time" in the worship service.
Sunday school classes are offered each Sunday immediately following the sermon, and continue until 11 a.m. We use the Seasons of the Spirit curriculum and supplement with Godly Play. Confirmation classes are offered for youth 12-17 years
of age. Last year we revamped the Confirmation curriculum and used the Making Disciples program, with great response from youth and families and mentors!
Adult education opportunities are offered seasonally and as interest arises. Sometimes we study a particular book over a set period of time, sometimes we offer one-time classes on topics of special interest. Recent classes have included a 4-week course on the history of the United Church of Christ, group book studies during Advent and Lent, and a study of the book of Acts. Be sure to check in with the church office to find or suggest an education opportunity you might enjoy!
The Memorial Garden at MBCC has been a labor of love for several years. The garden is an ongoing project -- what began as a small
spot to plant a few flowers has grown into a terraced space for prayer
and contemplation, blooming from early spring to late fall. Please feel welcome to stop by the church any time
during the day and sit on one of the benches in the garden area. See what's growing in the garden!
The garden is a community effort, and donations are always
appreciated. Gardens require planning and constant upkeep, and there is a deliberate vision for the growth of the
garden. Please check with the church office before making a purchase, to be sure that your
contribution makes a positive step toward realizing our dream for the space. Current goals involve building a wall to make way for a ramp that would make the lower deck of the garden wheelchair-accessible.
Music is a huge part of the worship and fellowship of MBCC. The Choir and the Praise Band are both small but mighty (and always open to new voices and instruments)! We have an excellent accompanist year-round, and a handful of other musicians who provide special music during the summer months.
We use two hymnals in worship, the New Century Hymnal and the "old red" 1974 UCC hymnal, and we also use a Praise and Worship Songbook with more contemporary worship music the second Sunday of every month. The worship bulletin is marked each week so it's clear which music resource we're using.
ABOUT OUR PASTOR
Rev. Mary Nelson Abbott has been the pastor of MBCC since December of 2007. She brings us the enthusiasm and excitement of a newly-ordained minister -- Malletts Bay is her first call! Before moving to Vermont, she lived in Atlanta, Georgia, where she attended seminary at Emory University, and worked with special education students in the Fulton County schools. Rev. Mary grew up in Des Moines, Iowa, and attended Grinnell College.
Rev. Mary is an active member of the UCC 2030 Clergy Network National Planning Team, and is highly involved in the Vermont Conference UCC as well, including serving as a conference delegate to General Synod in 2009 and 2011.
In her spare time, Rev. Mary loves to sing, knit, bike, write, and travel. She and her husband Joel live in Burlington with their cat, Doc.