Wishing our readers a very

Merry Christmas

from the VCC Board

and Guest Pastor Dr. Neil Parker.


December 2019: In this Issue

• Capturing the Moment

• Get Involved 

• Guest Pastor 

• Meet the Board

• Special Thanks

• Save the Date

• Pastoral Note


Capturing the Moment


A Warm Sunday Welcome from VCC Greeters: Edson Dorneles and Cintia Sue.



Lovely Lilies donated by Rick & Cintia Sue.


The lighting of the alter candle.

Guest Pastor Neil Parker during ‘Time with the Children’.

The VCC Choir. 

Reinier and Noelanie Coetzer with baby Heinrich (born on 10 October) a n d  Reinier’s mother Marjorie Coetzer.

Brazilian Visitors Rev. Gerson Flor (Chaplain with the Canadian Armed Forces in Naples/Italy) and his wife Guislei, with VCC’s Canadian Guest Pastor Neil.

On November 17th the VCC celebrated Thanksgiving at the Meeting Point. The Organizers, Anne Storey and Maurine Mellinger made the event a huge success!

Our Thanksgiving Group, in from of the Meeting Point.

In the dining room, cheers!

Our Thanksgiving celebration was filled with good conversation and we left with full bellies and hearts filled with gratitude. 

VCC Guest Pastor Rev. Dr. Neil Parker just before administering the Sacrament of Communion.

Sitting together in church: Our Moderator, Mickela Moore, with Mary Geissler, her granddaughter Maëlle and daughter Zita.

The VCC Choir lead by Cassandra McConnell.

Susan Kanzian donated the flowers for church on this Sunday, "For the goodness of God!".

Eeva and Jary from Finland.

This year the VCC packed Christmas Boxes that were delivered to children in Eastern Europe, some of whom may never have received Christmas presents. It was a beautiful way to start the holiday season as a church community and remember others in need, especially during the holiday season. Maryanne Macris, VCC Charity and Missions Chair (pictured in the red sweater far right) did a wonderful job organising the event for us. 


A Note from Pastor Neil


I’ve already been to a couple of Weihnachtsmarkts. Mostly strolling around, looking, not really with any purpose. There’s lots to see there. Among all the stalls and stands, there is usually a Nativity scene. Not always at the centre, and not always very glamourous. But there is usually one there, and most of the time, I’ve seen people quietly looking at it, nodding, and maybe pointing out one or two features to children that are with them. I like that.

I’ve been collecting Nativity scenes (crèches / Krippe) for years now. It’s quite an eclectic collection, and for the most part, represents my own tastes. I’ve tried to avoid the very traditional, classic “pastorale” versions that are the standard, with medieval kings and shepherds playing pipes. I’ve collected ones made of many different materials, such as wood or stone or ceramic, and I’ve tried to collect scenes that place the Holy Family into local contexts, so that they are represented as if the Christ child had been born in Peru, or China, or Haida Gwai.

Still, most have the same elements. There is a Mom and a Dad. A Baby. Wise guys (almost always three). Shepherds (of varying numbers). Often, there are animals – a camel or two for the wise ones, a handful of sheep, possibly a donkey or cow.

But no puppies. That’s too bad, I think. It’s bad enough that the gifts the baby gets are gold, and frankincense, and myrrh, chosen for symbolic value rather more than their intrinsic worth. No diapers, no stroller, no toys. And no puppy.

Wouldn’t it have been nice if, before the weight of the world was laid on his shoulders, Jesus could have had a companion to run with, snuggle up to, and chase squirrels with? To laugh out loud, whoop and holler, and get dirty? We assume that Jesus had an ordinary childhood, for the most part. He experienced all of what we experience in our lives, God in human form. He should have had a puppy.

The next Nativity scene I buy will have a puppy in it, I think.


Get Involved


Daily Devotion

Sunday School

Mark your calendar for this year's Christmas pageant: 

15 December /noon service.

The Sunday school will perform a very special Christmas pageant. All children are welcome to take part!

Parents, please consider volunteering in the Sunday school we need your help! 

Contact the Christian Education Chair, Edson Dorneles for information.

For where two or three gathered in my name, there am I with them” 

Our Prayer Circle seeks God’s vision, guidance and will for our church and also to become more dependent on Him in our individual and family lives, respectively. We would like to keep in our prayers those who are sick, suffering, hospitalized or have spiritual needs and requests for God.

The Prayer Circle  has chosen a topic for each day's prayer as follows:


Monday:         Pastor

Tuesday:         Leadership and all those who serve VCC faithfully

Wednesday:    Membership

Thursday:       Music and Choir

Friday:            Church Programs

Saturday:        Outreach

Sunday:          International - those who are persecuted

Sita Weinrich is coordinating the Prayer Circle until Eeva Vähäsarja returns in the Autumn.  In the intervening time, all requests and communication should be sent to:


Wednesday, 11 December 2019

19-21:00 (Doors open 18:30)

VCC Meeting Point 

Viewing: The Bishop's Wife (USA 1947) 

See poster below.

The  College & Career Group meets up at the VCC Meeting Point every Thursday evening at 7PM. The weekly Thursday meetings of the College & Career Group alternate between Bible Study and a relaxed meal together or other planned activity.

Join us for dinner and Bible study - free from formality. Fun, discussions and fellowship!

The C&C will be hosting a Welcome Back dinner. If you are interested in the C&C or would like to attend the Welcome Back dinner, please contact Alice Wanner.

Upcoming dates in the new year!

Next Dates for lunch will be in January!


VCC Choir Sings

The VCC Choir which rehearses every Sunday in the choir loft starting from 11:15.

If you would like to join the VCC Choir or know of a musician or singer who would like to guest with us, please contact our Choir Director, Cassandra McConnell.




Unfilled positions: Property, Stewardship & Finance. If you feel called to serve in any of these positions, please contact Mickela on


Many thanks to all those who participated in the VCC International Buffet and a big round of applause to the organizers, Anne Storey and Maurine Mellinger on a successful feast!

And also a sincere note of gratitude for all the gifts as well as help we received in this year's Christmas Box Charity project lead by Maryanne Macris. Your time and donations will bring joy to a special child this Christmas. 

With our gratitude,

The VCC Board


Become Part of the VCC Family!


Are you interested in becoming a part of our ecumenical, international, inter-denominational, VCC family? For more information, please contact the Membership Chair, Sita Weinrich:



8 DECEMBER – No After-worship Fellowship

While there will be no after-worship fellowship on 1 and 8 December, you are encouraged to enjoy a drink and bite to eat at the charming Henriettenmarkt in the Church courtyard.

15 DECEMBER Children’s Christmas Pageant

It will take place during Sunday Service.


Pastor Neil has unearthed his collection of Nativity scenes (Krippe) from around the world, and they are on display at the Meeting Point. If you have a nativity scene that you would like to share, bring it along and add to the display.

The Meeting Point will be open from 1400 to 1600 (or a bit later) every Tuesday. Pastor Neil is learning to bake Christmas cookies, and requires the help of volunteers to eat them. This is a ministry to which you may be called. Or just drop in and have a decent cup of coffee or tea and enjoy the display, the music, and the quiet.

 24 DECEMBER - Candlelight Service, 21:00


Join us for our Christmas Eve celebration of the Birth of Christ, with the singing of traditional and new hymns, prayer, praise, candles and the sharing of the Christmas Story, always new and always familiar. This will be a family-friendly service, so invite those you love to be with you on this holy evening.

VCC Events


Supporting the VCC

The VCC has been a self-funded Church since its founding in 1957.  All donations help support our ministry and we thank you for each one. You can contribute to the General Fund or the Capital Fund that will assist in paying off the loans to purchase the VCC Meeting Point.

To make a bank transfer:

IBAN: AT 082 011 128 753 849 700  BIC: GIBAATWWXXX

US Taxpayers may make a tax-deductible donation to the VCC by either writing a check out to the American & Foreign Christian Union (AFCU) with VCC General Fund or VCC Capital Funding Appeal on the Memo line and place it in the offering basket, or alternatively, write the check to the AFCU and send to the AFCU Treasurer, 2885 Sanford Ave, SW #29934, Grandville, MI 49418, U.S.A.. You can also make a donation over the AFCU online platform.


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