Current Events, News, and Information



◊ Merry Market
Sunday, Nov. 29
Shop to make a difference
Your opportunity to find unique and meaningful gifts while supporting local and international non-profits.

Purchase your gifts online.




◊ Advent Contemplative Prayer Group

Listen for the voice of God in the words of scripture, in community, and in silence. Observing the prayer practice of Lectio Divina (holy reading), the Rev. Molly Hatchell will lead us as we read scripture and reflect on how the Spirit is speaking to us in the present moment. The group starts Monday, November 30th, and will meet for four weeks via Zoom from 7-8 pm. Class is limited to 8 people. Click here to register. For questions, please contact the Rev. Molly.




◊ “Let’s Chat” via Zoom
Connect with your church friends as we get to know each other better, share our stories, and discern where God is showing up in our lives during this Advent season. The Rev. Molly Hatchell and Karen Downing will facilitate this small group fellowship opportunity. The group starts on Tuesday, December 1, and will continue for four weeks on Tuesdays, from 10:00-11:00 am. Limit 6-8 persons in a group. For more info, please contact Molly ( or Karen ( New members welcome. We look forward to seeing you! Click here to register.




Children and Families—Let’s Get Together

Join us for Children’s In-Person Sunday School

Sunday, Nov. 29th at 9:30 am. Meet in the parking lot for socially-distanced, masked, outdoor Sunday School at the fenced area in the 3rd parking row. Parents please join us to help support your children and visit with other families.

For more info, visit our Children’s Ministry Events page.


◊ Shepherds and Angels

Calling all children, youth, and the young at heart to be a shepherd or angel via video for Christmas Eve! We’ll get you the costume — all you have to do is walk like a shepherd or flap like an angel. Sign up here.



◊ “The Story of Christmas” Ornaments Project
An All-Age Community Craft Project and Sunday Zoom Series December 1 – 20
Each week of December you can collect an Ornament Craft Kit from a basket located outside of the Fellowship Hall. You can assemble the craft on your own from the included instructions, or together with others during a Zoom gathering. There will be 3 ornaments in the series: an Angel, a Star, and Baby Jesus in the Manger.
Week 1 — Angel Ornament
Optional Congregational Event to assemble the ornament together (in real time via Zoom call*)
Sunday, December 6
10:00 – 10:30 a.m.
Look for the Zoom link in next week’s online newsletter
Be sure to return your completed ornament to Fellowship Hall during the week of December 7th, and it will be added to the WPC Christmas Tree.




◊ Making Advent Visible at Home
Whether you live with others or alone, there are suggestions for you! Many of the ideas we share come from Traci Smith’s new book Faithful Families for Advent and Christmas.
In the introduction to this book, Traci emphasizes that “one of the remedies for making long days count is a deliberate focus on ritual to mark the moments. It doesn’t take long, just a few minutes in the midst of ordinary life to slow down and say, ‘this day will not pass by unnoticed.'” She also points out that holy moments cannot be forced, and often come as a gift. So instead of trying to complete this list of activities, focus on letting ideas come naturally from your life. Allow yourself to be led by the Spirit present each moment to show you surprising connections between yourself and God. Here are some ideas to bring Advent into your home.





◊ For Such a Time as This Stewardship Campaign
As we consider our call to be Christ’s followers “for such a time as this” and the many ways in which we can nourish the hearts, minds and souls of God’s children, we invite you to make a commitment to our 2021 ministries through your pledge of time, talent and treasure. If you haven’t made a financial pledge in the past, this is a wonderful time to begin that practice!
You may make an online 2021 financial pledge here. You may also complete a personal online time and talent form here.
Please make your For Such a Time as This pledge.





◊ Intentional Living, Intentional Giving Continues Dec. 6
Young adults: curious about how to manage your time, energy and financial resources to be the change you want to see in the world? Join WPC members Leslie Pettijohn, Kim Edwards and Phil Doughtie for this series, continuing Sunday, December 6 @ 7:00 p.m. via Zoom.





◊ Christmas Benevolence

It’s Christmas Benevolence time! Thanks to a  generous and anonymous donor, each church member is invited to help someone in the Austin area in need and be reimbursed for their gift, up to $300. You may help someone you know or contact the church office to be connected with someone who has asked for assistance. For more information on the program and to request reimbursement, click here; contact Pastor Ellen with questions.




◊  Christmas Poinsettias $12/plant
You are invited to purchase poinsettias for worship!
Order by Sunday,
Dec. 13




Manos de Cristo’s annual tamale sale is underway! This year the sale is more important than ever: COVID has forced Manos to cancel other fundraising events, while community need for their services remains high. Click here to order your tamales online before Nov. 30th. If you would like to pick up your order at church on the afternoon of December 4th, choose Westminster in the “Organization/Church” dropdown menu on the checkout page. If you would prefer to pick up your tamales at Manos, leave this field blank. Tamales are $15/dozen; vegan option available. Contact Pastor Ellen with questions.




◊ Outdoor Worship Signup
Our next outdoor worship service will be Sunday, December 13th at 4 pm, weather permitting. As we’ve done for the last few months, we’ll gather in the education wing courtyard for a special, casual service of prayer, instrumental music, and socially distant fellowship. For COVID safety, attendance is limited, so you must reserve your place: click here to RSVP. For more safety information or with questions, please contact Pastor Ellen.





◊ Interested in Becoming a Member of WPC?
We would love to welcome you! Our church elders are ready and willing to receive you into membership via Zoom. Call or email the church office to request a membership meeting or to learn more about joining our church.




◊ Blood Drive Interest
Did you know that in the first few months of the pandemic, the Red Cross experienced 800,000 cancelled blood donation appointments? Closure of schools, community centers and businesses has affected their ability to hold blood drives. WPC would like to step into the gap and host a donation day in Fellowship Hall in early 2021. In order to be assigned a date, we need to show the Red Cross that we can provide 50 donors, as well as a few volunteers to keep things running smoothly that day. Click here to express your interest in participating. This is not a sign up sheet, just a way for us to gauge numbers. For information about COVID safety precautions, visit the Red Cross’s blood donation site.





◊ DAS Senior Sidekick Program
Though DAS scaled back to essential medical rides only during COVID, they are ramping back up. If you would like to donate food items, you may drop them by the DAS office at Tarrytown Methodist Church, where they will be delivered to the pantries. Also, a new Senior Sidekick program has been created that matches volunteers to clients for help with learning to order curbside or delivery services on-line. Please call 512.472.6339 to volunteer. Thank you!




◊ Central Pres. Needs Our Help!
Our friends at Central Pres. continue to provide bagged lunches for our neighbors experiencing homelessness downtown. They now accept sandwich donations Monday and Wednesday only, and they ask that you sign up in advance for a delivery date and a number of lunches. Click here for instructions and to sign up.





Thursday Prayers
Join O. R. and others virtually at 12:15 p.m. via Zoom. Look for the link in this week’s newsletter to join in for a brief time of sharing and prayer. For those who cannot join the Zoom call, but would like to “pray in place, you can download the prayers here.