Serving within the Church
Niantic Community Church is entirely self-governing. Major decisions — such as approving an annual budget, making changes to our Constitution, or calling a pastor to serve us — are made by Congregational Meetings. Those are held at least once a year, on the last Sunday of January, and at other times when need arises.[Click here to read the NCC Constitution]The vast majority of decisions about the ministries and mission of our church, and the many ways we serve, happen in smaller groups (boards and committees). These offer members and friends a “hands on” approach to serving in our church and community. Let us affirm your gifts as you use them for service in one of the following ways:
The Prudential Board
The Prudential Board comprises the pastor(s), the officers, one member of each of the committees and boards or their subcommittees, Women’s Fellowship Board, Senior High Youth Fellowship, and three (3) members-at-large. The Prudential Board’s duties include (summarized from the NCC Constitution [link]):
- Coordinate and schedule the Church’s overall program, providing encouragement and leadership so that the Church’s purpose of serving the community and the world God loves may be furthered;
- Manage the financial and budgetary affairs of the Church;
- Authorize and direct the Treasurer concerning the payment of Church obligations;
- Oversee insurance programs, legacies, endowments, special funds, and securities;
- Advise the Church staff concerning the fulfillment of their responsibilities and handle the arrangement of their contracts;
- Keep all property of the Church as a trust, the only restriction being that all transactions involving real property must first receive the approval of two-thirds of the Church members present and voting at either an Annual Meeting or a special meeting called for that purpose;
- Present to the Annual Meeting a budget for adoption;
- Establish such committees as may be needed to assist the Prudential Board in fulfilling its responsibilities to the Church.
Church Officers (2016): Carole Glenn, president; Bob Castronova, vice-president; Jennifer Datum, clerk; Linda Leavens, treasurer, Elizabeth Kuchta, historian
The Diaconate Board has a large responsibility: to oversee the spiritual life of the congregation. Two groups comprise the Board: Parish Life Ministries and the Worship Team, both of which meet on the first Tuesday of each month.
Tasks of the Parish Life Ministries Team:
- Help the pastors in calling on the members of the congregation, especially the sick and the needy;
- Introduce new members to the life of the congregation and prepare them for membership;
- Extend hospitality to both members and visitors;
- Offer intergenerational religious and educational opportunities to the congregation and the community.
Tasks of the Worship Team:
- Plan and assist in conducting services of worship, especially in the administration of the Lord’s Supper and Baptism;
- Manage the housekeeping tasks of worship;
- Consult with the Pastor-Parish Relations Committee to provide for the supply of the pulpit in the absence of the pastors.
Constituent Boards of Trustees
The Old Stone Church Burial Ground Committee
The Old Stone Church Burial ground committee maintains the burial ground site on Society Road. The bell from the Old Stone Church is located across the street from the burial ground.
Here are a few facts about the burial ground:
- There are over 500 marked graves at the site and probably 500 unmarked.
- The oldest marked stone is dated 1722. The oldest marked stone with a name is that of George Smith, 1724.
- The stones are made of many types of materials. You can find examples of the following there, fieldstone, slate, sandstone, marble, granite, and cast metal.
- There are many symbols carved on the stones including winged cherubs, urns, and willows.
- There are soldiers from every war buried there. The monument for our Civil War veterans is not located on our town green, but at the burial ground. Take time to go visit it.
- Three of our early ministers are buried there, as well as many members of the church and this community.
If you would like information on the availability of burial plots, please contact the church office.
Children's Center Board
Christian Education Committee
Music and Worship Arts Committee
- Organizes and promotes worship arts, including music, drama and dance;
- Cares for the organ, pianos, bells, hymnals, choir robes, music library, and any other musical property of the Church;
- Assists the music ministers in enlisting music ensembles; and
- Cooperates with the Christian Education Committee to integrate worship arts in the curriculum.[Click here for more information on the Music and Worship Arts Committee ]
Open, Affirming, Reconciling Ministry (OAR)
The OAR Committee works diligently and joyfully to oppose all discrimination, no matter what form it takes, that afflicts, separates or treats unjustly any member of our society.
- We actively support persons of any age, gender, race, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and physical or mental ability.
- We ensure that our worship services respect differences, use inclusive language, and speak to all of God’s children.
- We strive to be visible in our openness in the community and the world around us.
- We pursue justice and uphold civil rights.
- We are intentional in our purpose to not be a one-issue church and to be welcoming to all who feel left out in our society.
- We offer panels, lectures, forums, classes and Bible studies.
- We share the journey and seek to support other faith communities who are seeking to be open as we are.
- We pray, study and actively engage in and celebrate diversity.
- We constantly explore new ways of affirming our faith in a community of love according to the wisdom of the Gospel.