News and Events for January 2020

Worship Service Every Sunday at 10:30 AM. Sunday School for all ages at 9:30 AM.


Happy New Year on Wednesday, January 1st. The church office will be closed.

Epiphany - Holy Communion during worship on Sunday, January 5th. 


Annual Reports Due Church leaders of all ministry teams and other groups, please submit your annual report by January 8th to the Vine Church office so that your team’s work during 2019 can be recognized and documented. 

Serve those who are hungry at Peoples City Mission on Thursday, January 9th.  Meet there at 4:30 PM. Note: Vine Congregation Members serve dinner at People’s City Mission every 2nd Thursday of the month. Sign up in Fellowship hall or contact Chuck Fast.

Celebration of Life Service for Rev. Clip Higgins, 90, of Lincoln, Nebraska died peacefully on November 25th, 2019 at Tabitha Residence Martha House. Clip was born on April 24th, 1929 in Coshocton, Ohio, to Rev. Clarence M. Higgins, Sr. and Dorothy (Brunner) Higgins. He was the retired Conference Minister for the Nebraska Conference of the United Church of Christ (U.C.C.). Previously Clip served parishes in Stone Creek and Archbold, Ohio, and later served in the Illinois Conference of the U.C.C. as Program Director and Associate Conference Minister. Clip was graduated from Heidelberg College (now University) in Tiffin, Ohio, and Eden Theological Seminary, Webster Grove, Missouri. In retirement, he continued to offer pastoral care, including serving as an interim pastor in Australia. Clip was a devout member of Vine Congregational Church, served on the Lincoln Inter-Faith Council, advocated for homeless services in Lincoln, and was an ever-faithful Husker fan. Clip, Dad/Pops/ Grandpa/Great-Grandpa, was loved by all who knew him. A grace-filled spirit, he was a good and faithful servant, project guy (“bring your work gloves!”), gardener without peer, builder, dreamer, leader, and family man. He never knew a stranger-all were welcomed into his life with warmth, acceptance, and love. Along with his wife Janice, he traveled the world to bear witness to God's creation. Above all, he derived greatest joy from time with family. Family members include adult children Ruth (John) Schleyer, Portland, OR; Tim (Marie) Higgins, Naperville, IL; Dr. Jonathan (Toni) Farrell-Higgins, Topeka, KS; Rev. David (Rev. Beth) Long-Higgins, Delaware, OH; Daniel (Liesl) Higgins, Bellevue, OH; and Mary Higgins, Lincoln, NE; 13 grandchildren; 5 great-grandchildren; brother Rev. Charles (Virginia) Higgins, Danbury, NH. Preceded in death by loving wife Janice (Ruth Kellermeyer) Higgins; his parents, and brother Rev. Thomas Higgins. Surrounded in love by companion Viki Kugler and her family. Visitation beginning January 10, 2020 from 3 – 7 p.m. and a Memorial Service on January 11, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. all at Vine Congregational United Church of Christ, 1800 Twin Ridge Road, Lincoln. Rev. Renae Koehler and Rev. David Long-Higgins to officiate. Cremation is planned. Arrangements by Roper and Sons Funeral Services. Memorial gifts to Vine U.C.C. Foundation-Youth Services, Lincoln City Mission (, and Nebraska Conference U.C.C. Academic Debt Retirement Fund. Condolences online at

Friendly Fellowship Please join us on Tuesday, January 14th at 6:30 PM sharp.  Bring a main dish to share. Dessert provided. Note: Friendly Fellowship is open to all Vine Members as a social group which meets on the 2nd Tuesday of each month.

Deadline for the February 2020 Newsletter will be Friday, January 17th at noon. The deadline is always the 3rd Friday of the month.


Creative youth led worship service on Sunday, January 19th. 

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, January 20th. The church office will be closed.

Evening Discussion Group will meet Monday, January 20 at 7 pm at the home of Mary Owens.  Mary will also lead the lesson. All women are invited to attend for discussion and fellowship.


Men’s Breakfast— This month’s Men’s Breakfast meets Tuesday, January 21st at 7:30 AM at Stauffers (5600 S 48th St.). Note: Men’s Breakfast meets same time and place every third Tuesday of the month.


New NRSV Bibles given to 4th graders: Isabella Back and Quentin Myers during the worship service on Sunday, January 26th.  


Annual Meeting after worship service on Sunday, February 2nd. 


Help Wanted Ads: Seeking reliable individual (or two) to serve as dishwasher(s) for Fellowship on the 2nd Sundays of odd-numbered months. Training provided. Friendly and cheerful working conditions! Also seeking someone to monitor the blue recycle bins under the counter in the kitchen and take the items to recycle when needed. Apply by contacting the church office or Joan Humphrey.


SCRIP Easy Does It!


E – Every Sunday availability

A – Abundant choices for merchants

S – Simple to purchase and use

Y – You can support the church by using SCRIP

By purchasing SCRIP to use for your normal shopping expenses, you support the work of the SCRIP Committee to provide funds for special needs at Vine, such as additional funds to purchase music for the choirs and a new Christmas tree for the atrium. Stop by the SCRIP table in Fellowship Hall any Sunday! Your SCRIP Committee


Branching Out

Pack the Sack in January – Branching Out for this month will collect items for the Eastridge Emergency Pantry that Vine helps support. Grocery bags will be available in the Narthex after worship January 12 and 19. Fill the bag with needed items and return them on Sunday, January 26. Reminder: The pantry can purchase many items from the Food Bank for less than we can purchase them at the store. So, let’s fill the bags with needed items. Baking supplies: flour, sugar, cooking oil; Personal Care: toilet paper, shampoo, feminine hygiene products; Food items: Chef Boyardee canned meals, salad dressings, spaghetti sauce, Hamburger Helper, crackers.


Reminder for the new year – We are still collecting small personal care items and working pens for the City Mission, and eyeglasses for the Lion’s Club. Box Tops for Education from various products are collected for Arnold Elementary School. The square plastic closures from some bread wrappers are collected for school nurses to repair broken flip flops. All of these items may be placed in collection containers in the Fellowship Hall. Let’s recycle and help others at the same time!


Best Choice bar codes – I will no longer being collecting Best Choice bar codes. We have just reached 1,000 that I will redeem in February for $30 as soon as we receive our annual $30 certificate. This will be added to the $60 we already have in a fund to buy needed items for the kitchen. If no one wants to take this over at Vine, you may still give me your labels for the Lincoln Education Association – Retired who use the funds toward the four scholarships awarded each year. Cheryl Svoboda


Christian Education


DiVine Children’s Sunday School meets every Sunday from 9:30 – 10:20 AM downstairs. Children from ages 4 through 7th grade are welcome to join us!


Vine Youth Group meets every Sunday 9:30-10:20 AM in the youth room. Led by Pastor Renae. For ages 8th grade – Senior in High School.


Adult Sunday School meets every Sunday 9:30 – 10:20 AM in the New Hope Chapel. The class is group led.


Sermon Themes for January

January 5 — Simeon and Anna

January 12 — Baptism of Jesus

January 19 — Creative Youth – Led Worship Service

January 26 — Calling of the First Disciples


Church Nursery is for children age 0 – preschool. Parents are welcome to use the nursery if you wish, but we encourage children and babies to stay in worship with their parents


Readers for January

January 5 — Mindy Rix

January 12 — Chandra Gross

January 19 — Judy Keller

January 26 — Susan Emanuel


January Greeters

January 5 — Marylynn Brinkhoff

January 12 — Schuessler Family

January 19 — Cuttlers Family

January 26 — Karen Lichty


Dishwashers for January

January 5 — Paul & Joan Humphrey

January 12 —

January 19 — Russ & Judy Workman

January 26 — Paul & Cheryl Svoboda


Fellowship Hour for January

January 5 — Paul & Cheryl Svoboda

January 12 — John & Lois Evans

January 19 — Ivan & Karen Lichty

January 26 — Barry & Karen Hemmerling

Ushers— Ivan Lichty, Lanny Goering, Jeff Brown, Haney Milstead. Substitute Ushers: Barry Hemmerling, Dan Wright, Mark Jeter, Terry Nestroyl.


Thank You


I am very grateful for the Christmas remembrance and the yearlong support of my Vine Church family. ~Mary Owens

Thank you for the Christmas gift of Scrip cards for my family.  We greatly appreciate your generosity and kindness. ~ Sincerely, Pastor Renae & Steve.


Thank you to children, youth, parents, Sunday School teachers and everyone who helped make our Vine Children’s Christmas Pageant a success!

From the Vine Foundation…Please consider joining the members and friends of Vine Church who have gifted or established estate plans to benefit the Vine Foundation. Your gift and/or bequest will help fund the long-range ministry and mission work of Vine Church. Be sure make out your check to the Vine Foundation or Vine Congregational UCC Foundation and indicate in the memo field of your check which of the six Foundation Funds you wish your gift and/or bequest to be directed:

  • General Endowment Fund (mission, program, and leadership at Vine)

  • Rasche Myers Outreach Fund (ministry in the community)

  • Margaret Myers Fund (annual proceeds to Vine’s Church Council)

  • Capital Improvement Fund (for Vine Church’s building and grounds)

  • Youth Fund (ministry to and for Vine’s youth)

  • Music Fund (support for Vine’s various music programs)


Should you have any questions or wish to discuss directing a gift to the Vine Foundation through estate planning please talk with any member of the Foundation Board of Directors: Cathy Anderson, Bruce Baker, Wendy Fast, Jim King, or Beckee Moreland. Thank you for your continued support of the Vine Foundation.





1 – Laura Williams

4 – Rick Williams

4 – Andrew Klein

5 – Peter Niimi

6 – Cheryl Svoboda

7 – Annette Foreman

7 – Aaron Sadler    

8 – Russ Workman

10 – Hailey Nestroyl

11 – Jeff Brown

11 – Scott Renken

12 – Paul Anderson

12 – Abby Rehm

13 – Steve Anderson

14 – Steve Martin

16 – DeLoyd Larsen

16 – Mark Darrington

17 – Roger Svatos

17 – Joyce Scheneman

18 – Gary Hergenrader

18 – Isaac Back

19 – Matthew Weisbrod

21 – Brett Person

22 – Julia Dickman

23 – Mike Byington

25 – Jadyn Nimetz

26 – Kim Flodman

28 – Kess Packett

30 – Lindsey Emery

31 – John McAuliff



Church Business

Church Council meeting The council will meet on Monday, January 13th at 7:00 PM. Please let us know if you have an idea or ministry that you would like to start at Vine. We are always here for serve the church! Vine Council Members: Moderator, Joan Humprhrey, or(402) 613-4393; Jean Jordan; Pat Criger; Cathy Anderson; Karen Hemmerling; Chandra Gross; Dick Roberts; and Paul Svoboda. Mark Jeter – Treasurer. Nancy Goering – Membership Clerk.

Church Council Minutes— Be sure to stop by and read the full copy of the Monthly Council Minutes on the bulletin board in the Fellowship hall.

Pastor’s Hours

Monday, Tuesday and Friday - Pastor does visits and works from her church office.

Wednesday - Pastor works from her home office.

Thursday and Saturday - are Pastor’s days off; Please honor her time off, so that she can rest and renew.

Sunday – Pastor is teaching and leading us in Worship.


For visits with the Pastor, you are welcome to drop in at the church office, but it is preferred if you email or call ahead for an appointment. Email: Pastor’s cell phone: 402-867-4044 


Office Manager Hours are Monday-Friday 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM. Have a need? You can contact the office by email at or by phone, at the church, at 402-483-4781.


We are a 5-for-5 Congregation! That means we give to all 5 of the United Church of Christ’s special missions (Neighbors In Need, One Great Hour of Sharing, Strengthen the Church, The Christmas Fund, and Our Churches Wider Mission).

Vine Mission Statement: Vine Congregational, United Church of Christ, rooted in the soil of Christian belief, is an open and affirming community of believers that provides care, support, and encouragement to individuals and families as they bear witness to their faith within and beyond the local church.

Our religion is over 2000 years old, but our thinking is not. Vine is an Open- Minded Church with Extravagant Welcome.

Church Office: 402-483-4781

Church Office Email:

Pastor's Email:

Church Office hours:

Monday - Friday 9:00am - 1:00pm

1800 Twin Ridge Rd

Lincoln, NE 68506

Vine Mission Statement:  Vine Congregational, United Church of Christ, rooted in the soil of Christian belief, is an open and inclusive community of believers that provides care, support, and encouragement to individuals and families as they bear witness to their faith within and beyond the local church.
Our religion is over 2000 years old, but our thinking is not.  Vine is an Open Minded Church with Extravagant Welcome.