Women’s Update (06/11/2015) | I Know The Plans

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I Know The Plans

By Phyllis DiBella

The year was 1977. We arrived in Fredericksburg with our one year-old son, Mark. My husband, Joe, had just signed a one-year contract to teach at Mary Washington College. He had been told it was a non-tenure track position, but it could possibly renew for up to three years. We visited NLICC on one of our first Sundays in town where we met Pastor Doug and Mary Jane Kittredge. During the following week, Pastor Doug and another church member visited our apartment and warmly welcomed us. We returned for worship services the following Sunday. As Pastor Doug followed us out to our car one Sunday (yes, he’s always done this!), he told us we’d be here for a long time. So here we are 38 years later! God is sovereign. He says in His Word in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you…”

Over the years that followed, Joe’s position at the now University of Mary Washington, became a tenure track one and he just completed his 38th year; we had another son, Phillip; I began my ministry at Fredericksburg Christian School (I just ended my 31st year); our sons married lovely, mature, Christian women; and we became the proud grandparents of the five most beautiful grandchildren in the entire world. So this all sounds picture-perfect. The reality of it is that it hasn’t always been the case. However, this church has always been the place where we have been anchored and sustained in His Word, where we have grown in our faith, and where we have learned the true meaning of a covenant community.

We were young in both years and in our faith when we arrived. We had been raised in moral homes but made our true commitment to Christ after college and before we were married. Our wedding was unique for two people from an Italian-Catholic background. I believe it was a clear testimony to our family and friends, and I’m sure God used it in bringing others to Himself. So, as we began to attend New Life eager to be fed, we were immediately blessed by the preaching and teaching each Sunday from the pulpit. Pastor Doug was sure to keep his focus clearly on the Word of God. This is where we learned to be anchored in Him alone. As His Word says in Ephesians 4:14, “We are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming…”

Our faith grew, and the blessings and trials came. Raising two active and strong-willed boys brought us our fair share of good times and challenges. God is faithful, and we are now reaping the blessings of standing firm in our beliefs, praying without ceasing during times when we couldn’t see the outcome, and trusting in the unchanging Word of God. Health issues for Joe caused more distress, and times came when we thought it could be futile to go on. We had moments of discouragement and even unbelief, but we can now in retrospect see the hand of God in all things and see our faith in Him deepen. Through these years we lost both of my parents but had the unbelievable joy of seeing them come to faith. We continue to hold up Joe’s parents asking the Lord to draw them to Himself.

This covenant community at New Life played a major role in our lives and continues to do so. I don’t believe I truly understood it until I had children. I say, “It takes a covenant community.” We take the Covenant of Discipleship when we become members of New Life, pledging to work together to literally help raise one another’s children – praying for them, training in righteousness, and also admonishing when necessary. I needed this many days, and now I see my own sons raising their children as “covenant babies” within their churches. Care groups over the years, brought us right into the every day lives of our fellow believers during the ups and downs of life. We attended in the early years, and most recently have been richly blessed to lead a wonderful group.

This merely scratches the surface of the many ways our loving, Heavenly Father has worked in the lives of my husband and me. If you want to hear the longer version, we’d be glad to accommodate as we share in person at our 40th Anniversary Celebration on July 12.

“I will give you thanks in the great congregation; I will praise you among a mighty throng.” Psalm 35:18

About Phyllis:  Phyllis has been married to Joe for almost 41 years, has 2 sons and their wives and 5 grandchildren, ministers at FCS as assistant principal at the Lower School Campus, has worked at FCS for a total of 31 years, serves on WMC, enjoys travel to Italy, spending time with grands, baking and shopping. You may contact Phyllis at pdibella@fcschools.org.

Current Announcements:


  •  Summer Pre-Teen Girls’ Study | Sunday Afternoons June 7 – August 9
    Each Sunday, after morning worship service, girls will go to the home of a different woman of the church where they will be hosted for lunch and Bible study on Biblical Womanhood.  The afternoon will be filled with fellowship, crafts, and service activities.  Girls will be returned to church for the 6 pm evening service.  Are you willing to hostess or lead a session?  Sign up here:  Contact: Heather O’Hara
  • Summer Women’s Study: Praying with Paul | Offered Tuesday Mornings (9:30-11:30 am) OR Tuesday Evenings (7-9 pm) {Room 217}
    You’re invited to join us for D.A. Carson & Brian Tabb’s Praying with Paul: A Call to Spiritual Reformation.  This study shows the “priorities of prayer, a God-centered framework for prayer, and practices for a more meaningful and dynamic prayer life.”  An evening session is also offered to suit schedules – don’t miss out! Childcare will be available for the morning study.  Heather O’Hara will be leading the Tuesday morning study (registration and more details here) and Gale Puffenberger will be leading the Tuesday evening study (registration & more details here). Contact: Heather O’Hara or Gale Puffenberger


  • Women’s Prayer Breakfast | Saturday, June 13 at 9 am {Fireside Room}
    Please join us as we celebrate Father’s Day during this month’s prayer breakfast!  Last month’s prayer breakfast was a sweet time of reflection of God’s word, sentiments of our own mothers and/or own motherhood, fellowship, and tasty breakfast treats.  Please don’t miss out on this monthly opportunity for fellowship with other ladies.  If you are able to bring something to share, please click here. Contact: Gail Weeks
  • Moses & Burning Within Performances | June 19 & 20
    Dinner Theater on Friday June 19 & Saturday, June 20 — 
    Doors Open at 6:00 pm; Dinner Begins at 6:30 pm; Musical Begins at 7:15 pmJune 20 Matinee — Doors open at 1:30 pm; Musical Begins at 2:00 pm (NO dinner).  Tickets are free, but, required.  Contact the church office for tickets.  To participate, contact Jonathan Allison. Contact: Jonathan Allison
  • 40th Anniversary Banquet | Saturday, July 11 at 6 pm
    Doors open at 6:00 pm and dinner begins at 6:30 pm.  Our banquet will include a meal, fellowship, and reflection on God’s goodness.  Please let us know if you will OR will not be attending!  Please RSVP by Sunday, June 28.  Click here to RSVP.  Contact: Amy Auker
  • {New Link} 40th Anniversary Service & Reception | Sunday, July 12 at 3 pm {Fireside Room}
    A reception will follow our special 40th Anniversary service.  If you are able to bring something to share or assist with setting up, click here. Please join us as we celebrate God’s faithfulness. This special anniversary service will be in place of our regular 6 pm service; Sunday School and our 10 am worship service remain unchanged. Contact: Katie Crawford
  • Vacation Bible School (VBS) | July 27 – July 31
    We are still seeking teachers and assistant teachers to help during the week.  We hope to borrow the following decoration needs (please label all items with your name and they will be returned to you): tube-style Christmas lights, lab coats/jackets, and any non-breakable science-themed items.  We seek the following craft supply donations (please label the bag ‘VBS’ & drop off in ministry office): toilet paper or paper towel cardboard tubes, aluminum foil,  3″ Styrofoam balls, assorted colors of Sharpie markers, and assorted colors of craft wire.  More craft & food donations and teen helper opportunities will follow soon. Contact: Carrie Verbosky


  • {Update} Childcare Help Needed for Summer Bible Study | Tuesday Mornings (June 16-August 11)
    Help is needed with childcare for the morning session (9:30-11:30) of our ladies’ summer Bible study.  The Tuesday morning study begins June 16 and runs through August 11 (no study July 28).   One adult and one teenager have already graciously offered their time to provide childcare, however, due to the number of children registered – an additional helper (and/or substitute) is desired. The nursery must be staffed by at least one person over the age of 18, but younger assistants are welcome.  If you are able to help, please contact the church office. Contact: Church Office


  • Baby Ava Jane Katarina Puig Has Arrived!
    Praise God for the safe arrival of Daniel and Taniya Puig’s baby girl, Ava! She was born on May 25 at 7:35 am, weighed in at 8 lbs., 15 oz., and measured 20 inches. If you are able to bring a meal to the Puigs, please contact Joy Plaia. Contact: Joy Plaia
  • Help Needed Assembling NLIC Directories | Tuesday, June 16 at 11:30 am {Fireside Room}
    Please join us as we prepare the 2015 NLIC Directory for distribution by 1) labeling large envelopes with members’ addresses and 2) stuffing the envelopes with the updated address directories & photo directories.  The task might take just a half hour with many hands!  If you are able to serve in this way, please let Amy Auker know. Contact: Amy Auker
  • Assistance Needed in the Church Office | June 21 – June 26
    Assistance is needed in the church office for the week of June 21-26 as both Dayra and Christine will be gone (things happen).  To sign up, please click here or contact the church office.  Thank you so much for helping us out – our pastoral staff will be so grateful. Contact: Christine or Dayra | 540-786-4848 | nlicc@nlicc.org
  • Substitute Sunday School Assistant with 7th & 8th Grade Girls Needed | June 21 – July 26
    Krystal Dowell and Beth Hamilton are looking for a substitute Sunday School assistant with the 7th and 8th grade girls.  The need is for 6 weeks starting Father’s Day (June 21 – July 26).  No teaching – unless desired – just assisting.  If able to help, please contact Krystal. Contact: Krystal Dowell
  • 40th Anniversary Celebration Planning Committee Seeking Assistance
    Your servant’s heart is needed!  If you have been prayerfully considering how you could help with this momentous occasion – it’s not too late!  With only four members currently serving on our planning committee, many hands and feet are needed to setting up the sanctuary, decorating, assisting with the meal, cleaning up the kitchen, preparing the sanctuary for Sunday’s worship service, and so much more!  IF meetings aren’t your thing – no worries.  Just let us know how you (and/or your family!) would be willing to serve and your gifts will be utilized. Contact: Amy Auker
  • Kitchen Cleaning Committee Seeking Monthly Cleaning Volunteers
    Katie Crawford and Christine Fulcrod have been working to establish a deep-cleaning maintenance schedule for the church kitchen.  We suggest that 2-3 people get together at some point (at your convenience) during the first week of each month to clean & organize the kitchen.  Sign-up with a friend or get to know someone new!  You can access the sign-up here.  Contact: Christine Fulcrod
  • Needs for NLIC Manses
    If you are able to donate gently used (or new) furnishings and new cleaning supplies, please click here.  If you have questions regarding delivery of furniture and/or specific needs listed, please contact the deacon on call.  Contact: nlicc@nlicc.org
  • Bulletin Folding
    Do you have a couple hours on a Friday afternoon you can spare?  Sign up HERE to fold bulletins after 1 pm some Friday.  Takes about 2 hours (faster if you bring a friend!) Contact: Dayra Rumbaugh | 540-786-4848 | dayra@nlicc.org


  • Food Pantry Needs: individually wrapped toilet paper rolls, peanut butter, jelly, cereal, a 5 lb. bag of sugar, canned corn, canned peas, canned potatoes, canned chicken, macaroni & cheese, spaghetti sauce, bean soup, chicken noodle soup, broccoli & cheese soup, pork & beans,  microwave popcorn envelopes, powdered detergent, and face soap. Contact: Connie Both
  • Baby Bottle Boomerang Campaign | Return Bottles June 21
    The Fredericksburg Pregnancy Center’s Baby Bottle Boomerang campaign allows for your change to change lives!  Members of the congregation, youth groups, and Children’s Sunday School classes can take part in this local missions project. Even a child’s spare change adds up to big support!  With your help, we can continue to provide free services for moms and their babies. Please return the bottles to Eileen Roberts or Krystal Dowell on 6/21 or to the church office. Contact: Eileen Roberts


We wanted to put a plug in for the Pre-Teen Girls’ Summer Study.
If you have not had the opportunity to serve in this way previously – please let us explain… via a poem!
Our pre-teen girls are registered and ready to grow,
Starting Sunday, June 7, it’s off they will go.
As two NLIC women take just one Sunday afternoon to open their hearts and their home,
From meeting in the courtyard after the morning service until 6 pm when they’ll say, “Shalom.”
Each week, the girls will have homework as they study how to be “True Women” and more,
Drawing close to the Lord, serving the body, and delighting in their sisters, we pray and implore.
Each Sunday afternoon will surely be as different as the one before
With new leaders, lesson, activity, and meal — the time will soar!
Heather O’Hara and Carrie Verbosky are coordinating this study,
Now that you know what to do, sign-up to host or teach with a buddy!

Have a ministry need, prayer request, or an idea for an activity? Contact us at wm@nlicc.org or find us on Facebook.

All for His glory,
The Women’s Ministry Committee

 If you are viewing this online and would like the Update emailed to you weekly/biweekly, drop a line to wm@nlicc.org. Likewise, if you are receiving this email and are no longer desire to receive the Update, email wm@nlicc.org and put “Unsubscribe” in the subject line.


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