Contributing writers: Penny Bretschneider, Judy Dales, Rosann Hickey, Shelly Jungwirth

As the vibrant Autumn foliage waned, so did our hopes of fully gathering again, due to the Delta and Omicron variants of the Coronavirus. We all watched as the COVID tally sign on the village green depicted alarming numbers.

Worship services had resumed in-person (with strict masking and ventilation protocols) and continued online – thanks to the steadfast commitments of our pastor Ed Sunday-Winters, music director Hal Parker, floral designer Cilla Bonney-Smith and videographer Kyle Gray. Our office manager Jason Crane now supports us virtually – something so many people in our country have learned is possible and often preferable!

Since the pandemic arrived in 2020, our church has recognized the heavy toll on members of the community, especially kids and families. We’re grateful to be safe and connected, thanks to the efforts of our committees and the generosity of others. Our gratitude to everyone who helped make these church and community activities as fun and inclusive as possible! It started with Halloween…


Halloween in northern Vermont is a challenge! If it’s not snowing, it could be crystal clear and 15º ! Or 34º and drizzling! But Vermont children are nothing if not hardy and they were out in droves in 2021 to show off their costumes and visit local homes for treats.

Cilla and Nat Smith, with George
Photo by Shelly Jungwirth

Greensboro has become a Halloween hub in the last several years because the community has come together to make it so. About five years ago, the church developed the Trick-or-Treat Trail. Every home owner in the village was contacted to encourage participation in trick-or-treating and for those houses which are normally empty during the winter months, porch-sitters were recruited so that every house in the village was part of the Halloween event. A special map was offered so kids knew where to go and posters around town promoted the event. Warming snacks were offered to both kids and adults and thus began the great revival of Halloween in Greensboro!

Word has spread and in the past several years, and we’ve had well over 100 trick-or-treaters in town. We’ve been joined by various individuals and organizations who set up spooky activities on the green, organized by Rose Friedman and friends. Every year, the highlight of the evening is the motorized skeleton, aka George, who lurks on the front lawn of the Smith house.


Photo by Hal Gray

When we established the Little Food Shelf in 2020, it was with the objective that no one should go to bed hungry, and that a small source of non-perishable food could be made available locally. In this case, the food was placed inside the door of Fellowship Hall. The shelves are continually stocked, and additional items are sent to local food pantries.

Recognizing that food is essential to Thanksgiving and can take a toll on a family’s budget, we once again gave turkeys (33 this year) to the families of students at Lakeview school. In response, we received charming and heartfelt letters of thanks from the children, mostly addressed to “Dear Church”— what a nice way to be thought of!


The church Deacons made the season of Advent memorable to a congregation that was restricted in so many ways. Coming up with original COVID-resilient ideas was not easy given the established parameters – but creativity abounds in the hearts and minds of those who give leadership to our church.

The Advent devotional, Less is More, seemed to strike a chord at a time when our psyches and environment were in need of respite. Each week presented a variety of readings, meditations, and prayers – many related to self-care and tips for showing gratitude.

The seasonal decorations sustained our traditional customs. Wreaths and garlands went up the earliest, thanks to the Lumsden family.  The tree in front of the church shone a welcome message of our continuing presence in the community. We gathered on the village green for carols, cookies, and cider.

Our Chrismon tree (an evergreen tree placed in the nave of a church during Advent and Christmas) started at Moffat’s tree farm and is seen here being loaded by Kyle Gray for the drive to the sanctuary while some of our Deacons enjoyed frolicking at the farm!

Photo by Shelly Jungwirth
Photo by Kyle Gray

The tree became awe-inspiringly beautiful with the help of those who were able to meet in person. 

For Christmas Eve, we videotaped the worship service ahead of time, requiring a bit of time-traveling such as moving the nativity figurines and poinsettias around! While we missed the warm connection of singing and praying together on Christmas Eve, our ability to hold an online service brought over 85 visitors to the web site.

Photo by Jason Crane

At the close of the season of Advent, still in the hybrid mode of in-person and online, we were once again invited to share communion and know God’s enduring love brought to the world through the birth of Jesus.

Photo by Mike Coffey