Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Season of Light

What are your Christmas traditions? Perhaps you tell stories about people who cannot be with you, for whatever reason. Maybe you go to church to hear the story of Christmas. Perhaps you decorate your house with lights to pierce the darkness. Maybe you send an annual Christmas letter.

As I've grown older, I've realized that my family doesn't have many Christmas traditions, but it does feel like there's something missing if we don't have a tree, with soothing lights and sparkly ornaments. This year, Syed and I finally have a home big enough for a tree, and we went and bought an ornament together to remember our first Christmas in Ithaca. Every time the lights of our tree are lit, it makes me feel a bit closer to my family and more at home here in Ithaca.

Lighting the Advent candles also makes me feel more connected to the season - especially now that I'm back in the Northeast, where the days are very short and any little bit of light is welcome! At our Advent Monday night services, we turned the chapel into a walkable Advent wreath, with prayer stations at each candle.

Today is the beginning of Hanukkah, the Jewish celebration of the miracle of light - when the oil lasted long enough to provide light for 8 days. And starting December 26, many will celebrate Kwanzaa with 7 candles to represent 7 foundational African values.

In his article "From Darkness to Light: Entering Holy Time," Eitan Fishbane writes that the true meaning of Hannukah is "to awaken light and redemption from within our darkest places, both as individuals and as a community. To break through the barriers and the hardships that hold us back. To realize that the yearning of our heart and the force of our intention can bring about the miracle of transformation."

A few weeks ago, I invited you to join me in resting in hope, while darkness does its work. Now, as we look toward Christmas, I hope we can all rejoice in the miracle of light as we seek to follow the Light of the World. May we all, together, "awaken light and redemption from within our darkest places, both as individuals and as a community." I hope to see you at our Christmas Eve and Christmas morning services, and if you are traveling, may you have safe travels and a joyous Christmas.

Many blessings,

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Building Up the Body of Christ

On Sunday, we had a lovely worship service of music, scripture, and prayer. Thanks to all who participated, particularly Bill and all our musicians! We also welcomed 4 new members, and because they have all started attending our church within the last year, I wanted to give you the opportunity to learn more about them. All 4 of them have jumped right in - among other things, Andi has joined the choir and sang a solo on Sunday, Chris has read scripture in worship, Kate has joined Bible studies at church, and Delphia has participated in women's retreats. They all bring many gifts to our congregation, and I hope you'll take the opportunity to greet them and get to know them better!

Every one of you is a treasured and important member of the Body of Christ. Paul wrote, "The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ" (1 Corinthians 12:12). So even as you get to know our 4 newest members, I hope you'll let them - and all of us - get to know you better as well. We need each other to build up the Body of Christ.

Hope to see you at one or more of our opportunities to gather and worship this week.

Kate Booth was born and raised on a farm in Northwest Missouri until her family moved to town, where she discovered the joys and drawbacks of neighbors.  She attended Missouri Western State University where she received her B.S. in Economics and Business Administration. After graduating, Kate was the Director of Childcare Services for the Saint Joseph School District and oversaw the District's 15 childcare centers. Miraculously, all 1000 children survived her tenure in the position.  In 2009, she accepted a position with the local Community Action Agency as the Director of Research and Planning.  Currently, Kate is the Assistant Director for the Cayuga Heights School Age Program. She is helping coach two elementary basketball teams at CHES and loves to be physically active: working out at the gym, hiking, and playing softball, basketball and golf. She enjoys cooking, taking naps, and being with her wonderful new Ithaca  friends! She is a huge women's basketball fan (Go Lady Vols!) and the proud mother of Stella, a 1-year old puppy. She does not like spicy food but is committed to trying at least one bite of everything.

Delphia Shanks is a second year PhD student in the department of Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University where she studies poverty, inequality and social policy. She loves living in Ithaca and has been excited to become involved at FCC so early in her residence here. Although she had hobbies before graduate school, she no longer remembers what they were and now divides her time between reading at the library and reading at home. She has taught swing dancing, nonprofit board management, and long division. Previously, she lived in St. Joseph, Missouri, where she worked for a Community Action Agency, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she completed Teach for America, and in Grinnell, Iowa, where she completed her undergraduate degree and a GrinnellCorps fellowship.

Andrea (“Andi”) and Chris Dietrich both grew up in Michigan,met in 1998, married in 2005, and moved to Ithaca in 2008. They jus discovered our church, and dove right in!
Andi works at Cornell as a C-Print Captionist, attending classes with deaf and hard of hearing students and transcribing lectures in real time. When she's not working, she spends a lot of my time in various choirs – the Madrigal Choir of Binghamton, the Ithaca Community Chorus, and of course our choir and handbell choir. She is a certified geek, and enjoy gaming, sci-fi and fantasy, Muppets, and dice, among other things! She crochets, and does a lot of gluten-free baking when she has the time. Andi is thrilled to have found such a wonderful church to call “home!” :)

Chris is the sort of person that spends a long time on a bio where he is depicted as being raised by a pack of wild Esperanto-speaking turnips before settling for an accurate description of himself. He grew up in Michigan, but has lived in Ithaca for the past few years. Chris is an avowed geek-of-all-trades, repository for an amusing excess of trivia, and a self-described “conversational black hole.” While Chris hopes to professionally return to the field of disability rights and advocacy, he is currently working as a research assistant at Cornell's Survey Research Institute and as a freelance educational game-master.
From Left: Delphia, Kate, Andi, Chris

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

"Traditions....Always the Same.... Always Changing"

I am thinking that many of us have holiday traditions that we hold dear, some of them came from our own childhoods and others, we created along the way.

Lighting the candles on the Advent Wreath is a tradition in many families and in many congregations. Avary and I always had an Advent Wreath on our dining room table and lit the candles each night. I don't, however, remember even seeing an Advent Wreath until my 30's and I was in seminary.

Where did we get a tradition of Advent Wreaths? One theory is that some German Pastor in the 19th Century reclaimed a pagan solstice tradition to help children visually move through the long days of winter. (click here to read more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advent_candles).

There are basics to an Advent Wreath - a wreath of greenery and candles. And, from there the variations are great! The number of the candles, the colors of the candles and the names of the candles. Like my mother's Christmas tree, Advent Wreaths seems to be popular as a tradition, but over time they change and change and change.

In our church, we have a tradition of having members light the candles each week at the beginning of worship and at both services on Christmas Eve. I am sure the basics have remained the same, but the specifics have changed over the years.

When the whole church moved from the purple of penitence and royalty to the blue of hoping and waiting as the color for the Advent Season, we changed to blue candles. We have changed from a rather square arrangement to a round one. We have used different songs and prayers. And, we have sometimes had a pink candle for the third Sunday (traditionally symbolizing rejoicing, but somehow changing to 'love') and sometimes not. We have used traditional names for the candles and we've changed the names to help us focus on our Advent theme.

Our tradition of lighting the Advent Candles in worship is basic, precious and ever-changing. It always reminds us of the Light of Christ, of the church family we share and of this amazing season of hope and waiting. AND, it changes to surprise us and remind us that God is always the same and always changing in our lives. So, enjoy the traditions this year and be surprised by the ways they change. Keep the holidays this year with the old and the new. You'll be glad you did!

Blessings Always - Laura Lee

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Resting in Hope

This week's web challenge of the week: Leave a comment on this blog post or on any of our other posts to be entered in a drawing for a prize! Your comments won't show up right away, but I will see them and post them.

Every Advent I reflect on this poem by Wendell Berry:

The seed is in the ground.
Now may we rest in hope
While darkness does its work.

Paul Nixon, Christian pastor and author, once said, "God does her best work just after midnight." Our culture often makes darkness out to be something scary or negative. And it can be, at times, yet it can also be a renewing time, a time of quiet and introspection, where seeds that are deeply buried can be nurtured and cared for and brought to birth. 

Growing up in the South, we didn't really have 4 seasons - I liked to say that Houston had 3 seasons - hot, scorching hot, and warm! I didn't really understand the changing of the seasons like we experience them here, particularly the darkness of the end of the year. In the church year, it seems fitting to me that Advent, the beginning of the year, is the darkest time. It's the middle of the night, growing darker before it grows lighter, an opportunity for dormant things to come to life.

This Advent, I hope you will find some ways to rest in hope, while darkness does its work. Join with us as a community - there are many opportunities listed below, including Friday's Christmas crafts and spaghetti dinner and next Monday's worship and soup supper. Let's rest in hope, together.

Blessings and peace,

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

"Balcony Time"

I love this balcony shot of Manhattan. It's a totally different perspective from the one you have when you are down in the street and walking among the people. Instead of individual faces and shop windows and apartment stoops (and trash on the ground), you see the beauty and diversity of the architecture and the overall 'layout' of things. You can appreciate the hum of the traffic and the pace of the people.

Ron Heifetz (corporate 'leadership' guru) says that people who are called to lead through difficult times must periodically step back and take a 'balcony view', if they are to succeed. It gives you a chance to get a bigger picture and to appreciate the whole. BUT, you cannot just hang out on the balcony, if you ever want to go anywhere!

Today, Manda and I are in Syracuse and we are hopefully getting a 'balcony view.' We're attending a workshop led by Dr. David C. Olsen, "Strategies for Creating & Sustaining Change in Ministry Settings." I have recommendations from others that this will be useful and productive information. So, I expect it to be a good workshop. I also think it is important for Manda and me to be able to get away from the busyness of our daily lives on the streets and to reflect on our dynamic congregation from a slight distance - sort of like the picture - not so far away that things are 'blurred', but far enough away to get some new insights and appreciations.

Maybe Heifetz' advice is not only for leaders. Maybe we all need a bit of 'balcony time' to see more than the details and our own limited perspective. I think that's what Jesus and the disciples did, when they periodically retreated to reflect and pray. They didn't stay there (we never can if we want to get anywhere), but I think they returned with a renewed appreciation for the ministry to which God was calling them. I expect the same will be true for Manda and me.

So, I encourage all of you to join us in some balcony-time. We may all be quite surprised at what we see!

Blessings - Laura Lee

AND, a number of you commented on my mention on Sunday of the old UCC bumper sticker: To Believe is to Care; To Care is to Do. For more on the UCC connection to this slogan, click on the link below:

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Challenging CS Lewis

Is it okay to talk about sex in church? In my childhood congregation, it was often only done in hushed whispers or with a hint of scandal. When I was a teenager, our youth minister apparently thought we needed to learn something about sex, so he had us watch James Dobson videos. Yes, that James Dobson! And rather than learning about healthy, whole sexuality, I took away an idea that the body and bodily desires were not holy, and that to be spiritual meant denying the body.

Many Christians, like those in my childhood, are uncomfortable talking about our bodies in the context of faith. And they're not alone, for many of the people who shaped Christian doctrines and theology struggled with the relationship between body and spirit. There was a quote going around Facebook for a while from CS Lewis: "You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body." At first glance, this might sound inspirational, but I would submit that CS Lewis, and others, miss the point of the incarnation of Christ. God thought the human body was worth dwelling in, so why don't we? You are a soul, and you are a body. We would not be fully human if not for our bodies, and being fully human means being created in the image of God.

This Sunday, I hope all adults and youth will join us for the Afterword, where we'll have some conversation about faith and sexuality, and how our whole lives are important to God. Have a blessed week!


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

We Are Surrounded

"For all the saints, who from their labors rest." Today is All Saints' Day, and I don't know about you, but many of the saints in my life - and the "saints" in Christian tradition - are pretty complicated people. From biblical saints like Eve and Adam; David; Peter, Paul, and Mary (hee hee) to modern-day saints like Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mother Teresa, there are many people we can look to as exemplars of faith. We can also recognize that they are complex human beings, both wonderful and flawed.

I think of of my maternal grandmother, who died when I was young. I know she had a deep, abiding faith in God which she passed on to her children, and she also wrestled with debilitating mental illness. Or another individual who passed away, whose kindness and generosity seemed at odds with his sometimes racist or misogynistic comments. Of course, there are those people who come along who seem to be wonderful all-around - though I'm sure that if I spent enough time with them, I'd know that they, too, were not always their best selves. And how boring would our religious history and our world be if the saints were all flawless?

On All Saints Day, I like to reflect on what I've learned from those who have gone on before me - those with few visible flaws, and those with many. For what is a "flaw," but an opportunity to learn and grow? In the Bible, those people who seemed the most troubling to others are the very same ones God chooses to work through - like Paul, who upset people of his day because of his anti-Christian past, and who upsets people today by his culturally-influenced views on women and slavery, among other things. Or Esther, who lied and used her feminine charms to influence the king. God seems to take particular delight in being present in complex, "flawed" characters!

We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1). This Sunday in our time of worship, we'll remember those saints who have made an impact on our lives. And tonight, at the Healing Ithaca service (5:15 in the chapel), we'll talk with others about what we've learned about peace from the complexly wonderful people in this world. I hope you'll join us, and I hope you'll take some time this week to give thanks for all the saints and for God's desire to dwell in and among every one of us.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Trying on Costumes

"A grandmother pretends she doesn't know who you are on Halloween."  ~Erma Bombeck

"Clothes make a statement.  Costumes tell a story."  ~Mason Cooley
As pastor, I put on a costume every week - I wear my robe and stole, and these signify my role as a worship leader and pastoral caregiver. Some of you wear your costumes on a regular basis - lab coats, aprons, construction hats, logo t-shirts, sports attire, or even a dress or suit and tie. The costumes we wear say something about the roles we play and the values we hold. Next week is Halloween, and we get the chance to try on a costume that might represent a role we'd like to play or a different value we hold. Or, conversely, we might try on a costume, just for the fun of it, that is the opposite of our real values.

I don't remember too many of my Halloween costumes.  I do remember one year, when I decided to be "a man." Not a particular man, like a celebrity or politician or superhero, just a man. I wore a mask that was some random guy, and clothes that I considered "manly." No, it wasn't an indication that I was wrestling with gender identity, at least not in the way that truly transgender people do. I do think, however, that I knew, even at age 10, that there were some things that might be easier and more possible for me if I were male.

In the church, we often try on "costumes." Some of them are literal costumes, like the stoles the welcomers wear, the choir robes, or our "Sunday best" clothes. These kinds of costumes can bring out the best in us, inspiring and reminding us to extend God's extravagant welcome to everyone. We can also choose to wear a figurative mask, trying to hide our inner feelings from ourselves and others.

Being a man for a day let me imagine what it might be like to have a different life and the privileges and challenges that might come with playing a different role. The Halloween season offers us the opportunity to try on some costumes we never thought we'd wear, and to try out some new roles. Maybe you've never been an usher or greeter. Maybe you've always imagined yourself to be a famous singer, but you've never joined the choir. Maybe, as a child, you wanted to be a public speaker, but you've never even read scripture in public. Or maybe, just maybe, it's time to leave the mask at home and be your real self in church, among people who love you.

What costume will you try this year? I'm looking forward to seeing them. Hope you have a festive and fun week!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Occupied (10/18/11)

Remember that Buffalo Springfield song, For What It's Worth? “There’s something happening here. What it is ain’t exactly clear….Stop, children, what’s that sound? Everybody look what’s going down.” We may not be sure what it is or what it means, but something is definitely happening, and it’s not going away.

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman says people are saying this is either the beginning of the “Big Disruption” or part of the “Big Shift.” It’s up to us to decide. When we have moments like this in our culture, how do we respond?

Throughout his ministry, Jesus preached that the kin-dom of heaven is among us. In other words, we are occupied by God’s spirit. These are kin-dom moments, inflection points, when we have the opportunity to stop, look, and respond in ways that create lasting change for the common good.

There’s something happening in our church, too. Last Sunday I watched people of all ages pack meals for hungry people in Ithaca, and then sit down to write letters urging our elected officials to pay attention and take action to confront hunger and food-related injustice. Andrew Spearman and the Suprons wrote about hunger from their perspectives, and Maggie DeGraff and Ellen Ross wrote about their experiences working in schools.

Last night, 12 of us gathered for Spirit:Uncorked to talk about spiritual and physical hunger, and we concluded with an impromptu communion service. New visitors continue to show up on a weekly basis, and we’re working to incorporate them into the life of the church. There’s something happening here! The Spirit is occupying our church, and we can either think of it as the “Big Disruption” or the “Big Shift.” You decide.

Join us for all that’s happening, and have a great week.

Mission: 1 (10/11/11)

Diane Beckwith and I have just returned with some of our youth group from a trip to Heifer Project’s Overlook Farm, where we learned about hunger and poverty around the world. Nick Supron was inspired by a world map exercise to help us think about how to reduce our consumption. Amy Milner and her friend Mia became Kenyans for a night, and Nick Supron, Justin Milner and his friend Will were Guatemalans. They cooked meals over an open fire, carried their own water, and milked goats. We all came back inspired, ready to take action to address hunger and poverty in the world. And lucky for us, the congregation and our whole denomination are taking part in an effort to do just that!

The whole United Church of Christ is on a mission to feed the hungry and confront food-related injustice. This UCC-wide campaign is the first 11 days of November, and we’re starting early, so we’ll have plenty of time to reach our goals!
By 11/11/11 (one month from today), we hope to:
  • Gather 1,111+ cans of food to donate to Kitchen Cupboard and the food pantry at the Baptized Church of Jesus Christ.
  • Contribute $1,111+ to address hunger needs in the US and West Africa.
  • Send 111+ letters calling on our Senators and Representatives to make hunger a priority.

This Sunday, bring canned goods, and we’ll have an opportunity to pack lunches for people without homes and to write letters to our elected representatives.

From the United Church News: “The entire United Church of Christ will make good on its "that they may all be one" motto with a coordinated mission campaign to gather more than one million food and household items for local food banks and marshal its 5,300 congregations to advocate collectively — and loudly — for hunger-related causes, both domestically and around the world.

"In a nutshell, 'One united church on a shared mission for 11 powerful days to feed the hungry and confront food-related injustice' is the centerpiece of this major push that we are launching today," the Rev. Geoffrey A. Black, the UCC's general minister and president, told United Church News. "If you've ever yearned for the whole UCC to walk hand in hand to achieve a common goal, this is the answer to that prayer."  

So join us in this effort – we CAN make a difference! And be sure to check out these other opportunities to be engaged in the life of our church – including this Saturday’s work bee (drop in for as much or as little time as you can), Wednesday’s men’s breakfast and Searching for Jesus study, Thursday’s handbell and choir practices, Sunday’s Lunches of Love and Lunch Bunch, and next Monday’s women’s study group and Spirit: Uncorked. We look forward to seeing you soon!


Blessing of the Animals (10/4/11)

Today is the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi, known as the Patron Saint of animals and the environment. Legends abound regarding the relationship between St. Francis and creation. From a story about birds gathering to hear him preach (he would have loved the Lab of Ornithology!); to the account of a wolf who, at St. Francis’ insistence, stopped attacking a village and lived peaceably with the people; to his faithful donkey’s tears upon his death, these stories make clear that St. Francis deeply cared for animals.

In “The Golden Legend,” a late medieval work about saints’ lives, Jacobus of Voragine writes this about Francis:
The saint would not handle lanterns and candles because he did not want to dim their brightness with his hands. He walked reverently on stones out of respect for him who was called Peter, which means stone. He lifted worms from the road for fear they might be trampled underfoot by passersby. Bees might perish in the cold of winter, so he had honey and fine wines set out for them. He called all animals brothers and sisters. When he looked at the sun, the moon, and the stars, he was filled with inexpressible joy by his love of the Creator and invited them all to love their Creator.

Many of us have or have had beloved pets and animal companions. A wagging tail, a purring cat, a gentle nuzzle – animals often bring great joy to our lives, and we hope to return that joy to them as well. We have a responsibility to care for them and for all the earth’s creatures.

At the same time, our relationship with the non-human animals of this planet is often complicated – from the many deer with whom we share land in Ithaca, to farm animals, to coyotes, to frightening encounters with some creatures. There are many reminders that we humans are not the only animals on this planet, and we are called to treat our fellow creatures with reverence and respect.

This weekend, I will travel with Diane Beckwith and several of our youth to Heifer Project’s Overlook Farm in Rutland, MA. We’ll experience what life is like for people around the world, and we’ll learn from Heifer’s example of working to create better relationships between human and non-human animals.

Join us tomorrow evening at 6:30pm for a service of blessing and to recommit ourselves to follow the example of St. Francis in caring for the earth and all her creatures. We’ll also remember our animal companions who have passed on. Bring your pets (in carriers or on leash) or pictures of your pets, or just come to join in blessing. Maybe the deer will wander by as well! Hope to see you there, and wishing you a lovely week.



Comm-Union (9/27/11)

The sacred meal we share makes us one.... Comm - with and Union - unity.  On Sunday, we celebrate communion that brings us all into community with Christ and with each other. But, this Sunday, we celebrate with Christians all over the world:

Our soldiers who are in war zones; our African sisters & brothers who are literally starving; the Coptic Christians in Egypt who are struggling for a new nation; with Jennifer Wansink & her mother, Helen in Taiwan as they mourn the loss of Jennifer's father; with Orthodox Christians in Greece.....

On this Sunday, Worldwide Communion, we are brought into community in a world that is so torn by violence and longs for peace. Come and proclaim your witness for peace... for community! Blessings Always - Laura Lee

The Spirituality of Autumn (9/20/11)

The signs are all around us – a slight chill in the air, squirrels and chipmunks gathering acorns, leaves beginning to change, an abundance of apples, active school zones, busses full of children, animals getting their thicker coats. My favorite season is about to arrive! Autumn is an invitation to cuddle with loved ones, warm ourselves with hearty soups for the body and soul, curl up by the fire, and prepare for winter.

I came across an article titled, “Autumn: Reflections on the Season,” by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat. They suggest 3 spiritual lessons and practices for the season: 

         (1) Balancing Darkness with Night. Part of preparing for winter, I think, is recognizing that there is value in darkness. It could be the darkness of turning off the television or computer, or getting up in the middle of the night to see the stars made visible by the lack of other light. Autumn provides an opportunity to notice the shifting balance of darkness and light. 
One of my favorite poems is by Wendell Berry:
The seed is in the ground.
Now may we rest in hope
while darkness does its work.

(2) Letting Go. Leaves begin to take a break from producing chlorophyll, revealing the vibrant colors underneath. Eventually the trees drop their leaves, revealing the intricate branches underneath. As we embrace times of rest and let go of things that aren’t needed for this season, we reveal the beauty that was there all along, and we make room for God’s Spirit to create something new.

(3) Acknowledging Impermanence. Some have said that the only constant is that life is constantly changing, and autumn is a reminder that “the grass withers and the flowers fade,” as the Psalmist says. When we acknowledge our own impermanence, we open ourselves to more fully embracing each moment as it comes, for life is a gift to be cherished. And, it means that no matter what happened yesterday, we have an opportunity to start fresh today and create a better tomorrow. Acknowledging our impermanence is also a reminder that God is not impermanent, that God’s spirit always breathes within us, in the ups and downs and cycles of life.

As we move toward Autumn, I invite you to find ways to engage in spiritual practices – individually and together – and to embrace the gifts of the season. There are plenty of ways to get involved in the life of this community, and you are always welcome. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Blessings and peace,

When We Serve, We Are Served! (9/6/11)

As we begin a week of being inundated with pictures of buildings blowing up and traumatized people, I keep looking at this picture taken on that day 10 years ago. And, I wonder, who got more? The dog who needed a comforting touch or the firefighter, who needed a moment of connection to something 'normal'? My bet's on the fire fighter! And, so it is with church, when we engage and serve, we always, always receive so much more. So, through this lens of reflection, I offer a message from Cyndi Slothower, Chair of our Nominating Committee:

"We are a Congregational Church. By definition that means this is OUR church, OUR community. Each of us plays a very important role in this Body of Christ. I believe that our interests and our talents are God-given and when we use these to engage in our church community, we are a piece of the puzzle, a tile in the mosaic, a square in the quilt, that helps to create the whole beautiful work that God wishes for us to be—together.

At FCC, we organize our chosen ministries into the work of committees. When we serve on a committee, a synergy happens: wonderful work gets done, and we are personally blessed with fellowship and feelings of belonging in this body. If you are not currently involved in a committee, we invite you to join one. And if you are serving on one, but feel your time and talents better fit another, we are happy to help you make the move.

There are three committees that are in particular need of more members: Outreach, Worship and Adult Education. Please read the descriptions below and listen for the small voice that says “yes!”. If you hear it, reply to this email or call the office and let us know where you feel you best fit into this body of Christ. Listen for that way that will help you receive so much in your giving!

Outreach: This committee enables our Church to make a difference in our local community and in the wider world. They guide us in channeling our financial gifts and our time and energies in ways that witness to the love we find here.

Worship: This committee works with the ministers and music director in fashioning the arc of worship in our church. Members also enlist other members and friends for the weekly staffing of the worship service: ushers, readers, communion servers.

Adult Christian Education: This committee is responsible for planning our AfterWord (adult forums) - held the hour after the weekly Sunday services, the Foote lectures in May, Lenten programs, Adult Bible Studies and whatever else they deem interesting and helpful for our Congregation to learn."

Wishing Many, Many Blessings for You ALL, Cyndi & Laura Lee