On February 9, 2021, Pastor Bob Loffer, Faith UCC’s faith leader for the past ten years, passed away following an illness. His passing has been a great loss to all of us. Pastor Bob was a tremendous leader for Faith UCC. He steadied our congregation and helped nurture us into the vital, strong, committed congregation we are today. He will be deeply missed.
A new year has already begun, liturgically for the church. Our liturgical year begins with the first Sunday in Advent. Christmas follows Advent in the liturgy and this year we had two Sundays after Christmas. Epiphany is always on January 6 (the Twelfth day of Christmas), and celebrates the arrival of the Magi in Bethlehem. Epiphany ends on Ash Wednesday, this year February 17. Lent begins with Ash Wednesday continuing to Easter, this year April 4. Easter Season is always 7 Sundays and end on Pentecost Sunday, this year May 23. Sundays after Pentecost, or sometimes called Proper time or Ordinary time continues through Advent. So, the Church New Year began November 29, 2020.
Our calendar New Year begins January 1. 2020 has been an adventure for us all. Each of have years when we celebrate births, deaths, weddings, divorces, and many other significant things. Through all those things in 2020 we have also experienced with worst pandemic in history, radical racial change, political blunders, lies, and grid lock. Mask wearing, social distancing, quarantine, and isolation have become “normal”. Who would have guessed a year ago the state of our world today?
Each new year brings a promise of hope. Advent focuses us on the hope of God coming into our world. Now, we know that has happened, so hope for 2021 lies in mask wearing, social distancing, vaccines, and being responsible in all our social, religious, and political actions. God is with us. It is true.
Our calendar new year begins; our liturgical new year is already several weeks old. Both offer the opportunity for a closer relationship with God and each other. Both of them offer promise, challenges, and new opportunities for service. God bless us as we travel these new year’s together.
Please plan to join us Wednesday, November 25, Thanksgiving Eve, for a Thanksgiving Prayer Services on Zoom 6:30 P.M. Pre-servvice music will begin at 6:15.
Thanksgiving is almost here and I am certain it will be a different kind of celebration than we have experienced in the past. We want to gather with family and friends and share all the traditions of the past. This year it simply isn’t safe to do as we have always done.
Families may have to meet and eat virtually so as not to spread the covid-19 virus. While that may not be our idea of an ideal situation, it is one which we have the opportunity to use to our advantage.
Please do celebrate and give thanks. Gather with family virtually, on the phone, or in person if you can do so safely and responsibly. But give thanks, even in hardship, God’s grace embraces us all.
Secular respect for animals is also strong, for example, World Animal Day, an international day of action for animal rights and welfare celebrated annually, but is still held on 4 October, the feast day of Francis of Assisi, a Christian patron saint of animals. However, we are asking that you have your pet or pictures of your pet prepared for our service of blessing during worship on Sunday, October 11, 2020.
Join us for special liturgy, special music, and blessing a special relationships.
Worship with us each Sunday. Music with Meagan begins at 9:15 a.m. Worship is at 9:30 a.m. Our adult study on White Privilege begins approximately 15 minutes following the end of Worship. Zoom details can be found under the “Events on Zoom” on this web site. Please do join us.
Pay attention to times when you feel defensive and be open to exploring what lies beneath your responses
If someone makes a comment you disagree with, let’s try to be gentle with one another, acknowledging we are all learners. You might ask Why do you think that? Or Tell us more about how you came to believe that before you share your perspective.
If you say something that you regret saying, feel free to acknowledge it with a straightforward Oops.
Allow each other and ourselves to change
This could be fun. We will be making discoveries together, with “beginners’ minds.”
Hoping to see you on Sunday, September 20 after worship,
Carol Tyx and Ann Zerkel, co-facilitators for Faith Works