Friday, November 18, 2011

Mission 1: Results for Faith UCC

Between 11/01/11 and 11/11/11, Faith United Church of Christ joined the rest of the United Church of Christ in Mission 1. The national UCC asked local churches to contribute 11 million non-perishable food items to local food banks; raise $11,111 in on-line contributions to the Neighbors in Needs offering to fight hunger in this country and around the world; and send 11,000 letters to members of Congress asking them to adequately fund hunger programs in this country and around the world.

Our local goal was:
111 non-perishable food items
111 rolls of toilet paper (requested by local Crisis Center)
$111.11 to be sent to the national office for hunger relief
11 letters to be sent to Legislatures/members of Congress

The final tally for Faith UCC was:
113 food items collected (weighed in at 100 lbs of food)
123 rolls of toilet paper
$243.33 collected
23 letters sent

Thanks to all for the success of Mission 1!

-Missions Committee

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Faith In Action's Readings with Soup -- 11/17/11 at 6:00 PM

Faith In Action is excited to revive it's Readings with Soup events later this month.  FIA is excited to feature Iowa City Writer, Joe Michaud!  Joe ran the Bookery for twenty-five years.  He is the author of Along the Iron Curtain, Booking in Iowa, and Iowa City, City of the Book.

Thursday -- November 17, 2011
6:00 PM Free Soup Supper
6:45 PM Program and Open Mike

Everyone is Welcome!  Faith United Church of Christ is located at 1609 DeForest Avenue in Iowa City.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Mission: 1 United Church of Christ Challenge

The first 11 days of November 2011 ---11/1-11/11 are days for the entire United Church of Christ to share in mission together. Nationally the United Church of Christ is asking local churches to contribute 11 million non-perishable food items to local food banks; raise $11,111.00 in on-line contributions for Neighbors In Need offering to fight hunger in this country and around the world; send 11,000 letters to members of Congress asking them to adequately fund hunger programs in this country and around the world.

Faith United Church of Christ is challenged by the Social Missions Committee to bring 111 non-perishable food items and 111 rolls of toilet paper to be delivered to the Crisis Center on November 12. The second challenge is to give and/or pledge funds to make a $111.11 contribution to the Neighbors in Need offering to fight hunger, on-line during worship November 6. Your financial contribution can be given to the church via cash or check between now and November 11. Please make sure you clearly identify your gift as one to Mission 1. The third challenge will be to sign a letter to either Senators Harkin or Grassley or Congressman Lobsack asking for support for funding hunger programs. Prepared letters will be available at the church from November 1 through November 10. You are asked to hand address the salutation of the letter to either Senator or the Congressman and then address the provided envelope. Letters will be collected and mailed on November 11, 2011.

These are significant challenges. This mission effort will have great impact in our community and in communities around the United Church of Christ. Let us all help make a better world by sharing as we can in this effort.

Come Worship and Grow at Faith United Church of Christ!

Sunday Worship at Faith United Church of Christ is an important way for us to celebrate our faith in God. We can share our faith together and with others. Why not invite someone to join you in worship? Please come and worship with us.

November 6, 2011, we will celebrate communion. Please know that the Table is open to all who profess a belief in Jesus Christ. Message title will be: "Murphy's Law Inverted."

November 13, 2011, Message title: "Snake Eyes -- Servant Eyes."

November 20, 2011, is Shared Ministry with Ann Zerkel.

November 27, 2011, Message title: "Restore Us, O God: Hope."

Following worship, Faith UCC has the following Christian Education sessions planned:

November 6, 2011: Congregational Conversation Part 3 & Evalia Hauck & the Intergenerational Group

November 13, 2011: Book Study: "The Greatest Prayer"

November 20, 2011: Film: "The Dark Side of Chocolate"

November 27, 2011: Advent Series: "Hope"

Worship begins every Sunday at 9:30 AM and Christian Education begins shortly after worship service (@ 10:45-11:00 AM). Faith United Church of Christ is located at 1609 Deforest Avenue in Iowa City. All are welcome to join our worship services.

November Message from Pastor Bob Loffer

Dear Faith Friends:

November is Native American Heritage Month, National Epilepsy Month, Peanut Butter Lovers Month, National Adoption Awareness Month, and a whole lot of other “Months” as well. November contains Chemistry week (week one) and Games and Puzzles week (week three). Every day in November has a special designation (and some have more than one); from “All Saints Day” November 1 to “Clean Your Refrigerator Day” November 15 to “Stay At Home Because You Are Well Day” November 30 The sublime and serious, (November 2 “All Soul’s Day,” November 3 “Housewife’s Day,” November 8 “Young Readers Day,” November 11 “Veterans Day,” November 24 “Thanksgiving Day”) to the silly and commercial (November 5 “Gun Powder Day,” November 7 “Bitter Sweet Chocolate with Almonds Day,” November 16 “Have A Party With Your Bear Day,” November 17 “Electronic Greeting Card Day,” November 25 (day after Thanksgiving) “Black Friday.” The Great American Smokeout Day (November 17), Universal Children’s Day (November 20), and Square Dance Day (November 29) are just a few more.

Different days, different events, different reasons to remember, reflect, recall, recommit, reconnect, and renew our lives, our passions, our hopes and dreams. What do we do with all those suggestions? Some silly, some serious, some border on absurd, others on reverence, perhaps a reflection of life in this 21st Century?

Each day is a gift. Whatever cause, whatever reason, whatever the day, each day, all day, is a gift for us to use to the very best of our ability.

How many of our days have been wasted on spite, revenge, hatred, bigotry, and abuse? How many of our days have been spent seeking what’s best for us rather than serving others? How many days have been consumed by complaining and whining about what we don’t have and how others are “out to get us”?

November days (or for that matter any months’ days) are filled with opportunities for us to remember the gifts of our past, (think November 1 All Saints Day, November 11 Veterans Day) reflect on the gifts of the present, (think November 13 World Kindness Day, November 24 Thanksgiving Day) and recommit, reconnect, and renew our lives for the future, (think November 17 “World Peace Day,” November 20 “Beautiful Day”). How will we spend our November days or any days?

A gift, each day is. Thanksgiving is a way of living, not for just a day, but a lifetime of days. Whether more days are behind than ahead matters not. How the days ahead are spent matters most.

Peace, Good Cheer, Thanksgiving, and Blessings from God,
Bob