Weekly Update 7 December

2601 54th Avenue South, St Petersburg, FL 33712-4700
(727) 867-7961 ~ lakewooducc.org



SUN, DEC 10 THIS SUNDAY: This second Sunday in Advent will continue with the theme for the season: “Be Born in Us Today.” It’s a time to remember all we are being given! You are being given time. Choose to spend some of it in church. Church school and nursery care is provided for children.
SAT, DEC 9 PARENTS AFTERNOON OUT: LUCC will host a free afternoon of peace-themed indoor and outdoor activities for kids on Saturday, December 9th from noon to 4. Free babysitting while you prepare for the holidays (or maybe take a break from all the preparations). Staffed by licensed day care workers and Pinellas County teachers. In order to be inclusive of all faith traditions, there will be no religious instruction. (If you are interested in this for your children, there is church school during the school year Sunday mornings at 10:30.) Bring your own snacks. For more information call (727) 867-7961 or email.
SUN, DEC 10 ADVISORS MEETING: The Advisors will meet after church on Sunday, all are welcome to attend.
MON, DEC 11 OPERATION ATTACK: The next LUCC volunteer date is December 11th at 6:00pm at Lakeview Presbyterian Church. Donations needed are children’s gently used winter clothing, canned fruits & vegetables, and peanut butter.
TUE, DEC 12 & 19 GUIDED LABYRINTH WALKS: The labyrinth provides a tool for walking meditation and prayer. Another straw labyrinth is being created on the church grounds. During Advent, guided labyrinth walks will be offered to help deepen your preparation to incarnate Divine Love in the world today. All are welcome! Tuesdays Dec 12 and 19 at 6pm at the church.
SUNDAYS IN ADVENT: “I’m so busy!” “I don’t have time.” “I’m so behind on all I have to do!” It must be the holiday season! Resist! Come to church each Sunday in December for, well, some peace and quiet. The services will be contemplative in style offering inspiration as well as time and space for reflection. Pause. Be. Renew. Reconnect with yourself, with God, and with others who are also seeking to stay centered in love.

10:15 Singing of favorite songs of the season
10:30 Contemplative worship.

SONGS OF THE SEASON: The spirit of this special season is beautifully expressed in carols and songs. Come early on Sundays in Advent to enjoy singing favorite songs of the season led by Hilton Jones. Sunday Dec 10, 17 & 24. at 10:15 am in the sanctuary.
DAILY DEVOTIONS: “Be Born in Us Today” is the theme for the daily devotions that will be posted on the church website and emailed to church family & friends each day. These daily reminders of the “reason for the season” provide touchstones on the journey of preparation to receive the incarnation of Divine Love.Each day brings a new barrage of information & news – much of it disturbing and distressing. Stay grounded in the Love that is at the heart of creation and fully expressed in the life of Jesus. This is the love seeking to be born in us.

Another daily devotion option is an Advent Book of Daily Devotions by the Still Speaking Writers of the United Church of Christ.  It is available in a Kindle version from https://www.uccresources.com/products/watch-2017-advent-devotional-the-stillspeaking-writers-group?variant=48339482831
REMEMBERING LOVED ONES AT CHRISTMAS: This year to honor loved ones and friends, you are invited to order a special handmade ornament that will grace the Christmas tree at church through Christmas Eve. Those who order ornaments may take them after the service on Christmas Eve. Order forms are available at church and on the church website. You are invited to include a donation with your order. If you would like to help make the ornaments, come by the Fellowship Hall on Wednesday at 3:30.
IN HONOR OF JESUS A HOMELESS REFUGEE & IMMIGRANT: Life is very difficult for immigrants and refugees in the US today. Locally, Gulfcoast Legal Services helps to provide legal help to those who are new to the United States. LUCC has been looking for ways to support immigrants and refugees in our area. As a special opportunity for giving, in celebration of gratitude and abundance the Christmas offering at Lakewood will be donated to Gulfcoast Legal Services. Jena Blair, part of the LUCC church family, works as a lawyer at Gulfcoast. Giving cans are available at church for your Christmas offering. Collect throughout the month and bring your offering can to church on Christmas Eve.
We are told stories of Jesus’ family migrating to Bethlehem and immigrating to Egypt where they lived as refugees fleeing the threat of death. So many people are in similar circumstances today. We help them in honor of Jesus.
LUMEN CHRISTI: Advent is the season of preparing to receive the gift of the light of Christ. It is a season in which to get ready for the blaze of Divine Love in the world and in our lives.

Lumen Christi means light of Christ. This Advent season, a candle with a brief prayer liturgy will circulate in the LUCC church family. A sign-up sheet will be available on Sunday. Select a date that you would like to host the Lumen Christi. Make arrangements to receive it from whoever had it the day before you. The day you have it, pause, perhaps at dinner time. Display the candle, light it and offer the prayers included. Then see that it gets to the next person on the list. This is a beautiful way to engage in welcoming the light of Christ. The Lumen Christi will begin its journey at church on Sunday, December 3rd and will return to church for the Christmas Eve service. Make sure to sign up and take a turn celebrating the coming of the light of Christ.

CHRISTMAS CARDS: Wally has holiday and Christmas cards featuring his artwork, as well as other holiday cards and holiday items. Items and cards available on a love offering basis. The proceeds will be donated to Covenant House Florida. Thank you, Wally!
DEC 13-17 PASTOR AWAY: Pastor Kim Wells will be away from Dec. 13-17 attending her son Sterling’s graduation in Pasadena, CA. If pastoral care is needed please contact the church.
SUN, DEC 17 CHRISTMAS CAROLING: Be part of sharing the love and peace of Christmas with the homebound friends of the LUCC church family. Join church friends to sing Christmas carols and share warm greetings with those who are homebound. All are welcome! Meet at the church on Sunday Dec 17th at 2pm and be part of this beautiful sharing of the spirit of Christmas.
SUN, DEC 24 CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE: “Be Born in Us Today” A service of lessons and carols, candlelight and communion helps express the joy and wonder of the birth of Jesus. Jesus shows us the potential and promise of every human life as an expression of Divine Love and grace. Celebrate how God is being “born in us today.” Child care provided.
6:30 Music of the Season featuring the Lakewood church choir
7:00 Service of candlelight and communion


CHRISTMAS CONCERTS: There are quite a few concerts this season!

FRI, DEC 1 – 7pm at the Lealman Community Church, (4090 58th Ave N). The SPC student choral group will perform Schubert’s Mass in G Major and other Christmas music.

SAT, DEC 2 – 5pm at the SPC Music Center on the 66th St. campus.
The Adult Community Chorus will perform Vivaldi’s Gloria and other holiday music.
WED, DEC 6 – 7:30pm Wireman Chapel on campus. The Eckerd College Choir will perform holiday music.
SUN, DEC 10 – 4pm at 1st Presbyterian Church (701 Beach Dr NE). The Chancel Choir of FPC will perform the Many Moods of Christmas St. Petersburg Free Clinic Benefit Concert.

SUN, DEC 10 – 4pm at Lakewood United Methodist Church (5995 Dr. MLK Jr. St. S). The Alumni Singers of St. Petersburg present Sounds of the Season Christmas concert.


AA: In the Fellowship Hall Thursdays at 7:45 p.m.
ANNOUNCEMENTS WELCOME: To have an announcement put in the bulletin or weekly update, please turn it into the church office by Wednesday at noon. Email, or voicemail, as well as written material is welcome. The church is glad to share activities and news from members and friends.
ART FOR HOPE: Wally LeBlanc has cards and paintings featuring his artwork for sale. The proceeds will be donated to the roof fund and other community ministries. Thank you, Wally!
THE BIBLE ON REFUGEES AND IMMIGRANTS: As Christians, we are called to love our neighbors. The Bible is unambiguous in calling us to welcome aliens and strangers in our land, and to love them as we love ourselves. In these times, let us listen to the voice of the still-speaking God. Visit ucc.org for a list of biblical references to immigrants and refugees.
CONTACTING YOUR REPRESENTATIVES IN WASHINGTON: If you are interested in calling, emailing or writing your representatives in congress, here is some contact information:

Senator Bill Nelson
716 Senate Hart Office Building, Washington, DC 20510
Phone: 202-224-5274
Tampa office: 801 N. Florida Ave., 4th Floor, Tampa, FL 33602
Phone: 813-225-7040
www.billnelson.senate.gov (Click “Contact” to write a message)

Senator Marco Rubio
284 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington DC, 20510
Phone: 202-224-3041
Tampa office: 5201 West Kennedy Blvd, Ste. 530, Tampa, FL 33609
Phone: 813-287-5035
www.rubio.senate.gov (Click “Contact” to write a message)

Dist. 14: Rep. Kathy Castor
2052 Rayburn House Office Bldg., Washington DC 20515
Tampa Office 4144 N. Armenia Avenue Tampa FL 33607
Website: www.castor.house.gov (Click “Contact” to write a message)
(202) 225-3376 Washington
(727) 392-4100 St. Petersburg
(813) 871-2817 Tampa

District 13: Rep. Charlie Crist
427 Cannon House Office Bldg., Washington, DC 20515
696 1st Avenue North, Suite #203 St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Website: www.crist.house.gov (Click “Contact” to write a message)
(202) 225-5961 Washington
1-(888) 205-5569 District office

If you are living outside Florida or local districts, you may phone your Member of Congress by calling the U.S. Capitol Switchboard (202) 224-3121. Visit americantrails.org for additional contact information.

givingELECTRONIC GIVING: The church offers several options for electronic giving. There are information sheets and sign up forms available in the sanctuary and the church office. For additional information, please contact Bill Parsons or Adrien Helm.
NEW MEMBERS: Lakewood UCC is always ready to welcome new members into the church family. Joining the church involves attending an orientation session and being part of a Reception of New Members ritual during Sunday morning worship.
FREE BOOKS: Did you know that there are not only books to borrow in the church library but books being given away for free. Take a peek at the great selection. Many new titles have been added including a selection of books for children.
FREE ECO-THEOLOGY COURSE: Yale is offering three free courses centering on eco-theologian Thomas Berry and the application of his work and writing to understanding the gift of God’s creation and our relationship to it. This is an excellent opportunity for individuals or small groups in churches to participate in the course. Learn more about this exciting opportunity at coursera.org.
GUN VIOLENCE INFORMATION PAMPHLET: Copies of a Gun Violence information pamphlet are available. This resource was created by Grace Lewis of the LUCC congregation to educate the public about gun violence. They are located at the back of the sanctuary, or you can download one here. Please take them and share them.
LUNCH BUNCH: This informal and open group gathers at a local restaurant for lunch and lively conversation after the service. Please check with one of the regulars – Don Ritchie – about the details each week.
Screenshot 2016-08-08 18.34.07NEW EZ PODCASTS!!! No downloading! Just click and play! Try it! Just click on the little orange circle with the white arrow in it. Only one click and it plays! Every week, a new podcast is posted on the church website. All our streamable podcasts are at https://soundcloud.com/luccpodcasts – please tell your friends who might enjoy listening! Keep checking back, more and more will be added each week.
recycle1RECYCLE: Recycle your print cartridges, cell phones, and all paper. At this time we CANNOT recycle toner cartridges, only inkjet cartridges. Keep it coming in! Many thanks to all who contribute to the church recycling. This income stream helps the ministry of the church.
USHERS NEEDED: Please see or email Wally LeBlanc if you would like to volunteer to usher for services.
WEBSITE — lakewooducc.org: Everything you always wanted to know about the church. Go ahead and ask. The information is probably at the church website. You can subscribe and have updates and comments automatically sent to your email address. See the homepage for details. You can also keep connected with on Facebook and on Twitter.
childrenYOUNG PEOPLE AT LAKEWOOD: Children and young people are a vital part of the LUCC family. Middle School age children and younger are invited to participate in Church School with Grace Lewis. Preschool children are welcome in the Nursery under the able care of Claudia Rodriguez. All children return to the sanctuary during the offering so they can participate at the end of the worship service. Children and young people are an integral part of this church family and the intergenerational relationships that form in this small congregation are truly a blessing!


Betty Harris, Ruth Halderman, Ron Huff, Carolyn Moore,
Gertie Pirazzini, Ann Quinn, Earl Waters




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