Yoko Nogami’s Students Create a Powerful Memorial for Victims of School Shootings

LUCC Member Yoko Nogami and her students at the Pinellas County Center of the Arts at Gibbs High School in St. Petersburg have turned the lobby of the school’s theater into an extension of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris for the school’s production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, staged through Friday at 7pm. Portraits of 103 students and staffers who were the victims of school shootings, from the 1999 columbine High School shooting to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS are part of the installation. For tickets call (727) 893-5452, ext. 2029.

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Amaiya Awarded Take Stock in Children Scholarship!!

On April 10th at the Coliseum, Lakewood’s own Amaiya Washington was inducted into the Take Stock in Children scholarship program in a ceremony attended by the Mayor and the Superintendent for Pinellas county schools. She will be provided college tuition funds when the time comes, but this comprehensive program offers much more including mentors  and enrichment activities designed to prepare her to succeed in College. We’re all very proud of you Amaiya, keep up the good work!

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Sermon 50th Anniversary – Rev. Angela V. Wells

Scripture Lesson: Colossians 3:12-17
Sermon: A Third Way
Pastor: Rev. Angela V. Wells

I went to Union Theological Seminary in New York City for graduate school from 2009-2012. My entering class had probably 150 or so people in it. The first-year Master of Divinity students took a lot of classes together, including Introduction to the Old Testament, Introduction to the New Testament, Systematic Theology, Church History, and so on and so forth.

During our class discussions, and in the library, and other informal gatherings around campus, I could see that my classmates were struggling in a way that I was not. Now, I was no expert, I was one of the youngest in our class, fresh out of college. I had less life experience and formal education than many of the people in our entering class, so I tried to figure out what in the world these people were grappling with that I… wasn’t.

It turned out that many of my classmates were raised in Christian traditions that were, well, suffice it to say, different from the context in which I was raised. They were from the Presbyterian Church, the Lutheran Church, the American Baptist church, the Episcopal church, the Methodist church, the African Methodist Episcopal church and the list went on. What I eventually came to understand was that my classmates were struggling with trying to reconcile what they’d been taught in their home churches with what they were learning in seminary.

At home, they had either implicitly or explicitly been taught that Christianity was the only right way, now in seminary, we were being taught classes by a man named Paul Knitter, who wrote a book entitled, Without Buddha, I Could Not Be a Christian. At home, they’d been taught that the Gospel stories about Jesus’ life were historically accurate, that these events, these miracles literally took place.

In seminary, we were being taught that the different Gospel accounts of the same stories were written at different times, by different people, with different political motivations. So these facts made it really hard for anyone to know what literally took place, what didn’t, and how Jesus’ life actually played out. Not to mention the fact that in our language classes, we were learning that one Hebrew or Greek word could have upwards of 10 or more English equivalents, and the English word that the biblical translator chose could significantly affect the meaning of the whole sentence or larger story. AND, remember that the first texts written down, Paul’s writings, were written starting about 30 years after Jesus died, so we can be pretty sure that none of the Gospel accounts were written by first-hand witnesses because they were all long dead by the time any of this was put on paper.

I was fine with all this information. I absorbed it, with varying levels of enthusiasm or interest, but I certainly wasn’t bothered by any of it, I wasn’t struggling with this new information. But my classmates were another story. Some of them were even having crises of faith, questioning all that they’d been taught in their churches up to that point, questioning so many of the sermons they’d heard, Bible studies they’d sat through, and so on. They were trying to figure out whether what they’d been taught by beloved pastors, mentors, parents, friends, and Sunday School teachers was “right,” or what they were learning in seminary was “right,” because they couldn’t reconcile the two.

My experience was vastly different. What I was learning in seminary completely aligned with all that I had been raised with. It resonated with the sermons I heard, the family discussions we had around the dinner table. All the puzzle pieces fit together for me.

For example, one day, in our Preaching and Worship class, our professor spent the day talking about the hymnal that we used in our chapel at seminary, also the hymnal that you all use, the New Century Hymnal. She talked about the controversy over changing the words to hymns. She talked about the theological reasoning behind removing militaristic imagery and regal imagery like king and kingdom. She talked about why they removed the word Lord and didn’t use the male pronoun for God in any of the hymns, unless the female pronoun was used as well. Some of my classmates were aghast, they thought this was sacrilegious. The editors had butchered their beloved hymns that they had memorized from childhood.

I sheepishly raised my hand and offered another perspective. I told them that I was raised with this hymnal. That my home church didn’t use male pronouns for God and I liked that our hymnal’s vocabulary matched the language we used in the rest of the service. I said that the words to the beloved hymns that I had memorized were the words of the New Century Hymnal. They were my “original” version of the hymns. The new way, the new vocabulary, it wasn’t new to me, because it was all I knew.

They say that you don’t appreciate what you have until it’s gone, and I can admit that I didn’t fully appreciate Lakewood until I was exposed to the wider world of churches and Christianity. You see, this church is a gift to Christianity because in a black and white world of dichotomies and either/ors, Lakewood presents a third way. I didn’t know it was a third way until much later in life, because, during my childhood it as all I knew, I thought it was just how church was done. But most Christians in the world know of two ways, and the problem is that an increasing number of people can’t see themselves in either of those two ways. The third way is a lifeline for people who are seeking something, who want to be part of a Christian community, but can’t find belonging in either of the two ways our society offers. So, what are these two ways?

The first way is dogmatic Christianity as we hear about it in the news and from traditional/conservative preachers and public speakers. It’s the Christianity, which professes that Jesus is God-incarnate and rose from the dead on the third day. This Christianity professes the doctrinal truth of the trinity, that God is 3-in-one, Father, Holy Spirit, and Son. This Christianity subscribes to substitutionary atonement, or the belief that Jesus died to take away the sins of the world, to atone for the original sin that Adam and Eve committed. This Christianity teaches that God loved the world so much that God sent his only son to die for us. This Christianity usually takes the Bible literally, lifting it up as the inerrant word of God. This Christianity professes that God is a theistic being which created the world and still has control over something so vast as the cosmos and something so minute as our individual lives. This Christianity teaches that prayer is a way to appeal to, or talk to this God. We ask for what we want and if we don’t get it, it’s because we are not faithful enough, didn’t pray hard enough, or it’s just not God’s will for us.

I can understand if some of this is making you bristle or cringe, which is why you feel at home at Lakewood and not any of the other thousands of churches in our country. Lots of people who are looking for a community of faith can’t get on board with most of this, regardless of whether they were raised Christian. They can’t subscribe to the magical thinking, suspension of reason and logic, ignorance of historical and scientific truths, not to mention the exclusiveness of it, because in this first way, Christianity is the only way. So, people who just can’t be part of this faith tradition, they either cobble together something on their own such as “spiritual but not religious,” or they do away with all of it and call themselves an Atheist.

This is the second way. Such people back up their argument with all the statistics about how many wars have been fought in the name of religion, and that we’d be better off not having any organized religion at all. They might tell you how religious people meddle in politics to the detriment of society and, by the way, there is no God, so let’s stop pretending there is and just get rid of all houses of worship.

I can understand if this second way also makes you cringe because, since you are part of a faith community, I presume you see the value in it. You see the importance of coming together with people that have the same values to celebrate all that is good in the world, lament when things aren’t good, and work together to change them. We happen to do all this in the name of Jesus, whom we follow.

This is the third way that Lakewood is following, which is a lifeline to people who want to be part of a faith tradition, who want to be part of a community that recognizes all that around us is sacred and so we’re committed to protecting it for the sake of all life.

You all engage our Holy Scriptures, but you don’t believe that critiquing them, questioning them, or learning about their origins is somehow threatening to their inherent worth. The fact that you all can say that the Bible is valuable because of all that it teaches us through its stories, not because it’s historically accurate or because it was written by God through men, is revolutionary.

The fact that you all engage scientific advancements as being amazing and awe-inspiring because they reveal more and more to us about the vast, unknown universe, and that science isn’t threatening to our beliefs but reinforces what we know to be true, that we are not the center of the universe, is reassuring and humbling.

The fact that you all don’t ask people to check their critical thinking skills or their rationality at the door, and that you all put on your shoes and use your hands and turn your “thoughts and prayers” into action, you all are what Christianity needs.

If the church continues to insist that people buy into the first way, well, Christianity might continue to exist in some form, but it’ll be small and irrelevant because most people won’t buy into the that myth anymore. But if we continue to expand the third way, that people can have a faith practice that aligns with their worldview and encourages their political participation, in the name of following Jesus, then the church will thrive in the future.

Lakewood is so needed at this moment in time, because you all, church and pastor, encourage engaging our faith with our lived reality. As the famous theologian Karl Barth said that, “one must do theology with the Bible in one hand, and the newspaper in the other.”

Now, I know that Lakewood is a small church, always has been for as long as I have been around. But I lovingly call it “the little church that could.” Because I know you all worry about finances and getting a new roof and paying bills and staff salaries, and maybe there have been times when you’ve wondered whether Lakewood could stay solvent long enough to have a future.

Well let me tell you, it’s lonely at the front. You are at the forefront of a religious sea change, the rest of us just haven’t caught up yet. The third way that this congregation offers is life-giving to people who are longing for community, critical thinking and social justice through following Jesus Christ.
Don’t tell my church this, but you’re also having an impact up north because a lot of what I do, and much of the information that I share with my colleagues in the Boston area, is inspired by what you all are doing, down here. So your influence extends far and wide beyond St. Pete.

Sometimes the future might seem bleak, and the road ahead won’t always be easy, but it is necessary for the future of our faith. So please, keep being you, keep being trail-blazers, because the rest of us, who also are seeking a 3rd way, we are looking to you all to set the pace.

Thanks be to God for this community of faith, Lakewood United Church of Christ, as it was, as it is, and as it is yet to be. Amen.

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Weekly Update 19 April

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, APR 22 THIS SUNDAY: In honor of Earth Day, the service will focus on the healing of Earth and the healing of humanity. The Bible tells of a God that forgives people for the crucifixion of Jesus. Can there also be forgiveness for the damage being done to Earth? Divine forgiveness is important to the healing process. The gathering Sunday will be a refreshing time of healing.
NAME TAGS: If you want or are in need of a name tag please contact or see Wally LeBlanc so he can make one for you.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION: The culmination of the 50th Anniversary celebration last week was a great success! If you missed it, be sure to listen to Rev. Angela Wells’ sermon and check out these great pictures from the event. Many thanks to the Anniversary committee (Mark Gibson, Bill Parsons, Lucille Ruga, Earl Waters, and Kim Wells), Anniversary Sponsors (Mark Gibson, Ed Kaspar, Martha Lamar, Charlie and Mary Beth Lewis, Bill Parsons, Don Ritchie, Lucille Ruga, Earl Waters, Kim and Jeff Wells) and the many others who helped including Sally Purvis, Emily and Bob Bell, Fran Whitney, Ruth Pettis, Claire Stiles, Yoko Nogami, Marg Radens, Dina Gamma, Denise Williams, Zach Blair-Andrews, Jim Andrews, Christy Martin, Vita uth, and the children of LUCC.
APR 18-20 CATHEDRAL OF REMEMBRANCE: LUCC Member Yoko Nogami and her students at the Pinellas County Center of the Arts at Gibbs High School in St. Petersburg have turned the lobby of the school’s theater into an extension of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris for the school’s production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, staged through Friday at 7pm. Portraits of 103 students and staffers who were the victims of school shootings, from the 1999 columbine High School shooting to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS are part of the installation. For tickets call (727) 893-5452, ext. 2029.
SUN, MAY 20 NEW MEMBERS: The church is planning to receive new members on Pentecost Sunday May 20. Those considering church membership may speak with Rev. Wells.
SUN, APR 29 SUNDAY CELEBRATIONS:  On Sunday April 29 there will be a luncheon following morning worship hosted by the Creation Justice Taskforce. Please bring salads, vegetables, and desserts to share. The main dish will be provided. During lunch, Claire Stiles will offer a presentation that she has prepared on sea level rise in the Tampa Bay area. This is a very stimulating and provocative topic Claire has researched. Plan to come and see this challenge from new perspectives. All are welcome!

COMMUNITY EVENTS

THU, APR 19 GUN CONTROL ACTION: Support Mayor Kriseman today! He is asking St. Pete City Council to approve his proposal that St. Petersburg join together with other Florida cities in a lawsuit against Rick Scott to allow municipalities to pass gun control legislation that may be more restrictive than state policy. Fired Up Pinellas has asked that we pack the city council chambers wearing orange to show support. Arrive at 2:45pm to go through security, the council meeting begins at 3pm. See facebook for more information. If you are unable to attend, write to the council by following the link on their webpage:  stpete.org/council.
JUSTICE MINISTRY EDUCATION: Join a learning community of people turning the world upside down! In June, Auburn Seminary will offer six-month training course for those who care about social justice issues and realize the importance of Florida, and in particular the I-4 corridor during the Mid Term elections this year. Gun control, immigration, equal pay, affordable housing and restoring voting rights for the formerly incarcerated are just a few of the issues facing our communities. E-mail Rev. Pritchett if you are interested in participating.
MLK VIDEO: On April 4th, 2018, the nation marked 50 years since the death of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In observance of the lasting impact of Dr. King’s ministry, Trinity Church Wall Street in New York City is offering a new video curriculum free of charge. Martin Luther King Jr.: Epistles & Prophets  brings together an interview with Civil Rights icon and theologian Ruby Sales and expert speakers exploring contemporary black/white relationships through writings by James Baldwin, Thomas Merton, and King that resonate powerfully today.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty,  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines, and Phone2Action to urge congress to undo the harm that mass incarceration has inflicted on families, individuals and the country.
THU, APR 19 ENVIRONMENTAL FILM: St Pete Earth Day, the Suncoast Sierra Club and The St Petersburg Museum of History will screen The Age of Consequences Thursday, April 19th at the St Petersburg Museum of History (335 2nd Ave. NE). The film explores how climate change impacts resource scarcity, migration and conflict through the lens of US national security and global stability. Social begins at 6:00 PM – Heavy hors d’oeuvres, desserts and a cash bar. Panel Discussion Begins at 6:30pm, Movie Begins at 7:00pm and ends at 8:30pm. This is a FREE event, donations are gratefully accepted at the door. RSVP Requested.
THU, APR 19 GUN VIOLENCE RALLY: On the anniversary of City of the Columbine High School shooting, students in Pinellas county will join others across the nation in a school walkout to protest government inaction on gun violence. On April 20th at noon public and private school students are encouraged to gather in front of St. Petersburg City Hall for a rally and to register to vote. Hear from student leaders, Mayor Rick Kriseman, and other officials and register to vote. Street parking available along 1st Avenue N, 2nd Avenue N, on Mirror Lake Drive, and at the nearby Sundial garage located at 117 2nd St N.
FRI, APR 20 FILM SCREENING: As the legal fights over access to abortion escalate, what remains of a woman’s right to choose? Pinellas National Organization for Women presents Trapped, a documentary that follows providers at reproductive health clinics throughout the South struggling to comply with TRAP laws put in place to prevent abortions. Friday, April 20 at 6:45pm at Good Samaritan Church (6085 Park Blvd).
SAT, APR 21 ST PETE EARTH DAY: The Fifth Annual Earth Day Festival In Williams Park will take place Saturday, April 21st. Vendors will offer green and sustainable living products and services, arts and crafts, information and demonstrations. Children’s activities, live music, tiny homes exhibit, electric vehicle display, wildlife, community orgs and city of St. Pete will also be on hand. Don’t miss this amazing free event! For more information, go to earthdaysp.com.
THU, APR 26 ENVIRONMENTAL FILM: A Plastic Ocean: A Screening & Discussion with Natural Resources Agent, Lara Milligan will be held April 26 from 6:30 to 8:30pm at the Seminole Campus Digitorium of St. Petersburg College (9200 113th St. N, Seminole). Seating is limited and online registration is requested or call 727-394-6942 for more information.
THU, APR 26 ECKERD LECTURE: Delores Huerta will be speaking at Eckerd College on April 26. The 2012 Presidential Medal of Freedom winner has spent her life organizing and advocating on behalf of the disenfranchised. From gathering her students’ parents into a labor movement that would become the National Farmworkers Association to working alongside Gloria Steinem to get more women into office, Huerta’s eight-decade life is a testament to the work and commitment social activism requires. This living legend and labor icon will share her story and thoughts with the Eckerd community during this special event on Thursday, April 26th at 7:30pm in Fox Hall.
WED, MAY 30 IFTAR DINNER:  On Wednesday, May 30th at The Coliseum (535 4th Ave N) Mayor Rick Kriseman and Muslim leaders from throughout Tampa Bay will host the 2nd Annual Iftar dinner welcoming residents of all faiths to celebrate the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Iftar is the evening meal when Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset. Doors open at 6pm, prayer at sundown (8:21pm). Sign up in the narthex if you plan to attend.
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. May 6th. The mission for May card sales is Lakewood Methodist Counseling Center. Ministry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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.
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! 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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Mim Carle and family, Betty Harris, Genevieve Jackle, Shirley Locke,
Carolyn Moore, Ann Quinn, Ron Spivack, Willy Zessoules

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Podcast: 50th Anniversary Celebration — Guest preacher, Rev. Angela Wells

Rev. Angela Wells, photo by Yoko Nogami

Sunday, April 15th, 2018 Lakewood UCC celebrated its 50th Anniversary! The anniversary celebration included a beautiful worship service with guest preacher Rev. Angela Wells. In the 50 year history of the church, Angela is the one person from the congregation to become an ordained pastor. After the service, a group picture was taken around the Peace Pole, followed by a festive lunch.


Click on the orange circle in the widget above to listen to Angela’s sermon!
To download Rev. Angela Wells’ sermon click HERE.

GUEST PREACHER: The Rev. Angela Wells grew up in Lakewood United Church of Christ, the daughter of Kim and Jeff Wells. Following graduation from New College of Florida in Sarasota, she attended Union Theological Seminary in New York City. During seminary, she served two Florida churches over the summer while the pastors were on sabbatical leave: The Venice United Church of Christ and St. Andrew United Church of Christ, Sarasota. After graduating from Union, Angela was called to serve the United Church of Christ Congregational in Burlington, MA and ordained into the ministry of the United Church of Christ at Lakewood, her home church. Angela continues to serve in Burlington. As part of that ministry, Angela serves on the Board of Directors of People Helping People, a non profit organization established to meet the needs of the residents of Burlington. She is a past president of the board. Angela serves on the Metropolitan Boston Association Committee on Ministerial Standing. She is a former chairperson. Angela is part of NGLI, Next Generation Leadership Initiative, of the Pension Boards of the United Church of Christ. This program equips select young pastors for future leadership in the UCC especially in light of the changing landscape of ministry. Angela is active in the Burlington Interfaith Clergy group. She is an on call chaplain for the Lahey Clinic. AND, Angela is a newly elected commissioner of the Housing Authority of Burlington which oversees managing affordable senior housing. Angela is engaged to Andy Bean, director of the Boston Climate Action Network, a community organizer and public policy specialist. And Andy is a newly elected town meeting member in Burlington.

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Weekly Update 12 April

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, APR 15 THIS SUNDAY: Happy 50th Anniversary, LUCC! The anniversary celebration includes a beautiful worship service with guest preacher Rev. Angela Wells. In the 50 year history of the church, Angela is the one person from the congregation to become an ordained pastor. After the service, a group picture will be taken around the Peace Pole. And there is a festive lunch planned for after the picture. You are encouraged to wear your LUCC t shirt to church if you would like to. Don’t miss the celebration!
SUN, APR 15 GUEST PREACHER: The Rev. Angela Wells grew up in Lakewood United Church of Christ, the daughter of Kim and Jeff Wells. Following graduation from New College of Florida in Sarasota, she attended Union Theological Seminary in New York City. During seminary, she served two Florida churches over the summer while the pastors were on sabbatical leave: The Venice United Church of Christ and St. Andrew United Church of Christ, Sarasota. After graduating from Union, Angela was called to serve the United Church of Christ Congregational in Burlington, MA and ordained into the ministry of the United Church of Christ at Lakewood, her home church. Angela continues to serve in Burlington. As part of that ministry, Angela serves on the Board of Directors of People Helping People, a non profit organization established to meet the needs of the residents of Burlington. She is a past president of the board. Angela serves on the Metropolitan Boston Association Committee on Ministerial Standing. She is a former chairperson. Angela is part of NGLI, Next Generation Leadership Initiative, of the Pension Boards of the United Church of Christ. This program equips select young pastors for future leadership in the UCC especially in light of the changing landscape of ministry. Angela is active in the Burlington Interfaith Clergy group. She is an on call chaplain for the Lahey Clinic. AND, Angela is a newly elected commissioner of the Housing Authority of Burlington which oversees managing affordable senior housing. Angela is engaged to Andy Bean, director of the Boston Climate Action Network, a community organizer and public policy specialist. And Andy is a newly elected town meeting member in Burlington.
SUN, APR 15 ALTAR CLOTH: The cloth on the altar for Sunday was made by Fran Whitney in honor of the 50th anniversary of Lakewood UCC, her church home. Many thanks to Fran for this beautiful gift!
SUN, APR 15 PICTURE TIME: Immediately following worship this Sunday, please head out to the Peace Pole for a group picture in honor of the 50th anniversary. Thank you!
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SHIRTS & BAGS: There are t-shirts and tote bags for sale with the anniversary logo. The cost is $10. Please see Amaiya and Kai’Lyn on Sunday to make your purchase.
WED, APR 18 WESTMINSTER LUNCH: Westminster Suncoast Luncheon Wednesday Apr 18 at 11:30 in the private dining room at Westminster Suncoast. All residents of the Shores and Suncoast are welcome.
SUN, MAY 20 NEW MEMBERS: The church is planning to receive new members on Pentecost Sunday May 20. Those considering church membership may speak with Rev. Wells.

COMMUNITY EVENTS

MLK VIDEO: On April 4th, 2018, the nation marked 50 years since the death of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In observance of the lasting impact of Dr. King’s ministry, Trinity Church Wall Street in New York City is offering a new video curriculum free of charge. Martin Luther King Jr.: Epistles & Prophets  brings together an interview with Civil Rights icon and theologian Ruby Sales and expert speakers exploring contemporary black/white relationships through writings by James Baldwin, Thomas Merton, and King that resonate powerfully today.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty,  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines, and Phone2Action to urge congress to undo the harm that mass incarceration has inflicted on families, individuals and the country.
THU, APR 19 ENVIRONMENTAL FILM: St Pete Earth Day, the Suncoast Sierra Club and The St Petersburg Museum of History will screen The Age of Consequences Thursday, April 19th at the St Petersburg Museum of History (335 2nd Ave. NE). The film explores how climate change impacts resource scarcity, migration and conflict through the lens of US national security and global stability. Social begins at 6:00 PM – Heavy hors d’oeuvres, desserts and a cash bar. Panel Discussion Begins at 6:30pm, Movie Begins at 7:00pm and ends at 8:30pm. This is a FREE event, donations are gratefully accepted at the door. RSVP Requested.
SAT, APR 21 ST PETE EARTH DAY: The Fifth Annual Earth Day Festival In Williams Park will take place Saturday, April 21st. Vendors will offer green and sustainable living products and services, arts and crafts, information and demonstrations. Children’s activities, live music, tiny homes exhibit, electric vehicle display, wildlife, community orgs and city of St. Pete will also be on hand. Don’t miss this amazing free event! For more information, go to earthdaysp.com.
THU, APR 26 ENVIRONMENTAL FILM: A Plastic Ocean: A Screening & Discussion with Natural Resources Agent, Lara Milligan will be held April 26 from 6:30 to 8:30pm at the Seminole Campus Digitorium of St. Petersburg College (9200 113th St. N, Seminole). Seating is limited and online registration is requested or call 727-394-6942 for more information.
THU, APR 26 ECKERD LECTURE: Delores Huerta will be speaking at Eckerd College on April 26. The 2012 Presidential Medal of Freedom winner has spent her life organizing and advocating on behalf of the disenfranchised. From gathering her students’ parents into a labor movement that would become the National Farmworkers Association to working alongside Gloria Steinem to get more women into office, Huerta’s eight-decade life is a testament to the work and commitment social activism requires. This living legend and labor icon will share her story and thoughts with the Eckerd community during this special event on Thursday, April 26th at 7:30pm in Fox Hall.
WED, MAY 30 IFTAR DINNER:  On Wednesday, May 30th at The Coliseum (535 4th Ave N) Mayor Rick Kriseman and Muslim leaders from throughout Tampa Bay will host the 2nd Annual Iftar dinner welcoming residents of all faiths to celebrate the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Iftar is the evening meal when Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset. Doors open at 6pm, prayer at sundown (8:21pm). Sign up in the narthex if you plan to attend.
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. May 6th. The mission for May card sales is still yet to be determined. Ministry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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.
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! 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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Mim Carle and family, Betty Harris, Genevieve Jackle, Carolyn Moore, Ann Quinn,
Ron Spivack, Willy Zessoules

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Weekly Update 5 April

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, APR 8 THIS SUNDAY: In the aftermath of the resurrection, there is the opportunity to reflect on faith and fact. The story of Thomas leads the way. See John 20:19-31 and Acts 4:32-35.
SUN, APR 8 CONGREGATIONAL MEETING: There will be a brief congregational meeting following worship on Sunday, 8 April for the purpose of presenting, discussing, and taking action on the roof proposal. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY: Plan to be part of celebrating the first 50 years of LUCC’s ministry in preparation for at least the next 50 years! The bash is on Sunday April 15. The preacher for the morning is the Rev. Angela Wells, pastor of the United Church of Christ in Burlington, MA. Angela is the one person in the history of the church to go into the ministry. The theme will be “Foundation for the Future.” Rev. John Vertigan, Conference Minister of the Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ will be part of the festivities. Founding pastor, Rev. Richard Wiggins and Mae are planning to attend. At the catered luncheon after the service, memories of past years and hopes and dreams for the future will be shared. Contact the Church Office or Bill Parsons to make your reservation.

COMMUNITY EVENTS

MLK VIDEO: On April 4th, 2018, the nation marked 50 years since the death of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In observance of the lasting impact of Dr. King’s ministry, Trinity Church Wall Street in New York City is offering a new video curriculum free of charge. Martin Luther King Jr.: Epistles & Prophets  brings together an interview with Civil Rights icon and theologian Ruby Sales and expert speakers exploring contemporary black/white relationships through writings by James Baldwin, Thomas Merton, and King that resonate powerfully today.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty,  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines, and Phone2Action to urge congress to undo the harm that mass incarceration has inflicted on families, individuals and the country.
SUN, APR 8 SOCIAL JUSTICE LECTURE: Les Leopold, co-founder of the Labor Institute and author of Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice will give a lecture on causes and solutions to economic inequality at 4:30pm Sunday, April 8th at Temple Beth El (400 Pasadena Ave S). For more information call the Temple office at (727) 347-613.
MON, APR 9 IMMIGRATION DISCUSSION: Join Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri, Immigration Attorney Mayra Calo and Isabel Sousa-Rodriquez from the Florida Immigration Coalition in a community dialog about immigration hosted by WMNF’s Mitch Perry. Monday, April 9 from 7:00 – 8:30pm at Allendale United Methodist Church (3803 Haines Rd. N).
WED, APR 11 ORGANIZING MEETING: The Poor People’s Campaign, A National Call for a Moral Revival, is building a movement to overcome systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy. Come hear about this movement and how you can be involved Wednesday, April 11th at the Quaker Meeting Hall (130 19th Ave SE).
THU, APR 26 ENVIRONMENTAL FILM: A Plastic Ocean: A Screening & Discussion with Natural Resources Agent, Lara Milligan will be held April 26 from 6:30 to 8:30pm at the Seminole Campus Digitorium of St. Petersburg College (9200 113th St. N, Seminole). Seating is limited and online registration is requested or call 727-394-6942 for more information.
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. May 6th. The mission for May card sales is still yet to be determined.
Ministry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to
Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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! 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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Mim Carle and family, Betty Harris, Genevieve Jackle, Carolyn Moore, Ann Quinn,
Ron Spivack, Willy Zessoules

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Sermon Easter Sunrise – Fully Known, Fully Loved

Easter Sunday April 1, 2018
Scripture Lesson: John 20:1-18
Pastor: Rev. Kim P. Wells

It is painted, sung about, and immortalized. That moment in the Easter story from the Gospel of John when Mary meets Jesus in the graveyard. She does not recognize him until he says her name. Mary. In the name is the knowing. It just takes the name and we know that this is a reference to the identity of the person, the history, the experiences, the inner feelings, the relationships, the habits, the quirks, the foibles, the full sense of Mary’s being. In that moment, Mary is made aware that she is fully known.

Jesus is known for fully knowing. He is known for knowing people as they truly are, not as they may perceive themselves nor as they may be perceived by others. His is a true knowing. A knowing in full not in part.

We see this in story after story in the New Testament. In the story of Jesus meeting the Samaritan woman at the well, he mentions that she has had five husbands. That is not something that she would have been advertising about herself. Yet he knew. Probably everyone else in her town was spreading the word. And we are shown a Jesus who knows this. And he still asks her for water. And he still gives her living water. And she goes to offer this saving gift to the people of her town who have doubtless tormented her. Fully known.

The gospels share a story of Jesus finding a group of men ready to stone a woman for adultery. She makes no plea of innocence. Fully known. But in the story, Jesus turns to those with the rocks at the ready, arms drawn back, and says, “Let the one without sin cast the first stone.” They, too, are fully known.

In another story, Zacchaeus, a notorious hated upper crust financial functionary, climbs a tree to get a glimpse of Jesus. And Jesus stops and invites himself to Zacchaeus’ house. Jesus knows all about Zacchaeus and his cheating and his greed. Zacchaeus is fully known.

And there is the story of a rich young ruler. He comes to Jesus desperately seeking life in God. Jesus knows this man. He knows there is just one thing. And the rich young man cannot accept Jesus’ offer. And Jesus is sad, so sad, for he knows this man.

We are told that Jesus knows those who initiate his execution. He knows those who adjudicate his trial. He knows the governor who can stay his execution, but does not. He knows the thieves that are crucified with him. Jesus knows them all. They are fully know.

Just that one word, in the cemetery, “Mary.” She is fully known. As are so many others. Nothing is hidden.

And what of these people who are fully known? With their past. With the evil intentions of their hearts. With their cheating and stealing. With their self absorption and greed. With their lust for power. With their self protectionist proclivities. What of this sorry lot? We are shown a Jesus who knows it all. They are fully known. Not in a clairvoyant, woo woo, supernatural way. But in a sincere, insightful, honest way that comes from paying attention and listening and caring.

We are also shown something else about Jesus. All of these people, all of the people healed and forgiven. The crowds. The women. The townspeople. The corrupt leaders. The hypocritical priests. The executioners. The disciples. All of them are fully known. And they are also fully loved. Loved for their full humanity and all of its imperfections. Loved for all of their misguided schemes. Loved for all of their hopes and dreams. Loved for all of their pain, grief, and guilt. Loved because of who they are. Loved in spite of who
they are. Fully known. Fully loved.

We may not know all about Jesus. We may hardly know his story. But all we really need to know is about the love. For each and every person. Because at the core, each and every one of us is holy and sacred. And because of that, we are worthy to be loved. Before anything we do or say, we are beloved. Because of everything we do and say, we are beloved. In spite what we do and say, we are beloved. And there’s nothing we can do about it. We are fully known and fully loved in the reality of God.

In the book, The Song of the Bird, Anthony De Mello shares this story:

I was a neurotic for years. I was anxious and depressed and selfish. And everyone kept telling me to change. And everyone kept telling me how neurotic I was. And I resented them, and I agreed with them, and I wanted to change, but I just couldn’t bring myself to change, no matter how hard I tried.
What hurt the most was that my best friend also kept telling me how neurotic I was. He too kept insisting that I change. And I agreed with him too, though I couldn’t bring myself to resent him. And I felt so powerless and so trapped.
Then one day he said to me, “Don’t change. Stay as you are. It really doesn’t matter whether you change or not. I love you just as you are; I cannot help loving you.”
These words sounded like music to my ears: “Don’t change. Don’t change. Don’t change. I love you.”
And I relaxed. And I came alive. And, oh wondrous marvel, I changed.

[Quoted in 25 Windows into the Soul: Praying with the Psalms, from the writings of Joan Chittister, p. 78]

Yes, the story of the encounter between Jesus and Mary in the garden is famous for that one word, “Mary,” showing us that we are fully known and fully loved. But there is another phrase in that story that is also well-remembered. Jesus asks Mary, “Why are you weeping?” Why are you weeping?

Do we weep because of this great love? We are fully known and fully loved. Does the enormity of it bring us to tears? Why are we weeping? Are we weeping in repentance? Seeking the healing of forgiving love? Why are we weeping? Are we weeping because the awareness that we are fully known and fully loved makes our compassion for ourselves, others and the world well up? Why are we weeping? Is it because in spite of this love, we will continue to hurt ourselves and others? Why are we weeping? Is it because we have not been able to say yes to this belovedness?

Why are we weeping? This Easter, may we know that we are fully known and fully loved and may we weep tears of joy. Amen.

A reasonable effort has been made to appropriately cite materials referenced in this sermon. For additional information, please contact Lakewood United Church of Christ.

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2018 Palm Sunday at Lakewood UCC

The service started outside around the cross and after the blessing of palms proceeded with a processional inside. Later in the service new members were received into the church.

photos by Yoko Nogami

 

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Weekly Update 28 March

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, APR 1 THIS SUNDAY: We celebrate the power of Love that is stronger than death this Easter Sunday. There is an outdoor Sunrise Service at 7am followed by breakfast in the fellowship hall. The 10:30am Festival Service is designed as an intergenerational service: children and youth are encouraged to participate for the whole service.  There will also be childcare provided in the Nursery for the very young. The celebrations conclude with an egg hunt and refreshments on the church grounds.
THU, MAR 29 MAUNDY THURSDAY: This is a night to remember Jesus’ last supper with his friends and followers. A light soup supper will be served at 6:00pm in the Fellowship Hall followed by a service of communion and Tenebrae in the sanctuary at 7:00. All are welcome at this solemn service of remembrance.
FRI, MAR 30 GOOD FRIDAY: There will be a guided labyrinth walk at noon related to the crucifixion of Jesus. The sanctuary will be open for meditation and prayer from noon until 3:00pm.
SUN, APR 1 EASTER: The celebration of Easter begins with a sunrise service at 7:00am outdoors on the church grounds followed by breakfast in the Fellowship Hall.
The Festival Service begins at 10:30am. This is an intergenerational service celebrating the power of Love that is stronger than death. The season of spring is a reminder that new life bursts forth even in the least expected places.
An Easter Egg hunt will be held following the Festival Service along with refreshments on the church grounds.
SUN, APR 8 CONGREGATIONAL MEETING: There will be a brief congregational meeting following worship on Sunday, 8 April for the purpose of presenting, discussing, and taking action on the roof proposal. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY: Plan to be part of celebrating the first 50 years of LUCC’s ministry in preparation for at least the next 50 years! The bash is on Sunday April 15. The preacher for the morning is the Rev. Angela Wells, pastor of the United Church of Christ in Burlington, MA. Angela is the one person in the history of the church to go into the ministry. The theme will be “Foundation for the Future.” Rev. John Vertigan, Conference Minister of the Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ will be part of the festivities. Founding pastor, Rev. Richard Wiggins and Mae are planning to attend. At the catered luncheon after the service, memories of past years and hopes and dreams for the future will be shared. Contact the Church Office or Bill Parsons to make your reservation.
 LOST AND FOUND: There was a battery and a small piece to a hearing aid found on the floor of the sanctuary following the PalmSunday service March 25.  Please contact the church office for details.

COMMUNITY EVENTS

CIW ACTION: Five-day fast to fight sexual violence against women farmworkers underway outside Manhattan office of Wendy’s Board Chairman Nelson Peltz. Read more on the coalition website.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty and  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines.
WED, APR 4 MLK REMEMBRANCE: The community is invited to come together to commemorate the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the 50th anniversary of that terrible event April 4th, 7pm at The Palladium Theater (253 5th Ave N). The evening will include readings of excerpts from Dr. King’s writings and speeches, recollections of historic events in St. Petersburg, and musical performances. Participants include Bob Devin Jones, City Administrator Kanika Tomalin, Terri Lipsey Scott, Sharon Scott, Alex Harris and One City Chorus.
SUN, APR 8 SOCIAL JUSTICE LECTURE: Les Leopold, co-founder of the Labor Institute and author of Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice will give a lecture on causes and solutions to economic inequality at 4:30pm Sunday, April 8th at Temple Beth El (400 Pasadena Ave S). For more information call the Temple office at (727) 347-613.
WED, APR 11 ORGANIZING MEETING: The Poor People’s Campaign, A National Call for a Moral Revival, is building a movement to overcome systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy. Come hear about this movement and how you can be involved Wednesday, April 11th at the Quaker Meeting Hall (130 19th Ave SE).
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. May 6th. The mission for May card sales is still yet to be determined.
Ministry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to
Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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! 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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 17 – The Legacy Of The River


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play The Legacy Of The River — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Sermon Palm Sunday – Ashes to Ashes: Life Before Death

Sunday March 25, 2018

Rev. Kim P. Wells

We began the Lenten season with ashes on Ash Wednesday. We reminded ourselves that we are dust and to dust we shall return. Death is the great fact of life. Real. True. Undisputed. No fake news, here. Death is democratic and egalitarian and inclusive. If you’re alive, there is one thing you can be sure of. You will die. Everyone dies.

This week, we remember one particular death. One very specific, cruel death. And this, too, is real. Factual. No fake news. While there is not much that can be historically verified about the life of Jesus, about his death, there is agreement. He was put to death on a cross. This was the Roman punishment for traitors, insurrectionists, and people who were thought to be threats to the Empire. Apparently, Jesus’ influence had become so great, that the Roman authorities could be convinced that he was a threat to their power in the territory of Palestine, already known for being rebellious.

So this week, we remember the death of Jesus. His death on the cross. But his death only really matters, only really is remembered, only really has meaning for us today, because of his life. Jesus lived his life in the reality of God. He breathed in and out unconditional, universal love. When he looked at a person, any person, he could only see a beloved, sacred, Divine being. And he, himself, was the most fully human human being.

Jesus knew that he was a wanted man by the authorities in Jerusalem. He knew they wanted him dead. We know from books and movies and TV that when there is a death threat, the person heads the other way, hides out, steers clear of the source of the threat. Not Jesus. He knew the threat was in Jerusalem. The capital. Where there was a concentration of religious power and political power. In collusion. Which typically results in corruption. And that is where he goes. And he doesn’t sneak in. We’re told he makes an entrance. In a parade. Not military style on a strapping steed with armaments in tow but on a donkey, the way strewn cloaks and with branches from nearby trees. Jesus imbues a traditional image, the military procession, with new meaning. He is not coming from having killed others in defense of the Empire. He is coming to be killed, to face his own death, because he is perceived as a threat to the Empire.

When we think of facing fear or a threat with our natural human instincts our response is typically fight or flight. Jesus chooses another way. He chooses the way of sacrificial love. He proceeds to his death not with resignation, but with strength, courage, and defiance, infused with compassion, meekness, and humility. It a rare and beautiful combination. Because of the way Jesus lived, because of the way he faces his death, because in him we see love conquering fear, the death penalty, the crucifixion, will not silence his voice, as his killers hope, but will amplify it so that his message is still powerfully heard today.

According to the gospel of John, in his last evening with his friends, his last opportunity to get across the main point, the big picture, the core concept, Jesus washes the feet of his friends. A humble, servile act. And he gives a new commandment – to “love one another as I have loved you.” Love and serve. That’s what he did. He didn’t just talk about it. He did it.

And he did this up to the very last moment of his life. We are given the tradition of Jesus forgiving even those responsible for his execution. We remember his death because of the way he lived his life.

The way you live is the way you die. Jesus shows us Divine Love that is not intimidated by fear or violence or hatred. When we live in that love, we need have no fear. Not even of death. Amen.

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Lakewood UCC presence at 2018 students’ MARCH FOR OUR LIVES, St. Pete

2018 March for our Lives LUCC folks & banner

2018 March for our Lives LUCC folks & banner

Banner was designed and constructed by Yoko Nogami, using salvaged materials from shed cleaning.

2018 March for our Lives panorama

2018 March for our Lives panorama

Below is a gallery of candid shots by Sue Sherwood of some of the sites plus pics of UCC folk actually marching!

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 16 – Guardian of the Mists


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play Guardian of the Mists — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Weekly Update 22 March

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, MAR 25 THIS SUNDAY: Palm Sunday commemorates Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and marks the beginning of Holy Week. Worship will begin outside with the blessing of the palms (please bring palm branches if you can). The One Great Hour of Sharing Offering, used to help people in times of crisis, will be collected. New Members will be received this Sunday as well. Those joining include: Bill and Catharine Delcamp, Elinor Ross, Jen DeGroot, Claudia Rodriguez, Joyce and Bert Lee, and Kay Rencken. There will be light refreshments and fellowship following worship.
SAT, MAR 24 MARCH FOR OUR LIVES: On Saturday March 24, people will gather in Poynter Park (1000 3rd St S) at 11:00am to march in support of sane gun laws. Look for the LUCC banner on the southern end of the park. Carpool or take the bus (parking will be tight), wear orange, and bring a sign to express your support of the students working to create a safer society. Visit pinellas4parkland.org for more information.
SAT, MAR 24 GREENFEST: LUCC is having a booth at IRB Greenfest. Come by and see us and other non-profits and eco-friendly vendors and artists. The 11th Annual Indian Rocks Beach Greenfest will be March 24th from 10am to 5pm on the block of 24th Avenue & 1st Street in Indian Rocks Beach.
EASTER FLOWERS: The time to order Easter Flowers is now! Fill out a form on Sunday or e-mail the church office with your name, the number of plants you would like to buy ($10 each) and who they are in honor or memory of. Make sure checks have “Easter Flowers” written in the memo line.
EASTER EGGS: Please bring filled easter eggs to the church office for the children to hunt after the festival service on Easter Sunday.
SUN, MAR 25 ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING: This special offering of the United Church of Christ will be received on Palm Sunday, March 25.  The One Great Hour of Sharing offering is taken by mainline denominations in the United States and it is used to help people around the world, including the US, in times of crisis.  Church sponsored organizations use the money to provide aid in times of famine, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other disasters and crisis situations.  Please pray about what you are able to give so that others may know the compassion of Christ in tangible ways in times of need.  
SUN, MAR 25 REFRESHMENTS: In lieu of Sunday Celebrations, there will be light refreshments following worship on Sunday March 25th. Bring a snack to share if you like.
HOLY WEEK & EASTER
SUN, MAR 25 PALM SUNDAY: The service begins outside with the blessing of the palms. Please bring a palm branch and some to share if you can. The One Great Hour of Sharing Offering will be collected this Sunday. This offering is taken by mainline denominations in the United States and it is used to help people around the world, including the US, in times of crisis.
THU, MAR 29 MAUNDY THURSDAY: This is a night to remember Jesus’ last supper with his friends and followers. A light soup supper will be served at 6:00pm in the Fellowship Hall followed by a service of communion and Tenebrae in the sanctuary at 7:00. All are welcome at this solemn service of remembrance.
FRI, MAR 30 GOOD FRIDAY: There will be a guided labyrinth walk at noon related to the crucifixion of Jesus. The sanctuary will be open for meditation and prayer from noon until 3:00pm.
SUN, APR 1 EASTER: The celebration of Easter begins with a sunrise service at 7:00am outdoors on the church grounds followed by breakfast in the Fellowship Hall.
The Festival Service begins at 10:30am. This is an intergenerational service celebrating the power of Love that is stronger than death. The season of spring is a reminder that new life bursts forth even in the least expected places.
An Easter Egg hunt will be held following the Festival Service along with refreshments on the church grounds.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY: Reserve your seat now for this celebration dinner! Forms available at church on Sunday. And talk to Bill Parsons about ordering an anniversary t-shirt.
LABYRINTH MAKEOVER: The labyrinth on the lawn at Lakewood has had a makeover thanks to the help of Melanie Moore and Bob Bell. Please use the labyrinth anytime you would like for reflection and prayer. It is always “open.”

COMMUNITY EVENTS

CIW ACTION: Five-day fast to fight sexual violence against women farmworkers underway outside Manhattan office of Wendy’s Board Chairman Nelson Peltz. Read more on the coalition website.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty and  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines.
WED, APR 4 MLK REMEMBRANCE: The community is invited to come together to commemorate the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the 50th anniversary of that terrible event April 4th, 7pm at The Palladium Theater (253 5th Ave N). The evening will include readings of excerpts from Dr. King’s writings and speeches, recollections of historic events in St. Petersburg, and musical performances. Participants include Bob Devin Jones, City Administrator Kanika Tomalin, Terri Lipsey Scott, Sharon Scott, Alex Harris and One City Chorus.
SUN, APR 8 SOCIAL JUSTICE LECTURE: Les Leopold, co-founder of the Labor Institute and author of Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice will give a lecture on causes and solutions to economic inequality at 4:30pm Sunday, April 8th at Temple Beth El (400 Pasadena Ave S). For more information call the Temple office at (727) 347-613.
WED, APR 11 ORGANIZING MEETING: The Poor People’s Campaign, A National Call for a Moral Revival, is building a movement to overcome systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy. Come hear about this movement and how you can be involved Wednesday, April 11th at the Quaker Meeting Hall (130 19th Ave SE).
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. May 6th. The mission for May card sales is still yet to be determined.
Ministry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to
Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Katharine Conover & the family and loved ones of Martin Keane, Betty Harris,
Ruth Halderman’s family and friends, Ruth Harrington’s family and friends, Carolyn Moore, Willy Zessoules, Genevieve Jackle,
 Ann Quinn

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Update for Pax Christi newsletter regard March for Our Lives

Friends,

 

There have been changes in the local March for Our Lives events since the last newsletter, and some of the information in that newsletter is now outdated. To get the latest information, go to

 

https://event.marchforourlives.com/event/march-our-lives-events/search/?source=zzns_March_MoveOn

 

A global map showing the location of over 840 worldwide marches will appear. Type in your city or zip code for information on the events near you.

 

WEARING ORANGE: Many activists will wear orange at the marches. Wearing orange dates to 2013 when 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago. Pendleton was an honor student who was killed in a case of mistaken identity a week after she performed at one of the events surrounding President Obama’s second inauguration. Her parents, Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton and Nathaniel Pendleton, ask gun reform advocates to wear orange to honor their daughter.

 

From the Wear Orange website:

 

We wear orange for Hadiya and to honor the more than 90 lives cut short and the hundreds more injured by gun violence every day — and to demand action. Orange is what hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others from harm. Orange is a bright, bold color that demands to be seen. Orange expresses our collective hope as a nation — a hope for a future free from gun violence.

 

The Wear Orange website is at https://wearorange.org/about/

 

 

REPORT ON THE NRA: The National Rifle Association (NRA) promotes itself as an organization whose purpose is to speak for gun owners. However, an extensive report by the watchdog group Bridge Project has revealed that this is a deception:

  • Fewer than 10% of gun owners are NRA members and 62% of gun owners say the NRA does not represent their thinking on guns
  • In direct opposition to NRA 74% of NRA households favor making private gun sales and gun show sales subject to background checks
  • The bulk of NRA funding comes from the gun industry, not member dues
  • The NRA’s executive leadership and board of directors are deeply tied to the firearms industry and uses the NRA to promote increasingly deadly weapons

“Marketing Death: How the Gun Industry Uses the NRA to Boost Profits and Undermine Public Safety” is available at file:///C:/Users/Owner/Documents/NRA-Report.pdf

 

Pax Christi Tampa Bay

 

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 15 – Rainbow Of Dreams


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play Rainbow Of Dreams — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Pax Christi Tampa Bay E-mail Newsletter

Ongoing Weekly Events Calendar

 

  1. Local action if Trump fires Mueller
  2.  FAST action for affordable housing and youth arrest reform Monday
  3. Workshop: What Will It Take to Win in November?
  4. March for Our Lives against gun violence
  5. Laundry Love: clean clothes for people experiencing homelessness
  6. Dolores Huerta documentary and lecture at Eckerd College
  7.  Earth Day St. Pete
  8. United Faiths Walk of Peace


Women’s March St. Pete Events Calendar

Friends,

Below is information on joining thousands of Pinellas County residents to stand for affordable housing and youth arrest reform this Monday at the Nehemiah Action at Tropicana Field.

 

Also below is information on the local March for Our Lives anti-gun violence actions on March 24; actions planned if Trump fires Mueller; a workshop on winning elections; and more.

 

At the end of the newsletter is the St. Pete Women’s March calendar of events.


Pax Christi Tampa Bay


WEEKLY ONGOING EVENTS

 

MISSIO DEI SUNDAY DINNER: Missio Dei is a small church that meets in the refurbished corner of a warehouse at 1330 Burlington Avenue N. (map; the entrance is on 2nd Avenue on the south side of the building.)  They serve a meal after their worship service.  The congregation is largely homeless or marginally housed. The worship service features a congregational discussion of Biblical texts, combining the insights of a theologically trained minister, housed members, and those whose faith helps them survive in the streets.

The service begins at 5:30 PM; the dinner begins at 6:30.  For information on how you can help prepare, serve, or financially support the meal, contact G. W. Rolle at (727) 424-1088.

RESIST TRUMP TUESDAYS AT SENATOR MARCO RUBIO’S NEW OFFICE:
Marco Rubio has opened a new office in the Sam M. Gibbons U.S. Court House, 801 N. Florida Ave. in Tampa, FL 33602 (map).  Indivisible and other local activist groups have moved Resist Trump Tuesdays to the new office.  The protest is every Tuesday, 10:30-11:30 AM.  Bring signs, or the Indivisible organizers can provide them.  There is parking around the courthouse and the meters take credit cards.  For more information (FMI): sjstew@gte.net

WEEKLY SARASOTA DEMONSTRATION: Activists from Veterans for Peace and Manasota Pax Christi, among other groups, will demonstrate for peace through justice from 4:00-5:00 PM every Tuesday in downtown Sarasota along Bayfront Drive/N. Tamiami Trail near its intersection with Gulfstream Drive (map).  The demonstration is south of Unconditional Surrender, the “kissing statue.”  FMI: Russ at Rjbannerusa@gmail.com

PEACE FIRST: During every Wednesday in March, Peace First will demonstrate at the intersection of Pasadena Avenue South and Gulfport Boulevard South in South Pasadena (map)  from 4:30-5:30 PM.  They will focus on gun violence and other issues.  Bring a sign, or they will provide one. There are a Publix, a Winn Dixie, a gas station and a liquor store at this intersection.  

The group eats at a restaurant in an “after party” following the demonstration.   For more information (FMI): SMcCown@tampabay.rr.com 


PEACE MEDITATION: Biweekly meditation for peace every other Wednesday at 7:00 PM  (March 21, April 4 and April 18) at Sacred Lands, 1620 Park Street N. in St. Petersburg, Florida 33710-4348   For more information: http://www.sacredlandspreservationandeducation.org/; 727-367-3592 or 347-0354

FRIDAY NIGHT PICNIC ON THE PLAYGROUND IN ST. PETEThe Friday Night Picnic is a potluck picnic for hungry people, most of whom are low income or experiencing homelessness.  The picnic continues to need potluck food, beverages, picnic supplies, and volunteers. The picnic, which serves over 100 people a week, is at 6:00 PM every Friday at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 719 Arlington Avenue N. at Mirror Lake Drive in downtown St. Petersburg.  FMI: http://uustpete.org/2014/09/17/friday-picnic-playground or (973) 768-3256.

WEEKLY BREAKFAST: Loaves and Fishes is a breakfast held at Trinity Lutheran Church on Saturday mornings. Volunteers serve a full hot breakfast to over 150 people. The breakfast is held on the third floor of Trinity Lutheran Church, 401 4th Avenue North in St. Petersburg. 

The breakfast runs from 7:30-10:30 AM, and volunteers can participate with some or all of the breakfast.   Please contact G. W. Rolle at (727) 424-1088 to help.

SINGLE EVENTS

  1. IF TRUMP FIRES MUELLER:  It seems more likely with each passing day that President Trump will fire special counsel Robert Mueller.  If that happens, Indivisible FL-13 will sponsor an emergency rally in Demen’s Landing, St Petersburg:

 

  • If Trump fires Mueller BEFORE 2:00 PM, meet at 5:00 PM

 

  • If Trump fires Mueller AFTER 2:00 PM, meet at NOON of following day.

Indivisible FL-13 will send an email notification and post it on Twitter and Facebook.

Indivisible FL-13 Contact Information:
Indivisible FL-13 on Facebook
Indivisible FL-13 on Twitter
Email Indivisible FL-13 at info@indivisiblefl13.com


  1. FAST PEOPLE POWER ACTION ON AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND YOUTH ARRESTS
    Monday, March 19th, 7:00 PM
    Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg


FAST (Faith and Action for Strength) is a congregation-based community organization in Pinellas County, Florida, whose purpose is to train low- to moderate-income residents from diverse congregations to work together to identify root causes of community problems and take action on these problems. Through FAST, diverse people come together to powerfully address the needs in their own communities.

Since one congregation does not have enough people power to hold systems accountable for justice, FAST holds huge “Nehemiah Actions.” Named after Nehemiah, the Biblical activist who called a huge assembly to confront systemic injustice (Nehemiah 5:1-13), these gatherings brings thousands of Pinellas County residents (who are also voters) face-to-face with leaders such as mayors, city and county officials, and police to win justice in our communities.

 

 

The next Nehemiah Action, on Monday, March 19th, at Tropicana Field will focus on two youth-oriented issues: affordable housing and youth arrests.  Everyone in Pinellas County is welcome to attend and to bring a friend.  There is free parking in lots 1, 2 and 4 off 16th Street. Enter at Gate 5.  There will be tickets to fill out and Tropicana security at the door. No food or beverage will be sold at the event.  For a parking map, click here.

Here are a few of FAST’s past accomplishments in Pinellas County:

-funding Pre-K funding for over 7,000 low-income four-year–olds
securing $19.2 million for affordable housing
getting the state legislature to allow 4,000 non-violent offenders to attend drug-treatment programs instead of prison
getting the County Commission to allocate $958,000 for dental care and $963,00 for a pilot prevention program for people who use mental health services.

For a complete list, go to http://fast-pinellas.org/issue-work/#/past-victories/

For more information on FAST, the issues, and the meeting, go to http://fast-pinellas.org/  

 

  1.  WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO WIN IN NOVEMBER 2018?
    Thursday, March 22, 2018 at 6:30 – 8:15 PM

Allendale United Methodist Church

3803 Haines Rd. N.

St Petersburg, FL 33703


Join Ana Cruz and Jennifer Webb to discuss the challenges of winning elections, the current political landscape going into the November mid-terms, and information on the demands of running a campaign and getting out the vote.  Ana Cruz, a political strategist referred to as “one of the top political players in the state of Florida” by FloridaPolitics.com, will speak about the complexities of the current political landscape and what it will take to turn the tide in the upcoming elections. Jennifer Webb, candidate for FL State Rep District 69, will describe the challenges and dynamics of running an effective campaign and getting out the vote. Also, one of the student leaders organizing the March 24th March for Our Lives will provide an update on the march. 

Map here.  For more information and to register, click here

Hosted by Fired Up Pinellas; Co-hosts: Indivisible FL-13, November Starts Now, South St.Pete Democratic Club & Women’s March FL – Pinellas/St. Pete

 

  1. There are over 760 worldwide marches against gun violence on Saturday, March 24, including ten in the greater Tampa Bay area.  Locally, marches are taking place at schools, government buildings, and children’s literary events.  For a map and to sign up for a march, go to https://event.marchforourlives.com/event/march-our-lives-events/search/?source=zzns_March_MoveOn.  Here are three local marches:

 

 

In Pinellas Park the march will be from the site of Caroline Morton-Hicks’ recent gun death to Long Bayou to lay flowers.  Details are here.

  

March for Our Lives –
St. Petersburg, FL
Judicial Building
545 1st Ave. N.  
St. Petersburg, FL 3370
RSVP ▶▶
March for Our Lives –
Clearwater, FL
Pinellas County Tax Collector
13025 Starkey Rd

Clearwater, FL 33771
RSVP ▶▶

March for Our Lives – Tampa, FL
Kiley Garden

400 N. Ashley Dr.

Tampa, FL 33602
RSVP ▶▶


  1. SOAP AND PIZZA: MONTHLY FREE LAUNDRY
    Monday, March 26, 6:30-8:00 PM
    Coin laundry at 365 8th St S, St Petersburg, Florida (map).

    Imagine being homeless and living in unwashed clothes for days on end.

    Laundry Love Projects are regular opportunities to help financially struggling people do their laundry. There are now over two hundred projects nationwide.

    Locally, Laundry Love is sponsored by the Missio Dei and takes place the last Monday of every month.  Organizers and their supporters provide soap, coins and pizza for those washing their clothes. 

    Each Laundry Love costs around $200.  FMI on how you or your group can support and participate, contact G. W. Rolle at (727) 424-1088 or gw@themissiodei.com 

 


  1.  DOLORES HUERTA ON PBS AND AT ECKERD COLLEGE
    2012 Presidential Medal of Freedom winner Dolores Huerta has spent her life organizing and advocating on behalf of the disenfranchised. From gathering her students’ parents into a labor movement that would become the National Farmworkers Association to working alongside Gloria Steinem to get more women into office, Huerta’s eight-decade life is a testament to the work and commitment social activism requires.

 

On Tuesday, March 27 the documentary Dolores premieres at 9:00 PM on PBS’s Independent Lens. FMI: http://www.pbs.org/show/independent-lens/episodes/   

 

An Evening With Dolores Huerta
Thursday, April 26, 2018 – 7:30
Eckerd College, Fox Hall (map)
St. Petersburg FL

Huerta will share her story and thoughts with the community during this special event. Sponsored by the Col. Christian L. and Edna M. March International Relations Lecture Series, her talk is free and open to the public.  FMI: https://www.eckerd.edu/news/events/

 

  1. St. Pete Earth Day will be Saturday, April 21 in Williams Park in downtown St. Petersburg.  Their website is at http://www.earthdaysp.com/ and their Facebook page is at https://www.facebook.com/stpeteearthday/

 

  1. UNITED FAITHS WALK OF PEACE
    Sunday, April 29  2:00-5:00 PM
    Gather at John R. Lawrence Pioneer Park
    400 Main Street in downtown Dunedin FL (map)

    Join Muslims, Unitarians, Catholics, Buddhists, Jews, Baha’is and others for a two-mile walk through Dunedin for peace, stopping for reflections on peace from many faiths.

    For more information: Rev. Becky Robbins-Penniman. (727) 733-4125; RevSBRP@gmail.com;   https://www.facebook.com/events/667220180154789

 

 

From the Women’s March St. Pete:

Solar Co-op Info Session


Wednesday, March 21, 6:00-7:30pm
West St Petersburg Library
6700 8th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33710

Attend this info session to raise your awareness on the many benefits of going solar, how to save money on residential PV, and how co-op membership will make going solar easier. Read all about the co-op here.

RSVP for the event here: https://secure.everyaction.com/dlGwqQRYVk-Nk9maAAe6Og2

https://www.facebook.com/events/171988120081763/

 

 

Film Premiere ~ Heather Booth: Changing the World 

Thursday, March 22 at 6 PM
Bryan Glazer Family JCC
522 N Howard Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33606

The Tampa film premiere of Heather Booth: Changing the World is presented by the Tampa Bay Jewish Film Festival.  Attendees will enjoy a talk-back after the film with Heather.

Heather has been organizing activists from the Civil Rights movement to the Women’s movement to helping Hon. Elizabeth Warren establish the Consumer Financial Protection bureau to her arrest last week at the Capitol at a demonstration in support of Dreamers. 


https://www.facebook.com/events/336812226835634/

 

 

More Guns Are Coming to Your School & The Assault on Net Neutrality

Thursday, March 29, 6:15 PM – 8:45 PM
Allendale United Methodist Church

3803 Haines Rd N, Saint Pete FL 33703

On March 9th, the 2018 FL legislative session came to an end. We’ve got the skinny on what legislation they passed, and what they didn’t pass. Significant areas of focus were guns, education and preemption.

The League will also launch its Net Neutrality initiative – what is it, why it matters, and what we’re going to do about it. 

The advocacy workshop portion of our event will focus on arming you with facts and talking points, learning to communicate effectively and preparing you to speak to your legislators. Workshop segments will focus on:

  • a legislative session debrief
  • introducing our net neutrality resolution initiative
  • effectively advocating with you city council rep
  • developing your own 30 second message to video and post on Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/events/188981168378038/

 

 

VoteFest 2.0

Sunday, April 8, 12 PM – 6 PM
Grill Dawg, 5419 Treadway Dr, Port Richey, Florida 34668


VoteFest 2.0 will continue the trend of reaching out to invigorate and include the community in the political process. VoteFest combines fantastic local music with voter registration and candidate speeches. It is an opportunity to meet and greet candidates for office that will effect the lives of Pasco County residents. Candidates are given three minutes of stage time to talk about issues, and their solutions for those issues. Vendors will be on hand selling a wide variety of art and craft items, and food & beverage will be available. 

https://www.facebook.com/events/237543016785747/

 

 

Leif Nissen Social Justice Lecture Series:
A Discussion with Les Leopold

Sunday, April 8 at 4:30 PM 
Temple Beth-El 400 Pasadena Ave S, St Pete 

 Leopold, co-founder of the Labor Institute, will discuss his latest book “Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice.” A light dinner will follow the lecture. 

https://www.facebook.com/events/2010966389173885/

 

 

An Evening with Jemele Hill:
A Gala Benefit

Saturday, April 21, 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

St. Petersburg Museum of History

Join the  League of Women Voters of St. Pete for a festive fundraiser featuring Jemele Hill, former host of ESPN’s SportsCenter and current Chief Correspondent and Senior Columnist for ESPN’s The Undefeated.  Jemele will speak to the St. Pete community about the intersectionality of race and gender in our culture, the world of sports, and the broader professional spectrum, as well as, the role of journalism in making democracy work.

Check LWVSPA webstite for ticket info (forthcoming): https://lwvspa.org/

 

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 14 – The Oak And The Holly


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play The Oak And The Holly — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Weekly Update 15 March

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, MAR 18 THIS SUNDAY: These Lenten Sundays are a time to think about how the church needs to be a Foundation for the Future.
EASTER FLOWERS: The time to order Easter Flowers is now! Fill out a form on Sunday or e-mail the church office with your name, the number of plants you would like to buy ($10 each) and who they are in honor or memory of. Make sure checks have “Easter Flowers” written in the memo line.
MAR 20 & 25 NEW MEMBERS: The church will be receiving new members Sunday March 25. Those interested in church membership are invited to speak with Rev. Wells. There will be two orientation sessions for those who are new to LUCC or who are interested in exploring membership. They will be held Tuesday March 20, one at 2:00 and one at 7:00. The sessions are the same. Choose the one most convenient for you. The orientation will offer a brief look at the history and mission of LUCC. All are welcome!
SUN, MAR 25 ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING: This special offering of the United Church of Christ will be received on Palm Sunday, March 25.  The One Great Hour of Sharing offering is taken by mainline denominations in the United States and it is used to help people around the world, including the US, in times of crisis.  Church sponsored organizations use the money to provide aid in times of famine, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other disasters and crisis situations.  Please pray about what you are able to give so that others may know the compassion of Christ in tangible ways in times of need.  
SUPPLIES NEEDED: Wally LeBlanc is collecting bath towels and deodorant to distribute to various shelters and others in need. Bath towels can be used or new – if used no stains or holes. Please bring towels to the church or contact Wally to make arrangements for getting them to him.
SUN, FEB 18 – MAR 18 SUNDAYS IN LENT: Services begin at 10:30 and focus on new directions in Christian expression that can form a solid “Foundation for the Future” as the church seeks to serve the world in the years ahead.
SUN, MAR 25 PALM SUNDAY: The service begins outside with the blessing of the palms. Please bring a palm branch and some to share if you can. The One Great Hour of Sharing Offering will be collected this Sunday. This offering is taken by mainline denominations in the United States and it is used to help people around the world, including the US, in times of crisis.
THU, MAR 29 MAUNDY THURSDAY: This is a night to remember Jesus’ last supper with his friends and followers. A light soup supper will be served at 6:00pm in the Fellowship Hall followed by a service of communion and Tenebrae in the sanctuary at 7:00. All are welcome at this solemn service of remembrance.
FRI, MAR 30 GOOD FRIDAY: There will be a guided labyrinth walk at noon related to the crucifixion of Jesus. The sanctuary will be open for meditation and prayer from noon until 3:00pm.
SUN, APR 1 EASTER: The celebration of Easter begins with a sunrise service at 7:00am outdoors on the church grounds followed by breakfast in the Fellowship Hall.
The Festival Service begins at 10:30am. This is an intergenerational service celebrating the power of Love that is stronger than death. The season of spring is a reminder that new life bursts forth even in the least expected places.
An Easter Egg hunt will be held following the Festival Service along with refreshments on the church grounds.
SAT, MAR 24 MARCH FOR OUR LIVES: On Saturday March 24, thousands of people will gather in Washington, D.C. for the March for Our Lives a march in support of sane gun laws. Susan Pomeroy from the LUCC family is planning to go and would like to know if there are others from the church family who want to go as well. Please be in touch with Susan. Many thanks to Susan for making this witness. There is a sister march planned for St. Petersburg, visit facebook for more information. “Blessed are the peacemakers.”
SAT, MAR 24 GREENFEST: Wally LeBlanc is having a booth once again at IRB Greenfest representing LUCC. If you are interested in volunteering for 2 or 3 hours on the day of the event or assisting with preparations beforehand please email Wally. The 11th Annual Indian Rocks Beach Greenfest will be March 24th from 10am to 5pm on the block of 24th Avenue & 1st Street in Indian Rocks Beach.
SUN, MAR 25 REFRESHMENTS: In lieu of Sunday Celebrations, there will be light refreshments following worship on Sunday March 25th. Bring a snack to share if you like.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY: Reserve your seat now for this celebration dinner! Forms available at church on Sunday.
LABYRINTH MAKEOVER: The labyrinth on the lawn at Lakewood has had a makeover thanks to the help of Melanie Moore and Bob Bell. Please use the labyrinth anytime you would like for reflection and prayer. It is always “open.”

COMMUNITY EVENTS

CIW ACTION: Five-day fast to fight sexual violence against women farmworkers underway outside Manhattan office of Wendy’s Board Chairman Nelson Peltz. Read more on the coalition website.
ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty and  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines.
SUN, MAR 18 FLORIDA AIDS WALK: Wally LeBlanc is participating in the Florida AIDS Walk as a sleepwalker meaning he won’t be walking but is fundraising. If you would like to donate, you can do so online or if you would like to donate with cash or check see Wally on Sunday after church.
WED MAR 21 SOLAR CO-OP INFO SESSION: Attend this info session to raise your awareness on the many benefits of going solar, how to save money on residential PV, and how co-op membership will make going solar easier. Wednesday, March 21, 6:00-7:30pm at the West St Petersburg Library
(6700 8th Ave N). Sponsored by the City of St. Petersburg, Solar United Neighbors of Florida, the League of Women Voters of St. Petersburg Area, and the Suncoast Sierra Clubs. RSVP for the event.
SUN, APR 8 SOCIAL JUSTICE LECTURE: Les Leopold, co-founder of the Labor Institute and author of Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice will give a lecture on causes and solutions to economic inequality at 4:30pm Sunday, April 8th at Temple Beth El (400 Pasadena Ave S). For more information call the Temple office at (727) 347-613.
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. March 18th. The mission for March is Daystar, funds from card sales will go to benefit DaystarMinistry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Katharine Conover & the family and loved ones of Martin Keane, Betty Harris,
Ruth Halderman’s family and friends, Ruth Harrington’s family and friends, Carolyn Moore, Bert and Joyce Lee, Willy Zessoules, Genevieve Jackle,
 Ann Quinn

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 13 – The Lake


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play The Lake — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 12 – The Darkest Gate


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play The Darkest Gate — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Meditations & Reflections for solo piano 11 – The Rose Of The World


Simply click on the arrow in the orange circle above to play The Rose Of The World — it’s free to play. It is one of the pieces I wrote to play for a series on contemplative moments during a past season at Lakewood UCC. If you wish to hear the complete set of pieces, Meditations & Reflections for solo piano, you may stream the audio at https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/meditations-reflections-for-solo-piano. If you want to play them at home on the piano, yourself, you can download the sheet music at hiltonkeanjones.com/music. To buy the CD click on the following link.

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Weekly Update 8 March

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

COMING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS

SUN, MAR 11 THIS SUNDAY: These Lenten Sundays are a time to think about how the church needs to be a Foundation for the Future.  This Sunday is a time to reflect on an individualist approach to life and a communitarian approach.  What is needed by the world going forward?  What is in keeping with the Christian tradition?  See Jeremiah 31:31-34 and John 12:20-15.
SUN, MAR 11 DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME BEGINS: Don’t forget to set your clocks ahead an hour (perhaps for the last time? Florida Lawmakers Vote to Stay in Daylight Savings Time All Year Long).
FRI, MAR 9 MEMORIAL SERVICE:  Ruth Harrington of the LUCC congregation and a resident of Westminster Suncoast died Saturday February 17th.  Sincere sympathy is expressed to her family and friends. A service to celebrate her life will be held on Friday, March 9th at 1pm at Westminster Suncoast chapel.
SAT, MAR 10 FUNERAL:  Ruth Halderman of the LUCC congregation died Saturday February 24th.  Sincere sympathy is expressed to her family and friends. Her funeral will be held on Saturday, March 10th at 1pm here in Lakewood’s Sanctuary with a reception to follow in the Fellowship Hall.
SUPPLIES NEEDED: Wally LeBlanc is collecting bath towels and deodorant to distribute to various shelters and others in need. Bath towels can be used or new – if used no stains or holes. Please bring towels to the church or contact Wally to make arrangements for getting them to him.
SUN, FEB 18 – MAR 18 SUNDAYS IN LENT: Services begin at 10:30 and focus on new directions in Christian expression that can form a solid “Foundation for the Future” as the church seeks to serve the world in the years ahead.
WED, FEB 21 – MAR 14 WEDNESDAY PRAYERS: Gatherings from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. for the ancient prayer practice of lectio divina, praying the scriptures. Lectio Divina is not a Bible study. It matters not whether a person knows very little about the Bible or is a biblical scholar. Led by Rev. Emily Bell.
SUN, MAR 25 PALM SUNDAY: The service begins outside with the blessing of the palms. Please bring a palm branch and some to share if you can. The One Great Hour of Sharing Offering will be collected this Sunday. This offering is taken by mainline denominations in the United States and it is used to help people around the world, including the US, in times of crisis.
THU, MAR 29 MAUNDY THURSDAY: This is a night to remember Jesus’ last supper with his friends and followers. A light soup supper will be served at 6:00pm in the Fellowship Hall followed by a service of communion and Tenebrae in the sanctuary at 7:00. All are welcome at this solemn service of remembrance.
FRI, MAR 30 GOOD FRIDAY: There will be a guided labyrinth walk at noon related to the crucifixion of Jesus. The sanctuary will be open for meditation and prayer from noon until 3:00pm.
SUN, APR 1 EASTER: The celebration of Easter begins with a sunrise service at 7:00am outdoors on the church grounds followed by breakfast in the Fellowship Hall.
The Festival Service begins at 10:30am. This is an intergenerational service celebrating the power of Love that is stronger than death. The season of spring is a reminder that new life bursts forth even in the least expected places.
An Easter Egg hunt will be held following the Festival Service along with refreshments on the church grounds.
SAT, MAR 24 MARCH FOR OUR LIVES: On Saturday March 24, thousands of people will gather in Washington, D.C. for the March for Our Lives a march in support of sane gun laws. Susan Pomeroy from the LUCC family is planning to go and would like to know if there are others from the church family who want to go as well. Please be in touch with Susan. Many thanks to Susan for making this witness. “Blessed are the peacemakers.”
SAT, MAR 24 GREENFEST: Wally LeBlanc is having a booth once again at IRB Greenfest representing LUCC. If you are interested in volunteering for 2 or 3 hours on the day of the event or assisting with preparations beforehand please email Wally. The 11th Annual Indian Rocks Beach Greenfest will be March 24th from 10am to 5pm on the block of 24th Avenue & 1st Street in Indian Rocks Beach.
SUN, MAR 25 REFRESHMENTS: In lieu of Sunday Celebrations, there will be light refreshments following worship on Sunday March 25th. Bring a snack to share if you like.
SUN, APR 15 ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY: Reserve your seat now for this celebration dinner! Forms available at church on Sunday.
LABYRINTH MAKEOVER: The labyrinth on the lawn at Lakewood has had a makeover thanks to the help of Melanie Moore and Bob Bell. Please use the labyrinth anytime you would like for reflection and prayer. It is always “open.”

COMMUNITY EVENTS

ONLINE PETITIONS: Urge your lawmakers to vote in ways that promote peace! Visit Equal Justice USA to support an end to the death penalty and  Move On to support a ban on military-style assault weapons and large capacity magazines.
THU, MAR 8 ADVOCACY TRAINING: Women are Making Democracy Work! Celebrate International Women’s Day by putting more in your advocacy tool chest. This workshop, led by League of Women Voters of the St. Petersburg area, and co-sponsored by Fired Up Pinellas, will provide a hands-on look at advocating for political change in 2018 with the CRC and beyond. The goal is to empower everyday activists to find their passion, get involved and go make a difference. Thursday, March 8, 6:15 – 8:45pm at Allendale United Methodist Church (3803 Haines Rd N). Everyone is invited. Refreshments provided. Registration is free, but required.
SUN, MAR 18 FLORIDA AIDS WALK: Wally LeBlanc is participating in the Florida AIDS Walk as a sleepwalker meaning he won’t be walking but is fundraising. If you would like to donate, you can do so online or if you would like to donate with cash or check see Wally on Sunday after church.
WED MAR 21 SOLAR CO-OP INFO SESSION: Attend this info session to raise your awareness on the many benefits of going solar, how to save money on residential PV, and how co-op membership will make going solar easier. Wednesday, March 21, 6:00-7:30pm at the West St Petersburg Library
(6700 8th Ave N). Sponsored by the City of St. Petersburg, Solar United Neighbors of Florida, the League of Women Voters of St. Petersburg Area, and the Suncoast Sierra Clubs. RSVP for the event.
CONTINUING LAKEWOOD UCC EVENTS
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.
THERE IS HOPE – COMMUNITY: Wally LeBlanc will have cards available for sale on Sun. March 18th. The mission for March is Daystar, funds from card sales will go to benefit DaystarMinistry item for months of March and April is deodorant, these will be given to Daystar to be used for their work. There will be a box in the back of Sanctuary for items to be placed in.
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.
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 the church office 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!


CIRCLE OF CONCERN

Katharine Conover & the family and loved ones of Martin Keane, Betty Harris,
Ruth Halderman’s family and friends, Ruth Harrington’s family and friends, Carolyn Moore, Bert and Joyce Lee, Willy Zessoules, Genevieve Jackle,
 Ann Quinn, Vita Uth

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