Many Ways to Give Thanks
Yes, there is a pandemic. Yes, that means for many of us life is restricted. Yes, some have lost loved ones and had dear ones contract the virus. Yes, the COVID 19 crisis has had a devastating economic impact on many. BUT – there are still things to be grateful for. Cultivating a spirit of gratitude can help us to maintain our spiritual health especially in times of trial.
Your LUCC faith community is providing many ways to give thanks this season of Thanksgiving:
In Person Worship Sunday Nov. 22 at 10:30 a.m.
There will be an in person worship service, outdoors, with masks, physical distancing and no singing, on the church grounds Sunday Nov. 22 at 10:30 a.m. You may bring something that represents what you are thankful for to add to the altar. All are welcome! There will be childcare.
Virtual Worship Thanksgiving Sunday Nov. 22 at Noon
The church will offer the same service that is being held in person virtually via Zoom/Facebook Live on Sunday Nov. 22 at noon. Participants will be able to watch the live streaming service taking place in the sanctuary and comment to each other in the chat space provided. Hopefully this will help to meet the needs of those who are not able or do not feel safe participating in person. Look for a link in your email the week before the service.
Congregational Gratitude Music Video
Music Director Hilton Jones is working on a Thanksgiving music video celebrating all that we have to be thankful for. Please help by sending pictures that represent what you are thankful for. Children and young people are encouraged to submit pictures of what they are thankful for. It will lift our spirits to see the inspiring video posted at Thanksgiving and feel a sense of gratitude not only for all that is shown in the video but also for the church which inspires us to give thanks in all seasons!
Pictures are needed by Wednesday Nov. 11.
Please email pictures to email@example.com
Offerings for Thanksgiving
Show your gratitude by extending generosity to others. Giving helps you to be aware of your abundance.
In addition to regular church offerings, this Thanksgiving there will be a special collection for the Special Needs Fund of the church which helps people in the church and in the community with basic needs such as rent, utilities, and prescriptions. The pandemic has increased the needs of our neighbors. Make your gift in person at the service or send it to the church marked Special Needs, or use PayPal at the church website.
There will also be a special food collection for Operation Attack. Cereal, peanut butter, pasta, pasta sauce, and canned meat are needed. Bring donations to church and place them in the grocery cart at church.
Sharing a Meal
What is Thanksgiving without food? And yet many will not be joining family and friends this year because of the health and safety issues involved. The LUCC Care Team is sponsoring a get together for people from the church to eat together on Thanksgiving. This gathering will be outdoors with masks and physical distancing. Participants may bring their own food or have food provided. Each will bring their own plates, utensils, and drinks. Those who would like to participate are asked to contact Patti Cooksey so that adequate arrangements can be made for the number of people who will be attending. More details will be forthcoming. You can reach Patti at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanksgiving Corona Sabbath
For those who have built the Corona Sabbath posts into their devotional routine, there will be a weekly Corona Sabbath post featuring the Thanksgiving music video with the pictures submitted by the congregation. This will be posted on Friday Nov. 20th.
In Person Services and Gatherings Ahead!
In the next two months, the church is going to experiment with a ‘soft’ re-opening. There will be in person gatherings and services outside, with masks, and physical distancing. There will be no singing. Participants are encouraged to bring their own chairs. Some will also be available at the church.
Here’s what’s coming:
In addition, the weekly guided labyrinth walks will continue on Wednesday mornings at 9:00 a.m. and weekly anti-racism demonstrations will continue on Sunday evenings at 5:00 p.m. All are welcome.
For those who want to remain engaged with the church ‘remotely’, the church will continue to post a weekly Corona Sabbath with a scripture reading, reflection from Rev. Wells, and music from Hilton Jones. Paper copies of the Corona Sabbath and the Update will continue to be sent to those who do not use the internet.
After this period of experimentation, there will be a discussion about how to proceed into the New Year.
Church Office Open
Office administrator, Gabi Paxton, will be at church Tuesday – Friday mornings from 9:30-noon. Please feel free to stop by with donations for Maximo or Operation Attack or to take care of other things at church.
LUCC Library Project
Beginning this past summer, Claire Stiles, Colleen Coughenour, and Patti Cooksey have been working to renew the LUCC Library and create and expand a useful, relevant, and appealing space for meetings, library resources, and reading/book discussions. To that end, the process has involved:
- removing all books from the shelve
- recycling and disposing of some of the collection that is outdated and in poor condition –
- reorganizing and recategorizing the remaining works
- reshelving all resources after cleaning storage spaces
Many thanks to Claire, Colleen, and Patti!
For pictures and additional information, click here: https://lakewooducc.org/2020/11/05/lucc-library-project/
How Do We Sustain Ourselves?
At the guided labyrinth walk, one of the things discussed was how do we sustain our spirits when the culture around us feels at odds with our faith commitments?How do we face these trying times? Here were some of the responses:
- Stay connected to people from church who share our values
- Spiritual readings and practices
- Uplifting music
- Gratitude journal
- Choose a news diet – limit news intake
- Spend time in nature
- Limit exposure to negative influences
What would you add to this list? How are you sustaining yourself in these stressful times?
Garden Hooks Needed
The church would like a few more garden shepherd hooks to use for night time outdoor events. The hooks are put in the ground and lanterns are hung from the hooks to light the outdoor space. If you come across such hooks at a yard sale or unused in your garage, please consider donating them to the church. Thank you!
Thanks to your generosity and constancy, the church has been able to remain basically financially stable and viable during the pandemic. At a recent advisors meeting, it was decided that there would not be a traditional stewardship campaign this year. No Big Event and no Harvest Forms. This year. That being said, you are encouraged to maintain your current giving in the year ahead. And, of course, you are encouraged to increase your giving to the church for 2021 as you are able. The pandemic has shown us the importance of the ministry of the church for meeting people’s spiritual and material needs as well as for being an agent of societal transformation.
If you would like to make a change in your giving to the church for the coming year, please be in touch with Bill Parsons at email@example.com.
While the ministry of the church has definitely changed, it has certainly not decreased. In fact, it has increased. These times call for creativity and experimentation and the LUCC family is embracing this time of transition in exciting ways!
Adult Day Care Update
Work is finally beginning on the renovation of the Fellowship Hall to accommodate the new adult day care program that will be offered by Neighborly Services. The mitigation of the asbestos in the ceiling is complete. Electrical work is proceeding. A fire alarm system that includes the sanctuary building is underway. The addition of 3 accessible bathrooms is to begin shortly. The church eagerly awaits welcoming this new program which will address the needs of senior citizens in this area.
Corona Sabbath Ahead
Investment advice is the theme for this week’s Corona Sabbath. A teaching from Jesus has many meanings and implications. Take a look at Matthew 25:14-30. It looks like a template for capitalism, but is it?
On this week’s post, Claire Stiles reads the scripture lesson, Rev. Kim Wells offers a reflection, and Hilton Jones provides the music.
If you missed last week’s Corona Sabbath here’s the link:
Meeting Needs at Maximo Elementary
LUCC’s EDUCATION MINISTRY TEAM and the WESTMINSTER SOCIAL JUSTICE TEAM
have collectively purchased and delivered the following items to Maximo Elementary for the children:
2 dresses~2 jumpers~9 skirts~30 shirts~21 pants~93 briefs~20 cloth masks~50 disposable masks~100 disposable vinyl gloves
In addition to these, checks have been received to purchase more needed supplies.
Thank you EACH and EVERYONE for your love and caring concern for these children.
Anti-Racism Demonstrations Continue on Sundays
Weekly demonstrations to end racism continue in front of the church each Sunday at 5:00 p.m. Bring a sign or use one of the signs provided. Regardless of the outcome of the election, this witness is an important demonstration of Christian values and moral values. All are welcome to join in!
Check out the post of the chalk witness created at the anti-racism demonstration.
And use the following link to see pictures from the last demonstration.
In case of rain, the demonstration will not be held that week. Know justice, know peace!
Weekly Labyrinth Walks Continue
Each Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. a small group gathers at the outdoor labyrinth for a time of devotion, discussion, and meditative walking of the labyrinth. The theme for the week is taken from the Corona Sabbath of the week before, so it is an opportunity to go deeper in the spiritual exploration of that theme for your life. This devotional gathering is outside and physical distancing is maintained. All are welcome!
If there is rain on Wednesday morning, the gathering will be held on Thursday morning at 9:00.
Spiritual Direction Offered by LUCC Clergy Member.
In these troubled times, it is important to find ways to tend to our spiritual lives. In the Christian tradition, Spiritual Direction is one of the ways of paying attention to the spirit in our lives. A Spiritual Director is someone to talk with about what is going on in our spiritual life and in our relationship with God however we may conceive of God.
Rev. Sally Purvis, Ph.D., a member of LUCC, is a retired clergy person with training and experience in Spiritual Direction. She is offering her services as a Spiritual Director to the community. The sessions would be held on Zoom and there is no fee to be paid. Church leaders are pleased to have the ministry of the church expand in this way.
Spiritual Direction with Sally is open to anyone, not just the congregation. And it is offered to everyone whatever their spiritual or religious background or affiliation or lack thereof. Sessions are generally held once every three weeks. Spiritual Direction is not a mode of therapy. It is a process for understanding and deepening your relationship with God/Spirit in ways that are authentic and life-giving.
Sally was trained by Henri Nouwen, a noted spiritual guide of the 20th century, and did Spiritual Direction as part of her professional ministry before retiring in 2015.
The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.
USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS DURING THE CORONA CRISIS:
- Corona Sabbath Posts
- Sermon and Reflection Texts
- Music at Lakewood
- Lakewood UCC YouTube Channel
- Lakewood UCC on Twitter
- Lakewood on Facebook
- Lakewood on Instagram
- Daily Corona Prayer
For the above church website links, please note the “Older Posts” button near the bottom of each page.
About Hilton’s music. . . If you would enjoy hearing Hilton play more Irish folk songs, you can
listen for free at either https://hiltonjones.bandcamp.com/album/irish-
tunes or https://soundcloud.com/hilton-kean-jones/sets/irish-tunes .
November Birthdays: Lucille Ruga 11/9, Emily Bell 11/15, Rev. Susan Sherwood 11/15, Ed Kaspar 11/21, Lorne Palmer 11/21, Bert Lee 11/22, Bill Lindsay 11/23, Wally LeBlanc 11/23, Kai’Lyn Washington 11/27, and Jane Diven 11/29, Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.
Circle of Concern: JoAnn Reid, William Owen, Wilbur Reid, Jen Degroot, Carolyn Moore, Ann Quinn, Maggie Brizendine, Dave Radens, Family and loved ones of Elinor Ross, teachers, students, and school personnel, and all healthcare workers and essential workers. All those suffering from COVID-19.
Please keep LUCC member, Olivia Gibson, in your prayers. She is a nurse in a COVID-19 unit in a local hospital. We are grateful for her ministry!
- Midweek Hymn (medley): NCH #459, 441, 444 November 11, 2020
- Sunday Morning Music: Elgar’s NIMROD November 8, 2020
- Corona Sabbath 34 CHOOSE THIS DAY Reflection Text November 6, 2020
- Corona Sabbath 34 CHOOSE THIS DAY November 6, 2020
Weekly Update: If you are involved with an activity or event that you would like to share with the LUCC family, please send the information to the Church Office by Tuesday since the Update usually is sent out on Wednesday.