Weekly Update 11/4

On land originally inhabited by the Tocabaga

‘Tis A Gift

This is a season to ponder the many gifts that we are being given each and every day.  It is a season for gratitude.  Last Sunday in church, the lives of those who have gone before us were honored and celebrated.  It was very moving and inspiring to remember those who have died and what they have meant to us.  Many thanks to all who participated!

This coming Sunday, November 7, will be a celebration of All Saints Sunday.  While this is a Sunday to honor those who have in some way revealed God to us.  We expand that concept to include nature as well.  The natural world is considered the self-disclosure of God, so we will honor how God is manifest for us in nature as well as in our own species.  

November 14 will be Stewardship Sunday.  This is an opportunity to celebrate how LUCC is a gift in our lives and to offer our gratitude and support through our time, talent, and treasure.  The church enriches our lives in so many ways.  This is a time to celebrate that!

November 21 is Thanksgiving Sunday.  The service will be outside.  Everyone is invited to bring something that represents a gift in your life, something you are grateful for.  Together we will construct an altar of gratitude.  

November 28 is the first Sunday of Advent.  The advent season provides the opportunity to continue to reflect on the gifts that we are receiving through the birth of Jesus and in so many other ways in our lives and in our world.

This covid time has been very stressful for everyone.  It continues to present challenges and cause friction and discomfort.  With the holidays coming, that friction may increase.  There may be tension between what we want to do and what is safe.  That makes this an important time to be intentional about considering all the gifts that we are receiving, all we have to be grateful for, what truly is important and what matters in our lives.  Even this deadly pandemic may be a blessing in some ways.  “God is working all things together for good.”  Please know that LUCC is intent on providing spiritual support and connection even during these difficult days, especially during these difficult days.  


Sunday, Nov. 7  – All Saints Sunday

This is a special celebration of the many ways that the presence of God is experienced in our lives – through others and through the natural world.  The congregation will have the opportunity to name saints in the service.  

Communion will also be served this Sunday. The Communion offering will be received. This offering is used to help people in the church and the community with basic needs such as rent and utility assistance, bus passes, prescriptions, etc. There has been a heavy need for these funds. Please consider how you can help the community through this offering

PLEASE NOTE:  

With the cooler temperatures we will resume opening the doors and windows for morning worship as we continue efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Sunday services are being held at 10:30 a.m. Masks are required. There is physical distancing. Childcare is provided.

You can also join in on Facebook Live at 10:30. Please see the instructions below. 


Sundays

Look for the bulletin posted on the church website on Friday: https://lakewooducc.org/category/bulletins/

Watch the service on Facebook Live Sundays at 10:30. https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

Or on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/LakewoodUCC/videos

Instructions for how to access Facebook Live: For additional assistance, please contact the church office.

Here are some instructions to watch our Sunday services live through Facebook:

Use the following link to visit our homepage: https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC/

On Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. please use the link above to visit our homepage. There, after using the link, you will see a section labeled “Happening Now”. This is our Livestream of the Sunday Service.

To watch the live stream, locate and click the “watch video” button in the lower right corner of the screen.

If the link above is not working, there is also a link to our Facebook page on our website. Please try that link located on the Home page of our website.


Stewardship Ahead

It is the time of year when we reflect on what has been and look ahead to what we might anticipate.  The changing of the seasons.  The ending of one year and the beginning of a new year.  You are invited to reflect on how LUCC has been a gift to you in your life, and how this precious, faithful church is a gift to the world.  In the next few weeks, a beautiful stewardship letter written by Lucille Ruga will be sent out and posted on the church website.  There will be an opportunity to pledge time, talent, and treasure, to support the ministry of the church for 2022.  The Harvest form will be available which provides a wonderful way to appreciate and celebrate the ministry of the congregation and its impact on the world. 

Yes, it is the usual stewardship stuff, done just about every year.  But perhaps more significant now as we realize just what an amazing gift LUCC is to us and to the world.  This is evident in all of the energy, creativity, connection, and adaptation that has been made to continue to offer the ministry of the church to the congregation and the world in a safe manner during the pandemic.  This church matters.  Plan to be in church Sunday, Nov. 14 or to participate on Facebook Live to celebrate and support this precious gift!


Wednesday Workshops Ahead!

The Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ is offering a series of Wednesday Workshops on Zoom at 7 p.m.  These events are intended for people from all churches of the Florida Conference.  Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate.  Here are the topics for the weeks ahead and information about how to tune in.  

Wednesday, Nov 10
Workshop Wednesdays: Preaching an Earth-loving Jesus in a Time of Climate Crisis

This workshop will explore the Earth-Loving Jesus and his kin-dom of God for preaching during climate change. We will explore the spiritual ecology of Jesus and kin-dom praxis and message in opposition to empire. Jesus represents a Hebrew Creation-centered spirituality that remained in opposition to empire in the Hebrew scriptures and against Roman colonization of the land. There are strong parallels of Jewish peasant relation to the land indigenous peoples in North America. Both were connected to the land as divine gift and dispossessed of their lands. Rev. Shore-Goss will provide an ecological paradigm of the Spirit-led Jesus and his kin-dom praxis.

Rev. Dr. Bob Shore-Goss is a retired UCC clergy/theologian and serves on the UCC Environmental Justice Council. When he served as the pastor of the North Hollywood MCC United Church of Christ, the church was recognized as the first Creation Justice Church of the denomination. Shore-Goss received a Th.D. from Harvard University in Comparative Religion and Christian Theology and self-identifies as a Buddhist-Christian. He has led numerous workshops for Cannula Gatherings, the Parliament of World Religions (2015) and individual churches of several denominations on creating sustainable spiritualties of faith communities for long-term commitment for eco-justice.

Wednesday, Nov 17
Workshop Wednesdays: Small Church is not Less Church

The Zoom Meeting ID is 361-687-8295, and here’s the link to connect: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/3616878295. And here is a link to a flyer with information on all the upcoming workshops.

https://www.uccfla.org


New Church Directory Available

An updated church directory is available.  The directory is a welcome tool to help the congregation remain connected and in contact with each other.  Please pick one up when you are at the church.  If you would like one sent to you, please contact the Church Office at lakewooducc@gmail.com or call at 727-867-7961. The directory is a welcome tool to help the congregation remain connected and in contact with each other.  


Technology Grant Received

The church has received a technology grant from the Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ to improve the sound system in the sanctuary and facilitate the streaming of the worship service on Sunday mornings.  Gratitude is expressed to the Conference for this generous assistance!


Adult Day Care Available

The Neighborly Services Adult Day Care at the church still has openings available.  The center is open Monday through Friday during the day.  Clients can come every day or part-time.  Health insurance and VA benefits can be used to offset the expenses.  If you have a friend or neighbor who could benefit from these services, please suggest the Evergreen Adult Day Care Center.  For more information, call 727-954-6484.


Electronics Recycling

Many thanks to all who contributed to the electronics recycling effort.  Many devices and cords and equipment were collected to be recycled into new equipment and kept out of the landfill!


Anti Racism Demonstrations

The church will resume its witness against racism with weekly demonstrations along the sidewalk of 54th Ave. S. Make your own sign or use one of the signs at the church.
Demonstrations will be held Sundays from 5:30-6 beginning Sunday, October 3. In case of rain, the demonstration will not be held that week.

Know justice, know peace! This is an important way to inspire hope in the community and to work to create an anti-racist society.


Guided Labyrinth Walks

The guided walk is held weekly on Wednesdays at 9:00 a.m. This provides an opportunity to be aware and deepen your spiritual journey. If it is raining, the walk is held on Thursday at 9:00 a.m.

Also, the readings and prayers used on Wednesdays at the guided walk are put in the mailbox by the labyrinth each week for use during the week.

The labyrinth is on the church grounds near the southwest corner of the church property. It is available for use at all times.


Being Covid Safe and In-Person Worship

Please stay home if you are not feeling well.

Please wear a mask while in the church building.  While most people have been vaccinated, this helps visitors to feel safe.  

Additional masks will be available at church to use as needed.

Two hand sanitizing stations are available for use by worshippers.

There is well-ventilated, physically distanced indoor seating in the sanctuary.

Please know that your safety is of primary consideration! 

Safe childcare is provided.


Operation Attack Update

OA needs donations of cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese. Donations may be placed on the shelf in the hallway at church.


USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS:

For the above church website links, please note the “Older Posts” button near the bottom of each page.


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: 

Dave Radens

William Owen-Cowan

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn is now under Hospice care

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

All those suffering from COVID-19 and all healthcare workers

Schools: Students, families, teachers, and staff


Church Office Hours:  Tuesday 9:30-noon Thursday-Friday 9:30-noon. 


Recent Posts:


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.

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