Weekly Update 8/4

Sundays

 The service is at 9:30 in person, covid safe.

Childcare provided.

When does no really mean no?  There’s a story associated with Jesus that raises that issue.  Take a look at Matthew 15:21-28.  The Canaanite woman sheds light on this for Jesus and for us.

Watch the service on Facebook Live Sundays at 9:30. https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

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


Advisors Meeting Sunday

The advisors will meet at 11:15 on Sunday on Zoom.  One of the concerns to be addressed is the safety of in person worship at this time in the covid pandemic.  If you have thoughts or feelings about this, please contact an advisor:  Patti Cooksey, Lucille Ruga, Jane Diven, or Malcolm Wells.  All are welcome.   If you would like to participate in the meeting, here is the Zoom link:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2700683648


Rev. Wells on Vacation

Rev. Wells will be on vacation from August 9-21.  On Sunday Aug. 15, she will be in Burlington, MA to baptize her two grandsons, Soren and Emerson, an occasion for much joy and celebration!If pastoral care is  needed, please contact Patti Cooksey at cooksepa@eckerd.edu or the Church Office 727-867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com.


Tree Mapping – Tree Planting on the Church Grounds

SAVE THE DATE:  August 29, 2021 at 10:30 a.m.

The Urban Forestry Committee of the City of St. Petersburg is sponsoring a tree mapping event on the church grounds on Sunday Aug. 29 at 10:30 following worship.  This event will involve a process for mapping the trees currently on the church property and developing a plan to add more trees to the church grounds.

 The all volunteer Urban Forestry Committee includes a landscape architect, a certified arborist, and state and county master naturalists.  

Members and friends of the church are needed to help with the tree mapping.  So, plan to stay after worship on Sunday Aug. 29 to be part of this exciting initiative to ‘green’ the church grounds.  All are welcome!  


“WHO WILL SPEAK FOR THE TREES?” A RESOLUTION ON THE RIGHTS OF NATURE

Jul 19, 2021

Resolution as Adopted by the United Church of Christ General Synod 33 UCC became the first mainline Protestant denomination to affirm and declare that nature has rights. The global movement for the rights of nature has become a significant force over the last 15 years with a number of countries and indigenous leaders enacting laws and supporting this philosophy. This resolution urges all UCC church to take “intentional actions” including becoming a Creation Justice Church, a designation that we have already attained!

For Christians, affirming the rights of nature is especially significant because it is a central part of decolonizing our faith. Too often, misguided conceptions of “dominion” over nature have gone hand-in-hand with a conquer and plunder ethos that treats nature as something to own and exploit. At its heart, the rights of nature movement supersedes such world-views with both an affirmation of our interconnectedness with nature and a recognition that the rest of nature inherently deserves to flourish and thrive. Truly caring for God’s creation requires this fundamental outlook. Let’s celebrate this critical advancement in our faith tradition.

Summary is adapted by Claire Stiles from article by Rev. Brooks Berndt,
UCC Minister for Environmental Justice
UCC Pollinator Newsletter – July 22 2021

Further articles on the passing of the resolution can be found here and here. One can also read the resolution in its entirety. We urge you to subscribe to The Pollinator.


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.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending double masking.  Please consider wearing two masks to church.  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.


Immigration Action Item: THOUSANDS of Dreamers at risk of deportation! 

Severe processing delays are keeping THOUSANDS of DACA immigrants at risk of deportation and unemployment! As of March 31, USCIS had a backlog of more than 55,000 pending first-time DACA applications, in addition to over 44,000 renewal requests. United We Dream – an organization led by Dreamers – is calling on President Biden to clear the backlog NOW. 


Please sign the United We Dream’s petition calling on Biden and USCIS to clear the DACA backlog and process applications and renewals in a timely manner.
Click here:  https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/end-the-daca-backlog/


Operation Attack Update

Good Afternoon, 
I hope you are doing well, many members of Lakewood UCC are aware that I’ve graduated from high school (thank you for the card) and plan to head to college. While at college, I won’t be able to help collect any OA donations or help keep Lakewood up to date on OA needs. I’ve had this task all of high school and I am very thankful for it. For replacing me, I HIGHLY recommend my brother Owen Blair-Catala. This position has been passed down from Zach to me and now to Owen. He’s someone who is active in OA and understands the task he must complete from watching me do them. 

Besides this OA is still doing very well. There are the same drive thru dates as before (September 11th). In addition, OA also still needs Donations of cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese. I came by this past week and was able to get some donations. Remember we still aren’t accepting clothing donations at the moment. If you have any questions please contact me. 

Thanks,Ian Blair-Catala

iblaircatala@gmail.com


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.

If you would like to explore Spiritual Direction with Sally, please contact her at
sallybpurvis@icloud.com or contact the church (867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com ).

The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.


USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS:

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


August Birthdays: Barbara Donohue 8/4, Mardie Chapman 8/7, Claire Stiles 8/11, Kay Rencken 8/13, Vita Uth 8/14, Dana Cosper 8/22, James Waterman 8/23, and Joanne Reid 8/28. Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.


Circle of Concern: 

Bill Parsons

Earl Waters

Dave Radens

Richard Wiggins and family

Sherry Santana

William Owen-Cowan

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

All those suffering from COVID-19.


Church Office Hours:  Tuesday-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.

Weekly Update 7/28

Sundays

 The service is at 9:30 in person, covid safe.

Childcare provided.

This Sunday is a time to consider how the gospel is a treasure in our lives.  See Matthew 13:45-46.  Wear your pearls!

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 heavy need for these funds. Please consider how you can help the community through this offering.

Watch the service on Facebook Live Sundays at 9:30. https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

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


In Memoriam

Mae Wiggins died Tuesday July 20.  Mae was the spouse of Richard Wiggins, the founding pastor of LUCC.  Given that there were no childcare centers in this part of St. Petersburg, Mae started the LUCC Childcare Center around 1970.  She wanted families to have safe, enriching daycare for their children.  Following their ministry at LUCC, the Wiggins moved to New Port Richey where Richard served the UCC church there.  That is where they have stayed in retirement.  Please keep Richard and their family and loved ones in your prayers.  

There will be memorial service in Port Richey on Saturday July 31 at 6:00 p.m. Please contact Rev. Wells if you would like to carpool to the service.  


You Can Impact the Death Penalty in Florida!
See the church website or Facebook page for a petition to sign and a video.  One step at a time, this inhuman practice can be abolished!  

https://lakewooducc.org/2021/07/20/former-florida-chief-justice-gerald-kogan-left-legacy-opposing-the-death-penalty/


United Church of Christ Holds Virtual Assembly

For highlights of the recent UCC General Synod, follow this link.

https://www.ucc.org/virtual-general-synod-able-to-connect-delegates-with-each-other-and-the-church/inf_contact_key=6c6dea068e9283bfdd6a30dac7210977b7af0999dac2af6212784c39e05d2aef

LUCC is part of an awesome denomination!  And the Rev. Karen Georgia Thompson who is Associate General Minister of the UCC and led the planning for the General Synod was a member of LUCC when she lived in St. Petersburg!


Meals on Wheels From the Church

Meals on Wheels now has a distribution center at Lakewood United Church as part of the Neighborly senior center. They need volunteers to help deliver meals to shut-in seniors in our area. Sometimes, the only person a client sees all day is a MoW volunteer. They are following COVID-safe practices (mask wearing, social distancing, dropping off food rather than entering the home). Volunteers pick up the meals at 10:30 and drive to clients in the area, and return the empty bags to LUCC when they’re done, usually within an hour. Please consider doing this; it takes just an hour once a week to make someone happy. Please contact Angela, the MoW coordinator at 727-612-1791 and she will tell you how to get trained. Or go to https://neighborly.org/volunteer-opportunities/ to find out more.

Scan the QR code to watch a video for more information about volunteering

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is dea8808f-9abd-ac39-e5af-b4ee53106b2a.png

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.


Be Part of Reducing AIDS

There is an  the increase in HIV/AIDS infections in our area.  As a way of responding, Suncoast Hospice has given the church a large supply of condoms to be distributed. They will be placed in the bathrooms at the church.  They will also be available in the sanctuary.  The church advisors are encouraging the congregation to take some condoms and put them in public bathrooms and workplace bathrooms where they may get picked up by the appropriate population.  

So, the next time you are at the church, pick up a few condoms and see that they make their way out into the community!


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.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending double masking.  Please consider wearing two masks to church.  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.


Immigration Action Item: THOUSANDS of Dreamers at risk of deportation! 

Severe processing delays are keeping THOUSANDS of DACA immigrants at risk of deportation and unemployment! As of March 31, USCIS had a backlog of more than 55,000 pending first-time DACA applications, in addition to over 44,000 renewal requests. United We Dream – an organization led by Dreamers – is calling on President Biden to clear the backlog NOW. 

Please sign the United We Dream’s petition calling on Biden and USCIS to clear the DACA backlog and process applications and renewals in a timely manner.
Click here:  https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/end-the-daca-backlog/


Operation Attack Update

Good Afternoon, 
I hope you are doing well, many members of Lakewood UCC are aware that I’ve graduated from high school (thank you for the card) and plan to head to college. While at college, I won’t be able to help collect any OA donations or help keep Lakewood up to date on OA needs. I’ve had this task all of high school and I am very thankful for it. For replacing me, I HIGHLY recommend my brother Owen Blair-Catala. This position has been passed down from Zach to me and now to Owen. He’s someone who is active in OA and understands the task he must complete from watching me do them. 

Besides this OA is still doing very well. There are the same drive thru dates as before (July 31st and September 11th). In addition, OA also still needs Donations of cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese. I came by this past week and was able to get some donations. Remember we still aren’t accepting clothing donations at the moment. If you have any questions please contact me. 

Thanks,Ian Blair-Catala

iblaircatala@gmail.com


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.

If you would like to explore Spiritual Direction with Sally, please contact her at
sallybpurvis@icloud.com or contact the church (867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com ).

The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.


USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS:

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


July Birthdays: Ann Quinn 7/6. Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.


Circle of Concern: 

Bill Parsons

Earl Waters

Dave Radens

Richard Wiggins and family

Carol Shores

Sherry Santana

William Owen-Cowan

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

All those suffering from COVID-19.


Church Office Hours:  Tuesday-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.

Weekly Update 7/21

Sundays

 The service is at 9:30 in person, covid safe.

Childcare provided.

The Sundays in July will be themed “Tell Me the Stories of Jesus.”  Each Sunday will feature a beloved story associated with Jesus.  These stories still offer much to inspire and inform our faith and our living today. 

This Sunday is a time to reflect on a story associated with Jesus that is well known but maybe not so well liked.  There will be a discussion oriented sermon with participation invited from the congregation.  Take a look at Matthew 20:10-16.

Watch the service on Facebook Live Sundays at 9:30. https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

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


In Memoriam

Mae Wiggins died Tuesday July 20.  Mae was the spouse of Richard Wiggins, the founding pastor of LUCC.  Given that there were no childcare centers in this part of St. Petersburg, Mae started the LUCC Childcare Center around 1970.  She wanted families to have safe, enriching daycare for their children.  Following their ministry at LUCC, the Wiggins moved to New Port Richey where Richard served the UCC church there.  That is where they have stayed in retirement.  Please keep Richard and their family and loved ones in your prayers.  


Follow Up Conversation from June Services

Those who would like to are invited to be part of a follow up conversation about the services held in June.  Are you looking at a feather and remembering your blessings?  Are you lighting matches?  Do you look at the sticker on your water bottle?  Kim Wells will invite reflection and reaction to some of the activities that were done in worship in June to aid in healing and processing of the pandemic experience.  This conversation will be held Sunday July 25 following morning worship.


Voter Registration Deadline July 26

The deadline to register to vote in the August 24 city election is Monday July 26.  Please make sure that you are registered to vote and encourage others to register as well!

https://www.votepinellas.com/


You Can Impact the Death Penalty in Florida!
See the church website or Facebook page for a petition to sign and a video.  One step at a time, this inhuman practice can be abolished!  

https://lakewooducc.org/2021/07/20/former-florida-chief-justice-gerald-kogan-left-legacy-opposing-the-death-penalty/


United Church of Christ Holds Virtual Assembly

For highlights of last week’s UCC General Synod, follow this link.

https://www.ucc.org/virtual-general-synod-able-to-connect-delegates-with-each-other-and-the-church/inf_contact_key=6c6dea068e9283bfdd6a30dac7210977b7af0999dac2af6212784c39e05d2aef

LUCC is part of an awesome denomination!  And the Rev. Karen Georgia Thompson who is Associate General Minister of the UCC and led the planning for the General Synod was a member of LUCC when she lived in St. Petersburg!


New Members

In these challenging times, being part of a church community is more grounding and supportive than ever!  The LUCC congregation is so grateful for all of the ways that spiritual support has been offered this past year and beyond.  The church would like to officially welcome as members those who are finding a spiritual ‘home’ at LUCC.  For those who are interested in considering church membership, there is an orientation session about the mission, identity, history and theology of the church.  Please be in contact with Rev. Wells if you would like to consider joining the church.  The orientation and the Sunday for joining will then be determined accordingly.


Meals on Wheels From the Church

Meals on Wheels now has a distribution center at Lakewood United Church as part of the Neighborly senior center. They need volunteers to help deliver meals to shut-in seniors in our area. Sometimes, the only person a client sees all day is a MoW volunteer. They are following COVID-safe practices (mask wearing, social distancing, dropping off food rather than entering the home). Volunteers pick up the meals at 10:30 and drive to clients in the area, and return the empty bags to LUCC when they’re done, usually within an hour. Please consider doing this; it takes just an hour once a week to make someone happy. Please contact Angela, the MoW coordinator at 727-612-1791 and she will tell you how to get trained. Or go to https://neighborly.org/volunteer-opportunities/ to find out more.

Scan the QR code to watch a video for more information about volunteering

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is dea8808f-9abd-ac39-e5af-b4ee53106b2a.png

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.


Be Part of Reducing AIDS

There is an  the increase in HIV/AIDS infections in our area.  As a way of responding, Suncoast Hospice has given the church a large supply of condoms to be distributed. They will be placed in the bathrooms at the church.  They will also be available in the sanctuary.  The church advisors are encouraging the congregation to take some condoms and put them in public bathrooms and workplace bathrooms where they may get picked up by the appropriate population.  

So, the next time you are at the church, pick up a few condoms and see that they make their way out into the community!


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.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending double masking.  Please consider wearing two masks to church.  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.


Immigration Action Item: THOUSANDS of Dreamers at risk of deportation! 

Severe processing delays are keeping THOUSANDS of DACA immigrants at risk of deportation and unemployment! As of March 31, USCIS had a backlog of more than 55,000 pending first-time DACA applications, in addition to over 44,000 renewal requests. United We Dream – an organization led by Dreamers – is calling on President Biden to clear the backlog NOW. 

Please sign the United We Dream’s petition calling on Biden and USCIS to clear the DACA backlog and process applications and renewals in a timely manner.
Click here:  https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/end-the-daca-backlog/


Operation Attack Update

Good Afternoon, 
I hope you are doing well, many members of Lakewood UCC are aware that I’ve graduated from high school (thank you for the card) and plan to head to college. While at college, I won’t be able to help collect any OA donations or help keep Lakewood up to date on OA needs. I’ve had this task all of high school and I am very thankful for it. For replacing me, I HIGHLY recommend my brother Owen Blair-Catala. This position has been passed down from Zach to me and now to Owen. He’s someone who is active in OA and understands the task he must complete from watching me do them. 

Besides this OA is still doing very well. There are the same drive thru dates as before (July 31st and September 11th). In addition, OA also still needs Donations of cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese. I came by this past week and was able to get some donations. Remember we still aren’t accepting clothing donations at the moment. If you have any questions please contact me. 

Thanks,Ian Blair-Catala

iblaircatala@gmail.com


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.

If you would like to explore Spiritual Direction with Sally, please contact her at
sallybpurvis@icloud.com or contact the church (867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com ).

The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.


USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS:

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


July Birthdays: Ann Quinn 7/6. Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.


Circle of Concern: 

Bill Parsons

Earl Waters

Dave Radens

Richard Wiggins and family

Carol Shores

Sherry Santana

William Owen-Cowan

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

All those suffering from COVID-19.


Church Office Hours:  Tuesday-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.

Former Florida Chief Justice Gerald Kogan Left Legacy Opposing the Death Penalty

Pastor Kim,

His voice softened and he shook his head.

“It puts the whole thing on me. That’s not good.”

Those are the words of Gerald Kogan, the late Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court as he described the terrible burden the death penalty places on those who are part of the capital punishment process.

Justice Kogan shared his experience with Florida’s death penalty in a new video produced by attorney and filmmaker Ted Corless in coordination with FADP. The video was released earlier this afternoon following a powerful op-ed recently published last Friday in the Orlando Sentinel. Press outlets have already begun picking up the release, including this article from FlaglerLive.com.
The first of a planned series, the video also highlights the shocking reality that Florida has proceeded with executions despite serious, lingering doubt about the guilt of the condemned person.

Sadly, Justice Kogan passed away in March, but his mission to end the death penalty lives on. Along with the release of the video, FADP has launched a new petition effort to urge Florida’s state legislature and Governor DeSantis to exclude the seriously mentally ill from execution. The new petition is part of a larger strategy to make our political leaders aware of the significant and growing number of Floridians who oppose such executions.

Please take a moment to sign the petition and then share the link with your networks.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks to hear more about our advocacy plans, including how you can use these tools and more to help end the death penalty.

Thank you for your commitment to justice.
Onward,
Mark

PS: FADP is always working to improve our ability to mobilize quickly, whether to support legislation or oppose an execution. Please watch the Justice Kogan video and then take a moment today to sign our new petition.

Weekly Update 7/14

Sundays

 The service is at 9:30 in person, covid safe.

Childcare provided.

The Sundays in July will be themed “Tell Me the Stories of Jesus.”  Each Sunday will feature a beloved story associated with Jesus.  These stories still offer much to inspire and inform our faith and our living today. 

What does it mean to be a person of faith?  Jesus uses the image of seeds to illuminate the faith journey.  Take a look at chapter 4 of the gospel of Mark.  Sunday will involve reflecting on “A Seedy Faith.”  See you then!   In person or on Facebook Live.  

Watch the service on Facebook Live Sundays at 9:30. https://www.facebook.com/LakewoodUCC

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


Book Talk Thursday July 15 at 6:30 on Zoom

What have you been reading?  Want to share with others and hear from others what they are reading? That’s what happens at Book Talk, the third Thursday of the month from 6:30-7:30.  You can participate from wherever you are because it’s a Zoon.  Here’s the link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2700683648

If you haven’t been reading lately, join in anyway and hear about what others have been reading.  So many books, so little time!  The LUCC family has wide ranging interests and Book Talk is an eclectic review of books.   Be part of the fun!


United Church of Christ General Synod to Meet Virtually 

The biennial national meeting of the United Church of Christ, the General Synod, will be held virtually this year.  It includes speakers, workshops, updates on the ministry of the UCC, resolutions, and other business.  Workshops are being held this week.  The official online gathering begins July 11 and ends July 18.  Major events and speakers take place in the evenings.  For the schedule and instructions about how to participate, click here:  https://www.generalsynod.org/ 


New Members

In these challenging times, being part of a church community is more grounding and supportive than ever!  The LUCC congregation is so grateful for all of the ways that spiritual support has been offered this past year and beyond.  The church would like to officially welcome as members those who are finding a spiritual ‘home’ at LUCC.  For those who are interested in considering church membership, there is an orientation session about the mission, identity, history and theology of the church.  Please be in contact with Rev. Wells if you would like to consider joining the church.  The orientation and the Sunday for joining will then be determined accordingly.


Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels now has a distribution center at Lakewood United Church as part of the Neighborly senior center. They need volunteers to help deliver meals to shut-in seniors in our area. Sometimes, the only person a client sees all day is a MoW volunteer. They are following COVID-safe practices (mask wearing, social distancing, dropping off food rather than entering the home). Volunteers pick up the meals at 10:30 and drive to clients in the area, and return the empty bags to LUCC when they’re done, usually within an hour. Please consider doing this; it takes just an hour once a week to make someone happy. Please contact Angela, the MoW coordinator at 727-612-1791 and she will tell you how to get trained. Or go to https://neighborly.org/volunteer-opportunities/ to find out more.

Scan the QR code to watch a video for more information about volunteering


The Labyrinth Has Been ‘Groomed’

For those who walk the labyrinth at the church, please know that the labyrinth has been raked and weeded this week.  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 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.

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


Be Part of Reducing AIDS

There is an  the increase in HIV/AIDS infections in our area.  As a way of responding, Suncoast Hospice has given the church a large supply of condoms to be distributed. They will be placed in the bathrooms at the church.  They will also be available in the sanctuary.  The church advisors are encouraging the congregation to take some condoms and put them in public bathrooms and workplace bathrooms where they may get picked up by the appropriate population.  

So, the next time you are at the church, pick up a few condoms and see that they make their way out into the community!


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.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending double masking.  Please consider wearing two masks to church.  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.


Immigration Justice: Action Item

The Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program provides a path to safety for Afghans who worked with U.S. forces and who, as a result of that affiliation, suffer direct threats to their safety. These visas have been long delayed. As the U.S. anticipates its final withdrawal of our Armed Forces in September, we know that we cannot simply abandon the Afghans who risked their (and their families’) lives to help us and our allies (think of the U.S. evacuation of Saigon at the end of the Vietnam War).

Send a message to President Biden today! Urge the administration to provide urgent humanitarian protections, including evacuation for those who have put their lives on the line for our country. Easy, templated, click and send link here from the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service: https://www.votervoice.net/LIRS/campaigns/85410/respond


Operation Attack Update

Good Afternoon, 
I hope you are doing well, many members of Lakewood UCC are aware that I’ve graduated from high school (thank you for the card) and plan to head to college. While at college, I won’t be able to help collect any OA donations or help keep Lakewood up to date on OA needs. I’ve had this task all of high school and I am very thankful for it. For replacing me, I HIGHLY recommend my brother Owen Blair-Catala. This position has been passed down from Zach to me and now to Owen. He’s someone who is active in OA and understands the task he must complete from watching me do them. 

Besides this OA is still doing very well. There are the same drive thru dates as before (July 31st and September 11th). In addition, OA also still needs Donations of cereal, peanut butter, canned meat, fruit, vegetables and soup, dried beans, and mac/cheese. I came by this past week and was able to get some donations. Remember we still aren’t accepting clothing donations at the moment. If you have any questions please contact me. 

Thanks,Ian Blair-Catala

iblaircatala@gmail.com


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.

If you would like to explore Spiritual Direction with Sally, please contact her at
sallybpurvis@icloud.com or contact the church (867-7961 or lakewooducc@gmail.com ).

The church is very grateful to Sally for offering this avenue of support to the congregation and the community.


USEFUL LAKEWOOD LINKS:

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


July Birthdays: Ann Quinn 7/6. Someone missing? Contact the church office with birthday information.


Circle of Concern: 

Earl Waters

Mae Wiggins

Sherry Santana

William Owen-Cowan

Jen Degroot

Carolyn Moore

Ann Quinn

Maggie Brizendine

Janet Hall

All those suffering from COVID-19.


Church Office Hours:  Tuesday-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.