Dear Church Community,
June is Pride Month, and I’m proud that our congregation has been openly affirming and welcoming to all LGBTQ+ people for over a decade. Our church is home to many different gender identities, sexual orientations, and family configurations, all of whom reflect the extravagantly loving and fabulously diverse nature of God. I hope you’ll join me for worship this Sunday as we celebrate our wonderful rainbow of Life!
After worship, we’ll welcome staff from Shaw Community Center (SCC) to tell us about their work in the Shaw neighborhood of NW DC. Our church has been a supporter of SCC for many years, and Serena Wiltshire is now President of its Board. I look forward to learning more about what SCC is doing to help at-risk youth whose families live in this rapidly gentrifying area of DC.
Sunday’s weather forecast is sunny, so after the discussion with SCC, I encourage you to get outdoors and go to Bread & Chocolate Café, 5542 Connecticut Ave NW. Our own Carol Porter will be displaying her art from 2-4:30 pm on the Café Patio. Please join her for what’s sure to be a visually inspiring event! For information: CarolPorterArt@gmail.com
There are two other activities happening before Sunday that you’re invited to attend. On Friday the Fellowship and Congregation Care Committees are hosting an Outdoor Social from 5:30-6:30 pm in the church’s side yard. Light refreshments in individual portions will be provided. In case of rain, we’ll move into the Parlor with open windows and doors.
On Saturday, please join the Mission & Social Action Committee for a virtual Jubilee Jobs Volunteer Morning from 9-10:30 am to help Jubilee Jobs clients with resumes, job applications, and mock interviews. Volunteers will receive a short training, then go into a breakout room to assist one person. To get the Zoom link, email email@example.com.
I hope you enjoyed last Sunday’s online Hymn Sing! Next Wednesday, 6/16, at 7 pm our Choir & Musicians will meet virtually for the last time before resuming in person rehearsals in September. If you’re interested in participating in the Choir and/or Music Program when we return to the Sanctuary this fall, please participate in this meeting. You can email our Music Director, Dorothy Mora, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and the Zoom link.
This summer the UCC General Synod will meet virtually each evening from July 11-18, with workshops taking place the week before. General Synod is the UCC’s biennial national meeting and family reunion. When it met in Baltimore four years ago, a number of us attended from Cleveland Park, and we’re hoping this year some of you will choose to participate online.
The sessions will feature two compelling keynoters—Valerie Kaur, a documentary filmmaker and social justice activist, and Adam Russell Taylor, the president of DC-based Sojourners. Other highlights include three worship services, four plenary sessions focused on the church’s business, and fifty workshops on a wide range of relevant and interesting topics. Registration is $100 for visitors (people who aren’t delegates), and our congregation is able to provide a few scholarships. We could also use an additional delegate! If you’d like to register and/or would like a scholarship, please contact Ellen, email@example.com, Holly, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Dan (our UCC Delegate), email@example.com.
There are three other UCC-related issues and events I’d like to share.
- The Justice & Witness Action Network of the Central Atlantic Conference has created a survey for any and all church members to help determine the social action and advocacy issues on which it will focus for the next few years. Your opinion matters, so please take a moment to fill it out.
- On Friday, 6/18, the UCC National Office will offer a Juneteenth Celebration with Stories and Sacred Music from 12-1:30 pm. “African descended people have resisted, revolted, protested, and fought for their freedom and right to exist as God intended since the beginning of human existence… And still we rise!” Register here.
- On Tuesday, 6/29, the Potomac Association will hold a press conference on Medical Debt Relief at 10 am in front of Westmoreland UCC. The purpose of this event is twofold: to highlight the issue and celebrate the huge amount of medical debt our churches helped relieve in 2020. We’re looking for speakers who have personal experience with medical debt, so if you’d be willing to speak, please contact me, firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Finally, some of you may remember the many years our congregation hosted a Monday night Bridge Game. This fall Dorothy and others would like to resurrect it, so if you’d be interested, please contact Dorothy at email@example.com.
In the words of our Summer Solstice Spiritual Retreat theme, “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.” (Julian of Norwich)
With Joy and Peace,
P.S. Curt Canada will have his second major dental surgery this August and is working to raise the final GoFundMe dollars to pay for it. If you’re able to make a donation so he can get this necessary dental work completed, please do!