United Theological Seminary moving to St. Paul

United Theological Seminary announced recently that it will move its campus from New Brighton to St. Paul at the end of 2018. The 55-year-old ecumenical graduate school is an affiliate of the United Church of Christ.

Leaders cited a desire to better serve students who rely on public transportation, to be closer to urban ministries in keeping with the seminary’s social justice emphasis, and to relocate in a smaller, more intimate space. The school currently has 85 students, almost half of whom are distance learners.

The school is looking for new quarters in the Hwy 280/University Avenue neighborhood. It plans to sell the New Brighton facility to Global Academy Charter School, which serves first-generation immigrant students.

“In the Image” children’s musical May 6

The children of Falcon Heights Church will present a spring musical, “In the Image,” in worship Sunday, May 6. Everyone is invited to join us at 10:30 a.m. to enjoy the performance and its inspiring message.

Mark Burrows’ musical features a group of children who have just experienced the story of the Creation. And now they’re starting to wonder what it really means to be created in the image of God.

Through humorous, earnest exploration, the children discover that the answer isn’t about physical appearance.

It’s about creativity, faithfulness, responsibility, community, and the ability to find the good in things.

Margot Olsen directs the production and Patti Holmes provides piano accompaniment.


Healthy Aging Group under discussion

Falcon Heights Church and other local churches and agencies are discussing establishing a Healthy Aging Group in northern Ramsey County.

The goal of a Healthy Aging Group is to enable older people to thrive in their communities. Two other groups are already operating in the St. Paul area: The West St. Paul group includes Hamline-Midway, Rondo, Union Park and the West 7th area; a second group focuses on the East Side of St. Paul.

Ours would be the third area group, and like the other two, would focus on the specific needs of our particular populations of older adults.

Falcon Heights Church has been looking for ways to advance our senior ministry. Rev. Rick King has been in touch with Julia Wolf, a planner with St. Paul-Ramsey County Public Health, and Lisa Kane of the Living-at-Home Block Nurse program about this potential partnership.

On March 27, our church hosted the first gathering to explore starting a group, which Julia Wolf would establish but which would become self-directing, self-sustaining and community-based.

A follow-up meeting is scheduled April 24 at 3 p.m. in the Gathering Room at Falcon Heights Church. We expect to meet with people from Como Park Lutheran, New Life Presbyterian, Lyngblomsten, District 10, and others.

Free STAR-lite training in healing and justice

A free one-day STAR-Lite training will take place April 21 in St. Paul. STAR-Lite is an evidence-based training that integrates several fields. These include neuropsychology, trauma healing and resilience. The training also covers restorative justice, nonviolent conflict transformation, and broadly defined spirituality. Everyone is welcome.

This training is in line with Falcon Heights Church’s mission to continue racial reconciliation work and become a trauma-aware congregation. Rev. Rick and Sara Wright have taken the training and can answer any questions you have.

The Minnesota Peacebuilding Leadership Institute (www.mnpeace.org) sponsors this training, with support from foundation grants. There is space for 60; you must pre-registrer. Details and online registration


Sign up for Holy Hammers

Sign up now for Holy Hammers and help build a house for a family this spring.  

Falcon Heights Church is part of a consortium of 14 north suburban churches that partner with Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity to build affordable family homes such as this one.

This year’s build is at 717 Geranium Ave. E., near Payne and Maryland avenues on St. Paul’s East Side. Framing begins in April and interior work will take place in June.

Stop by the Holy Hammers display in the Gathering Room to learn more about this year’s Habitat build and how to sign up to volunteer. Our church’s work dates are April 27, May 10 and 23, and June 21.

Congregation elects 2018 leaders

The congregation of Falcon Heights Church elected its lay leaders for 2018 at its annual meeting Jan. 28. They are:


Moderator: Pat Bohman
Moderator-elect: Carol Holm
Financial Secretary: Lee Barry
Clerk: Bryan Seyfarth
Treasurer: Dave Hill
Assistant Treasurer: Sue Lillehei
Historian: Kyle Roeckeman

Executive Board

Jeanie Morrison
Jacob Kanake
John Reitan
Kyle Roeckeman
Conee Biggs
Peter Duddleston
Marv Fabyanske
Bob Olsen
Noah Keitel

The congregation also approved the 2018 budget and nominations to ministry teams.

Conversation with immigrants

Join other  volunteers from Falcon Heights Church who are helping adult English language learners at Fairview Community Center to practice their conversation skills. We meet every other Wednesday from 10:30 to 11:40 a.m. when the public schools are in session. Many immigrants and refugees are taking daily classes in English, but it is tremendously helpful for them to have a chance to talk with native English speakers in more informal conversational settings. We talk about everything from families to food to life in people’s native couintries and in America. The volunteers learn at least as much as our conversation partners!

Contact Nancy Duffrin at nduffrin@gmail.com or 651-348-7880 to learn more.


Rev. Rick King is called as pastor of Falcon Heights Church

The congregation of Falcon Heights Church, United Church of Christ, voted unanimously Aug. 13 to call the Rev. Rick King as our next lead pastor. He will join us Nov. 1, after completing his current interim ministry in Colorado.

Rev. Rick graduated from Yale Divinity School in 1989 and was ordained Jan. 28, 1990. Over the past 27 years, he has been called into covenant with several congregations, serving 10 years in Winona, Minnesota, and eight years in Longmont, Colorado. He has also served in interim roles in Illinois, Colorado and North Carolina. He is a member of the First Congregational Church in Loveland, Colorado.
Rick and his wife, Linda, have three teen-agers: Gabe, who will start high school in St. Paul this fall; Samuel, who will remain in Colorado with his mother for his senior year; and Elijah, a student at Lewis and Clark College in Oregon.

Watch video of July 8 Service of Prayer and Recommitment

Videos from the July 8 Service of Prayer and Recommitment are now online at YouTube. You can view all nine of them here as a playlist, or go to https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLOoJSJzmgg2gd5qAM5exRuQaoj9voA8zK


Congregation approves expanded Open and Affirming statement

At a congregational meeting Sunday, March 19, members of Falcon Heights Church unanimously adopted a revised Open and Affirming (ONA) statement that not only recognizes and affirms people of any sexual orientation, but also those of any gender identification and gender expression, as “equal recipients of God’s love.”

The new statement was developed through a process that included several well-attended Sunday meetings where members of the congregation could learn about and discuss transgender and gender identity issues. The expanded statement commits our church to working to make justice and inclusivity a reality in the community as well as in the congregation.

Read the original and revised statements:

ONA statement