Pastoral Search update for January

A subgroup of the Pastoral Search Committee is working to fine-tune our church profile to get it ready to send to our Minnesota Conference representative, the Rev. Rick Wagner. After we receive his feedback, probably close to the end of January, the full committee will resume regular meetings to focus on any changes needed before we release the profile to the congregation. We look forward to your comments and feedback as well. Blessings and peace to you in the New Year!

–Carol Holm and Jenica Domanico, co-chairs

Join us at Women’s March Minnesota Jan. 21

An invitation from Falcon Heights Church Moderator Lynne Bradbury

As I sat in church on Sunday, Jan. 1, I heard with my ears and heart Pastor Anne’s message about how important it is at this time, in this New Year, to stand up for those who are marginalized in our society. I want to invite you to take a step forward in action with and for those who are marginalized.

As Falcon Heights Church, we will provide an opportunity to gather and carpool to the Women’s March Minnesota at the state capitol on Jan. 21. Marchers are asked to be at the event meeting point by 10:30 a.m. Please watch the TAB and Sunday bulletin for details about when and where we as a church group will convene to go to the starting point for the march. All are invited. Please see the official website for more information and to RSVP. When you RSVP, you will receive email updates regarding parking, sign-making events, etc.

The march is a sister event to the nationwide Women’s March in Washington, D.C., on the same day. Organizers state: “We march in solidarity with our sisters in Washington, D.C. We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families – recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.”

Discussion series on transgender issues

As an Open and Affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ, Falcon Heights Church welcomes those in the LGBTQ community into our life together. This month, it’s all about the “T” in LGBTQ. Our Open and Affirming Working Group invites you to three after-worship conversations in January, from 11:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

We will learn more what “transgender” means and find some answers to questions and misconceptions about gender identity and gender expression. The discussions will cover:

Jan. 8 – Getting to Understanding: What is gender and how have society’s expectations of gender changed? Who are transgender people? How does gender identity differ from sexual orientation? (Rachel Flaherty and Pastor Anne will lead this session.)

Jan. 15 – Getting to Acceptance: What does our Christian tradition say? How do other cultures see gender? (Peter Morris of OutFront Minnesota will join the Rev. Philip Rohler and Pastor Anne in leading this session.)

Jan. 22 – Getting to Welcoming: How do we help transgender persons know they are welcomed here? How do we help our community be welcoming? (Lee Barry and Pastor Anne will lead this session.)

 

Civil War speaker at Women’s Fellowship

Church member Bob Wicklem will speak about the American Civil War at the Women’s Fellowship meeting at 10 a.m. Jan. 6. Both women and men are welcome to join us in the Gathering Room for this informative program.

Bob describes what draws him to this pivotal event in our history as a nation:

“I have been asked by the Women’s Fellowship to give a talk about the American Civil War. It has been an interest of mine for at least the past 25 years. I have read about and visited most of the national historical sites related to this period, which was a defining moment in our nation’s history. I intend to give a general overview of the war, including why it happened, some of the events and what resulted from this tragic, yet important event.”

Epiphany party Jan. 6

Join us as we close the 12 days of Christmas with a welcoming of the Three Kings at 6 p.m. on Epiphany, Friday, Jan. 6. All ages will gather for supper, a brief time of prayer, song, and sharing hopes for the New Year around an outdoor bonfire. Bring a small piece of your holiday greens for the bonfire. Sign up in the Gathering Room to bring any kind of chili to share, and we will have a blind tasting with prizes. The Children’s and Intergenerational Ministry Teams will provide beverages.

New refugee group needs winter clothes and supplies

The Roseville Schools Adult Learning Center, where several FHC members volunteer in the English language program, has received a new group of refugees from Ethiopia who need warm winter clothing now. As you receive new items for Christmas, please consider giving good items you no longer use, or look for sales after the holidays.

Needed now through the end of January are gloves, socks, hats and other warm clothing and blankets. The refugees can also use towels, pots and pans and other basic items. Place contributions in the grocery cart near the coats, or in designated boxes. We will work through the Learning Center staff to distribute them.

The refugees are Anuak people, a minority ethnic group in southwestern Ethiopia near South Sudan. The mostly Christian Anuak have been under attack from the government and other groups. After fleeing to refugee camps in Kenya near the equator, this group arrived in Minnesota this summer with few clothes and flip-flops for shoes. Now winter has arrived and there is little support for them here.

Contact Nancy Duffrin for more information, nduffrin@gmail.com.

Christmas caroling to shut-ins Dec. 14

On Wednesday, Dec. 14, join us for a 5:30 p.m. soup supper, then leave in groups around 6 p.m. to go caroling to our shut-ins and elders. Carolyn Hill (651-646-6656) and Tracy Faville (651-483-0260) are coordinating the light supper. Give them a call if you would like to help.

Christmas giving opportunities

Poinsettias for Keystone: Buy a live poinsettia for our chancel garden to honor or remember a loved one, and/or purchase a silk blossom for our Gathering Room tree, for $15 each. A small portion of the live poinsettia cost and all of the silk flower proceeds go to Keystone Community Services, which operates food shelves and other services for the poor. Deadline to buy live blooms is Monday, Dec. 12. More info in the Sunday bulletin and Connections, or call the church office.

Socks and Mitten Tree: Look for the Christmas tree in the lobby where we’ll collect socks and mittens for children, youth and adults. These will be distributed by the Department of Indian Work at Interfaith Action in St. Paul. Bring donations by Monday, Dec. 19.

Elders at Lyngblomsten: The staff at Lyngblomsten Care Center is collecting money and gift cards to buy gifts for senior without family or friends to remember them at Christmas. Purchase Target, JCPenney, Walmart, Kohls or Macy’s cards at our Scrip table at Sunday coffee hour, or place checks payable to Lyngblomsten Foundation in the designated box in the lobby no later than Dec. 11.

Annual Christmas Fund giving: We will receive this annual offering to help support retired United Church of Christ clergy who are in need. Envelopes will be provided in the bulletins on December 18, and you can also send checks to the church office with “Christmas Fund” in the memo line, by December 27.

Join us on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day

We invite you to join us on Saturday, Dec. 24, for Christmas Eve worship:

  • At 4:30 p.m. – A shorter service of readings, carols from around the world, story-sermon and candle-lighting, intended for all ages.
  • At 10 p.m. – Readings, traditional carols and candle-lighting, with music by our Chancel Choir. Cider and snacks follow the service.

On Sunday, Dec. 25, we celebrate Christmas Day at 10:30 a.m. with a brief service of carols and stories for all ages. Nursery care will be provided.

“Counting on Christmas” pageant Dec. 11

We’re counting down the days to this year’s intergenerational Christmas pageant, “-1-C-2-O-3-U-4-N-5-T-6-I-7-N-8-G-9- ON CHRISTMAS,” which will be presented during worship at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 11. The show is written by Margot Olsen, with inspiration from “The Lion Storyteller Christmas Book” by Bob Hartman and Krisztina Kallai Nagy. For more information, contact the church at 651-646-2681.