Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Email - 28 JUN 2013

Prayers for BYC Campers
Food Bags Due this Sunday
Taizé Worship
Welcoming, Fellowship & Growth Meeting
Hospitality for Moral Monday
Keeping Homeless Families Together
Great Flying Seeds!!!
Gardening Therapy
Art Wall
Musical – Into the Woods, Jr.
Food Donations for Moral Mondays Event
Screening of Film – Citizen Koch
Retreat, Contemplate, Share, Recreate

Monday, June 24, 2013

Please pray for our youth and leaders as they travel to Baptist Youth Camp

Dear friends,

As eleven of us prepare to leave for BYC (Baptist Youth Camp) on Sunday, June 30, (Alex Bowen, Michael Bowen, Leah Jensen, Erin Kiel, Jackson Kiel, Carson Roach-Howell, John Robertson, JaCarrie Spurlock, Teresa Worley, Paul Kiel, and Santi Matthews), I am aware of how much we need and cherish your prayers, your thoughts, your support, and your care. It’s my hope that CUCC will pray for us as we travel and while we are gone. Please offer prayers in worship on Sunday, June 30, and throughout the week as we leave for camp and as we spend time over the following six days learning, and growing, and understanding each other, and God more deeply and truly. We will be focusing on Exile. We'll study the biblical meaning and history of Exile, but we'll also be exploring more personally, the spiritual effects of deep loss, the religious and social effects of crisis, and the beautiful consequences of hope and new beginnings.
BYC Contact Numbers and Address
Laurel Ridge Camp
124 Pendry Drive
Laurel Springs, NC 28644 
Santi Matthews
CUCC Youth Leaders

What's new with CUCC's Moral Mondays effort?

At yesterday's meeting we planned for today's (June 24th) rally (see post below) and confirmed we will meet next week (June 30) at 9:15am in the Vaughan Fellowship Hall.  If you have questions about Moral Mondays, or are interested in participating in the work at CUCC please come. Meanwhile, you can contact Jane Smith to have your name added to the emailed work of the ad hoc group which happens during the week.

Gray Woodard has a small list of folks willing to provide hospitality to out-of-towners attending Moral Mondays or returning for court dates.  Joan McAllister will let the NAACP-NC know of our offer.  Call Gray to add your bedrooms to the list.  You are asked to provide a clean bed, and a warm shower to guests.  Gray will call to ask if your space is available for a specific date.

Karen Vollrath announced today's rally logistics at worship yesterday.

We had some internal discussion about how to work during the week.  Moral Mondays events arise quickly and we needed to think about how to be inclusive of all interested voices without bogging down to prevent action.  Jane is circulating some ideas this week which will be decided at next Sunday's meeting.

- submitted for the ad hoc Moral Monday's group

Moral Monday: June 24

What are the Moral Mondays?  Check out the inspiring videos at the NAACP of North Carolina web site.  The theme for today is "Labor, Women and Economic Justice."

If you are considering using your constitutional rights to be present inside the legislative building (thereby risking arrest), you MUST attend the training at 3pm at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church.

The rally for everyone begins at 5pm on Halifax Mall.  A carpool will leave from the CUCC Dixie Trail parking lot at 4:30 sharp; look for Jane and Joan there.  If you don't plan to stay until the last bus leaves, Jane is happy to drive you back to your car earlier.

Can't get to the rally by 5pm?  Arrive when you can.  The first bus to the detention center doesn't leave until about 6:45pm, so your presence is still needed throughout the evening.

Questions?  Call Jane.

- submitted for the ad hoc Moral Monday group

Sunday, June 23, 2013

CUCC young families head to the pool July 28

Our next Rituals & Resources for Teaching Faith at Home gathering will be Sunday, July 28, 4-6pm, at the Lake Johnson swimming pool.  Families with children 5th grade and younger are welcome.  Bring snacks & drinks for your own family.  Those families who still feel energetic at 6pm will head out for a pizza dinner, while the sleepy ones can head home.

Pool fees

A lesson for us all

In a "State of Things" broadcast on WUNC Radio this week, Frank Stasio reflected on the career of the late Gov. Jim Holshouser. A clip from a comment made by Gov. Holshouser in 2004, 40 years after his term as Governor of North Carolina, is worth remembering by all of us in this current age of political polarization ...

Gov. Jim Holshouser speaking in 2004 (16 sec.)

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Friday Email - 22 JUN 2013

Church Office closed Friday – Monday
Rev. Margot Pickett to Preach this Sunday
Property Ministry Meeting
Youth Field Trip this Sunday
Moral Mondays
Fun at the Lion’s Park Playground & Cookout
Items needed for PLM Families Together
Living the Questions Discussion Series

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Share your Moral Mondays photos

Have a great photo of CUCC members at Moral Mondays?  Share them here or on our Facebook page.  Send a .jpg to Cathy in the office and she'll ask Josh to add it to a new Moral Mondays photo album on our web site.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cy King on WRAL's Moral Mondays story

Did you catch Cy King on WRAL's story on the June 17 Moral Monday?
- submitted by Jane Smith for myself

Monday, June 17, 2013

"When were you slapped in the face by grace?" - Life & Faith discussion, July 9

The Life and Faith in Downtown Raleigh group will meet on our usual second Tuesday, July 9, at Tyler's Tap Room.  Come at 6:30 to order dinner or arrive at 7 if you just want a beverage.  Look for Sherrie King and the Life & Faith red comma at the round table on the far right of the restaurant.

Those who attend choose the topic for the night, but I generally bring a fall-back question.  I propose the question from the Rev. Hollie Woodruff Duncan's sermon on Sunday, "When were you slapped in the face by grace?"  And, more to the point, is there something about that experience that you are still chewing over that you'd like to brainstorm with a group?

You can read Rev. Hollie's sermon on her blog .

Here's the map for parking near Tyler's Tap Room

- posted for the Life & Faith in Downtown Raleigh group

Today's Moral Mondays carpools/themes

The theme for today is Environment, Justice and Health.  You are welcome to bring a sign or to wear a t-shirt depicting one of these topics.

If you would like to carpool to the 3pm training for those considering non-violent civil disobedience, call Joan McAllister this morning.  Training is required for those risking arrest.

If you would like to carpool to the 5pm rally, meet Jane Smith in the Dixie Trail parking lot at 4:20.  She will leave promptly at 4:30.  Jane plans to stay until the last bus leaves, but is happy to drive you back to your car if you need to leave earlier.

Joan McAllister has prepared Moral Mondays lapel ribbons for those who would like a conversation-starter during the week.  The ribbons are made with duct tape and red/white/blue ribbon.  These rich symbols allow you to assign your own meaning.  Duct tape:  fixing our broken state legislature?  refusing to be silenced?  Red/white/blue ribbon:  patriots, not-outsiders, remembering the values of liberty and equality at our country's roots?  Look for Joan at the rally or at church on Sunday to get your ribbon or make one of your own.

Gray Woodard is collecting the names of those willing to offer a spare bedroom to out-of-towners coming to Moral Mondays or returning for their court dates.  Let Gray know if you are willing to be on her list.

The next ad hoc Moral Monday group meeting is Sunday, June 23, at 9:15 in the Vaughan Fellowship Hall.  We start each meeting with a time for those new to Moral Mondays to ask questions.  As time permits, we turn to plans for future CUCC participation in this collaborative work for justice in North Carolina.

Submitted for the ad hoc Moral Mondays group

Rev. Margot Pickett to preach this Sunday, June 23

We welcome the Rev. Margot Trusty Pickett to the pulpit this Sunday at 10:30 worship.  Our pastor, Steve Halsted, is on sabbatical this summer.
Margot was born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana, the youngest of three children. She did her undergraduate work at Duke University and received her Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary. She was married to Mark Pickett in 1977 and ordained in 1978 at Third Christian (Disciples of Christ) Church in Indianapolis. She and Mark served as Co-Pastors of Christ Congregation in Princeton, New Jersey from 1979-1985 and of Pilgrim UCC in Durham, NC from 1995-2004. From 1985-1995 Margot served as the Associate Pastor at the Church of Christ at Dartmouth College, UCC, in Hanover, New Hampshire. In July 2004 Margot was hired as the Director of the Pastoral Leadership Development Program of the Southern Conference, the position she continues to hold today.

Margot is a rabid fan of Duke Men’s and Women’s basketball, and almost anything else Duke related. She loves to travel and to eat at the many outstanding restaurants in Durham. She also enjoys gardening, reading, and going to the theater.

 She is a member of First Christian UCC, Burlington, where Mark is the Pastor. She and Mark are the very proud parents of two daughters, a son-in-law, and a goofy dog named Sydney. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Items needed for PLM Families Together

The response we got from our request for items needed when new families move into an apartment was so great that we have decided to continue it. There is a basket in the fellowship hall under the windows for you to put items into. Items needed are: 
laundry soap       
dish soap                      
toilet paper                           
paper towels
trash bags                     
spray cleaner       
bar soap               
hand lotion                     
dish towels
bath towels         
wash clothes       
moisturizing shampoo

Gardening Therapy

If you love being outdoors, love to get dirty and muddy while tending the garden and plants, and getting to know other CUCC folks, then “Gardening Therapy” is the right place for you.  Join us from 9:00am – 11:00am on the first and third Tuesdays of the summer months to pull weeds, listen to the birds, prune plants and shrubs, and spend a few productive hours working on the CUCC grounds.  A little gardening therapy is good for body and soul.  We hope you’ll bring your work gloves and join us. We will meet again this Tuesday, June 18.  For more information, contact Lena Gallitano.

Friday Email - 14 JUN 2013

Reverend Hollie Woodruff Duncan
Durham Bulls Baseball
Moral Mondays Ad Hoc Group Meeting
Hospitality for Moral Monday
Youth News for this Sunday
Gardening Therapy
Living the Questions - Joy's living room on Wednesdays and CUCC on Sundays
PLM Families Together
Property Ministry Meeting
Fun at the Lion’s Park Playground & Cookout

Monday, June 10, 2013

Hollie Woodruff Duncan to preach this Sunday.

The Rev. Hollie Woodruff Duncan serves as the Chaplain of Barton College (in nearby Wilson, NC). She is an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). You can get to know her at her blog,  "The Underside:  Thoughts and musings from a faithful, but sometimes irreverent, minister."  CUCC came to know of Hollie through the Beisels who met her at Love Wins Ministries in downtown Raleigh.

Rev. Hollie is married with a teenage stepson; her husband serves as a hospice chaplain. Hollie is also mom to two golden retrievers, Stone and Sadie. 

We welcome her to the pulpit while our pastor, Steve Halsted is on summer sabbatical.

Moral Mondays - staying informed

Location and time of Moral Monday events has changed in the last few hours before several Moral Monday rallies.  To make sure you are going the right place at the right time, subscribe to the NAACP-NC emails.  Send an email with your name and email address to .

To keep informed about what we're doing at CUCC, contact Jane Smith who will add you to our in-house email notices.

- submitted for the ad hoc Moral Monday group

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Moral Mondays - ad hoc group to meet June 16, 9:15am

If you have questions about Moral Mondays and how you might participate, attend the ad hoc Moral Monday group discussion Sunday, June 16, 9:15 in the Vaughan Fellowship Hall or talk to Edith, Joan or Jane.

  • Attend a Moral Monday.  Rally attendees are present legally; those who go inside the legislative building risk arrest.  Rallies are family friendly.  You can attend the rally (about 5-7pm), cheer on the arrestees (about 7-10pm), or greet those leaving jail (anytime between 9pm and the wee hours).
  • Provide a bed to someone who is travelling from far away to attend Moral Monday.  (Contact Gray Woodard)
  • Support a CUCCer who is risking arrest.  Possible needs:  money for fines, pet sitting while detained, a middle-of-the-night ride home, a friend to attend non-violent civil disobedience training and be there on the outside, make a "thank you" sign to greet an arrestee returning home.
  • Attend a Congregations for Social Justice meeting to report back to CUCC on collaborative actions in the Raleigh area.
- from the ad hoc Moral Mondays group

Moral Mondays - offering a bed to out-of-town attendees

North Carolina is a BIG state.  If you would be willing to offer a bed to someone who is travelling a long distance to attend Moral Monday, please contact Gray Woodard.
- submitted for ad hoc Moral Monday group

Moral Monday, June 10 - carpool

Carpool:  Those wanting to carpool to Moral Monday after the memorial service for Marge Eckels should touch base with Joan McAllister who will be cleaning up in the kitchen.  The plan is to grab some dinner, then spend the evening cheering on the arrestees until the final bus departs the legislative building for Hammond Road detention facility.

There is no carpool this week for the 3pm non-violent civil disobedience training (Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, 3pm) or the start of the rally (Halifax Mall, 5pm).  David Smith will be going to the rally from the beginning, so you can look for him if you'd like to stand with the CUCC contingent.

- submitted for the Moral Monday ad hoc group

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Memorial Statement for Marjorie Eckels

Marjorie Mills Robinson Eckels died June 5, 2013, at age 91. She died peacefully at
home in the loving care of her daughters Marilyn and Christine. Marjorie was born in
Hartford, CT, where she grew up the cherished only child of William and Violet
Robinson. She attended U of Conn where she met her husband and life partner Arthur
Raymond Eckels. They were married for over 50 years. Marjorie completed a Master of
Social Work degree at the U of Chicago. Between 1949 and 1953, Art and Marjorie's
four children were born, Alan in Mt. Carmel, CT, and Peter, Marilyn, and Christine in
Raleigh, NC, where Art taught at NC State. The family moved to Burlington, VT, where
they lived for five wonderful years in a countryside home with a spectacular view of
Lake Champlain. Following their move back to Raleigh for Art's professorship at NC
State, Marjorie worked for years in her chosen field of social work. Despite busy lives
working and raising four children, Marjorie and Art opened their home to minority
students and students from other countries. In their retirement years, they welcomed the
Angar family, friends from Afghanistan, into their home. Marjorie also maintained a
close relationship with her Aunt Margaret of Manchester, CT, her father's youngest
Marjorie lived among the trees, flowers, and birds she loved in the family home in
Raleigh for 52 years. On Feb. 1, 2013, Marjorie moved to the Oaks at Whitaker Glen
where she joined many longtime friends, including many church members. She was
happy and comfortable there in her new home, being, as she said, a woman who
adjusted easily to many circumstances. Marjorie was a transplanted New Englander
who surprised herself by her deep affinity for her adopted home in the South.
Marjorie had an abiding faith in God's mysterious presence in all people and creatures
of this earth, and in the earth itself. She loved her church community at the Community
United Church of Christ, where she and Art were committed members throughout their
adult lives. Marjorie expressed her faith actively in her commitments to people and
causes that mattered to her deeply. These included many years engaged in this
country's Civil Rights Movement and the Women's Rights and Gay Rights Movements.
Community action was important to her. For years, Marjorie delivered meals for the
Meals-on-Wheels program, collected food bags for the Urban Ministries Food Pantry,
and participated on the Rich Park Board. She was proud to participate faithfully in the
Raleigh Peace Vigil as a “Grandma for Peace!” Recently she was honored with the
Carolyn and Cy King Peace and Justice Award, a tribute she treasured.
Marjorie enjoyed so many experiences in her good, long life, but simple pleasures
meant the most to her: cooking and sharing meals with family and friends, playing
games at her dining room table, watching birds from her breakfast table, picnics on the
back deck, evenings by fireside, reading, sewing, knitting, and tending her garden. She
also enjoyed tent camping with her family; establishing a Christmas Tree Farm at Art’s
family home in CT; and lifelong learning through the CUCC forum, Elderhostel, and
college courses at Meredith College and elsewhere. She loved visiting art museums,
attending ballet and symphony performances, and going to the theater. She always
focused on the positive and accepted life's imperfections and minor disappointments
Marjorie and Art shared a love of travel, both visiting other countries and living in them.
With their children they lived in Taiwan, Japan, and Afghanistan, while Art taught
Electrical Engineering at local universities. One experience of which Marjorie herself
was incredulous in her later years was bringing her four young children home from
Taiwan solo. While Art finished his work in Taiwan, Marjorie shepherded her children
home to Vermont aboard a Danish cargo ship. Those who knew Art as well will
understand that this was, in fact, his idea! Marjorie and Art were active in SERVAS and
Friendship Force in their retirement years. A highlight for Marjorie, her daughters, and
Christine’s husband Michael in recent years was a small boat cruise from Croatia to
Greece on the Adriatic Sea. Marjorie and her daughters also enjoyed retreats to the NC
mountains, the NC and Oregon coasts, and one exceptional trip to the English Lake
District and Scotland. Marjorie enjoyed many special times with her son Alan who died
in 2005, and her son Peter who lives in Raleigh.
Marjorie and Art took great pleasure in their grandsons- Peter's son Jonathan, Marilyn's
son Daniel, and Christine's son Damian. Visits with Grandma and Grandpa were muchanticipated
by all. Art and Marjorie had many adventures with Jonathan at their CT
Christmas Tree farm. With Daniel, they explored the parks and enjoyed campfires and
s'mores in Bellingham, WA. With Damian, they enjoyed outdoor activities in Fort
Collins, CO, and Corvallis, OR. Despite all living at a considerable distance from NC,
Marjorie and Art were a strong, caring presence in their grandsons' lives.
In recent years Marjorie was happy to see her grandson Jonathan, who lives on Long
Island, marry and have a son of his own, Daniel. She was proud to see her grandson
Daniel complete an MBA degree and accept a position as a Management Consultant in
DC. She was thrilled that her grandson Damian was selected for NOAA Corps where he
worked aboard a hydrographic research vessel and is soon to enter graduate school at
U of NH. Marjorie was proud of her grandsons' accomplishments, but what made her
happiest was that they were embarked on meaningful, satisfying lives.
Love, humility, and compassionate acceptance of differences were the threads that ran
through Marjorie's life. She never waivered from her belief that we are ALL God's
children, equally beautiful and deserving in God's eyes. Marjorie was an inspiration to all
who knew her. She was a beautiful and much loved wife, mother, grandmother, and
friend. We will miss her everyday, but we are so thankful, family and friends alike, for
her loving and faithful presence in our lives.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Friday Email - 7 JUN 2013

Marjorie R. Eckels
Śānti Matthews to preach this Sunday, June 9
Caring Committee
Moral Monday Forum
Life and Faith in Downtown Raleigh
Fun at the Lion’s Park playground & cookout
Living the Questions - Joy's living room on Wednesdays and CUCC on Sundays
Durham Bulls Baseball

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Solar Panels for CUCC?

Members of JCC and the Property Ministry have been discussing solar energy generation. We have a preliminary estimate that a combination of the CUCC Fellowship and Education wing roofs could be used to generate about 20,000 kilowatt hours of energy per year to sell to Duke Energy Progress. We are considering funding the system through an "LLC" in which CUCC members and others will have the opportunity to invest for several years to purchase the system, recoup their investment through tax credits and energy sales, and then donate the system to the church. We are looking for a date to hold an open discussion meeting this summer and would like to know of your interest in attending. Please contact Skip Stoddard, Ron Howell,  or Gary Smith, if you are interested. We will keep you informed as we schedule the meeting.

Monday, June 3, 2013

What's next for Moral Mondays?

An ad hoc group of CUCCers and friends met Sunday, June 2, to discuss how we might continue our work for justice with the North Carolina General Assembly.

Ideas/plans on the table:
Moral Mondays
- continue to follow the leadership of the coalition working through the NC NAACP by participating in Moral Mondays
- hold information sessions for those planning to attend or do non-violent civil disobedience at Moral Monday on every Sunday immediately before the next Moral Monday.  For instance, if there will be  a Moral Monday on June 17, we will hold an info session on Sunday, June 16, at 9:15 in the Vaughan Fellowship Hall.  At these questions you can receive answers to your questions about logistics.  We'll also continue to encourage one another as we speak about our experiences and commitments to an ever-wider circle of friends.
- carpool from the CUCC Dixie Trail lot to Moral Mondays
- those who aren't doing non-violent civil disobedience can provide support to those who are.  If you are being held back from making this commitment, contact Jane or Gary Smith to let them know what is blocking you.  They will try to connect you to offers of:  money to cover fines, pet care while you are in jail, transportation to and from the event....

Beyond Moral Mondays
- Judy and Leo will talk with other arrestees about the possibility of having quarterly gatherings at CUCC to ground our actions in faith.  They will also try to talk to NC NAACP representatives to see if such gatherings are in their plans so that we can join that effort rather than create something new.  These spirit-restoring gatherings would be open to the public.  The gatherings would also include time for networking about action.  After some information gathering, we need to clear this idea with Property Ministry and the Council before proceeding.
- If CUCC sends a representative to the Southern Conference of the UCC, Jane will ask that person to explore informally with other NC congregations how they are responding to their legislators and if they are participating in Moral Mondays.   CUCC might offer home hospitality (lodging, meals) to UCC members who must travel a long distance to speak to their legislators or to attend Moral Mondays.
-  The ad hoc group requested that the Forum schedule one or more sessions this fall with representatives of organizations who are planning for long-term change in the NC General Assembly.  One possible group:  NC Conservation Network.  Edith will bring this to the Forum planning group.

While the participants in Sunday's ad hoc discussion had a variety of issues which brought them to the table, a common bond seemed to be the commitment to start now by saying "no" to the current direction of the NC General Assembly and the commitment to stay engaged in working for a more just General Assembly in the future.  We identified the need to stay in touch for mutual support, to nurture our spirits for the long haul, and to push ourselves to go outside our comfort zones in making a public stand.

Anyone with questions or who would like to be on the email list for updates can contact Jane Smith.

- rough notes from the meeting submitted by Jane Smith (corrections/additions welcome!)

Carpooling to Moral Mondays

NEW LOCATION FOR RALLY:  The rally to support those doing non-violent civil disobedience has moved to Halifax Mall which is on the opposite side of the legislative building from the Bicentennial Mall (where the museums are).

If you would like to carpool to be a witness (not doing non-violent civil disobedience) at today's Moral Monday, meet Jane Smith at the Dixie Trail parking lot at 4:25.  She will leave promptly at 4:30.

Jane plans to stay at the witness until the last batch of arrestees leaves the legislative building, but she is happy to drive folks back to their cars earlier and then return for more standing.

Remember - dress for rain, wear VERY comfortable shoes, and bring water for the heat.

If you would like to carpool to attend the non-violent civil disobedience training at today's Moral Monday, call Joan McAllister by 2:15 today and leave a message.  If you plan to do civil disobedience, you MUST attend the training today.

- submitted for the Moral Monday ad hoc group

Śānti Matthews to preach this Sunday, June 9

Śānti is second row, second on right
We welcome Śānti to the pulpit this week.  We normally hear her in her role as our youth leader, so it is a treat for the rest of us to hear her. 

This Sunday we also celebrate with our graduates; plan to speak with them during the party after worship.

From College
Jeffrey Mohr (UNC-Greensboro)
Austin Osborne-Newman (UNC-Charlotte)

From High School
Susie Binganisi
Jackson Kiel
Carson Roach-Howell
Katie Srivastava

-submitted for the Deacons

How is faithing going in your life?

Join the conversation with Life and Faith in Downtown Raleigh.  This group of CUCCers and friends meets on second Tuesdays to bounce ideas, support and challenge each other, and enjoy good company.  We meet at Tyler's Tap Room (Raleigh); parking map.  Arrive at 6:30pm if you want dinner or at 7 if you just want  a beverage (with or without alcohol).  Dutch treat.  We’re generally out of there by 8:15.  Our topic may be "How is faithing going in your life?" unless someone comes with something they'd like to brainstorm.  Look for Etta Barksdale and the red Life and Faith comma at the round table on the far right of the restaurant.  New folks and friends of new folks are always welcome.
A Gathering of Friends event

- submitted by Jane Smith

Roger Shinn, author of the UCC Statement of Faith

Roger Shinn, a key player in the formation of the UCC in 1957, died last month in Southbury CT at age 96. An interesting obit appears in Sunday's NY Times ...

Perhaps Dr. Shinn’s signal moment came after the 1957 merger of two mainstream denominations, the Evangelical and Reformed Church and the Congregational Christian Churches, to form the United Church of Christ. He was the principal author of the statement of faith for the denomination, which is still used in words close to his original.