Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Ethiopian Refugees are here!

The two Ethiopian refugees moved into their apartment on Method Road the evening of August 31. The slide show below shows the process of setting up the apartment for them and helping them move in. All this took place during the period August 29-31. Thanks to all those who took part in the planning sessions, gathering items and furniture, preparing the apartment, moving furniture in, and greeting the mother and daughter when they arrived. (The man in the photos is the translator who helped introduce the newcomers to their new apartment.)

See the following post at the church website for more information:
www.communityucc.org/2016/07/ministry-alongside-refugees.html

Śānti's Dad

Śānti's Dad, Curtis Fitzgerald died on Sunday, August 28th, at Transitions LifeCare in Raleigh.  He was 89 years old.   Obituary

In these days, please pray for his wife Carolyn Billings, his daughter Śānti and her husband Matt, son Ted and his wife Pat, and son Greg and his wife Mary.

A memorial service celebrating Curtis' life will be held on Saturday, September 10, at 11:00am in the sanctuary at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church.  The family will receive friends at a reception in Finlator Hall following the service.

Weekly News - August 31

The online calendar is always available and is always up-to-date.
Deadlines to submit articles to the church office (office.cucc@gmail.com):
  • Weekly Newsletter email - TUESDAY by NOON.
  • Sunday bulletin - TUESDAY by NOON.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Ending Gerrymandering

When is the last time you looked at a congressional district map from North Carolina that seemed to have reasonably shaped congressional districts? Here's the one put together in a common effort led by Common Cause and Duke University that demonstrates it's not impossible to put together a reasonable looking map that's truly nonpartisan.


At last Sunday's dialog among justice groups in the church, one of the major topics of discussion was the unfortunate consequences of blatant Gerrymandering as long practiced in North Carolina by both political parties.

Fortunately, a reform effort is underway and is achieving some actual bipartisan support. See the complete article in the Raleigh N&0 from August 30.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Weekly News - August 25

The online calendar is always available and is always up-to-date.
Deadlines to submit articles to the church office (office.cucc@gmail.com):
  • Weekly Newsletter email - TUESDAY by NOON.
  • Sunday bulletin - TUESDAY by NOON.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Walk with CUCC at the NC Pride Parade - Sept. 24


SAVE THE DATE:  NC PRIDE, Saturday, September 24, 2016

Save the date and join fellow CUCCers at this year’s NC Pride Parade and Festival.  We will once again have a presence at PRIDE and will be marching in the parade.  It is a fun and affirming event for those who participate in the parade and for those who come to cheer on the marchers.  

We would love for you to join us in the parade and to also volunteer at our table.  For volunteer times and opportunities, please contact Joan McAllister. 

The Parade begins at 1:00pm.  CUCC members, who wish to march in the Parade, please meet up at 12:30 at the CUCC table. 

For additional information about the PRIDE event

Help people vote + 3 ways to make new justice friends

Adrienne Little, who represents CUCC at Congregations for Social Justice, sends these 4 notices from organizations in our community.  Talk to Adrienne if you want more information.

1 - Volunteer opportunities at an urgent time for voters in Wake County from Barbara Smalley-McMahan

This coming weekend marks the anniversaries of the death of Emmet Till and the 1963 March on Washington DC with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  The weekend also comes at the end of a disturbing week where according to a letter sent out yesterday by Bob Hall, Executive Director of Democracy NC.
“Dallas Woodhouse, Executive Director of NC Republican Party sent explicit instructions to Republicans who hold the majority on all 100 county boards to ’make party line changes to early voting.’  He explicitly told them to close Early Voting sites on Sunday, remove them from college campuses and open more in Republican areas, according to his email obtained by the Raleigh News & Observer.”  

The Board of Elections in Raleigh has voted and is now taking steps to shut down our vote.  Seeing this kind of systemic racism in action again, more than five decades after the tragic death of Emmet Till and the march on Washington DC, ought to make people angry!  Volunteers with the Raleigh-Apex NAACP will put our righteous anger to good use as we spend all day Saturday making sure all of our neighbors in Raleigh are registered to vote!  Click on the attachment above to sign up and join us!  The Raleigh-Apex Branch of the NAACP needs you, because the people need all of us now!

2 - Love Wins Open House Sept. 1 5:30 – 8:00pm from Hugh Hollowell
           Love Wins Open House
           Thurs, Sept. 1 - 5:30 – 8:00 pm
           824 N Bloodworth St, Raleigh  27604
           (Shares space in Trinity United Methodist Church)
A lot has changed at Love Wins over the last six months. We have four new staff members. We’ve spun off into Love Wins Ministries and Love Wins Community Engagement Center. And we have changed the look of our space. We’re ready for company to come over. Let’s have a hootenanny!

Everyone is welcome of course and we’re especially hoping our community partners, partnering congregations, donors, friends, family, and fans of our work will come.

It’s a drop in event. You can stop by anytime 5:30 – 8:00 to meet the new staff, walk through the facility, hear from Hugh and Love Wins board members, and enjoy light snacks. No need to bring anything, just come hang out with us for a bit. Hugh will give a brief formal presentation at 6:30.

3 - You're Invited! Eat With Us On First Friday - Carroll's Kitchen from Jim Freeze
Make it your happy hour, your after school snack, or your dinner on the fly - we'd love to have you at the restaurant on September 2 for a sneak peek of the space and some tasty treats from Chef Liz. Bring your friends, bring your kids, and bring your neighbors so we can do #good4raleigh together. And don't forget to hit up the Facebook event for updates.

4 -  2016 CAMPAIGN NONVIOLENCE NC WEEK SEPTEMBER 17 -24 from Sue Woodling
The Campaign Nonviolence NC Week is an event that is part of the Campaign Nonviolence movement-- a long-term movement to mainstream nonviolence and to foster a culture of peace. This movement was launched nationwide September 21-27, 2014 with 230 nonviolent actions in every state in the nation. It is a grassroots movement to mainstream active nonviolence using the vision of Martin Luther King, Jr. that calls us to become people of nonviolence and to resolve personal and global conflicts nonviolently. Campaign Nonviolence was developed by Pace e Bene. For additional information about Pace e Bene go to their website paceebene.org.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Planning for Welcoming Sunday

Is your group planning something for Welcoming Sunday (Sept. 11) that requires table space or an activity area? If so, we need to know about it so that we can coordinate space indoors and out and plan for table placement. There's a simple form available that allows your group to tell us what you need. If you'll do this, we'll be sure to have what you need already in place when you arrive for Welcoming Sunday.

Form to request table or space: bit.ly/tables2016
-- Lavon Page
for the WFG Ministry

Add your name to the PFLAG ad in The INDY

Every September during NC Pride week, PFLAG Triangle publishes an ad in Indy Week listing individuals, faith communities, organizations, and businesses supporting our LGBTQ family and friends. The ad is supported by donations and is the main fundraiser for financing PFLAG Triangle’s work in this community. The text of the ad reads:

     We the undersigned affirm the lives of gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, and transgender people. We condemn acts of bigotry and hatred. We join PFLAG in celebrating the lives of those we love and admire; acceptance and love … family values for a lifetime.

You may be listed as an individual (or individuals in one household) only or you may add your listing as part of a faith community, denomination, business, or organization. A faith community, organization, or business may choose to be listed by itself without an individual’s name. If you wish to donate and be listed in this 2016 ad, please provide your name as you wish it to appear and if you want to be listed as an individual or as a member of CUCC. Please call the church office (919-809-8850) or Cathy Marshall if you need any additional information.

The deadline is September 12th, 2016.

Suggested Donation
$15 for each individual/family or organization
$30 per business
PFLAG Triangle is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Your contributions are tax deductible as allowed.

You may donate online at pflagtriangle.org or drop off your check or cash donation (receipt provided) to the church office or contact Cathy Marshall or Joan McAllister.

Alternatively, you may donate by check and and send the check made out to PFLAG Triangle to the address below:
PFLAG Triangle
PO Box 51776
Durham, NC 27717

Cathy Marshall will be available during Fellowship to collect donations for the INDY Week Ad. You may give her your donation and information for the INDY Week Ad during that time.

CUCC has been an ongoing supporter of PFLAG and the INDY Week Ad.  Thank you so much for your continued support.

Welcoming Sunday - Sept. 11

What is Welcoming Sunday?  A staff-led worship service on the theme of "peace," followed by a fun-filled gathering with food, games, and activities for all ages, sponsored by Welcoming, Fellowship & Growth!

people filling their plates at the potluck table
Grilled chicken sandwiches, beef hot dogs, veggie burgers, watermelon juice pops, and s'mores provided! Bring a cold side dish for 6-8 people; please label if it is vegetarian, gluten-free, or vegan.

2 men playing horseshoes
Horseshoes anyone?
Some of the activities planned...

  • Play games on the lawn, blow bubbles, play checkers and board games
  • Prepare for our unknown new pastor:  (1) Get your light-hearted photo taken for our informal directory for the pastor and (2) put your home on our map.
  • Choose a question for a candidate for CUCC's own (completely nonpartisan) voter information guide
  • Decorate a footprint to honor someone living with mental illness that the walkers can remember on the Walk for Hope
  • Pack a toiletries bag for a refugee family
  • Sign a card for each of our college-age young adults
  • Pick up and pay for your CUCC t-shirt
  • Decorate a poster for the NC Pride Parade
  • Take time to get to talk that intriguing person you have wanted to know

children and adults making crafts around a table
Don't miss this exciting church-wide celebration and kick-off to our new program year!   Sunday, September 11th.

Celebrate with Ruth

All adult members of CUCC are invited to Ruth Klemmer's 90th Birthday Party at the Glenaire Retirement Community in Cary on Saturday, August 27th.  Come anytime between 2:30pm and 4:00pm. The Decatur Street Dixieland Band will be playing until 4:30pm. NO presents please.  Birthday cards are welcome at the Auditorium door. Ruth & Ed's daughter Karen Klemmer Brown will be the MC for the event.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Are we open to that?

A shared thought from the UCC Daily Devotional of Aug. 20 ...

It's pretty easy for Christians, and maybe especially liberal Protestants, to say, "Look at those uptight, narrow-minded Pharisees. Thank God, we're not like them! Thank God, we know that human needs like hunger, healing or help in crisis are more important than religious ritual or observance."

It is easy, in other words, to be smug about our open-mindedness, and to congratulate ourselves on our more flexible and magnanimous, and certainly not hidebound, faith.

But what if Jesus' point was not less, but actually more, demanding? This story concludes with his tense, not entirely clear statement, "Christ is lord of the sabbath."

It's the kind of statement that creates a moment of truth: what is God doing right now? What does God require of me, of us, right at this moment? We are in the presence of the living Christ, what now?  

Often we too are stuck in familiar arguments, predictable conflicts and entrenched positions. Christ's presence shatters all that, renders it null and void. The old that has passed away; there is, in Christ, a new creation. In Christ God is doing a new thing.  

We are "open," but are we open to that?

Full article

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Weekly News - August 18

The online calendar is always available and is always up-to-date.
Deadlines to submit articles to the church office (office.cucc@gmail.com):
  • Weekly Newsletter email - TUESDAY by NOON.
  • Sunday bulletin - TUESDAY by NOON.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Are you new to CUCC? Join us for lunch.

Newcomers' Luncheon in CUCC's Library
Sunday, September 18, 12pm – 2pm

Calling all Newcomers!  If you are a newcomer to CUCC or to the UCC (or consider yourself a newcomer), we invite you to a Newcomers' Luncheon in the Hoffmann Room on Sunday, September 18, noon to 2pm.  We will provide lunch, drinks, and conversation and, hopefully, answer your questions about the church or the denomination.

Please RSVP to the church office (office.cucc@gmail.com or 919-809-8850) by Sunday, September 11.

Monday, August 15, 2016

What are CUCC's justice groups doing and how can I join in?

PLEASE JOIN THE CONVERSATION.  Everyone is invited to a meeting at CUCC on Sunday, August 28, from 12:00 to 1:00 in the Hoffman Room to share information about what groups* and individuals are doing.  This is an opportunity to keep in touch with each other and to stay informed about what is happening.  It is also a good time to explore ways to collaborate and support each other in our activities and concerns and to suggest new initiatives and projects.

* CUCC's justice groups so far:  Community Outreach Ministry, Economic Justice Task Force, Justice in a Changing Climate Task Force, Open and Affirming Task Force, Social Justice Ministry, Youth Group, and our just-starting welcome to refugees resettling in our area.

CUCC is collecting toiletries for refugee families

Looking for an easy way to get your toes wet helping refugees?  Community Outreach and the Youth are collecting toiletries to provide a "Welcome Bag" for Refugee Families to be filled and decorated on Welcoming Sunday Sept. 11 but we need the items to fill them!  A list of items that we will put in the bags are below:

Toothpaste/Toothbrush
Soap
Shampoo (without conditioner added)
Deodorant (non-scented)
Brush & Comb (especially picks and wide-toothed combs)
Razor  & Shaving Cream
Feminine Hygiene (pads only)
Lotion
Nail Clippers
Grocery Store Gift Card ($25)

Please bring what you can! We are collecting items Aug. 15 through Sept. 11.  For questions, email Maria Mayorga.  To find out more please go to: Lutheran Services Carolinas Refugee Resettlement.

Find more ways to help CUCC welcome refugees at Refugee Friendship.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Save the date - Walk for Hope, Oct. 9

4 people in matching Walk for Hope t-shirts smile at the camera
Part of a CUCC Walk for Hope team
It may seem like a long way off, but October 9 will be here before you know it.

Join the youth of CUCC on our all-ages Walk for Hope team.  Funds raised by this nonprofit are used for mental health research.

Not up to walking?  You'll have opportunities this September after worship or online to make a donation sponsoring one of our walkers.

Watch this space for more details.

Death penalty, election protection, and jobs

Adrienne Little, CUCC's representative at Congregations for Social Justice, shares these three opportunities to work for change with others in the community.

1 - Memorial Prayer Service - 10th anniversary of no executions in N.C. - Thurs, Aug. 18 from Patrick O'Neill
       Memorial Prayer Service
       August 18 Thursday 7 P.M.
       Gather at Pullen Baptist Church 1800 Hillsborough St. Raleigh, NC
As we approach the 10th anniversary of NO EXECUTIONS in our state, it is important that we gather to commemorate this amazing achievement by calling on all people of Good Will to proclaim: "No More Executions EVER AGAIN in Our State!" North Carolina is the only Southern state to have gone a decade without an execution.

It is simply wonderful and almost unimaginable that we will be remembering 10 years of no executions in the Tar Heel state. August 18 is the 10th anniversary of Sammy Flippen's state-sanctioned execution. While Sammy died -- after he and his family proclaimed his innocence -- no one else has been executed in our names in a decade.

Please join us at Pullen Baptist-- in the same chapel where we gathered 10 years ago (see below) to say Good Bye to Sammy -- for a service and memorial walk to Central Prison to hold candles as we proclaim the massage that 10 years of no executions should become Executions -- Never Again! This will be our first walk to Central in a Spirit of Hope rather than despair. When a person is executed at Central Prison the cause of death listed on the death certificate is homicide. More than 400 homicides have been carried out on Western Blvd. We say: "No More Killings in Our Name!"

2 -  Standing up for Democracy from Judye Jacobs
The Reform Jewish Movement will be partnering with the NAACP, the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights under the Law, and the PICO National Network to protect the right to vote this election year.

This national effort will be launched at Temple Beth Or, Thursday, August 18th - 7 -- 9 pm.  Speakers will include Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union of Reform Judaism, Reverend William Barber, President of the NC NAACP and Bishop Dwayne Roster, PICO National Network.  The event is free and open to the public.
Temple Beth Or is located at 5315 Creedmoor Road, Raleigh, NC 27612.

3 -  Jobs For Life Classes from Carolyn McClendon  
The Support Circle Program for Homeless Families is pleased to offer our 6th Jobs for Life class for persons in our community who are unemployed or underemployed.  Classes will be held twice a week for 8 weeks beginning September 12  and ending November 3, 2016.  Students will graduate on November 4, upon completion of the course.  Participation in the class will be limited to 12 students and dinner and child care will be provided at each class.

Jobs for Life uses a faith based curriculum to teach basic skills to individuals that will prepare them for work and life.  To that end, each student is assigned a Champion/Mentor who will attend classes with them and support them as they experience a journey filled with opportunities to develop confidence, learn self-control and build their overall sense of self-worth.

We are currently accepting applications for candidates for the class that will begin on September 12;  the deadline to submit an application is September 1.  If you  or someone you know would like to be considered for this session, please fax a completed application along with all supporting documents to my attention at Catholic Charities at 919-790-8836.  Email and mailed applicants are also acceptable, and can be scanned and emailed to: carolyn.mcclendon@raldioc.org or mailed to Catholic Charities, Jobs for Life, 3000 Highwoods Blvd., Suite 128, Raleigh 27604.

Volunteer opportunities are also available for persons who would like to participate in the class. If you have questions, need additional information about the Jobs for Life class,  or would like to participate in the program, please contact Carolyn McClendon at carolyn.mcclendon@raldioc.org or 919-790-8533 ext. 25.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Thursday, Aug. 18: 10th anniversary of no executions

Memorial Prayer Service
August 18 Thursday 7 P.M.
Gather at Pullen Baptist Church 1800 Hillsborough St. Raleigh, NC
Directions and Parking Tips

Elizabeth Soboeiro of our congregation shares this announcement and invites you to join her at this prayer service.

Dear Abolitionists:

As we approach the 10th anniversary of NO EXECUTIONS in our state, it is important that we gather to commemorate this amazing achievement by calling on all people of Good Will to proclaim: "No More Executions EVER AGAIN in Our State!" North Carolina is the only Southern state to have gone a decade without an execution.

It is simply wonderful and almost unimaginable that we will be remembering 10 years of no executions in the Tar Heel state. August 18 is the 10th anniversary of Sammy Flippen's state-sanctioned execution. While Sammy died -- after he and his family proclaimed his innocence -- no one else has been executed in our names in a decade.

Please join us at Pullen Baptist-- in the same chapel where we gathered 10 years ago (see below) to say Good Bye to Sammy -- for a service and memorial walk to Central Prison to hold candles as we proclaim the massage that 10 years of no executions should become Executions -- Never Again! This will be our first walk to Central in a Spirit of Hope rather than despair. When a person is executed at Central Prison the cause of death listed on the death certificate is homicide. More than 400 homicides have been carried out on Western Blvd. We say: "No More Killings in Our Name!"

Peace and Abolition, Patrick O'Neill

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Weekly News - August 10

The online calendar is always available and is always up-to-date.
Deadlines to submit articles to the church office (office.cucc@gmail.com):
  • Weekly Newsletter email - TUESDAY by NOON.
  • Sunday bulletin - TUESDAY by NOON.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Church Work Day - Saturday, Aug. 27

Come one! Come all! to our church-wide work day on Saturday, August 27, 9:00am to noon.  There will be lots to do - inside and out - and there will be jobs and projects for all ages!  Come and help get our church and church grounds spruced up for our upcoming Welcoming Sunday (September 11). Bring your gloves (if you have them) and wear work clothes!

Busy on August 27?  You can still help. Ask Allan Beidler or Skip Stoddard for a job that you can do on your own time during August.  They can select a job that fits your time availability and skills.

Community UCC seeking full-time Pastor

Community United Church of Christ is delighted to officially launch its search for a full-time, settled pastor to join our Beloved Community.

Thanks to the thoughtful preparation by our Transition Team, led by our Intentional Interim Pastor, the Search Committee announced the position on August 9, 2016. Interested candidates can view the position opening and request the Church Profile through the UCC website. Anyone who would like to review the Church Profile can also read a hard copy in the church office or the church library.

Community UCC has a long history of involvement in social justice, peace and civil rights movements in Raleigh and beyond. We became an Open and Affirming congregation in 1989. After the retirement of our most recent settled Pastor, Steve Halsted, late in 2014, we began a year-long process to discern who God is calling us to be as a congregation, and how to search for our next settled Pastor. The Transition Team thoughtfully explored our history as a congregation. Visitors to the church can view the beautiful timeline of our history in the fellowship hall, which was created by members of the Transition Team after many interviews and conversations with church membership.

As a growing congregation, we recently embraced the growth in our Youth ministry to promote our formerly part-time Youth & Adult Education Coordinator to full-time status. We have rejoiced at how the energy and vitality of our youth group has invigorated the whole congregation.

Mindful of both our past and our future, we seek a grounded, energetic pastor to become a vital part of this sacred community that is nurturing spiritual growth and working for social justice. As a congregation we are praying and listening for Gods voice to guide both our Search Committee and our next Pastor.   


Interested candidates can view the position opening and request the Church Profile though the UCC website.