Thank you for the incredibly warm welcome you have extended to me!
This welcome has only gone to affirm the sense of you that I got from looking over your materials in the interim search process and from the interview -- you are an incredibly friendly and active group! Full of passion and idealism and a faith that you are living out, making a real difference in your lives and in the life of the greater community.
This is a time of transition for this congregation and I am impressed by how you've not shied away from change, but jumped in with both feet. I'll be away this weekend and most of next week visiting my parents and attending an Interim Training workshop in Minneapolis where I'm sure I'll be getting my feet more than wet.
A time of transition means that we will encounter some bumps in the road ahead. In fact, one of the most important things we'll do is try to figure out where those bumps might be and that will require us to actually hit a few of them. But the energy and enthusiasm that has been so evident to me on meeting you will carry us through.
Please don't hesitate to be in touch with me. My office hours are Tuesdays through Thursdays, and while you'll often just be able to find me at the Fellowship, it's best to make an appointment so that we can be sure to have the time together we need. You can reach me at 989-400-4933 and at RevJoeUUFCM@gmail.com.
Please note that the "Beauty is..." journal I mentioned in the service last Sunday will be living for a while in the Social Hall. Feel free to read it and to add your own reflections to it and practice beauty!
Walking with you is my prayer!
The worship theme for Sunday, August 18th will be "Affection and Jim Leyland", with guest minister: Rev. Dr. Brent A. Smith. The word “Covenant” is often used in religious circles, but rarely analyzed as to what living a life shaped by it might mean. We will evaluate modern life using this concept to see what it calls us to do and how it invites us to live.
Dr. Brent Smith is currently an Assistant Professor at Grand Valley State University, where he teaches classes on Life Journey. His past ministerial jobs include being the minister at the Tulsa All Souls UU church and being the founding minister of the (UU) All Souls Community Church in Grand Rapids.
Get Your Questions Ready!
On Sunday, August 25, there will be no formal sermon. Our new Interim Minister, Rev. Joe Cleveland, will respond to your questions rather than preach a sermon. Take advantage of this opportunity to get to know Rev. Joe!
Fellowship Life Meeting
On Sunday, August 25th will be our next fellowship life meeting after the service. Topics to be discussed will be plans for the RE program, upcoming Fellowship Fair (formerly known as Job Fair) and new office protocols. As always this is a great opportunity for asking questions and get more invested in our fellowship.
Fall Fellowship Fair Coming Soon!
It is by working together, bringing our ideas and efforts to promote the health of this fellowship that we can grow and expand our Mission. Serving together we learn to rely on one another and become deeper friends. Please plan to attend one day of our two-day "Fair" to see all the areas in which you are needed. Learn about the places your time and talents can be given to promote the health and growth of our community. From worship on Sundays to RE, from communications, to planning, from soup to nuts, we need you. The return on involvement is deep and the work is lighter with many in service.
Our "Fall Fellowship Fair" will be held on Sundays September 15 and 22 following the worship service in the Fellowship Hall.
The '13-14 RE year will be kicking off on Sunday, September 15 at 3 p.m. with a UU paddle event at Buckley's. All congregants are welcome and encouraged to participate. An alternate event will be planned in case of inclement weather. Further details will be provided, but mark your calendars now to reserve the afternoon for fun, family and fellowship.
Joyful Noise Choir Rehearsal
The Joyful Noise choir has begun rehearsing. If you enjoy singing we would be very happy if you would join us. If you have any questions please contact Chris Bauerle at (989) 330-8457 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
UUFCM will soon be forming a children's choir. Roze Finn will be leading our youngest members in this endeavor. Donations of percussive instruments such as tambourines, triangles, maracas, etc. are needed for the Youthful Noise choir. If you have something the children and youth could use, please see Roze or Niki. More information will soon be available.
Please remember that the UUFCM RE children and youth are collecting cans and bottles to raise money for a peace pole. We have raised about a third of the funds that we need to plant the pole on our property, so we have a great start. Also, start saving your pennies for this project. Several "noisy collections" will be taking place this fall to add to the fundraising effort.
Do You Donate to CMU Public Radio?
The last couple years some of us have bundled our donations to CMU Public Radio and purchased "publicity". UUFCM has been a "day sponsor" and had regular "blurbs" acknowledging us. Mary Alsager will be collecting our donations once again. You can make the check to CMU Public Radio as you have in the past but give it to Mary. You still get the tax benefit. We will continue to do this in the future, so if this year is a done deal for you, please remember us next year.
Have You Been Counted Yet? How Do We Show Up? Survey –
The first tabulation of the surveys is now posted in the Fellowship Hall, but we need more complete information as people return from summer. There are more surveys available in the entry way and we will be encouraging participation in the next few weeks.
The first two Sundays in July we asked “How do we show up?” living our faith in the world. To facilitate a discussion about how we collectively might work for Social Justice, we are looking at where we, as individuals, are already committed. On Friday, July 19, you received a survey via email. If you have not yet returned it or completed one at church, please do so by leaving it in the box in the entryway at the UU Center or mail it to Vicki Chessin, 7546 N Luce Rd., Alma, 48801. The collective information will be shared in early September.
First Friday Potluck
Want to host one of the upcoming potlucks? We still need help! The dates available for hosting are: September 6, October 4, and December 6. Duties include: arriving 15 minutes early; setting out plates, cups, and silverware; overseeing clean up afterwards and run dishwasher (if full) - not to worry, most will stay to help!; and then lock up and go. Contact Laura McBride at 989.772.5512 or email@example.com to sign up!
Sewing Circle is cancelled for August, but will resume in September - see you then!