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Showing posts from June, 2018

From the Pastor

Dear Community UCC Friends, 
Take a deep breath. Exhale. Take a deeper breath. Exhale again.
Think of a time in your life when you felt at peace. Allow that feeling and that moment to cross the boundaries of time as we know it, and claim that space again.  Rest into this peace and allow it to rush into your mind space, fill your body, and settle deep into your spirit. 
Now, Imagine yourself suspended in air without worry, or fear, or pain or stress, only peace and tranquility surround you and support the weight of your body. Rest into this experience as long as you are able... 
When your feet hit the floor again, Remember. Remember what it felt like to choose a quiet mind, and to steady your heartbeat with a calm surrender to a timeless and infinite peace. This experience is similar to living life with faith. Choosing faith and God's love, and a peaceful center, in the face of fear. 
Today, like too many other days, we are hearing unsettling/frightening/violent news from so many direct…

Saturday Demonstration Protesting Administration's Immigration Policies - Downtown Raleigh, 10:00am

Saturday Demonstration Protesting Administration's Immigration Policies:  Downtown Raleigh, 10:00am
This Saturday, June 30, there will be a demonstration protesting the Trump administration’s policy of separating immigrant families at the border, detaining children apart from their parents, and related policies. It's happening in downtown Raleigh at10:00 a.m. RSVP online at
March starts at City Plaza in Downtown Raleigh, 400 Fayetteville St. Raleigh 27601 and ends with a Rally at Bicentennial Plaza, 1 E. Edenton St. (directly across from the NC General Assembly). While we’d love to have you march with us, if you prefer to just join us at the rally please do!
Coordinated demonstrations are happening nationwide in 132 cities across the country Saturday morning, June 30. Go to to see all the other sites.
Demonstrations also are planned in C…

Fellowship and Worship Opportunities for the Week of July 1, 2018

Sunday  07/01      9:00am   Nursery provided 9:00am   Taizé Worship – Sanctuary 9:30am   Adult Monday Morning Bible Study - Bradow Room 10:30amWorshipServicewith Communion - Sanctuary 10:30amCommissioning of BYC Participants at Beginning of Service  10:45amChildren’s Sunday School - Sunday School Room  10:45amNo Youth Sunday School -First Sunday Youth stay in Service  11:45amFellowship - Vaughan Fellowship Hall 4:00pmCovenant Community - Bradow Room Monday07/02 12:15pm Monday Lunch Group - Hoffmann Room Tuesday07/03 10:00amOffice Staff Meeting - Pilgrim House Wednesday 07/04    9:00amCHURCH OFFICE CLOSED - HAPPY 4TH! 9:30am Tai Chi – Vaughan Fellowship Hall

Lectionary for the Week of July 1, 2018

Lectionary for the Week of July 1, 2018 - Sixth Sunday after Pentecost - Green 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27; Psalm 130 or Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15, 2:23-24 or Lamentations 3:22-33; Psalm 30; 2 Corinthians 8:7-15; Mark 5:21-43

Youth Summer Camp BYC 2018!

Eleven youth and two adults are preparing to leave for BYC Youth Camp on Sunday, July 1.

BYC is a church camp in Laurel Springs, NC, that is organized and supported by eleven churches (eight Alliance of Baptist Churches and three UCC Churches) who covenant together to provide a safe, nurturing, fun and creative space for youth to learn more about God, themselves, and community. Youth get to spend the week with roughly 100 other youth from like-minded churches all over the country. This will be the 10th year that CUCC has participated. We can't say enough good things about both the deeply profound spiritual opportunities and the community building experiences that this camp offers.

We need and cherish your prayers, your thoughts, your support, and your care. It’s our hope that CUCC will pray for us in worship, and throughout the week of July 1, as we leave for camp and as we spend time learning and growing and understanding each other, and God more deeply and truly. We will study Cre…

NC Families Belong Together Campaign has asked that we share this with the wider community.

Please share widely: 
If you see a group of children traveling without parents and think they might have been separated from family at the border, leave a message with details and/or send a text with a photo if possible to the North Carolina Justice Center (NCJC) at 774-255-3286. Please include your complete contact information which will be kept confidential. 
To get more involved with the campaign and learn what you can do to help, sign up at

Faith Leaders, Immigrants Gather For World Refugee Day

Rev. Jenny Shultz-Thomas, of Community United Church of Christ, leads a prayer with area clergy on Wed., June 20, 2018 at One Table United Methodist Church in Raleigh.

Faith leaders, immigrants and their neighbors gathered today in Raleigh to recognize World Refugee Day.
The day began at Open Table United Methodist Church for prayer. Jennie Belle, a community organizer with Church World Service, said the group is using the day to speak out against current federal immigration policies.  
“Different faiths and clergy, to raise up a prophetic voice to say that the policies right now that our administration is implementing around separating families and not allowing refugees in this country are immoral,” Belle said.
The news in recent days has been dominated by searing images of children held in cages at border facilities, as well as audio recordings of young children crying for their parents — images that have sparked fury, question of morality and concern from Republica…

From the Pastor

Pastor’s Letter

Again Jesus said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.”

This text from last Sunday has continued to call me to center, providing universal spiritual context to the particular moral crisis of our day as "children" continue to find harm in the arms of a 'nation under God'. 

When I think of seeds growing, I think of my own children who sometimes seem to go to sleep and night and awake the next morning having grown 3 inches!

What does it mean to grow tiny seeds into the fullness of their existence, and to offer shade under the branches of this abundance?

Mary Ellen Maunz reminds us of Maria Montessori's idea of the child absorbent mind saying, "From birth to (approximately) age six, a child’s b…

This Week's Opportunities

Sunday06/24   9:00am Nursery provided 9:00amTaizé Worship – Sanctuary 9:30amAdult Monday Morning Bible Study - Bradow Room 10:30amWorshipService - Sanctuary 10:45amChildren’s Sunday School - Sunday School Room 10:45amYouth Sunday School - Youth Room 11:45amFellowship - Vaughan Fellowship Hall 12:00pmReligious Education Ministry Meeting - Hoffmann Room 12:00pmSocial Justice Ministry Meeting - Bradow Room 12:00pmStewardship Ministry Meeting - Library 4:00pmCovenant Community - Bradow Room Monday06/25 12:15pmMonday Lunch Group - Hoffmann Room Tuesday06/26 10:00amOffice Staff Meeting - Pilgrim House

2020 Census Questions & Answers Meeting

The 2020 census is just around the corner and plans are being debated on what questions to ask and how to run the count.  There are important fairness and representation issues at stake, so Social Justice is discussing it. Our next meeting is at Noon on June 24 in the Bradow Room. CUCC member Mike Cline and Stacey Carless, Executive Director of NC Counts Coalition (NC Counts), will tell us about the 2020 census and what churches can do to help ensure a complete and accurate count. This should be a fascinating discussion. I hope you can join us. From Gary Smith, for the Social Justice Ministry.

Sisters in Spirit Beach Retreat

The SIS beach retreat is scheduled for Friday June 29th through Sunday July 1st. Please bring your questions or interest to Marty Lamb at 919-819-4084. We have space for 9; deadline to sign up is June 25.  Watch the screen in fellowship hall on Sundays after church coming up for possible visual history of the retreats. 

Triangle Expo for LGBTQ Aging Adults

SAGE Raleigh, a program of the LGBT Center of Raleigh, and Resources for Seniors are pleased to jointly announce the first ever TRIANGLE EXPO FOR LGBTQ AGING ADULTS, with American Airlines as our Presenting Sponsor.
The EXPO will be held at the Five Points Center for Active Adults located at 2000 Noble Road, Raleigh, NC on June 23, 2018 from 11:00 AM until 4:00 PM. The purpose of the EXPO is to bring together LGBTQ seniors, their families, caregivers and others with service organizations who want to make it known they are welcoming, nonjudgmental and mindful of the need for cultural sensitivity when serving LGBTQ individuals.
During the EXPO, numerous events are scheduled to occur throughout the day, including educational programs, a law clinic, health screenings, entertainment and prizes, and much more. Numerous exhibitors will be present to provide services and information. The EXPO, which is open to the public, is free to all.
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- from the Website Team, extending God's extravagant welcome

Pray for our DC advocacy team this week

This week (June 12-16) a team of 17 youth and adults will travel to Washington, DC, to advocate on behalf of immigrants and of school safety.  After a time of retreat at Lake Anna, they will be briefed on effective advocacy techniques by a long-time Capitol Hill staffer.  Then they will visit with the staffs of their Congressional representatives.

Please pray for them this week as they travel, work and relax together.  Pray also for open hearts so that when they return home, we are ready to join them in next steps on this work.

From the Pastor

Fast forward 50 years and precious little of Dr. King’s vision for economic justice has been achieved in America. In the richest, most developed nation on earth, 17.2 percent of the population lives in poverty and 21 percent of all children live in poverty, with disproportionately higher rates for Black and Latino children. The United States ranks 18th among the top 21 most developed countries in terms of poverty, inequality, and economic mobility. It is 23rd in income inequality, lagging behind Turkey and Slovakia.

When political candidates on the left and right do talk about inequality, their language tends to center around "middle class jobs" or "working families." The word poverty is almost always left out of the equation — as if it no longer exists, or the people who suffer from it don't really matter. 

But Barber and Theoharis’ Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival hopes to change all of that by creating an intersectional movement ou…

Lectionary for the Week of June 17, 2018

Lectionary for the Week of June 17, 2018 - Fourth Sunday after Pentecost - Green 1 Samuel 15:34 -16:13; Psalm 20 or Ezekiel 17:22-24; Psalm 92:1-4, 12-15; 2 Corinthians 5:6-10, (11-13), 14-17; 2 Corinthians 5:6-17; Mark 4:26-34
Father’s Day

Fellowship and Worship Opportunities for the Week of June 17, 2018

Sunday06/17Father’s Day 9:00am Nursery provided 9:00amTaizé Worship – Sanctuary 9:30amAdult Monday Morning Bible Study - Bradow Room 10:30amWorshipService - Sanctuary 10:45amChildren’s Sunday School - Sunday School Room 10:45amYouth Sunday School - Youth Room 11:45amFellowship - Vaughan Fellowship Hall 4:00pmCovenant Community - Bradow Room                 Wright Center Meal Monday06/18 12:15pmMonday Lunch Group - Hoffmann Room Tuesday06/19 10:00amOffice Staff Meeting - Pilgrim House Wednesday 06/20