A Super Saturday! 

Super Saturday Attendees Called to Get Their Boldness On 

By Tiffany Vail
Associate Conference Minister for Communications

WILBRAHAM, MA - Author Brian McLaren told more than 700 people on Saturday that it is time for progressive Christians to get bold, and that the only things hindering them are in their minds.

"The house is on fire, and it's time to wake up and get bold," McLaren said. "This is an actual emergency. This is a time for boldness. And I think its time for progressive people of faith to get their boldness back."

Speaking to a record Super Saturday crowd at Minnechaug Regional High School in Wilbraham, McLaren acknowledged that times have changed for mainline Protestants in this country since their heyday in the 1950s.

"To be a UCC person in New England in the middle part of the 20th Century was like being a Southern Baptist in Georgia or Alabama is today. You were at the center of your culture's power," he said. "But guess what folks - there was a shift. You're not in the center any more. The big tall spire mocks the actual reality. It's not your fault. You don't have to feel ashamed. Times have just changed. It's a different world."

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Photos and Video 

View Super Saturday Photos on Flickr and  Facebook 

Videos of McLaren's address, and of highlights from the day, will be available shortly on ctucc.org.

What is Possible When People Work Together for a Common Purpose

By Ellie Richardson
Associate Conference Minister for Lay and Clergy Leadership Development, Massachusetts Conference UCC

Those who attended this Super Saturday may not have realized something different was going on behind the scenes.
The people who greeted you in the parking lot and hallway, who handed you your purple folder, who registered you on site, who led the children's program, who ushered at opening worship, helped you find the coat room, the restroom and the cafeteria and your workshop classroom -- they were from the three Conferences currently discerning a new future. 
What you experienced Saturday would not have been possible if we, the Massachusetts Conference, did it alone. Without staff and volunteers from the Connecticut and Rhode Island Conferences assisting with the hundreds of moving parts of Super Saturday it would have been chaos. With their support and generous spirits we were able to extend an extravagant welcome that is awe inspiring.

Photo: CT and MA Conference staff working the registration table together.

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Read more about the Together, As One proposal

UCC advocates join Native Americans in D.C. march against Dakota Access Pipeline

Pam Arifian, Director of the Northeast Regional Environmental Justice Center at Silver Lake, was among more than 100 members of the United Church of Christ marching March 10 in the nation's capital, showing solidarity with native brothers and sisters from around the country opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).

About 200 people from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and thousands of their supporters, marched in Washington, D.C., in an effort to take the momentum of the Standing Rock public demonstrations to Lafayette Square, just north of the White House.

Read more and see a photo gallery

Local Churches in the News

HARTFORD COURANT: Wethersfield Resident Rebuilds Homes And Lives In Appalachia

For more than 20 years, UCC in Newington Member Bill Ford has traveled to Appalachian states to help impoverished residents rebuild their homes.

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Spirit Calendar: More Conversation Needed
Drew Page  writes: "I know that I needed that conversation."

Spirited Wednesday: Always With Us

The Rev. Kate VanDerzee-Glidden writes:  "Don’t we all need to be reminded that God is with us and that we are loved?"

Featured Event
March 30, Noon and 7:30 PM

This year's Tri-Conference Annual Meeting will be historic!  For the first time, the UCC Conferences of Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island will meet together for one shared, exciting, inspirational Annual Meeting.

Get ready!  Take part in this first-ever Tri-Conference webinar, designed to help you speak to your local congregation about the historic decision we'll be discussing at this year's Annual Meeting: to form a new, unified Conference.

Sign up for the webinar

Learn more about the meeting
Upcoming Conference Events
March 23, March 30, and April 6
2:00 - 3:00 PM
An online book study of Eboo Patel's   Sacred Ground . For pastors, youth leaders, and lay leaders who wish to explore new models for Interfaith dialogue. Try on this unique Lenten practice as a way to grow in understanding of Muslim neighbors.  
March 24 - 26
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon
Whether you’re a yoga devotee or a novice, a seasoned singer or shy about your voice, we have a special place for you in our circle! A weekend of exploration and restoration, rather than performance and perfectionism.
March 24 - 26
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon
For youth in grades 6 - 8, experience nature’s renewal and its sweet gifts.
April 29, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
UCC Southbury
This event will present a timely gathering of speakers:  Chris George, Executive Director of IRIS (Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services); Megan Miller from Church World Service; Aida Mansoor, President of the Muslim Coalition of Connecticut and others. 
April 30, 3:00 - 5:30 PM
First Church of Christ Congregational, West Hartford
A dynamic worship service that will renew your spirit. All youth in grades 5 and up and their pastors, parents, or adult leaders are invited.
May 5 - 7
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon
From chopping wood to repairing buildings, moving picnic tables to raking leaves, there’s a project for everyone, high schoolers through adult. 
May 9 - 11
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon 
Whether you challenge yourself on the high ropes course or lounge in the meadow, swap stories with old friends or spend an afternoon on your own, Clergy Camp is the place to step back from life's demands, unwind, and capture the joy of summer. For authorized ministers to network and engage in self-care.
May 19 - 21
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon
Environmental justice and leadership training for youth in grades 9-12 who care about the health of their communities
June 30 - July 5
Baltimore, MD
This event is for young leaders ages 13 to 18 who want to experience the vibrant diversity of the wider church.   Participation is limited to 18 from the Connecticut Conference - registration now open.
Find a complete list of Conference events at: www.ctucc.org/events
Other Events of Interest

Embracing Stewardship: 2017 Northeast Ecumenical Stewardship Council Conference
March 24 - 25

Holiday Inn, Boxborough

How to Put Stewardship at the Heart of Your Congregation's Life. An Ecumenical Conference for Churches.  

March 30, 2017 at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
First Church, West Hartford
This lecture is part of an on-going effort by JPW Library and First Church West Hartford’s Outreach team to focus on issues of social justice, faith, and spirituality.” 
April 1, 2017 at 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Edwards House Meeting Center, Framingham, MA
Members-in-Discernment throughout New England are invited to attend this workshop for help in navigating through the search and call process within the UCC. 
April 1, 10:30 AM - 2:30 PM
First Congregational Church of Stamford
Come and hear a Native American perspective on American History and the Dakota Access Pipeline with Mark Charles, Navajo Christian Author and speaker. 
April 1, 12:30 - 4:00 PM
First Church of Christ, Congregational, Farmington
2-day event to commemorate the 175-year anniversary of the freedom of the  La Amisted  captives.

46th Annual NEAUCE Conference: Toward Common Ground
May 2 - 4
Pilgrim Pines, Swanzey, NH

This three day event gives church leaders involved in Faith Formation a chance to refresh, rejuvenate and renew. 

May 13, 2017 at 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Rocky Hill Congregational Church
Jessica Steytler, librarian with the Congregational Library in Boston, will present a workshop on Archives 101- getting a handle on and organizing your archives. 
July 9 - 12
Simmons College, Boston, MA
This biannual conference seeks to nourish, inspire, and sustain church musicians.    
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