Aldersgate United Methodist Church
A vibrant and inclusive Christian community 
growing in faith, love, health and service

www.Aldersgate-Church.org                                                               December 7, 2017
Aldersgate UMC
14230 SE Newport Way
Bellevue, WA  98006
(425) 746-9800
Email Links
Lead Pastor

Associate Pastor
Church Office

Children, Youth, Family

Preschool Director

Core Leaders
Calendar
Calendar
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Dec 9
Christmas Bash
Dec 10
UMW Bake Sale
Christmas Pageant
Christmas Cantata
Club 345
Dec 13
Preschool Program
Cluster Charge Conf. at St. Peters UMC
Dec 14
Preschool Program
Last Day of Preschool
Dec 17
Blue Christmas Service
Youth Christmas Party
Dec 21
Christmas Story Time
Dec 24
Christmas Eve Services
Dec 25-Jan 1
Church Office Closed
Dec 31
One Service @ 10am
New Year's Eve Party
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Jan 1
Church Office Closed
Jan 2
Preschool Resumes
Jan 7
Bible Sunday
Jan 12-15
Young Adult Retreat
Jan 14
CRC Classes Begin
Jan 15
MLKJ Day of Caring
Church Office Closed
Coffee
Church Leadership
Click these links to read the minutes of the Core Leadership Team and the monthly minutes of the Ministry Teams.
Core Leaders (Nov)
Common Table (Nov)
Green Team (Nov)
Outreach (Nov)
Preschool (Oct)
Worship  (Oct)
Trustees (Oct)
Finance (May)
Staff Relations  (12/2016)
Thanks

A huge thank you to all the volunteers who helped to decorate the church and transform it into a wonderful place to celebrate Advent, Christmas and the entire holiday season.  And thank you to those people who donated the poinsettias.  
~~~From the Flower and Banner Committee.

Scripture Lesson:  John 6:5-14  

Theme:"The Gift of Christmas Feeding"
   
First Service:  Christmas Pageant:  "Wow! A Nativity Play"
                                           b y G. Watkins
Second Service: Christmas Cantata:  Sing Joy to All the World" 
                                          by L. Larson

This Sunday
The theme for this Sunday is "The Gift of Christmas Feeding."  A tradition of this season is the family getting together around food.  This Sunday the food will be food for the soul.  If there was ever a Sunday to spend the whole morning at church, this is it.  At the first service, we have our annual Children's Christmas Pageant.  At the second service, the annual Christmas Cantata will be presented by the Chancel Choir.  Both will set the mood for this season.  Both include stories of the season and yet each are obviously offered in very different ways.  And if that wasn't enough, if you get hungry (more about food) there will be a refeshment time following each service, and as a bonus, the United Methodist Women's Bake and Craft Sale will be held following each service.  I mean, how does it get any better than that?  The scripture for Sunday is included in the presentations so, if you want to prepare, simply go back to Matthew and Luke and read the Christmas stories.  We will also be lighting the second candle of Advent.  So, "Come, let us adore Him..." on this Advent Sunday.  
 
 
~~~ Pastor Brad
MINISTRY NEWS
Mug Someone Today :-)
There are church mugs filled with goodies and information about our Christmas Worship Schedule ready to be handed out to visitors throughout Advent. Please find them at the narthex desk and feel free to hand one to any visitor you meet this month.
Cookies Needed for Preschool
by December 10
Aldersgate Christian Preschool will gladly take donations of cookies for our annual Christmas Program.  Donations will be accepted beginning Sunday, December 3rd through Sunday, December 10th.  Please consider buying cookies at the UMW Bake Sale on December 10th to then donate to ACP helping both UMW and ACP.  Thank you!  Contact is Dorothy Beeman.
Cluster Charge Conference
December 13
On December 13 at 7:00pm at St. Peter's UMC the Bellevue area United Methodist churches will meet together with our District Superintendent Rich Lang to get to know each other and celebrate the ministry that is happening in our city next month. It will be a shared time of fellowship, business, and visioning for the future together. It is vital that those who are in leadership at Aldersgate attend, but all who wish are welcome to participate. It should be a fun evening that is also enlightening and festive.
Blue Christmas Service
December 17
Seasons of joy and  happiness can also contain feelings of loss and loneliness.  If you are in need of comfort this season, we welcome you to a service of healing and support on December 17 at 2:00pm.  All are welcome.
December 24 Services
On Sunday, December 24 we invite you and your family, friends, and neighbors to worship with us in the morning and the evening:
  •  9:00am & 11:00am - Regular morning worship services  celebrating the fourth Sunday of Advent
  •  5:00pm -  A child-oriented family friendly candlelight service.  Christmas carols will be sung and the children will be involved in the retelling of the Christmas story.  It will be a shorter service, meaningful and a lot of fun
  •  7:00pm - A more contemporary candlelight service centered on music by the worship band.  It will include the most beloved scriptures surrounded by the singing of some of the more modern Christmas carols..
  •  9:00pm - A joyful traditional candlelight service with carols, scripture readings, handbells, and communion.
Christmas Eve Refreshments
Do you enjoy sharing some cocoa and cookies with family and friends after Christmas Eve services?  We are looking for a couple of people for each service to setup and replenish the Cookies, Coffee and Cocoa for the 5:00pm, 7:00pm, and 9:00pm services on Christmas Eve. Also if you have some holiday cookies to share that would be great.
Finance News
  • 2017 Contributions If you would like a donation reflected on your 2017 contribution statement, it needs to be received in the church office (or post-marked if mailed) by 12/31/2017. Questions? Contact Wendi in the church office.
  • Planning a Fundraiser? This is a reminder that all fundraising activities at the church need to be coordinated and approved through the AUMC Finance Team. Please contact Melinda Lilley, the Finance chairperson, with your fundraising plans, (melindalilley@me.com). Click here for a copy of the Aldersgate Fundraising Policy.
2018 Flower Calendar
The 2018 flower calendar is now posted on the bulletin board across from the office. Please sign up to provide Altar flowers especially in January and February. They are a lovely way to commemorate a special person or a special event with your dedication appearing in the Sunday bulletin. The Flower Committee will provide a flower arrangement for $35 or you may provide your own arrangement.
Sunday Refreshments
Sunday Refreshments Every Sunday morning after services we enjoy coffee, juice and treats. We encourage everyone to take a turn at serving the refreshments. We are happy to pair you with someone who has experience who can show you how to do it. The sign up sheet is posted on the kitchen counter. Please sign up.
Resource Library News
Bob Olson's latest poems have been added to "Aldersgate Poems: Inspired by Junior Church and Sermons," displayed on the library mobile cart. Copies of Either/Or...and in Between, The Word, Kindness, and Change are found on pages 146 through 149, respectively.
Considering Becoming a Reconciling Congregation
Update on Process to Consider Reconciling Congregations (CRC)
The committee that has formed to design a process for our church to use as we consider whether to become a Reconciling Congregation would like to invite you to participate in some upcoming events in 2018. The committee felt strongly that this process should not detract from our celebration of the holy seasons of Advent and Lent, so we will not schedule events during those seasons. 

In January, 2018, the pastors will offer a series of Bible studies for anyone interested in participating. For each of three weeks, a series of five or six studies per week will engage with Scripture passages that have traditionally been interpreted to mean that homosexuality is not compatible with Christian teaching and Scripture passages that have been interpreted in the opposite way. There is no need to attend more than one session per week as all six sessions will address the same passages. The dates of the Bible study are listed below. 

After Easter, the current plan is to hold two evening panel discussions or speaker events. One would be to hear the stories of other churches who have considered becoming Reconciling and decided either way. The other would be an opportunity to hear from parents and families of children who identify as LGBTQIA+ in Christian churches. 

In addition to these events, the committee has been collecting your questions and researching to find answers to them. The first set of answers to questions posed to us by congregation members is attached here. Please read it and keep the questions coming. The committee will continue researching and finding answers as long as there are more questions. 

Bible Study Dates (all sessions will last approximately 90 minutes):
  • Sunday January 14, 21, and 28 at 12:30pm, child care available, both Pastor Brad and Pastor Laura co-lead, bring a bag lunch and lunch for your children who are staying for child care.
  • Sunday January 21 and 28 at 5:00pm Pastor Brad and Pastor Laura will co-lead these sessions, intended to include youth and families of youth
  • Wednesday January 17, 24, 31 at 10:00am Pastor Brad will lead.
  • Wednesday January 17, 24, 31 at 7:00pm, Pastor Brad will lead.
  • Thursday January 18, 25, and Feb. 1 at 7:00am with pancakes prepared by Dave Carver, Pastor Laura will lead.
  • Thursday January 18, 25, and Feb. 1 at 4:00pm - these sessions are family friendly for families who have children they wish to include in the conversation. Pastor Laura will lead.
FUN EVENTS
Christmas Bash - Something for Everyone!
Saturday, December 9
Come celebrate the Christmas Season at Aldersgate United Methodist Church at our 2nd annual Christmas Bash on Saturday December 9 from 10:00am-noon!  There will be Family friendly crafts and games for all age plus the Aldersgate ensemble will be playing and we will have a Christmas Carol Sing-Along at 11:30am. Enjoy the Bake and Craft Sale (all proceeds benefit missions.)  And get a  Festive Christmas Photos $25 for 5x7 plus digital copy (all proceeds benefit the youth mission trip.)  Contact is Jen Hoerber.  Bake/Craft sale and Christmas photos will be available Sunday morning the 10th as well.  
Emerald City Ringers Concert
December 9
Come and hear Christmas music on handbells on  December 9 at 4pm  at St. Matthews Lutheran Church at  1700 Edmonds Ave NE  in Renton. You'll recognize at least one of the ringers from Aldersgate!
Club 345 (3rd~4th~5th Grade)
December 10
Kids in 3rd, 4th and 5th grades meet once a month on Sunday evening for food and a fun activity. 
The next meeting will be December 10.   Contact is Jen Hoerber, CFM@aldersgate-church.org.
Youth Group (6th-12th Grade)
Youth Group meets on Sunday evenings from 6:00-8:00pm.  All youth in 6th-12th grade are welcome.  If you have questions about the youth program, contact  Jen Hoerber.  Here are some upcoming events:
*Dec. 9 -  Santa Photo Youth Fundraiser at Christmas Bash, 9:30am - noon.
*Dec. 10 - Christmas Pageant at the 1st service, 9:00am.  No Sunday School today.
                 Dinner, 5:00pm, Youth Group, 6:00-8:00pm
*Dec. 17 - Youth Christmas Party, PJ Style, 6:00-8:00pm
*Dec. 24 - No Sunday School. No Youth Group.  Come with your family to a candlelight                                service  at 5:00pm, 7:00pm or 9:00pm
*Dec. 31 - One worship service at 10:00am. No Sunday School. No Youth Group.  
                 Bring your family to the church  New Years Eve party!
Christmas Storytime
December 21, 10:00 - 11:00am
Join us around the Christmas tree in Friendship Hall for the reading of a few of our favorite Christmas stories and some singing and dancing of our favorite Christmas songs. There will be coffee, water, and a Christmas snack waiting for you.  
New Year's Eve Party
Save the Date! On Sunday, December 31 we will have an Aldersgate Family New Year's Eve party from 6:00 to 9:00pm.  Details to follow.
CHURCH & SOCIETY
Holiday Bake & Craft Sale
December 9 & 10
SWEET EVENT THIS WEEKEND!  Come one, come all to shop the UMW's annual bake/craft sale for delicious treats and interesting crafts this Saturday, December 9 from 10:00am-noon, at the Christmas Bash and also on  Sunday, December 10, between services and after 2nd service!  This is a win-win:  delicious baked goods and/or handmade items for you, and support for the UMW's mission projects!  Or, in the alternative, support two worthwhile projects for the price of one: buy cookies to support UMW and then donate them to the preschool!  
Christmas Giving Opportunities
Please consider giving to the following worthwhile organizations.  If you have any questions contact   Dorothy Bennett, 425-641-0971.
  • Vision House  This wonderful organization gives  transitional housing to homeless families and provides support services and childcare as the family becomes self-sufficient. To help the process, gift cards for groceries, clothing, gasoline, and personal items, etc. are invaluable and provided year round.  Your purchase of a gift card during the Christmas season is so appreciated and will brighten the lives of children who have been homeless.   A gift card tree is in the narthex for your choice of a gift card from $10 to $50. Please return the gift cards to the church by Sunday December 17.
  • Hopelink  The Christmsa gift store at Hopelink provides gifts for children from infant to 18 years old.  Each client family can apply for a voucher to choose one gift for each child from the store.  . Aldersgate focuses on teenagers because gifts for them are often in short supply at the gift store.  Suggestions are  - sweatshirt, sweat pants, jacket,sweater, gift card to stores, warm scarves, dressy scarves, makeup, sports equipment, movie gift cards, hair care products etc.And of course, gifts for any age are happily accepted.    Starting November 26, drop off your donation in the donation box located in the narthex near the drinking fountains.  Please return donated gifts to the church by December 17. 
  • Sophia Way   Do you have someone you would like to remember with a Christmas gift but they have everything?  Give a gift to Sophia Way in their name.  Jean Harris has cards she is selling that you can give as an acknowledgment of the donation. Contact Jean  at 425-747-0727  or jean7439@comcast.net.
"Doughnations" from Panera
We are now in our 3rd month of picking up "Dough-nations" from the Factoria Panera.  Experience is showing us that we normally have enough breads and some pastries to give to 5 locations every week (Sophia Way, Griffon Home, Congregations for the Homeless Day Center, Union Gospel Mission, and Tent City 4).  We need more help with deliveries on Thursday mornings so that people only service every other week.  Also we'd like to train 1-2 people to help with pickup and sorting in case we need a substitute.  Pick up and sorting is Wednesday nights from 8:45-10:30pm. If you can help, please contact Ruth Carver (carver.ruth@gmail.com) or Kelly Carver  (kellymcarver@gmail.com).  Thank you for your help.
Pillowcase Dresses & Shorts
Jo Fritze and the Grinning Grannies are expanding their mission, from not only sewing feminine hygiene kits, to also sewing  pillowcase dresses for girls and shorts for boys.  Jo and the Grannies need donations of pillow cases and help making the dresses and shorts.  The patterns are simple to make so they can teach the ladies in Malawi to make them in their villages.  A return trip to Malawi is planned for June 2018. If you would like to help, contact Jo Fritze at 425-777-5892.  You can donate pillowcase, sew dresses and shorts at home, or join with the Grinning Grannies on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 1:00-4:00pm.  
A Light in the Dark: Grace Boarding's Christmas Wish List
After two years away, Kara Bennett will be traveling back to Thailand to celebrate Christmas with Grace Boarding. Audra and Wally Bennett will also be joining the trip!  During their stay, they will be assisting in upgrading and expanding the solar electric system. The system powers lights and provides running water for Grace Boarding, the local church, and several neighbors. You can help! They are seeking donations towards a larger inverter ($135) and new DC water pump ($250).  Support Grace Boarding via check to Aldersgate UMC specifying "Grace Boarding" or via Paypal to graceboardingthailand@gmail.com.  Click here to read the latest Grace Boarding newsletter.
PRAYER REQUESTS
People with Health Concerns  
*Heidi James' sister Linda
*Ferrell & Lea Fox's grandson David
*Sue Black
*Bev Allott
*Flo Monkman
*Stormie Cruz's sister Brandi
*Garnet Ormsby
*Cindy Wheeler

Additional Prayers
*Missionary Katherine Parker
*Janice Zahn

To submit a prayer request to the Prayer Chain, email Dorothy Bennet t, the Prayer Chain Coordinator.  You can also fill out a pew prayer card on Sunday and put it in the offering plate, or you can contact the church office with your prayer request.   All prayer requests will appear in the church newsletters unless you request otherwise.