Staying involved in the Bloomington/Normal area, and beyond. 
Where do you fit... Beyond the Bricks?

Welcome... to the latest issue of
Beyond the Bricks!


Dear Christian Friends,
This week our prayer groups are looking at Luke 10:25-37, which is the parable of the Good Samaritan.  In this parable, Jesus answers the question "Who is my neighbor?" by telling the story of a Samaritan, a foreigner, who saves a man beaten by robbers and left for dead.
The lawyer who asked the question wanted to find out who was, and who was not, his neighbor so that he would know who deserved to be helped and who did not.  Jesus turned the question around and said that instead of looking for who qualifies as a neighbor, and who does not, we should seek to be a neighbor and show mercy to all who are in need.
To whom can you show mercy today?  Who needs your caring and compassion?  To whom can you reach out with the love of Jesus Christ?
Perhaps this issue of Beyond the Bricks will give you some ideas.  Read through it and ask yourself, "To whom can I be a neighbor today?"
In Christian love,
Jim Warren
Dementia Conversations Presentation

Holy Trinity Parish Center
Thursday, October 4
7:00 p.m.
Bloomington, IL  61701
Elizabeth Hagemann, Manager, Education and Outreach, of the Alzheimer's Association will present a program,  "Dementia Conversations."
The Parish Nurses are sponsoring this presentation by the Alzheimer's Association.

When someone you know shows signs of dementia, it's time to talk. Conversations with family members about memory loss and changes in behavior can be challenging and uncomfortable. Come learn tips on reducing the stress related to doctors' visits, deciding when to stop driving, and making legal and financial plans.

Behavioral Health Community Forum

Monday, October 8, 2018
8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Normal Theatre and B-N Marriott & Conference Center
Normal, IL  61761
A day of reducing the stigma of behavioral health, increasing understanding of community resources, and understanding the role of chronic illness on mental health.  Includes continuing education credits, lunch and learn sessions, and adolescent sessions.   
For more information, contact Trisha Malott, LCSW, at 309-434-6510 or
Better Together: Bridging Interfaith Barriers  
Eboo Patel  
Founder and President of Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC) 

Tuesday, October 9, 2018
7:00 p.m.
Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall
Illinois State University
Normal, IL  61761

Eboo Patel is a leading voice in the movement for interfaith cooperation. He is founder and president of Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), a national nonprofit working to make interfaith cooperation a social norm. He is author of Acts of Faith, Sacred Ground and Interfaith Leadership.  
Named by U.S. News & World Report as one of America's Best Leaders of 2009, Patel served on President Barack Obama's Inaugural Faith Council. He is a regular contributor to the public conversation around religion in America, and a frequent speaker on the topic of religious pluralism. He holds a doctorate in the sociology of religion from Oxford University, where he studied on a Rhodes Scholarship.   
For more than 15 years, Patel has worked with governments, social sector organizations,  and college and university campuses to help realize a future where religion is a bridge of cooperation rather than a barrier of division.
"SHARE THE WARMTH" Winter Outerwear Drive for Men

Bloomington-Normal, IL
First Christian Church and Area Churches/Organizations
What Winter outerwear drive for men
How:   Donate gently used or new winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves in all sizes.
When:  October 1 to February 1 
Where:   Drop donations in the "Start Fresh" bins at the Information Center 
Why?   Jesus commands us to love and clothe those in need and many of our neighbors are cold in the winter
Contacts:   If you have any questions, please contact:
Julie Robinson at
Sarah Trefzger at
Thank you in advance for your help!
Together as The Body of Christ we will serve those in need and share God's love.
-- Mathew 25:36
Support the Harmony Park Project

Bloomington-Normal, IL
First Christian Church Contacts:  Todd and Corin Chapman
The Harmony Park Project is a partnership of local nonprofits with the purpose of purchasing safe and accessible playground equipment within Bloomington-Normal.

The latest news from the Harmony Park Project's Facebook page:
"The Harmony Park Project recently qualified for a grant through our playground equipment vendor, GameTime. This grant will save the project approximately $30,000 bringing the total budget from $330,000 to $300,000!
We have already raised $250,000, which means we only need $50,000 more to complete this much anticipated and needed playground!
Please donate today to drive this project to completion!!"

Click below to donate.
Throughout October, 2018
Sponsored by Mid-Central Community Action
Various Locations
Bloomington-Normal, IL
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Come out and be part of the 2018 Stand Up With Me events and let survivors of domestic violence know they are not alone!  See the attached flyer for many, many opportunities throughout the month, including a rally, cell phone drive, volleyball game, "Purple Day," Domestic Violence Simulation, and drive for donations for Neville House. 
Tuesday, October 16, 2018
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
Old Main Room, ISU Bone Student Center
360 Wylie Dr.
Normal, IL 61761
The gathering will be a spirituality forum, hosted by the Prairie Pride Coalition, which will acknowledge how members of the LGBTQIA+ community have been harmed by religion, and how some faith traditions are seeking change, reconciliation, and healing for the atrocities committed in the name of God.
Holly Irvin will be a presenter at this event.
Saturday, October 20, 2018
Shifts Throughout the Day
360 Wylie Dr.
Normal, IL 61761
The Third Annual Bed Blitz is a community driven project sponsored by The Tool Library, Youth Build McLean County and West Bloomington Revitalization Project, where we will be building beds for children in the McLean County area. To make this event a success, we need the help of individuals and groups around the community to attend our Bed Blitz event on Saturday October 20th.

There will be two shifts throughout the day and you can sign up with a group to help build beds (no construction experience required!) as an individual or sign up as a group! We will be using a new plan and template this year that simplifies the building process and improves the portability of the bed frames for receiving families allowing our groups to build more beds in less time!
Help Serve a Meal at Abundant Life in Christ Church
First Christian Church is Serving Oct. 21, Nov. 18, Dec.16, 2018
Abundant Life in Christ Church
108 E. Market St.  
Bloomington, IL  61701
Abundant Life's mission is "to lead people to saving faith in Jesus Christ by sharing the Gospel, as defined in the Holy Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:3-6).  
We exist to help people get from where they are to where God wants them to be (Philippians 3:13-14)."
Continued contributions are needed along with helpers to serve or make desserts for the meals FCC serves.  Contact Julie Robinson ( if you would like to help on the above date and for details.  Or contact Abundant Life (309) 232-8702 to help in any other way.

Volunteer at INtegRIty Counseling  

Hours Vary
INtegRIty Counseling
502 S. Morris Ave., Suite D
Bloomington, IL  61701

INtegRIty Counseling is looking for reception volunteers. We need both regular volunteers (two hours or more per week) and substitutes. We especially need volunteers for afternoons, evenings, and one Saturday morning a month.  
Our reception volunteers answer our phones, do phone screenings, and help schedule clients based on counselor availability. We are flexible with schedules and are a great volunteer placement for retirees and students.  
For more information contact Luella at 309-827-9100 or email
Around the Community
First Christian Church || 309 829-9327  |
401 West Jefferson St.  Bloomington, IL  61701
Bloomington's Oldest Continuing Congregation
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