October 23, 2020
As we return to in-person worship for those who choose to attend, we resume the Friday Email and its efforts to inform you about what you need to know before coming to church on Sunday.
We hope you are finding FCC Connected and the resources and news within helpful. Please remember to read to the end for FCC plans for the future! Updated, important, and new information is highlighted in aqua.
Being Church Together
(at FCC or at Home)
This combination Friday Email/Connected newsletter is a resource for accomplishing "Being Church Together" whether you are at home or on the church premises, or anywhere you might find yourself now and in the future.
Dear Friends of FCC,

We had our first experience of in-person worship last Sunday, and everything went smoothly. The Re-opening Group worked very hard to make that possible, and their efforts proved quite successful. Thank you to everyone who was part of that group.

We’ll do in-person worship again this week. If you were present last week, all of the protocols will be the same. If you didn’t come last week, but think you may this week, please read the information about how we are returning to church.

For many of you it still may not be the right time to return to in-person worship. We are continuing to broadcast our services on Facebook and through our website so that we can all worship together.

Thank you again for your patience and flexibility during this time of transition.

Your friend in Christ,
Jim Warren
Please Wear a Mask and Review Opening Procedures!
Reminder: All church-related events, inside or outside, require that face masks be worn. This includes small group meetings. Please take this important measure to protect yourself and your church family, further allowing all participants to be comfortable in attending these fellowship and/or learning opportunities.

The policies and procedures established by the Re-Opening Group have been mailed to each church family member, and are available for review here. Jim Warren made an excellent video previewing the experience and you can watch it on our FCC Facebook page here.
This Sunday

The sermon focuses on Matthew 22:34-40 and is entitled, "First Things." This passage contains the two greatest commandments: love God and love neighbor. These are the primary commandments to follow.

It is Heritage Sunday, when we honor those who have been members of First Christian Church, Second Christian Church, Third Christian Church, Stanford Christian Church, or University Christian Church for 50 or more years.

Bring a donation for Bent School this Sunday, October 25. There will be a bin in the elevator foyer for your donation (or call Julie Robinson at 309-838-4335). Items needed are:
  • Sanitizer wipes
  • Hand Sanitizer 
  • 8.5 by 11 manila envelopes to send homework in
  • Masks
  • Boys and girls underwear all sizes
  • Sweatpants
  • T-shirts

Serving Schedule
  • Temperature Takers/Registration: Libby Nussbaum, James Nussbaum
  • Communion Set Preparer: Kathy Dailey
  • Info Desk Attendant: Susan Chaney
  • Time for Children: Patty Thompson (on video)
  • Building Lock-up: Chip Jamerson
  • Tech Crew: Dave Phillis, Kevin Kiesewetter, Brian Metz, Austin Metz

Looking Ahead
  • Next Sunday, November 1, is All Saints Sunday, when we honor those who have passed away in the year since we last did this.
  • Our Fall Stewardship Drive is being planned now.

Special Notes
  • A Blood Drive was held October 20 at the YMCA gym. A BIG thanks to all who signed up and donated. FCC sponsored the drive, but due to the COVID issue it was held at the YMCA. A very big thanks to Pete Whitmer, who called donors from previous drives, and to Maggie Burton, who signed donors up via phone or email from home. The Red Cross was in dire need of donors and appreciated all who donated. --Wholistic Health Council
  • An adult Sunday school class will start next week, November 1, in the Conference Room, immediately after worship.
  • First Christian Church is indeed awesome!  THANKS to everyone who attended my farewell drive-by on Saturday, October 10. Thank you for all the cards, gifts, and even phone calls from some who were unable to come by. I appreciate those who organized the event and those who made things run smoothly. --Beverly Leight (this is a portion of Beverly's thank you message, which can be seen in its entirety in next week's Messenger newsletter.)
Staying Connected
Small Groups: Many FCC small groups continue to meet this summer over Zoom , Skype, and Discord. Is your small group meeting? Perhaps you'd like to join a group or start a new group.

The Brown Bag Bible Bunch is meeting at FCC at noon on Wednesdays in the Conference Room. Bring a Bible and a mask.

As always, contact Bill Robitske for help, and go to our website to learn more about Small Groups and study material available for groups to use. You may want to join a group or get a new one started this fall.

Bill's' email is bill.robitske.jr@gmail.com


Video Updates from Jim Warren: Check Tuesdays and Thursdays on Facebook and our website homepage for a short video from Jim Warren. If you haven't seen these yet, they are always available for viewing on our website, lower portion of homepage.


Worship Online: Watch the live streamed 9:00 a.m. service each Sunday morning. Not only will Rev. Jim Warren keep us apprised of what's happening in the life of the church, he will share wisdom and faith-filled teaching. Each week, expect wonderful music and a Time for Children, as well as communion. Tune in on our Facebook page or on our website homepage.



We're on the map! Share this link with your friends so they can find us on the Disciples of Christ Illinois Virtual Worship Locations Map.


Stay Connected through Swag: What connects people more than beautiful items that remind them, and their friends, of their great church community?

  • An FCC T-Shirt is available for ordering! What a great Christmas gift idea! Adult, youth, and FCC kid styles are available for just $10 each. Order HERE.

  • FCC grocery bags are also available for purchase, and for just $5. If you need a bag, contact Jen Petri at info@blmfcc.org.
Supporting Each Other
People at higher risk for illness are described on the Centers for Disease Control website. Think of someone you know and reach out by phone, or by email or mail, to check on their well-being or give an encouraging word. FCC members' addresses and phone numbers are in the Church Directory.

Don't forget you can access an updated church directory below and reach out by phone, text, email, or US mail to a church friend.

Please fill out the sign-in sheets at the doors to the church if you must come on premises during hours other than Sunday morning. It is important to know what areas were used and for what purpose to ensure proper cleaning.

October 23 Prayer Concerns at FCC - - Pray for our church family!
Being a Part of the Community

October is Pastor Appreciation Month. Please reach out to our pastors and let them know how much they mean to you! Their contact info is at the bottom of this email.
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Pray: In addition to praying for your church, pray for your community, and all affected by this pandemic, especially those at the greatest risk and the health care workers who get exposed to this virus every day. Also pray for our healthcare system to sustain patient numbers should they rise.

Provide a Meal for the Cox Family: For the next three weeks, Gunner will be continuing to recover from a recent surgical procedure. Find a Take Them a Meal signup here.

Follow the CDC Guidelines for Prevention: These include knowing how it spreads, knowing how to protect yourself, and knowing how to protect others. Especially as we resume in-person worship, it is important to read the guidelines often for updates that are made as we learn more about the virus. CDC Guidelines for Prevention


Share News about Local Resources: Many agencies, groups, and organizations are finding ways to help in a tangible way, and you can inform friends and family of these resources. You can help, too! A few are listed below.
  • Watch and listen to members of the (Illinois Wesleyan Symphony Orchestra) present their fall concert under the direction of Dr. Sey Ahn online tonight at 7:30.
  • Attend the (Uptown Dance BOOtiful Ballet) on October 31 at 1:00 or 3:00 p.m. at McGraw Park. Halloween masks required! Come see our dancing Scarecrows, Jack-o'-lanterns, Phantoms, and all things Halloween! It’s going to be a spooktacular afternoon! Bring your own chairs/blankets.
  • Attend a prayer vigil on Wednesday, November 4, from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. Hear prayers, scriptures, and songs by Bloomington-Normal faith leaders at the (Prayer Vigil for Peace and Unity at Wesley UMC)
  • Find and share information about the (McLean County Triage Center) (MCTC), which provides McLean County residents with an alternative to existing crisis services for those experiencing a mental health crisis, who are not violent in behavior.
  • Tune into the Celebrating Local Philanthropy event on November 19, where Camille and Art Taylor will be awarded the Illinois Prairie Community Foundation's (Philanthropists of the Year Award).
  • See Diane Walker, director of Seedling Encore, and others perform now through November 2, in the (2020 Virtual Evergreen Cemetery Walk).
  • Attend virtual concerts at the Bloomington Center for Performing Arts on Thursdays through December 17. Bookmark the site here: (BCPA’s Fall Virtual Concert Series)
Share Online Resources for Learning and Entertainment: Museums, theater arts, national parks, home schoolers, libraries, self-care coaches, and other entities have graciously shared a free peek into their offerings. Take advantage, and tell your friends!
Questions and Answers
How do I make my offering?
If you are not attending Sunday worship at FCC and thus not bringing your offering to church, to ensure your offering is received by FCC in a timely manner, feel free to mail it to 401 West Jefferson St., Bloomington, IL 61701. Interested in automatic withdrawal? Email Debbie Stumm at dstumm@blmfcc.org to find out how. We appreciate your continued giving!
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How do I get in touch with a staff member?
The church office will be closed the through the end of the year. To talk to a staff person, call the church office at 309.829.9327, and follow instructions on the answering machine.

Or send an email to the staff person you want to contact. 
Office Receptionist: Maggie Burton office@blmfcc.org       
Financial Secretary: Deborah Stumm dstumm@blmfcc.org
Communications Coordinator: Jenifer Petri info@blmfcc.org
Director of Youth and Music Ministries, Holly Irvin hirvin@blmfcc.org

In case of an emergency, you may text or call Jim Warren at 309.212.6873.
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What if I, or someone I know, need pastoral care?
You may text or call (309.212.6873) or email (jwarren@blmfcc.org) Jim Warren.