Community UCC eNews
Feb. 11, 2021
Community UCC is an inclusive and progressive Christian Church doing social justice, environmental faithfulness, interfaith collaboration and spiritual formation to help ourselves and others grow in faith, hope and love.

COVID Status: Virtual worship. Limited office hours. See below.

SO MUCH GOOD NEWS! — If it says "[Message clipped]" at the bottom of your eNews, that means you're not seeing everything. Click the link next to that to view the entire newsletter.
Sunday worship — Zoom and YouTube

Join us for worship this Sunday, Feb. 14. EJ will deliver a guest sermon based on Matthew 26:47-56. See below for how we "do church" now.
Sunday worship onYouTube begins at 10:30 a.m.
Instructions for Zoom worship

For now, we will continue to provide the Zoom worship live on our YouTube channel ( on Sundays at 10:35 a.m. Doors "open" around 10:15-10:20 for a few minutes of fellowship before worship begins.

Links to the Zoom worships go out each Friday in a separate email just to church members. Look for "Zoom links" in that email subject line. If you would like to receive the Zoom links to participate in the Sunday service in a more interactive way, please contact the church office or let Lisa know.
Evening worship service on Mondays

Join us for an alternative to our Sunday morning worship, via Zoom at 7 p.m. Mondays. If you have questions or would appreciate a Zoom link, contact Robin at
Week 3 update on our campaign progress!

Since launching our campaign last month, we have raised $3,330 — 22% of the way toward our goal! Thank you to all who have donated!

If you would like to donate, you can give to our capital campaign through Givelify or send a check to the church. In either case, please designate that it’s for the capital campaign in the memo field. We will continue to provide regular updates as we progress toward our goal.

You can read more about how this capital campaign will help our church grow on our church homepage.
You can help CUCC become a WISE congregation

Elizabeth Davis-Russell, chair of the Missions and Social Justice Team, writes: 

“If you are feeling a bit more anxious about what happens next in these turbulent times, or depressed about not being able to visit family and friends, you are not alone. This pandemic has exacerbated feelings of anxiety and depression.”

CUCC wants to become a WISE congregation that is Welcoming, Inclusive, Supportive and Engaged with all persons who experience mental health challenges. WISE is an initiative of the United Church of Christ.

The Missions and Social Justice Team is looking for folks interested in joining a WISE committee at CUCC. If want to join others and make a difference in our church, Elizabeth says, please contact her at
Adult Education meets Mondays

Adult Education meets on Mondays from 9-10 a.m. The group is discussing Richard Rohr’s daily meditations.
To get them, please register at the Center for Action and Contemplation: A Zoom link will be made available. Contact Robin at if you're interested.
Men's Book Discussion Group

The Men's Book Study – meeting virtually via Zoom from 7-8 p.m. Tuesday – will resume Feb. 16 with a discussion of Pages 115-140 in "Inspired" by Rachel Held Evans. Please contact Rod Zook at if you're interested. A Zoom link will be sent out on Monday, Feb. 15. 
 Women's Book Discussion Group

The Women's Book Discussion Group will conclude its discussion of "Julian of Norwich: Wisdom in a Time of Pandemic — and Beyond" by Matthew Fox at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16.

The group will begin a new book soon. Contact Robin if you'd like to hear about the next title. All are welcome!
Virtual Ash Wednesday set for Feb. 17

We will have a Zoom Ash Wednesday service at 6 p.m. Feb. 17. Please join Pastor Julia and Robin as we begin our Lenten journey with words, music, and a spiritual time of reflection. We will then virtually share in the imposition of ashes. A Zoom link for the service will be sent out with tomorrow's Zoom links.
Millennial/Xennial Happy Hour 

Grab your drink of choice and join us on Zoom. Let’s chat, laugh and just have a good time, social distancing style! 6:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19. Contact Felicia for more info:
Lenten Series on lament scheduled

We are planning a four-part Lenten Series about the significance of lament. We spend little time thinking about the role lament plays in our lives, and how we come to healing. We will meet via Zoom on four consecutive Wednesdays from 6 to 7:15 p.m. beginning Feb. 24 and continuing through March 17. More details will be coming soon.
Growing Together! – Restoring Faith, Justice, Creation

Our church is one of 40 churches in 11 denominations from across the country participating in a new national pilot program called Growing Together! This program engages churches on the journey of restoring faith, justice, and creation.

Sessions are held via Zoom at 4 p.m. (Pacific) and 7 p.m. (Pacific) on the second Thursday of each month. If you're interested in registering, please email Robin at and she will send you the link.
Office hours at church, closed Monday for holiday

The church office will be closed Monday, Feb. 15, for the Presidents Day holiday. Marilyn is in the office from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday. Please be sure to call ahead (559.435.2690) and remember to wear a mask if you need to come to the office.
Pastor Julia on vacation

Pastor Julia is on vacation through Feb. 15. During this time, please reach out to Robin or Marilyn if needs arise. When she returns, she will be in the office Thursday morning and can be reached by phone, text, e-mail or Facetime other days of the week as well. E-mail her at
If you have a prayer (of joy, for healing, gratitude, love) for someone or someplace that you would like lifted up during worship on Sunday mornings please send them to Pastor Julia at You can also submit prayer requests via our web page at
Interfaith Scholar event goes virtual this year

The Fresno Interfaith Scholar Weekend will adapt to safety measures during the pandemic by holding six Zoom sessions every Monday at 4 p.m. from Feb. 15 to March 22.

The topic will be “Bearing Witness from Fresno’s Mason-Dixon Line.” All sessions are free, and they will be recorded.

Click here to register.

On Feb. 15, Andrew Fiala, Ph.D., director of The Ethics Center at Fresno State, will moderate a 90-minute panel discussion featuring:
  • Malik Simba, Ph.D., professor emeritus of history and Africana studies at Fresno State.
  • Nathan Hensley, Ph.D., associate professor of English at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
  • Uziel Jimenez, M.A., co-founder of the Fresno Ethnic Studies Coalition and a teacher at Fresno’s Sunnyside High School.

On Feb. 22, March 1, March 8, and March 15, representatives from four faith traditions will lead 60-minute discussions of “Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Our Own” by Eddie S. Glaude Jr.

On March 22, Simba, Hensley, and Jimenez will participate in a 90-minute roundtable discussion on what we must ask to call forth a new America in our community.
In each week's eNews, we include a news article from our larger denomination, the United Church of Christ, to show the faithful work being done in other places.
Witness for Justice: A Dispatch from D.C.

By Sandy Sorensen, Director of the UCC D.C. District Office

Last week I made my first trip to the UCC’s Washington, D.C., office since the Inauguration and the implementation of strict security measures that prevented access to the office. The UCC D.C. office is housed in the United Methodist Building, directly across from the U.S. Capitol Building. We share that space with other faith-based advocacy organizations and nonprofits. While staff members are largely working from home during the pandemic, I do find it helpful periodically to be in the office.

The Methodist Building falls within the perimeter of the Capitol complex, which extends much further than the Capitol Building and grounds itself. As I found last week, the entire Capitol complex, which includes all House and Senate office Buildings and the Library of Congress, is surrounded by seven-foot “unscalable” fencing topped with razor wire, with members of the U.S. Capitol Police and National Guard monitoring and patrolling the line of fencing.

After an hour of walking around the perimeter, through trial and error, I, at last, found an entry point for designated staff. It was a sobering sight and a sad reflection of the state of democracy in the United States. Continue reading at
Happy Birthday to all who are celebrating this month!

February Birthdays

2 Rod Zook
4 Arthur Kilburn, Diana Kloos, Dwayne Ruffin
7 Michelle Williams
10 Bonita Earl, John Comegys, Beryl Weinschenk
12 Alexandra FitzGibbon
14 Cathie Moseley
15 Christian Fazio
16 Ruben Fernandez, Bob Garcia
17 Rose Rowe
19 Charlene Toews
22 Vhuso Sukuta
26 Cheryl Jones
27 Anne Simone

Did we overlook someone's birthday or anniversary for this month? Please let Marilyn ( and Lisa ( know so we can get you in next week. We never intend to leave anyone out.
eNews deadline is 10 a.m. Wednesdays

CUCC eNews is a weekly publication distributed every Thursday. Deadline for submitting announcements is 10 a.m. Wednesdays (and earlier is appreciated). Please send your announcements to Marilyn at Lisa Boyles Bell (, 559.244.9502) is the volunteer communications liaison for our church.

Lisa and Doug Hoagland ( alternate working on eNews. Send your announcements to both of them. Emails: and
Our Joyful Giving page reflects the many ways members can help support our Church's missions and operations, especially needed in these critical and uncertain times.

Due to COVID-19, worship will remain virtual for now. Limited office hours have resumed.

Phone: 559.435.2690