19 February 2021
Greetings!

Peace and Greetings to you!

As we prepare to begin this season of Lent, it’s hard to even think that it has been almost a year that we’ve been in pandemic mode and worshipping virtually. While the church has never closed, only the building, it makes my heart joyful, knowing that we continue to be the survivors we are, and virtually connect weekly through God’s Spirit.

Once again, I invite you to join me in making the Lenten season, a season of preparation, as we trace this season back to as early as the year 200, when an early church father wrote about such a season. In its earliest days, Lent was two or three days, not the forty days that we now set aside for spiritually preparing for Easter day. By the year 325, the Council of Nicaea discussed Lent in terms of a forty-day season of fasting and spiritual preparation. 

Bringing us to the present time, years and years later, many churches observe this time of spiritual preparation. People observe the Lenten season in a lot of different ways. Some people observe it by giving up things for these forty days, like desserts or other tangible things.

It seems that we have somewhat been living in a period of preparation over this past year, having to give up so many of the normalcies in our lives. While the idea of Lent is basically having a yearning for something in our life, we have pretty much have had to give up so much during this time of pandemic, even to the extent of not being able to be with those we love and care for. However, Lent is supposed to remind us of our yearning for God, following in the path that was set forth for us as Jesus journeyed those forty days, in preparation for his resurrection.

I invite you to join me, even though not in person, to once take this spiritual journey that began this past Wednesday, February 17th and will continue until April 4th, Easter Sunday morning. As in previous years, but virtually this year, we began this Lenten Season with a special worship service for Ash Wednesday, once again joining us together with our siblings from Christ Church United Church of Christ, Bay View. 

Over this Lenten Season, through Easter Sunday morning, I will be preaching a sermon series entitled, LENT. The series will focus on portions of the current lectionary with Jesus’ journey to the cross. So, join me this Sunday, for Worship ONLINE, starting at 11:00AM Central Time, on our YouTube or Facebook, and as we begin out series in Mark’s Gospel and The Temptation of Jesus.

I also encourage you to engage in the two Lenten opportunities the church is engaging in. The first is our Lenten 40 Day Challenge Offering, of which you can find details on how to be a part of this challenge further down in this weekly. The other is a special Lenten Study opportunity, being hosted by Sanctuary in the Woods. CLM (Creating a Life that Matters) will offered virtually for each of the five Tuesday in March. I’m excited that our friends at Sanctuary in the Woods will be being a modified version of Creating a Life that Matters, virtually and free to you online. Those details can also be found below, as well as on our website in the Event Calendar section.

The Board of Directors and I invite you to keep watch as we continue 2021, for some exciting things ahead, as we begin our year-long celebration, celebrating 50 YEARS, as a Vibrant, Inclusive, Progressive Community of Faith, here in the Greater Milwaukee area.

As always, I invite you to take a moment to scroll down for other important announcements and events in the life of our congregation and community, as we continue to be the vibrant, inclusive and progressive community of faith that we are.

Blessing to you!
Rev. Tory
Scripture: Matthew 4:1–11 (The Inclusive Bible)

Then Jesus was led into the desert by the Spirit, to be tempted by the Devil. After fasting for forty days and forty nights, Jesus was hungry. Then the tempter approached and said, “If you are the Only Begotten, command these stones to turn into bread.” Jesus replied, “Scripture has it, ‘We live not on bread alone but on every utterance that comes from the mouth of God.’” Next the Devil took Jesus to the Holy City, set him on the parapet of the Temple and said, “If you are the Only Begotten, throw yourself down. Scripture has it, ‘God will tell the angels to take care of you; with their hands they will support you that you may never stumble on a stone.’” Jesus answered, “Scripture also says, ‘Do not put God to the test.’” The Devil then took Jesus up a very high mountain and displayed all the dominions of the world in their magnificence, promising, “All these I will give you if you fall down and worship me.” At this, Jesus said to the Devil, “away with you, Satin! Scripture says, ‘You will worship the Most High God; God alone will you adore.’” At that the Devil left, and angels came and attended to Jesus.
Join Us Sunday for WORSHIP ONLINE
through Facebook and YouTube

We invite you to join us for Sunday Worship, by joining us at our Facebook and YouTube Channels for our
WEEKLY SUNDAY WORSHIP WATCH PARTY!

Connect with us starting at 11:00AM on our Facebook Page
or YouTube Channel Links to our Facebook and YouTube pages
are below.

THIS SUNDAY WE BEGIN OUR LENTEN SERIES:
"LENT"

We begin our journey through lent with:
"The Temptation of Jesus"
You’re invited to join the
2021 Milwaukee MCC Lenten Offering Challenge

Each year Milwaukee MCC engages
in our annual Lenten Offering Challenge. This year being no different, we once again invite
YOU to be a part of this year’s
2021 Challenge!

In the past, as we have been able
to this challenge in-person, we obviously are not able to have
the same engagement for 2021.
 
You’re once again invited to join the challenge by placing a set amount in the container we have provided for you in this letter. Whether it’s a $1/day, $5/day, emptying out your pockets of your loose change, or whatever you are called to give, we invite you to place that in your containers during these
forty days of Lent.

If you're not a regular attender or on our regular postal mail list at Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church, and would like to partake in our challenge, you can contact the church via email at info@milmcc.org.

As we would normally bring our gifts and offering to the altar on Palm Sunday, this year we invite you to turn in your offering challenge in
the following ways:
  1. Contact the church to make safe arrangements to drop your offering/gift off in person. You can also drop your envelope through the Mail Slot. If you're collecting loose change, we request that you exchange that for bill currency or write a check or money order.
  2. Use the Lenten Offering Envelope that was provided in the letter you received to send your offering via check or credit card back to the church.
  3. Go online to by cutting and pasting this link and make your payment online. Make sure you indicate other type of offering and put “Lenten Offering” in the other box.

CLM (Creating a Life that Matters) GOES ONLINE
A GREAT LENTEN STUDY OPPORTUNITY!

Sanctuary in the Woods is excited to share that they will be doing a modified version of CLM (Creating a Life That Matters) Online, during the month of March 2021.
 
This wonderful opportunity will be offered each Tuesday evening during the month of March at 8pm Eastern/7pm Central time.

You'll be able to connect to this series each of the Tuesdays listed below at 7:00pm Central Time/8:00pm Eastern time at:


Schedule of CLM OFFERSINGS
Tuesday, March 2nd – CLM 2. 1
Brilliant, Gorgeous, Fabulous - Our Multi-Dimensional Selves

Tuesday, March 9th – CLM 2. 2
Powerful Beyond Measure - The Four Yogas

Tuesday, March 16th – CLM 2. 3
Under the Waterline

Tuesday, March 23rd – CLM 2. 4
Keeping Body and Soul Together - Sexuality and Spirituality

Tuesday, March 30th
Monthly Book Club – Possibly one of the Source Books of
Rediscovering Relationship with My Self

Join us in 2021 for our
POZ Spirit Gathering
TUESDAY
March 2, 2021
at 7:00PM

POZ Spirit is back and will be gathering on, Tuesday evening, March 2, 2021
at 7:00pm via Zoom!

POZ Spirit is a group for men who are HIV/AIDS infected, providing a safe, respectful and supportive environment. POZ Spirit is where individuals have the opportunity to form friendships, while having the opportunity to network, share resources, while providing peer support and education, along with having discussions on any personal and relevant issues.

We hope you’ll join us on February 2nd and take the opportunity to connect with those in our group. If you haven't joined us in a while, please consider joining us, as we have new people who have joined us over the last several months!

Connect with us on March 2nd at:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88487848985
Don't FORGET to
join us for
Theology-on-Tap ONLINE the First Thursday of each month!

Join us for our next gathering, Thursday Evening, March 4, 2021 at 6:30pm via ZOOM to take part in our discussion!

Grab your favorite beverage and some snack type foods for an evening of good discussion. 

For questions and more information, feel free to contact the church office by calling 414-383-1100
or by email at info@milmcc.org

Connect with us on March 4th at:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86055363676
DON'T FORGET TO JHOIN US FOLLOWING ONLINE WORSHIP for our
Virtual Fellowship Gathering viz Zoom THIS
SUNDAY, MARCH 7, 2021
at 12 NOON via Zoom

Rev. Tory and the Board of Directors invite you to join them on Sunday, March 7, 2021 at 12 Noon, immediately following online worship for our virtual get together and enjoy some congregational fellowship, social time, along with spreading greetings for a great 2021!

We know that we all miss being together with one another, and having that ability to give one another a hug, pass the peace or have that ability to socialize with one another after Sunday Worship. So come join in for some great conversation and fellowship with one another!

DON'T BE LEFT OUT! Connect with us on March 7th at:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82834642928
SHOP WITH SCRIP CARDS
ARE STILL AVAILABLE FOR ORDER AS WE ENTER 2021!

You can still shop with SCRIP in 2021, making it simple and easy to shop virtually.

By purchasing and shopping with SCRIP Cards, you can continue to shop in your normal way, whether in person or virtually, while continuing to support Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church.

Order forms can be obtained by clicking below on the SCRIP ORDER FORM LINK below. You can mail your payment to the church by using one of your tithing envelopes or going online and using our online giving portal, noting in the comments that your payment is for SCRIP Cards. SCRIP Orders will be mailed to you once received.


GIVE AT CHECKOUT AND MAKE A MICRODONATION TO MILWUAKEE MCC

If you use PayPal for your purchases and other things, you can now provide a microdonation of just $1, YES $1, when you check out with PayPal. It’s east as 1-2-3-4!

This new program from PayPal,
Give at Checkout is an easy way
for consumers to give what they
can when they are able. Over time these small amounts can grow exponentially, offering charities a way to diversify fundraising efforts.

Simply go to your PayPal Account Dashboard and …
  1. God to the bottom right to the Make an Impact Section and click on Set Your Favorite Charity.
  2. Type in Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church and Click on the church name.
  3. Receive confirmation that Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church is now your FAVORITE Charity.
  4. Begin making an impact and/or make an additional donation.
EACH TIME YOU SHOP/BUY AT SMILE.AMAZON.COM YOU HELP MILWUAKEE MCC

Did you know that when you shop SMILE.AMAZON.COM you can help Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church receive a donation from Amazon, and at no additional cost or efforts to you?

Each time you shop Amazon Prime or Smile at Amazon, and have Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church as your designated Charity of Choice, Amazon will make a charitable donation to Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church.

Registering is easy by simply going to your Amazon account and designate Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church as your designated charity. Once you've done that all your need to do is log in via smile.amazon.com and Amazon will do the rest.
Since we have still been unable to pass the offering plate during this time of pandemic at worship in person, our giving continues to be down. 

If you auto-give, through your financial institution, or already give online, we THANK YOU. But, if you have typically placed your gifts in the offering plate each Sunday, we ask that you please consider the options we have available for giving to the church, until we are able to be back in-person again.

There are several ways YOU can make either a one-time donation or even a recurring donation. Here are the ways you can make that happen:
  1. Through our Secure Online Giving Portal, or either of our two PayPal links. You can go to our Secure Online Giving Portal and/or our PayPal Giving Link for your regular offering or one time giving. You can also go through our regular PayPal Link if you’re wanting to start and set-up a recurring monthly giving for your offering. Click on either of the links below to make that happen.
  2. You can mail your offering via check or credit card by using one of the pre-printed offering envelopes that have been distributed to all our members. Simply insert your check in the envelope or complete the information on the inner flap, should you choose to donate by credit card, and return it by mail. If you are in need envelopes, please contact the church, either by leaving us a message or emailing us at info@milmcc.org. We will be happy to send some to you.
  3. You can send your offering via check in a regular addressed envelope to: Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church, 1239 West Mineral Street, Milwaukee, WI 53204.
  4. You can go to our website at www.milmcc.org/donate to do your giving as well.
Click link above to do a regular
offering or one time gift through our Secure Giving Portal
Click link above to do a regular
offering or one time gift
Click link above to set up a monthly recurring gift
As a board, we are praying with you, and for you. We look forward to the day when we can once again gather and worship together. In the meanwhile, please continue to follow the social distancing guidelines outlined by health officials to keep you and your family safe.

Please prayerfully consider making a gift to support your church, so that we can continue to meet the needs of the congregation.

Peace and Blessings,
Milwaukee MCC Board of Directors
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