Community UCC eNews
May 7, 2020
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.

The Church and Office will be closed until the City of Fresno's "Shelter in Place" advisory is lifted.
Sunday Sermon — Zoom and Facebook Live (not at church, for now)  

On Sunday, May 10 , Robin Carlson will deliver a sermon titled “ Love of Children. ” See below for details of how we will "do church" for now.

Worship on Facebook Live will begin at 10:30 a.m.
Instructions for Zoom worship

For upcoming worship services, we will do a Zoom meeting, so we can see each other's faces even as we are apart. Zoom is a videoconferencing interface available for video and audio conferencing, chat, webinars and more.

Links to the Zoom worships will go out each Wednesday in a separate email just to church members, to ensure security. Look for "Zoom links" in that email subject line.

Lisa will continue to provide Facebook Live on Sundays at 10:30 a.m., by capturing her computer screen during the Zoom worship.
A Message From Our Incoming Pastor

Julia Penner-Zook will start as our next minister on May 15:

Imagine how we would have scrambled and done everything within our power to avoid the discomfort, pain and uncertainty we are now experiencing. 

But, here we are! All of us live with realities we did not choose — a situation which sends us reeling and sometimes causes us to slip towards despair. 

At this time of new beginnings in the church, layered onto the newness we’ve already been challenged with, we think ahead to how we will navigate this course together. Thank you for the opportunity to envision this future with you. 

Just as we could never have foreseen this exact COVID-19 scenario, so we are only able to  project  the shape of our joint future, at best. This place of unknown doesn’t leave us without resources as we move forward, however. 

We are individuals, families, and friends—all united through this body we call Community United Church of Christ. It seems clearer than ever that the Church is not a building, not a program, not even a gathering of like-minded, faithful people. We are a community fashioned around the life and calling of Jesus, and we have the ability to shape this community with hope.

  • We are a community with a shared history, built on a strong commitment to one another and to God. Equally, we have made a commitment to the neighborhoods of our city, meeting people in their place of need, inviting whoever wishes to join us in the joy of following Christ. 
  • We are an honest community; we allow each other to be real, to share joys and burdens without being called out or disregarded. We do this to fulfill our call as imitators of Christ.
  • We are a searching community which always poses the question, “How is God speaking in our midst right now?” How can God’s message transform the spaces we’re in? 

While our world has faced crises and grave dangers before, this time it’s  us together — who will rise to the challenge confronting us. But we are not destined to travel alone. Jesus came to draw a community together, promising the Spirit who would bring comfort. This Spirit of comfort comes to us over and over again. We can count on this. 

Julia Penner-Zook
Stewardship Campaign 2020: Four Great Loves

This year's Stewardship Campaign – Four Great Loves – kicks off on April 26 and will culminate on Stewardship Sunday, May 17. Each week will feature a different theme and different speaker:

  • April 26 – Love of Creation, featuring Sharon Powers-Smith
  • May 3 – Love of Neighbor, featuring Janet Capella
  • May 10 – Love of Children, featuring Doug Hoagland
  • May 17 – Love of Church, featuring Julia Penner-Zook

Community UCC conducts an annual Stewardship drive each spring to ask church members and supporters what they will bring to the mission of the church for the following fiscal year, from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021.

If you want to print out and mail in your forms, here are links to do so:

NEW: Or you can submit your answers online via these links to Google Forms:
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
We want to celebrate our grads!

If you have a child, grandchild, niece or nephew who is transitioning to a new school level, let us know so we can share in your celebration during the May 17 worship service! Sixth-grade to middle school, middle to high school, senior or college grad share them all!

Please send the following information to Rod Zook:
  • Name, grade, school and a photo.
New address for Gretchen Choate

From Phil Fullerton: Gretchen Choate has moved to Fairwinds near Woodward Park. She moved on Monday. I checked with her daughter Ellie, and she agrees that Gretchen loves to get phone calls and letters. Contact info for Gretchen will be added to the church directory and posted in the private Facebook group for members.
Living the Questions

We will resume the Living the Questions study at 10 a.m. Mondays via Zoom.

  • May 11: Compassion: The Heart of Jesus' Ministry
  • May 18: Creative Transformation
  • May 25: Embracing Mystery

Contact Robin if you need a link to the Zoom meeting (or check the email to church members that went out on Wednesday with Zoom links for this week).
Women's Book Discussion Group  started a new book on May 5 " Small Graces: The Quiet Gifts of Everyday Life " by Kent Nerburn. We will meet via Zoom at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays.
In each week's eNews, we include a news article from our larger denomination,  United Church of Christ ,  to show the faithful work being done in other places.
UCC plans Interfaith Day of Prayer May 7 online

The United Church of Christ is honoring May 7, the day designated by Congress as a national day of prayer, as a day of healing, hope and lament — and reaching out to ecumenical and interfaith partners to join them.

Rooted in a firm belief in the power of prayer, the UCC is inviting people of faith everywhere to be part of an Interfaith Day of Prayer this Thursday on Facebook and Instagram. At part of its commitment to “a just world for all,” the church will offer prayers for health and wholeness during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The UCC will publish 24 hours prayer in many voices, from many faiths, praying to God on behalf of our nation and our world on and on Facebook. Prayers from all five living United Church of Christ General Ministers and Presidents will be included. 

As a church of extravagant welcome, the UCC is inviting members of all faiths to add their prayers to the stream of UCC posts on Facebook (@UnitedChurchofChrist). Continue reading at
Happy Birthday to all who are celebrating this month!

May Birthdays

1 Wendy Thompson
3 Sarah Fey, Thomas Russell
6 Benjamin Kloos
7 Louise Andrews, Bill Dailey, Mirth Lundal
8 Adriana Wall
11 Gail McDougle
15 Marty Mulvihill
16 Hayden Shea
17 Lynn Samuelian, Victoria Wall
19 Marilyn Wall
21 Tom Carroll, Promila Mahtab
22 Robin Carlson, Karri Jones    
24 Sib White
25 Spence Hipp
29 Maria Contreras
31 Donna Wright
NO May Anniversaries

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.
Upcoming Church Events

  • We will resume listing events after things get back to normal. For now, events have either been cancelled or will be rescheduled.
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 (, 559.244.9502) is the eNews editor and communications liaison for our church.
We've updated our Joyful Giving page to reflect the many ways members can help support our Church's missions and operations, especially needed in these critical and uncertain times.

The Church and Office will be closed until the City of Fresno's "Shelter in Place" advisory is lifted.

Phone: 559.435.2690