Aldersgate United Methodist Church
A vibrant and inclusive Christian community 
growing in faith, love, health and service

www.Aldersgate-Church.org                                                                 February 21, 2019
Aldersgate UMC
14230 SE Newport Way
Bellevue, WA  98006
(425) 746-9800
Email Links
Lead Pastor

Associate Pastor
Church Office

Children, Youth, Family

Preschool Director

Core Leaders
Calendar
Calendar
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Feb 23-26
GC2019 Prayer Vigil
Feb 24
New Member Welcome
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Mar 3
Camp Sunday
Worship at 10:00am
Taco Bar
Mar 4
Scouts BSA Girls Troop
Mar 5
Young at Heart Potluck
Mar 6
Prayer & Ashes
Ash Wednesday Service
Mar 10
Daylight Savings Time
Preschool Sunday
Mar 15-17
Youth SUMYT Retreat
Mar 24
Mission Sunday
Worship at 9:00am
Mission Projects
Church Lunch
Mar 31
UMCOR Special Offering
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Apr 14
Palm Sunday
Dinner & Club 345
Dinner & Youth Group
Apr 18
Maundy Thursday
Apr 19
Good Friday
Apr 20
Egg-Stravaganza
Apr 21
Easter Sunday
Easter Egg Hunt
Apr 27
UMW Spring   Salad Supper
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Coffee
Church Leadership
Click these links to read the minutes of the Core Leadership Team and the monthly minutes of the Ministry Teams.
Core Leaders (Feb)
Church Conf. (Dec)
CRC Team (Jan)
Trustees (Jan)
  Worship Team (Jan)
Green Team (Jan)
Preschool (Jan)
  Finance Team (Nov)
Common Table (June)


  Series:  "Foundations of Faith"
Sermon:  "General Conference Reflections:
Faith and Foundations"
Scripture:  Hebrews 11:7-12, 23-25

This Sunday  
In Brian McLaren's book, We Make the Road by Walking, we read Chapter 26 this week. In the chapter, McLaren relates a fictitious conversation between himself and one of Jesus' followers, a woman on the edges of the crowd. He asks her if she ever has doubts about Jesus' message. She replies,
Sometimes I think his message is the crazy dream of poets and artists, the fantasy of children at play, or old men who drink too much. But then, I ask what other message could possibly change the word? Perhaps what is truly crazy is what we are doing instead- thinking that a little more hate can conquer hate, a little more war can cure war, a little more pride can overcome pride, a little more revenge can end revenge, a little more gold can cure greed, or a little more division can create cohesion.

As we meet on Sunday morning, the General Conference of the United Methodist Church across the world will also be meeting in St. Louis. There are those who ask if we are crazy to hope that something good might come out of the meeting. There are those who wonder if this conference is just more division that could never lead to cohesion. We don't enter this time in naivete. We know that the church that emerges will be different than it was going in. We don't know all the ways that it will be different yet, but we know that our Tradition is changing.

This week in the midst of all that uncertainty and change, we celebrate the crazy dream of the rabbi Jesus. We celebrate with new members, a baptism, and the return of Pastor Brad to worship. We will have a reception after each service. We will come together to worship and praise God because that's what we do. We will come together to proclaim that there is good news even in the middle of uncertainty and we are living in that good news.
MINISTRY NEWS
Worship @ 10:00am March 3
Mark Your Calendars!   March 3 is Camp Sunday.   There will be only one worship service at 10:00am  followed by the famous Taco Bar lunch at 11:30am.

Worship @ 9:00am March 24
Write This Down! March 24 is Mission Sunday.  There will be only one worship service at 9:00am, followed by service projects from 9:30am-12:30pm, and lunch at 12:30pm.
Countdown to General Conference ~ 2 Days!
Saturday February 23-26
If you are trying to make sense of what the fuss is all about leading up to the General Conference in St. Louis later this month, here's a little background and some links to more information that might be helpful. General Conference in the United Methodist Church is a global meeting of representatives from each annual conference around the world. Annual conferences are geographical divisions of local churches, served by the same bishop. Usually General Conference meets every four years (a quadrennium) and decides on matters of church policy. It is the highest authority for United Methodists. 

In the last regular General Conference in 2016, it was decided that a special General Conference would be held in 2019, before the end of the quadrennium to address one single issue. The single issue is how to best respond to the proposed full participation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people as clergy and as laity. The General Conference asked the Council of Bishops to appoint a special commission that would research the matter carefully and make proposals. The Council of Bishops appointed the Commission on the Way Forward and the Commission outlined three possible options, which will be before the General Conference in St. Louis. More on the three options (plus one more that has been promoted by some in our Annual Conference since the Commission's report)  is available below. 
Prayer Vigil for CG2019
We are organizing participation from several east side churches to pray for the General Conference delegates, their safety, their discernment, and their leadership. Prayer services will be held at Bellevue First UMC on Saturday  February 23 , the first day of the Conference, at 6:00pm and at Mercer Island UMC on Sunday  February 24  at 1:00pm.  In addition, individuals and groups may sign up for any hour of the conference to be in prayer during that hour, beginning at 7:00am (Bellevue time zone, which is 9:00am in St. Louis) on Saturday  February 23 , until 9:00pm on Tuesday  February 26 . Signup for the Prayer Vigil at the table in the narthex or online at http://bit.ly/2CE73I3 . The site will be updated regularly with new resources, so check back regularly.  If you would like to help with coordinating or leading prayers during this Prayer Vigil, please sign up or see Pastor Laura, Sabrina MacIntyre, or Patty Ferguson. 
Scouts BSA Girls Troop Open House
Monday, March 4
It's a historic day! Scouts BSA troops are forming across the nation and GIRLS are joining! All GIRLS ages 11-18, are encouraged to join the Scouts BSA Girls Troop 638 here at Aldersgate. Girls and their parents are invited to an Open House at Aldersgate on Monday, March 4 at 7:00pm. Learn more about the program, talk to adult leaders, see exhibits, have your questions answered, enjoy refreshments. Take a flyer from the desk in the narthex and give it to a girl you know who might be interested in Scouts BSA. For more information please contact David Plowman, Aldersgate Troop 638 Charter Organization Representative, 425-503-1146, dplow@comcast.net
Pastor's Class Resumes 
Wednesday, March 6
The Wednesday's Pastor's class will begin again on March 6, Ash Wednesday. It will move through the five weeks of Lent. There will be two classes, one at 10:00am and another at 7:00pm. The title is, "A Marriage of Christianity." No, this is not a class to build a stronger marriage between potential spouses. The focus of the class is to build a stronger "marriage" between faithful disciples who disagree, sometimes strongly. It is about how to stay together in the midst of our differing pasts, understandings and beliefs. As we know, marriage is hard, complex, even complicated. It involves compromise, trust and understanding. So it is this time in our denomination. So, given that we do not all agree, even here at Aldersgate, we will go through some of Pastor Brad's own premarital counseling techniques to see if we can make our congregational, and even denominational marriages work. The class will explore our beliefs, our personal theologies, histories, and maybe most importantly, scripture. We will explore Jesus, and Paul, and others. We will explore John Wesley and how the interpretations of his standards have been redefined and interpreted today. Some of those lay at the foundation for the deepest denominational disagreements. Believe it or not, this will be fun, enlightening, and potentially transformational. Click here for the four page overview. Contact Pastor Brad if you have questions. Finally,  please pray for those heading for General Conference in St. Louis; for our church leaders and for the denomination as a whole. 
Church Fiscal Year Change 
At their February 11th meeting, the Core Leadership Team approved to change the church's fiscal year from what it is now (July to June), to a January to December period that matches the calendar year. A fiscal year is the 12 month period that is used for budgeting, financial planning and reporting.
 
There are three reasons for this change. First, we want our church's fiscal year to align with the January-December fiscal year used by the PNW Conference and the January-December fiscal year used by you - our members and donors in your personal finances. Second, the switch to mid-year in 2017 did not work out as well as anticipated. Third, we want to have our budgeting process line up with the Conference's timeline for making pastoral appointments.
 
This change will take effect on January 1, 2020. During the transition, we will conduct a mini Stewardship campaign from April 28 - May 19 for the six month budget July 1 - December 31, 2019. And then the full Stewardship campaign will be in October for the January 1 - December 31, 2020 fiscal year.
 
We hope this change eliminates the confusion of a mid-year fiscal year. Thank you in advance for your patience as we transition and for your faithful stewardship. If you have any concerns or questions regarding this change, please contact: 
Joe Lee, Core Leadership ChairJim Phillips, Finance Chair
Melinda Lilley, Stewardship ChairSteve Briggs, Stewardship
Hal Prow, StewardshipLaura Baumgartner, Pastor
Finance Report
For our fiscal year to date (July 1, 2018 - January 31, 2019), our overall church income ($284,111) exceeded our expenditures ($269,808) by $14,303. Thank you to all for maintaining your giving and to staff and team chairs for keeping your expenditures under control. If you have questions about church finances, contact  Jim Phillips Finance Chair. 
Trees & Playground News
You may have noticed that some large trees were removed from the playground outside the pastors' offices. For a number of years the Board of Trustees has been monitoring the health of the four evergreen trees. The first, a hemlock, had its top break out a few years ago. The other three, all Norway Spruce, have been oozing sap at an increasing rate over the past few years. This condition often indicates the presence of a pathogen. In response to the declining health of these trees, the Trustees decided to remove them and replace them with healthy trees.
 
The tree removal is part of a larger playground upgrade that includes a new fence. The current fence is outdated and showing signs of wear. In order to comply with regulations for preschool playgrounds located near a street or parking lot, Aldersgate Christian Preschool will install a 6 foot black chain link fence the third week of February. This is for the protection of the children who use the playground.   Sometime in the spring the preschool will also install some new playground equipment and playground grade wood chips.
 
The Trustees and the preschool have been working in cooperation on this project to make sure that these improvement are done at times and in ways that minimize negative impacts to the preschool classes and other building users. If you have questions or concerns, please contact Rich Detering, Trustees chair, or Dorothy Beeman, Preschool Director.
Reading Guide to Brian McLaren's Book
"We Make the Road by Walking" 
During the coming seasons, many people from churches throughout the west will be reading chapters from Brian McLaren's book "We Make the Road by Walking". The chapters are intended to be read one per week.You may choose to read on a schedule that will coincide with themes in worship and the life of the church. Here is the reading schedule through Easter. Copies of the book are available for check-out from our church library or you may wish to order your own copy from Amazon or another online book seller.

Week Beginning         Chapter(s)            Main Idea
February 3                     28/29                      Trinity
February 10                   30                           General Conference
February 17                   31                           Choices
February 24                   26                           Making it Real
March 3                          23                           Jesus and the Multitudes
March 10                        Introduction           Seeking Aliveness
                                         pages xv-2
March 17                        1                             Awe and Wonder
March 24                        2                             Being Human
March 31                        3                             A World of Meaning
April 7                             4                             Being Image Bearers
April 14                           32                           Peace March

FUN EVENTS
Camp Sunday & Taco Bar Lunch
Sunday, March 3
On Camp Sunday, March 3, there will be only one worship service at 10:00am . We will celebrate the camping ministry and representatives from all four of the United Methodist PNW Camps will be here to share about this lifesaving ministry. Following the service at 11:30am, there will be a Taco Bar luncheon . Besides an amazing taco lunch and your favorite camp desserts, you will have the opportunity to hear from Aldersgate's campers about their camp experience and learn more about the four camps. A free will offering will be taken and funds will be split between Aldersgate's Campership Fund and the district campership fund. This is a fun and yummy way to help ensure all children and youth have the opportunity to go to camp.   If you will join us for lunch and if you can help set up, prep food Saturday, serving food Sunday or help clean up after lunch, then please sign up on Sunday's attendance form or via the church Facebook page.  Contacts are Patty Ferguson and Jen Hoerber.
Club 345 (3rd~4th~5th Grade)
March 3
Club 345 is open to all 3rd, 4th and 5th graders and meets once a month usually on the first Sunday evening for dinner and a fun activity.  Volunteers are always needed to host the Club 345 activity or to provide the dinner.  Please sign up on the CYF bulletin board by the church office.  C ontact is Jen Hoerber .
Youth Group (6th-12th Grade)
Youth Group meets on Sunday evenings from 6:00-8:00pm.  All youth in 6th-12th grade are welcome.  If you have questions about the youth program, contact  Jen Hoerber.  Here are some upcoming events:  
*Feb. 24 -  Youth Group, 6:00-8:00pm
*Mar. 3 - Camp Sunday!  Worship at 10:00am and the famous Taco Bar Lunch at 11:30am.
                  Dinner and Youth Group, 5:00-7:30pm
*Mar. 10 - Youth Group, 6:00-8:00pm
*Mar. 15-17 - Youth SUMYT Retreat
Young at Heart Potluck
Tuesday, March 5
We've had enough of this wintery weather - let's have some fun! The program will be Ryan Breske, UW Cheerleader. We hope he will give us some insights on what is required and the benefits to being on their squad. The committee will furnish the meat (ham) and dessert. Attendees need to bring a salad or casserole and your own table service. Please plan to join us for an entertaining and socially stimulating evening. See you there. Please sign up.
CHURCH & SOCIETY
Green Team Invites you to Brunch Bingo!
Saturday, March 2
The Green Team at Aldersgate would like to invite you to attend a fundraiser for Earth Ministry with us. On March 2 from 11:00am-2:00pm, at St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral in Seattle, come and play bingo and have brunch. Tickets are $65 until February 2 and then they cost $75. Ticket includes brunch and 5 rounds of Bingo! Earth Ministry is an organization that supports environmental ministries in local congregations. Tickets available HERE.  For more information, see anyone on Green Team!
Mission Sunday 
March 24
It's not too early to mark your calendar for Mission Sunday. We'll have one brief worship service at 9:00am, then break into teams to work on mission projects all over the community and then return for lunch together. Think about whether you can help to lead a team or donate items needed for birthday bags, hygiene kits, or lunch. If you have ideas for community service projects on Mission Sunday, please see Pastor Laura. 
African-American History IS American History: 
What You Probably Didn't Learn in School: 
Tuesdays, January 22, February 5, 19, March 5, 19, 7:00 p.m.
This class is for anyone who wants to gain a fuller understanding of our nation's past and how it affects present conditions. Classes can be attended separately but will build on each other. Each class will begin by exploring what we already know or think we know about the topic at hand. The teachers intend to lecture very little. We will use short readings and roles plays, consider motives and alternatives for the various actors at key turning points. Generally, each person will share a response in groups large and small. There will be ample time for comparisons between past events and current issues.  Register here .
January 22: "The Invention of Whiteness": Bacon's Rebellion and colonial trade.
February 5: Enlightenment, Revolution, and slavery. What were they thinking? 
February 19: Who really freed the slaves? Civil War and The Emancipation Proclamation.
March 5: When the Impossible was (almost) Possible: Reconstruction and Jim Crow
March 19: Institutional Racism in the 20th century. 
Facilitators: Mike Radow, former history teacher, Mercer Island High School and Gray Pedersen, former history teacher, Lakeside High School
Why two white guys? A. We've both taught this material poorly and increasingly better over the years. B. White people can make a strong effort to do their "civic homework" rather than so often place the burden on people of color to explain.
PRAYER REQUESTS
Prayer Requests

People Who Mourn
Lynda Dreher's youngest son Robert passed away unexpectedly.

People with Health Concerns
*Hope Barker
*Pam Breske's mother Edna'
*Jenni Pollmann's father
*Carol Cubilie
*Dorothy Beeman
*Cindy Wheeler
*Melinda Lilley's friend Melissa's mother Marilyn
*Mark Olleman's sister Ruth
*Charlie Stansell
*Eathel Allyn
 
Additional Concerns
*Missionary Katherine Parker
*Jeff Wheeler

To submit a prayer request to the Prayer Chain, email Dorothy Bennet t, the Prayer Chain Coordinator.  You can also fill out a pew prayer card on Sunday and put it in the offering plate, or you can contact the church office with your prayer request.   All prayer requests will appear in the church newsletters unless you request otherwise.