NOVEMBER 2015 - In This Issue:
Sunday Services
9:15 AM & 11:00 AM
November 1     "Day of Remembrance"     
Rev. Thom, leading worship
Join us for a multigenerational service as we celebrate All Souls Day with a service remembering those in our lives and families who are now with us only in spirit. 
November 8     "The Deconstructing Discontent"    
Randy Lewis, Guest Minister
Many of us spend our lives constructing tales, belief systems, and ideologies, which then inform and enforce our realities. But when paradigms shift, old, outdated structures and traditions give way to new emerging ideas and new realities, and blind spots and misconceptions become exposed, individuals may undergo crises suddenly needing to deconstruct decades of social conditioning. Join me this Sunday as we explore the crossroads of tradition and change and what's truly possible for a post-modern society.
November 15      "The Traditions We Choose"     
Rev. Thom, preaching
Rev. Thom says of this service, "Earlier this fall Glenn invited me to preach about the themes explored in Fiddler on the Roof. This morning we'll explore the idea of tradition. Do traditions connect us with our roots or are they unnecessary baggage worth leaving behind. Join us this morning as wrestle with tradition."
November 22      "Fishes. Loaves. Turkey. Stuffing."     
Rev. Thom, leading worship
Join us for our annual multigenerational service on the Sunday before Thanksgiving. This morning through story and song we'll worship as a community of all ages and explore the theme of abundance. Join us after both services for Pumpkin pie during coffee hour.
November 29      "Question Box Sermon"     
Rev. Thom, preaching
During the month of November, a mysterious question box will appear near the entrance of the sanctuary. There will be notecards and pens and you'll have the chance to ask Thom whatever you would like to ask. This Sunday the box will be opened and the sermons at both services will be different and consist of Thom answering as many questions as he can.

All Church Community Dinner
Friday November 6, 6-7 p.m.
Come for fun and fellowship for at our monthly All Church Community Dinners in the Community Room.  $3/person covers the main dish and dessert. Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and nut free options available. Please also bring a side dish (salad, vegetable, bread, fruit, etc.). All are welcome! RSVP here.  These are the dates for this year's Community Dinners:  
11/6, 12/10, 1/15, 2/15, 3/11, 4/8, 5/6, and 6/3
Outdoor Connections
Paddle and Picnic, Saturday November 7. Cheap canoes, priceless scenery, pretty good company. Spectacular or in bad years simply beautiful, early November on Cane Creek offers 400 acres of our own pocket wilderness at its best. Bring your fine self and picnic shareables to the church at 10:00 to carpool. RSVP:
Jingle Bells?
Yes, it is a bit early to start talking about the holidays, but it's not too soon to begin planning for the Greening of our church. This year our family-friendly celebration of the Winter Solstice will take place on Saturday, December 5, so mark your calendars. Starting at 4 p.m. we'll green the Sanctuary and the Commons, make and hang wreaths on doorways, and assemble baskets of donated household supplies for the women served by the IFC's Homestart Center. This will be followed by our annual chili supper and carol sing-a-long.

We need volunteers to head up these activities and recruit a team of helpers. Please call Ruth Leopold at (919) 537-8853, or email Ruth for more information. Let's plan together and then have a ball when we deck those halls!
Within the span of 4 weeks from November 20-December 13, the Community Church will come alive with 3 amazing musical and theatrical events.

The first is our production of the classic American musical, "Fiddler on the Roof." With a cast of 37 congregation members, and dozens of others helping behind the scenes building props, painting backdrops, creating and acquiring costumes, running lights and sound, we are finding that it really does "take a village" for us to create the village of Anatevka for you. Though first staged in 1964, "Fiddler" still resonates in today's culture, exploring  the themes of tradition, identity and justice, and the necessity of love and compassion to make sense of a complicated world. Performances the weekend of November 20-22. It is not to be missed! Click here for more information, and here to buy your tickets online.

Continuing with the exploration of Jewish culture, on
December 6 at both services your choir will perform of Ernest Bloch's "Sacred Service," accompanied by a 14 piece chamber orchestra. Josh Socolar will sing the part of the Cantor for this highly emotional work. Written in 1934, and based on a Sabbath morning service, the music runs the gamut from sublime to soaring, from meditative to majestic. We are very excited to bring the powerful piece to life at the Community Church.

F inally, it's time to start thinking about the annual Children's Pageant, this year held on December 13. You never know what's in store for this service, but it's always a fun experience for participants and congregation alike. Sign-ups will start on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, with rehearsals beginning the first week in December.

I look forward to sharing these events with you and talking with you about them. See you in church. 
When we hold the Greening of the Church on December 5th, we'll be working on a different Service Project this year. The Chatham Rape Crisis and Family Violence Center is no longer housing women at its Center. Therefore, we'll be making holiday baskets for the IFC's "Homestart Center", a residential facility for homeless women and children. Currently this facility houses 14 women and 10 families. We would like to make a holiday basket of supplies for all. They need the following: toiletries, cleaning supplies, tooth care supplies, laundry detergent, feminine products, diapers, baby wipes, new socks and underwear, bath towels and wash cloths. This is a long list; so to collect the maximum amount of supplies, there will be large, marked box stationed in the Commons throughout November. And, of course, you may bring items on the night of the Greening. Questions? Call Ruth Leopold at 919-537-8853.
This year we are happy to announce that Stephanie Bailey is leading our Sunday program for children ages 3-5, the Rainbow Circle at both services. Stephanie brings a wealth of experience in working with children in our church.  She has been a Chalice Camp Counselor, a childcare provider for many years, and she was an Insch Leadership Associate.  Stephanie is known for her warmth, enthusiam and welcoming spirit.  She brings both fun and a steady structure to Sunday mornings. Also on the Rainbow Circle team is Jenny Nelson and Zac Johnson, members of our youth staff.  Our program this year "Celebrating Me and My World" explores the spirituality and joy we find in everyday experiences and is perfect for children ages 3 to 5.

  Since the 1980s the children of the Community Church have been making homemade
pumpkin pie on the Sunday before Thanksgiving -- enough pie so that there is a piece for every member of the congregation (who wants one) during the coffee hour. 200+ pieces of delicious, warm pie.... it is fun. But to get in on the pie making fun you must get to church early--Either at 8:30 AM (for the 9:15 Service) or 10:30 (for the 11:00 service) to make the pies. At 9:15 and 11:00 all the children go to the service with their parents so the pies need to be made by the time church starts. Then children who are interested can also help to serve the pie after the service . Let Marion know if you would like to help with pie making or serving. It's fun! And easy!  
Thanksgiving is a time for sharing, and again this year we have an opportunity to ensure that local families have a nourishing dinner to look forward to.  Holidays are challenging to those who live on limited incomes.  Thankfully, Inter-Faith Council for Social Services has partnered with community groups on the Holiday Meals initiative that provides festive dinners to individuals and families in need. $25 buys a bag that contains a turkey or ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing, a vegetable, bread and a dessert - enough for 4 people. You can help by contributing cash or a check with Share the Plate in the memo line.  Any amount is gratefully received.  Last year our donations supported dinners for 107 families!  As you gather with family and friends this holiday season, you will know that another local family is enjoying a holiday meal because of your generosity.
The Share the Plate recipient for November 18 is "Holiday Gifts for Foster Children."  The church has sponsored this collection to purchase gifts for local children for over 15 years.   Funds go to the Orange and Chatham County Departments of Social Services.  Our donations make it possible for new toys and clothing to be given to foster children in our area during the holiday season.  This offering is sponsored by the Children and Youth Ministry Teams.
First Sunday Recyclables (at the ECO table during coffee hour)
  • Nov. 1: Cell phones/accessories, batteries (AAA - D, button, rechargeable), natural and synthetic corks, plastic pencils, pens, and markers.
ECO's theme for this church year is "CARING FOR THE EARTH STARTS WITH US." There will be a new focus every two months and ECO will suggest practical steps you can take to better care for the earth. The November-December focus will be "CARING FOR OUR WATER." See the ECO website for more details .
A key event for the planet. The United Nations Climate Change Conference will take place in Paris from November 30 to December 11. Meaningful commitments by nations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are needed to mitigate climate change. People everywhere will be calling for climate justice and an end to carbon emissions. ECO will provide updates on local actions. Also, see
for more information. 
Spiritual Explorations for Adults (SEA) will continue this fall with more Thursday evening courses! "Secularism and Ethics, or Being Good Without God" ( October 29, November 5, 12, 19 from 6:30 to 8:30) will work with topics discussed in Phil Zuckerman's book " Living the Secular Life" and will explore how Secular people are addressing important life questions with a spirit of "Aweism." 

Reverend Thom Belote will offer "Blue Holidays" Gathering ( December 3, 10, 17 from 7 to 8:30) where participants will offer sharing, do grief work, learning, and ritual to support those experiencing grief during the Winter Holidays. 

SEA plans on offering more courses in January and throughout next Spring as well including a film series and the Northwest Earth Institute course " Seeing Systems: Peace, Justice, and Sustainability ." For more information, or to register, please visit our table following services. We hope to see you at SEA!

  On November 21, Saturday at 10:30, in the Kirby Room, Steve McNeary will lead our discussion of Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World .  We will also be voting on the books we will read in 2016.  We 'll post our selections on the church website.
On December 19, we will be discussing God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World, by Stephen Prothero.  Marya Ilgen-Lieth is our discussion leader.

If one of these books interests you, please read it and join us for an interesting discussion.


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If you would like to learn more about joining the Community Church of Chapel Hill, please contact our Membership Director, Rachel Rose, by calling the office (919) 942-2050, emailing, or find her at one of our Sunday services. Whether you are brand new or a longtime attendee, and whatever your beliefs or background, we welcome you to our community of friendship and ideals.