August 17 , 2017

Responding to Charlottesville: Friends, I am appalled and sickened by the events in Virginia and elsewhere this past week. Racism and hatred are alive and well and living in our own back yard. You and I have a responsibility to speak the truth in love – and to speak against hatred in all its ugly forms. Silence gives consent. This is a Christ-mandated practice. Eli Wiesel wrote, "We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
If this feels political, remember that Jesus spoke against those in power (Rome) and those in leadership (Israel’s Temple) when they did not treat others justly and care for those on the edges and the outcasts of society. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is all encompassing. There is no aspect of our lives that is not affected, effected, and infected by what God calls us to be, do, say, think, and act. Our faith is based upon the teachings and actions of person of color from the Middle East who spoke truth to power, took up the cause of those oppressed and outcast by systemic prejudice, and died for the cause of loving neighbor as ourselves. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and your neighbor as yourself. This text is at the heart of who we are as First Congregational Church of La Grange.
I invite you to join me in standing up and speaking against the vitriol and hatred that are spewing forth and creating schisms in our society. I encourage you to not only place a sign in your yard, but to speak the truth in love to those who display this hatred around us. Let the love of Christ infect all your being, speaking, standing, walking, working, and living.
  • Note: There will be a Witness for Peace at the La Grange Village Hall on August 20 at Noon

Ask The Question:
We ran out of time for a number of questions asked in worship on May 14th. Here is the last installment on responses to those questions.
Why is the Number 40 found so often in the Bible?
The number forty is used 102 times in the Old and New Testaments. It is the traditional Hebrew number used to (continue reading)
This Week:
Friday 8/18: OA at 9 am, Be Still and Know 12 Step at 4 pm, Alanon at 7:30
Saturday 8/19: Saturday Meals Program at 8 am, Kindermusik at 8 am, School and Tutors Volunteer Training at 9 am
Sunday 8/20: Worship at 10 am, Fellowship Hour at 11:15 am, OA at 7 pm
Monday 8/21: AA for under 30s at 7 pm, AA at 8 pm
Wednesday 8/23: Council Meeting at 7 pm
Friday 8/25: OA at 9 am, Be Still and Know 12 Step at 4 pm, Alanon at 7:30
Saturday 8/26: Saturday Meals Program at 8 am, Kindermusik at 8 am, School and Tutors Volunteer Training at 9 am
Sunday 8/27: Worship with Baptism at 10 am, Fellowship Hour at 11:15 am, Messy Church Meeting at 11:15 am, OA at 7 pm
Construction Notice from the Village of La Grange  
The Village advises us that the BNSF Railroad is planning to close Ogden Avenue at the BNSF railroad crossing in order to perform bridge repairs. Odgen Avenue from La Grange Road to East Avenue will be closed for this work from 5am to 9pm on August 20 and August 27, 2017.
Traffic will be detoured to East Avenue, 47th Street, and La Grange Road. 
FCCLG Building Repair Updates 2017
Two of the doors on the north east entrance of the church have been repaired and replaced. The other two are now out to be repaired. The expectation is that they will be back in 3 or 4 weeks. The stonework repairs are being done to fix leaks. Most of the work will be done on the Cossitt Avenue side by the 23rd of August. The remaining work on the 6th Avenue side should be done by early September.  
Celebration of Communion
Communion will be August 27 instead of Labor Day Weekend. FCCLG usually celebrates the Table on the first Sunday of each month with the blessing of the bread and cup by ordained clergy. Worship Team has moved our September celebration of communion to August 27th so that our pastor can spend Labor Day with her family. After August, World Wide Communion on October 1 will be the next celebration. 
Music Opportunities
All programs are open to the community, so invite a friend or neighbor to check us out. Interested musicians please contact Ryan Cox before your first rehearsal for door codes and more info.
Chancel Choir rehearsal begins on August 31 at 7:30pm in the Choir Room. Membership is open to all singers, high-school on up. All voice parts are needed. Not sure where you fit in? Ryan will help. All new choir members are offered two free voice coachings with Ryan.
Carillon Handbell Choir rehearsal begins on September 6 at 7:15pm. Anyone high-school and up is welcome. Previous ringing experience is not required: basic music reading is helpful. We need both regular ringers and those who would like to sub in from time to time. 
Ring 'n Sing : It's back and it does what the name suggests. We sing. And, we ring. Children in 1st-8th grades are welcome. Rehearsals begin on September 17 from 11:15-11:45am. This is a great introduction to our youth program.
Treble Choir : An extension of Ring n' Sing, this ensemble is designed for children in 3rd grade and up. The focus is on voice development, music reading, and singing more challenging music. Normally we meet right after Ring n' Sing from 11:45am-12:15pm. However, our first rehearsal is combined with Ring n' Sing on September 17 from 11:15-11:45am.
Sunday School Registration
If you have a child 0-18 please fill out a Sunday School registration form! Forms can be found in the office, on the Sunday School bulletin board, or outside Sylvia's office. You can also click here!
Messy Church
Messy Church will be Sunday, September 3rd at 4:30 pm. Our theme this month is Who is Jesus? Come and have a great time and grow in faith and in your love of others on the journey. 
4:30-5:15pm: Crafts and Stories
5:15-5:30pm: Celebration
5:30-6:00: Dinner
Ministry of Education Volunteer Opportunities
School is starting soon and so is our Ministry of Education programming. If you can help our amazing children and youth, please fill out a Ministry of Education volunteer form found in the church office.
Positions available in Messy Church, Sunday School, Yzals, and Zackleys.

September 3 : Messy Church
September 10 : Sunday School starts
September 10 : Yzals meeting 6:30pm
September 17 : Zackleys Meeting 6:30pm
September 24 : Yzal and Zackley BBQ
Kick-Off Sunday
Please join us for our annual Kick-Off Sunday picnic on September 10th on the 6th Avenue lawn after worship. A delicious broasted chicken lunch and beverages will be provided. Please bring either a side dish or a dessert to share. Play games and visit new friends and old in your church family. See you there!
Safe Church Training 
Anyone who works with children in the church is required to complete Safe Church and Boundary Training annually. The class is offered in September and February. This session will take place on September 24th from 1:00 to 2:30 in the Founders' Room. If you are a teacher, Messy Church volunteer, mentor, or youth leader, please register for training during fellowship hour.
New Members Class
Let's explore what it means to belong, to sense that you're at home in the community of faith. Three gatherings are planned for those who have been worshiping and participating in the ministries of the congregation and who would like to explore a deeper relationship.
  • Sunday, October 8 at 11:15 am, in the Dining Room following our Sunday morning worship. We will explore the work and ministries of the congregation and tour the church building.
  • Sunday, October 22 at 4:30 pm, at the Parsonage.
  • During morning worship on November 5th, participants will have an opportunity to formalize their relationship with FCCLG.
This is an exploration only with no obligation or strings attached. There is no cost to participate, but registration is appreciated. Sign up in the Fellowship Hour following worship, or contact Carly .
Back Bay Mission Trip
Back Bay Mission trip October 15-22, 2017 in Biloxi, MS. Join Pastor Carly and five others. Mission trips at Back Bay are divided between work, learning, and time for play. Accompany us on this journey! There are 3 more spaces available. There's a $175 per person materials and lodging fee, and we share the cost of groceries and car expenses. If you have any questions, please email Bobbie Nunez or Pastor Carly .
Food Pantry Donations For August
Thank you to those generous folks who donated food items for the Second Baptist Food Pantry. For August, canned tuna and salmon would be especially appreciated. As always, all nonperishable food items are gratefully accepted and will help needy local families.
Craft Fair 2017 - Save The Date!
October 21st is the Church Craft Fair from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Check out the FCCLG website to become a volunteer or sign up for a table. Call Dave Bryant at 708-352-3034 for more details.
Missions Book Group

Missions will facilitate a book discussion focusing on issues of social concern. We meet at 7:30 on the 1st Monday in November, February, and May .
November 6: Dreamland: The True Tale of Americas' Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones
February 5: Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the America City by Matthew Desmond
May 7: TBD
Fundraising For FCCLG
Give back to FCCLG when you shop on Amazon! Click here
  Prayer is at the heart of our relationship with God. Please lift these friends, family, and members in your prayers.
Ojo Adedji, seeking asylum in the U.S., whose hearing date has been postponed to October.

Conrad Affholter, 13 month old son of Jessica, and grandson of Joan Burke.

Emil and Maria Balz.

Thoughts and prayers for the Dave and Doris Bryant family, as they mourn the loss of Dave's brother, Peter Bryant, who died on July 29th.

Renee Bryant’s friend Melissa, diagnosed with breast cancer.

Gail Harris Schmidt and her family as they mourn the loss of Gail’s mother, Ann Harris, who died July 13th.

Prayers for Dave King, who is suffering from West Nile encephalitis.
Genesis Matthiesen’s friend Vincent Franco, who has lost his way.
Petra Palmer’s granddaughter’s friend Summer who is having chemotherapy for leukemia.

Prayers for Tom Pitman, who has recently been diagnosed with cancer.

Nancy Coleman’s friend Sharon Veltre, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

Those living in fear and without hope, and those who use fear to control others.