June 6, 2019

Dear Congregation:

This week we welcome guest writer, Kevin Coyle.

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”
Romans 12:12-13 (NIV)
Reaching for Love: Building Community in a World Diverse
To me the most powerful and authentic times in our church are when we pray together in small groups. During that time, we open our hearts to one another. Though we live separate lives we feel their pain, their suffering, their inner trial. This to me is a sign of the great spirit unity that we all have with one another. Suffering is the common soil on which we all rest. It cuts through ideological lines and religious differences. This reality and our social nature, explain our need for community.
We need people who care, support, and are there for us during our hardest moments. This is true for all mortals no matter where they stand or what beliefs they hold. Without these fruits of the soul we cannot survive. Yes, we may be physically living, but our inner life would be undernourished. How do we reach out to those who need our love the most? How do we fill the hearts of our neighbors? How do we build community in a world diverse? 
History has offered two ways of dealing with diversity. One is to allow communities to “co-exist,” or on the other hand, deny the uniqueness of the human person and merge to some whole homogenous society. The latter has failed, leaving behind a violent and bloody legacy, but even in a society of democracy and freedom, there can exist insufficient interaction between communities and groups.
It is easier to talk about those who may be disagreeable than it is to reach out and be their friend, daring to walk alongside. The problem goes deeper than worldviews being supposedly right or wrong. The heart of conflict lies in perception. We often divide ourselves into groups and defend our points against rival worldviews. Even if it is done peacefully it creates tension in society.
Jesus transcended both of these earthly answers without succumbing to the temptation of pride. He advocated neither merging or avoidance of the other, but unconditional love. Where there was no community, he built one, reaching out to gather disciples. He sat with those who felt rejected by the established communities of the day, those that others despised and hated. He tapped into their common yearning for acceptance. Yet, in the end, he did not pit the oppressed against the oppressors, but died on the cross offering grace to both sides.   
Reaching out is a risk, something that I myself don’t always do, but scripture gives us a new perception. Like the Old Testament prophets, Jesus spoke not of different groups using labels, but of “brothers,” “sisters,” “children,” and “friends.” He challenged us to see the common spirit in us all. Changing the language of society and how we relate to one another is a great challenge, but just imagine how different our world would be if we called each other not by categories, but as “friend,” “neighbor,” and “brethren”?
 ~Kevin Coyle
Rev. Dr. Barbara Kershner Daniel, Senior Pastor
Evangelical Reformed Church, United Church of Christ
15 West Church Street, Frederick, MD 21701
301-662-2762 e-mail: bkdaniel@erucc.org

Food for Thought 
"I read a wonderful quote from the twelfth century mystic, Hildegard of Bingen that gave me pause. She described the Holy Spirit as 'the Greening Power of God.' Of course she did not intend that in the context that we might mean by 'Greening' something; that is, making it more environmentally friendly. She meant, I believe, that as plants are greened by water, sunlight, and soil, the human soul is 'greened' by the Holy Spirit's presence in one's life. Because of the Holy Spirit the human soul can 'flower and bear good fruit.'" (Sandy Olson, Alternatives for Simple Living, 21st century)
Sunday Worship
Pentecost Sunday is a day to celebrate the breath and fire of the Spirit that lives and moves and acts among God’s people. This Spirit of liberation and freedom poses an inevitable challenge to a spirit of domination so present in the world. The Spirit gives us a new identity, one infused by God’s desire for the world.                                                                                    

Our scripture lessons for today are Isaiah 6:1-9a, 1 Corinthians 12:1-6, and Acts 2:1-21. The Rev. Michele Beadle will be preaching and leading worship this morning. The title of her sermon is, “The Language of Fire.” The Spirit will be singing.
Adult Education
Let’s Talk               9:30 – 10:15 a.m. in the North Room
  Healthy Lives and Conversations
June 9         Ann McGreevy will speak on Mindfulness this Sunday
Strengthen the Church Offering
June 9
The Strengthen the Church offering supports the expansion of ministry and growth of UCC local congregations. Your support of this offering will help the UCC fulfill on its commitment to creating a just world for all by investing in new ministries and practices that meet the emerging needs of local communities.                                                                                                 

As God calls our congregations to be the church in new ways, your generosity will plant new churches, awaken new ideas in existing churches and develop the spiritual life in our youth and young adults. This offering helps support costs for the UCC National Youth Event which our youth have attended for many years                                                                                               

ERUCC will receive this offering on June 9. There is an envelope in your envelope packs and envelopes will be available in the bulletin on that Sunday as well.
The church picnic will be Sunday June 9. from 1:00 PM to ? at Ballenger Creek Park Pavilion 2. Bring place settings and drinks for your family along with a side dish or dessert to share. Children may want to bring a bathing suit or change of clothes as there may be water games.
Don't forget to bring something for white elephant bingo. Sign up so we can plan accordingly.
Children’s Summer Musical
 It's that time of year again. Time for our summer musical rehearsals! We hope many of you children and youth will join us.  Blast off on an intergalactic adventure as we board the space shuttle Discovery and travel through space where we will discover all the indescribable things in creation that God has created. We will have help from various stars, planets, and even a robot as we are led by the wise and patient Flight Commander, Mr. Houston.
We will begin rehearsing on Sunday, June 23 from 9:30-10:15 in the Trinity Chapel high school classroom. Rehearsals will continue through the summer with the production in late August/early September. A complete schedule will be shared with everyone during the first rehearsal. Participation is open to anyone who is willing to lend a hand and we hope you will join us! These musicals help raise money for several of the youth programs and mission trips throughout the upcoming year. We are looking for older youth to help with important pieces of the production as well including assisting with directing, choreography, lights, sets, sound, and costumes. 
There are also parts for those who want to sing in the chorus, parts for those who want to act, parts for those who want to dance, and parts for those who want to be involved, but not on stage. If you have any questions, or if you are an adult and are interested in helping with this effort, please contact Tricia Coffey ( tntcoffey@comcast.net or 301-455-8720). We look forward to having you join us–it’s going to be great fun!!
The Western Maryland Coalition of RISE (Resources for Immigrant Support and Empowerment) is holding a forum at ERUCC on Saturday, June 8th from 4-6 on the topic of "Steering Away from 287g." This program, since 2008,  has deputized local law enforcement as ICE agents. 

Community members will share their first hand testimony of how this program has affected them and their families.  Snacks will be provided and the event will be bilingual.
Spring Foyer Duty
Foyer Volunteers sit in the foyer during the 10:30 worship service to welcome late comers, direct visitors and redirect anyone who is not entering for the worship service. The goal of having foyer volunteers is to provide a welcoming atmosphere while maintaining a safe and secure environment.

HELP SHARE THE MESSAGE OF ERUCC’S RADICAL HOSPITALITY at Frederick Pride. Frederick Pride is celebrating its 8th year in 2019!

This year’s festival takes place Saturday, June 22, 2019, once again at Carroll Creek Linear Park in beautiful, historic Downtown Frederick.

ERUCC will have a table with information about the church. BUT the best information to share is about the spirit of our congregation and our people. 

Please contact the church office ( erucc@erucc.org ), Pastor Daniel ( bkdaniel@erucc.org ), or Tyler York ( tylerlyork@gmail.com ) if you are interested in helping. We’ll need people to set up the table between 10 and 11. People to host the table from 10:30 – 6:30 and then to clean things up and get stuff back to the church.
Vacation Bible School 2019
August 5-10
9 am to Noon in Trinity Chapel. 
4 years old through 6 th grade.
$25 Registration fee until June 1        
$30 Registration fee until end of June
$35 Registration fee until end of July
Click HERE for the Registration Form
Just a reminder that you're receiving this email because you have expressed an interest in ERUCC. Don't forget to add bkdaniel@erucc.org to your address book so we'll be sure to land in your inbox!
Evangelical Reformed United Church of Christ
15 West Church Street
Frederick, MD 21701