UPC Communicator
October 30,  2018

Prayers in the Air
Many of you may be familiar with Prayer flags that are hung on mountain tops, among the trees or even in your back yard. The tradition is to write prayers on pieces of fabric and display them to broadcast blessings and prayers. It's believed that each time the fabric is moved by air, it's as if the prayer is going out to help the world. Prayers are usually wishes for peace, compassion, and happiness for all beings.
As we enter this season of exploring this spiritual practice of gratitude I am inviting you to write or draw prayers or wishes for the world on the squares of cloth, to create your own prayer flag. As the flags are complete with your prayers we will hang them on the wires in our sanctuary.
Whether you see bright flags waving in the wind, sanctuaries or outside a church, these outward symbols reflect our inner yearnings. They are quiet reminders that the world contains more than the ephemera of daily life, the endless flow of worries and distractions. No matter where these fluttering pieces of cloth are tied, it's the same wind and the same spirit that stirs them, bearing witness and broadcasting blessings.
Look for the prayer flags in the welcome area next to the sanctuary this Sunday, November 4.

Thank you so much to those who pledged to the 2019 operating budget.  If you haven't had a chance to turn your card in, please mail your pledge to the church office or simply email Pastor Sheri the amount.  Thank you!
"Fall" into a Clean(er) Fridge
Greetings from your friendly Property Committee! With so many upcoming holiday events, it is time for a fall cleaning of the North Lounge refrigerator. Either the weekend of the 10th or 17th the Property Committee will be tossing/recycling expired items, combining condiments, removing frost build-up, etc. If you've left something in the fridge you'd like to take home, please do so! Labeled and unexpired items, of course, will be left alone. Thanks ya'll!
There will not be any LOGOS this week.
Holiday Cookie Sale
This popular annual event is scheduled for Saturday, December 8, starting at 9am. Please consider donating holiday-themed cookies and/or volunteering! Proceeds will benefit Family Promise. More information to come.
Maker to Market
Spread blessings around the world when you shop your values at Laramie's annual Ten Thousand Villages Fair Trade Holiday Sale on Friday, Nov. 9, from 4-8 pm, and Saturday, Nov. 10, from 9 am to 4 pm, at the First United Methodist Church, 1215 E. Gibbon.
Your holiday gifts and decorations can send children to school, create safe workplaces, and improve families' homes and health care.   The long-standing relationships built between Ten Thousand Villages and Third World artisan co-ops gives the artisans the opportunities, dignity and hope they need to achieve economic success.
Laramie's sale will include ornaments, jewelry, nativities, baskets, housewares, toys, coffee, chocolate, and many other beautiful handcrafted items!

If you are an ordained elder or deacon, your help in serving communion during our worship services would be greatly appreciated. Just click on the following link and then mark the date that will work for you. Thank you from The UPC Worship Committee.

elders and deacons
Church Contact Info
To contact the church staff click on a name below.

Rev. Sheri Fry        Rev. Sheri Fry

Clerk of Session      Carole Hertz

Church Office or 
Nikki Rogers           Nikki Rogers

Ministry                   Michelle Harris

Ministry                  Lorinda O'Hashi

Gratitude as Action with a small Challenge thrown in
I have come to understand that I do not need to feel grateful in order to be grateful. Unfortunately, too often in our society terms like "gratitude" and "love" come to be understood or perceived primarily as emotional experiences or responses. Also, from this perspective, if things seem to be going badly for us, it's difficult to be grateful.
A little back I had an epiphany of sorts on this subject. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine-she happens to be a recovering alcoholic in Alcoholics Anonymous-who told me in response to a comment I made about "feeling grateful", that gratitude was an action and something we practiced. I learned that it did not matter or depend on whether I was feeling grateful.
While it is perfectly appropriate and important to verbally express my gratitude to God or others, it means very little if I'm not showing or living it. I am also learning and experiencing that it is more meaningful and rewarding when I do something as an act of gratitude-or love-without expecting some kind of response or reward. I discovered the quote by Thomas Merton on gratitude, which I also found quite helpful: "Gratitude is more than a mental exercise, more than a formula of words. We cannot be satisfied to make a mental note of things which God has done for us and then perfunctorily thank God for favors received. To be grateful is to recognize the love of God in everything God has given us - and God has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of love, every moment of existence is grace, for it brings with us immense graces. Gratitude therefore takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder, and to praise of the goodness of God. For the grateful person knows that God is good, not by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes all the difference... Gratitude is therefore the heart of the Christian life."
So I think we could have fun with the ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE CHALLENGE!
In the 22 days leading up to Thanksgiving, I invite you to name the people, experiences, and gifts for which you're most thankful. Please post a new "I'm grateful/thankful for..." on UPC's Facebook page or weekly communicator or send to me at UpcLaramiePastor@gmail.com and I will post for you
Sometimes we all need a little reminder to count our blessings!
With gratitude for all of you ~ Pastor Sheri
Adult Education Opportunity: Sunday, November 4th
On November 4, please join us for a 10-week book study and discussion group. Using Jonathan L. Walton's new book "A Lens of Love -Reading the Bible in Its World For Our World."  Jonathan L. Walton is the Plummer Professor of Christian Morals at Harvard Divinity School.  
The book is an exploration of the Bible from the perspective of the most vulnerable and violated characters in scriptures. A Lens of Love is a book for Christians who seek to be rooted in faith while pursuing lives that are just, ethical and challenge inequity. We will be examining how the Bible approaches justice, compassion and love.
A further component of the class will include guest speakers from the University of Wyoming and the Laramie community discussing issues related to the reading material. 
Grab a cup of coffee and please join us in the Fireplace Lounge at 11:45 following the 2nd service.  A sign up for the books will be available this Sunday, Oct. 28th. 
UPC @ UW Men's Basketball 
Wednesday, Nov 14th 
Hope you can join us for Wyoming vs. Grambling on Wednesday night November 14 at 7:00pm!   Let's cheer the team on together for a fun night of Wyoming Cowboys Basketball!
Please contact Nikki Rogers at upclaramie@gmail OR Rev. Sheri Fry at UPCLaramiePastor@gmail.com if you would like tickets to this game.
See you in the stadium!
Pastor Sheri
November Care Cart: Heifer International
Following the Sunday worship services, you will be able to purchase all or parts of a wide variety of critters and services.  These sales support the sustainable development efforts of Heifer International that was founded to meet the needs of displaced people following WWII.  Their efforts are directed to ending hunger and poverty while protecting the earth and empowering women.  Through livestock training and passing on the original gift, Heifer has helped 15.5 million families in more than 125 countries, including the USA, by helping individuals and/or communities improve their quality of life and achieve greater self-reliance.  Please consider being part of this grass-roots movement by purchasing all or parts of ducks, chickens, water buffaloes, oxen, pigs, bees, fish, cattle, rabbits, alpacas, camels, women's empowerment, energy efficient stoves, water resources, and frogs.
  • Mission wants to thank the people who attended the recent presentations by Pastor Ameer on the Tyre Church's initiatives in Lebanon and Tom and Jim on Presbyterian Disaster Relief. Additionally, special thanks to those who came forward to help with the meals and clean-up.
  • The Homecoming Hospitality Tables providing coffee, cider, and marshmallow cereal bars were again hits.  It was great watching some of the UPC family marching this year. Thanks to the non-marchers who came to help out.
  • The gift tags for Community Holidays should be available on November 18 to be returned to UPC, unwrapped, by December 12. Cookies and volunteers are needed on December 19 to help with distribution. 
  • Speaking of cookies, the Annual UPC Cookie Sale is scheduled for Saturday, December 8.  In addition to the cookies, Mission will again be opening the Serrv Free Trade Boutique featuring ornaments, nativities, scarves, jewelry baskets, chocolates, coffees, teas, hot sauces, and much more. Remaining items will be sold after services on the 9th and 16th.   Pecans will again be available at First Baptist Church.
  • Special thanks to the folks working on the Trunk and Treat event on the 28th for allowing Mission to invite the foster children being served by the Foster Closet of Laramie.  All costumes were terrific as well as the decorated trunks. Where did Pastor Sheri get that Spider?
  • The 2019 Mission Plan will be discussed at their meeting at 11:45 a.m. on November 4th .  Anyone with ideas is welcome to attend or send their ideas to Nancy Lick at sadielady2@charter.net .
The church office will be open Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:00-1:00.  Pastor Sheri will be in the church Monday-Thursday 9:30-4:30 on a regular basis.
Calendar of Events at UPC
For a full calendar of events click here         
UPC is pleased to offer online giving opportunities.  For more information click  on-line giving  
L iturgist  volunteers
Liturgists  are needed for upcoming services at UPC. 
If you are willing to step forward to do this, please click on the following link and mark the date/time that will work for you. Thank you from the Worship Committee.

Reports & Session Minutes
The UPC Session Minutes and reports can be read at our website at  upclaramie.org/minutes/

United Presbyterian


Christ's Love in Action