Weekly E-News
Monday, October 30, 2017
Everyone is invited to celebrate the abundance of our blessings at the annual Tables of Thanksgiving after worship this Sunday, November 5. The Board of Membership & Fellowship will provide the turkey, trimmings, dessert, and utensils. Please bring a "table-ready" side-dish to serve 8!
Worship Next Sunday, November 5:
Tim will begin his Sermon Series on 'Spending the Holidays with the First Family' on All Saints' Sunday with "Once Upon a Time: Stories That Shape Us."
Worship Last Sunday, October 29:

Adam Barth preached "Sola Fide?" on Reformation Sunday. Listen to the sermon here!

To subscribe to our podcast,  click here   - the sermons will automatically download to your device!
New Weekday Study - Wednesdays at Noon Beginning November 1

Tim Tutt will lead a conversation every Wednesday in the parlor about the book, “The Virtue in the Vice: Finding Seven Lively Virtues in the Seven Deadly Sins,” by Robin Myers. Myers is the pastor of Mayflower Congregational United Church of Christ in Oklahoma City. In the book, Myers explores the connection between virtues and vices. For example, emulation and envy are related he says. Participants may order the book ahead of time or just show up to join the conversation.

  • Nov 1 - Intro & Worthiness/Pride
  • Nov 8 - Emulation/Envy
  • Nov 15 - Righteous Indignation/Anger
  • Nov 22 - No Study
  • Nov 29 - Holy Eros/Lust
  • Dec 6 - Communion/Gluttony
  • Dec 13 - Wanting Wisely/Greed
  • Dec 20 - Contentment/Sloth & Conclusion
Names to Include for All Saints' Remembrance

All Saints’ Sunday is Sunday, November 5. As part of our worship service, we will name and remember those who have died since November 1, 2016. If you have names of people who have died in the past year to include in our remembrance, please pass along those names to Samantha ( samantha@westmorelanducc.org ) by noon on Wednesday, November 1.
Learn About the Upcoming Vote to Include Gender Identity in
Our Open & Affirming Statement

The Governance Council has unanimously voted to propose a change to our Open and Affirming
Statement. The Statement, approved in 1999, says, “We are an open church, affirming the dignity and worth of every person as created in the image of God, welcoming into our fellowship people of all ages, races, abilities and sexual orientation who acknowledge Christ as our foundation and who seek to embody the mind and spirit of Jesus.” The proposal is to change that sentence to read, “…welcoming into our fellowship people of all ages, races, abilities, sexual orientation, and gender identity who acknowledge…”  

The Governance Council has set a congregational vote to take place at the Congregational Meeting on Sunday, November 19, on this change. In preparation for this vote, Tim Tutt will lead three informational sessions about the proposal: Sunday, November 5 at 9:00 am; Monday, November 6 at noon; Thursday, November 9 at 7:00 pm. Church members are encouraged to come to whichever session works for their schedule.
Westmoreland's StillReading Book Group Meets Sunday, November 5

Westmoreland’s "StillReading” book group will meet on Sunday, November 5 from 4:30 to 6:00 pm in the Parlor to discuss “The Secret Scripture” by Sebastian Barry. This book combines two narratives, both focused on religious and political upheavals in Ireland during the 1920s-30s: Roseanne McNulty recounts her 100-year life spent mostly as a patient in a mental hospital, while chief psychiatrist Dr. Grene investigates how she came to be confined. The novel was awarded the Costa Award and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, and was a finalist for the Man Booker Prize. Please join us for discussion and snacks!
Rally to Save the Moses Cemetery
Sunday, November 12, 1:30 to 3:30 pm
Macedonia Baptist Church, 5119 River Road, Bethesda

From the late 1800s until the 1950s the area near the intersection of River Road and Westbard Avenue in Bethesda was home to a primarily African American community that was founded by freed slaves. Tax records from 1911 indicate that a parcel of land was used as the Moses Cemetery, a burial place for African American residents. Records of the cemetery disappear about 1959. Members of Macedonia Baptist Church on River Road and other descendants of persons buried there say that the Westwood Tower on Westbard Avenue was built over the cemetery in 1966. That parcel of land is now open for study as plans to redevelop Westbard are being proposed.

A parking garage is proposed on top of the old cemetery. Members of Macedonia Baptist Church, Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ), River Road Unitarian Church, and others are asking that the location of the cemetery be commemorated with historical markers and a museum. The land owners, the Housing Opportunities Commission, County planners, church members and others are engaged in ongoing conversations about this effort.

Macedonia Church is hosting a rally on November 12 to call attention to this effort. You are invited to take part.
Sabbatical Plans for 2018
 
Rev. Tim Tutt, our Senior Minister, will be on sabbatical from January 1 through April 1, 2018. Tim had planned to take his sabbatical this fall but deferred that due to staff changes.
 
Rev. Tom Lenhart has agreed to serve as our Sabbatical Minister. Tom and his wife Lynn were active members here starting in 1978 up until Tom left his work as a lawyer to attend Harvard Divinity School from 2002 to 2005. Tom was ordained in 2005, then served as the minister at First Congregational Church of Chappaqua, NY. After retiring from that role, Tom served as the interim pastor at Plymouth Congregational Church in Brooklyn. Tom will be our Sabbatical Minister from January 3 through Easter Sunday, April 1, 2018. We look forward to welcoming Tom and Lynn back “home” to Westmoreland.
 
During his sabbatical, Tim will take two classes in his Doctorate of Ministry program and will work on his D. Min. Project. His project is tentatively entitled “Preaching Peace.” He will examine and compare sermons preached at Westmoreland during times of war in the 20th Century. He will also use the sabbatical time to worship with other congregations, especially Macedonia Baptist Church, the historically African American church in River Road in Bethesda.
 
We look forward to having Rev. Lenhart with us and are fortunate to have our talented staff in place during the sabbatical time. Thanks to Adam, Alec, Farid, Janet, Pat, Martell, and Samantha.
View the Photos from the All-Church Retreat

Click here and here to view the two sets of photos taken by Alton Frye of the All-Church Retreat! Thank you, Alton, for capturing this wonderful weekend!
Giving to Westmoreland & A Letter from Geoff Lilja, Stewardship Chair
Westmoreland Friends,

On October 15, we closed our service with the hymn, “We cannot own the Sunlit Sky,” by Ruth Rock. The words are a beautiful call to action – of how we are God’s instruments and how our blessings can touch others and give purpose to our lives:

 God calls humanity to wake, to join in common labor,
 that all may have abundant life in oneness with their neighbor
That new world beckons from afar, invites of shared endeavors,
that all may have abundant life and peace endure forever.

This month, we are on a ‘Journey to Generosity,’ as we prepare to pledge our planned 2018 contributions to Westmoreland – our spiritual home. As of this weekend, we have received 12 pledges in the amount of $70,000. Our goal of $575,000 will reduce our continuing reliance on the use of funds from our Permanent Endowment to fund our programs.

Westmoreland has always had a positive impact, and it can continue to be a transformative force in your life and in the lives of Washingtonians through your gifts. To those who have made and continue to make an annual contribution, we thank you. Would you be able to increase your financial gift this coming year? If you have not made an annual pledge in the past, please consider whether a regular gift would be
possible, so that we may better plan for 2018.

Remember as you fill out your pledge card or pledge online that God works through us to accomplish positive change and, together as a congregation, we can feed each other spiritually and be a difference for good.

Respectfully,
Geoffrey Lilja
  
Gifts to support the ongoing life of our church -- music and worship, spiritual formation programs, fellowship events, staff salaries, and building maintenance. 

Gifts to our four-year campaign to build a new entrance, add a new elevator, add a gender neutral restroom, and an updated kitchen. 

The five UCC offerings (plus our own outreach offering) that go across the country and around the world to meet needs.
 
Children's Collection
Items collect by our children in worship each Sunday to give to local helping groups.
Photo Directory Update

Due to numerous errors found in the roster portion of the new photo directory, it is going to be reprinted. We will not be distributing any additional copies and we are asking that those of you who already picked them up please return them and you will receive a corrected copy. These can be returned on Sundays in the narthex or to the office during the week. Thanks for your cooperation and we apologize for the inconvenience.
Volunteers Needed to Assist Refugees

The Westmoreland Refugee Support Group is working with the network of Montgomery County faith groups to assist refugees who now qualify to apply for Green Cards. We are seeking lawyers who are willing to assist applicants, ideally pro bono. Please contact Nancy Pielemeier at nancy.pielemeier@gmail.com or 202-577-6389 if you can help in this way.
The church's Office Hours are:
Mondays & Tuesdays, 10 am - 5 pm
Wednesdays, 12 - 3
Thursdays & Fridays 10 - 5 
Leaders and Helpers Needed to Teach Church School
Every week, we need one leader and one helper to teach Church School for the preschool class, the K - 2nd grade class, and the 3rd - 5th grade class. Click on the link below for more information or to sign up!
Ushers Needed
The Usher Service (US) here at Westmoreland is looking for folks who are willing to usher a few Sundays a year. We’ll train you! If interested, email Greg Perla, the Usher Coordinator, at greg.perla@yahoo.com. Please join US!
Donate Flowers for Worship
Flowers add beauty and meaning to our Sunday worship service. Individuals or families may sign up for a date to donate with a dedication in the worship bulletin. Please contact the Flower Chairman, Judy Fogt by phone (301-229-1183) or email (judyfogt@gmail.com) and she will give you the details. And THANK YOU!
Sign Up to Host Coffee Hour
Coffee Hour is a time to welcome guests and to strengthen relationships within our church community. This ministry is vital to the life, spirit, and growth of our church. Beverages (coffee, tea, water, juice/lemonade) and tableware are provided by Westmoreland. Food is a welcome addition and is provided by Coffee Hour Host(s). Please sign up to host coffee hour (once per year is recommended) with your family or pair-up with another member of the church.