November 2019

Being Noticed

When I was growing up, I both wanted to be noticed and to be invisible. As a deeply introverted and shy child, my cheeks would flush and my eyes would get teary when someone or something called attention to me. And yet, I was also a creative child. I studied dance and sang in choirs. I was part of a theatre group and even wrote plays. I both wanted no one to notice me and everyone to notice me, all at the same time.
Being noticed is funny like that. We want to be seen, but once we are seen, we feel vulnerable. Being noticed is like realizing you’ve been standing in front of a two-way mirror with someone standing on the other side. Did they see me when I made that funny face just a minute ago? Exactly how ridiculous was I behaving? How long have you been standing there?
“Notice” comes from a Latin word that means “knowing” or “being known.” Notice isn’t simply giving attention to something; it is coming to understand it better. Notice is more than a glance; it is a gaze that knows.
Being noticed means to be seen for who we are, to be seen and known. I think this is part of why going unnoticed hurts so much. We wonder if anyone really sees us. Does anyone really know who we are or what’s important to us?
We live in a hyper-connected world filled with lonely people. We have more ways to reach out and keep in touch with others than ever before, but studies show half or more of adults (some studies say up to 75% of adults!) feel lonely and socially isolated on a regular basis. We are swimming in notifications, but we feel unknown. We are hyper-connected, but we are profoundly isolated. We maintain “friendships” from decades past via the Internet, but report to surveys and studies that we have very few (if any) friends.

The world moves so fast, bounding along from one trend to the next and one outrage to another. Our attention has become like the ball in a pinball machine – swatted back and forth by flippers. If we disconnect from it all, will we go down the drain? Is inattention to the trends the equivalent of a social game-over?
How, in the sea of all these notifications and viral trends will anyone see me? Where do I fit? Who will notice me?

Psalm 139 declares, “O Lord, you have searched me and known me.”
“Lord, you sought me out, and you noticed me.”
Thinking about this stops me in my tracks. I want to be known but am terrified of being known. In the presence of the God who created me and knows the words I’m going to speak before I am even able to spit them out, there is no more imposter syndrome, no more faking it until I make it, no more putting my best foot forward. Just like Hagar named God in the wilderness “the God who sees me,” I, too, know this truth in my bones. God notices, and God sees me.

Rev. Kathi
From the Chair of the Leadership Circle
Full Steam Ahead
The York Durham Heritage Railroad has some unique, themed train rides which are perfect for family outings.  On October 19 th I had the pleasure of riding the “Halloween Train” with my granddaughter, other family members and friends. The kids and some adults were dressed in costumes and the train was decked out with Halloween decorations. We all waited in anticipation for the whistle to blow and the train to pull out of the station for our return trip from Uxbridge to Goodwood. 
Here at EMUC we are moving ahead on our journey through November and anticipating the beginning of the Advent and Christmas seasons. The Annual Stewardship campaign has begun, and will end with the Stewardship Luncheon on November 24 th. The luncheon is hosted by the Leadership Circle and is our way of saying “Thank you” for your pledges of financial support for our church and for the Mission and Service Fund of the United Church of Canada.
Sunday, November 24 th, will also be the Hanging of the Greens, the time when we decorate the church in preparation for the beginning of Advent on Sunday, December 1 st. The Advent planning meeting took place on Sunday, October 20 th. Creative ideas for worship were discussed and decisions were made about the theme and dates for special events. As it has been for many years, included in our planning was the special service for those for whom loss and need are more acutely felt at Christmas time. 
At the Leadership Circle Meeting in October, Sandra Witterick, Leader of the Community Life focus circle, shared with us plans for the annual Christmas Hamper Donation Drive. It will again be coordinated by Sarah Phillips and is one way we help our neighbours who are in need. The Interfaith Justice and Peace group also met in October to plan for the Amnesty International “Write for Rights” campaign. The focus of the campaign is on justice for those who are prisoners of conscience or whose lives are endangered by speaking out against injustice.  This event is held in early December and seems appropriate for the time when we await the arrival of the “Prince of Peace”. 
I am sure I speak for us all when I say we are grateful for the detailed planning that goes into the activities for the Advent season. This planning allows us to more fully experience the wonder of the season with its messages of Hope, Joy, Peace and Love. A huge “THANK YOU” is due to all who are involved.
There will be many ways for you to participate in the activities which make the Advent season at EMUC one of meaningful fellowship and service to our larger community.  Please be on the lookout for further information on all the plans that are being made.
So…get on board! Fill out and return your Stewardship form. Be ready to volunteer for, and participate in, the Advent journey at EMUC. Let’s journey together in faith and love.
Dianne Hope
Chair, Leadership Circle
Thanks to:
  • Sylvia Arnold and the Worship Committee for decorating the church for Thanksgiving
  • Cathy Scattergood for arranging the Women for Women "Ghost Walk"
  • Loaves and Dishes for the preparation and sale of the turkey pies
  • Sue Ogilvie, Muriel Hamdani, Barb Jennings for making sandwiches and all who donated baking for the Ontario Male Chorus luncheon
  • David Leeder for planning and overseeing the Stewardship Program
  • Mary Anna Williams for organizing the "Big Dig" garden clean-up days and all those who helped her
  • Everyone who donated coats, boots etc. to the Deacon’s Cupboard Winter Outerwear Collection
  • All those who greet, host coffee or read scripture in the worship service each week
  • Sandy Hayes, Sue Ogilvie and the Member Development and Care Committee for preparing and overseeing the Memorial Banners

Stewardship 2019 - Sharing Our Gifts
Each year in November we focus on Stewardship at EMUC. Each of us is asked to prayerfully consider how we can use our time, talents, and finances to support the mission of our church.
It is also time to celebrate the generous support that the members and adherents of the congregation have given over the years. This is demonstrated by the fact that we have a higher percentage of PAR (Pre-authorized Remittance) than most other congregations. In addition, you have given generously of your time and talent in many capacities to further the ministry and programs of EMUC.
Our challenge going forward is that our givings have been decreasing, reflecting the decline in the numerical size of our congregation.
The good news is that the rate of decline is reducing, but the reality is that we are running a deficit budget and the number of givers is decreasing.
Basically we have a revenue shortage, not an expenditure problem.
To date we have covered the deficits from our operating surplus built up over the years. In four to five years these funds will be depleted and ongoing shortfalls will require funds from the land sale to be used. Some of these funds have already been spent on building projects such as the HVAC system and tower and roof repairs. Eventually, however, the congregation is not sustainable if we cannot cover annual budgeted expenses from annual revenues.
If we are to correct this problem, we need to increase the number of givers. The Congregational Growth Committee has been busy looking at the path forward.
Dave Leeder
Treasurer/Chair of Finance.(On behalf of Finance Committee)

Our Congregation’s PAR Program
  1. What is PAR? PAR means Pre-Authorized Remittance whereby your monthly donations to local operating expenses and Mission & Service are debited to your bank or credit card. If you have automatic withdrawals from your bank account to pay bills, taxes, or mortgage, then you already understand the PAR principle. 
  2. Why give using PAR? Besides being convenient, using PAR for your offering ensures regular monthly givings to help our church’s ministry even when you are away. You will be providing EMUC a dependable flow of contributions, which increases our overall financial stability. 
  3. Are there other donations that can be made using PAR? In addition to local operating expenses and Mission & Service you can donate to the Benevolent Fund and the Deacon’s Cupboard.
  4. When are payments charged to my account? Payments are processed on the 20th of each month.
  5. Can I change or stop my PAR donations if my circumstances change? You may amend or revoke your authorization at any time, subject to providing notice of 15 days to our Envelope Secretary, Mike Ogilvie.
  6. What if my bank or credit card information changes? You simply inform Mike Ogilvie of the change and he will update your information.
  7. How do I enroll in PAR? If you wish to take this step please contact Mike Ogilvie in person or through the church office.
Thank you for your generosity, commitment and participation in the life of EMUC
Life at EMUC
"Ghost Walk"
On October 18th, 18 women travelled back in time to Old Oakville to bravely take part in a ghost walk. Our walk was led by our own "ghost," Miss Ann Andrews, alias Tina Driscoll. Carrying lanterns through the dark streets, we learned some of the history of the earliest residents.  Did you know there was a secret tunnel running under a street between two buildings (a former hotel and a mayor's home)? Or that Stoneboats Restaurant got its name from the boats that used to raise stones from the bottom of Lake Ontario to be used to build homes? We also ran into other ghosts out walking or getting into some shenanigans. The weather was perfect for walking. Afterwards, we enjoyed hot chocolate, cider and cookies at the Oakville Historical Society's cottage.
Where Have All the Pews Gone?
Over the last month, EMUC has been disposing of some of the pews which we no longer use. Some pews are being kept for the Kids’ Zone but many have been repurposed and have new homes. Wondering where they went?...
Two went to Nora Douglas’s son who is turning them into shelves. Seven went to The Giving Place, an 8½ acre lavender farm in Mt Albert. They will provide resting areas throughout the property and seating in an outdoor chapel.
Blessing of the Animals
The service last Sunday, October 27 th was a little unusual. Four-legged friends were welcomed. The service focussed on appreciating all animals, pets, service animals, and our friends in the wild. There were numerous dogs and pictures of or symbols of cats or other pets unable to attend. All were well behaved with a few "woofs" heard from time to time. Worshippers were invited to the front with their animals to receive God’s blessing of the animals and the humans who share their lives. See pictures.
Mississauga Cluster Potluck Dinner at Erindale UC

On an unusually warm October 29 th  evening a small group from our church attended an inaugural gathering of "Meet our Neighbours." Representatives of seven local churches: Erindale, Erin Mills, Westminster, Christ First, Applewood, Eden and Sheridan United enjoyed a potluck meal and great conversation and information sharing. Thank you to Rev. Brenna Baker and Erindale United for hosting this evening. 
Upcoming Events
November 3 rd : "All Saints” Sunday
Dedication of Memorial Banners

November 9 th : Regional Council Meeting
Horseshoe Falls is meeting as a region again this year for its first Autumn Gathering. It will take place in Fonthill, Ontario and will be a chance to greet each other, get to know new friends and familiar faces. They will do business, make plans and decisions, and include worship and prayer. Rev. Kathi will be attending.

November 10 th at 12:30 pm: Striders hike Etobicoke Creek at Mill Park
Plan to enjoy the outdoor surroundings, as the EMUC Striders (Mindful Steps from Applewood UC have been invited) take a leisurely walk through the valley of the Etobicoke creek off Garnetwood and Fleetwood parks. Trails are paved with one set of stairs to climb. 
Bring a bagged lunch and meet in the Narthex. At noon we'll organize carpooling to travel to the Garnetwood Park (north side of Burnhamthorpe, East of Ponytrail). The hike will start at 12:30 and last about 1 hour 15 minutes.
November 10 th at 7pm: Peace Vesper Service
Invite your family and friends to enjoy a service of readings, singing, and music provided by Len Feldman, EMUC’s Music Director. Light refreshments follow the service.

November 16 th at 5:00 pm
Deacon’s Cupboard Christmas Dinner for the volunteers is being held at St. Thomas à Beckett Anglican Church.

November 22 nd : Women for Women
Women for Women will meet on Friday, November. 22 nd , at EMUC. Gather at 6:00 p.m. for dinner at 6:30. Our guest speaker is Anne Bokma, author and storyteller (and former EMUC attendee). Anne will be reading from her new book , My Year of Living Spiritually and discussing the book and various spiritual practices. Books will be available for sale as well. Cost is $10. Dessert donations are welcome. Please sign up on the list in the Narthex or respond to the email invitation by November 18 th . See Cathy Scattergood for further information.

November 24 th : Stewardship Luncheon hosted by the Leadership Circle
Hanging of the Greens follows the luncheon. Help decorate the church for Christmas and Advent.

November 28 th : Open Door Dinner at Square One
As in previous years, EMUC will again be hosting a dinner. There will be a sign-up sheet posted at the back of the church or you may call me.  
How you can help:
Prepare a casserole (e.g. Shepherd’s pie, Mac N’Cheese, Turkey/Chicken/Beef Pot Pie, vegetarian dish); slice up some fresh veggies (e.g. carrots, celery, peppers, cucumber) or toss a salad (e.g. green, coleslaw, Caesar, Greek). Bake some cookies/squares/bars. If cooking isn’t your forte, we need drinks (water/pop), rolls/buns, paper plates, napkins, and cutlery.
If you want to help other than cook, I will need four people. There will be about 50-60 people in attendance. We will meet at the church at 4:30 that day.
Thank you.
Lorraine Moore
Tel: 905-821-1741
First Time Ever!
City Wide United Church Advent Service
Sunday, December 1, 2019
At 6:30
Eden United Church
Mississauga, ON

The United Churches of Mississauga are holding
 a common candlelight service to begin Advent.
 Come and enjoy readings, special music and a mass choir!

Advent and Christmas 2019
 “Joy to the World”

Sunday Nov. 24   11:30 am. Hanging of the Greens
Sunday Dec. 1    10 am. Advent 1 – “Imagine…Hopeful Joy”
Sunday Dec. 8    10 am. Advent 2 – “Imagine…Peaceful Joy”
"Giving Sunday" (Previously White Gift - donations of food, gift cards or cash are collected for those in need in our community)  
Wednesday Dec. 11  2 pm. Christmas Tea (all are invited for Christmas tea & desserts, conversation & carol singing)
Sunday Dec. 15   10 am. Advent 3 – “Imagine…Unabashed Joy”
                                  7 pm. Candlelight Carol Service & Reception
Wednesday Dec. 18   7:00 pm. “Longest Night - Hope & Healing Service and Communion” – for those struggling with loss in this Xmas season
Sunday Dec. 22    10 am. Advent 4 – “Imagine…Loving Joy”
             Christmas Eve.
Tuesday Dec. 24   “Imagine…Incarnate Joy”
                                 6:30 pm. Family Service
                                 9 pm. Candlelight Communion Service
Sunday Dec. 29    10 am. “Imagine…Compassionate Joy”
A percentage of the gift cards we purchase through FUNDSCRIP is donated back to our church. This means that just by paying for your groceries and gas with gift cards, you can generate funds for our church on a monthly basis. You don’t have to change where you shop, what you buy and it doesn’t cost you anything extra.

Order forms for gift cards will be available the last Sunday of every month. The next order date is November 24th . Simply fill out the order form for the gift cards you would like to buy.