T O U C H S T O N E  -  A  M i d W e e k  B u l l e t i n

   Sixth Sunday After Epiphany    
February 17, 2019    
Now Meeting at 500 E. Colorado Blvd.
Sunday Worship Service: 11:30 am, Chapel

Our Core Values: 
Spiritual Growth. Welcome. Justice-seeking


We will be serving the meal and laying out the cots at the Bad Weather Shelter this Sunday evening Feb. 17th.
Contact Joey Bland to help out.

Reflection for Worship. . .
Jeremiah 17:5-10

Disclaimer: Jeremiah is not the touchy-feely Bible book or prophet. As one person summed up his message from God: "I will punish; I will restore." And in between, woe is every nation and individual who rejects God and "wontonly pursues wickedness."

So then, having been duly warned, let's think for a moment about the time that Jeremiah lived. He began his public ministry in 627 B.C. and he was a prophet for over 40 years. We know more about him and his time of prophecy than any other prophet in the Bible. And during his time in the public eye they saw the downfall of the Assyrian Empire to the north, the death of the great Reformer King Josiah in the southern part of Israel, and the destruction of the Jews by the Babylonians who dragged many of their elite off to captivity in Babylon - the worst crisis in their history after becoming a Chosen People of God. As you can imagine, everyone was trying to make sense of this tumultuous time in their history. Jeremiah, known as the woeful complainer, who bemoaned the lack of faithfulness he saw in his people as well as the downfall of their way of life. And yet. Deep, deep, deep, deep, deep beneath his complaining and damning of them and their lack of faith, he offered a ray of hope. After all the understandable punishment that Jeremiah felt the people deserved, he also believed and preached about a God who would ultimately restore God's people. Jeremiah had a style that said you do it wrong and you will be punished. Not a whole lot of grace coming at them from this one. As a result Jeremiah is not often quoted or revered. He does have a beautiful set of verses in chapter 31 when he says that eventually...
...this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says God: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, "Know God," for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says God; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.
In today's reading of the 17th chapter of Jeremiah he also gives us a vision of what it looks like to trust in God. We shall be like the tree planted by water, sending out roots by the stream; and we shall not fear when heat comes, and our leaves shall stay green...
I'm not sure if it is much comfort for those of us today who seek to follow God. Does his style work for you? Does it inspire you to be your best and most faithful self?
We'll explore Jeremiah's perspective and theme in worship on Sunday. See you there!!
-Rev. Marlene W. Pomeroy
Also on Sunday:

Church School  
will be led by Neva Orr/Roberta White this Sunday in our main office space on the 3rd floor - room 302 at the top of the stairs.  
Membership Ministry
will meet from 9:30-10:25 in the Co-Pastors' office on the 3rd floor.
Worship Ministry  
will meet from 12:40-1:45 in the Youth Lounge on the 2nd floor - follow Pastor Marlene after you grab a cup of coffee in the Fellowship Hall.
Bad Weather Shelter Meal  
prep and serving from 6-9:30 p.m. See article below.
Monday Feb. 18th is a Federal Holiday.  
The FUMC Church and our FCC offices will be closed.
Tues. Feb. 19th Council  
will meet at 6:45 in our Main Office on the 3rd floor.
Looking Ahead: 
Saturday Feb. 16th is our next date to help unpack and stock the shelves at the Friends in Deed Food Pantry. Lu Nguyen (formerly Burd) is coordinating the list of folks. Please speak with her if you can attend from 9-11 a.m. We need 6-10 children and adults.

That evening the Lamplighter Group is attending the San Gabriel Lunar Celebration. See details below.

On Sunday Feb. 17th is our next Bad Weather Shelter date. Please sign up with Joey Bland if you can help out with setting up cots and preparing and serving food that evening. See article below.
Our Winter Business meeting will be held after worship on  Sunday Feb. 24th starting at 12:30. Please plan to bring potluck food to drop off to the Fellowship Hall before worship so that Sallie can have the food ready for us.

Worship Leaders 
Rev. Marlene W. Pomeroy 
Rev. John H. Pomeroy
Brian Brandenburg
Sandy Biehler
Robert Rinck
Kevin Cordova-Brookey

Pianist & Music Director 
Connie Washburn

Church School Teaachers
Combined class led by Neva Orr/Roberta White upstairs in Room 302. 
Church Nursery (for infants - K)
Jackie Rodriguez and Lachlan Ashenmiller         
This week everyone comes to the Chapel at 11:30 a.m. and stays through the Children's  Time and then heads to the nursery with caregivers and parents.   

Nina Kung   
Visit us at:  uccpasadena.org

Sermon Podcast
D id you miss a worship service and want to hear the sermon? Please visit uccpasadena.org and select 'podcasts' from the menu on top of the home page or click below

Office Hours
  Mon. - Thurs.
9 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Lunch Hours
12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.  
Office is closed on
Presidents' Day Feb. 18th and Feb. 19th 
Tel. # 626.795.0696
Fax. # 626.795.0698

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In this Edition . . .
-Confirmation Class dates are being arranged  
-Budget Forum
-Winter Business Meeting 
-Lenten Activities 
-Lamplighters New Year Celebration 
-A Thank You from Friends In Deed  
-Bad Weather Shelter for February    
-Pictures of FUMC/FCC Combined Worship Service Jan. 17th and Randy VanDeventer's Ordination Service 
Confirmation Class
The next class is Saturday March 9th from 3-4:15 for confirmands and their sponsors.

Budget Forum Report
Last Sunday 30 persons stayed after worship in the Fellowship Hall and discussed our draft budget for 2019. Moderator Randy Vandeventer and Vice-Moderator Krysty Leckrone explained the key points and members shared their support and raised a few questions. The Budget Committee and Church Council are looking with care at what guidance they wish to offer in receiving proposals and reviewing requests to allocate the proposed $100,000 in outreach monies in the budget. We ask that members join us on Sunday February 24th after worship for our Winter Business Meeting, where we will receive reports and vote on the 2019 Budget. Please contact Krysty Leckrone or Randy Vandeventer if you have questions about the 2019 Budget before the 24th. Budget Committee is grateful to our Bookkeeper Celina McHugh and to Elizabeth Lanski for preparing an accurate balance sheet and summary for us to review.
Winter Business Meeting
On Sunday February 24th after worship we will gather in the Fellowship Hall to listen to reports from Council and staff, and vote on the proposed 2019 Budget. We will have a light lunch available for persons after worship in the Chapel - all are welcome to attend, though only members are qualified to vote on the business of the church. We expect to begin at 12:45PM and conclude at 1:45PM on that day.

Pastor Marlene Attended a Church and Ministry Training

Several of our church members have served the wider UCC church over the years. Randy VanDeventer is currently serving on the Worship Planning Committee for the Annual Gathering Committee and will be leading the worship this June at Chapman University. Stacy Thomas is currently serving as the Vice Moderator of the Central Association. Pastor Marlene is currently serving her 10th year as a member of the Church and Ministry Committee Section A in the Central Association- the committee that oversees folks who come through to transfer their ordination standing to the UCC or who pursue ordination as a Member in Discernment over a period of years. Marlene attended a 2 day training last weekend with 40 other pastors and lay members from our wider SCNC folks to learn about the new Manual on Ministry which has just been published by our national denomination. Several changes have taken place for the oversight of ordained and lay authorized ministers. If you would like to learn more, just ask Marlene. The hope is for us to strengthen our leaders for the future. Currently we have many ordained clergy who are members of our local church who are ordained in the UCC; they work as pastors , therapists and chaplains in the Southern California region. They are: Revs. Carolyn Olney, Stacy Thomas, Randy VanDeventer, Willetta Helene, Anne Cohen, Leo Lynch, Andy Schwiebert and Jake & Marlene Pomeroy.


2019 Women's Retreat Planned For April 26-28th

This year we are having our Women's Retreat in Joshua Tree. It will be a time of respite and community building for any FCC women. We have a house rented just a mile from the town center and near the Joshua Tree National Park. We have a private room as well as several dorm style beds to keep the cost down. The cost is about $100 per person for two nights. We will cook most of our food and that cost will be separate. Please speak with Pastor Marlene is you wish to join us!! Please plan on giving Marlene a non-refundable $50 deposit to save your spot. 


Lenten Activities & Dates
Pastor Marlene will be putting together a Lenten Reflection Booklet this year. If anyone is interested in writing a brief reflection for the booklet, please let her know at fccrevs@yahoo.com. Writers are invited to gather at the Co-Pastors' house on Saturday Feb. 23rd to help in your writing. We will gather together to pray, talk about the themes for our reflections, do some Soul Collage work with the Rev. Anne Cohen, and hopefully get the juices flowing for your reflections. The booklet will be available for anyone to use during the 40 days of Lent. 
Shrove Tuesday is March 5th and we are invited to join FUMC in their Shrove celebration which takes place outside on the lawn with a jazz band, painting and pancakes. Please let Pastor Marlene know if you would like to help cook with the FUMC Men's Group. And please plan to join everyone for the festivities. More details will be forthcoming.
Ash Wednesday will take place at the La Canada Congregational Church with newly ordained Rev. Randy VanDeventer as the preacher for the evening. This is a Area UCC Ash Wednesday Service with our 6 area UCC churches. We will gather at 6:00 for a meal in their Fellowship Hall, followed by a brief combined choir practice (music is forthcoming) and then a 7 p.m. service in their sanctuary. All are invited and welcome to attend. The meal is being catered by the La Canada church. 
Palm Sunday is April 14th and our Membership Ministry (Lu, Kevin, Kim, Tara and Pastor Marlene) have planned another fun day in the park after worship. We are headed back to Grant Park, located just 1 mile east of us. We have the overhang and grassy area reserved for us from 12:30-4:30. Plan to come and enjoy an afternoon together. The day will include our Annual Easter Egg Hunt.  
Maundy Thursday is April 18th and we will have a supper and worship this evening. Details TBA.
Easter Worship will be held in the Chapel on April 21st at 11:30.  
Lamplighters Lunar New Year Celebration
at the San Gabriel Mission Playhouse

The City of San Gabriel presents San Gabriel Lunar New Year Festival
Saturday February 16th at 11:00am to 8:00pm
320 S Mission Dr 
San Gabriel, CA 91776
Visit the Mission District for delicious food trucks, vendor booths, fun kids' activities, a chalk art contest, and free live entertainment.
During the festival, join us inside the Playhouse for a free performance from the Alan Chan Jazz Moo-sic Group at 3:00pm!
For more information, please contact San Gabriel's Community Services Department       (626) 308-2875 or visit sglunarnewyear.org
RSVP to Regina at (626)576-2718 or Cindy at dolphinlover827@yahoo.com

My Refuge House Fund-Raiser in South Pasadena - Reduced Price Tickets
We are offering reduced price tickets for this event - Joey Bland's Improvised Shakespeare Company is performing as a fund-raiser for My Refuge House. Read more about this fantastic non-profit at http://www.myrefugehouse.org/ Church member Heather Bland is their CEO.
The date is Saturday March 16th at the Calvary Presbyterian Church in South Pasadena. Early bird tickets are $35/$3 fee till Feb. 18th. Then tickets will be $45/$3 fee. Please let Pastor Marlene or Jake know ASAP if you would like tickets. Thanks to the generosity of the Appley Foundation we are able to supplement tickets for FCC folks. We will supplement by $20 per ticket. Send an email to fccrevs@yahoo.com if you would like to take advantage of this event and join other FCC church folks that night.
Join us for a night full of enjoyment and laughter with the  The Improvised Shakespeare Company*. This marks the third Much Ado event! Guests will learn about the transformational work of My Refuge House and ways to invest in the hope and resilience of girls and families impacted by commercial sexual exploitation and abuse, all while experiencing an evening of creativity and joy.
*Don't miss the chance to see the ISC perform a once in a lifetime show!
**My Refuge House is a registered IRS 501(c)(3) organization. A portion of your ticket purchase and 100% of your donation is tax-deductible.    
Altar Flowers
flowers for Bea
There are lots of open Sundays available for altar flower donations for 2019. Sign up to remember/honor someone or event! The Flower Chart is located by the entrance in FUMC Chapel or you can contact Nina at the Church Office 626.795.0696 or email her at fccmonina@gmail.com

A picture taken of our choir and staff at our final worship service at 464 E. Walnut St. Pasadena

Bad Weather Shelter Meal
Our first date to help at the shelter was cancelled since the shelter was not activated by either cold temperatures or rain that night.  Our next date to volunteer is Sunday Feb. 17th. Please plan to arrive at 5:30. Joey Bland is collecting names for this evening - please email him at joeybland@yahoo.com to sign up to help.  
 Here are those who have signed up:
1. Josh Ashenmiller
2. Amon Ashenmiller
3. Lachlan Ashenmiller
4. Joey Bland
5. Grace Rinck
6. Bob Rinck
7. John Escherich
8. Andy Speakman
9. Alice Dryden
10. Robert Burnham
11. Lu Burd
12. Judy Burd
13. Marlene or Jake Pomeroy
Remember the BWS is weather-activated, so we always need to wait and hear whether or not the shelter will be opened on our assigned night. We normally hear either Friday afternoon or Saturday morning whether or not we are a go! Thanks for your patience in helping us help others.

Randy's Ordination
 FCC Moderator and friend Randy Vandeventer was ordained to the Ministry of Word and Sacrament!  The worship service took place at the La Canada Congregational Church (UCC) and members, friends and family were in attendance.  After worship our Membership Ministry coordinated a lovely Italian themed supper as a reception - many thanks to all who helped set up and clean up for that important kinship time together.  Our congratulations to Randy and Meagan on this new chapter in their journey with us and in the church!