This Week – September 28, 2017


We open ourselves to God’s Spirit in worship, prayer and study, holding each other
in community and encouraging one another to grow in the Spirit.
We reach out in generosity and compassion to the people around us.

Sunday, October 1, 2017
9:15 a.m. Adult Choir Rehearsal
10:15 a.m. Worship/Communion
VEAP Food Shelf Sunday

Scripture: Exodus 20: 1-20, Psalm 19
Sermon: “Don’t Do It”
Serving Our Church This Sunday:
Liturgist: Chris Solso
Greeters: The Kerr Family

petsBlessing of the Animals

Join us on Sunday, October 8th for our Annual Blessing of the Animals.

• keep all small pets in safe travel containers
• keep all dogs/cats on leashes
• make sure all animals are fully vaccinated
• bring treats for your own pet (we’ll provide water)
• pets who prefer to be away from other animals should be left at home

Sign-up in the narthex if you’d like to contribute treats for the humans following worship.

boilerChimney and Boiler Replacement
We passed the hazardous materials test and do not need to remove any dangerous materials (asbestos) from the old boiler.

The masonry firm has been here and removed and replaced the chimney. The new boiler has been ordered and the estimate is 3-4 weeks before it arrives and installation can begin. So far, so outstandingly good!

House of Charity
We are grateful to those who continually volunteer their time at the House of Charity. Thank you to Mark & Susan Brauer, Bob Lucas & Heidi Schellhas, and Peggy Loving who will be representing Chapel Hills on Saturday, October 7th.

Neighbors in Need Offering
We will receive the Neighbors in Need offering on Sunday, October 15th. One-third of this offering supports the Council for American Indian Ministry (CAIM) and two-thirds is administered by Justice and Witness Ministries to support a variety of justice initiatives, advocacy efforts, and direct service projects through grants. Make checks payable to Chapel Hills and note “Neighbors in Need” on the memo line.

Please consider signing-up to greet on a Sunday morning. Our fellowship time after worship is an important part of our ministry. Please call or email the church office if you are interested in taking a turn.

natureNature: A Walking Play – Friday through Sunday, October 6-8
The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum presents Nature: A Walking Play, the mythic telling of Emerson and Thoreau’s mutual love affair with the natural world.

Laura Feierabend is in the community chorus, for the second year, which is basically a singing usher. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Tickets are available online at or by calling 952-443-1400.

“Wisdom for the Way
Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Just like the Constitution of the United States, lots of people swear by the Ten Commandments but few have read and studied it or them deeply or paid them much mindful attention. And just because they were written on a stone doesn’t mean they should feel like a stone around your neck. Jesus said that the Sabbath was made for us and we were not created for the Sabbath. This tablet, this list of “do nots” is a gift so we might be better humans and treat each other with compassion.

Instead, they often get treated as if they were written as hand, feet and heart cuffs intended to restrict and adjure. Perhaps they are more about a way for us to love together and not a rule book to use as a hammer.

The idea that things are made for us and not we for them is a way to think of our buildings.  Today is Access Sunday.  Winston Churchill once said, “We shape our buildings, thereafter they shape us.”  That’s an interesting notion—the idea that buildings create us. If they are not welcoming then we inhabit that inhospitality and bring its philosophy into our own beings.  Our interactions do get shaped by the flow and levels and decoration of our buildings, and our buildings learn from us what our needs are.  Buildings may become their best when we are willing to refine them and teach them what we have learned.

Our church buildings are gifts from the past and they are often made of stone, which makes them difficult to adapt. But they were made for us and intended to be tools for mission, as the church was built for mission. The United Church of Christ Church Building and Loan Fund (CB&LF) is an affiliated ministry of our denomination, and it is the oldest church building and loan fund in the U.S., going back to 1853. It is their mission to lend financial and advisory support for how we interact with our buildings.  Through their loan programs, congregations can get low-cost loans to make their buildings accessible. CB&LF is also available to help churches think through a vision for how to use and adapt their property.

Rev. Jamesetta Ferguson, pastor at St. Peter’s United Church of Christ, in Louisville, Kentucky, reached out to the Building and Loan Fund for help. Her church needed extensive rehabilitation and it sat across from a 760-unit public housing complex.  In conversation with the Fund, the congregation discerned a larger plan, a greater vision for its ministry and missional use for its property.  In addition to rehabilitating their building, St. Peter’s built a two-story retail and office building. This property will provide the church with rental income and space to offer ministries and social services to the community. 70% of this 7,000,000 dollar project was funded by the CB&LF. Our property and buildings are gifts to us. We are not owned by them.  Our buildings can learn from us.

Book Club – Mark Your Calendar
Our next Book Club will be on Sunday, October 15th – following worship. We selected A Study Guide for the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation by the Stillspeaking Writers’ Group (Alan purchased copies with memorial money received in his mother’s memory… just ask him for a copy).

Looking ahead, we’ll be reading:
November: Canoeing with the Cree by Eric Sevareid
December: Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake by Anna Quindlen

Looking Ahead
September 28 Londonderry Townhomes Association Annual Meeting
September 30 Cooks of Chapel Hills (Root Vegetables) – 6:00 p.m.
October 2 Board of Deacon’s Meeting – 5:30 p.m.
October 3 Tai Chi – 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
October 4 Tai Chi – 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
NO Adult Choir Rehearsal
October 7 House of Charity
October 8 Blessing of the Animals
Choir – Off
October 10 Tai Chi – 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
October 11 Tai Chi – 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
Adult Choir Rehearsal – 7:30 p.m.
October 15 Neighbors in Need Offering
Book Club – Following Worship
October 17 Tai Chi – 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
October 18 Tai Chi – 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
Adult Choir Rehearsal – 7:30 p.m.
October 24 Tai Chi – 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
October 25 Tai Chi – 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
Adult Choir Rehearsal – 7:30 p.m.

Worship This Sunday
Scripture: Exodus 20: 1-20Psalm 19
Sermon: “Don’t Do It”

May the strength of God guide us, the Power of God preserve us, the wisdom of God instruct us, the Spirit of God be within us, this day and evermore. Amen.