Weekly Update: August 1, 2017

one Word & Eucharist liturgy

Summer Sundays at 9:45 am

Green Season

Sometimes it is called “Time after Pentecost” or “Ordinary Time” because of the numbering (ordinals) of the Sundays. The primary color of the season is green, highlighting themes of growth in faith and discipleship, so the name “Green Season” is appropriate. It includes the distinct seasons of summer and fall, which have different themes emphasized. The image of a green, growing plant in the warmth of the sun helps us to envision how God is working among us.

Scripture Readings for Sunday, August 6

Isaiah 55:1-3

Ho, everyone who thirsts,
come to the waters;
and you that have no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good,
and delight yourselves in rich food.
Incline your ear, and come to me;
listen, so that you may live.
I will make with you an everlasting covenant,
my steadfast, sure love for David.

Matthew 14:15-21

When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” Jesus said to them, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” They replied, “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.” And he said, “Bring them here to me.” Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
Comments from the Cloud of Witnesses
Eternal Goodness, I shall contemplate myself in you.
By this light I shall come to know that you, eternal Trinity,
are table and food and waiter for us.
You, eternal Father, are the table that offers us as food,
the Lamb, your only-begotten Son.
He is the most exquisite of foods for us,
both in his teaching, which nourishes us in your will,
and in the sacrament that we receive in Holy Communion,
which feeds and strengthens us while we are pilgrim travelers in this life.
And the Holy Spirit is indeed a waiter for us,
who serves us this teaching by enlightening our mind’s eye with it
and inspiring us to follow it,
and who serves us charity for our neighbors
and the salvation of the whole world for the Father’s honor.
—Catherine of Siena
[Catherine of Siena, The Prayers of Catherine of Siena, ed. Suzanne Noffke OP (NY: Paulist, 1983), 101-102.]

2017 Summer Children’s Gathering: Growing in worship and community

People of all ages are vital in the life of Christian community, and that includes children. Liturgy means “the work of the people” and the presence of children in leadership and service is an important part of Christian faith formation.  On Sunday mornings, children gather with the worshiping community at 9:45 am. Then following the bible readings in the liturgy, children 4 years through 5th grade are invited to gather with Anne Wiebe and other leaders in the fellowship hall.  During this time, children will engage in hands-on learning about one aspect of liturgy. They will return to the worshiping community at the sharing of the peace for communion and blessing. Children’s Gatherings continue on Sunday mornings through August 13. (a snack will not be provided during this time.)

8/6 Meal: Holy Communion

We’ll study the Last Supper

Faith, Sexism, and Justice: Summer Conversations on Wednesday Nights

Continues this week

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is preparing a Social Statement on Sexism and Gender Based Violence starting Fall, 2017. Since our community has been studying the sin of sexism and searching for God’s grace in response, FELC is exploring a study guide this summer to continue to reflect, learn, and grow.

These study sessions will happen on Wednesday evenings throughout the summer, 6:00-8:00 PM at FELC, pot-luck style dinner in the parlor.

Remaining dates are: 8/2, 8/9

The study sessions are lead by an excellent crew of church leaders, including Leigh Northcutt-Benson, Mary Lou Larson, Nancy Baden, Renee Carlson, Anne Wiebe, Taylor Dieringer, and Travis Fitzgold. FELC is delighted to be nurturing community through in-depth study of social issues. Bring yourself, and bring a friend!

Bathroom and Hallway Construction

As part of our capital campaign, construction of the bathrooms and hallway area between the sanctuary and fellowship hall continues.  Asbestos abetment for the hallway tiles is scheduled for Thursday, August 3. Flooring installation for hallway and restrooms is scheduled to begin Tuesday, August 8. If you’re in the building during the week, the utility bathroom in the CDC wing is usable.

FELC Website and YouTube channel: connect online

 

We have updated the FELC website to better and more regularly connect with everyone, near and far.  Check it out at www.felcaustin.org

Check out our YouTube channel where you can find audio of Sunday worship services at www.youtube.com/channel/UCj9B6jWh3PqO7ojn9-tHHRQ

Connect with FELC, in person AND online.

Planning Meeting for Children, Youth, and Family Ministries:

Sunday, August 13, 11:15 am – 12:15 pm in the parlor

All parents and other adults wanting to help make our ministries for children, youth, and families excellent in the coming year are invited and encouraged to attend a planning meeting. We will join in conversation, share information about the direction we are going for 2017–2018, and plan together how to do some great special events during the year. Children will have a supervised activity in the fellowship hall during the meeting. Everyone’s input and participation is important.

 

Back to School Blessing: Sunday, August 20

Sunday, August 20 at the 9:45 am liturgy, students of all ages and education professionals of all types are invited to participate in the Back to School blessing and bring backpacks and or some sign of their work.

Weekly Update: July 25, 2017

one Word & Eucharist liturgy

Summer Sundays at 9:45 am

Green Season

Sometimes it is called “Time after Pentecost” or “Ordinary Time” because of the numbering (ordinals) of the Sundays. The primary color of the season is green, highlighting themes of growth in faith and discipleship, so the name “Green Season” is appropriate. It includes the distinct seasons of summer and fall, which have different themes emphasized. The image of a green, growing plant in the warmth of the sun helps us to envision how God is working among us

Scripture Readings for Sunday, July 30

Romans 8:26-27

The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

Matthew 13: 31-33

[Jesus] put before [the crowds] another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field; it is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.”
He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.”

Comments from the Cloud of Witnesses
“The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.” In a single sentence several ancient stories are evoked, and yet, by the introduction of a few new terms the traditional sense of these stories is radically transformed. Three measures of flour is an ephah, somewhere around a bushel. That is a lot of flour. It is three measures or an ephah that Abraham causes to be prepared for the angels of God at Mamre. In the new temple that is imagined and described by the prophet Ezekiel, the grain offerings will be an ephah of flour baked by the priests apart from the people. Yet the one who welcomes the outsiders to table says this: the dominion of God is like leavened holy bread baked by a woman. No wonder the leaven is hid. All the meal—enough for Abraham, enough for the new temple, enough for meeting God—is leavened, to be feast for all who long to meet with God in the same way that Jesus’ unclean death is made to be such a feast. This dominion of God, then, is not what had been expected: it comes with a radical grace to the outsiders and the sinners.
—Gordon Lathrop
[Gordon W. Lathrop, Holy Things: A Liturgical Theology (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993), 24-25.]

2017 Summer Children’s Gathering: Growing in worship and community

People of all ages are vital in the life of Christian community, and that includes children. Liturgy means “the work of the people” and the presence of children in leadership and service is an important part of Christian faith formation.  On Sunday mornings, children gather with the worshiping community at 9:45 am. Then following the bible readings in the liturgy, children 4 years through 5th grade are invited to gather with Anne Wiebe and other leaders in the fellowship hall.  During this time, children will engage in hands-on learning about one aspect of liturgy. They will return to the worshiping community at the sharing of the peace for communion and blessing. Children’s Gatherings continue on Sunday mornings through August 13. (a snack will not be provided during this time.)

7/30 Meal: Sharing the Peace and baking bread

We will bake the bread for next week’s Eucharist, and learn about sharing the peace

Faith, Sexism, and Justice: Summer Conversations on Wednesday Nights

Continues this week

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is preparing a Social Statement on Sexism and Gender Based Violence starting Fall, 2017. Since our community has been studying the sin of sexism and searching for God’s grace in response, FELC is exploring a study guide this summer to continue to reflect, learn, and grow.

These study sessions will happen on Wednesday evenings throughout the summer, 6:00-8:00 PM at FELC, pot-luck style dinner in the parlor.

Remaining dates are: 7/26, 8/2, 8/9

The study sessions will be led by an excellent crew of church leaders, including Leigh Northcutt-Benson, Mary Lou Larson, Nancy Baden, Renee Carlson, Anne Wiebe, Taylor Dieringer, and Travis Fitzgold. FELC is delighted to be nurturing community through in-depth study of social issues. Bring yourself, and bring a friend!

FELC Website and YouTube channel: connect online

 

We have updated the FELC website to better and more regularly connect with everyone, near and far.  Check it out at www.felcaustin.org

Check out our YouTube channel where you can find audio of Sunday worship services at www.youtube.com/channel/UCj9B6jWh3PqO7ojn9-tHHRQ

Connect with FELC, in person AND online.

Micah 6 Reception: Sunday, July 30

On July 30, University Christian Church will host the Annual Meeting of Micah 6 with a reception at 12:30 pm in the UCC Fellowship Hall. Micah 6 board leaders and members of the Micah 6 congregations are invited to gather at UCC to celebrate the M6 Food Pantry and the Sunday Street Youth Drop in Center. Did you know that the M6 Food Pantry is the largest in Travis County? Did you know that the Drop in Center has served more than 7,800 hot meals to Austin’s street youth?

You will learn even more about this vital ministry at the reception. We will also get a chance to meet the new M6 Executive Director, the Rev. Barry Smith. Barry and the Board have big plans for ministries of Micah 6, building on the founding spirit of fourteen years ago and recruiting and expanding the cadre of volunteers who are the heart of the organization.  University Christian Church is located at 2007 University Ave, Austin, 78705.  For more information, contact Sarah Roberts at sarabeara_13@hotmail.com.

Suggestions for Great Reads

The First English Book Club is asking for your suggestions for our 2017-2018 reading year! Every summer, we ask anyone and everyone to submit suggestions so we can choose our books for the coming year. We want good suggestions for our reading. Interesting ideas, great writing, fiction preferred this year, but all suggestions are welcome. The Book Club wants suggestions now through July 30. Submit suggestions to Anne Wiebe at wiebeanne@hotmail.com with the title/author for your suggestion/s. We especially request suggestions of shorter books, since we plan to alternate shorter “quick-read” books with average-length books on this year’s list.

RULES FOR SUBMISSIONS:

1.      At least two copies of the book must be available through Austin Public Library.

2.      The book should be less than 450 pages, good “quick-read” books under 225 pages are especially requested.

3.      Deadline is July 30.

The First English Book Club meets the second Sunday evening of each month, mostly in homes of participants. We meet, share a potluck dinner, and discuss the book for that month, as well as related subjects brought up by the book. Everyone is invited! You can come to a meeting just once, or as often as you wish. We love to discuss books and ideas, and the more who come, the better the discussion. Questions? Anne Wiebe at 512-407-8427 or wiebeanne@hotmail.com.

Interfaith Lobby Day: Tuesday, August 1, Texas State Capitol

Texas Impact urges you to register now and spread the word as Texas faith leaders and Texans of all faiths stand against discrimination at “Y’All means All” the August 1 Lobby Day from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.  Visit texasimpact.org for information.

This year Texas Impact joins faith leaders who affirm the values of respect, dignity, and welcome and who reject the fear-filled rhetoric and un-American endorsement of discrimination that underlies proposed “bathroom legislation.”  Lutheran Bishop Erik Gronberg (Ft. Worth), Presbyter Sallie Watson (San Antonio), Mufti Mohamed-Umer Esmail (Austin), and mainstream faith leaders from across the state will speak at this day of advocacy for our shared Texas values of love and respect for all.  Pastor Coffey will be attending. For more information, contact Scott@TexasImpact.org.

Planning Meeting for Children, Youth, and Family Ministries:

Sunday, August 13, 11:15 am – 12:15 pm in the parlor

All parents and other adults wanting to help make our ministries for children, youth, and families excellent in the coming year are invited and encouraged to attend a planning meeting. We will join in conversation, share information about the direction we are going for 2017–2018, and plan together how to do some great special events during the year. Children will have a supervised activity in the fellowship hall during the meeting. Everyone’s input and participation is important.