Based on the latest Monroe County data and weighing the impact in our local community, all church activities, including worship, will be offered online only. We hope to return to in-person activities on Sunday, February 6

AN UPDATE ON OPERATIONS FOR FIRST UNITED

From the COVID-19 Task Force: While Sunday church services and most meetings will continue virtually for the time being, Pastor John Krueger is available for conversation and consultation: john_krueger425@comcast.net or h: 317-467-1529/ c: 317-498-0710.

FIRST UNITED IS CALLING A SENIOR MINISTER!!

Information on the virtual candidating and voting processes is being sent by USPS mail, email, and is available on our website  https://firstuc.org

Questions?
Pulpit Committee Chair Bob Ivie r_ivie@comcast.net (812-821-0656)
President Mary Peckham mkpeckham59@gmail.com  (812-361-5047)

DEADLINE EXTENDED! Anti-Racism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Training     Sign up by Monday, August 17th at: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfJkeH-Y0YofDb3GQqIOOyf_6NXf9_PGiOIzvpGpyQBmJG-pw/viewform.  

First United’s Board of Christian Education is fortunate to be bringing in an accomplished facilitator, Chidimma Ozor, to lead our congregation through a two-day training experience in August, rescheduled from the session we were to have in March.  Anti-Racism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Training takes place online /via Zoom on Friday, August 21 6-9 pm, and Saturday August 22, 10 am – 4. You’ll be sent a link and password to join the virtual meeting as well as other materials to be used during the training shortly before the event. Please call or text Rebecca Keith at (812) 325-0145 with any questions.

We depend on your sustained giving in this difficult time. If you can, please maintain, or consider increasing your regular giving, to support our work. Options for giving include:

  • mail (checks strongly preferred)
  • online giving at  https://tinyurl.com/GiveFirstUnited
  • by phone at 1-800-675-7430 [account ID is ES799783 (First United Church, Inc.)].
  • by text: 812-432-2002

VIRTUAL COMMUNITY OFFERINGS Our work as a caring community continues on Zoom through Sunday worship and lectionary study, and Tuesday’s Virtual Café and Adult Study class. Please visit https://firstuc.org/online/

JOIN US FOR SUNDAY WORSHIP!! at 10:30am. You may login to Zoom at 10am.

Zoom Meeting Link:

https://zoom.us/j/94635708633?pwd=NE9CdGtTWk5ndGRzRnQ2TTVrQmlZZz09

Meeting ID: 946 3570 8633

Password: 879535

OFF TOPIC SCRIPTURE CIRCLE (formerly Lectionary Discussion)

Want to read and discuss the week’s scripture readings with friends before church in a casual setting where you will never be asked to leave your brain or your heart at the door?  We have the place for you!  Click below to join us, Sunday mornings 9-10am.  
Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84002403978?pwd=N0sxS093T1JobkVxTVVGRlFBdVUwUT09
Meeting ID: 840 0240 3978
Password: 122688

VIRTUAL CAFÉ and TUESDAY ADULT DISCUSSION Tuesdays10:00am

Pour yourself a cup of coffee or tea and join us for the Tuesday Adult Discussion group led by Derek Roe.  

Our current video series on the New Testament is ending soon, and we will be voting on a new series on 8/18!  We hope to see you there!

Discussions range over many topics, and it’s a great way to keep in touch with church friends during social distancing. We’ll end somewhere between 11:30 and noon.

  1. From your laptop or desktop computer  https://zoom.us/j/309686166?pwd=OVZ2VXFUSDV6R2IwM0xTMTd4TEVCdz09, OR
  2. From your landline telephone or cell phone: (253) 215 8782 then enter the meeting ID:  309 686 166# Password: 399499
  3. Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/aCaOLQbW3

FROM THE BOARD OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION

Racial Justice Book Club

The Board of Christian Education’s newly-formed Racial Justice Book Club will read and discuss a different book related to racial justice each month. Our first meeting will be Saturday, August 29th, from 2-3:30 over Zoom. We will be discussing “So You Want to Talk About Race” by Ijeoma Oluo.

Jennifer Fultz has set up an online discussion board for the group, so you can participate even if you are unable to attend the virtual meetings. If you are interested in joining the group, please contact Don Wooldridge at dontylw@gmail.com

NEW!! Progressive Christianity Series Tuesdays 6:30—8 p.m.

September 1, September 29, October 27, December 1
Session 1 – September 1: “What Is Progressive Christianity, Theologically Speaking?”
Session 2 – September 29: “What is Progressive Christianity, Socially
& Ethically Speaking?”
Session 3 – October 27: “What Might Characterize Progressive
Christianity in Worship?”
Session 4 – December 1: “Tenets of the Faith in Progressive Christian
Perspective”

Format: Zoom meetings, with approximately 30 minute presentation by
Byron Bangert, followed by Q&A and open discussion.  More details
later. 

CALL for Sacred Conversations to End Racism Facilitator Applications

The Sacred Conversations to End Racism (SC2ER) is a Restorative Racial Justice Journey curriculum created by the UCC to address and dismantle racism within the Christian Church and society.  For more information, visit https://www.ucc.org/sacred_conversations_to_end_racism

The Board of Christian Education would like to bring this program to First United Church in 2021.  However, this program requires trained facilitators, and this training is offered by the UCC.  If interested in becoming a trained facilitator, please contact Don Wooldridge (dontylw@gmail.com). 

The application process for the 2021 SC2ER Facilitator Training Cohort will begin Monday, August 31, 2020. 

Peace Pole

Anyone wishing to provide input on languages to be included on the new peace pole should email Mitchell Farmer (mitchellgfarmer@gmail.com) before 5:00pm on Wednesday, 8/19.  Financial contributions designated for the new peace pole can be sent to the church office. 

Construction Update—from Mitchell Farmer

As the renovations in the sanctuary begin to move forward, here is our expected timeline: 

Week of 8/2—Lumber for Narthex stairwell prepared with custom stain,

Basement/Weyland stairs prepared for installation of non-slip treads, New light fixtures ordered

Week of 8/9—Non-slip stair treads installed on basement/Weyland Room stairs, Carpet removed and non-slip stair treads installed on front choir loft staircase, Early work on installing new woodwork on Narthex stairwell 

Week of 8/16—Glass arrives for choir loft balcony guardrail, installation begins

Week of 8/23—Riser rebuilt in choir loft 

Week of 8/30—Fire Door installed at top of Narthex stairs, New flooring in choir loft installed (est.)

Several items such as the installation of new handrails and light fixtures do not have exact dates yet. Also, COVID-19 related supply chain issues may continue to cause schedule changes. More updates to come.

FIRST UNITED’S SPECIAL COVID-19 FUND APPLICATIONS

If you have a relationship with First United Church, you may apply for assistance economic hardship caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Click here for an application form and instructions to apply for Covid-19 assistance. Contact Sharon McCann with any questions at 1041sharon@gmail.com

PREVENT THE SPREAD

All church activities will be out of the building at least through August. Our COVID-19 Task Force is advising Council as we move ahead into a challenging new period of finding best practices for opening our congregation. Remember that much of our success depends on us–we can and must make responsible choices to protect ourselves, our families and our community: maintaining 6 feet of social distance; washing hands often; wearing a face mask in public; staying home when sick; getting tested immediately if symptoms appear. 

Need a fabric face mask? Let Rebecca Nunley know: reblea99@gmail.com

MEANWHILE GRASS AND WEEDS CONTINUE TO GROW whether church is open or not. If you have time and energy to work at socially distanced mowing, weeding, or general upkeep on our grounds, Laura Kao is graciously available to provide guidance. Laura has also posted a to-do list of discrete tasks on the shed door for all comers. Contact laura_b_kao@hotmail.com or 812-361-6074