- Off-Topic Scripture Circle – Sundays @ 9am; Join Zoom Meeting here
- Sunday Morning Worship – Sundays @ 10:30am; Join Zoom Webinar here
- Morning Café and Discussion – Tuesdays @ 10am;Join Zoom Meeting here
- Intro. to Process Theology – Tuesdays (thru 03/01) @ 6pm; Join Zoom Meetinghere
- Scripture Reader sign up – Click here
- Donate to First United Online – Click here
- First United Vimeo Channel – Click here
Support Our Musicians
“An Evening of William Grant Still” (featuring an opera and a ballet) will be offered by the IU Jacobs School of Music at 7:30pm on February 4th, 5th, 11th, and 12th, and three First United vocalists have major roles in the opera (Wayne Allen, Maisah Outlaw, and Chase Sanders, who has subbed occasionally; Note: the opera is double cast, so they will only perform two of the four evenings). And, our Music Director, Sam Grace, has helped prepare the chorus. If you are interested in attending in person or via livestream, more information can be found here.
Feminist Women’s Book Club
This weekend, our Feminist Women’s Book Club will join other Bloomington readers in welcoming MacArthur Fellow and author Jacqueline Woodson to our town. Besides winning the MacArthur Genius Grant, Woodson has also won Newberry Awards, the Langston Hughes Medal, Coretta Scott King Award, the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature and more. She is a gay woman of color and has redefined young adult literature in her work to reflect the complexity and diversity of the world we live in while increasing our capacity for empathy. Her books show the power of human connection in tackling difficult issues such as gender, race, identity, and LGBTQ themes. To participate in any or all events, mark these dates:
- Saturday, February 5th, at 7pm, Monroe County Public Library’s Power of Words, “An Evening with Jacqueline Woodson,” a free event at the Buskirk Chumley, our book club will attend as a group.
- Saturday, February 5th, at 8:30pm, A Gala Author Reception & Book Signing at the Monroe County Public Library with Jacqueline Woodson. A champagne & nosh fundraiser event for the library. To learn more visit: https://mcpl.info/pow
Tuesday Morning Café and Discussion
Join us online (click here) this Tuesday, February 8th, 10am-11:30am, as we begin a new 36-session video series entitled “The History of Christianity: From the Disciples to the Dawn of the Reformation.” After a time of informal conversation, we’ll engage in thought-provoking theological study and discussion as we explore the phenomenal story of Christianity’s first 1,500 years, with all its remarkable diversity and complex dimensions. Professor Dr. Luke Timothy Johnson will lead this examination of Christianity’s origins, rise, and civilization-shaping activities from its inception to the Reformation. While we’d love to see you each Tuesday for the next several months, perfect attendance is not required, neither is previous participation.
Introduction to Process Theology
The next gathering of the group exploring “Process Theology: A Basic Introduction” by C. Robert Mesle will be held this Tuesday, February 8th, 6pm-7pm. We’ll read and discuss the Introduction to Part III and Chapters 8-10. All meetings are held via Zoom (click here) on Tuesdays, 6pm-7pm (thru March 1st).
NEW THIS WEEK
Welcome, Baby Fak!
Andy Fak and wife Nicole Thompson are overjoyed to welcome a wonderful baby girl into the world! Noemi Zephyra Fak (pronounced no-EM-ee zeh-FEER-uh) made her entrance at 5:33am on January 25th. She weighed in at 6lbs 7oz and is perfect. The whole family is healthy and happily resting at home. Positive thoughts can reach Andy via Facebook.
First United Website Member Area
Dedric Dennist is working hard to update the member area of our website and keep it secure for our community’s use. Part of this process involves deleting the previous profiles that were created on the platform, so you may receive an email notifying you that your profile was deleted. Do not fear! As soon as the member area set up is complete, you will receive instructions for how to log in and set up a new account. More info soon to come!
Being Church Online…a Little Longer
While we had hoped to gather this Sunday, February 6th, for in-person worship, the latest COVID variant continues to cause concern for our congregational leadership and the community at large. Due to these concerns and in considering the latest Indiana COVID dashboard information, we will be extending our period of virtual-only services. For the next few Sundays, we will continue our policy of allowing only the technology and AV team, scripture readers, providers of special music, and worship staff to be present in the sanctuary. CLT and nursery care will not be offered; if children are present, families can choose to become “panelists” for the children’s time if they wish. After worship, everyone is invited to become a “panelist” in order to interact in the virtual “coffee hour” space. We trust that these continued measures will reduce the possibility of COVID-related harm during this surge of omicron and other variants, and we very much hope to return to in-person activities on Sunday, February 20th.
UPCOMING WORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
Sunday Morning Virtual Worship
Join us for worship each Sunday morning at 10:30am. During this Sunday’s service, we will celebrate communion together, so you are invited to prepare a “nibble” and a “sip” for you and yours to share at home. The service will also feature Rev. Jessica Petersen-Mutai in the pulpit and a special message for the young and young at heart. As always, beautiful music will be led by Sam Grace and Hansol Kim, and our section leaders will offer a special music piece. Keith Gerber will once again present the day’s scripture reading and serve as our congregational lead. Dedric Dennist will welcome all via Zoom, and Kyle Hetrick and Jim True will ensure the audio/visual pieces run as smoothly as possible. And, remember to stay on after the service for a time of connection.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we return to online only worship for a brief time in an effort to keep everyone safe.
Join the Zoom Webinar by clicking here
Dial-in number: (312) 626 6799; Webinar ID: 828 3681 0281
The service will be posted on Sunday evening on First United’s Vimeo channel (where you can access all of our previous worship services).
Donate online at: firstuc.online/donate
Undies for MCCSC
Members and friends of First United are invited to join with those from other local churches to provide underwear and sweatpants for children and adults facing emergency situations. Donations of all sizes of underwear and sweatpants will be received in a collection box at our church February 12th-28th. Monroe County school (MCCSC) social workers will distribute the clothing to various schools as needed.
Displaced Immigrant Support Program
Thank you to all who have offered such generous support of the Afghan family we are welcoming into the Bloomington community! As our guest become acclimated to their new home, ouronline sign-up sheet is being updated looking forward to the families next steps and will be shared soon. Childcare has been found!
Your financial support is greatly appreciated and continues to be needed. A special giving section on the church donation page has been set up as one way to give; click here to access it. Individuals may also write checks to First United with “DISP” in the memo line. Please contact Dave Meyer (DISP Chair; firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information or to express your interest in helping.
Off-Topic Scripture Circle
Want to read and discuss the week’s scripture readings with friends before worship 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! During this time of online only, you can join the discussion via Zoom here. See you Sunday morning, 9am-10am!
Feminist Women’s Book Club
First United’s Feminist Women’s Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 13th, at noon via Zoom. The group will discuss “Mother Land” by Leah Franqui. Feminist women of all ages are invited to join in the conversation! For Zoom information or more information about the book club contact facilitator Cindy Stone, email@example.com.
Reader’s Choice Book Group
All are invited to join the Reader’s Choice Book Group on Monday, February 14th, 1:30pm when the group will discuss “The Overstory,” a novel by Richard Powers. It is the story of nine men and women and their relationship to trees and asks the question, “If trees could talk, what would they tell us?” The group will meetat the home of Nancy Martin (1047 Sassafras Drive; Meadowood).
First United is seeking to hire someone with a passion for working with young people and committed to our Progressive Christian identity as a part-time Director of Children’s and Youth Ministries. Please see the job description here. Share widely or apply today! Candidates should respond to Lisa Stanger (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a resume and email cover letter detailing relevant experience and intent to apply. Thank you for your help!
Congregational Meeting Follow Up
During Annual Congregational Meeting on Sunday, January 23rd, the gathered congregation voted to pass the 2022 budget as presented. The congregation also considered and voted to approve the final version of the technology upgrades proposal. If you would like to contribute to the funding of this technology project (we are seeking to raise $25,000 in total), you may do so by mailing in or dropping off a check with “A/V project” or “Technology upgrades” in the memo line. Thank you to those who have already donated to this project and to all who participated in last Sunday’s meeting.
- Rev. Jessica Petersen-Mutai, Senior Minister – email@example.com; 812-727-4414 (Friday & Saturday off; emergency calls only)
- Lisa Stanger, Office Manager – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sam Grace, Music Director – email@example.com
- Dedric Dennist, Web Content & Media Coordinator – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Rebecca Keith, Church President – email@example.com; 812-325-0145 (Cell)