News 06/03/2020

Please Note: The church building is currently closed due to the COVID-19 “Safer at Home” quarantine. Weekly worship services are still occurring via YouTube (see link below).

Donate online! In addition to mailing in your pledges you may also choose to donate online via PayPal or Tithe.ly

On Sunday, June 7th, at 10am, click here to watch our Worship Service video on YouTube and click here for the accompanying Sunday Worship Bulletin. 

For any previous Sunday sermon, click here to go to the Sermons page. 

CALLING ALL 2020 HIGH SCHOOL OR COLLEGE GRADUATES FROM FMCUCC

FMCUCC would like to celebrate our graduates and we need your help. If you would like to feature your High School or College Graduate in the newsletter, please send:

  • their name
  • the school they graduated from
  • what their plans are after graduation
  • if college graduation, please share what their degree is in
  • and a graduation photo

Send this to Lisa Riehl, Office Manager, [email protected]. We will feature the graduates in the Newsletter next week, June 12th. Please send submission by Wednesday, June 10th.

 

PASTA AND SAUCES

FMCUCC is collecting “Pasta and Sauces” for the South Fort Myers Food Pantry. As a replacement for our Peanut Butter Sunday, we are collecting pasta and jars of sauce for those hit hardest by COVID-19.

Each time you shop, you can pick up an extra box of pasta and a jar of sauce and help our sisters and brother.

There’s a brightly painted metal newspaper vending box under the portico at the main building entrance. Use it for your donations.  The boxes will be emptied daily and then taken to Cypress Lake Presbyterian Church for distribution.

Look for the colored box and make a donation of hope for those caught in the COVID—19

If you would rather not go out and purchase the items, you can write a check and mail it to the church marking “South Fort Myers Food Bank” in the memo section. Soon we hope to have a designation in Tithe.ly for South Fort Myers Food Bank.

So, you may purchase or donate funds. Either way, you’re coming to the aid of those in need.

Questions????  Contact Linda McGlashan at 239-218-4272 

 

GROW STAYS INSIDE

Through the month of May, FMCUCC’s GROW is hosting conversations with advocates and educators who will guide us in exploring vital moral and theological issues while we’re all stuck inside. There are still important justice issues that require our attention and exciting possibilities for enlightenment we can pursue even though we’re staying at home!


FRIDAY – 6/5 at 2pm

Rev. John Vertigan – Conference Minister, Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ
In this time of social distancing and online worship, it can feel as if our faith community is in a vacuum. Yet, other churches and ministries within the United Church of Christ are weathering this challenge, as well, often in different, exciting, and innovative ways. Next Friday, we’ll be joined by our conference minister, Rev. John Vertigan, who will lead us in a discussion on the pandemic’s impact on the broader context of the organized church.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81651515289

Meeting ID: 816 5151 5289
One tap mobile:
+13017158592,,81651515289# US (Germantown)
+13126266799,,81651515289# US (Chicago)


Videos of previous Zoom GROW Sessions:

Journeying with Brian McLaren (5/27) 


Learning About Coronaviruses with Dr. Sharon Isern (5/22) 

The New Sanctuary Coalition with Rev. Micah Bucey (5/21) 

Grief and Self Care in Pandemic Times (5/14) 

War is a Lie with David Swanson (5/7)

Literature, Connection, and Solidarity in a time of pandemic (5/1)

The crisis of stay at home orders when one has no home (4/30)

Discussing Immigration Law with Rev. Craig B. Mousin (4/24)

Farm Workers in the Time of COVID-19 (4/23)


Youth Group Zoom Sessions
Thursdays at 6pm

FMCUCC’s youth group is still getting together–just virtually! If you’re in middle or high school and want to attend, reach out to our Community Minister Wesley at [email protected].  

WE ARE STILL OPEN, JUST REMOTELY

 

During the extended stay at home, our Office Manager, Lisa, sends you well wishes and wants you to know that she is available if you need to be in touch with the church office number. You can reach her by phone at 239-482-3133 or by email: [email protected].

If you need anything or just want to hear a friendly voice, she is always open to a call.

Stay healthy! 

OUR SANCTUARY IS GETTING A FACELIFT

 

During the long weeks and months of the Pandemic our sanctuary has been undergoing some big changes. Through a generous gift from the family of Lois and Denton Smith we will be ready for our return from the Pandemic. In late April two 82 inch Sony Bravia QLED monitors were attached above the chancel on either side of the organ speakers and the elevated cross. In the rear of the sanctuary a 75 inch LG LED monitor was installed for use by the pastor, liturgist and other worship leaders.

The screens will show prayers and readings for the congregation as well as hymns, illustrations, photos and videos. The gift further aids us in our quest to be paperless and better stewards of our resources. More information and news about the dedication of the Smith Gift will appear in future eBlasts.

Gifts honoring or memorializing family members are a great way to express your appreciation for loved ones and help FMCUCC at the same time. If you are interested in making a gift, please contact Pastor Bucey or the Church Office. 

REV. WESLEY SNEDEKER’S CONTRACT EXTENDED

At its May 29, 2020, meeting, our Church Council voted unanimously to extend the contract of Rev. Wesley Snedeker for an additional year as our Community Minister. Wesley will continue to work in all phases of ministerial life with his greatest concentration being Preaching, the GROW program and our Youth programming. We look forward to building on the past nineteen months of Wesley’s ministry.  

PRAYER CHAIN

In these days of uncertainty, comfort can be found in prayer. If you have someone who could use some extra prayers, whether it is in celebration or concern, please send your requests to our new Prayer Chain point of contact, Rebecca Totaro – [email protected]. She will share your requests with the prayer chain. If you would like to be part of the prayer chain, let Rebecca know. 

SUNDAY SCHOOL IS MEETING

KAREN KELLEY is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Sunday school
Time: 11:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Every week on Sun, until Jun 28, 2020, 6 occurrence(s)

May 31, 2020 11:00 AM
Jun 7, 2020 11:00 AM
Jun 14, 2020 11:00 AM
Jun 21, 2020 11:00 AM
Jun 28, 2020 11:00 AM

Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.

Weeklyhttps://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/upwvceCurzgiHtw0eDhBUMgM5gAEkhWlq82Q/ics?icsToken=98tyKu6grD0jHNWWuB2PR7Y-AI_oXe7zmHZHgrdKzBrBCwJmTwTbY-VjF7l3J9TB

Join Zoom Meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/78269613848?pwd=aWdnbTdvSzkzcUI3d0JUajJ6eTVqdz09

Meeting ID: 782 6961 3848
Password: mushroom

One tap mobile:
+13126266799,,78269613848#,,1#,866720# US (Chicago)
+16465588656,,78269613848#,,1#,866720# US (New York)

Dial by your location:
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 301 715 8592 US (Germantown)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
Meeting ID: 782 6961 3848
Password: 866720
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kAC8x7uhC 

2-1-1: YOUR FIRST CALL FOR HELP

What is 2-1-1?
2-1-1 is a FREE service provided by United Way that connects area residents to critical health and social service resources when they need help. From help with a household bill, food assistance, or counseling for suicide prevention, calling United Way’s 2-1-1 helpline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year-round. Instead of searching the phone book or internet when faced with a crisis, think of 2-1-1 as your first call for help.

Need Help?
If you or someone you know needs assistance, please reach out through calling, texting, chatting, or emailing.

  • Call 2-1-1 or (352) 332-4636. Calling is availble 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Text your zip code to 898-211.
  • Chat with a 2-1-1 operator:
  • Email an operator here.

Chatting and texting are available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Contact 2-1-1 during a crisis for help with:

  • Emergency shelters
  • Food distribution centers
  • Shelter & federal assistance
  • Grief counseling
  • Helping locate family members
  • Clean-up crews
  • Potable water, ice, food, etc.
  • Elder services
  • Youth and child care issues
  • Emergency financial assistance
  • And more!

Visit the searchable database for local services online!

DUE TO COVID-19, YOU MAY EXPERIENCE LONGER CALL WAITING TIMES.

RETIRED PASTORS’ LUNCH

The Retired Clergy third Tuesday Lunch has reconvened on Zoom.

Next meeting:
Retired Clergy Lunch on Zoom
Tuesday, June 16
Noon -1:30pm

For meeting invitation email Jim Boler ([email protected])

Did you know this about Lee Interfaith For Empowerment (LIFE)?
Did you know that LIFE is quickly approaching its 9th birthday?

In nine short years we have…

  • Modified the school code of conduct for more equitable treatment of students.
  • Addressed the problems with our alternative learning centers leading to one being closed and the other transformed into the success academy
  • Banned-the-Box for Fort Myers city jobs
  • Got the police department to address the unsolved murder problem with new police substations, new positions, and additional training and partnership with other agencies
  • Passed a state bill to eliminate the unnecessary arrests of children
  • Gotten additional county funding for a new mental health facility for children in Cape Coral
  • Gotten additional county funding allocated for programs for children
  • Organized a response to the county’s allocation of CARES funds

There’s so much more… we have trained hundred of community leaders, had actions with close to 1,200 people present, responded to hurricanes and community violence and pandemics. We have shared stories and built bridges across divides many would not think could be bridged.

We have laughed and cried and mobilized and we have worked hard. In the words of one member, “I’ve worked with LIFE for all this time because I actually see the changes we’ve worked for in my community. It keeps working so I’ll keep working it.”

Please visit www.LIFEjustice.org to learn how to make an investment so the work can continue for years to come. 

 

PLEDGE CARDS

As we continue to forge through these new obstacles, we know that some of you have not had a chance to return your pledge card. The Finance Board is working to have a completed budge and needs to make sure your pledge has been counted.

 

If you haven’t had the chance to send it in and would like to, click here to get a new pledge card that you can print out at home and mail in.

 

Thank you to everyone who has already returned your pledge cards and for everyone faithfully helping our mission continue.

 

Click on the card below to send your pledge information electronically to our Finance Coordinator, Laura Wunderly.

 

NOW MORE THAN EVER, YOUR STEWARDSHIP IS IMPORTANT

Fort Myers Congregational UCC is accepting your tithes and offerings via our website. Simply go to FMCUCC.org and find the word “DONATE” prominently displayed on the main page.

 

Depending upon which option you choose, your donation will be processed by PayPal or Tithe.ly as a safe and secure way to underwrite the expenses of our vital ministries. Or if you prefer, you may mail your offering in the convenient, pre-addressed envelopes you use every week. Don’t forget to mail in your pledge cards if you haven’t already.

 

Don’t have giving envelopes? Place your check in any envelope and mail it to FMCUCC. That way you’ll be participating in your church’s vital ministries during our time apart.

 

Remember: When You Give ONLINE Through tithe.ly You Can “Cover the Cost“ of the fees and save the church about $2.50 when you donate $100.00. That’s good Stewardship!
Click on the logos below to make a donation

Or, if you prefer, please mail your donation to the church

Fort Myers Congregational
United Church of Christ
8210 College Parkway
Fort Myers, Florida 33919 

 

DO YOU NEED A MASK?

Have you been leaving the house with an uncovered face lately?

We at FMCUCC want you to be safe and so with the help of our Deacons are able to provide you a cloth mask that will protect the people you encounter outside.

You can find masks inside a bright Christmas tin with a puppy on it, on the bench outside the Narthex door. Please take one for your family member who ventured beyond your home the most. If you are unable to get out and would like a mask, please call the church office 239-482-3133.

All masks are washer/dryer friendly and Should Not Be Microwaved.

We are also looking for individuals willing to assist in making the masks.

If you would to be part of this project, please contact
Vice-Moderator, Carolyn Martin at 315-529-3369

Sending out a big THANK YOU to Linda McGlashan for assisting Carolyn Martin in making and providing these wonderful masks! 

UPCOMING COUNCIL MEETING

There will be a Council Meeting on June 23rd at 7pm by Zoom.