News 05/09/2020

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 below).

Donate online!

On Sunday, May 10th, at 10am, click here for our Worship Service.


PSALM 31:1-5, 5-16 

One of the most well-known modern prayers is the Serenity Prayer, said first by Protestant theologian Reinhold Niebuhr during World War II. It is now central to the recovery from addiction being achieved in thousands of 12-step groups: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.”


Notice that God is not being asked in this prayer to miraculously eliminate a desire for alcohol or narcotics. Instead, God is being asked to give serenity, courage and wisdom to people so that they can become well. As is said in a book called How Al-Anon Works, “We turn to the God of our understanding for the attributes necessary to live life more fully.”


In other words, praying people turn to God and ask for help to live better lives. By praying to God in this way, millions of people have become sober through 12-step groups across our country and around the world. In each of these groups, the Serenity Prayer is said to change the hearts and minds of people, not the heart and mind of God.


These words could be seen as “fightin’ words” in some quarters. Some see God as a short order cook who grants needs while others interpret the almighty as a facilitator who allows us to align our wills with God’s. Let’s get together this Sunday and take a look at prayer.


See you then? — Dave 

Come back here on Sunday, May 10th at 10:00am to watch the service on our YouTube channel by clicking on the icon below. 

Now and Always

Service Prayers for the Fifth Sunday of Easter

May 10, 2020 – Bulletin 


Opening Music “Fish and Whistle” – John Prine


Welcome and Centering around Prayer in a Pandemic 


Passing the Peace


Call to Worship 

Leader: Jesus said, I go and prepare a place for you, and I will come again.
People: We gather in this place
to know your presence and your love,
now and always. 

Leader: Jesus said, I am the way, and the truth, and the life. If you know me, you know God.
People: We pray to know you more deeply,
that we may know God more intimately,
now and always. 

Leader: Jesus said, Ask me for anything, and I will do it.
People: Help us to ask for the right things, Lord Jesus Christ,
that we may fulfill your will,
now and always. 

Leader: Jesus said, Believe in me, and Follow me.
People: Help us to worship you fully
believing and following –
now and always! 


Ever-gracious, Way-Making God,
we celebrate the gifts of your Spirit.
You have not fed us a diet of shame or shrinking,
but with the milk of your truth
you have made us strong and faithful servants of Christ.
You call us to take up the mantle of justice and to follow wherever faith leads us.
You fill us with strength and hope,
and you invite us to share in the cost and joys of discipleship.
You promise us splendor and beauty in this life and in the world to come.
Meet us here, we pray,
that your word will be fulfilled in our hearing
and that your Spirit will fill us with courage. Amen.


Children’s Sermon 


Scripture Reading A Living Psalm for Easter 5 


Message “The Value of Prayer” Rev. David Bucey 


Call to Offering 


Offertory “Come Christians Join to Sing” – Amy Maneval 


Prayers of the People 


Silent Prayer 


Lord’s Prayer 


God, bless these tithes and offerings,
that they may heal and make whole the lives of all your children.
And bless those who give and those who long to give, that we may become living stones of mercy, grace and justice
in the house of your creation. Amen. 



Once you were not a people,
but now you are a people bound together in God’s mercy
and united in Christ’s service.
Depart from this place in peace and confidence,
to love and serve in the name of Jesus the Christ,
the living representation of God
– our way, our truth, our life. Amen. 


Closing Music “On Eagle’s Wings” – Brandy Miller and Shane Talbott 


Now and Always: Service Prayers for the Fifth Sunday of Easter was written by the Rev. Elizabeth Dilley, Minister and Team Leader for MESA (Ministerial Excellence, Support and Authorization), UCC


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.



Fort Myers Congregational UCC is accepting your tithes and offerings via our website. Simply go to 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 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 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












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!

Please check the session start time and plan to get on 5 minutes beforehand. If you’ve never used Zoom before, CLICK HERE to view the PDF on “How to Zoom”.

THURSDAY – 5/14 at 12:30 pm (not 2:00pm!)

Jessica Yarab, LCSW, MSW, ACHP-SW – Bereavement Counselor, Avow

Next Thursday, FMCUCC members will be joined by Avow Bereavement Counselor Jessica Yarab for a discussion on the personal and emotional dynamics of social distancing and best practices for self care in this unusual time. This discussion will be held at 12:30 (!!) next week, not 2:00 pm, so mark your calendars!
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 878 4836 7654
One tap mobile
+13017158592,,87848367654# US (Germantown)
+13126266799,,87848367654# US (Chicago)

Videos of previous Zoom GROW Sessions:

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)



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



Over the duration of our social (but not spiritual) distancing, I invite you to email your photos to me at or


We have received some photos and are thrilled to be able to put them up in the Sanctuary but we would love to get more. If you have not had the chance to send one in, please email one today. It doesn’t have to be a formal photo, a selfie works great!


Each day I will set aside time to pray for each person included in the March 20, 2020, Church Directory sent as a separate email. You are invited as well to take the new directory and pray for those you know AND those you do not.


A lot has been made of social separation in recent days. As we pray for each other and contact each other via phone, text, and email, may we strive to be closer spiritually as well as on social media. — Dave


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 “safely “ encounter outside.


On Friday you will 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.


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


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

Persistence pays off: Governor DeSantis announces free, community-wide testing to begin in Immokalee this week! 


Click here to read the full article.


Would you be willing to take a few minutes to pray for people during the week? We have a group who is praying for those who have needs, be it health/medical, a family member, a neighbor or a friend. God knows the needs of those we lift in prayer to him. Cheryl Frank will accept the information and then email the request out to those who are willing to pray. If you would like to join the group who are praying, please email her with your contact information. If you have someone who would like prayer for their situation, please email her:


Many are out of work at this time and are having trouble meeting their financial obligations. The pastor has been busy helping those in need. Because of this, the Pastor’s Discretionary Fund is getting low. Please consider a gift to this fund. Thanks.


Here is the link to the April/May issue of Celebrate Florida: Click here to see what other UCC Churches are doing. See if you can locate where our FMCUCC family is featured.


If you know someone who would benefit from the comfort and blessing of a prayer shawl, please don’t hesitate to let me know and you can present it to a loved one yourself. If you would like to create and donate a shawl, we can provide printed instructions and yarn. Of course you can always use your own pattern and yarn if you would prefer! In God’s service, Kris Hurren  239-565-4289








































Are you interested in helping serve the FMCUCC community by being a welcoming face before guests enter the sanctuary? Please consider serving at the Welcome Center desk or as a door opener once a month. See the sign-up sheets in the Fellowship Hall to indicate your desire.


“Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.” (1 Corinthians 12:27) Paul uses the metaphor of a human body to explain how Christians are to work together to be the body (and message) of Jesus in the world. There are lots of parts needed to make a body function. So too with the church. So what part are you? Please take some time to review the ministry opportunities and see all the different parts that are needed to make the church function. Prayerfully consider stepping out in faith and/or stepping up to leadership. Maybe your part is to host a coffee hour, or volunteer to usher. Maybe even join a committee. What part are you? Think about it.


We have many volunteer opportunities available to assist with various aspects of our Sunday worship services and around the church. Please consider signing up for one of these important jobs. Sign-up sheets can be found on the bulletin board in the Fellowship Hall or send an email to Lisa Riehl,, and let her know what you are interested in doing. Thanks in advance for helping make our church so great!


Did Joan go on the around the world cruise she’s been planning these past several months? Do you know whether Harold is recuperating at his daughter’s home in Wisconsin? And how about Marie – she’s usually back in Fort Myers for the season by now, have you heard from her? Oftentimes, the Board of Deacons and the church staff know when a church member is homebound locally, and keep tabs on him or her. However, we aren’t always informed by family members or caretakers when a member has prolonged health issues making it difficult for them to attend church functions. Here’s where the members of the congregation can help out. If you are aware of a member that is homebound, or have noticed a member’s prolonged absence but haven’t heard it announced at church, please bring it to the attention of one of the deacons or the church office. Most times we are aware of the members who are homebound locally, but we don’t want to overlook anyone.


Rev. David Bucey – – 513-535-2121
Rev. Wesley Snedeker – – 239-297-1586
Church Office – – 239-482-3133