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Good News

SPECIAL SUMMER EDITION

The

July 30, 2006

A Publication of The Union Church of Hinsdale

Message from the Ministry Team

By the time you read this I will be flying back home from a short jaunt out west to see family and friends. That's a big part of summer isn't it? Summer time doesn't always mean an exotic trip to some fabulous place on the far side of the globe. At its best, summer is a few lazy days by a lake somewhere, or halfway up a mountain out of cell phone range, reading a novel for no particular reason other than its mindless and fun. They used to call these the lazy days of summer. I have precious few of those and so do you. At the moment I'm reading a book called Jihad on Us All: The Roots and Branches of Islamic Militancy by Steve Chambers. This fall our preaching series and adult forums will include some of the hard issues of our day and a frank discussion about how our faith informs our thinking and decision making. I'm also reading a number of books about church and how we worship, books like: Overhearing the Gospel by Fred Craddock; Beyond the Worship Wars, by Thomas G. Long; What's Theology Got to Do With It? by

Anthony B. Robinson and You Can Preach to the Kids Too, a book on intergenerational worship by Carolyn Brown. One of the practices of faith we are seeking to recover in this place is how to share our passionate faith with others. This practice is called testimony, and it simply means telling our story of how God is at work in our lives and in the world. Youth returning from work tour shared the reading of scripture in worship last week by telling their story of how God was at work in the world through their mission in Cortez, Colorado. Their stories will be featured in the upcoming work tour dinner, and featured on the youth page in the next Good News. Children in Vacation Bible School shared their stories in their own way, when we asked them what they liked about their experience. Molly said, "This is a great place to learn about God's love and fun for kids!" Maggie said, "A great place to see friends, learn about God and have fun!" And Matthew said, "You get to play games, do crafts and go to music." If you want to know what people are thinking and feeling about faith matters, you have to ask. We've been asking often. Conversations about how we worship and what we hope for when we gather week in and week out have been challenging and encouraging. We

Volume 38, Issue 15

now know one another well enough to risk the deeper conversations that only those committed to the journey of faith can share. Growing small group ministries from the prison ministry support group to the couples Bible study groups that are expanding this fall, are drawing participants who want a deeper experience of faith and an expanded language of faith to articulate how God is present in ordinary things. Two further books helping us explore these practices include Speak to Me That I May Speak by W. Dow Edgerton, and Tell It Like it Is: Reclaiming the Practice of Testimony by Lillian Daniel. Neck deep and treading water in these conversations, I'm about to be whisked away by my husband for a brief respite out west. I'll be back with you for worship on Sunday August 6, when Beth Dickerson, long time church member and student at Chicago Theological Seminary will preach. She will be talking about conflict in the family. I'm eager to hear her testimony of faith woven into the fabric of faith as well. This time every year I issue the same sage counsel that I am so reluctant to take. If you haven't yet quit the house and headed for the shore, do so now before it's too late. Read something that takes you to a place long ago and far away just for fun. Then come back to church where in faith we tell it like it is. Verlee A. Copeland


THE GOOD NEWS is a publication of The Union Church of Hinsdale (United Church of Christ)

Senior Minister: Rev. Verlee A. Copeland Minister for Christian Formation and Mission: Rev. Dr. Thom Parrott-Sheffer Minister for Membership and Discipleship: Rev. Dr. Julie Ruth Harley Director of Youth Ministries: David Knecht Director of Music Ministries: Michael Surratt Director of Choirs: Gary Wilhelm Director of Early Childhood Programs: Jennifer Keldahl Director of Children’s Christian Education: Penny Johnson Executive Manager: Merrilee Hall Financial Manager: Chris Biank Project Manager: Joel Gratcyk Systems Manager: Mary Bock

WORSHIP SERVICES Journey Contemporary Worship Saturdays at 5:00 pm Sunday Worship 8:00 and 10:00 am Prayer and Healing Service 3rd Sundays at 7:00 pm

CHURCH OFFICE HOURS Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm Sundays 8:30 am to 12:30 pm

REPORT FROM THE ANNUAL MEETING THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

CONFERENCE

OF

Your ministers and officers of Union Church attended the Annual Meeting of our denomination, the UCC, in June at Elmhurst College. This event is always very interesting and worthwhile, and this year was no exception. Clergy and lay delegates come from all over Illinois to take part, and it is good to see a large contingent of youth who participate in all phases of the meetings. Sessions began on Thursday afternoon, June 8th, when a wide range of workshops were offered to everyone. There were two groups of one-hour workshops, arranged so that each of us could attend two of our choice. After dinner we gathered in the large college chapel for our first meeting together. These meetings were chaired by our good friend and neighbor from the UCC church in Westchester, Rev. Joe Mills. The featured speaker that evening was the Rev. Linda Jaramillo, Executive Minister of the UCC Justice and Witness Ministries from UCC headquarters, in Cleveland. Everyone returned on Friday for a busy morning of business and budget considerations and presentation of resolutions. The afternoon was set aside for individual visits of the delegates with the many UCC agencies and ministries that are available to all of our churches to augment our programs and missions. Evening included an excellent sermon by Ms. Katie Mellentine, an active member of the Illinois Conference Youth Initiative. On Saturday morning we returned to the chapel for the closing sessions. Worship was highlighted by a moving sermon by Rev. Dow Edgerton, author and long-time professor at Chicago Theological Seminary, in the fields of preaching, worship and ministry. The Illinois Conference UCC will meet next year at the Clock Tower Inn in Rockford from June 8-10, and the General Synod of the UCC will meet later in June in Hartford, Connecticut. Union Church will be sending representatives to both of these gatherings. We want to foster our connections with our denomination at every opportunity. -Chuck Armstrong, Moderator

ALLEGRO HANDBELL ENSEMBLE 2006 DESERT CONCERT TOUR RECAP On June 12th, the Union Church Allegro Handbell Ensemble embarked on our Desert Tour, playing concerts throughout the Southwest. We started in Tucson, Arizona, traveling north through the state, and eventually reaching Las Vegas, Nevada. Plenty of side trips were made along the way, including a day-trip to Nogales, Mexico, several breathtaking stops along the Grand Canyon, and an interesting tour of the Hoover Dam. Despite assurances that Arizona's "dry heat" would make the warmth more bearable, we were always grateful that many of our host families owned pools and that our bus was air-conditioned. After flying into Tucson, Rebecca Woodle's godmother, Carol Bogg, who graciously offered to show us the area, took us on a tour of the nearby Desert Museum. There, we got a fascinating glimpse at the local flora and fauna, including bobcats, various arachnids, and javelinas. Rebecca's godmother was also generous enough to open her home for the evening, where we all took a refreshing dip in her pool and the chance to relax from our early morning flight. We were fortunate enough to reunite with plenty of friends, many from Hinsdale, along the way. My aunt and cousin came to support me and the rest of the choir while we were in Phoenix, and in Flagstaff, Bill Stannard pleasantly surprised the bell choir by attending one of our concerts. And after visiting Las Vegas on the last leg of our trip, Roberta Wentling, her husband Andy, and their baby girl, Anna Grace, welcomed us to the local museum for our final concert. Roberta even tried her hand at the bells after a ten-year hiatus! We are all thrilled that the Wentling's have decided to return to Union Church; they were greatly missed. Ten days and ten concerts later, the bell choir returned to Hinsdale. Five seniors (Ingrid Elias, Rebecca Woodle, Hillary Bozeman, Jonathan Wroble, and I) completed our final tour this summer. Despite the heat, we all enjoyed the trip; many of us had never seen the Grand Canyon or Las Vegas, and we are so blessed to experience these sights while spreading the joy of music to others. - Cara Stevens Allegro Handbell Ensemble President

THE UNION CHURCH OF HINSDALE 137 South Garfield Avenue Hinsdale, IL 60521-4298 www.uchinsdale.org 630.323.4303 (Telephone) 630.323.4407 (Fax)

OF ILLINOIS

•2•


ADVENTURES

IN

CHRISTIAN EDUCATION

AHOY FIRST MATES, I want to thank all my first mates and officers for making our voyage to Son Treasure Island so much fun. We discovered a treasure much greater than gold or jewels "God's Love." God's Love is always with us and teaches us to be patient, kind, caring, and forgiving. Captain Cooky and I are still singing about God's Love. Remember to practice God's Love and keep singing until our next voyage. - Captain Johnson

The VBS Stewardship Project for the future Ronald McDonald House near Hope Children’s Hospital raised $583.44 in spare change!

SUNDAY SCHOOL PREVIEW Parents of children from kindergarten through fifth grade are invited to a Sunday School Preview at 11:15 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 13, in the Lounge. Penny Johnson, Director of Children's Christian Education, will introduce the Sunday School curriculum and plans for the coming year.

“VBS was cool and I really liked helping the 4 year olds in recreation.”

“VBS was fun, exciting and my group was awesome!”

"What Did You Say?" … A Lexicon for Union Church of Hinsdale: Terms from the Christian Formation Ministry Our Sunday morning programs for children Children in Worship: This term refers to a program and style of Christian Education, which involves engaging the Scriptures in ever-deepening experiences. Scripture is shared as story and is followed by a variety of activities that deepen the child's understanding of the story. This program also includes music and worship. We have been using this program as our two-hour Sunday morning education option. Workshop Rotation: This term refers to a program and style of Christian Education that utilizes a multi-sensory approach to education. The participants engage the lesson over a period of several weeks using a variety of methods, such as music, arts, cooking, computer, drama. We have been using this program as our one-hour Sunday morning education option. Children's Church: This term refers to a program that was designed by the staff at Union Church to provide an educational experience during the 11:00 worship time. This program expanded on the theme of the Children's Moment, from worship, with a storytime, an art or craft activity, prayer, and returning to the worship service for conclusion. Church School: This term has been used to refer to the total Sunday morning program, in its complexity and variety. It is a universal term, and does NOT designate a specific program. Sunday School: This is the term which will be used beginning in the Fall of 2006. It refers to the children's program being offered from 9:50 - 11:15 a.m. on Sunday morning (concurrent with worship). Beginning this fall we will have only ONE educational offering for children, and it will be referred to as "Sunday School." Our Sunday School will be using the Children in Worship program and style, but in a 85 minute format. •3•


Summer Work Tour

RETURNS

(From Cortez, CO and From Towaoc, on the Ute Mountain Reservation)

REMEMBER THEM? Mark & Mary Toole (with daughters Maura and Cara) hosted us in Denver on our way home.

Work Tour is about a lot of things! It’s about physical work, but it’s also about building relationships with others, breaking down walls of injustice, and showing Christ’s love where perhaps it has never been evident before. It’s also about being spiritually transformed so you can be an agent for change in a world that desperately needs to know love, kindness, mercy, humility and grace. Watch for the stories of transformation, from the students who participated in Summer Work Tour (in Colorado), in the next issues of the Good News.

Plan your Days & Get Your Reservation in NOW for Some Awesome Union Church July & August Youth Events!! Thurs. August 10th , 6-9PM (Work Tour) Sponsor-A-Youth Dinner &

Slide Show .

Sponsors, Families and Participants please RSVP by Monday August 7th.

Tues. August 15th , 3:00-11PM (High School) NIGHT MINISTRY Moonlight Picnic. Prepare a meal and hand it out on the streets of Chicago to help homeless teens & families. Reserve by Friday Aug. 11th. Space is LIMITED. This is an AWESOME EXPERIENCE!

Thurs. August 17th , 5:00-7:30PM (Middle School) BOWLING NIGHT. Cost: $8 / Reserve by Tues. Aug. 15th - Bring a friend!


READ ANY GOOD BOOKS LATELY?

9 WEEKS AND COUNTING...

The Women's Association "Last Wednesday Drop-in Book Group" If you could bring one box of clothing, housewares, books, jewelry would like to hear from you! or other gently used items to the church dining room each week for the next two months, imagine how you could reduce the clutter in Beginning again on September 27, everyone is welcome to stop by your home while also benefiting the wide variety of organizations South Parlor on the last Wednesday afternoon of each month at that Women's Association supports with the proceeds from 1:30 pm for an informal chat about a book. RESALE! And if that looks doable, challenge yourself to bring two or three boxes each week. Just to whet your appetite, Sue Nelson, the coordinator of the group, offers these suggestions: Don't wait! Our crew is ready and waiting for your gently used clothing, housewares, books, jewelry, holiday decorations, etc. You "For starters, I thought we would do two books in tandem: Anne may bring your donations (clearly marked "Resale" please) to the Morrow Lindbergh's Gift from the Sea along with Under a Wing, Dining Room stage at any time. If you have furniture or other large a memoir written by her youngest daughter Reeve Lindbergh. items to donate, please call Fran Evans (630-986-1438) to make arrangements for pick-up Other suggested readings: • Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See Want to get the first look at the treasure trove? Come to the Dining • Digging to America by Ann Tyler Room every Tuesday afternoon from 1-3 and each Friday morning • The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seirstad from 9-12 to help sort. Remember, the big days are Friday and • The Forest Lover by Susan Vreeland Saturday, September 29th and 30th! • The Elements of Style (not the textbook!) by Wendy Wasserstein SPIRITUAL DIRECTION IS AVAILABLE • An Unfinished Life by Mark Spragg TO MEMBERS AND FRIENDS OF UNION CHURCH • The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy Most journeys are easier and more fruitful if they are shared journeys. If the journey is through unfamiliar or unchartered Please note that these are suggestions. If you would like to recom- territory, it is wise to have a guide. mend a title, or would like to host one month, Sue would love to Spiritual direction is the process of accompanying people hear from you. Please call her at 630-789-6364. on a spiritual journey. Spiritual direction helps people tell their sacred stories everyday. Spiritual direction exists in a context that TWO COUPLES GROUPS OPEN emphasizes growing closer to God (or the holy or a higher power). Married couples are invited to join two new couples groups that Spiritual direction invites a deeper relationship with the spiritual will begin meeting monthly this fall. Couples who participate aspect of being human. Spiritual direction is not psychotherapy, meet monthly in a host and hostess’ home for appetizers and counseling, or financial planning. refreshments, Bible study and prayer and a simple potluck supSpiritual Direction involves committing to an intentional per. All groups will meet beginning Friday, Sept. 22, at the and professional relationship with a Spiritual Director. Direction church for an orientation with other group participants. Then can be weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly; and in some cases involve a the groups will meet on the third Thursday of each month from fee. October to May. One new group will be led by Craig and If you are interested in Spiritual Direction, please contact Marilyn Schaefer and Doug and Heather Stoffer, and the other Dr. Thom Parrott-Sheffer, in the Church Office. group will be led by Ellis and Verlee Copeland. Please contact Rev. Copeland at 323-4303 if you would like to learn more about these faith deepening groups for couples.

LUCILLE HEIDE WILL ESTABLISHES SCHOLARSHIP FUND Lucille Heide, a former member of Union Church who died this year, established a scholarship fund for qualifying young members of the Church to further their education upon graduation from high school. The scholarship, given in memory of Lucille and Lawrence W. Heide and Rose and John Chiska, will provide one thousand dollars annually and will be given beginning next year. Ms Heide's gift, which will be managed as a part of our Church Endowment Fund, will support young church members in college for years to come, as was her desire. Have you remembered Union Church in your will? Members of the Endowment Committee can help you as you consider a wide variety of giving opportunities. If you would like to discuss these please call Sally Porter or Bill Whitney, Chairs of the Committee.

YOUR USED AND UNWANTED CELL PHONE CAN MEAN NEEDED FUNDS AND SUPPORT FOR VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE Donating a used, unwanted cell phone allows you to donate to an important cause without reaching into your pocket or wallet. Family Shelter Service has partnered with Shelter Alliance, which raises funds through the recycling of used cell phones. The phones are reconditioned and used to provide emergency phones for victims of domestic violence or resold to provide necessary funds for domestic violence programs. At present, over $ 2,500,000 has been raised by Shelter Alliance. Please consider donating your used and unwanted cell phone to this cause. It is as easy as dropping it in a box - which is set up in the Gathering Place at the church. •5•


THE UNION CHURCH OF HINSDALE United Church of Christ 137 S. Garfield Ave., Hinsdale, IL 60521

INSIDE THIS ISSUE... 2 ILLIONIS CONFERENCE ANNUAL MEETING 3 SUNDAY SCHOOL PREVIEW 4 UTH GNUS 5 LUCILLE HEIDE SCHOLARSHIP FUND

WELCOME TO OUR NEW MEMBERS WHO JOINED JULY 9, 2006 Kristen and Joshua George were married last December at St. John's United Church of Christ in Mokena, where Kristen has been a member. They now live in Downers Grove, and Kristen is a social worker at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital. Joshua is a federal investigator with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Kristen's interests are health and mental health, singing and social justice issues. Joshua is interested in criminal justice, law enforcement and fitness. Their sponsors are Phil and Barb Voorhees. Hank and Becky Hartman have been married for 37 years and live in Hinsdale. Becky and Hank have lived in several states, from Wisconsin to Arkansas. Becky is retired from being a computer "geek" for Exelon/ComEd, and Hank is a network administrator and tech trainer for ISMIE Mutual Insurance Company in Chicago. They are former members of First Presbyterian Church of LaGrange, and we are glad they have already joined our choir. Both are interested in prairie restoration, and also enjoy canoeing, biking and hiking. Their sponsors are Lorelei Collins and Dick Hill. Ann Kleboe has attended our church for many years and has been involved in the mental health ministry team and adult education-as a teacher and student. She and her fiancĂŠe John Ross live in LaGrange. Ann is a visual artist and facilitates creativity workshops, such as "The Artist's Way." She transfers her membership from Christ Church in Oak Brook, and her sponsor is Sue Becker.

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A church newsletter published by The Union Church of Hinsdale, U.C.C.

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