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CONNECTION

A publication of First Christian Church of Edmond, OK Vol. 4 No. 44 November 8, 2012

The Chalice

Who Is Our Neighbor?


By Rev. Chris Shorow, Senior Minister
Once upon a time I lived in the small city of Macon, Georgia. Macon had about 75,000 residents at the time, but seemed like a much smaller town. When I first arrived there, I could walk incognito anywhere I wanted, being a stranger in a strange land. But as I got to know the people of the town, it became more difficult to do anything in private. In fact, by the time I left Macon, I couldnt go anywhere without seeing someone I knew. There is something safe about living in anonymity. Going places where you wont be recognized and doing things that no one else will care about gives us a certain freedom. But it also has its risks. Once in Macon, a restaurant opened up a few miles outside of town. The draw to this restaurant was topless waitresses. It was quite popular in its early days (I am told) until a local church and its pastor began to hang out in the parking lot and take pictures of the license plates and cars that were parked there. Then, once a week in the Macon Telegraph, they would take out a full-page ad showing all those pictures from the previous week. Strangely enough, the restaurant suffered a downturn and eventually closed. When anonymity was gone, people didnt dare do what might be seen as bad. Living in community is much more difficult than living in anonymity. Being responsible to, and for, one another brings all new complications to our lives. And it brings great blessing as well. As we reach out to one another, getting rid of the cloak of anonymity, we take on the problems and challenges that each of us face. In that way we bless one another. Its just like Jesus said when asked who is our neighbor. Our neighbor is anyone in need. In fact, there are no strangers in our world, only friends we have yet to meet. One time Beth and I went to dinner with some friends in Macon. While there, we met a wonderful couple who would become some of our closest friends. We wondered where they had been for all that time we had lived in Macon. Turns out, they lived a block away from us and went to all the same places we frequented restaurants, grocery stores, video stores, etc. And we probably saw them on a daily basis. But it was only after we had met them and realized how wonderful they were that we recognized them out in public. I wonder how many other people are like that in our worldswonderful people waiting to be recognized. I recall Jesus response to those who didnt recognize himWhen did we see you hungry, or naked or sick or in prison? He simply said, When you do it to the least of these, you do it to me. Maybe if we open our eyes to those around us, well see the risen Christ in our midst, and that veil of anonymity will be lifted and we can be Gods children together.

Serving with Open Hands

Operation Christmas Child Project in Full Swing!


By Rev. Greg Bunton As Christmas draws near, people from our church and the Edmond community are busy filling shoeboxes with gifts of toys, combs, toothbrushes, hard candies and other goodies for children around the world for Operation Christmas Child. As a favorite hands on mission project of First Christian Church, we have agreed again to be an official drop off location during National Collection Week, November 12-18. We will have LOTS of shoeboxes (thousands) filled with Christmas gifts coming into our facility on these days! We still need LOTS of help to receive shoe boxes and help pack them into shipping boxes. If you can spare a few hours, we could use your cheerful assistance as we provide a hospitable, convenient location in the community for donors to bring their shoeboxes full of gifts! You can sign up online now by logging on to www.fccedmond.org and clicking on the Operation Christmas Child slide. It will take you to an online sign-up sheet at We Join In. Or type this address into your web browser and go straight to the sign up http://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/lnnjd Come serve as cheerful greeter, help unload shoe boxes from vehicles, carefully package the gifts into shipping boxes, and track valuable ministry data. If you have any questions about Operation Christmas Child and our church involvement in this ministry, please contact Michele Schlough at 844-3214.

FOCUS: Seeing Gods Vison for First Christian


Our prayer triads are currently meeting for 90 days of Prayer and Discernment, as an initial step towards developing a strategic plan for ministry in the coming years. We are excited to share a sampling of the kind of dialogue that is occurring in our prayer triads so far (this is a VERY small sampling as there are more than 40 triads meeting). Most triads are still in the first half their sessions, so much of the conversation focuses on current program and ministry. Later sessions will begin laying out more clues to Gods vision for us as a congregation. Please keep these triads in your prayers!

We appreciate having 3 very unique ministers with 3 very unique styles that complement each other. We feel that Mission and Service is central to who we are We need to devise a way to offer a variety of means for people to become connected to others in the church. This would involve a variety of activities on many days of the week. The church process of summer of 2011 (ReNEW) was a great tool of bringing all members together from the church and allowing them a chance to be heard and participate in future of their church. There could be a way to develop a pool or list of members that have an interest in serving in certain capacities and/or who also have certain gifts that they could offer to the church and then when the church is looking for leaders or committee positions, ..they could look to this list and find possible candidates to fill the position. Communicatecommunicate communicate Our church family is united in faith and service to Christ and provides a support system in a secular world, even as we participate in outreach programs to that world. Although we are called to be in the world, witnessing to others, it is important to surround ourselves with Christian friends to keep us grounded, for accountability, and to prevent us from being of the world.

Although, traditionally a church has 25% of its members who do all the work, our congregation seems to be involving more of its members. Means of improving the percentage of participation should be pursued. Many people are willing to volunteer --- they just need to be asked. Need for cross generational relationshipsNeed to organize formalized mingle coffee time where individuals can visit and share in an informal settingNeed something beyond Sunday school to maintain and develop existing and new relationshipsNeed more open and welcoming environment in the rotunda We feel our congregation does a fair job at attracting people. Some of the things that make our congregation attractive are: our web site, the location, grounds and the variety of service styles. We stated that we did a better job at attracting people than getting them connected. We dont have a good program to help them have the tools or desire to be leaders. While the children and youth are wonderfully supported, there seems to be a lack in programs supporting their parents. Classes could cover a variety of life topics; such as finances, parenting, marriage strengthening, spiritual development, balancing work with raising a family, etc. Everyone has a gift and everyones gift is useful. Our discussion here centered on the issue that many people dont know his/her gift(s).

If you have more questions about the Focus visioning process, please feel free to contact any member of our Focus Team:
Brenda Peterson, Co-Moderator With: Billy Harrison, Co-Moderator

Brian Cavanaugh, Ellen Chitwood, Molly Haley, Robbi Kinnaird, Terry Kerr, Molly Larrison, Wayne Shepherd, Bethany Shipley and Wayne Warner

Prayers of the People


THOSE IN NEED OF PRAYER Tom Cowling, Larry Hays (Dyke Moffatts brother-in-law), Jay ONiel (Virgina ONiels son), Lori Snider (Loretta Parks daughter), Terra Conlin (Sid & Thadda Grooms daughter), Jason Scheer (Larry & Judy Freemans son), Jerri Jones, Rose Marie McKee, Virginia ONiel, Cynthia David (Winnie Halls daughter), Ed Berry, Bill & Mary Lou Womble

Happy Birthday!
11/11 Sonni Adams, Brian Carroll, Avery Miller, Chloe Stout, Jim Thorpe 11/12 Judy Farley, Janet Helms, Felicia Jones, Glo Rehrig, Barbara Shaw 11/13 Brian Kilpatrick, Lorelle Watts, Bill White 11/14 Demaris Burleson, Sherilyn Clark, Jill Ferrell, Winnie Hall, Joyce McNickle, Todd Ward 11/15 Mark Taylor, Chris Webb 11/16 Carrie Akin 11/17 Andrew Anderson, John Rahhal 11/18 Judy Bennett, Kathy Lee

Share With Open Hands!

Donate Items For Hurricane Victims

By Rev. Greg Bunton One week after Hurricane Sandy, thousands of people are still homeless and without power. Still others are sitting in line for gasoline or waiting for roads to be reopened so they can assess damage to their homes. If you are seeking a way to share hope with victims of the storm, please join us as we partner with the University of Central Oklahoma Volunteer & Service Learning Center to collect items for Church World Service. These students will be creating clean-up and hygiene kits in cooperation with Church World Service, who will distribute the kits to those who were impacted by the storm. Simply select one or more items from the following list and drop them off no later than noon on Friday, November 16 at either the Nigh University Center, room 212, or the collection box in the church rotunda.

Emergency Clean-up Bucket Items


Five-gallon bucket with re-sealable lid Scouring pads Seven sponges, assorted sizes Scrub brush Unopened 50-78 oz. box dry laundry detergent Unopened 12 oz. bottle of liquid concentrated household cleaner (like Lysol) Unopened 25 oz. bottle liquid disinfectant dish soap (like Dawn) Dust masks Latexgloves (like Playtex) Work gloves 28-bag roll of heavy-duty trash bags (30-45 gallon)

If you ordered a butter braid pastry, you can pick up your order on Monday, November 12 between 5:30 and 8:00 p.m. in the rotunda. These arrive frozen - dont delay, so your pastries will not thaw! Questions? Contact Diane Ball: 406-8628 or dball@fccedmond.org

Butter Braids Are On The Way!

Hygiene Kit:

Childrens Christmas Musical


Sunday, December 9
Our Childrens Christmas Musical will be held Sunday, December 9, at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary. If your child, or grandchild, would like to participate in this years musical Once Upon A Christmas Light, please be sure that they come to rehearsals on Wednesday evenings from 5:00-6:00 pm during Unite. Rehearsals have begun! Attention Parents: There will also be a mandatory dress rehearsal on Saturday, December 8! Contact Diane Ball or Michelle Fritz at 341-3544 or email them at dball@fccedmond.org or mfritz@fccedmond.org

Hand towel measuring approximately 16 x 28 (no fingertip or bath towels) Washcloths Wide-tooth comb Nail clippers Bar of soap (bath size in wrapper) Toothbrush (in original packaging) Standard size Band-Aids What a wonderful opportunity to partner with the Edmond community in sharing with open hands! Would you like to serve? Through Breakfast on Boulevard (BOB), First Christian Church helps feed the hungry of the Edmond community, Monday through Friday mornings. Volunteers are needed to set up, cook, serve, prepare, and clean up from 5:30 to 7:30 a.m. If you would like to volunteer on a rotational basis, contact Judy Griffis at (405) 348-1443 or Mickey Stufflebean at (405) 341-4742.

BOB Needs Volunteers!

Regional Minister, Rev. Dr. Thomas R. Jewell Retires


Celebrating 40 Years of Service ~ November 17 - 12:30pm

Worship
8:15, 9 & 11am

at First Christian
November 11, 2012

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Oklahoma has planned a celebration of Rev. Dr. Thomas R. Jewells regional ministry and work. The celebration will be held on Saturday, November 17 at Southern Hills Christian Church in Edmond. Please RSVP by Friday, November 9, as seating is limited. Lunch reservations are $20 per person. To make reservations, call Jean Scott Gauldin at 528-3577 or email jscottgauldin@okdisciples.org

Message: Rev. Chris Shorow Rev. Dr. Jerry Black Scripture: Exodus 18:12-27

Edmond Community Thanksgiving Dinner


Each year, several churches in Edmond combine efforts to host a Community Thanksgiving Dinner. This shared meal is for anyone, but provides a special sense of community for singles, college students, those far from family members, and others. Hundreds of volunteers are needed to prep the food prior to Thanksgiving Day, and, on Thanksgiving Day - prepare food, serve the food and clean up afterward. Drop by the Rotunda display to complete a volunteer form. For Home Delivery, please call 341-3602, ext. 130.

November 18, 2012

Thursday, November 22, 11a.m. to 3p.m. University of Central Oklahoma at the UCO Ballroom

Message: Mark Taylor Rev. Chris Shorow Scripture: James 2:1-13

The Chalice CONNECTION


Shelley Regan, Editor sregan@fccedmond.org Read News Online @ fccedmond.org/news Submit Articles to news@fccedmond.org

Want Some Pizza? Try Papa Dinos!

When a member of First Christian Church orders from Papa Dinos Pizza & Grill, and mentions FCC, Papa Dinos gives 10% of all sales back to FCC! You can dine in, order take out or have it delivered - just be sure to inform the cashier that you are with FCC. Papa Dinos will catalog each sale for our church, and, at the end of every month, total the sales and write a check to FCC for 10% of the total amount spent by our members. What a great way to give back! Call Papa Dinos at (405) 341-4447.

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