You are on page 1of 8

e

h
T

Courier
C

The
Vol. 67,
Christian
No. 1
Courier The
Bellingham
Christian
FirstCourier
ChristianThe
Church
Christian Courier
January
The
2017
C
International Welcoming Church Sunday
January 22
Each year, the fourth
Sunday in January is
designated as “International
Welcoming Church Sunday.”
This is a time when
congregations in many different
denominations all celebrate our
commitment to diversity – and in
particular to affirming God’s love
for persons of all sexual
orientations and gender identities.

Jesus Has Left the Building
Sunday, January 29
10:50 a.m.
Gathering Time
11 a.m.
Worship
Noon Potluck
1 p.m. JHLB

The Welcoming Task Force of First Christian Church
invites you to a special worship service of welcome
and diversity

Away Team:
Destination TBD

Church Team:
•Crafting
Group: Bring your sewing machines
& fabrics, knitting needles, crochet
hooks, & yarn; we’ll be making winter
hats & scarves for Joseph’s Closet

• Kids’ Table: Making Valentines
• Letters for Justice

Congregational Meeting
Sunday, January 22
12:10 p.m.
Your vote is needed! Take a look at our annual reports
and vote on our annual budget (Aw, c’mon! Muster some
enthusiasm.) and help make changes to our church bylaws and constitution (as proposed on page
3 of this newsletter).
And, hey, maybe there will be candy. (Seriously, this
is important, as we do the good work of God. See you
there.)

Shoe’s News

First Christian Church
(Disciples of Christ)

495 East Bakerview Road
Bellingham, WA 98226
360.734.6820
office@bellinghamdisciples.org
www.bellinghamdisciples.org
Follow us on Twitter
Find us on Facebook

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
A movement for wholeness in a fragmented
world. As part of the one body of Christ, we
welcome all to the Lord’s Table as God
welcomed us.
All of Us
Ministers
Rev. Gary Shoemaker
Pastor
gary@bellinghamdisciples.org
Rev. Tamalyn Kralman
Director of Ed. & Community Outreach
Courier Editor
tamalyn@bellinghamdisciples.org
Amelia Nye
Accompanist
Katie Ramstead, Aneesa Ahad
Childcare Providers
Rev. Sandy Messick
Regional Minister
Rev. Sharon Watkins
General Minister and President

Sunday Schedule
9:30 a.m.
10:50 a.m.
11 a.m.
12:15 p.m.
12:30 p.m.
2 p.m.

Office Hours

Sunday School
Gathering Time
Worship
Fellowship Time
Out-to-Lunch Bunch (4th Sunday)
Someone Cares! Community Meal
(2nd Sunday)

Monday - Friday
9 a.m. - noon
Our staff are in and out of the office throughout the
week. Please feel free to stop by during their office
hours or make an appointment that fits your schedule.

Officers
Renee Hoemann, Moderator
Don Hoffman, Vice Moderator
Cheryl Perry, Treasurer
Melissa Henderson, Secretary

To unsubscribe or go paperless:
Contact 360.734.6820, 495 East Bakerview
Road, Bellingham, WA 98226, or
office@bellinghamdisciples.org.

2

Shoe’s News
Traveling through Advent, Christmas and New Year’s is always a
journey that is packed with activity. It almost seems contradictory that
in this season of the year when we ought to be slowing down and
reflecting on what the coming of Jesus into our world means, we do
just the opposite. But I hope you’ve found at least a few occasions to
allow the pace of your life to slow enough to welcome God’s Spirit into
the world anew.
For me, that happened as the choir was rehearsing for our Cantata. I
hope it’s obvious that we run through the Cantata a great number of
times as we practice. So for me, the message of each of the songs and
the narration has a chance to sink in. I’m afraid if I only heard it once,
it would be a challenge to really hear it. You’re probably a better
listener than I am and once was enough to make an impact on you.
Time goes by too quickly! I miss so much and so much of my time is
taken up by the less meaningful activities. In that way, I envy the
monks of old where their time was spent in reflection and worship.
(Actually a lot of their time was probably spent on less meaningful
activities as well, peeling potatoes, sweeping the floor, taking out the
garbage.)
But I digress! I wish for each of us a deeper spiritual walk, where we
put in adequate time to reflect on our relationship with God, Jesus and
the world around us. We live in challenging times, and we need to fill
ourselves with the product of deep reflection so we can bring our best
selves into living the Jesus Life in these days. If we can do that, the
world will change for the good just a bit.
Hopefully yours,
Pastor Gary

Did You Ban the Bag?
Yes, we know Bellingham
banned plastic bags in
grocery stores and most of
you are carrying your own
canvas/reusable shopping
bags. But, for those of you
who still receive plastic
bags at the store, please
save them and bring them
to the church. We need
them for a special Jesus
Has Left the Building
crafting project. We’re
making sleeping mats!

00000 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000oooo 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000oooo 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000
00000oooo 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000oooo
00000 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000oooo 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000oooo 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000
00000oooo 00000 00000 00000
00000 00000 00000 00000oooo
January 2017

Elders’ Report and Proposed By-Laws Changes

Elders’ Report to the Board October, 2016
In the Fall of 2015, the elders began a process to discover if our congregation, at this time in our history was interested
in and willing to become an Open and Affirming congregation.
To this end we discussed what we meant by open and affirming and defined the concept for our use.
In March, 2016 we then adopted a statement for elders’ use about the gospel of Jesus Christ cutting across all barriers.
Along the way we shared the statements with the Board as well as the process we intended to use—to send a letter that
included both definition to every person in the congregation. That letter also explained that an elder would be
contacting them to discuss the content of the letter.
The letter was sent and members were contacted by an elder. I imagine every Board member received such a contact
and so you know the process.
In September, the elders met and summarized each elder’s results to give us an estimate on the willingness of the
members to become an Open and Affirming congregation.
A side note is in order at this point: The elders are charged with being spiritual leaders at First Christian Church. We
take that charge seriously and this entire process was a process of discovery and spirituality for each elder. We learned
a lot about ourselves and our congregation. We now pass on to the Board what we have learned and make a
recommendation that is for the spiritual growth of First Christian Church:
After several months of preparation and after personal contact with the members of our congregation the elders report
the following:
1) A substantial majority of the congregation agreed that “Every individual is a child of God and has
equal status in this congregation” is a good working definition of Open and Affirming for First Christian
Church, Bellingham.
AND
2) An even greater majority of the congregation agreed with the statement “We believe that the gospel
of Jesus Christ cuts across all barriers that fragment and divide us. We are called to love, affirm and
welcome ALL regardless of race, gender, sexual and/or affectional orientation, class or life situation.”
The elders, therefore, recommend to the General Board that the two statements in quotes (above) be incorporated in
the Constitution and/or by-laws of our church and that these constitutional/by-law changes be presented to the
congregation for a vote at a congregational meeting.
Here is the suggested placement of these two items if the Board and Congregation agree. The BOLD FACE is not
intended to be included but is used here to indicate appropriate placement:
Article I. Section B. Mission:
First Christian Church is called to be a Christ-centered faith community, engaging in the ongoing ministry of Jesus and
inviting all people to experience His love and practice His message. We believe that the gospel of Jesus Christ cuts
across all barriers that fragment and divide us. We are called to love, affirm and welcome ALL regardless
of race, gender, sexual and/or affectional orientation, class or life situation.
Article II. Membership
Anyone who publicly accepts Jesus Christ as Lord is invited to become a member of this congregation. We are an
Open and Affirming congregation, which means that every individual is a child of God and has equal
status in this congregation. Members covenant to support the church by giving, serving, and praying to the best of
our abilities. Our regular practice is baptism by immersion, but we accept baptism in all forms.
Letter submitted by John Riseland and approved by the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Bellingham, WA
General Board, October 23,2016.
This information is to be published in the January 2017 “Christian Courier,” posted in the fellowship hall, and voted on at
the January 22, 2017 Congregational Meeting.

January 2017

3

2017 Church Officers

Joys and Concerns

2017 Slate of Officers
Bellingham First Christian Church
New people voted on are indicated with an asterisk and in boldface;
the vote was taken at the December 11, 2016 congregational
meeting.
Board Officers
*Renee Hoemann, Moderator (serves for a term of one year)
*Don Hoffman, Vice Moderator (serves for a term of one year)
*Melissa Henderson, Secretary (serves for a term of one year)
*Cheryl Perry, Treasurer (serves for a term of one year)
Trustees (No trustee term is ending in 2016)
Kelvin Smith (2015 - 2017)
Darleen Page (2015 - 2017)
John Riseland (2016 - 2018)
Elders (elected for 3-year terms and may succeed themselves)
2015 - 2017
2016 - 2018
Margaret Brown
Jane Kletka
Gregg Heyne
Kelvin Smith
Melody Hoffman
Joe Plancich
2017 - 2019
Brenda Riseland
*Don Hoffman
John Riseland
*Leslie Pinkston
Deacons (elected for 3-year terms)
2015 - 2017
Ardythe Hannah
Lynn Plancich
Deacon Emeritus
Connie Page
Board Members at Large
2015 - 2017
Jane Kletka

2016 - 2018
Jim Becker
Renee Hoemann
Linda Heyne
2017 - 2019
*Kathy Wheeler
*Pat Whitney
Proposed, 2017 - 2019
*Pat Whitney

Fund for Living Ministry Board of Administrators
(This board consists of up to five members, elected to five-year
terms.)
No new administrators are proposed at this time.
Margaret Brown (2013 - 2017)
Bea Gilfilen (2016 - 2020)
Ann Hall (2016 - 2020)
Human Resources Coordinator (no one yet recruited)
Proposed by Nominating Committee:
Bob Fisher
Don Hoffman, Chair
Jane Kletka

4

Joys and Concerns
Please submit written
requests to update this
list.
Medical concerns:
•Bridget Becker
•Matt Nelson
•Harmon Woodworth
• Mary Ann Teeters
• Chloe Gibson
• Donna Fairchild
• Bill Pribilsky
• Nathan Klemann
• Alex Hicks & family, Bob Fisher’s
nephew
• Sue and Henry Cross
• Heather, friend of Kris Ann Lewis
Life’s challenges:
• Matthew, nephew of Kris Ann Lewis
Beyond Our Walls:
• For the healing of our nation
• Refugees worldwide
• Disciples House Residents, past,
present and future
• Iglesia de Dios, as together we share
God’s love
• Raices Culturales families in their
gardening program in our field
• Kristine Tissinger, missionary partner in
Ghana
• Rev. Sandy Messick, Regional Minister
• Rev. Sharon Watkins, General Minister
and President
• Our General Church ministries
• Yakama Christian Mission
• Victims of hatred, injustice, violence,
poverty, disease, and disaster worldwide
• All troops involved in world conflict
• Peacemakers worldwide

Thank You Received
Thanks to all who
participated in the
Interfaith Coalition’s
holiday gift program
this year. [2016] Your
love and generosity
yield a happier
Christmas for families in
need.
God’s blessings to you
and those you love
— Darleen & Cheryl

January 2017

In Our Community
Come, dear friends, Sants and companions, let us join
together and sing the glorious praises of the Infinite One!
(Guru Arjan - SGGS page 104)

Interfaith Prayer Service
SATURDAY, JANUARY 7, 2017
WELCOME: 3:30pm
INTERFAITH PRAYER SERVICE: 4:00pm - 6:00pm
Noemi Ban, Holocaust Survivor - Keynote speaker
Hosts: Satpal Singh Sidhu, Whatcom County Council member
President and Executive Committee of Sikh Temple
Whatcom County faith leaders and civic leaders will be
sharing prayers and peace in multicultural congregation.
Langar begins at 4:00pm and continues until 8:00pm
Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara
176 E. Pole Rd.
Lynden WA

“Gurdwara” is the name for a Sikh temple or church. “Gurdwara” means “door
of the Guru”, and it is where the Sikh scripture resides. The Sikh scripture is the
Guru Granth Sahib and it is the only Guru/Guide/Teacher of the Sikhs. People
from all faiths, and those who do not profess a faith, are always welcomed in
Sikh Gurdwaras.
Every Gurdwara has a Langar Hall where free vegetarian food is served.

Interfaith Coalition Hope Auction Is on the Way
Mark your calendar: Interfaith Coalition’s Annual Hope Auction happens on
Saturday, March 25th, beginning at 5:30 p.m. The auction will again
take place at the Four Points by Sheraton, 714 Lakeway Drive, Bellingham.
Whatcom County’s friendliest auction fundraiser features fellowship,
inspiration, hope and lively bidding on great silent and live auction items.
Please join us as we continue in our work of transforming struggling lives. You can help in these ways:
Donate an auction item! A service you offer, your own artwork, gift certificate, tickets to popular sporting events,
vacation home getaway. Let your imagination soar and think of what you might be able to donate, and get in touch
with us!
Buy tickets to the auction. Tickets are $55 each, including dinner.
Become a business sponsor or ask your favorite businesses or employers to support Interfaith with a dedicated
donation.
We make a difference in the lives of homeless families and individuals. Partner with us by attending our Hope Auction
and lifting up our brothers and sisters! To donate an auction item and purchase tickets, please contact Brenda
Riseland, your congregation’s board member, through our website: www.interfaith-coalition.org , or call Interfaith
Coalition at 734-3983.

January 2017

5

Who’s on First?!

Sunday, January 1
Elders: Gregg Heyne (O), Brenda Riseland (C)
Lock-Up: Kelvin Smith
In Home Communion: Melody Hoffman
Joe Plancich
Deacons: Kathy Wheeler, Lynn Plancich*
Reader: Melody Hoffman
Flowers: TBD
Fellowship Time: TBD
Sunday, January 8
Elders: Leslie Pinkston (O), Margaret Brown (C)
Deacons: Renee Hoemann, James Becker*
Reader: Betty Schmidling
Flowers: TBD
Fellowship Time: TBD
Sunday, January 15
Elders: Jane Kletka (O), Melody Hoffman (C)
Deacons: Ardythe Hannah, Linda Heyne*
Reader: Gregg Heyne
Flowers: TBD
Fellowship Time: TBD
Sunday, January 22
Elders: Don Hoffman (O), John Riseland (C)
Deacons: Pat Whitney, Kathy Wheeler*
Reader: James Becker
Flowers: Esther Group
Fellowship Time: Esther Group
Sunday, January 29
Elders: Kelvin Smith (O), Joe Plancich (C)
Deacons: Kathy Wheeler, Lynn Plancich*
Reader: Don Hoffman
Flowers: TBD
Fellowship Time:TBD
Sign up in the fellowship hall to help in these
important ministries:
• Read scripture during Sunday morning worship
• Bring flowers for Sunday worship
• Provide goodies for fellowship time following
Sunday worship
*Deacons’ schedule may change in the New Year

Birthdays & Anniversaries

Happy Birthday:
Samantha Becker
Kathy Wheeler
Chloe Gibson
Jane Kletka
Mark Hoemann
John Riseland
Charles Schmidling

2
1
8
10
10
11
14

Zoe Ila Becker
17
Russ Weston
17
Marceille Kobel
19
Nathan Klemann
23
Ralph Gilfilen
24
Kelvin Smith
26
Victoria Botts
27
Benjamin Shoemaker 29
Happy Anniversary:
Max & Cheryl Perry
12
Angel & Nicole Herrera 25

Find Weekly Lectionary Readings
http://lectionary.library.vanderbilt.edu/

Be the Hands of God (nurture the world)




Community Meal
Joseph’s Closet
Disciples House
CAST
Socks on the Street

• Food Bank collections
• Blessing Bags
• Hospitals & wells
(Africa)

• Community Garden

For more info on how to assist in any of these projects,
please contact us at office@bellinghamdisciples.org.
Be a Part of A Small Group (nurture your soul)
• Women's Spiritual Growth Groups - Please contact
the church office if you would like to be a part of a group.
• Out-to-Lunch Bunch, 12:30 p.m., 4th Sundays - This
informal gathering, visits locally owned and run
restaurants.
• Book Group, 7 p.m., 4th Sundays - This group
explores books to expand their minds and their hearts.
• Esther Group, 11:30 a.m., 3rd Mondays - this group
meets for lunch and fellowship in a local restaurant.
• Bible Study, Noon, Tuesdays - Meeting in the church
library, this group explores the lectionary scriptures.
• Wild Goose Worship, 6:30 p.m., 1st & 3rd Tuesdays
- An alternative worship experience for young(ish) adults.
• Pub Theology, 6:30 p.m., 3rd Thursdays - Beer,
conversation, and God! (Or any beverage of your choice.)
• Checking in Group, 5 p.m., 4th Thursdays -supportive
group of people who share life's journey together. 


Attention: Elders, Deacons, Committee Chairs, and Task Force Leaders, 2017 calendarizing is
underway. Please get your 2017 events turned into the office ASAP.

6

January 2017

January calendar

January 2017
Sunday
Sunday

Monday
Monday

1

Tuesday
Tuesday

2




9:30a Sunday School
10:50a Gathering Time
11a Worship
12:15p Fellowship Time





9:30a Sunday School
10:50a Gathering Time
11a Worship
12:15p Fellowship Time
2p Someone Cares
Community Meal &
Joseph’s Closet

• 6:30p
Stewardship
Meeting

15

16

22

International
Welcoming Church
Sunday
• 9:30a Sunday School
• 10:50a Gathering Time
• 11a Worship
• 12:10p Congregational
Meeting
• 12:15p Fellowship Time
• 12:30p Out-to-Lunch
Bunch, location TBD
• 7 p.m. Book Group
29





9:30a Sunday School
10:50a Gathering Time
11a Worship
Noon Potluck
1p Jesus Has Left the
Building

January 2017

3

4

Friday
Friday

Saturday
Saturday

5

6

12

13

19

20

7

Bulletin
deadline
• 6p Bell
Choir
• 7p Chancel
Choir
Rehearsal

8

Courier
deadline
•7:30a Elders’ Mtg
•9:30a Sunday School
•10:50a Gathering Time
•11a Worship
•12:15p Fellowship Time

Wednesday
Wednesday Thursday
Thursday

9

• 11:30 a.m.
Esther
Group (no
host)

23

10

• Noon Bible Study
• 5:30p
Spanish
Class
resumes

17

• Noon Bible Study
• 5:30p
Spanish
Class
24

• Noon Bible Study
• 5:30p
Spanish
Class

30

11

Bulletin
deadline
• 6p Bell
Choir
• 7p Chancel
Choir
Rehearsal
18

Bulletin
deadline
• 6p Bell
Choir
• 7p Chancel
Choir
Rehearsal
25

Bulletin
deadline
• 6p Bell
Choir
Rehearsal
• 7p Choir
Rehearsal

• 5p
Checking in
Group,
location
TBD

21

•7:30a Men’s
Breakfast,
Denny’s

• 6:30p Pub
Theology,
Hops ’N
Headz
26

14

•7:30a Men’s
Breakfast,
Denny’s

27

28

•7:30a Men’s
Breakfast,
Denny’s

31

• Noon Bible Study
• 5:30p
Spanish
Class

7

First Christian Church
(Disciples of Christ)
A church of grace and welcome for all!
495 East Bakerview Road
Bellingham, WA 98226-9168

Click Here to
Read the
Recent Issue of
the Regional
Church
Newsletter

PERIODICALS POSTAGE AT
USPS 0589-870

Save the Dates
Sun., March 22

World Water Day: We’ll
turn in the coins we’ve
been collecting for
wells in Africa

Sat., March 25

Interfaith Auction

July 8 - 12

General Assembly,
Indianapolis