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Vol. 68, No. 1
Courier Bellingham First Christian Church
An Open and Affirming Congregation January 2018

We wish you peace and the fullness of God’s grace˝
Cabin Fever College

as you embark on this New Year!
Session I Session II
Thursday Thursday
January 11, 2018 February 8, 2018
5:30p Soup Supper 5:30p Soup Supper
6 - 7p Classes 6 - 7p Classes

Featuring: Featuring:
• Cake Decorating 
 • Jam & Jelly Making 

Instructor: Kathy Wheeler Instructor: Darleen Page
• Bell Ringing Basics
 • Tai Chi Basics, part 2 

Instructor: Judy Bayless Instructor: Paul Mulholland
• Tai Chi Basics, part 1
 • Your Class Here

Instructor: Paul Mulholland Instructor: You! (What can YOU teach?)

Note: Materials fee may apply
First Christian Church 360.734.6820
(Disciples of Christ)
495 East Bakerview Road Like us on Facebook
Bellingham, WA 98226 Follow us on Twitter
Shoe’s News

First Christian Church
(Disciples of Christ)
Shoe’s News
“Another New Beginning”
495 East Bakerview Road
Bellingham, WA 98226 Each year there is a sense of a fresh start when January rolls
360.734.6820 around. The days are getting a bit longer; the busy season is behind us. We have a chance to catch our breath and consider our lives in a more restful time. The same is true of the church,
Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter
especially this year.
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
A movement for wholeness in a fragmented We begin the year with a time of reflection with our Visioning
world. As part of the one body of Christ, we Task Force. They’ve been discussing and dreaming about the
welcome all to the Lord’s Table as God future of our congregation. And on the first Sunday of the year
welcomed us. they will take some time during worship to listen to the rest of us,
All of Us and perhaps share a bit of their journey thus far.
I look forward to that opportunity. I’m curious about their vision
Rev. Gary Shoemaker
and to hear how we will interact with it as a congregation. Time is both kind and cruel. On the kind side, it gives us the
Rev. Tamalyn Kralman opportunity to learn from the past and use that wisdom to move
Director of Education & Community Outreach into the future with a fresh perspective.
Courier Editor Our faith is that way as well. One of the wonderful things about
Amelia Nye grace is that it never leaves us in the dust of our failures. It picks
Accompanist us up and allows us to gently learn from our missteps as we
Katie Ramstead receive a fresh start.
Childcare Provider
As we begin 2018 (I think that’s the first time I had to write that!),
Rev. Sandy Messick
let’s celebrate grace and the many new beginnings that we’ve
Regional Minister
enjoyed over the course of our lifetimes. Let’s look forward
Rev. Teresa Hord Owens
General Minister and President
together to a future that will bring us deeper opportunities to love
and serve.
Sunday Schedule (Labor Day - Memorial Day)
10:50 a.m. Gathering Time Pastor Gary
9:30 a.m. Adult Sunday School
11 a.m. Worship
12:15 p.m. Fellowship Time
1 p.m. Out-to-Lunch Bunch (4th Sunday) The eye of the great God,
2 p.m. Someone Cares! Community Meal The eye of the God of glory,
(2nd Sunday) The eye of the king of hosts,
Office Hours
Tuesday - Friday
The eye of the king of the living.
9 a.m. - noon Pouring upon us
Our staff are in and out of the office throughout the At each time and season,
week. Please feel free to stop by during their office Pouring upon us
hours or make an appointment that fits your schedule.
gently and generously
Renee Hoemann, Moderator
Glory to thee
Don Hoffman, Vice Moderator Thou glorious sun.
Cheryl Perry, Treasurer Glory to thee, thou son
Melissa Henderson, Secretary Face of the God of life.
Important Links:
Regional Website (including monthly
—Gaelic poem
General Church Website:

2 January 2018
Nurse’s Notes Joys & Concerns

The Cup of Life: that is full" -- which is simply being aware and paying
attention to each moment of each day. Allowing the
Full? Half Full? mind to wander down rabbit trails to past events or to
Empty? the future is an exercise in futility: very little can be done
about what has been or what is to be. A certain amount
Life and living can produce of pro-active planning for the future is wise, but goes
Nurse’s Notes feelings of fears and anxiety only so far. Mostly, we have very little control of the past
that are all based on the or future. Worrying about the future drains the energy
stress encountered with the from today.
many stressors produced
through our current political situation, aging, finances, Think of life as a cup. We as God's people are, like a
health problems, etc. cup, containers holding the refreshing, life-giving
presence of the Sacred. God's presence is within us
Stress can be described as a change in life that is wherever we go. In the rush of life we may forget this,
perceived as a threat, as a challenge, or as harmful. so it is important to stop and take notice of the Sacred
Physical effects of stress come from activation of the Presence that enfolds us on all levels.
sympathetic nervous system that produces increased
heart rate and blood pressure, narrowing of the blood Take a moment and try this: Brew yourself a comforting
vessels (vasoconstriction). Secretion of epinephrine and cup of tea. Sit down in a comfortable chair in a quiet
non epinephrine from adrenal stimulation (kidney) brings setting. Hold that cup. Notice its feel, its shape, its color,
about the "fight or flight" reaction. These physical effects the warmth it bring to your hands. Take a sip of the tea
of stress challenge physical and mental health. and notice its warmth as it slides down your throat. Sit
quietly and become aware of the blessings of this
A limited amount of stress can be helpful toward taking moment. Think of those with whom you are the most
action toward problem solving. Excessive or prolonged close and be thankful for them. Notice which mind
stress can cause emotional problems, anxiety, panic , frame that is most comfortable for you and think how
eventually illness: high blood pressure, asthma attacks, you can remain as much as possible in that thought.
peptic ulcer disease, irritable bowel syndrome, migraine From the physical nourishment of a cup of tea move to
headaches, etc. the spiritual nourishment of God. Be still and savor. Don't
To keep stress from harming health certain strategies let yourself come to a time when you look down at the
can help through stress management. Managing stress cup to find it is suddenly empty, that you missed the joys
can help control illness, improve self-esteem, gain of its fullness. Stay alert and aware so as to never miss
control and generally help life be more enjoyable. the blessings that do come our way.
Identifying stressors through assessment of finances, Jane Kletka, RN
family dynamics, work or social associations, Faith Community Nurse
responsibilities can help bring understanding with the
aim of resolution.
One major help in dealing with stress involves relaxation
techniques such as deep breathing that can bring about Joys and Concerns
mindfulness and stillness. Mental imagery can do the Please submit written requests to update list.
same as well as tensing and relaxing muscle groups.
Distraction such as reading, exercise, crafts, helping For a complete list, please see the Sunday
others, social contacts all can reduce stress. The best bulletin or contact the office.
technique is the one that the individual finds most Medical concerns:
helpful. Negative coping behaviors must, of course, be • Joyce, friend of Marian Overcash
avoided such as smoking , excessive alcohol intake, • Ellen Fisher, Bob’s sister-in-law
drugs, overeating, inactivity. Anger and abusive behavior • Helen Blaney
must be avoided as well. • Kelly Franks
• Marian Crim
Life is stressful at times, we all know that. It is our • Daisy Shoemaker, Pastor Gary’s mom
personal responsibility, however, to self and others to • Sharon Kralman, Tamalyn’s stepmom
find ways to reduce to every extent possible the negative • Chloe Gibson
effects of stress and challenges that come our way. • Gary Schwebel, Diana Findlay’s son
Reflection: "Finding a place to rest in the middle of • Pat Spiller, Kris Ann’s stepdad-in-law
things means that you bring your attention fully and Life’s challenges:
completely to what you are doing now. That is where • Gunther Charles
you will find the rest that you seek." (Frank Oskaseski) • Katie, Bob Fisher’s daughter
This is a wonderful description of mindfulness-- "Mind • Matthew, Kris Ann Lewis’s nephew

January 2018 3
Who’s on First?! Birthdays & Anniversaries God at Work in Us

Sunday, January 7 Russ Weston 17
Elder: Don Hoffman Happy Birthday:
Marceille Kobel 19
In Home Communion: Brenda Riseland Samantha Becker 2
Ralph Gilfilen 24
Deacons: Kathy Wheeler, Bentley Becker Kathy Wheeler 1
Kelvin Smith 26
Reader: Megan Shoemaker Chloe Gibson 8
Victoria Botts 27
Flowers: TBD Jane Kletka 10
Benjamin Shoemaker 29
Fellowship Time: Kathy Wheeler, honoring Mark Hoemann 10
January birthdays John Riseland 11
Happy Anniversary:
Charles Schmidling 14
Max & Cheryl Perry 12
Sunday, January 14 Zoe Ila Becker 17
Angel & Nicole Herrera 25
Elder: Leslie Pinkston James Char 17
Deacons: James Becker, Linda Heyne
Reader: Bruce Radtke
Flowers: TBD Be the Hands of God (nurture the world)
Fellowship Time: TBD
• Annual Bazaar Promise Day Center
Sunday, January 21 • Alternative Market • Food Bank collections
• Blessing Bags • Joseph’s Closet
Elder: Jane Kletka
• CAST • Clean Water Projects
Deacons: Renee Hoemann, Celia Obrecht
• Comfort Quilt Ministry • Jesus Has Left the
Reader: Kris Ann Lewis
• Community Gardens Building
Flowers: TBD
• Community Meal • Family Promise Hosts
Fellowship Time: TBD
• Disciples House (soon • Socks on the Street
to be the Family
Sunday, January 28
Elder: John Riseland For more info on how to assist in any of these projects,
Deacons: Pat Whitney, Kris Ann Lewis please contact us at
Reader: Melody Hoffman
Flowers & Fellowship Time: Esther Group
Be a Part of A Small Group (nurture your soul)
• Women's Spiritual Growth Groups - Please contact
Sign up in the fellowship hall to help in these
the church office if you would like to be a part of a group.
important ministries:
• Out-to-Lunch Bunch, 12:30 p.m., 4th Sundays - An
• Read scripture during Sunday morning worship informal gathering that visits locally owned restaurants.
• Book Group, 7 p.m., 4th Sundays - This group
• Bring flowers for Sunday worship
explores books to expand their minds and hearts.
• Provide goodies for fellowship time following • Esther Group, 11:30 a.m., 3rd Mondays - A women's
Sunday worship group that meets for lunch in local restaurants. (No host.)
Please contact the office for more info. • Bible Study, Noon, Tuesdays - Meeting in the church
library, this group explores the lectionary scriptures.
• Pub Theology, 6:30 p.m., 3rd Thursdays - Beer,
conversation, and God! (Or any beverage of your choice.)
“Humankind, full of all creative possibilities, Jeckyl & Hyde Deli & Ale House 709 Orchard Pl #1.
is God’s work. • Checking in Group, 5 p.m., 4th Thursdays -supportive
Humankind alone is called to assist God. group of people who share life's journey together.
Humankind is called to co-create.” • Men's Breakfast, 7:30 a.m., Saturdays at Denny's - 

All men are invited to join this weekly breakfast group for
—Hildegard of Bingen fun and fellowship. (No host.)

4 January 2018
New Church Officers & Leaders

2018 Nominations - Bellingham FCC
New nominations for congregational approval are in Bold Print. Nominations will be presented at the Annual
Congregational Meeting, Sunday, January 14, 2018, immediately following worship.

Moderator John Riseland [serves for one year]
Vice Moderator Renee Hoemann [serves for one year]
Secretary _______________________ [serves for one year]
Treasurer Cheryl Perry [serves for one year]

Trustees Kelvin Smith [term expires 2020]
Darleen Page [term expires 2020]
James Becker [term expires 2018]
[To fill the unexpired term of John Riseland]

Elders [elected for 3-year terms]
Melody Hoffman [term expires 2020]
Brenda Riseland [term expires 2020]
John Riseland [term expires 2020]
Don Hoffman [term expires 2019]
Leslie Pinkston [term expires 2019]
Jane Kletka [term expires 2018]
Kelvin Smith [term expires 2018]
Margaret Brown, Gregg Heyne, and Joe Plancich have elected not to continue as elders. We thank them for their many
years of service.

Deacons [elected for 3-year terms]
Bentley Becker [term expires 2020]
Linda Heyne [term expires 2020]
Kris Ann Lewis [term expires 2020]
Celia Obrecht [term expires 2020]
Kathy Wheeler [term expires 2019]
Pat Whitney [term expires 2019]
Jim Becker [term expires 2018]
Renee Hoemann [term expires 2018]

Board Members at Large
Jane Kletka [term expires 2020]
Pat Whitney [term expires 2019]

Fund for Living Ministry Board of Administrators
[This board consists of up to five members, elected to five-year terms.]
________________________ [term expires 2022]
Bea Gilfilen [term expires 2020]
Ann Hall [term expires 2020]

Human Resources Coordinator

________________________ [serves for one year]

Nominating Committee Don Hoffman
Pat McGovern
Suzy Merrick
Frances Van Dyke

January 2018 5
Happy New Year! Out in the Community

My Only and Best Advice for the New Year
For the last two years, I’ve shared this post at New
Years. I am sharing it again because I believe in this
truth now more than ever and because so many of you
have told me how this idea of “beginning again” has
changed you in some small or large way. If you’ve heard
Hope is on the Way! Save the Date for
me talk about this a hundred times before, I hope this
time it visits you with a fresh voice. the Interfaith Hope Auction!
If you commit to anything in this New Year, resolve to do Interfaith Coalition’s Hope Auction happens on
this one thing. It’s the most profound sentiment/idea/ Saturday, March 24, beginning at 5:30 p.m. The
discipline/practice I can think of. It’s a game-changer. It’s auction will take place at the Four Points by Sheraton.
a new way to see it all. Whatcom County’s friendliest benefit features
Here it goes . . . are you listening? Pen poised? fellowship, inspiration, hope and lively bidding on great
auction items. Please join us as we continue in our
In the words of St. Benedict, “Always, we begin again.” work of ensuring that all children have a safe, warm
That’s it. Beginning again. place to call home. You can help in these ways:
For many of us, this idea is not nearly sexy enough to be • Do you have an auction item to donate? A service you
revolutionary. But, I assure you. It will change you. It offer, your own artwork, gift certificate, tickets to
will change your year. It will give you hope. We are not popular sporting events, vacation home getaway, …let
locked into our maniacal craziness. We are not bound to your imagination soar and think of what you might be
our small ways. We are actually, through the grace of able to donate, and get in touch with us!
God, free.
• Buy tickets to the auction. Tickets are $65 each,
So we can stop. Our minds. Our mouths. Our hand- including dinner.
wringing. And we can decide to begin again . . .
• Become a business sponsor or ask your favorite
In our marriages businesses or employers to support Interfaith with a
In our parenting dedicated donation.
In our sobriety
In our creating We make a difference in the lives of homeless children
In our forgiveness and their families, and with your support, we will be
In our attitude serving additional families through our new program,
In our thankfulness Family Promise. A father whose family stayed in
In our meditation Interfaith emergency housing shared his appreciation,
In our anger management “We want to thank Interfaith for giving me and my
In our health pursuits family a safe place to call home. It was a life changing
In our time outdoors experience. It took us out of our darkest moments and
In our desire to read more showed us the light of people who care.”
In our hopes to cook a real meal every now and again. To donate an auction item and purchase tickets, please
If today, if this hour, if this year has not been what you contact Brenda Riseland, your congregation’s board
had hoped, you can begin again. And, in fact, if today, if member, or Interfaith Coalition at 360-734-3983 or
this hour, if this year was perfect. You still—must—begin
again. We must wake up and choose to live in each the most revolutionary things we can do is allow those
minute, each day, each year. Moment by moment. around to begin again. And, of course, allow ourselves.
Beginning again. None of this is easy.
We must choose to love, to create, to breathe, to return, So we blow it. We mess up big time. We numb out. We
to quiet down, to believe. Over and over again. turn away. We choose contempt. We don’t show up. We
So, if I can gently suggest, perhaps don’t bite off the vacate. We forget.
entire year in one overly-ambitious, shame-inducing list. And then, we begin again. And again. And again.
Perhaps, commit to one thing: Beginning again.
And let’s remind each other that none of us is too far ~Leeana Tankersley, author of Brazen:
gone in the same way that none of us has arrived. We’re The Courage to Find the You That’s Been
all in this beginning again business together. And, we Hiding
have his mercies-are-new-every-day broad grace. One of

6 January 2018
Family Page

Devotions for the Household Kids’ Coloring Page
What does it feel like to finally receive what you have been
waiting for? What is it like to be the person giving what was
being waited for?
Advent is a time of waiting and preparing. We hear the prophets,
we hear John in the wilderness, and we set up trees and buy
gifts, practice Christmas music and make cookies.
All in anticipation of Christmas! And then it’s here. In a flash all
the preparation is over, the presents are unwrapped, the cookies
are eaten, and Christmas is over.
Wait, no it isn’t! Christmas has just begun! In the story we hear
Simeon’s blessing, and hear the joy of seeing the Christ child. His
waiting is complete, but the story of Christ has just begun. An
easy challenge this week is to keep saying, “Merry Christmas!”
The real challenge is to live in the joy of Christ’s arrival. Keep
celebrating in your households and communities. Christ has come
to be with us again. Christ has come to redeem us again. Mary and Joseph took their baby Jesus to the temple to be blessed.
There, Simeon took the baby in his arms and blessed him and gave God thanks.

Christ has come to forgive us, to heal us, to walk with us, to be
our light, again!
Go and share Christ’s long-awaited love with everyone you meet. Click here for a full size coloring page.

Faith on the Go Tips from Tam
God of light and love, smile on us! Give us hope, fill us with
good things, bless us with abundant life. We praise and thank Each time your child celebrates a
you for your good gifts of mercy, grace, shelter, food and birthday, you mark the passing of time
relationships. Amen. and a new year begun and a fresh
How have you been blessed this week? start in that child’s life. We can do the
How can you be a blessing to someone else next week? same at the start of our calendar year,
Luke 2:22-40 - Jesus Presented at the Temple looking at ways to begin new
Day 1: Luke 2:22-24 adventures in parenting and new
We know so little about Jesus’ childhood. Why isn’t this detail ways to see the world through the
important enough to be written down? What rituals does your eyes of our children, new ways to
family have around childhood? bring delight and wonder and joy into
Day 2: Luke 2:25-32 their lives as they learn and grow.
The end of this passage is known as the Song of Simeon. The
text has been used as communion blessing throughout the It’s hard work being a parent. It’s also
centuries. What about the song reminds you of communion? hard work being a kid. But, you can
Day 3: Luke 2:33-35 enjoy this crazy, wild ride together.
Mary has many things to ponder! Angels telling her about her May God bless each of you in this
son. Shepherds telling her about Angels. Kings bringing gifts new year, as you learn more about
that are more fitting for a funeral, and now this! What do you
wonder about Mary’s thoughts? one another and work together to
create even stronger bonds within
Day 4: Luke 2:36-38
your families.
The messages about Jesus must have been difficult to hear. He
will be great, but he will suffer, he will unite God’s people and Wishing you peace and hugs,
divide God’s people. When in your life have you been excited Tamalyn
and anxious at the same time?
Day 5: Luke 2:39-40
After all that, they go home to raise their child. What do you
Devotions & Faith Focus provided by:
return to after exciting or difficult times? Where do you find

January 2018 7
First Christian Church, Christian Holidays Jan 2018 (Pacific Time)
January 2018
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
31 1 2 3 4 5 6

9 : 3 0 a m - Adult Sun. School 6 : 4 5 p m - [Boy Scouts] 1 1 a m - Bible Study Bulletin deadline 7pm - [4H] 6 : 3 0 p m - [Iglesia de Dios] Epiphany

1 0 : 5 0 a m - Gathering Time 6 : 3 0 p m - [Toppers] 6 p m - Bell Choir 7 : 3 0 a m - Men's Brkfst, Denny's

1 1 a m - Worship 7 p m - Choir Rehearsal @ Choir 9 a m - [Iglesia de Dios]
1 2 : 1 5 p m - Fellowship time

7 8 9 10 11 12 13
January 2018 calendar

9 : 3 0 a m - Adult Sun. School 6 : 3 0 p m - Stewardship Mtg 1 1 a m - Bible Study Bulletin deadline 5 : 3 0 p m - Cabin Fever College 6 : 3 0 p m - [Iglesia de Dios] 7 : 3 0 a m - Men's Brkfst, Denny's

1 0 : 5 0 a m - Gathering Time 6 : 4 5 p m - [Boy Scouts] 6 : 3 0 p m - [Toppers] 6 p m - Bell Choir 9 a m - [Iglesia de Dios]

1 1 a m - Worship 7 p m - Choir Rehearsal @ Choir
1 2 : 1 5 p m - Fellowship time

2 p m - [Iglesia de Dios
5 p m - Board Mtg

14 15 16 17 18 19 20

9 : 3 0 a m - Adult Sun. School Courier deadline 1 1 a m - Bible Study Bulletin deadline 6 : 3 0 p m - Pub Theology, location 6 : 3 0 p m - [Iglesia de Dios] 7 : 3 0 a m - Men's Brkfst, Denny's
1 0 : 5 0 a m - Gathering Time 1 1 : 3 0 a m - Esther Grp Lunch 6 : 3 0 p m - [Toppers] 6 p m - Bell Choir 9 a m - [Iglesia de Dios]

1 1 a m - Worship 6 : 4 5 p m - [Boy Scouts] 6 : 4 5 p m - [Guide Dogs]

1 2 : 1 0 p m - Cong'l Mtg 7 p m - Choir Rehearsal @ Choir
1 2 : 1 5 p m - Fellowship time

2 p m - Community Meal

21 22 23 24 25 26 27

9 : 3 0 a m - Adult Sun. School 6 : 4 5 p m - [Boy Scouts] 1 1 a m - Bible Study Bulletin deadline 5 p m - Checking in Group, 6 : 3 0 p m - [Iglesia de Dios] 7 : 3 0 a m - Men's Brkfst, Denny's
location TBD
1 0 : 5 0 a m - Gathering Time 6 : 3 0 p m - [Toppers] 6 p m - Bell Choir 9 a m - [Iglesia de Dios]

1 1 a m - Worship 7 p m - Choir Rehearsal @ Choir
1 2 : 1 5 p m - Fellowship time

28 29 30 31 1 2 3

9 : 3 0 a m - Adult Sun. School 6 : 4 5 p m - [Boy Scouts] 1 1 a m - Bible Study Bulletin deadline 7pm - [4H] 6 : 3 0 p m - [Iglesia de Dios] 7 : 3 0 a m - Men's Brkfst, Denny's

1 0 : 5 0 a m - Gathering Time 6 : 3 0 p m - [Toppers] 6 p m - Bell Choir 9 a m - [Iglesia de Dios]

1 1 a m - Worship 7 p m - Choir Rehearsal @ Choir
1 2 : 1 5 p m - Fellowship time

1 p m - Out-to-Lunch Bunch

January 2018