Weekly Calendar

Rebecca K Announcements

Saturday, September 7

  • 10:00am Mennonite Disaster Service Illinois Unit Annual Meeting, Arthur Mennonite Church, 710 East Park, Arthur, IL

Sunday, September 8: Fall Schedule Begins

  • 9:15am Christian Formation
    • We begin a study of Richard Rohr’s book, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life (see note below)
  • 10:00am Fellowship Time
  • 10:30am Worship
    • Communion
    • Start of new liturgical season, “The Season of Creation” (see note below)
  • 12:00pm Potluck

Tuesday, September 10

  • 2:00pm and 8:00pm Everence Webinar: The New Rules of Money (see Upcoming Events below for more information)

Wednesday, September 11

  • 7:00pm Children’s Ministry with First Baptist in Waukegan

CHRISTIAN FORMATION

Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life by Richard Rohr

“In the first half of life, we are naturally and rightly preoccupied with establishing our identity–climbing, achieving, and performing. By those concerns will not serve us as we grow older and begin to embark on a further journey…With rare insight, Rohr takes us on a journey to give us an understanding of how the heartbreaks and disappointments of life are actually stepping stones to the spiritual joys that the second half of life has in store for us.””This ‘second half of life’ need not wait till our middle years. It emerges whenever we are ready and able to expand beyond the structures and structures of our chosen path.”

  • September 8: Ch. 1–The Two Halves of Life
  • September 15: Ch. 2–The Hero and Heroine’s Journey
  • September 22: Ch. 3–The First Half of Life
  • September 29: Ch. 4–The Tragic Sense of Life

THE SEASON OF CREATION

This Sunday, September 8, we enter a new liturgical season called “The Season of Creation” that will last until Advent. This innovation is shaped by a global movement to explore and deepen our relationship to the Earth and all its creatures and thus to God, the Maker of the cosmos. The Season of Creation joins the other seasons of the liturgical year: Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter and Pentecost. All the elements of our worship will reflect aspects of creation and our relationship to it. It is our hope that this season of worship and proclamation will encourage you to grow to a new level of relationship with God through deepening awareness of and interconnectedness with God’s first book of revelation, Creation. 

For the first of several weeks, Anne will offer selections to consider from the main resource we are using for this season, The Season of Creation: A Preaching Commentary edited by Norman C. Habel, David Rhoads, and H. Paul Santmire. As we gather with gratitude again this fall and renew relationships with one another in our community of faith, our shared prayers of thanksgiving find focus each week.

Offerings and prayers belong together as presentations of ourselves and the world around us as gifts from God given back to God. Our offerings back to God are tokens of the fact that we recognize all of life as gifted to us from God. Our prayers of thanksgiving are spoken with this awareness. Our prayers of petition match these in the sense that we pray for realities that are not broken and need restoration as re-creation from the One who created them in the first place. Prayer involves God’s power to heal humans, nonhumans, and all Earth community.

Prayers of thanksgiving are critical, because they prevent us from taking for granted what has been provided by God—not just family and loved ones and coworkers and neighbors and companions in the faith, but also the entire created world of which we are a part and upon which we depend as human beings. Unless we are specific about that for which we are thankful, we will tend to neglect it. We commonly pray for people for whom we are grateful. Now we will want to expand our prayers of thanksgiving to include deer and dolphins, woodpeckers and whip-poor-wills, lions and ladybugs, whales and worms. More particularly, it will be important for us to give thanks for specific plants and animals of Earth community that are found in our neighborhoods….We all live together. We all share Earth together. God created us all together. God redeems us all together. God will bring all creatures to fulfillment together. Hence, are gratitude will fittingly be expressed together.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Everence®will host an informative webinar entitled The New Rules of Money: Navigate the New Economy Like a Pro! on Tuesday, Sept. 10 at 2 and 8 p.m. Participants will learn about new resources to manage debt, about the impact of credit scoring, and how to avoid those ever-changing scams. For more information, or to register, visit the webinar’s page on the Everence site or contact Melissa Short at 800-348-7468 ext. 3392 or melissa.short@everence.com

Putting Jesus on the Ballot is an MCUSA 3-part webinar led by Scott Peterson. The three sessions are September 17, October 15, and November 19. Please see the Announcement post for more details and a link to registration.

Creation Care Tip of the Week

Advocate for Environmental Justice

Volunteer for, donate to, or promote creation care. Join and existing organization, talk to your family and friends about environmental justice, or start a green committee at your church. (NSMC has a green committee!)