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Southminster Presbyterian Church
An inclusive, welcoming community of Christian faith.
June 2017 E-Newsletter
What is the E-newsletter?
Subscribers will now receive a digital version of our monthly newsletter. Don’t worry–if you like receiving the paper newsletter, we are still sending them out. We know many of you love getting them in the mail, and that’s great! But, we have had some feedback that an e-mailed version is perfect for some.
If your paper newsletter usually winds up in your recycling bin (we are not offended), please sign up HERE to opt-in to receive the online version only. You will no longer receive paper newsletters monthly, and you’ll be saving some paper and ink.
Wow. I have been here two and one-half years already. Now it feels like home. It usually takes about two years to feel home in a new place. Bev and the puppies and I are home in Bethany and we are at home at Southminster.
It is a good time to check the pulse. I am excited about our ministry at Southminster. I want to check and see how you are feeling and what are strengths and what might be areas of growth particularly in my ministry with you. In this newsletter you will find a survey that has been created in cooperation with the personnel committee. I understand my predecessor, Peg Pfab, did a similar exercise every now and again. I think it is a good thing to do.
I invite you to complete it and send it on to the personnel committee, who in turn, will summarize it without names for me and for the session. Instructions are included and you can also complete it on-line. Of course, you can let me know directly as well if you have ideas, suggestions, and so forth. Summer is a nice time to share an iced tea!
I am excited about the things we have going at Southminster, including long-standing programs like the Art Show, MAD Camp, all of the youth events, and new projects such as Family Promise. As you can hear during announcement time we are an active and passionate group of folks! I love it. I love the outreach we do in the larger community and the friendships we make in this community. I am excited to be able to do outreach in the larger community with you.
As you know by now my main hobby is the radio program and podcast, Progressive Spirit. In addition to the show I volunteer at KBOO. I do that because it feeds my soul. We all need volunteer work that is life-giving and sustaining and my radio volunteer work is that for me. I also think that it helps my ministry in terms of making connections and keeping me up to date with scholars, activists, authors, and so forth. I very much appreciate that Southminster has embraced it and even has helped to fund it as a mission project.
I am wondering if this program can be more accessible to church members and whether or not some of you might be interested in helping me with it. Recently I had a conversation with Bud Frimoth who was the creator of the “Open Door” radio broadcast that aired for decades. Here is an article about him:
He was telling me that the congregation took ahold of it with him, packaging and sending over 100 reel to reels each week to stations. It was a program that combined voices of youth with “rock and roll.” It won many awards including the Peabody Award. It was a valuable ministry that was shared with his churches.
The reason I am sharing this is that I would like to connect what I do even more with the congregation. For example, I think it would be helpful to have transcripts of each show for those who might not listen to podcasts but be interested in reading the interviews I have with the guests. That might help in terms of forming discussion groups. Perhaps a few of you might be interested in that.
I am also interested in hearing from you in regards to possible guests. Who have you found to be interesting at either the national or local level? Maybe some of you would be interested in helping prepare for interviews by reading the books and offering questions for me to ask.
Perhaps some of you might have production or editing skills or could help upload the shows to the various websites or perhaps help with some marketing (send packets to stations, share the show via social media) and what all.
Back to the survey. While I didn’t ask those kinds of questions during the survey, I realize that this volunteer work with my radio program is part of our shared ministry as well. So I would be happy to have feedback on that.
The other area of feedback in which I am interested is in regards to connecting with church members and helping church members connect. I think I need a boost with the visiting team and how we might continue those efforts of connecting in times of need. Personally, I think that is a growth area for me and would welcome your suggestions.
You can offer feedback on these topics or others either personally or through the survey.
Southminster Life Events
Super Wednesday Schedule
Super Wednesdays are an inclusive group who gather for discussion and friendship. As we are finding through research, friendships and socialization are imperative for maintaining a strong mind as we age. However, it’s never too early to start! Everyone is welcome and encouraged to join in regardless of age. The broader the span, the healthier the perspective. The group atmosphere is warm and accepting and embraces sharing. There is time for serious thought as well as time for laughter and joy. Come have a cup of coffee or tea and join the shared camaraderie. You’ll be glad you did. There is no commitment, just drop in Room 7, at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesdays.
June 7 – movie day – Lion – Five year old Saroo gets lost on a train which takes him thousands of miles across India, away from home and family. Saroo must learn to survive alone in Kolkata, before ultimately being adopted by an Australian couple. Twenty five years later, armed with only a handful of memories, his unwavering determination, and a revolutionary technology known as Google Earth, he sets out to find his lost family and finally return to his first home.
June 14 – game day – come have fun and play games with a very non-competitive group. Room 7 all are welcome.
June 21 – Coffee and Conversation – come relax and have coffee and conversation. Room 7 all are welcome.
June 28 – Newsletter folding. Conference room. Talk to Barbara if you are interested in joining this group
Mariners will gather on Friday, June 16 at the home of Marylou Belknap-Jones and Greg Jones. Fun will start at 6 p.m. Bring your favorite dish to share. This is always a great time. A reminder e-mail will be sent out before so you can RSVP to them.
Water 2 Wine – Testing Your Taste Buds
Our next meeting of Water 2 Wine is scheduled for Sunday, June 11 at 2:00 p.m. at the home of Debbie and Steve Wilkins. /div>
We will see if we can taste the differences in the same grape when prepared by different winemakers. So bring two glasses to be able to test them side by side. And we will see which are people’s favorites.
While we may learn a little more about wine, we think that the best part of the group is meeting fellow Southminsters in a relaxed social setting. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to ensure that we have enough wine. We have a suggested donation of $10 per person to cover the cost of the wine.
M.A.D. Camp time is almost here. For an incredible week of fun with music, art, and drama, be sure to register your 6 – 10 year olds. Camp runs June 26-30, 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM, with lunch included. The fee is $45 per child and scholarships are available. Call the church office or pick up a registration form at church. We fill up quickly, so please get registration forms in asap.
Sunday Morning Rides
We are in need of a few volunteers to help members of our congregation get to Sunday services and, occasionally, other church activities. If you’d like to help out please contact Suzanne Angelo. Thanks!
Legacy Gifts for Southminster
As you may have seen, Southminster has a new initiative this year about legacy giving. I’ve been with this church for about 26-27 years now, and it is now my primary community beyond my family. Also, I’ve worked with the Foundation for ten or fifteen years and have been inspired by what the Foundation is able to do in the community, so I’m interested in supporting their work. I’ve given annually every year, but I’d never done any legacy gift planning. It seemed complicated, and I have trouble starting new projects.
But now I’ve made a legacy pledge-and the impetus came from elsewhere. This is my 50th college reunion year. The college I graduated from has one of the highest alumni giving rates in the country, so there’s a lot of peer pressure. The 50th year is when they hit you up for legacy giving. So this is the year I got organized, and found that it was actually quite simple after I’d eliminated all the options I didn’t need.
Southminster isn’t into peer pressure: no one needs to know what you do. But for me it is a good feeling that I can give to several organizations I value, that my gifts will be around after I’m gone, and that I can do it flexibly in ways that take my family’s needs into account. These aren’t huge gifts, but they will be part of my permanent legacy.
(You can find more information about our legacy giving program on our website here).
Worship Schedule (Subject to Spirit’s Adjustment)
June 4 Graduation and Confirmation. Don Ludwig Leads Worship
June 11 Music Sunday
June 18 Former Prophets Nebi-im (Joshua, Judges) “Deuteronomic” History
Joshua (“God Saves”) is also the Hebrew name for Jesus. Joshua leads the people to conquer the Promised Land, which they do in short order. Judges tells of temporary leaders who rise up to take care of an enemy then depart the scene. Of course we have to talk about “holy” war, genocide, manifest destiny, and the theological justification for killing other people and taking their stuff. For the Deuteronomist, here is how the world works: If you have success with politics, war, the weather, childbirth, whatever, it is because you obeyed God and God is rewarding you. If your enemies are victorious, or you suffer droughts, or are unable to give birth, it is because you didn’t obey and God is smiting you because God is disappointed in you. What are some advantages and disadvantages of this view of God?
Theme: “Stray neither to the left nor to the right” Scripture: Joshua 1:7 (command of God to stay on the straight path, or else) Extras: Joshua fit the battle of Jericho, Holy Wars, Genocide, Manifest Destiny, herem “the ban” Sermon Title: “God is Disappointed In You”
June 25 John on study leave.
Youth Rummage Sale Jun. 15-17
Thursday & Friday from 9:00am-5:00pm. Saturday from 9:00am-1:00pm.
Proceeds will benefit youth Mission trips and youth transportation needs. (Note: 25% of Proceeds benefit the Southminster Budget) Donations may be dropped off in Room 7 starting Sunday, June 11.
Suggestions for Rummage Sale Donations:
* Good conditioned Furniture
* Kitchen-ware and non-broken Knick Knacks
* Slightly used baby and toddler clothing (no adult
* Small appliances (that work), tools, toys, games, shoes,
jewelry, linens, plants, blankets, arts and crafts etc.
WE CANNOT ACCEPT:
Exercise machines, computer equipment, tires, water beds, paint and chemical weed killer, broken or tattered furniture, adult clothing, construction materials and television sets.
Sound Help Needed!
The sound team needs your help! Summer is always hard to find volunteers with vacations and other travel. No previous experience needed. Josh Townsley will train you and make sure you’re ready to go. Willing to help out? Contact Josh Townsley at email@example.com. The following dates need volunteers:
Family Promise Week June 4 – 10
A reminder that the next Family Promise week kicks off on June 4th.
If you are new to the Family Promise program, it is a wonderful program in which we host a family overnight at our church. We provide them with a meal, entertainment, and a safe place to sleep for the week. We always need help with serving/cooking dinner and overnighters. For more information, contact Liz at the church office (503-644-2073) or Kathy Ayers. As usual, there will be an online sign-up for time slots. Please click HERE for the link.
Test the Waters – June 10th
If you are new to our congregation, join us Saturday, June 10th at ten a.m. Test the Waters is an opportunity to learn more about Southminster, meet some great folks and enjoy a free lunch. We think Southminster is a fun place that does important work and we would love you to be part of it! RSVP If you can to John at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office. Childcare is available on request.
Progressive Spirit & Beloved Community Podcasts
The main web page is www.progressivespirit.net. From there you can find many links to download podcasts such as iTunes. During June, interviews were posted with…
Mindfulness in Education and Economics
What if we brought mindfulness to schools and Buddhism to economics?
Clair Brown teaches at Cal Berkely and is the author of Buddhist Economics: An Enlightened Approach to the Dismal Science.
Caverly Morgan is the founder of “Peace in Schools,” the first for credit high school mindfulness course in the nation.
What if we brought mindfulness to schools and Buddhism to economics? We just might make a more compassionate world.
:00-26:00 Caverly Morgan Interview
26:30-53:00 Clair Brown Interview
Riffs, Rhythm, Rhyme, and Ramadan
When we hear the word theology, we may think we are going to engage in esoteric reflections about divinity and the afterlife. But theology at its best is not about God or gods, but about life and its meaning and the myths that drive us. Arthur Dewey is professor of theology at Xavier University in Cincinnati. He is a scholar of the historical Jesus and a Fellow of Westar Institute, popularly known as the Jesus Seminar. We are going to talk about his book, Wisdom Notes: Theological Riffs on Life and Living.
The Ramadan Tent Project is a creation of students in London. It is an open iftar, a breaking of the fast, in which the public is invited. The first ever Ramadan Tent Project in the United States was held last year in Beaverton, Oregon. The students who brought it to Portland will do it again this year. We will hear about this event and we will hear about the heart of Islam from two bright and compassionate university students, Sadaf Assadi and Hanan Al-Zubaidy.
:02 – 34:45 Arthur Dewey
34:45 – 54. Sadaf Assadi and Hanan Al-Zubaidy
The New Morality
What is moral? How has morality changed and how does that effect how we make decisions and evaluate the decisions of others in politics, business, and sex? In Behaving Badly: The New Morality in Politics, Sex and Business. Eden Collinsworth embarks on a personal journey to discover morality in a new globalized culture.
Eden Collinsworth is a former media executive and business consultant. She was formerly of Arbor House Publishing Company founder of the LA based monthly magazine Buzz before becoming a vice president at Hearst Corporation.
She wrote a best-selling book in China for Chinese businesspeople on Western deportment and she launched Collinsworth & Associates, a Bejing based consulting firm which specialized in intercultural communication.
Sunday, June 4 – 10:00 Worship – Graduation Sunday! – High School Graduates Congratulated… Carter Willson, Bryn King, Sofia Riverman, Yuen Wai Ng–yeah! – DV8 Lunch & Something – 11:30-1:30pm “Pizza and Lazer Tag” Cost $7 – SNL serves dinner with Family Promise
Wednesday, June 7 – DV8 serves dinner with Family Promise – 4:30-7:30pm
Saturday, June 10 – Spokane Mission Trip Orientation and Lunch – 9:00-2:00pm at the Ludwig’s. Light breakfast and lunch provided. Community building, planning, VBS preparations, and t-shirts.
Wednesday, June 14 – All Youth Rummage Sale Pricing Party – 6:00-8:30pm
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday June 15-17 – RUMMAGE SALE!
Sunday, June 18 – Spokane Mission Trip Commissioning at 10:00am service *Youth and adults march in the Gay Pride Parade – leave church at 10:15am
Sr. High Youth in Spokane on Mission Trip June 24 – July 1
Read the Bible Cover to Cover
June Quick Guide (Five Scrolls and Post-Exilic Writings)
The Writings Ketuvim (Part 2)
The Five Scrolls (Megillot):
(Song of Songs, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther)
And Post-Exilic Writings:
(Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, 1 & 2 Chronicles)
Song of Songs or Song of Solomon is poetry about sexual love. It is in the form of a drama with a man, a woman, and a chorus speaking the lines. Some of the poetry may have been used at weddings. The attribution to Solomon is due to his reputation as a lover. Because it contains mature content, in some Jewish traditions this book is not to be read until age 17! “Young women of Jerusalem, promise me…never to awaken love before it is ready.” (8:4)
Within the entire biblical story likes the tension between Israel being a holy people set apart from the other nations and being a blessing and means of grace to all nations. The story of Ruth, the Moabite, reminds Israel (and all those who profess faith) that God is not simply “our” God but the God of all.
The book of Lamentations is a psalter of laments. The songs are about the destruction of Jerusalem. Lamentations has been attributed to Jeremiah, which is why it follows the book of Jeremiah in the Christian Old Testament. However, it is probably the work of several authors. While the book of Lamentations speaks to a specific historical situation, it also speaks to the hearts of any who have been victims of violence or who have experienced loss and grief.
Like Proverbs, Ecclesiastes is considered “wisdom literature” but the wisdom is of a different sort. Instead of pithy short sayings like in Proverbs, Qoheleth “the preacher” speaks at length about many topics and questions the truism that the righteous will live and the foolish perish. The book of Ecclesiastes contains the much-needed words of the skeptic. See if you can find the song by the Byrds.
Esther is a legend set in the time of the exile (although probably written much later) that provides the rationale for the Festival of Purim. Esther is the only book in the Bible that does not mention God. Yet the assurance of God’s presence with God’s people is assumed. Esther is a wonderful story about courage.
This is from Wikipedia:
All five of these megillot (“scrolls”) are traditionally read publicly in the synagogue over the course of the year in many Jewish communities. In common printed editions of the Tanakh they appear in the order that they are read in the synagogue on holidays (beginning with Passover), thus:
The Song of Songs (Hebrew: Shir ha-Shirim; שיר השירים) is read publicly in some communities, especially by Ashkenazim, on the Sabbath of Passover. In most Eastern Jewish communities it is read publicly each week at the onset of the Sabbath. There is also a widespread custom to read it at the end of the Passover seder.
Book of Ruth (רות)is read in some communities, especially by Ashkenazim, before the reading of the Torah on the morning of Shavuot. Others read it in the Tikkun at night, or not at all.
Lamentations (Hebrew: Eikhah or Kinnot; איכה) ) is read on the Ninth of Av in all Jewish communities.
Ecclesiastes (Hebrew: Kohelet; קהלת) is read publicly in some communities, especially by Ashkenazim, on the Sabbath of Sukkot. In other communities it is not read at all.
Book of Esther (Hebrew אסתר ) is read in all Jewish communities on Purim. The public reading is done twice, on the evening of Purim and once again the next morning.
Daniel is set in the period of exile although it was probably written during the 3rd or 2nd century BCE. The first six chapters are filled with great stories including Daniel and lion’s den and the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Daniel is the story of courage in the face of opposition. It is also the story of the Hebrews keeping their identity in the midst of a hostile, powerful, and influential culture. Chapters seven through twelve are filled with apocalyptic visions.
Ezra and Nehemiah tell of the return to Judah from Babylon in the 6th and 5th centuries BCE. The temple and the walls are rebuilt, traditions are rediscovered, and the people seek to reestablish their identity. Ezra and Nehemiah provide food for thought about the tension between building walls for survival and identity and breaking down walls in order to seek peace and understanding with those who are different.
1 and 2 Chronicles is a retelling of 1 and 2 Samuel and 1 and 2 Kings. Some stories are identical. But not all. The Chronicles are told from a different viewpoint than that of the Samuel and Kings stories.
1 Chronicles is about David who can hardly do wrong. The Chronicler skips over the embarrassing story involving Bathsheba. Interesting to compare the accounts. The first nine chapters are real sleepers. Skim through the list of names but do read the narrative portions.
2 Chronicles picks up with the reign of Solomon and the division of the kingdom down to the exile and the return. Chronicles is an example of revisionist history. The story is told from the viewpoint of the southern kingdom. The north (Israel) gets bad press if it gets any at all! It seems to read a bit “smoother” than the Kings account.
Thus ends the TaNaKh with the edict of King Cyrus of Persia:
‘Thus says King Cyrus of Persia: The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever is among you of all his people, may the Lord his God be with him! Let him go up.’
Click here for a copy of June’s calendar that appeared in the paper newsletter for printing at home.
Questions for the Congregation
Members of the Southminster Community are invited to share their feedback on John’s ministry by answering John’s questions either on paper or online by June 12th. The survey is included in the Newsletter, available at Southminster, and online HERE. Responses will be summarized by members of the Personnel Committee and then the summary, without names or identifying details, will be shared with John and Session. Thank you for taking the time to help.