Reaching Heights April 2022
Reaching Heights April 2022
Links to this month’s news:
A Legacy of Fellowship and Service
Lenten Challenge – from the RenewalWorks Team
Book Group – 4/6
Meditative Arts Group – 4/13
Plymouth Lunch Club – 4/20
Memorial Day Parade
Summer Camp Schedule for 2022
Gift Card Reminder
See the Serving Schedule
Worship – Lent, Holy Week, and Earth Day
April 3 – Full to the Brim – “Brazen acts of beauty” – John 12:1-8 – Pastor Roger preaching
April 10 – Palm Sunday – “Even the stones cry out” – Luke 19:28-40 – A service of celebration highlighted by a Palm Procession – Dr. Kate Gillooly preaching
April 14 – Maundy Thursday – 7:30 pm – “Take off your shoes” – John 13:1-17, 31b-35 – A worship service in three movements where we will encounter God through water, communion, and Jesus’s commandment to love. If you are worshipping with us online please have a small dish of water and communion elements with you.
April 15 – Community Good Friday Service at St. Paul’s Episcopal – noon to 3:00 pm
April 17 – Easter – “An expansive life’” – Luke 24:1-12 – Come Worship as we celebrate together the promise of new life in Christ with choir, the Cuyahoga Brass Quintet, and the Hallelujah Chorus! Pastor Roger Preaching
April 24 – In Celebration of Earth Day – “Seeking God in All Creation” – Job 12:7-10 – Dr. Kate Gillooly preaching
First Hour Adult Class – Sunday mornings 9:30 – 10:30 April 3 & 10 (In Herr Chapel and on Zoom)
The Sermon on the Mount: A Beginner’s Guide to the Kingdom of Heaven, with Dr. Amy-Jill Levine
4/3 “Finding Your Treasure” Matthew 6:19-7:5 Pastor Roger facilitating
4/10 “Into the Kingdom” Matthew 7:6-27 Carolyn Troha facilitating
MidWeek Bible Study – Tuesdays at 2pm on Zoom April 5 and 12
“Depicting Abundance” – contemplating images and phrases of Lent
4/5 Isaiah 43:16-21
4/12 Psalm 118:19-29
Meeting ID: 865 4906 1235
You can also find the link to this study on our Zoom page
Mark your calendars for Sunday and MidWeek Studies in May!
Adult Study will meet on Sunday mornings 9:30 – 10:30 am in the Chapel and online to explore Gospel passages of the Easter season. We’ll seek new insight from familiar stories!
May 1 – John 21:1-19 Jesus Appears to Seven Disciples (Dr. Kate leading)
May 8 – John 10:22-30 My Sheep Listen to My Voice (Pastor Roger leading)
May 15 – John 13:31-35 The Love Commandment (Dr. Kate leading)
May 22 – John 14:23-29 My Peace I Leave (Pastor Roger leading)
Zoom link will be the same as Sunday morning worship.
MidWeek Bible Study will explore Lessons from the Early Church – Passages from the 1st Century with Wisdom for the 21st Century Tuesdays at 2 pm in May on Zoom
Along the Path:
I am always grateful for the arrival of Spring, even (or perhaps especially) the early spring days of March that provide a tantalizing taste of what is to come, in between those last days of cold and snow. I am also grateful, this year, for our Lenten theme, Full to the Brim, that is a reminder of the abundance that is often difficult to see in the midst of the daily headlines.
Spring is a season of hope as first the crocuses emerge (this year miraculously uneaten by the deer) and then the daffodils and other green and blooming things. It is a hope that we can celebrate because we know the abundance of good things that God has placed in our world. A hope that can remain, even in the midst of war and violence, climate change and political bickering, personal tragedy and social injustice, because we believe that God is greater than those things.
As we move into Holy Week and the joy of Easter this month, let us remember that resurrection is possible, for us, and for our world. Let us remember and celebrate that, and then work to help it happen.
Looking forward to seeing you…along the path!- Pastor Roger
About a week ago I attended a Lent retreat at the Cleveland Museum of Art. It was sponsored by the Cleveland Ecumenical Institute of Religious Studies, and consisted of two blocks of self-directed time where we wandered the galleries until some piece of art caught our eye. Then we sat with the artwork and a quote from St. Teresa of Avila to see where the art and the quote spoke to our own beliefs and concerns. A kind of visio divina. We had times to gather and share our reflections with the group.
I chose a painting called “Gouise” by Joan Mitchell. The information plaque states “Rather than copy a specific scene, the artist rendered the rural landscape filtered through memory and sensation.” This and the quote from St. Teresa (“Yours are the eyes with which God looks with compassion on this world.”) helped me think about the fact that we can choose how we remember our pasts – landscapes, relationships, and circumstances. Perhaps we are called to look with love and to remember with love, and to encourage others to do the same. It may not be the sole ingredient for world peace, but I believe it is a faithful choice, and one that can help make the world a little brighter and warmer, a little more gentle and loving.
I invite you to join me in choosing Love – in how we see our world, remember our past, and hope for our future.
No Longer Interim
After serving as Interim Music Director for many months, HCC is pleased to announce that Dr. Irwin Shung has agreed to become our Director of Music Ministries effective March 15. We are excited that Irwin will continue to bring his many talents and gifts to our worship experience.
From the Moderator…
The Board of Trustees has been working on behalf of the congregation to continue our long legacy of being active in the community and the larger world. In March, the Board authorized sending $1000 to aid First Christian Church in Leipsic, Ohio, which was badly damaged by fire. There is a small fund of monies from the sale of Campbell Court, the Tithing Fund, that was set aside to respond to needs of this kind. By using our resources in this way, we are reaching out to help this congregation rebuild their church home.
Other news, this time much happier, reached us. Rev, Gary Walling, who was Senior Pastor here at Heights, retired from his church, First Christian Church in Wilson, Georgia in February. As part of that church’s celebration of his ministry, Donita Singerman wrote a letter of appreciation for his ministry here at Heights Christian. In addition, using funds from the Tithing Fund, the Board approved sending a donation of $!000 to help establish an Endowment Fund in his name in his Wilson Church. This was sent with warm regards from our congregation.
Shortly thereafter, Donita received another request. Rev. Jayne Kuroiwa, who had been an Interim Minister with us for two years, was also retiring from her position in Hawaii. Many thanks to Donita for the wonderful remembrance letters she wrote!
In other business, the Board of Trustees made the decision to place $9000 into the budget for mission. This was possible because of the sale of the Van Aken building. These funds are in addition to the money already set aside for Outreach. In making this decision, the Board will use these funds to make an impact in our community and our world. We will seek to work in partnership with other churches and organizations. Our commitment to helping others, to working for justice and peace, will contribute to touching others’ lives with kindness, hope and love.
CWF – A Legacy of Fellowship and Service
A group of CWF women met on March 30th to discuss the role of CWF. Currently both the Meditative Arts group and the Book Discussion group are actively meeting again. It was decided to expand these fellowship activities to include both men and women who would like to participate in them. These groups will be under the banner of HCC fellowship. Everyone is welcome! Invitations to participate are also being extended to the Plymouth congregation as well.
It was also decided to transfer the remaining funds in the CWF treasury to a newly formed CWF Legacy account to be administered by the Board of Trustees. The account is in honor of the generations of CWF women who have provided fellowship and service to HCC, and in special recognition of the tireless leadership of Elizabeth Perdue, Jan Everett and Kathie McWilliams. This CWF account would contribute to the types of ministries CWF traditionally has supported: those involving children and youth, peace-making, racial justice, interfaith activities and refugee resettlement. Many thanks to all the women who have supported CWF over the years, and now look forward to enriching experiences as part of the HCC Fellowship.
Mission Ministry Team Update
Wall of Love. Thanks again for your past contributions to this cause. Although there were a few more days in March when this was written, our goal was to collect contributions through March. The weather seems to indicate that Spring is not only on the way according to the calendar day which was Sunday, March 20th, but our snow days just might be out of here. Of course, we live in Cleveland and my slogan is “wait three days and everybody gets a chance at his/her likable weather”. We look forward to next Fall working with Lomond School to again provide winter items for families and children who need them.
We continue our connection with Disciples Christian Church(DCC) related to support for the Afghan refugees. You may continue to make financial contributions by mail, using envelopes when you come for worship or other times, as well as via Givelify on our website. The money will be for food. We all know that trips to the grocery store isn’t just a one time thing but ongoing whether weekly or like me maybe every three weeks. Connee Choi is our liaison to DCC and will let us know if something else is needed.
Heights Christian has a long history of helping refugees. The most recent is with Afghans through Disciples Christian Church. But there are other refugees in our Shaker community. The Shaker Heights Library has provided tutoring for an inclusive number of refugees from other countries. Presently, there is a need for more tutors. This program is in the process of reorganizing.. Stay tune for more information in our weekly newsletter updates.
Outreach Committee- The Outreach applications for funding to programs, agencies, events that meet the qualification can be found on the Heights Christian Church website. Applications will be accepted through the month of April. The committee will review and approve applications in May 2022.
Ukrainian refugee crisis. We are all aware of what’s happening with the attack of Russia on Ukraine through various media sources.. We hear and see stories of how devastating this situation is. We have compassionate thoughts for the people, especially the children who are about half of the refugees fleeing Ukraine. We want to do something. There have been many contributions from around the world including medical supplies and financial support through reputable sources. We know that Heights Christian congregants have individually made donations on their own. Note: Lynda and Lloyd Ackerman have made personal contributions and taken items for others to donate. But for those who haven’t or desire to do more, the following are ways we suggest for you: We suggest that you may give monetary gifts to our disciples Week of Compassion which supports disaster relief through the Christian Church. We are comfortable that this is a reputable source. You may give with a check made out to HCC. Please put in the memo: Week of Compassion or give through Givelify on the Heights Christian website. One of the largest and well advertised local disaster relief organizations is Med Wish International. In addition to medical supplies needed, it has listed on the website items such as baby wipes, shampoo, toothpaste, sleeping bags, crutches, walkers. Volunteers are also needed at the warehouse. The Med Wish warehouse is located at 1625 E.31st.Cleveland. Hours: Tuesday-Friday 8:30-4:30. Phone:216-692-1685. If you need more information/help you may contact Andrena Sharp at 216-848-0108.
Unity in Community Food Pantry. God has provided a wonderful blessing for this program. It has received a grant. Food donations are not needed at this time. Roger our Pastor who is involved with this program has noted that the grant is for food only. There are other ongoing costs. So monetary gifts are still needed. You may give with a check noting in the memo Unity in Community or Givelify on our church website.
Remember: You can still make non-perishable food donations to the Little Free Pantry at our former Heights Christian Church location as well as here at our Plymouth location.
Please share with us any suggestions you have for Missions involvement to be discussed/considered. We are your representatives, but we don’t know everything that our community needs.
During Lent HCC has centered on the theme “Full to the Brim.” The RenewalWorks Team has encouraged us to find meaning in this theme through photography!
In these last days of Lent we are invited to continue to look at our lives through the lens of “abundance”. Read the scriptures below, pray on them, live with them for a few days and then find something that represents your musings and capture it in a photograph and send it to Kate (email to Kate@heightscc.org or text to 216-408-9512). We will use the photos to enrich our worship, to decorate the Chapel and to capture our journey together visually!
Here are a few of the photos that have been submitted:
The scripture passages for the remaining weeks are:
Week 5 (April 3-9) Luke 6:38
give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”
Holy Week (Apr. 10-16) Psalm 65:11a, 12a, 13b
You crown the year with your bounty;
The pastures of the wilderness overflow,
they shout and sing together for joy.
Yours in faith, The RenewalWorks Team – Lynda, Val, Kate and Jane
The newly re-formed HCC Book Group is open to everyone and now meets the first Wednesday of the month at 1:00 pm in Room 102 of Plymouth. Our next meeting is April 6 for a discussion of Death on the Nile, by Agatha Christie. The book for May will be Brooklyn, A Novel by Colm Tolibin. Everyone is welcome – invite a friend!
Meditative Arts Group…
Meditative Arts will meet on April 13 at 1:00 in the Atrium. Everyone is welcome to join us, and we will work on an activity in preparation for Easter..
Plymouth Lunch Club…(Note new time! We are back to an in-person lunch at 12:30, with the presentation at 1:00.)
April is National Fair Housing Month. On April 20, we will be joined by Lisa Gold Stat from Shaker Height’s fair housing division to explain their work and educate us on how we can advocate for ourselves and others. The Lunch Club meets in room 102 and on Zoom.
RSVPs are required! Lunch is available only with pre-registration and $7.
RSVP: Email Office@PlymouthChurchUCC.org
Ready to march?
We’ll be participating in the Shaker Heights Memorial Day Parade again this year! We’re hoping for a big turnout from HCC – either in cars, on bikes, or walking! If you’d like to participate, please let Kate Gillooly know, and indicate whether you’ll walk, bike or ride. We need to register by the end of April!
Summer Camp Information
More details can be found here: https://www.ccinoh.com/media/320839/camp_christian_info_2022.pdf
Gift Cards – Support HCC!
Remember gift cards are available on Sunday mornings and in the office every weekday during normal office hours.