Reaching Heights May 2022
Reaching Heights May 2022
Links to this month’s news:
See the Serving Schedule
May Worship – Join us as we explore Life-changing Acts!
May 1 – “Who are you, Lord?” – Acts 9:1-6 – Pastor Roger preaching
Congregational Meeting immediately after worship – see more info below
May 8 – “Get Up!” – Acts 9:36-43 – Pastor Roger preaching
May 15 – “Why do you eat with them?” – Acts 11:1-18 – Dr. Kate Gillooly preaching
May 22 – “Come and help us!” – Acts 16:9-15 – Pastor Roger preaching
May 29 – “These people are disturbing our city” – Acts 16:16-34 – Pastor Roger preaching
Pentecost … is Sunday, June 5th and we will be worshipping and celebrating outdoors in the pavilion at Euclid Beach Park (16301 Lakeshore Blvd, Cleveland)! This service will also include the baptisms of the members of the Pastor’s class in the waters of Lake Erie. We hope you can join us in person, but we are working on broadcasting the service via Facebook Live as well.
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 – Characteristics of Christian Community: Wisdom from the Epistles
Tuesdays at 2:00 pm May 10-31 on Zoom (link below)
Join us for an exploration of true community as descripted in the letters to the Thessalonians and the Romans, and how we might strive for a similar way of living together in a different time and place. Using materials developed by missionalchurch.org, we will consider how our practice of Christian community can serve as a modern “Letter to the World,” an example of Good News and a witness of Love.
Computer link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86549061235?pwd=U09Wd2tIZGQ0dGhwcEpCcGlkQjJJUT09
Meeting ID: 865 4906 1235 Passcode: 431738
From a smart phone: +19294362866,,86549061235#,,,,*431738#
Along the Path:
As you might imagine there are many challenges to being the pastor of a church, but there are also many rewards and joys. One of the greatest joys is when I have the opportunity to share who Heights Christian Church is with people who do not know you.
It does not happen often, but when it does I get to tell them about how warm and welcoming you are. I get to tell them about how you have taken that welcoming spirit and turned it into a statement of purpose which provides a safe place for everyone and which you strive to live out everyday. I am able to tell them that I serve a group of people who are trying to follow the teachings of Jesus by serving the community and the world; a people whose faith informs their actions in inspiring and loving ways. I get to tell them about the work you do to feed the hungry and clothe the naked, and that you also care about changing the structures of our society that create hunger and poverty.
Most of all I get to tell them how proud and awed I am to have been able to walk this road with you for over 15 years. That has truly been an wonderful and amazing gift from God.
Looking forward to seeing you…along the path!- Pastor Roger
With the weather warming up and Covid precautions easing up a bit, many of us are feeling inspired to make summer plans. Summer is a wonderful time for new forms of community engagement. People are visible in their neighborhood, gardening, walking, bicycling, shopping at Farmer’s Markets, etc. Yards and parks fill up with cookouts and folks chose more active forms of leisure. As we think about how we might engage the community as HCC, remember that this can happen organically – it doesn’t always need a planned program. We want to find ways to reach out to our neighbors in official capacities, but each member of HCC can do the same on an individual level, as opportunities arise. As we consider what we might plan as a congregational effort, I invite you to give some thought to how you might reach out to friends, neighbors, and local organizations on your own as well. Engagement is not necessarily evangelism (although it can lead to that at times). Engagement is being neighborly, adopting curiosity and a listening stance to get to know the folks around us, their concerns, and their gifts. Engagement does not have an agenda, beyond seeking opportunities for deeper connection and partnership. Engagement grounds us in the reality of our community, strengthens relationships with those outside our church. It helps us discover what God is up to in the neighborhood, and how we might become a part of God’s mission right here and now. Who will you engage with this summer? What might happen as a result? The possibilities are infinite!
Congregational Meeting, May 1 after worship…
To address the following matters:
- Ratification of the Board of Trustees’ action to employ Dr. Kate Gillooly as the Transitional Minister of Heights Christian Church
- Recommendation to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) to grant full ministerial standing to Dr. Kate Gillooly as a Commissioned Minister.
Read the letter to the congregation explaining these actions.
Mission Ministry Team Update
Outreach Committee: Funds for grant applications may still be available. If you are aware of a special community, group, agency need, please use the application which can be found on our Heights Christian Church website to apply. The Outreach Committee will be making decisions this month regarding the applications that have been made and the funds available.
The Ukrainian crisis: Our giving is ongoing. Your monetary donations may still be made by check or through our Givelify website. On your check memo note that it is for Ukrainian relief. The situation in Ukraine has not changed over several months. Deaths are still occurring by the thousands. Women, children, and the elderly are fleeing the country when they can get out while many brave men and some women remain to protect their country. Some of us at Heights have ties to Ukrainians. Our hearts and prays go out to the people in this crisis. When you can also help with donations of supplies but also financially. Our treasurer has set up monetary contributions to be donated through the Christian Church Week of Compassion for disaster relief.
VERY IMPORTANT REMINDER: Get out to vote on May 3, 2022 Primary Election. Your vote is powerful. If you need help getting to your designated poll, call the office by Monday, May 2nd, and a volunteer will help with transportation. First come, first served. You may be asked to wear a mask but we will get you there.
League of Women Voters is having an EDUCATION MATTERS Postcard Party on Saturday, May 7, 10-12 at Forest Hills Picnic Shelters A and B in Cleveland Heights. Attendees will spend a few minutes hearing from experts on various education topics, and then write postcards to Ohio legislators and other decision makers sharing your opinions on the topics that matter to you. The League provides blank postcards, stamps, coffee and snacks! Come when you can, stay as long as you like. You can RSVP to President@LWVGreaterCleveland.org or walk-ins are welcome.
Prior to our actual move to Plymouth, a team from our congregation ascertained through interviews what Shaker residents felt was needed in our community and how Heights Christian Church could contribute. Among other things it was ascertained that partnerships with others was important. The Social Justice Committee(SJC) of Plymouth UCC has reached out/invited Heights Christian to join some of their events and Heights Christian has done the same noting these as examples(Ash Wednesday service and the Book Group and others). We look forward to another potential opportunity for our participation with the SJC in the near future. More information will be shared as it becomes available.
Ongoing outreach: contributions can be to made to Unity in Community via Givelify at anytime on our website; food contributions to the Little Free Pantry at our former Heights Christian Church location and here at Plymouth can be made at anytime. Contributions to the Afghan refugees can be made by check or on Givelify.
Unity in Community Food Pantry
The Unity in Community Emergency Food Pantry continues as an initiative of Shaker Heights congregations, neighborhood groups, and local residents of the city. It was formed to respond to emergency hunger and food insecurity caused by the COVID – 19 crisis and is still needed. Each month, the pantry distributes food to about 200 families giving out $2000-3,000 in groceries. Both volunteers and financial support are needed to sustain this pantry.
You can donate through HCC’s Givelify app or by visiting the secure giving site:
and select “Shaker Food Drive (Unity in Community)” as the fund.
Volunteers are needed on the following days this month; May 2, 7, and 9. Please use the Sign-Up Genius page to register for a volunteer shift. Most shifts are one hour in length. You can find additional information and register at: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/unityfoodpantry
Please contact the Pantry Director, Matt Mondry, at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
News from the Treasurer
We collected $620.00 for the Week of Compassion.
We brought in $768.00 for Christmas in 2021, which was shared with the Cleveland Christian Home and the Christian Church in Ohio
Love Notes to HCC
At our Maundy Thursday service this year we invited people to write love notes to the congregation, noting aspects of our life together for which they are particularly grateful.
- To HCC, I appreciate that you allow everyone to be as they are and welcome them fully.
- Heights Christian Church, Thank you for being a place of refuge from the storm of life. Thank you for the room to grow, knowing that I am welcome just as I am. Thank you for the unwavering love, kindness and nourishment that gives me the strength to face the uncertainty of the world with love and hope. Mostly, thank you for challenging me to love boldly and to keep drawing my circle larger! I am a better me because of this community. ~ Carolyn Troha
- I’m grateful for a loving congregation who warmly welcomes people as they are, loves them unconditionally, and leaves room for lots of grace and differences. HCC is blessed to be a blessing to others!
- Dear HCC, I am most grateful for the freedom and acceptance of my faith as well as my doubts. I have never been in a church before that did not tell me in absolutes exactly what to think! Thank you!
- Dearest Heights Christian Church, Thank you for being my spiritual rock. And thank you for the love and support and sense of community for me and my family. Love always, Danielle McDonald
- To HCC: Over the years being in this church has brought me closer to to God and knowing his spirit in me. I sometimes burst with the spirit.
- Beloved HCC, I love the faithful witness of the congregation. Although we may stumble at times, over the long haul I believe this congregation stands for what is kind, just and loving and does its best to share these things with the wider community.
- I love you all! I love my family! I love all people!
- To Heights Christian Church – I love Heights Christian Church! Thank you for always being there for me. Pastor Roger and Debbie, you Rock!
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 May 4 for a discussion of Brooklyn, a Novel by Colm Tolibin. Everyone is welcome – invite a friend!
Meditative Arts Group…
Meditative Arts will meet on May 11 at 1:00 in the Atrium. Everyone is welcome to join us.
Plymouth Lunch Club…(Note new time! We are back to an in-person lunch at 12:30, with the presentation at 1:00.)
On May 15, we are going on a field trip! We will take a packed lunch to Shaker Nature Center to listen to their program: Flyways not Highways. Join us for this talk and to spent some time walking the grounds
RSVPs are required! Lunch is available only with pre-registration and $7.
RSVP: Email Office@PlymouthChurchUCC.org
Memorial Day Parade May 30
It’s almost here! After interruption by COVID, the annual Shaker Heights Memorial Day Parade is back, and HCC is marching again this year! It begins after the 9:00 am Ceremony, which takes place at City Hall. Immediately following the Ceremony, the Parade will begin at the intersection of Van Aken Boulevard and Lee Road and will proceed east to the Van Aken District in the westbound lane of Van Aken Blvd. We will have giant puppets, folks on bicycles, walking, and riding in cars. Many of us will wear our blue HCC T-shirts (there are more!) and we will carry signs. Please contact Dr. Kate if you would like to march with us and haven’t signed up yet.
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.