A Center for Spirituality and Healing.
Saturday, October 19, 2014
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|STUFF THE BALLOT MAIL BOX!? |
Yes, we're watching for those pledge envelopes coming back in the mail. Thanks to all of you who have already responded.
Come to think of it, our mailbox is sort of like a ballot box. Each pledge card and/or check is like a vote for Grace Church and all you like about it.
- Does it feel like family? Acceptance?
- Do you learn something from the sermons and bible study?
- Do you feel you are helping to serve others through the outreach and partner programs?
- Do you appreciate the prayers, liturgy and forms of healing?
- Do you experience God at the Eucharist?
- Do you like feeling YOU really matter in this (almost) all volunteer Mission Congregation?
If even one answer is "yes", then please find that pledge slip and envelope on your desk or kitchen table and fill it out today. We need your $$, your hands and your "vote."
The Annual Giving Committee
|No Pledge Form? No Problem |
If you're one of the unlucky few not to receive a pledge form, or if you've mislaid yours, you can get one to print and mail or email here
|Gimme Five?!?! |
"Gimme Five" means we are hoping each member will budget 5% of their income for the church next year. (And that those who are giving more will continue to do so!) We ask that you remember those "gimme five" hands as you prayerfully consider what Grace Church means to you.
Mail Your Pledges Now.
Were celebrating the ingathering of pledges and donations on October 26.
|Growing to Five |
If you're just starting out on your giving path, 5% can sound like a lot. Let me share our story.
When Carol and I were starting our life together, the church we joined challenged us pledge 10% of our income. At that time we were giving less than 1%. We figured that making that jump all at once wasn't something we were ready to do/ Instead, we decided to grow slowly. We started at 1% and each time our pay increased, we increased our giving by 20% of the raise. It wasn't too many years before our giving was at the level we wanted it to be.
Of course, we were young then had growing careers. But still, the idea of growing your giving is one I'd recommend for your consideration. Maybe you can increase your percentage of giving by 1% of your income this year, and 1% next year, and the next and the next. Or maybe your number is half a percent per year.
However you decide to grow your giving, I can assure you that our experience of church has grown more rewarding as our giving has increased.
|What Does Your Pledge Support? |
If you need a reminder of what your pledge will support in 2015, take look at what's happening now on the Spirituality and Healing page
on the website, or pick up a Spirituality and Healing brochure at the church.
|Dedication of Supply Clergy Make Grace's Outreach Possible |
Last week, we mentioned that, according to one calculation, fully 75% of Grace's budget goes to support our outreach and partner Spirituality and Healing ministries. We forgot to mention that this allocation of our resources is only made possible because of the dedicated support of our supply clergy, who all go beyond the call of duty to support our Sunday worship and other ministries while being paid a fraction of their value--about 5% of our total annual budget.
They are the Reverends David Z. Howard, Bob Hufford, Susan Lehman, Anne Warrington Wilson, and joining us later this year, Heather Wiseman. Hawley Todd, TSSF, provides a similar service at our Celebrations of Wholeness and Healing.
Thank them the next time you see them.
See their pictures and mini-biographies here
Love & Sex: Among the Fringe Benefits of Being Religious
This week, we read in November issue of The Atlantic
, "Compared with non-religious, religious people report more satisfaction with their love lives and sex lives. Frequent church attendance has also been associated with lower rates of smoking and drinking, a greater tendency to exercise, reduced risk of cancer and improved cardiovascular health. A research review conducted on behalf of the National Institutes of Health went so far as to declare that 'church/service attendance protects healthy people against death.' So religion affects the course and even duration of your life." You can read the article here
Just last week, we reported that a New Republic
article stated, "Start giving your money and time away: New research shows you'll be happier for it. Americans who describe themselves as "very happy" volunteer an average of 5.8 hours per month. Those who are "unhappy"? Just 0.6 hours." Read the whole article here.
|Selected Short Subjects|
The Grace Church Directory has been updated. To get your copy, email email@example.com. Specify email or paper.
The Hamilton County Board of Elections is looking for people willing to work the Tuesday, November 4, election as a Precinct Election Official. Rate of pay is approximately $160-$180. A 3-hour training class is required. If interested, email Joe Mallory, Elections Administrator at Joe.Mallory@hamilton-co.org.
Haven't seen a Monarch Butterfly for awhile? They have declined 90% in the past 20 years! You can improve their chances of survival by planting milkweed this fall. (A very pretty plant.) Aiding our environment is an important part of Christian stewardship. Ask for a free seed packet at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Confused about voting? Get all the info about the candidates and issues for your location at Vote411.org.
|Thanks ... |
... to Rhonda Sharp and other office volunteers for updating the Grace Church Directory.
... to Grace Staples for sending us tidbits to include in this publication.
... to Ruth Bertram, who is dedicated to making our accounting system right, while training a new Treasurer.
If you want to thank anyone in the congregation for something they did week (leading the meditation in the Friday Prayer and Meditation group, going above and beyond on a routine responsibility, donating food or cooking for the Community Dinner, etc.) then please send that thank you to Ken Lyon (eGraceNotes@gracecollegehill.org) or the office (email@example.com), so they can be recognized.
|AMOS Project Mobilizing Faith Community to Fight Child Poverty |
Do you have a call and desire for justice ministry? AMOS is focusing on children in poverty. Here's a letter from biblical scholar Walter Brueggemann, who now lives in Cincinnati.
Earlier this year, I learned that over 53% of Cincinnati's children live in Poverty. I have invested my many years of teaching, writing, and ministry to cultivate a prophetic response to the injustices of our day. I am joining with AMOS to challenge the conditions that contribute to this staggering statistic and the young lives it represents.
In my book The Prophetic Imagination, I wrote, "Compassion constitutes a radical form of criticism, for it announces that the hurt is to be taken seriously, that the hurt is not to be accepted as normal and natural but is an abnormal and unacceptable condition for humanness."
I am joining with AMOS on Tuesday October 21st, from 7 til 8:30 PM at Tryed Stone New Beginning Church (5550 Reading Road) because the hurt and pain unleashed in our community by our shameful childhood poverty rate must be taken seriously. This is abnormal and unacceptable, and AMOS is mobilizing the church and faith community to respond.
Please join with me and hundreds of people from dozens of congregations in Greater Cincinnati on October 21st. You can register at the following link: AMOS Public Meeting
I look forward to seeing you on October 21st.
Dr. Walter Brueggemann
Dr. Troy Jackson, The AMOS Project, Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
You can donate a bouquet of flowers on the altar on any Sunday in honor of or in memory of anyone. The suggested donation is only $35. Just sign on the flower sheet by the door or call the church office or email email@example.com or donate online at gracecollegehill.org.
Read more on the Cathedral website here.
Editor's note: This will be an event well worth attending. Register soon!
|Prayers and Thanksgivings|
Prayers for healing are asked for Rev. Rev. Ernestein, Patty Rogers, The Rogers Family, (Sarah and Joe Rogers - Patty's parents), Carl, Jackie, Robb Martin, Kim Martin, Melissa, Jordan and Brandie, Lee Hardy, Rhonda Sharp, The Partin Family, D.L., Maree White, Robert and Kathleen Keefer and Anna Keefer, Virginia Chapel and Family, Our President and Our Country, Anni Gibson, Albertha Howard and DeConte Howard, Johnny, Peter Harten, Phillis Dietz and Laura Hubrich, Peter Hawkins, Judy Handy, Madeena Nolan, Gwynne and Naomi Gabbard, Marla, Mae Armstead, Jan Sharp, James McNab, Bev Olinger, Paul, Katharine Thayer, Grace Moore, Stella Parker, Jim and Nancy Vath, Darryl Handy, Father Hufford, Father Ray Betts and Mary McLain, Ken Lyon.
Prayers are asked for members often not able to come to church: Elizabeth Kelly, Janet Henthorn, Mary Jane Showers, Naomi Koester, Elva Gscheidle, Jo Carroll, Anne Henneberg, Phillis Dietz, Raymond Betts.
To add or subtract from this list, please contact the Church Office (513-541-2415, firstname.lastname@example.org) with the names of the persons to be included on this list. If you email, please place "Prayer Request" in the subject line. Please also indicate whether the name of the prayer recipient is to be listed in the bulletin.
Names remain on the list for about a month. Please let us know if people should be put back on the list.
Pastoral Care. If you need pastoral care or know of someone who does, please call or email the office (513-541-2415, email@example.com). Keep us informed about about illness, hospital stays, requests for visits, communion, and prayers for special concerns.
| Coming Attractions |
The online Grace Church Calendar lists most everything we know about that's happening at Grace Church. If something's not listed, or if you see errors, please tell the office (firstname.lastname@example.org, 513-541-2415).
Grace Church worship services and participants' assignments are shown here.