Kairos-Milwaukie United Church of Christ

KMUCC News & Events

Photo: (c) iStock.com / SunnyGraph (image #695671848)

Photo: © iStock.com / SunnyGraph (image #695671848)

News and events information from KMUCC and the wider community.

 

God formed a human from the dust of the ground,
and breathed into their nostrils the breath of life;
and they became a living being.
- Genesis 2.7 -

Photo: © iStock.com / elinedesignservices (image #43282422)Despite the ash stained faces that mark its beginning, lent is a season of hope.

It’s a time to see ourselves as we really are, in all our tininess, fragility, and insignificance. And a time to see ourselves as we really are in all our belovedness - made in the image of God.

It’s a time when we see the world as it really is: broken and ravaged by violence; beautiful, abundant and ever renewing.

This lent, as we pay attention to both sides of reality, we will gather each week to listen for the voice of the Divine, rest in the Great Love, and gather the wisdom and strength we need to navigate this beautiful, broken, miraculous life. Janice Roggenkamp and I will offer introductions and brief instructions for each practice and then all together we will experiment and explore.

  • March 5 Guided Meditation from Richard Rohr to help us begin
  • March 12 Lectio Divina (Sacred Reading), a practice of reading that allows us to listen for a word, phrase, or image that speaks a word of God to us.
  • March 19 Centering Prayer, wordless prayer that invites us to be still in God’s presence.
  • March 26 Praying the Labyrinth, the path is symbolic of the journey inward toward God’s illumination and then outward, grounded in God and empowered to act in the world. (In the sanctuary)
  • April 2 The Loving-Kindness Meditation; “a meditation of tenderness and compassion for oneself and others; a softening of the mind and heart, an opening to deeper and deeper levels of kindness and pure love.” (www.contemplativemind.org)

So let us be marked
not for sorrow,
but for claiming
what God can do
within the dust,
within the dirt,
within the stuff
of which the world
is made
and the stars that blaze
in our bones
and the galaxies that spiral
inside the smudge
we bear.
- Jan Richardson -

 

River of Fire CoverTheology On Tap readers/talkers have chosen as the next “read” Sister Helen Prejean’s River of Fire. Prejean is best known for her award-winning book Dead Men Walking for which she is known worldwide for starting a dialogue on the death penalty.

Reviewers have said this new book is a “deeply authentic memoir of faith in action.” And another, “Sister Prejean’s radical openness and bracing honesty about her own faith journey is as refreshing and compelling as it is demanding and questioning.”

The Theology On Tap group meets monthly at 7:00 pm on the third Tuesday at the Buffalo Gap Saloon & Eatery, 6835 SW Macadam Ave, Portland OR 97219.

Good pub food and drinks make for an enjoyable evening.

God has told you, O mortal, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you but
to do justice,
and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8)

Photo: © iStock.com / wildpixel (Image ID# 1145766838)This well-loved verse comes to us in the lectionary this month. These are some of the Protestant world’s most oft-quoted words from Hebrew scripture; words we sing every week as part of our offering ritual:

Help me do the justice to be done today.
Help me love kindness in all I do and say.
Help me walk humbly with you, O God, I pray,
Every step of the way, every step of the way.

With these words we remind ourselves of who we wish to be as a community and the work that we feel ourselves called to do. And we throw ourselves into that work with such generosity and such deep kindness! Our care, financial support and donations, from Clackamas Service Center right around the corner, to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation halfway across the country, to Cetana Educational Foundation halfway across the world -- and many other places in between. We donate our time and energy to feed folks at Hoyt Street each month, and we walk to raise money for senior housing with Northwest Pilot Project every spring. We try to stay awake and aware, always learning about the real injustices and crises in our world so we can respond – to racial injustice, the mistreatment of refugees and asylum seekers, the needs of immigrants, the reality of the climate crisis…

KMUCC Styrofoam DayOn January 12, 2020, we took 3 full truckloads and at least 5 carloads of styrofoam in for recycling. Wow!

We found out that a local Milwaukie non-profit called Exceed Enterprises has a styrofoam pickup location near Bob’s Red Mill restaurant. They take it to Agilyx for recycling. Exceed is a supported employment agency for disabled people, but a group called Milwaukie Environmental Alliance has set up this pickup location in the Exceed parking lot. They are only doing pickup Mon-Fri daytime through March of this year. It appears to be a trial setup but they seemed thrilled to have us bring so much stuff!

An interesting note is when we returned to the church for our last load (that we thought would be a light one), we were surprised that someone had dropped off a big stack of containers!

Some notes about this project: We need to check what people give. That was done well right after church but later donations had random junk plastics and some flexible stuff that resembled styrofoam but isn't. We bundled things in plastic bags which is good for handling, but we now have maybe 20 bags (we need to reuse those next time).

We would say the styrofoam recycling project was an awesome success! Thanks to everyone that contributed.... and it was a lot of people!

DinnerChurchWeb

The Second Sunday of Every Month from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

We gather to cook and eat a meal together, to talk and laugh, sing and pray.
Everyone of every age is welcome!

Happy New Year 2020We are all meant to be mothers of God.
What good is it to me if this eternal birth of the divine Son
takes place unceasingly, but does not take place within myself?
And, what good is it to me if Mary is full of grace if I am not also full of grace?
What good is it to me for the Creator to give birth to a Son
if I do not also give birth to him in my time and my culture?
This, then, is the fullness of time: When the Son of Man is begotten in us.
-- Meister Eckhart

For the last six weeks, the flow of the church year has focused our attention on the events of 2000 years ago, retelling and celebrating our ancient stories about divine presence with and for us.

As we approached a new decade many people, especially on social media, have spent time reflecting on the decade that was… where they personally were in 2009 and the successes, failures, adventures, and resiliencies that had brought them to 2019.

But the invitation of standing on the edge of a new year and a new decade and the yearly invitation of the Christmas story is to turn from what has been, to what will be.

This moment invites us to consider where we hear God speaking to us in our individual lives, to listen for where God might be leading us.

This moment invites us to consider where we hear God speaking to us as a congregation. With all of the challenges facing our Portland community and our country, with immigrants and refugees being scapegoated, with an uptick in antisemitic violence shocking us all, with the climate crisis facing the whole globe; with all the challenges of 2019 rolling over into 2020, how are WE being called to be the body of Christ in the world?

What gifts and graces do we have as a community and how are we being called to use those gifts to speak peace and justice into the world in new ways? The promise is that God will not leave us on our own; the challenge is to bring that presence to a world longing still for peace, for love and for hope.

Peace and blessings as we journey together.

Mark GambaThe Green Team and Pastor Jeanne have invited Milwaukie Mayor Mark Gamba to deliver a “Mission Message” on January 19, 2020 during worship and speak on the current Climate Crisis and what Milwaukie city government is doing to address this issue, as well as fair housing and other issues related to climate justice.

Mayor Gamba, formerly a nature photographer for such magazines as National Geographic, saw first-hand the destruction of such important ecosystems as the Great Barrier Reef. Read more about Mayor Gamba at the City of Milwaukie website (click here).