In This Week's E-Pistle, You Will Find:
This Sunday's Service: "Spiritual Healing"
In Sunday's Gospel, Jesus begins his healing ministry, curing many who were sick with various diseases. He said that we, too, have been given the power to heal, and he came to show us the way. Tune in this Sunday to our "Video Worship Service," as we explore how to "Awaken the Healer Within." Message: Pastor Sal. Music: Peter Black and Stan Greene.
Tune in on Sunday at 10 AM via our Facebook page, YouTube channel, or here on our website.
Last Sunday's Video Service
In the gospel reading for last Sunday, Jesus begins to teach in the temple, and everyone there is amazed because he taught with an inner authority. Our spiritual growth requires the development of an inner knowing and an inner authority. During last Sunday's "Video Worship Service," we explored how to develop and tap into our inner wisdom. Click on the video link above to enjoy the message from Pastor Sal Sapienza and music by Peter Black and Brenda Marcy.
Black History Month Begins
February is Black History Month in the United States. The United Church of Christ has a few suggestions for us to honor the history of Black Americans this month:
1. Commit to being Anti-Racist and align yourself with like-minded organizations.
2. Educate yourself about the impact of white supremacy in our world.
3. Reflect on your inner circle and query if there are voices of folks who do not look like you. If your circle is homogenous, do the personal work to expand your horizons.
4. Patronize Black Owned and Operated Businesses.
5. Explore National UCC Resources
Pastor Sal on the Radio!
This Saturday morning at 8:30 AM, our very own Pastor Sal will be a guest on the "Morning Grind" Radio Show on 92.7 FM, the Van. He will be talking about making preparations for the Season of Lent, which begins later this month.
Stephen Ministry Leadership Training Online!
Our Stephen Minister Leaders, Paul Burdick and Laurie VandenBeldt, joined us for Sunday's Friendship Hall meeting to share news of the upcoming online Stephen Leaders' training program. This training is open to anyone who wishes to serve as a team leader to Stephen Ministers. You don't need to be a Stephen Minister to lead this crew, but you do need to complete the leadership training course. If you'd like to learn more about the course and the work of Stephen Leaders, email Paul Burdick or Laurie VandenBeldt.
Michigan's Contact Tracing App
We can protect one another as we work to stay safe by downloading and using the MI COVID ALERT app for our apple or android smart phones. The app a free and is managed by the state health department to help with contact tracing and notification, which will slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Michigan. Using the MI COVID Alert app along with following and observing existing public health recommendations will help us all stay safe when we meet up, socialize, work or travel. Click here to find and download the app to your phone!
Sign up for your vaccine! Volunteer to help people get their vaccines!
Local public health departments are working to distribute vaccines in West Michigan. Click here to visit Vaccinate West Michigan for news of distribution in our region. If you are an Allegan County resident and wish to have a vaccine and/or volunteer to help out , follow this link to register with the Allegan County Health Department website. You may wish to register with your local Meijer, whose clinics will be set up to distribute Covid 19 vaccines. Here is the link to register at your closest Meijer pharmacy. Hope is on the horizon!
Please note that healthcare advisors in our own church and across the nation are advising people who have received the vaccine to continue to wear masks and practice social distancing for a while longer. Patience is the gift we give to each other. Here's a good explanation of why masking and distancing will still be necessary.
If you have the time and the skills to help people sign up and receive their vaccines, Allegan County has a volunteer application form you can use to let them know of your skills and availability.
You need to sign up online, and here is the link for Allegan County:
And here is the link for other locations in Michigan:
Friendship Hall News
Creation Justice Team Members Chris Clark and Betsy York shared news of their support for the work of Jon Vanderbeek, who has a campaign to protect and preserve the hiking trails (and their trees!) in our region. For more on this program and how you can help, visit trailmasterplan.com. We all worked to cultivate patience in the wait for vaccines. For help getting in line for yours, see the article above. Stan Greene noted that the vaccines are opened in batches that must be used up in a set amount of time, which may be adding to scheduling challenges. We offered prayers for Bev's nephew, Darren Dixon, for Kurt McDonald, for Rev. Marty's brother, Ronald Vroon, and Gregg Smith's stepdad, Bill Tucker. We prayed for healing for Pam Chappell's neuralgia, and Laurie Van Den Beldt's rotator cuff pain. Because some of you have asked, you should receive your tax letters from the church in the next couple of weeks. They were mailed out on Friday.
Quarterly Financial Report
With big thanks to Mike Boston for his reporting, here is the Douglas Congregational UCC
2021 Budget vs. 2021 Actual vs. 2020 Actual Report for fiscal year 2021, the six moths from July 2020 to December 2020. Click the link below to download a copy.
Birthdays & Anniversaries
February 9- Mason Harvath Gerrans, 10-Elizabeth (Libby) Greene,
11- Kirt Oliver, Lin Wisehart, 12- Demetrhea Terrien
Birthday and Anniversary cards are a great way we can continue to reach out to one another during this time. If you wish to mail a card to one of our church members, addresses can be found in our Church Directory. If you don't have a directory, please let us know, and we will email one to you.
Sue Tucker and her entire family (Gregg Smith's mom and family); Pete McDermed (Paul Burdick's friend); Chris Stuart (Virginia Stuart's sister-in-law); Ronald Vroon (Marchiene Rienstra's brother); Kurt McDonald (Roye McDonald's nephew); Matt Brazys (Friend of Pete Wehle's); Darren Dixon (Beverly and Orie Hawkes' nephew); John (Wendy Hamilin's son); Mike Spina (Tom Spina's father); Chris Lee (Joy McClendon's son); Krissy Molitor (Ann Hopkins' daughter); The Plantinga Family; Dr. Bernie Siegel (Ruth VandenBosch's friend); Kathy Austin and Mike Boston and their family; Barbara Muller; Bill & David Lezondra; Lisa and Michael and baby Harper McLoughlin (Jane Brodt's daughter and son-in-law and new granddaughter); Mary Elizabeth Loudin (friend of Laurie VandenBeldt); Richard Graham; Max Brown; the Klott Family; five members of family of Max Brown's sister; Audrey Looman and Michael Titus, (friends of Ruth VandenBosh; Ruth Pearson (Wendy Hamlin's sister, Fred Hamlin's daughter); Char Clausing (Nancy Plantinga's cousin); Brent Havens; Ruth VandenBosch; Pamela Chappell; Bubba Beaudreaux; Marilyn Ondersma (the Reimans' friend); Chris Robinson (Peter and Kathleen Mueller's nephew); Leith Letcher and Jim Shewell; Gregg Kirchen (Sheryll and Greg VanPortfleet's friend); Sidney Matheis; Jodi Berault, Dirk Hollebeek (Ruth VandenBosch's godson); Larry Gregsbeek (friend of Mark Reiman); Daniel Ver Meulen (Susan Fleming's son); Hannah Sherman; Terry Stough (Catz Dienes' son); Ted Sommer; Drew Carter; Jeff Cooley (Jo Cooley's brother); Marcia Sullivan (Jo Cooley's friend); Len Lynch (Kathleen Mueller's brother); Curtis Coffin (Marty Coffin's brother).
All of our Covid-19 pandemic first responders, and for the researchers and scientists working on effective tests and treatments for Covid-19. Prayers for all in the military and their families; all who are homeless or addicted or abused or neglected or rejected or hungry; The UCC; the Grand West Association; our Church Council; our Stephen Ministers; our church committees; our communities, our schools, our nation and our planet.
To add or remove a name from the Prayer List, please email us.
January 31, 2021
Viewers for January 31, Online Service Videos: 991
Online Giving: $2,428.49
Mail-in Donation Plate: $2,955.00