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Recent Church Newsletters from RCUMC
 Note:  These are just example newsletters - for the most recent edition please pick up a hard copy from the table in the Narthex, or sign up to receive our newsletter electronically on our attendance pads! 



 Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Praise the Lord!
Praise, O servants of the Lord;
praise the name of the Lord.
Blessed be the name of the Lord
from this time on and forevermore.
From the rising of the sun to its setting
the name of the Lord is to be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations,
and his glory above the heavens.
Psalm 113:1-4
Pastor’s Column
It’s very obvious, a Kindergarten-level statement, something right out of Relationships 101: To grow in friendship you have to spend time together. Duh, right? That is, if you want to get to know someone, and for them to know you, and to build a relationship, and a friendship, and to grow close together, step one: Spend time. Rub elbows. Share experiences. Because that’s what it takes to grow relationships. You can’t get to know someone you never spend any time with!
And that’s true for us and God. Growing in relationship with God isn’t magic. It doesn’t happen just because I come to Church, or just because I own six Bibles, or just because I believe He’s real. I grow in God when I spend time with Lord – maybe in prayer, maybe with your Bible, maybe in Worship, maybe in service, maybe in fellowship with others… but to grow in God and with God, we’ve gotta spend time in God’s presence! On Sundays --- and then every day of the week! J
The exact same being true as Christians. We build relationships with one another by spending time together. And as much as I love our Sunday mornings together, that has to be our starting point: our first gathering of the week. But then, if we are truly to grow in relationship, we have to come together more. Growing with each other in classes, or on retreats, or in committees, or during special events. We share conversation around a table together on a given study. We spend time together in a music rehearsal. We grow closer spending a night together on a retreat. We grow closer going on a mission trip, or by cooking and serving a dinner together, or by lending a hand when the Church needs help. We decorate for Christmas, or we have a cleaning day, or we’re gearing up for Vacation Bible School, or we’re even sharing in a committee conversation. We gotta spend time, to know each other. To grow closer. And to building up our Church Family.
You’ll hear a lot on this front this year. Lots of invitations to come and participate. Lots of encouragement to rub elbows. We have several new families and individuals who are eager to make friends – and we need our veteran families to come out and play together! We are also so appreciative of the parents and children in our church; and we want to provide regular opportunities for them to spend time together too – particularly our kids, so they can develop friendships within their Church Family! We want ladies to be able to get together with other ladies, and gents with gents, and old with young, and teens with teens, and veteran members with newbies, and kids with kids, and everybody with everybody!
My very eager word of encouragement in the midst: Where might you plug into something new? Where haven’t you stepped out before, that you could try on? When was the last Sunday School class you attended? When did you last come to a fellowship event, like caroling, or Bunko, or a prayer gathering? Have you been on retreat with us? When the UMW meet, have you checked them out? The Recovery Study group on Sundays? Have you helped serve a dinner at Open House? Have you volunteered to help with a youth group? Where might you spend some time with your church family in a new way? That we can get to know you more too?
Looking ahead, a few examples of special opportunities to gather, to rub elbows, and to grow closer to one another and to our God – just to get thinking and get excited!
· Family Potluck Dinners in February – I hope you sign up to simply share in one meal with other members of our Church!
· Women’s Studies on Daniel
· Serve a Meal at Open House
· Children’s Events each month
· Ash Wednesday Worship, March 5th
· Women’s Retreat at Ocean Park on March 14th – 16th
· 30 Hour Famine with our Jr. & Sr. Highers this Spring
· Holy Week Events, like a new Passover Seder and our Cross Walk
· Men’s Retreat in May
· Women’s Tea this Spring
· Church Campouts this Summer – right here on our Church grounds!
· Summer Church Softball League
· Vacation Bible School this Summer
And those are just some examples – but the real invitiation, is to then come to these gatherings! Spend time with your brothers and sisters, whether we’re retreating, we’re in a class, we’re working together --- however you would fit, come and join in!
I am excited for the month of February ahead, for the Season of Lent ahead, and for the year that lies ahead of gatherings, classes, outreaches, services, worship opportunities, and especially, of growing in relationship with one another and with our God!
See you in Worship,
Pastor James Murphy
Food Ministries at RCUMC
1. Open House Ministries Dinner on the 2nd Thursday
Our next dinner at Open House is Thursday, February 13th. We do not have a regular rotation of committed servants on this, so we rely each month on different folks to sign up and let us know you’ll help with set up and cooking. We ask helpers to arrive at 4:00 pm at Open House in Vancouver, 900 W 12th Street so we can set up and cook; serving the meal beginning at 5:00 pm. It is a very clean and safe environment, as we serve dinner to about 50 residents of the Open House program. We are also in need of support in either gifting or purchasing necessary food items for the dinner; you can sign up and provide a specific item, or you can now donate to the new pink coffee can on the Ministry Table.
2. New: Backpack Ministry for Elementary Kids
Our Backpack Ministry involves filling 10 backpacks with breakfast and lunch items to assist with 10 hungry kids and their families through Union Ridge Elementary school. We will fill those backpacks every week throughout the school year as a love offering. Thus, we invite your support through regular gifts of food items: individual oatmeals, fruit, snacks, bread, peanut butter and the like.
3. Neighbors Helping Neighbors Food Bin
We keep a large white bin in our Narthex so that donations of non-perishable food items can be made year-round to our local food bank: Neighbors Helping Neighbors. Just drop yours off in the bin!
Worship Ahead
Testimony Speakers
Thank you to Susan, Jim, Joyce and Jun, who have thus far shared their testimonies with us, and the ways God has been active in their lives! We will hear from CarrieAnn Baker this Sunday, February 2nd, and from Pastor James on February 9th to wrap up this time of testimonials.
Pre-Lenten Series: Heaven, Hell and Repentance!
For the three Sundays preceding the Season of Lent, Pastor James is offering a fun, mini-sermon series on the hereafter! He hopes to use a little humor as we explore together our understanding of eternity in Scripture, and how it can impact our day-to-day lives.
“Heaven” on Sunday, February 16th
“Hell” on Sunday, February 23rd
“Repentance” on Sunday, March 2nd (this will be Part I of II, with the 2nd part later that week during Ash Wednesday Worship at 7:00 pm on March 5th)
Ash Wednesday Worship: March 5th
Mark you calendars early for this powerful, once-a-year worship experience focused on “getting right with God” as we begin the Season of Lent together!
Events and Announcements
Get to Know Your Church Family! Family Potluck Dinners in February
We are inviting everyone: singles, couples and families to sign up to share an in-home meal together next month to grow in relationships as a Church family. Think of it as a more intimate version of a potluck, where we’ll invite someone to host, and then each participating family to bring a designated main, side or dessert. We’ll divvy participants up between various hosts to keep these dinners small, asking for hosts and participants to arrange their dinners for the latter half of the month. Our hope is for everyone to sign up—that we can break bread, pray, and rub elbows together as a Church family! Sign up to either host or just participate are on the Ministry Table, and thank you to our coordinator Carolyn!
Welcome to Baby Beau!
Praises to God for the newest addition to our Church Family: Tyler and Heather Brinkman’s new son, Beau Peyton Brinkman! And continued prayers for two special moms with babies on the way: Tessa Davis and Brandy Young! Jenn Murphy is hosting a Baby Shower for Baby Beau and Mom Heather on Sunday, February 9th at the Church – speak with Jenn!
Parents! Valentine’s Day and a Parents Night Out
Bake & CarrieAnn are offering parents of our church a generous gift: Two blissfully kid-free hours on the evening of Friday, February 14th: Valentines Day! Drop off kids from 6:00 to 8:00 pm for snacks, games, crafts and fun! Talk with Children’s Ministry Guru Caleb Bake Baker for more details.
Youth Group in February
Pastor James has already put out feelers to see if Sunday afternoon, February 9th would work, probably from 2:30 to 4:30 pm at Church. He’ll confirm with our kids this Sunday!
Ministry Council in February
Our Ministry Council will meet this month on Tuesday, February 18th as we discuss the year ahead. All members of the Church are invited to share in this conversation. As this is our first Council of the year, we’ll also share in Holy Communion.
New Women’s Study: Beth Moore’s “Daniel”
Both the Monday morning and Monday evening Women’s groups are studying Beth Moore’s “Daniel”. Monday mornings at 8:00 am, and again Monday evenings at 6:30 pm. See the Ministry Table for more details, or speak with Amy Hoch-South.
The Return of UMW
United Methodist Women resumeson Wednesday, Jan 15 at 10:00 am. All ladies are invited to come!
RCUMC Lenten Devotional
This will be our third year of creating our own unique, in-house devotional! A Lenten Devotional is a collection of Scriptures, reflections and prayers for each day of the Season of Lent—the time of preparing our hearts and minds for Holy Week, the Cross and the Resurrection. But as there are 40 days in Lent in addition to Sundays, we needs lots of writers to help! What to do:
1. Sign Up on the Big List on the Ministry Table.
2. Take your Reminder Tag
3. Write a brief reflection on your Scripture, highlighting both details and what this passage can mean for us. Include a Closing Prayer.
4. Email it to: Office@RidgefieldUMC.com by Monday, February 24th. Devotionals available Sunday, March 2nd, just before Lent begins!
New Prayer Chain Address: prayer@ridgefieldumc.com
Our email prayer chain has moved to a new address at prayer@ridgefieldumc.com. If you are not already on our email prayer chain and you’d like to be included going forward, just email Carey at this new address.
Women’s Retreat at Ocean Park
Mark you r calendars: the Women’s Retreat at Ocean Park Camp will be March 14-16, with speaker, study, singing, fellowship and fun! Save the dates, and look for more information!
Attention All Committee Members and Chairs: Vancouver District Leadership Training Day
You are invited to the Vancouver District Leadership Training Day! This year’s trainings will be held on March 15, 2014. There will again be two locations: North - Chehalis UMC beginning at 9am and South – Vancouver Heights UMC in the afternoon beginning at 2:30pm. (the meeting for us)
In addition to the workshops being offered, we will be featuring 3 of our vital churches in both the north and south locations to briefly share about vitality in their ministries in a special presentation prior to the workshop time. The south location will feature: Ridgefield UMC, White Salmon UMC and Vancouver First UMC.
Join us for a time of inspiration and connection as we witness how God is using our Vancouver District churches to make a difference in our communities.
The workshops being offered are as follows:
· Trustees/Finance
· Mission and US2
· Effective Stewardship
· How to Cultivate Generosity Through Wills and Bequests
· Personal Spiritual Practices
The cost is $10/person or $50/church (as many as you want to bring). Registration link below:PM Training - Vancouver Heights
Missing Book
John Oatley lent a copy of his book “The Monuments Men” to another member of our church, but now he doesn’t remember quite who – did you borrow it from John? Give him a ring at 727-3045.
Thank You from Pastor James
This past month I was allowed to take some spiritual renewal leave, and my family is very grateful to the larger church family, both for the gift of the time, but also to the many servants who helped cover responsibilities like Preschool Chapel, Living Center studies, and Sunday Worship duties. While we lined up this time beginning last fall, we of course did not know that it would include the passing of my mother-in-law Jan Reinmuth – and we believe God in His providence created this time for us, as it was a month with lots of family time with our extended loved ones. Thank you again – we are eager for the year ahead.
Summer Church Camp with the UMC
Parents! Kiddos! Teens! The Summer Church Camp catalogues have arrived, with information about all the summer camps happening at our 4 Pacific Northwest Conference Camp sites. Our Church will offer scholarships again this year to encourage kids and families to take advantage of a week of summer church camp! Get a catalogue from Pastor James!
Now at RCUMC: Two AA Groups
There are now two Alcoholics Anonymous groups meeting downstairs in our facility ,on Monday and Wednesday nights at 6:00 pm each night. The meetings are open to the public, and it is a pleasure to welcome them into our facility.
New: Our District Service Center
Maybe you've already heard the news, but since the start of the year the District Service Center has been providing administrative and communications support for DS David and the Vancouver District. Jonathan looks forward to providing you with whatever you might need from the district office. Don't hesitate to call or email! Find out more about the DSC here
Celebrating the Retirement of Duane & Julie Sich
If you have not had an opportunity to thank Duane & Julie for their ministry with Friends of the Carpenter, cards can be sent to the Friendship Center at POB 65358 Vancouver, WA 98665.
Bishop Hagiya’s Blog
Our Bishop Grant writes a blog for our Conference website. Read it here: Bishop’s Blog
Preschool Playgroup
Our preschool playgroup meets on Thursday mornings from 9:00 to 10:30 am. In addition to open play and connection for parents there is also snack and songs. All preschoolers and parents are welcome, both from our church and from the larger community! Speak with Jenn Murphy for more info.
Thursday is Music Night at RCUMC
Our Praise Band and Chancel Choir are back in full-swing, with a new practice night: Thursdays. Choir at 7:00 pm, Band at 8:00 pm. All are welcome to join them! Speak with Choir Director Joe or Band Leader Bob!
Recovery Bible Study
Is a gathering of friends on Sunday mornings to study God’s Word around issues of dependence, co-dependence, and more – for both those recovering from addictions, and those who have loved addicts. They meet each week in the Fireside Room at 9:00 am Sundays; for more information speak with either Joyce Woodward or Grant Johnson. All are welcomed!
Lifeway Christian Preschool
LifeWay Christian Preschool is a nonprofit Christian preschool with their own board of directors and staff, with Carolyne Higley their director. They meet in our Sunday School wing during the week. They are offering classes for 3, 4 & 5 years , Monday thru Friday, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. To register or for more info, contact Carolyne at (360) 837-2202
Stephen Ministers
Are caring members of our congregation who can provide support and prayer in difficult times. Would you like someone to provide support, to pray with, and call upon God together? Could God love you through them? Call Lisa Detchman 608-2251 or Grant Johnson 281-1150 for info.
Giving and Stewardship at RCUMC
Tithing by Online Bill Pay: Want to make your giving easier?
A great way to manage your church giving that can make it easier for you and the Church is to use your bank’s online bill pay service. All banks offer a way to pay your bills online and it can work for your church payment also. It’s not complicated, and it’s free for nearly all personal accounts! Just a few steps to get going: If you don’t pay any of your bills with online bill pay yet, you will have to activate the service with your bank. Banks have free online bill pay for personal accounts. Once your online bill pay is activated, you sign on to your bank and choose ‘pay bills’ or ‘online bill pay’ then click to add a payee/bill.
You type in the church’s name, RUMC is fine, and then enter our address: PO Box 446, Ridgefield, WA 98642 and phone number 360-887-8312
Put your name in the account number field. Save your payee/bill. Schedule a repeating payment or Manage online bills – look for a heading that allows you to manage the bills and then set up a repeating or automatic payment. You will be able to enter the date of payment and how often it occurs (weekly, monthly). You will also be able to choose how you are notified. A check will be automatically sent from your account to our church with your name on it. That’s tithing made easy!
Support RCUMC by Donating Used Clothes to the ARC Bin
Did you know that by donating used clothing and soft goods you are supporting RCUMC? The ARC weighs donations to our box each month, and then reimburses the church. Those funds are then used to assist individuals and families both inside and outside our church. Recent funds have gone toward gas money and groceries for families in need, and toward church camp scholarships. Simply place your clothing items in the big white ARC box at the edge of our parking lot!
Contact for Our Church, District and Conference