Church Jottings 2/9/19

Rincon’s February book selection might be of interest to all AZ residents: Gila: The Life and Death of an American River, by Gregory McNamee.

Desert Palm has created a task force to help guide the congregation into becoming a WISE congregation. WISE stands for Welcoming, Inclusive, Supportive, and Engaged and centers on becoming more inclusive of those with mental health issues. 

Good Shepherd UCC in Sahuarita’s Progressive Lecture Committee is hosting a "Progressive Theology Seminar" on February 22-23 with special guest Diana Butler Bass. Dr. Bass writes for Huffington Post, Washington Post, Sojourners, Christian Century and several other publications and is a commentator on many networks.  She will focus upon her books, Grounded and Gratitude.  Contact Ed Hunt at 

From the Arizona Faith Network:  March For Our Lives Arizona invites you to join them on February 14th, 2019 to commemorate the one-year anniversary since the Parkland shooting. A year ago on this date, 17 students and teachers were mindlessly killed in their high school classrooms. On the 14th we will mourn those lost and honor those still here. The vigil will be held from 6:30 - 8:00 pm at Madison Meadows Middle School, 225 W Ocotillo Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85013. We thank you for your support and attendance on the 14th. 

First Church Phoenix holds a Feminist Book Club on the first Saturday of the month at 10:30. The March 2nd book is “Good and Mad” by Rebecca Terister and centers on anger in all its varieties. 

For those practicing a 12-Step program, the simple yet powerful method of Centering Prayer, when used as an 11th Step practice, opens one to a deeper spiritual awakening and prepares us to receive the gifts of God’s presence.  This group meets on Mondays, 7–8:30 p.m., at Shepherd of the Hills and is open to anyone in 12-Step Recovery searching for emotional and spiritual sobriety through the 12 Steps of AA, Al-Anon, and other 12-Step programs. Those with an established Centering Prayer practice will also benefit by refreshing the essentials of the practice.

Casas Adobes is offering a Parents (and Grandparents) Night Out on Feb 15th 5–8:30 p.m.  Kids can eat pizza, see a movie and make crafts while adults have some alone time.  Valentine’s Day a day late but surely appreciated! 

Church of the Red Rocks has been awarded a grant of $300,000 to develop a property in Sedona to house homeless families. Congratulations!

The Sahuarita Food Bank has named Carlos Valles as its Executive Director. Valles is a business owner and has 10 years experience with the military in transportation logistics and program management.  The food bank is connected to Good Shepherd UCC.   

First Congregational of Albuquerque’s Green Team is reviewing NM legislation on environmental issues and planning the programming for Faith Climate Action Week in April. 

Good Shepherd in Sahuarita has been paying tuition for high school students in Guatemala for 15 years.  The over $60,000 contributed has enabled 150 students to attend. This year’s scholarship fundraiser is underway. Only 1 in 10 Guatemalans have the equivalent of a high school education. 

St Paul’s in Rio Rancho, NM is doing a full month’s worship series honoring Black History Month.  They will remember the Amistad, reflect on the words of Langston Hughes and Maya Angelou, and hear about the work of the abolitionists in the Congregational Churches. 

First Church Phoenix, Scottsdale UCC, and Desert Palm are joining together to offer confirmation classes to 10 kids from the three churches. They meet weekly at the SWC office. 

The Church of the Beatitudes’ Charity Football Pool raised over $700.  Money will be divided between three charities. 

Larry Loeber, Music Director at Congregational Church of the Valley, will participate in a special chamber music concert featuring musical instruments that survived the Holocaust. 

Monday, February 18th, 2019, Presidents' Day, 9:30 AM - 3 PM will be the annual UU/UCC Day at the Legislature. This is an excellent opportunity to learn more about the Arizona legislative process and meet with your State Senator and House Representatives. Children are also invited with their parents as Presidents' Day is a National Holiday with children off from school and a Holiday for some adult’s employment. Please contact Desert Palm member Jo Vredenburg, e-mail address,, if you are interested in attending or would like more information. She will assist you in setting up your Legislative District appointments or you can join her with LD16 visits. Come and learn how to make your voice as a person of faith heard and make a difference discussing issues important to you.