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Our 63rd Year Roberta Croll, EditorRevised January 21, 2016

Inclement Weather Notice

The National Weather Service has a blizzard watch in effect for Friday night through early Sunday morning. If a decision is made to cancel worship services on Sunday, a notice will be posted on our Facebook page and an Alerts email will go out.

In addition, it is requested that people refrain from driving to the church on Saturday so that our contractor, Mowing and Towing, can thoroughly clean the driveways, parking lot, and sidewalks before 8:00 a.m. Sunday morning.

Stay safe and warm this weekend, and enjoy the snow if you can!

This Week

Town Hall - Budget Information Sessions

Sunday, January 24

On Sunday, Rob Peters and Joe Christiansen will be present in Room 8 following each worship service to answer your questions and provide an opportunity to discuss the planning for the budget and finances which will support our church's ministries in 2016.

Little River UCC Meditation Group Meeting

Sunday, January 24

It has been said that prayer is talking to God and meditation is listening to God. Are you seeking to add a contemplative element to your spiritual practice? Please join us on Sunday, January 24 at 11:00 in the conference room as we explore Meditation as a contemplative practice that helps to quiet the mind. We will have a brief guided meditation followed by sharing about the experience. Please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you have any questions.

"Caring Hands" Prayer Shawl Project

Sunday, January 24

"Caring Hands" is Little River's name for those of us in the church who knit or crochet items for various causes. Over the past several years, projects have included preemie hats for Fairfax INOVA Hospital, winter hats for Thrive DC, squares for Knit-a-Square blankets for South Africa, scarves for the UCC Rainbow Scarf Project, and baptism blankets for babies baptized at Little River UCC. At this time, the Deacons' Parish Care Committee would like to provide prayer shawls to the pastors so that they may give them to those experiencing difficult life circumstances. The Committee aims to have several shawls on hand, so there is always one available when the need arises.

For those interested in making prayer shawls, there will be a drop-in session on Sunday, January 24 (11:00 am - 12:30 pm) in Room 7 where you may pick up supplies and connect with others interested in this effort. There will also be information on baptism blankets as well as charity knitting and crochet projects beyond Little River UCC.

Questions? Or to schedule a knitting/crochet lesson, please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Monday Morning Bible Study

Monday, January 25

From The Great Courses, Professor Gary A. Rendsburg focuses on the book of Genesis. This course of 24 lectures allows for numerous avenues of inquiry. Discussions are led by Richard Davidson. Please join us at 10:00 a.m. in Room 8 on Monday mornings.

Next Week

Annual Congregational Meeting (One Worship Service - 10:00 am)

Sunday, January 31

Next Sunday there is one worship service at 10:00 a.m. After service, members are called for a Congregational Meeting at 11:00 a.m. Read the official call to meeting here.

Changes to the current Endowment Fund Policy are being proposed. You may view those changes and the current policy on the Schedules, Procedures, Policies, and Forms page.

Hungry for the Annual Meeting? We hope you are!

Sunday, January 31

To help fuel the discussion at the Annual Meeting, PYF will help provide a Baked Potato Bar lunch. This will serve as a fund raiser to help the PYF Youth attend this summer’s UCC National Youth Event (NYE), taking place from July 26-30, 2016 at Coronado Springs Resort, Lake Buena Vista, FL (Yes, we’re going to Disney World!). This will be an ecumenical leadership and mission event (different from our usual hands-on mission trips), and the cost is substantially increased (about $800 per person attending). Please bring your appetites, and your wallets, to support our youth attending through a free-will offering.

More Church News

Hands-on Mission Project - Postponed

The Board of Outreach and Social Justice has postponed the Hands-on Mission project for Alternative House originally scheduled for Saturday, January 30. In consideration of the Annual Meeting scheduled for Sunday, January 31, we have decided to postpone the activity until later in the year and plan for a less busy weekend.

Year-End Giving Statements

Those who have contributed to Little River UCC during 2015 should be receiving your year-end giving statements in the next few days. Please take a moment to review your statement to make sure it comports with your records as to your contributions for the year. If you find any discrepancies (or if you do not receive an expected statement by the end of January), please call or e-mail Office Administrator, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , at (703) 978-3060; or Treasurer, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , at (703) 978-0470. The sooner we catch any errors in our accounting for your contributions, the easier it will be to correct them and issue a corrected giving statement.

February 28: A Time to Celebrate!

Over the past several months, we have celebrated Little River UCC’s 60th Anniversary in a variety of ways. We’ve marked the occasion by sharing stories from our church’s history in Lent; reflecting in Eastertide on God’s call for us in the years to come; granting Verne Arens the honorific title of Pastor Emeritus in October; and (in January 2016) voting on a renewed vision for our future. As the 60th year anniversary year comes to a close in February, the Deacons would like to celebrate Little River UCC’s six decades of welcoming diversity, independent thought, and faithful action on Sunday, February 28.

And what better way to celebrate our church’s rich and vibrant history than to officially welcome back Verne and his wife Julie? In honor of our anniversary, and Verne and Julie’s return to the flock, we will host a celebration and Verne has graciously agreed to preach here at Little River UCC on the 28th to help us celebrate in honor of the occasion.

What kind of celebration? We don’t know -- help us! If you would like to help plan the festivities, please contact Deacons This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Volunteers Needed for Sunday Services

Would you like to volunteer? We need ushers, liturgists and greeters on Sunday mornings.

Ushers prepare the sanctuary for worship services, help seat people, distribute worship bulletins, collect the offering, and generally support the logistics of the services. The time required is 1½ hours on most Sundays during every third month (i.e., 4 months a year).

Liturgists help to lead the worship service at one or both services on Sunday morning. They lead the Call to Worship and the Prayer of Invocation and read the scripture. They sit up on the chancel during the service. The liturgy you need to read is prepared for you and will be sent to you ahead of time so that you can become familiar with the text. You may choose to serve at both services or just one.

If you are ready to volunteer as an usher or liturgist, or would like more information about either, please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

We also need greeters at the Front Door for both services. Greeters arrive 30 minutes before the service and welcome visitors. Please sign your name on the sign sheet by the church office door if you are interested. Questions? Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Save the Date

First Friday: Mardi Gras Celebration

Friday, February 5

We might be a few days early, but what does that matter during Carnival!  February’s First Friday will be a Mardi Gras Dance Party Celebration. Come let the bon temps roulez, February 5, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.! The children will enjoy dinner, games, and crafts while you enjoy a little free time. The cost is $15 per child, with a family maximum of $30. Registration forms are available at http://bit.ly/lruccfirstfriday. If you’ve already completed a registration form for the 2015/2016 program year, please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to let us know your child(ren) will be attending before January 31.

First Friday is a kids' night out program designed to give parents an evening to themselves. Volunteers provide creative and exciting entertainment for the children in a safe and fun atmosphere at the church. First Friday is for children aged six months through 12 years. All children in our community are welcome, whether or not their families attend Little River UCC, so spread the word and make your plans!

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper

Tuesday, February 9

Mark your calendars! Plan to prepare for the start of Lent – the most important Christian holiday season – by joining Little River UCC friends for a pancake supper on Shrove Tuesday, February 9, from 6:00 to 7:30 pm. Come when you can; a blessing will be said at 6:30.

Pancakes, sausage, and fruit salad will be served, with vegetarian and gluten-free options available.

RSVP to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it in the church office either by email or by phone at (703) 978-3060. Donations (cash or check) will be received at the door. Please note: We also need volunteer pancake flippers, set-up helpers, and clean-up angels! Sign up on the bulletin board in the social hall after any Sunday service.

Ash Wednesday Service

Wednesday, February 10

The season of Lent then officially begins with our Ash Wednesday service on February 10. This quiet, reflective service will include both the Sacrament of Communion and the imposition of ashes. The service begins at 7:30 pm in the sanctuary. Please join us for this beautiful, ancient tradition.

Church Council News

Minutes and more