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Our 63rd Year Roberta Croll, EditorRevised September 2, 2016

Sixteenth Sunday After Pentecost
10:00 am Worship

Sunday, September 4

This Sunday is a Hymn Sing Sunday!

This is your chance for all of us to sing one of your favorite hymns. Be sure to join us in worship at 10:00 am, and you will be invited to raise your hand and shout out a hymn you'd love to sing.

These Sundays are some of the most beloved we have all year, so get here early to look through the hymnal and find your hymn before you miss your chance!

This Week

Food Pantry

Sunday, September 4

This Sunday and every Communion Sunday (normally the first Sunday of every month), we invite your gifts of non-expired, non-perishable staple food items, which are placed in our church’s FISH (For Immediate Sympathetic Help) pantry and used to help the hungry in our community. Food is distributed by FISH; to local charities including Food for Others, Alternative House, and Thrive DC; and to individuals who ask for assistance from the pastoral staff.

Individual pre-packed bags of food are prepared for use by FISH and church staff to respond to immediate needs. A bag of food includes: two boxes of cereal, one can of fruit, two cans of vegetables, one canned meat product, two boxes of pasta, one jar/can of pasta sauce, dry milk, and a jar of peanut butter. These items and paper or reusable grocery bags to pack them in are always appreciated. Thank you for your support of the pantry.

Church School Reminders

Sunday, September 4

There is no Church School on Sunday, September 4. However, childcare for infants, toddlers, and twos will be available in Room 1. Church School begins for 2016-2017 the following Sunday, September 11.

Little River UCC Meditation Group Meeting

Sunday, September 4

Please join us on Sunday, September 4 at 9:00 am in the Jubilee 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.

Questions? 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 .

Next Week and Beyond

Rally Day Picnic

Sunday, September 11

Church School relaunches on Rally Day (Sunday, September 11), and to celebrate, we're having a picnic! The Fellowship Committee of the Deacons will provide the entree and beverages, and you are invited to bring salads and desserts. The picnic is scheduled to start after worship, and it will happen on our back patio just outside the narthex. In the event of rain, we will be in the Social Hall. In honor of our Green Policy we will have non-disposable dishes and utensils available but you are encouraged to bring your own. If you are able to help out with set up or clean up, please be in touch with Clark Beil, chair of the Fellowship Committee. You can email him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call him at (240) 832-6823. Be sure to join us for this fun kick-off to the fall!

Welcome Back to Church School!

Sunday, September 11

Church School for children and youth begins on Sunday, September 11, following the Time with Children at 10:00 am worship. Registration tables will be open in the atrium beginning at 9:30 am and again at 11:00 am. Parents with children 18 years and younger will receive an email with a registration form and further information. Registration forms are also available here. A Welcome to Church School brochure is available in the atrium and narthex. We look forward to an exciting, faith-filled year!

Youth Choirs Kick Back into High Gear

Sunday, September 11

The Salt of the Earth Choir welcomes children in grades 1-5 to rehearse regularly and sing in services throughout the school year. Beyond the children’s church school experiences, this choir offers an opportunity to learn a variety of musical traditions, instruments, and choral techniques in an atmosphere of fun, sharing their accomplishments periodically with the congregation. The Salt of the Earth will begin rehearsals on Sunday, September 11 at 9:30 am.

The Joyful Noise is a choir for youth in grades 6-12. This choir performs a variety of music from classical to folk, including many contemporary anthems. Singers learn to work with others and develop their musical talents in a Christ-centered environment. The Joyful Noise assists at worship on a regular basis and will begin rehearsals on Sunday, September 11 at 9:00 am. Both choirs offer a wonderful foundation for developing young musical talents.

Welcoming Warmth: Coat Drive for Thrive DC

Sunday, September 11 - Sunday, October 2

The Board of Outreach and Social Justice is partnering with Thrive DC again to provide coats and winter items for homeless in DC. We are collecting earlier this year so start looking through your closets now! Do you have any used coats, hats, scarves, gloves, blankets or sleeping bags that could warm someone in need this winter? A collection box will be available in the Narthex from Sunday, September 11 through Sunday, October 2. We will make our delivery of donated items to Thrive DC in early November for their first distribution of the winter.

Fair Trade Sales Reminder

Sunday, September 11

Fair Trade Sales are happening next Sunday. Stock up on your supplies of coffee, chocolate, and Palestinian olive oil while providing fair compensation to farmers in less-developed countries. A portion of the olive sales supports Tent of Nations and its peace-building programs in the West Bank.

Book Group

Sunday, September 18

Women's Ministry is organizing its Book Group for 2017 – please come and join us! If you are interested in being on the email list for this group, please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . The next gathering is Sunday, September 18 following worship in Room 7. We will be discussing Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.

Biblical Storytelling Workshop

Sunday, September 18

Biblical Storytelling is an art form of telling stories from the Bible by heart, as was the custom in the early Christian Church. If you are an experienced storyteller or a novice interested in learning a new way to share your favorite stories from scripture, please join us in Room 8 at 11:30 am on September 18. This will be an information session to gauge interest in developing a group to offer stories in worship on a regular basis. All ages and abilities are welcome!!

Hands-On Sunday Project — Stop Hunger Now

Sunday, September 25

Please save the date for our 5th Stop Hunger Now meal packing event to help feed children with limited resources around the world. Thanks to the generous contributions received through the Easter Fund, on Sunday, September 25, we will gather in the social hall from 3:00 to 5:00 pm to pack 20,000 highly nutritious meals. Between setup, packing, and cleanup, there will be opportunities for people of all abilities and ages (four and up) to participate. More details about sign-up and volunteer needs to come in September.

More Church News

Interim Pastor for Pastoral Care and Social Justice (part time)

Church Council is exploring the hiring of an Interim Pastor for Pastoral Care and Social Justice (part time). Please share your thoughts, concerns or wishes regarding this position with Past Moderator Cici Thompson If the effort goes forward, with congregational approval, this addition to our staff could begin serving our congregation in November.

A Message from the Deacons

The bylaws indicate that services of public worship shall be held as determined by the Board of Deacons.

Since March, the board has been contemplating the idea of moving from two services to one on a regular basis at the conclusion of the summer schedule. Rev. David made an announcement about this in May, and in June, the board sought feedback and collected responses on people's thoughts about having one service or two. The primary concerns raised about moving away from two services were loss of flexibility, possible difficulty for church school teachers to attend church, and problems with getting to church earlier for some of our seniors. On the positive side, there was a strong desire by many to experience a full worship service with the broader congregation, enjoy the fellowship and sense of community that comes with one service and everyone being together in coffee hour, and ease the burden associated with volunteer staffing of the second service.

Given the overwhelming feedback showing interest in moving to one service, the Deacons voted to implement that change beginning in September. After seeking feedback from both the Board of Christian Education and the Board of Outreach and Social Justice on setting a time for the service, it was agreed that continuing with a 10:00 start time would work best. The children will continue as they do today with starting in worship then moving into their classrooms after Time with Children.

This is a big change in the life of our church. Change can be hard, messy, but also invigorating. We ask that you embrace this new normal in a positive way and show patience as we work through issues that will inevitably arise which were not thought of previously.

VOICE Assembly: Deliver the Promise

The Board of Outreach and Social Justice would like to encourage you to attend VOICE’s (Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement) meeting on Sunday, October 16 from 3:30-5:30 pm at Oakton High School (2900 Sutton Road, Vienna, VA 22181). State and local officials will address concerns about schools, housing, safety and community in Northern Virginia. This is an opportunity for you to stand with your neighbors and demand a more just Northern Virginia. For more detailed information please see their information online.

Updated Worship Schedule and Office Hours

  • Starting on Sunday, September 11, we will move permanently to one 10:00 am Sunday service for the entire the year.
  • Next week, the office will be closed on Monday, September 5 for the Labor Day holiday and will resume normal office hours of 9:00 am - 5:00 pm (Monday through Friday) on Tuesday, September 6.

Church Council News

Little River UCC Committee Meeting Updates

Board of Outreach and Social Justice (July 24, 2016)

Board of Deacons Meeting Minutes (July 31, 2016)

Board of Trustees (June 21, 2016): On Tuesday, July 19, the Trustees discussed the many leaks in the ceiling and the church's flat roof. After a lengthy conversation, the Trustees agreed that something had to be done. They are now in the process of finding a structural engineer to offer perspective on what options we have. Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to learn more!

Christian Education (August 22, 2016)

Endowment Fund Committee (July 13, 2016): At its quarterly meeting, members were delighted to learn that ten years after establishment of the Fund, total contributions as of June 30 had reached $257,232, putting the Fund over the threshold of $250,000 to enable disbursements. Second quarter contributions were $23,100, including a $10,000 bequest from the estate of Eleanor Wulff and many gifts from the congregation in response to a $4,000 challenge grant. The market value of the Fund on June 30 was $360,000. An amendment will be presented at the next congregational meeting to correct an error in the Endowment Fund Policy that would have drastically limited disbursements, after which some $12,000 will become available for 2017, per guidelines contained in the Policy.

Finance Committee (June 20, 2016): The Finance Committee meeting on June 20 discussed several recent financial situations that have occurred to clarify how they were being handled. We also discussed preliminary comments received regarding draft policies. One such proposed policy, on paying members of the congregation for services rendered to LRUCC, has been circulated to church leaders for comment. It notes that since Little River UCC is sustained largely by the active voluntary participation of the congregation, it is the exception to pay members for services provided to the church and requires that any such exceptions have the prior approval of the Governance Board. A full statement of the draft policy and the supporting discussion is available here. This proposed policy will be submitted to the Governance Board for approval in the next few months. Any comments on this draft policy can be submitted to the This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Next meeting will be August 3.

Nominations and Appointments Committee Meeting Minutes (August 2, 2016)

Personnel Committee (June 22, 2016): The Personnel Committee continues to tweak language of the Employee Handbook as needed; is working on a charter for Governance Board approval; and has begun drafting a "How-To" manual for the committee's work. The committee also continues advising David Lindsey on position descriptions and personnel issues.

Stewardship Committee Minutes (July 11, 2016)

Women's Ministry Meeting Minutes (August 5, 2016)

Full minutes of Church Council, Governance Board, and Ministry Board meetings are posted on this webpage.