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Our 63rd Year Roberta Croll, EditorRevised June 30, 2017

Fourth Sunday of Pentecost
10:00 am Worship with Communion

Sunday, July 2

Jesus told us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. As we prepare to celebrate the 4th of July, what does it mean to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us in 21st century America?

Join us for worship at 10 am this Sunday as Pastor David reflects on this challenging passage!

This Week

Building Fund Matching Gift Challenge

Friday, June 30

Thank you to all who have already participated in this challenge! Friday, June 30 is the last day to submit pledges to qualify for the building fund challenge matching gift. If you haven't done so, please submit your pledge immediately to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

An anonymous donor has offered a matching gift to support our church’s Building Fund. The donor will provide up to $10,000 in matching funds at the rate of one dollar of matching for each two dollars that are pledged and given to the Building Fund. Pledges to the Building Fund Challenge must be received between now and the end of June. Donors may pay pledges up until Thanksgiving. This Building Fund challenge has the potential to generate $30,000, and will help to reduce the total funds the trustees need to borrow for major building projects. Please note checks should be marked for "Building Fund Challenge."

General Synod Baltimore

Sunday, July 2

General Synod – the biennial meeting of the entire United Church of Christ – is taking place in Baltimore right now! There is a community worship service at Synod on Sunday, July 2, and a group from Little River is planning on attending. If you are interested in joining a carpool or leading one, we plan to leave at 12:30 pm. See Carolyn Yocom immediately after worship if you are hoping to attend.

Adult Summer Engagement Series

Sunday, July 2

Technology, Entertainment and Design. These are the three words that make up the acronym TED, a global sharing of wisdom from people working in a variety of vocations and disciplines. This summer, our Adult Faith Formation series will call on TED’s wisdom to open our minds and spirits to respond to our call to work towards justice and peace in our lives, communities, and around the world.

The Christian Education Board has selected a variety of topics to help further our discernment on our congregation’s Mission and Vision Statement. Each week, we will begin at 9:00 am in Room 8 with video and discussion (and end in plenty of time to get to worship). We will share in follow-ups from what we witnessed together, answering the question, "What is God calling us to do with this information?"

All are welcome to the first session on Sunday, July 2 as we begin with the topic, “Our refugee system is failing. Here’s how to fix it.” presented by Alexander Betts. This talk is focused on the continent of Europe but the problems are global. Please come and share your thoughts. We will meet for a total of 10 weeks -- ending on September 3.

Food Pantry Reminder

Sunday, July 2

This Sunday, July 2, and every Communion Sunday (normally the first Sunday of every month) we invite your gifts of non-expired, non-perishable staple food and baby items, which are placed in our church’s FISH (For Immediate Sympathetic Help) pantry and used to help the hungry in our community.

The pantry is currently well stocked to supply Fairfax FISH with pre-packed food bags. This month we hope to focus on breakfast foods, especially cereal, granola bars, and breakfast bars for Annandale Terrace students and families.

Racial Justice Coalition/Intersections: Sacred Conversation on Race

Sunday, July 2

The Racial Justice Coalition will meet the first Sunday of each month at 11:15 am following the morning service starting this Sunday, July 2. We will meet in Room 8. We are a congregation founded and grounded in affirming all people regardless of race and ethnicity. We have spent the past three years discussing various issues related to race in Intersections: Sacred Conversation on Race. This process has allowed us to focus our concerns on specific issues, including the school-to-prison pipeline, mass incarceration, (the new Jim Crow), prison conditions for inmates, the needs of immigrants, and outreach in the surrounding geographic area, specifically Annandale Terrace Elementary School. Finally, we would like the congregation to consider becoming a multiracial and multicultural church during the months ahead. Please join us as we discuss proposed actions on the above issues.

Next Week and Beyond

Office Closed

Tuesday, July 4

The church office will be closed on Tuesday, July 4 in observance of Independence Day. We will resume our normal office hours on Wednesday, July 5.

Book Group

Sunday, July 9

Little River Book Group will meet next Sunday, July 9 at 11:30 am in Room 7. Please join us as we discuss Offshore, a book in which we meet a quirky group of people who live on barges on the Thames River. Penelope Fitzgerald, the author, received the Booker Prize for this novel. All LRUCC members are welcome, including those who've not read the book.

Fair Trade Sales Reminder

Sunday, July 9

Fair Trade Sales are happening next Sunday, July 9, so plan to 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.

Greenspring Ministry

Wednesday, July 12

On the second Wednesday of the month, Pastor David visits with our church members at Greenspring Village, a retirement community in Springfield. This visit happens in the Craft Room at Hunter’s Crossing from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. If you or someone you know lives at Greenspring, be sure to let them know about this opportunity to get together with their neighbors and church friends!

Guest Speaker: Chrisdeon Cofield, Mother of "Lifelines" Participant

Sunday, July 16

The "Lifelines" prison pen pals at LRUCC, the Racial Justice Coalition, and the Board of Outreach and Social Justice invite all to join us in welcoming Ms. Chrisdeon Cofield to Little River on Sunday, July 16. Ms. Cofield's son, Kevin Williams, is incarcerated at River North Correctional Center in Independence, VA, and is a correspondent in our "Lifelines" project. His experience in Virginia's criminal justice system raises important questions regarding fair sentencing, the quality of legal representation, and the use of solitary confinement. We will meet in the Jubilee Room after worship from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm.

New Member Information Class

Sundays, July 23 & 30

Has God been nudging you to become a member of Little River UCC? Are you unsure but just want to learn more about our congregation? Then you are invited to our New Member Class on July 23 & 30 from 12:00 to 1:30 pm in Room 8. Child care is available, and kids are always welcome to attend the class with their adults. During this class, we will get to know one another, review church history (including Little River and its denominational roots), and even have a little fun!

Youth Art Exhibit in August

Sunday, July 30

The Arts Committee invites our young artists to participate in the "For the Beauty of the Earth" Art Exhibit on August 6. Using any medium – wood or popsicle sticks, crayons or paint, yarn or fabric, glitter or gold – we want you to illustrate God's gifts of beauty in our natural world. So while you are on vacation and enjoying the great outdoors, look for love and life in all of God's creatures and creations! Any size is welcome, from small to large, but it does have to fit through the church doors! Please bring it to the church by the service on July 30 and the Arts Committee will create displays for the church to see in August before you go back to school. You can bring them sooner if you are ready. Anyone from our youngest artists to college students are welcome to participate. You might even see your artwork on a future church bulletin! If you have any questions, please see This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Spencer Jones!

More Church News

Congregational Listening Session Update

About 30 people attended the listening session on Sunday, June 25. Mary Summers presented information on current spending as of March, and Carolyn presented information on the stewardship goal for 2018, as well as initial plans for spending. Our stewardship goal is set for $260,000, an amount which should include enough to hire a full-time associate pastor. For additional information on current expenditures and next year's initial budget, see the slides that were shared at the listening session here.

During the open discussion, several points were raised:

  • There was a request for additional information on the program portion of the budget, and whether it represented an increase or a decrease over the total amount allocated in 2017.
  • Bulletin summaries were considered good additions to communication, as well as information in Current Tidings and the In the Stream Newsletter.
  • Our website calendar still needs work in terms of getting (and then staying) up-to-date. Individuals who are interested in making adjustments to the calendar can email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and provide the information to the office staff.
  • There was also a statement regarding the number of flags and banners outside of the church entrance off of Little River Turnpike. The request was to ask the appropriate committee whether there should be fewer banners that are rotated more often. This request has been referred to the evangelism committee within the Board of Deacons.
  • As shown in the slides, there was an over $4,000 in additional funds that were donated as a result of the vandalism that occurred. The intent behind using these funds would be to aim that at efforts towards a more inclusive ministry. This currently has a broad definition--and could run the gamut of having better security outside the building, or participation in interfaith efforts in our community.


Board of Deacons Meeting Update

The Board of Deacons met on Tuesday, June 27 and would like to share the following information:

  • The Deacons discussed ways to better coordinate the banners that are put out on Little River Turnpike with the information posted on our website.
  • They also discussed making contact (by phone or in person) with all members and friends of LRUCC on a yearly basis.


Vacation Bible School at Hope UCC

The Director of Christian Education at Hope UCC in Alexandria, VA would like to invite LRUCC children to join their Vacation Bible School (VBS) -- Camp Hope. The camp is for kids ages 4-11 and meets July 24-28 with the hours of 9:30 am - 12:30 pm. Camp Hope uses Cokesbury's Hero Central curriculum. Interested parents can register their children online at Questions? Contact Ellen Ebeling at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (703) 960-8772.

Summer Church School Volunteers Needed

Summer Church School has started and we still need volunteer teachers! Can you devote one hour of your time to make a connection with a child? If so, 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 to share your gifts for a one week commitment, working with a partner to lead a multiage class.