T O U C H S T O N E  -  A  M i d W e e k  B u l l e t i n


  9:00 a.m. Combined FCC/(a)Spire Worship in Alden Hall


                   July 12, 2015   


Reflections on Sunday Worship . . .

Spiritual Obesity and the UCC
Luke 6:46-49

At the National UCC Coalition dinner two weeks ago in Cleveland Rodney Walker, a UCC layperson from the Dallas area, asked if we were vulnerable to "spiritual obesity" - taking in God's Word and not doing anything with it! This is an engaging and challenging way to address a long time concern of our Christian faith - how do we live up to God's command to love ourselves and our neighbor? Are we able to walk the talk given all the stress and busy-ness of our lives? Do we find our faith having any affect on our choices and practices in our daily lives?  In worship this week we will continue our July series entitled "Why UCC?" and consider how our denomination puts it's faith into action!  Join us for worship at 9AM in Alden Hall on the third floor of our building.

Rev. John H. Pomeroy

As a critically important part of our Visioning Process, AFTER WORSHIP THIS SUNDAY 7/12 from 10:30-12:30 all FCC folks are invited to take part in Congregational Visioning Session in the first floor east parlor, including a brief discussion about our Spiritual Styles, and the bulk of our time spent responding to the results of the Natural Church Development survey taken by a sampling of 30 FCC folks last week. Join us!

Combined worship please remember THIS SUNDAY July 12th WORSHIP IS AT 9AM. This is a combined worship with both the FCC and (a)Spire communities. We hope to have someone sign up to provide breakfast each week.  This week Timothy & Candace Murphy volunteered to prepare breakfast. We are hoping that someone will bring fruit, cereal and milk to round out the food. Please let Marlene know at fccrevs@yahoo.com if you can do that.

We will have a sign-up sheet on Sunday for the other two weeks in July. You may also call Nina when she is in the office Monday-Thursday each week and let her know. 

Combined Worship Info The first two Sundays will be held up in Alden Hall and will be more (a)Spire-style in worship - that means words projected on the screens, Beau Wammack as the primary music director, weekly communion and a more casual style of worship in general. Wear your comfy clothes and come on up to the the 3rd floor for worship on Sunday. Folks will be on hand on the first floor to guide you up - we do have an elevator!!! 


There will be the regular nursery after a Time for Children on the first floor. In addition there will be some kind of church school each week. Elementary class with Judi Tyler/Josh Ashenmiller in Room 232.


After the first two Sundays in Alden we will have the final two Sundays in July down in our chapel with Connie as the primary music director. 




To see the latest e-news from (a)Spire, click here  


Worship Leaders:
Rev. Jake Pomeroy
Rev. Andy Schwiebert

Ron White
Kathie Arscott
Jeff Levison
Jim Maddox

Krysty Leckrone, FCC
Timothy Murphy, (a)Spire

Pianist & Music Coordinator:
Beau Wammack

Church School Teachers:
Children and Youth will begin in worship and then younger ones will head to the nursery on the 1st floor while the older children will go Judi Tyler/Josh Ashenmiller to Room 232.

Nina Kung  

Visit us at:  uccpasadena.org 

Sermon podcast:

Office Hours

M-Thurs  9AM - 5:30PM

  We close for lunch 
12 - 1:30PM

Tel. # 626.795.0696
Fax # 626.795.0698

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Dear Friends,


It is with deep sadness that we share the passing of Beth Biery on Friday July 3rd. Beth has been a member of our church for several decades and will be remembered with great fondness.


There will be a memorial service to honor her and celebrate her life on Sat. July 11th at 4 p.m. in our sanctuary with a reception to follow in our parlors. If you are able to help bring some food for the reception, please contact Nina in the church office by Thursday (the office is closed on Fridays), or contact Roberta White.


The family has asked for any memorial gifts in her honor be given to Villa Esperanza (send any checks directly to Ken and made out to Villa Esperanza), or to the First Congregational Church of Pasadena marked for the Pilgrim Pines Scholarship Fund. 


-Marlene & Jake Pomeroy


Outreach Update



Friends in Deed Open House July 11th. See article below for details.


Friends in Deed Backpack and Back-to School Drive. 


I know, I know, it is just Summer vacation!! However, the deadline for us to donate backpacks is Tuesday July 21st so now is the time for us to get organized. 

Click here for details on the backpacks and supplies needed. 




Save the Date:

On Saturday afternoon October 17th Aid Africa will host its annual fund raiser in our church!! It is a wonderful event that profiles the amazing work that Aid Africa has done for 10 years now!! FCC will be able to offer radical hospitality for this event - details to come! Please save the date and be thinking about how you can help us host this event. We will be asking for many hands to make this possible in the coming months. - Pastor Marlene



Highlighted at GS2015 (a)Spire Meal in the Park Project and Fundraising Tool


(a)Spire was awarded a new "matching" grant this year by the Local Church Ministries of the national UCC. As part of that, (a)Spire was invited to prepare a ministry project for which we might seek out new, outside funds using a brand new crowdsourcing online tool. We launched the new site just before General Synod and then an announcement was made there in the plenary with over 3,000 members of the UCC. Soon thereafter a generous gift of $1000 was made to (a)Spire's project by an anonymous donor. This caught the attention of the UCC News, who wrote an article highlighting the new fundraising tool and (a)Spire's project. See below for a link to the article about the gift, (a)Spire's Meals in the Park project and this new fundraising tool on UCC News website here:


Click here


See the link to the actual project and consider making a contribution to support our meals in the park:


Click here



After the initial anonymous gift of $1,000 and a few other donations, we are now more than halfway towards meeting our goal of $2,000. But we need your help. Please consider sharing this project page with friends, family and colleagues and inviting them to give so we can reach our goal and make these meals happen! The point is to raise new OUTSIDE funds.




FCC Vision Team Update and July 12th Meeting for All


We are asking EVERYONE in FCC to take time to work through the Spiritual Style Test (SST), produced by Natural Church Development. It's the hope of the Vision Team that the SST will not only help YOU understand your own spiritual style, but will help us to see what our collective, congregational Spiritual Style is.


As we begin to vision a way forward for our congregation, understanding our individual and collective Spiritual Styles will be helpful in seeing the gaps or growing edges on which we might want to spend time & energy. At our next congregational  visioning meeting THIS SUNDAY July 12 we will discuss our individual and collective Spiritual Style.


Also, SOME of you-30 in total-were asked to fill out a completely separate "Natural Church Development" survey. This sample size is big enough to paint a picture of our areas of strength and primary area of weakness as a congregation; or our "minimum factor." On July 12 when we meet as a congregation we will brainstorm 3-5 reasons why we came out with said minimum factor and brainstorm possible actions we might take to address them together.


We look forward to discussing these Natural Church Development tools, that should help give us a clearer picture of our congregation-as we currently are-as we begin to vision a future that lies ahead.


Women's Swap Set for July 12th! 


On Sunday July 12th from 3-5 p.m. we will be hosting a Women's Swap! Click HERE to view the flyer. It is for all FCC/Aspire women (and friends!) so we can clean out our closets, swap for new things, and then haul everything away to the local thrift shop when we are done. Bring food and drink and RSVP to Shannon Anderson! We are urging everyone to bring a donation of $10 to the swap to contribute to the church as an easy fund-raiser. 


Small Groups Up and Running


We have three small groups running this summer through September. One is full but the other two have a few spots left. Please contact Carolyn Olney for the group meeting at Kim Story's house.


You may also contact Lisa Gamber or Stacy Thomas for the group meeting at Barb Bonzo's house. They have already met once but could take newcomers if you can come July 14th at 7:00 p.m.


We will start new groups as there is interest and host homes later this summer. Please let Pastor Marlene know if you wish to host or join a group down the road.


No Meetings July!



We are doing our best to NOT have church meetings in July. That gives us room to 

enjoy our small groups if we have signed up for that; it also gives you extra time to come to 9 a.m. worship! And read a book!! We have several extra copies of Real Good Church in the office if you want to pick one up. The cost is $16. It is a story of church revitalization in Somerville, MA. Your church council is reading it this summer and you are invited to as well! See Marlene for a book. An excerpt from the book....


"You've read all the same articles I have about the decline of the mainline church... and the end of Christianity as we know it. Great! Churches have died, are dying, will die.  But that doesn't mean they they all will. Some of our churches will make it... People ask me a lot: what one thing made a difference in turning your church around? I answer: We didn't do one thing. We did a lot of things. This manual will tell you exactly what we did, and how we did it. Not all of these things will work in your setting and culture - but lots of them will."  - Rev. Molly Phinney Baskette



Friends in Deed Summer Open House


On Saturday July 11th FID is hosting an Open House at their site, 444 E. Washington Blvd. from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Stop in, see what they are doing, have a tour of the Women's Room, and bring some groceries for their food pantry.  BBQ and refreshments will be in the parking lot.


We continue to accept non-perishable food items throughout the summer for them. There will also be a backpack/school items drive in July. We will keep you posted on those details.



The Pantry's Most Needed Shelf-stable Items: 
"Gold" Items - these items are extremely popular and are the most difficult to keep in stock: 
Peanut Butter, Canned Tuna, Canned Chicken, Cereal, Rice, Cooking Oil, Sugar, Flour
Other Non-Perishable Foods 
 Proteins: Chili, Beef Stew, Dry Beans 
Whole Grains: Pasta, Oats, Sliced Bread 
Milk: Shelf Stable or Powder 
Other: Jelly, Tomato & Spaghetti Sauces, Soups
Deliver anytime Tuesday or Wednesday morning 
Fresh Poultry & Meats, Packaged Prepared Foods, Fresh Fruits & Vegetables, Milk, Cheese, Eggs, Cold Cuts
Friends In Deed 
Deliveries Accepted Mon. - Thurs. from 9am-4pm 
*Ring the Bell at the red door in the parking lot*


 The Art of Corita Kent

My name is Raquel and I am writing from the Pasadena Museum of California Art. Here at the PMCA, we greatly admire the mission First Congregational Church of Pasadena (UCC) and sincerely hope that Little Heart, an enthralling new play
reading, in conjunction with our triumphant exhibition of Sister Corita Kent, will be of interest to you, your members and employees.

Corita Kent, a former Sister of the Immaculate Heart Order, was
pioneering artist, designer, and educator, who for over thirty years experimented in printmaking, producing a groundbreaking body of work. Little Heart is a play based on Corita's life and explores her ongoing battle with arch-conservative Cardinal McIntyre, as well as her private struggles with fellow sisters, students, and her own spiritual doubt. Little Heart is written by the acclaimed playwright Irene O'Garden, directed by John Pielmeier, author of Agnes of God, and starring Amanda Plummer.

The reading is FREE, and hope you will pass the information that I've attached along to the members of your church. The play is Sat. July 18th at 2 p.m. at All Saints Church. The art exhibit runs through Nov. 1st at the museum.

All the best,
Raquel Olvera
Getty Multicultural Undergraduate Intern
Exhibitions & Marketing
Pasadena Museum of California Art (PMCA) 495 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 9110, 626.568.3665 pmcaonline.org