Archive for Uncategorized

June NCNC News

News from Our Wider Church
Northern California-Nevada Conference (NCNC)
United Church of Christ

Vandalism in the Murphys Church
Our prayers go out to the people of First Congregational United Church of Christ in Murphys. A vandal threw a concrete block through a stained-glass widow in the sanctuary. As Pastor Bonnie Hollinger reports, “ It just breaks my heart to see this beautiful window so devastated. I do not understand people who do these sort of things, but I do know that Jesus requires a response of  a response of mercy and grace. While indeed our anger at such an incident is appropriate, it is my prayer that we will be generous in our forgiveness and mercy.” Our Murphys church is part of the Mountain-Valley Association of six congregations, which includes our own church.

NCNC Annual Gathering
The Annual Gathering of churches in our regional Conference will take place at Sonoma State University on June 16-19. The gathering includes workshops, worship, and fellowship. Pastor Michael will be attending Annual Gathering through June 18. The Conference includes 118 local churches and about 383 ministers, from Eureka to Tulare, from Monterey to Reno, and everywhere in between.

Your Help Needed
The Executive Council of our six-church Mountain Valley Association needs an at-large representative from our church. The Executive Council coordinates Association gatherings, guides the ordination process of ministers in our Association, and oversees the calling of ministers in our churches. In addition to our own church, the Mountain Valley Association includes the following churches: United Congregational Christian Church, Lodi; First Congregational Church, Stockton; First Congregational Church, Ripon (seeking full standing in the MVA); Union Congregational Church, Angels Camp, and First Congregational Church, Murphys.

Save the Date! MVA Meeting at First Congregational, Murphys
Our Association’s Annual Meeting will take place at First Congregational Church, Murphys on Sunday, September 18. The meeting includes worship, a meal, and fellowship. In attendance will be Conference Minister Diane Weible and Associate Conference Minister Davina Jones. The members of all six churches in our Association are encouraged to attend. Please join Pastor Michael in representing our own church. More information TBA.

The Chartres Labyrinth

The labyrinth committee researched and experienced walking different types of labyrinth designs. We decided to create our labyrinth based on the Christian Chartres Cathedral design found in the gothic cathedral of Chartres which is located outside of Paris, France. This classic design has 11 circuits—concentric circles—with the 12th circle being the center with the rosette pattern. This design was created in the 12 Century.

One of the commitments a Christian made at that time was to journey to Jerusalem and experience the path that Jesus walked. During this time, the Crusades were happening, making it almost impossible for the Christian to go to Jerusalem. The Bishops at that time, decided to create labyrinths in the major cathedrals in Europe. This would allow Christians to symbolically journey to the “New Jerusalem” which would be the center of the labyrinth.

From a contemporary perspective, this design’s energy causes one to calm, to focus inward as one walks the labyrinth as a meditative walk. Other design’s energy do the opposite—energize and “rev up”. The 11 circuit design welcomes us to experience an inner spiritual process of releasing and letting go of our every day “stuff;” receiving guidance, insight, inner peace; and then returning to the world.



Memorial Service for Don Lundberg

A memorial service for long-time member Don Lundberg  (August 11, 1915 – June 26, 2014) will be held on August 17, at 2:00PM.  The service will be outdoors at a ranch located at 1583 Old Tim Bell Road in Waterford.

Please RSVP if you plan to attend and bring your own lawn chair.  Contact Doris Geisler at [email protected] or phone 209-576-2688.  Remembrances can be made to the Sierra Club at 85 Second St. Second Floor, San Francisco, CA. 94105.  www.

MoPride Spaghetti Feed Fundraising

Spaghetti Feed Fundraising event to benefit Modesto Pride.
Tickets for the dinner are $7.25 for single, family of four is $25.00.

Raffle tickets are $1.00 and will be sold throughout the evening.
contact person: James Brown at 209-846-0636 or email [email protected]

Young Adult Gathering

Young Adult Pizza Gathering, Saturday August 9, 5pm, Round Table Pizza, 2401 E. Orangeburg. Join Pastor Michael and the Young Adult Group for pizza and conversation. For adults 35 and under. Bring your friends!


Center Stage Conservatory production of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest”

You can support and encourage one of our  youngest new members of CACC by attending and enjoying a production she’s been working with all summer.    Pansy Plata plays several roles in the Center Stage Conservatory production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Performances are this Friday and Saturday, July 25 and 26,  at 7:00 pm and Sunday, July 27,  at 2:00 pm.   The theater space is in the basement of an office building on the corner of 11th and J in Modesto (address is 948 11th, entrance is on J Street. Tickets are $10 adults, $5 students.

All-church Barbecue & Pool Party

Friday, June 13, 5:30pm, Margaret Ritchey’s home.

Bring a side dish to share! All are welcome!

Holy Week 2014

Holy Week – Sunday, April 13 to Sunday, April 20                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   During Holy Week, we recount the final events in the life of Jesus, ending with his execution for proclaiming a radical message inviting all to live God’s dream of a Kingdom where forgiveness, compassion, and self-giving replace the ways of judgment, power, and division.

Palm Sunday Service – Sunday, April 13, 10am. Before the service we gather outside the sanctuary around a giant street-puppet of Jesus. To remember Jesus’ triumphant march into Jerusalem on the final week of his life, the young people follow behind Jesus leading us in a procession around the youth building, up the sidewalk, and into the sanctuary to continue our worship service.  Childcare provided. 

Maundy Thursday Service – Thursday, April 17, 7:30 pm, Sanctuary.  Come and celebrate Jesus’ institution of a special meal to help us connect to God and each other in one Spirit, and a ritual of foot washing to help us remember Jesus’ command to love one another. Pre-worship Taize music begins at 7pm.

Multi-Church Good Friday Noontime Service – Friday, April 18, 12:15pm,  First United Methodist Church, 16th and I Sts. Several area churches remember the story of Jesus’ arrest, trial, and crucifixion.

Good Friday Candelight Tenebrae Service – Friday, April 18, 7:30 pm, Sanctuary.  In this dramatic candle-light service that ends in darkness, we reflect on the story of Jesus’ arrest, suffering, and death on a cross. Several local churches will participate with us in this service, joining our choir for special music.

Easter Sunrise Service – Sunday, April 20, 6:30 am, Church front lawn.  This simple service led by Sandy Sample celebrates the resurrection of Jesus and resurrection in our own lives.

Easter Sunday Service – Sunday, April 20, 10 am, Sanctuary.  We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus with joyful music and praise.   Childcare provided.


“Time to Heal–Body and Soul”

The College Avenue  Healing/Wellness Team invites you to a one-day retreat, “Time to Heal–Body and Soul” led by Rev. Nancy McKay of Berkeley Saturday, March 22, from9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Fellowship Hall.  The theme will be “Whole People and Wholistic Medicine– Love is the Greatest Healing Power.”   With story and sharing, with setting intentions, with relaxation and trust, we will focus on what needs our loving attention right now.  Prayer and laying on of hands will be taught using a combination of body work modes.  This gentle and respectful method, the Pilgrimage Integrative Healing Process, was developed by Dr. Tanya Vonnegut, an Episcopal priest.  One remains fully clothed, privacy is respected, and the usual result is feeling loved and cared about.  The CACC Healing/Wellness Team uses this process for its healing sessions.  People trained in this process are welcome to become members of our Healing/Wellness team.  Donation for the retreat is $20 before March 10 and $25 after March 10, which includes lunch. Please call or email Lisa Bruk to register, [email protected]., 551-8509.


Ecumenical Choral Concert

Ecumenical Choral Concert to benefit Habitat for Humanity,  Sunday, March 16, 4pm,  First United Methodist Church, 850 16th St, Modesto, Ca.