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February 22, 2019
Greetings,
 
A reader requested that I take a look at the word this week is repentance.  This word covers several biblical ideas that range from regret to changing one’s mind or behaviour as to bring about a moral or ethical conversion. In the early stages of Israelite history, the nation was more conscious of its collective guilt than of its individual guilt.  In addition, the prophets in the Hebrew Bible point to hope as being closely linked with repentance.
 
In the “New Testament”, the notion of repentance implies turning to God. Furthermore, Jesus’ calls to repentance in the gospels is closely linked to the arrival of the Kingdom of God.
 
So, what does repentance mean for us in 2019? Individually, we could ask ourselves what practices can draw us closer to God? In what ways do we think that we have distance ourselves from God and God’s commitment to us? Communally, I think that we can look at the “Old Testament” variation of repentance and how it relates to guilt but also how we may have distanced ourselves from God. For example, through the Truth and Reconciliation Commission we heard testimonies about the residential school system. There is guilt there because of the actions of our ancestors. In addition, we could say that our treatment of Indigenous folks has not regarded them as children of God.  There are many examples, both smaller and larger scale.
 
All in all, I think that being repentant is a healthy part of faith and an integral part of our spirituality. It is more than feeling guilty about speeding or mistreating someone. The act of repenting means that we acknowledge what we have done has not only hurt an individual or community, but that it has acted in a way that denies God. And by denies God I mean not in the sense of believing in God, but in the sense that God is a deity of life and love. What makes repentance easier is that we know that we are loved by God. We are assured that God loves us more than we know.  I assure you, repentance is not futile. (Paraphrasing the Borg).
 
Do you have any words that you don’t know about? Any ideas that you want clarification on?
Blessings,
Rev. Eric

In preparation for the upcoming Annual Congregational Meeting, financial information, draft policies, minutes from last year's ACM and Special Congregational Meeting follow.
 
The United Church of Canada and The Lord’s Supper
The United Church of Canada has an “open table” policy; which means that there are no barriers to partaking in the feast. Simply put: the table belongs to Jesus, therefore all are welcome.
Communion is a sacrament. A sacrament is an “outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace”. Here are a couple understandings about what communion means in the United Church of Canada. One understanding is that of remembrance. Through communion we remember the life, relationships, teachings and death of Jesus Christ. Secondly, we celebrate communion as we give thanks for God’s ongoing love and relationship with us. (For further reading check out Eager for Worship by Charlotte Caron).
Best Practices at Woodcliff United Church
Communion is normally served once per month. This frequency allows us to observe the sacrament on a regular basis. We recognize that communion is a time to remember the story of God’s relationship with God’s people. In partaking we acknowledge that we have a place in God’s plans and that the feast affords the opportunity to be filled to minister to the world.
At WUC, we serve communion by intinction. Intinction means that the bread is dipped into the juice prior to the bread being consumed. We serve gluten free bread so that all can share in one bread and one cup. This practice promotes the “open table” policy and allows the gathered people to share in the same inclusive meal.
There are normally 2-3 stations comprised of two people each; one for the bread and one for the grape juice.  While distributing the elements, the servers will commonly say one of the following: Bread for the journey/Wine of arrival. Bread of life/ Cup of Salvation. Body of Christ/ Blood of Christ.
Am I allowed to be involved?
 In the Gospel according to Matthew it is written that Jesus blessed the meal and then shared with the disciple (Mt. 26:26-28). The laity are involved in the distribution because “these are the gifts of God for the people of God”. Age is not an impediment to serving. Young and old, families and individuals are welcome to be a part of the sacrament.
*Please speak to Rev. Eric or Mary Anne Christie for more information.
Rev. Eric: eric@woodcliffunited.com / Office: 403-249-3121/ Cell: 587-434-6481
Mary Anne: al.maryanne@shaw.ca / Phone: 403-246-8409
Follow this link to sign up for a Sunday: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1pa5kc3lstSL-VtlfO7BgvxEWXBx9XJdj5zAeYTQM2Ig/edit?usp=sharing
The role of an M&P Liaison is "an arm around the shoulder and kick in the ..." Fortunately for Rev. Eric , his new Liaison is Cathy Williams!
The rest of the M&P team is made up of the following:
Brian Plesuk - Chair
Jeremy Fraser - Church Administrator Rep
Melissa Jackson - Music Director Rep
Nancy Boyles - Children's Ministry Rep
Allison Magnusson - Youth Ministry Rep
Sean Stuart - Custodian Rep
Would you like to be on the email list for the Men's Group? Sign up in the Narthex or speak to Ron or Rev. Eric so you can be kept in the know!
WOODCLIFF DEMENTIA CAREGIVERS SUPPORT GROUP
If you are a caregiver for someone suffering memory loss and need a safe, confidential circle to share your experiences and obtain information, DCSG is for you. We meet on the first and third Tuesdays of the month from 1:30 to 3:00 pm in the Edworthy Lounge. No registration is required. For more information, please contact the church office. Next gathering is March 5, 2019 .

WOODCLIFF PRAYER CHAIN
To have names placed on the confidential Prayer Chain List please contact the prayer chain at wucprayerchain@gmail.com or 403-246-9384. Next Prayer Chain meeting will be held March 24 at 11:15 am.

PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY
Pick up a request form at the Church to arrange for a prayer shawl presentation.

CARD MINISTRY
Contact the church office to help us acknowledge the life situations of our congregants.

HEALING MINISTRY
The Healing Pathway Ministry team is available to give healing sessions upon request. To experience relaxation, and receive the gift of healing hands, please contact the church office at 403-249-3121.

FACING THE OCCUPATION

June 5, 2017 marked the 50th year of Israel’s military occupation of Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem. More than two generations of Palestinians have known no other reality than Israeli military occupation. Staff in the United Church’s Church in Mission Unit recently visited Palestine-Israel, where they were hosted by Wi’am: The Palestinian Conflict Transformation Center.

Opening in 1994, Wi’am works to resolve disputes in the Palestinian community, support reconciliation, and address the psychological and physiological consequences of long-term conflict and occupation. Located just inside the separation walls surrounding Bethlehem, Wi’am literally faces the occupation—one quarter of its property is lost to the eight-metres-high Israeli separation wall, and an Israeli security tower overlooks its outdoor space.

In spite of the 24-hour, seven-days-a-week surveillance, Wi’am is committed to providing programs, empowering Palestinian youth, children, men, and women. One of its programs is a community garden. Even such simple projects face big challenges. At the height of summer, running water is denied to Bethlehem residents to maintain uninterrupted service to Israeli settlements. And the nearby Israeli military base directs its sewage run into the garden. In spite of these obstacles, Wi’am was proud to offer United Church staff a tour of its small garden and share a harvest of fresh pea pods, snapped off and enjoyed in the last rays of sunshine on a warm evening. Mission & Service works with our partners striving for justice and peace in Palestine-Israel.

If Mission & Service giving is already a regular part of your life, thank you so much! If you have not given, please join me in making Mission & Service giving a regular part of your life of faith. Loving our neighbour is at the heart of our Mission & Service.

For more Minutes for Mission resources, see our photo collection and video playlist.

WORD DAY OF PRAYER 2019
Come, Everything is Ready!

LAKEVIEW UNITED CHURCH
Friday, March 1 at 7:00 PM
Please join us for the World Day of Prayer, a prayer movement that invites us to enrich our faith experience with the experience of Christians from other countries and cultures and to bring hope to women touched by injustice. Service written by the World Day of Prayer Committee of Slovenia
 More information about our community’s service is available from contacts:
Gwen Jamieson            Phone: 403-249-5655
Nancy Gillean                Phone: 403-249-0505

Lakeview United Church
3023 63rd Avenue SW    
Phone 403-242-5760

ENNEAGRAM INTRODUCTION: A TOOL FOR SPIRITUAL AWAKENING
March 8 Friday Evening Presentation 7-9 pm.
Open to all, suggested donation $10.
March 9 Saturday
Workshop 9 am to 4 pm. $80.00, includes lunch.
Facilitated by Rev. Doug Klassen and Barbara Grant
Location: Wild Rose United Church 1317 1 St NW
The “Enneagram” centers on nine personality types that are arranged into a geometric form. Every one of us can identify with the nine faces of the Enneagram to some extent, but one of the 9 descriptors seems to fit our characteristic way of navigating the world we live in. Through working with the Enneagram we can appreciate those with whom we work and live. As we move through the phases of the life cycle we may be challenged to move from what we understand as our default personality type to try on some of the other faces of the Enneagram so that we gain consciousness and awareness. It becomes part of the spiritual journey when we recognize that each of the nine faces is divine and when we integrate these into our lives we are awakened to a more integrated consciousness.
This program made possible by the Edge Foundation of the United Church of Canada 
Register at the office, office@wildroseunited.ca or 403 277-5576, or on our website, wildroseunited.ca

NATIONAL P.I.E. DAY AT SCARBORO
March 15 7:00 pm
Scarboro United Church
134 Scarboro Ave. SW
In celebration of P.I.E. Day, we are thrilled to present Open Mic Night & Clothing Exchange. And what a better way to celebrate than over home-made pie!  Everyone is welcome to come on over on March 15 for a fun evening of music, home-made pies, a clothing swap, and special guest MC: Shane Onyou. Whoever you are, however you identify, whomever you love, you are welcome here.
We are excited to welcome Shane Onyou as our MC for the evening, who is also going to perform for us! We are in for a treat, that's for sure! All performers are celebrated! Whatever you feel like expressing, the mic is open to you! Singing, dancing, spoken word, poetry, music... the opportunities are endless. 
If you have clothes that you no longer wear and would like to exchange them to freshen up your wardrobe, bring them along. All expressions of fashion are welcome.
Included in the $5 entry fee is a piece of pie (cheese/ice cream to top it off!) and coffee/tea. 

PLAYTIME AT ST. ANDREW'S
Care & Connect Playtime at St. Andrew’s Centre is on Tuesday mornings from 10am – 12pm. We have a great program for child caregivers and the kids too. Care & Connect Playtime is an excellent opportunity for caregivers to take a break let the kids play (with some really neat Brand New toys and playsets) while the adults engage in conversation. Stories Song, crafts and more. We will even include a healthy snack.
Visit www.andychruch.org for more information.

SOUL STORIES: WRITING OURSELVES HOME
Wednesdays May 1 - 22, 2019, 9:30 - 11:30 am. Open to all.
Cost: $60.00, includes lunch on May 22.
Facilitated by: Carolyn Pogue   
Location: Wild Rose United Church 1317 1 St NW
Soul Stories: Writing Ourselves Home offers a distinctive lens through which to look at our lives. Through the magic of gentle free-fall writing prompts and exercises, we will re-view our own stories. We will adjust our focus to include the landscape of dreams, place, family and experience.
Each week, we will also touch briefly on the story of one the holy women whose stories have enlivened people through the ages.
This program made possible by the Edge Foundation of the United Church of Canada
Register at the office, office@wildroseunited.ca or 403 277-5576, or on our website, wildroseunited.ca
 
5010 Spruce Drive SW T3C 3B2
403-249-3121
NEED AN ANNOUNCEMENT IN THE BULLETIN, MESSENGER OR POWERPOINT? email the office at 
office@woodcliffunited.com

wucprayerchain@gmail.com
woodcliffkids@gmail.com
youthwuc@gmail.com

Please add us in your address book.
Find more information about the wider Church at:
Calgary Presbytery: www.calgaryunited.ca
Alberta & Northwest Conference: www.anwconf.com
The United Church of Canada: www.united-church.ca
Wondercafe2 http://wondercafe2.ca/index.php

© 2019 Woodcliff United Church, All rights reserved.


5010 Spruce Drive SW

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