Saving Jesus Redux

You don’t have to spend much time watching the news or trolling social media to encounter people who use Jesus to justify their words or actions. Sports figures, celebrities and politicians talk about Jesus like he’s a best buddy or mascot or secret power. The Jesus they know is always on “their side”. But how can this be? How can Jesus be pro- and anti- such trigger issues as abortion, gender rights, war and the like? Is Jesus a weapon of the Christian Right or a tool of the ‘spiritual but not religious’ Left?

“We’re having a culture war and Jesus happens to be one of the weapons tossed
about by both sides.” — Amy-Jill Levine

“Saving Jesus Redux” will be offered on Tuesdays from 1:00pm to 2:30pm starting January 7, and on Wednesdays from 7:00pm to 8:30pm starting January 8, and finishing on February 19. Even if you missed the first five episodes, come anyway!

Christmas Season Services & Events

Join us this Christmas Season for services celebrating the birth of Christ and the coming of the new year! There will be services every Sunday in December, a time of reflection for the winter solstice, two services on Christmas Eve, and a community dinner to welcome the new year!

December 21, 3pm: The Longest Night: a time of quiet reflection walking the labyrinth.

December 22, 8:30am and 10am: Regular Sunday worship services.

December 24, 7pm: Christmas Eve Family Service.

December 24, 11pm: Christmas Eve Candlelight Communion.

December 29, 8:30am and 10am: Regular Sunday worship services.

January 1: New Year’s Day Dinner. All are welcome, volunteers are needed! Check the events page for details!

Sparkle Tour

“It’s starting to look a lot like Christmas”. One of the things that gets me in the Christmas spirit is to drive around and look at the wonderful Christmas light displays.

The Pastoral Care Core Ministry is pleased to once again organize the “Sparkle Tour”. People are picked up between 4:30 and 5pm, driven around the city for about an hour and then taken back to the church for hot spiced apple juice and shortbread cookies. Thank you to the congregants that have volunteered to be the “Drivers”.

Now we need to identify the “Riders”. If you would like a go for a drive at night and see the lights, whether you have mobility issues or you just don’t drive at night anymore, please sign up at the Welcome Table after church or call the church office during business hours at 250-762-3311.

~ Pat Totton

Film Screening: The Doctrine of Discovery

The Doctrine of Discovery: Stolen lands, Strong Hearts is a film about a devastating decision, made over 500 years ago, which continues to profoundly impact Indigenous and Settler people worldwide. Pope Alexander VI ruled that the lands being discovered by European explorers at the time were “empty” land and its millions of Indigenous inhabitants were “non-human”.

Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission released 94 Calls to Action in 2015, with many of them referring to the Doctrine of Discovery and calling for its repudiation. This film will be very informative for anyone wanting to move on the 94 Calls to Action.

Thursday, December 12, 2019
6:30pm to 8:30pm
First Mennonite Church, 1305 Gordon Drive, Kelowna

Admission is free but donations will be accepted at the door. Registration is not mandatory but to help us plan for seating and refreshments it would help if you could register on Eventbrite: https://doctrineofdiscovery-stolenlands-stronghearts.eventbrite.ca

You “Can” and We Did!

Thank you to your generous response to the food shelf campaign in October! We asked the congregation: “Can you help us fill this cart?” and you did! Each week the cart was in the Hall for people to drop off canned and non-perishable goods. In all we collected 34 cans of vegetables/fruit and beans, pasta, toilet paper, boxed macaroni and cheese, 20 cans of ravioli/chilli, peanut butter, tea, 20 cans of tuna, granola bars, rice, oatmeal and more!

In October Kelowna was ranked the 17th most expensive city to rent an apartment in Canada according to a national rental report. Kelowna was one of five BC cities, ranked only behind Vancouver, Burnaby, Westminster and Victoria. For many on meagre incomes or assistance this means 80% or more is spent on housing. Our Food Shelf helps those who can not afford groceries.

Handbell Boot Camp

Are you interested in trying out handbells? Have you rung in the past, are interested in joining the Alleluia Ringers or the Grace Notes, but it’s been a while and you need a refresher?

?Handbell Boot Camp is a one-day program for learning the basics of ringing, and preparing one piece for the service the next morning. If you have basic music reading skills and are interested in taking part, mark Saturday, November 30 and Sunday, December 1 on your calendar and contact Nikki Attwell at 250-707-3375 or [email protected] to sign up.

Decorate the Church

The season of Advent is a time of expectant waiting and preparation for Christmas. To begin we invite you to join us to “make the house ready”—to help decorate the sanctuary, trim the tree, and enjoy a time of fellowship—on the first Sunday of Advent, December 1st.

Stay after church for a sandwich. Lend a hand decorating, enjoy a cup of warm apple cider or making a craft. This is a great way to meet others in the congregation of all ages!

Adult Study

Come be part of this lively 12-part study of Christianity in the 21st century. Contributors include: Brian McLaren, Diana Butler Bass, Robin Meyers, Marcus Borg, Walter Brueggemann, John Dominic Crossan, Matthew Fox, Amy-Jill Levine, and a host of others for a conversation around the relevance of Jesus for today.

This video-based series will begin on Wednesday October 16 at 7:00 pm in room 14 and run to November 20. Facilitated by Sharon Wilson.

Welcome Potluck

The Affirm Committee encourages everyone to join in a welcome meal in the church hall on Saturday, October 5 at 5pm to come and meet our new supply minister, Rev. Bob Wallace. You are encouraged to bring a dish to share that reflects your heritage.

Adopt-a-Road Clean Up

Enjoy some fresh air, an opportunity to get to know others in the congregation, and participate in a project that helps keep our city beautiful! First United is part of the City of Kelowna Adopt-a-Road Program and is responsible for a stretch of Guisachan Road east of the Chevron gas station at Gordon & Guisachan. If you would like to participate, please join us in the parking lot of the Chevron at 10:30am. The City provides reflective vests, bags to collect garbage, gloves, and signage. We provide the volunteers!

Click here for event details and map.