United Church of Rogers Park

 

Open Hearts,

        Open Minds,

                Open Doors...

 

The People of the United Methodist Church

                             Current News
New member, Alexia Paul [right], becomes a member of UCRP by Pastor Catiana [senter] and Leader Ron Johnson [left] on 21 May 2017
New members, Chance Lowe [far left]  and David Behrns [second from left], becoming members by Pastor Catiana, and Lay Leader Ron Johnson on 7 May 2017 
New members Neil and Chris [right] join UCRP and Gabriel [far left] was baptized. 
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  Against such things, there is no law.
 - Galatians 5:22-23
On April 25 - 28, the Judicial Council of The United Methodist Church [the court of the United Methodist Church] once again met to be ruling on the lives and ministry of LGBTQ people.  Rev. Karen Oliveto from San Francisco's' Glade United Methodist Church became Bishop of Western Jurisdiction's Big Sky Area.  It is Bishop Oliveto election last summer that was reviewed. A ruling from the Judicial Council may come at any time. 

From the Reconciling Ministries Network:

"Whether the Judicial Council rulings perpetuate harm or move the church one step closer to justice,
Reconciling Communities are committed first and foremost to God's call on our lives - to model what the 
church should be, to live into Biblical Obedience despite the consequences, and to proclaim with 
unabashed joy that ALL God's people are beloved, called, and blessed." 

At United Church, we support all people and ministry of the LGBTQ community and are part of the Reconciling Ministries Network.  "For we know God, as known to us in  Jesus Christ, welcomes all.  We welcome people of any race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, social or economic status, employment status, or life situation; including people with physical or mental illness or disability.  We practice loving acceptance of each person and respectful discussion of our differences."  This is our church's Mission Statement.

Our prayers and hope are toward Bishop Oliverto.

updated 28 April 2017

On Earth Day Sunday [23 April 2017], Garrett-Evangelical Theology Student Sabrina Bermingham gave today’s sermon.  She asked who is to take nature for granted?  To answer that question, she asked another question, “Who is our neighbor?”  Our neighbor is like the Good Samaritan. “Anyone we can help is our neighbor. Neighbors are not just the people, but the birds, air, and water.  We’re gardeners [of the earth]; Not the owners.”  To make her point even substantial that this is our church’s call, Sabrina quote John Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church:


"I believe in my heart that faith in Jesus Christ can and will lead us beyond an exclusive concern for the well-being of other human beings to the broader concern for the well-being of the birds in our backyards, the fish in our rivers, and every living creature on the face of the earth."

A Pastoral Letter to the Northern Illinois Annual Conference

Re: A Response to Executive Orders on Immigration

From Bishop Sally Dyck, Resident Bishop of Northern Illinois Conference

12 February 2017



Who is Our Neighbor?


What does the Bible say?

“Any immigrant who lives with you must be treated as if they were one of your

citizens. You must love them as yourself because you were immigrants in the land of Egypt; I am the Lord your God.” [Lev. 19:34, CEB]


What does the United Methodist Church say?

“We recognize, embrace, and affirm all persons, regardless of country of origin, as members of the family of

God. We urge the Church and society to recognize the gifts, contributions, and struggles of those who are

immigrants and to advocate for justice for all.” [Social Principles, par. l62H]


What does our country say?

"Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your

teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

--Emma Lazarus’ poem on the Statue of Liberty.


What does the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church say?

“The very soul of our country is at stake. When we abandon strangers who are at risk of bigotry, Xenophobia,

and violence, we not only destroy their hope, we destroy our own souls... Christ calls us to tear down the walls

around our souls that we might live fully and abundantly."

-- Bishop Bruce Ough, President of the Council of Bishops ® The United Methodist Church


But What do you say?

While I stand firmly within the traditions and values listed above on welcoming the immigrant, I understand

that some United Methodists disagree with those principles and resolutions. Nevertheless, I call all of us to

action:

♦ Study What the scriptures say about welcoming the immigrant. I recommend that you do so with the

Common English Bible which translates words like “alien” or “foreigner” as “immigrant.”

www.relevantmagazine.com/god/what-bible-says-about-how-treatrefugees

♦ Study the United Methodist Book of Resolutions on immigration. (see below)

♦ Have a conversation with someone who disagrees with your opinion by telling the story of how your

family came to the US (unless of course, you are Native American and/or African-American—these are other

painful stories that reveal what happens when we don’t regard our neighbor as ourselves).

♦ Attend the Northern Illinois Annual Conference’s Summit on “Who Is My Neighbor?” hosted by our

Hispanic/Latinx leadership on April 22, 2017, at Schaumburg: Our Saviour’s UMC. More details to come. It

will be an opportunity to learn more about immigration policies as well as our biblical and UM traditions, how

to be supportive of immigrants [of all nationalities], what it means to be a sanctuary church, how Justice for Our

Neighbors is helping, etc. Most of all, I hope it will be a time when we truly build relationships across our

cultural divide.

♦ Pray! Pray! Pray! Pray for our President, our country, and the communities of immigrants who are uncertain

and afraid.

♦ Support Justice for Our Neighbors with a monetary gift. Our two lawyers, Jenny Ansay and Megan Davis,

are working diligently to provide free legal advice to people in critical situations.


I am providing a list of resources that you can access online to begin studying and talking with one another. As you do, I trust that the prayers of our people will begin to rise on behalf of our neighbors. Keep the faith!



CHICAGO AREA EPISCOPAL OFFICE

77 West Washington Street

Suite l82O

Chicago, Illinois 60602

Office: 312-346-9766 X 702

Fax: 312-214-9031


Blessing of the Animals 2016