Be The Church: February 20, 2023

We hope you'll join us this Sunday as we begin our Lenten series, "Seeking: Honest Questions for Deeper Faith." This week's question is, "Who will you listen to?" After worship we'll gather for community hour and our monthly conversation with the Governing Board.

Don't forget to join us on Wednesday for Fat Ash Wednesday as we kick off the season of Lent. Then on Saturday we're gathering for Kudzu Removal. And, Sunday is our much anticipated talent show. Find all details below.

Please find more information below about:
- Fat Ash Wednesday Pancake Supper: Wednesday - Sign up
- The Congregational Church FolliesSunday
- Church T-Shirt Contest:  Last call to hare your ideas
- Christkindlmarkt Updates & Requests
Ministry Team, Worship, & Volunteer Sign-Up: Ushers needed
Pic of the Week: Planning For Your End Guide
Weekly Preview: Fat Ash Wednesday, Kudzu, Youth Group, Follies,
- Notes From The Church Dog: Lenten Practices
Love Your Neighbor: No more stigma
Faith Formation Opportunities & UCC News: Planning for the Energy Future of Your Congregation

You can find recordings of this past Sunday's worship services on our website and YouTube page. You can also support the ministries of our church, by giving online, or mailing in your contribution. Let us be the church as we love and serve our neighbors.
Pastor Meghan
Fat Ash Wednesday Pancake Supper
Wednesday, February 22, 5:30 - 7 PM in the Fellowship Hall
After a 2 year hiatus, it's back! Fat (Shrove) Tuesday + Ash Wednesday. Join us for a Pancake Supper and pancake games. Followed by a short Service of Ashes to help us transition into Lent. Sign up here. 

Youth group participants who are helping with set-up & pancakes should arrive by 4:45 PM.
The Very First Annual Church Variety Show: The Congregational Church Follies
Sunday, February 26, 2023 at 3 PM in the Sanctuary
Join us for our variety show featuring our amazingly talented congregation. There will be readings, song, music, hidden talents and more. All ages are welcome. Support our church community and have a wonderful time! 
Church T-Shirt Design Contest
Last call to share your ideas.
Now that we have a church logo, we'd love to have a church t-shirt that we can wear at community events, Church Beyond The Walls Sunday, and more. 
Please submit your ideas for a church t-shirt design using our logo and name, as well as any phrases or slogans you think we should use, to We'd love to get t-shirts made by our March 4th event with Doug Tallamy.
Christkindlmarkt Updates & Requests

A more specific update on our Christmas Market results:
We are so grateful for the amount of folks from the church who pitched in, in all different ways building up to and on the day of the market, including those who came to shop and be present with us. Including donations from church members who worked their own booths, the church ended up making around $3,000 and netting around $1,000. We are happy that we didn’t lose money the first year, and even happier to have had so much fun working with so many church members and with folks in our community. It was our first year and we made some bigger purchases that won’t need to be made again in future years, so we are very hopeful about increasing our net in future years.

Looking Ahead & Requests:
  • We welcome anyone who wants to join our Christkindlmarkt meetings in the future! Just let a team member or Meghan know and we will add you to our planning group!
  • Save the date for next year's Christkindlmarkt: Saturday, December 9, 2023.
  • If you come across working Christmas lights in the corners of your attic, or at a garage sale, and want to donate them to the market, it would be welcome, as it helps keeps our expenses low.
  • If you come across new or used half pint mason jars (Ball or Kerr) and lids, our market jam makers would love them. All lids (ideally 2 part lids) must be new.
Thank you for your help!

- The Christkindlmarkt Team, Karyn French, Lisa Schulenburg, Christel Walter, Jackie Weedon
Ministry Team, Worship, & Volunteer Sign-Up
We welcome all in our congregation, regardless of membership or age, to participate in worship leadership and Ministry Teams. Contact the church office for more information about any of the opportunities below.
Please consider signing up to usher, serve as liturgist, and host community hour in the coming months. Offering those gifts of hospitality helps build community, attracts and welcomes folks to our church.
Pic of the Week
A look into the life of the church

Several weeks ago we did a second hour on planning your memorial service - it can be a meaningful gift to yourself and loved ones. Click the picture below to download the guide. We ask that if you fill one out, that you bring it to the church to put in your member file. We'll also copy it for you, so you can keep a copy and make sure your family as one as well. If you have any questions, please contact Pastor Meghan.

Do you have a picture of something that you would like to share with the Congregation? Email it to Lindsay and we can share it as our pic of the week and continue to stay connected with each other. 
Weekly Preview
Grow in faith, share in ministry.
  • Community Hours
    Community Hours this week will be Wednesday from 2-3 PM at All Good Things Bakery in Tryon.
  • Prayer GroupWednesdays at 12 PM on Zoom
    Click this link to join Prayer Group
    Meeting ID: 396 479 012, Password: 117851
    To join by phone, dial +1 646 558 8656.
    Join us as we pray for the congregation, the community, and the world.
  • Fat Ash Wednesday Pancake Supper
    Wednesday, February 22, 5:30 - 7 PM in the Fellowship Hall
    See details above.
  • Kudzu Eradication
    February 25, 10 AM, Back Parking Lot
    Join us to rework the area from last year and remove any debris possible. Were identifying natives and restoring our historic woodlands. Invite all you know to help. It is a wonderful donation to God's world. Contact Carol Meeske for more information.
  • Sunday Worship: Lent 1 - February 26 at 10 AM, Sanctuary & Online
    Join us for worship, story, music, and fellowship. The Sunday email will have links to watch the service online via live stream. This week's scripture is Genesis 2:15-17, 3:1-7 and Matthew 4:1-11. Following worship we will gather for Community Hour and our monthly chat with the Governing Board.
  • Youth Group
    Sunday, February 26 at 11:30 AM
    We will meet at the church and watch the movie, Puss n Boots: Last Wish, and discuss mental health issues addressed in the movie. Lunch will be provided. 
  • The Very First Annual Church Variety Show: 
    The Congregational Church Follies
    Sunday, February 26, 2023 at 3 PM in the Sanctuary

    See details above.
Looking Ahead:
  • Game Night
    Saturday, March 11th at 5 PM
    Join us for dinner and some friendly competition. Bring your favorite game! Free will offering for dinner. Sign up online.
  • Joy & Justice Book Club
    Sundays, March 12 & 19 after worship
    Join us for a discussion of the book Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom,  Scientific Knowledge, and the Teaching of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer. As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these lenses of knowledge together to show that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings are we capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learning to give our own gifts in return. There is also a Young Adult version also available for discussion with youth.  Sign up online
Notes From The Church Dog
Because somebody has to run this church...
What are you giving up for Lent? What spiritual practice are you taking on?

As our Lenten brochure reminds us, Lent is a time of preparation, self-examination, penitence, and special devotion for all Christians as we prepare for the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus. Lent is an invitation to join together as God’s people, and to explore how we can shape our lives in the way of Jesus. It is a time of conversion, an intensification of the movement which is the spiritual rhythm of our lives: a continuous turning away from distractions and sin, and reorientation toward God. Basically it's an invitation to renew our relationships with God, by loving our neighbor, ourselves, and all of creation. It's about healthy and vital community, that helps build the Kindom of God. It's about being intentional with our spiritual practices.

I still have a couple of days to decide, but I'm thinking that this year for Lent, I'll give up taking things that aren't mine. I'll just keep repeating the mantra "not all things are dog toys" and "not all things should be shredded". My hopes for that particular Lenten sacrifice aren't high, but I'll try my best, as I think it might improve my relationship with others. And, then for my spiritual discipline, I'm going to do my best to appreciate God's creation whenever I can. I started this weekend, with some swimming and hiking. There's so much of God's creation that I'm looking forward to discovering this Lenten season!
Wishing you all the toys and pets,
Love Your Neighbor
Wider Community Opportunities, Events, and Resources
No More Stigma, No More Shame #standbymePolk
April 28. 4:30PM - 7:30PM
Join us for an exciting evening as we welcome nationally acclaimed TEDx speaker Tony Hoffman to Polk County to share his inspirational true story "From Prison to the Olympics," about overcoming and recovery from substance misuse.

*Hosted by Polk County Health and Human Services Agency in partnership with Polk County Schools.
Find more information here

Hear of any community gatherings, resources, or opportunities to love our neighbors? Email us to share.
Faith Formation Opportunities & UCC News
Staying connected to the wider church.
Click here to sign-up for WNCA email updates.
Planning the Energy Future of Your Congregation
Tuesday, February 21 at 1 PM online
Register here. 
Join the Interfaith Power & Light, the United Church of Christ, and other faith partners in learning about benchmarking your facilities’ energy use, so that your congregation can cut energy costs and care for creation. This is the first step in planning to take advantage of federal funding now available to faith communities. Presenters include: Jerry Lawson, National Manager of EPA’s Energy Star for Small Businesses and Congregations; Sarah Paulos, Interfaith Power & Light’s Cool Congregations Program Director and Tom Hackley from People’s Church of Kalamazoo, Michigan. 

Create Playspace with the President Series
On Wednesdays from February through May, UCC President, Rev. John Dorhauer has arranged eight different conversations, each with a unique topic and facilitator.
The next discussion topic will be: 
Is property a missional asset or a liability?
March 1st at 1 pm 
Register here


Rev. Meghan D. Young, Pastor -
Lindsay Lewis, Minister of Faith Formation -
Dr. Susan Lyle, Minister of Music -
Brittany Plumley, Custodian -
Michele Brulé, Church Administrator -
General Office/Church Requests can be sent to:


Sunday Morning Worship is at 10:00 AM. Check weekly emails or for more information, as to protocols and worship location.
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The Congregational Church, UCC
210 Melrose Ave
Tryon, NC 28782

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