Every day is a time to shine.
To radiate your inner light.
You are the brightest star.
Show your stuff!

Fear not who you are and
Embrace the person you have become.

You are you.
A whole, complete, brilliant, sparkly creation of God!
And you look magnificent when you allow yourself to live in love.

~ From Robin Carlson, Commissioned Minister of Religious Education

September birthdays and anniversaries

Each month we recognize the birthdays and anniversaries of our church members. Here are the ones for the month of September:


7 — Gretchen Choate

10 — Jaidyn Ramirez, Serenity Shea

11 — Mike R Smith

12 — Bobbie Wolfe

14 — Elizabeth Davis-Russell, Keithie Earl

16 — Rachel Van Patten

17 — Sommer Earl

21 — Janet Capella

26 — Phil Fullerton

27 — Selena Wall


1 — Jacque & Bob Garcia

4 — Tim & Laurie Tidyman-Jones

9 — Bryan Clark & Brian Isbell

Work Anniversary

7 — Marilyn Wall 25 years!


Living the Questions (LTQ) 2.0: Adult Education for the Journey

An Invitation to Journey: Beginning on Sept. 23, we will begin our DVD and discussion gatherings at 9 a.m. in the Conference Room.

Each Sunday morning we will watch a DVD and discuss issues and concepts that may challenge many people’s worldview and understanding of the Divine.  It may, for some, be radically new information.  For others, it will be an affirmation of what they’ve known deep down for a long time.

The intention of this information and discussion is not to provide answers but to expose people to ideas and concepts that may take a while to process.

Sept. 23 — An Invitation to Journey

  • Focus: Faith is not a destination, but a journey

Sept. 30 — Taking the Bible Seriously

  • Focus: The authority one places in the Bible plays a critical role in one’s worldview and understanding of the Christian life.

Oct. 7 — Thinking Theologically

  • Focus:   While family, education, social class, and geography all contribute to how we think about God, our experiences and perceptions along life’s journey also shape our thinking. Being comfortable with ambiguity, metaphor, and uncertainty help us get the Divine “out of the box” and rethink theological ideas that have become barriers to our further spiritual growth.

Oct. 14 — Stories of Creation

  • Focus: How one perceives the creation stories is not only critical to the way one looks at the Bible, but how one understands the purpose of creation, the essence of human nature, and the attitude one takes toward the environment in which we live.

Oct. 21 — Lives of Jesus

  • Focus: From divergent opinions on Jesus’ “program” to the reasons for his having been killed, the many portrayals of Jesus in the gospels, in various traditions, theologies, and the arts, amount to a Jesus who lived many different lives—each of which helps us in teasing out what it means to be a disciple of this mysterious and profoundly significant phenomenon called Jesus of Nazareth.

Oct. 28 — A Passion for Christ: Paul the Apostle

  • Focus: Little of what most people think of as Christianity has been untouched by the legacy of Paul’s writing and influence. The many understandings of his interpretation of Christianity continue to be re-examined in the 21st century.

Nov. 4 — Out into the World: Challenges Facing Progressive Christians

  • Focus: There is a reformation afoot in Christianity—a re-visioning of the traditional understandings of Jesus, the virgin birth, substitutionary atonement, and the Christian life as a whole. Long held ideas of divinity and of faith are changing and evolving to reflect 21st century thought and spirituality. Inspired by these fresh insights, progressive Christians can claim a distinctive voice by being in solidarity with the poor, countering the idolatry of wealth, practicing non-violence, and by seeking justice and inclusivity in a culture dominated by fear.

Nov. 11 — Restoring Relationships

  • Focus: There are three Biblical “macro-stories” that shape the whole of the Biblical narrative: Bondage and Liberation, Exile and Return, Sin and Forgiveness. Each representing a different facet of the human condition, they demonstrate what is necessary for the restoration of relationships on a variety of levels.

Nov. 18 — The Prophetic Jesus

  • Focus: Jesus was a troublemaker. He said and did things that were upsetting to agents of the political and religious domination systems that oppressed the weak and downtrodden. In this way, Jesus stood firmly in the tradition of the prophets of Hebrew Scripture—those who offered a clear and challenging “alternative script” to the status quo.

Nov. 25 — NO LTQ (Thanksgiving Weekend)

Dec. 2 — NO LTQ (Hanging of the Greens)

Dec. 9 — Evil, Suffering & A God of Love

  • Focus: If God is all-powerful, all-loving, and all-good, how do you explain and respond to the existence of so much suffering and evil in the world?

Dec. 16 — The Myth of Redemptive Violence

  • Focus: The most potent religion in Western culture is not Christianity, but a belief in the redemptive power of violence. Although Jesus inaugurated a new order based on partnership, equality, compassion and non-violence, his example and teachings have been eclipsed by an emphasis on a human unworthiness that demands and defends the need for Jesus’ violent, suffering, atoning death.

Dec. 23 — NO LTQ

Dec. 30 — NO LTQ

Jan. 6 — NO LTQ

Jan. 13 — Practicing Resurrection

  • Focus: While much has been made of Jesus’ literal and physical resurrection being the core historical event of Christianity, the Biblical texts themselves present conflicting evidence. For many today, the resuscitation of Jesus’ body is less important than the idea of resurrection as a credible and meaningful principle for living.

DVD speakers include Marcus Borg, Rita Nakashima Brock, Walter Brueggemann, John Dominic Crossan, Yvette Flunder, Amy-Jill Levine, Helen Prejean, John Shelby Spong, just to name of few.

Come and join us on this journey of exploration.

Considering joining Community UCC?

If you want to learn more about becoming a member of our church, please join us at 9 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 19, for an informational meeting. We officially receive new members four times a year:

  • During Kickoff Sunday, Sept. 9
  • First Sunday in Advent (winter)
  • Easter Sunday (spring)
  • Pentecost Sunday (summer)

New members may attend an informational class, usually a month before one of the four Sunday worship services to receive new members. The information class is organized by the Extravagant Welcome Team, or “elders.”

Even between those times, there are many ways you can become involved in the offerings of our church life.

Farewell Luncheon for Shelia and Arville Earl

Join us for a farewell luncheon in honor of Shelia and Arville Earl on Sunday, Aug. 19, following the worship service.

Fellowship will provide a salad bar luncheon for Sheila and Arville after the worship service on Aug. 19.  Please join with our congregation as we say farewell and extend best wishes to these dear church members as they relocate for their next endeavor.

DEADLINE APPROACHING — Escape to the mountains at All-Church Family Camp

Time is almost up to register for All Church Family Camp.  The deadline for camp registration is Sunday, Aug. 26.

Click here to download the registration form, then print out, complete and return to the church office: 2018 — Registration Form- with logo — 2018

For more information please contact Annie Van Patten at 209.902.2033.

It’s time to get serious about Family Camp at Tamarack. We want YOU to come “Frolic in the Forest” during Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2.

Get away from triple-digit heat, eat delicious food, sleep comfortably in your cozy tent on new cots, participate in a fun variety of activities like hiking, swimming, TNT skits, playing music, Morning Meadow-tations, Sunday worship, visiting, hanging out together and making new friends — but keeping the old.

There are bath houses with flush toilets and hot water showers. There is a lodge with a huge stone fireplace and a fire pit outside for s’mores and fellowship.

You won’t be disappointed. It’s a GREAT experience! One to remember.

Click here to see a slideshow of Camp Tam memories from across the years.

Click here to read the Hayden family’s experience at last year’s Camp Tam.