February 14th News and Notes

 

Ash Wednesday

Lent begins on today.  Join us for our Ash Wednesday service at 7:00!

 

Time for Testimony

Once again, during Lent, we are inviting the congregation to share stories of their faith.  This year, we are asking people to share their favorite (or a favorite, if you have more than one) hymn and why it is meaningful to you.  Afterwards, we will sing the hymn!  We are looking for somebody for this Sunday, February 18th.  If you are willing, please email Ckdeacon@yahoo.com with the hymn you will talk about!

Lenten Dinners and Devotions

Our Lenten Dinner and Devotions will begin on Wednesday, February 21st and continue every Wednesday until Holy Week.  We will begin dinner at 6:00 and have an inter-generational devotional activity afterwards.  The them will be exploring Lent through African American Spirituals.  You can sign up here 

 

Year End Video

In case you missed our year end video, you can see it here.  Special thanks to Dina Bickel for putting it together.

Two Week Outlook

Wednesday, February 14th

  • Ash Wednesday Service, 7:00 PM
  • Lent Begins

Thursday, February 15th

  • Men’s Night Out, 6:30 PM, Lagnways in Crofton

Sunday, February 18th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • First Sunday of Lent
  • Sunday School following worship

Wednesday, February 21st

  • Dinner and Intergenerational Devotion, 6:00
  • Choir, 7:30

Thursday, February 22nd

  • Men’s Breakfast, 7:45, Nautilus Diner in Crofton
  • Ladies Night Out, 6:30, Bowie Town Grill

Sunday, February 25th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • Chat and Chew
  • Sunday School following worship

Wednesday, February 28th

  • Dinner and Intergenerational Devotion, 6:00
  • Choir, 7:30

Looking Ahead

  • Lenten Studies begin, February 21st
  • April 1st, Easter
  • April 28th, Christmas in April
  • May 6th, Church in the Park
  • Mars Hill Mission Trip, July 8th-14th
  • Art and Music Camp, July 23rd-27th
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February 8th News and Notes

Mission Giving

Due to the weather last week, we postponed our Mission Giving to this Sunday.  This month, our mission partner is the United Campus Ministry from the University of Maryland.  Remember, if you have a non-profit or ministry you would like to invite, please let Chris or one of the board members know!

Ash Wednesday

Lent begins on Wednesday, February 14th with our Ash Wednesday service at 7:00.  Plan on joining us!

CYF Committee

The Children, Youth, and Family Committee are meeting this Sunday, February 11th at 5:00 at Sue Kennedy’s house.

Time for Testimony

Once again, during Lent, we are inviting the congregation to share stories of their faith.  This year, we are asking people to share their favorite (or a favorite, if you have more than one) hymn and why it is meaningful to you.  Afterwards, we will sing the hymn!  Please let Chris know if you are interested or sign up here.

Lenten Dinners and Devotions

Our Lenten Dinner and Devotions will begin on Wednesday, February 21st and continue every Wednesday until Holy Week.  We will begin dinner at 6:00 and have an inter-generational devotional activity afterwards.  The them will be exploring Lent through African American Spirituals.  You can sign up here 

Soup-er Bowl Sunday

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the Soup-er Bowl giving!  We had 68 cans given for the Eagles and 38 cans given for the Patriots.  With the match, we raised 174 cans for the Bowie Food Pantry!

Year End Video

In case you missed our year end video, you can see it here.  Special thanks to Dina Bickel for putting it together.

Two Week Outlook

Friday, February 9th

  • Ladies Luncheon, 11:30 AM, First Watch

Sunday, February 11th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • Mission Giving, During Worship
  • Chat & Chew, following worship
  • Sunday School following worship
  • CYF Committee meeting, 5:00 PM, Sue Kennedy’s House

Tuesday, February 13th

  • Choir Rehearsal, 7:30

Wednesday, February 14th

  • Ash Wednesday Service, 7:00 PM
  • Lent Begins

Thursday, February 15th

  • Men’s Night Out, 6:30 PM

Sunday, February 18th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • First Sunday of Lent
  • Sunday School following worship

Wednesday, February 21st

  • Dinner and Intergenerational Devotion, 6:00
  • Choir, 7:30

Looking Ahead

  • Ash Wednesday, February 14th
  • Lenten Studies begin, February 21st
  • April 1st, Easter
  • April 28th, Christmas in April
  • May 6th, Church in the Park
  • Mars Hill Mission Trip, July 8th-14th
  • Art and Music Camp, July 23rd-27th

February 7th E-votional

If you, like much of the country, watched the Super Bowl last Sunday evening, you saw a great game!  The only people who can complain about that game were Patriot fans and fans of defensive battles.  The game had great story lines like the back-up quarterback vs the 5 time Super Bowl winning Tom Brady or Chris Long and LeGarrette Blount playing against the team they won the Super Bowl with last year.  It had the most yards ever for a Super Bowl.  It was an entertaining game!

Do you know what else was entertaining?  The commercials!  Sure, there were some misses like “Solo: A Star Wars story” (as much as it pains me to say that) and the Dodge truck commercial that used a Martin Luther King Jr. sermon out of context.  There were a lot of great commercials too.  Three, particularly stood out for me.  The “Tide” detergent commercials, the Australian tourism commercial, and the commercial for Netflix’s “Cloverfield: Paradox”.  I don’t think they were they best commercials (Eli Maning and Odell Beckham Jr’s Dirty Dancing was hilarious!) but they stood out the most.

These three commercials struck me as particularly innovative.  Tide had a commercial that kind of spoofed other “typical” Super Bowl commercials, only to reveal there were no stains, so it must be a Tide commercial.  It was okay.  But then, they put in little fifteen second commercials through out the game that looked like other commercials.  They developed a theme and ran with it and built on it!  It was genius.

The commercial highlighting Australian tourism started off as a movie trailer for a new sequel to “Crocodile Dundee”.  When, it seems, every movie is a remake or a reboot, why not Crocodile Dundee.  It then shifted when the actors realized it wasn’t a movie but instead showing off the beautiful scenery of Australia.  It was a pretty clever concept, but what really sold me was they have been laying the ground work for several weeks.  I first heard about the new Dundee movie two or three weeks ago.  It had an IMDB page, a cast, and a director.  It was all a ruse.  I was completely, delightfully fooled.  They were able to use the power of social media and the internet to build up anticipation for their fake movie.  The build up moved it from a creative idea to a truly innovative one!

The final commercial was for the Netflix movie, “Cloverfield: Paradox.”  The first commercial drew your interest as Netflix promised it was coming soon.  Then in the third or fourth quarter, they showed another preview and announced it was premiering right after the game!  This is almost the opposite of what the Australian tourism commercial did.  They just dropped it in our lap and showed the flexibility and maneuverability that Netflix enjoys.

What do these commercials tell us about the church?  How can we share the Gospel or advertise UPB in new ways?  How can we, as a congregation, develop a theme and build on it?  How can we draw on the power of social media and the internet to tell the story of UPB and of God’s grace and love?  How can we use the flexibility of being a small congregation to better communicate who we are?

January 31st News and Notes

 

 

Mars Hill Chili and Dessert Cook-Off

Thank you to everybody who contributed to the Mars Hill Chili and Dessert Cook-Off last Sunday.  Congratulations to Jan Barbato, who won the chili category, and Hannah Deacon, who won the dessert category.  We raised $619 to go towards our Mars Hill mission trip!

Soup-er Bowl Sunday

It is the New England Patriots versus the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl this Sunday!  There is a basket for each team in the sanctuary!  Bring canned goods to vote for the team that you think will win!  The team that wins the Super Bowl will have it’s basket matched with all food items going to the Bowie Food Pantry!

Mission Giving

We will take up our Mission Giving offering this Sunday.  This month, our mission partner is the United Campus Ministry from the University of Maryland.  Remember, if you have a non-profit or ministry you would like to invite, please let Chris or one of the board members know!

Year End Video

In case you missed our year end video, you can see it here.  Special thanks to Dina Bickel for putting it together.

Ash Wednesday

Lent begins on Wednesday, February 14th with our Ash Wednesday service at 7:00.  Plan on joining us!

Lenten Dinners and Devotions

Our Lenten Dinner and Devotions will begin on Wednesday, February 21st and continue every Wednesday until Holy Week.  We will begin dinner at 6:00 and have an inter-generational devotional activity afterwards.

 

Two Week Outlook

Wednesday, January 31st

  • Seeds, 6:00
  • Choir rehearsal, 7:30

Friday, February 2nd

  • Book Club, 7:00

Sunday, February 4th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • Soup-er Bowl challenge
  • Sunday School following worship
  • Committee Chair meeting, 12:00 (or after Sunday School)

Wednesday, February 7th

  • Seeds, 6:00
  • Choir rehearsal, 7:30

Thursday, February 8th

  • Men’s Breakfast, 7:45 AM, Nautilus Diner, Crofton

Friday, February 9th

  • Ladies Luncheon, 11:30 AM, First Watch

Sunday, February 11th

  • Worship, 10:00
  • Sunday School following worship

Wednesday, February 14th

  • Ash Wednesday Service, 7:00 PM

Looking Ahead

  • Ash Wednesday, February 14th
  • Lenten Studies begin, February 21st
  • April 1st, Easter
  • May 6th, Church in the Park
  • Mars Hill Mission Trip, July 8th-14th
  • Art and Music Camp, July 23rd-27th

December 14th News and Notes

 

 

Childrens’ Christmas Program

The children of UPB have been hard at work practicing the Christmas play since October!  They will present the story of Christ’s birth during worship on December 17th.  Come and support our kids and hear the Christmas story in a new way!

Christmas Open House

Pastor Chris and his family invite you to a Christmas Open House at their home on December 17th from 3:00-6:00.  Stop by or stay for the whole thing!

Men’s Night Out

The men of the church will be gathering for food and fellowship at the new restaurant by Bowie Towne Center, Bj’s Restaurant and Brewhouse on December 21st at 6:30.

Christmas Movie Night

On December 22nd, the CYF committee will be holding a Christmas Movie Night.  We will have dinner and watch “Elf”.  This is a perfect opportunity for parents to do last minute shopping!  Dinner will be at 6:00 with the movie starting at 6:30.

Christmas Eve, part 1

On Christmas Eve at 10:00, we will have an interactive service for all ages.   We invite you to dress comfortably and bring breakfast finger foods to share.  We will worship around tables in the sanctuary as we hear the story of Christ’s birth presented in a new way!

 

Christmas Eve, part 2

On Sunday, December 24th, we will have out traditional, candlelight service at 7:00.  We still need 1 more reader for the candlelight service, if you are available, please email ckdeacon@yahoo.com

De-greening the church

Please make plans to stay after worship on January 7th when we will take down the Christmas decorations.

Two Week Outlook

Sunday, December 17th

  • Third Sunday of Advent
  • Worship, including Children’s Christmas Program, 10:00
  • Deacons’ Christmas Open House, 3:00-6:00

Wednesday, December 20th

  • Choir rehearsal, 7:30

Thursday, December 21st

  • Men’s Night Out, 6:30, BJ’s restaurant and brewhouse

Sunday, December 24th

  • Fourth Sunday of Advent
  • Christmas Eve
  • Interactive Worship service with breakfast finger foods, 10:00
  • Deacons’ Christmas Open House, 3:00-6:00

Looking Ahead

  • December 17th:  Children’s Christmas Program
  • December 24th: Christmas Eve
  • January 7th: De-Greening the Church
  • January 28th: Annual Meeting

December 7th News and Notes

 

 

 

Congregational Meeting

On December 10th, we will have a Congregational meeting following worship for the election of officers for the coming year.

Committee Chair Meeting

On December 10th, there will be a committee chair meeting following Sunday School.

Gingerbread Houses

Remember, if you signed up, we will be decorating Gingerbread Houses this Sunday at 5:00.  Each house is $5.00 and a bag of candy to be shared for decorating.  Feel free to bring more candy!  Pizza will be provided for dinner!

Childrens’ Christmas Program

The children of UPB have been hard at work practicing the Christmas play since October!  They will present the story of Christ’s birth during worship on December 17th.  Come and support our kids and hear the Christmas story in a new way!

Christmas Open House

Pastor Chris and his family invite you to a Christmas Open House at their home on December 17th from 3:00-6:00.  Stop by or stay for the whole thing!

Men’s Night Out

The men of the church will be gathering for food and fellowship at the new restaurant by Bowie Towne Center, Bj’s Restaurant and Brewhouse on December 21st at 6:30.

Christmas Movie Night

On December 22nd, the CYF committee will be holding a Christmas Movie Night.  We will have dinner and watch “Elf”.  This is a perfect opportunity for parents to do last minute shopping!  Dinner will be at 6:00 with the movie starting at 6:30.

Christmas Eve

On Sunday, December 24th, we will have two services.  At 10:00, we will have an interactive family activity telling the Christmas story!  We invite you to bring breakfast breads and casseroles to share!  At 7:00, we will have out traditional, candlelight service.  We need 8 readers for the candlelight service, if you are available, please email ckdeacon@yahoo.com

Two Week Outlook

Friday, December 8th

  • Book Club

Saturday, December 9th

  • Christmas Play Practice, 9:30am

Sunday, December 10th

  • Second Sunday of Advent
  • Worship, 10:00
  • Congregational Meeting, immediately after worship
  • Sunday School, following worship
  • Chat & Chew, following worship
  • Committee Chair meeting, following Sunday School
  • Gingerbread House night, 5:00

Tuesday, December 12th

  • Board Meeting, 7:00

Wednesday, December 13th

  • Christmas Play practice, 5:45
  • Choir rehearsal, 7:30

Thursday, December 14th

  • Men’s Breakfast, 7:45 am, Nautilus Diner, Crofton

Sunday, December 17th

  • Third Sunday of Advent
  • Worship, including Children’s Christmas Program, 10:00
  • Deacons’ Christmas Open House, 3:00-6:00

Wednesday, December 20th

  • Choir rehearsal, 7:30

Thursday, December 14th

  • Men’s Night Out, 6:30, BJ’s restaurant and brewhouse

Looking Ahead

  • December 10th: Gingerbread Houses
  • December 17th:  Children’s Christmas Program
  • December 24th: Christmas Eve
  • January 28th: Annual Meeting

December 25th Christmas Devotional

All the World’s People

Scott Simmons

Luke 2:1-20

The story of the birth of Jesus, as told in the Gospel of Luke, occurs in the midst of an exhaustive and ambitious human project: a census designed to record and register every person in the entire world. The successful completion of such an endeavor held great strategic potential for the Roman Empire. With the data collected, government and commerce could be more efficient and effective. Opportunities and threats could be predicted more accurately. Lives could improve. Wealth could increase. Rome could unite the world.

It is very unlikely that Caesar’s census achieved its lofty goals. Luke doesn’t elaborate further. There’s no historical record of such a census being completed. However, it is within the backdrop of such raw ambition and immense scope that a single humble birth is recorded and remembered. A vulnerable baby stands apart from any person who lived that day, before or since.

One of the Angels of the Lord said: “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.”

 

Holy God. Today we give thanks and celebrate the birth of the One by which you truly unite the world’s people – Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Scott Simmons is a Mission Developer at Lydia’s Place in Saint Paul, MN.

©2017 by individual authors and Facebook Narrative Lectionary Group. This work is published under a Creative Commons AttributionNonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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