Sunday, October 23rd, 2016, 10:30 a.m.

Sermon: The Cloud (& The Fire) of Unknowing
Preacher: Rev. Michael Ellick
Scripture: Exodus 13:17-22
Music: "Experimental Sunday" with special guest musician Colin Shepard 


October 23rd - Sunday Service - 10:30AM

This coming Sunday is the 4th Sunday of the month, and that used to mean "Jazz Sundays" here at First Congregational.  But in the spirit of experimentation, for the time being we are going to be calling these "Experimental Sundays," with - hopefully - a different kind of musical experiment each month.

First up: my friend Colin Shepard (who is on the music staff at Kairos Milwaukee UCC) will join us as guest music leader with a service about "embracing mystery" and "finding the sacred in the secular."  To this end, this week's service will explore some of the big themes of Exodus with a little help from contemporary "secular" music.  If you already soundtrack your life to the likes of Leonard Cohen, Radiohead, Coldplay, and Deathcab for Cutie, OR if none if this is familiar yet but you're eager to learn more... this is the Sunday for you!

Please join me in giving Colin a warm First Congregational welcome this week, and I'll see you all in church!

-Rev. Michael


Abbreviated Fellowship Hour this Sunday

We'll be holding a shorter Fellowship Hour this Sunday in order to prepare for an exciting and important event in our Fellowship Hall, #WithRefugees. We are honored to be hosting this special event with the United Nations Association of Portland to discuss and consider the worst global refugee crisis since World War II. In commemoration of United Nations Day, please join us at 1:00 PM this Sunday in the Fellowship Hall for a uniquely immersive, audience-engaged program about this ongoing humanitarian crisis.


Interested in Shaping Our Sunday Morning Worship?

You are invited to join our Worship Team to participate in a variety of ways to shape our Sunday Morning Worship experiences. For example: preparing and serving Communion, special music-instrumental or vocal, leading prayers, decorating our sanctuary for seasons and holidays (Advent, Christmas, Lent, etc.), coordinating Intergenerational worship, and more. Creative ideas welcome!

If you are interested, or if you are curious and want to participate, talk to Julie Blanchard, Community Core Facilitator on Sunday morning or email: You can also contact Rev. Elizabeth or Rev. Michael.


Exodus: Journeying Deeper into Sacred Story

Sunday, October 23rd - 9:00 AM
Church Chapel

Our next adult education class, led by Maggidah Batya Podos, will continue the study of the book of Exodus. No RSVP needed. See you there!

Welcome Families!

Welcome Families! We're so glad you've joined us this morning. Childcare for infants to preschoolers is available in our nursery downstairs beginning at 9:30 AM. Colorful activity bags are available for children to use...please see an usher or look for the wooden stand with cloth bags at the back of the Sanctuary.

Children and youth (ages 4 to 12) are invited downstairs to the Story classroom after our "Time with the Children." Our fall lessons use the Godly Play curriculum, which invites children to experience the sacred stories of our faith with a sense of curiosity and wonder. Today's story is "The Ark and the Temple" led by Rev. Elizabeth Durant.


Healing Through Yoga

All of us are recovering from something. Whether that is an addiction, trauma, or life in general, we all have wounds. Let's join together with the aim of healing through the practice of yoga. We regularly meet on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 4 to 5 p.m. in the downstairs classroom. Our next class is October 26th. This is a donation-based class, open to the community, and is offered to all on behalf of First Congregational. Please contact Stephanie ( before attending your first class or if you any questions. Donations support social justice causes in our community.