Church Action eNewsletter Week of January 4, 2016

God calls us to some things we cannot do alone.

Regional Council of Churches of Atlanta


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1. Great Decisions lecture and discussion groups begin in January at Dunwoody United Methodist Church and Central United Church of Christ. Read more here. Topics change annually and are based on the Foreign Policy Association’s nonpartisan briefing book. Contact Kristin Fairchild for more information.


2. The Center for Lifelong Learning at Columbia Theological Seminary announces that the application deadline has been extended until January 22 for Can They See Your Church: Evangelism in the Visual Age (Thompson Scholars 2016), April 26-29, with Pastor Keith Anderson, author of Digital Cathedral: Networked Ministry in a Wired World, and Ralph Basui Watkins. To apply, see


3. Winter Mid-day study of Exodus at Lake Oconee Community Church continues, wandering in the wilderness and taking on the Ten Commandments, selected Wednesdays, Jan. 6 and 20, Feb. 3 and 17, March 2, 16, and 30. Click here for more information.


4. Contemplative Outreach of Atlanta offers an Introduction to Centering Prayer workshop, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 9, at St. Jude the Apostle Catholic Church, 7171 Glenridge Drive, Sandy Springs. Cost is $25. The series will introduce participants to the four simple steps of Centering Prayer and provide opportunities to practice the discipline in daily life. Bring a sack lunch or order lunch at registration.  For information contact Roberta White,


5. Dr. Clay Schmit, provost of Lutheran Theological Seminary of Lenoir-Rhyne University in Columbia, S.C., is the featured preacher on Day 1 this Sunday, Jan. 10. “I have called you by My Name” is his sermon based on Isaiah 43 and Luke 3. Find your local station, hear or read the sermon, and explore other resources at 

6. Two Bubbas and a Bible: Preaching the Lectionary Texts for 2016 at Lutheranch, an opportunity to study with the Rev. Delmer Chilton and the Rev. John Fairless, Jan. 11-13.  Click here for details and here to register.

7. Egg-Onomics at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, January 12, 7:30 a.m. Paedia Mixon of New American Pathways will discuss issues of resettling in America and Georgia’s refugee communities. Full breakfast served. For reservations email

8. Confronting Racism:  A Holy Yearning, live webcast, Thursday, Jan. 14, 8:00 p.m., ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton and William B. Horne II, an ELCA member from Clearwater, Fla., will continue their conversation on racism – a violation of God’s intention for humanity. Click here for details and to view the August 6, 2015 webcast.

9. In 1992, a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress authorized and requested that the president to issue a proclamation stating that January 16, 1993 be proclaimed Religious Freedom Day. President George H.W. Bush was the first president to issue such a proclamation and every president since has issued an annual proclamation calling on the people of the United States to join together to celebrate their religious freedom on January 16 and to observe the day with appropriate ceremonies and activities. More information.

10. Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie, the 117th elected and consecrated bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, presenting Called to Kingdom Living in a Culture of Violence:  Am I My Brother’s Keeper?  Ben Hill United Methodist Church 2016 Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration & Awards, Jan. 18, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.  Ben Hill UMC’s Social Concerns Ministry and Senior Pastor the Rev. Byron E. Thomas invite the public to join them for this annual celebration and awards program. For more information, contact Martha Bell at

11. Grounded: Exploring the Sacred within Us and the World featuring Diana Butler Bass, Columbia Theological Seminary, Jan. 19-21. Workshop leaders include Jake Myers, Tim Hartman, Haruko Ward and William Yoo. Details and Registration there is a new option for lecture registration only. Register now to add your name to the drawing for a copy of Grounded.

12. The Training and Counseling Center at St. Luke’s (TACC) monthly Live and Learn Lunch is Thursday, Jan. 19, from 11:30-1 focusing on “difficult conversations” in the life of the family, congregation, and faith leaders-- open for anyone to attend and lunch is provided. Walk-ins welcome, but R.s.v.p.s are encouraged at (404)876-6266, ext. 1 to Linda Smith.  Suggested donation of $10. TACC, 98 Currier St, NE, Atlanta 30308.  Free parking. More information at:  Contact Shannon Ball at for more information.  

13. January Jazz: Jazz Meets Classical benefiting the Atlanta Music Festival and the Atlanta Music Festival Conservatory, Thursday, Jan. 21, 7:00 p.m., Miller-Ward Alumni House, Emory University. The Atlanta Music Festival is a collaboration between First Congregational Church, Meridian Herald, and Emory. The conservatory provides musical education for underserved youth.  January Jazz will feature Dwight Andrews, Gary Motley, Veronica Motley, Will Ransom, Nathan Sparks, Bradley Howard, and Gary Paulo. Tickets here.

14. Westminster Presbyterian Church invites you to join them for Brad Sherrill's performance of Apostle on Sunday, Jan. 24, at 2:30 p.m. Sherrill has worked for the past year adapting and memorizing large portions of Acts and Paul's letters for the stage. This two-act performance includes 2015 multimedia segments from many of the Paul-related communities throughout Greece and Turkey. All are welcome and the congregation looks forward to meeting you at a reception following the performance. An offering will be taken. WPC, 2208 Main Street East, Snellville 30078. For more information call (770) 979-9676.

15. Volunteers are needed for the 2016 DeKalb Homeless Veterans Count, Tuesday, January 26, from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m., three locations, CPAC, South DeKalb Senior Center, and Salvation Army. If you can help with this important task please register at

16. Lindsay Starck will speak and read from Noah’s Wife, Decatur Library Auditorium January 27, 7:15 p.m. Full of whimsy and gentle ironic humor, Noah’s Wife, is a wise and poignant novel that draws upon the motifs of the biblical flood story to explore the true meaning of community, to examine the remarkable strength of the human spirit, and to ask whether hope can exist even where faith has been lost. - See more here.

17. Rainbow Village 25th Anniversary Benefit Concert, breaking the cycles of homelessness, poverty, and domestic violence, is Friday, Jan. 29, at 8:00 p.m. at St. Philip’s Episcopal Cathedral with a reception following. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Choir with Combined Choirs of Atlanta will present the world premiere of “Blessed.” Tickets here. For more information contact Rainbow Village at (770)497-1888 or visit

18. Georgia Interfaith Power & Light reports that according to the EPA, the volume of household waste in the United States increases 25% between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. That's one million extra tons of trash in our landfills.  We can do better! You can join GIP&L in efforts to rein in our refuse—now and through the rest of the year—by taking part in the free Waste Wise (info here) program. Through Waste Wise, your congregation will receive a waste audit to see what's going in your dumpster, tips on how to better recycle, reuse, and repurpose your resources, and greater insight on the connection between our trash and our faith.

19. The Georgia Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention accomplishes so much and one of the reasons is their volunteers. If you would like to help contact Stuart Winborne at for more information.

20. Journalists from the Associated Press have reported that U.S. supermarkets and restaurants are selling shrimp that is peeled by slaves, including children, in Thailand.    Article from "The Atlantic." You can find out more and take action here.

21. Fulton County PICH Program 2016 Faith-based Active Living Initiative, beginning January 2016, the PICH team will initiate Physical Activity work with faith-based partners.  The goal is to increase the number of faith based institutions with access to physical activity opportunities. If your congregation is interested in joining contact Wykinia Hamblin, health coordinator, Active Living- Physical Activity, Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness, at (4040612-9467.


Ethel Ware Carter

The Regional Council of Churches of Atlanta, Inc.


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