Faith United Church of Christ

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Faith News

Here's what's happening at Faith Church! Click the "+" to see more.

If you have an announcement you'd like to see here, contact the church office.


Read All About It!

This Month


  • CROP Walk-Sunday, October 14
  • Faith UCC Photo Christmas cards available for purchase in the Gathering Space, immediatly to the right of the stairs.
  • SERRV Sale of International Handcrafts and Fair Trade Foods—November 29-December 16
smoggy traffic Speak out in support of the existing Clean Cars standards (including the CAFÉ standards).

Existing standards were set to automatically increase on a pre-decided schedule. These fuel economy standards were developed collaboratively with automotive companies, were vetted by a robust slate of stakeholder input before going into effect. The EPA and NHTSA are asking stakeholders (that includes you!) whether they should roll back the new standards with weaker and delayed replacements.

This is a climate change issue because car, truck and bus emissions are an enormous source of climate-changing emissions. Tailpipes are also the source of bad-to-breathe emissions, including some worsened by hot days. These impacts disproportionately affect low-income, black and brown communities. Perhaps counterintuitively, the standards are also important because of the burden of fuel costs for low-income households. More rigorous “fleet emissions standards” drive the manufacturing of more high-efficiency vehicles, dropping their purchase price. Nearly every state (PA included!) manufactures items that are part of the supply chain for higher-efficiency vehicles.

Submit written testimony by October 23.
As always, please share your faith-rooted testimony with us.

2018 annual conference Join us at our 2018 Annual Conference Facing the Climate Crisis: Called to Save our Sacred Home on October 27th.

Our conference this year connects deeply to the Pittsburgh region, taking place on the 70th anniversary of the day the Donora Smog began — a deadly event which led the country to implement clean air laws. Our speakers and workshop leaders draw on wisdom deeply rooted in this history, and highlight some of the powerful work being done here, now.

There are too many wonderful details to share here — click through to learn more, get linked up with all kinds of publicity to share in all kinds of place, and register. Pre-registration saves. Group pre-registration saves more! Scholarships available.

women's guild The Women's Guild will meet October 29 at the home of Edna Bicehouse.

Bring your lunch!

almonds The preordered nuts arrived this week.

Pick up your order in the fellowship hall after service.

Due to bulk ordering, there are some additional nuts for sale, if you need more or didn’t get to pre-order.

church directory Directories are available in the Gathering Space.

Contact Jeff in the office for accessing the online directory.

Updated covers are available (with the new Mission and Vision statements). Contact the office to have yours printed.

boy at microphone Choir Rehearsals are Thursday Evenings @ 7pm
October 4, 11, 18, & 25

3rd Way Collective We have our next Pizza & Movie Night with our friends from Houseasaurus on Thursday night at 6:30pm - we’ll be watching the new Fred Rogers documentary, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

We also encourage our community to show up for the weekly Standing at the Gates for Justice vigil every Monday at 4pm.
Campus Pastor Ben Wideman

We continue to look beyond University Mennonite Church to support the work of 3rd Way Collective in this coming 2018-19 school year. Individuals or organizations can pledge at

For our full schedule and to find out how to support this ministry please visit or contact

A reflection is posted each month at

Next Month

SERRV Though our Holiday SERRV Craft Shop won’t open until November 30, it’s time now to begin planning and preparations.

The order for fair-trade international handcrafts, coffees, chocolates and other sustainably produced foods will go in by mid-October.

If you’d like to special order from SERRV, let me know ( by October 15 so I can include your items in the master order.
You can view the catalog on line at or find paper copies in the Gathering Space and Romig Hall.

We’ll need lots of help with unpacking and set-up as the time draws nearer; if you’re able to help, keep these windows of opportunity in mind:

November 27-29 SET-UP
November 30 – December 17 STAFF THE SALE, Thurs- Sat 11:00-3:00, Sun. after worship
December 18-19 PACK-UP

And, as always, consider doing your own shopping with fair trade in mind!

Penn Central conference, United Church of Christ Here's what's happening:

  • 10: Fall Fair, Children’s Carnival and Yard Sale. St. Luke’s Lock Haven 9 AM – 2 PM.
  • 12: Boundary Training – Educating Educators – Trinity UCC, Dalmatia, 9:30 AM – noon, $10.
  • 14: Mission Insite – Demographics for Lay and Clergy – St Thomas UCC, Harrisburg. 1 - 4 PM
  • 16-18: Youth Retreat at Hartman Center. Escape Room! Grades 7-12 $95. See your pastor for registration info.
  • 16-18: Women’s Retreat at Hartman Center. Tie-dyed Faith – Revealing Your God Colors Room! $125 includes all materials. See your pastor for registration info.

  • On Going

    jes kast Dear Faith family,

    On behalf of the Search and Call Committee, I am excited to share with you that the members of the committee have unanimously agreed upon, and present to you, our candidate as Faith’s Settled Pastor.
    After prayerfully reviewing the submitted profiles, and interviewing candidates, the committee members individually and collectively felt called to the candidate whom we selected.

    The committee members recently attended the neutral pulpit service presented by Rev. Jessica (Jes) Kast, currently of West End Collegiate Church in New York City, NY. As a committee of Consistory, we reported our recommendation to the Consistory, who in turn responded with a unanimous endorsement. The Search and Call Committee is enthusiastically working to schedule the Candidate’s Weekend, the final step in the search and call process.

    Rev. Jes has a strong and vibrant online presence.

    We invite you to explore her work and faithful involvement and service!

    Please stay tuned for notice of and invitation to Rev. Jes’s Candidate Weekend service once it has been scheduled!


    Margaret Hammond
    Committee Chair

    We appreciate your continued prayers for our work on this search.

    Penn State Lion Shrine at night Faith UCC welcomes college students to join us in worship and fellowhip, and we would love to be your church away from home!

    Our church is conveniently located directly across from the Penn State campus, and our weekly Sunday worship services are at 10:45 AM during fall and spring semesters. Come as you are, and please join us for refreshments immediately following the service.

    We are a long-established, Open and Affirming, inclusive faith community. Students are welcome to join us in other church activities such as: the church choir, participating in and teaching Sunday School classes, food and fellowship, annual CROP and AIDS walks, mission trips, and service projects.

    The Sacrament of Holy Communion, or the Lord's Supper, is usually celebrated on the first Sunday of each month as well as on special days of the church year. All Christians are invited to share the bread and the cup from our Lord's table.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us by email at

    figure with puzzle piece If you would like to become a member of Faith UCC, or you simply want to learn more about our UCC identity, please let Pastor Bret know of your interest so that a two-session class may be started at times you may attend. You may email him, or call (814) 237-3904.

    Hurricane from orbit Hurricane Florence has directly devastated a large swath of both the Carolinas and has caused extensive flooding along the Eastern US. Even here in PA: water levels broke the records set in the wake of Hurricane Agnes in 1972 all across the state.

    Thank you to all who have expressed great compassion in wanting to provide relief aid.

    Here are a few ways you can help:

    PRAY - Please keep the victims, families, leaders and responders in your prayers.

    MAKE A DONATION - As always, our UCC response has been quick and will be on-going.
    There are no administrative fees -- 100% of funds designated for disaster relief to the United Church of Christ are used for disaster relief and rehabilitation programming.

    This link is to the UCC donation page.

    VOLUNTEER - A list of volunteer opportunities can be found here.

    PURCHASE CLEAN UP KITS- You can assist hurricane and other disaster relief efforts by pre-assembling various kits that are warehoused by CWS, ready to be shipped at a moment's notice when the need arises. There are still matching grants available!

    Thank you for your abundant generosity!

    martin luther statue The Forum group will be using the Great Books series on the History of Christianity this fall beginning on September 9.
    Join us at 9:30 on Sunday mornings in the Library (on the second floor) for a short DVD presentation followed by discussion on what we have seen.

    This is a good place to get to know those who join you In worship and to enjoy a lively discussion while you learn about our heritage.

    Faith Church Proudly Supports:

    Centre Safe

    For over 40 years, we’ve been the Centre County Women’s Resource Center.

    However our mission is to eliminate domestic, relationship, and sexual violence for everyone – women, children, men, and people of all gender identities and diverse backgrounds.
    Our mission remains the same: Empowering survivors, so they may live lives free of violence.

    So we are becoming Centre Safe: Empowering Survivors, Eliminating Violence as we envision a safe Centre County.

    You are not alone; help is available for women, men, and children who have experienced dating & domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    Call toll free at 1-877-234-5050
    All of our services are professional, confidential, and free.
    Inclusive of all gender identities and sexual orientations.

    For more information, see our website: 24-HOUR HOTLINE: 814-234-5050 | TOLL FREE: 1-877-234-5050 | TTY: 814-272-0660

    MidPenn Legal services

    MidPenn Legal Services is a non-profit, public-interest law firm dedicated to providing equal access to justice and high quality civil legal services to low-income residents and survivors of domestic violence in 18 counties in Central Pennsylvania.

    For more information, see their website:

    Hoffman Homes for Youth

    Hoffman Homes for Youth is committed to promoting the personal growth and achievement of the children and families we serve through continuous quality improvement, education, staff development, and the use of evidence-based practices.

    Our team of caregivers is devoted to creating a culture of healing that enables our children to recover and thrive, and to realize brighter, healthier futures. We do this by following the seven commitments of the Sanctuary Model and adhereing to our Core Values & Guiding Principles:

    • Honesty & Integrity
    • Safety & Well-being
    • Dignity & Respect
    • Commitment to Excellence

    Hoffman Homes for Youth • 815 Orphanage Road • Littlestown, PA 17340
    Phone: (717) 359-7148 • Fax: (717) 359-2600

    For more information, see their website:

    hartman center

    HARTMAN CENTER is the Outdoor Ministries facility owned by Penn Central Conference of the United Church of Christ since 1964.

    Programming includes retreats, conferences, workshops, dinner meetings, summer camps, and other events which, while designed for particular age levels and interests, are open to all persons without regard to race, creed, or ethnic origin, and who accept the guidelines and philosophy of the Center.

    For more information, see their website:

    Out of the Cold, Centre County

    Out of the Cold: Centre County is an emergency shelter open from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. every night from mid-October to early May.

    During the 2017-2018 season, fourteen congregations helped to provide overnight shelter for 118 guests, filling 2473 cots and serving almost 5,000 meals!

    Staffed almost entirely by volunteers, the host site rotates every two weeks.
    Each evening our guests are welcomed warmly, served a hot meal, given a cot, warm blankets, and a place to sleep.
    Breakfast is served and in the morning and before leaving guests can register to return that evening.

    Basic case management is available for guests wanting assistance acquiring housing.

    Out of the Cold: Centre County is a grassroots effort and is a registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.

    If you would like to help as a volunteer or through other means of support, please send us an e-mail at: For more information, see their website:

    Bethany Children's Home

    The mission of Bethany Children’s Home is to continue a Christian ministry, begun in 1863, to serve children and families within our care.
    We strive to provide a safe place of nurture, protection, and supportive care to aid our residents in their self-understanding, growth, and healing toward a brighter, healthier future.

    Our vision is of a community where all youth and staff are safe in their environment and feel safe within themselves.
    To bring this vision into reality, we provide the resources needed to children and families to work through their losses, enabling them to have a brighter future.

    For more information, visit their website:

    Park Forest Preschool

    The Park Forest Preschool is a nonprofit, tuition-free school for two, three, and four-year-old children from low-income families.

    We offer a comprehensive program that includes education, social skills, and developmental motor skills taught by qualified teachers in a friendly, safe environment.
    In each classroom there are one to three teacher aides, providing additional attention.

    Classes meet from 8:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. from September to December and from January to May.
    The two year-old class meets Tuesday through Thursday while the other classes meet Monday through Friday.
    Check out our online calendar for a details on class schedules and school events. Nutritious breakfasts and lunches are provided daily.

    The school also provides the following services to students and their families:

    • Health screenings–medical, dental, vision, developmental and speech
    • Clothing bank for the children
    • Holiday food and gift boxes
    • Emergency funds
    • Weekly parenting classes
    For more information, see their website:


    Penn State Beaver Stadium

    • Iowa, Oct 27, Time TBA
    • Wisconsin, Nov 10, Time TBA
    • Maryland, Nov 24, Time TBA
    open bible Here are links to daily readings from:

    the UCC online Devotional,

    and the Revised Common Lectionary

    At the Annual Meeting, the vote on the Plastic Foam Resolution was adopted. The resolution on plastic foam states,

    "Penn Central Conference of the United Church of Christ encourages all congregations to avoid the used of plastic foam in food packaging and other activities within their church facilities. Be it further resolved that congregations educate their members about plastic foam and that they encourage them to use alternatives such as paper products of better yet, ceramic or other dishwasher safe products."

    UCC Disabilities Ministry

    The newly reorganized Disabilities Ministries Team is proud to share that we have received a $1,000 grant from UCC Disabilities Ministries Board (UCCDM) to help us expand our work of disability justice and inclusion within Penn Central Conference. Stay tuned for information on a series of workshops throughout the conference on the national Accessible 2 All (A2A) Designation and the background of the work of disabilities ministries.