Chili Cook-Off and Bread Auction

Chili Cook-Off! After our 10am worship service on Sunday, October 1st, we will have our annual community chili cook-off. Bring your favorite crock pot of chili, or just bring your appetite for this free event. We have two categories, meat and non-meat. Jennifer Berg is the point person for this project. Please see Jen at church, or sign-up by calling our office with your contact information at 616-453-2497. We can't wait to taste all of the creative recipes. You are always welcome and invited to participate at St. John's UCC.

World Communion Sunday Bread Auction! In addition to our Chili Cook-Off on Sunday, Oct. 1, we will hold our annual Bread Auction. Please bring your favorite homemade or store bought breads. While enjoying our chili lunch, we will auction off the breads to those who are present to raise money for our youth programs. We look forward to your dessert breads, fruit breads, sandwich bread, pita, taboon, and breads of many cultures and traditions. Thank you for your delicious donations and supportive purchases. What a fun Sunday for foodies and friends. You are always invited to gather with St. John's UCC. 

Party For Veterans

Members, non-members, and friends, our next Grand Rapids Home for Veterans volunteer opportunity is Tuesday, September 26 at 1:30pm. You are invited to come spend time with veterans as we share cake, fun, and more in their community room. If you would like to donate supplies, we are collecting prepackaged single-sized servings of cookies, chips, cheese sticks, candy, and snack cakes. We are also in need of fresh fruit (no apples, please). The point person for this project is Diana DeKorte. Please see Diana any Sunday before 10am worship service, during 11am fellowship hour, or call our church office with your contact information at 616-453-2497. You are always invited to serve with St. John's UCC.

Blessing of the Animals

Blessing of the Animals! Please bring your pets to St. John's UCC on Sunday, September 24 at 10am! We enjoy meeting and blessing this beautiful part of your family each Fall. Please make sure cats are in a crate or kennel bag, dogs are on a leash or harness, and all others (hamster, guinea pig, ferret, fish, snake, rat, turtle, etc) are in safe and comfortable containers. Kids are free to bring their favorite stuffed animal for a blessing as well. Help us make the September 24th worship service and coffee hour fellowship memorable by bringing your beloved pet to St. John's United Church of Christ. 1934 Bridge St. NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504.

Blessing of the Backpacks

Students of all ages! Please bring your backpacks to the St. John's UCC church service this Sunday, September 17 at 10am, so that we may bless the bags our students will carry throughout the 2017/18 school year. This blessing symbolizes the wider support each student will receive from their church family as they journey through another school year. We value caring for each other.

Fall Kick-Off Sunday

Fall into church with friends and family on Sunday, September 10 as we celebrate Fall Kick-off at St. John's United Church of Christ! Gather at our 10:00am Worship Service as we welcome new members. Witness the excitement of our little ones as they begin a new year of children's programs in our worship center classrooms. Experience our free community lunch with new friends after service at our 11:00am Pork Roast, Potluck, Pie Baking Contest, and Yard Games on the lawn. Bring a dish to pass or just bring your appetite! After the garden party, drive or carpool to our 1:00pm Mission Project, where you get to help create an Artprize installation downtown by the Grand River at Lyon Square titled, UNLEARN Fear + Hate with spray chalk, button makers, and more. Invite your friends, all are welcome to celebrate the season with St. John's UCC!

You are welcomed and invited to participate in the full life and ministry of St. John's UCC whatever your race, age, sex, marital status, financial status, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, nationality, or ability.

Artprize Mission Project: Unlearn Fear + Hate.

On Sunday, September 10, at 1pm, you are invited to gather with St. John's UCC as we help create a 2017 Artprize installation titled: UNLEARN Fear + Hate, a concept by designers Kurt Ghode and Kremena Todorova. This Fall Kick-Off Mission Project is open to all, so please bring your friends. After our 10am worship service and 11am Fall-Kickoff pork roast cookout, yard games, and pie contest at St. John's United Church of Christ (1934 Bridge St NW Grand Rapids, MI 49504), we will head over to Lion Square (overlooking the Grand River next to the Pearl Street walking bridge downtown) at 1:00pm. Fear, prejudice, and hate are learned behaviors that can be unlearned. You are invited to help us deliver love, compassion, and awareness to our city!

A mosaic-like template of stenciled halos that express Unlearn Fear + Hate in 30 different languages, each of which represents one of the most common languages spoken in Grand Rapids, will transform the railing along the Grand River into a larger half-halo. We will use non-toxic washable spray chalk to transfer the images together. This exhibit will become a visual petition advocating for the need to unlearn fear as individuals stand in front of a halo and share their own images to social media. There will also be a button making station for kids on Sept. 10 at 1pm. Join us! You are always welcome to serve with St. John's UCC.

Chancel and Bell Choir

You are invited to join our music ministry! Rehearsals resume for the season on Thursday, September 21. Bells rehearse from 6:20pm - 7:00pm, and Cancel Choir from 7:30pm - 8:30pm. The choir will begin singing in the sanctuary on Sundays beginning October 1st. Bells will perform on November 5.

We have a great time at Thursday night rehearsals with St. John's UCC Director of Music, Joel Gary and friends. Consider joining one or both choirs. Invite your friends. Come to rehearsal on September 21.

Church Gardening Days

Are you interested in gardening? We have tasks for all ages and abilities. Please wear or bring your gardening clothes to church the next three Sundays. After our 10am worship service on July 30, August 6, and August 13, we will provide a light lunch for volunteers, then head outside and get our hands dirty beautifying our grounds from 12-2pm. If the weather is slated to be over 85° or it is raining, we will postpone. Please bring your gardening gloves, weed-pulling tools, and tree pruning shears. All are welcome!

Church Family Campout

Saturday, August 19, we will be camping out as a church family! Set-up at 1 PM, dinner at 5 PM, s'mores, songs, fun, and games all night!

Bring your campers, tents, and grills to the west lot and yard beginning at 1 PM. We will have a corn hole tournament for the adults and several games for the kids. Gather with us at 5 PM as we grill hotdogs (provided) and have a potluck dinner. There will be s'more roasting, songs, and games throughout the night. If you don't want to sleep outside, the church will be open for people to use our Fellowship Hall, Bridge Room, and Parlor. A sign-up sheet for the potluck is posted across from the kitchen on the fellowship board.  

Our morning worship service that weekend (Sunday, Aug. 20 at 10am) will be held outside, weather permitting. See you on the 19th for the Church Family Campout!