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As a church, we believe that connecting with each other is vital to our faith and our community life together.

Weekly Groups: 

Balance Class meets on Wednesdays from 10 am to 11 am.  Led by our Parish Nurse, Julie Pennella teaches ways to stay active and healthy in body as you age.

Centering Prayer Group ~ This group meets Sundays at 5 pm in the Chapel.   All are welcome.

Wednesday morning Bible Study –is currently discussing “The Gospel of Matthew”.  We meet at 11 am in Syster Hall.  All are welcome!

Lakewood Ranch Bible Study – is currently discussing “The Gospel of Matthew”.  We meet at 6:30 pm at Lakewood Ranch Medical Center.  All are welcome!

Thursday Team Players – is our mid-week Children and Youth programming.  They will meet on March 28, April 4 and 11 to prepare for Palm Sunday and Holy Week.  We welcome all children and youth to be part of this GREAT event.

Monthly Groups:

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Collage (Coalition Of Laity for Lesbian And Gay Equality– Collage is an adult LGBT social group that welcomes supporters no matter their sexual orientation.  The group seeks to be a safe and supportive place of friendship and extravagant welcome.  This is a wonderful chance for support, fellowship, and advocacy information.  All are welcome.  Next meeting will be March 24th at Bravo Restaurant.  Dale Moore and Pauline Geary are the co-coordinators, please call the church office for more information.

Men’s Breakfast The church men will meet for breakfast on Saturday, March 2 and Saturday, April 6 at 9 am at the IHOP (4000 S Tamiami Trail).

First UCC Women’s Fellowship Group – will meet on March 5, 2019 at 11:30 am We will have a speaker from Rev. Dick Sparrow.   Lunch $10.

Tuesday Book Group will meet March 19 to discuss: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikery by Gabrielle Zevin. Also, on April 16: Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson.

Ready Readers meets on the 3rd Thursday at 10:30 am in the church library.  Upcoming selections include: The Last Ballad by Wiley Cash (March 21); Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann (April 18); Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger (May 16); and Kurdish Bike by Alesa Lightbourne (June 20)

FEAST (Friends Eating and Studying Together)

FEAST will begin on March 14th at 10:30 am in Syster Hall. We will enjoy light refreshments, a brief worship service focusing on communion, and offer wonderful classes.
We will meet on March 14, 21, 28, and April 4. ~~ call the church office to RSVP

1. Where do you listen for God? Teacher is Sandy Smith In this collection of stories and essays from contemporary American literature, the challenge is to pay attention everywhere. “Listening for God” is a resource intended to help readers investigate how life and faith merge in surprising ways and places. This group will be limited to 15 members. Cost of the book is $10. Please collect your book at the office to read the 1st two chapters prior to the first FEAST session.

2. African Bible Study method with Rev. Dr. Sarah Melcher We will explore African-American biblical interpretation, both from historical and contemporary perspectives. As an important emphasis, participants will consider the kinds of Scripture passages and theological perspectives that have been used to convey a liberating message. The course will explore a historical range of African-American biblical interpretations (from 1790 to the present). Participants will examine a variety of approaches or perspectives among African-American interpreters; beginning with a brief overview of African religion, interpretations from the context of slavery, distinctive interpretations from traditional African-American preaching (post-slavery), and interpretations from modern African-American biblical scholars.”

3. The how, what, and why of music ~ Greg Chestnut and Larry Monson will lead participants in this class as they listen, study, and question the essence of music. We will examine the construction of melody and the inflection of texts on melody. We will discuss, style, form, modes, and the emotions of music. Class members will become more engaged listeners of music but may also be challenged to become creators of music. All in layman’s terms, no musical training required. Come, and discover and understand your love of music.

4. Chair Yoga ~ CHAIR YOGA is continuing! March 14, 21, and 28 at 10:30am in the back of the sanctuary. Gentle chair yoga is physically less demanding than conventional styles of yoga but provides many of the same benefits. If you’d like to improve your posture, increase your flexibility and range of motion and reduce your cortisol levels and your stress, this practice is for you!  Please join Lisa Kauffman a certified Chair Yoga instructor to give it a try.