This Week


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Delight in Diversity; Called to Community

As I write this email, we are one day away from an important event in the Brainerd community. On Friday evening we expect anywhere from 200-400 people to join together with their neighbors and friends and take a firm stand against racism, white supremacy and hate. Community is important. How we define our community is also important.
This Sunday we will be engaging with Psalm 133 and Matthew 15:10-28. Even Jesus struggled with an evolving understanding of community.
More details below about the “Stand Against Hate” event on Friday.
See you in church!

Pastor Leslie has posted her sermons online so you can access and share them!
Click here to access the manuscripts.
Selected sermons are uploaded to the church website:
This Week
Friday, August 18

10:30 am – Book Group

Sunday, August 20

10:00 am – Worship
11:00 am – Fellowship
11:30 am – Synod Video

Wednesday, August 23

9:30 am – Prayer Circle
11:30 am – Men’s Group

Thursday, August 24

5:30 pm – PPRC

Friday, August 25

10:30 am – Book Group
4:00 pm – Soup Kitchen
Lunch Bunch is scheduled for August 29 in Gregory Park if weather is good. This will be a no-host picnic.
Sunday, August 20

Hosts: Brian & Becky Twamley
Ushers/Greeters: Charlotte Goedsche, Marina Grabowski, Cynthia Janes & Barb Stokke
Counters: Tracy Lyons & Mabel Schultz

Sunday, August 27

Hosts: Ellie Burkett & Sharon Carlson
Ushers/Greeters: Caroline & Rebekah Bender & Jean Gustafson
Counters: Nancy Gould & Lowell Johnson
Sunday, August 20 – Lori Howe
Sunday, August 27 – Reader needed
Gather with neighbors in the Brainerd Lakes community to take a firm stand against hate, against white supremacy, against racism in all its forms. This is a non-partisan, family friendly gathering.
To view the event page, visit pm – Optional sign making at First Congregational UCC
6:00 pm – Gather at Gregory Park near bandshell
6:30 pm – Walk from Gregory Park to Historic Brainerd Water Tower where we will be a visible presence against racism and white supremacy.
7:30 pm – Return to Gregory Park for singing, readings and candle lighting.
End no later than 8:30pm.

Please bring your own light source – candles, glow-sticks, etc. For safety, flames larger than a candle will not be permitted. Please also bring signs for displaying at the water tower.

In the event of rain, we will gather at First Congregational UCC (415 Juniper Street) instead of Gregory Park.

Gathering supported by Stand Up Brainerd Lakes, Brainerd Women’s March, Brainerd Area Coalition for Peace, Project Rainbow, and First Congregational United Church of Christ.

Collecting School Supplies
Between now and August 27, we will be collecting school supplies to help local school children prepare for the new school year. A list of needed supplies is available by clicking here. Paper copies of the list are available at church. Gift cards to Wal-Mart and Target are also encouraged. You can bring donations to the church any time during office hours (Tuesday – Friday 8am – 12 noon)We will bless the supplies during worship on Sunday August 27.

If you are a family in need of school supplies, the donations will be made available after worship on August 27 in the Rainbow Center. All remaining supplies will be donated to the Salvation Army for distribution.

Backpack Blessing
Start the school year with a blessing! Students of all ages are invited to have their backpack (and/or other school supplies) blessed during worship on August 27.


The Lakes Area Music Festival brings it’s ninth annual season to a close with a symphony orchestra program titled Concerto for Orchestra. Saturday, August 19 at 7:00 pm and Sunday, August 20 at 2:00 pm. A full orchestra of top performers from around the country will perform Bela Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra and Antonin Dvorak’s Cello Concerto featuring Toronto Symphony’s principal cellist Joseph Johnson.All concerts are presented at Tornstrom Auditorium (804 Oak Street, Brainerd) without tickets or fees in order to make live classical music accessible to everyone.
More information available at
Hope For Recovery Class (Mental Illness Recovery)
Obtain information about mental illnesses, treatments, coping strategies, the communication skills, crisis management, suicide prevention, the mental health system and local resources along with practical strategies for helping a loved one or friend..
What will participants learn? Participants will gain knowledge about various illnesses, coping and communication strategies, navigating the mental health system, local resources, and recovery.
Who should take the course? This class is intended for people who have a family member or friend living with a mental illness, and their loved one who is in a good place in their mental health recovery.
NOTE: Lunch is not provided as part of the workshop. Participants may bring a bagged lunch or money and join the group in ordering a delivery.A few dates coming up soon:
Fergus Falls, Aug. 19, Life Church, 901 Co Hwy 116 (Register here.)
Excelsior, Aug. 26, Trinity Episcopal Church, 322 2nd St. (Register here.)
Onamia, Sept. 23, 9:00-3:00, Grand Casino Mille Lacs Event Center, 777 Grand Ave. (Register here.)

If you would like to carpool to the Fergus Falls class with a church friend, contact Alvin at 218-839-0610.

The Brainerd Walk to End Alzheimer’s is being held on Saturday, September 23 at Forestview Middle School, located at 12149 Knollwood Drive. Registration begins at 8:30 am with the walk at 10:00 am.First Congregational and St. Mathias Farm have combined their teams, now named Guardians of the Earth and Spirit. Co-Captains, Karen Ford and Arlene Jones invite you to join our team by following this link:

Having been deeply impacted by this disease, Karen and Arlene are dedicated to raising funds for research and eventually, a cure. Alzheimer’s Association is one of the top nonprofit organizations who dedicate funds raised locally to remain in our community for local impact.

The national Alzheimer’s Association organization continues to meet and exceed standards with 78% of total annual expenses going to care, support, research, awareness and advocacy activities.

Please consider joining this AWESOME team! If you are not able to walk, please consider making a tax-deductible donation by following the link above.
If you have questions or ideas for fundraising,
please feel free to reach out directly to Karen or Arlene.

 Thank you!

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415 Juniper Street
Brainerd, MN 56401