Author Archive for Barbara Richmond

Compassion Week: Save the Date, Lead a Project

Last year, Compassion Week surpassed our goal of 2,000 volunteers, and we hope to do the same this year, October 2–8. Save the dates and plan to go beyond our Sanctuary walls and into the world to serve. With more than 100 projects available, everyone has an opportunity to serve, regardless of age or varied abilities. Consider blocking out an afternoon, a day, or the whole week to serve in our community.

Project leaders are an important part of our service! If you are interested in leading a project or learning more about Compassion Week, contact Nadine Tadeo.

Family Fun Nights Aug. 8 & 15

Families are invited to enjoy some summer fun together! On two Tuesdays, August 8 and 15, bring your dinner and a picnic blanket, and join us from 6:00pm to 8:00pm on the grassy area by the Youth Room and Resource Center. Invite your friends and neighbors to experience how welcoming our church family can be! This is a great way to meet and get to know other families in our community, as well as the new director of Children’s Ministries. Please note: Parents are responsible for supervising their children at all times during this event, and all items brought in must be taken home at the end of the evening.

Worship Schedule Alteration

Summer is an out-of-the-ordinary time. A little breathing space to try new routes and routines. This summer we’d like to try to bring our congregation all together more regularly for worship. For five Sundays—August 6 to September 3—we will hold just two regular worship services on Sunday mornings, instead of three.

Worship at 8:00am or 9:30am, then stay for extended conversation and study of the day’s text with Pastor Kathi at 11:15am in the Redwood Room. The evening Creekside Crossings service will remain at its regular time of 5:00pm.

We hope that this will offer all of the morning worship-goers a chance to see and worship with folks they don’t usually get to see!

This is not a permanent change. At the end of this five-week “pilot project,” we’ll ask you what you thought about this arrangement, and we’ll figure out together what’s best for our church in the long term. Please share your questions or comments with us along the way. We’ll be glad to hear them!

With blessings and hope,

Rev. Kathi McShane, senior pastor
Rev. Dirk Damonte, minister of music and worship arts
Margie Gong, chair of Church Council
Jan Grace, interim chair of Passionate Worship Practice Committee

Calling All Artists for Arts Alive! 2017

Artists are invited to get out your paintbrushes, clay, or other tools and create some new artwork to share with your church family. Arts Alive! Sunday, August 27, is the day we celebrate God’s great gift of creativity in our lives and in our congregation. If you are an artist in any medium, of any age, please consider sharing your original creations.

To sign up, email Jan Grady and include your name, phone number, email address, art medium (painting, sculpture, photography, etc.), and how many display panels you want or what length table you need. We have new Pro Panels to display our work on that are 30” wide and 6’ tall. Set-up time is the preceding day, Saturday, August 26, 10:00am–1:00pm in Creekside. There is a $10 participation fee payable at set-up; the fee is waived for artists ages 14 and under.

Please contact Arts Alive! coordinator Lisa Webb with questions.

GroupLife Fall Preview

Beginning in late August, GroupLife will offer several short-term small groups on a variety of topics. You may pick the topic you want to attend for 6–8 weeks. Your challenge will be how to decide among these fabulous choices!

  • Science and Faith, hosted by Brian Jones
  • Pity Is Not Compassion, hosted by Perrie Erickson
  • The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, hosted by Rev. Sam Lewis
  • Becoming Human, hosted by Rev. Kathi McShane
  • Invitation to Romans, hosted by Bob Olah

Mark your calendars for groups to start the week of August 21 and get ready to enhance your faith and fellowship. Sign-ups will begin in early August.

All-Church Dinner: Welcome New Pastors, July 9

Come to the Creekside Crossings service on July 9 at 5:00pm and stay for the All-Church Sunday Dinner (starts approximately at 5:45pm) to welcome our incoming ministers. Senior Pastor Kathi McShane will give the message at the service, and then she and Associate Pastor Jon Visitacion will be available to meet the congregation and share fellowship time. Please register for planning purposes.

Donate Books for Men’s and Women’s Jails

The United Methodist Women are now collecting books for both men and women at Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas. Would you donate books to those with a little extra time to read? Please bring your book donation to the church office, where there is a collection box. Biographies, inspirational books, good fiction, and historical novels are preferred. Donations will be picked up and delivered by CIC Ministries, which responds to the spiritual needs of incarcerated youth and adults in Santa Clara County.

New Ministry Tools at Work

A crew of Los Altos UMC staff and volunteers have been working hard to change our electronic membership database system to better support our ministries. The switch to the new system was officially made on June 1, although it will take a while to fully implement and integrate all of the new tools available to us.

One new tool is an online portal being integrated into our website. The portal shows upcoming events, active groups, opportunities to serve, and more. (Some of these areas will take a few more months to be fully updated.) If you create a user account, you can also see personal information such as events and groups you are signed up for, your giving history, and a church directory. If it looks like any of your personal information is wrong, contact Membership Services Assistant Kyle Aiken-Forderer (650-948-1083 x121). If you are a group host or church event planner, watch for more information on how the new database system will help you.

The transition team continues to tweak and improve all of the processes and applications involving our new database. If you have any questions, contact Project Manager Lisa Shemwell (650-575-7807).

Habitat Volunteer Report

Last month, members of our OpenCircle young adult group and other Los Altos UMC members worked together to improve the Habitat for Humanity veterans shelter in San Jose. A full day of work involved adding seismic strapping, furring shear walls, digging dry wells, and weed abatement. The 1920s-era buildings have been renovated in partnership with the city of San Jose to serve veterans who are disabled, homeless or facing addiction issues. A special dog bathing station is included for vets with pets. Each room has its own heating and cooling system. Habitat can still use your help. If you would like to help with this ongoing project through our All Faiths team, visit the Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley website and volunteer sign-up page for further details.

African Students Graduate

On June 10, four of the ten young women known to LAUMC as “our students” graduated from Africa University in Zimbabwe, fulfilling what was once only a dream of an education. This dream became a reality for these women due in part to the scholarships they received from LAUMC.

Our African Student Education Fund provides half-tuition scholarships of $2,800 to qualifying students each year until they graduate. We strive to provide this benefit to 10 recipients at a time. As students graduate, we add new students in need. Recipients must be African women who intend to use their education in Africa.

Pambi Jatutu, one of our graduating students, wrote: “You have made a great impact on my life. Having the scholarship was such a great blessing to me and my family. I believe that as I move out of AU, it will have such a great impact on my community as well. Thank you so much for every prayer made for me and for showing me God’s love in many ways. I love you all.”

Six of the remaining ten scholarship students at Africa University need our continued financial support to make their dreams of an education come true. Your donation can help make their dreams become a reality. Make checks payable to LAUMC and denote “African Student Education Fund” on the memo line. Visit the United Methodist Women’s page for the history of this fund.