Whoever you are,
and wherever you are
on life's journey...

YOU ARE WELCOME HERE!
         
Sunday Service & Nursery Care
10:00 am

Sunday School Grades K-5
(no Sunday School on Communion Sundays)

 
                

Rev. Janet Matthews

Minister of Music, Wayne Lackman

 Office Hours:  Tues/Wed/Thu 9:30a - 1:30p

 



Directions to Easter Sunrise Service
Fox Island Fishing Pier
Sunday, April 20th at 6:00 a.m
.

Coming soon... 

The Healthcare Movie 
+ Q&A with Filmmakers
click above for details
Friday, May 2nd at 7:00 p.m.
Featuring music by Bob Wickline!

 
 

Also coming soon....

 

Youth Mission Trip 2013
White Swan, Yakama Reservation

The scale is in our favor — balance it anyway
 
— Youth Connection
 
Published: September 25, 2013, The Peninsula Gateway
Reprinted with permission

I said a fond farewell to Gig Harbor last week and moved into my dorm at the University of Washington. I’m thrilled to be starting my freshman year of college, but that I would someday get to attend a university was never really in question – not because of my grades or test scores, but because of the systems that have surrounded and supported me for 18 years.

I was raised in a healthy family and went to a good school, and with the help of government programs, I was able to strengthen my college application with extracurricular activities instead of working to save up money.

I am the product of a family, a school and a government that empowered me to be where I am right now. Where would I be without those systems?

This summer, I visited a place where systems have created disadvantages rather than opportunities. With the youth group from the Fox Island United Church of Christ, I spent a week serving the community of White Swan, a town on the Yakama Indian Reservation.

White Swan is the slum of the reservation; 43 percent of people there live below the poverty level. Alcoholism is pervasive, feral dogs and cats roam the streets, and vandalism is everywhere.

The youth group cleaned up a playground littered with broken glass, painted bunk beds at a homeless shelter, and worked on a farm that donates food to families in need.

We hoped that, in some small way, our work would improve the lives of the people around us. But it was impossible to ignore the insignificance of our contributions against the seemingly insurmountable poverty and hardship the community faces. There was nothing we could do to heal families with teens who litter and break windows, no way we could create jobs for people seeking employment, and no solution we could offer the alcoholics who lived in the shelter.

What created those conditions?

David Bell, the director of our mission program, explained:

In the 1800s, the federal government forced American Indian bands from across eastern Washington onto one reservation. Repercussions of their confinement still influence the economy today; the ruggedness and isolation of the reservation land make it a poor place for farming or commerce. White Swan has faced economic disadvantages since it was established.

But the impact the U.S. government had on the Yakama Nation is far more insidious than financial disparity: between 1860 and 1893, the government forced all Indian families to send their children away to boarding schools with the goal of making them assimilate into white culture.

Even after children were no longer forced into the schools, parents continued to send them until the 1970s; having themselves grown up away from their families, new parents struggled to raise their kids.

Thus, a century of boarding schools devastated a key system in White Swan – families.

I went to White Swan thinking my mission was to fix up a slum, but the town itself is not the issue. Rather, flawed systems – the federal government, the economy and the family – have created the cycle of poverty and hurt that has plagued the community for more than a century.

It’s hard to comprehend how the same institutions that have given me such advantages have damaged the lives of others so greatly. But I’ve realized that’s why I am in college, so that — someday, more educated and more influential — I might be able to change some of the systems.

All I’ve managed so far is to go on a summer mission trip, but I hope all of us who are born into situations of advantage make it our mission to change our institutions until they provide the same benefits to all people.

Anna Mikkelborg has written a monthly Youth Connections column as part of the Gateway’s outreach to Peninsula School District journalism programs. To learn how to contribute, call Editor and Publisher Brian McLean at 253-358-4150.
http://www.gateline.com/2013/09/25/2803570/the-scale-is-in-our-favor-balance.html
 

Sunday

Easter Sunrise Service, F.I. Fishing Pier

6:00 am

Service at sunrise, Fox Island Fishing Pier.  All are welcome! Read More

Sunday Service

10:00 am — 11:00 am

Please join our warm and welcoming community for Sunday service each week at 10 a.m.  ... Read More



Dreaming Our Future
Church Retreat, May, 2013

Fox Island United Church of Christ

726 Sixth Avenue
P. O. Box 475 (mailing)
Fox Island, WA   98333
t. 253-549-2420
f. 253-549-2438
fiuccsec@centurytel.net

The call to religion doesn’t always come with a dramatic pilgrimage

 
By:  Rev. Janet Matthews, Fox Island United Church of Christ
Reprinted with permission from the Peninsula Gateway. 
The original article can be found
here
December 4, 2013

 

Prior to ministry, I was a mental health counselor, although, as funding sources and insurance plans changed, I became a behavioral health counselor as well as clinical supervisor somewhere along the way.

I discovered my path toward ministry through a series of United Church of Christ pilgrimage retreats. Warning: be careful about going off into the woods with a group of people who are prepared to spend a weekend in prayer and meditation with a full 24 hours of silence.

Outfitted with Bibles, journals and books by spiritual masters, our task was to realize how we might bring a bit more light and love into the world.

Open to the grace of the Jesus that I came to know through the United Church of Christ, I served on boards and committees, taught Christian formation classes; led new-member orientations and facilitated women’s groups. It just wasn’t enough for me.

At the church, we say: No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.

I felt a yearning for a deeper commitment to my faith, thus the trip to Templed Hills in the woods. A plan emerged.

I did not immediately return home to pack up all my belongings to head for seminary. Instead, I finished the degree I was working on in psychology, applied for a fellowship, completed graduate school and worked in mental health as I remained curious about what might be next.

Years later, the door opened for me to enroll at Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, Calif. That was followed by a call to my first church in rural Ohio and ordination.

As I share my story, I am reminded that God’s call is not always dramatic. There are stories in scripture like that of Paul, who, before he became Christ’s most faithful follower, persecuted Christian.

Yes, one day the disciples were fishermen, and then they left all behind to follow Jesus.

We have all heard radical conversion stories, from jailhouse to church or addiction to pastor. Stories that may be authentic yet aren’t the norm.

About writing, E. L Doctrow once said: “You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”

Faith, too, is often like having really good headlights. Sometimes we see just as far as we need to in the moment, whether we cross the Narrows, head over the pass or traverse the country.

God’s light shines foot by foot, mile by mile, day by day in life’s journey.

I look forward to the journey with you.

On Faith columnist Janet Matthews is the pastor at Fox Island United Church of Christ.
 

Oct 9

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Oct 16

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Oct 23

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Oct 30

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Nov 6

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Nov 13

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Nov 20

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Dec 11

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Jan 8

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Jan 15

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Jan 22

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Jan 29

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Feb 5

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Feb 12

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Feb 19

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Mar 5

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Mar 12

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Mar 19

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Mar 26

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Apr 2

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Apr 9

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Apr 16

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Apr 18

Good Friday Service: Journey to the Cross

7:00 pm – 8:00 pm

All are welcome!
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Apr 20

Easter Sunrise Service, F.I. Fishing Pier

6:00 am

Service at sunrise, Fox Island Fishing Pier.  All are welcome!
Read More

Sunday School

10:00 am

Sunday School - Grades K-5 Sunday School resumes September 8th, 2013 after summer ...
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Sunday Service

10:00 am – 11:00 am

Please join our warm and welcoming community for Sunday service each week at 10 a.m.  ...
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New Voice Rehearsal

12:00 pm

New Voice     Our Middle & High School choir meets every Sunday ...
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Apr 21

Joy of Grace Yoga & Meditation

9:30 am – 11:00 am

Please note:  This class meets all year on Mondays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to ...
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Centering Prayer

7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Apr 22

Crafty Needlers

1:30 pm

Please come join us for a fun couple hours of great conversation and whatever craft you enjoy ...
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Apr 23

Adult Ed led by Jerry Abbott

7:00 pm

Adult Education led by Jerry Abbott "Jesus Was Not a Christian" We will begin to ...
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Apr 24

NO YOGA TODAY!

All Day Event

Choir Practice

7:00 pm – 8:00 pm

The Chancel Choir meets for practice on Thursday evenings at 7 p.m.  Interested ...
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