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October 2017                                                                                     View this email in your browser

On Pastor Katie's Mind...

This past weekend, Tab had its first ever “Joy and Justice Block Party”. Though we weren’t able to take over the street, we took over the sidewalks in front of our building. We set up tables for people to relax, talk and enjoy food. Our mission partners shared information about the good justice work they do. We had funky music playing, and the old and the young danced the electric slide together! There was an abundant table of food prepared for all. We set up a station for people to write their prayers of joy or for justice on ribbons to hang on the “prayer tree.” Someone spontaneously volunteered to do face painting, and we had sidewalk chalk and games for kids. In short, the Joy and Justice Block Party felt like a little slice of the Kingdom of Heaven right out in front of our building.
 
Our Church Council worked hard to plan the party, and I thank them especially and all of you who volunteered your gifts (you know who you are!). What strikes me often about parties that we plan is that what makes them “successful” is not really in our control. Our party was a success because of all the people the Spirit brought our way that day - old and new friends who came by, and strangers that we had never met before. These people made that day beautiful and divine. It was successful because God made it so! Whenever people come together to find community and share joy, there the Spirit is working and moving.  

Mother Teresa is known to have said, “We are not called to be successful, but faithful.” And on Saturday, we lived into our calling to be faithful. We made ourselves available and open to others, we brought gifts of food, games, and music to share. The rest, the success of it all, we left up to God. And God made beautiful things happen with our offering of our time and gifts. 

Our theme this year for Stewardship Season in October is Thank you, Church. So as we prepare for this season, let me be the first to say: Thank you church! Thank you for the ways you offer yourself, your gifts, your talents, your money, your love for us and the community around us. Thank you for being the church. 

I’m so proud to be the pastor of this faith community that is not shy about proclaiming who we are and whose we are; that we are followers of Jesus Christ who gives abundant joy and calls us into the work of justice until the Reign of God comes in full. We are not in control. We do not control success. We are only asked to be faithful, to stay awake, to be present to people in their need, to share the joy that is given to us, and to help alleviate suffering whenever we can. Thank you, and thanks be to God.

Hope to see you in October for Stewardship season!

Peace,

Pastor Katie

Council Corner

This morning, Council met with a packed agenda full of excitement and joy for the new season ahead.

Council received a letter from Andy Lees outlining some building needs, and discussed plans to make necessary repairs. We did some beginning work on Stewardship Season, including reviewing the congregational letter and time and talent forms that will kick off the season.We talked about some necessary personnel replacements, including some future openings on Council, and the Bookkeeper and Treasurer positions. 

We finished our meeting with a discussion of our upcoming Joy and Justice weekend, finalizing details and plans for both the Block Party and the Worship Service. We are so excited to share both with the Tab Community!

What's Happening at Tab...


Worship Themes during Stewardship Season. The centering Scripture for the season is "O give thanks to God, for God is good and God’s steadfast love endures forever."  (Ps. 106:1)
  • Oct 8 - Offering our first fruits to God 
  • Oct 22 - Giving to God, giving to Ceasar.
  • Oct 29 - Being rooted. What does it mean to be as one who is rooted by streams of living water?
Paul sends his love: a study of I Corinthians. The Bible study group will be exploring 1 Corinthians this fall. We will gather at 5:30 pm in the Community Room at Tab on the following dates to study the following chapters of the book:
October 11: 1 Corinthians 7:1 - 9:24;  October 25: 1 Corinthians 10:1-12:31; November 8: 1 Corinthians 13:1-14:40; November 15: 1 Corinthians 15:1- 16:24. We would love to have you join us.  Please contact Jean Erb or Pastor Katie for more information or if you have questions.

4th Quarter Rotation. If you've not yet had a chance to submit your availability for October-December, please visit the Google Form here.  If you've already filled out the form, you can check the current rotation to see where you've been scheduled. There are still several open slots in the Support Rotation, so please let me know if you would be willing to volunteer for those dates!



Our 300th Anniversary as a Presbytery. 
On Saturday, October 7, at 10:00 a.m., at Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church, the Presbytery of Philadelphia is holding worship to commemorate its 300 years of mission and ministry in the Greater Philadelphia area. A reception will follow, at which one can view historical artifacts from the member congregations, including the Seal of the General Assembly Presbyterian Church in the United States, which has been on top of the bookcase in the Community Room for decades.

As Clerk of Session/Council, Jim Gerhard will participate the procession, carrying a sign for Tab, which is the seventh-oldest congregation in the Presbytery, counting our predecessor bodies. He has room for two passengers, if you don’t mind arriving a bit early. More information is available at https://presbyphl.org/events/300th-celebration-october-7-2017-worship-event/, including a link to RSVP for the reception. Let Jim know of you plan to attend and if you need a ride. The worship planners would like to know the number attending the reception for the caterers.

                                             

Liberating pleasure & healing the spirit.  The relationship between Tabernacle United and the Incarnation Institute for Sex & Faith is most significant. Started by a former Tab member this was the first congregation to see the importance of contradicting the sex-negative cultural narrative about the body.  By loyally supported IISF each year since its inception, Tab is helping to ensure that the Institute can teach an inclusive, science-friendly, and sex-positive Christianity at national conventions, as well as through a growing virtual presence with webinars and memes, and lastly by training, (and soon certifying) sexologists and seminarian/pastors to do this work.

Begun in 2013, the IISF has hosted two Level #1 trainings and in October will host a Level #2 training for six student who are on track to become certified as Sex & Faith Educators. Coincidently, this advanced training includes a partnership with Transfaith, another sex-positive and body-positive organization (that incidentally, was also birthed by a former member of Tabernacle United, Chris Paige.) 

This year, Rev. Dr. Beverly Dale, the IISF founder, has recruited another nationally known theologian to our list of Advisors. Dr. Daniel Helminiak gained a reputation for his book What the Bible Really says About Homosexuality. Attracting such stellar Advisors to this work lends a credibility expertise for the training and educational ventures. 

“Everywhere we go people are amazed when they learn that what they thought is not what Jesus taught, and what they believe about sexuality cannot be supported by good peer-reviewed scientific research. They are eager for some good words about the body.”  Thanks to the support of the Carpenter Foundation the  IISF is re-filming its  webinar series, “Reading the Bible with Sex-Positive Eyes” and will begin national marketing as a resource for the Church as well as individual Christians. In addition, we will have 6 IISF Resource Sheets on the website for download for a nominal fee. They include: “How to know if Your Religion is Sex-Positive,” “7 Sexual Prohibitions that are Not in the Bible,” “Checklist for a Great Sex Life,” “How to Find a Gay-Friendly Place of Worship” and “10 Commandments for Sexual Decision-Making.” More are planned.

“Whether it is issues facing the sexual minorities or prison work, race relations or immigration reform, all have a body/sexual aspect to the issue.” Rev Bev said.  “To Tab’s credit, the congregational commitment to a justice-centered gospel  means they are willing to push into areas such as sexuality when most others are unwilling to in spite of the fact that body justice is one of the most pressing social issue, if not the top one, of our day.”  Rev Bev will be hosting the December 10 Tab Adult Forum to tell more of this work.

Watch Reverend Beverly Dale explain how Sex and Faith
takes on a whole new meaning.  Hosted by Tammy Nelson

Opportunities to Engage with Mission Partners
 

Important Dates
  • Oct 1 - G(reet)E(at)M(eet) Potluck- No Tab.Edu scheduled
  • Oct 7 - Our 300th Anniversary as a Presbytery, 10am
  • Oct 8 - Tab.EduHEARTSONG with Pax Ressler
  • Oct 10 - Council Meeting
  • Oct 11 - Bible Study, 5:30-7pm in Tab Community Room
  • Oct 15 - Tab.Edu, Tab’s StoryCorp with Lucinda Megill Legendre and Jim Gerhard 
  • Oct 22 - Tab.Edu, White Privilege: Let’s Talk: Becoming an Ally – Pastor Katie and Megan Gibson, Co-Facilitators
  • Oct 25  - Bible Study, 5:30-7pm in Tab Community Room
  • Oct 29: - Tab.Edu, Parenting, Spirituality & Worship – Nicole Diroff, Facilitator
  • Nov 8  - Bible Study, 5:30-7pm in Tab Community Room
  • Nov 15  - Bible Study, 5:30-7pm in Tab Community Room

Tab.edu: September 2017

October 1: G(reet)E(at)M(eet) Potluck - No Tab.edu scheduled.

October 8: HEARTSONG with Pax Ressler - What songs are on your heart this season?  Join Pax, Minister of Music at Tabernacle United, to sing your requests of favorite sacred songs.  Feel free to bring an instrument, a song, or a friend for this informal time of singing what’s on our hearts.

October 15: Tab’s StoryCorp with Lucinda Megill Legendre and Jim Gerhard - One way that we hope to reach out and share God’s love is through our website.  On our website we made a space where Tab folks tell their stories.  Many of you saw our request for stories this summer.  Here is your chance to spend a few minutes thinking about writing your story, share with and listen to others’ stories, and submit your stories to go onto the Tab website.

October 22: White Privilege: Let’s Talk: Becoming an Ally – Pastor Katie and Megan Gibson, Co-Facilitators - Picking up where we left off this past spring, today we will look at Part 4 in the UCC’s “White Privilege: Let’s Talk” series.  Our conversation will center on what it means to become an ally in anti-racism work.  It would be helpful (though not necessary) to read the articles in Part 4 in preparation for our conversation.  You can find all the articles online here: http://www.uccfiles.com/pdf/White-Privilege-Curriculum.pdf or contact the office for a paper copy.

October 29:  Parenting, Spirituality & Worship – Nicole Diroff, Facilitator - All parents of young children and people interested in supporting parents as they bring their children to Tabernacle are invited to join in this open conversation around parenting and spirituality.  The conversation will be framed around general questions that explore parenthood as a spiritually formative experience as well as Tab-specific questions around how to make worship an especially welcoming space for parents.

Tab. edu meets from around 11:45am-1pm. If you have ideas or suggestions for future Tab.edu sessions or series, please contact Deb Ahrens


September Service & Bulletin Roles
 

September Supporting Roles
 


September Communion Rotations
 

+ Bread donated by Four Worlds Bakery, 47th & Woodland.; it should be picked up the day before.

Tabernacle Church  Staff

Ministers ……………..........................................................................................................................TAB congregation
Pastor ………...….....................................................................................………......…..……………...........Katie Aikins
Youth Pastor…...................................................................................…...........………………………...Meagan McLeod
Minister of Music …...............................................................................………….........…........Pax Ressler (they/them)
Nursery Caregiver ……...................................................................................……………………………….Lisa Jacobs
Office Manager….................................................................................…..........……………....….............. Chelle Bruhn
Sexton ……………………..................................................................................................…………….. Patrick O’Brien

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