Archive for the ‘News & Announcements’ Category

Advent at Bethel UCC…something for everyone!

Meaningful gifts that help others at our Living Gift Market…Christmas Music Festival…Blue Christmas Service for those who find the season difficult; check out all our Advent events. Click here for a brochure.

AFAC cereal drive goal…going for a big finish!

We’re in the final month of our 2014 drive to collect low-calorie cereal for Arlington Food Assistance (AFAC). We long ago surpassed our goal of 365 boxes—one a day—and then topped a new goal of 500 boxes! So our sights are set on a big finish! Thank you for your continued generosity in December.

Over $7,000–a Bethel record–raised to alleviate hunger locally and globally

The blisters are all healed and the money all collected from the 2014 Arlington CROP Walk held on October 18. The total from Bethel’s walkers is a Bethel record $7,270. Thanks to our walkers, Ralph Buglass, Kristen Curlee with Ward and Bekah, Cheryl Falcone with TimMyiah, Jaila, Annabel,
and James Jr., Bill Graver, Richard Lee, Art Lipman with Judy Lipman, Amy Mills, Susan Peters, Lisa Petersen, Peter Rich, Carolyn Richar, Laura Wells with Mike Palermo, Judson and dog Jeter, and Kristen Wheeler for their efforts in getting sponsors, walking and collecting and especially to all who supported our walkers so generously. This means that $1,817.50 goes to the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) and the rest to Church World Service for its campaign against hunger around the world.


Give Thanks


Join us on Wednesday, November 26th at 7:00 pm to give God thanks for all the blessings in our lives.  We will gather in ecumenical community at Bethel with Arlington Church of the Brethren and Arlington Forest United Methodist Church for music, prayer, and scripture.  All are welcome and invited to join us.

It’s a Party


Community Ministry 2.0


Thank you to everyone who took time to fill out Survey Monkey about our August Community Worship Series. We received feedback from more than 45 people! The theme was overwhelmingly positive. You loved worshiping in a space filled with voices, you liked meeting new people and learning about other traditions. You thought the series created positive energy for all our churches. cw1Though you are excited about the way the Spirit is at work in our midst, you worry about losing our own identity, about over extending ourselves with too many new programs, about visitors or members who missed worship this summer because they didn’t know what was happening or that the logistics were overwhelming. We hear your concerns and seek to move forward, carrying the energy of the Spirit, in a positive, intentional way. Your feedback, support and prayers are welcome!

cw2World Wide Communion Sunday is October 5th and we will celebrate the multi-cultural, ecumenical service by welcoming the Rev. Nancy Fitzgerald for a pulpit exchange. In order to continue to learn about one another, but to minimize the logistical challenges of moving congregants, the clergy of our three churches are exchanging pulpits. I will be worshiping and preaching at Arlington Forest United Methodist Church while the Rev. Mike Vess will be at Arlington Church of the Brethren. If you are interested in helping with worship that day, we are looking for extra support including scripture readers, liturgists, and a children’s message. Please let me know if you willing to participate.


Looking ahead, in November we will welcome all three churches into our sanctuary for the Thanksgiving service on Wednesday, November 26th at 7 pm. We hope you will join us.


Continuing the conversation on marriage equality

We had two productive discussions around marriage equality in July. Please join us either:

  • Wednesday, September 10th at 7 pm  or
  • Sunday, September 21st at 11:30 am

as we transition our conversation from listening to writing covenantal language about marriage equality.


Community worship in August


Bethel will be joining with two nearby Arlington churches for joint worship services the first four Sundays in August. All are welcome to attend. Click here for the schedule.

Marriage equality conversation continues

More than 40 people from the community gathered at Bethel on Sunday, June 22th for a screening of Bridegroom and a conversation about marriage.


The film, Bridegroom, tells the true story of two young men in a loving and committed relationship that is cut short by a tragic accidental death. The film powerfully documents how people without the legal protections of marriage can find themselves shut off and ostracized.

Panelists included:

  • Phil Hicks, former Board President of the Metro DC Chapter of PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and current Virginia Advocacy Chair; and
  • David Farmer, a member of Ravensworth Baptist Church in Annandale who is active in the Reformation Project, which educates Christians in supporting and affirming LGBT people.

If you missed the screening, but want to see Bridegroom, speak with Pastor Kristen to borrow the film.

The conversation continues at Bethel as we explore our position on marriage equality, with two listening sessions held in July. If you have not had an opportunity to voice your thoughts, feel free to speak with Pastor Kristen or Lisa Peterson.

Welcome Arlington Interfaith Council!

Bethel is delighted to host the monthly meeting of the Arlington Interfaith Council (AIC) on Monday, June 16th at 7:30 p.m. (Refreshments and meet-and-greet from 7:15 to 7:30)

AIC consists of representatives from 48 Arlington faith communities and 18 Helping Hands agencies that provide direct services to people in need. Contributions from member congregations provide grants so that agencies can help the homeless, feed the hungry, assist ex-offenders and victims of
domestic violence, and put supplies in the backpacks of homeless children.

For more about AIC, visit their website.