News from University United Methodist Church in East Lansing, MI 

August 3, 2022



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Feature Articles
Congratulations to the UUMC Softball Team!
UUMC Welcomes Two New Staff Members


Congratulations to the 2022 UUMC Softball Team!! They are the League Champs and also the Tournament Champs! Great job, team!

Front row: Ginny Dymond (#1 fan!), Alex Doherty (child of Roger and Laurel), Archer and Ava Morey (children of Josh and Christina)

Team from left to right: Nate Jost, Connie Gamage, Laurel Doherty, Caitlin Brown, Angie Zarka, Alan Wilk, Christina Morey, Drew Wilk, Heather Hoshal, Aaron Wade, Andrew Walton, Jake Ohm, Roger Doherty

Not pictured: Don Jost

Missing from tournament: JJ Burchman, Lucas Wade, Charlie Wilk, Brenlie Bartlett


A big UUMC welcome to two new staff members: Sam Corey and Wyatt Forhan!

We welcome Sam Corey back as REACH band director. Sam Corey is entering his second year of graduate school in the jazz studies program at Michigan State University. He has experience playing saxophone and bass with many different groups in various genres, including jazz, rock, pop, RnB, country, and others. After he graduates, he plans to keep playing music professionally and to travel the world. We’re pleased to have our talented Sam Corey back as the REACH Band director!
Wyatt Forhan is our new technical director. Wyatt is an aspiring young musician from St. Louis, Missouri. Wyatt began his musical career at the age of three when he learned drums and then progressed to learn jazz and classical piano at the age of 8. He has won several music awards and participated in many festivals and ensembles in the US, Canada, and Europe. During this time, Wyatt has been able to learn from the best sound engineers and technical directors this world has to offer, including Paul Booth, Jim Alfredson, and many others. Wyatt has been producing, mixing, and mastering projects for people all across the country. With his vision for providing the most beautiful music possible with the highest quality sound, Wyatt has been a go-to engineer for many people. We’re excited to welcome Wyatt to the UUMC family!





We have had a report of someone’s vehicle being broken into in our parking lot. Please remember to lock your doors and remove anything valuable from view.

In addition, beware of email scammers impersonating others and asking for you to respond urgently! Sadly some email scammers are using some of Pastor Melanie's contacts to ask for gift cards. Be aware that Pastor Melanie would never ask for you to purchase gift cards via email. If you receive this type of message, delete it and do not respond. If you look carefully at the email address, you will note that this is NOT coming from Pastor Melanie's email. (The scam from this week had the email address of and that is definitely NOT Pastor Melanie's email address.)


We are excited to relaunch our band-led service, REACH, on Sunday, September  11 at 11:00 a.m. To get ready for the restart of REACH services in September, we are having a few preview services on Sundays, August 7, 14, and 28 at 10:00 a.m. Join us in person or online and invite your friends!


We are pleased to announce the continuation of our traditional worship service. Traditional style worship will be offered on Sundays, August 21 and September 4 at 10:00 a.m. Starting on Sunday, September 11, the traditional worship service will be at 9:30 a.m. with coffee offered both before and after worship.


Beginning this Sunday, August 7, we will introduce a new style of individually packaged communion elements made by TruVine. These should be easier to hold, as they are chalice shaped, and easier to open the tabs. Gluten-free unleavened bread is on one end of the container and 100% grape juice is on the other end. More instruction will be given on Sunday. Added bonus: we’ll be saving the earth as these are 100% recyclable and can be discarded in the marked recycle bin when you leave worship!


Tying in with our current worship series on the Minor Prophets, we’ve been having a little fun with “Flat Prophet” – a take on the “Flat Stanley” book series. Visit our Facebook page to see all the adventures he’s had so far! We still have several laminated Flat Prophets available in the Gathering Space to take with you, or you can download your own by clicking here. Snap a “selfie” with Flat Prophet and send it to our social media manager, Kim Depew (, to have it posted to our Facebook page!


Comfort Quilts meets in the lower level of the church building on the second and fourth Mondays of the month from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. The next meeting date will be Monday, August 8. No experience is necessary! We ask that you please wear a mask, regardless of your vaccination status.


We’ve had two wonderful “meet and greets” with our new pastor, Melanie Carey, and her husband, Jon! If you missed those or haven’t had a chance to sign up for one, there’s still time! We’ll have one more “meet and greet” on Sunday, August 14 from 11:20 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. in the Memorial Garden, weather permitting. A sign-up sheet is in the Gathering Space, but it is not required to sign up in order to attend.


Mark your calendars for a fun-filled evening of delicious food and extraordinary music for the whole family on Saturday, August 27. The events are as follows:
  • 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.: Food trucks in the UUMC parking lot. Everyone will receive a ticket at the door for one free entrée. Donations are accepted.
  • 5:30 p.m.: UUMC's REACH Band, with band leader Sam Corey, will be performing a variety of music on the church lawn.
  • 7:00 p.m.: RODNEY WHITAKER W/SPECIAL GUESTS present a tribute to ROY HARGROVE. The concert will take place in the sanctuary and features Rodney Whitaker - Bass; Ron Blake - Saxophone; Willie Jones III - Drums; Marc Cary - Piano; Etienne Charles - Trumpet. A limited number of tickets will be sold. General admission: $20 adults, $5 students. Click here to purchase tickets to the concert.
Masks are required inside the church building. Venue is disability accessible. Childcare may be available; contact the church office at 517-351-7030. This concert is supported by the Donna Noyes Worship and Music Endowment Fund. All proceeds go towards enrichment of the UUMC Music Department. For more information, contact the church office at or 517-351-7030.


On the evening of August 2, Larry and Jane Kies, our church missionaries, came to UUMC and provided their last official presentation. Larry and Jane have spent their careers, some forty years, serving as missionaries at Africa University in Zimbabwe. Larry served as professor of Agriculture, Jane as professor of English. Our church congregation has supported this couple for the past ten years through both annual apportionments as well as through our Missions Committee, of which the Kies are eternally grateful. Larry Kies officially retired as a missionary for the United Methodist Church a year or so ago but continues to teach agriculture at the university. Jane plans to retire at the end of September.

As these two incredible individuals end their official duties as missionaries, University UMC would like to present an opportunity to honor the Kies through a monetary gift that will go to their student scholarship fund. If you would like to contribute to this fund, please send your check written out to University UMC and earmark it to “Kies Scholarship Fund”. Any amount would be deeply appreciated.

~Scott McRee, Missions Committee Chair


The UUMC Missions Committee is asking for your assistance in offering support to those who have been ravaged by recent episodes of wind, rain, and fire in certain portions of our country, especially Kentucky. Tornadoes, flooding, and continued forest fires have brought death and destruction to untold numbers of U.S. citizens. Whether fueled by heat, fire, wind, or rain, each disaster brings the potential for human suffering and loss -- the loss of life, health, home, livelihood, safety, and well-being. We ask that you hold these families in your prayers as they struggle to recover from their loss. We would also ask that you join us in providing financial assistance as they begin the long road to recovery.
You can donate directly to UMCOR by going online and selecting the option ADVANCE # 901670 (US Disaster Response). Or, you may make a donation to UUMC, with the notation "Disaster Relief". However you choose to help, we appreciate your generosity, care, and grace.  


The UUMC Missions Committee is asking for your continued support as we strive to provide assistance to the Afghan refugees that have arrived in the greater Lansing area. Your donations (both financial and collected items) have been of tremendous value to the over 95 families/300 individuals that have resettled in our community.
As the arrivals began last fall, we supported St. Vincent Catholic Charities Refugee Services with our cash donations, an Endowment grant, the Giving Tree, several household/personal care item collection drives, online purchasing through Amazon/Walmart, and a Meijer gift card donation program. Since January 2022, we have donated over 200 Meijer gift cards valued at more than $4000. These gift cards are used by the refugee families to purchase needed household and personal items.  
The UUMC Missions Committee is asking for your financial assistance in continuing to support Afghan Refugee Services. Your donations can be made to UUMC by marking your gift as "Afghan Refugee Services". We thank you for your care, support, and compassion. 


Tower Alert will be published every other week during August. The upcoming Tower Alert publication schedule for this summer is:

Wednesday, August 17
Wednesday, August 31

If you have announcements for Tower Alert, please plan accordingly so we can make sure to advertise your event for you in a timely fashion. Announcements can be sent to


Office hours for business purposes are Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Social distancing and wearing of masks in the building is still encouraged. For committees and groups meeting inside the church, please confirm that your space has been reserved on the church calendar before the meeting time.


If you would like to submit a prayer concern, please send your request via email to These will be posted on our website, and the names will be read and lifted in prayer during our services. Prayer concerns will remain on the lists for 3 weeks unless updated with the church office. If you would like to view the prayer concerns on our website, go to From the top menu, select “Make a Difference” and then “Prayer.” The password to view the prayer concerns is “Together” (please note that It is case-sensitive). If you have an urgent request, please contact the church office at 517-351-7030.


Thank you for your continued support of the church! There are three convenient ways to make sure your donations reach us: 
  1. Mail your donation to UUMC (1120 S. Harrison Rd., East Lansing, MI 48823). Make sure to specify what the donation is for on the memo line.
  2. Give through the Venmo app to @UUMCDonation.
  3. Electronic Giving: If you would like to utilize the e-giving option, please contact our Financial Administrator, Jay Weessies, at 517-351-7030, ext. 205 or for assistance.
Announcements are due on Tuesdays by 5:00 PM. If possible, please e-mail your item to Questions about Tower Alert should be directed to Diane Constan (517-393-5450).

For updated church information, be sure to check the UUMC-Wesley Foundation website at

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