Ramadan: Time to Meet Your Neighbors
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June 26, 2013
 

In this Issue

News
Ramadan: Time to Meet Your Neighbors
Upcoming Events
Mental Illness and the Faith Community
The Practice of Spiritual Maturity: Meditations on "The Cloud of Unknowing"
Citizenship Day of Welcome
JRLC’s Day on the Grill
Make a Difference
Sweet Dreams for Refugees
Help Pack Over 200,000 Meals at SHH Pack-a-thon
Resources
Learn About Native Americans in Minnesota
Churches: Contemplating a Consultant or a Gathering?
Emergency Attacker Preparation for Houses of Worship
Chuck Knows Church
Employment
National Council of Churches Seeks President / General Secretary
Looking Forward
The Search for Home: An Introduction to Housing & Homelessness


News

Ramadan: Time to Meet Your Neighbors

Last year the Taking Heart Program brought 350 non-Muslim guests into local mosques to learn about the holy month of Ramadan and celebrate it with their neighbors. This was the first visit to a mosque for 233 people!

As our Muslim neighbors once again prepare for the sacred month of Ramadan this July, join us for a series of open houses at area mosques organized by the council’s Taking Heart program. Ramadan is the month on the Islamic lunar calendar during which Muslims abstain from food and drink from sunrise to sunset. The fast is performed to learn compassion, self-restraint and generosity. Each day the fast is broken with a meal called Iftar. Please complete this form to let us know you're joining us for Iftar dinner and conversation. More events may be scheduled as Ramadan approaches. Registration is required to attend.



Upcoming Events

Mental Illness and the Faith Community
Thursday, June 27, 8:30am – noon
     Twin Cities Public Television
     172 East 4th St, Saint Paul

Twin Cities Public Television, in collaboration with Health Partners and the National Alliance on Mental Illness, are currently working on a year-long project entitled “Make It OK,” to reduce stigma and build awareness of mental illness. Faith community representatives are invited to an initial brainstorming conversation that will focus on how we all might work together to pass information to our congregations and how TPT can support our work with video segments, online promotion or other tools. To participate, or for more information, email Diane Waarvick.

The Practice of Spiritual Maturity: Meditations on "The Cloud of Unknowing"
Friday, June 28, 9:00-11:15 am
     Saint Benedict’s Monastery, St. Joseph

A retreat/presentation by Beverly Lanzetta, a former Studium Scholar at St. Benedict’s Monastery and founder of a non-traditional monastic community. Free and open to the public. Call 320-363-7112 or email mweidner@csbsju.edu for information. Click here to register online.

Citizenship Day of Welcome
Saturday, June 29, 10am - 2pm
     Minnesota State Capitol south lawn
     75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul

Please join the Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota in welcoming a group of new American citizens including Minnesota Council of Churches clients. ILCM invites new and long-time citizens to join us for lawn games, face painting, storytelling, music and a community picnic. This picnic will have something for everyone, melding the diverse cultures that make our state and our country great. This is a great opportunity for people who have never seen a naturalization ceremony before! Parking is free in all capitol parking lots the day of the event. Click here to RSVP!

JRLC’s Day on the Grill
Sunday, July 14, 12:00 – 2:30pm
     Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
     2730 East 31st Street, Minneapolis

Join us for an afternoon of live music, tasty food (including veggies!) from the grill, games, and art! Help raise funds for JRLC’s payday lending reform effort. You’ll even have the chance to dunk Executive Director Brian Rusche in the loan shark tank! Click here to RSVP, and view the flyer for more information.


Make a Difference

Sweet Dreams for Refugees

We are running low on Twin/Full/Queen blankets and comforters to help refugee families sleep in comfort. Donations can be delivered to the MN Church Center (122 Franklin Ave, MPLS) anytime during business hours. Contact: Joo by email or at or 612.230.3219 with any questions.

Help Pack Over 200,000 Meals at SHH Pack-a-thon
Saturday, July 20th, 2013
Two hour shifts from 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
     Second Harvest Heartland West
     6325 Sandburg Road, Suite 1700, Golden Valley

Gather friends, family and co-workers for a lively day of packing food for those in need right in our community while enjoying non-stop music, food, prizes and a family-friendly post-packing party. Register online, collect pledges and prepare for a unique packing and fundraising event alongside your fellow supporters. Space is limited so sign-up today! You can create a team, join a team, sign up solo or participate virtually if you can’t join at the event. Kids ages 8+ are welcome but must be accompanied by an adult.


Resources


Learn About Native Americans in Minnesota

Healing Minnesota Stories (HMS) is making available Native American speakers for adult forums/youth religious education, tours of sacred sites in the Twin Cities, and film/dialogue sessions for faith communities in the metro area.  Native American people have suffered deep trauma over many years, losing their land, language and culture.  HMS is bringing attention to those historic and ongoing wounds and supporting a healing process. Churches and all faith communities can play a key role in promoting and experiencing healing by opening themselves to their own history, making amends, and listening to the stories of Native people. For more information or to schedule a program, see www.spinterfaith.org , or contact Renee Pfenning at 651-292-8760, or email reneepfenning@gmail.com.


Churches: Contemplating a Consultant or a Gathering?

The Center for Congregations has released two two-page resources to guide church leaders in making decisions that can positively impact their congregations. “Working with Consultants” has suggestions on how to find an outside expert, interview one, and make best use of the time you have with one. “Group Processes that Facilitate Positive Change” helps leaders decide when to use Asset Mapping, Appreciative Inquiry, World Café or Open Space Technology when bringing people together.

Emergency Attacker Preparation for Houses of Worship

Since the Sikh temple shooting in Wisconsin, places of worship have received advice from across the board on how to handle emergency situations. The U.S. government has now released a publication, “Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Houses of Worship,” (pdf) that faith communities can use to develop and implement a plan. It includes specific advice on responding to an active shooter. You can download the guide here.

Chuck Knows Church

Chuck Knows Church is a fun and informative (and free!) weekly web series about the objects, symbols and terms used in church. Take a couple of minutes each week and have some fun while you learn from Chuck! Ever try to summarize what you believe? It's not easy, but that's precisely where our affirmations of faith come in. Watch the latest "Chuck Knows Church" video to find out more about common Christian creeds.

Employment

National Council of Churches Seeks President / General Secretary

The National Council of Churches is seeking candidates for General Secretary / President, the top staff leadership position in the 63-year-old ecumenical organization. This position is a new configuration. Click here to see the news release, profile and job description.

Looking Forward

The Search for Home: An Introduction to Housing & Homelessness
Thursday, August 22, 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm
     Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity
     3001 4th St. SE, Minneapolis

Join for an educational and interactive training about affordable housing and homelessness in Minnesota. The training will cover the history of homelessness and low-income housing, the range of housing options available today, the cost of homelessness, and an examination of solutions. To register, visit the Simpson Housing website Or contact Christina Giese at cgiese@simpsonhousing.org, (612) 455-0859.
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