Do you have an interest in issues of Social Justice? Check the church calendar for our next Sunday meeting. Bring your ideas and your energy!

Get a jump on your holiday shopping ! Congregational UCC will host a Ten Thousand Villages fair trade marketplace in our Fellowship Hall.

Saturday, November 25 from 10 AM to 4 PM

Sunday, November 26 from Noon to 3:30 PM

We are well into the autumn season, so it is definitely time to flag your calendars for this event. Help us spread the word amongst families, friends, co-workers and neighbors about the exponential power of the 10,000 Villages international program to move skilled artisans into the fair-trade marketplace. So many uniquely fashioned items cleverly utilize recycled and sustainable materials, so in our small way, we are helping to "green up" our environment while enabling artisans to earn a living wage.

If you would like to volunteer for one of the sale days for a two-or-three-hour time block, watch for the sign-up sheet soon to be posted. We definitely need strong backs to help unload the truck and unpack boxes on Friday starting at 1:00 p.m. Then the stock must be re-boxed and re-loaded on the truck Sunday afternoon starting at 4:00 p.m. Please consider helping, and ask all your friends to come shop!

"Second Sundays"

Every second Sunday of the month, CUCC will be collecting non-perishable food donations to be brought to the Lutheran Church of the Cross Food Pantry here in Arlington Heights. A basket will be set at the altar, and donations may be brought up before, during or after the service. This is a small but important way we can support our neighbors in need. Thank you in advance!

Greater Chicago Food Depository Hunger Walk

On Saturday, September 16, 2017, six members of CUCC joined Lutheran Church of the Cross's team at the 32nd Annual Hunger Walk - Greater Chicago Food Depository in Jackson Park. We helped Church of the Cross earn over $6,700 for their Arlington Heights food pantry, which translates to tens of thousands of pounds of food! It was a terrific day!! Yay for (L-R) Laura, Eric, Roberta, Bob, Whitney, and Anna! Thank you!

Habitat Workday

On Saturday, October 28, CUCC provided a team for build day with Habitat for Humanity Chicago at a 16-home, single-block project in the West Pullman neighborhood! Here they supported Habitat Chicago homebuyers in building strong, stable futures for their families through affordable homeownership. (Did you know: children of homeowners are 116% more likely to graduate from college compared to children of renters?) We are grateful for the people who worked!

Fair Trade Coffee Hour

In keeping with CUCC's heartfelt mission to "do good" in the world, we will begin serving Fair Trade coffee during our Hospitality hour following church services each Sunday starting in October. Coffee has been purchased from the Second Chance Coffee Company, LLC, an organization that provides employment and support to post-prison people. The company roasts and distributes coffee under the brand name "I Have a Bean" and operates under the premise that "every part of our business can be used to 'love our neighbor as ourselves' to positively impact the spiritual, social and economic condition of our employees, their families, and the communities in which they live." For more information, visit Won't you join us for a cup?

Blessings in a Backpack

Because of your generosity, Congregational UCC will be providing food for students in need at Jane Addams Elementary School be for three school years, starting with 2017-2018, helping provide stability for these students. Several CUCC members have volunteered to “pack” these backpacks at Jane Addams, beginning in late October. It is a very organized and efficient team of volunteers who make this happen.

Friends of Social Justice have agreed to provide something “extra” for the backpacks during the holiday season and will request $100 from Mission of the Month in October to support this. Working with Jane Addams, we will determine what the “extra” will be. Our Social Justice Team would like to approach our youth in this project. One thought was to have our church school children make holiday notes/cards for these students. What a treat for these students to know that others are thinking of them. Friends of Social Justice is hoping to make Blessings in a Backpack more than a financial commitment, but also a caring and loving support for those in need.

A CUCC Social Justice Project: Zatoun Olive Oil

By buying a bottle or two of Zatoun olive oil, you are supporting a Palestinian farmer who struggles to support his family under the current Israel-Palestine government restrictions impacting day-to-day farming, his access to ancestral family lands and olive orchards, and his movement to local markets. “Zatoun” is the Arabic word for "olive." In Palestinian culture, the olive tree is the historic, sacred connection to the land. As the Palestinian Fair Trade Cooperative that has successfully managed to export this delicious product under tough conditions likes to say, when you purchase this olive oil, you are tasting a bit of the Holy Land. Place your order via the sign-up sheet on the Social Justice kiosk or call the church office to add your name to the list. Your $20 multiplies the power of fair trade and serves as a UCC voice for economic and social justice in the Holy Land.