May Messenger Newsletter Now Available!

Screen Shot 2015-05-05 at 12.33.21 PMDear FCCC Friends,

Attached is the May 2015 issue of the Franklin Circle Christian Church newsletter, The Messenger.  Please download and read it thoroughly, as there is some extremely important information in it.  We thank Cody Corrigan, as always, for his faithful job in editing the newsletter.  Thanks to all who wrote articles and helped in the preparation of this publication.
Gratefully Yours,
Pastor Allen

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Grow Spiritual At The General Assembly In Columbus This Summer!

GA2015-Logo-HiRes-BlueBGLearning Opportunities At General Assembly

Get the benefit of both hearing from experts and networking with people who are doing the work in the learning tracks offered at the 2015 General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Columbus this summer July 18-22.  Core lectures Sunday will be followed by further unpacking of themes in short bursts on Monday and then working sessions Tuesday and Wednesday will dig deeper into the subject matter.   Anticipated workshops and lectures are already available on the web at  Learning communities will be organized around five topics – Innovate, Administration, Global/Ecumenical, Justice and Faith Formation.  And that’s just the classroom.

In addition, you can learn about our ministries during business reports and by talking with staff in the exhibit hall.  Who knows what great resources you may discover?  Return to the website often as updates will be added as the assembly draws near.

Powerful Preaching

The Rev. Dr. Amy K. Butler, Sr. Pastor, The Riverside Church, NYC

The Rev. Dr. Amy K. Butler, Sr. Pastor, The Riverside Church, NYC


The Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Black, General Minister & President, United Church of Christ

Worship services at the 2015 General Assembly will include both Disciples and ecumenical guests.  The gathering in Columbus, Ohio will kick off with Disciple Rev. Dr. Teresa (Terri) Hord-Owens, dean of students at the University of Chicago Divinity School and pastor of First Christian in Downers Grove.  The Rev. Dr. Amy Butler of New York’s Riverside Church – the first woman to fill that pulpit – is slated for Monday evening.  We will celebrate our 25-year partnership with the United Church of Christ by welcoming Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Black, general minister and president of that denomination.  And on Wednesday evening we will pull out all the stops and SOAR with Rev. Dr. Adam Hamilton from Church of the Resurrection near Kansas City, author of Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today.  For more about these speakers or to register online, go to today.

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Visioning Report Available Online

150208_Congregational_Visioning_Forum.001We had a modest but faithful group of folks stay after worship on Sunday, February 8 to hear the Visioning Report from the Official Church Board.  In order to facilitate the distribution of this information, I am making available the report in several ways: a.) the printed Visioning Report is attached to this post: FCCC Board Visioning Report.  b.) if you follow this link ( ) you will have access to a Dropbox folder which contains the digital presentation (new and improved!) from the Feb. 8 event.  You can view it as a Quicktime movie (.m4v) in which you can see it as it was presented and pause it as needed, as a PowerPoint presentation (.ppt), or you can view the individual slides as pictures (.jpg) and see them one by one.
Also, I am available to talk over the Visioning Report with you personally.  In addition, if you want the full report with numerous suggested ways the Visioning Team imagined that might be helpful to fulfill the recommendations, you can request that also.

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March Messenger Newsletter Now Online!

Screen Shot 2015-02-27 at 9.13.00 AMYou will find attached to this blog post the March 2015 Messenger newsletter.  As always it is full of wonderful information and inspiring tidbits!  Please download it and read it though.  We also hope that you will pass it along to those in your network of friends, family members, coworkers, and neighbors and tell them about all the good things that are happening in our congregation.  Thanks to Cody Corrigan, Editor, and all who help him to make this newsletter happen each month.

To download the newsletter, click HERE: Messenger_March_2015

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Will You Put YOUR Compassion Into Action?”

Week Of Compassion Offering To Be Received February 15 & 22

WOC2015LogoWeek of Compassion (WoC) is the relief, refugee and development mission fund of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada.  It seeks to equip and empower disciples to alleviate the suffering of others through disaster response, humanitarian aid, sustainable development and the promotion of mission opportunities.  WoC works through implementing partner organizations to facilitate relief and development efforts in areas of great need by providing financial resources.  Giving to Week of Compassion is an effective way for Disciples congregations, members and friends to channel their resources and concerns to the humanitarian needs of suffering people within the United States and in the world.  Find out more on their Facebook Page: or their website: (including current responses around the globe.)

WoC can also help resource a congregation looking for a mission project by connecting them with a local Foods Resource Bank growing project, a program that raises money to fund food security programs all over the world.  Likewise, WoC promotes the Church World Service Blanket program and Gift of the Heart Kits in Disciples churches, as well as the Safe Motherhood Kit and Medicine Box programs of IMA World Health. WoC also helps connect congregations with people in need by supporting fair trade products through the Disciples Coffee Project, a partnership with Equal Exchange. WoC supports congregational efforts to live out our call to care for “the least of these,” providing resources and materials for worship, education and the WoC special offering season, and by providing grants for groups to engage in work trips domestically and internationally.

The 2015 theme is “Will You Put YOUR Compassion Into Action?” and is based on 2 Corinthians 8:13-15.  The Week Of Compassion offering is our opportunity to join with hundreds of thousands of people to express our Christian witness and create real change in the world.  Franklin Circle Christian church will receive this offering on two Sundays: February 15 and 22.  Special offering envelopes will be made available in the bulletin those Sundays.  Each individual gift matters and multiplies with thousands of others enabling the Church as one body to achieve significant change in the world.  We are one in Christ Jesus, and our many gifts together make a world of difference.

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Widening The Circle – Trans Inclusion

Widening The Circle Forum – Trans Inclusion

Tuesday, February 17, 6:30 – 8pm 

Photo: Pastor Allen testifies on behalf of Transgender inclusion at a City Council hearing at Cleveland City Hall November 2014

Photo: Pastor Allen testifies on behalf of Transgender inclusion at a City Council hearing at Cleveland City Hall November 2014

Important discussions have been taking place recently in Cleveland about the full inclusion of transgender people in our city.  Part of this recent attention has been guided by those who wish to finally make the Non-Discrimination Ordinance passed by the Cleveland City Council five years ago fully and truly non-discriminatory.  Some of this has, tragically, been in response to the deaths of transgender persons in Ohio, both through murder and suicide.  Ongoing education, dialogue, and action are needed to further justice and equality in our city and region.

As part of our ongoing commitment to diversity, inclusivity, and hospitality, our congregation will host a “Widening The Circle Forum,” on Tuesday, February 17 at 6:30 p.m. here at the church.  This forum is presented jointly by Equality Ohio, the Cleveland Advocates For Transgender Equality, and Franklin Circle Christian Church and is open to everyone.

The program for the forum will include:

  1. An introduction/history/update of the proposed City Council Ordinance 1446;
  2. A panel of trans individuals discussing their personal experiences;
  3. A discussion of how trans equality is a matter of faith;
  4. A time for Questions and Responses;
  5. A call to action: how people of faith can support trans equality

Our Widening The Circle Forums are a means for the congregation, neighborhood, and broader Northeast Ohio community to explore in a creative manner critical issues of diversity, hospitality, and inclusiveness.  It is a central part our three Core Commitments: to be an Open & Affirming, Anti-Racist/Pro-Reconciling, and Accessible Congregation.

TransInclusionForum   The Widening The Circle Forums are usually planned on a monthly basis and include a creative or interactive element (film, speaker, interactive exercises, etc.) ample time for discussion, and refreshments.  There is never a charge and suggestions for future topics, speakers, films are always encouraged.  If childcare is needed, please call the church at least five days in advance: 216-781-8232.

For more information, go to

Next month’s Widening The Circle Forum will focus on the 50th Anniversary of the march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama as we show the newly released documentary, “Selma: The Bridge To The Ballot.”  Save the date: Monday, March 30 at 7:00 p.m.

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Summer Adult Conference Details Set!

Adult Conference LogoAdult Conference

June 15-19, 2015 Northwest Christian Church & Fairfield Inn

Columbus, Ohio

“Witnessing as a Community of Faith” Acts 1:8

Vesper Speaker
: Rev. Timothy Murtaugh, South Side Christian Church, Lima

Bible Lecturer: 
Rev. Trayce Stewart, 
Second Chance Christian Church, Columbus

Mark your calendars and plan to be part of this unique gathering of Disciple Adults!

Share this news with members of your congregation! More information coming soon!

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