“Our Evolving Story: Integrating Religion and Science” Retreat at Church of the Palms

February 22–24, 2019 at Church of the Palms, $25

“Our Evolving Story: Integrating Religion and Science” Retreat is coming to the Northwest Valley and will be held at The Church of the Palms. It’s coordinated by the Lifelong Learning Board who has contracted with Sr. Sharon Zayac, OP for a weekend presentation.  Sr. Sharon’s ministry has focused on the new Cosmic Spirituality and Eco-Spirituality. She is recognized nationally and internationally as a teacher and preacher on this topic.

Program schedule: Friday, February 22, 6–8 pm with reception to follow and Saturday 9 am–3:30 pm (lunch/breaks included).  Sunday morning Sr. Sharon will be speaking at Church of the Palms.

Tickets are $25; pre-registration is required as there is limited seating.

Registration is open! Tickets are available online for your convenience; click HERE to purchase.

OR click here for a paper registration. You may also register at Church of the Palms in person.

Sr. Sharon has shared an outline for the retreat:

Title: “Our Evolving Story:  Integrating Religion and Science”

We are in the midst of a cosmic shift in understanding who we are as persons, as people of faith, as a human species. What is this newly emerging consciousness? What does it teach us about who we are, how we are related to the whole, and how we image Holy Mystery? Using The Cosmic Story as our context, we will find inspiration and hope as we explore and reflect upon its deeper meaning.

Friday evening, 6–8 p.m.: An introduction to the weekend, speaking about Story, its power and role in the evolution of our species.

Saturday, 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m.: Two sessions with time for reflection and sharing. Includes breaks and lunch; if a vegetarian lunch is desired, please email or call 623-977-8359.

Part I  Evolutionary Consciousness (what it is, what characterizes it, what its implications are for understanding who we and where we are going).

Part II Exploring the two particular universal powers of cataclysm and emergence (where we find currently find ourselves embroiled) and the promise and hope they offer.

Sunday, 10 a.m.: Sr. Sharon will speak at the Palms’ worship service.

Below is the biographical information for Sr. Sharon Zayac, OP and URL links to hear her speak and review her work as Founding Director of Jubilee Farm for the Dominican Sisters of Springfield, IL.

Sr. Sharon Zayac – a Dominican Sister in Springfield, Illinois – was founding Director of Jubilee Farm, her congregation’s 164-acre center for ecology and spirituality located near Springfield, Illinois.  A writer and lecturer, she speaks on many ecological topics, but her passion is sharing the Universe Story and its implications for life and faith.  Her book – Earth Spirituality: In the Catholic and Dominican Traditions –  which compares Judeo-Christian traditions that cause a disregard for nature as well as those that support a respect for Earth. The book focuses on evolutionary consciousness as an emerging worldview.

Jubilee Farm Center for Ecology and Spirituality is a sustainable farm developed under the leadership of Sr. Sharon.  The farm’s ministry is grounded with the philosophy of sustainability that is foundational to this ministry of the Dominican Sisters of Springfield, Illinois. The farm was purchased in 1999 to “honor the Year of Jubilee and its biblical injunction to let the land lie fallow, to honor Earth and support the delicate bioregion.”  “Climate change isn’t a political issue; it’s a faith and moral issue,” states Sr. Sharon.

The farm is a spirituality and ecology center where they raise llamas and alpacas, grow chemical-free fruit and vegetables, and offer walking trails, a labyrinth a retreat house, and education programs open to the public.

She participates in The Climate Project, which has trained 2,500 volunteers in the United States, Australia, Canada, India, Spain and the United Kingdom to lead presentations about climate change. Sr. Sharon is a member of Sustainable Springfield Illinois Inc’s Board of Directors. She received the “2018 Outstanding Member Contribution to Sustainability Award” from this organization.

She has presented across the United States and in Europe, New Zealand; and returned to Ireland this summer to continue presentations on this topic. Read more.

Moral Compass: Responding to Climate Change video (45 min)

Thank you for your time and attention to this lengthy article. Church of the Palms is looking forward to this wonderful event!

Say cheese!

Embracing Our Future . . . with each other:
New Year’s Resolution

It’s time! It’s time for us to update our photo directory. Why? In the last three years more than 100 new members have joined us, others have moved, and some have passed away. Why else? Time has changed some of us…new glasses, new hair style, more wisdom lines.

We will be professionally photographing all families February 13, 14, 15, 16, 26, and 27. Our directory won’t be complete without you. So make a resolution to be included. Sign up on Sundays in January at the table in the narthex, or make your appointment online.

Contact Nancy Mueller with questions.

2019 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Representatives from 10 Sun City congregations have come together to plan the 2019 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. With the Graymoor Ecumenical & Religious Institute (geii.org) providing materials and guidance, these 10 churches have been conducting the Week of Prayer in Sun City since 1999.

This year’s them has been selected and finds its origins in Deuteronomy. “Justice, Only Justice, You Shall Pursue” (cf. Deuteronomy 16:20) was chosen for its powerful message of promoting truth, equality, and unity.

Week of Prayer services are from 12:00 to 12:30 p.m., with a fellowship lunch following until 1:00 p.m.

Schedule and locations:

Monday, January 21: at Church of the Palms, 14808 N Boswell Blvd, with St. Joachim & St. Anne (Prayer for justice)

Tuesday, January 22: at St. Elizabeth Seton, 9728 W Palmeras Blvd, with First Presbyterian (Prayer for honesty)

Wednesday, January 23: at Faith Presbyterian, 16000 N Del Webb Blvd, with United Church of Sun City (Prayer for the health of the environment and to live more simply)

Thursday, January 24: at Shepherd of the Desert, 11025 N 111th Ave, (Prayer for the end of exploitation of the poor, women, and children)

Friday, January 25: at First United Methodist, 9849 N 105th Ave, with St. Christopher’s (Prayer for the hope in Jesus Christ who is the light of the world)

Social Justice Action Team Works with Dysart Community Center

At a recent meeting, the Social Justice Action Team approved working through the Board of Mission & Outreach to establish a long-term relationship with the Dysart Community Center. The reason for this decision is that the center embraces the same purpose as our team: to serve the needs of the marginalized, oppressed, and often forgotten. The mission statement of the Dysart Community Center is: To provide educational and developmental opportunities for low-income children and adults in our local communities.

Dysart Community Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 1962 by a group of 12 determined volunteers to provide basic health and educational resources to local families on the verge of poverty. Educating those in need was the first priority for these volunteers and remains so today. From its founding more than fifty years ago, Dysart Community Center has expanded its services to provide a variety of educational programs for thousands of West Valley residents in our local communities. Today it proudly serves our community with GED, ESL, and citizenship courses for adults; after-school and summer care for youth; and access to various basic needs resources for families and individuals.

The center believes that by empowering the community through education while providing relief from various social and economic stresses, it can play an important part in helping community members reach the full potential of their character and capabilities. Dysart Community Center’s work with migrant families and assisting homeless is very much in line with the priorities of the Church of the Palms Social Action Team.

Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Monday, December 24 at 7 p.m.

Experience Christmas Eve in word and music as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus. The Christmas Eve Candlelight Service features carols, communion, readings, and the music of our choir and handbells.

All are welcome; no exceptions. Bring family, friends, and neighbors.

The Church of the Palms Social Justice Champion Recognition: Carolyn Modeen

This recognition is awarded to a person who is a member of our church, active in leadership roles, and active in social justice ministry. The individual  demonstrates a long-term commitment to seek justice on local, regional, and global issues. Her/his actions challenge injustices and effect change through education, advocacy, activism, and fundraising. Finally, the individual demonstrates the belief that everyone deserves equal economic, political, and social rights and opportunities.

The first recipient of this recognition goes to Carolyn Modeen.

Carolyn, a member for over 20 years, has served as Church Moderator, Chair of the Board of Mission and Outreach, initiated sale of free trade items, helped with the monthly fellowship breakfasts and provided leadership for Ecumenical Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.

Carolyn’s community roles have included: volunteer with Central Arizona Shelter providing clothes for the homeless, participation in marches and rallies for peace and to stop wars. Twice a month she holds up “Peace” signs on Bell and 99th.

Carolyn has advocated for sensible gun legislation, marched for women’s reproductive health rights and has given speeches at Planned Parenthood gathering. She has participated in equal pay gatherings and efforts to correct worker pay disparity. She demonstrated for migrant rights as workers and participated in monthly meetings of domestic violence prevention program.

Carolyn has been an active participant with Grandmothers for Peace and has volunteer at Benevilla since 1984. She regularly gathers signatures to help political candidates have names placed on election ballots and get initiatives on ballots.

Carolyn lives the following scripture: Micah 6:8 … “And what does the LORD require of us but to DO JUSTICE, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God.” Well done Carolyn! Thank you for your service!

Grief Share

Fridays, 1 to 3 p.m.
September 14 through December 21

For people grieving a death of a loved one.

You can come for one or all of the sessions. (You don’t have to commit to all of them). Each session is a complete lesson in and of itself. Come when you can.

“My Bag Project”

Our LGBTQ Equity sub-group of the Social Justice Team would like to introduce Ron Enzweiler, a new-ish member here at Church of the Palms, and his ministry “My Bag Project.” Ron is a member of the LGBTQ Club of Sun City and the Sun City Sewing Club. He was featured in an article in the November 2017 Sunviews Newspaper regarding the work that the Clubs are involved in with helping Eve’s Place for domestic violence victims. You can see the article and a sampling of his work on our bulletin board by King Hall.

In conversation with Ron, we found out that he has a wish list of items he needs for his “My Bag Project” ministry. Plus, he would love to have others, who love to sew, join him in this endeavor.

Here is his list:

  • Broadcloth, Seersucker, Corduroy (not too heavy a weight)
  • Duck (the kind of material that can be easily cut by senior arthritic hands) A little dirty is OK
  • NO upholstery material

Ron does have a contact in central Phoenix for crushed velvet, lace, trim items. If you would like to donate to Ron’s ministry or give him an hour of your time, he would love to have you contact him at 480-225-8231. Ron believes that those who are in transition, or homeless, need to have something of their own to carry their possessions in, besides a trash bag, and we believe the same.

Debby Stinton
Assistant Pastor

Ron Enzweiler "My Bags Project" for Eve's Place, Sun City, Arizona