New 2021 Free Stewardship Resources

Center for Faith & Giving Releases Free 12-Month Stewardship Resources

Rev. Bruce Barkhauer has announced the release of new stewardship resources titled “Created To Be a Steward”. To meet changing circumstances, the Center for Faith and Giving determined that “business as usual” for resourcing stewardship was simply not going to work. The new “dynamic resource” provides fresh installments made each quarter as the year progresses. It is designed to to be relevant in the moment rather than hope we “guessed right” where your congregation finds itself throughout the year. It is intended to keep the stewardship conversation alive throughout the year by providing preaching, teaching and personal practical resources.

Created To Be a Steward

“Created To Be a Steward” is a 12-month stewardship emphasis for congregations that seeks to explore four major themes of biblical stewardship:

  • Self-Care (January – March)
  • Earth Care (April – June)
  • Resource Management (July – September); Gospel
  • Sharing [Evangelism] (October – December)

What is Included?

Each quarter, the free materials will contain:

  1. Three background pieces for sermon preparation
  2. Three companion educational curriculums based on the texts for preaching
  3. A commitment card for that particular theme (self-care, earth care, resource management, gospel sharing)
  4. Additional “experiential” exercises
  5. Links to additional resources and ideas (updated during that quarter)
  6. Worship resources including: prayers, call to worship, and offering and communion meditations
  7.  An entire separate resource of “campaign guidance” meant to help you organize and manage a financial campaign

How Do I Access the Free Resources?

Visit the Center for Faith and Giving website here. When you request the materials you will be given a link to the folders that may be downloaded free of charge.

2021-02-08T16:31:40-06:00Feb 8, 2021|Congregations|0 Comments

FCC Hennessey Receives Faithful Partners Award

First Christian Church Hennessey, Oklahoma received the first “Faithful Partners Award” from Phillips Theological Seminary on January 28, 2021 during the seminary’s Remind & Renew event. It honors the 50+ years of service and giving to Phillips University and Phillips Theological Seminary.

Pictured above with the award are Dona Caulder, FCC ‘s  Pastor Ish Engle and John Peach. Click here to watch the video presentation.

2021-02-03T13:42:08-06:00Feb 3, 2021|Congregations|0 Comments

Four Local DOC Churches Awarded Grants for Meals

Hope is More Than a Meal – Grants Provide Warm Meals for Local Homebound Elderly

The Oklahoma City Community Foundation has awarded $3,200 to the following Disciples of Christ churches that provide home-delivered meals in central Oklahoma:

  • Crown Heights Christian Church
  • New Covenant Christian Church
  • Nicoma Park Christian Church
  • Western Oaks Christian Church

This winter, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation is helping provide warm meals to homebound elderly citizens by awarding $51,600 in grants to 40 area churches and organizations that prepare and deliver mobile meals through Meals on Wheels Oklahoma City. In addition, the Foundation is awarding $5,000 each to Meals on Wheels of Norman and Edmond Mobile Meals to support seniors in their areas.

“This year has been challenging for most of us, but it has been particularly difficult for homebound seniors, who rely on services that provide access to health care, nutrition, recreation and interaction with others,” said Nancy B. Anthony, Oklahoma City Community Foundation president. “We are grateful for our donors, who give the resources to support essential care for the most vulnerable among us.”

Since 2008, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation has distributed more than $450,000 in support of mobile meals programs in central Oklahoma. According to Meals on Wheels of Oklahoma City, one in 12 senior citizens in Oklahoma County lives in poverty, and nearly 16,000 lack consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life. Through the mobile meals programs in Oklahoma City, Norman and Edmond, home-delivered meals are available to all seniors age 60 and older who are unable to leave their homes without assistance or prepare meals due to health limitations regardless of income.

In 2020, Meals on Wheels Oklahoma City volunteers provided nutritious meals, wellness checks and meaningful contact for nearly 1,400 homebound senior citizens living in central Oklahoma who are unable to prepare their own meals.

“Senior hunger has unfortunately been a major issue in Oklahoma County for years, and the coronavirus pandemic has made it even worse,” said Chris Lambert, director of Meals on Wheels Oklahoma City. “Since March, we’ve added nearly 700 seniors to Meals on Wheels, and our meal deliveries have doubled to more than 16,000 meals each month. The generosity shown by the Oklahoma City Community Foundation and our community allows us to bring hope to so many who are isolated from their friends, family and neighbors, and lets them know someone cares. Hope is more than a meal.”

About the Oklahoma City Community Foundation

Founded in 1969, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity that works with donors to create charitable funds that will benefit our community both now and in the future. Learn more about the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.

2021-01-25T15:45:31-06:00Jan 25, 2021|Congregations|0 Comments

Weekend Breakfast Program at Southern Hills CC

“Volunteers work 35 hrs each week.”
by Mary Hirsch

What a year!  With all the misery of 2020, I want to share a shining light of life from the Southern Hills Christian Church (Edmond) Weekend Breakfast program.  These ladies and gentlemen never “closed”!  Before the pandemic began, diners came inside to eat at tables with centerpieces and church members served their breakfasts and sat and visited with those who wanted the company. When the pandemic hit, alternate ways to serve breakfast had to be found so this group just bagged the breakfasts (and lunch and dinner sandwiches) and met people outside to share the food.  Everyone is longing for a return to those pre-pandemic days!

Church member Georgia Shaw spearheads this program which she started in September 2018.  She requested permission from the Leadership Council,   donations from our members, and was off.   In addition to Georgia’s leadership, volunteers work 35 hours each week purchasing food and supplies, and preparing, serving and cleaning up for Saturday and Sunday morning breakfasts.   We are averaging about 35 guests each day and have had as many as 51!

We are so thankful to our friends and members who have made generous donations to the program.  We also feel fortunate to have received several grants from the Oklahoma Disciples Foundation to help in the purchase of a commercial size refrigerator and freezer and to replace the church’s 40 year old dishwashers! 

L-R: Kate Christie, Carolyn Christie (seated), Kay Ferris, Georgia Shaw, Pat Fennell

2021-01-11T14:04:18-06:00Jan 11, 2021|Congregations|0 Comments

Congregations Foster Feet

Foster Feet, a ministry of Central Christian Church in  Enid, recently donated 63 pairs shoes and socks  to First Christian Church Midwest City to support  their “Christmas for Others” program. Every Christmas, for the past 50 years, “Christmas for Others” has provided clothing, shoes and other necessities to families in the Midwest City area. This year, they will serve 60 families with over 200 family members. In 2020, Foster Feet will have provided over 900 new pair of shoes primarily to children ages 4 to 17 in Garfield as well as several other counties in Oklahoma.

In 2020, the Oklahoma Disciples Foundation provided grants to both of these churches for these ministries. This is a good example of how Disciples of Christ churches in Oklahoma, with the help of the Oklahoma Disciples Foundation and the Christian Church in Oklahoma, make a difference by working together.

2020-12-07T14:09:16-06:00Dec 7, 2020|Congregations, Mission|1 Comment

Infographic of COVID-19 Congregational Impact

Infographic of COVID-19 Congregational Impact Survey by Pension Fund

In September and October of 2020, the Pension Fund did a survey of congregations they serve across the country concerning COVID and its impact on the congregation and the community.  There were eight hundred and eight completed surveys.  Here is the infographic of the final survey results which you might find interesting.

Click here to download a pdf document of the infographic.

2020-11-17T08:57:40-06:00Nov 17, 2020|Clergy News, Congregations|Comments Off on Infographic of COVID-19 Congregational Impact

Next DRYG: October 28

Reconnect with God

Digital Regional Youth Group began last month (Sept 23rd) as five congregations met up with Regional Youth Council members.  The fall theme, Reconnect with God, invites Chi Rho, CYF, and their adult sponsors to consider the ways they are actively meeting God through spiritual practices, music, service, and community.  We had 24 participants in September.  Let’s make it 45 or more this month.

There is time to chat, a game or two, and time with the speaker.  There is a short closing worship.  Join DRYG this month!

Digital Regional Youth Group

6:30pm – 8pm

October 28: Music

November 18: Service

December 16: Community

Youth Leaders Email Rev. Michael Davison to RSVP to receive the link for DRYG.

2020-10-06T11:57:02-05:00Oct 6, 2020|Congregations, Youth|Comments Off on Next DRYG: October 28

Virtual Regional Assembly Replay

Rev. April Johnson and Rev. Dr. Nancy Pittman offered insight and challenge to all that participated in our Virtual Regional Assembly.

Oklahoma Disciples gathered on Sept 26 for our Virtual Regional Assembly from 9am-1pm.  During VRA, there were 225 unique connections to the event.  Voting delegates, clergy, and Regional Board members participated through the VRA Zoom and the event was streaming live to the Region’s Youtube channel.

Our Regional Minister, Rev. Pamela Holt’s reflection about the State of the Regional Church focused on what has happened since Covid-19 changed the ways congregational ministry and regional ministry live and love like Jesus.

You can replay all of VRA or portions of Virtual Regional Assembly using the links for the Region’s Youtube and Vimeo channels.

We Give Thanks

It takes many, many people to produce Regional Assembly (virtual or in person) and we pause to offer our thanks for their work.

Rev. Colton Lott who worked with the original Leadership Training School team to organize the workshops and made arrangements with our VRA Bible Lecturer, Rev. April Johnson.

Rev. Joshua Bell who planned and organized the VRA Worship service.  Rev. Bell collaborated with all those that led worship during VRA and created the Lord’s Prayer chorus of voices for worship.

Rev. Tom Stanley served as our Regional Moderator.  Tom worked with our Regional Minister, Rev. Pamela Holt, and the Regional Board to make the decisions and changes necessary to hold Virtual Regional Assembly.

Jacque Bass as she begins her service as the Regional Moderator.

Ms. Ellen Beer Spleth, Executive Assistant, who prepared all the documents for VRA, managed the VRA webpage, sent many emails, made calls, and kept us on schedule.

We give thanks to the Tech Team that made VRA possible:
Top Left: Chuck Marshall (Southern Hills Christian Church)
Top Right: Jeff Champeau (First Christian Church Norman)
Bottom Right: Rev. Michael Davison, Associate Regional Minister
Not pictured: Travis Carlson (First Christian Church Chickasha)

2020-10-07T11:00:56-05:00Oct 6, 2020|Congregations|Comments Off on Virtual Regional Assembly Replay

Sept 23: Digital Regional Youth Group Begins

Digital Regional Youth Group Logo

Like all our congregations and clergy, the Regional Youth Council is improvising and adapting to offer opportunities for the Region’s youth groups to play, pray, worship, study, and serve.  This fall, RYC is offering four digital youth group gatherings for Chi Rho and CYF on the theme, Reconnect with God.

These monthly gatherings will last 90 minutes and meet via Zoom.  To maintain the security of our meetings we ask youth group leaders will need to register.  Email Michael Davison for more information.

DRYG (Digital Regional Youth Group) kicks off Sept 23rd, with the focus on spiritual practice to reconnect with God.  Our Guests are: Rev. Nancy Brink and Andra Moran.

DRYG is planned and led by the Regional Youth Council.

Q: How do I get my group to DRYG (digital regional youth group)?

A: To access DRYG youth group leaders need to email Rev. Michael Davison who will send them connection information to share with their group(s).

Upcoming Dates & Theme

October 28: Music
November 18: Service
December 16: Community

Schedule for DRYG

6:25pm: Digital Room Opens
6:30: The Fun Begins!
7:55: Preview Next Month
8:00: We bid you goodnight

Rev. Nancy Brink
Rev. Nancy BrinkGuest Speaker
Rev. Nancy E. Brink, the Donna (Ford) and Fahmy Attallah Endowed Director of Church Relations at Chapman University.

Rev. Brink will talk about centering prayer and offer other practices youth might explore. 

Andra Moran
Andra MoranMusical Guest
Andra Moran lives in Nashville, Tennessee where she works as a songwriter, singer, author, worship designer and freelance touring musician in a variety of ecumenical settings. In addition to her work in concert and commissioned music, Andra is a consultant in worship design, modern liturgical music and leadership in churches and denominational conferences across the country. She is regularly engaged as a clinician and workshop leader, teaching songwriting and creative expression in colleges and retreat centers. Currently, Andra tours and writes full time, and works part time on the staff of Woodmont Christian Church in Nashville as the Creative Director and worship pastor. She has a four year old daughter named after the heirloom lilies in that bloom in her garden.
2020-09-10T07:20:04-05:00Sep 10, 2020|Congregations, Youth|Comments Off on Sept 23: Digital Regional Youth Group Begins

Reconciliation Grant Helps Fund FCC Stroud’s Children’s Ministry

Funding Provides New Children & Youth Coordinator

FCC Stroud is benefiting from two grants and finding ways to serve its community. One grant was received from the Oklahoma Region’s Faith in Action Reconciliation grant program. The Oklahoma Disciples Foundation provided a second grant with funding from four of its endowments including Children, Youth & Young Adults, Education of Clergy & Laity, Pastoral Support, and United Ministries for Higher Education.

Using the two grants, FCC Stroud called Israel Ragle to serve as Children & Youth Coordinator, beginning her ministry on August 1, 2020. Israel is the mother of three children and is a student at the University of Central Oklahoma.

Back-to-School Care Packages Serve Local Children During the Pandemic

Senior Minister Paul Ragle said, “Israel shared with us when we interviewed her as a candidate for the position that ministry would look a lot different during these times of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

One of the very first ministry projects Israel undertook was to organize the congregation to share Back-to-School Care Packages with the children in the congregation’s sphere of influence. Members of the congregation donated school supplies, gifts (snacks & toys), and notes of encouragement as the kids were heading back to their classrooms.

FCC Stroud Reconciliation-1
FCC Stroud Reconciliation 3
FCC Stroud Reconciliation-4
2020-09-09T12:14:33-05:00Sep 9, 2020|Congregations|Comments Off on Reconciliation Grant Helps Fund FCC Stroud’s Children’s Ministry