Welcome to Pilgrim Faith United Church of Christ in Oak Lawn, IL

rainbowcommawithwordsWelcome to Pilgrim Faith United Church of Christ in Oak Lawn, an Open and Affirming congregation. No matter who you are or where you are on your spiritual journey, our 340-member congregation welcomes you.  Explore this site to find out what we’re all about. We hope you will be inspired by what you see and join us for worship at 9:30 a.m. Sunday in our historic Oak Lawn, Illinois church. We promise you will find a progressive church full of people dedicated to living our mission statement every day: Welcoming All, Worshiping God, Working Together to Serve Others. . A nursery is provided for children younger than 3 during worship. Children ages 3 years through 8th grade are invited to attend Sunday School during the last half of the service. Our service is an inspirational, uplifting experience open to anyone of any faith and those who are searching. Dress as casual or formal as you like – just come experience our welcoming church!

See our Facebook page for photos of many of our events! (You don’t need to join Facebook to see our photos and news.)

Worship at 9:30 am each Sunday     Office hours: 9:00-2:00 Mon-Fri    708-422-4200

“Star Word” on January 7

On January 7 you will get a “Star Word,” a special rock from the beach at Tower Hill on which the Deacons have
put a star and a special word. We invite you to receive that word as a gift and ponder all year what it means for your
life. We believe this word will lead you to understand something God wants you to know!

On February 25, we will have a special Lenten potluck lunch and program after church at which we will share with
each other about our special star words mean to us. We will include the children in this activity so we hope they will get a “Star Word” on January 7. God has spoken to many of us through our past “Star Words” in way that altered our lives. Get your word in 2018 and listen for God’s message to you!

Join the 2018 Biggest Loser Contest!

Do you want to start 2018 off looking and feeling your best? Join the Pilgrim Faith Wellness Ministry’s Biggest Loser Contest! Cash prizes will be awarded for 1st through 5th place, based on the percentage of weight lost.

The cost is $20 per person. Starting weights must be received by 9 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 7. The final weigh-in will be Sunday, March 18. It is open to everyone; you do not have to be a church member to play.

Read all the details are here. You can register here.  If you have any questions, please email pfwellness@gmail.com or call (708) 422-4200.

Winter Bible Study Begins January 9

If you’ve got some “Krazy Kinfolk,” you are not alone. The Bible has a whole raft of families who were pretty
messed up! Animosity, jealousy, violence, infidelity, discord and pain — it’s all right there in the Bible
stories. We’ll spend five weeks exploring how we understand and deal with all the challenges in our
families. Even if your family is perfect, maybe you can help the rest of us! The class will meet for five weeks on Tuesday evenings 7:00-8:15 starting January 9, through February 6, in the lounge. (Enter through the courtyard on 51st Avenue.)

Winter Wellness Retreat – January 13

The Pilgrim Faith Wellness Committee invites all adults (women and men) and their friends to the first Winter Wellness Retreat. Our theme will be “New Year, Healthy You!” Join us for a day of learning about many different aspects of wellness – emotional, physical, spiritual and more! The retreat will be from 10am—3pm on Saturday, January 13, at Pilgrim Faith. The cost is $20, which includes lunch. Please register by Sunday, Jan. 7. The link to register will be on the church’s Facebook page, or you can go to http://bit.ly/2zpZZge. Registrations forms will be at the church. If you have any questions, please contact Libby Langevin on Facebook or at libbylangevin@gmail.com;

or Jacqui Cook on Facebook or at Jacqueline.k.cook@gmail.com, or you can talk to them at coffee hour. Please invite your friends and family and join your fellow Wellness Warriors for this special event to kick off the new year!

W.I.S.H. Joins Wellness Retreat on Saturday, January 13

The January W.I.S.H. meeting will not be held on its usual day and time. Instead, the ladies of W.I.S.H. are invited to
take part in the first Pilgrim Faith Wellness Retreat! The retreat will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan.
13, at Pilgrim Faith. It will feature speakers and activities focusing on all aspects of wellness – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and more.

The cost is $20 and includes lunch. You can register at the link on the Pilgrim Faith Facebook page (look under “Events”) or at the Wellness table during coffee hour.

Game Night – January 27 at 6:00 p.m.

The CE Board is hosting Game Night for young and old on Saturday, Jan. 21, at 6 p.m. in Colonial Hall. Bring some friends and your favorite board or card game or come by yourself and join in the fun! Light refreshments will be served. A great way to escape those winter blues.

Blessing of Young Children at Candlemas – January 28

For all children under age 5, on January 28 we will have a special time in our 9:30 worship service for parents to bring their children who are younger than five for a blessing of the children. Each family will also light a candle for their child. Families are asked to meet at the front of sanctuary at 9:15.

We hope all the families with young children will be here for this special service. Grandparents and other relatives are invited to sit with family. Please let the office or Pastor Peggy know if you have friends or family with young children who might like to be included in this service. They do not have to be members of this church to bring their children for a Candlemas blessing.

Hot Topics Discussion January 28 – Beyond Homeless Shelters

Pilgrim Faith’s Hot Topics discussion group provides an opportunity to discuss in a caring Christian way your thoughts on issues facing our world.

The next Hot Topics discussion will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, January 28, in the church lounge. At that time representatives from the Community Renewal Society (CRS) will join us to discuss with us how our congregation might help remove barriers that keep homeless from be-come becoming self-sufficient and other CRS initiatives.

2018 Book Club

The Pilgrim Faith Book Club had a great 2017 reading list and we hope to start 2018 with a list of meetings and book selections that we will all enjoy and lead to great discus-sions. The Book Club is open to all the women of the church. I hope to see many new members during the com-ing year. Listed below are the next five books.

January 28: “Boys in the Boat” by Daniel James Brown

February 25: “The Whistler” by John Grisham

March 18: “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah

April 22: “Travel Guide to Heaven” by Anthony DeStefano

May 20: “The Wager” by Allen Kent

On My Mind: Facing The Future

As I prepare to retire in June and our church begins to plan for future, we are wading through a bubbly brew of excitement, sadness, hope, fear and anticipation.

Change is often hard. You are used to me and the way I do things, even when you wish I’d do it differently! We’ve been together through heaven and hell and held each other up. Some have been hoping I’d be here for their wedding or funeral or other celebrations or trying times. You probably know just what I will say and have come to count on that. Saying goodbye and welcoming another pastor will be hard for many.

Change is also often invigorating. We are a healthy, vital church because we are always changing, starting new min-istries, tweaking the old and laying other efforts to rest. The opportunity to work together with a new leader with new ideas and gifts can help Pilgrim Faith reach new people and bring God’s love to a changing world in exciting ways. Your openness to where God leads will move you forward in faith. Our Pilgrim Faith Mission Statement says “We will face the future together in fellowship.” That is one of our great strengths as a church. We not only worship and work together, we are really good at fellowship! We take time to get to know each other. We go on retreats together and eat lunches and dinners together and talk about silly things and important things. We pray for each other and lend a listening ear and a helping hand. It’s more than friendship. It is Christian fellowship, with the Spirit of Christ in our midst.

When you face the future together in fellowship God will hold you together and show you what to do. God’s future is good! So stick with each other and stick with God, while continuing to welcome others into the fellowship. That will lead you to God’s blessed future.

Pastor Peggy McClanahan