South Whidbey churches list weekend events

The Interfaith Amigos — Sheik Jamal Rahman, Pastor Don Mackenzie and Rabbi Ted Falcon — will lead an interfaith peace vigil next week in Freeland. - Mark Reden photo
The Interfaith Amigos — Sheik Jamal Rahman, Pastor Don Mackenzie and Rabbi Ted Falcon — will lead an interfaith peace vigil next week in Freeland.
— image credit: Mark Reden photo

Speakers share lessons of Yom Kippur

Teachings of the Jewish faith are among the sources of inspiration for Unitarian Universalism. At the Sunday service for the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Whidbey Island, guest speakers Katlaina Rayne and Jerome Rosen of the Whidbey Jewish community will reflect on the lessons of Yom Kippur. Gloria Ferry Brennan will be the special musician.

All are welcome, values-based children’s religious exploration classes and childcare will be provided. The service is at 10 a.m. at 20103 Highway 525, just north of Freeland. Check for more information.

Forum highlights our hidden needs

“The Hidden Needs of South and Central Whidbey” is the focus of the adult forum at Trinity Lutheran Church in Freeland on Sunday.

Representatives from Good Cheer Food Bank, the South Whidbey Family Resource Center, Ryan’s House, and Gifts from the Heart Food Bank in Greenbank and Coupeville will speak about social-service needs in area communities. Whidbey Island is known for its lovely vacation homes and as a travel destination, but the continuing recession has pushed more families into need.

The forum starts at 9:30 a.m. in the church’s Fireside room, and all are welcome.

Pastor Wenzek togive sermon at SWCC

Many Christians want their fellowship to emulate the early church. So what was it like during the earliest days of Christianity? Pastor Darrell Wenzek will give the sermon Sunday morning at South Whidbey Community Church, on the topic: “The Church at Jerusalem, Part 1,” based on Acts, chapter 2.

Morning worship begins at 10 and is preceded by an adult learning forum at 9 a.m., with Stan Walker leading an inductive study into Paul’s Letter to the Church at Ephesus and Art Angst leading a study into the Gospel of Luke. These are open classes where everyone is invited.

South Whidbey Community Church provides a unique church experience in a historical setting, with traditional worship and hymns in a friendly, informal atmosphere.

All SWCC sermons and special adult forum lectures are recorded, and copies on CD-R or e-mailed as Windows audio attachments may be obtained by calling the church at 221-1220.

South Whidbey Community Church is a local independent, non-denominational church that adheres to the National Association of Evangelical’s Statement of Faith. It is open to everyone and gathers for worship each Sunday at the Deer Lagoon Grange, 5142 Bayview Road.

For further information about the church and services, call 221-1220.

‘Order Up!’ is topic at Unity of Whidbey

Rev. Patty Becker will give the talk “Order Up!” at Unity of Whidbey on Sunday.

In the Unity philosophy, it is taught that thoughts are things, and through our thought we participate in the creative process responsible for the out-picturing of our lives. What a lot of power that is. And yet, we often feel powerless when our lives seem out of control. There is a process and an order that propels us toward our heart’s desires that often get overlooked.

Becker will refresh the harmonizing principles that support successful living.

Talia Toni Marcus will provide the music, and the platform assistant will be Karen McInerney.

The service is at 10 a.m. and all are welcome. Unity of Whidbey is located

in its new chapel at 5671 Crawford Road in Langley.

Office hours at the church are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

See the Unity Web site at for more info.

Readings on Sunday will examine ‘Matter’

At the next Christian Science service, through readings from the Bible and “Science and Health,” the topic of “Matter” will be examined in order to clarify why you do not need to accept limitations.

“Are ye so foolish? Having begun in the Sprit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” (Galatians 3:3).

“Theology and physics teach that both Spirit and matter are real and good, whereas the fact is that Spirit is good and real, and matter is Spirit’s opposite” (“Science and Health”).

All are invited to join in this study of our true spiritual identity at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 19 at 5910 Highway 525 (north of Bayview and across from Useless Bay Road).

Interfaith vigil held at St. Augustine’s

St. Augustine’s in-the-Woods Episcopal Church in Freeland will host the seventh annual Whidbey Interfaith Vigil of Peace and Hope at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23.

This community interfaith gathering originated with St. Augustine’s Episcopal Peace Fellowship, which continues to be the primary organizer of the event.

This year’s interfaith vigil will focus on an interactive presentation by the nationally acclaimed group, the Interfaith Amigos.

The Interfaith Amigos of Seattle are Sheik Jamal Rahman, Rabbi Ted Falcon and Pastor Don Mackenzie. They received national recognition as the subject of a Nov. 24, 2009 New York Times article, “Three Clergymen, Three Faiths, One Friendship”; a CBS News report; and several NPR interviews. Rahman is a Sufi Islamic minister at the Interfaith Community Church in Ballard, Falcon is a Reform rabbi who has founded synagogues in Los Angeles and Seattle, and Mackenzie is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ (Congregational) and has recently retired as pastor of the large University Congregational U.C.C. church.

The rabbi and pastor met and formed a friendship during a Christian-Jewish dialog group. Falcon and Rahman met as board members of a new university — the university never took hold, but their friendship did.

The three clergymen began to meet weekly for spiritual direction, sharing theological reflection and providing mutual support. Their sharing led to a radio show, and travels together to Israel and occupied territories of Palestine. They have given many presentations and workshops throughout the nation, and have co-authored a book, “Getting to the Heart of Interfaith.”

Getting to the heart of interfaith for the Interfaith Amigos has required being direct with each other and confronting their disagreements. One example of this directness was to discuss verses in one another’s holy scripture that they found offensive. At a Tennessee church where the Interfaith Amigos appeared, Rabbi Falcon stated, “We try to honor the truth. This is the truth for you, and this is the truth for me. It may not be reconcilable, but it is important to refuse to make the other the enemy.”

While the primary focus of this year’s Interfaith Vigil of Peace and Hope will be a discussion led by the Interfaith Amigos, the service will also contain Buddhist and Native American spiritual traditions.

The service will begin with a First Nations smudging ceremony to cleanse the sacred space. The service will close with a First Nations release of directions liturgy. Corrine Bayley of Langley United Methodist Church will lead the gathering in the smudging and release of directions liturgy. Following the cleansing of the sanctuary, short peace and justice excerpts from the Qua’ran, Isaiah from Hebrew Bible, Christian Gospel of Matthew, Buddha in the Dhammapada and the Hindu Taittiriya Upanishad will be read from the pews.

Next, the One Drop Zen Buddhist community of Freeland will offer a meditation and lead the gathering in a sutra. As in previous interfaith vigils, Karl Olsen of the Brothers Four will lead the gathering in song.

There will be beverages and cookies in the church undercroft immediately following the service. This will allow for further interfaith discussions with the Interfaith Amigos.

Island churches, faith communities and peace groups involved in the vigil planning and participation are the Tahoma One Drop Zen Buddhist Monastery, Langley United Methodist Church, St. Hubert’s Catholic Church, Trinity Lutheran Church, Whidbey Friends Worship Group (Quakers), St. Augustine’s Episcopal Peace Fellowship, and the Unitarian Universalists.

Interfaith Council to spotlight homeless

The Interfaith Council of Whidbey Island will host a conference today on helping the needy in the community at Family Bible Church.

The conference is 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Across the country, people of faith have joined together to provide shelter, meals and guidance for those suffering from the downturn in the economy. Islanders are invited to come, have coffee and listen to guest speaker Jim Cozad of the Interfaith Council in Bellingham speak on how his group has partnered with the Opportunity Council to help the homeless in their community.

All are welcome to come and hear of the need in our own community and join hands as people putting faith into action.

Family Bible Church is located at 2760 Heller Road. Lunch will be served; RSVP with Hap Fakkema at 360-675-0759.

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