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Thursday, April 18, 2024

~~~ Click here for this Sunday's bulletin ~~~

Bulletin available on Friday

Joe Zarro in the pulpit

This Sunday is Candidate Sunday!

With great pleasure, the RUCC Board announces a special congregational meeting on April 21 to vote on calling Reverend Joe Zarro as the next settled pastor of Redlands United Church of Christ. Rev. Joe will lead our worship that day and give his candidate sermon. 

Immediately following the service, we will meet to vote on the call. Per our bylaws, we need at least two-thirds of covenanting members, or 87 votes, to vote in the affirmative. We hope everyone will be there in person, but if you are not able to be there, please use the information in the special edition of The View to learn more about Rev. Joe, then cast an absentee ballot. The ballot form is online at

More information is here in the Special Edition of The View.

Special Potluck Celebration Sunday, April 21

You are invited to a potluck lunch following the special congregational meeting on Sunday, April 21st. Please bring a dish to share and help us welcome Rev. Joe Zarro and his family to RUCC!

Click this link to let us know what you’re bringing:

A message from Rev. Joe for Candidate Sunday

April 21, 2024 ~ Fourth Sunday of Easter and Candidate Sunday ~ "Parable of the Sequoia Seed"

I’m looking forward to worshipping with you this Sunday on Earth Day weekend and sharing one of my favorite parables: the Parable of the Mustard Seed. In it, Jesus tells us the kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that grows until the birds of the air can make nests in the branches. Jesus asks us to see God’s work not as something descending complete from heaven, but rather something that grows steadily from the earth.

The sermon and children’s circle message will focus on a different type of seed: the pinecones of the Great Sequoia tree. Like the parable of the mustard seed, the sermon “Parable of the Sequoia Seed” will look for inspiration and wisdom in the life cycle of the Sequoia, which needs wildfires and snowstorms to reproduce. I will, of course, also speak to why I wish to serve Redlands UCC as its next pastor and how a small group of faithful, committed people can be the seeds of change and growth in the world. Hope to meet you on Sunday! 

Sunday's Scripture:

Mark 4:30 - 32

Concerns / Prayers:

  • Barbie & Loring's daughter Sarah Averette-Phillips is recovering from recent surgery.
  • Craig Wesson had a mild heart attack but has been able to be back in church.
  • Charlie Seek is back home and doing better following kidney surgery.  
  • Dianne Landeros' cousin Monty Montano passed from life to Life on 3/26/24.
  • Coralyn’s niece, Shannon, with 20 percent heart function after COVID. 
  • Judith Gregory requests prayers for her granddaughter Allyson and Allyson’s newborn baby Paisley. Judith is being tested for blood clots in her legs.
  • Jolene Barrow's brother Andrew will receive kidney surgery in April.  
  • We continue to hold in our prayers the people of Ukraine, the Middle East, and wherever war and violence prevail. 
  • Tom Medlicott recovering from a broken neck.  
  • Lori Glass is still having throat problems and has not yet received a referral to ENT to get a diagnosis. 
  • Rick and Georgia Sforza request prayers for the family, Rick’s mother passed.
  • Jayne Miller requests prayers for the healing of her husband Tom's wound.   
  • Marla and Richard Steffen and family.
  • Inez Diggs' son Shelton is recovering from rotator cuff surgery and her niece Kelly Graham was diagnosed with breast cancer. 

Ongoing Concerns:

Karen & Daniella

Jerry Andrews

Stephen Arth

Scott Ault

Dave, brother of Johanna Ballard

Bill Buchanan

Denise Cain

Cousin of Rick Cruz

Janet Edwards

Norma Erickson

Rev. John Forney

Katia Hage

Mary Lou Haney

Beki Hill

Harriet Holt, Beki Hill's mother

Jules Rattray’s sister, Jenny

Amber McGuigan

Cynthia McGuigan

Don Don and Scott Mong

Floyd Orr

Ryan and Evan Paul

Julie Phillips

Jake Pomeroy

Dick Ault's Brother-in-law, Charles Proctor

Dan Schoepf, Michael Schoepf

Spencer, friend of Stacey Greene

Robert Silver

Rick Sforza's father Frank

Nancy Ternasky

Arika Torres

Beth Welsh


Getting comfortable with the tech at church - continues on Monday, April 22

It’s not too late to join!

This class is for everyone who would like help with all the technology here at RUCC. Led by Dan Abushanab, this course will help us all become more familiar with Teams, Forms, QR Codes, Screen sharing and more!
  • Week 2 (April 22): Document collaboration. Co-editing documents in channels, sharing links. OneNote vs. Word, benefits of each.
  • Week 3 (May 6): Scheduling and hosting meetings in Teams and using the room systems available at the church.
  • Week 4 (May 13): More advanced tools. Gathering content in Forms, making a QR code, adding new tabs to channels
Classes meet in the Founders Room starting at 6 p.m. (Note the earlier start time)

Caring for Kin -

Just TWO MORE WEEKS (April 21 and 28) to bring in your donations for dogs and cats while they are waiting to find loving homes.

Thank you for your generosity. The Yucaipa Animal Placement Society (YAPS), the Benevolent Animal Rescue Committee (BARC), and the Redlands Animal Shelter have asked for the following donations:....

Food for dogs and cats

Beds and bedding





Towels & blankets - used but clean

Grooming items

Dish soap

ALSO …. If you are interested in adopting a pet, you may wish to take a look at the websites for these organizations to see some of the animals who need homes.

We still need a Youth Director!

This may be only a part-time position, but it is important to our church's mission. The Youth Director plays a key role in helping our young people understand why RUCC's values and theology are important to them as they prepare to go out in the world.

......................~~ The RUCC Personnel Committee

Earth Day is too important for just one day!

earth day Redlands

From the RUCC Environmental Justice Team

Earth Day 2024 is almost here!

Officially, Earth Day takes place on April 22, 2024, but there’s too much going on and too much work to be done, to dedicate just one day to the planet. You can find information about Earth Day events worldwide, the history of Earth Day, and the work of EARTHDAY.ORG, the global coordinator of Earth Day at:


Redlands will celebrate Earth Day with a day of climate action on Saturday, April 20, 2024. The celebration will include hands-on projects, learning opportunities, even a chance to get stuff repaired for free! The fun begins at 9:00 a.m. and lasts into the afternoon. For a list of projects with links to further information and registration, go to For more information about activities and events taking place on Redlands’ day of climate action go to


Meanwhile, the second annual United Church of Christ Earth Summit, hosted by the Church of Christ at Dartmouth College, will take place beginning at 10:00 a.m. Pacific time, Saturday, April 20, 2024. Author and activist Bill McKibben will be the keynote speaker and the summit will be live-streamed via Zoom. For more information and registration, go to:

Those who register will receive a link to a recording of the summit, so you can take part in activities in Redlands and watch the recording of the UCC Earth Summit afterwards.


Creation Celebration 2024: The RUCC Family Nature Fair - April 27

It’s time to get ready for the 3rd Annual RUCC Family Nature Fair! Fun and games on the patio as we celebrate our natural world.


Date: Saturday April 27 Time: 10 a.m. to noon

Kids go from station to station, adding stickers to their Nature Passports. Here is just a partial list of fun stations we have planned for this year’s Fair:

  • Tumbling in the Garden with Joette and Foundations Gymnastics.
  • Sierra Club: Clean Transportation For All.
  • Go on a guided Nature Walk with Gretchen Andrews in our gardens.
  • Decorate your own small plant pots and then plant some seeds and seedlings. Take them home to watch them grow!
  • ...and More!

Please follow this link to RSVP and to learn all the fun details:

Racial justice reflection of the week

Pew Research asked which is the bigger problem regarding racial discrimination. 53% said people NOT seeing discrimination where it really DOES exist is the bigger problem. 45% said people SEEING discrimination where it really DOESN’T exist is the larger issue.


Views on this changed between 2019 and 2023. Previously, it was 57% to 42%; the gap narrowed from 15 to 8 percentage points.


Americans’ views differed greatly by race and ethnicity: 88% of Black adults say people overlooking real discrimination is the bigger problem, followed by Asian (66%), Hispanic (58%), and White (45%).



Annual Mayor's Prayer Breakfast on May 2

Each year, the Redlands Area Interfaith Council (RAIC) organizes the Mayor's Prayer Breakfast to coincide with the National Day of Prayer. This year's Breakfast will be held on Thursday, May 2 at 7 a.m. at the Orton Center, University of Redlands, 1250 E. Brockton Ave, Redlands. This is not a political event; rather it is a way of appreciating the rich religious diversity in our community. RUCC is one of many religious institutions that make up RAIC.

The program will feature music and speakers from a variety of different faith traditions in Redlands. Tickets are $20 per person. Make your check payable to RAIC. Reservations should be made before April 28.

Download the flyer here to make your reservation.

RUCC Children and Youth: Trip to the Y Circus May 5

RUCC Children and Youth and their caregivers are invited to join us at the Y Circus Sunday, May 5, at 3:00 p.m. This performance features our own Cai Sternberg and Daniella Kirchner-Rose!  We have a block of seats available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Please contact and let me know the total number of adults and children 12th grade and younger in your group.

Child and Youth tickets are compliments of the RUCC Youth and Children's Activities budget; we invite you to reimburse us for your adult tickets if you have the means to do so. Use this link to give $20 per adult ticket to the Youth and Children's Activities budget.

Next Book Group meeting is May 5

The RUCC Book Group will discuss The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store by James McBride on May 5, in the Founders Room. The discussion leaders will be Susan Matthews and Karen Walsh. The time has changed to 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., as there will be a Quarterly RUCC meeting on May 5 following the church service. This will not be a potluck, so the Book Group may be able to start a little earlier if the meeting finishes earlier.

“A murder mystery locked inside a Great American Novel . . . Charming, smart, heart-blistering, and heart-healing.” —Danez Smith, The New York Times Book Review

“We all need—we all deserve—this vibrant, love-affirming novel that bounds over any difference that claims to separate us.” —Ron Charles, The Washington Post

From James McBride, author of the bestselling Oprah’s Book Club pick Deacon King Kong and the National Book Award–winning The Good Lord Bird, a novel about small-town secrets and the people who keep them.

(Amazon reviews)

REVISED RUCC Book Group Schedule 2024:

May 5: The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store by James McBride. Presenters: Susan Matthews and Karen Walsh


June 2Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan. Presenter: Toni Momberger


July 7The Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno Garcia. Presenter: Charletta Campfield 

August 4The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. Presenter: Janet Chandler

Sept. 1: We Should Not Be Friends by Will Schwalbe. Presenter: Mark Leggett

Oct. 6The Splendid and the Vile by Eric Larson. Presenter: Judith Ashton

Nov. 3: The Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler. Presenter: Diana Sommer / tie-in with Heather King’s grant study

Dec. 1, An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the US by Roxanne Dunbar- Ortiz. Presenter: TBD

Blood Drive - May 15

Our Second Annual RUCC Blood Drive will be in Covenant Hall on May 15th. The need for all blood types is acute right now. Last year we had a larger-than-expected number of donations and I hope this year we can do even better.

It helps if you can make an appointment—see the attached flyer for how to do that—but walk-ins are always welcome. 

If you have any questions, ask me at church or call me. Thanks for your support!

  —Kerry Dunn

Wider Ministries seeks your input about donations by May 19

If you know a worthwhile charitable organization to which the church should consider giving a donation, RUCC Wider Ministries wants to hear from you! There were many outstanding groups represented at last month’s Caring Fair. Wider Ministries donations must go outside of RUCC to other deserving groups. Donation criteria are 1) Designation as a 501 (c ) (3) charitable organization 2) Support for the mission and values of RUCC and 3) A relationship with RUCC in some way, such as participating in our recent Caring Fair, or being a group that a RUCC member is involved with. 

You can find donation suggestion forms by clicking HERE, or on the Wider Ministries Bulletin Board, where you can also find Thank You letters to RUCC from many of the organizations we help. Donation forms may be turned into Kathie Blakley (, Wider Ministries area leader, or to any member of the Wider Ministries group.

The deadline is May 19, which is the next Wider Ministries Quarterly Meeting.

Western Regional Youth Event

Western Regional Youth Event (WRYE) is an event that happens every four to six years. Current 6th graders through current 12th graders in the Western half of the United States come together for music, inspirational speakers, direct service opportunities, workshops, games, and fun.


This year, happily, we have six RUCC Youth who will attend this great event!


We’ll be doing a few fundraisers in the coming months to help cover the cost of this trip: keep an eye out for these opportunities, and please be generous!


  • April 22, May 6, 13 - Getting comfortable with technology series of classes
  • April 20 - Day of Climate Action (see article above)
  • April 21 - Candidate service with Rev. Joe Zarro followed by congregational meeting to vote on calling him as RUCC's next settled pastor
  • April 27 - 3rd Annual RUCC Family Nature Fair
  • May 2 - Mayor's Prayer Breakfast at U of R (See article above)
  • May 4 - Sacred Saturday
  • May 7 - Y-Circus (see article above)
  • May 15 - Blood Drive 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at RUCC. To make an appointment, call 1-800-879-4484, or visit
  • May 19 - Wider Ministries Quarterly Meeting to approve donations (see article above)
  • June 9 - 10 - Southern California Nevada Conference of the UCC Annual Gathering at Chapman University and on line
  • June 23 - 27 - Western Regional Youth Event

The church calendar is found at

Click on "calendar" in the red banner near the top of the page

This Week at Redlands United Church of Christ

Sunday, April 21 - Candidate Sunday

  • 9:20 a.m. - Seekers will not meet this Sunday
  • 9:30 a.m. - Kids' Zone
  • 10:30 a.m. - Worship service
  • 11:30 a.m.Congregational meeting to vote on calling Rev. Joe Zarro as settled pastor, followed by a celebratory potluck in Covenant Hall.

Monday, April 22

  • 6:00 p.m. Session 2 of "Getting Comfortable with Tech at Church" Topic: Document collaboration. Co-editing documents in channels, sharing links. OneNote vs. Word, benefits of each.

Tuesday, April 23

Wednesday, April 24

  • 6:00 p.m. - Handbells Rehearsal
  • 7:00 p.m. - Choir Rehearsal

Thursday, April 25

Friday, April 26

Saturday April 27

  • RUCC Family Nature Fair (see article above)

Sunday, April 28

  • 9:20 a.m. - Seekers
  • 9:30 a.m. - Kids' Zone
  • 10:30 a.m. - Worship service
  • 11:30 a.m. Fellowship/Coffee hour in Covenant Hall

RUCC Staff

Interim Pastor: Rev. Elaine Schoepf

Honorary Minister of Arts and Worship:  Rev. Erin Beardemphl

Music Director: David Wells

Associate Music Director: Sophia Ohanian

Children's Education Director: Susi Jacobsen

Director of Youth Ministries: Vacant

Office and Property Manager: Veronica Bermudez

Child Care: Caitlin Walsh



Phone: 909-793-3520


Staff and Other Emails,