You're invited to grow your faith through mission and outreach! Growing support through local, national, and international efforts.
Youth and adults from St. Paul’s UCC support Feed My Starving Children, a non-profit Christian organization which packs meals formulated especially for starving children around the world and when disaster relief is needed. Volunteers help several times of year and our number of volunteers for this ministry is growing.
This year we will gather on Sunday, October 14th at 1:00 PM. Please click here for more information.
Each summer, as a member of a local group of churches organized as the Interfaith Builders, St. Paul’s UCC participates in a “build” to help meet housing needs for residents of our city. We raise funds, build and cook for volunteers as a way of supporting this outstanding mission program. H4H makes a significant difference for every family that benefits from this affordable housing mission program. This year we worked with several other churches on a new build in Saint Paul during August. Next year, come join in the fun and help us provide low cost, stable housing for people in need. Construction experience isn't necessary, just a desire to help provide a good home for someone, a stable environment for children, and stability in the neighborhood. Join us Sunday, September 9th for our Rally Sunday/Mission Fest, our major fundraiser for Habitat for Humanity.
Guided by Christ’s example, the Saint Paul Area Council of Churches (SPACC) builds a more just and compassionate society. We connect congregations, faith communities and civic organizations to overcome poverty, promote peace and dismantle racism and other barriers that divide our community. St. Paul’s UCC generously support many mission program through SPACC and you may learn more about this great organization at www.spacc.org
Our congregation extends its ministry through our national setting of the United Church of Christ by contributing financially to Our Church's Wider Mission (OCWM). We also support all five special offerings to include: Neighbors in Need, One Great Hour of Sharing, Strengthen the Church, Just Peace, and the Christmas Fund.Through our OCWM commitment, we make a difference nationally and internationally. Learn more about our wider church by visiting www.ucc.org
The concepts of both Mission and Ministry apply to ourselves as well as to others. Sometimes, short-term and longer-term issues arise that can impact our faith journeys and require us to seek a place away from the world of many distractions. One sanctuary available to us, just an hour or two drive from the Twin Cities, is the ARC Retreat Center. Here is a description of the center quoted directly from the ARC website: "ARC (Action, Reflection, Celebration), is a retreat center operated by a residential community, rooted in Christian tradition, emphasizing the values of simplicity, justice and healing, mercy and prayer, serving individuals and groups seeking time apart, rest and spiritual renewal."
As one expression of our congregational Lenten Sabbath journey, fourteen individuals went on a 2-day retreat at the ARC Retreat Center in March. During the retreat, we experienced warm hospitality extended to us by the ARC staff, delicious meals prepared and presented with care, periods of silence in a chapel to begin and end each day, discussions based on the theme of Sabbath, quiet free time to explore the beautiful natural surroundings of the lodge, and improptu gathering times for laughing and playing together. By the end of the retreat, group members had deepened their friendships with each other and grown in their individual faith journeys. Those of us who attended the retreat will be eager to share our experiences with the rest of our church family, so please do not hesitate to ask us about it! Please click here to view some images from past retreats and to read some background our our Lenten Journey.
This August, members and friends of St. Paul's UCC attended an intergenerational camp weekend at beautiful "Pilgrim Point Camp and Retreat Center" near Alexandria, Minnesota. The group shared in fellowship, worship, and fun activities with an intergenerational group from Mankato UCC. The weekend included sunset walks along the Pilgrim Point peninsula, an experience of learning to tease sheared wool, peaceful vespers services, campfires, s'mores, water-sliding, a pontoon ride, and more! To view a slide show of our campout weekend, please click here.
A Women's Retreat will be held this September 21-23 at Pilgrim Point Camp. Its theme will be Celtic Spirituality and it will be keynoted by Diane Gardner, Spiritual Director and member of Mayflower UCC. Diane has recently traveled to Ireland and will guide the group as we immerse ourselves in the exploration of Celtic Spirituality. The cost will be $90. Check-in begins at 4:00 pm on Friday and the weekend concludes at noon on Sunday. Learn more, find a flier, and register online at www.pilgrimpoint.org/conferencecamps.
In recent past summers, adults, youth and children from St. Paul’s UCC enjoyed a wonderful summer camp at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center. Wolf Ridge is a nationally respected residential environmental learning center located on 2,000 acres of the North Shore overlooking Lake Superior (http://www.wolf-ridge.org). During this time we were immersed in nature exploration, cultural history, outdoor skills, team-building, and personal and spiritual growth.
Our Wolf Ridge naturalists, a splendid team of skilled and first-class teachers, guided us through this wonderful outdoor learning experience. We observed wildlife and went on long and short hikes. We paddled a canoe so big that it held all of us! We felt like the Voyageurs, who, we learned, guided similar canoes through northern Minnesota in the late 1700s. We performed a scientific lake study (Wolf Lake is in good environmental shape), learned about the raptors that make their home at Wolf Ridge, and gained knowledge of how the lumberjacks lived in the area during the early 1900s. We experienced how the Ojibwa Indians lived and traveled throughout the north at a recreated Ojibwa camp site.
We stayed in comfortable dorm rooms and ate healthy and tasty meals in a large dining hall. Our days were filled with educational experiences and outdoor challenges. Our evenings included sitting around a campfire under the cathedral ceiling of starlight, closing with singing and prayer before bedtime.
St. Paul’s UCC is an “Earthwise Congregation” which means we are committed to caring for God’s creation. Our Wolf Ridge summer camp deepened our appreciation for God’s creation and increased our passion for becoming better stewards of the earth. Thanks to an Ashley Grant from the Minnesota Conference of the United Church of Christ, we were able to make this affordable for everyone!
(Please click here to see see more pictures from our trip.)