Happening This Sunday:
GPS will meet January 13 at 9am with a new 3 week series:
What does racism look like in Grand Rapids? For three weeks in January, we will take a closer look at health and housing in Grand Rapids to better understand the real-life impact of racism in our city.

The Justice Class will not meet January 13, 20 or 27, but will resume in February, so all can attend the GPS series on racial justice starting today. Watch for more information about re-starting the “Proximate Justice” conversation (likely on February 10).

Puerto Rico Info Meeting – If you are planning to go to Puerto Rico, meet JAN. 13 in the Youth Room following the worship service. Paperwork MUST be filled out by the end of this month for all participants so we will go over all the paperwork details at this meeting. If you cannot attend, let Annette know ASAP.

Youth News:
High School:
Do you think Grand Rapids has a problem with racism? We are going to join the adult Sunday school class for the next three weeks to talk about racism in Grand Rapids. See you at 9am in the cafe area!

Small Groups should be meeting some time over the next 2 weeks. Here are a couple questions for groups to discuss: How would you define racism? Why is racism bad?

Reminder: Puerto Rico participants need to fill out paperwork for our trip! Plan to meet this Sunday in the Youth Room to complete the paperwork and to learn a little more about our team and our trip. Let me know if you are coming to PR but cannot attend the meeting.

Middle School- Wednesday Night Live:
This Wednesday – “On Safari with Jesus”
Next Wednesday – “Grand-Friends Night”

Church News

Budget Envelopes and year end Giving Statements – The Finance team apologizes for the delay in the ordering and receiving of the 2019 Budget envelopes. We hope to have in your mailboxes as soon as they are delivered.

Members’ 2018 giving statements will be sent in the mail next week. Thank you for your patience.

Changes with our Assistant Treasurer position -Rachel May resigned as of January 7 due to more hours needed than she could give. We thank her for helping our church with tracking all of our receipts in these last three busy year- end months. We welcome COS member, Jon Bruss, who will begin the Assistant Treasurer role on January 14!

Event: Wednesday, January 23, 6:30pm, Gender and Sexuality 101
This will be an evening of learning with Julia Smith, Coordinator for Student Support and Sexuality Programming at Calvin College, and Joshua Van Wyhe. We’ll look together at a framework for thinking about sex, gender, and sexual orientation that can help us sort out the sometimes confusing array of LGBT+ terms, concepts and identities. We’ll also share personal stories, data, and resources that can point us towards more nuanced conversations about gender and sexuality in the church.

COS’s Prisoners in Christ team is hosting a conversation with Michelle Warren, author of “The Power of Proximity,” on Wed. Feb. 6, 6:30 – 8pm at COS after the church supper. Michelle serves as the Advocacy and Strategic Engagement Director for the national Christian Community Development Association (CCDA), based in Chicago, founded by Rev. John Perkins. She will focus on CCDA’s initiative “Locked in Solidarity: Awareness and Action on Mass Incarceration.” For more information, go to www.prisonersinchrist.org

Upcoming events from the COS Anti-Racism and Reconciliation Team:

Jan 16 — Richard Rothstein @ Wealthy Street Theater 3:30pm –as prelude to the New Urbanism Film Festival at 7pm

Jan 21 — Dr. Willie Jennings –at January Series and Calvin Seminary

Feb 6 — 6:30-8 p.m. at COS, Michelle Warren, advocacy and
strategic engagement director for Christian Community Development Association (CCDA) and author of “The Power of Proximity” https://ccda.org/product/the-power-of-proximity-moving-beyond-awareness-to-action/ will speak about the CCDA national awareness and action weeklong focus on mass incarceration, Locked in Solidarity, https://ccda.org/justice-initiatives/mass-incarceration/locked-in-solidarity/

Feb 7 — CCDA Proximity Cafe’ with Michelle Warren @ Bridge Street House of Prayer, 7-9 pm

February 13, 2019, 7 pm, Grand Rapids Community College Diversity Series: “Education, Civil Rights and Equality: Cornerstones for our Future,” Bakari Sellers, CNN Political Analyst, Lawyer, and Activist (Fountain Street Church, 24 Fountain St. NE in Grand Rapids) https://www.grcc.edu/thebobandaleiciawoodrickcenterforequityandinclusion/programs/diversitylectureseries0

Feb 17 — A gathering after worship for lunch and conversation from noon to 2 pm; All COS members who have attended a CORR Understanding Racism Workshop are encouraged to attend

Feb 21-23 — CORR Understanding Racism Workshop –register at: https://corrnow.org/

March 23 — (Tentative) COS trip to the Jim Crow Museum

ARTery News : Join us tomorrow, Mon. Jan. 14 at 7pm for our first event of the new year, featuring COS member and artist Gene Ellens. This will be an opportunity to hear from the artist and spend time experiencing the new installation over wine and music. Please RSVP on the Facebook Event page.
Beginning January, shows will take place every two months with an evening gallery opening event on the second Monday of the month the show is installed. We plan to do six Artery shows throughout the year: three featuring COS members & three highlighting artists in the community and beyond.