Sabbath Sundays, the 5th Sundays of the month, are all about spiritual practices and doing things that bring you delight. Our first experience of Sabbath Sunday in our new Sunday rhythm will be Sunday, November 29th. You can create your own experience of Sabbath, or there are three options organized by the church:
  1. Use your body and senses to become more aware of the neighbors who surround us. Take a short, socially distanced walk through the areas surrounding the church building with Sheri Y., during which you'll be invited to take note of what you see, hear, and even feel along the way.
  2. Use poems as a way to reorient yourself around the Divine, community, and where we are in this season of our lives. Brittany L. invites participants to bring a poem that has helped them get through the last year. Sharing is optional, but listening will be essential!
  3. Sabbath invites us to reconnect with both nature and the divine. Using materials easily found around our homes and neighborhoods, Laurie E. will lead us in constructing a simple "Advent Wreath" to use as we prepare for Christmas.
Here is more information on these events as well as registration information. Sign up today!

(Most of these resources were shared with us via the Quaker group that  presented October's ACT Sunday presentation on Working Toward Right Relationships with Native Peoples)

Thanksgiving Myths: A Podcast
Harvest festivals were common events in Native American and European cultures well before the 1600s. Why did the harvest festival of 1621 become “The First” Thanksgiving, what was the true relationship between Wampanoags and Europeans at that time, and why have so many facts been omitted from history books?  We sort through fiction and fact with David Vanderhoop, Wampanoag native and co-founder, with his wife Saskia, of Sassafras Earth Education; and David Silverman, professor of Native American and Colonial American History at George Washington University. 

Or, if you prefer an article to read, on Thanksgiving myths, here's a good one from The New Yorker magazine called The Invention Of Thanksgiving

And, finally, from a Native American's perspective, an article called The Thanksgiving Tale We Tell Is a Harmful Lie. As a Native American, I’ve Found a Better Way to Celebrate the Holiday from Time magazine. 

However, you choose to celebrate this year, center it on gratitude. Here are some thoughts from poet David Whyte on gratitude worth reading Thursday when you gather with loved ones via Zoom. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

(by Maggie Radford, Social Action Ministry Team Chairperson)
The lists below are just a starting point for identifying Black-owned businesses to purchase from this holiday season. Small businesses are struggling due to Covid and it is more important than ever to shop small and also consider the broader social impacts of our spending. If you do not see something here that is the style of your family and friends we encourage you to look around for yourself and identify ways you can make the gifts you give more broadly impactful on top of the smile of joy brought to a loved one. 
Etsy (small artisan online shop)
Black Owned Business Page 
  • Offering everything from Jewelry, art, candles, and baby clothes to coffee tables 
Shopping for someone with on-point household style 
  • List focuses on Black artisans with everything from pottery, blankets, linens, art, to furniture
Local Seattle Black-Owned Business 
  • List includes everything from farm to door grocery subscriptions, massages, yoga, jewelry, local boutiques, to restaurant gift card ideas
Another resource for Seattle Black-owned businesses 
  • List includes everything from candies, pasta, to clothes, and jewelry 
We will be offering more information about buying from Black-owned businesses this month for ACT Sunday, December 27th, so keep an eye out for that!

This year, donate to families in need in a COVID-19 safe way:  GIFT CARDS!  Support families through  these organizations with whom we regularly partner:
  1. Jubilee Reach (Bellevue organization helping families in need) Elves program is asking for a  $100 donation from you to buy gift cards, groceries, gas, a blanket, and socks for one of 500 families.  You'll even get information about the family you sponsored! Donate here or send a check to Jubilee Reach at 14200 SE 13th PL, Bellevue, WA, 98007.
  2. Mary's Place (Seattle day center and shelters for homeless families) would like $10 or $25 gift cards from your favorite grocery store so that families can have a holiday meal, or from your favorite retail store (Target, Walmart, etc.) so that families can purchase their own holiday gifts. Gift cards can be delivered to families safely and give them flexibility. Send to PO Box 1711, Seattle, WA 98111.
  3. Bellevue LifeSpring (our usual Christmas family sponsor) would like $100 donations, by November 20th,  to buy food and gifts for one child. The Bellevue School District will distribute the gift cards and food vouchers to local families in need. You can donate here or if you prefer to send a check, please write Adopt-A-Family in the subject line and mail the check to 302 Bellevue Square, Bellevue, 98004. 

This year's Advent devotional is available to be read online, printed, or picked up from the wreath box outside the church's north entrance door.

“Sing to God a new song, for God has done marvelous things. Let the floods clap their hands; let the hills sing together for joy.”  -Psalm 98

In a year like no other, we’ve evolved and come together as a community in ways we never imagined. We’re supporting our community in many ways. Youth lunches, Crossroads Feeding, Jubilee Reach meals, and new social justice initiatives are only some of the ways we are reaching out.  We have a new church rhythm with live and online video content that’s helping members engage and stay connected while gaining new connections in the community. We’ve come together at happy hours, webinars, prayer services, community groups, and bible studies.

Your remarkable financial and volunteer support, prayers, and creativity is making all these things possible in 2020. We wish to continue to fulfill our mission of transforming the world in the name of Christ in 2021. To do so, your continuing financial and volunteer support, along with your prayers, is critical.

To help us plan for 2021, we’re asking our community to indicate their financial support by completing a 2021 estimate of giving card and returning to the church by December 11. If you’ve not yet received a 2021 estimate card, please contact the church office ( or 425-454-2059) and we will forward a card.
STAFF:  We're here for you!
  • To sign up for a time to meet with Pastor Phil, click here. 
  • To sign up for a visit with Laurie, click here
  • To leave a message for any of us, call the church office! We check messages remotely.
  • For other needs email Aya in our office: Changes in your contact information, emergency contact information (if you would like to provide that), opting out to receive reminder texts on Sundays, a paper copy of the directory, etc. 
For Your Prayers
Consider spending some time this week in a moment of quiet reflection or prayer.
Consider praying for the following:
  • Please pray for Linda and Neal Harold, both experiencing some serious health issues.
  • Please pray for the members of the Duwamish Tribe, as well as all those whose ancestors lived on these lands from time immemorial.
  • Please pray for all of our LGBTQ neighbors.
  • Please pray for the protestors.
  • Please pray for our country to be less divided
  • Please pray for the health of our community and those affected by COVID-19.
  • Please pray for Pastor Joe and his LGBTQ+ friendly medical clinic and church in Kenya
  • Please pray for Pastor Phil for wisdom, strength, and vision
  • The mission and vision of our Church 
  • Our church family and friends
  • The local community and our neighbors 
  • The United Methodist Church
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First United Methodist Church of Bellevue. · 1934 108th Ave NE · Bellevue, Wa 98004 · USA

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