The Vitality Committee is planning some meaningful and exciting activities for church members and friends in 2017. We started off with Dinner and Decorating on February 11. About 25 showed up for pizza, making love decorations and decorating (and eating) heart-shaped cookies. A big thanks to Sue Gerth, our Craft Queen, for providing materials and coaching for all ages to make cards and banners. Many cards were made and left for the church to use for those who might need a message of love during the year.
March 6 – 12 is Stand By Our Muslim Neighbors week and we will kick off the week with a joint gathering with some of our Muslim neighbors here in Manhattan on Sunday morning, March 5. Caela is working with Haroon from the Islamic Center and Sajid from the Muslim Student Association to plan the sermon. They will bring other guests, so we will have a substantial and extended Fellowship Hour. Keep an eye out for more details. In addition, we will have signs that say “No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor” in Spanish, English and Arabic for you to put in your yard or window. On March 13 is an advocacy event in Topeka organized by Kansas Interfaith Action.
On Tuesday, March 14, from 7 – 8:30, the Vitality Committee invites members and friends to a Social Justice Write-In, a casual event for people to spend time together reading and writing or just sitting quietly in community. You might write to local policy makers, a neighbor, a close or estranged family member, or in your diary. We will provide coffee and tea, as well as writing materials and stamps. Feel free to bring your supper or snacks. Contact Rachel Gintner for information or suggestions.
April is our annual Easter Potluck Brunch. The next Dinner and Discussion will be about Fair Trade, with the owner of the new Fair Trade store on Poyntz (no date yet). June is sexual diversity month and we’re working on something for June. Also in the works is an Underground Railroad Tour for families, to which we will invite our Bethel neighbors. The church has a copy of the documentary (“Dawn of Day”) made by the K-State College of Education about the local underground railroad, or you can download it from the college website. We’re also getting more Black Lives Matter buttons, as well as some of the other favorites.
If you have suggestions for the committee, and if you’d like help out with any of these planned activities, we would love your input! Let any of us know - Linda Thurston, Craig Weston, Rachel Gintner, Sue Gerth, Andrew Wymer, Rita Henry.