ORUCC Weekly Announcements for April 21


Spiritually Alive, Joyfully Inclusive, Committed to Justice

Our Week at a Glance 04/24/2022

Sunday April 24th Worship 10:00 am

Confirmation Sunday

In-person & Live-streamed

Preaching: Tammy Martens

Lay Liturgists: Confirmands

Details in Saturday’s Worship Resources

9:00 am Social Justice Programming

Care of Creation – “The Problem with Plastics and What We Can Do About It” Part II

Friendship Hall

9:00 am Adult Programming

Prospective New Member Class

in the Day Room

9:00 am Sunday School

For children through 5th Grade

No Middle School Sunday School this week.

10:00 am

No Music Connections or Craft/Play time.

Children and youth are invited to remain in worship with their caregivers.

11:30 Java & Jesus

Sunday, April 24

11:45 am – 12:45 pm

Jim McNamara


Men’s Group

Monday, April 25

7:15 pm – 8:30 pm

John Lemke

Romero Room

Immigration Justice Mission Team

Tuesday, April 26

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Ruthanne Landsness


Meditation Group

Friday, April 29

9:00 – 10:00 am

Sue Dixon


Movie Group Returns Tomorrow, April 22nd 7 P.M.

The ORUCC Movie Group is back on Friday, April 22nd at 7 p.m. We have lively discussions and a light dessert. All are welcome. WE WILL BE MASKED UNLESS WE’RE EATING. On the 22nd Academy Award nominees and winners will be discussed. Please let Steve Sheets know that you plan to attend so that a list of the nominees and where to see them can be provided to you. Mark your calendars: April 22nd, 7 p.m.

9am Social Justice Programming

Care of Creation

Sunday April 24

 ”The Problem with Plastics and What We Can Do About It.”

Part II followed by letters to Congress led by

Chris Thomas from Care of Creation

We’ll talk about how the manufacturing of plastics contributes to global warming, and that a huge concern is how they affect the health of our planet and all that lives upon it as they proliferate and accumulate. Finally, we’ll talk about how we as individuals can do our part, both in the everyday choices we make, and in how we can influence government policy to hold corporations responsible for the entire lifecycle of the plastic products they manufacture.

Ilgen Literacy Fund: New Mission Team Forming

ORUCC is building a new mission team for the Ilgen Literacy Fund. If you feel called to work on a small, community-based project at the intersection of childhood literacy and racial justice, consider joining!

Check out our 2021 progress report to see how we’ve moved forward this year, and/or contact chairperson Jen Walker to learn more.

The United Church of Christ Makes an Appeal for Ukraine

Click here to learn how you may contribute

Or visit https://www.ucc.org/global-h-o-p-e/ukraine-emergency-appeal/

Might you be interested in a New Members / Seekers Series with the Pastors and Leadership Team of ORUCC? Or perhaps you joined the church in the last couple of years, but were not afforded the opportunity to participate in New Member Classes. Here’s your chance!

Please attend at least three of the four informational classes at the church:

Sunday, April 24th, 9:00-9:50 a.m.

Sunday, May 8th, 9:00-9:50 a.m.

Sunday, May 22nd, 9:00-9:50 a.m.

RSVP to Ken Pennings at [email protected] or 608-556-2371.

At the Informational Classes, you’ll learn more about Orchard Ridge and the United Church of Christ (UCC). We’ll discuss our history as a local church, the leadership structure of the church, ministries within the congregation and the wider community, and some of the church’s views on important issues of faith.

You may participate in the New Member Classes even if you decide not to join the church at this time.



for you!

For the week of April 21 – April 27

Read this week’s reflections as a way to dive deeper into your spiritual practice or to get some nourishment and inspiration

for your day.

Click here for reflections

We are grateful for the ministry of Jeanne Moberly who is a member of Adult Faith Formation, as she puts together a set of fresh readings every week for our devotional practice at Orchard Ridge UCC. You will see these posted daily if you are part of the “Members & Friends” Facebook group. If you know someone who needs encouragement and would like the devotional mailed to them, please contact Julie Wombacher in the church office.

ORUCC is one of the sponsors of this interfaith Iftar!

Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice invites people of any (or no) faith to attend the 

Ramadan 2022 Interfaith Iftar

Saturday, April 30, 2022, at 7:15 PM

Lakeview Park

6300 Mendota Avenue, Middleton, WI

Iftar is the evening meal with which Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset. Transcending generational, ethnic, and religious differences, this annual event allows guests to learn about Islam, Ramadan, and the Muslim obligation of zakat (charity). It is also an opportunity to break bread together at a time when we are all especially yearning for more connection with each other. 


In keeping with the importance of Zakat for celebrating Ramadan, we are excited to raise funds once again for the Second Harvest Food Bank of Southern Wisconsin. During the pandemic, Second Harvest saw a 40% increase in the number of food insecure people in SW. Donation jars from Second Harvest will be out on the tables during the iftar. Please come prepared to make a donation by cash or check.


For non-Muslims who may want to delve even more deeply into Ramadan, we encourage you to try fasting from the dawn of April 30 until the Iftar. Muslims believe that fasting redirects the heart away from worldly activities and cleanses the soul by freeing it from harmful impurities. The fast also helps us to appreciate the blessings of food and to understand the plight of our food-insecure neighbors. 


Due to COVID, the Iftar will be a catered meal instead of the usual potluck, and we are limiting registration to 100 people. SPACE IS FILLING UP! Please RSVP early to guarantee a seat! 50 indoor and 50 outdoor seats are available, on a first-come, first-served basis.


Click HERE to RSVP

Please consider making a gift to help support the Iftar. Suggested donation: $5 for children under 17; $10 for adults; $20 per family. You can donate HERE or pay at the door by cash or check.

COVID mitigation: If you are unvaccinated, please use the outdoor seating, wear a mask, and stay physically distanced. Please stay home if you are not feeling well.


However you approach the Interfaith Iftar, we look forward to your joining us in this shared celebration.

April Compassion Offering

Common Wealth Development

Common Wealth Development, a 40 plus year old non-profit, uses a people’s first philosophy to work in solidarity with the people we serve in our communities. CWD, uses a housing and employment approach to help stabilize families, thus contributing to stable neighborhoods. Under our racial justice and health equity model, Common Wealth works with a diversity of people, many who may face significant challenges in housing, employment, literacy and transportation.

In the South West neighborhood, CWD owns and manages > 200 low income housing units. We are proud to have opened our newest residential building on Raymond Road in August 2021. The first floor accommodates offices for our staff in addition to offices for our partners in the neighborhood: Joining Forces for Families and RISE Wisconsin with the Early Childhood Initiative.  ORUCC has been a great partner who helped to establish the STEP program within the Work Force Development mission. Through ORUCC financial aid and volunteers, this program has assisted many neighbors in securing stable employment.

Common Wealth also provides incubation space at for first and second stage new businesses to help spur economic development. Our business incubators, Madison Enterprise Center, 100 S. Baldwin St and Main Street Industries, 931 E. Mains St, provide affordable rents for tenants.

We at Common Wealth, are grateful for the support of ORUCC. For more information about Common Wealth Development, go to CWD.org and learn more about CWD’s Adult Workforce Development activities by watching the video. 


You can make a donation by check, on the memo line, please write “compassion” and mail to ORUCC, 1501 Gilbert Road, Madison, WI 53711, or donate online at orucc.org. Click the brown button “Contribute” in the upper right of the home page.

Java & Jesus (by Zoom) 11:45

April 24–Jim McNamara

May 1–Jim McNamara

May 8–Mother’s Day No J & J

May 15–Larry Goss

Click here to join Java & Jesus

Don’t miss out! Contact Ken Pennings to be added to the Java & Jesus email list.

Family Game Night is back!

We’ll meet next on Friday, May 6 in the church from 6-8 pm. Bring a game and some food to share. Questions?

Contact Rachael Lancor([email protected]). Also save the date for a special fun night on June 3 featuring improv! 

ORUCC member Dan Miller and his team at Mad City Dream Homes are hosting a wonderful event for the second time (with no real estate related activities!) and we are all invited. Lilada Gee and her artwork will be highlighted on Friday, May 6th from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM at at their 1619 Monroe Street office. Here’s the event on Facebook (you don’t need to register in order to come). We’ll be serving refreshments and free food from a food truck, too. 

Care of Creation Green Corner


Our sister UCC church, Middleton Community Church is sponsoring this event:


Earth Day Every Day: EV Car & Sustainability Show


Date & Time: Saturday, April 23, 2022 from 10 am – 2 pm

Location: Middleton Community Church (645 Schewe Rd, Middleton, WI off Old Sauk Rd.)


On the Saturday after Earth Day, April 23, Middleton Community Church will be hosting an EV Car and Sustainability Show. This family-friendly event will go 10 am – 2 pm, and it’s planned to be held outdoors on the church grounds, but in case of bad weather, exhibits will be indoors. Free admission and free popcorn! Lunch will be available for purchase from the popular Melted Craft Grilled Cheese food truck.


Besides electric and hybrid cars, there will be games for the kids, an interactive solar panel display, and lots of tables and displays hosted by representatives from clean energy and environmental organizations and businesses. Come find out about whatever aspects of sustainability most interest you! For further information see: Earth Day Every Day: EV Car and Sustainability Show FLYER

Wayfinding for Seniors Returns!

Wednesday, May 18, 9:30 am – 11:30 am


After a long hiatus, waiting out you-know-what, Wayfinding is ready to get back up and running.  So if you see yourself as a “senior,” please join us on Wednesday, May 18, for a chance to reconnect and envision our future.


Lucky for us, Pastor Julia is experienced with senior programming. So we’re very grateful she’ll be taking the lead on shaping the future of Wayfinding.  One decision that’s been made is that, going forward, we’ll be narrowing the focus of Wayfinding to address the spiritual aspects of aging and end of life — i.e., the very real challenges of getting older, the spiritual qualities that help meet these challenges, useful spiritual resources, and how we make sense of it all. 


For the fall we’re envisioning a series of “cafe-style” meetups on a regular basis.  They will provide a chance to connect around specific issues and gain strength for our journeys.


On May 18 we’ll begin with inquiry.  Julia would like to know: What are the spiritual tasks of aging as you experience them? Are you finding new wisdom (or humor!) as part of aging? What are the unique challenges elders face? (Of course being a 65-yr-old is quite different from being a 90-yr-old, so “senior /elder” encompasses a range of things.)  We’ll use this input to further plan our cafes for 2022-23.  


Date:  Wednesday, May 18.  Time 9:30-11:30.  Place: ORUCC Fellowship Hall.

No need to RSVP. For more information contact [email protected]


Save the date!

Celebration of Tammy Martens’ Ministry

August 6, 2022

Stay tuned for more details and times.

If you have questions or suggestions please contact

Ann Evensen [email protected]  cell 608 628 4280 

Barbara Stretchberry [email protected]  cell 608-239-6669

Kellie Miller [email protected]   cell 608 852-7578

Save the date!

ORUCC Installation

Celebration of Julia Burkey

officially installed as our Senior Pastor

Sunday May 22nd 2pm

An installation is a special service in the United Church of Christ that marks the beginning of a pastor’s leadership in the local church and is our way of saying to Pastor Julia “you belong here with us!” It grants a sense of permanence and belonging and celebration of the Holy Spirit for bringing us together. We believe God has brought us together for a reason in this time and place and along with our local Southwest Wisconsin Association of the United Church of Christ, we will celebrate.

The COVID Response Team met on Sunday April 3rd and advises that:


The COVID Response Team met this past Sunday, April 3. After considering the current trends in the region, the team determined that the plans for Maundy Thursday and Easter should go forward as planned, with current mitigations in place: 

For group activities, especially those that traditionally include food, we ask that all participants are either vaccinated & boosted or have had a negative rapid antigen test within the previous day. We will purchase test kits in the office for those who wish to use them.   Masks will be required for the programming portion of the event, and food and beverage are welcomed; groups should maintain spacing while eating.


We are also starting to ask how we will “know” when it is time to increase or decrease our mitigations. While we haven’t made any decisions yet, in the meantime we are making some incremental changes. For one, the choir has been empowered to make their own determination regarding masking during their performance of special music during worship. You may have also noticed the resumption of using the Friendship Pads! We will continue to make these small resumptions as conditions allow.


While this represents a slight increase in risk, we also recognize that by wearing an N95 mask – freely available outside Worship Hall – the wearer essentially ensures that nobody can be considered a “close contact” during worship — it would take hours of continuous exposure to an unmasked individual for this to be the case! This frees us from the need to be concerned with “contact tracing,” etc. if any of our friends test positive for COVID — although we do appreciate being able to pray for them during Joys & Concerns. Please keep telling us when you test positive for COVID after being in worship or at a church function.


The team will next meet on May 1, when we will consider the effects of these changes and what the appropriate next steps might be.

AT ORUCC, the Members are the Ministers!

We are seeking a whole new team of volunteers to serve in 2022 on Sunday mornings for in-person worship. You need not be a member, simply a person who loves ORUCC and is eager to find a place to serve!

Would you consider serving one or more times as a Lay Liturgist, a Welcomer, or for Holy Communion?

Feel free to sign up as an individual, a couple, or a family!

Click here to sign up as a Welcomer

Click here to sign up as a Lay Liturgist

Click here to sign up as a Coffee-Maker

Click here to assist with Holy Communion

Questions? Contact Ken Pennings at [email protected] or 608-556-2371.

Pictorial Directory

Thanks to all those who helped with the pictorial directory. Here is a print version. Photo Directory Print Version

In Case You Missed It!

Pastor Julia Joy & Terror April 17 Click Here

Pastor Julia The Compassion of Jesus April 10 Click Here

Pastor Julia In the Beginning was the Meal April 3 Click Here

Rev Ari Douglas You Will Have the Poor With You Always March 27 Click Here

Listen to Worship Recordings…



Office Manager Julie Wombacher

available Mon.-Thurs. 8:30am -12:30 pm

608-271-7212 or EMAIL

Senior Pastor Julia Burkey available

Tues.- Fri. & Sun. 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

by appointment

518-542-6915 EMAIL

Pastor Julia will be away April 28-May 3rd for a leadership retreat using some of her continuing education time. This opportunity is sponsored by national UCC through the Next Generation Leadership Initiative and is called “Creativity and Design.” Pastor Ken will preach May 1. Pastor Julia may be reached by cell phone in the case of an emergency.

Associate Pastor Tammy Martens: available

Tues.- Fri. 10:00 am -4:00 pm

by appointment

608-957-3184 or EMAIL

Associate Pastor Ken Pennings: available

Tues.-Thurs. 10:00 am -5:00 pm 

by appointment

608-556-2371 EMAIL

All pastors (try to) take Monday & Saturday as Sabbath days.

Friday is observed as a writing day for the preaching pastor.

In case of a pastoral emergency, please call any of the pastors, as all pastors are available by phone, text and we will always have a pastor on call who we can turn to.

LIKE or FOLLOW the Orchard Ridge FaceBook Page

JOIN our Private FB Group:

Members & Friends of Orchard Ridge UCC

Orchard Ridge United Church of Christ

1501 Gilbert Road

Madison, WI 53711

Office Hours: M-Th 8:30-12:30

Facebook  Twitter  Pinterest