On October 8, 2020, Deborah Capouch and Amanda Crombie of the Bloomington League of Women Voters presented information about voting in the November election at an Oak Grove Zoom session. The following is a list of links to web resources covered in their presentation.
Nine new members joined Oak Grove Presbyterian Church on October 4, 2020. Welcome George & Leah, Kylie, Ed & Sara, Josh & Ashley, Emily, and Katharine!
If you are interested in joining Oak Grove, please contact the church office (email@example.com or ph: 952-888-4621) for information on our next New Member Class.
On September 22, the Session and Deacons passed the following statement of Racial Justice:
We, the Elders and Deacons of Oak Grove Presbyterian Church, stand in solidarity with you, our Black, Indigenous, and Brown siblings of color. We acknowledge that our experiences have often blinded us to your cries for help. We affirm your experiences of discrimination and violence as truth. We commit to listen and seek to understand and will not hide behind a right to comfort when the conversations are hard. We commit to holding ourselves and others accountable to become and continue to be anti-racist for “as you use steel to sharpen steel, so one friend sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 (The Message by Eugene Peterson).
On September 28, Sue Gjerset will begin work as Oak Grove’s new Office Administrator. Sue and Beth will overlap for two weeks prior to Beth’s retirement.
Sue Gjerset is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Madison and comes to Oak Grove with more than 20 years nonprofit office experience. She brings a unique combination of administrative, technical, and creative expertise and is a life-long learner.
Sue enjoys making an impact on people’s lives, being a resource to others, and giving back to the community. When not working, she loves spending time outdoors, especially kayaking, whether on a lake, river, or the ocean. She has been blessed with the opportunity to travel, both domestically and internationally, and enjoys meeting new people and experiencing new cultures.
Sue is a resident of Shakopee and an active member at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Minneapolis where she was born and raised.
UPDATE! Car Rally Sunday video
UPDATE: Car Rally Photos
This year we will celebrate Rally Day in a whole new way! We will offer virtual worship from 9:30 – 10 am, and then invite you to hop into your car and drive over to Oak Grove for a drive-through party between 10:15 – 11:30 am. This is our way to say hello and to thank you for “Living Church Beyond Walls!”
The Mardi Gras Jazz combo, a 5 piece band, will play music, we’ll enjoy Morris Dancing and collect Noisy Offering for supporting children in Minneapolis. Committee representatives, including Youth and Children’s leaders, will be on hand to give a friendly wave and connect in person! We can’t wait to see you on the 13th!
Please follow the arrows through the parking lot from Penn Ave!
Oak Grove hosted a car wash on Saturday, August 22, to raise money for our youth group and to help OASIS FOR YOUTH purchase a minivan. Thank you to everyone who attended and donated!
Jessi and Brandon provided live music on eight instruments (not at the same time!) at the fundraising event. Thanks, Jessi and Brandon!
Nine Mile Creek Watershed District is offering training on how to maintain a rain garden by watering, weeding and selection of replacement plants (if necessary). Oak Grove will be hosting the training in our rain garden on the outside of the Education Wing under the solar panels on Wednesday Night Sept. 9th 6:30 to 8:30 pm. To sign up, please contact John Crampton 612-396-6010 firstname.lastname@example.org
UPDATE: Here are links to the two books mentioned by Brenda Johnson in our August 16 Worship Service: The Romance of African Methodism: a Study of the African Methodist Episcopalian Church by George A. Singleton and Before the Mayflower: a History of the Negro in America, 1619-1962 by Lerone Bennet.
On Sunday, August 16, we welcome Brenda Johnson, for “Courageous Conversations” with Mary Koon. Brenda was ordained in 2017 as a local elder/clergy in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Her life verse is Hebrews 1:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” And Nehemiah 8:10, “…for the joy of the Lord is my strength.”
Ms. Johnson is a Transitional Specialist with Stadium View School — part of the Minneapolis School District housed in the Hennepin County Detention Center — where she works with youth and families. Johnson is passionate about youth, families, and those incarcerated and is devoted to interrupting the “cradle-to-prison” pipeline. She is actively involved in the National Education Association. Her work is recognized internationally. We are excited to hear from you, Brenda! Welcome!
On Sunday, August 9, we welcome Reverend Denise Dunbar Perkins. Join us at 9:30 a.m. for our virtual Worship Service!
The Reverend Denise Dunbar-Perkins is an Honorably Retired Presbyterian Church USA Minister from a Specialized Ministry of Board-Certified Chaplaincy at AbbottNorthwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, where she also served as an adjunct Clinical Pastoral Education Facilitator and chaplain preceptor for CPE students.
Her work included providing pastoral care to patients and their families through spiritual assessment, sacramental ministry, bereavement assessment and support, bio-ethics or health care decision making support, consultation with staff, End of Life, life transitions with the elderly and connection with the interfaith religious community. Her specialty was in attending to the cultural/emotional/spiritual aspects and challenges with long term and life limiting medical conditions.
She also served as a public speaker with a focus on the healthcare concerns of the communities of color (HIV, diabetes, cancer, etc.) and the church’s response to them.
She is one of the original founding members of Kwanzaa (now Liberty) Community Church PC(USA) in North Minneapolis, the only African American Presbyterian Church in Minnesota and is also the first African-American female to be ordained into Presbyterian ministry in the State of Minnesota. In the last 24 years within the church, she has served locally, nationally and internationally as a speaker, teacher, preacher, workshop leader, curriculum writer and worship leader. She also been an adjunct professor at United Theological Seminary, where she received her Master of Divinity, teaching on Black church culture and Womanist Theology. Additionally, she is a former high school history teacher which informs her passion around paying attention to what has gone on before us in society.
Denise is currently serves on the Called Ministry team for the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area and she is our Presbytery liaison to the Pastor Nominating Committee.
Oak Grove pastors Rev. Dr. Anne E. Fisher and Rev. Mary Koon joined with 21 other Bloomington Faith Leaders to sign a racial equity letter sent to Bloomington Mayor Tim Busse, Bloomington City Council, and Police Chief Jeff Potts. Bloomington Faith Leaders is an inter-faith, ecumenical group of clergy committed to racial equity in schools, government, and policing.
Our pastors have been meeting with Bloomington Faith Leaders via Zoom, and they hope to be part of the group that meets with Chief Potts later this month.