July 30, fourteen members of the Brattleboro Area Interfaith Youth Group and including teens and adults from St. Michael's Catholic Church, the Brattleboro Area Jewish Community and Guilford Community Church, UCC, will head out on a road trip to La Plant, South Dakota, to help with a summer camp and various community building projects for the Cheyenne River Sioux community in South Dakota. The 2 week long interfaith trip will include helping the La Plant community with the rehabilitation of a local home, creating a summer camp for 40 Lakota children and evening gatherings during which the group will learn about native american history and traditions.
On Sunday, July 25, at the 10am service, members of Centre Congregational Church and the First Congregational Church will gather at the Guilford Community Church to learn about the impending trip and to celebrate the United Church of Christ social justice ministries. The first joint summer service this year occurred June 25 in West Brattleboro under the leadership of Pastor Jeremy Kirk in celebration of Gay Pride. Sunday's service will continue with the theme "Creator's of Justice and Joy", holding up the reconciliation work that needs to be done with native peoples. In late August the three UCC congregations will gather at Centre Church. Social Justice Ministries have always been integral to the work of UCC churches, as is the Joy of community music. Local musician Andy Davis will call together a Choir of the Community to sing anthems related to the earth and to our commitment to generous giving of ourselves and our resources. Anyone wishing to sing should arrive by 9am. " Desert Pete", a folk favorite, along with other special music will enliven the service. The children's story, taken from the Lakota tradition, is a story marking the similarity of Vermonters saving salamanders with the native traditions valuing the frog.