Archive for News

Installation of Rev. Michael Cronin at IUC

We invite you to join us for the installation of our newly-settled pastor, Rev. Michael Cronin, at 3 PM on Saturday, March 23 in the year of our Lord 2024. Clergy are encouraged to robe. RSVP to [email protected] or 650-349-3544. Rev. Dr. Penny Nixon & Rev. Jim Mitulski will be preaching. Light refreshments to follow. 

Pray Their Names Recap

pray their names

At our church this afternoon. Thank You Ed, Paul, Denzel, Sophie, Elisabeth, Alexis, Doris, Machiko, , Brian, Huijun, for helping and attending. (Forgive me for leaving names out by mistake)

Thank you to the 40 or so who turned out in the heat and sun to bless the Pray Their Names installation at Island United Church of Foster City this afternoon artist Katie Morrison, church council president Alexis Lewis, Foster Vity vounbilor and diversity champion Sam Hindi, Rev’s Penny NixonMarlyn BusseyElisabeth Middelberg were among them thank you readers of the Names.

A highlight was Amaka Okobi, mother of Chinedu, who was remembered on one of the hearts. We made a strong statement; #blacklivesmatter. Many people walked the installation. I engaged one neighbor who didn’t like this display in our neighborhood because it was “Marxist” though she couldn’t say why exactly.

See a full photo gallery of the day on our Facebook page.

Rev. Jim.

Pray Their Names Dedication Ceremony

Sunday, October 11, 3-3:30 pm, Island United Church

You are invited to attend the dedication ceremony for the Pray Their Names exhibit. This is an installation of 160 hearts in our churchyard commemorating the lives of Black people who have been killed in the United States in recent years, many as a result of police brutality. Some are historical figures as well. Special thanks to the Ring family, Tim Luca, and Paul Bade for all their work installing the exhibit.

This is a socially distanced ceremony. Please wear a mask and observe social distancing of six feet. The ceremony will include a reading of the names, as well as a special acknowledgement of Chinedu Okobi who was killed by police using tasers in San Mateo County two years ago this week. Clergy will offer interfaith prayers, It is one way we say that Black Lives Matter You are welcome to visit the installation at any time this month. Walk among the hearts; say the names out loud. To learn the entire story of the Pray Their Names exhibit, visit .

Shelter Network

Shelter Networks’s programs focus is on providing support for families and single adults, like job training and housing search assistance, but they find it just as important to meet the day-to-day needs of homeless men, women, and children that they serve.  For these families and individuals, losing their home also meant losing many of the other basic necessities that many of us take for granted.  Whatever we contribute helps support the work of the shelter and families who need temporary care.  We are helping families become self sufficient again.

Let us take time to think of the children of First Step for Families of Shelter Network.  The high school begins on middle of August and the younger ones it will be the end of the month.  The focus is for BACK TO SCHOOL SUPPLIES.
Suggested items:
    pencils, pens and erasers
    art supplies
    composition books
    glue and scissors
    back packs

Deliveries will be made as needed.  So bring your items to church on Sunday to help the children. 

dirty/stained, torn, broken or items needing repair
expired canned food or opened/used food
car seats, cribs, stroller
curtains/curtain rods, feathered bedding, table linens and napkins
decorative dishes,carpeting, rugs
candles, knick-knacks, wine glasses, alcohol
used hygiene products
VHS players, R rated movies
large sports equipment

If you have any questions, concerns and would like to help, let me know.

Norma Searle

New Beginnings 2.0 Conversation

Our first New Beginnings campaign has given IUC a welcoming new look!  Now we need to turn attention and energy to new and improved visibility for IUC in the community.  Our leadership retreat discussed structure, upcoming events, hopes and priorities.  You have already heard about the “team” concept of ministry.  The first teams to be organized will be communications, and worship and music.  Pastor Carol will facilitate a gathering after worship on Sunday, July 5 for anyone who would like to discuss, ask questions, and learn more about anything covered at the retreat.

New NCNC Conference Minister Rev. Diane Weible

Last Saturday, Pastor Carol, Lee Lamkin and Pat Barber – along with several hundred of our brothers and sisters from NCNC churches gathered at the 1st Congregational Church of Palo Alto. In a meeting, artfully woven in to a worship service, we met, heard, questioned, discerned, and affirmed the search committee’s nominee for our settled Conference Minister, Rev. Diane Weible. We broke bread together and gave thanks. (The Hawai’I Conference’s loss is our great gain!) We hope you get to meet and experience her soon (we’ll work to get her to IUC!)

PC(USA) Supports Marriage Equality

After over 30 years of debate, the Presbyterian Church (USA) has embraced an LGBT-inclusive definition of marriage!  A majority of presbyteries voted to accept a change to the Book of Order which now defines marriage as “between two persons.”  There is still division among Presbyterians with some individuals and churches leaving the denomination where presbyteries voted down what was termed “Amendment  14-F,” and affiliating with other branches of Presbyterianism.  However, we are proud that two of the three denominations with which Island United is covenanted now support marriage equality.  The UCC was the first among American mainline denominations in 2005.  The marriage of gay or lesbian persons is currently not permitted in United Methodist churches, per the Book of Discipline.  This continues to be a subject of debate and discernment in the UMC.

Welcome Rev. Carol Barriger

We at Island United Church are very pleased to announce that on Sunday, January 18 we chose the Rev. Carol Barriger to be our new settled pastor. Carol is no stranger to the Peninsula, having lived for many years in Redwood City. Rev. Barriger has been a pastor for over 20 years. IUC will be the 6th congregation she has served in the Northern California Nevada Conference of the UCC.  She has also been a hospital chaplain, and served as our Associate Conference Minister for Ministerial Authorization for six years. Currently she is a member of the NCNC Committee on Ministry. Carol is in her 5th year teaching UCC polity to students at Pacific School of religion in Berkeley and is embarking on a Doctor of Ministry program.

To quote Carol, she said, “Aspects of local church ministry I most enjoy are preaching and worship preparation, blending traditional and progressive elements, and small group teaching, especially Bible studies and spiritual sharing. Most of all, I treasure relationships with people of all ages in the congregation, and feel privileged to hear and hold their stories. I am excited to be part of a small, diverse community at IUC – part of the diverse community which is Foster City.  I hope to remind Foster City what a ‘gem’ IUC is in their midst and attract new energy to our ministries.”

Carol has a great smile, an open and listening heart, and a sometimes zany sense of humor and fun. We are looking forward to her beginning her service with IUC on February 8, with her first Sunday in the pulpit being Sunday, February 15.

Harvest Festival

Sunday, October 26, 10:00 Worship Service and following….

Harvest Festival!  Musical Extravaganza!  Pot Luck!   This is something you just don’t want to miss: music, music, and more music–food, food, and more food, following the service.  There will be a hymn sing, several gospel songs, an anthem by our choir, a “hymn sandwich” by our pastor for sure, and our featured special guests, The M’Earthtones.  What will really make the day even more special is that we will have four new members joining our church that day as well!  After the service there will be a pot-luck (bring a salad or a main dish to share).  We’ll provide a drinks plus a delicious Harvest Home desert.  So come join us!  Celebrate the Harvest!

New Beginnings Update

We did it! It is difficult to see in print, but as the chairperson of the New Beginnings committee, I am breathing a huge sigh of relief as we successfully completed the renovation work of our sanctuary ceiling and carpeting.

We all hope that you are pleased with our new look, feel and sound. The ceiling work started immediately after the last day of the preschool and was completed in time for school to start. A very tight schedule and we have successfully minimized the impact to our school.

The project included all new lights, insulation and drywall. We have a fresh coat of paint and of course finally new carpet. A major milestone has been met and we are very pleased!

We thank you for the strong support that we continue to receive from the congregation. Your gifts and good thoughts are greatly appreciated.  We still have some major milestones ahead for seating and cabinetry, but we hope that you invite friends and family to share in the new look created by our New Beginnings.

Paul Bade