There's always something happening at Sanibel Congregational United Church of Christ. Our monthly "Sanibel Light" newsletter offers plenty of news, as well as previews of upcoming events and learning opportunities.
A STEP TOWARDS SERENITY:
Exploring Prayer and Meditation
Wednesdays, March 18 and 25,
Pastor Danner will offer a two-part
course exploring prayer and meditation. He will not only examine the theological background of each spiritual discipline,
but also lead the class in different forms of each. His presentations will reflect varying religious and spiritual backgrounds, as well as twelve-step spirituality. Participants
will have an opportunity to put into practice what they are learning as part of each session. Classes will be held in
Fellowship Hall, Wednesdays, March 18 and 25, at 10:00 AM and 7:00 PM
Are You Among Those Who Are Vitamin D Deficient? Vitamin D deficiency is a global health problem. With all the medical advances of the century, vitamin D
deficiency is still epidemic. Over a billion people worldwide are vitamin D deficient or insufficient. Recent research concludes that over 40% of Americans lack a sufficient amount of this essential vitamin. Vitamin D, also described as the Sunshine Vitamin is a steroid with hormone like activity. It regulates the functions of over 200 genes and is essential for growth and development. Vitamin D3 deficiency can result in obesity, diabetes, hypertension, depression, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, osteoporosis and neuro-degenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease. Current research indicates vitamin D deficiency
plays a role in heart disease, stroke, autoimmune diseases, birth defects, and periodontal disease. Vitamin D3 is believed to play a part in controlling the immune system (possibly reducing one’s risk of cancers and autoimmune diseases), increasing neuromuscular function and improving mood, protecting the brain against toxic chemicals, and potentially reducing pain. There are two forms of vitamin D. Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol). Vitamin D status depends on the production of vitamin D 3 in the skin under the influence of ultraviolet radiation from
sun and vitamin D intake through diet or vitamin D supplements. Usually 50 to 90% of vitamin D is produced by sunshine exposure of skin and the remainder comes from the diet. The natural diet, most humans consume, contains little vitamin D. Food sources are high is the vitamin are egg yolk, fatty fish, fortified dairy products and beef liver. When Vitamin D supplements are recommended, it is usually in the form of vitamin D3 as it is easier for the body to digest. Exposure to sunshine each day helps the human body to manufacture the required amount of vitamin D. To prevent vitamin D deficiency, one should spend 15 to 20 minutes daily in the sunshine with 40% of the skin surface exposed. However, due to fear of developing skin cancer most people avoid sun exposure. High concentration of melanin in the skin and aging slows production of vitamin D. Use of sun block, some window glass in homes and cars, and clothing all block the UVB radiation needed for your skin to produce
the vitamin D your body needs. I would recommend asking your physician to order a vitamin D level the next time he or she orders your labs. The name of the lab is 25-Hydroxy Vitamin D, but you can just ask for a vitamin D level to be drawn. You may not be deficient, but if you are, it would important to consider taking supplements. Of course, you need to discuss this with your physician before taking any new supplement or medicine. Gregor, Michael M.D. FACLM, How Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease.
Hollick MF, Chen TC. Vitamin D deficiency a worldwide problem with health consequences.
Am J Clin Nutr. 2008;87:10805–68. [PubMed] [Google Scholar] Iqbal R, Khan A. Possible causes of vitamin D deficiency. J Pak Med Asso. 2010;60(1):1–2. [PubMed] [Google Scholar] Naaem, Zahid M.D. Vitamin D Deficiency An Ignored Epidemic, Int J Health Sci (Qassim). 2010 Jan; 4(1): V–VI.
Psalm 34:8 O taste and see that the Lord is good: happy are those who take refuge in Him.
Caring for you and your health,
Linda Convertine, RN, BSN
Reflections on the Current State of the Green Team and Environmental Activism on Sanibel Environmental action in the area has moved to a different level, both in terms of more organizations working
together and in terms of the nature of their activities. The Green Team is now an interfaith group, with eight members from SCUCC and seven from Bat Yam. At the
SCUCC annual meeting of 2020, the congregation voted (by a vote of 104 to 1) that the Green Team should be
represented on the Church Council and that its members be appointed by the Council.
The congregation has also applied to be a Creation Justice Church of the United Church of Christ because of our
covenant, which states “We will serve and support each other, and do all we can to protect as well the birds, animals
and plants on this fragile barrier island,” and our work to fulfill it. Because of our work on behalf of the environment, SCUCC is a leader among faith communities on the barrier
islands. The Church Council voted to sign on to the mission statement of the new coalition of faith communities on
Sanibel and Captiva, called “Together—A Way Forward” and led by Peter Blaze Corcoran, one of the authors of the
Earth Charter and professor emeritus of Environmental Studies and Environmental Education at Florida Gulf Coast
University. Our Shared Scholar this year, Dr Mary Evelyn Tucker, author with Brian Thomas Swimme of the book and film,
Journey of the Universe, attracted quite a few environmental activists in the area, such as members of the Pachamama Alliance and the Rev. Kim Wells, pastor of Lakewood United Church of Christ in St. Petersburg. The Church Council also voted to join with Climate Reality (which has a new chapter that meets both on Sanibel
and in Fort Myers) and other groups and individuals to ask the Lee County Electric Cooperative and the Sanibel City Council to move towards getting 100% of its electricity from renewable sources as soon as possible. SCUCC’s Board of Trustees is willing to look into the possibility of installing solar panels on our property as well. A new Solar Collective of Southwest Florida has been formed in Naples to investigate vendors and get a good price.