Send announcements to The Loudoun Connection, 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102, e-mail to or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is Friday, two weeks before the event. Photos/artwork encouraged. For more information, call Jennifer Lesinski at 703-917-6454.

This free listing is reserved for activities and events that are open to the public at no or minimal cost.

Riverside Presbyterian Church in Sterling is holding a potluck dinner, video and discussion on "Faith Lessons on the Life & Ministry of the Messiah," Wednesday nights, through Aug. 16, from 6:30-8:30 p.m., at the church office, 20 Pidgeon Hill Drive, Suite 109. Visit or call 703-444-3528.

Riverside Presbyterian Church is planning a summer trips for rising sixth-graders through graduating eighth-graders, is a week at Ligonier Camp with high ropes, caving, 50-foot climbing tower, zip line and white-water rafting, Bible study, praise and worship, Aug. 13-17.

Contact or or visit or call 703-444-3528.

Congregation Sha'are Shalom, Loudoun County's conservative synagogue, is holding an open house for prospective members Aug. 16, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Call 703-737-6500 or visit Congregation Sha'are Shalom is located at 19357 Evergreen Mills Road, Leesburg.

Service of prayer for healing and wholeness, Thursday, Aug. 17, at 7:30 p.m., Galilee United Methodist Church, 45425 Winding Road, Sterling. Caring people throughout the ages have lifted each other up in prayer for healing and wholeness. Visit the Web site at or call the church office at 703-430-2203.

On Aug. 19, Joshua's Hands is sponsoring a "Walk Thru the Old Testament" seminar at Hamilton Baptist Church, 16 Colonial Highway, in Hamilton. Walk Thru the Bible seminars utilize interactive learning techniques to help people absorb and remember the key characters, geography and major themes of the entire Old Testament.

For children grade first through fifth a Kids in the Book seminar will be offered. The children will learn the Old Testament through stories, puzzles and the same learning techniques as the adults.

A subsequent Walk Thru the New Testament seminar will be held Nov. 18. Contact Joshua's Hands at 540-454-7827.

The United Methodist Women of Sterling UMC will hold a pancake breakfast, Sunday, Aug. 20, from 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m., in the fellowship hall, 304 E. Church Road, Sterlng. Admission free; goodwill offering accepted. All proceeds benefit local missions. Call 703-430-6455.

Galilee United Methodist Church is starting a beginning handbell choir this fall and is looking for folks who have an interest in learning how to play handbells and who can attend rehearsals on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Open to students in the ninth grade or above or an adult. There will be an open house Thursday, Aug. 22, 7 p.m., 45425 Winding Road in Sterling. Contact the church office at 703-430-2203.

Riverside Presbyterian Church in Sterling is holding a children's summer program for second- and third-graders, Aug. 22, at the new Chuck E. Cheese in Sterling, 10 a.m.- noon. To RSVP visit or call the office at 703-444-3528.

"Jesus Loves Me Party" at Galilee United Methodist Church's contemporary worship service featuring Winding Road, Sunday, Aug. 27, 6 p.m., 45425 Winding Road in Sterling. Contact the church office at 703-430-2203.

Congregation Sha'are Shalom, Loudoun County's conservative synagogue, is holding its Annual Picnic Sunday, Aug. 27, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m., at Foxridge Park in Leesburg located at the west end of Catoctin Circle at ChildrenÕs Center Road next to the C.S. Monroe Vo-Tech School. Nonmembers welcome to join the event free. visit or call 703-737-6500.

Letters From Dad, Saturday, Sept. 9, 7:30-9 a.m., at St. MatthewÕs Episcopal Church, 201 East Frederick Drive, Sterling. Dads learn to write the things they have always wanted to say but just didn't know how. Contact Mark Vereb at 703-785-0468 or via e-mail at

The Pleasant Valley United Methodist Women's 14th Annual Fall Festival is Sept. 9, from 9 a.m.-3 p.m., at Pleasant Valley UMC, 43987 John Mosby Highway, Chantilly. Includes classic car show, craft show, breakfast adn lunch served, bake sale, silent auction, Lions Club sight and hearing van, live bands and children's activities. Rain date Sept. 16.

St. GabrielÕs Episcopal Church of Lansdowne is extending an invitation to families that have children with autism spectrum, ADHD, bipolar disorder and similar conditions. St. Gabriel's has developed several programs to reach out to the community.

* The ÒChrysalisÓ Room is a safe space for children with autism spectrum, ADHD, bipolar disorder and similar conditions. Includes a trained professional staff that provides appropriate activities and lessons. It is available every Sunday during the regular 10 a.m. worship and for special events.

* Spiritual Support Group for families with special needs, on the first and third Thursdays of each month, from 7-8:30 p.m. This group is completely Òdrop-in.Ó

All programs held Belmont Ridge Middle School, 19045 Upper Belmont Place in Lansdowne. Visit or call 703-779-3616.

Cathedral Church of the Transfiguration follows regular services Sundays, at 10 a.m., at the Loudoun County Senior Center at Cascades Marketplace, 21060 Whitfield Place, Sterling. Call the church office 571-434-0888 or contact Father Mike Evans by e-mail

Riverside Presbyterian ChurchÕs Kenya CafŽ will be open, from 9:15-10:30 a.m., Sundays, at Potomac Falls High School. It offers a friendly, comfortable spot to grab a cup of coffee, chat with others or just relax and read the paper while the children are in small group. The cafŽ is also designed to raise awareness of RiversideÕs partnerships in Kenya and other parts of the world.

Feel free to join the church for worship at 10:35 a.m. Contact 703-444-3528 or

Ashburn Presbyterian Church (APC) is offering its Stephen Ministry to people in the community. Stephen Ministry is grounded in Jesus' command to love one another.

Through one-to-one caring relationships those who are hurting and stressed receive a Stephen Minister to listen and pray with them. Although Stephen Ministry is not counseling per se, these caregivers walk with people through a variety of difficult life situations such as: divorce, grief, unemployment, relocation or just the stress of life. Anyone interested in being a care receiver, call the Rev. Mark Armstrong at 703-421-0511.

APC is located at 20962 Ashburn Road. Call the church offices at 703-729-2012 or visit the Web site at

Beth Chaverim Reform Congregation invites the community to join it for Shabbat services, religious school, BÕnai Mitzvah program, youth activities, interfaith discussions, adult education and social activities. Student Rabbi Jesse Gallop presides over biweekly Shabbat services. Children attend Sunday school every Sunday and midweek Hebrew classes on Wednesday evening. The congregation eagerly anticipates moving into its own building in the fall. Call 703-391-8669 or visit the Web site or e-mail

Congregation Sha'are Shalom, Loudoun County's Conservative Synagogue, holds Erev Shabbat services Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Shabbat morning services on the first and third Saturdays of the month at 9:30 a.m. Rabbinic intern Michael Ragozin will preside over services once a month. The congregation has an active Men's Club, Sisterhood and extensive gift shop. Call 703-737-6500, e-mail or visit Congregation Sha'are Shalom is located at 19357 Evergreen Mill Road, Leesburg.

The Loudoun Church Alliance is a formal association of churches of many denominations, founded two years ago. It works in the areas of youth development, international missions, evangelism outreach, and is now working to develop relationships with government and business. Contact founder and missionary Jack Stagman at

The Unitarian Universalists of Sterling meet on Sunday mornings, at 10:30 a.m., at the Sterling Oaks Commerce Center at 21355 Davis Drive near Route 28 and Church Road. Call 703-406-3068 or visit