|First Presbyterian Church||October 2017||Whiteville, NC|
“To be a light in our community reflecting Christ’s love and compassion”
From the Pastor’s Desk…
- What an amazing God we serve! On September 24 we came together for my installation service. Having already been ordained, the installation service served as the Presbytery of Coastal Carolina’s official recognition, and blessing, of God’s call in our collective lives for mission and ministry. As I stood before you and reflected on the questions that Steuart Link asked me as part of the installation process…I was humbled. I was humbled by the responsibility that God has called me to receive. But more importantly, I was humbled by what this service did…it joined us together as partners in ministry in Whiteville, Columbus County, and throughout the world.
As partners let us enjoy and celebrate God’s blessings together…let us smile and laugh together. But may we also come together during the difficult times of life…where our laughter is replaced by tears. Through all the good times and bad times, the ups and downs, we are called to journey together. An installation service is not simply about the pastor…it is about the partnership that God has formed. Let us celebrate together the life that God has called us to undertake as we seek “To be a light in our community reflecting Christ’s love and compassion.”
- Studies show that 86% of first time visitors to a church attend because someone invited them! With only 14% of first visitors showing up on their own, it is imperative that we develop the habit of inviting people to join us for worship. Last month I encouraged you to think about, and pray over, people that you could invite to church…and I continue to do wo. You might offer to pick them up and give them a ride or you might offer to meet them at the church so you can sit together…this will help alleviate some of their stress about visiting the church.
- Another thing that is important is to be sure to extend the hand of fellowship and welcome to those who may be visiting with us on a Sunday morning. Here are some thoughts to help us be more hospitable…
- If someone asks you where the nursery, or bathroom, or some other place is, don’t just point and give directions, offer to walk them to their destination. This will give you an opportunity to engage them in a conversation.
- During the time for the “Sharing the Peace of Christ” be sensitive to visitors in worship. Seek them out and extend a hand of welcome.
- Following worship, when you are waiting to exit the sanctuary, utilize the waiting time to introduce yourself to visitors and engage them in a conversation. None of us really like to wait…but this time following worship can be a great time to engage with some visitors.
Remember…together we CAN grow God’s Church!
- Pastor Joe
The office has been updating our records and trying to make everything as accurate as possible. Please take the time to make sure all phone numbers, email addresses, and birthdays, etc. are in the church database. Thank you!
October 2107 Worship Schedule
Head Usher, October: Ben Kilpatrick October 1
Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, Communion
World Communion Sunday
Psalm 100 “Living the Faith: Worship Regularly”
Nursery Attendant: Joan Dorsett
Sound Team: Jonathan Medford
Communion Servers: Greg Blackmon, Peggy Blanchard,
Joan Dorsett (juice), Coke Gray II, Ethan Scott (bread)
Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Matthew 25:31-46 “Living the Faith: Serve Eagerly”
Nursery Attendant: Ben & Sydney Kilpatrick
Sound Team: Fuller Royal
Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Ephesians 4:1-13 “Living the Faith: Live Worthily”
Nursery Attendant: Ethan Scott
Sound Team: Jim Brooks
Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost
2 Corinthians 9:6-15 “Living the Faith: Give Generously”
Nursery Attendant: Kaye Pope
Sound Team: Josh Horne
Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost
Mark 12:41-44 “More Than These”
Nursery Attendant: Sarah Gray
Sound Team: Justin Smith
The Session of First Presbyterian Church, Whiteville, met on Wednesday, September 13, 2017, moderated by Rev. Dr. Joseph D. Washburn. Items discussed were:
- Washburn’s visitations and preparation for his installation.
- Mandy Horne elected commissioner to the Presbytery meeting October 14, with Coke Gray as alternate.
- The statement of income and expenditures to date. Concerns over income shortfall were discussed.
- The stewardship campaign and the elder nominating committee.
- Possibility of a hurricane relief workshop. More information will follow.
- Successful Rally Day.
- Request from the Reform Rebels Sunday School class to paint a Christian mural on their Sunday school wall. Members of the class will pay for the project.
- Replacing the carpet in the nursery.
- The policy for use of the church facilities for weddings and funerals, including wedding liaison and wedding information form.
- Upcoming Events
Oct. 15 – Lunch on the Lawn after worship service (in case of rain, Worth Hall)
Dec. 3 – Caroling with Youth and Hot Dogs afterwards
Dec. 10 – Love Feast Service in Sanctuary
- Elect four elders instead of five for each class going forward.
- Reestablishing the gifts and memorials committee.
A Note from The Outreach Committee:
FPC is once again going to participate in the program formerly known as Two-Cents-a-Meal. Now called Cents-Ability, this program is the Presbyterian Church’s “strategy for raising awareness-and funds-for the fight against hunger.” In honor of World Food Day on Monday, October 16th, we will kick off Cents-ability on Sunday, October 15th. But before then, we need your help! “Banks” will need to be made, so if you have any empty (and clean!) pickle jars, larger-sized soup cans, or any other containers which could be used, please drop them off at the church office by Friday, October 6th.
FPC will once again be holding a Sole Hope Shoe Cutting party! This program aims to outfit people in Uganda with shoes to prevent jiggers in feet, and to provide a sustainable job and income for Ugandans. The party will be held in the fall, and even though a date has not been finalized, there is a way to help now. Each shoe pattern we send off needs to be sponsored for $10–this includes shipping, extra materials, and payment for the Tailors and Shoemakers. If you are interested in helping sponsor a pair of shoes (or several!), please make your check out to FPC with “Sole Hope” in the memo line.
Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes will be collected the week of November 13th. More information will be coming.
Anyone interested in doing hands-on mission work in Hurricane Matthew-affected areas (Fayetteville and Lumberton) need to sign up for a day of work during PUSH week (more information coming).
The Outreach Committee
HOW DO WE RATE?
I enjoy visiting churches. Although I do not have many opportunities to worship with other churches, I find these visits during vacations and study leave to be rewarding and beneficial. It is rewarding to simply attend church and worship God so I may nurture my personal relationship with Him through Jesus Christ. While I love preaching and taking part in the planning and leading of worship, it is a nice change to have occasions when I can simply be in the presence of God.
Long after the prayers have ascended, the hymnbooks have been closed and the preacher’s Bible has been opened for next week’s sermon preparation, I find it rewarding to reflect back on my visit with this particular congregation. Perhaps the most basic observation I make is how were we received as visitors to this church? Were we brought into the life of the church and made to feel like we belong or were we kept at arm’s length, obviously kept in our places as visitors? I do not think I have met a congregation that does not say they want to grow. It is the goal of virtually every church to expand its membership and the Kingdom of God. But an honest appraisal would reveal that not every church puts their best foot forward on Sunday morning.
In a recent newsletter that I received I came across an interesting survey. It seems that a person from the west coast made a study based upon visiting and rating churches. The rating was based upon how he was treated as a visitor to each church. Points were merited on this scale:
– 10 points for a smile from a worshiper;
– 100 points for an exchange of names;
– 200 points for an invitation to return;
– 1,000 points for an introduction to another worshiper;
– 2,000 points for an introduction to the minister.
Using this scale of rating, 11 of 18 churches received fewer than 100 points! Five of the 18 actually received less than 20 points. This is something for all of us to think about.
Obviously I am new and still trying to learn my way around, but perhaps this is a good time to encourage each one of us to examine how we at First Presbyterian Church would score on this test. How do you think we would be rated as a church if this visitor came into our sanctuary? My hope is that no one visiting First Presbyterian Church will walk away un-welcomed, feeling like we are a cold congregation. The answer to this test is up to each one of us. We can intentionally work to make visitors feel a part of our worship service and church life. If we are to be a warm and friendly church, and I believe we do quite well, we each need to take some responsibility and seek to extend the right hand of fellowship with everyone who may find his or her way into our midst on a given week. How would they rate us? That answer is up to you!
– Pastor Joe
Trunk or Treat on October 29th from 3:00-5:00 p.m. Prize for best decorated trunk! Games, prizes, cake walk, and candy!
(The Outreach Committee would appreciate donations of baked goods for the cake walk. Please have to the church kitchen by end of worship on the 29th. Thank you!)
1 Josh Horne 2 Scott Caperton
4 Don Stocks 5 Sarah Gray
4 Emma Gray 5 Carrie Medford
5 Peggy Blanchard 6 Carroll Branch
8 Logan Hester 7 Gail Crutchfield
9 Butch Blanchard 7 Sydney Kilpatrick
9 John Krahnke 8 Kathon Ramey
11 Walter Strickland 14 Charlene Hinnant
15 Kenneth Smith 16 Ri Love
17 Betty Monds 17 Jeff Kindschuh
18 Martin Scott 19 Emily Bannerman
20 Emily Cook 25 Jenifer Hester
26 Donald Hester 27 Jean Lee
27 Fredrica Stell 27 Paul Woodall
29 Sara Cartrette 29 Colette Michaud
30 Zach Spivey
30 Hanna Washburn Suire
31 Rick Neisler
On Oct. 15th” Lunch On The Lawn”. Weather permitting; we will set-up tables and chairs outside, or you may bring a blanket for your family to picnic on. This will be a covered dish event following the Worship Service. If the weather does not cooperate we will go into Worth Hall.
Debbie Viets and Congregational Life Committee (CLC) Members