The latest news and updates from Cary Presbyterian Church

Sunday School correction: A week from this coming Sunday, on Dec. 16. the following classes will not meet-- Faith Journey, Middle School, and Confirmation-- so that pageant participants can practice. The three classes will meet as usual on Dec. 9.

There remains uncertainty about this coming Sunday's weather (Dec. 9). Please review the inclement weather post about notifications in the newsletter below. Thanks!
News & Updates from Your CPC Family
In Search of Our Dwelling Places (1st Stanza)
by Ann Weems
This Advent let's go to Bethlehem
and see this thing that the Lord has made known to us.
In the midst of shopping sprees
   let's ponder in our hearts the Gift of Gifts.
Through the tinsel
   let's look for the gold of the Christmas Star
In the excitement and confusion, in the merry chaos,
   let's listen for the brush of angels' wings.
This Advent, let's go to Bethlehem
   and find our kneeling places.
Second Sunday of Advent 
Worship Services 
December 9, 2018
Worship Services: 8:30 and 11:00 a.m. 
Sunday School (All Ages) 9:45
Sermon:   Benedictus
 - Alan Bancroft
Scripture Reading: Malachi 3:1-4; Luke 1:67-80

Ministers: Lori Pistor, Alan Bancroft
Director of Music: Ed Yasick
Choir: Chancel Choir

  An important announcement from CPC Session 

The Session of Cary Presbyterian Church has called a Congregational Meeting for Sunday, December 9, following 11:00 a.m. worship for the purpose of receiving a report and motion from the Nominations Committee regarding the election of the Pastor Nominating Committee. Information regarding the slate of candidates will be forthcoming.

  Inclement Weather Policy

As there is a possibility of inclement weather this weekend, we want to remind everyone of this portion of the CPC Inclement weather policy covering worship services:

Our utmost concern is the safety of our members and visitors, especially during inclement weather. While we are always happy to see you, please use your discretion about traveling when weather conditions are potentially hazardous.

Cary Presbyterian Church policy is to hold scheduled Worship services if at all possible. In the event of a forecast of inclement weather on the weekend, the pastor/head of staff, in consultation with the clerk of Session, will make the final decision on whether to postpone or cancel scheduled Worship services. A decision will be made no later than 9 p.m.the night before.

Any worship service delays or cancellations will be communicated as promptly as possible via congregational E-mail and the Cary Presbyterian Church Facebook Page. The information also will be posted on WRAL-TV and its website.  

Joy Offering, December 9
The Christmas Joy Offering of our denomination, the PC(USA), will be received beginning December 9, 2018. Needed assistance is provided to retired church workers and their families and to current church workers and their families facing emergency situations. Support is also provided to students at racial-ethnic colleges. Envelopes will be in the pews.  

Remember, Respond, Rejoice!

A Reminder from the CPC Finance Manager
We are truly grateful to all who have shared God's treasure, regardless of how large or small. All of your gifts are truly appreciated.
If you are up to date with your planned giving commitment, we thank you. If not,
we graciously ask that you become current by the end of the year.  

(If you would like to provide your commitment  to the ministry of CPC online,  a pledge form is provided for you at this link.)

A week from this Sunday, Dec. 16. the following classes will not meet-- Faith Journey, Middle School, and Confirmation-- so that pageant participants can practice. ALL children on those grades are welcome and encouraged to be in the sanctuary and Faith Hall of Fame for rehearsal, cast additions, and snacks!

Adult Sunday School during Advent

Kerygma Listening to Scripture; strategies for interpreting the Bible, with Duane Hix. Room 102.

Bible and Beyond: Dec. 9 - Christmas Accounts in the Gospels, an Advent study by Cynthia M. Campbell, President of McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, featuring a different Gospel each week. Library.
Faith Today : Through Dec. 16 - Advent in Narnia: Reflections for the Season. "With its enchanting themes of light and darkness, temptation and sin, forgiveness and hope, and an appearance of Father Christmas, the world of Narnia from Lewis's The Lion, the Witch, and the WardrobeThe class will use readings, discussion and scenes from the film of the same name to consider grace, love, and sacrifice. Led by Medora Hix, Room 100.
Faith and Families: for people raising families in faith in a complicated world: Advent Conspiracy "was founded on the radical idea that we can celebrate Christmas humbly, beautifully, and generously. Advent is the story of a wondrous moment when God entered our world to make things right. It is the greatest story ever told and it changes everything-including the way we celebrate Christmas." Fellowship Hall

Loaves and Fishes 
Angel Tree

The Loaves and Fishes Angel Tree is in place in the Narthex.  

Lists of possible gifts for children of various ages will be available; choose a gift from the list and return it to the Narthex by December 9. Gift cards or checks made out to Loaves and Fishes are also needed. 

Some gifts for younger children may be designated for the Pride for Parents Store. Families who have been vetted as Low Income may come to the store and purchase gifts for their children at lowered prices. 
All the families live in Southeast Raleigh and have limited income. You can assist them in having a blessed Christmas. Thank you!  

A Special Advent Study:
God Is in the Manger
by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
This Advent study is led by Dr. Duane Hix (whose Ph.D. thesis was on Bonhoeffer). Come at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday Dec. 12 and 19 for a soup supper. The class will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. Please sign up in the narthex or here:
You will need to order your own book (Google 'God Is in the Manger, Bonhoeffer').
If you are willing to provide soup for one of the weeks, please email Medora at
Fair Trade Gifts for the Christmas Season

Stop by our Fair Trade table, located just outside Fellowship Hall, from 9:30-11:00 a.m. to taste Sister's Blend coffee and peruse our wide selection of coffees, chocolate, tea, and olive oil.  We have gift baskets of coffee and chocolate, tea and chocolate, as well as festive packages of assorted teas or chocolates.  Need teacher or hostess gifts?  We have great ideas.
Watch for us this Sunday Dec. 9 and Dec 16.  Dec. 16 will be your last opportunity to purchase Fair Trade items or pick up your orders before Christmas. Have questions?  Contact Jeanne Bolick at or Betty Boyd at

DECEMBER 16: Third Sunday in Advent
Two very special worship services
8:30 a.m. A contemplative service of worship engaging scripture, silence, music, songs of Taize, and quiet reflection.
11:00 a.m.    The Beginning A pageant of humor and meaning with an intergenerational, all-star cast and congregational singing as our journey to Bethlehem continues.
Youth Group Events for Week of Dec. 9

Christian Adventurers
December 9: Christmas Caroling with Middle School Group
CA Parents: please note that this week's event will last until 8:00 p.m.

Middle School
December 9: Christmas Caroling with Christian Adventurers

The Christian Adventurers and Middle School Youth will join forces this week to bring some Christmas cheer to the residents of Chatham Commons. We'll gather for dinner, then head to Chatham Commons to sing Christmas carols. 
Senior High
December 9: 5:15 p.m. Bridge to Life: Moth Radio Hour

This will be our final Bridge To Life for 2018.
CPC students get the chance to respond to a semester of Bridge to Life focused on Social Justice. We will be reflecting on what we have learned and how we will use this information in our futures.

Members of the youth group will have the opportunity to tell a story, a la Moth Radio Hour, in answer to the question: When did you realize the system was broken? This is sure to be an interesting evening, so we hope you'll join us.

Upcoming Youth Events
December 16
MS: Christmas Party
HS: Christmas Party
December 23 & 30
No Youth Group Gatherings
On the 23rd, we'll go out to lunch somewhere after the 11:00 service. We'll decide that day where to go.

Get Your Online Directory Photo Taken Sunday! 
Need your picture taken and added to the new online directory?  Meet Mitzi or Barbara in the Narthex by the Angel Tree following 8:30 and 11:00 a.m. worship this coming Sunday, Dec. 9 and on Dec. 16. One of them will snap your smiling face(s) and post the picture to your Servant Keeper profile. Thanks for helping create the new online directory!

A Message from Personnel and Administration.
CPC is blessed with a wonderful and devoted staff. Beginning Sunday December 9 through Sunday December 16, we are collecting monetary gifts. Small envelopes for the gifts will be in the Welcome pads. Place the envelopes in the collection plate or drop off checks in the office. Please be sure to write "staff gift" in the memo line. Thank you. 

Order Poinsettias by Sunday, Dec. 16!

The inside back page of Sunday's bulletin will have an order form 
for you to complete and place in the offering plate 
or to drop off at the church office no later than December 16.
There is also a place on the form for you  to indicate 
dedications for your poinsettias.
Your gifts and dedications will be acknowledged 
in the Christmas Eve bulletins 
and at the end of the 8:00 p.m. service you may take your poinsettias home. 
Thanks for your continued support of this CPC tradition.  

Christ Be Our Light Labyrinth Walk,
Friday, December 21 at 5:00 p.m.
The word "light" is referenced often in the Bible to symbolize goodness, truth, and knowledge. On the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, we celebrate the hope, love, and light of Christ's birth. 
Join us in the lower parking lot for a short service of song, prayer and poetry. We will then walk to the labyrinth to witness the light of over 100 candles. You may walk the labyrinth, simply stand, or sit as others do so.  Hot apple cider will be available to help keep us warm.  Questions?  Email Diane Garber at

Advent Traditions and Symbols 2018

Advent is filled with images and symbols. Some of us have known them since childhood; for others these are new ways to engage Advent waiting and imagination.
We light candles as a reminder that the light of Christ "shines in the darkness, and the darkness shall not overcome it." Often there are 3 purple candles,
1 pink candle, and the white Christ candle lit on Christmas Eve. Each candle may represent a word or theme like peace, hope, joy, and love. The pink candle is often associated with Gaudete (joy) Sunday, representing Mary's joy. This year at CPC our Advent wreath lighting and liturgy draw on the ideas
of taking courage, preparing our hearts, going where we're sent, and the angelic reminder "do not be afraid," so all the candles are purple.
CPC's angels join the choir this year just a bit differently from the past with one added each Sunday.
The tree gracing the front of the sanctuary, decorated in white and gold ornaments, is called a Chrismon tree. The ornaments are a collection of ancient Christian symbols and crosses. For example, the shell represents baptism, the dove represents the Holy Spirit, and the crown calls to mind Jesus as King. The word Chrismon is a combination of the words Christ and Monogram as all the decorations are monograms or symbols which together tell the story of our Christian faith. (More symbols and their meanings can be found on the purple cards in the pew pockets.) You will also see Chrismons on the green swags or ropes along the sanctuary walls.
The paraments (the cloths on the lectern, pulpit, Table) are purple, which has long been the color used to represent both royalty and a time of waiting and preparation.
Finally, behind the pulpit is the Bethlehem banner with the star shining over the city. We see it as at a distance as we make our weary, expectant way; along with Mary, Joseph, wisemen and shepherds to the city of David where the Christ child will be born.
So this year, as we tune our eyes to the subtle changes of candles and banners, may we also tune our hearts to hear the old, old sto ry as if for
the first time. As Ann Weems wrote,

"When we are Bethlehem-bound
   we can no longer look the other way
       conveniently not seeing stars
            not hearing angel voices.
We can no longer excuse ourselves by busily
   tending our sheep or our kingdoms.
This Advent let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing
that the Lord has made known to us...
 This Advent, let's go to Bethlehem
  and find our kneeling places."

Resources for Advent Devotions

The following sites provide helpful resources to assist with your personal devotions during the Advent season. 

Each year Pittsburgh Theological Seminary offers free Advent devotionals as a gift. Read daily messages written by members of the PTS community. Scroll down on their site for this year's Advent devotionals, and learn more about the various ways you can read the daily messages.
  A new day, a new piece of classical music - FREE!   Naxos's new musical app for Advent features 25 complete tracks behind numbered doors. Each day, a new door is 'unlocked' to reveal a new piece of seasonal music from Naxos's classical music catalogue. 

These daily reflections were coauthored by Paul H. Lang and David Crean in the fall of 2012. David passed away before they were published. The paintings for these devotions are by Joanne Lang.

Interactive sharing of individual Advent meditations from the department of Lifelong Learning at Virginia Theological Seminary.

CPC Keypads are Installed and Active
The church keypads were installed Monday, Dec. 3 and were made active. 
You will now need to use the codes you have received to enter the church building. (
If you have not received a code and need one, you will need to come
to the church office during the week and sign to receive one. 
Your code will be immediately active.)

Here is how you open a door (see picture of keypad above):
  1. Enter your 4 digit code. There will be a beep, a red light above the numeric pad will turn green, and you will hear a lock release.
  2. Turn the latch below the keypad and above the keyhole to the right, fully.
  3. The door will  open. While the door is open, TURN THE LATCH BACK TO THE LEFT TO LOCK THE DOOR AGAIN WHILE THE DOOR IS OPEN. When the door closes, it will relock. 
  4. Please Note  if you don't turn the latch back to the left to relock the door, the door will remain unlocked for an indeterminate length of time.  
Thanks for your cooperation and patience as we get acclimated to the new security system.

CPC Security Team

Online Directory Access and Update Information 
On October 31, an email invitation from Servant Keeper was sent to the person shown as head of household in your Servant Keeper Family account. On November 28, an email invitation was sent again from Servant Keeper to each family that did not log into their account with the first invitation. This email has an access link that is good for two weeks
(The email is generated by Servant Keeper. Only one is sent per family account, not to each individual member.) The 
database allows only one person in each family to be designated head of household.

If you have already logged into your family profile and set up a family password, you can access the CPC Directory at this link, , using the universal directory password mycpcdirectory

We ask you  to review your profile family information to make sure that the correct address, phone, and email addresses are in our system.
The ability to download photos of your choice for your family page and for individual family members is also provided. 

Please use the link here for detailed instructions about logging in to your family profile and setting up a family password .
(The 'Manage My Family' link shown on the instruction page illustration in the pdf is not active. Your Family Profile must first be accessed through the link in your invitation email.) 
Again, once you are logged in and your family password is set up, you may access the entire member directory at 
with the universal directory password mycpcdirectory.
Thank you for taking time to help create CPC's new pictorial directory!
PLEASE NOTE: Hard copies of a non-pictorial directory are available from the office upon request. Hard copies of the Pictorial Online Directory will be printed ONLY when a substantial number of photos have been downloaded.  

Esperanza de Guatemala Thank You
Thank you to everyone who generously gave to our "Outfit a Classroom" campaign for Giving Tuesday.  Esperanza de Guatemala raised over $1,100!  Your generous gifts, combined with the gifts from the Alternative Gift Market will provide classroom supplies for the elementary school in Nimasac, Guatemala.  The teachers and students are very appreciative.  Thank you! (It's not too late to give!  Please visit our website at and click on "donate.")

Memory Care Workshop at Covenant Christian Church
December 8, 9:00 to 11:00 a.m.
2911 S. Cary Parkway

CPC Church Service Podcasts
CPC Service podcasts are added weekly to Soundcloud and for posting to the website on this page. They appear with the most recent service featured at the top of the page, with the illustration from that week's bulletin as an identifier (as shown above).

(The services for August 12 and for September 2 are not available due to recording difficulties those Sundays. You can find a copy of Mitzi's message 'Expectation Vs. Reality' for August 12 at this link.)

The public CPC Facebook page is a great continuing source of information about what is upcoming and what has happened at CPC. Visit it frequently for news and pictures you won't see elsewhere, and share the posts with your friends and on your own Facebook page! 

Follow the links to the public page and the CPC family page below: 

Need a Name Tag?

BE KNOWN! Wear your name tag!

Need a name tag?  Need a new name tag?
You can either:
Write "Need a name tag" next to your name in the Welcome Book
OR sign up for a name tag at the table by the TV in the Narthex.
As soon as yours is ready it will be on that same table.
Keep it where most convenient on one of the name tag racks.

Send Your News and Announcements

Bulletin and e-Link announcements 
to be placed in any upcoming print issue  or email 
are  due by 12:00 noon on the prior Wednesday.
Please send to Phil Melton at

CPC Calendar for December  9 through December 16

Did You Know?

Cary Presbyterian Church is a part of a larger family of churches comprising the New Hope Presbytery. 
From Efland to the Outer Banks, spanning 33 counties, with 122 congregations representing 28,314 members, we are a Mid-Council of the Presbyterian Church (USA) serving eastern North Carolina. 

To learn more about what is going on within our New Hope Presbytery, click here to sign up for the Presbytery of New Hope e-newsletter

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