New Church of Phoenix Periodical
Issue # 31
July - August, 2016
In This Issue

Hospice Volunteering 
- Our New Community Service Initiative

A great deal about the New Church message is captured in this quote from 'Apocalypse Revealed': "Charity without faith is not real, nor is faith without charity real, and neither charity nor faith is real without works. But in works they become real."
We are all meant to continually work on strengthening our faith.  We are meant to allow the spirit of true charity to grow within us.  And, we are meant express this faith and charity through doing useful things for others.

Many people throughout the church do wonderful charitable work in many areas of their lives. In doing so, they play their part in helping to make this world a better place.  Still, it is often hard to know how a congregation might practice charity collectively.  Our newest initiative at the New Church of Phoenix has as its goal to provide this type of charitable outlet.  

Interested people are invited to join our team of hospice volunteers.  We are in partnership with Prime Care Hospice, a local organization based in Phoenix. (Read more about them below.)

Our first group of trainees has now completed the course and is ready to be sent out into the field.   Our trainees will be assigned patients near their homes and will meet with those patients as frequently as is agreed upon between the patient, the patient's caregiver, and the volunteer.  Each visit will be an opportunity for a trained caring volunteer to provide a loving presence with individuals who are likely to soon leave this world.  In other words, our volunteers help bring an additional human touch at this precious and sometimes challenging time of life.

Work in the field of hospice care seems to be a natural extension of New Church teachings concerning the end of this life and the beginning of the next. For instance, the book 'Apocalypse Explained' speaks of how the true person that we are exists on the level of our spirit and is not defined by our body.  Many other teachings in this and other books say the same thing.  During our life in this world, our spirit and our body are joined.  This is how this "conjunction" is said to take place:

The conjunction of a person's spirit with their body is by means of the respiration of the lungs and the pulse of the heart, and that therefore when these cease the person dies as to the body, but lives as to the spirit.

We are spiritual beings living for a time in natural bodies.  When the natural heart and lungs no longer operate, our consciousness leaves the natural body and enters the spiritual body.  Because of this we can say that no one ever really dies.  The body must one day die, but the spirit, the real person, lives on.

This passage from 'Heaven and Hell' reinforces what has just been said:

When someone's body can no longer perform its functions in the natural world in response to the thoughts and affections of its spirit (which it derives from the spiritual world), then we say that the individual has died. This happens when the lungs' breathing and the heart's systolic motion have ceased. The person, though, has not died at all. We are only separated from the physical nature that was useful to us in the world. The essential person is actually still alive. I say that the essential person is still alive because we are not people because of our bodies but because of our spirits. After all, it is the spirit within us that thinks, and thought and affection together make us the people we are. We can see, then, that when we die we simply move from one world into another.

I have no doubts that our volunteers will be happy to share their beliefs about the afterlife if they are asked or if it seems helpful.  This, though, is really not what the work is all about. It is about providing comfort. Still, knowing that death is not the end but merely a passing from one type of life to the next, affects the nature of someone's interaction with the dying and their family.  It means that death, while never a happy time, can at least be a hopeful time.
"The Lord loves everyone, and wants all of us to have what is good."  This is a message found in 'True Christian Religion." Every dying person, therefore, is loved, probably more than they have ever realized.  A volunteer who knows this can share love with others in their times of need.  The volunteer can engage in conversations, read a story, play music, ensure that the patient is comfortable, or simply be a loving presence.

If this type of work appeals to you, please contact the church at 
(480) 991-0048, or

We anticipate that our next round of training will begin in August, 2016.  

The Prime Care website states:] Prime Care Hospice provides compassionate end-of-life care.  We support patients and families and relieve suffering in all realms - physical, emotional and spiritual.  Our staff is available 24/7.  Most services are delivered in patients' homes.
We are not a place, which means you do not have to leave your place of residence or relocate a loved on to a new environment.  Focusing on quality, not quantity of life, we assist with the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the patient and their families. 

 The Role of our Pastor 

Our pastor, Garry Walsh, we be serving in a support role with Prime Care Hospice, providing pastoral care, especially in the area of bereavement support.  As part of this work he will likely be called on to conduct memorial services, especially to support the Prime Care Hospice staff and volunteers who helped care for the person who has now passed.

  New "Journey" Spiritual Growth Program

Welcome to the upcoming program!

Is it true? Kind? Useful?

Sometimes it's hard to know how to share ourselves authentically. The Mindful Communication Challenge offers structure to help us improve how we connect with each other. Paying attention to how our words, tone, and actions affect others, and asking ourselves "Is this true? Kind? Useful?" can help us speak from the heart. These tools help us weed out any thoughts and feelings not grounded in reality or love, and helps us dig beneath words to see our common humanity, with our deeper, universal needs.

Since true connection feels heavenly, Mindful Communication Challenge is grounded in symbolism from various Parables found in the New Testament that explore "The kingdom of heaven" as well as descriptions of what a heavenly community looks like from the works by philosopher and theologian Emanuel Swedenborg.

Join us as we support each other on a journey of true self-expression, and help nourish connections with those we love in our lives. Because what could be more beneficial in the long run? 

Our local launch date is October 2. 

WE hope to start forming small study groups in the next few weeks.

Please call or email the church if you would like more information.  

(480) 991-0048 

 Ryan's CASE for SMILES Project

For quite some time our church has provided a monthly venue for Paradise Valley Junior Women's Club to meet. This is nonpartisan, nondenominational volunteer organization that works on projects which support individuals and worthy causes throughout the community.  A number of our members have been, and continue to be active club members. 
A current project for the club is Ryan's CASE for SMILES.  This project is dedicated to helping sick children cope with the stress of their illness or injury.  It does so through making whimsical pillowcases for these children.  So far over a million pillow cases have been made and delivered via more than 120 chapters and thousands of volunteers across the country. 
If you would like to get involved through providing materials, sewing, or any other part of the creation and distribution of these pillows you can contact the Phoenix coordinator, JoAnn Shaw at, or Lois Taylor from our church community at

For more information go to:

July and August
Birthdays and Anniversaries


Meryl Machado - July 8
Heather Walsh - July 16
Edwin Henderson - July 20
Yehsenia Odhner - July 21
Wayne McCleaft - July 21
Carson Henderson - July 24

Sadie Cole - August 5
Jonathan Taylor - August 18
Isaac Sanchez (Clark) - August 19
Ben Mistiuk - August 30

Liberty and Amanda Van Hine - July 1

Victor and Terry Odhner - August 13

If you or someone you know is not on this list but should be, please contact Garry at (480)991-0048 or
Vision & Purpose

"The Lord's Divine Providence has as its end a heaven from the human race."

(Divine Providence 27)