Friday, June 28, 2019

SUNDAY SERVICES: 9:00 a.m. Contemporary ∙ 10:30 a.m. Traditional

No Sunday School during the summer months
Join us for “Lemonade on the Lawn”, our hospitality time from 10-10:30 a.m.
on the back lawn 
On the Road - Log College Project

As I write this, I am preparing to leave town to head to Princeton, NJ along with six members of First Pres to attend the Design Lab for the Log College Project at the Institute of Youth Ministry at Princeton Seminary. Whew, that’s a mouthful! What does that mean?
Almost a year ago, we were selected to be one of 12 congregations from across the nation, and a variety of denominations, to participate in the Log College Project at Princeton Seminary. The Log College Project is a major initiative funded by the Lilly Endowment to try and cultivate new models for youth ministry that work in the environment of 21st century church.
Most churches are still running some version of the “youth group” model that became the standard for youth ministry after World War II, and most of them are finding that model is less and less effective in building faith, discipleship, and community in and among young people. The Log College Project is using “design thinking,” an innovation method that has become popular for creating possible responses to problems without easy answers, to help the 12 congregations in the program to imagine, develop, and implement ideas for new ways to do youth ministry.

We were thrilled to be chosen as one of the churches in the “Community of Practice,” the group of churches who are in the program, and we are excited about this weekend, because we have been building towards it since last September!

A group of adults and youth who are particularly invested in this work has been coming together regularly since last September as our “Design Team,” working through the curricula that Princeton has sent us to help us unlock our imaginations, examine our resources and the possibilities around us, and begin developing possible ideas for new forms of youth ministry.

From Thursday through Monday this week, members of our Design Team will be in Princeton to take our ideas and refine them in exercises and conversations with the other Design Teams of the other churches, with a goal of coming out of the conference with at least one solid idea that we will begin to implement in the fall. And Princeton has given us $15,000 as seed money to help bring that idea to life!

There will be more to tell you when we get back, but in the meantime, please keep the Design Team and the entire Log College Project in your prayers, and we look forward to seeing what the Spirit unleashes among us!
Grace and Peace,

FIRST LESSON: 2 Kings 1:9-15  
SECOND LESSON : Luke 9:51-62                 
·       This week’s sermon: Render No One Evil for Evil  by Rev. Sally Brown
·       We post each week’s sermon (audio and text) on our website:
The Hospitality Committee is pleased to bring back last summer’s “Lemonade on the Lawn” – our fellowship time from 10-10:30 a.m. held on the back lawn
If you come to the Contemporary service at 9:00 a.m. – stay after! If you attend the Traditional service at 10:30 a.m. – come early! Enjoy fellowship with each other and a tasty snack – and lemonade, of course.

In case of inclement weather, we will move to Fellowship Hall. Lemonade on the Lawn will be held every Sunday through the summer months.
“Educate a Child, Transform the World.” That is the purpose of the Pentecost Special Offering which takes place through Sunday, July 7. This offering has raised over $14 million since 1998 for young people here and around the world. 
Our congregation keeps 40% of the offering, which is targeted for children/youth programming and resources. Last year, it paid for the Sunday School curriculum and the Sunday nursery personnel during the worship services.

Globally, it has also helped children-at-risk, young adults who helped survivors of human trafficking, and other youth ministries.

To learn more about this, there are pamphlets in the racks throughout the church and special red envelopes for your contribution in the pews and racks. Thank you for considering this special offering
Longtime missionary - and a former member of our Church - Beverley Harrar will be speaking at both worship services on Sunday, July 21 about her travel to Yaounde, Cameroon, as part of a Refuge 139 project which focused on developing a vacation Bible school and curriculum.

Beverley's trip was partially funded by the McKnight Mission Scholarship Fund, which has made 77 grants for more than $65,000 over its history. The McKnight Fund was established to honor the work of Jim and Minnie McKnight, Presbyterian missionaries who worked in Sudan and were longtime members of First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem.  

Please plan to hear about Beverley's fascinating work.
The Bereavement Support Group will meet on the second Sunday of the month, in the Eagle Room of Kirkland Village’s Marketplace. Anyone interested in attending is welcome to meet in the Narthex immediately following the Traditional service.

This move was prompted to make it easier for residents of Kirkland Village to be involved in the group. The next meeting is Sunday, July 14.
Linda Robertson shares that a new reading group will begin in August; daytime dates and time will be announced soon. The group will read and discuss:

Stony the Road: Reconstruction, White Supremacy, and the Rise of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., 2019, Penguin Press

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. asked why America has a schizophrenic personality on the question of race ( Where Do We Go From Here? ). More than 50 years later, we are still asking the same question.
In daytime meetings in August, we will discuss Gates’ newest book. Be forewarned, the book contains disturbing photos and cruel caricatures of African-Americans.
We will discuss how the country might have embraced black voter registration if Reconstruction had been permitted to honestly go forward post-Civil War and consider the legacy of these long-ago cultural wars in the face of “anti-black racism and white supremacy today”. 
If you missed our weekly sermon – or would like to revisit it for any reason (to contemplate the message, share with another, etc.) – you can easily access an audio or text version on our church website. Go to and you will see it right at the top of the home page.
First Presbyterian Church of Allentown has announced a bus trip to Jesus: Live on Stage at the Sight and Sound Theater in Lancaster. It will be held on Saturday, Aug. 24 – the bus will leave Allentown at 11 a.m.; the trip includes lunch and the show begins at 3 p.m.
The adult cost of $123 includes your show ticket, bus fare and buffet lunch.
To book tickets or more information, contact Sherry Deal at or 610-360-8543.
If you are staying at a hotel, motel or other spot that provides small toiletries, please consider bringing them home for the disaster kits we make for Outreach Depot. We will let you know when to bring them to church.
Send us your news and photos to share:
Deadline for newsletter: Wednesday at noon
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And follow us on Facebook : @FirstPresBethlehem
Your likes / comments / shares help us spread the word about First Pres!


  • 9:00 a.m. - Contemporary Service, Kirk Center
  • “Lemonade on the Lawn” between each service; join us for light refreshments and fellowship on the back lawn (inclement weather: Fellowship Hall)
  • 10:30 a.m. - Traditional Service, Sanctuary
  • Childcare for Infants and Toddlers, 8:30 a.m. to noon, Room A3

TUESDAY:   Crafters, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Room 408;
WEDNESDAY: Overcomers Outreach, 7 p.m., Room 408
THURSDAY: Al-Anon Family Group , 7 p.m., Room 212

FIRST SUNDAYS (next: July 7): Blood Pressure Screenings, between services, North Link
SECOND SUNDAYS ( next: July 14 ): Bereavement Group gathering; this is a new date going forward, and there will be a new location. See the article above.
FIRST AND THIRD TUESDAYS (next: July 2): Successful Aging, 10:30 a.m., Room 412
THIRD WEDNESDAY (next: July 17):  Dementia Caregiver Support Group, 1 p.m.,
Room 206 (PW Room)
THIRD THURSDAY (next: July 18): Prayers & Squares, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Room 408
(bring your lunch and join us to create quilts and prayer shawls)

CHURCH OFFICE HOURS: We are open Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. As always, you can leave a voicemail message with the church any time at 610-867-5865 or contact us at . I f you have an urgent pastoral need, please call our answering service at 610-778-7003.

CARE CONCERNS AND HOSPITAL VISITS: If members of the FPCB congregation are hospitalized and would welcome pastoral and hospital ministrant visitors and/or prayers, please contact:
    Melody Engel, Hospital Ministrants, phone: 484-695-4905 or email 
    Phil Fair, Prayer Ministrants,  phone: 610-867-8361 or email   

BAPTISMS, WEDDINGS AND FUNERALS : If members of the FPCB congregation would like to schedule weddings, baptisms or funerals, please contact The Rev. Sue Bennetch at 610-867-5865, ext. 209.
First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem, 2344 Center Street, Bethlehem, PA 18017 610-867-5865 |

The Rev. J.C. Austin , Pastor/Head of Staff: ext. 213,

The Rev. Sue Bennetch , Pastoral Care Associate: ext. 209;

David Macbeth , Music Director: ext. 202;

Cristy Mette, Administrative Operations Manager: ext. 228;

Rebecca Angione, Facilities Manager: ext. 210;

Andréa Wells, Business Manager; ext. 211:

Carol Burns, Communications Manager; ext. 238;

Andrea Barbehenn , Preschool Director; phone: 610-867-2956;