GCPC Weekly News | April 29, 2021
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For more information about GCPC worship, building status and current COVID safety, please see the latest GraceNote.
GCPC Alive and Well This Week!
PW Circle 3 Mtg. on 4/15
Adult Education 4/25
Chancel Choir Derby Party
Potato Planting Palooza with Anthony Cole and volunteers at Jasperwood Farm in Leicester!
Worship Preview | Sunday, May 2, 2021
Fifth Sunday of Easter
Youth Sunday
Sermon: "New Horizons" by Annie Cole, Frances Barnett, & Owen Gast
Scripture: Luke 5:1-11


Live Stream Worship Service @ 10:45 AM Sunday
We celebrate the baptism of Nora Cameron Yantis! 

We would love for you to share a prayer or memory of his baptism by filling out this form. All the responses will be shared with his family. This is a wonderful keepsake for celebrating this wonderful event!
GCPC hired a part time Garden Manager to support and coordinate the work of the garden.  
Please welcome Allison Kiehl to our GCPC staff team!
Allison's bio:
I grew up as a water child in Virginia Beach, VA swimming, surfing, skateboarding, and water skiing. I was first introduced to gardening and composting at an early age by my grandmother and her family farm in Salisbury, NC. I have a varied background that includes a degree in International Business and Spanish, traveling to Central America and Europe, and organic farming in California, Hawaii and Asheville. Prior to joining GCPC, I had a career in land conservation working as a land steward of preserved wildlands and family farms. Locally I served as the Farmland Stewardship and Sustainability Director at a local land trust where I managed their Community Farm. I also recently helped create and manage the Fairview Road Resilience Garden - a community garden in the Oakley neighborhood of Asheville. I love connecting to nature and connecting people through growing food. I love just about any activity that is outdoors - basketball, hiking, boating, wildlife viewing, travelling, and finding the best swimming holes in the mountains. I also love to help train shelter dogs, trying to build things out of wood, and watching college basketball and women's soccer. I'm so grateful for all that I have and that I get to share my life with my wife Sarah Carter and our very spoiled and skeptical super mutt Kona!
Pentecost
PC(USA) Special Offerings
April 5 - May 23, 2021
The Pentecost Offering unites us in a church-wide effort to support young people and inspire them to share their faith, ideas, and unique gifts with the church and the world.

A gift to the Pentecost Offering helps the church encourage, develop, and support its young people, and also address the needs of at-risk children. 40% of the Pentecost offering can be retained by individual congregations wanting to make an impact in the lives of young people within their own community. The remaining 60% is used to support children-at-risk, youth, and young adults through ministries of the Presbyterian Mission Agency.

WAYS TO PLEDGE FOR 2021:
  • Sign into your Realm account online or on the Realm Connect mobile app and enter a pledge under the Giving tab. Detailed instructions with photos are here.

  • Email Natalie Weaver your total pledge amount and planned giving frequency (i.e. weekly, monthly) to have her enter it on your behalf.

  • Contact the Finance Office at 828-254-3274, ext. 202 or nweaver@gcpcusa.org to request a printed pledge card be mailed to your home address.

Click here to watch a video example of how to pledge in Realm.
Recurring Weekly Zooms:

  • Sundays "Adult Education" @ 9:00 am (No Adult Ed on May 2)
  • Sundays "Pre-K - 3rd Grade Sunday Morning Adventure" @ 10:15 am (email Anna Louise for zoom info)
  • Sundays "4th and 5th Grade Connect Class" @ 5:00 pm (email Anna Louise for zoom info)
  • Sundays "Youth Group" @ 5:00 pm - (email Cat Kessler for zoom info)
  • Wednesdays “Zoom Bible Study@ 3:00 pm
  • Wednesdays "Choir Chat" @ 7:30 pm
  • Every other Thursday "Men of GCPC" @ 8:30 am (May 6, May 20, etc.)
If you are a part of a group, Team, or Circle at GCPC and you want to have a Zoom meeting, let staff know. We will help you get set up on our GCPC Zoom account for group gatherings and meetings. You can schedule your meeting on the calendar with Anna Louise, and any staff member can help you get set up for your meeting if you have questions. 
Spiritual/Pastoral Support
Deacon of the Week
In this time of physical distancing, the deacons of Grace Covenant continue to be available to talk and pray with you by phone or online and to coordinate care. If you have difficulty reaching your assigned deacon or if you do not know who your assigned deacon is, please feel free to reach out to our deacon of the week.
This week (4/25-5/1): Amber White email: amberleigh164@gmail.com
Next week (5/2-5/8): Cathy Byers email: byersabc@gmail.com
Prayer List

Prayer requests will stay on the GCPC Prayer List for one month. Please let any staff member know if you (or your loved one) would like to remain on the list for longer.
 
Iglesia Jerusalem congregation
Ryan Lockett (nephew of Denise Lockett)
Jennifer Martin (Yvonne Smith's daughter)
Truly and Eric Mount (Marcia Mount Shoop’s parents)
Bertilda Arteta (Marta Alcala-Williams' mother)
Sheldon Smith (Beth Robrecht’s brother-in-law)
Buster Carswell (Amanda Pressley’s brother-in-law)
Charles Williams (Libby Kyles' father)
Family of Rev. Felicia Fox friend/former student of Kathy Meacham)
Pam Holcombe and family (upon the death of her son Ian McGrayne)
Family of Emily Middleton (Anna Hamel’s aunt)
Leone Alexander (Beth Kissling’s friend)
Family of Juaco Alcala and for his wife, Janeth (Aunt and Uncle of Marta Alcala-Williams)
Bo Wang (Liz Huesemann’s relative) 
Alyse Pryzant Pribish (Ashley Cooper's mom)
Carol Lisi (Robin Gaiser’s friend)
Bob Higgins
Florence and Steve Riedesel
Roslyn Carney
Susan Smialowicz
Laura Ross
Bill Williamson
Queen Mother Maggie Belle Gladden
John Mount Shoop
Elizabeth Fisher
Doris Prak
Susie Wheelis
Dan Blake
Betsy Rhodes
Don Moe
Ida Edge
Erin Tolar

Our sympathy and support are extended to Fran Killian, following the death of her mother on April 27. Please keep her in your prayers.
Formation/Education
Adult Formation
*Please note: NO Adult Education this Sunday, May 2.
Spring Adult Education Series: Responding in Faith to Asheville's Racist History | Sunday | May 9 | 9:00 AM | Zoom
Asheville's entrenchment in the legacy of slavery and white supremacy is illuminated and upheld in its names and monuments. How far and how deep do these legacies go? How are white dominant communities of faith called to listen to and support Black voices in our town that call out these legacies? This spring, we will dive deeper into this history and learn more about ongoing efforts for repair and reparation in the city of Asheville.
  • May 2: Youth Sunday / Anniversary Sunday - NO Adult Education

  • May 9: The Rev. Tami Forte Logan from Faith4Justice will lead a discussion about the ongoing efforts toward reparations for BIPOC communities following the City Council's vote to make reparation for the devastation wrought by the legacies of white supremacy, including slavery, Jim Crow, and urban renewal. The conversation will include ongoing conversation about the Haywood St. project and other initiatives and obstacles for reparations in our town.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 969 6572 5763 | Passcode: 789
GCPC 20s/30s Gathering: "Burgers & Blessings" In-Person Outdoor Gathering | TONIGHT, Thursday, April 29 | 6:30 PM
You are invited to a splendid evening of tasty grilling and thoughtful conversation. We will provide the dinner, so enjoy a night off from cooking! If you are able, bring an object or story that showcases tangible hope that you have found during this pandemic year.
Dress in layers and please wear a mask.

Click HERE to RSVP, so we can expect you and know dietary restrictions. 

Questions? Contact Samantha sgblock@gcpcusa.org

Enneagram Gathering for GCPC Parents | Wednesday, May 12 | 6:30-8:30 PM | via Zoom
Facilitated by Carol Hovis, all parents are welcome. If you don't know your enneagram type, contact Carol. Email Carol if you would like to participate.
The Racial Justice Book Series returns!
The Racial Justice Book Series will return this summer with three books by Black female authors about the systems, consequences, and remedies of the deep entrenchment of white supremacy culture in our country and church.

We will meet on zoom during the Sunday school hour the last Sunday of each month. The first book is a great and lengthy one, so go ahead and get started!


Presbyterian Women’s Circles are Zoom meetings.
Please join us.

Circle 1: First Tuesday of each month, 10:00 a.m.

Circle 2:  First Tuesday of each month, 7:30 p.m.

Circle 3: *Third Thursday of each month, 7:00 p.m.

Circle 4:  First Thursday of each month, 7:00 p.m.

Circle 5:  First Monday of each month, 11:00 a.m.
Children & Youth Formation
Pre-K - 3rd Grade Sunday Morning Adventure | 10:15 am | Zoom
You'll get an email every Friday with the Zoom link for our Sunday 10:15am check in. Email Anna Louise if you did not receive the link.
4th & 5th Graders CONNECT Class | Sundays | 5:00-5:45 PM | Zoom
Each week, families will receive an email with a unique login for class. If you would like to be on the list, please email Anna Louise.
This weekend is YOUTH SUNDAY! 
We will meet on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. to rehearse and will meet again at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday to prepare to lead worship. Please bring your orange T-shirt!

On Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m., come to a celebratory drive through in the GCPC parking lot! We will be waiting with a sweet treat and a big 'thank you' for all of your hard work on Youth Sunday!

Contact Cat Kessler for zoom information or if you have questions.
SENIOR HIGH GRADUATION SUNDAY!!
On Sunday, May 23rd, GCPC will be honoring our high school graduates during the 10:45 a.m. worship service.

If you will be graduating from high school, please save the date and take a moment to fill out your graduation information form here BY Friday, May 7th. 

Please contact Samantha or Cat if you have any trouble with the form. THANKS!
SIGN UP FOR CONFIRMATION (Fall 2021):
Attention current 8th-11th graders! Because of the pandemic, we are moving Confirmation to Fall 2021, with some special programming in the late Spring and a request to participate in one of the summer conferences (info below).

Our theme for the year is "Faith Voyage." This will be a sacred and exciting time to explore your faith in community. And it is a whole lot of fun!

Register for the 2021 Confirmation class by clicking here. This class is for youth who have completed 8th-11th grade by summer 2021. More information about exact times/dates/etc. is forthcoming, but registration will help us plan accordingly and have materials ready.
Community Working Together
Racial Justice Coalition Solidarity Circles

The RJC has a way to support our members’ anti-racist activism while combating fatigue and passivity: Solidarity Circles.  

What are RJC Solidarity Circles?
The purpose of a Solidarity Circle is to support RJC members in staying engaged and active in anti-racism work through small, intimate groups (generally 4 – 8 people) that support individual and collective accountability through: 
  • Relationship Building: Consistent meetings with the same group members help build relationships and trust within groups. They can offer a nonjudgmental space to process whatever is coming up for folks so they feel supported and inspired to stay engaged in anti-racism activism. 
  • Action: Solidarity circle members complete calls to action established in collaboration with RJC, AVL Black Demands, and the overall Black Community, and then report this progress to the RJC community.
  • Accountability: Solidarity Circles provide a brave space that serves to create individual and collective accountability to initiating and sustaining community activist work. 

How to be a part of Solidarity Circles: 
If you are interested in being part of a Solidarity Circle or would like more information, please fill out this form.
RJC Solidarity Circle Orientations
In case you might be looking to join another Circle or if you want to come and share your experience being part of a Circle.

And for those of you not on a Solidarity Circle, this will be an opportunity to learn more about how Solidarity Circles work and meet others with whom you can begin forming a Circle.

Click here to register:
ANNOUNCING THE LAUNCH OF A WEBSITE...
(divorcing) WHITE SUPREMACY CULTURE | Thursday, May 13 | 8 PM
Over 20 years ago, Tema Okun and Kenneth Jones wrote the widely distributed article on the characteristics of White Supremacy Culture.

Now Tema, in collaboration with the help of many brilliant friends, has created a website designed to update and add to the original article.

Join Tema, SURJ and special guests from around the country to launch the website and share what we've been learning about white supremacy culture in these last two decades.

Cost is $10; everyone welcome regardless of ability to pay; larger donations welcome.

Click here for more information and to register. Click here to register directly.

This launch is a fundraiser for the Earthseed Land Collective.
Habitat for Humanity AVL presents "This Divided Land"
The home is the primary way Americans build wealth, but laws and systems have kept people of color- especially Black Americans- from accessing homeownership. 
Nationally and here in Asheville, white homeownership rates are significantly higher than people of color, and the racial wealth gap is as wide as it was in 1968 when the Fair Housing Act was passed. 

After discovering a racial covenant in a deed of a South Asheville property they developed for affordable housing, Asheville Habitat decided to delve deeper and learn more about the history of discriminatory housing practices, how they shaped our city, and how practices like these contributed to current day racial disparities. 
The result is this 18 minute film, 
‘An outpouring of solidarity, care and concern’ -
Bipartisan COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act caps a year of research into widespread anti-Asian acts, attitudes
At the Lived Theology in Asian Americab Conference on race, justice and politics held last week, Dr. Melissa Borja of the University of Michigan shared what she and her research team learned as they tracked stories in the media about anti-Asian racism and resistance to it over the past year.

Presbyterian Mission Agency Board sympathetic to Shinnecock Nation’s fight
Board hears a poignant plea for Native voices to be amplified

A request for mutual aid by Shinnecock Nation tribal leaders via the Racial Equity Advocacy Committee and the Native American Consulting Committee fell on welcoming ears Friday among members of the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board. Click here to read the full article.
Easter Liberation Bible Study | Tuesdays | April 6 - May 18th | 5:30-7:00 PM
Come to some or all!
How we read the Bible matters. Where we come from and our life experiences inform the way we understand what we read in the Holy Bible and shapes the way we follow the teachings of Jesus. Liberation Theology is a theology grounded in the insight that God sides with the poor and marginalized throughout scripture.
 
Join Rev. Milly and community leaders such as Tami Forte LoganAmy CantrellBruce Waller Jr.Nontombi TutuAmy Kim Kyremes-Parks and others as we break down the various voices of Liberation Theology during the season of Eastertide. Reading together we can discover how Liberation Theology will inform us come Pentecost and the birth of Church. Please register. The registration form can be found here.
GCPC Still Growing
GCPC Community Garden News
Potato planting at Anthony Cole’s farm

  GCPC gardeners are grateful to Anthony Cole who invited us to plant potatoes at his farm. GCPC gardeners John Curry, Beth Kissling, Amy Kim and Justin Kyremes-Parks, Evelyn Lyles, Judy Major, Jim McDowell, Rick Philipsen, and Betsy Wilson planted 450 to 500 pounds of seed pieces in long beautiful rows prepared by Anthony. 

Stewardship & Sustainability GIVE HERE
Want to help make a difference while you shop in the Amazon app, at no extra cost to you? Simply follow the instructions below to select "Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church" as your charity and activate AmazonSmile in the app. They'll donate a portion of your eligible mobile app purchases to us.

How it works:
1. Open the Amazon app on your phone
2. Select the main menu (=) & tap on "AmazonSmile" within Programs & Features
3. Select "Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church" as your charity
4. Follow the on-screen instructions to activate AmazonSmile in the mobile app
Summertime Stewardship 
Are you looking forward to time outside and away from screens, but worried about staying on top of your pledged giving? Don't worry, there are ways to give easily remotely, even automatically!
 
MAIL gifts to the office at 789 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804 (the office remains closed but we are checking the mail)
 
BANK BILL PAY mails checks remotely, one-time or on a recurring schedule – contact your bank to set this up
 
ONLINE at https://onrealm.org/gcpcusa/give/now or through your Realm Connect smartphone app
 
TEXT "giveGCPC" to 73256 on your mobile device, then follow the prompts
1st Quarter Statements Emailed 4/21/21

If you gave January 1 - March 31, you should have received an email on 4/21/21 with a link to your 1st quarter giving statement. These will come through our software from notifications@onrealm.org with a blue link towards the bottom, which will open your contribution statement in a PDF. This shows the details of all donations made in the 1st quarter and your pledge summary at the bottom, if applicable. 

As a reminder, you can access your giving history and YTD gifts in real time by logging in at onrealm.org/gcpcusa and clicking the Giving tab. You can adjust the filter to show specific dates or funds. 

Questions or concerns? Contact Natalie Weaver in the Finance Office at nweaver@gcpcusa.org or leave a message at 828.254.3274 and she will return your call. 
Remote Giving

Here are a few different ways to stay up-to-date on your giving remotely:

  • MAIL gifts to the office at 789 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804
  • BANK BILL PAY mails checks remotely, one-time or on a recurring schedule - contact your bank to set this up
  • ONLINE at https://onrealm.org/gcpcusa/give/now
  • TEXT "giveGCPC" and AMOUNT to 73256 (i.e. giveGCPC $100)
  • MOBILE through the Connect - Our Church Community app

Interested in setting up online recurring giving? Follow these simple step-by-step instructions to self-manage eGiving through Realm or return this signed authorization form to have our Finance Office set up on your behalf.

If you have any questions, please contact Natalie in our Finance office at nweaver@gcpcusa.org or by leaving a message for Natalie Weaver at 828-254-3274.
GCPC Out and About
Yearning for Home: The Cry of the Earth (Episode 2 in John Philip Newell’s Series ‘Spiritual Exile & Seeds of Promise’) | Saturday, May 8 | 1:00 PM | via Zoom | Cost: $25
In February 2021 John Philip offered a livestream presentation attended by hundreds of women and men throughout the world on the subject of spiritual exile and promise today. The response was so great that he is planning a series to explore, one at a time, the yearnings that have led countless numbers of people into an experience of exile from the religious tradition of their inheritance, whether in literally leaving church or in looking well beyond its bounds for vision and nourishment. Episode 2 will explore the longing for a spirituality that deeply reconnects us to the sacredness of the earth as home in the belief that paying faithful attention to our yearnings will lead to new beginnings.

All those who register for ‘Yearning for Home: The Cry of the Earth’ will be sent a recording of the introductory Episode 1 as well as a link to the live session for Episode 2 on May 8th 2021.

This livestream event is a collaboration of Earth & Soul (www.earthandsoul.org) with LaForet Conference and Retreat Center (Colorado Springs, CO), Shambhala Mountain Center (Red Feather Lakes, CO), and Montreat Conference Center.
STAY CONNECTED
HOW TO CONTACT STAFF DURING BUILDING CLOSURE:

Our staff are all still working remotely as the office remains closed due to the pandemic. To leave a voicemail for a staff member to return your call, follow these steps:

  1. Call the office at 828-254-3274.
  2. Listen through the office closure notice, which will then take you to a staff directory.
  3. Enter the first 3 letters of either the staff member's first or last name on your phone keypad (i.e. to reach Natalie Weaver, you'd enter 628 for NAT or 932 for WEA).
  4. You'll be directed to the staff member's individual voicemail, where you can leave a message to be returned as soon as possible.
  5. If you just want to leave a message for the general voicemail box, press 0.   

You can also reach our staff by email- please see our website for each staff member's individual email address. 
Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church | 828.254.3274 
789 Merrimon Ave. Asheville, NC 28804