GCPC Weekly News | July 16, 2020

GCPC Alive and Well This Week!
'Netta @ Home
Youth Summer Social
Worship Preview | Sunday, July 19, 2020

Live Stream Worship Service @ 10:45 AM Sunday

Sermon: " Yearning Power " by Marcia Mount Shoop
Scripture: Romans 8:12-25

Click for Children’s Bulletin and coloring page for this Sunday!
Continual Hope and Praise -
2020 Presbyterian Women Birthday Offering
Thank you for your generosity! We celebrate the service of Presbyterian Women all over the world with our offering of Continual Hope and Praise.

Originally begun in 1922, the Presbyterian Women’s Birthday Offering is an annual tradition that has celebrated our denomination’s commitment to mission through the funding of more than 200 projects that touch the lives of women and children, both in the US and abroad. We ask that you give as you have been blessed, generously and as led by the Holy Spirit. See more about this year’s recipients  here .

We are collecting the 2020 PW Birthday offering now through the end of July. Please send your check to the church office, or give on-line through the church website at  www.gcpcusa.org  or through the new REALM mobile database platform. Click on the drop-down menu to select the fund:  Presbyterian Women Birthday/Thank Offering.

Click on this  video link  to see how the Presbyterian Women Birthday Offering has impacted our community through a recent grant to WNC Faith4Justice.
Welcome to Realm!
Thanks to everyone who has begun the process of joining GCPC Realm. Realm uses your primary email address to link to your individual member profile. 
  To log in or register, visit   onrealm.org/gcpcusa .  If you have questions or need assistance, please email  Anna Louise  to set up an appointment time to go over Realm.

"Giving" in Realm
All online and text giving has been transitioned into Realm, which integrates confidentially with your member profile. You can see your giving records and set up one-time or recurring donations under the  Giving  tab once logged in. Check out this how to, to self-manage your online giving or contact Natalie Weaver  for assistance.

*Important Note:
After you have created your login, please go to the drop-down menu in the right-hand corner next to your name and choose "Manage Privacy." On the next screen, click "Custom Privacy" to manage what information you want in the directory. (You can also manage your "Notification Settings" in that drop-down menu.)

Please change your privacy settings to "Anyone"
so you will appear in the church directory.
Recurring Weekly Zooms:

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 Sherrie, and any staff member can help you get set up for your meeting if you have questions. 
Spiritual/Pastoral Support
Deacon of the Week
I n 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 (7/12 - 7/18):   Mary Berg email:   marhber@hotmail.com
Next week (7/19 - 7/25):  Marcy Onieal  email: marcy.onieal@gmail.com
Prayer List

*At the end of this month, the Prayer List will only include those who have been put on the list in the last month. If you would like to continue to have someone on the list for more than one month, please contact Sherrie or Anna Louise .
Iglesia Jerusalem congregation
Pat Cocke (Les Stradley’s friend) 
Marcia Zuzel (friend of Kim Hottle and Melissa Shook)
Eveline Damiano (Lisette de Groot's daughter)
Melissa Matherly Bowers (friend of Rick and Lynne Noble) 
Jonathan Hettrick and family (friends of Mary Craig)
Nancy Hoyt Duncan (friend of Rick and Lynne Noble)
Sharon Meares (Moderator of Presbyterian Women in PWNC)
Deerfield Retirement Community
Ryan Lockett (nephew of Denise Lockett)
Family of Larry and Trudy Forward (daughter, Jenny, and grandsons, Ben & Matt)
Jennifer Martin (Yvonne Smith's daughter)
Becky Hamilton (friend of Pam McGill & Pamela Culp)
Vicki Meiser (Matt Wiedle’s mom)
Queen Mother Maggie Belle ( Phyllis Utley’s mother and Co -founder of 12 Baskets Cafe)
Harold Shook (Melissa Shook’s dad)
Fred Schroeder (Penny Ponder's brother)
Hettie Lou Garland
Margaret Rada
Bob Higgins
Cory Hartbarger
Florence and Steve Riedesel
Doris Prak
Roslyn Carney
Dean Presson
Bill McNeff
Susan Smialowicz
Laura Ross
Carol Kavalhuna
Carolyn Crew
Bob Walther
Kelley Griffith
Bill Williamson
Cathy Byers

Our sympathy and support are extended to Elizabeth Mullen and family following the death of her mother, June Glenn, last night at the Solace Center. Please keep the family in your prayers.
Summer Adult Education: "Beyond Belief" | June 7 - July 26 | Sundays | 9:15 - 10:15 AM via Zoom
Marcus Borg was among the most widely known and influential voices in progressive Christianity and internationally known in both academic and church circles. This summer, we will be delving deeply into his work and living in his questions about the possibilities of belief and action in our modern world. We will be meeting over zoom and utilizing  "Beyond Belief," a new curriculum by "Living the Questions." Facilitated by Tim Hamel.
Contact Sherrie for zoom information.
GCPC Summer Speaker Series | 7:00 PM |
4th Thursday of the month

July 23 | Susanne Walker Wilson and Audi
Join us for a virtual evening of conversation about one woman's immigrant experience here in Buncombe County, the biblical imperative to love our newcomer neighbors, and thoughts on how to become a friend and ally across borders, language, and unjust systems. 

Originally from rural Guatemala, Audilia "Audi" has lived in WNC for 15 years now. She is the mother of two amazing sons, has her own house cleaning business, teaches Circle of Security Parenting in Spanish to other immigrant parents, studies English year round and teaches Spanish as well. Grace Covenant has provided space (in pre-Covid times) as an in-kind partnership with Audi's Spanish class (composed of retirees many of whom are active GCPC members). In these days, the class continues their language learning and friendship building via zoom each week. Susanne Walker Wilson is a local bilingual social worker, parenting educator, and justice seeker. Both people of faith, Audi and Susanne initially met through their sons' soccer experiences and forged a deep friendship that's spanned 9 years and many different contexts. Through story sharing, photos, scripture, and a few pertinent facts on immigration, these two friends will invite you into a celebration of hope and pondering small tangible ways that you might take further steps to welcome immigrant neighbors and their abundant gifts into your lives and hearts while working for justice and systems change alongside them.

Kids/grandkids as young as 10 or 12 may find this evening offering of interest--welcome them to join you as we learn together. 
Meta Commerse | Spotted Wolf Peace Series - Part 2 | Thursday, July 30 | 7:00 PM | via Zoom
The Spotted Wolf Peace Series is a two-part Story Medicine presentation, naming and describing our social climate grounded in U.S. history and in-depth research into the spiritual nature of the problem of violence. Meta’s story, scholarship, experience as a healer, black mother, elder and author all inform this piece from an  African Frame of Reference  so named by her mother, Johari Amini.
Part Two (July 30) of The Spotted Wolf lecture series, "Recognizing the System" will focus on white supremacy as it is basically structured and developed through institutions. This talk will help attendees better and more clearly recognize and "unplug" from such institutions and then begin to imagine systems designed to serve ALL life. Meta Commerse is an author, educator, healer and speaker living in Asheville since 2009. She uses the indigenous modality of Story Medicine in all of her work.
  • Aug. 27 - DeWayne Barton (Hood Huggers International)
Summer Women’s Memoir Series | 6:00 – 7:00 PM via Zoom 
Join us for a series of book talks focusing on memoirs written by people of faith. Open to all women of the church. Please pre-read the book to ensure lively discussion.
  • July 27 | Shameless: A Sexual Reformation by Nadia Bolz-Weber | Facilitator: Amber White
  • August 30 | The Yellow House by Sarah Broom | Facilitator: Amy Pike
Rob Thomas Presentation | Friday, July 31 | 7:00 PM | via GCPC Youtube channel
Rob Thomas is the Community Liaison for the Racial Justice Coalition. As a community activist, a native of Asheville and an African-American man, Thomas has lived through many of the experiences that the Racial Justice Coalition is seeking to improve regarding racism in law enforcement.

“Innovative methods that seek to address root issues – as opposed to criminalizing poverty – are activities that drive and inspire me. My focus and passion has been centered around local policy related to the racial disparities that plague our communities of color,” Thomas stated. “When the policies and practices around policing properly reflect a city that values racial equity, inclusion and working relationships between law enforcement and the community it serves, I will feel accomplished in my role.”

Rob is doing important work with the Racial Justice Coalition around things like policing, reparations, and addressing the root causes of racial disparities in Asheville/Buncombe County. This is a great opportunity for us, Grace Covenant, to learn and to grow in our understanding of issues that are harming people in our community.
PART (Power & Race Team)
Tema Okun is an author and facilitator who has been helping organizations, communities, and individuals dismantle white supremacy culture for several decades. You can find more about her work here and a full list of her "Characteristics of White Supremacy Culture" here . PART has been engaging for some time with these characteristics and exploring how they show up at GCPC and in each of us. 

Tema Okun names either/or thinking (yes/no, good/bad, with us/against us) as a characteristic of white supremacy culture. At the PART meeting we came up up with the following ways that either/or thinking impacts communities:
  • Trivializes relationships
  • Eliminates possibilities
  • Simplifies complex things
  • Creates conflict and a sense of urgency
  • Places value on being right; power is at stake

Here are questions PART invites you to consider:
  • How are you encouraging people to do a deeper analysis?
  • How are you encouraging people to dialogue?
  • If it is an urgent decision, are you giving people time to be creative?
  • How are we listening to everyone? (mutual invitation)
  • Have we generated many possibilities to the issue?
  • How are we considering both/and?

By considering these questions, relationships are valued and rich solutions are uncovered in our community.

~ Liz Huesemann, PART member

PART continues to address White Supremacy norms on August 13th at 6pm.
Listen to Krista Tippett’s “On Being“ podcast where she interviews Robin DiAngelo, “White Fragility”and Resmaa Menakem, “My Grandmother’s Hands."
She states,”Hearing the two of them is electric-the deepest of dives into the calling of our lifetimes.”
  • Here is a quick highlight:
Resmaa answers How are you thinking about 2020? “Covid, then Sister Breonna Taylor getting murdered ..Brother Floyd and the countless before is brutal.When white folks say they are allies and ask what can they do, there is a brutality to your words.”
Robin DeAngelo asks us to feel this in our bodies. Stop the apathy.
Enneagram Sessions for GCPC Parents:  

We are taking a break until late July.    Facilitated by Carol Hovis, all parents are welcome. We meet virtually on  Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30pm .  Email  Carol  if you would like to participate. 
Presbyterian Women’s Circles are Zoom meetings.  Please join us.

Circle 1:  First Tuesday of each month, 10:00 a.m.
         Carol Kavalhuna – 658-1088,  carolkavalhuna@gmail.com
         Cathy Froehlich – 775-1016,  oremont2@gmail.com

Circle 2:   First Tuesday of each month, 7:30 p.m.
         Barbara McLean - 254-1034,  Barbaram_2@charter.net
         Heather Hudson – 501-442-6223,  hehudson@charter.net

Circle 4:   First Thursday of each month, 7:00 p.m.
         Frances Johnson – 628-4742,  facjohnson@gmail.com
         Connie Jones – 231-2680,  Conjones@charter.net

Circle 5:   First Monday of each month, 10:00 a.m.
         Lynne Noble – 803-206-3821,  lynnesnoble@gmail.com

Community Working Together
CJJ-West Voting, Democracy Rights, and Civic Engagement

Promote Voting in WNC
   CJJ is "fighting for a just, fair, and compassionate North Carolina." This year, the election is so important, and with your help, our organization can work with other nonpartisan groups in our region and state to put social justice on the ballot.
   To provide you with opportunities to  learn  and  take action , there will be a zoom meeting on:
Sunday afternoon, July 26th,
starting at 3 pm

   At this one-hour meeting, the focus will be on voter:
  1. Registration, both online and the possibility of in-person.
  2. Education on the process, issues, and candidates.
  3. Turnout. How can we mobilize people to vote?
  4. Advocacy. What can we do to affect positive change to make voting more accessible, fair, and safe?

   Included in the meeting will be information about what other nonpartisan organizations are doing to promote voting and how CJJ-West will work with them. The meeting will also cover some areas where CJJ-West can take the lead with your support. 

   Please RSVP  here  by next Wednesday, 7/22, and we'll send you the zoom link a few days ahead of time. Should you or others have any questions, feel free to call (828-768-4559) or  email  Ron Katz.   
HFA/YAV End of Year Storytelling Event | Tuesday, July 28 | 7:00 - 8:00 PM | via Zoom
Come hear the stories of challenge and change from our 2019-2020 volunteers and help us say goodbye as their year comes to an end! We may not be able to gather in a room and provide great snacks, but we are excited to see you virtually!
Click on the link below to RSVP and use this zoom link to join this virtual event on July 28th!

Habitat for Humanity News
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Asheville Habitat has scaled back construction. They are restricting volunteers on our construction sites out of concern for everyone’s health. As a result, they will build 20% fewer homes this year.
This decision affects the house sponsorship that your congregation is a part of. This year, the Interfaith and Presbyterian-United Methodist Houses will be combined. Together, the faith community will support one home, a   3-bedroom townhome in Habitat’s New Heights neighborhood in West Asheville, that we’re calling the  House of Faith.
Construction will start on the  House of Faith  in mid-August. At this time, we are not able to engage volunteers from your congregation, but we want to find other ways for you to stay connected with your sponsored house and the critical mission of Habitat. I encourage you to remember this home and the essential role housing plays in the health of our neighbors in your prayers. We’re glad to discuss other ways to provide meaningful connection to the mission. And, of course, we will adjust volunteer and event restrictions as state and local recommendations allow.
All of us are disappointed that right now we can’t do some of the things that are familiar and meaningful. The truth is we can’t wait until we are “back to normal”. Our neighbors need housing now and Habitat will meet that need however constrained our operations may be. Your congregation and all our faith partners are critical to this work, and during this unprecedented time Asheville Habitat is committed to this partnership.
Local Outreach for Those Affected by COVID-19

We have a specific need for donors currently!

Commit To Help:

Pandemic of Love, Asheville, has been launched as an extension of a larger national/international mutual aid movement (Pandemicoflove.com). Just as this virus has spread rapidly, now too have extraordinary acts of kindness and love for neighbors in need.

Anyone throughout Asheville in need of essentials to help weather this crisis, or anyone able to help a local family with funds for groceries, medicine, etc, is urged to reach out. Help is available throughout the Nation for family or friends elsewhere. Those interested in volunteering for this effort or with questions, please email  PandemicofloveAVL@gmail.com .

To learn more about Shelly and this movement, or to access Get Help/Give Help forms go to  Pandemicoflove.com , click on HELP, and submit under the Asheville, NC tab.

Email us at  PandemicofloveAVL@gmail.com  with questions.
YMCA Community Health Summer Updates
Free Meals for Kids  - For the summer we are offering FREE meals for kids 18 and under at a variety of sites throughout the summer in Buncombe, McDowell and Henderson counties. Please review the schedule for locations and times. Kids do not not have to be present to get the meals. Please share with all of your families!

Mobile Markets - we provide free, fresh, and nutritious foods to anyone in the community, no questions asked. Here is our  July Mobile Market calendar . You can refer anyone to these markets, we do not need any information or have any restrictions as to who is able to access this program. The colored circles on the calendar refer to the bus line that will either take to directly to, or near, that market.

Diabetes Prevention Program  - We are continuing to offer the Diabetes Prevention Program VIRTUALLY to anyone in North Carolina for FREE. Please see the attached document for more information on how people can register.
GCPC Still Growing
People, including young families,
to become GCPC Community Gardeners.
Interested people, who are willing
to work in the garden
– while wearing a mask, gloves, and physically distancing –
for 2 hours every 2 weeks. 

Please contact Pam Baker  pam.dunkin56@gmail.com  
if interested.
GCPC Diaspora
Dispatches from GCPC scattered around the globe
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a physical, emotional, and spiritual impact on our “family”. I should probably explain who our family is. Of course there is the best wife ever, Susan (some of you know her as one of the Burkhardt’s daughters) and then there are the two dogs (Leader and Cooper), the cat (Walker), the four goats (Freckles, Andy, Lilly, and Little Joe), and the four birds (two Harris’ Hawks – Sam and Hoppy, a Peregrine Falcon – Pisgah, and a Barn Owl - Oskar). Yes, we are all in this together, but we are all experiencing it a little differently from each other.

Since this is for the church newsletter, we’ll start off spiritually. I have to admit that this has been tough for me spiritually – I really miss being with you all. But I have to say that Susan has been a wonderful example for me. She is Zooming like crazy and is doing a daily devotional with a Walter Brueggemann book. I do think God is moving in mysterious ways during this time and that includes in my life. He is challenging me to look to the needs and struggles of others instead of being so self-focused.

Emotionally this is a roller coaster. First it’s doom and gloom and stay home. Then there is a glimmer of hope and we move to Phase 1 and even Phase 2. And then we start messing things up and more doom and gloom. And then the self-centeredness hits hard and we forget to look after one another and we even get into blaming each other and expressing hatefulness toward one another. Okay, so I’m not doing so well emotionally with COVID-19. But then there is God and GCPC and HOPE.

Thank goodness for our animals because they are keeping us physically active. I am a licensed falconer in North Carolina and that is why I have four raptors and these guys have to be taken out to fly pretty much every day. So I get to go on “Hawk Walks” but without a leash. One good thing about COVID-19 is that I was able to finish Oskar’s enclosure – during Stay Home Stay Safe, I put on my tool belt and went to work as a carpenter. I am also fortunate because I get to share my birds with other people; and whenever you get to be outdoors and share in God’s creation with others, that’s a good thing.

So when I think about COVID-19 from my selfish human perspective, I can get pretty bummed out. But when I think about COVID-19 with God, my family, and GCPC as my foundation I have HOPE and know that we will all be stronger on the other side.

~ Jeff Curtis, GCPC member

Stewardship & Sustainability GIVE HERE
Thank you for your generous giving! Your gifts are enabling the church to continue our important work in our community. If you have not signed up for online giving, you can do that   here . You can also mail your checks to the church. Without you, the church could not continue its ministries in these difficult times. Thank you, again, for your generosity and your faithfulness! 
2nd Quarter Statements EMailed Today!

If you gave  April - June,  you should receive an email from  notifications@onrealm.org   with a link to your contribution statement. This shows the details of your donations and pledge balance, if applicable. 

Please note, this only includes gifts made through  June 30th.  To see all your giving records to date and manage online giving, log in at  onrealm.org/gcpcusa  and click  Giving,  or contact Natalie in the Finance Office at  nweaver@gcpcusa.org
Remote Giving & Paperless Statements  

Did you know that you can make donations and receive statements online? Here are a few different ways to stay up-to-date on your pledge 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

Please note, the church office is closed and staff is not there to receive payments left on-site or in the mailbox.

To sign up for  paperless statements  or if you have any questions, please contact Natalie in our Finance Office at 828-254-3274, ext 202 or  nweaver@gcpcusa.org
We're in this together...
Grace Covenant can help your stimulus check get to impacted families if you would like to share it with our larger community in that spirit. Some GCPC members have already sent theirs in and Marcia is confidentiality disbursing those to impacted families. 

Thank you for your continued generosity. If you would like to participate, please put "Pastor's Discretion" in the memo line of your check and let  Marcia  and  Natalie  know that you are sending it for that purpose. 

If you have questions, please contact  Marcia  .
AmazonSmile is now available in the Amazon Shopping app
AmazonSmile customers can now support Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church in the Amazon shopping app on iOS and Android mobile phones! Simply follow these instructions to turn on AmazonSmile and start generating donations.

  1. Open the Amazon Shopping app on your device
  2. Go into the main menu of the Amazon Shopping app and tap into 'Settings'
  3. Tap 'AmazonSmile' and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process

If you do not have the latest version of the Amazon Shopping app, update your app. Click  here  for instructions.  
GCPC Out and About Online
July & August 2020
Virtual Enneagram Weekday Gatherings  

Fridays , 10:00am-12noon

Topic: Relationships between different types

Click here for flyer

All are welcome; you can participate once or every week. 
Basic knowledge of your enneagram type is suggested.

Contact Carol for more information:    cmhovis@gmail.com
Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church | 828.254.3274 
789 Merrimon Ave. Asheville, NC 28804