GCPC Weekly News | May 14, 2020
Photo by  Jorge Gardner  on  Unsplash
GCPC Alive and Well This Week!
Circle 4 Zoom
Adult Education Zoom
Youth Sunday
Youth Sunday
Worship Preview | Sunday, May 17, 2020
Sixth Sunday of Easter

Live Stream Worship Service @ 10:45 AM Sunday

Sermon: "Over-Looking and Over-Looked" by Marcia Mount Shoop
Scripture: Acts 17:22-31

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. 
From the GCPC Worship Council

Dear Church Family: 

Worship Council has been so impressed and amazed by the great work the staff has been doing--the daily devotionals, live streamed worship, and all the ways we are able to connect as a church family. Even though the Worship Council hasn't been able to help support worship in the sanctuary as we normally do, staff has provided us with a beautiful Easter season. 

The Worship Council has  been discussing ways that we can celebrate when we finally are able to enter our church doors and worship face to face. I am excited to share a summer project for our Grace Covenant community! We are going to build a banner together that reflects this time physically apart from each other! 
The theme is "HOW HAVE YOU BEEN FINDING GRACE?" The banner will be constructed much like a quilt and you will have a square to add whatever the Spirit leads you to add to this touchstone of our congregation's life during the COVID 19 pandemic. We will supply your quilt square and easy instructions and ideas for how you can create your square with stitching, fabric markers, images, and more. When we come back together, we will hang this collectively on the wall of our church in a creative way, one that reminds us how the Spirit has held us together during COVID-19, bound by Christ's love and the desire to serve God, our community and each other. Stay tuned for more information coming soon! 

Christ's blessings, 
GCPC Worship Council 
Margaret Belk Tierney, Council Chair

GCPC's Got Talent is getting an extreme makeover! 

That's right!
We're planning a live Cabaret performance on Zoom at 6:00 p.m., Sunday, June 14. 

Don't worry if you never got around to the talent show - now you can look forward to live on Zoom for your church family. 

Want to sing or play a solo? Want to perform a magic trick, juggle, dance, or share pet tricks?  Perform solo or with the whole family, act out a mini drama or share your gift of speaking in spoonerisms?  The possibilities are endless (as long as you keep your act to 3-5 minutes!) We will accept enough acts to fill up one hour on Zoom so don't be shy and don't delay. 

Send Jeff an email stating your desire to share a talent along with a brief description of what you'd like to do. All those participating will have a zoom rehearsal earlier in the week prior to June 14 and then we will gather with our church family online to share our talents on Sunday, June 14. 

Mark your calendars and plan to join us!
Earth Team News
What can you do for the EARTH during lock-down when you’re already ‘staying home and staying safe”?

PLANT MILKWEED  for Monarch and other butterflies!  The Earth Team will have small milkweed starts at the church at the far left door to the church by the courtyard by Monday 5/25 (Memorial Day!).  Please email or text Betsy Richards-Smith ( larkspur0318@gmail.com  or (770) 548-0862) to let us know if you would like some milkweed so that we will be sure to have enough.

More Light Presbyterians

On June 7 we will celebrate More Light Sunday! 

Registration is now open for both the More Light Sunday  Worship Service  and the   Out of Order Streaming Release Party .

The day’s events will begin at 4pm (ET) with Worship, where we will all be blessed by the preaching of Rev. Laura Cheifetz and a worship service led entirely by LGBTQIA+ people.

At 7pm (ET) we will host a Streaming Release Party for Out of Order , followed by a panel discussion with the cast and crew of this groundbreaking documentary at 8pm (ET). The Out of Order documentary follows the lives of a group of LGBTQIA+ Presbyterians called to ministry as they navigate the ordination process and the delicate work of inclusion beyond policy change. Out of Order offers audiences a glimpse into what it looks like to navigate the reality of gender transition and lived sexual identity as a person of faith. 
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 .
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 (5/10 - 5/16):  Earl Fowler  email:   earljfowler@aol.com
Next week (5/17 - 5/23):  Betsy Rhodes  email:  betsyrhodes@charter.net
Prayer List
[We are happy to pray for anyone who is in need. Concerns will stay on this list for a month unless we hear otherwise. Please keep us updated.] 
Iglesia Jerusalem congregation
Pat Cocke (Les Stradley’s friend) 
Marcia Zuzel (friend of Kim Hottle and Melissa Shook)
Suzy Carter (David Carter's wife and Yvonne Smith's friend)
Eveline Damiano (Lisette de Groot's daughter)
Joseph Tierney (Paul Tierney's father)
Melissa Matherly Bowers (friend of Rick and Lynne Noble) 
Glen & Tom Kilbourne (parents of Janet Martin)
Jonathan Hettrick (friend of Mary Craig)
Mike Arim (friend of Ken and Ednamae Fisher)
Bud Darnell (Jerry Bleckley’s cousin)
The Moore Family (friends of Jim and Martha Branden)
Anne Z. (friend of Jim and Martha Branden)
Laurie Allen (Amber Cook’s cousin)
Paula Kelton (Mary Bridges’ mom)
Jeb Kramer (Nancy and John Kramer’s grandson)
Nancy Hoyt Duncan (friend of Rick and Lynne Noble)
Sharon Meares (Moderator of Presbyterian Women in PWNC)
Hettie Lou Garland
Betty Smith
Margaret Rada
Bob Higgins
Cory Hartbarger
Florence and Steve Riedesel
Elizabeth Fisher
Doris Prak
Roslyn Carney
Dean Presson
Bill McNeff
Susan Smialowicz
Laura Ross
John Mount Shoop
Carol Kavalhuna
Carolyn Crew

Bob Busey, a person who served this congregation ('64-'74) and the world with honor, courage and generous love, died this morning at Solace Center. Please keep his children, Becky and Bob, Jr., and his extended family in your prayers. 

Because of COVID-19, our service of witness to the resurrection and thanksgiving for Bob's life will be different than what we are used to. We will be in touch soon with the details. Rest assured, there will be a way for all of us to honor the faithful life he lived.
PART (Power and Race Team) Meeting | TONIGHT, Thursday, May 14 | 6:15 PM via Zoom
Contact Richard for details.
"Zoom Education & Formation" | Sunday, May 17 | 8:30 AM
All are invited! We will be discussing the Intro and Chapter 1 of Barbara Brown Taylor's book, Holy Envy . You are encouraged to purchase the book, but Richard can also send you a pdf of the chapters if you contact him directly at rcoble@gcpcusa.org .

 The *new* zoom link to the meeting is: https://zoom.us/j/99391251799
(Contact Richard for password)
Virtual Youth Group | Sunday, May 17 | 5:00 - 6:30 PM on Zoom
Join us for an evening of fun to say THANKS for your leadership in worship, to connect with one another, to play games and to share ideas for the summer ahead.   Contact Samantha for details.
GCPC 20s/30s Gathering: "Virtual Campfire Night"  Monday, May 18 | 7:00 PM | via Zoom Video Chat
If you are in your twenties or thirties (or about these ages), get ready for a night by the (virtual) campfire! Bring a story to share, song to sing, poem to read, or joke to tell. Also, feel free to bring a snack or drink to enjoy! Get ready for a fun and relaxed evening connecting with one another. All are welcome!
RSVP HERE  so we can know to expect you. All are welcome! 
For Zoom details, c ontact Samantha sgblock@gcpcusa.org
Racial Justice Book Series | Thursday, May 21 | 7:00 PM | via Zoom
In May, we are reading  How to be an Antiracist  by Ibram X. Kendi.

Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society.
Enneagram Sessions for GCPC Parents
Carol Hovis continues facilitation of  enneagram  zoom gatherings for  GCPC parents  in  May.  We will meet  Wednesdays, May 20 & 27, 6:30-8:30pm . All parents are welcome; you can participate once or every week. If you don't know your enneagram type, contact Carol.   Email  Carol  if you would like to participate. 
GCPC Zoom Speaker Series | 7:00 PM | Every 4th Thursday |
  • May 28 - "Hope Springs Forth Brightly!" with Phyllis Utley - In November 2019, the City’s Public Art & Cultural Commission completed a two-year project resulting in Asheville’s latest public art piece, entitled Hope Springs Forth Brightly by Art Ecologie and local artists Joseph Pearson and Phyllis Utley. The two installations serve as a gateway to the historic Block area of downtown and pay homage to the many Black businesses and residences lost during urban renewal in the 1970s. In addition, the work envisions an equitable future for Asheville. Lessons from the Ancestors can help us recreate a brighter future for all as we re-emerge from our current economic downturn. Let's explore the possibilities together.
  • June 25 - Meta Commerse
  • July 23 - Susanne Walker Wilson and Audi
  • Aug. 27 - DeWayne Barton 

C ommunity Working Together
Haywood Street Clothing Bin Update
Due to Coronavirus, Haywood Street Congregation has temporarily closed the clothing closet and are unable to accept and process donations at this time. The blue bin will be removed from the church parking lot until further notice.
Bountiful Cities
Bountiful Cities nursery has an abundant selection of organic edibles, pollinator plants, medicinal and culinary herb starts ready for the growing season! A list of our current inventory can be found  here . If you'd like to place an order with us, please use this online  form . All payments will be made online to maintain safe social distancing practices, we'll be happy to coordinate pick up and delivery options upon purchase. Feel free to reach out to Alex Bergdahl at  alex@bountifulcities.org  with any questions.
Free WNC COVID Legal Hotline | Thursday, May 21 | 8 AM - 2 PM
John Noor, GCPC member and attorney, is organizing this effort in partnership with Pisgah Legal Services, the Buncombe County Bar Association, and the NC Bar Foundation.   Click HERE for full media release .

  • What: A legal aid project with Pisgah, Legal Aid of NC, and the NC Bar Foundation to provide free legal guidance to businesses, nonprofits, and individuals that have been hit by the pandemic. 
  • When: May 21st well be hosting a legal relief hotline where folks from the 18 county WNC region can call in and talk with a lawyer for free about any issues that have come up during the pandemic. 

Volunteer Attorneys Needed!
We need attorneys to provide free legal information and advice to callers affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Attorneys can sign up for a 2-hour shift to answer questions related to housing (for renters & homeowners), bills or debt, unemployment insurance, health insurance, personal safety, stimulus checks, public enefits, and other basic needs matters. Attorneys are also needed to take calls from small business owners and nonprofit executives who are facing challenges due to the pandemic.
  • Answer calls from your home or office (through easy-to-use app).
  • Information provided to attorneys related to COVID-related matters, including expanded unemployment benefits, stimulus checks and resources for business owners.
  • Designate which legal matters you want to advise on.
  • Malpractice insurance provided by the NC Bar Foundation.
  • Questions? Contact: Emily Dezioemily@emilysuttondezio.com, Cell 828-242-6754 (texting preferred) 
  • Attorneys can register HERE

Volunteer Call Operators Needed!
We need volunteers to answer calls and gather basic information (name & legal problem) in order to direct caller to the appropriate attorney. No legal background necessary.
 Please sign up for a 2-hour shift as a call screener.
  • Answer calls from your home or office (through easy-to-use app).
  • Brief (20 minute) orientation/training provided.
  • Spanish speakers needed.
  • Questions? Contact: Katie Russell Miller, katierm@pisgahlegal.org, 210-3420
  • Volunteer call operators can register HERE.
Local Outreach for Those Affected by COVID-19

Pandemic of Love, Asheville, has been launched as an extension of a larger national/international mutual aid movement (Pandemicoflove.com) that started only a few weeks ago and has already connected well over 30,000 patrons with people in need as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

What is special about Pandemic of Love is the personal connection between patrons and people in need. After completing a Request for Need/Commitment to Help form online, volunteers create matches that connect people in a tangible way to give quickly, discretely and directly.

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.

Forms are also available by following links to -
Request Aid:

Commit To Help:

Email us at  PandemicofloveAVL@gmail.com  with questions.
Illegal Workers Now Deemed Essential

One of the largest organic California farmers in the country, Joe Del Bosque, was recently quoted by Alfredo Corchado in the  New York Times , saying “Sadly, it’s taken a pandemic for Americans to realize that the food in their grocery stores, on their tables, is courtesy of mostly Mexican workers, the majority of them without documents." Del Bosque worries about future labor shortages, saying "You need these workers today, tomorrow, and for a long time." Corchado suggests that "the best way to guarantee food security in the future is to legalize the current workers in order to keep them here, and to offer a pathway to legalization as an incentive for new agricultural workers to come." 

~ contributed by the Creating Sanctuary Team (CST)
YMCA Community Health Updates
We have had to change our schedule just a bit for meals, but we are still offering FREE meals for kids 18 and under at a variety of sites throughout Buncombe, McDowell and Henderson counties. Please review the attached document titled "Free Meals for Kids" for locations and times. Kids do not not have to be present to get the meals. Please share with all of your families!
We are still continuing our mobile markets, but as mentioned before, instead of client choice we are pre-packing food boxes for our neighbors to just come and pick up. We are discouraging drive-through pick-up, as this is putting our team more at risk. Folks can come up to the back of the truck to grab a bag.  If you serve the Candler area, please make note of the new time for that market. We will still be in the same parking lot as the Mission My Care Plus clinic, but the time will be from 4:30-5:30. We adjusted the time to be more accessible to working families. It will still be on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays. Once we get through this outbreak, we plan to set-up inside the Enka-Candler Library.

ASPCA Relief & Recovery Initiative
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA®) is providing  free cat and dog food, and access to urgent veterinary care  for Western North Carolina residents. Pet food distribution and access to urgent veterinary care are  by appointment     only . The location and more details about these free services will be provided when an appointment is made.

Appointments can be requested by calling the following ASPCA hotlines:
  • Pet Food: 800-738-9437 (Daily from 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. ET) 
  • Urgent Veterinary Care (Cats and Dogs only): 855-434-9285 (Mon.–Thurs. from 8 am-6 pm ET, Fri.–Sun. from 8 am–2 pm ET)

Important Details:
  • These services are open to all residents of Western North Carolina.
  • Urgent Veterinary Care includes conditions such as ear or eye infections, acute vomiting and diarrhea, severe skin issues, urinary tract infections, minor laceration repair, abscesses, etc. We have limited diagnostics available and will not be hospitalizing patients overnight. A quick assessment of our ability to treat an animal will be made when an owner calls to inquire about the service. 
  • Pet food is available for drive-thru pick-up or curbside delivery to homes.
GCPC Still Growing
Harvesting of greens continues!!

Avoiding a wet Wednesday, team 1 worked in 2 shifts Thursday May 7 while masked, wearing gloves, and maintaining social distancing.   Sixty-five pounds of Swiss chard, collards, kale, turnip greens, beet greens, and baby lettuce went to Southside Community Kitchen, who is currently producing hundreds of meals per day for elderly and disabled housing authority residents.

On Saturday, 5 masked, gloved, and distancing members of team 2 harvested 77 pounds of greens.  This harvest also went to Southside Community Kitchen.  

Under Phase 1 guidelines on Monday, nine gardeners, who were masked, gloved, and distancing, harvested greens from garden rows to be tilled for the first round of summer planting.  Just over 67 pounds of bagged greens went to Southside Community Kitchen.   Four summer planting beds have already been tilled.  
Nancy Hogan harvesting beet greens

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! 
IRA, Financial Advisor, & Charitable Distributions

If you're giving through a third party and having a check sent directly to the church, please be sure to ask your adviser to include your name and fund designation on the distribution so we can properly apply it on your contribution statement.
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 www.gcpcusa.org/ways-to-give - just click GIVE HERE
  • SMARTPHONE with the Give+ Mobile App or by texting 828-266-0126 the amount you’d like to contribute
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
GCPC Out and About Online
May 2020
Virtual Enneagram Gatherings 

Subtype Gatherings:  Sundays, 1:30-3:30pm May 17, 24, 31

Weekday Gatherings,  Mondays, 6:30-8:30pm & Fridays, 10am-12noon

Topic: Relationships between different types

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