GCPC Weekly News | May 27, 2021
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GCPC Alive and Well This Week!
Staff Meeting 5/25
GCPC Community Garden 5/26
Circle 4 Mtg. 5/20
Worship Preview | Sunday, May 30, 2021
Trinity Sunday
Sermon: "Unassisted Triple Play" by Marcia Mount Shoop
Scripture: John 3:1-17

Live Stream Worship Service @ 10:45 AM Sunday
Summer 2021

Please see the latest GraceNote for the
"face to face"
events calendar
at GCPC this summer!

  • 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.
Setting up Zoom Meetings:

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 (5/23-5/29): Jeff Curtis email: jandscurtis@msn.com
Next week (5/30-6/5): Martha Ensign Johnson
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)
Bertilda Arteta (Marta Alcala-Williams' mother)
Sheldon Smith (Beth Robrecht’s brother-in-law)
Alyse Pryzant Pribish (Ashley Cooper's mom)
Carol Lisi (Robin Gaiser’s friend)
Healing for Davion Chambers
John Maddrell (Martha Seddon’s step-father)
William Johnson (Marty Johnson’s dad)
Denise Currie-Lowe (Karen Rohl’s sister)
Barb Patterson (Friend of Mount Shoops)
Bob Crouch (Allen and Frances Johnson’s brother-in-law)
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
Dan Blake
Betsy Rhodes
Don Moe
Erin Tolar
Liz Rupp
Martha Branden
Kimo Hyatt
Angie Everett

Long time GCPC Member, Ida Edge, died on Wednesday in Charlotte. She was with her beloved daughter, Kelly. Please hold Ida's family and all those who loved her close in prayer in the coming days.  
Adult Formation
GCPC 20s/30s Gathering: "Farewell to Samantha & End-of-Year Celebration!" | TONIGHT, Thursday, May 27 | 6:30 PM | Highland Brewery (Outdoor Meadow Area) 12 Old Charlotte Hwy #200, 28803
If you are in your twenties or thirties (or nearly these ages), let's give thanks for a wonderful year together by sharing in an evening of conversation, games and laughter. There will be a food truck, as well as drinks & beverages available for purchase. We we will meet at the meadow section (which is to the right of the indoor brewery) and will have a few tables saved for our group.

Please wear a mask when not eating/drinking and plan to be socially distanced.

The Racial Justice Book Series returns! |
May 30, June 29 & July 25
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.

This Sunday, May 30 we will meet on zoom at 9:00am.
  • Sunday, May 30 | Caste by Isabel Wilkerson

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 972 3906 6867 | Passcode: 789
We will hold our June and July book series meetings in person and outdoors! Both meetings will go 6:30-8:00pm. Bring your own dinner and be ready to discuss these important texts from a faith perspective. 

(see below for details)

This month, contact Jim Branden if you have questions.
VRQ—BBQ Cook Team | Tuesday, June 1 | 4:30 or 5:45 PM
On the First Tuesday of each month, a team of folks gather at the Veterans Restoration Quarters, (1329 Tunnel Road) to grill hamburgers and prepare supper for more than 200 US Armed Forces Veterans living in transitional housing at the VRQ— an ABCCM Ministry. Team volunteers begin to gather at 4:30 to prepare the meal and fire up the grills; to help serve the meal come at 5:45. The evening meal is served at 6 and the team joins with the veterans at their table for supper. Commitments can be for one Tuesday or more. Contact Bill Neeriemer if interested in joining the team.
J.O.Y. Group Morning Bingo! - To all those of retirement age, empty nesters, or qualifying for a senior discount, you are invited to come out for doughnuts, coffee, and ‘competitive’ outdoor bingo on July 15 at 9am. Highly sought-after prizes will be awarded! Please RSVP to Richard by July 11 so we can plan accordingly. 
Men of GCPC - The men will gather in person and outdoors on June 24 and July 22 at 8:30am. Bring your own breakfast and coffee and we will gather for conversation and fellowship around important topics of the day. If you are not on the email distribution list, please contact Richard for more information. 
Bible Study - The program year is over, but in an effort to continue our deep study of scripture and to see one another in fellowship, the lectionary Bible study will have two in-person, outdoor meetings over the summer on June 23 and July 14, both at 10am. Bring your Bibles and an open heart as we discern together what God is saying to use through the week’s lesson! All are welcome! 
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
LAST "Pre-K - 3rd Grade Morning Adventure" will be this Sunday, May 30 at 10:15 am on Zoom!
You'll get an email on Friday with the Zoom link for our Sunday 10:15am check in. Email Anna Louise if you did not.
GCPC Compassion Camp Days
On the Second Saturday of each month we will meet on the church lawn for a Bible story, community building, music, movement, creating, playing and a sending. The theme for these times is Lovingkindness.  

Lovingkindness is the utmost form of selfless love toward ourselves and others. The practice begins with focusing on self-compassion because once we have compassion for ourselves, we can have compassion for others.

These sessions are designed for families to participate together (no drop-off).
  • Families with Children 0-5 years old will meet from 9-10:30 am.
  • Families with Children current 1st-5th graders will meet from 11-12:30pm.
If you have families that span the age groups, please attend the one most convenient for you. Please wear comfortable clothes, a water bottle and a blanket to sit on. As always, this is open to the community, please invite friends to join us!

Let us know who will be joining us by filling out this form.

We still need some volunteer help before, during and after each camp day. Please contact Amy Kim at amykim@gcpcusa.org.
Playground and Popsicles | 4th Saturday of every month | 3-5 PM
Kids 0-11 and their parents are invited to join us on the playground of GCPC for some outdoor community building and popsicles. We will start at 3:00 pm and stick around until 5:00 pm. Please come for a little or a lot of the time!  Please bring water bottles for your family.
Mark your calendars for this summer! 

We're planning some fun activities for youth this summer. More details will be available soon, but please save the dates for the following:

  • Wed., June 9 | Youth Committee Meeting @ 6-7 p.m. on Zoom
  • Thurs., June 10 | Senior High Youth Gathering @ 8-9:30 p.m. at GCPC
  • Wed., June 16 | Montreat Youth & Families Meeting @ 6-7 p.m. on Zoom
  • Wed., June 23 | Middle School Youth Gathering @ 6-7:30 p.m. at GCPC

  • July 8-11 | Massanetta Middle School Conference
  • Sat., July 17 | Youth Coffee Break @ 10 a.m. - noon, location TBD
  • Sun., July 18 | Youth Coffee Break @ 4-6 p.m., location TBD
  • July 25-31 | Montreat Senior High Youth Conference
Community Working Together
from the Creating Sanctuary Team...
2021 has been a wild ride for El Refugio, as the organization supports detainees of Stewart Detention Center and their families.
As we have prayed, many detainees are being released.
El Refugio reports, “So many people are being released that we have exceeded our 2021 budget for plane and bus tickets! Paz Amigos, our partner organization, has depleted its funds as well. We have almost depleted our funds for commissary support.
“We are also raising money for rent and bills assistance for families impacted by detention and for our new mental health program.”
We hope you can support this vital organization as they assist families whose lives have been inexorably disrupted and damaged by indiscriminate ICE arrests.
For more information regarding El Refugio’s grave financial needs at this time, see this site: https://www.mightycause.com/story/J2p11f  
You may make donations directly via the link or send a check to:
El Refugio, ATTN: Patti Ghezzi, P.O. Box 3996, Decatur, GA 30031.
PCUSA Immigration Webinar Series

The PC(USA) Migration Roundtable is presenting a new series of webinars to address various issues related to forced displacement and U.S. policy. As the PC(USA) statement from 1999 reminds us, love of neighbor requires Christians to seek justice for refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrants. What does justice look like in US policy to address root causes? What does justice look like in the reception of asylum seekers and resettled refugees?
Central American Migration: Root Causes & US Policy
The first workshop in this webinar series on May 25 looked at the circumstances that drive people from Central America to seek safety in the U.S. Click here to see the ‘Welcoming the Stranger’ webinar in its entirety.

The second episode will be at 3 p.m. on June 9 and features Krehbiel moderating a discussion about immigration detention, which has remained in the news as the Biden administration has grappled with the evolving immigration situation at the U.S. Southern border with Mexico. It will feature Presbyterian ministers from Georgia and California who have regularly dealt with immigration detention, as well as a new video series about detention. Check the Office of Public Witness website for details.
SURJ presents Mass Meeting for White People: Recommitting to Racial Justice | TONIGHT, Thursday, May 27 | 8:00 PM | online
Join SURJ tonight at 8 ET for a mass meeting for white people committing to the work of racial justice. We’ll hear from SURJ organizers from across the country about how white people have taken action for justice in the last year and how you can do that in your own community.
Racial Justice Coalition May Community Call | Monday, May 31 | 6:00-7:30 PM
Community Calls are an opportunity for you to learn more about racial equity issues in Asheville/Buncombe County, share your own ideas, and connect with others who are committed to promoting racial justice in our community. We gather in these ways because our relationships with one another are equally important as understanding the circumstances of justice and injustice.

This month, our focus will be on the City’s proposed budget—which will be voted on by City Council on June 22nd—the current status of reparation funding, and what our/your vision is for reparation funding. Organizers from RJC will be sharing our own thoughts and concerns and would love to hear your ideas as well!

Community Calls are also a chance to get to know each other and share different perspectives. We’ll be organizing small breakout rooms to explore the following critical questions:
  • How can you spread the word on the City’s proposed budget?
  • What are some alternative methods to funding reparations?

Sistas Caring 4 Sistas -
Juneteenth Tabling Event Request
SistasCaring4Sistas is a community-based doula program founded by women of color for women of color who could benefit from this evidence-based form of birth support.

They are in need of t-shirt and water bottle donations that they can get their logo imprinted on for gift bags for this event as well as big ticket maternal raffling items such as bassinets, car seats, strollers, Pregnancy support pillows, massage coupons, Boppy Pillows, etc. that can be difficult to obtain due to financial barriers or lack of support.

Please reach out to Cindy cindy.mcmillan@mahec.net if you want to donate.
City of Asheville to launch Information and Truth-Telling Speaker Series
Please join us for the first phase of the City of Asheville’s process to deliver community reparations for Black Asheville, the Information and Truth Telling Speaker Series. The series will include opportunities for community members and local and national speakers to share information about past policies, present trends and disparities, and future initiatives.  
See more details on the City's Engagement HUB on dates and how to participate. 

Information Sharing and Truth Telling Speaker Series
June 3, 10, and 17, 2021 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Thomas Wolfe Auditorium | Harrah’s Cherokee Center Asheville
87 Haywood Street , Asheville, NC 28801
Series moderated by: Dr. Darin Waters, Ph.D.
Honors Director, Direct of for Community Engagement, and Professor of History

  • PAST: June 3, 2021 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm | Featuring: William H. Turner, PhD; James E. Ferguson II, Civil Rights Attorney; Sasha Mitchell, Family and Community Historian
  • PRESENT: June 10, 2021 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm | Featuring: Rinku Sen, Executive Director of the Narrative Initiative; Dr. Dwight Mullen, Professor Emeriti, UNCA, Jorge Redmond, Assistant District Attorney, Buncombe County; Dr. Marcus Harvey, Associate Professor or Religious Studies, UNCA
  • FUTURE: June 17, 2021 | 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Featuring: Tracey Greene-Washington, President, Indigo Innovation Group; Lakesha McDay, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Consultant; Robert Thomas, Racial Justice Coalition Community Liaison

To register for events, please click here.
YWCA Social Justice Virtual Hangout Hour | Fridays | 12:00-1:00 PM
As part of the YWCA’s commitment to eliminating racism, we have launched a weekly virtual Social Justice Hangout Hour hosted by Tre Williams, YWCA Racial Justice Advocate + RJC Member. These Friday gatherings, from noon to 1 pm, serve as a space to discuss relevant topics, raise awareness around racial equity and justice, engage with community members, meet local leaders in the freedom struggle, and just vibe. 

Click the button below to attend on Fridays between noon and 1 pm or join via Facebook.
Coming to the Table 2021 Virtual National Gathering | June 24 @ 7:00 pm - June 27 @ 6:00 pm EDT |
Dr. Joy DeGruy, author of Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome, will be our keynote speaker on opening night. Yeye Luisah Teish, teacher, dancer, storyteller, high priestess, and author, will be our featured speaker on Friday. An announcement about the featured speaker on the final day of the Gathering will be announced soon. This will be a different type of National Gathering since we’ll gather “virtually” rather than in person. The schedule will take into account our multiple time zones so West Coast participants won’t need to get up too early, and East Coast participants won’t need to stay up too late. One big advantage will be the cost. Without expenses for travel, accommodations or meals, the only expense will be the cost of registration.
*NEW (divorcing) White Supremacy Culture website

with Resmaa Menakem, Co- Facilitated by Carlin Quinn
Somatic Abolitionism is an embodied anti-racist practice and process of culture building. This event offers a foundational base for developing the skills to cultivate somatic abolitionism personally and communally.. This course is available to the general public, and to organizations entering a year of learning with Resmaa Menakem.
A Summer Virtual Sunday School on the Climate Crisis | Sundays | July 11, 18, 25 and August 1 | 4:00 - 5:15 PM | via Zoom

This program is taught by the southern Indiana group Presbyterian Climate Advocates, made up of the Rev. Dr. Trisha Tull and Carol Dunn of Scottsburg (Indiana) Presbyterian Church, Beth Snyder of Jeffersonville (Indiana) First Prez, and Kristina Lindborg, an Indiana Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteer.

We encourage several members of the same congregation to register together. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. A brief Zoom tutorial will be available for anyone expressing the need.

To register and receive your Zoom invitation, please go to our website: https://www.presbyclimateadvocates.org/upcoming-classes/ 
GCPC Still Growing
GCPC Community Garden News
On Saturday a team of 12 harvested 75 lbs of greens and delivered them to Western Carolina Rescue Mission. The Saturday team also planted zucchini, squash, beans and tomatoes.   

A Wednesday team of 12 harvested 133 lbs of cabbage and 44 lbs of greens. They planted tomatoes, okra, eggplant, and peppers.  

The Saturday harvest of greens and some cabbage was delivered to Southside Kitchen, and remaining cabbage was delivered to Western Carolina Rescue Mission. 

More tomatoes, okra, eggplant, and peppers will be planted by YTL on Thursday afternoon.
Allison Kiehl

Stewardship & Sustainability GIVE HERE
Summertime Stewardship 
Are you looking forward to time outside and away from screens, but concerned 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
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.
IRA Charitable Rollover

Did you know that if you're 70 ½ or older, you can make a tax-free contribution from your IRA? The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act (PATH) allows you to make a charitable gift directly from your IRA without counting the donation as income. You can use your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) to pay your church pledge or donate to a charity… all without having to pay income tax on those dollars!
IMPORTANT: The donation must come directly from the IRA to the charity to avoid being considered taxable income. Contact your investment fund manager to request a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) made payable to Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church, mailed to the office at 789 Merrimon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804.. Be sure to remind them to list your name as the donor in the memo line so we can apply it to any pledges you may have.
Of Interest....
‘Race, Reparations and Reconciliation’ webinar -
Co-author of the Belhar Confession says reconciliation is ‘not an option’
In discussing reparations in his book, “Radical Reconciliation: Beyond Political Pietism and Christian Quietism,” co-authored with Curtiss Paul DeYoung, the Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak used the example of Zacchaeus, a greedy little tree-climbing tax collector, from Luke 19:1–10.


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. Beginning in June, the office will be open on Tuesday, 10am - 4pm.
  2. Call the office at 828-254-3274.
  3. Listen through the office closure notice, which will then take you to a staff directory.
  4. 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).
  5. You'll be directed to the staff member's individual voicemail, where you can leave a message to be returned as soon as possible.
  6. 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