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Thought for the Week:

“Success has nothing to do with
what you gain in life or
accomplish for yourself. 
It’s what you do for others.”

Danny Thomas
 In worship this week:
April 29, 2018

Pastor: Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Music Director: Aubrey Nelson

Pianist: Bingyu Peng

Highland Presbyterian Church Choir: Sherry
Hutchinson, Rosemary John, Janie McElwee-
Smith, Deanna Lewis Sklar, Brad Smith, and Doris
M. (Skippy) Thompson

Ushers: Dave and Peggy Adams

Hospitality: Sherry Hutchinson
Flowers this Sunday are presented
to the glory of God
in thanks for His Unbound Love.

Focus on HPC:     
Unbound Love

Our Service of Music this morning carries the title of “Unbound Love.” Why “unbound” love? This refers to love as in the true love of God which goes beyond what we can understand and has no bounds. 

How do we begin to understand this love that is so all encompassing? By looking first to Jesus who found a way to embrace any and all who sought God. Not just the easily embraceable - those with demons or scars or misunderstandings. We also see that many questioned those whom Jesus chose to share his love with. Perhaps we should wonder that if we are never questioned about whom we love, is our love unbound enough?

The message of our “Unbound Love” Service is just that. Let the music free our hearts and souls to want to live a life that seeks to go beyond the normal understanding and explore new expressions of love for the unloved. A love that is unbound.

This week in PCUSA Mission:                
Church Needs Creative Outlet to
Fail and Learn

Shawna Bowman, Pastor
Friendship Presbyterian Church, Chicago

Two years ago, I collaborated with colleagues and friends to develop an experimental, art-making, spirit-stirring, imagination space called Creation Lab. We believed that the church needed spaces set aside for creativity and trying new things; a research and design space, if you will.

We knew, as creative church pastors and leaders, that we were hungry for such spaces. Deep in our bodies and spirits, we were being depleted. Our creativity needed an outlet and a place for renewal and expansion, and we believed we weren’t alone. Our idea was this: Create a working art studio space where we could collaborate and experiment at the intersections of art, spirituality and faith leadership and invite other folks to join us.

We found a space in a larger artist and musician collective building on Chicago’s Northwest Side and we built a studio. And while Creation Lab hosts open studio time and workshops on-site, we also find ourselves out and about both online and on the road, curating creative conversations, maker-spaces and spirituality studios at churches, conferences and gatherings.

When we started Creation Lab I believed that all the church needed to become more imaginative was practice. I believed that if we created spaces that invited folks to get their hands dirty, to try new things, to make art and to be creative forces in the world, they would jump in. I believed that we, as the church, had the capacity to follow the Holy Spirit with energy and imagination into the unknown future — we just needed a bit of practice stretching our own imaginations. I also believed that if we provided materials and the space to create, folks would jump at the chance. And some do.
Immediate Church Family*:
Betty Bagent; Carol Behrmann; Doris Baugh; Inez Geoghegan; Betty Lancaster; Preston Lancaster; Mary Perry; Deanna Lewis Sklar; Brad Smith; Caitlin Thompson.

Extended Church Family*:
Brandon Behrmann (Carol’s nephew); family of Mary Etta Brown; Lettie Capers (friend of the Leonards); Austin Casey (Jack and Betty Bagent’s grandson); Woody and Susie Chew (friends of Deanna); Wayne Cline (Sherry Hutchinson’s brother); Susan Corona (friend of the Bucks); Steve Dull (husband of Lynn Nichols Dull); Dan Durway (former Pastor of Highland); Eva Fuller (Inez Geoghegan’s niece); Donald Leake; the Miller twins (friends of Brad Smith); Aleta Pickholtz; Earl Rabe (friend of Rick Gurtner); Family of Betty Rich (Jack Bagent’s sister) ; Joy Walker (niece of the Pfeifers); Larry Wilcoxson (friend of the Leonards); Barbara Zeagler (friend of the Dyes.)

 * New names or concerns added to the prayer list this week are in italics.

April 29 – May 5:  Aubrey Nelson (5/4)

May 19 – John & Marian Kleinpeter
May 23 – Jacob & Audrie John
May 28 – John & Louise Dye
Detail of the Prague Astronomical Clock in thePrague Old Town

This week at HPC:
Monday, April 30: 
12:00 p.m. AA

Tuesday, May 1:     
10:30 a.m. Tuesday Morning Study
12:00 p.m. AA 
7:30 p.m. AA

Wednesday, May 2:
12:00 p.m. AA
5:30 p.m. HPC choir practice
7:00 p.m. Ladies’ AA

Thursday, May 3:
12:00 p.m. AA
8:00 p.m. Men’s AA

Friday, May 4:
12:00 p.m. AA

Saturday, May 5:
Yard Crew – Jack Bagent & Bill Pfeifer

Sunday, May 6:
9:30 a.m. Worship
11:00 a.m. Sunday Study
7:00 p.m. AA
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Upcoming Opportunities at HPC
  • Sunday Study – Today. Following Worship, A Clash of Kingdoms (how Paul communicated the Good News of Christ to Philippi) continues with Lesson 4 – “The Philippian Jailer.”

  • Sounds of CommUNITY Concert this afternoon (4:00 p.m.) at Broadmoor United Methodist Church, 10230 Mollylea Dr. See for more information.

  • Tuesday Study Class (May 1) – continues its study, The Return of the Prodigal Son, by Henri Nouwen. Coffee will be ready at 10:30 followed by the lesson, “Part 2 - The Elder Son” (pages 59-88). For more information, contact Louise Dye.

  • Gifts of Literacy - End of the Year. As the school year ends, “Gifts of Literacy” provides a book for each first grader at Magnolia Woods Elementary. If you would like to participate, please contact Connie Buck.

  • Our Visiting Pastor next Sunday (May 6) will be Rev. Dr. Michael Elmore. His Sermon title is “God’s Problem” from John 15:9-17.

Session News

The Session of Highland Presbyterian Church met for its regular stated meeting on Sunday, April 22, 2018. The following business was conducted:

  • Session approved the request of Dale and Kathleen Redman for a Transfer of Letter of Membership to First Presbyterian Church of Baton Rouge.

  • Session approved the inclusion of Communion during the regular Worship Service on April 29.

  • Session approved designating Highland’s portion of the Pentecost 2018 Offering to the Presbyterian Children’s Homes and Services, Baton Rouge office.

  • Session approved forming an Ad Hoc Committee with Louise Dye as chair and Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith serving ex-officio to pursue the feasibility of hosting a community outreach/education program in conjunction with Highland’s 35th Anniversary. (Other committee members will be sought from the congregation and community.)

  1. The program will feature Dr. Amy-Jill Levine, Vanderbilt University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies, and focus on her work from the Parables of Jesus. 
  2. The proposed date for the event will be September 23-24, 2018. An educational event for the church and community will be planned for the afternoon of September 23. An educational event for Clergy will be planned for the morning of September 24.
  3. The event will have a budget of $10,000: $8,500 for the speaker’s fee and $1,500 for expenses. Session approved allocation of existing monies ($3,236.27) in the Durway Lecture Fund for expenses associated with this event ($2,000 toward speaker’s fee and $1,236.27 toward expenses). Donations to cover the remaining speaker’s fees have been promised. 
  4. To move forward, support and involvement will be sought from the Baton Rouge Cluster of the Presbytery of South La. as well as the Interfaith Federation of Greater Baton Rouge.

Reports of Interest

  • Rev. Janie will be attending a Credo Conference sponsored by the Presbyterian Board of Pensions as part of her continuing education May 1–7.
  • Rev. Janie’s upcoming vacation is planned for June 19-25, 2018.
  • A summer sermon series on The Lord’s Prayer is being planned.

Congregational Care/Christian Education:
  • Upcoming May Third Sunday Lunch (Pentecost) will be our traditional jambalaya lunch and celebration of Highland’s birthday.
  • 35th Anniversary Celebration is tentatively set for Sunday, September 23, 2018. Morning worship will focus on the celebration of Highland’s 35th Anniversary. Invitations to former members and ministers will be sent out. A reception will be held following the worship service.
  • Special thanks go Connie Buck for coordinating the supper in conjunction with the Maundy Thursday Service. 
  • The Tuesday Study class, co-led by Louise Dye and Connie Buck, is doing a six-week study of Henri Nouwen’s The Return of the Prodigal Son.
  • The Sunday Study class will resume April 29. A Ray Vander Laan That the World May Know DVD, “Clash of Kingdoms” is the basis for the class study.

  • Attendance at Sunday worship for the first quarter of 2018 averaged 35 persons. Several friends of our youth have been consistent visitors.
  • Thirty-eight persons attended the Maundy Thursday service.
  • Easter Sunday (April 1) began the second quarter. Forty-three persons were in attendance.

  • For the month of March, expenses of $11,789.06 exceeded income of $10,879.14 by ($909.92).

  • Plans are underway for “Gifts of Literacy – End of the Year” book donations to first grade students at Magnolia Woods Elementary.
  • Response to the Easter Sunday offering for One Great Hour of Sharing was a success in that $355.00 was collected.
  • A check has been sent to Shepherd’s Market at St. John’s UMC for the hunger offering totaling $312 and a check in the amount of $460 has been sent to the Presbytery for the Christmas Joy Offering.

  • This year the supply of palms was restricted due to a shortage. Thanks to help from Connie Buck and Mike Groves they were safely delivered.
  • On Thursday, March 29, the Maundy Thursday Service was held at 5:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 1, Easter was celebrated with all the lilies in full bloom and the flowering of the Cross. Cullen Crochet on a trumpet provided a pleasant accompaniment to the music.  

About HPC
Highland Presbyterian Church is a vibrant tree in God's grace-filled orchard. Deeply rooted in God's life-giving presence here on earth, this tree extends its branches to support one another in faith and reach into the world around it to produce fruit. Whether you are seeking God's presence through questions or service, discussion or fellowship, there is a home for you at Highland.
Connecting with Our Pastor
Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Rev. Janie is on study leave May 1 - 7

cell (call or text): 314.283.7596
office: 766-5775 (please leave a message)

Highland Presbyterian Church (USA)
10024 Highland Road • Baton Rouge, LA 70810 • 225.766.5775 •