Connecting us with one another, our community, and the world...
Thought for the Week:

“To change the world we must be good
to those who cannot repay us.”

Jorge Mario Bergoglio

In worship this week:
February 24, 2019

Pastor: Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Pianist: Ana Paula Simões

Liturgist: Jack Bagent

Ushers: John and Louise Dye

Hospitality: The Smiths

The flowers this Sunday are presented
to the glory of God
in celebration of Connie Leonard's birthday.

Focus on HPC:     
Budget Concerns Bring Changes

Going into the summer months of 2018 it became obvious that Highland was looking at some serious budgetary concerns. Our budget is what is called a “zero budget,” meaning we start off the year with $0 and add income from pledges, offerings, and rental. Our expenses are paid out of this pool of money. How then can we have a “negative” budget – one in which we know in advance our expenses will be more than our income? Highland does have a reserve of monies from both the sale of the adjoining property in 2005 and previous years in which income exceeded expenses. We have relied on this pool of money to provide for the needs of the church when income doesn’t meet expenses. However 2015 was the last year our budget ended with a surplus. In 2016 there was a deficit of $5,801, in 2017 a deficit of $17,541, and in 2018 a deficit of $41,088. There came a realization that our savings would not be able to sustain this drain on these resources.

What can we do? Highland has done its best to increase income. The final option is to decrease expenses. Unfortunately this brought a hard look particularly at personnel expenses. It became obvious that Highland was no longer in a position to be able to afford a full-time Pastor. Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith was brought into these discussions and agreed the best option for her was to look for another call for the coming year, 2019. While this is a major change in the operations of Highland, it does not mean that we will cease to exist. What it does is challenge us to look toward the season to come and how we can continue to do God’s work here on Earth and continue to Connect our Community with Christ.
This week in PCUSA Mission:            
Hands and Feet Fellow
Finds Joy Working In
Addiction Treatment Clinic

Melva Lowry has found joy in service where she least expected it. Lowry is one of two young women selected for the first yearlong fellowships with Hands and Feet, an initiative launched by the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Nelson’s idea is to strengthen the church’s mission efforts through partnerships and mission involvement in cities hosting the General Assembly.

Lowry and Olivia Thomas are working with The Center, a mission outreach of the Presbytery of Baltimore, which is hosting the 224th General Assembly in 2020. Adult and youth mission teams across the U.S. are given the opportunities through the center to work alongside churches and nonprofits in the Baltimore area.

Recently, Lowry took part in one of her first weekend mission visits to the Glenwood Life Center in Woodbourne-McCabe, a methadone clinic working to treat people addicted to opioids. She spent time with a patient advocate named Precious, who is also a patient herself. “She is very open and forthcoming about her story and the process she has gone through to get where she is today,” said Lowry. “Plus, Precious always comes with smiles and hugs.”

Lowry says Glenwood offers a lot of opportunities to help patients overcome their addiction through resources, counseling, art projects and group meetings. On this day, Lowry is joining Precious in the community garden, another project to promote healing. “When you enter the garden, you feel as though you are in a completely different setting. The chill in the air and the mist of light rain does not matter as you begin to dig, pull, turn over soil within the garden beds,” said Lowry. “The plants are her babies, each one a sign of hope and optimism. This garden has helped feed more than 1,300 people with produce donated to the local farmers market and food pantry. To watch Precious and volunteers work in the garden is to experience a small taste of the impact the garden holds for this community.”
Immediate Church Family*:
Betty Bagent; Inez Geoghegan; Betty Lancaster; Mary Perry; Deanna Lewis Sklar; Brad Smith.

Extended Church Family*:
Brandon Behrmann (Carol’s nephew); Austin Casey (Jack and Betty Bagent’s grandson); Steve Dull (husband of Lynn Nichols Dull); Dan Durway (former Pastor of Highland); Eva Fuller (Inez Geoghegan’s niece); Julius Fuller (Inez
Geoghegan’s brother); Randy Geoghegan (Inez’s son); Carol Harrison (Rob Stewart’s Mother); Claudia Hill (Connie Leonard’s sister); Phillip Lanier (friend of Rosemary John); the Miller twins (friends of Brad Smith); Aleta Pickholtz; Larry Wilcoxson (friend of the Leonards); the husband and family of Barbara Zeagler (friend of the Dyes.)

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

February 24–March 2: Connie Leonard (2/28)

February - none
Detail of the Prague Astronomical Clock in thePrague Old Town

This week at HPC:
Monday, February 25:
12:00 p.m. AA
Tuesday, February 26:
9:30 a.m. WW Quilters
10:30 a.m. Tuesday Morning Study
12:00 p.m. AA
7:30 p.m. AA

Wednesday, February 27:  
12:00 p.m. AA
7:00 p.m. Ladies’ AA

Thursday, February 28: 
12:00 p.m. AA
8:00 p.m. Men’s AA

Friday, March 1:
12:00 p.m. AA

Saturday, March 2:
Yard Crew – John Dye & Mike Groves

Sunday, March 3:
9:30 a.m. Worship/Communion
7:00 p.m. AA
coming soon brand new product release next up promotion and announce road sign or announcement billboard
Upcoming Opportunities at HPC
  • The Tuesday Morning Study Class will do a two-week “intersession” study on A Theology of Luke/Acts, a DVD study featuring the teachings of Dr. Darrell L. Bock of the Dallas Theological Seminary.  See Connie Buck for more information.

  • Mardi Gras Holiday The church office will be closed for Mardi Gras on Mon., March 4 and Tues., March 5.

  • The Annual Congregational Meeting will be Sunday, March 17 during the Third Sunday Lunch. This will be a special time for Highland as we begin to discern what the future might hold for us as a church.
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 will be away Tuesday, 2/26 – Friday, 3/1

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 •