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Thought for the Week:

“When the star in the sky is gone …
the work of Christmas begins:
to find the lost, to heal the broken,
to feed the hungry, to release the prisoner,
 to rebuild the nations,
to bring peace among brothers ...”

Howard Thurman
In worship this week:
December 31, 2017

Pastor: Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Music Director: Aubrey Nelson

Pianist: Bingyu Peng

Liturgist: Doris M. (Skippy) Thompson

Youth Liturgist: Mei Stewart

Ushers: Anne McKnight & Mary Martin

Hospitality: Anne McKnight

Communion Servers: John & Louise Dye
Flowers this Sunday are presented
to the Glory of God
by Anne McKnight.

Focus on HPC:       
The Angel Did Say . . .

Our hymn of dedication for Epiphany is often con-sidered a Christmas hymn. Nevertheless, three of the six verses are about the arrival of the wise men in Bethlehem. The hymn includes the three key players in the Christmas story, aside from the immediate family: the angels, the shepherds, and the wise men. As with many hymns, the verses are expository and cover much of the scriptures them-selves. Many hymn writers have done this throughout the centuries so that their congre-gations might commit essential lessons or stories to memory more easily. 

The song uses the Anglicized version of a French word, noel, that comes from the Latin words that mean “born” and “news.” What has largely been forgotten is that in the Middle Ages, this word was the shouted greeting for Christmas, rather than the forms we use today. As we come to the close of our Christmastide, let us once again sing this beloved hymn as a prayer for the year ahead: “Then let us all with one accord sing praises to our heavenly Lord, that hath made heaven and earth of naught, and with his blood our life hath bought. Nowell, Nowell, Nowell, Nowell, born is the King of Israel.”

This week in PCUSA Mission:                
Westminster Presbyterian Recognized
as a Hunger Action Congregation

Westminster Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is a little church with a big heart. It recently applied to be and was recognized as a Hunger Action Congregation by the Presbyterian Hunger Program . One of its hunger advocacy programs, titled Imagine No Hunger, approaches the hunger issue in a unique way — by fasting. Church members pledge to fast one meal each week and to contribute $5 to a fund affiliated with the program. Since 2009, Westminster has do-nated more than $56,000 to local, national and international food-related projects as a result of Imagine No Hunger.

In July 2009, the Rev. Chester Topple preached a sermon to the Westminster congregation about hunger based on a 2008 General Assembly chal-lenge. As an act of “worship and humility” he challenged his congregation to skip one meal a week and to give the money that would have been spent on that meal to an organization helping to relieve hunger. For a congregation of approx-imately 80, $5 a week for two years until the next General Assembly totaled more than $40,000.

Topple’s sermon was the genesis for Imagine No Hunger. For the past eight years, on each fourth Sunday, Westminster has held Agape Fasts following worship where participants share a simple meal of soup and bread and donate to the fund. A speaker interprets one of the projects supported by the program, or speaks about a timely issue related to the overall hunger problem. 
Immediate Church Family*:
Betty Bagent; Carol Behrmann; Doris Baugh; Inez Geoghegan; Betty Lancaster; Mary Perry; Deanna Lewis Sklar; Brad Smith; Caitlin Thompson.

Extended Church Family* :
Brandon Behrmann (Carol’s nephew); Ron Brelsford (Rosemary John’s brother-in-law); Lettie Capers (friend of the Leonards); Austin Casey (Jack and Betty Bagent’s grandson); Wayne Cline (Sherry Hutchinson’s brother); Dan Durway (former Pastor of Highland); Cecil and Judy Eubanks (former members); Eva Fuller (Inez Geoghegan’s niece); the Miller twins (friends of Brad Smith); Aleta Pickholtz; Earl Rabe (friend of Rick Gurtner); 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.

January 7 - 13: Arden Kleinpeter (8)

January: none
Detail of the Prague Astronomical Clock in thePrague Old Town

This week at HPC:
Monday, January 8:
12:00 p.m. AA

Tuesday, January 9:
9:30 a.m. WW Quilters
10:30 a.m. Bible Study
12:00 p.m. AA 
7:30 p.m. AA

Wednesday, January 10:
12:00 p.m. AA
5:30 p.m. HPC choir practice
7:00 p.m. Ladies’ AA

Thursday, January 11:
12:00 p.m. AA
8:00 p.m. Men’s AA

Friday, January 12:
12:00 p.m. AA

Saturday, January 13:
Yard Crew – Jack Bagent & Bill Pfeifer

Sunday, January 14: 
9:30 a.m. Worship
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
  •  New Year – new opportunities to participate. Participation in the life of Highland Presbyterian Church is a blessing all year round, but especially at this time of year we are looking for people to sign-up as ushers, litur-gists, hospitality providers, flower providers and communion servers for the coming months. Please consider a small commitment of time to provide service to Highland. The blessings are great for you and everyone else.

  • Third Sunday Lunch, Jan 21 – “Souper Bowl of Caring.” Get those soup bowls ready! Our Third Sunday Lunch will feature soup and all the fixings. A sign-up sheet is on the bulletin board. All proceeds will go to fight hunger in our area.

  • A Session Retreat is scheduled for Saturday, January 27, 2018, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 pm.  All remaining, outgoing, and incoming Ruling Elders are expected to attend. Lunch will be provided.  

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 vacation this week

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 •