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Thought for the Week:

“Lent comes providentially to reawaken us,
to shake us from our lethargy.”

Jorge Mario Bergoglio
 In worship this week:
March 18, 2018

Pastor: Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Music Director: Aubrey Nelson

Pianist: Bingyu Peng

Liturgist: Barb Pfeifer

Youth Liturgist: Taylor Thompson

Ushers: Mike and Connie Leonard

Flowers this Sunday are presented
to the glory of God
by Jim and Mary Martin.

Focus on HPC:     
Lenten Hymns:
O Jesus, I Have Promised

Written in the middle of the 19 th Century by an English Pastor, O Jesus, I Have Promised offers an ardent prayer in these final weeks of our Lenten journey. The verses lead us through the realities of our world: from the sights that dazzle to the mur-murs of self-will. Nevertheless, the final verse is quite haunting in light of the turn our narrative will soon take:  and Jesus, I have promised to serve Thee to the end; O give me grace to follow, my Master and my Friend.  The story of Simon Peter and all of the disciples during Holy Week is all too familiar. When the time comes, and our faith really counts, will we truly follow Christ? When we must take up our own cross – welcome the unwanted, speak against injustice, stand with the oppressed – will we willingly follow Jesus to the cross? Or will we falter? Though there is mercy for all, Christ does desire that we pursue God’s desired course.

This week in PCUSA Mission:                
PC(USA) Stated Clerk Preaches, Delivers
“Holy Pep Rally” to Church Educators

Speaking to attendees at the 2018 gathering of the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators ( APCE ), the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), as-sumed the role of cheerleader for educators. This year’s convention of church education practi-tioners from the PC(USA), the Reformed Church in America, the Presbyterian Church in Canada, the Moravian Church in America and the Christian Reformed Church in North America had a theme of “ Deep & Wide: Boundless Hospitality .” Nelson’s sermon, based on Luke 10:25–37 — known as the Parable of the Good Samaritan — took him to a “place I was not intending … it is subversive teaching.”

“Teaching is the most important work we in the PC(USA) can do in these times,” he said. “Teaching the gospel is life-saving work.  Teaching gives life and offers life to those who would otherwise dwell in ignorance to the God of our salvation.”  Recalling his own history, Nelson said, “All my education post-high school has been in Presbyterian institu-tions. If we are to receive what is required in greater measure, it will require subversive Chris-tian education.  To teach us to love our God, and our neighbor as yourself.”

“Christian education is essential. Don’t let any session tell you you’re not worth your weight in salt. Don’t let any pastor tell you they can do it without you,” he encouraged.  “If we don’t learn to teach again as we have done historically, and as we are known for — theology, education and how-to — if we don’t begin to learn how to do this today, we will probably be no more than a remnant going into the middle of the 21st century.”

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); Lettie Capers (friend of the Leonards); Austin Casey (Jack and Betty Bagent’s grandson); Wayne Cline (Sherry Hutchinson’s brother); Steve Dull (husband of Lynn Nichols Dull); Dan Durway (former Pastor of Highland); family of Judy Eubanks (former member); Eva Fuller (Inez Geoghegan’s niece); Donald Leake; family of Hank McKinney (former member); 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.

March 18 - 24:  none

March:  none

Detail of the Prague Astronomical Clock in thePrague Old Town

This week at HPC:
Monday, March 19: 
12:00 p.m. AA
12:00 p.m. Rev. Janie - CPM

Tuesday, March 20:     
10:30 a.m. Tuesday Morning Study
12:00 p.m. AA 
7:30 p.m. AA

Wednesday, March 21:
12:00 p.m. AA
5:30 p.m. HPC choir practice
7:00 p.m. Ladies’ AA

Thursday, March 22:
12:00 p.m. AA
8:00 p.m. Men’s AA

Friday, March 23:
12:00 p.m. AA

Saturday, March 24:
Yard Crew – Jack Bagent & Bill Pfeifer

Sunday, March 25: Palm Sunday
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
  • Today – Third Sunday Lunch celebrates the Irish. All are invited to enjoy an Irish themed pot-luck lunch following the Worship service.

  • Easter Lily orders – It’s time to place your order for Easter Lilies. Please fill out the Easter Lily form and return it with $15.00 per plant no later than Sunday, March 25.

  • Tuesday Morning Study, March 20, will explore the theme “The Stone Table” as seen in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Class begins with coffee at 10:30 a.m.  All are welcome.

  • Maundy Thursday Service, 5:30 p.m., March 29. Highland will host a Maundy Thursday service including supper, Communion, embodied prayer, and a candle-light Service of Tenebrae (shadows) to conclude. All are invited to attend and participate in this service. Contact Rev. Janie to offer assistance.

  • Sermon Palm Sunday (Mar. 25) “Which Is Better?” from Mark 11:1-11 and Mark 14:1-11.

Session News

The Session of Highland Presbyterian Church met for its regular stated meeting on Sunday, March 11, 2018. The following business was conducted:

  • Session elected Mike Groves and Louise Dye to serve as members of Session on the 2018 Nominating Committee along with members of the Congregation Tillie Groves, Sherry Hutchinson, and Bill Pfeifer.

  • Session approved accepting the gift of a new handicapped accessible toilet to be installed in the main bathroom of the Office building.

Reports of Interest

Clerk of Session:
  • A financial donation and note of thanks were received from the Baton Rouge Caledonian Pipes and Drums.

  • Rev. Janie has been able to meet and begin training with new OfficeAdministrator/ Bookkeeper, Jennifer Hirstius. Dave Adams is working with Jennifer con-cerning bookkeeping duties. Louise Dye is working with Jennifer concerning printing and office tasks.

  • Registration for the Montreat Youth Conference, July 6 -15, is underway. It is anticipated 6 Youth will attend.

  • Plans for Holy Week will feature a Maundy Thursday Service to be held at 5:30 p.m. and include supper, Communion, embodied prayer, and conclude with a candle-light Service of Tenebrae (shadows).

  • Plans for Easter Sunday will include Communion, flowering of the Cross and guest musicians.

Ad Hoc Property Committee:

Kevin Nguyen, Deric Murphy, and Joe Labbe attended a meeting with Mike Leonard, Bob Buck, Connie Buck, and Janie McElwee-Smith held at Highland Presbyterian Church on Monday, February 19, 2018. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss possible allocation of a portion of Highland Presbyterian Church’s property for the construction and installation of a sewer treatment plant for the Highland Cove development planned for the property adjacent to HPC.

Joe Labbe presented an engineering drawing that detailed placement of a sewer treatment plant on HPC property. The treatment plant would be owned and maintained by the sewer provider (Ascension Waste). The plant would be approxi-mately 40’ by 50’. An 8-foot cedar fence with 2 wooden gates would surround the plant. A 30” pipe drain would be located on the property line that would allow water to drain from the front of the property to Bayou Fountain. There would be a limestone road to provide access to the sewer plant with the entrance on Highland. In return for use of the property the developer would connect HPC to the system. There would be no cost to HPC for the connection; no sewer fee; and no maintenance responsibility to HPC.

Christian Education:
  • The Tuesday Study class led by Rev. Janie is doing a Lenten study based on C. S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. The study began February 20 and will conclude on March 27. Beginning April 17, the Tuesday Study class, co-led by Louise Dye and Connie Buck, will do a five-week study of Henri Nouwen’s The Return of the Prodigal Son.

  • The Sunday Study class has been meeting on the first and fourth Sunday of February and March and will conclude in May. A Ray Vander Laan That the World May Know DVD, “Clash of Kingdoms” is the basis for the class study.

  • The youth-sponsored Souper Bowl of Caring was a success. Food items collected were as follows: Here for the community – 21; Here for the commercials – 19; Here for the game – 5. Total food items collected was 45, which were delivered to St. John's UMC Shepherd’s Market by Louise Dye. Also collected was $312.00 - $137.00 collected at the January Third Sunday Lunch an $175.00 collected through the Souper Bowl competition.

  • The first liturgical reading each Sunday has been done by members of the Youth Group.

  • On February 25, our pianist Bingyu Peng was sick and Mary Martin kindly stepped in and accompanied the hymns.

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

office hours for Rev. Janie are Mon. 10:30 am – 11:30 am
and Thurs. 10:00 am – 1:30 pm
by appointment Mon. – Thurs. 9:00 am – 4:30 pm 
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 •