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Thought for the Week:

“Hope is being able to see light
despite all the darkness.”

Desmond Tutu

In worship this week:
October 22, 2017

Pastor: Rev. Janie McElwee-Smith

Guest Preacher: Rev. Steve Wallace

Music Director: Aubrey Nelson

Pianist: Bingyu Peng

Liturgist: Dave Adams

Youth Liturgist: Emma Stewart

Ushers: Mike and Tillie Groves

Hospitality: Sherry Hutchinson
Flowers this Sunday are presented
to the Glory of God and
in loving memory of Barbara Payton.
Focus on HPC:       
More on Reformation Creeds

We are less than a week and a half away from the 500 th Anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. As we come closer, we look to confessions from our own tradition and drawn from the Reforma-tion Period to affirm our faith.

This Sunday, our creed comes to us from the great mother church of all Presbyterian descendants – the Church of Scotland. The Scots Confession is largely credited to John Knox. He studied under John Calvin in Switzerland while he was exiled from his home country of Scotland by Queen Mary for his treatise, “The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women.” This treatise was written in opposition to female sovereigns of England who were, at this time, staunchly Catholic.

Upon his return he was commissioned, along with five other prominent ministers, by the Scottish Parliament to draft a statement of the Protestant Faith. This statement became the “charter docu-ment” of the Scottish Kirk (Church) and joins Calvin in affirming ancient Augustinian principles of faith.

This week in PCUSA Mission:                
Educate a Child, Transform the World
Alonzo Jordan, Coordinator of PC(USA) SDOP

I was in a morning Bible study when I received the phone call. It was from the father of one of my youth group teens who had called to let me know that his son “B.A.” had been shot. Hearing this news, I felt overcome by disbelief and sadness as I began asking a flurry of questions. Dad calmly replied, “Reverend, he is alive, he is OK; the gunshots were not fatal.” I was thankful and relieved that B.A. was still alive, but then another wave of sadness overtook me as I remembered that two weeks earlier, I had suspended B.A. from youth group activities because he, as a “prank,” had brought a BB gun there and threatened others with it. This happened the week following the massacre at Sandy Hook, Connecticut, so as one can imagine, I did not find his “prank” amusing. 

Days later, when I visited B.A. in the hospital, he told me in detail what happened. He said that he had been a victim of circumstance, that he was shot because of the new “friends” he had been spending time with. B.A. told me that the shooting happened so fast, he had no idea what to do. I asked him about the friend he was with when it happened, and B.A. looked downward. He hesi-tated for a minute and replied, “Reverend, I tried to wake him, but he didn’t make it.” Silence filled the room for a minute and B.A. then said, “Rever-end, I’m staying away from that life; that was scary. Maybe God is telling me I need to be at church.”

I am grateful that B.A.’s life was not taken on the streets. At the same time, it is extremely difficult to imagine the pain of the parents of the young man and many other young people whose blood cries out from the ground due to violence. When I think of B.A., I also think of Psalm 99. It is a reminder that the church is a gift of God’s grace and that we are called to be “lovers of justice” in establishing “equity and righteousness” in being tireless advocates for young people. Our faith commun-ities should be sanctuaries where young people can find love, refuge and protection so that all of our children can experience hope.

Immediate Church Family*:
Betty Bagent; Carol Behrmann; Doris Baugh; Inez Geoghegan; Betty Lancaster; Mary Perry; Deanna Lewis Sklar; Brad Smith; Caitlyn 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); Eva Fuller (Inez Geoghegan’s niece); family of Denny Hill (Mike and Connie Leonard’s brother-in-law); Jonathan Kellebrew and family (the Pfeifer’s daughter’s nephew); the Miller twins in NICU in Nashville (friends of Brad Smith); Aleta Pickholtz; Earl Rabe (friend of Rick Gurtner); family of Sammy Salvato who entered the Church Triumphant Oct. 17 (friends of the Leonards); 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.

October 22-28: Haleigh Thompson (23), Todd Stewart(26), Shelby Brown (28), Julia Stewart(28)

October 29 – Hans and Rosmarie Dunner
Detail of the Prague Astronomical Clock in thePrague Old Town

This week at HPC:
Monday, October 23: 
12:00 p.m. AA

Tuesday, October 24
9:30 a.m. WW Quilters      
10:30 a.m. Bible Study
12:00 p.m. AA    
7:30 p.m. AA

Wednesday, October 25:
12:00 p.m. AA
(no HPC choir practice)
7:00 p.m. Ladies’ AA

Thursday, October 26:
12:00 p.m. AA
8:00 p.m. Men’s AA

Friday, October 27:
12:00 p.m. AA

Saturday, October 28:
Yard Crew – John Dye & Mike Groves

Sunday, October 29:  Reformation Sunday
9:30 a.m. Worship
10:30 a.m. Appreciation Reception
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
  • Appreciation Reception for Barbara Aguillard – October 29. Although not everyone has met her, Barbara has served as our Office Manager and then Financial Administrator for many years. Sadly she must end her service to Highland at the end of October. Please plan to stay following worship on Oct. 29 and share our thanks.

  • “Fighting Hunger One Quilt at a Time” Raffle tickets continue to be available. The drawings for the two quilts will be November 19. All ticket stubs, unsold tickets and money need to be returned by November 12. Contact Louise Dye for raffle tickets or information.

  • Hunger Walk – November 5, 2:30 pm. Join our youth as they walk to remedy hunger. All are welcome to join in and/or sponsor a walker with a monetary donation. All proceeds go to the Holy Grill, an outreach of the Interfaith Federation of Greater Baton Rouge, and the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.

  • Sermon next week (Oct. 29–Reformation Sunday) is “The Greatest” from Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17 and Matthew 22:34-40. 

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 October 16-23
office hours for Rev. Janie are Thurs. 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
by appointment Tues. – 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 •