Update for the week of May 2 - 8, 2019
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Our Mission Statement

To Be and Make Disciples of  
Jesus Christ 

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Contact Us?
Saint Mark UMC
616 Quincy Road
Seneca, SC  29678

Call us:
9 am - 5 pm (M-Th)
(864) 882-2603
Pastoral Care
Emergencies or after regular office hours

call or text
(864) 888-7072  

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send an email
Saint Mark 2019 Ministry Guidebook 
Click here to view the entire Saint Mark 2019 Ministry Guidebook with information about church structure, leadership, ministries and our 2019 budget. 
Check Out Our Entire Church
 Calendar of Events
Click here to see what is going on at Saint Mark this week and the weeks to come.
Sunday, May 5
Saint Mark Festival 
 9:00 am 
  Sunday School
for all ages
9:55 am
Fellowship Time in the Atrium
10:15 am
Saint Mark Festival Worship
One Combined Service in the Sanctuary
11:30 am 
Saint Mark Festival Luncheon
Saint Mark Center 
4:00 pm
Wings 'N Things 
5:30 pm
In His Eyes 

Quick, easy and available HERE 
Listen to Last Week's Sermon Today 
If you were not able to attend worship on any given Sunday, you can still listen to the sermon.   Click here to select and listen to sermons that you may have missed.
Got Good News To Share With Your Saint Mark Family?   
Good news lifts our spirits. Share your good news with us. We will publish your good news in our "People 'Neath Our Steeple" feature. Your news will be sent out as an email. Click here to share your good news (achievements, births, awards, etc.). Include pictures if you have them. 
Interested in LGBTQ+ Inclusion?

Click here for more information. Or click here to join the Reconciling Ministries Network movement. 
Prayer Focus for This Week  
Pray for all students who are coming to the end of their school year.   
Pray for clear minds and rested bodies as students prepare for and take their final exams.
Pray for all students who struggle with school, whether academically, socially or behaviorally.  
Pray that students will remain safe these last days/weeks of classes, as the fear of gun violence in schools escalates.    
Pray that students and teachers will enjoy a safe and rejuvenating
Submit Your Prayer Requests
Saint Mark is pleased to receive your prayer requests . . . for yourself or for friends or loved ones.   Click here to submit your request to Pastor Todd Davis.
Join us as together we celebrate  
the mission and ministries of Saint Mark!  
If you have a Saint Mark shirt (old or new),  
we encourage you to wear it during our  
Saint Mark Festival celebrations.  
We will celebrate Holy Communion. 
Alms Offering This Sunday

Our alms offering will primarily support the work of Safe Harbor in Seneca.  Safe Harbor provides a variety of services to domestic violence victims and their children.  These services include emergency shelter, counseling and legal advocacy, and transitional housing.  Safe Harbor also works to eliminate the cultural acceptance of domestic violence.  In the words of a former client, "I am finally free.  I have hope for my future."  Thank you for supporting this and other important ministries through your alms offering every month.

If you made your reservation online, your tickets will be at the Will Call table at the top of the stairs to the Saint Mark Center this Sunday, May 5.
I (Pastor Todd) will be away on vacation Friday, May 3 - Monday, May 13 and will return to the office on Tuesday, May 14.  Thank you for this time away for rest and renewal.  If you have a pastoral care need outside of regular church office hours, please contact (864) 888-7072 to leave a message for the pastor on call.
Memory Cafe
Boat Trip on Lake Keowee 
Monday, May 6
Meet at the Church at 10:45 am
Our May 6 trip will be special. We will be venturing onto Lake Keowee for a boat trip. The boats will consist of a house boat and a pontoon.
We will meet at Saint Mark United Methodist Church at 10:45 am in the parking lot across from the church (where the buses are located) on Quincy Road.  We will then carpool to Stacy Keeler and Danny Markus's home where they will host a lunch of hamburgers and hot dogs in their very beautiful back yard. Then we'll board the boats.  Halfway on the boat trip we'll dock. Those on the pontoon will trade places onto the houseboat and vice versa, giving everyone a chance to enjoy both. Then we'll come back and carpool back to Saint Mark again.
Each boat can only take 10 people. Since we have more than 20 participants in Memory Cafe, the first 20 to sign up will get to go. There are still 2 spaces available!! In case of rain, we may reschedule the trip to a sunny day. Click here to make your reservation. 
Looking forward to boating with you.
Bonnie Holmes
Continuing the Conversation . . .
Follow-up Gathering
Wednesday, May 8
6 - 7 pm
Commons Room

During March and April, four gatherings were scheduled to create a time and space for persons who needed to express their feelings and deep concerns about the outcome of the 2019 General Conference.  Those who participated in the earlier conversations expressed interest in coming together one more time after Easter to discuss ways to faithfully move forward in our wonderfully diverse community of faith - Saint Mark UMC. 

As always, everyone is welcome to attend.
Are You 50+?
Join us for Dinner and a Baseball Game

First, we will enjoy dinner at 5:00 at Liberty Tap Room, located within walking distance of Fluor Field.  Click here to see the menu.
We have reserved 18 tickets to watch the Greenville Drive play the West Virginia Power at Fluor Field on Friday, May 17.  The game begins at 7:05 pm.  The tickets are only $9 and will probably go quickly!!!  What a great deal and a wonderful evening out!!   
Click here to make your reservation(s), or contact Marla Fuller at the church office.  Transportation is available.  
Wings for the Lord Angel Sponsorships
Sundays, May 19, 26 and June 2 
We are excited for this summer's special choir tour as we are not only singing on the way and back from Kansas City, but will be attending the United Methodist Youth 2019 World Gathering with over 6,000 other youth. In November, we were in need of a special offering in order to register for the Gathering and were so blessed for our "Angel Partners" who met that need.
In the atrium on May 19, 26 and June 2, Wings will sell their annual "Angel Sponsorships" for $30 that help our youth with meals during the week.  As usual, you may purchase a particular youth to pray for. You will receive a picture of your youth, a tour itinerary and a ribbon to wear to be recognized on our "send off" at the July 7 worship service.  Thank you for loving and supporting our youth!
For more information, click here to contact Donna Poston.
Celebrate Our Graduates!

Join us on Sunday, May 19 at the 10:15 Celebration Service as we celebrate our Saint Mark disciples who are graduating from high school, college, tech school, graduate school or other training.  If you or a Saint Mark disciple that you know, falls into one of those categories, and would like to recognized at the service, click here to contact Donna Poston, our Minister of Youth and College Ministries.

Help us embrace the successful completion of this chapter of their journey of life-long learning!
Would you like to participate in this combined choral experience?  Rehearsals are going on now! Click here to contact David Wilcox.

We hope you will come to Fort Hill Presbyterian Church in Clemson to enjoy the performance of this spirited and moving music of our faith!
Are You 50+?
An Elderberries Educational Opportunity
Estate Planning
with Ray Lanham
Monday, May 20
12 noon
Commons Room
Cost: $8.00 for Lunch

Our monthly Tuesday Lunch Bunch is taking a break for the summer, but there will be a very special lunch event for our Saint Mark Elderberries on Monday, May 20 in the Commons Room.   
While you eat a delicious lunch prepared by our own Donna Jaynes, there will be a special presentation sponsored by the Saint Mark Endowment Committee regarding the benefits of Estate Planning.  No matter where you are in your personal  Estate Planning consideration . . . 1) You never had the time to consider a Plan,  2) You want to make sure your Plan is current for your circumstance, or 3) You or your friends just want to learn more about the opportunities in Estate Planning to reduce taxes and avoid challenges to your will . . . please do attend.

Saint Mark disciple, Ray "Rainman" Lanham, will lead the lunch hour presentation.   Before joining Saint Mark, Ray worked professionally with the American Cancer Society for over 10 years as an Estate Planning coach.  Since he retired, Ray has been making his vast professional experience and talent available to Saint Mark disciples and friends. In about one hour, Ray will give his presentation and answer your questions regarding the benefits of and effective strategies for Estate Planning.  Ray is not an attorney, but an experienced Estate Plan coach.  As his service to Saint Mark, Ray is working with a number of Saint Mark members and friends as they consider Estate Plan concepts that may be appropriate in their specific circumstance.  He is willing to do this for you, if you so desire.  We are indeed blessed to have Ray as a Saint Mark disciple/member.

So, please plan to attend.  There is no downside.  You will get a fine lunch for a fine price, free and meaningful-to-all Estate Plan information, the fellowship that you have come to expect at Saint Mark, and only if you are interested, the opportunity to discuss your situation one-on-one with Ray.  

Click here to make your reservation, or contact Marla Fuller at the church office (864) 882-2603.  See you at noon, Monday May 20 in the Commons Room at Saint Mark!!! 

Reconciling Ministries Network
of South Carolina
Annual Conference Breakfast
Monday, June 3
7:15 am
First Baptist Greenville
Cost: $20

Registration for Reconciling Ministries of South Carolina's 2019 Annual Conference Breakfast is now open. Simply click here to go to the Reconciling Ministries South Carolina website and follow the links to register and to pay for your reservation.  If you are interested in carpooling, click here to contact Marla Fuller.

In addition to arts and crafts, there will be garden tours, topiary displays and tasting wine walks in uptown Greenwood. Some activities will require the purchase of tickets. Transportation is available.  Click here to make your reservation by Sunday, June 2.

Vacation Bible School 2019
Registration Is Now Open!
Sunday, June 9 - Wednesday, June 12
5:30 - 8:00 pm 
REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN for Vacation Bible School 2019 - To Mars and Beyond: Explore Where God's Power Can Take You! Our amazing space adventures will take place June 9 - 12.  
VBS is open to children from age 4 years through 12 years. This year's adventure includes daily snack supper, crafts, science, games, songs, Bible stories, and more!
Pick up a registration form in the atrium or click here to sign up online.  
Hope to see you there!

An Elderberries Event
Be Prepared for Caregiving
For Spouses or Family Members
with Bonnie Holmes
Wednesday, June 19
6:30 - 7:30 pm
Commons Room

No one is prepared to take care of a spouse or parent who has become seriously ill.  If a disease lasts for a length of time, such as dementia, the task becomes particularly difficult.  This seminar will help you be prepared.  It will cover techniques to take care of the care receiver and the care giver.  You will learn to understand what your loved one is experiencing and what he or she needs.  Most important, you will learn what you need to be efficient, to enjoy a life of your own, and to come through the experience thanking God that you were privileged to be a family caregiver.

To properly become prepared for caregiving, you might want to get experience by helping a friend or neighbor.  Good caregivers are hard to find.  You can become indispensable to someone or your community while possibly earning money as a professional caregiver.  This seminar will highlight the needs of the care receiver and family caregiver, thus giving you the resources you will need today as a professional care giver, and tomorrow, for your own family.

Click here to register for this seminar.  For more information, click here to contact Bonnie Holmes. 

The words, "Jesus Loves Me" are among our earliest musical memories of faith and church.  For most of us, they are words of assurance and comfort.  For LGBTQ Christians, who grew up believing that they are God's precious children, the words to the song may ring hollow in their ears because of the exclusion they have felt and experienced from fellow Christ-followers.
Based on the book, This I Know: A Simple Biblical Defense for LGBTQ Christians by Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church in Greenville, Rev. Jim Dant, Mary Holley and Ginny Argue will present a workshop on Sunday, June 23 for those who may be struggling with a biblical defense of same-sex relationships, or who want to expand their knowledge. The following is what will be covered:
  • Misunderstandings that can occur when single Bible verses are taken out of context
  • Loving responses and explanations we can share with those who want to learn more about what the Bible says
  • Our hopes for the future and healing of our church
  • Ways our church can become even more welcoming
The cost of the event is $5 per person that will cover the cost of lunch. 

Copies of the book will be available for $12/copy.  Although reading this brief book is encouraged, you may certainly participate in the discussions without having read the book.

This workshop is being sponsored by the Church and Society Ministry Team. Sign-up will begin next week. For more information, click here to contact Mary Holley, or click here to contact Ginny Argue.

Together Around the Table 
One Combined Service of Worship
Sunday, June 2
10:15 am
Saint Mark Center
Contact: Todd Davis 
South Carolina Annual Conference
June 2 - 6
Greenville, SC
Contact:  Todd Davis  


ARE YOU 50+?
Here are some
Elderberries Events
that might interest you.  Save the date(s) on your calendar. 
Memory Cafe
Houseboat Ride
with Danny Markus and Stacy Keeler
Monday, May 6
Greenville Drive Baseball Game
vs. West Virgina 
Friday, May 17
Gametime: 7: 05 pm
Fluor Field in Greenville
Estate Planning
Lunch and Presentation
with Ray Lanham 
Monday, May 20
12 noon
Saint Mark Center
Cost: $8 
Memory Cafe
Tour of Garrison Agricultural Museum
Monday, June 3 
South Carolina Festival of Flowers
Greenwood, SC
Saturday, June 8
10:30 am - 3 pm
No cost for admission
Watch for more details in upcoming weeks! 
Memory Cafe
Art Glazing Activity in Clemson 
Monday, July 1 
Boat Party/Covered Dish Picnic on Lake Keowee
Thursday, July 11
10 am - 2 pm
Board Pontoon Boats at South Cove Park
Picnic at High Falls Park
Memory Cafe
Lunch at Aunt Sue's near Table Rock
Pickens County  
Monday, August 5 
Lunch at Chattooga Belle Farms Bistro
Tour of Chattooga Belle Farms and Distillery
Friday, August 16
11 am
Elderberries Annual Covered Dish Dinner
at Biggerstaff Retreat Center
Friday, September 20 
For more information about our Elderberries ministry or any of these events, click here to contact Marla Fuller.  
THE "E" WORD . . .    
Another Presence In Our Community

Your Evangelism Team invites you to see our new church banner at Shaver Recreation Complex!  We encourage you to watch our sponsored T-ball team coached by Mr. O'Kelley.  
The game schedule follows:
Thursday 5/2 at 5:30pm on Kapp 1 Field
Tuesday 5/7 at 6:30pm on Kapp 2 Field
Thursday 5/9 at 5:30pm on Kapp 1 Field
Tuesday 5/14 at 6:30 on Field 7
Thursday 5/16 at 5:30 on Kapp 1 Field
Tuesday 5/21 at 5:30pm on Kapp 1 Field
Thursday 5/23 at 5:30pm on Kapp 2 Field
As Reverend John-Peter Smit stated, "It is not about getting people to church.  It's about getting church to people."    
Thank you Saint Mark for living out your faith in our community.  

From the book:  
35 Dumb Things Well-Intended People Say: Surprising Things We Say that Widen the Diversity Gap

"Have you ever found yourself unsure of what to say, or what word to use, so said nothing?  One of the major challenges when communicating across differences centers on the use of language and terminology.  Words can ease your ability to communicate, or they can put up walls, often without your awareness.  And to add more confusion, the meanings of words change along with the times.  What was once accepted terminology is no longer acceptable.  What was once funny is now potentially offensive.  Staying current on appropriate word choice and phrases requires effort on your part.

Unfortunately, we don't receive daily email updates with advice on today's acceptable language.  Often the updating of language is done through personal trial and error which can be frustrating and embarrassing.  Some unintentional mistakes in language are met with judgment and impatience.  People on the receiving end of this exchange are tired of having to constantly serve as educators, with the expectation that they must be patient with the person who is using the language that they find offensive.  And conversely people whose language is being corrected are tired of being educated, and believe that too much emphasis is placed on words and people are overreacting. 

For instance, decades ago the term "colored people" was regarded as a polite description of black people.  Nowadays, this term is seen as offensive and has been replaced with the term "people of color." This terminology is used to describe all non-white people, not just black people.  The emphasis is on the person and not of the color."

Building a set of skills by which to communicate will have a powerful effect on every relationship in your life.  To learn more, click here to find the free book, 35 Dumb Things Well-Intended People Say by Dr. Maura Cullen.  It is a great read, and is guaranteed to help you to build bridges in all of your relationships, especially where there are differences.

Every Monday in May, you can find the DAR School out in the community talking about their foster care program and how you can help!!!  There are over 4,500 children in S.C. who need a family.   

You are invited to attend free Informational Sessions about the new Foster Care Program at Tamassee DAR School. During these Informational Sessions, they will share information about the process of becoming a licensed foster parent, as well as how the church and community can play a very important role in serving foster families.

For more information, please contact Amaris Gibson at (864) 944-1390, ext. 123, or click here to send her an email.
Relay for Life
Celebrating 25 years of Hope
Saturday, May 18
Shaver Recreational Park
3 - 10 pm

To sign up and join the fight, click here.
Families Fighting Addiction
Oconee Drug Forum
Saturday, June 15
9 am - 1pm
Christ Central Ministries Oconee Resource and Solution Center
Former: Oconee Detention Center
South Church St. Walhalla
When: Saturday, June 15, 2019
Time: 9 am til 1 pm
Contact Info: Christ Central Ministries
Ashley Williams
112 West Main St.
Walhalla SC 29691
Saint Mark UMW Well-Represented
at Spiritual Growth Retreat
Eight United Methodist Women from  Saint Mark were at Lake Junaluska for the Spiritual Growth Retreat this past weekend. The theme was "Keeping Faith in the Midst of Change." Rev. Robin Dease inspired the gathering with her message. The United Methodist Women celebration of 150 years was highlighted. Our ladies enjoyed wonderful fellowship and great weather. There were about 435 women from the South Carolina conference in attendance.
Front row: Martha Lang, Nell Hodge, Polly Fehler, Carolyn Ellenburg
Back row: Jean Rogers, Florence Hanzel, Hallie Mappus, Nancy Evatt
Ask them about their experience.  Consider going next year!!
After Hours Pastoral Support
If you have a pastoral care need outside of regular church office hours (Monday through Thursday, 9 am - 5 pm) please call (864) 888-7072 to leave a message for the pastor on call. Keep this number handy in case you need to contact a pastor when the office is closed.
2020 Holy Land Tour
Rev. Ken and Becky Minton invite the members and friends of Saint Mark UMC to join them on their next trip to the Holy Land.
"Our 'Journey Through the Bible' tour is an 11-day trip that departs on February 18, 2020. You will visit many of the sites so central to our faith. Visit the birthplace of Jesus in Bethlehem . . . pray in the Garden of Gethsemane . . . sail across the Sea of Galilee . . . have communion in the Upper Room . . . walk the Via Dolorosa . . . stand atop the Mount of Olives . . . meditate at the Western Wall . . . sense the presence of the resurrected Jesus in the Garden Tomb . . . and MORE! This is provided by Educational Opportunities Tours, the world's leading provider of faith-based tours. We have been traveling with them for over 25 years and are currently serving as their Directors of Travel Ministries for the State of South Carolina. You may find trip brochures with details and prices in the Atrium Information Racks or you may click here to email us electronic brochures or questions. Come and join us on this amazing journey of a lifetime. ALL ARE WELCOME."
Saint Mark UMC T-Shirts Have Arrived!
AND now for a Second Order 
95 of you have already ordered and paid for Saint Mark t-shirts. If you haven't yet been able to get the shirt(s) you ordered and paid for, you may pick them up in Todd's office, or check with Jens Holley, our administrative assistant. 
We are now taking orders for a second printingWe must have a minimum of 36 t-shirts ordered to reprint at the following cost: $16.00 for Youth M-Adult XL and $18.00 for 2XL-3XL.  If you are interested in ordering a shirt(s), please click here to contact Faith Holley. You can also click here to place your order online.   
Show your church pride with a new  
Saint Mark UMC t-shirt! 
Saint Mark Child Development Center
Is Now Receiving Donations
for Upcoming Yard Sale on June 7 and 8 
Do you have "stuff" that you want/need to get rid of?  Here is your chance to finally clean out closets, cupboards, storage units, etc. and help our Child Development Center with their annual Yard Sale Fundraiser.  They are receiving items now.  For more information, click here to contact Becca Williams, director of our CDC.
Do You Drive a Black Ram Truck?
During Worship This Past Sunday, April 28, Was Your Truck Parked on Ben Hilda?
Did You Notice That Your Truck Had Been Hit?

We have the contact information of the person who was responsible for the damage.  If the truck is yours, she wants you to contact her.  Marla Fuller has the information. Please call Marla at the church office (882-2603), or click here to email her.  
May Calendar and May Birthdays

Click here to find our May Calendar of Events and the list of May birthdays.  If we missed your May birthday, click here to let us know.

  Click here to discover the many ways to serve at Saint Mark. Fill out the form and submit it. We will get you plugged in!    

Saint Mark United Methodist Church

616 Quincy Road
Seneca, South Carolina 29678-3820

Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors