Update for the week of May 9 - 15, 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 12
 9:00 am 
  Sunday School
for all ages
9:55 am
Fellowship Time in the Atrium
10:15 am
10:15 am 
Celebration Worship 
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 mothers!
Pray for expectant mothers.
Pray for infertile women who desire to be mothers.
Pray for mothers of young children.
Pray for mothers of disabled children.
Pray for mothers of addicted children.
Pray for mothers in abusive marriages.
Pray for unwed teenage mothers. 
Pray for single mothers.
Pray for foster mothers.
Pray for adoptive mothers.
Pray for mothers with  empty nests.
Pray for mothers who are struggling to make ends meet for their children.
Pray for mothers who are physically, mentally or emotionally unable to care for their children.
Pray for mothers who are incarcerated.
Pray for mothers whose children are incarcerated.  
Pray for mothers who have abandoned their children.
Pray for mothers whose children have been taken away from them. 
Pray for mothers with Alzheimer's disease or dementia.
Pray for mothers whose children have died.
Pray for grandmothers raising their grandchildren.
Pray for children who have lost their mothers too soon.
Pray for the many women who have served as mother-figures in our lives. 
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.
Worship With Us This Sunday!
Traditional Worship
Sunday, May 12 
10:15 am
"Healed by His Wounds"
bringing the message
Rev. Bob Stillwell 

Worship With Us This Sunday!
Celebration Worship 
Sunday, May 12 
10:15 am
" Attitude or Biology?"
bringing the message
Jens Holley
Epworth Children's Home
Annual Mother's Day Offering
This Sunday, May 12

This Sunday is Mother's D ay. We will buy flowers, call the mothers in our lives and remember those mothers who have impacted our lives in the past. Most of the children at Epworth Children's Home will not be celebrating Mother's Day with their mothers. Instead , they will be surrounded by loving staff and volunteers who walk with them daily to provide spiritual, education al , emotional , and physical support .
C onsider what God is calling you to give to support our church's ministry to the children in South Carolin a . Your generous contribution to our church's ministry enables transformation to happen for the child ren who call Epworth home. Epworth does not receive apportionments from the United Methodist Conference . This offering is our opportunity to support this v
ital ministry.  
For your convenience, offering envelopes were in the bulletin this past Sunday, and will also be available in this Sunday's bulletin.  
For more information about Epworth Children's Home ,
click here to visit them on line . 
Pastor Todd continues to be out of the office through next Monday, May 13, returning on Tuesday, May 14. 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.
Child Development Center
Parents' Night Out
Friday, May 17
5:30 - 9:30 pm
Let our Saint Mark CDC watch your kid(s) while you enjoy a few hours of adult time with your spouse or friends.  The cost is $10 per hour for one child, $15 per hour for two children and so on.  You pay by the hour.  Click here to contact Becca Williams, CDC Director, to make your reservation.
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.
The deadline to reserve tickets has technically passed, but we still have only 6 tickets left for the Greenville Drive game against West Virginia Power at Fluor Field on Friday, May 17.  The game begins at 7:05 pm.  The tickets are only $9!!!  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, by no later than this Sunday, May 12.

Help us embrace the successful completion of this chapter of their journey of life-long learning!
To Mars and Beyond

Glory to God who is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine by his power at work within us!
Ephesians 3:20
VBS Wants You!   
Our 2019 VBS leader workshop will be Sunday May 19 at 11:30 am in the Commons Room.  This year we will go beyond Mars and experience an intergalactic voyage to three very special planets, Planet Faith, Planet Kindness and Planet Hope as we discover God's love.  
A light lunch will be provided as we set our eyes and hearts on leading this year's adventures in space.  If you would like to be a part of the fun, click here to contact Lisa Kiser, Minister of Children's Discipleship for more information.
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!

For more information, click here to contact David Wilcox.
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!!! 

Fifth and Final Session 
"Taking Action Matters " 
We will continue to move up our 'racism learning curve' and learn how to initiate courageous conversations and advocacy.
Please join us!  If you haven't attended the first 4 sessions, that's OK!  Click here to make your reservation.  For more information, click here to contact Danny Markus.
Special thanks to Church and Society team members who planned and facilitated these important and informative gatherings: Danny Markus, Stacy Keelor, Marian Stillwell, Suzette Cross, Arrylee Satterfield, Jody Gaulin and Gary Gaulin. 

On Sunday, June 2, we will be Together Around the Table with ONE worship service in the Saint Mark Center.
Our pastors encourage you to come hear their personal experiences, and their hopes for how we as the people of Saint Mark, though not of one mind in all things, can continue to respect and trust one another, and continue choosing to be in this one mission together. 

Saint Mark Clergy and Delegates
are scheduled to attend the
2019 South Carolina Annual Conference
Sunday, June 2 - Thursday, June 6
Greenville Convention Center
Greenville, SC

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. 
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! 
Be Prepared for Caregiving
For Spouses or Family Members 
with Bonnie Holmes
Wednesday, June 19 
6:30 - 7:30 pm 
Commons Room
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.  
Systemic Racism Explained
Watch this short (4+ minute) video
"Systemic Racism Explained"
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.

Saint Mark has a team called "Oconee Cares"? The team consists of Carolyn Keese, Sue Crane and Jane Harlin. Their goal is to raise $1000 as a team. Friends can walk with them, or sponsor us or come and sit in their lawn chairs and cheer for them as they walk!  For more information, click here to contact Carolyn Keese.
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
Bishop Holston's Statement on Judicial Council Rulings on Traditional Plan, Disaffiliation

The complex, often painful debate that has garnered so much of our time and energy over the past few years has reinforced that the United Methodist Church is far from consensus on matters of human sexuality.

The 2019 General Conference was called in hopes of bringing the church together in holy conferencing to find a place from which a people called Methodist could remain united in our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Unfortunately, the actions taken in St. Louis in February - whether or not we agree with the outcome - have not brought us together and in many ways seem to be pushing us away from shared ministry.

That said, the General Conference is the only body that speaks for the church. The 2019 General Conference has made a decision, and I will uphold the Book of Discipline, as I vowed to do upon both my consecration as bishop and my ordination as elder.

The Judicial Council of the United Methodist Church has ruled that the Minority Report on Disaffiliation, permitting the "gracious exit" of a local church, and most of the petitions that made up the Traditional Plan are constitutional. The Judicial Council upheld its previous rulings that seven of the 15 Traditional Plan petitions are unconstitutional and "null and void."

As a bishop, I am called to lead with "a passion for the unity of the church."

Diversity of thought and understanding is present among United Methodist clergy and laity across the South Carolina Conference. In May 2018, I entered into a covenant as a member of the Council of Bishops by which I committed myself to unity as a part of our consecration vows, rather than polarization and disunity among the body, and to creating a non-anxious presence in my leadership.

My heartfelt prayer is that, by leading in this way through this agonizingly divisive issue, I can continue to fulfill my role as "the shepherd of the whole flock, and thereby provide leadership toward the goal of understanding, reconciliation and unity within the Church."

There is tremendous pain throughout the United Methodist Church because of the decisions of the General Conference. Those who hold convictions that the church's stance on human sexuality must change are deeply disappointed, hurt, frustrated and angry. Those who support the General Conference's decisions because of their own convictions are struggling with being labeled as judgmental and hateful.

What's happening in our church is painful to me, as well. I believe that in the midst of our pain, we will see the opportunity that God has planned for us. In the midst of our hurting, we will see the possibility for healing.

I humbly ask all South Carolina United Methodists - whatever our differences - to stay in conversation, to focus on those things that unite us, and to remain steadfast in our mission as we walk together toward a future with hope.

Grace and Peace,
L. Jonathan Holston
Thank You, Saint Mark!

The Aesthetics Committee would like to thank all who contributed to the Ministry/Mission Cross Wall. This wall represents the missions that have impacted the disciples of Saint Mark through the years.

The cross walls are never complete and if you wish to add a cross contact the Aesthetic Committee. For more information, click here to contact Joyce Carney.
Available Dates to Provide Flowers

Sunday, May 19
Sunday, June 30
Sunday, July 28
Sunday, August 18
If you would like to provide the sanctuary flowers for one or more of these four dates, sign up on the Flower Calendar in the entrance just outside the music suite. Or click here to contact Sandra Stricker.
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.  You will also be able to drop off your items in the Saint Mark Center between June 2 and 7.  
Then come and shop on June 7 and 8!   
For more information, click here to contact Becca Williams, director of our CDC.

  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