For Youngsters, Each Day is a Fresh Start
Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church Newsletter
Weekly Happenings at SHPC    
December 29, 2016
Happy New Year!
Fresh Start

     This New Year's Day, Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 9:30 a.m., come to church casual or in your p.j.s.  Let's start the new year by peacefully turning the page on the past and bringing all our energy and enthusiasm for life into TODAY!  Our text is John 1:1-18, and with it for inspiration, we'll explore right-sizing and re-storying our way into a fresh start for the new year.  We will celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Communion.
In This Issue
Quick Links
Bev piano
A Note From 
Pastor Bev

I hope you had a beautiful Christmas weekend and that you are continuing to enjoy the holiday season this week!

My very best gift was to grand-babysit for my granddaughter Grace Monday - Wednesday while her parents had a lovely getaway in the wine country.  Grace was a charming house guest and gave Grandma and Grandpa no difficulties at all!  

Just last week in this space, I was writing about the life challenge of  enjoying each moment mindfully. Enjoying each moment mindfully is Grace's way of being in the world!  This is something she shares with her fellow one-year olds, and apparently with all the delightful children we met at the playground.  As adults, we spend so much mental energy on yesterday and tomorrow; we can easily get caught up in regret, resentment, and anxiety.  Very young children can show us the way to experiencing more of life wholly in the now, with awe, wonder, joy, and delight.    

To keep up with these little ones, we need to be pretty flexible in all ways, so that's an inspiration to tune into our bodies, yes, the temples of our spirits, and stretch, move, and play more!  Fun!

It is my great joy to be your pastor and to be part of this vibrant church with our life-affirming ministries.  Thank you for all you bring to the church, and blessings to each of you for the New Year!

With joy,

December/January Calendar
December 26th-30th 
Holiday Break, no Bible Study
Sunday, January 1st
9:30 a.m.
10:30 a.m.

Fresh Start Service with Holy Communion
Coffee and Fellowship -- All are Welcome!
Wednesday, Jan. 4th
                 6:30 p.m.
                  7:30 p.m.

Session meets at the church
SHPC Singers rehearse
Friday, Jan. 6th 

Sunday, Jan. 8th
                    9:30 a.m.
                   10:30 a.m.

Bible Study with Pastor Bev

Coffee and Fellowship -- All are Welcome!
NO Bible Study -  Friday, Dec. 30
Happy New Year!
Please Remember in Your Prayers

Those who are lonely or depressed at the holidays, for God's presence to comfort them and bring them hope, and for the church to provide warmth and friendship;
Those for whom addiction, dependence and/or abuse on/of alcohol and other drugs is destructive to health and relationships, and for their loved ones;
Those who are in financial uncertainty and stress;
Ara Jo, who perished in the Oakland warehouse fire, and all those mourning the loss of Ara Jo, including Nancy Elberg, Nancy's nephew Grant Gleason, and Ara Jo's extended family and loved ones, may God's peace and comfort wash over and accompany them in their grief.
Our Muslim neighbors, subject to Islamophobia and hate crimes;
Our country,  for deep healing, and for a way forward where we live our values of justice and equality for all people;
The world's poor, all who suffer from disruptive climate change, and our planet;
The refugees and displaced, almost 1 out of 100 people in the world today, for safety, homes, and the basics of life;
Laurie O'Hara and her family, for God's loving presence and comfort in mourning the loss of her mother, Carolyn;
Kelsey Lopin, for healing and full recovery from complications of Lyme disease, and for God's abiding presence, comfort, and love;
Steve Derr's Father, for recovery from stroke, and God's presence, and for the family, God's comfort;
Ryan Burk s, son of  Warren and Jackie Burks, for healing, and for strength and hope for his family;
Praying Hands
Andrea Proster, sister of Nancy Elberg, for complete healing, and for Nancy for continued strength in companioning her;
Betty Swalberg, for God's presence and peace, and  Wil Swalberg, for God's comfort and community support;
Paul Lambert's Mom, blessed assurance of God's constant presence; 
The PC(USA), as it strives to speak up effectively for justice for all people, especially the vulnerable and marginalized;
Dr. Doug Tilton, our PC(USA) mission co-worker in Southern Africa;
Our church community, renew us and grant us fortitude to continue to bring light to a dark world.

Please take time this week to pray for those on our list.
Thank You 
I want to take a moment to thank you so much for your wonderful and supportive prayers, thoughts and condolence cards. We truly appreciate your kind words and prayers during this tough time. We are back in NC with my dad for Christmas and it's good to be here with him. We look forward to seeing you in January. 

Merry Christmas to you and yours,
Laurie O'Hara, AJ and Isabel
Last Pledge Update Before We Budget on Jan. 4

Thank you to 52 pledgers for pledging $136,613 to the life of church in 2017! We are getting close to last year's finish of 55 pledgers, and also nearer to our goal of $148,000.  Session meets on Wed., January 4 to finalize the 2017 Budget, and is committed to passing a balanced budget. For those who still haven't pledged, now would be a great time to pledge your support!

A note to all friends of the church, near and far: All are invited to participate in the pledge drive in any amount to show your support for the church's peace and justice ministries.  Please consider SHPC in your year-end giving and click on Doug, below, to let him know of your gift.  Thank you for helping to build a kinder, more just and peaceful world!

Just click on  Doug  to pledge by email. Pledges in any amount are very much appreciated.  

With gratitude,
Doug, Finance Elder and Stewardship Chair

Children's Gift Program

Thank you so much to all who have supported the Angel Tree!  You have brightened many children's holiday!

                  --Frankie Eakes
Justice Garden 2016 Year-End Donations to Hunger Programs
Your support of the Justice Garden and Farm Stand Made this Possible!
Through your donations to the Farm Stand and countless hours supporting this year's Justice Garden, we were able to raise a total of $3,200 that will go to the following six organizations!  Thanks for your support in making this year a success!

$1,600 - Marin Food Bank
$   500 - Pedal for Protein
$   500 - Interfaith Sustainable                   Food Collaborative
$   200 - Presbyterian Disaster
               Assistance (Syria)
$    200 - Short School
$    200 - Marin I nterfaith Street 

--Patti Vance, Mission Elder
This week's Spotlight is on Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Program: Syria, one of the 6 worthy programs chosen by the Justice Garden/Farm Stand team for support thanks to your donations. 

In 2015, the number of forcibly displaced persons around the world exceeded 51 million, including some 13 million refugees who lacked access to the most basic necessities of life, including food, clean water, safe shelter, health care, education, and protection from conflict, war, and violence.  12.2 million of the displaced were Syrians.

PDA Response:
Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war in March 2011, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) has been engaged in responding to the needs of displaced persons and refugees. The response has been in collaboration with and support of ACT Alliance (Action by Churches Together) members and other ecumenical partners who are providing relief to refugees in neighboring countries and to internally displaced Syrians. PDA has also been providing direct assistance to our mission partner, the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon (NESSL), which is also providing relief and care.

If you would like to learn more about PDA: Syria,  click here.

Solar Grant

Thank you to the County of Marin and our own Supervisor Katie Rice for a $3,000 grant towards the SHPC Solar Panel Project - a key step forward in greening the church and environmental leadership!
Patty Kuehn Wins the Deacons' Fellowship Volunteer Thank You Gift Basket

A Big Thank You to all who made Fellowship Time so enjoyable in 2016!

Congratulations Patty Kuehn for being the winner  of our "Thank You Gift Basket"!

We thank all of you who have helped 
so much with Fellowship this past year.  
We could not do it without you!

Happy New Year from Kit, Frankie, Nancy, Marie, Nance, and Robin, your Deacons
REST Program Needs You

Thanks to the many volunteers who make it possible for our unhoused neighbors to sleep in a safe location with delicious food in their bellies!

We will continue to host meals through April.  To  read more information about REST and to sign-up online, please click on this link:   

SHPC  will continue to organize Middle and High School students to contribute to REST -- this year youth will prepare soup and bread for our REST guests. For more info, contact Jennifer Gauna at

If you have questions, please contact Shannon Mong at (phone is 415-279-2402).  
In advance - thanks for your support of this year's REST evenings!

Wil LOVES an invite for lunch or dinner!

Thank you and bless you to all who have reached out to invite him over for a meal.  You are lighting up his life!

And thank him for his faithful and continuing FOOD BARREL MINISTRY.

Fellowship time is organized by your Deacons. We need everyone to sign-up about 3-4 times a year. 
Click below to sign up: 

January:   Robin's Parish
Sign up now and keep the hospitality

Don't be shy, Greeting is a Treat!
We are in need of greeters to sign up through the signup genius website. 

Help with our ministry of hospitality by signing up to be a greeter! All you have to do is get to church by 9:15, light the candles, and hand out bulletins with a smile. Thank you to all who have signed up so far!

Thank you all for your continued support,

Jody Brockett, 
Worship Elder
"Expect the Unexpected" in 2017

As we prepare for the year ahead, I believe embracing the phrase "expect the unexpected" is a good place to start.

Surprises and unexpected circumstances are going to hit every one of us. There's no way we can live in a cocoon, avoid the media clutter, and be calm and steady when life's glitches and tidal waves roar to our shores. 

The Bible says  "The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers that individual from them all" (Ps 34:18).
"God is faithful, He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted he will provide a way out" (I Cor 10:13).
"The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you ... God will never leave you ... Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged' (Deut 31:8).

So as we approach the New Year, let's not be afraid. Remain positive knowing there will be high energy days and some days that slump into melancholy. Let's develop emotional resilience when frustrated or feeling overly sensitive. When our emotions start to dip into these areas let's get off the computer, cut ourselves some slack and realize whatever is bothering us will more than likely pass with time.

A smart psychologist once said "don't believe everything you think." He went on to say, "thoughts can be a virus and it's important to protect your mind from too many negative opinions and misinformation. Your mind is like a garden. Without a strong fence, animals will get in and destroy the crops. Therefore, keep the animals out."

2017 will require that we commit to becoming even more "spiritually disciplined," more "knowledgeable" of God's teachings and preferences, and most of all that we commit to our individual "faith's" growth. 

God promises, "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go" (Psalm 32:8) and "Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old, for I am doing a NEW thing" (Isaiah 43:18,19).

Together, let's cut loose from 2016 and grasp the reigns of 2017 focusing on discipline, knowledge, and growth.

Your friend, Paul

Paul Lambert is a member of SHPC who travels extensively for his career as a producer of Broadway-bound musicals.  He is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute who studies the Bible daily and attends our Bible Study whenever he's in town. He posts this blog each week no matter where he is, to the delight and comfort of many.  SHPC thanks you, Paul.
Women's Weekend ~ January 20th-22nd, 2017
Click here for more information and registration

From our own Jen Boynton:
Come hear the music play!  Come to the Cabaret!

Enjoy an evening of Broadway song and dance by MMTC performers and other outstanding members of the Marin theater community while raising funds for our wonderful Playhouse and MMTC!  

The evening includes wine & beer, appetizers, raffle prizes, and a fabulous silent auction. Auction items include airline tickets, Disneyland passes, dinner parties, a private tour of Pixar, ballet and theater tickets, and more! 

Doors open at 7pm, performance at 8pm
Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church
100 Tarry Road
San Anselmo, CA  94960
Katie Brendler,  Editor
E-mail us at or call us at 415-453-8221