Newsletter
July 8, 2020

520 Washington Avenue
Savannah, Georgia 31405
SERVICES FOR THE WORSHIP OF GOD

On-Line Virtual Format

SUNDAY, JULY 12
SERMON: “The Sower, the Seed and the Soil”
TEXT: Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23
Stephen Williams, preaching

SUNDAY, JULY 19
SERMON: “The Wheat and the Weeds”
TEXT: Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43
Rachel Greiner, Memorial University Medical Center, preaching

SUNDAY, JULY 26
SERMON: “On Being a Shrub” 
TEXT: Matthew 13:31-33
William Shelburne, Sr., preaching



OUR LIFE TOGETHER


It was in late January when the first case of Covid-19 was diagnosed in the United States. In the months since, we have grieved the mounting death toll, completely adapted the rhythms of work, reinvented the school classroom, physically distanced from our neighbors and friends, and learned to live with anxiety while doing ordinary things like grocery shopping. 

We have observed the weight of Covid-19 fall disproportionally on minority communities and wept. We have shuddered while watching the video of George Floyd’s murder and seen how protests around the country have exposed deep and longstanding wounds. For nearly half a year, we have altered everything about our lives in the hopes of changing everything for a better, safer, and more equitable future.

This time is an opening , a season to use wisely and well. These are days of holy dislocation, when we see one another through all the “isms” that separate us and perhaps truly notice that “the pain in me sees the pain in you” is balanced with “the hope in you inspires hope in me.” The sorrow in me sees the joy in you. The confusion in me sees the purposeful in you. The loneliness in me sees the friendship in you. The pessimist in me sees the visionary in you.

It is unclear where this path leads , but it offers a road that will bring us together. It is a way that promises to create a society that is more inclusion and just. As we listen to one another in this kairos moment, and reach toward a new future, we can be guided by Martin Luther King writing in his Letter from the Birmingham Jail : “We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”

People of faith have an important perspective on current events. We can trust the breaking just as we can trust the mending.  Christians know the ways of life, death and resurrection. God is always present in the world and in our lives creating something new. Against the backdrop of enormous upheaval, God is still speaking words of hope and love. There is a stirring hymn by Brian Wren that concludes:

“Christ is alive, and come to bring good news to this and every age,
Till earth and sky and ocean ring with joy, with justice, love and praise.”
 --SCW

PRAYER CONCERNS, RECORD OF OUR FAITHFULNESS, ETC.


PRAYER CONCERNS, RECORD OF OUR FAITHFULNESS, ETC.

Condolences to the family of Jack Turbiville on the death of his father, Tom Turbiville on July 2 in Savannah...

Condolences to Rosie Donnelly on the death of her brother-in-law, Bob Wilson on July 7 in Richmond Hill… 

Condolences to the family of Harvey Morgan who died June 9 in Savannah… 

May offering: $32,040.71…June offering: $29,529.28…


Bi-Weekly Announcements

PICK UP YOUR COPY OF BRUEGGEMANN’S LATEST BOOK

Walter Brueggemann, professor emeritus at Columbia Theological Seminary , has written a new book, Materiality as Resistance: Five Elements for Moral Action in the Real World, that has been chosen for First’s “Summer Read.”  Email Judith@savannahfpc.org to arrange to pick up a cope of the book ($11).

“The material aspect of faith,” writes Brueggemann, “is grounded in our conviction about creation: the world is God’s creation that God has called good. It is further grounded in our conviction concerning the incarnation, the confession that God has come bodied in Jesus of Nazareth, who ‘went about doing good’ (Acts 10:38) of a vigorously material kind. That materiality performed by Jesus is not to be confused with materialism, because the gospel accent on the material is grounded in the conviction that the truth of our life summons us to hope-filled obedience, an obedience that is always referred back in gladness to the goodwill of the creator God…”
 
 
MUSIC SERIES CELEBRATES BELOVED
HYMNS OF THE CHURCH

The hymn series, “When in Our Music God is Glorified”  began last Sunday, July 5. Each program in this two-month series for voice, organ and piano will be approximately 30-minutes long. The link will be on the church website and Facebook page and in the constant contact email about Sunday worship. Program notes will be available to print and include information about the hymns presented.  Each performer has selected music based on hymn tunes which support the lectionary texts for a particular Sunday.  This week our performers are John Palmer and Tim Robison. John is the Associate Organist/Choirmaster at Calvary Episcopal Church in Memphis, Tennessee. Tim is the Organist and Co-Director of Music at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Fort Wayne, Indiana. If you haven't had a chance to listen to the July 5 program presented by Deanie Strength you can find it on the church website or the church Facebook page.
 
 

STEWARDSHIP UPDATE: LET YOUR LIGHT SHINE!

On-line giving using the “Give” tab on First’s website uses the Presbyterian Foundation to process the contribution. The Foundation forwards the funds to the church and our finance secretary keeps track of individual giving. The postal service continues to deliver mail to the church, so contributions can also be mailed to the church. Questions? Email the finance secretary at Barbara@savannahfpc.org .



STAY IN TOUCH BY PHONE OR EMAIL

In this time while we are not meeting in person, we remain committed to living out our care for one another and remaining together while apart. We very much want to hear from you. Do you have prayer requests or pastoral care concerns? Call the church office; 354-7615 or email the ministers:




July Birthdays

  1 st       Paul Weller
2 nd       Josh Brooks
5 th        Danny Cohen
6 th        Lauren Milmine
7 th        Jim Shirley
8 th        Sara Bromley
9 th        Judith Crawford
10 th      Larry Miller, Steve Layden
11 th      Sara Shelburne
12 th      Sealey Roberts
13 th      Peggy Gilpin
14 th      Mary Nicol, Ernest Rogers
15 th      Betsy Tate Barrow
16 th      Ashley Fletcher
18 th      Ashley Barre
19 th      Isabella von Trapp
20 th      Nell Graham, Deihpi Sian
21 st      Victoria Avant
23 rd      Abigail Nance
25 th      Isabel Alexander
26 th      Pat McCord
28 th      Linda Wittish
29 th      Mark Tate, Bill Keightley
30 th      Pearl Spaulding, Pascal Binda, Jr.
31 st     Allison Johnson, Jim Utsey


If we missed listing your birthday, please email judith@savannahfpc.org


CALENDAR OF EVENTS

ALL EVENTS CANCELLED