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On the bookshelf of my childhood home along with the Time-Life books and Funk & Wagnalls New Encyclopedia was a thick blue book that stood apart. Within easy reach, I often pulled this tome from the shelf and lay it on the carpet. On the blue cover was an image of Mary riding a donkey while Joseph walked along beside her. Their path appeared to lead to a city that rose from distance before vanishing into the horizon.
When I opened Egermeier's Bible Story Book, I felt transported through time to a distant place. It was a place where God walked and talked with people. It was a time where battles were fought with trumpet blasts and slingshots. I still recall how I would grab my father's slingshot and head outside to select five smooth stones. The story of David and Goliath came alive with five smooth stones in my pocket and a tin can in front of me.
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The above quotation, often misattributed to St. Augustine, is actually of anonymous origin. Despite that fact, singing remains an integral aspect of worship. As you read this, I want to encourage you to seriously consider joining us in the Chancel Choir as we strive to make a joyful noise unto the Lord.
Recent life transitions in the congregation have generated substantial challenges to the choir as we seek to fulfill our role in the worship life at OPC. In addition to our overall numbers dwindling, placing greater responsibility on those remaining, we are now missing an entire voice part, which renders the vast majority of the music in our substantial library difficult to satisfactorily perform.
Thus, I am making a sincere plea to you, please consider joining the choir. By way of persuasion, I offer you dear reader the following rationales: Singing in a Choir Offers 11 Surprising Health Benefits! Backed by reputable scientific research, researchers have discovered tangible physical, psychological, emotional and social benefits to singing in a choir. A brief summary of these benefits follows:
- singing strengthens the immune system
- singing is a workout that yields a stronger diaphragm; stimulates overall circulation; increases both aerobic capacity and stamina
- singing improves your posture
- singing assists with healthy sleep patterns and strengthens throat and palate muscles
- singing is a natural anti-depressant
- singing lowers stress levels; releases stored muscle tension; decreases the blood levels of the stress hormone cortisol
- singing improves mental alertness and enhances one's sense of well being
- singing widens your circle of friends
- singing boosts your confidence and self-esteem
- singing makes you a member of a team working together for identifiable and achievable goals
- singing broadens communication skills
- singing increases your ability to appreciate other singers and heightens your aesthetic awareness for the musical arts
If you are not moved by these personal benefits to joining us in the Choir, perhaps I could entice you on spiritual grounds? SEEKING God we strive to know and love God and to sing praises to God. SERVING OTHERS we follow our Servant Savior, serving to help bring fullness of life and the beauty of musical worship to others. SHARING CHRIST'S LOVE WITH ALL, we proclaim the unconditional love of Christ through our thoughts, words, songs of praise, deeds and actions, filled with joy and hope.
Please prayerfully consider this request. I am a gentle shepherd of my choral flock but I do work them hard. We rehearse every Thursday evening from 7:30-8:30pm during the academic school year and 9:00am every Sunday prior to Worship. I also encourage you to inquire of any choir member for their personal perspective on singing in the Choir.
Yours in Christ,
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History and Memories of the Seminary Church
We are delighted that Tim Bredemeier
has chosen to focus on the rich heritage of our Seminary church in pursuit of his Eagle Scout designation, which is the highest achievement in scouting. Tim, whose father, is serving as the architect for the renovation of our Seminary church, is currently a junior at King's High school.
During the initial meeting with Tim the church support committee was impressed with his obvious maturity, his talents and his love of history, which promises to be a consideration in his future life goals. His project involves documenting our Seminary heritage through such vehicles as video reminiscences, displays, publications, presentations and exhibits.
Tim is working with Bill King, Mary Jane Roberts, Charles Crain, Scott Parkinson and Arly Allen. If you would like to share your memories about the Seminary Church with Tim, contact him at
or contact any of the members on the project support committee. Tim plans to have his project completed prior to the grand re-opening of the church this summer.
Answer to the Question of the Month
Me (one person) All others are walking away from the church
IN OUR PRAYERS
Keep these friends in your prayers:
Betty Barnhart, Judy Cross, John Curry, Tracy DeGood, Bob Douglass, Nancy Gates, Genee Hesse, Breanna Kinneman, Jan Reinhart, Becky Rudolph, Charles Skipper, Sarah Soika, Joan Teckman, Dave Wilson, Stacey Winn, Jean Woodruff
Lord in Your Mercy, Hear Our Prayers
For generations, members of the OPC family have made a lasting impact on countless lives through higher education. This week, John Bailer was recognized with the E. Philip Knox Distinguished Teaching Award
On Wed April 18, 2018 Isabella Walter (8th grade) set a personal record in 200 Hurdles (38.59) and New Talawanda Middle School Record in Girls Pole Vault of 7'-0.00". Isabella broke the old TMS record of Madison Fantelli (2016) and Kate Bolenbaugh (2018) of 6'-6.00". Congratulations Isabella!
With great joy we welcome our newest church members:
Eugene and Janet Krebs
Nancy and Tom (TK) Wilson
(Watch for Abby's picture next month)
To Becky Quay, Lynn Cronk, Prue Dana and me (ed) for cleaning up the Library shelves and the Supply Closet.
Making it nice for upcoming interviews!
To our Mosaic of Peace Conference pilgrims:
Pastor Lawrence and Angela Trubceac
Janet Ziegler and Amir Zahoor
OPC will host the September meeting of the Presbytery of the Miami Valley.
Buzz Green and Nancy Moeckel were named co-chairs of the 2019 Nominating Committee
While Pastor Lawrence is away in May, Lisa Hess will Lead worship on the 6th and Randall Brakemeyer on the 13th.
Vision 20/20, developed from ideas voiced at the January Retreat is slowly being integrated through session committees.
Ellen Burk and Robert Bell were approved as chaperones for the 2018 Youth Mission Trip to Charleston, S.C.
Jenny Bailer and Candace Crist are planning continuing adult education meetings. Topics will include 1) "the way of life" 2) the world around us with people who have lived abroad sharing their experiences 3)"ripped from the headlines"-current events 4) spiritual practices.
Community use of the Seminary Building was defined and approved.
Judy Fisher, Clerk
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(Committees without reports did not meet in time for this newsletter and will have reports next newsletter)
Worship and Music
Dick Munson graciously agreed to co-chair the committee with Amy McGoldrick for 2018.
Choir recognition Sunday is moved to the fall. Lisa Hess will lead worship on May 6th; Randall Brakemeyer will lead worship on May 13th
Mission and Outreach
Planning for Josh Heikkila visit on Memorial Day weekend (May 26, 27).
Membership, Evangelism and Fellowship
Grades 3-5 will be present for communion on the first Sunday in May.
New members toured the Memorial.
Stewardship and Finance
A new architectural firm, KBA Inc., has been hired, as the initial firm's work was not satisfactory. The major objectives of the Seminary construction are to install an HVAC system, a lift to the second floor, new second story flooring to replace the deteriorating current flooring, and a handicapped accessible bathroom. These objectives were presented to the anonymous donor who gifted $240,000.
Mary Jane Roberts is investigating grant possibilities to assist with funding the Seminary AV system. Louise Limper donated funds to purchase lighted music stands and the cart to hold them. They were used on Palm and Easter Sundays
We would like to make stewardship an ongoing focus, not just a fall campaign. Create a stewardship committee at the June meeting to begin planning for fall 2018.
New Gifts: an anonymous $5,000 gift has been received to insulate the Seminary attic, as there currently is no insulation. Thank you to the donor!
Facilities Planning Team
Discussed the ramp drawings by Mark Bredemeier from KBA. Detailed drawing of the ramp and estimated costs to construct should reach us sometime mid-to end of April. FPT to review drawings and cost estimates at May meeting. Will then meet with congregation to present plan and drawings.
After some discussion it was decided not to move forward with accessible bathroom in the Narthex, as it is too expensive.
An engineer will evaluate wall between Narthex and Sanctuary for feasibility of adding glass panels.
The old tables upstairs in the Seminary Building have been taken to Goodwill
A unanimous vote was cast for North Shore Construction and Development Services. Discussion followed on the remaining necessary costs not covered by the construction contract. These included remaining architect costs, asbestos abatement, wood floor, carpeting, west side door, and powered door operators
CCNS Board Meeting
The CCNS board has given permission to purchase needed equipment: Light Table, Pattern Blocks for the Light Table, Puppet Theatre (will check upstairs, might be one in closet)
The 2018-2019 Handbook has been updated and reviewed by the CCNS Board.
We already have a waiting list for the 2018-2019 school year. We are taking 15 children in both classes. MWF will have 15 children and 2 teachers; T-TH class will have 15 children and 3 teachers.
We are happy to announce that all members of the CCNS Board have decided to continue their duties for the upcoming 2018-2019 school year!
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The Deacons thank everyone for their kind contributions to the Lenten Food Drive. We received 230 lbs. of food and $140.00 in monetary donations. We are grateful for all of the kind donations.
Do you know someone who needs a Prayer Shawl? Shawls are given for comfort in times of illness or grief, as well as for celebration in times of joy. If you have a friend or relative to whom you would like to give a Prayer Shawl, please contact
Cornelia Browne, email@example.com or 513/523-1680
THE TUESDAY AFTERNOON CIRCLE
will meet on May 15th in the Country Kitchen at the Knolls. Reservations for the optional $8 lunch at 12 noon are due to Lynn Cronk by Friday May 11th. Rosemary Fisher will lead the lesson. Visitors are always welcome.
THE TUESDAY EVENING CIRCLE
will be meeting May 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the home of Janet Holmes, 210 Ridge Avenue. Karen Simpson is the co-hostess. Debbie Davidson will give devotions and Jean O'Connell will present the program. Anyone needing a ride should call Karen Simpson, 523-8363.
2018 JAMIESON AWARD
The Oxford Presbyterian Women are pleased to announce that on Sunday May 20, 2018, the S. R. and Luna Weede Jamieson Award will be presented to three deserving youth. Noah Curry, son of John Jr. and Ann Curry, Valerie Green, daughter of Matt and Paula Green, and Evan James, son of Steve and Angie James.
They will graduate from Talawanda High School on May 24, 2018. While attending Oxford Presbyterian Church, these three students have been very active youth participants.
Noah has taught and continues to teach in the preschool church school. He helps in the nursery and has helped in Vacation Bible School. At this time his college plans are not finalized.
Valerie has attended several mission trips and was active in the youth fundraisers, including Souper Bowl Day of Sharing. Val is planning on attending Auburn University.
Evan has been very active with the Celebration at the Manger for all four years. He has collected the offering on Sunday mornings and he has participated in the church grounds clean up projects. He plans on attending UC in the fall.
The S. R. and Luna Weede Jamieson Award was first awarded in 1966 as a $10.00 award to recognize a high school senior or seniors who have made a significant contribution to the church and its youth activities. Dr. S. R. Jamieson was pastor of the Seminary Church form 1914 to 1922.
The Jamieson's were always interested in young people and fully realized their importance to the church and to the community.
In 1992 Qunicy and Jean Butterfield increased the Scholarship fund in celebration of their 50th wedding anniversary. S.R. and Luna Weede Jamieson were the pastor and wife for the Seminary congregation when Jean's parents were newlyweds. Upon their retirement the Jamieson's returned to Oxford to live. In December 1942, Dr. Jamieson officiated the marriage of Quincy and Jean.
Each recipient currently receives a certificate and a check for $200 from the Oxford Presbyterian Women. Their name and photo are entered in the Jamieson Scrapbook housed in the Molyneaux Library. There is also a plaque outside the Christian Education Office listing previous winners that is in the process of being updated.
Congratulations Noah, Valerie and Evan!
2018 BIRTHDAY OFFERING OF PRESBYTERIAN WOMEN
Welcome to This Place
In 1922 Hallie Paxson Winsborough challenged each member of the Woman's Auxiliary of the PCUS to give a penny for each year of her life as a "birthday gift" for Miss Dowd's School for Girls in Japan. The Birthday Offering has helped fund mission projects that improve the lives of women and children around the world. Oxford Presbyterian Women applied for and received $100,000 for the Seventh Church in Barranquilla, Colombia to build the Bethesda Christian Community Center. This year there are three projects to be funded: Cottage Village, a Tiny-house Community for Low-income Residents in Cottage Grove, Oregon; Village of Grace Center for Physical and Spiritual Health in Tegucigalpa, Honduras; and The Dwelling Place in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota which provides the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of women and their children following their escape from a violent partner. You are asked to give as you have been blessed, generously and as led by the Holy Spirit. A collection envelope is attached to this newsletter and there will be some available in the pews. The Dedication will be at the June 2 Women's Retreat.
Karen Simpson, OPW Coordinator of Studies and Mission Interpretation
Seeking God, Serving Others, Sharing Christ's Love With All
Wouldn't it be wonderful to visit our mission worker, Josh Heikkila, in Ghana this spring? We could see firsthand all that he and others are doing on behalf of OPC and PC(USA). Since it is unlikely that we can visit Josh in Ghana, Josh is coming to visit us in Oxford.
Many of you may remember him from his last visit here in Ohio. Those who did not meet him before will have the opportunity to meet and talk with him over Memorial Day weekend, Saturday May 26 and Sunday May 27.
Josh will arrive Saturday afternoon May 26. He will participate in the Worship Service with Pastor Lawrence on Sunday May 27. After service, Josh will be available for casual time of information sharing and conversation in the Molyneaux Lounge
The logistics of the weekend are still being ironed out, so there may be some minor changes to this plan. Anne and Rick Bailey have invited Josh to spend the night at their home. They are also inviting the Mission and Outreach Committee members, and any others who would like to be a part of the group, to a Potluck Dinner on Saturday night. If you would like to join the dinner group, let Anne Bailey know. The Bailey's can accommodate more than the committee, but not an entire congregation, even though it might be fun to do so!
Possibly, Josh will have time on Sunday for lunch with congregation members before he heads to northern Ohio to be with family and visit other churches. The Mission and Outreach Committee is excited by Josh's visit and is looking forward to an uplifting and enriching weekend.
ABOUT JOSH HEIKKILA'S MINISTRY
Appointed as a PC(USA) mission co-worker in October 2009, Josh is regional liaison for West Africa. He facilitates support for the programs, relationships and activities of PC(USA) partners. He also provides support to PC(USA) mission personnel and helps connect partner churches with PC(USA) churches that want to be involved in ministry in the region.
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As we move forward into long-anticipated Spring let's consider some new projects needed to enhance our worship and mission experience.
We are so blessed with the talents of Kent, Lynn and our chancel choir members as we absorb the message of the gospel. Lately, we have lost several of our choir members who have passed away or moved to other locations. Kent is valiantly seeking new recruits and we encourage those in the congregation to consider joining the group.
In order to heighten the various sections of the choir, our music program needs consistent and talented section leaders. Gifts have been extended to support special music which has suggested the creation of music internships. Our proximity to Miami University and an exceptional music academic program offers a wealth of additional musical talent. Funds are being requested to establish an OPC Music Internship Program, which will enable us to gain needed talent while contributing to the real-life educational experience for our student community.
The Seminary renovation project is moving forward and we eagerly anticipate completion this summer. One need, which remains unfunded at this point, is the inclusion of a public-address system and video projection system, which will serve the wide variety of programs to be accommodated in both the downstairs community room and the upper sanctuary meeting space. The Seminary facility will feature prominently in realizing our expanded community mission efforts and an appropriate presentation support system is an essential component. An audio-visual system will also enable OPC to provide new and creative programming opportunities for our youth and adults.
Please consider each of these needs in your planned giving. If you would like to make a contribution or seek further information you are encouraged to contact Bill King. Phone: (513) 523-2546 (h) or (513) 720-7345 (c)
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THE PENTECOST OFFERING HELPS YOUNG PEOPLE
The Pentecost Offering is traditionally received on the day of Pentecost, this year on May 20. It provides a direct way to meet the needs of children at risk, youth, and young adults. Congregations are encouraged to keep 40% of the offering to support ministries benefiting these age groups in their communities.
The General Assembly's portion (60%) provides leadership development opportunities for Presbyterian youth and young adults and supports children-at-risk programs at the national level. Since 1998, Presbyterians of all ages have raised more than $14 million for these ministries that benefit younger members of God's family.
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Who counts the coins, bills, and checks that are collected each Sunday and who counts the "Community Coins" the children collect in their colorful buckets on the 3rd Sunday of the month?
Each Sunday, at least 2 people count the gifts in the collection plates. Your counters, who rotate Sundays, are: Steve Flee, Debbie Davidson, John Curry, Joe Foltz, Sue Skillings, Bill King, Bill Fisher, Greg Hughes, Katie Payne, Mary Jane Roberts. Brent Bader is the handy substitute.
The counters tally the cash, prepare a deposit slip and promptly take a deposit bag to the night deposit of our bank. Checks are left for Mary Martin to tally, sign and deposit.
Every 3rd Sunday Sue Skillings counts the Community Coins* (and bills) collected for OPC's Community Meals (5th Wednesdays). Sue counts, rolls, and deposits the cash in the bank, into a fund designated for this purpose. (*See article in this issue titled Not All Pennies Are Least Coins in Announcements column)
Thank you all for your careful and accurate work on these essential procedures.
Per capita or per head... is a set amount of money per member that congregations contribute to the larger Presbyterian Church (USA). This per capita is used for the expenses of our PC (USA) mission co-workers, leadership development, new church development, and General Assembly meetings to name just a few.
We urge every member to give toward your per capita of $45.98. Your contribution not only connects you with the work of the church throughout the world, this also allows finances reserved in 2018 to fully cover our congregational per capita to be used instead to support the missions of the Oxford Presbyterian Church.
Per Capita envelopes are available in the narthex or by contacting the church office. And thank you as we seek...serve... and share!
NOT ALL PENNIES ARE LEAST COINS.
There are Least Coins and there are Community Coins, each important in different ways.
Shanti Solomon of India started the Fellowship of the Least Coin (FLC) in
1956. She was traveling as part of a mission team organized by the National Office of Presbyterian Woman. The mission was to find reconciliation among women from war torn countries. Refused entry in to Korea, Shanti waited and prayed for inspiration. She envisioned women praying for each other across boundaries, setting aside a coin as a symbol of their sincerity. And it was to be the least coin of their home currency, so that even the poorest woman could join in. Other mission team members embraced her vision and from then on the FLC has flourished as a global ecumenical women's prayer movement. It is not a fund raising body or a donor agency or an organization. It is a prayer movement. Individuals or groups may join by committing to pray for peace, justice and reconciliation among families and communities, and worldwide. Each time a woman prays she sets aside the least coin of her local currency as a symbol of the prayer. The coins are collected and sent to the central FLC fund. The prayers offered and the least coins collected support projects for women and children around the world. Least Coins support programs that address: gender justice issues, literacy and education, health and social concerns, overcoming violence against women and children and poverty issues. The women in our Tuesday afternoon and Tuesday evening circles collect "least coins" at their monthly meeting.
On the 3rd Sunday of each month, OPC children, using their colored buckets, collect coins from the congregation. These coins are used to support our Wednesday community meals program. On average, about $80 in coins is collected each time. These Community Coins support our mission of nutrition and fellowship for our local community.
Out of respect for each mission, and for clarity, we refer to "Least Coins" as those funds collected in the OPW circles in support of the FLC and "Community Coins" as the those funds collected from our congregation in support of our community meals.
Prayer of The Fellowship of the Least Coin
O Loving Creator we present ourselves in your divine presence to thank you for all the bountiful gifts of life. We are especially grateful for the Fellowship of the Least Coin, which binds us together in love and forgiveness around the globe. Free us from all doubts and prejudices, we pray. Inspire us to live in solidarity with humankind, that we may know the joy of giving and receiving.
Dear God, accept this least coin "symbol of love." Make us mindful of the miracles of these coins. Let us honor your creation with love, as shown through the life, death and resurrection of your Son, Jesus the Christ. Amen
CHURCH SERVICES AT THE KNOLLLS
If you are unable to attend some of our church services on Sunday mornings, we have another option for you. Becky Quay shows recent church services on DVD in the Country Kitchen at 10:00 A.M. on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month. However in May there is one change. The dates are
THURSDAY May 10
and Tuesday May 22. Becky is working the polls on Tuesday, May 8 so the first meeting date had to be changed. If you would like to join us, but need a ride,
ust give Becky a call at 523-5747
Welcome Spring; with Spring comes the reminder that our Relay for Life team is starting to gear up for this year's event which is Saturday, June 23 in the uptown park area. Our church has one of the longest running sponsored teams for this local American Cancer Society event. We walk in the relay, fund raise for Cancer Research, and support a fund raising booth all day during the event. It's a wonderful way to enjoy fellowship with our church community as well as memorialize and honor friends and family who are fighting or fought this horrid disease. Our team generally has about 12 members, and we are always looking for more people who might like to join our team. It's very easy to join on line, you sign up at
life.com. From there, put in 45056 and our Oxford relay event will post. If joining the team is not your "cup of tea", then please donate to our cause by seeking out any team member to let them know that you would like to donate to our Relay for Life team. We will continue to get information out through the Sunday bulletin, but we wanted to get you to start thinking about our upcoming Oxford event. Luminaries are also a popular way to donate. The luminaries are $10 and you write down the name of the person you would like to honor or memorialize and a luminary will be lit at dusk on June 23 to honor this person. Please see Candice Crist or Janet Holmes (523-3857) if you would like to join our team or if you have any additional questions. Pictured below is our team from 2017.
Deadline for the June/July Newsletter is May 20, 2018
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FAITH BUILD UPDATE and
REQUEST FOR HELP
Eight area churches have banded together to form the second "Faith
Build" for Habitat for Humanity in Oxford. OPC is working with Bethel AME, Oxford United Methodist, St. Mary, Holy Trinity, Faith Lutheran, Unitarian Universalists and Religious Society of Friends.
The Mission and Outreach Committee is requesting the congregation's help in meeting our church's pledge of $8000.00 to help fund the two homes that are being built in 2018.
There are so many wonderful things that happen when you work on a Habitat House.
First of all it is a warm, safe, extremely well built home for a family. Second you can learn or share a skill. If you volunteer for a Saturday coming up you get to know a very well organized site leader. If you volunteer, you get to meet other "church folks" and the homeowner. You get a great lunch. You will be amazed at the neighborhood. The last 2 Carter Court houses are being built. Two houses will be built at the same time.
Funding will be raised with Habitat of Greater Cincinnati with contributions coming from the local partners as well.
Habitat provides the Site leader.
Work is every Wednesday through Saturday for 16 weeks. On Saturdays, it would be good to have at least 15 volunteers. 5 from the community and 10 students from various groups.
Individuals can work anytime the site leader is there. Volunteers can signup to work on the website.
Questions? Call Prue Dana
CHURCH WOMEN UNITED 2018
MAY FRIENDSHIP DAY
will be celebrated Sunday, May 6, 3p.m. to 4: 30 p.m. at the Interfaith Center and the Haven at College at 16 South Campus. Janae Arno, Student Care Manager will be our speaker. The theme is Reaching for Wholeness based on the scripture of
the 2018 celebrations "God's Presence," taken from Colossians 1:17-"And God is before all things, and in and through God the universe is a harmonious whole." May Friendship Day focuses on our gratitude for God's presence in all things and especially as we respond to human needs. We will learn about ways we can support this program, Haven at College that is a national provider of substance abuse treatment and support services. The Haven at College believes that college students struggling with substance abuse issues should have the opportunity to work on their recovery while engaged in an enlightened college experience to grow and discover their full potential. Started at University of Southern California in 2012, The Haven at College is now at six universities and will expand to two more in 2018, including the University of Maryland in College Park. We will learn about ways we can support an agency that in turn supports young adults in our community.
There will be dedication of the Least Coin. All are welcome.
Oxford Presbyterian Church Staff
Office Hours: 8:30-4:30, M-F
Seminary Building: 513-523-7411
Dr. Joseph R. Hookey
Rev. Diane Ziegler
: Julia R. Fisher
Sarah Mapel: firstname.lastname@example.org
OFFICERS OF OPC
Class of 2018
Carol Klumb, Amy McGoldrick, Katie Payne, Deb Sayers,
Class of 2019
Jenny Bailer, Lynn Cronk,
F. Harrison Green
, Greg Hughes, Nancy Moeckel,
Class of 2020
Candice Crist, Danny Cross, Pat Gifford, Richard Munson, Jennifer Walter
Class of 2018
Karen Shearer, Lee Fisher, Virginia Layton, Joni Marcum,
Class of 2019:
Carol Burkhalter, Debbie Davidson, Janet Holmes, Pat Roberts Diane Young
Class of 2020
Cornelia Browne, Jill Grajewski, Stephanie Hartman, Matt Lykins, Becky Quay
Class of 2018:
Tom Holmes, Nick Fears
Class of 2019
: Keith Payne, Joe Simpson
Class of 2020 Rick Bailey, Scott Parkinson
"Birthdays need to be celebrated. I think it is more important to celebrate a birthday than a successful exam, a promotion, or a victory. Because to celebrate a birthday means to say to someone: 'Thank you for being you.' Celebrating a birthday is exalting life and being glad for it. On a birthday we do not say: 'Thanks for what you did, or said, or accomplished.' No, we say: 'Thank you for being born and being among us.' Henri Nouwen
2 Lisa Brunckhorst
3 JoAnne Hagerman
3 Joe Simpson
5 Lynn Cronk
5 Joe Hookey
6 Katya Fisher
6 Michael Hughes
6 Violet Suit
7 Breanne Parks
8 Betty Wills
9 Spencer Lykins
9 Melanie Ziegler
11 Margaret Butcher
13 Cial Beal
14 Bryson Fears
14 Genee Hesse
14 Nancy Gates
14 Ray Patterson
15 Bryan Richmond
16 Hank Thomas
17 Brent Bader
17 Zachary Grajewski
17 Katie Payne
18 Doug Gardner
19 Amelia Johnson
20 Cathy Fujii
22 Rachel Lathery
23 Dave Ferris
23 Keith Payne
24 Joan Teckman
25 Dennis Deahl
26 Allyson Gayhart
26 Autumn Saylor
27 Mark DeGennaro
27 Kyle Gardner
27 Sarah Jane Soika
28 Melissa Chase
28 Charles Teckman
29 Cristina Hunter
30 Candace Crist
31 Lawrence Bartel
31 Debbie DeGennaro
31 Carlisle Myers
31 Winston Myers
FIFTH MONTH FOOLISHNESS, FACTS, AND FUN
Laughter really is carbonated holiness.
The full moon in May is called the Full Flower moon
Barred owls lay 2 to 4
in March or early April. The
are brooded by the female and hatch about 4 weeks later
May is National
ALS Awareness, Asian-Pacific American Heritage, Barbecue, Better Hearing and Speech, Bike Month, Blood Pressure,Brain Tumor Awareness, Community Action Awareness, Cystic Fibrosis Awareness, Date Your Mate, Egg, Foster Care, Garden for Wildlife, Golf, Haitian Heritage, Hamburger, Jewish American Heritage, Loaded Potato, Mental Health Awareness, Military Appreciation, Older Americans, Osteoporosis, Photographer, Skin Cancer Awareness, Smile, Strawberry, Stroke Awareness, and Water Safety Month (whew, something for everyone)
May 2, 1965 - The Rolling Stones made their second appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.
May 4 is Star Wars Day. "May the Fourth be with you."
May 6, 1954 - Roger Bannister broke four-minute mile (3:59.4) at the Iffley Road Track in Oxford, England. He gave up athletics and had a long career in neurology. He died
March 3, 2018
Hicham El Guerrouj is the current men's record holder with his time of
Opinion varies widely, but most anecdotal evidence places the average between seven and ten minutes per mile for a non-competitive, in-shape runner.
Question of the Month
I am walking towards a church. I come face to face with one man and seven women. Each woman has a cart containing a cat with seven kittens.
Question: How many living things are walking to church?
Find the answer by reading the WHOLE newsletter. It's hidden somewhere.
The Virginia Opossum is the only marsupial found in the U.S. Their tails are prehensile. They have the most teeth of any mammal in North America. (50). Baby opossums are the size of honeybees when they move to the mother's pouch for 3 more months of growing. A bunch of opossums is a "passel."
LISTENING TO THE HEARTBEAT OF GOD continued
In spite of my active imagination, I never supposed then that God would call me to be a pastor. Becoming a major league baseball player seemed much more likely than having the privilege of interpreting and reinterpreting the sacred stories of scripture for our time.
Yet I dreamed as I turned the pages of the bible storybook. As I studied the images, I dreamed that one day I might have the opportunity to walk over the same land as Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Jacob, David and Jonathon, Mary and Joseph, Jesus and the disciples.
Many years have passed since I first opened the bible storybook. Over this time, much has stayed the same and yet much has changed in the Holy Land. As I write this, Israel faces a stark choice between a future as a Jewish state or a Democratic state. Torn apart by factional fighting, the Palestinians face the coming days with few life giving options. Gone are the days when battles were fought with trumpet blasts and slingshots.
Yet there is hope, Easter hope, in the land where Abraham walked. There is the hope of resurrection in the land where Jacob encountered God and named the place Bethel, "the house of God". Only 70 years have passed since the creation of the modern state of Israel. That's merely a fraction in the entire sweep of time shared by the Abrahamic traditions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
Close to the time you read this, I anticipate having joined over forty people as a co-leader of the 2018 Mosaic of Peace Conference in Israel & Palestine through the Peacemaking Office of the PC(USA). I'm particularly thrilled to share this experience with fellow pilgrims from Oxford Presbyterian Church - Janet Ziegler, Amir Zahoor, Greg Hughes and Angela Trubceac.
In Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Nazareth, we will meet Israelis and
Palestinians. We will listen to their stories. We will dialogue with Jewish Rabbis, Palestinian Pastors and Imams. We will seek to understand the rich history and present complexities of the Holy Land. We will engage with those who seek its peace and share these stories upon our return. In the words of Palestinian priest, Elias Chacour, we will learn about the "living stones" of the Holy Land. Please pray for us and follow our journey at
After the conference concludes, I'll extend my journey by leading ten of our participants on a four-day walk over the land where Jesus walked with his disciples. From Nazareth, the Jesus Trail passes through Cana and the site where the gospel of John records Jesus' first miracle at a wedding feast there. The walk continues along the Sea of Galilee coming to the sites where tradition holds that Jesus initiated a miracle of generosity that fed five thousand people. Finally, the trail reaches Capernaum where Jesus called the first disciples.
Christ still calls. Christ calls us as disciples of a LIVING story of faith. Herein lies the mystery of faith that I sensed but couldn't have explained as I lay on the living room floor looking at the Egermeier's Bible Story Book.
In God's sight, you and I appear in the story since the last chapter hasn't been written!
CHRISTIAN EDUCATION (continued)
Prue Dana is busy planning this summer's Vacation Bible School that will be taking place July 6-8! Be sure and visit the VBS registration table in the Molyneaux Lounge on Sunday, May 20.
Check out Jenny Bailer's article about upcoming adult education opportunities. Jenny and Candace have planned some phenomenal, thought-provoking activities/events!
Our 12 youth and 3 chaperones are getting ready for their upcoming mission trip June 17-22. Mitch has planned some pre-trip bonding activities for this group to prepare them for their mission journey to Charleston, SC.
It is with a heavy heart that we accept Mitch's resignation as Interim Youth Director effective June 30. He will be missed very much. Mitch has made an enormous impact on your youth program and for that we are eternally grateful. We know that God has great plans for him and we wish him all the best in his last year at Miami and beyond.
Teachers in May:
Preschool/Nursery ~ Marilyn and Noah Curry
K-2 ~ Sarah Miller and Deb Sayers
3-5 ~ Leanne Staley
6-8 ~ Prue Dana
Acolyte in May:
May 20 ~ Teacher Recognition and Jamieson Award ceremony during service.
May 27 ~ In lieu of Sunday School, "Crafts with Carol" will be held in the 3-5th grade classroom for K-8. Preschool/Nursery will be offered in the preschool classroom.
ADULT EDUCATION IS ON THE MOVE!
1. An enthusiastic group of adults completed a Lenten Study of the book, The Way of Life, by Brian McClaren and enjoyed it so much; they have asked to continue to meet! Look for details of continuing meetings of this group coming soon. Anyone is welcome to join even if you weren't in the first group, and even if you haven't read this great book that encourages Christians to bring more love of neighbor into all they do.
2. This summer a new model emerges called: "Ripped From the Headlines, What's a Christian To Do??" This will be an informal study of current events from a Christian perspective. Here's how it will work:
- We will meet every other Sunday afternoon from 3-4:30 through out the summer. Come when you can! Exact dates TBD...stay tuned!
- Leadership will rotate with one-two volunteers signing up to lead for one Sunday, 3-4:30.
- When it is your week to lead- choose a headline, or article, or current topic that you wish to discuss, and send it and the meeting place out to the group one week before the meeting.
- Meetings can take place wherever the leader chooses (a home, a deck, a front porch, the church, uptown, a park), and will likely change each time.
- Leaders will be provided with questions to assist them in facilitating discussion.
- You may lead more than once if you choose to, but you do not have to.
- You do not have to lead at all, but we would love it if you give it try. It's pretty easy, and you get to choose what you want to discuss!
- Youth, students, and young adults are especially encouraged to be leaders for a week. What burning topic would you like to discuss?? Now is your chance!
3. Another program coming up is called "The World Around Us." This study will center on people who have knowledge of other countries or cultures presenting their experiences. Come to learn more about the world around us, or be a presenter and share what you know!
4. Finally, in the Fall, we will begin a 6-week study of Spiritual Practices used by Christians and others to keep focus on the Divine, or experience the presence of God on a deeper level.
Sign ups are currently taking place for options 1 and 2 by emailing the church office, email@example.com, or by putting your name on the form in the Molyneaux.
We hope you will join in!
Jenny Bailer and Candace Crist
We welcome your feedback on the newsletter. We CRAVE your feedback as if we were a cucumber seeking cool.
What is missing from the newsletter that you would like to see? Let me know. Thanks, nancy.
firstname.lastname@example.org (and here is your bonus for reading this section: Did you hear about the two men from the monastery who opened a fast-food seafood restaurant? One was the fish friar, the other was the chip monk.