Pastor Connection
May 20, 2021
Pentecost Prayer

And suddenly from heaven there came a sound
like the rush of a violent wind,
and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.
All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit.
--Acts 2:2,4

Spirit, Wild One
sweeping in, unseen, unannounced,
unexpected, uncompromising,
pressing through the door
startling those hovering in fear
shaking them out of the corners,
awakening concealed gifts.

Spirit, Wild One,
relentless loving presence,
bringing strength to the weak,
courage to the fearful,
determination to the doubtful,
joy to the disheartened,
faith to the disbelieving.

Spirit, Wild One,
come whirling into my soul space,
gather what remains in disarray,
lift up what is neglected,
send forth what wants to hold back,
impassion what hesitates,
heal what remains wounded.

Spirit, Wild One,
breathe large gusts in me,
sweep through my being,
drench me with hope,
soften my resistance,
wrap your love around me
until I welcome you fully.

Joyce Rupp, "Prayer Seeds: A Gathering of Blessings, Reflections, and Poems for Spiritual Growth" (Notre Dame: Sorin Books, 2017) 175.

Pentecost Special Offering

A special offering will be received this week on Pentecost Sunday, May 23.
This offering unites us in a church-wide effort to support young people. A gift to the Pentecost Offering helps the church encourage, develop, and support its young people, and also address the needs of at-risk children. Forty percent of the Pentecost offering will be used to make an impact in the lives of young people within Black Hawk County. 

This year that will be donated to Youth in Transition to help celebrate the young people turning eighteen and leaving foster care. The thirteen young people graduating foster care this year will be given household necessities to help them make the transition from foster care to adulthood. Often these young people have very little support and knowing the community cares means so much. 

The remaining 60% is used to support children-at-risk, youth, and young adults through ministries of the Presbyterian Mission Agency.
Mission and Outreach Special Guest Speaker

The Mission and Outreach team has invited Amgad Beblawi, our Presbytery's new Mission Executive, to speak at their next meeting on Tuesday, June 8th, from 4-5 pm in Calvin Hall. Amgad will be sharing his perspective and ideas in regards to mission and outreach of the church. In particular, he will be answering questions that the Mission Team has been discussing related to justice work. Church members are invited and welcome to attend. We hope to see you there to join in the discussion.
Mark Your Calendars! First Church Fellowship Gathering Planned

On Sunday, June 20th, the First Church family will be holding a Bring Your Own Picnic event at Byrnes Park. We will gather and spend time together at the shelter, immediately following worship. There is a playground for the kids to enjoy! We will also be taking time that day to honor Dakota, our choir director before he leaves for Texas. Be looking for more information on how to express your gratitude for the contributions Dakota has given to our church family.
Walnut Street Baptist Church Spruce Up Opportunity

The community is looking for 10-20 volunteers to spruce up Walnut Street Baptist Church, 415 Walnut Street, after a winter of sitting empty. They were able to get so much done last summer as they emptied out the building. On June 4 and 5, from 9 a.m. to Noon, we are just going to polish, dust, sweep, and do a little more detail cleaning.  
A community consultant has been hired to host listening meetings for the future renovation and reuse of the building. The community hopes to be able to host some meetings in the building this summer and have some tours through the building this summer and fall.  
If you are interested or know of others who might be interested in cleaning for 1-3 hours (9-Noon) on Friday, June 4, or Saturday, June 5, please sign the form at the link below or pass this information on to others. Many hands make light work, and this effort will certainly continue to be one of collaboration the whole way to completion. The community continues to be hopeful and prayerful for what might become of this beautiful historic space.

Community Volunteer Opportunities

Want to volunteer but also want to stay safe? Here are two ideas that will allow you to stay safe at home, but make a great contribution to the community:


  • Do you like to sew or mend? Residents of Pillar of Cedar Valley sometimes need clothes mended or altered. You can do this in your home. Volunteers can arrange times to pick up and return clothing or arrangements can be made to have clothes delivered and picked up at your home.
  • EMBARC (Ethnic Minorities of Burma Advocacy and Resource Center) needs mentors for middle school students. A commitment of at least one hour per week for a minimum of 6 months is required. Mentors will meet virtually with the student at this time. Training will be provided and a background check is required.
  • Hawkeye Community College needs virtual tutoring for English Language Learners at the Van G. Miller Adult Learning Center. Help ELL students to understand and learn academic subject matter in order to become independent learners. Some training is required.
  • The Pillar of Cedar Valley is looking for volunteers to write letters to their residents. Become a Pen Pal!

For more information, contact Jean Seeland
Are you Handy and Looking for a Project?

There are two Little Free Pantries in need of some TLC in our community. The pantry in front of the Jesse Cosby Center at 1112 Mobile Street in Waterloo has had a squirrel chew its way inside. A repair for this would be very welcome. The pantry at 1800 Newell Street has a door that doesn't close tightly enough to help keep out pests or the elements.

Fixing these up would help mitigate local food insecurity, which has increased during the pandemic. If you're looking for an outdoor project, this would be a great way to volunteer that would have a lot of impact on those around us.
Church Directory

If you would like an updated church directory, please contact Amber in the office, or 319-233-6145. We have a version which can be emailed, or if you would prefer a paper copy, we can send you one in the mail.
Vacation Bible School

First Presbyterian church would like to share an opportunity for VBS at Westminster Presbyterian with you!

Westminster is offering "Knights of North Castle Vacation Bible School"
June 21 - 25, 2021 / 9am-12pm
Ages 3 thru kids going into 5th grade
They will hold VBS outside as much as possible this year to provide a safe environment and masks will be required.

If you are interested in attending or know someone who is, please visit or call their office at 319-234-5501.
Pulpit Flower Volunteers Needed

We are once again accepting donations of flower arrangements for our Sunday Services. We currently have openings on May 30th, June 6th, June 13th, June 20th, and June 27th. If you would like to donate, please contact Amber in the office to find a date that works for you. You can call the office or email Amber directly. 319-233-6145 or Alternatively, you can let Nancy Valentine know on Sundays after service and she will relay your information to Amber. Thank you!
Volunteers for Coffee Hour!

We are hoping to offer an opportunity for fellowship over coffee after the worship service very soon, but first we need some folks to help make the coffee! Are you willing to help? If so, please sign your name and contact information in the church office. You can call, 319-233-6145, email Amber,, or stop in. Thanks for your help!
Summer Camp at Lake Okoboji

We are happy to announce that Lakeshore Center at Okoboji is having summer camp this year! The theme for this summer is "Leap into Adventure". There are camping options for children, youth, and families. The Christian Nurture and Fellowship Team will help defer the costs for those who wish to attend. You can find more information about their different camping programs by visiting the following website: There is also information in the church office. Please contact the church if you or your family plans to participate.
Church Prayer List
New to the Prayer List:
-Darlys Varner has moved to live with her daughter Kristin in Davidson, MD. We pray this is an easy, smooth, and happy transition for the whole family. If you would like to receive Darlys's new contact information feel free to contact Amber in the office, or 319-233-6145.
-Marilyn Lottich is in the hospital
-Mable, Skip and Judy Mulock's great granddaughter who is 7 months old, is struggling with health issues.
-Nancy Newhoff had surgery on May 19, she is recovering at home.

Ongoing/Continuing Prayers:
Tom and Rita Campbell and family as they grieve the loss of their grandson, Jason Young; Jean Priebe recovering from pneumonia; Donna Beaver recovering from foot surgery; Karen Hahn recovering from surgery; Marsha Platt as she recovers from knee replacement surgery; Evelyn and Carl Boice's son who is ill; Angie (Kim Swallow's friend) who works at the Anamosa State Penitentiary; Barbara Benskin recovering from injuries from a fall; Steve Miller recovering from surgery at home, prayers of safety for Barbara Benskin's son who is a trucker; Paul Holtz, Hospice Care

Add to the Prayer List
Click HERE to submit a prayer request online. Our pastors will be praying for you and sharing concerns with the congregation as requested.
Church Family Birthdays

We celebrate our members with birthdays in May. If you get a chance, please join us in wishing them a very happy birthday!

4 Deidre Shea
6 Justin Edwards
7 Neva Kerr
8 Randy Lippert, Brody Powell
11 Marshall Abbe, Kathleen Jaeger
12 Corey Wheelock
14 Jana Fairbanks                              
16 Jordan Abbe                              
19 Dee May
20 Mary Dutton, Ed Jessen
23 Caleb Mananga, Alannah Sage
25 Sybil Whyte
28 Debbie McQuilkin
29 Helena Mananga

First Presbyterian Church | Waterloo, IA | 319-233-6145 |