April 1, 2021
Blessings to you all on this Maundy Thursday. This is the day during Holy Week when we reflect on the events of the Upper Room where Jesus washed the disciple’s feet and shared a meal with them immediately before his arrest and eventual death. In the acts of foot washing and breaking bread we remember the new commandment that Christ gave us in word and deed as he taught us how to love one another. I hope you will join us for an outdoor Maundy Thursday worship service on the Ashantilly Lawn tonight at 6P.

Tomorrow – Good Friday – the sanctuary will be open from 9A to 6P for quiet meditation and prayer. Rev. Annie Franklin Arvin has put together a visual prayer that will be available for your use that combines images of the cross from our own community with the last words of Jesus Christ. Rhonda Hambright and Amy Bishop are also preparing music that will be quietly played in the space from 12-2P. So whether you come to pray, reflect, listen, or simply be – please come. All are welcome and no registration is required.

And then… Easter. What a great joy it will be to gather again in-person to celebrate our risen Lord! We will have three services this year on Easter morning — 7A sunrise outdoors, 8:30A in sanctuary and online (please note that registration for the limited attendance indoor sanctuary service is already full), and 10:30A outdoors on the Ashantilly Lawn. Please remember that masks continue to be required for all in-person worship services and we ask that, if you are able, please bring your own chair with you for the outdoor worship services. 

The flowering cross will be outside on the front steps of the church all morning long on Easter Sunday. No matter which service you attend, we invite you to bring flowers to affix to the flowering cross. We will also take up a special offering as part of the Presbyterian Church USA One Great Hour of Sharing. You can learn more about the One Great Hour of Sharing by clicking here. Finally, following the 10:30A outdoor service, children of all ages are invited to participate in the annual Easter Egg Hunt, which will begin around 11:45A. A special thank you to Frieda Warner and our youth for helping prepare and lead that fun tradition every year!

Blessings to you all as we near the end of our Lenten journey. Let us not forget the ultimate witness that all of the events of Holy Week mark – namely that God is with us. Even at a final meal, even in the pain of betrayal, even while suffering on the cross, and, yes, even in the grave – God is with us. 

Thanks be to God,
Rev. Alan Dyer
Easter Sunday
Mark Your Calendar
Try Something New
Sunday Worship
March 28, 2021
Musical Notes
It is Holy Week and so much is happening. Sod is going down in the midst of organ builders going in and outside using chop saws to finish the case molding on the organ, our harpsichord is going out for some maintenance, six cases of organ pipes sitting in the back hallway are going in, it’s early registration deadline for the Montreat Music & Worship Conference, and there are services to be held and music to be prepared individual and in groups– and that is just my world.  There’s much more that each staff member is handling and it’s all hands on deck – not to mention members of our congregation that are as busy as we are! Thank goodness everyone is helping everyone. Remember all those details that I wrote about last week?  They are happening!   
The events as told in the gospels that happened during Holy Week were chaotic, catastrophic, confusing, confounding, and yet crucial to our salvation. Today’s events alongside that week pale in comparison, even though we are in difficult times. I hope that we all can find some space this week to slow down and meditate on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Worship opportunities that will be available to you will occur on: Maundy Thursday at 6:00 on the church lawn – Ann Nermoe will sing “Were You There?” for the first time in a while. She and I will lead the music for that service. Good Friday from 12 – 2, there will be continuous music from the organ and/or piano from myself and Amy Bishop during a meditation and prayer time that will be from 9 am until 6pm.   
Easter Sunday’s music will start with the sunrise service at 7:00 am, where I will play and sing and lead a hymn to bring us into the daylight. At the 8:30 indoor service, the Chancel Choir, Chancel Ensemble, and complete organ will lead us in the hymn Jesus Christ is Risen Today. The anthem is a hymn tune as well – Alleluia! My Redeemer Lives! arranged by Benjamin Harlan. The introit is written by Douglas Wagner - Christ is Risen. We will end with Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus. Sing along if you know it!  All of these selections will be accompanied by organ and instruments including trumpets, clarinet, French horn, trombone, and timpani. Amy Bishop will play a special prelude and postlude for our first Easter with the newly renovated organ and sanctuary. At 10:30, we will do all of this music outside! It will be a challenge, but with your prayers and support, we are prepared.   
On April 11, which is still Eastertide, our bell choir will play once again.  Under Suzanne Morrison’s direction, we will play Festive Peal by Karen Thompson and Outbursts of Joy by Cynthia Dobrinski. Dr. Emri Comer will be our guest organist, as Amy will be spending time with family on Cumberland Island.   
I hope that you will take the journey to Resurrection Sunday by experiencing our worship services that are offered this week. It is the hope of the music ministry that you will be inspired and comforted by the Spoken, Played, and Sung Word.  Hallelujah! 
Love & Gratitude,  
The Week Ahead
Sunday, April 4
7:70 am Sunrise Service - Ashantilly Lawn
8:30 am Indoor/Livestream Worship - Online
10:30 am Outdoor Worship - Ashantilly Lawn at SSPRES
11:45 am Easter Egg Hunt - Church Lawn
6:30 pm Youth Gathering - Location Varies

Monday, April 5
ALL DAY Church Office Closed

Tuesday, April 6
10:00 am PW Planning Meeting - Britt Room

Wednesday, April 7
1:30pm Hands & Heart Quilting Ministry - Youth Suite
7:00 pm Chancel Ringers - Social Hall

Thursday, April 8
10:00 am Ladies Bible Study - Sanctuary
1:00 am Ladies Bible Study - Sanctuary

Friday, April 9
No Activities Planned for this Day
New Sermon Series
Joys and Concerns
New Baptisms

Together, we celebrate the baptism of Palmer James Kizzire. Son of Patton & Kari Kizzire.

We also celebrate the baptism of Henry Tucker Hodgdon. Son of Ryan & Anna Hodgdon.

“For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good, to give you a future and a hope.” - Jeremiah 29:11
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