The Arkive: Ark and Dove's Newsletter

Sixth Sunday of Easter, 10:00 am!

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Message from Pastor Tim
Dear Ark and Dove Community,

I am keeping our congregation in my prayers as daily I am reminded how hard this COVID-19 pandemic is on all of us. One of the difficult parts of the pandemic is that our community is deprived of the comfort of worshiping together in the sanctuary and therefore deprived of one of our best tools for facing the world each week. I have witnessed Zoom tears, and I hear the anguish in voices.

This week the governor made some changes with his executive order of May 13, which led several people to ask if we were opening the sanctuary for worship this Sunday. As it turns our County Executive Steuart Pittman issued his own executive order , which makes clear that we will not be worshiping in the sanctuary. I for one am very grateful for Mr. Pittman's decision because I do not think it is safe for us to gather with a large crowd in the sanctuary.

The Session met by e-mail this week in the days between the two executive orders and agreed that we are not ready for such a move. The Session will be meeting by Zoom on Wednesday, and we will begin to develop a plan for re-opening, but I'll be honest, and I am grieved to share this, I don't think our worship will look like it did in January for some time. Singing together is particularly vexing, as when we sing, we pump all kinds of aerosol into the air, and they travel well past the six feet of social distance that is recommended for shopping. Our Director of Music, Margaret McGillivray has collected substantial information on this subject and she has provided these links if you would like to do your own reading.

As difficult as it is to share such news and as painful as it is to let this reality sink into our hearts, we are still the church alive in the world, sharing resurrection with the way we live our lives. We are still the church worshiping in hundreds (maybe) of homes each resurrection day, each Sunday. We are connected virtually and surprisingly (but maybe it should not be) we feel the Holy Spirit in this new way of being together.

And this encourages me to end with a prayer of Thanksgiving for our Session, Our Deacons, our seven Ministries and our staff who have labored mightily to redefine church and worship in these last eight weeks. I am extremely grateful for the ingenuity and the spirit with which livestream worship and virtual church has been implemented. It is a privilege to serve with a church like Ark and Dove.  

In Christ,
Message from Pastor Jon
Dear Members and Friends of Ark and Dove,

Some of the most inspirational work, in my opinion, was created in difficult circumstances. The best music seems to be written in duress. The best music being, of course, spirituals, blues, punk, and alt-rock. The most intriguing theology is also written under stress: Julian of Norwich's Revelations of Divine Love, Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Discipleship and Letters from Prison, and James Cone's The Cross and the Lynching Tree. It seems to me that struggle, even suffering, often leads to innovation.

More personally, when I was trying to find my way in a church. I came to Nassau Presbyterian Church in Princeton, New Jersey after the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti. The pastor informed the congregation that he scrapped his planned sermon in order to address the horrific loss in a new sermon. As I sat in the old pews of that historic church, I was moved by the way the preacher brought the congregation through lament to realistic hope. I had never heard a sermon so poetic and relevant. It was a work of divine inspiration. After I heard it, I became a Presbyterian.

We have already seen some incredible innovations during the restrictions of quarantine. Several members of our congregation have built a new platform for worship. Our music directors have found new ways to bring quality music to us, music that inspires praise. Some have used their talent and creativity to make masks and others have found a new way to feed the hungry. These are just a few of the many examples. We are being forced to be creative, and you are rising to the occasion. One thing that continues to give me hope is that God's creative Spirit is doing something new among us, even now.

Verse and Prayer
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.
-John 14:15-17
Alight upon us, Spirit of truth. Illuminate our hearts and minds that we might tell your truth in new and fresh ways. Inspire us to look beyond our present circumstances, beyond the restrictions imposed on us, to the new possibilities that are present in this moment. Be our peace, Spirit of God, and our passion.
This week, the prelude is the old hymn tune, Jesus the Very Thought of Thee set to Bach famous chorale accompaniment, Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, arranged by Cindy Berry. Our choral anthem will be Thomas Tallis' If Ye Love Me, a beloved renaissance motet that speaks to our lectionary reading this week. We are so fortunate to have such intrepid choir members learning new technologies to help lead the music in worship!


Director of Music
Thank you all for the wonderful feedback about the music and recording quality! It takes lots of hours to get it to sound that good, and the thanks are very much appreciated. My thanks to all those still contributing to the services by volunteering their time to practice the music and spend time recording their parts, and to all those who have donated to the streaming fund to allow us to provide a great service each week with the most updated software and equipment. Just very happy to have the facilities to still have the community and joyful music to share each week.

This week the choir will present the offertory, but the band will be recording 'Forever' by Chris Tomlin. If you are a regular 11 am attendee, I am sure you will recognize the song, but the regular 9:30 am attendees, give the song some plays this week, so you can sing along from home. Lastly, I am very excited for the special guest who recorded the postlude for this week. One hint: they play guitar.... Stay until the end for an awesome treat!

God bless,

Director of Contemporary Music
I cannot believe that four months have nearly passed, since I began my internship with Ark & Dove. It has been a unique experience, one that has had a lot of change and adaptation for all of us as COVID-19 has shifted all of our baselines and ways of engaging with being the church. I appreciate all of the folks that I have come to know over the past months, and wish I could have had more time and different circumstances so that I could have gotten to know more of this wonderful congregation. I am grateful for the kindness and acceptance everyone has granted me, giving me the space to learn and grow within this community of faith. I look forward to visiting in the future and seeing all who continue to be a part of our shared community mission with ACT. Thank you again for all the ways you show up and are a presence of the church in this world.


Seminary Intern
DONATE ONLINE ! Samaritans Today fund, Streaming Services fund, one-time and recurring!

TEXT your donations! 410-983-3481
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You will be enriched in every good way for your generosity….
- 2 Corinthians 9:11
Sixth Sunday of Easter
All are invited to join livestream worship at 10:00 am.

Access the

Wednesday Evening Prayer
Join us weekly for evening prayer, 8:30-8:45 pm. This is a great way to end your day in thanksgiving and supplication.

Connect on Zoom, Wednesday, 8:30 pm:

The Lobby
Tune in to worship a little early and catch up on church life! We are streaming a short video, The Lobby , every Sunday morning around 9:50 to fill you in on what's happening around Ark and Dove, outside of Sunday worship. Turns out, it's a lot! Join Brian Boudreau and other church leaders to catch up in The Lobby . On the Ark and Dove YouTube channel . Ellen Makar, worship elder,

Send Us Your Selfies!
Although Gov. Hogan has cautiously announced that Maryland is entering phase 1 of reopening, Ark and Dove will continue livestreaming (please see Pastor Tim's letter and County Executive Steuert Pittman's executive order) . We all miss seeing each other, so please submit selfies of you and your families, so we can share during worship. We especially love seeing how you are worshiping! In front of the TV? On the phone at the kitchen counter? Little ones in jammies? Please send photos to Ellen Makar, Worship Elder,
Adult Education Opportunities
May Book Club
Join us as we read Naamah by Sarah Blake, a contemporary re-telling of the Flood Narrative in Genesis, told from Naamah's point of view, the wife of Noah. We will gather virtually on the evening of May 26, 7pm, to discuss the book. Please let Pastor Jon know if you plan to join (
Christian Education
Zoom Games and Bible Lessons
We hope children and youth will join us for our opportunities to play zoom games and share lessons of faith.
  • Senior High Fellowship, Sunday @ 5 pm
  • Middle School Fellowship, Tuesday @ 5:30 pm
  • Kindergarten through 5th Grade, Wednesday @ 5 pm
Please check your e-mail for the zoom links. For security reasons, we will not post them publicly. Any questions? Email Pastor Jon ( or Julie Devers (
Godly Play
Godly Play, our Sunday school program for Kindergarten through 5th grade, takes place via zoom on Sunday mornings at 9am. Amy Tardiff leads our Godly Play program. Our host welcomes the children, the storyteller tells a story and then leads the children in reflection and wondering. If you have any questions about Godly Play or would like to be put on our list to receive zoom invitations, please contact Julie Devers, Christian Education Elder, at
Healing Through Grief
Healing Through Grief During Quarantine
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Matthew 5:4

Pastor Tim and I will be co-facilitating the next  Healing through Grief group on Wednesday, May 26 at 7 pm again as a Zoom meeting. The Healing through Grief small group is open to anyone attending Ark and Dove and their family, who have experienced the death of a loved one, whether it is recent or a long time ago. While quarantining during COVID-19, many have found grieving for lost loved ones, even from years ago, a difficult thing to bear. There will be another meeting on June 10.

Let me know if you have the slightest inclination to attend on May 26th, so that we can send you the link to the Zoom meeting. If you change your mind later, no problem. Also, let me know if you have not used Zoom before, so that we can provide you with some information in advance. Any questions, contact Pastor Tim Stern at or 410-674-6400 or Linnie Girdner at or 410-999-7892.

Let's be there for one another in this new way of healing through grief. If you need to talk with someone prior to that date, feel free to give me a call or contact your  Deacon. (To keep the growing group at the appropriate size for deep sharing, we are sorry to say that it will not be open to neighbors and friends unless they have participated in the past. I am happy to provide referrals to other community resources.)
Tea at Three
Friendly Seniors
Thursdays at 3:00 pm on Zoom. Please contact Pastor Tim ( to receive an invitation.
Streaming Services Fund
Livestream Equipment, Subscription and Services Fees
The streaming services fund connects us during our most trying times through livestream and Zoom. Worship services and programs can now be viewed through livestream and Zoom when in person participation is not possible. Thank you for contributing to this crucial fund that strengthens our church home and our whole community. Please donate online or text an amount followed by stream to 410-983-3481.
Samaritans Today! Ark and Dove's Stewardship Response
Samaritans Today is a stewardship effort of Ark and Dove and our response to the adverse economic impact the coronavirus pandemic is taking locally. The Samaritan took care of the traveler and the innkeeper as he would have family. As Samaritans those of us who are able can acknowledge the blessings we have and affirm our Christian beliefs with generosity that meets the needs of our church, our church family, and our community. Funds will first be allocated to support and sustain Ark and Dove’s ability to provide continuous ministry, as well as our ability to conduct weekly services and activities online. The good news here is that pledged giving for the first four months of 2020 is the best it has ever been. Thank you for your commitment and generosity. Funds in excess of foundational needs will be directed towards members of our church community who are in need and to local food programs, as directed and managed by our session, pastors, mission ministry and deacons. Our goals are to help families and prevent hunger. At least 50% of the offering will go to food pantries, food delivery and feeding programs. Today is the day that you can be a Samaritan.  Donate according to your ability , so that we may help heal the weary and feed the hungry during these unprecedentedly turbulent times. Please donate online or text an amount followed by GoodSam to 410-983-3481.
Light House Homeless Prevention
In the Same Storm but Not the Same Boat
This pandemic has made starker the line between those with privilege and those that are vulnerable. It has also left many of us feeling like there is nothing we can do to help our neighbor without risking our health or the health of those we love. We can feel hopeless and overwhelmed watching the suffering of so many from the sidelines. Luckily we live in an era when technology can bridge some of that gap. At Ark and Dove we have been able to participate in worship service, collective prayer, and bible study via zoom. And we can give our offering online too. Similarly we can also help our neighbors via the internet.

If you are able to, Lighthouse is still in need of monetary and in kind donations. You can find their list of needed supplies at , and you can help meet those needs while social distancing. Light House has updated their list to include grocery stores that will deliver directly to them. Just click on the link search for the items requested, pay and have items delivered directly to their address (10 Hudson Street, Annapolis, MD 21401).
- Christina Cosio ,
Antiracism and Social Equity
COVID at the Margins: A PCUSA Series
The Presbyterian Church USA has launched a weekly webinar series called Covid at the Margins, which explores the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color and what actions can be taken by people of faith. The first one on Black Communities' Experience with COVID-19 is available here and is well worth watching. The next will be on Anti-Asian Racism in the Wake of COVID-19, which will be live on Monday, May 18 at 12:30 pm and available afterwards here. The series will address other topics in subsequent weeks. If anyone is interested in a Zoom discussion group, please contact Linnie Girdner at 410-999-7892 or
Prayer Requests
Please keep the following people in your prayers this week:

PRAYERS OF HEALING AND SUPPORT for Bruce and Debbie Arey; Ben Rollins’ sister, Caroline; Zach Murray’s father, Kelly Murray; Becky Marcus; Fred Barrow; Carlton Jackson; Sabonna Keeney’s mother; Pattie Plander; Richard and Edie Budd; Daryl Sensenig; Amy Grimm’s sister and grandparents and Amy’s father; Joan and Merlin Berry; Adell Gaurin; John Rolewicz; Laurie and Fred Barrow’s niece, Hope Simeone, nephew, Samuel, and Fred’s aunt, Lee; Bernabe Solano; Griselda Solano's sister, Irma; Kathy Miller’s sisters, Patty and Beth; Dotty Kaufman, her son, Bill, daughter-in-law, Carol, and granddaughter, Sarah; Ellen Makar’s uncle, Carl Erickson; Greg and Diane Makar’s aunt, Adeline Makar; Barbara Reynold’s sister-in-law, Kay Campbell; Laura Doughty’s brother-in-law, Carl Hahn; Bob Johns; Hollis Butterworth’s brother-in-law, Brian Smith; Cindy Knott’s mother, Madeline; Debbie Saylor’s two friends and her uncle, Wayne; Laura Willoughby's father, Norman and Laura’s friend; Bill Ruble’s mother, Mary Jane Weathers, Shane and Aubrey Ard and Ashley Ruble; Stan Houck and Ann Hirschy; Christina Nelson’s grandmother, Pat Dole; Chip Burnett; Kelly Burnett’s nephew, Justin; Debbie and Bruce Arey’s daughter, Allison; Debbie Arey’s aunt, Linda Rose; Dot Forloines; Dorene Chen’s family; Lewis Shorter and niece, Jennifer Schwandt-Gayle; Archer and Honor Bauman’s grandfather, Larry; the Tardiff family; Brian Boudreau’s cousin, Valery Householder; Kameron and Kamarii Miller; Cheryl Walcutt’s mother, nephew, and sisters, Judy Walsh and Lori Henninger and Lori Johnson; Amanda Wehage’s father, Dave; Ylonda Fauntleroy's aunt, Bernice Taylor; Brooks Emrick and her sister, Susan; Vaughn Brown; Frances Keyes; Julia Kirby's mother, Margaret Floyd, cousin, Judy, niece Amy Heiny, and friend Barb Cleland; Erika Sealing's son, Trip, and grandmother, Margaret Schade; Amy Benson's family and Amy’s friend, Brian Shriner; Lou Kareha’s friends, Thomas and Judy Kochis, Nellie Eboli, and Jim Zaranosky; Margaret’s friend, Kim Nolet; Michelle Schoonmaker's friend Amaris Wallace; Linnie Girdner and Jan Hof’s friends, Grace Ligon and Skip Dorrell; Michelle Schoonmaker’s friends, Everly and Emilia Stugart; Patriceo Green’s brother and sister; Jane Biondolillo’s sister; Tracy Churchill’s friend, Tammy; Jerri Webb’s friend, Chuck Mabry; Jennifer and Shawn Ralston’s niece; the Yeagers’ older neighbors; Connie Kinnick’s friend, Robbie Heverling; Amy Hagemann’s friend, Gayle Medford; and Doug Mattingly’s mother.

PRAYERS OF LOVE, SUPPORT AND PROTECTION for all hospital staff, patients, clinics, grocers, essential workers and hourly workers around the world, who are working bravely and arduously to protect our loved ones and our communities. Including: Becca Distad; Jack Burnett; Emily Sanders; Audrey Miller; Linda Jordan’s nephew, Russell; Diane Johnson’s grandson; the Ralston’s family members and friends; Simone Stiegler’s friend, Jean Marie; Mike Stiegler; Amy Grimm’s mother; Jeff Grimm; Amy Goldberg’s brother, Joseph Alexander, and parents, Michael and Maryann Cooper; Judy Cooper’s daughter; John Mikeska’s son, Jonathan; and Hollis Butterworth’s sister-in-law, Cyndie.

THE LOVE AND PRAYERS OF THE CONGREGATION go out to the families of those who are battling COVID-19: Emily Dellinger’s sister; Laura Willoughby’s friend, James Carberry; Cliff and Wendy Wellington’s neighbor’s daughter, Lisa; Deborah Dingle’s daughter’s fiancé, Sergio; and Michelle Schoonmaker’s friends, Sarah and Lloyd Russ.

PRAYERS OF LOVE AND SUPPORT for those on the frontlines; those experiencing domestic abuse; those who are furloughed or laid off; for the children who are scared and lonely; for those going through marital stress; and for those challenged by mental illness.

PRAYERS OF THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE for the recovery of Michelle Schoonmaker’s friend, Mark Johnson Sr.; and Sue Hanburger's sister-in-law, Susan.

If you have prayer concerns or blessings that you would like to share, please contact Deacon Patriceo Green at and he will add your concern to the prayer partners email chain.
Ark and Dove Presbyterian Church | 410-674-6400 | | | 8424 Piney Orchard Pkwy. Odenton, MD 21113