May 3, 2021
Spring 2021 Service Times:
9:00 AM - Sanctuary | 11:00 AM - Sanctuary & Livestream
Baby & Toddler Nursery Available at 11:00 AM - Registration Required
Wednesday Outdoor Communion Service - 7:00 AM.
“Samson said to them, “This time, when I do mischief to the Philistines, I will be without blame.” So Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took some torches; and he turned the foxes tail to tail, and put a torch between each pair of tails. When he had set fire to the torches, he let the foxes go into the standing grain of the Philistines, and burned up the shocks and the standing grain, as well as the vineyards and olive groves.”
-Judges 15: 3-5

We are still welcoming submissions for our Stump the Preacher sermon series for the summer. As you can tell from the scripture above, there are some wacky things in the Bible. Can the Holy Spirit speak God’s truth to us from all of them? I hope you’ll use the link below to submit your scripture choices.

In this story, Samson is upset because a misunderstanding has led to his wife being given to another man. She’s a Philistine, and so Samson decides to take revenge. He’s a creative pyrotechnic, and sets fire to the tails of foxes and sends them through the Philistine grain fields. If you read further, this act of revenge does not lead to a restoration of his marriage and peace between he and the Philistines. Hotheaded Samson only increases the animosity and elevates the discord.

How many times do we do the same thing? We are wronged, perhaps on purpose and perhaps by mistake. Instead of seeking understanding, compromise, repentance and forgiveness, we escalate the offense. Our pride overwhelms everything else within us and rage replaces nuanced and careful thinking.

This can happen in the “comments” section on social media. It can happen with family members at the holidays. Siblings and spouses who only elevate the anger. It isn’t healthy for us as individuals and certainly destructive to our communal life to live in a constant state of rage and anger escalation.

Eventually this inability to control himself causes Samson’s death as well as many Philistines. His life was charismatic, worthy of a Marvel Comic Book movie, but it did not enhance the lives of the Israelites he was supposed to lead. It didn’t strengthen their commitment to Yahweh. It did not draw them into deeper obedience to Torah. He used his strength to make a name for himself, but he did not strengthen those around him.

Might we learn from Samson this week. When a wrong occurs to us, whether an intentional slight or a common misunderstanding, might we seek to understand, to repair, and to reconcile. It takes a lot more effort to round up three hundred foxes and burn the grain fields with their fiery tails than it does to repent, forgive, and heal a people. Let’s be healers not destroyers this week.

Prayer:
O Lord, give us more patience, endurance, and calm than we can manifest on our own.
Take our rage and replace it with your reconciliation.
Help us to lower the temperature in our families, our neighborhoods, and our workplaces.
Make us agents of your peace today.
Amen.

-The Rev. Andrew C. Whaley, Head of Staff
Wednesday Communion Service
The Wednesday morning Communion Service began again last Wednesday. You are invited to join us in worship at 7:00 AM in the Columbarium. Please wear a mask and practice social distancing.
Fellowship Parking Lot Picnic - Last one for the spring!
Come sit out in the parking lot with your church family this Wednesday night. The final Parking Lot Picnic for the spring will be Wednesday, May 5. Register for dinner online or by calling the office by Tuesday at noon. Registration is required by noon on Tuesday the week of the event either using the online link in the This Week @ RCPC or by calling the church office, 540-343-5541 x 111 and leaving Anne Currin a message. Meals are a suggested donation of $7 for an individual 12 years and up, $5 for children ages 4-11, and free for 3 and younger, with a max of $20 for a family. If you have made a reservation, please plan to attend. We always welcome new volunteers! Please contact Matt Cook at matt@cookmail.us or 540-903-4685 if you are interested.

May 5 Menu:
P
We Need You! Church Receptionists Needed!
Are you involved in a ministry at RCPC? RCPC has an opportunity for discipleship for you by simply greeting folks that come into Raleigh Court each day. We are the "Church of the Open Door" and we need you to help us be hospitable to our guests. We will have a receptionist again to greet guests beginning in June. Please see if your schedule would allow you to serve in this ministry. The morning shift is 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM and the afternoon shift is 12:30 PM to 4:00 PM.
The front door will remain locked. We will have a button to push at the receptionist desk to let guest into the church as needed. We want all receptionists to feel comfortable with being at church. We will continue to wear a mask when a guest walks up to the desk for assistance. Please consider serving RCPC through this ministry, please contact Anne Currin at anne@rcpres.org.
We especially need volunteers on Wednesdays. Please contact Anne today!
Amazon Smile to Benefit the Rent Assistance Funds Distributed by PCC and RAM
Already shopping on Amazon? Why not have your purchases support RCPC's support of the rent assistance funds distributed by PCC and RAM at the same time! AmazonSmile is a simple way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. AmazonSmile is available at smile.amazon.com on your web browser and can be activated in the Amazon Shopping app for iOS and Android phones. When you shop AmazonSmile, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection, and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added benefit that AmazonSmile will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.

The videos below show you how to quickly set RCPC as your AmazonSmile charity.
Stump the Preacher Summer Sermon Series
"All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work." -2 Timothy 3:16-17

Does ALL scripture have a purpose? Do ALL the words of the Bible guide us to the Living Word, Jesus Christ? We're going to find out this summer! From April 11 to May 16, you have a chance to submit ANY passage from the Bible (the sixty-six books of the Protestant canon) that you'd like to challenge your ministers to preach from. After May 16, we will draw 13 scriptures at random that will be the preaching texts for the summer.

Baby & Toddler Nursery
We will be re-opening our Baby and Toddler Nursery returned last Sunday for the 11:00 AM worship services. Due to COVID precautions, families will register their baby or toddler for a space in the nursery. There will be 4 spaces available in the Baby Nursery and 4 spaces available in the Toddler Nursery. We will have two caregivers in each room. We have hired two Nursery Caregivers and are seeking to fill two more paid positions for our nursery. If you know someone who may be interested in this position, please let Leigh Sackett know leigh@rcpres.org

We are also seeking one adult volunteer each Sunday to serve in our nursery. This is a wonderful way to honor the vows of baptism and get to know the young families and the littlest ones of our church.

Sign-up your here to volunteer or you can contact Leigh Sackett. Once you have signed up, Leigh will contact you with any additional information you need to know about volunteering in the nursery. Thank you for your consideration in being a part of this ministry!
Adult Small Groups for 2020-2021
There are available spaces in our small groups for new participants. If you have not been a part of small groups in the past now is a great time to join! Sign-ups for small groups will be made available online, or you can contact Leigh Sackett if you would like more information about our small groups.
Our small groups will be reflecting on the previous Sunday worship service sermon and the Sunday scripture. A weekly small group lesson is provided, participants discuss and share how the word read and proclaimed connects to our world today and to our personal lives and experiences.
Below is a list of our small group offerings and facilitators.

  • Andrew Whaley – Mondays, 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm – Room 201
  • David Dixon – Tuesdays, 4:30 pm – Church Parking Lot
  • Jennifer Bryant (30-something women’s group) – Tuesdays, 8:00 pm - Rotating Backyards
  • Leigh Sackett - Wednesdays, 7:00 pm - Gathering Area
  • Elise Hansard - Fridays, 10:00 am – via Zoom
Habitat for Humanity Apostles Build 2021
Once again, RCPC will be participating in Habitat for Humanity’s Apostles Build. This year’s build will be a two-story, front-gabled house for Desanek Trent and her two children. We are currently scheduled to sponsor work at 1932 Moorman Ave. Roanoke 24017 on Wednesday, May 5, and Saturday, May 15. The workday is from 8:00 AM-2:00 PM. We need up to 10 construction volunteers for each day. No experience is required but OSHA regulations require that construction volunteers be 16 or older. Habitat will provide all necessary tools, safety equipment, water, coffee, and snacks. Volunteers need to bring their own lunch and a refillable water bottle. Work gloves are strongly suggested. Dress for the weather and wear sturdy closed-toed shoes. Our past experiences with Habitat for Humanity have been positive and rewarding. Those interested in participating can sign-up online here.
Pump-A-Pint Spring Blood Drive - Another Success!
RCPC has once again proved itself to be not only the church of the open door but the church willing to roll up its sleeves! Our blood drive held on April 27 saw 43 donors cross the threshold and 41 units were collected! That’s 123 lives saved.

Mark your calendars now for the two remaining 2021 Blood Drives: July 6 and October 5. The July drive is available on RedCrossBlood.org or contact Lillian Alexander at alexanderlj@yahoo.com if you’d like to schedule your appointment now!

Thank you for your continued support of this vital mission!
Gratefully,
The RCPC Pump-a-Pint Mission Group
West End Center Spring Bling April 30 – May 3
The Annual Spring Bling for West End Center will once again take on a new form this year. Last year we held our auction online with great success! This year we will once again host an online auction and a live raffle of the Greg Osterhaus painting “A Small Study of Two Cows”. You can get your raffle ticket by going to www.westendcenterforyouth.org and click on the “Events” tab. 

New this year we will be having a recorded fashion show on Facebook Live throughout the auction. You will get to see those smiling children showing off adorable outfits just like you were there at the Hotel Roanoke. If you haven’t “liked” our Facebook page, go to the page and click on the “like” button at the top of the page. (www.facebook.com/westendcenterforyouth) This will be the best way to follow the event all weekend. 

This fundraiser helps support our summer program which provides safe, educational, and fun, low-cost all-day care. West End Center supports underserved families in the Roanoke Valley giving children experiences to equip them with the developmental assets they need to become productive, responsible adults.

The Auction will begin at 5:00 PM on Friday, April 30 and end on Monday, May 3 at Noon. The drawing for the painting raffle will be at the end of the auction. You will see the auction go live on our Facebook page at 5:00 PM. We have close to 100 items of all kinds and values from gift cards to restaurants, a weekend at Smith Mountain Lake, photography sessions, artwork, and more! There is surely something for everyone—including gifts for Mother’s Day!
MAY BIRTHDAYS
May 1-9
1 Kirk Grove
Matthew Hutchinson
2 Amy Hodges
Barry Marsh
3 Louis Newton
Frank Ward
Grace Ward
5 Janet Miller
6 Chip Morris
8 Trisha O’Quill
Stella Snead
Grace Whitehead
9 Sarah Elizabeth Walton
The Herald
The Herald is a monthly newsletter that comes in your mailbox the first of each month. The deadline for articles is the 10th of each month to appear in the next month's newsletter.
This Week @ RCPC
The This Week @ RCPC is published every Monday morning via email. This publication is for weekly activities at RCPC. If you would like to receive this email please contact Julie Satterwhite at julie@rcpres.org or call the church office at 540-343-5541 x 107. The deadline for the This Week is noon on Wednesday prior to the Monday publication.
Prayer Requests
Alice Cabaniss, Rachel Erb Birch, Brandan Brown, Gail Cordes, Dawn Blakeman, Mary Frances Donnelly, Sue and Jerry Garrett, Bill Gordge, Mary Hampton, James Harrison, Pieter Jager, Dick Kepley, Susan Lindstrom, Helen Lovelace, Roger Lovern, Bernard Marie, Ann Moomaw, Susan Moore, Bob Nelson, Jennifer Owen-O'Quill, Lois Pollash, Marion Raney, Bryan Tims, and all caregivers.

Our sincere thoughts and prayers are extended to Becky Marsh and family
on the passing of her brother, Larry Hinebaugh on April 26.

(Prayers request as of Friday, April 23. Names in bold indicate an addition to the prayer list this week.)
Monday, April 26
9:00 AM - Preschool
10:00 AM - Monday Morning Prayer Group
1:00 PM - Small Group - Whaley
7:00 PM - Session
7:00 PM - Confirmation Class (Outside at RCPC)

Tuesday, April 27
9:00 AM - Preschool
12:30 PM - Open Door Prayers
1:30 PM - Blood Drive
4:30 PM - Small Group - Dixon
8:00 PM - Small Group - Bryant

Wednesday, April 28
7:00 AM - Communion Outdoor Worship
9:00 AM - Hunger Mission Packing
9:00 AM - Preschool
3:45 PM - God Alive Hiking
6:00 PM - Fellowship Parking Lot Picnic
7:00 PM - Small Group - Sackett
Thursday, April 29
9:00 AM - Preschool
10:00 AM - Centering Prayer
8:00 PM - Evening Prayer Service

Friday, April 30
9:00 AM - Preschool
10:00 AM - Small Group - Hansard

Saturday, May 1
9:00 AM - Presbytery Meeting

Sunday, May 2
Communion Sunday
9:00 AM - Worship
11:00 AM - Worship
12:15 PM - New Officer Training
5:00 PM - Youth Group - Senior Send Off
NO Youth Bells
1837 Grandin Road SW, Roanoke, Virginia 24015  540.343.5541