First Presbyterian Church  |  701 Florida Avenue  |  Bristol, TN 37620  |  423-764-7176  |

In This Issue
About Windows
A Pastoral Musing
Hear of Heroes of the Reformation Wednesday Night
Contact Peggy by Sunday to Learn More about Spring Ethiopia Trip
Children Follow the Good Shepherd
Vanilla Wafers for Fairmount
Present and Correct in Green and Brown
Music Notes
In the Pulpit Sunday
Pray for One Another
Gifts to the Church
FPC's Elders and Deacons
Church Calendar
Deadline for contributions to Windows is the Monday of the week of publication. The newsletter is emailed a minute after midnight on Thursday morning.

Windows is a publication of First Presbyterian Church, Bristol, TN. Please direct questions and suggestions to the editor, Kathy Acuff,
October 15
19th Sunday after Pentecost
Exodus 32:1-14
Matthew 22:1-14
Guess Who's Coming To Dinner?
Rev. Steve Playl
O Word of God Incarnate
Lord, Speak to Me That I May Speak
O Jesus, I Have Promised
God Is My Shepherd
Sanctuary Choir
Last Sunday's Attendance
8:30: 50; 11:00: 110


on First Presbyterian Church

October 12, 2017
From Dave Welch
A Pastoral Musing

Over the past six weeks, we at FPC have been blessed with incredible teaching from Dr. Martin Dotterweich, who has shared with us the life, writings, and impact of Martin Luther, in celebration of the 500th anniversary of the posting of his famous 95 Theses. I am struck that when Martin Luther posted the Theses, it was a simple and common form of communication and teaching. Maybe not quite the spam or junk mail of his day, it nevertheless served a very similar purpose. (By the way, if you missed Dr. Dotterweich's teaching, you still have a chance to hear him next Wednesday, October 18, at 6:15 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall, when he presents "The Heroes of the Reformation," the capstone to this fall's Wednesday programs.)
What has captured my attention from the series has been the idea that Martin Luther is a giant among theologians throughout Christendom. He is someone who changed not only the course of theological and biblical study but also, as Dr. Dotterweich cogently argued, of all history. And yet, Martin Luther was a simple monk, who served in a fairly common, some would even say, backwater location, and whose teaching and preaching influenced and transformed first his own life and then, like the stone thrown into the pond, rippled out to change the world. One man in conversation, dialogue, reflection, and yes, I am saying it, "wrestling" with God was personally transformed and then used by God to transform others. The actions of one have had profound positive and life-giving impact, just like the ripple in the pond, and now affect you and me some 500 years later.
This week I'm reminded as well that the actions of one may also transform lives negatively, actions that bring death, grief, and profound sorrow to many. The quandary is why or how does this happen, or more to the point, why does God allow this to happen? The theological word for this dilemma is theodicy. I have never found a satisfactory answer. I'm not sure there is one, and much better thinkers than I have tried to find one. The only comfort for me in theodicy continues to be that God's own son suffered and died, which means that God has experienced the same depths of despair, grief, sorrow that I, that we, do.
In the mystery of incarnation, Jesus took on human form, not like putting on a coat but becoming everything we are, experiencing everything that we do. At a simple level, Christ and God feel the simple realities of humanness, hunger, thirst, and anger, and the most profound realities of fear, grief, and even death. It is because of this truth that Paul wrote to the church in Rome, near the end of his own life, a profound statement that was meant as an encouragement for faithful living: "For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38-39). In this only do I find solace and comfort, praying that it will comfort and solace you as well. 
Hear of Heroes of the Reformation Wednesday Night
Next Wednesday, October 18, Dr. Martin Dotterweich will return to our Adult Learning segment to follow up on his series Martin Luther and the 95 Theses with "The Heroes of the Reformation." This talk with be the capstone to an incredible semester of lectures by a gifted communicator and teacher.
Before the evening programs for adults, youth, and children, we will share a fellowship dinner of beef stew, corn, cornbread, salad, and dessert at 5:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. The Adult Learning segment will follow at 6:20; the Middle School Gathering and Wednesday Night Kids will meet separately at 6:00; and High School Small Groups will meet at 7:00.
Contact Peggy by Sunday to Learn More about Spring Ethiopia Trip
Happy students in Dembi Dollo during our 2012 mission trip.

Our next Ethiopia Mission trip has been tentatively planned for early spring of 2018. If you are interested in knowing more about this wonderful opportunity to serve and to learn, please contact Peggy Hill by this Sunday, October 15. Peggy is available by phone at 423-956-0209 and by email at
Children Follow the Good Shepherd

The children of First Presbyterian Church want to buy a sheep for a family in need. A sheep from Heifer International costs $125. They began contributing their Sunday School offering toward this goal last week and will continue through December. Parents, please share this information with your children and talk to them about this opportunity to learn and help. Kids, remember to bring an offering each Sunday.
Vanilla Wafers for Fairmount
vanilla wafers
We are continuing to collect boxes of vanilla wafers for snacks for Fairmount Elementary School students. About 80% of the children get help with lunch, but their families can't afford to buy snacks to get them through the afternoon slump. That's where we come in. We collect the snacks from our generous church family, and the Christian Hands Ministry folks make sure they get to the school. Please bring your boxes to the Little Red House in the Fellowship Hallway to help our friends at Fairmount get through the long fall afternoons. Thank you!
Present and Correct in Green and Brown
Lawns around town are green but flecked with fallen leaves. These next few weeks will most likely be the last hurrah for the mowing season. While there is still any kind of encouragement from the weather, however, the grass will continue to call for our attention. We are on it! When you come to church this Sunday, you will see the handiwork, or perhaps we should say the footiwork, of JB Madison. David Moore will make all presentable and correct the following week.
Join our mowing team! You can sign up in any season by contacting Team Captain Randy Cook. You can reach him by email at or by phone at 423-956-1541. We welcome men and women, adults and teens, and even small children can move debris to the curb. If you're unfamiliar with Scag mowers, Randy will be happy to give you a lesson on our Tiger Cat. 
Music Notes
Sunday's music participants: Sanctuary Choir.
Sunday's music: Today's anthem, God Is My Shepherd, is an adaptation of the 23rd Psalm by the great composer Antonin Dvořák (1841-1904). This psalm is from Biblical Sings, a song cycle that originally was written for solo alto voice and piano
Antonin Dvořák
accompaniment. The cycle is not only considered the culmination of Dvořák's song oeuvre but also is a work of great spiritual depth, in which the composer speaks to God of his anxieties, trust, and joy. It is also the most fundamental expression of Dvořák's humble faith in God, without any trace of ceremonial pathos. The songs are deliberately divested of all signs of flamboyance and are as enchanting for their absolute simplicity, humility, and sincerity as they are for their pure musical invention. With Biblical Songs, Dvořák attained an even higher level of intimacy, coupled with the minimal use of musical devices. The songs all share a rare intensity of emotion and exceptional melodic beauty. At the same time, however, while maintaining stylistic cohesion, the whole cycle conceals within it an unusual diversity of expression: from moments of painful anxiety, then tranquil meditation, to the joy of human existence.
Organist's footnotes: In October we are exploring new compositions from the Augsburg Organ Library's publication, Reformation, recently released for the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation.
The tune "Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier" (Prelude) was composed by Johann Rudolph Ahle (1625-1673). Ahle was organist at St. Blasius Church in Mühlhausen and was known for his sacred choral music. This setting was composed by Wayne L. Wold (b. 1954), who is Professor of Music and Department Chair, Hood College, Frederick , Maryland. Mr. Wold is also Director of Music Ministry at First Lutheran Church, Ellicott City, Maryland.
"Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele" (Offertory) is a Lutheran hymn in German, with lyrics by Johann Franck and a melody by Johann Crüger from 1649. A song for Lutheran Communion, it first appeared in 1649 in Crüger's hymnal Geistliche Kirchen-Melodien and later in the 1653 edition of his Praxis pietatis melica. The hymn was often set to music to be played or sung under communion. This setting was composed by Artur Kapp (1878-1952), who was Professor and Conductor at the Tallinn Conservatory, Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre, Estonia.
"Wir glauben all an einen Gott" (Postlude) is a Lutheran hymn, a paraphrase of the creed, by Martin Luther and first published in Johann Walter's chorale hymnal, Eyn geystlich Gesangk Buchleyn. It was used in several musical settings, including Kleine Geistliche Konzerte I, SWV 303, by Heinrich Schütz, and Johann Sebastian Bach's Clavier-Übung III, BWV 680 and 681. Jacob B. Weber (b. 1988), the composer of this setting, is Kantor at Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Dearborn, Michigan.
In the Pulpit Sunday
Steve Playl

The Reverend Steve Playl was born in Madisonville, Kentucky, and graduated from Western Kentucky University and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Steve served as pastor of Woodlawn Baptist Church for 28 years. He is currently the staff chaplain at Bristol Regional Medical Center, writes a weekly column for the Bristol Herald Courier, and teaches at King University as an adjunct instructor. He and his wife, Sammie, have lived in Bristol for 30 years; they have four children and many grandchildren. In addition to their ministries, Sammie and Steve enjoy being the caretakers of their vintage house in the Historic Fairmount neighborhood and traveling ... every chance they get.
Pray for One Another
An extensive list of prayer concerns, "Pray for One Another," is available for pickup at the church each week.
In Our Prayers
Becky Bussler
Wayne Creel (Sherry Ratliff's father)
DeeDee Galliher
Ron Grubbs
Vivian Hill
Don Moneyhun
Tony Raccioppo
Sam Samuel
Cassie & Michael Thornton
To the Church Triumphant
Jean Harrison Eller
October 5, 2017
Our love and sympathy are with Jeff Looney in the death of his father, Addison C. Looney Sr., October 2 in Bristol.
Birthday Prayer Fellowship
October 15      Sue Faucette, Kristi Johnson
October 17      Ann Abel
October 18      Anna Connolly, Mariel Story, Laura Ann Warner
October 20      Dyan Buck
Gifts to the Church
We gratefully acknowledge recent gifts to the Music Projects Fund in memory of these individuals:
Helen Dorsey: from David & Dee Ginn
Diane Flannagan: from Fred & Heidi Harkleroad
FPC's Elders and Deacons
Here, by popular demand, is our roster of current Elders and Deacons. PCUSA seal small
Class of 2017
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Ann Abel
Aaron Brooks
Anna Booher
Beth Flannagan
Randy Cook
Lee Galliher
Tom King
Debbie McMillin
Pete Holler
Ernie Pennington
Stuart Parker
Han Ong
John Vann
Chuck Thompson
Pete Stigers
Class of 2017
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Jim Mayden
Adam Abel
George Linke
Mark Mervis
Nancy Butterworth
Greg Roberts
Robin North
David Ginn
Nate Sproles
Jordan Pennington
Rett Stocstill
Bill Whisnant
Byron Schiesz
Ann Woods
Church Calendar
Sunday, October 15
8:30 a.m.       Worship, Fellowship Hall
9:45 a.m.       Sunday School
11:00 a.m.     Worship, Sanctuary
4:00 p.m.       Evangelism & Outreach Committee, Room 117
Monday, October 16
5:30 p.m.       Adult Handbells
Tuesday, October 17
9:00 a.m.       Staff Meeting, Room 117
10:00 a.m.     Morning Prayer Group, Conference Room
7:00 p.m.       Boy Scout Troop 3, Scout Wing
Wednesday, October 18
9:30 a.m.       Women's DVD Bible Study, Coffee Klatch Room
4:45 p.m.       Savior's Singers Children's Choir
5:15 p.m.       Baby & Toddler Care, Rooms 34-36
5:30 p.m.       Fellowship Dinner, Fellowship Hall
6:00 p.m.       Wednesday Night Kids
6:00 p.m.       Middle School Gathering
6:00 p.m.       Pastor Nominating Committee, Room 117
6:15 p.m.       Adult Learning Program, Fellowship Hall
7:00 p.m.       High School Small Groups
7:15 p.m.       Sanctuary Choir
7:30 p.m.       8:30 Worship Team, Fellowship Hall
Thursday, October 19
7:00 a.m.       Men's Bible Study, Parlor
12:00 p.m.     Noon Bible Study, Room 117