Dear Friends, as always, I hope this note finds you well and in good spirit, despite whatever you may be facing in life at this time. Know you are loved and appreciated, greatly.
A Memorial Service in celebration of the life of Rollie Blondeau will be held in our Sanctuary tomorrow, Saturday May 18, at 2:00 p.m. A reception for the family will follow the service in the East Wing of the Sanctuary. If you are able, I hope you will come and support Rollie’s daughters, Elisse and Carrie, and their families, as we gather to celebrate the life of a truly remarkable man whose voice and musical talents enhanced our worship of God so eloquently. Rollie died on May 3.
On the front page of our worship bulletins, perhaps you have noticed a change. Under the Celtic cross you will see the words “Serve…Grow…Praise…Connect.” As you see, the first letter of each word is the church’s acronym: SGPC. The session has chosen these words, with accompanying description, as the session’s and congregation’s focus for 2019. Thus for 2019, our life and work will be characterized by the following values and vision: SERVE all people as God calls, Christ equips, and the Holy Spirit inspires. GROW disciples through the love of God in worship, prayer, study, and fellowship. PRAISE God for God’s goodness through word, song, and deed. CONNECT with our world to fulfill Christ’s command to love one another. I hope these words, and accompanying descriptions, might inspire and encourage your worship and service to Jesus Christ as you participate in the life of SGPC in 2019.
As the Lord’s Day, Sunday May 19, the Fifth Sunday of Easter approaches, a few items of highlight.
Adult Sunday School begins at 9:00 a.m. The Topics Class meets in Room #4 and will be led by Jill Haus. Jill’s topic is “Spiritual Disciplines for Vacation.” The Bible Study Class will meet in the church’s Library. It is led by Karen Blevins and is a study of the book of Jonah. Looking ahead, next Sunday, May 26, the Topics and Bible Study classes will be combined for the summer months. The combined classes for the summer will meet in Room #4 at 9:00 a.m. Jill Haus will begin the combined classes for the summer with the topic, “Praying the Psalms.”
Our Summer Food Drive begins this week in support of The Caring Place. Our item for this Sunday is breakfast CEREAL. Please bring cereal to share with our neighbors in need. During the summer months, The Caring Place receives more volume of need as children who are on no charge to reduced charge breakfasts and lunches in GISD are off for the summer. Please give generously in support of our underserved children, youth, and their families.
During worship this Sunday, we will honor our graduating senior, class of 2019, Aubrey Ford. We will present Aubrey with a study Bible during worship. A reception for Aubrey will follow worship in the East Wing of the Sanctuary. A basket will be set up at the reception for you to drop off a card of congratulation for Aubrey.
Immediately following worship this Sunday, May 19, and before Aubrey Ford’s reception, a called congregational meeting will take place. The purpose of this called congregational meeting is to elect four elders and four deacons to three-years terms. Those to be nominated for elder are Ellis Gill (second term), George Hejtmanek (second term), Melinda Lacy, and Barbara Pennington. Those names to be placed in nomination for deacons are Lynn Chapman (second term), Joyce Gill (second term), Fred Thompson, and Byron Williams. The floor will be open for further nominations as required by our Book of Order. Secondly, the call of the congregational meeting includes a proposal “to approve extending by 6 months the terms of service for existing classes of elders and deacons, to end December 31.” The purpose of this second item of business at the called congregational meeting is to move our rotation of elders and deacons from July to January each year. Rotating officers in July poses a problem for many of our officer-elects, as well for me in training new officers. Many of our members travel during the summer months, making it difficult to be present for officer training and ordination/installation in July. The session cannot automatically extend terms of elders and deacons. It requires congregational approval. After congregational approval of a six-month extension of officer rotations from July to December 31 yearly, Mission Presbytery will have to concur for the extension to be granted. I hope you understand the reasoning for moving our officer rotations from July to December 31, yearly. Should you have any questions, do not hesitate to speak with me, your clerks of session, Mike and Ann Weir, or any of our elders.
And last but certainly not least, this Sunday afternoon, May 19, at 3:00 p.m. in our Sanctuary, we will gather for the second SGPC Forum on Bible, Theology, and Culture. Our topic for this Forum is “Immigration.” Mark Kinzler, an Austin attorney who specializes in immigration law, will present the program. I hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to reasonably explore an issue that is front and center in our culture today.
Do good work.
I will see you Sunday if you are able to attend.
Grace and Peace, Pastor Bill