Save the date! We hope you can join us for our Picnic at the Park Sunday, July 15, at Gypsy Hill Park Golf Pavilion at 11:00 am.

 

Weddings
Interested in having your wedding at First Presbyterian Church?  Please see our updated guidelines here.

Sunday Worship
Adult Sunday School  10:00-10:45 am (now meeting in church parlor)
Youth Sunday School  10:00-10:45 am
Elementary Sunday School  10:00-10:45
Church Nursery: 10:30 am-12:30 pm
Chancel Choir Rehearsal: 10:30 am 
Morning Worship: 11:00 am
Youth Group 12-2 pm (alternates with Youth Sunday School, please call to check times)
 
Wednesdays 
Bible Study: Wednesdays at 10:00 am in the Library 
Chancel Choir Rehearsal: 7:30 pm 
 
This week's Bulletin-> Click here 

This month's Newsletter -> Click here

Visit the Shenandoah Presbytery Website -> http://shenpres.org/

Visit the Synod of the Mid-Atlantic Website - > http://www.synatlantic.org/

This month's birthdays - > Click here

What's up?


Haiti Education Foundation School Fundraiser Ends June 30 
 -  Our fundraiser to support our adopted school, St. Thomas, ends at the end of this month.  Your funding ensures that the students of St. Thomas can continue their education and hopes for a brighter future in a country with no public education system and widespread poverty.  Thank you for your help and prayers for St. Thomas school and all the teachers and children in Haiti!



Can you help the Food Pantry?
 Items currently needed for our pantry include egg noodles, cereal, and grape jelly.  Canned fruit and canned vegetables (especially peas), are always welcome.  Donations may be brought to the church office or placed in the canvas hamper in the narthex.  Please remember to check the expiration date on donated food!



 
        St. Thomas School students in Lavanneau, Haiti.

June 2018

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Molly Morris has graduated from Seminary!
 For those of you in our congregation who are new in the last three years, you may not know this name.  Molly Morris?  Who’s she?
  
Molly is not only a child of Jamie (and Page) Morris (who you probably do know), Molly was a child of this church.  She served as a Young Adult Volunteer in the Presbyterian Church in college.  She spent three years working on her M. Div. at San Francisco Theological Seminary, during which time she preached her first sermon at this church.  She served a mission semester abroad with refugees in France.  She served a church this year as an associate for family and children’s ministries. She has passed all the ordination exams and hurdles required by the PC(USA), which are steeper than any other Protestant denomination.  And still she is not done.  She cannot yet be ordained.  There is still one more requirement.  This year Molly will be doing her Clinical Pastoral Education, in which she will serve—most likely—in a hospital setting processing the psychological, pastoral, and personal implications of the multiple levels of interactions, health, responses, family dynamics and stressors that happen to human beings.  Then she will receive a “next” call to the form of ministry for which God has been preparing her.  It is easy to see that Molly has been engaged in ministry all along.  And when the next call comes, it will be “easy” to see why Molly needed the preparation she has received—including all the hard days that necessarily come along with being a human.  And then she will be required to take continuing education all the years of her “formal” ministry, until she retires.

Looking backwards and forwards from this moment, we recognize the arch of transition.  We celebrate this passage for her.  And we can learn something for ourselves.  
First of all, it is in looking backward that we gain perspective on how God has been readying us for new things (Moses hidden in the cliff of the rock while God passes by sees only the back of God – God reveals that he has been there).  We should not look backward with longing – lest our tears turn us into a pillar of salt and we miss the next stage (think Lot’s wife!).

Second of all, there is ministry all along the way for all of us.  Jesus’ disciples had to be ongoing learners in their journey with him, as he continued to teach them and reveal to them what the kingdom of heaven is like.

Some requirements are hard.  And we’d rather circumvent them.  “Can you suffer what I suffer?”, asks Jesus.  “Take up your cross and follow me,” says our Lord.  It’s not always a walk in the park, but it is always a walk toward resurrection.

There are days we’d rather not go to class, frankly.  We have this treasure in earthen vessels.  Jesus’ disciples couldn’t stay awake in the garden.

And days we don’t get it, even though we’ve been disciples for a long, long time.  “Have you been with me all this time, O ye of little faith?”

But even when, maybe especially when things look particularly bleak, the Lord shows us that yet, once again, God is doing a new thing.  The empty tomb, the resurrection appearances, breakfast on the beach, the coming of the Holy Spirit, the acts of the Apostles – a HANDFUL of ordinary humans sent to proclaim the GOOD NEWS, teaching everything you have been taught.

You’re IT, beloved, as much as Molly is.  Pray for Molly as she crosses this threshold.  Pray for yourselves that you may be faithful ministers in this priesthood of all believers.  Pray for your church that we may be awake and aware to God’s good plan at work in us and through us with JOY and LOVE. Let us “press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 3:14).  And may everything that we do give glory to God, Creator, Word, and Spirit One – Alleluia!

Your sister in the journey,

Pastor Karen