The Good News: Weekly Addition February 22, 2023

Dear Church,
On Sunday we have a potluck we host representative from Family Promise of Wake County. These guests will share more about the problem of homelessness in our region and how we can address this need. Our time together will include a church potluck—BBQ provided by the church and side dishes generously brought and shared by participants!

In the spirt of potluck, this week’s “Weekly Addition” features several smaller morsels about what God is doing among the community of faith here at FPCoG. Most of these tidbits can also be found in the March Spire, but I wanted to bring them a little extra attention as well.

Always Being Reformed
On Sunday we concluded our sermon series on “The Church: Then, Now, Next” by looking at a refrain of the protestant Reformation: “The Church reformed, Always being reformed according to the word of God.” This article says more about the meaning of this phrase and also shares a story about how it is not solely a presbyterian notion.

Lent Begins tonight, with Ash Wednesday service at 7:00pm
The season leading to ester begins tonight with a service of prayer, song, and imposition of Ashes reminding us of our fragility and dependence on God who loves us. A recorded Ash Wednesday prayer will also be posted on our website in place of a livestream of the service.

If you cannot join us tonight at 7:00pm, come on Sunday at 11:00am for worship[. Each Week in worship, in addition to prayer, hymns, fellowship, and praise, we will have an item available for pick up. These items are offered as a reminder of the ways God sustains us through the wilderness of life. Sunday’s “sign” are our Lenten devotionals for 2023.

2023 Vision Update:
In January’s edition of the Spire newsletter, I wrote about church leaders (session, deacons, and staff) exploring an emerging vision for FPCoG, rooted in the idea of serving our “neighbors.” The session continued this conversation at its February meeting and approved the following recommendations:
1. Appoint a group who can help develop a consensus among the congregation for a vision of FPCoG rooted in the image of being neighborly towards our local, regional, and global communities.

2. Complete a demographic study of our region to better know who our neighbors are and what their needs might be.

The next step will be identifying people to serve on a “Vision Team” described above and identifying resources to help us complete a demographic study in a helpful way. The Team will be composed of active members of session, the deacons as well as the congregation. If you might be interested in serving and helping clarify the call God is issuing to FPCoG for its ministry now and into the future, please contact me or Mike Koenig, the Clerk of Session.

Share FPCoG with Each Other and Our Neighbors!
FPCoG is an active church! To help others know this (and to stay up to date yourself), please consider following and asking others to follow us on Facebook or Instagram!
http://www.facebook.com/firstpresbyterianchurchofgarner
http://www.instagram.com/firstpresbyterianchurchgarner/

If you have pictures of church events, please share them as well! Send to adminsitration@firstpresbyterianchurchofgarner.com
Stephanie Taylor, our church admin, and our Instagram Volunteer Susie Knabe will take it from there!

The Lord Bless and Keep you,
Rev. Ben

Announcements:

*In-Person/Livestream Worship: Join us each Sunday at 11:00am in person or online (via Facebook live) for worship!

See and share the Sunday, February 19 service, that concluded  our sermon series: The Church: Then, Now, Next.

Facebook: https://fb.watch/iSd64kwqdS/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TiANMP9HILw&t=76s

On Sunday, February 26, we mark the first Sunday of Lent by proclaiming with trust how “Again & Again…God Is With Us” Explore with us God’s sustaining presence through times of wilderness and temptation. Join us after worship also for a Potluck lunch as we hear more details about homelessness in our area and what we can continue to do as a church to address this need with faith, hope, and love.

Online participation via Facebook Live: https://www.facebook.com/firstpresbyterianchurchofgarner

*Masks are welcome but optional during in-person worship as we continue to contend with COVID and an emerging flu season. We also ask everyone to be still mindful of social distancing and respectful of the personal space of others even as we give thanks for being together.*

*Lent Begins February 22! Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, the 40 days before easter. On Feb. 22, at 7:00pm FPCoG will host a service of prayer, music, and imposition of ashes to mark this time. We will also be joined by friends from White Memorial in Willow Springs, NC as we share the journey towards the cross and beyond together.

* Walking Group: Join the Walking Group each Tuesday at 6pm. We currently meet at Cadence Senior Living Center (200 Minglewood Dr.). Dress warmly! If you have any questions, contact the church office at 919-772-0727. In the event there is inclement weather, we’ll just gather the following week.

*February is Heart Health Month and our Wellness Activities Team is sharing helpful advice (like joining the Tuesday Walking Group!) for maintaining a healthy heart lifestyle each Sunday in worship. Come and see how you can feel God’s wholeness in body, mind, and spirit.

*Boy Scout Troop 392 is having a Krispy Kreme fundraiser. Please contact the church office at (919) 772-0727 for information on how to get your certificate for a dozen glazed donuts. The cost is $15 for each certificate which can be used at any Krispy Kreme location across the United States. (Not valid for in grocery store purchases.)

* The 2023 Flower Chart is up! The flower chart is posted in the hallway and ready for sign-ups. The cost of the flowers for the coming year is $40.00.

* Family Promise Potluck Luncheon: Family Promise is fast approaching! Our time to host will be April 2 – 9, 2023. To kick off our service to this mission we will host a luncheon and short program about Family Promise on February 26th. Representatives from the Wake County office will give a short presentation on homelessness and its current trends and will answer any question we have. The Missions team will provide the main course – BBQ. Bring your best side dishes and desserts! Come learn about this mission we have supported for 7 years!

*CNCB and Wellness Hygiene Item Drive: Community Navigators, Community Builders Youth group is planning a Women’s Health Event on Saturday, March 18. As part of the preparation for the event, the Wellness Activities Ministry team is coordinating with CNCB to have a Women’s Hygiene Item Drive beginning on February 12. Items can be brought to the church office during the week or placed in a bin in the Library on Sunday’s. The collection will run through March 12.

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