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The Pastoral Staff Letter

The Rev. Dr. Fred R. Anderson - May 23, 2013

A Look at this Week’s Events

 
To Check Last Minute Changes
in the Calendar,
Go to www.mapc.com/calendar.

 

Thursday, May 23 – Psalm 62; Luke 13:31-35
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space
Shelter Dinner, 6:30 pm, Parish Hall
End-Of-Year Choir Party, 6:30 pm, Roof Garden

Friday, May 24 – Psalm 65; Luke 14:1-11
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space

Saturday, May 25 – Psalm 98; Luke 14:12-24
CHURCH HOUSE CLOSED

Sunday, May 26, 2013
Trinity Sunday

Worship Schedule

Worship at 10:30 am and 7:30 pm
Infant Nursery – 4th Floor Phillips Building, 9:15 am – 12:15 pm
Toddler Nursery – 4th Floor Church House, 9:15 am – 12:15 pm

Worship: This Sunday the Rev. Rebecca S. Jones is preaching at the morning and evening service. Her sermon is entitled “God Revealed” and is based on Proverbs 8:1-4, 22-31; Psalm 8; Romans 5:1-5; and John 16:12-15.

Children’s Worship at 10:30 am: Following the Lesson for Young Christians, the children 3-8 are invited to go with Millie Tourtelot and her support teachers, to Children’s Bible Study in the Phillips Lounge. They return to their parents during the singing of the Doxology so that they may participate in the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. When there is a baptism, the children return earlier than the Doxology in order to be part of the baptism. Millie would be glad to have parents join their children if they are interested in seeing what takes place in this important program.

Summer Choir Rehearsal, 9:30 am, Choir Room

Fellowship Hour, 11:45 am, Church House Lobby

Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space

This Sunday

Change in Worship Schedule begins this Sunday, May 26, Memorial Day Weekend: Worship at 10:30 am and 7:30 pm

It happens every year–someone does not get the word that we moved to a single Sunday morning service on the Memorial Day weekend. It will come as an even greater surprise this year because it is still early in the spring. Please remember, we go to one Sunday morning service this Sunday, May 26, and will continue through Sunday, September 1 (the Labor Day Weekend). We will continue the 7:30 pm service through July, and then go into recess with that evening service until September 8, 2013.

Summer Choir Begins This Sunday, May 26

You’re invited to sing on Sundays during the summer at MAPC! Our Summer Choir provides an opportunity for church members and friends to sing some beautiful choral music together as leaders of worship. Beginning this Sunday, May 26, and continuing through the Sunday of July 28, the Summer Choir will meet on Sunday mornings for a rehearsal at 9:30 am in preparation for our 10:30 am services. This is a great way to join in on the music-making at MAPC on an informal level; just come as you can! Further information and the music list can be found in the Narthex and on MAPC’s website. Please contact Andrew Henderson at aeh@mapc.com for more information.

Other Events and Announcements

L. Cuttino Alexander is the David H .C. Read Preacher Scholar for 2013

The 2013 winner of the $20,000 David H.C. Read Preacher/Scholar Award is L. Cuttino “Cutno” Alexander, who will receive a Master of Divinity degree from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago in May. In addition to the $20,000 award to Mr. Alexander, three finalist prizes of $1,000 each were given to Karen Salmon Witt, from Union Richmond Theological Seminary; Nicholas Dougherty of the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary; and Alison Leigh Campbell-Taylor of Columbia Theological Seminary. To read more about the competition and Mr. Alexander go to the website. Congratulations to this year’s David H.C. Read Preacher Scholar Committee on a terrific roster of finalists.

Thank you for Participating in the Special Offering: $955 Received ... and Counting!

Thanks to all who supported the special offering received on Sunday. The $955 received will be used to support the Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions, which distributes more than $5 million annually to retired pastors and church workers who are in urgent need of financial and housing assistance. Gifts may also be made anytime online. Please let your generosity guide your giving to this important special offering–thank you!

Preparations Continue for the Youth Trip to Zimbabwe

Preparation meetings are taking place for the youth and young adult delegation from MAPC traveling to Harare, departing JFK on Thursday, June 27, and returning Friday, July 5, 2013. The team will hold its remaining preparation meetings on Sunday at noon: June 2, 16 and 23. If you have questions, please see either Don Wahlig or Millie Tourtelot. Please hold the delegation in prayer as we prepare for this life-changing experience with our partners in Zimbabwe!

Beverly Bartlett Begins Extended Study Leave May 24

A Note from Beverly: I will be taking six weeks of accumulated study leave beginning Memorial Day weekend. During this time I will be doing some course work at General Theological Seminary and related reading and writing, and will also be spending a week at Montreat Presbyterian Conference Center in North Carolina. While I will not be able to set MAPC-related duties aside completely, I will be out of the office, and will attempt to impose strict discipline on my e-mail habits! Members of the Congregational Nurture Committee and other MAPC members and staff will facilitate the regularly planned fellowship programs during these weeks, and the pastoral staff and Deacons will be on call (as they always are) for pastoral concerns. I am very grateful for this opportunity to dive into some studies and make up for some lost educational time over the past several years. It is indeed a gift to have this block of time for study and reflection.

Church Family Night, May 31, 6 pm in the Parish Hall

We’ve got one more Church Family Night coming up before the summer programming break! Please plan to attend the Church Family Night on Friday, May 31, for families with children of all ages. You are also welcome if you do not have children at home–but come prepared for a high noise level and a bit of chaos! We’ll have a nice meal prepared by Chef Ray, beverages for those of all ages, a movie suitable for younger children (and everyone else), and we will open the gym up for older children (elementary-school and older). Please let us know you are coming ASAP, so Ray will know how many to order and cook for. RSVP to Alicia Amazan in the church offices, ara@mapc.com, 212-288-8920 x271.

Next Inquirers Class & Breakfast:
Saturday, June 1, and Sunday, June 2

Have you been thinking about membership at MAPC, or wondering what kind of commitments that might involve? Then join the Rev. Don Wahlig for the upcoming Inquirers Class offered on Saturday, June 1, from 9 am to 1 pm, followed by an Inquirers Coffee on Sunday, June 2, at 9:30 am. Those wishing to become members may join as early as Sunday, June 9.

Saturday, June 1: The Saturday class will be held in the Phillips Lounge beginning at 9 am. The class will conclude by 1 pm. A light breakfast and lunch will be served and dress is casual.

What will we cover? The class begins with some brief introductions and then moves on to explore the meaning of the confession: “Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior.” From there, we shift our focus to the 16th century Protestant Reformation, and specifically to Presbyterianism as it emerged from Geneva to Scotland and then to the United States. Then, while we take a walking tour of the Church House, we will discuss MAPC and our rich history, and the many ministries that emerge as we try to make Jesus Christ Lord in our lives. We will conclude with a review of our expectations of members.

Sunday, June 2: Over coffee, inquirers will gather in the MAPC Shelter Space at 9:30 am to get to know other members of the congregation in a fun, interactive format. The emphasis is on building relationships and gaining a better sense of how you can become engaged in the life of the congregation. For those who are ready to do so, an invitation will be offered to unite with the congregation, as well as instructions for being welcomed into membership as early as June 9 during the 10:30 worship service. If you would like to attend or have questions, please contact Don Wahlig, Associate Pastor for Outreach and Evangelism, at dbw@mapc.com or 212-288-8920 x242.

Meredith Loftis, New Phillips Talbot Global Ministry Fellow, Joins Us June 3

Meredith F. Loftis, who will graduate from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia within a few days, has been selected as the seventh Phillips Talbot Global Ministry Fellow. Meredith has met with the Presbytery’s Committee on Ministry and has been cleared and recommended by them to the Presbytery for ordination and membership in the Presbytery. She was examined by the Presbytery Tuesday, May 21, and will join us June 3. The Presbytery will ask Meredith’s home presbytery, Greater Atlanta Presbytery, to ordain her. That is currently scheduled in Meredith’s home church on Sunday, June 30. To learn more about Meredith, see our website.

Reception for Youth and Family Ministries Resident
Christopher De La Cruz on June 9

Please join us in welcoming our new Youth and Families Resident, Christopher De La Cruz, to MAPC! Chris arrives officially at MAPC on Sunday, June 2, right after graduating from Princeton Theological Seminary with a Masters of Divinity degree. He has an interesting background, having been an atheist for much of his life, and was previously working in the field of journalism before sensing the call to full-time ministry. Chris will be coming with his wife Amanda and baby daughter Amelia, and they are all looking forward to life at MAPC. During his year here, Chris will be working both with our youth to build up our youth program, as well as with younger children and their families.

There will be a luncheon welcoming Chris and honoring our latest class of confirmands on Sunday, June 9, after the 10:30 am worship service. This will be an excellent time to get to know Chris and find out more about what he has planned for his time at MAPC.

Shelter Orientation on Sunday, June 2 at 1 pm – the First Step in a Terrific Family Mission Experience!

The next orientation on homelessness and the MAPC-St. James’ Homeless Shelter will be held Sunday, June 2, at 1 pm in the Shelter Space. Want to learn more about homelessness in New York and what you and your family can do about it? Come to this orientation and learn how you can become part of this life-changing ministry. If you/your family are looking to get involved as a host, this is the first step! RSVP to Shontae Walker at SWalker@StJames.org.

Families with Young Children, Saturday June 8, 10 am to Noon

We’ve got one more Families with Young Children gathering before summer is upon us–and you won’t want to miss the fun with water play on the Roof Garden! As long as the temperature is warm enough, we will have wading pools and the sprinkler on the roof, so bring bathing suits, towels, water shoes (the Roof Garden floor can be slippery when wet), and grownups should wear clothes that can be splashed! Families with children ages 5 and under are invited to join in this time of play and fellowship–older siblings can come, too. We’ll have bagels and snacks, coffee, tea and juice. It’s helpful to have a count for the bagel order, so please let us know you are coming if you can. RSVP to Alicia Amazan in the church offices, ara@mapc.com, 212-288-8920 x271.

Confirmation Sunday, June 9

Our latest class of confirmands, Drew Dye, Alex Van Zijl and Jane Wahlig, are to be confirmed during worship on Sunday, June 9. Please join us this day to congratulate them on their hard work this year and encourage them to engage in our ministries as they become full-fledged members of our congregation. A luncheon for the congregation has been planned after the service to honor the confirmands and welcome our new Youth and Family Ministries Resident, Christopher De La Cruz.

Tuesday Morning Prayer Service

We now hold a weekly Tuesday morning prayer service from 9 to 9:25 am in the Dana Chapel, led by the pastoral staff. The Tuesday morning prayer service is open to all! Please join us!

The staff will continue to pray for those on the prayer list, as they did during the noonday prayer services. A circle of intercessors are also praying daily for those on the prayer list. They are committed to keeping the prayer concerns confidential.

Mothers of Young Children On Summer Break until September

With changing schedules for the summer, the Mothers of Young Children group has decided to take a break from our weekly Monday morning gatherings until September. We do hope to meet for coffee a couple of times before then. If you would like to be put on the e-mail list for this group, or have questions, please contact MAPC member and mom, Lisa Somar, lsomar@estee.com.

Seniors Unlimited, June 10, 3 pm in the Parish Hall
Lisa Chickering, Filmmaker, and “Bravo Portugal!”

We have a wonderful program planned for our June 10 Seniors Unlimited gathering. MAPC member Lisa Chickering will show her film, “Bravo Portugal!” and talk about her life’s adventures and work as a travel writer, photo-journalist and filmmaker with partner Jeanne Porterfield. Lisa and Jeanne, who died in 2010, started out with careers in music and theater, but soon learned that travel, photography, film-making and lecturing were their true callings. They formed a company, made five major films together and many educational film-strips for schools. Lisa and Jeanne were pioneers, being the only women making travel films in their time. Lisa and Jeanne spent twenty-seven years traveling around the United States showing their films and giving travel lectures in major halls and other venues. They also worked as photo-journalists for the New York Times travel section for many years. “Bravo Portugal!” is 28 minutes long, which will leave plenty of time to ask questions and hear more from Lisa about their fascinating, adventurous lives and careers.

A time of refreshments and fellowship will follow the program. Please let us know you are coming so we can be sure to have plenty of cookies and enough chairs. RSVP to Lissette Perez-Erazo in the church offices, 212-288-8920 x245, or lgp@mapc.com.

LEAP Picnic June 1 – Volunteers needed and welcome!

The Spring Cycle of LEAP will conclude on June 1 with the annual LEAP picnic. If you’ve been thinking about volunteering in this ministry, this a wonderful opportunity to get to know the kids we work with on Saturday mornings, week in and week out. Participants develop wonderful relationships with the children, helping to strengthen their reading skills and engaging in fabulous art projects. Once a month activities also include puzzles and computer activities.

For details on the picnic or more information on LEAP in general, please contact Alice Alston at alston@rci.rutgers.edu or by phone at 646-478-7564 or 609-937-2556.

English as a Second Language Continues in the Summer

ESL classes are in recess until June 9 and will continue in the summer months, meeting at 12 noon on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month through August. Weekly classes will begin again in September.

Are you interested in teaching ESL? Due to the enthusiastic response from ESL students, ESL classes have reached capacity. More teachers are always needed and welcome anytime. If you’re wondering whether this ministry is for you, remember that you don’t have to speak a foreign language to teach ESL! You just need a desire to teach and compassion for non-English speakers. Classes are held at MAPC on the 5th Floor on Sunday afternoons from 1-4 pm in fall, winter and spring semesters. Teaching is done in teams, which makes scheduling flexible. If you are interested in teaching ESL or have questions about the program, please contact Sharon M. Davison or Anne Connor.

Oklahoma Tornado Response

Your One Great Hour of Sharing gifts are already being utilized by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance to respond to the devastating tornados in Oklahoma. To support PDA’s ongoing relief and recovery work, you may give online at www.mapc.com, designating your gift to “DR000015 – USA Disasters and Emergencies,” or by writing a check to MAPC and noting “DR000015 – Oklahoma” on the memo line. PDA National Response Team members are already in Oklahoma, working with local churches and coordinating with the Red Cross and Church World Service.

Hurricane Relief Work Opportunities through Presbyterian Hope In Action

Presbyterian Hope In Action (PHIA) is organizing volunteers for ongoing relief work to assist hurricane survivors on Staten Island and Far Rockaway. To learn more, please see our website. If you are unable to lend a hand, you can still help financially! Gifts may be made any time at http://www.mapc.com/giving/donation/hurricane-sandy.

We are also continuing to host groups here at MAPC who are engaged in relief work, including a group of 9 FEMA Corps volunteers who will be with us through early June. Please continue to pray for the people of this city and all whose lives have been turned upside down by Sandy, especially those who have suffered great loss and those reaching out to them in the name of Jesus Christ.

Reflections on the Daily Lectionary on www.mapc.com and Facebook!

Have you been following Dr. Anderson’s reflections on the Book of Revelation? Many of you have enjoyed his classes. Here is an opportunity to read his reflections on a daily basis, as he works his way through the Old Testament, Psalm, Epistle and Gospel lesson from the Daily Lectionary. They are posted on MAPC’s website as well as on the church’s open Facebook page. Posted early in the morning of each day, here is a convenient way for you to begin your day with scripture and reflection. Then “pray” the psalm as your morning prayer and you will be set for the day.

Flowers for the Sanctuary

Is there someone you would like to honor or remember through a gift of flowers for Sunday worship? If so, please contact Lissette Perez-Erazo at lgp@mapc.com or 212-288-8920 x245. The cost for Sunday flowers is $100.

Thank You for Filling the New York Common Pantry Grocery Carts...and Let’s Keep Yorkie Fed!

The Yorkville Common Pantry is now the New York Common Pantry, acknowledging that the pantry has served more than people in Yorkville, and is the largest private food pantry in the city. While its name has changed, the Pantry’s commitment to fighting hunger while promoting dignity and self-sufficiency has remained the same! Thanks to all who offered assistance in recent months. For May, NYCP is requesting brown rice, canned tuna/salmon, whole wheat pasta, tomato sauce, and granola/cereal bars for snacks. You can drop items off with “Yorkie” in the grocery carts in the Church House Lobby or the Sanctuary Narthex, or you could even order groceries to be delivered through one of your grocers. (8 East 109th Street, New York, NY, 10029, Phone: 917-720-9700). Thank you for taking literally and seriously Christ’s command to “feed my sheep!”

Clothing Donations Needed for Men–and now Women–too!

The Homeless Outreach Program at Jan Hus Presbyterian Church, one of MAPC’s long-term outreach partners, continues to see a dramatic increase of homeless persons seeking assistance. Both casual and business clothing for men and women, as well as new undergarments, are among their most urgent needs. If you have clothing items in clean and neat condition, we encourage you to take them to the Jan Hus Clothes Pantry at 351 East 74th Street at 1st Avenue. The clothes pantry is open Monday through Saturday from 8 am-8 pm. NOTE: Please bring all clothing to Jan Hus directly–clothing may no longer be left in the coatroom off of the MAPC Church House Lobby. Thank you for remembering those whom Jesus called “the least!”

Hands-On Ministries

Ways to get involved at MAPC with hands and hearts!

“Faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.” The following opportunities to participate in hands-on ministries are provided by the Outreach Committee. If you are interested in exploring any of these opportunities, e-mail Don Wahlig at dbw@mapc.com. Let’s put our faith into action!

Teach English as a Second Language

We have been overwhelmed by the enthusiastic and faithful response of MAPC volunteer teachers seeking to participate in this new, hands-on ministry. You don’t have to speak a foreign language to teach ESL! You just need a desire to teach and compassion for non-English speakers making a life for themselves in this country. Classes are held on specific Sunday afternoons. Teaching is done in teams, which makes scheduling flexible. If you are interested in teaching ESL or have questions about the program, please contact Sharon M. Davison or Anne Connor.

Hurricane Sandy Relief

There are ongoing opportunities to muck out the homes of hurricane survivors in the affected areas of Staten Island and Far Rockaway most Saturdays and Sundays from 9 am until sunset. See the MAPC website for more details or e-mail Lisa Orloff of World Cares Center at lorloff@worldcares.org.

LEAP Saturday Reading Enrichment Program

The Spring cycle of LEAP will conclude with the annual LEAP picnic in Central Park on Saturday, June 1. For more information, please contact Alice Alston at alston@rci.rutgers.edu, or by phone at 646-478-7564 or 609-937-2556.

Can You Host at MAPC’s Shelter This Month?

If you are already trained and actively participating as a shelter host, a big “Thank you!” You know firsthand what a blessing it is to provide hospitality for the 12 homeless men who call our shelter home 6 nights a week. Please contact Shontae Walker at SWalker@StJames.org for scheduling.

Search and Care

Can you spend an afternoon with an elderly person on the Upper Eastside to walk their pet, go with them to a doctor’s appointment, help them shop, balance their checkbook or even just offer them the gift of companionship? If so, contact Robin Strashun at SandC@searchandcare.org.

New York Common Pantry

The New York Common Pantry offers opportunities for volunteers to help pack and distribute food to the working poor on Saturday mornings and other times each week. MAPC has supported this very well organized and effective organization since its inception 30 years ago. This is a wonderful way to follow Christ’s command to “feed my sheep!”

Further Program Calendar

Monday, May 27 – Psalm 135; Luke 14:25-35
CHURCH HOUSE CLOSED FOR MEMORIAL DAY
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space

Tuesday, May 28 – Psalm 123; Luke 15:1-10
Morning Prayer, 9 am, Dana Chapel
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space
Session Meeting, 7 pm, 5th Floor

Wednesday, May 29 – Psalm 15; Luke 15:11-32
Cocaine Anonymous, 6 pm, 5th Floor
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space

Thursday, May 30 – Psalm 36; Luke 16:1-9
Overnight Shelter, 6:30 pm, Shelter Space
Shelter Dinner, 6:30 pm, Parish Hall

 

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