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The Pastoral Staff Letter

The Rev. Dr. Fred R. Anderson - November 4, 2010

A Look at this Week’s Events

Thursday, November 4Psalm 16; Luke 13:18-30
Day School Book Fair, 8 am, Church House Lobby
Daily Prayer, 12 pm, Dana Chapel
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space
Shelter Dinner, 6:30 pm, Parish Hall
Recovery Group, 6:30 pm, Library
Saint Andrew Chorale Rehearsal, 7 pm, Sanctuary
Christian Education Adult Subcommittee, 7:30 pm, 5th Floor, Rm 503
Church Choir Rehearsal, 8:30 pm, Choir Room

Friday, November 5Psalm 142; Luke 13:31-35
Day School Book Fair, 8 am, Church House Lobby
Daily Prayer, 12 pm, Dana Chapel
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space

Saturday, November 6Psalm 138; Luke 14:1-11
Inquirers Seminar, 9 am, Phillips Lounge
LEAP, 10 am, Church of the Resurrection

Sunday, November 7, 2010
Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Memorial Sunday

Daylight Saving Time Ends;
Move Your Clocks Back One Hour!
Please Allow for Marathon Sunday.
Worship Schedule

Morning Worship at 9 and 11:15 am; Evening at 7:30 pm
Infant Nursery – 4th Floor Phillips Building, 8:30 am – 1 pm
Toddler Nursery – 4th Floor Church House, 8:30 am – 1 pm

Worship at 9 am, 11:15 am and 7:30 pm: The Rev. Donald B. Wahlig will be preaching; his sermon entitled “Work, For I Am with You” will be based on the texts: Haggai 1:12-2:9; Psalm 145:1-5, 17-21; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17; and Luke 20:27-40.

Children’s Worship at 9 and 11:15 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 a 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.

Day School Book Fair, 9 am, Church House Lobby

Adult Education Class, 10:10 am, Parish Hall, “A Primer in Personal Prayer” (see below)

Church School/Youth Bible Study, 10:10 am, 5th Floor/6th Floor

Church Choir rehearsal, 10:30 am, Choir Room

T(w)een Choir Rehearsal, 12:45 pm, Choir Room

Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space

 
Next Inquirers Class Is This Saturday, November 6

There will be a one-day Inquirers class offered on Saturday, November 6. The class will be held in the Phillips Lounge (behind the Sanctuary), beginning at 9 am and ending by 3 pm. Have you been thinking about membership at MAPC, or wondering what kind of commitments that might involve? Then join Dr. Anderson and the Rev. Wahlig for this Inquirers class. A light breakfast and lunch will be served and dress is casual.

What we will cover: The class begins with some brief introductions and then moves to explore the meaning of the confession: “Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior.” From there, we move on to a brief history of the development of the church from Pentecost to the Reformation, and then specifically to Presbyterianism as it emerged from Geneva to Scotland to the United States.

We will talk about MAPC and our rich history, how we are organized and governed, and the many ministries that emerge as we try to make Jesus Christ Lord in our lives. At the end of the class, for those who are ready to do so, an invitation will be offered to unite with the congregation, as well as instructions leading to doing so and being welcomed in thereafter. 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.

This Sunday

Adult Education: A Primer in Personal Prayer
10 am in the Parish Hall

During these two sessions we will learn about, explore and engage in two forms of personal prayer: meditation and contemplation.

“Wait a minute? Isn’t meditation for Buddhists?”

Yes, but the Christian tradition has a rich and ancient heritage of both forms of personal prayer that many Protestants are unaware of. There is a growing movement among Protestant Christians to reclaim these forms and practices of prayer, and a growing realization of how they can enrich, deepen and inspire our lives of faith. On these two Sundays, come learn more about these forms of personal prayer and enjoy an opportunity to practice them.

Christmas Angel Ministry – Sign-Up this Sunday to Donate a Gift

Christmas Angel Ministry 2010 began Sunday, October 31! Please stop at the Christmas Angel Ministry table this Sunday after worship, or any Sunday in November, in the Narthex after worship, or in the Church House Lobby during the coffee hour to pick up your “angel” and instructions. Your gift on behalf of an incarcerated parent will help heal challenging family relationships. Gifts will be dedicated in worship on December 6. As part of this annual gift drive, members and friends purchase gifts of clothing and toys for children who have a parent in prison. Behind-the-scenes helpers prepare and distribute gift tags, sort gifts and help prepare the presents for pick-up by the Church of Gethsemane who present the gifts to the families on behalf of the incarcerated parent.

Children’s Lesson Sermon Series Continues

Dr. Anderson has begun a series of “Lessons for Young Christians” on the Lord’s Prayer. Each week, through the third Sunday in Advent (December 12), he will talk with the children about one of the phrases in the prayer, using both the traditional “Tudor” English and the modern translation that we sing on the first Sunday of the Month. The time at the font is being coordinated with Millie Tourtelot so that the Children’s Worship lesson provides for more exploration and reinforcement. Parents–they make this request of you: please ask your children to tell you what they have learned, and practice the prayer with them. The goal is for them to know the prayer by heart, as well as understand what they are doing and saying. A second series on the 23rd Psalm is planned for the spring.

Future Events and Other News

Consecration Sunday Is Coming!

Sunday, November 21 is Consecration Sunday. This will be the second year that the Stewardship & Development Committee has used this approach to stewardship commitments for the following year (2011). The response to last year’s was quite extraordinary and a witness to this congregation’s ability to approach financial stewardship from a biblical perspective, rather than think about simply helping the church to pay its bills. The result was not only a much stronger commitment financially, as our members and friends began to think about supporting MAPC’s mission and ministry with a proportion of their incomes, but also an opportunity for people to begin to experience the same kind of proportional spiritual growth.

The New Consecration Sunday stewardship program is based on the biblical philosophy of our need to give for our own spiritual development, rather than on the need of the church to receive. Instead of treating each other like members of a social club who should pay dues, we want to treat one another as followers of Jesus Christ who want to give unselfishly as an act of personal discipleship. New Consecration Sunday encourages us toward proportionate and systematic giving in response to the question, “What percentage of my income is God calling me to give?”

During morning worship on Consecration Sunday, the Stewardship & Development Committee is asking each of us to make our financial commitments to MAPC’s mission, outreach, pastoral and educational ministries in this community and around the world for 2011.

Every person who completes an Estimate of Giving Card will do so voluntarily. We also urge those who feel strongly opposed to completing a card to attend not only the service, but the celebratory brunch or luncheon that will follow the 9 and 11:15 am services respectively. During morning worship our guest preacher for the day, the Rev. José G. González Colón, will conduct a brief period of instruction and inspiration, climaxed by our having an opportunity to make our own commitments as a confidential act of worship. The process will be done in such a way that no one should feel personal embarrassment if he or she chooses not to fill out a card.

We encourage you to participate in Consecration Sunday, making a special effort to be present on Sunday, November 21.

Those unable to attend worship on Consecration Sunday will be contacted later in the week and given an opportunity to make their own commitments. Thank you in advance for your enthusiastic participation in this year’s Consecration Sunday events. Those members living outside of the city are being contacted by mail, so that their pledge commitments can be returned and included with those made on Consecration Sunday.

Emergency Shelter Benefit, Tuesday, November 30, Parish Hall

The congregation is invited to attend a special benefit for our emergency winter shelter on Tuesday, November 30, at 6:30 pm in the Parish Hall. As we did last winter, beginning in January we will open up a second shelter in the Community Services Room next door to our volunteer-run shelter. Operating in partnership with the City of New York’s Department of Homeless Services and its vendors, the emergency shelter will be staffed with professionals and will provide food, safety and a warm place to sleep for up to 12 homeless men who come directly from the street. Last winter, all 12 of our guests received housing–a true miracle!

The benefit program will feature a conversation moderated by former ABC news correspondent Bob Jamieson and involving Teun Voeten and Bernard Isaac, an eloquent former tunnel dweller in the West Side rail yards. They will discuss their experiences as described in Voeten’s recently published book Tunnel People. Book sales and the proceeds from a silent auction of photographs featured in the book will be used to fund the emergency drop-in shelter.

The benefit will be held in the Parish Hall from 6:30 to 9 pm on Tuesday, November 30. RSVP to www.mapc.com/shelter or by calling Soraida Maldonado at 212-288-8920 x271.

Congratulations to the Reverend Camille Cook

Our former seminarian, the Reverend Camille Cook, has been called to be Pastor and Head of Staff of the Georgetown Presbyterian Church, in the Georgetown area of Washington, D.C. She is being installed this Sunday afternoon, November 7, at 4 pm, with Dr. Anderson preaching the installation sermon and the Rev. J.C. Austin, former Associate Pastor of MAPC, delivering the charge to Ms. Cook.

After receiving her Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary in May of 2006, Camille received the Seminary’s esteemed Parish Pulpit Fellowship Award, which enabled her to complete an additional Master of Applied Theology degree at Oxford University, Oxford, England in 2007. While at Oxford, she served the Summertown United Reformed Church of Oxford as Pastor. Thereafter Camille served St. Columba’s Church of Scotland (Pont Street in London), first as Associate Pastor and then, for the last year and a half, as Pastor in Charge and Head of Staff. Camille was our seminary student from 2004-2006 while studying at Princeton Theological Seminary, when she won the hearts of us all. She was ordained later that summer in her home church, The House of Hope, in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Mothers of Young Children Group, Monday Mornings at 9:30

All mothers of young children are invited to join in this discussion, fellowship and support group that will be meeting every Monday morning from 9:30 to 10:30 in the Phillips Lounge. Please note that this is a change from the Thursday morning time of last year. We’ll have coffee and tea, a brief time of guided, silent prayer (which most moms find very welcome!), and lots of conversation. You do not need to commit to being there every week–please come as you are able.

Families with Young Children
Saturday, November 13, 10 am-noon

Come join in our monthly Saturday morning Families with Young Children gathering. We will meet in the Parish Hall, unless we are treated to an unseasonably warm day that allows us to be on the Roof Garden. We’ll have a Thanksgiving craft activity, and the usual light breakfast of bagels, toppings, fruit, coffee, tea and juice. Families with children ages 5 and under are encouraged to join in this Saturday morning play date for both children and parents. This is a great way to get to know other families in the church. We appreciate knowing if your family is coming so we can be sure to order enough bagels. RSVP to Soraida Maldonado at the church office, 212-288-8920 x271, or via e-mail to sam@mapc.com. If you do not receive the Families with Young Children e-mail notices, and would like to, please let Soraida know that! Mark your calendars now for our annual Families with Young Children Christmas Party on Saturday morning, December 11!

Annual Hood Library Book Sale, Sunday, November 14

When you enter the Church House Lobby on Sunday morning, November 14, you will find tables full of books waiting for you to browse and purchase. There will be art and coffee table books that make wonderful gifts, as well as all sorts of fiction and non-fiction. Enjoy book shopping along with your coffee or tea and cookie during fellowship hour, and take home some books to curl up with this coming winter or to share with family and friends as gifts. All proceeds from the book sale are used to acquire new books for the Hood Library.

Partnership Agreement Is Signed with the Synod of Harare

In a grand celebration with 700-800 people attending from all over the Synod of Harare, the partnership agreement between the Synod and Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church was signed on Saturday, October 23. The MAPC delegation, consisting of John Carr, Jack Hobson, Lauren Logan, Jeff Miller, Don Wahlig and Fred Anderson, represented the church at the signing and they all preached in various churches throughout the Synod the next day. All have returned, safe and sound!

LEAP Reading Enrichment Program Has Begun

LEAP is a life-changing reading and enrichment program that enables adults to spend one-on-one time with at-risk children in East Harlem. Participants develop wonderful relationships with the children, helping strengthen their reading skills and engaging in fabulous art projects. Once a month, activities also include puzzles and computer activities.

New – Weekday tutoring! Weekday volunteers are also needed to provide after-school tutoring for students from 4-5:30 pm. Volunteers of high school age and above who want to spend time with children are welcome to participate. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or other responsible adult. To participate in either the Saturday morning reading enrichment program or the after-school tutoring program, e-mail Don Wahlig at dbw@mapc.com.

Sign Up Now to be a Host in MAPC’s Shelter

A big “Thank you!” to all who have volunteered to be overnight hosts in the MAPC overnight shelter. You already know what a blessing it is to provide hospitality for the 12 homeless men who call our shelter home 6 nights a week. Due to your faithfulness, we have not been forced to close the shelter for even a single night so far this year–great job! Please contact Terry Grace at terrygrace@juno.com to schedule shifts.

Shelter Host Orientation and Training

If you are curious about what is involved in becoming a host at the MAPC-Saint James’ volunteer shelter, or if you are interested in becoming a host at our shelter, please contact Don Wahlig at dbw@mapc.com. Don will arrange a mutually convenient time to meet with you. This is a life-changing ministry, both for our hosts and our guests–don’t miss it!

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 the Office Manager, Arabel Bello, at aeb@mapc.com, or 212-288-8920 x245. The cost for the Sunday flowers is $75.

Please Donate Food & Toiletries to the Yorkville Common Pantry Grocery Carts: Yorkie says “Thanks for feeding me!”

“No one is ever turned away.” That is the promise that the Yorkville Common Pantry makes to any and all who come to their doorstep seeking food or other assistance. With donations of food, money, talent and time from MAPC members, YCP has been able to keep that promise to the hungry and homeless even in the midst of such devastating economic times as these, when YCP continues to see record numbers of hungry families and individuals seeking help each month.

YCP is now asking for canned vegetables, 100% juice, tea/coffee, snacks (e.g.: crackers, cookies and Jell-O fruit cups and/or pudding). You can drop items off with “Yorkie” in the grocery carts in the Church House Lobby or the Sanctuary Narthex, or you can order groceries to be delivered to YCP through one of your grocers. (8 East 109th Street, New York, NY, 10029, Phone: 917-720-9700).

Hands-on Ministry: YCP offers opportunities for volunteers to help pack food for distribution on Saturday mornings and at certain other times each week. For details, please call YCP at 917-720-9710 and speak with Gladys at x110. Thank you for taking literally and seriously Christ’s command to “feed my sheep!”

Neighborhood Coalition for Shelter Needs
Thanksgiving Dinner Supplies

The Neighborhood Coalition for Shelter (NCS), an organization which MAPC helped found, is in need of supplies for a holiday dinner for the 131 homeless and formerly homeless neighbors it serves. NCS needs hams, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, macaroni and cheese, pasta, stuffing, gravy, vegetables, desserts, soda and cider. For more information contact Prema Menon at 212-537-5080.

Homeless Clothing Donations Needed, Especially for Men

Since our Neighborhood Center for Homeless People was closed, the Homeless Outreach Program at Jan Hus Presbyterian Church has seen a dramatic increase of homeless persons seeking assistance. Casual men’s clothing and new men’s undergarments are the most urgent needs. If you have clothing items in clean and appropriate condition, we encourage you to take them to the Jan Hus Clothes Pantry at 74th Street and 1st Avenue, or leave them in sealed plastic bags in the MAPC coatroom off of the Church House Lobby. (Please inform the receptionist that you have left a clothing donation.) Please note that this is NOT an opportunity to simply “clean closets” of unwanted rummage, but appropriate clothing donations are very welcome.

Program Calendar for Next Week

Monday, November 8Psalm 97; Luke 14:12-24
Mothers of Young Children, 9:30 am, Phillips Lounge
Daily Prayer, 12 pm, Dana Chapel
Wee Kids, 2:45 pm, 5th Floor
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space
MAPC Women’s Bible Study, 6:30 pm, Phillips Lounge
Evangelism Committee, 7 pm, 5th Floor, Rm 503

Tuesday, November 9Psalm 30; Luke 14:25-35
Buildings & Grounds Committee, 8:30 am, Library
Daily Prayer, 12 pm, Dana Chapel
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space
Worship & Music Committee, 6:30 pm, Pastor’s Study

Wednesday, November 10Psalm 48; Luke 15:1-10
Parents Prayer Group, 8 am, Phillips Lounge
Bible Study Fellowship, 9:30 am, Sanctuary, Dana Chapel, 5th Fl, Parish Hall
Daily Prayer, 12 pm, Dana Chapel
Kids’ Club, 3:45 pm, Parish Hall, Gym, 5th Fl, Roof Garden, Youth Lounge
Children’s Choir rehearsals, 4 pm, Choir Room
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space
Cocaine Anonymous, 6 pm, 5th Floor
Shelter Subcommittee, 6 pm, Community Services Room
Outreach Committee, 7 pm, Community Services Room

Thursday, November 11Psalm 80; Luke 15:1-2, 11-32
CHURCH HOUSE CLOSED FOR VETERANS DAY
Overnight Shelter, 6 pm, Shelter Space
Shelter Dinner, 6:30 pm, Sandwich Distribution
Saint Andrew Chorale Rehearsal, 7 pm, Sanctuary
Church Choir Rehearsal, 8:30 pm, Choir Room

See you in Church!

 

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