Detail of sanctuary stained glass
Announcements and Requests
Please submit items for the May issue of The SPIRE to Beth Mabee in the church office by Monday, April 28.
Presbytery Meeting Thanks
The Presbytery meeting that took place at our church on Saturday, March 29, was a resounding success, and the many volunteers who helped to make the campus a welcoming place were largely responsible. From those who turned out on March 22 for Church Campus Cleanup Day to the workers involved in the food preparation and service, everyone did an amazing job. Most people turned up early for their shifts and stayed late. Extra people who had not signed up to work also showed up on Saturday, or stayed late on Sunday to help put away the tables, chairs, and tents in the courtyard. Special thanks to Tina Trowbridge, who supervised the cleaning and kitchen staff and did much of the deep-cleaning herself, to Bill Wentling and the "Saturday crew," who painted and repaired many neglected items, and to the members of the choir and handbell choir, many of whom performed beautifully during the worship service and stayed to help with lunch or cleanup. AWESOME work, everyone!
FREE Easy T'ai Chi Classes Start in April!
Sponsored by SCAN Health Plan Arizona and Carol Arseth, R.N., our Parish Nurse. Click here to read all about it!
Don Berg and Max McVicker are retiring from our sound committee after 28 years and 12 years, respectively, of recording worship services for the homebound. (You can listen to services they've recorded elsewhere on this website.) Bill Wentling, current chair of the sound committee, presented them with certificates of appreciation at the March 30 service. We will miss their dedication and reliability.
With their retirement, we need people willing to learn how to run the sound system and carillon and record Sunday services. If you are interested in helping out, talk to Bill Wentling, call him at 623.476.2426, or send him an email. You can also leave a message at the church office, 623.974.3605.
Please also let Bill or the office staff know if you are scheduling an event at the church that will require microphones, the projector in Swain Hall, or any other audio-video equipment setup. We would appreciate at least a week’s notice if we have the equipment on hand, and a month’s notice if we will have to rent or borrow anything.
Recycling Day Success
The congregation went green in a new way this St. Patrick's Day by bringing old electronics to the church campus for pickup by eGreen-IT Solutions, Arizona's only Certified e-Stewards Recycler. (The pile of old VCRs had to be seen to be believed!) Thanks to everyone in the congregation who brought in items to be recycled instead of sending them to the landfill! We hope that this will become an annual event, allowing all of us to do our spring cleaning in an ecologically sound way. Next time we will invite the neighbors to participate, too!
In case you've never noticed, we have two types of benches in our courtyard. Several are concrete, but the three benches closest to the gate are laminated wood mounted on concrete blocks, and they are starting to show signs of damage from leaking bags of citrus.
If you bring fruit for others to enjoy, please be sure to leave it on a bench in the inner courtyard (the one nearest the Sanctuary door, for instance) rather than on one of the wooden benches. Repairing or replacing those if they start to delaminate would be very expensive.
The Lions Club "Recycle for Sight" program collects used eyeglasses, cleans them, sorts them by prescription strength, and packages them for distribution to people in need in developing countries where they will have the greatest impact. Lions accept prescription and reading glasses, sunglasses, and plastic and metal frames. They also accept hearing aids.
For more information, contact Bill Wentling or Tina Trowbridge, or visit the Lions Club website. You can donate your old glasses to the Lions by giving them to Bill or Tina, or drop them off in the Lions collection box in the church office.
If you signed up to receive the booklet of Donna Roth’s 50th anniversary articles or a DVD of the anniversary slideshow, they are now available in the church office. Stop by to pay for and pick up your memento(s).
Session voted at their November meeting to increase the cost of chancel flowers to $25.00.
We need two individuals to sign up to provide the flowers each Sunday. A sign-up chart will be in Swain Hall. Place your name on the chart for the date you desire to furnish flowers; be sure to advise Marge, in the office, the notation you want in the bulletin—in memory of; celebration of; a thank you; etc.— place your check in a pew envelope, and mark “Flowers” on the memo line or on the front of the envelope. Yes, you may sign up for more than one Sunday. The large Sunday bouquet is broken into 3-4 small arrangements to be delivered to the hospital, nursing home, or someone just out of the hospital. PLEASE, we NEED your help to continue this ministry.
We need more members to serve as Liturgists for our Sunday services. (Being an Elder is not a requirement.)
The task includes reading, with the congregation, the opening Call to Worship, and a little later, the Declaration of Pardon. A brief Prayer for Illumination is read by the Liturgist just prior to the reading of the first scripture lesson. That concludes the Liturgist's responsibility.
An advance copy of Sunday's worship guide is always available by Wednesday for the Liturgist to use in making notes and reminders of when to stand and speak, etc.
If you'd like to know more about being a Liturgist, please call Sharyl Moen in the church office at 623.974.3605.
Join Our Stephen Ministers
Are you a compassionate person, full of faith and trustworthy? Would you like to help, on a one-to-one basis, people who are going through a personal crisis? If so, the Stephen Ministers of First Presbyterian would like you to join them.
Don't know how to be a Stephen Minister? We will train you through classes held here at the church by our Stephen Leaders and Stephen Ministers.
INTERESTED? Contact Gene Downing (623.933.0642) or another Stephen Minister at church.
Stewardship is a Gift from God
November 17 was Stewardship Sunday. If you have not yet filled out your pledge card for 2014, please do so.
In our lives as stewards, the gifts we offer—time, talent and our financial resources— are holy gifts. They are gifts of love, given in joy and devotion. Through the gift of stewardship, God gives us the opportunity to witness to God’s love through Jesus Christ. Pledges, donations, money, tithes, cash, checks, gifts—in its simplest form stewardship is annual giving. Stewardship also encompasses legacy giving—planned giving, deferred giving, plans for gifts beyond our lifetime. Planned giving includes current and future gifts, made as part of estate planning, and is over and above annual giving.
A brochure about our church’s Foundation Fund is now available. The First Presbyterian Church, Sun City Foundation Fund brochure has information about Planned Gifts and will help you select the best instruments for including the church in your estate plans. To receive a copy of the brochure, please call the church office, or pick one up in Swain Hall following Sunday worship services.
2014 Per Capita
The 2014 Per Capita rate is $31.00 per person. What exactly does that mean? The Department of the Stated Clerk at the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) explains it this way:
The Westminster Confession of Faith says, “all believers are, therefore, under obligation to sustain the ordinances of the Christian religion where they are already established, and to contribute by their prayers, gifts, and personal efforts to the extension of the Kingdom of Christ throughout the whole earth” (The Book of Confessions, 6.058).
Per capita is a fundamental way in which all of the nearly 11,000 congregations and mid councils of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) are connected and participate in the work of the wider church.
Because it is rooted in the connectional and covenantal nature of the Presbyterian church, as affirmed by the ordination vows taken by elders and ministers of the Word and Sacrament, per capita could be called the Presbyterian Covenant Community Fund.
How important is per capita? Per capita is as important as being Presbyterian! Per capita funding is how Presbyterians mutually share the costs of coming together to discern the Spirit’s leading for the future.
- It is how Presbyterians are trained to become better elders and ministers.
- It is how Presbyterians discern God’s call in their lives.
- It is how Presbyterians participate in the life of the wider church by serving on GA committees and commissions.
- It is how Presbyterians participate in the life of the Church universal as we commit ourselves to work and live in fellowship with “all persons in every nation” (Book of Order, G-4.0101)
To learn more about the history of the per capita offering, click here.
THANK YOU to members who have contributed their per capita apportionment for 2014. To date we have received $2,062.00. This was contributed by 36% of the 184 active members. The church expense is $5,983.00 ($31 x 193 members at the end of 2012). Our budget goal is to receive $2,500.00. Will you help?