Happy Juneteenth! This Sunday, the 19th, we celebrate the second anniversary of this federal holiday. Although the Emancipation Proclamation was signed in 1863, news did not reach the enslaved people of Galveston, Texas until Major Granger of the Union Army rode into Galveston and announced to the people there that the war had ended and that the enslaved people were now free. In the words of one woman who had been a slave on one plantation, when the “master” arrived home after the war he didn’t let the slaves know that the war had ended or that they were now free people. Upon hearing the news on 19 June 1865, there was great celebration. From that day forward, Black people have celebrated Jubilee Day or the day when all knew they were freed. Until the last few years, most white people were unaware of this important date and its significance. Last year, Joe Biden signed into law a bill passed by both Houses of Congress making this important date a federal holiday. We pray for freedom and celebrate the recognition of Black American’s struggle for it.
This weekend begins an exciting few weeks for our denomination, the PC(USA). GA or General Assembly begins on Friday, the 17th, and continues until 9 July. This is the first time that a hybrid meeting will be held which is why it will last for so many weeks. I was a commissioner at GA four years ago - in 2018 - which was the last time we met in person as the group of elected commissioners (teaching and ruling elders) to vote on the different overtures that were put before the group. This year, committees will meet via Zoom while there will be plenary sessions held in person for those who can make it. The work of the GA will be spread out over several weeks.
Perhaps, most exciting for this congregation, is that your former pastor, Shavon Starling-Louis, now a member of the Presbytery of Charlotte and Ruth Santana-Grace, a minister member from the Presbytery of Philadelphia, are running for the position of vice-moderators for GA. If elected, they will serve for two years as ambassadors around the world for the PC(USA). We wish them the best!
That June that I did attend GA, I found myself re-invigorated and excited about what it means to be a Presbyterian. Our committee meetings may often seem like too much work or we find ourselves less than thrilled over mundane issues that are always on the list of what must be accomplished but to be part of the larger church in action was an inspiring time. Like Congress, commissioners are sent to represent their presbyteries but vote according to their consciences. There is no one person who makes decisions for what we hope to be in the world as the church. In 2018, one young man came out to us all because he trusted his fellow commissioners to be accepting of who he is. Some of us were disappointed when the vote failed to disinvest in corporations that were involved in business having to do with fossil fuels. This will be a topic of discussion this year, too. I hope you all have your reasons for choosing to be Presbyterian. We are a denomination that is “reformed and always reforming.” We are a voice for justice and peace and freedom in this world.
Finally, “Happy Father’s Day” to those of you who celebrate this day. My father was a good Presbyterian (!) and a kind and caring man. Two gifts he gave to me were my love of music and my faith. I hope you have fond memories of your father - or someone who acted as a father in your life. For those of you who have youth or children in your home still, we offer our prayers. You are important in the life of your children!
The first day of summer arrives on Tuesday. Celebrate the season of outdoor picnics, boating, swimming, reading in the shade, and perhaps a more relaxed outlook on life.
Grace and blessings,
Sunday Worship @10 am- in person and Zoom
“Hybrid” service will continue to be accessible via ZOOM
At its February 17 meeting, updated May 20, Session decided it is becoming safe enough to return to in-person worship, for those who are comfortable doing so. Previous safety precautions will continue to be in effect:
Mask wearing optional at PPC.
However, in keeping with the Department of Health recommendations, PPC continues
to encourage wearing a mask in the church building, and staying up-to-date with Covid
19 vaccines and boosters.
“Social distancing” to the extent possible
Windows will be open for ventilation – dress accordingly
“Check-in” with greeter, providing your name and phone contact #
Please attend only if you are feeling well and are symptom-free
Vaccination is strongly urged for all who are able to be
Please use the front door. The ramp entrance is not yet available. Contact the church in advance to insure that the elevator is available to you if needed.
More details on the church's reopening plan can be found HERE
Dial in by phone: (646) 558-8656
Meeting ID: 817 8173 3351
Click on the image below to open/download worship bulletin and hymns.
We hope you will continue to support the mission and ministry of the church if and as you are able—online, through your bank's bill payment system, or with a check mailed to the church (500 Hope Street, Providence, RI 02906). All offerings are gratefully received. Thank you!
Transcripts and audio recordings of recent sermons can be found on our website here. Audio recordings of older sermons are available here.
Greetings from your Pastoral Nominating Committee (PNC)!
This week we narrowed in on our interview questions for pastoral candidates. We also discussed how we will respond as a PNC to questions asked of us during the interview process. We are moving ahead with our planned timeline and look forward to our mock interview with COM (Committee on Ministry) in the coming weeks.
If you would like to be with us at our ceremony online, then we have a few limited spots available on Zoom. Which means if you do decide to attend, please use a single device. The chat box will be like a guestbook and we will record with Zoom as well. Oh, and because of our wedding, please excuse the appearance of the sanctuary at worship the next day!
NEW PROVIDENCE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH DIRECTORY
We are excited to share with the PPC community that we are beginning to gather contact information for our church’s new directory. Our previous pictorial directory was printed 6 years ago. Marianne Harrison has volunteered to design the new directory, Sally Lockhart and Monica Vander Baan will gather the contact information from our PPC community.
There are 3 methods to share your information with us.
• Use the link in the Providence Presbyterian Publicist to enter your contact information into the Google form out the Google Form
• Contact Sally Lockhart or Monica Vander Baan by email, text or phone with your information.
• To receive a printed form to ﬁll out contact Sally Lockhart or Monica Vander Baan by email, text or phone.
Rather than having a photographer come to PPC and take photos of everyone, we would like people to send their personal photos of themselves and families for use in the directory. In looking through past church directories both from our church and other churches, we found that we the personal photos are most welcoming. Photos should be sent to Marianne Harrison.
Thank you and we look forward to receiving all the photos and contact information.
Send photos to Marianne Harrison at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Sally Lockhart by phone at 401-624-3144 from 10:00-12:00 AM or 6:00-8:00PM; by email at email@example.com
Contact Monica Vander Baan by phone at 508-479-1611; or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Picnic at Lippitt Park on Sunday June 26, after the worship service.
Everyone is invited to picnic at Lippitt Park (off Hope Street and Blackstone Blvd), and should bring your own picnic lunch for you/your family, as well as BYO chair or picnic blanket.
The PPC mission highlight for June, July and August is Access to the Arts.
Following the overall mission theme of Awareness, Inclusion and Active Participation (via donations and volunteering), we’re highlighting the beauty of Rhode Island arts organizations and associated nonprofits in our back yard.
The highlighted nonprofit arts organization for the balance of June and into July is WaterFire. WaterFire is an experience which embraces all of the senses and all of the city and offers a multitude of volunteering opportunities. The season runs from April 9th through December 3rd (the full schedule and details can be found on the WaterFire website).
Particularly important lightings will be on July 30th (RI Defeats Hep C), August 13th (Celebrating Rhode Island’s Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Communities), August 27th (Clear Currents Community Paddling Night), September 24th (Celebrating Educational Excellence in RI) and November 5th (Salute to Veterans).
PVDFest is one of Providence’s free outdoor signature arts festival, which starts on June 10 till June 12. Entertainment for all ages. Artists are once again ready to reinvigorate and showcase their mind blowing work of arts. This year FirstWorks has partnered with the City of Providence and will be co-producing the free festival with the city. Volunteering and job opportunities are available.
WaterFireis an experience that embraces all of the senses and all of the city, which is stated on its website.Saturday June 4 will be the first fire of the season. This free event also offers volunteering and internship programs.
As our church enters a new phase with the formation of a Pastor Nominating Committee, we are starting a new prayer meeting (on zoom) to pray for the PNC and our church community in this transitional season. All are welcome!
We now have two accessible parking spaces in front of the church on Hope St. Please reserve them on Sundays for those who need them. Many thanks to Lee Vander Baan and the Building & Grounds committee for working with the City of Providence to get these installed!
Volunteer Greeters Needed
In order to make it possible for in-person worship to work, we need extra volunteers!
Two volunteers are needed at every service to help greet attendees and help each person record their attendance via a sign-in sheet for the purposes of contact tracing if needed. If you are planning to attend in-person worship, please help us make the church service possible by serving as a Worship Service Greeter & Sign-In Table Volunteer: