On my visit to Lee and Monica today I felt my soul releasing a huge sigh of relief. First, although it wasn’t that far, I was getting out of Dodge! There is something about being on the road and going somewhere that is so freeing. Trees, with their leaves turning colors, were highlighted by the lower angle of the sun. In spite of the pandemic and the looming fear of what might happen in the next few months, the beauty of the scenery comforted me. I recommend to any of you who are feeling a sense of despair in this season of death and change, a ride into the countryside is restorative. Although, I must admit what also added to my pleasure was the opportunity to sit around a table with good people and share a meal. What little things we miss in this time of isolation. Cyber hugs to all of you!
Tonight, we had the first meeting of the Finance Committee, newly formed by Session. The committee is made up of Julie Baldwin, Dan Blackford, Sheryl Mason, Uluma Sharpe, and me. Our first task was to hear from our Ameriprise representative about ways we can invest our money that might be helpful in our managing of our funds. Session will get a report from the committee and we will let you all know what our decision is. This pandemic has impacted our bottom line. Our operating funds (the general funds) are outpacing our income. Decisions need to be made about priorities in our budget. What kind of budget can we afford? We are not teetering on the edge but it is good to make decisions now for the best ways to invest and use our money. If you have any questions about budget matters, you may contact any of the members of this committee or me and we will try to answer your questions as best we can. Since none of us are financial investors it’s important for us to take advantage of the expertise that is offered through Ameriprise.
Since we can’t do this in person, seated around tables after a delicious potluck supper, I invite you to consider what your life in this church has meant to you. This invitation is extended to the youngest among us! Write your story about what this church has meant, draw a picture, write a poem, make a video, record some music. Over the next two months, if we all contribute something, we will have a record of what has drawn each of you to this place. What has been meaningful to you? How does your church experience differ from other civic activities of which you are a part? If there are areas of concern for you, include those also. We are trying to envision a future that is satisfying and helps us grow spiritually. Please consider contributing in some way to this project so that we can get a full picture of this congregation. If you haven’t responded in the past, step out in faith and help Session as they consider what our next steps might be.
To that end, I am also asking each of you to help us create a new directory! As a new pastor here, it has been frustrating to try to reach someone and find that we don’t have the contact information that is needed. So, PLEASE – send this information:
Phone number – land line and cell (do you like to use text?)
When you have done this, Monica VanderBaan has agreed to compile the information and put it together into a new directory. Since we don’t seem to have everyone’s correct information, if you know someone who should be on this list but they haven’t received this request, please let them know and have them send their information.
Either of these addresses will work. Help us create a directory that we can all use. Our connections to one another are so important at any time. We are family!
Enjoy this reminder!!!
In Christ's love,
Worship (and Youth Sunday School)
9/27 @ 10am via Zoom
Welcome to online worship with PPC!If there's a problem with zoom, check your email for backup plans. Youth (grades 6-12) will meet for Sunday school during worship; a zoom link will be shared at the start of the children's sermon in the chat and via email (email Matt Harrison at firstname.lastname@example.org if you do not get the email and want to be added to the list).
By phone: call 646 558-8656 and enter meeting ID 864 6572 5219
Click here to open/download the worship bulletin and hymns:
Receiving of offerings continues to be important to sustain our church community. While it is missing from our order of worship, we hope you will continue to give online or with a check mailed to the church (500 Hope Street, Providence, RI 02906) as you are able. Thank you!
We invite you to stay online after worship for our virtual coffee hour.
Transcripts and audio recordings of recent sermons can be found on our website here. Audio recordings of older sermons are available here.
Authority of Jesus Questioned Click here for printable activities based on this week's Scripture lessons.
Deacons Meeting: 9/27
This Sunday after worship.
Bible Study: 9/29
This Tuesday, September 29 at 5:30pm, Pastor Deb will lead Part 3 of the Bible study on "The Women of the Bible." If you would like to participate, contact Pastor Deb at email@example.com she can send you the zoom link. (Previous participation is not necessary.)
Youth Group Update
We had a lovely afternoon for our hike at Neutaconkanut Park last Sunday with eight youth group members and three parents—enjoying a bit of wildlife, frisbee and fresh air together :)
While the weather is still nice enough to be gathering outside, we will try to have a number of activities each month.
Friday 10/2 @ 6:30-9:30pm Outdoor movie night at the Fishers: Black Panther
We'll provide popcorn, drinks, and some movie candy. Please RSVP so we'll have enough for everyone.
35 Glen Avenue
Saturday, October 17 @ 9:30-11:30am Apple picking and corn maze
Join us at Dame Farm to pick some apples and try to make it through the corn maze. They have been getting slammed (and limiting customers/closing early) so we are going to go early Saturday morning to try to beat the crowds. Dame Farm and Orchard
91B Brown Ave
Johnston, RI 02919
If transportation is an issue, please let Jo Fisher know and we will try to work something out! (617) 893-0865 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, remember the youth group Sunday school class is meeting every 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month during the worship service. Be sure to log on!
PPC Book Group: 10/3
Our next zoom gathering will be on Saturday, October 3, from 10:30am – 12:00. We will discuss how we might engage in productive dialogue across political differences, particularly as race and politics are so intertwined, and how we might get ready for the November election and possible social unrest. To prepare for this conversation, there are two resources we’d like to watch/read:
(1) A video recording of a talk hosted on Sept. 10 by InterVarsity Graduate & Faculty Ministries at the University of New Mexico and the Deep Differences Project: Confident Pluralism: Embracing Deep Differences
A conversation with Prof. John Inazu, author of the book Confident Pluralism
*If it asks you for a passcode it is this: d!l29mCW
*The video lasts 1 hour and 19 minutes
*You can learn more about John Inazu from the event flyer here.
(2) Review chapter 10 of Dolly Chugh’s book, The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias. The chapter is entitled “Educate and Occasionally Confront Others” and discusses the 20/60/20 rule (p. 209).
By phone: call (646) 876-9923 and enter meeting ID 941 8046 4200
What Can I Do?
As the book group continues to discuss racial justice, we have been asking ourselves, "What can I do?" In response, we decided to make financial contributions to Delta Sigma Theta's college scholarship fundfor African-American high school grads in RI, which has long been actively supported by Millie Nichols. Due to the pandemic, the service-dedicated sorority's annual fundraising event can not take place this year. We want to invite the rest of the PPC community and friends to join us in making contributions, which will have an immediate impact on the lives of students in the next graduating class in RI. Consider this as an opportunity to "do justice" locally. It’s also a way in this time of social isolation to gather our resources together to support the lifelong efforts of one of our members and take action in a wider community. Learn more here.
Here's what to do. Send a check to: Delta Sigma Theta Sorority PAC Inc, PO Box 40175 , Providence, RI 02940. In the memo line, put "Scholarship Fund suggested by Millie Nichols”
Election day is Tuesday, November 3
Please contact the leaders listed below if you're interested in any of these ongoing opportunities for fellowship and service:
If you or someone you know needs help, contact your assigned deacon if possible, or otherwise contact deacon Matt Harrison at email@example.com or 401-340-9444 and he will coordinate care.
If you have a prayer request or would like to be included in the prayer chain, call/text Suzanne Affigne at (401) 523-4907.
Milton has put together some helpful tips for using Zoom – read them here and here.
Visit our presbytery's website (psne.org) for summer book study info and more. Visit our denomination’s website (pcusa.org) for info about the recently concluded General Assembly, racial justice resources and more.