Mission co-worker Kristi Van Nostrom extends Christmas greetings
Mission co-worker Kristi Van Nostrom extends Christmas greetings
Join us Christmas Eve at 7:00 P.M. for a multicultural service of Lessons and Carols that includes carols in Indonesian and Urdu.
Our Pakistani/Indian Ministry will hold a Christmas Day service in John Knox Hall, at 11:00 A.M.
Our Indonesian congregation will hold a Christmas Day service at 4:00 P.M. followed by fellowship in John Knox Hall
Then on Sunday, the 27th, there will be a service of carols at 9:30 A.M. which will be held in John Knox Fellowship Hall to be followed by birthday celebrations and you know what that means… CAKE!
The regular Indonesian worship service is at 5:00 P.M. on Sunday and there will be a special New Year’s Eve Service on Friday, the 31st, at 7:00 P.M. A reception in John Knox Hall will follow the service.
You are welcome to join us for all of these services as we make a joyful noise.
Pastor Rennard and Pastor Steve Davis, of the First Congregational Church will be holding a prayer service in the sanctuary tonight, beginning at 6:30 for families with children and 7:00 for adults.
All are welcome to come and share our grief and our hope during this troubling time.
The FPC Book Club meeting, scheduled for tonight has been cancelled.
Report on the San Bernardino shootings and search of a Redlands home:
It does appear that the two shooters were residents of Redlands. This is of special concern for our congregation because they were Pakistani -Americans and we worship in Urdu, the language of Pakistan every Sunday night. 10-15% of our regular English language service is of Pakistani heritage. Two of our members are awaiting asylum status as they’ve fled religious persecution in Pakistan. Will their asylum request be second guessed?
One of our active member’s spouse was at the Inland Regional Center and heard the shots. She is well. The Pakistani and Indonesian associate pastors report all of their congregations are safe. As we meet with the Congregationalists for a prayer service and discussion tonight we ask for prayers for the eternal rest of the murdered, the healing of the wounded, the families and friends of the killed and wounded, law enforcement and the larger Pakistani and Muslim community in our Valley which is sizable.
Thank you for your prayers and concern.
Tom Rennard, Transitional Lead Pastor
Wednesdays during Advent, we will be hosting an hour of music and quiet reflection in our sanctuary, starting at noon. We would like to invite you to stop in and take a few moments to reflect on the true “reason for the season” of Christmas. You are welcome to come and go as your time allows. Come for the music and linger for the peace.
Today, Nelda Stuck and Mary Lou Jones played a medley of four-hand carols on the piano (it was simply lovely, if I do say so myself!) ; next week Dennis Neufeld will play guitar; and the week of December 23rd our multi-talented music director, Zach Neufeld, will be singing with a small acapella group.
Last Sunday was what we call “Pledge” Sunday. Pastor Tom’s message carried a poignant message about the importance of learning to “spend, save, and share”. You can read his sermon by clicking on the link on our “Sermon” page which is in the tool bar at the top of this page. The sermon is titled “Beware of Pedestals”. http://fpcredlands.org/?page_id=89
The worship service wasn’t anything like an NPR pledge drive; it simply reminded us of how Christ taught Christians to share their blessings.
We sometimes struggle with the concept of sharing joyfully rather than out of obligation. And perhaps part of finding that pleasure in sharing comes from understanding how the church uses donations to effect positive change in the world.
Obviously, there is a ton of overhead in maintaining a campus of this size and age, and the lion’s share of our funds go towards paying our staff (who would love to donate their services but have to pay mortgages and keep groceries on the table). But we still manage to support mission projects around the world and in our own community. We also strive to provide meaningful adult enrichment programs and youth education. The church combines all of your “small” contributions to sustain these programs and we combine the church’s “small” gifts with the donations of others in the Christian community to make meaningful contributions to making a difference around the world
Somehow, visualizing the benefits of sharing, puts the “feel good” factor into the picture. And while altruism is a wonderful thing, it doesn’t hurt to take pleasure in helping someone in need. Even Jesus loved his work!
First Presbyterian Church and Redlands Family Services will team up again this year to supply gifts for teens at Christmas.
So how does it work? We will have our FALL GIVING TREE set up in the Narthex for the first three Sundays in November.
All you have to do is select a leaf from the tree naming the gift you would like to give. Give the leaf to us along with your check or cash and we will purchase the scrip to buy the gifts. This will also help Christian education through the scrip program.
Thanks for your continued support.
Don and Lynn Jordan will be hosting a church picnic/barbecue at their beautiful Oak Glen home on Saturday, August 1st at 3:00. Call the church office for details or to sign up for ride-sharing. You can also sign up to bring a side dish for the potluck supper. Members of all of our congregations, English, Indonesian, and Pakistani/Indian are invited. Church visitors and guests may join the festivities by invitation.
“Summertime when the livin’ is easy/the fish are jumpin’/the cotton’s wild. . . . (Do you know the rest?)
I believe in taking it easy in the summer. The heat doesn’t allow many backyard barbecues in our neck of the woods. But there’s always minor league baseball, yogurt or ice cream, the mountains, and air-conditioned movie theaters and libraries.
At our church we will be trying to “live easy”, too. That means learning about God or praising God in different ways, and with different voices. On July 5th we’ll have a hymn and song sing. Patriotic songs will be sung as we kickoff a special emphasis on a special people in our midst, and in our communities—our VETERANS! Ruling Elder Monica Frederik whose ministry is in triage with our Veterans at the Loma Linda Hospital will speak, and I’ll be reading a poem out of the Poems That Make Grown Men Cry book that’s related to Veterans. Vacation Bible School with First United Methodist is July 6-10. Three families are signed up, as well as a few adult volunteers. There’s room for more. On July 12th the kids from the past week’s jointly sponsored Vacation Bible School will “surprise us” in worship, and Sam Roberts, chaplain at Loma Linda VA will preach.
On July 19th we’ll be reviewing Terrance Roberts two books in adult ed and on the 26th we’ll be having a Loaves and Fishes Sunday. You’ll have to come to find out what that is.
Then the real fun begins.
August 1st – All Church Picnic at the Jordan’s Oak Glen House
August 2nd – Worship with Elizabeth Nordquist with the Holy Communion
August 9th – Worship with Steve Wirth on how his former church merged with another
August 16th – Kick-off Sunday (Chancel Choir Back) and Ice Cream Social
August 23rd — Chaplain Gail Stearns of Chapman University on “Christian Mindfulness”
August 30th – Multicultural Service with Pulpit Exchange with Grace Presbyterian, Temecula; Lynn Stone preaching and presiding at Holy Communion
Meanwhile, the organ will be worked on, kids will visit camp and perhaps the San Clemente Beach via the Beach Train on July 28th, Redlands Unified School starts (on August 13th) and conversations will continue with Community Presbyterian of Redlands.
The livin’ might be easy, but I promise you it won’t be boring.
Warmly—with Christ and in the Spirit,
Sunday’s sermon by guest speaker, Dr. Terrance Roberts delivered a compelling message about what it means to “Soar on the Wings of Love”. He told how every day he went to high school, taunted and harassed by opponents of the integration of Little Rock schools, he wanted to quit. He told how difficult it was to focus on his studies with his fellow students and even some of his teachers pitted against him. What brought him back day after day was the knowledge that he was participating in something meaningful and that it would be a betrayal of those who had sacrificed before him to give up out of fear.
The chancel choir, under the direction of Zach Neufeld, sang a heartfelt version of “This Little Light of Mine” reiterating Dr. Robert’s message of hope.
Nancy Irby performed a lovely Introit and also sang the Offertory.
At the reception following the service, Dr. Roberts signed copies of his books for members who purchased them. The Adult Enrichment class of Sunday, July 19th will be having a one-hour discussion of these books.