2021 CONSECRATION SUNDAY

CONSECRATION SUNDAY

Saturday, October 17, 2021

Worship Service, 9:30 am

Drive-Through Dedication, 11:30 am-12:00 pm

On Sunday, October 17 we celebrate the joy of living a generous Christ-centered life with our annual stewardship emphasis.
 
We will all be together (in-person or via live stream) for ONE 9:30 am service, where we will welcome Rev. Sam Massengill as our guest preacher. During worship, we will prayerfully dedicate our gifts. If you won’t be here that day, you may return by mail, fill out online, or swing through a Drive-Through Dedication from 11:30-Noon that day.
 
Our sermon series “Now Is The Time” provides a biblical framework for this emphasis highlighted by personal stories from church members. To assist with budget projections, we kindly ask that all estimates be turned in by October 31.
 
 

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APPRECIATION SUNDAY 2021

PASTOR AND STAFF APPRECIATION SUNDAY, OCTOBER 10

Help us celebrate the ministry of Rev. Stuart Spencer, Rev. Wes Allen, and our program staff this Sunday, October 10, by sending them a note of appreciation sharing your gratitude for their ministry and sharing kind words of appreciation.

And I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will guide you with knowledge and understanding. Jeremiah 3:15
 
You may bring a card with you to either worship service, or fill in one of the blank thank you cards available in the Commons Lobby. Kids: they’d love to receive artwork or a picture from you too!
 
Baskets will be located in the Commons Lobby and in the Narthex to receive cards and notes for our clergy and senior staff:
  • Rev. Stuart Spencer
  • Rev. Wes Allen
  • Holly Asciutto
  • Martin Bass
  • Linda Jagiela
  • Joel Krott
 

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PRAYER VIGIL FALL 2021

12-Hour Prayer Vigil

Our ‘River of Prayer’ is widening and constantly flowing!

Saturday, October 16, 6:00 am to 6:00 pm

Consecration Sunday October 17 and The Church Has Left the Building October 24
 
Our “River of Prayer” is widening and constantly flowing! The Prayer Committee will hold its next “12-Hour Prayer Vigil” on Saturday, October 16th to provide our church family an opportunity to reflect on our stewardship emphasis for Consecration Sunday, October 17th: “Now Is The Time.” We will also focus on prayer for “The Church Has Left the Building” Sunday, October 24th.
 
Please SIGN UP online for a 30-minute time between 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.
 
A special Prayer Guide will be emailed to everyone who signs up and will also be available on the church website. For questions please contact Prayer Committee chair Pam Engle at 609-332-7513 or pam@pamengle.com.
 
Have an immediate prayer need?
The Prayer Team is ready and available to pray for your request. Simply text the wording to be shared to 609-923-4135 or 609-332-7513 and the team will be notified immediately. Updates and praises are appreciated!

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GROUPS RETURN 2021

KIDS AND YOUTH GROUPS ARE KICKING OFF

Our young people share opportunities to learn about God and find community among their peers!

 
KIDS GROUPS
Starting Wednesday, October 6
  • Crossing Zone (grades 4-6), 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
  • Kingdom Kids (grades k-3) – 4:45 pm – 5:45 pm
 
YOUTH GROUPS
Starting Sunday, October 3
  • High School (grades 9-12), 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Starting Wednesday, October 6
  • Middle School (grades 7-8), 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

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VAN CAMP PORCH

VAN CAMP PORCH DEDICATION

Joan Van Camp,

a long time and faithful member of our church, left a generous legacy bequest to the church. Through Joan’s unparalleled generosity, the church has addressed numerous upgrades to God’s House over several years and donated sustaining gifts to our local and international mission partners. Her gift impacts not only the present, but generations of members and families to come.
 
On August 31 we held a ceremony to honor Joan’s generosity and dedicate the Van Camp Porch in her honor. Used by staff, committees and groups, this place is a comfortable outdoor space to meet and do God’s work.
 
We invite you to learn more about Legacy Giving.
 

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PW FALL GATHERING 2021

Presbyterian Women Fall Gathering

WOMEN OF THE CHURCH:

On Monday, Sept. 20 at 10:00 am, we will be kicking off our program year with the Fall Gathering Presented by PW. We will meet in person in Fellowship Hall (masks required indoors). ALL women are invited – and encouraged to bring a friend or neighbor. Spacing in the room will be generous.
 
Ruth Stotsenburg will be introducing the group to the engaging new Presbyterian Women small group study “What my Grandmothers Taught Me-Learning from the Women in Matthew’s Genealogy.”
 
Circle Leaders will be present to offer a personal invitation to their particular group, which will begin in October. These small groups meet monthly with day and night times available. Leaders are Jean Kunkel, Barbara Lewis, Ginny Weber, and Debbie Heller. Gayle Payne leads a service group.
 
Register ONLINE to attend the Fall Gathering! All women of the church are welcome.

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THE ENGAGEMENT PROJECT

THE ENGAGEMENT PROJECT

Adult Spiritual Formation (Room 3-4)
September 15 – November 17, 2021

The Engagement Project is a 10-week study which will meet Wednesday evenings at the church. When we draw near to God and contemplate His divine nature, it exposes us, as it did Isaiah. But it also awakens us to His Truth, which transforms us and calls us to engage the world around us. After we engage, we seek to restore the Truth of God in all areas of life.
 
Invite your friends from other churches to this video discussion series — all are welcome! No book is required.
 
NOTE: In previous years a meal has been served with similar studies, with meal costs shared among participants. Due to COVID restrictions, we are unsure if food or beverages will be permitted; watch this space for updated information and meeting times.
 

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MINISTRY FAIR 2021

MINISTRY FAIR – CONNECT, DEVOTE, SERVE, WORSHIP

A Time to Scatter … Gather

As our church continues to gather together again for worship, we will plan to gather to kick off the 2021 program and school year with our Ministry Fair on Sunday, Sept. 12th. The Ministry Fair features table displays from church ministries to educate the congregation about specific goals and gain new participants. Watch for a companion August sermon series on gathering as well.
 
As in previous years, the Ministry Fair centers around four key practices that enliven our faith:
  • We connect in smaller groups to discover fellowship with God and one another
  • We devote regular time to deepen our relationship with God through Scripture and prayer
  • We serve the needs of others
  • We worship our Lord together
Our individual and collective faith flourishes when these practices are consistently embodied, so we’re highlighting how we can live them out together. For example, if you’re a newcomer or visitor, perhaps a good place to start is to connect with others and discover what it means to worship with the body of Christ. If you’ve been devoting time to God on your own and long for fellowship and rich dialogue, you might consider joining a small group. Maybe the Spirit is leading you to discover the gift of service as an usher or audio visual technician.
 
Our goal remains to encourage FPC Moorestown and the wider community to grow in love for God and one another; to encourage people of all ages and stages of faith to reflect on what it means to connect, devote, serve and worship. How is God calling you to take your next step of faith? What does it mean to listen to the Spirit as it guides you toward new opportunities to love God and your neighbor for the coming year?
 
We are grateful to be on this journey together and look forward to hearing how we can support you as we all seek to be Christ’s salt and light!
 
Your Church Staff
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

Don’t the areas overlap?
Yes. We worship through serving and meeting together and devoting our hearts to God, but in the interest of clarity, we have made what we think are meaningful separations between them. This is not intended to erase these connections, but to highlight areas for growth. As you engage in one step or expression of faith it will become clear how one expression of faith transforms your experiences in the other three.
 
Where is the Ministry Fair? When will it begin and end?
The Ministry Fair will be held in Fellowship Hall and Miller Commons lobby on Sunday, September 12th. It starts at 9:45 AM and ends at 10:45 AM. However, each area of the fair (Connect, Devote, Serve and Worship) will remain set up for the entire day on Sunday to give everyone a chance to explore and learn more about FPC Moorestown.
 
How does my ministry area reserve a table?
To reserve a table, contact Earl Gage at egage@fpcmoorestown.org or (856) 235-1688, Ext. 106 by August 21st. Table space is limited so in some instances, groups will be asked to share tables.
 
What are the COVID protocols?
At this time, masks are optional, with the knowledge that most in the congregation are fully vaccinated. Hand sanitizer will be available.
 
When does set up begin?
Tables will be placed in all four areas of the Fair (Connect, Devote, Serve and Worship) on Thursday, September 9th. We kindly ask for all participants to leave their ministry information at their areas until Monday, Sept. 13th. This way, no matter whether you attend the Traditional or Contemporary worship service, you have time to explore and learn more about FPC Moorestown. Property staff will break down tables on Monday, Sept. 13th.

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FPC 133 BIRTHDAY

SEPTEMBER 12: HONOR OUR FOUNDING 133 YEARS AGO

This year, our Ministry Fair happens to fall on our birthday! Let’s make September 12th special this year!

September 12th marks the 133rd Birthday of our church. In honor of the church’s celebration of its founding on September 12, 1888, members are encouraged to donate to the future of FPC Moorestown by giving to the September 12 endowment fund. The fund is invested to earn income which helps to support the needs of our church.
 
How can you send your birthday gift to the church? Bring your envelope to the Sept. 12 Ministry Fair, mail your gift to the church, give online, or drop in the offering plate. Gifts may be donated through December.
 
See our flyer ..SEPTEMBER 12 FLYER
 
This fund began in 1993, when our Interim Pastor at that time, Dr. Bryant Kirkland, and Dr. James Honan, conceived of creating a special fund to celebrate our past and invest in our future. The September 12th Fund serves as a long-term endowment for our church. Financial contributions to the September 12th Fund are held and invested for the care and protection of our church over time. A designated portion of the earnings are distributed each year for current church needs.
 
It is the invested gifts of those who came before us that have grown over time to create financial stability for FPC even in uncertain times. It is our gifts that will provide that same stability for future generations to weather the storms that will come.
This is especially important for us at times like this COVID-19 pandemic. We can only be ready for these situations if we faithfully prepare, save and invest for times like these.
 
There is no better way to protect the future and make a lasting difference financially for our beloved First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown. So, in this our 133rd year, please consider a gift of $13.30, $133.00, $1,330 or $13,300.
READ a letter from the pastor about a special opportunity to support this legacy …  PASTOR SPENCER’S LETTER

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911 REMEMBRANCE SERVICE

A SERVICE OF REMEMBRANCE, PRAYER AND RESURRECTION

On Saturday September 11, 2021 at 8:30 am, we gather at the cross in the First Presbyterian Church cemetery for a service of remembrance, prayer and resurrection as we commemorate the 20th anniversary of the deadliest terrorist attack in world history. This will be a solemn time for reflection, prayer, scripture reading, and song as we remember the 2,977 lives tragically taken from this world and the 20-year war that ensued.
 
 
For those unable to attend, you may use this prayer guide to find prayers and scripture readings to coincide with the times the planes struck the World Trade Center towers, Pentagon, and field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
 
 

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COVID PROTOCOL UPDATED

Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 23

COVID GUIDELINES UPDATED

Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown:
On this gorgeous morning, two days after heavy storms battered our region, I bring you an update. I’m always amazed how a fierce downpour often clears the air and results in a string of lovely weather. I pray that the storms we’re facing together may soon bring the beauty of God’s purposes.
 
At a specially called meeting September 2nd, Session approved the following COVID-19 protocols. These protocols take effect immediately and will remain in place through October. Session and staff will monitor the pandemic and make changes to these guidelines as warranted.
 
  • Masks will be mandatory for everyone when gathering indoors (including both vaccinated and unvaccinated) when Burlington County is deemed to have high or substantial community spread. This applies to worship and all indoor meetings. Masking is encouraged but not required for outdoor meetings or gatherings on our property.
  • Beginning Sunday, Sept. 5th, congregational singing will be discontinued, singers will be masked, and those who attend in-person will be distanced.
  • We’ll continue to serve the Lord’s Supper as we have through the pandemic in pre-packaged units.
  • We will not serve or eat food indoors. Pre-made or prepared food may be served and eaten outside.
We’re learning how to live with a pandemic that appears to have no end in sight. I’m certain that some from our congregation will be discouraged or disheartened by the return of masking to our indoor gatherings. In light of the rising transmission risk for Burlington County, Session felt that our protocols needed revision. Throughout the pandemic, your Session has always sought to ensure the safety of our members and friends — from the youngest to the oldest.
 
I am deeply grateful for the members of our Session. Amid busy lives, our elders give freely and often of their time. Throughout the course of the pandemic, Session members have met, beyond our monthly stated and committee meetings, to tackle the wide range of unprecedented issues and concerns that no one has faced before.
 
I happened to read a portion of the New Testament book of James this week in my daily quiet time. James was a straight shooter. In chapter 3, James pens a clear call for God’s people to seek “heavenly wisdom” or God’s wisdom as we live together facing all the challenges we face. Notice his assurance of something beautiful blooming as we seek God’s guidance. It’s as beautiful as the stunning late summer weather that follows a hurricane.
 
13 Who in your community is understanding and wise? Let her or his example, which is marked by wisdom and gentleness, blaze a trail for others. 17 Heavenly wisdom centers on purity, peace, gentleness, deference, mercy, and other good fruits untainted by hypocrisy. 18 The seed that flowers into righteousness will always be planted in peace by those who embrace peace. (James 3: 12, 17 – 18, The Voice)
 
Thank you for patient support and unfailing kindness to me, our staff and our lay leaders.
 
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 

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133rd BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION

FPC MOORESTOWN CELEBRATES 133 YEARS

Let’s go back twenty years to three days in September 2001 that changed everything. I refer to September 10, September 11, and September 12, 2001.
September 10 was the last ordinary day that our nation experienced for a long time. September 11 brought the loss and sorrow of the terrorist attacks. September 12 ushered in a new way of life.
 
While the September 12th Fund began eight years before those difficult days, the vision that then Interim Pastor Bryant Kirkland, and Dr. James Honan had in 1993 created a crucial form of preparedness for First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown. As we have learned then and now, we’ll never see the momentous challenges coming before they arrive. We simply have to be ready to respond to those unanticipated needs with courage and resolve. Twenty years after 2001, we face another challenge of a worldwide pandemic. We must continue our readiness and resolve for the needs of the moment. That’s why I am so grateful for the September 12th Fund, a special account to celebrate our past and invest in our future.
 
The September 12th Fund serves as a long-term endowment for our church. Financial contributions to the September 12th Fund are held and invested for the care and protection of our church over time. A designated portion of the earnings are distributed each year for current church needs.
 
It is the invested gifts of those who came before us that have grown over time to create financial stability for FPC Moorestown even in uncertain times. It is our gifts that will provide that same stability for future generations to weather the storms that will come.
 
This is especially important for us at times like this COVID-19 pandemic. We can only be ready for these situations if we faithfully prepare, save, and invest for times like these.
 
There is no better way to protect the future and make a lasting difference financially for our beloved First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown.
This year, September 12th, the birthday of our church, falls on a Sunday. Make it a special year! Celebrate the 133rd Birthday of FPC Moorestown with a special gift. Please consider a gift of $13.30, $133.00, $1,330 or $13,300. Enclosed is a pre-addressed envelope for your convenience, or you may also easily give online.
 
THANK YOU for your incredible and consistent generosity, especially in these uncertain times. I’m so blessed by you and I thank God for you!
 

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor


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REV WES ALLEN

WE INVITE YOU TO ‘MEET’ OUR ASSOCIATE PASTOR CANDIDATE

Rev. Wesley Allen is no stranger to FPC Moorestown!

He is the candidate our Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC) has presented to fill the long empty ‘office in the corner’. As Pastor Spencer says in his letter, “the Spirit of God faithfully and wonderfully answered our prayers for an Associate Pastor.”
 
Our thanks to the APNC, Kevin Fauvell, Chair, Carole Wehn, Adrienne Barr, Jane Murphy and Marsha Booker, who have published a beautiful brochure to tell us all about our candidate.
 

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JOIN OUR CHOIR

YOUR INVITATION TO JOIN OUR CHOIR

“When we lift our voices in song, we join a cosmic affirmation of God’s glory.” Joel Krott

 
We will begin rehearsals again in September and welcome you to join us! All who enjoy singing and who have a passion for worship are encouraged to join us. Young people are welcome to participate, regardless of prior singing experience or music reading ability. Our programs encourage growth and offer instruction in a nurturing style. And don’t forget our Contemporary Worship Band, it may be just the place for you!
 

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ANNOUNCING CALL

ANNOUNCING CALL OF ASSOCIATE PASTOR

Dear Members and Friends of First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown,
 
After nearly 30 months of a nationwide search, our Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC) gratefully presents a candidate who lives exactly one mile from the front doors of our sanctuary. A brief glance at the enclosed brochure tells you that the Spirit of God faithfully and wonderfully answered our prayers for an Associate Pastor in the person of someone who is no stranger to many of us: Reverend Wesley “Wes” Allen. I praise God for sending a gifted friend who is clearly called to this position. We’re incredibly blessed to welcome Wes and his family, Jen, and Vivian and Jacob into our midst.
 
When Kelly LePenske announced her plans to conclude her ministry, the Personnel Team and I started seeking someone who could help me while the search for an Associate Pastor continued. I reached out to Wes to discover if he had any interest in filling that interim role. He did not but he did tell me that he was attracted to the called position for Associate Pastor.
 
We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to our APNC. Kevin Fauvell was the chair of the committee. The other members were Carole Wehn, Adrienne Barr, Jane Murphy and Marsha Booker. Dave Adams was a member until he resigned last year. These servants reviewed 184 Personnel Information Forms. They had deeper conversations with about 30 candidates. You’ll recall at the time of their election in February 2019 they were asked to seek a Pastor who would oversee our discipleship and adult spiritual formation ministries, guide our congregational care, including Stephen Ministries, participate in worship leadership and preach regularly. A year into their work, Session re-directed their search to find a candidate who would lead our youth ministries. Early this year, Session asked the Committee to return to their original mandate. All along, they met regularly, often weekly, and for most of the time, via Zoom. They encouraged each other like weary runners in a marathon. They prayed constantly. They once told me that the acronym, APNC changed meaning for them from Associate Pastor Nominating Committee to Always Praying, Never Conceding. I thank the Committee for persevering on behalf of our congregation and Presbytery.
 
Session has called a special meeting of the congregation for Sunday, August 29, 2021 for the purpose of voting on the call of Rev. Wes Allen as our Associate Pastor. It’s a Fifth Sunday, so we’ll gather in our Sanctuary for one service at 9:30 a.m. when Wes will preach. The meeting begins at the close of worship. The worship service and the meeting will be live streamed. We’ll provide a Zoom link with an option to vote for church members who’d prefer to stay at home.
 
In addition to considering the terms of call for Wes, we’ll also act on a request from Session to amend our By-Laws to allow virtual meetings. Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve held four such meetings, including our Annual Meeting in February of this year. When we meet in a few weeks, it will be the first time we’ve done so since February of 2020, which means we can properly make this amendment. After we’ve worshipped and voted, we’re planning a reception for the Allens outside. Do plan to join us for this momentous morning!
 
Since and Wes and Jen and their children already live in Moorestown, once elected, he can begin his ministry with us on Monday, August 30, the next day. That’s one additional blessing from calling a Pastor who lives around the corner. There will be, I’m certain, many more to follow in the years to come.
 
Gratefully yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 
 

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MISSION BOOK CLUB JULY

MISSIONS BOOK CLUB MEETS

Join us on MONDAY, July 26 at 6:00 pm for the Missions Book Club via Zoom.

NOTE: Moved from Friday, July 30.

We will be discussing The Simple Faith of Mister Rogers by Amy Hollingsworth.
 
Celebrate the release of A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood starring Tom Hanks with an inside look on Mr. Rogers’ spiritual legacy.
It shows us a man who, to paraphrase the words of St. Francis of Assisi, “preached the gospel at all times; when necessary he used words.”
Tom Brokaw of NBC Nightly News once said of the American icon Fred Rogers, “Mister Rogers was an ordained minister, but he never talked about God on his program. He didn’t need to.”
 
Eight years before his death, Fred Rogers met author, educator, and speaker Amy Hollingsworth. What started as a television interview turned into a wonderful friendship spanning dozens of letters detailing the driving force behind this gentle man of extraordinary influence. Educator? Philosopher? Psychologist? Minister? Here is an intimate portrait of the real Mister Rogers.
 
To participate in the call:
Log on to: www.zoom.com
Meeting ID: 858 1209 6236
Passcode: 040982

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85812096236?pwd=ci80R2ZVaXhjS1RYLzF3STZkTGprUT09
Join Zoom Meeting
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 408 638 0968 US (San Jose)
+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
Meeting ID: 858 1209 6236
Passcode: 040982
 
If you have not read or finished the book, please feel free to still join the discussion! We’d love to have you.
For information contact Linda Jagiela at missions@fpcmoorestown.org. The Book Club will meet by Zoom on the third Monday of each month. (Note some dates are different due to holidays)
 
Want to read ahead?
See our summaries of upcoming books for 2021:Remaining Schedule:
August 23, 2021: Father to the Fatherless: The Charles Mulli Story by Paul H. Boge and Bruce Wilkinson

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25 WAYS GUIDE US

OUR 25 WAYS GUIDE US

Community is such a gift!

It is a true strength for FPC Moorestown. The better we grow our community – more loving, kind and merciful – the more inline we are with our greater message; the message of our faith.

Pastor Spencer shares with us how, using our 25 WAYS as a guide, we create a culture that knows how to go out into the local and global community to give and invest.

Thank you to Rolando Vega and CultureWise for this video production.

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PROPERTY CREW

Steve Margerum, Property Manager

OUR PROPERTY CREW HAS EXPANDED

Would you like to contact a member of our day time Property Crew? JUST CALL FOR STEVE!

Steve Purdy, Property Team

Yes, three members of our property staff have the first name of Steve. Our new Property Manager is Steve Margerium, having taken the role just last month. Steve Purdy was added to the team just this week joining Steve Cashmer and Fausto de la Cruz. When you see our newest team members please be sure to say… ‘Hello Steve!’


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COLOR WARS

Color Wars! (grades 4th-6th)

COLOR WARS RESCHEDULED
Join us on Wednesday, July 28 at 6:30 pm 

 
Color Wars AKA Paint Wars for grades 4th-6th only (this includes those going into 4th grade in the fall and those entering 7th grade in the fall are invited back for the summer for one last hurrah!)
  • When: Wednesday, July 21st
  • Time: 6:30-8:00 pm
  • Where: First Presbyterian Church, 101 Bridgeboro Road, Moorestown
  • What to bring: Wear a white tee shirt, old sneakers, shorts (these will get stained!!) and hair ties if you want your hair up and out of the way. Bring a pair of goggles if you have them (I will try to have spares for those that do not) and TWO OLD TOWELS … one to dry off with and one to use to cover the car seat on the way home! No need to bring a change of clothes.
 
Because of the nature of this event, no one will be permitted to enter the building once the event begins. (Can’t get paint all over the church)
 
This will be a FUN event BUT messy!! We will have hoses available to rinse off at the end of our time together.
 
Questions? Contact Holly Asciutto at 609-273-7465 cell/text or hasciutto@fpcmoorestown.org.

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NEW PROTOCOLS

NEW PROTOCOLS FOR GATHERED WORSHIP

OLLIE, OLLIE IN COME FREE!

Right at this point in June, in the longest days of the year and summer nearly arrived; I fondly remember playing outside as a child with the kids of my neighborhood. My favorite game was Kick the Can, the reverse of Hide and Go Seek. One kid guarded an old tin coffee can while the rest of us hid by the houses, trees and shrubs of our neighborhood. The goal was to kick the can — though if the guard tagged you, you had to sit in jail until someone successfully booted the can. If the game went too long or the hour was too late, the person guarding the can shouted: Ollie! Ollie in come free! According to Wikipedia, the phrase my friends and I yelled is a variant of “Olly olly oxen free.” The term is a truce term used in children’s games such as hide and seek, capture the flag, and kick the can. Hearing it indicates that players who are hiding can come out into the open without losing the game; or, that the game is entirely over.
 
I’m calling: Ollie, Ollie in come free today. Though the COVID pandemic isn’t completely over, we see the right signs moving in both directions. Infection rates in Burlington County are dropping while the vaccine rates are rising. At FPC Moorestown, this means that we’re loosening more of our restrictions and easing into a number of changes. I invite, welcome and encourage you to join us Sunday for worship at 8:30 a.m. in the Sanctuary and 11:00 a.m. in Miller Commons. The coast is clear. Come on in!
 
At its stated meeting Tuesday, June 22, Session approved the following guidelines for our worship services and meeting (see our event page for details).
  • Effective Sunday, June 27, masks will be optional. Some people may decide to wear a mask for a number of reasons. As disciples, we honor and love one another without judgment. NOTE: These mask guidelines will not apply to participants of our Vacation Bible School. Children will need to mask next week because of mandates for day camps in the State of New Jersey.
  • Starting Sunday, July 4th, our Independence Day, congregational singing will be permitted at both services. We’ll start slowly, meaning that the congregation will sing a couple of times in each worship service. Beginning this Sunday, singers at both services won’t have to wear masks as they offer their praise to God.
  • The collection practice continues with emphasis on electronic giving and mailing checks to church. The offering box will be available at both services.
  • All entry remains through the Commons Lobby.
  • Check-ins will be for attendance purposes only and will shift to self-check only (no QR code). We won’t be asking people to complete release forms, health forms or have temperatures taken, effective immediately.
  • Please continue to check in on the Church Center app on your smart phone when arriving or when viewing the live stream from home.
  • Handicapped entry remains through the narthex.
  • Restrictions on seating capacity are fully lifted.
  • We’ll continue using individual communion serving units when we celebrate the Lord’s Supper.
  • If you’re not feeling well or have any COVID symptoms, please stay at home.
  • These same protocols are in effect for all FPC Moorestown groups, though groups won’t have to check in before meeting. Please consult the Church Office when planning an event or a meeting.
  • For the present, no food will be served inside our facilities. We won’t offer a Sunday Coffee Hour for the time being, though we hope to in the coming months.
  • Both Sunday morning services will be available by live stream.
I have more pleasant news to share with you. At Tuesday’s Session meeting, our elders approved the recommendation of our Personnel Team to hire Steve Margerum as our new Property Supervisor and Steve Purdy as a full-time member of our Property Team. Identifying the members of our Property Team is now simple but confusing. Just call Steve!
 
I like to conclude all of our Congregational Updates with a request for your prayers. Please hold Holly Asciutto and her staff in prayer in the final days before Vacation Bible School and each morning next week. Remember regularly our search committees for an Associate Pastor and Youth Director.
Please continue to support the mission and work of our church financially. Our staff and lay leaders are eager to serve our community and congregation as the pandemic recedes.
 
Ollie! Ollie in come free! See you in worship!
 
Fondly yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 

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CREDO CLASS 2021

FPC Moorestown Welcomes New Young Members

The congregation accepts new members with open arms and prayer.

Pastor Stuart Spencer led the CREDO confirmation class for those young people looking to become members of the church. Students who began CREDO last year were also invited to complete the course this year. Each student is assigned a mentor from the congregation to walk this journey with them.
 
The class met Sunday afternoons on the Van Camp Porch. Members were examined by Session at an outdoor dinner on Sunday, June 6 where the students presented their Statements of Faith.
 
Those who wished to join First Presbyterian Church were welcomed during worship on Sunday, June 13 at the Traditional Worship service.

2021 CREDO Participants and Mentors

  • Ava Callahan ~ Holly Asciutto
  • Caroline Cristella ~ Jenna Cole
  • Luke Eagles ~ Dave Fauvell
  • Evan Livingston ~ Mike Baker
  • Will McNeil ~ Lorenzo Eagles
  • Alivia Nawrocki ~ Holly Asciutto
  • Max Nicklas ~ Jason Rose

Welcome CREDO class 2021


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PW SPRING GATHERING

Presbyterian Women Host Spring Gathering

Monday, June 21, 7:00 pm

Via live stream and in person
Dr. Jenny Legath presents “Grace and God’s ‘Will’: Living and Loving in a Special Needs Family.”

Jenny Wiley Legath and her husband Jeff joined the church in 2004. They have three active sons: Jack, Will, and Cole. Jenny served as an elder from 2009-2012 and is a devoted member of the Thursday morning Moms Group. In 2008 Jenny earned her Ph.D. in Religion from Princeton University, where she works as the Associate Director of the Center for the Study of Religion. She teaches and advises graduate students, and in the fall she will teach her first undergraduate class at Princeton: “Religion and the Public Conversation.” She is the author of Sanctified Sisters: A History of Protestant Deaconesses (New York University Press 2019). Jenny will speak about relying on God while raising a family that includes a special needs child.
 
For those attending in person, masks are required and please distance comfortably. There is no cost to attend and guests are always welcome!
 
To watch the live stream, simply log on to the church website at 7:00 pm, Monday, June 21 for the live event: www.fpcmoorestown.org/live-stream. Please forward the website link to any of your friends you’d like to invite to the event. There is no registration required to view the event.

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LEGACY GIVING

Legacy Giving Sunday – June 6, 2021

Live Forward. Give Forward.

 
Legacy Giving Sunday, observed May 3 in the PC(USA) and June 6 this year at First Presbyterian Church, is an invitation to consider how you can share the blessings God has given to you beyond your lifetime.
 
On this Sunday, we recognize and honor those who have created a legacy here at First Presbyterian Church through bequests, both large and small. These important donations benefit our programs and services, ministries, beautiful grounds and property, and our impact in the world, and make an enduring statement of faith for God’s work here on earth.
 
A legacy speaks not about how we died, but how we lived. It speaks about the things that move us in life, the things that matter to us. A legacy is an expression of gratitude and thanks to God for all that has been given and enjoyed in life.
In creating a legacy, the dream is to keep our church caring and working here after our lifetime.. The Presbyterian Foundation offers many resources to begin this conversation.
 
Including a gift to the church in your will or estate can make a lasting difference for our church family and faith community. It’s a simple process and we can help. If you feel called to include the church in your legacy giving plan, please contact Norman Vandergrift in the church office at (856) 235-1688, Ext. 112 or nvandergrift@fpcmoorestown.org.
 
A LOVING HISTORY OF GIFTS TO GROW OUR CHURCH

Over the years, special gifts and bequests have allowed our church to “live forward” and provide for our future as we do the work of the Lord. Just some of the growth opportunities that were realized because members made a plan to “give forward” have been:
  • Renovation of Main Kitchen
  • Replacement of Fellowship Hall and Sanctuary roofs
  • Yearly scholarships to high school seniors
  • Construction of Prayer Room and development of prayer team ministry
  • Installation of high efficiency boilers
  • Fire code upgrades for boiler rooms
  • Energy upgrade of HVAC/lighting for cost efficiency
  • Restoration of carillon bell tower
  • Purchase of pick-up truck for property use
  • uild out of Miller Commons stage
  • Way of the Week Showcase and artwork
  • Upgrade of church office computer system network
  • Repair and resurfacing of all parking lots
  • Installation of improved drainage
  • Beautification of cemetery, cross, hardscaping, landscaping, entry
  • Creation of Spencer Powell Fund for pastoral housing
Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. II Corinthians 9:7 (NIV)

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JOURNEYING TOGETHER

West Jersey Chamber Music Society

Closes its 2020–21 season with Journeying Together, a free live stream concert on Sunday, May 23 at 7:30 pm.

The West Jersey Chamber Chorale pairs spirituals from the African-American and European-American traditions of the 1860s. We explore the commonalities that led both communities on a journey to heaven.
 
The program includes arrangements by composers Moses Hogan, Alice Parker, Hall Johnson, and Jester Hairston, among others. The talented WJCMS singers, plus host Ivan Woods, will contrast the roots, characteristics, and themes shared among these musical traditions. Journey through mankind’s earthly struggles to the divine aspirations that unite us.
 
The Performers:
  • West Jersey Chamber Chorale
  • Ivan Woods, narrator
 
This program includes:
Such traditional spirituals as “Walk Together, Children,” “Let the Church Roll On,” and “Hark, I Hear the Harp’s Eternal,” among others.
 
We thank our sponsors:
  • This concert is generously sponsored by DJK Roofing LLC.
  • WJCMS is grateful to Cigna for its support.
  • Funding is made possible in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts / Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts through a grant to the Burlington County Board of Commissioners.

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KELLY AND JOEY WEDDING

A GLIMPSE INTO THEIR WEDDING!

MR. AND MRS. SPONSELLER

MAY 15, 2021

The wedding worship was held at an estate in San Ynez, California with family and friends sharing in the happiness; all praying for God’s blessings on this wonderful couple!
 
Joey and Kelly are now husband and wife. God made a beautiful day in a gorgeous setting.
 
 

Ready for the wedding worship.

Kelly is stunningly gorgeous and Joey is handsome in his purple suit.

And some pictures from the rehearsal rehearsal dinner held at a winery.

Kelly was excited to be escorted down the aisle by her parents, Tom and Terry LePenske.

 

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MISSIONOPOLY FAIR

THE GREAT COMMISSION: MISSIONOPOLY

Our first ever virtual mission fair!

Your Mission team is excited to bring you The Great Commission: Missionopoly — our first ever virtual mission fair based loosely on the game Monopoly.

Watch the videos, play the game, pray the devotions, compete in trivia night (May 21st at 7 pm) and join our missionaries live on May 23rd throughout the day for zoom panel discussions and Q&A meet the missionaries.

With this event we will be celebrating our mission partners; bringing to you their stories and giving a firsthand opportunity to travel across the globe to see God’s good deeds in action from the comfort of your sofa.
 
 

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A FAREWELL FROM KELLY

A Letter from Kelly LePenske

May 2, 2021

THREE YEARS AGO this month, I moved from Princeton to the historic town of Riverton where the Delaware River glistened just beyond the windows of my new apartment. Before I could unpack my boxes, I dove into full-time ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Moorestown and met many of you for the first time. Early on, it became clear to me that FPC was a cherished home for multiple generations, a place where people came to connect with God and each other not just on Sundays, but practically every day of the week. It was easy to feel God’s welcome as I learned the names of preschoolers, teens, adults and lifelong members in their 90s.
 
I also learned some serious life lessons as a South Jersey resident. Lesson #1: Don’t ever order an ice cream cone with sprinkles; only jimmies. Lesson #2: If anyone asks what you did over the weekend, just say “I went down the shore” even if you drove north to get to the beach. As important as these lessons are for a West Coaster, my favorite memories don’t revolve around ice cream but you, the body of Christ at FPC. The greatest thing I’ll carry with me across the Verrazano Bridge into Brooklyn is the gift of your friendship and generosity.
 
Thank you for inviting me into your lives, in good times and in hard times, and sharing so much with me––delicious meals, laughter, honest conversations, brilliant questions, prayers next to beeping hospital machines, volunteer projects at the shore, Spirit-led meetings that help our church grow spiritually for the short and long term… and the list goes on. Your stories have enabled me to see the Gospel at work in some truly unforgettable ways. Christ is much closer and available to us in the daily rhythms of our lives than we often believe. Don’t forget to pay attention to the ordinary!
 
I’m proud of the way FPC Moorestown has embraced cultural change through The 25 Ways, which encourage us to grow from the inside out so that we might become more authentic, committed disciples. I’m praying for our APNC and Youth Director Search Committee, and will celebrate with you all when we know their names as God already does. You will undoubtedly bless them the way you’ve blessed me, with the gracious love and joy of Christ. So, in true English major form, I’m giving my last words to Mary Oliver, a favorite poet who knows how to say thank you best:

“Be slow if you must, but let the heart still play its true part. Love still as once you loved, deeply and without patience. Let God and the world know you are grateful. That the gift has been given.”
 
– Kelly
 

Farewell Drive-by Photo Gallery

Click any photo to open the photos in full size.

 

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UPDATE FROM PASTOR SPENCER

PASTOR’S UPDATE LETTER

WE HAVE EXCITING NEWS TO SHARE

 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
 
I borrow and paraphrase a line from A. A. Milne, author of Winnie the Pooh, “How lucky I am to have [someone] that makes saying goodbye so hard.” How lucky, how fortunate, how blessed I am and we are to have someone like Kelly LePenske. She makes saying goodbye so hard.
 
This coming Sunday, May 2, we say goodbye and thank you to Kelly as she concludes three years of exceptional ministry. Thirteen days later, she marries Joey Sponseller in California. Kelly preaches at both services on this communion Sunday. After the second service, from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., Kelly and Joey return to the Main Parking lot for a Drive-Through Farewell Reception. I hope you’ll worship with us and then come to bless this couple.
 
Kelly’s departure marks a new time of waiting and prayer for us. I share news about some help that’s on the way and other help that will arrive.
 
  • Meet Peter Jonescu: At its stated meeting on Tuesday evening, April 27, Session voted to hire Peter Jonescu to serve as part-time Interim Director of Congregational Ministries. Peter is about to graduate with a Masters of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary. He’s a candidate for ordination under care of the Los Ranchos Presbytery in southern California. Peter believes that God has called him to serve in both academia and the local church. He plans to do doctoral studies in theology at Princeton Seminary in another year. Peter comes from southern California. He earned a degree from Baylor University before coming to Princeton. He loves dogs and he has a great beard. Peter begins his 25-hour a week, part-time position in early May.
  • APNC Update: Our Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC) has redirected its efforts once again in its task of finding a candidate to serve as Associate Pastor. This faithful, praying group has lost no energy or focus since they began their work two years ago. They are now receiving Personal Information Forms (PIFs) from interested pastors. We can’t say when we’ll have an Associate Pastor here; we only know that God will deliver to us the person we need in His perfect time. APNC Members: Kevin Fauvell, chair; Carole Wehn, Adrienne Barr, Jane Murphy and Marsha Booker.
  • Youth Director Search Committee: We’re seeking a full-time non-ordained Youth Director to lead our youth program. I know that many of our young people feel disconnected to our church right now. It’s been a tough year for our students. Under the excellent leadership of Dave Fauvell, members of the High School and Middle School Youth Groups have had opportunities to “be together” virtually and occasionally, in person. Dave has organized events and stayed in touch with our young people, while doing his full-time job and planning his June wedding. I look forward to the day when we have a full-time Youth Director who can pour herself or himself into the lives of our youth. The Youth Director Search Committee has received many strong resumes thus far. They’ve started interviewing a few. Please pray regularly for this wonderful committee in this crucial moment. Youth Director Search Committee Members: Michael Hock, chair, Gwen Wilkie, Tamara Trzeciak, Carl Krott, Izzy Delgado and Christian Trzeciak (Izzy and Christian are members of the Youth Group.) Dave Fauvell serves in an advisory role without a vote.
 
Several of you have expressed your worries for me as we await the day when we’re fully staffed. Thank you for your concern. I know that you pray for me regularly and that’s the most important gift you can give. I’ll ask for your patience in these days. I may not respond as quickly to email or texts but I’ll do my best.
 
I promise you that I’m seeking daily the strength and wisdom that I need from God. I give glory to God because he has provided both, faithfully and abundantly throughout the pandemic and, really, every day of my life. The fourth petition of the Lord ’s Prayer, “Give us today our daily bread,” reminds me that each day I am to ask for all I need, certain that God will generously provide. That’s also true for us as we wait for God’s good provision of those who will soon serve us.
 
Gratefully yours in Christ,
Stuart
 
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 

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MEETING OF THE CONGREGATION

NOTICE OF SPECIAL CONGREGATIONAL MEETING – MAY 2, 2021

The Session of the First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown, New Jersey, in accordance with the Church Bylaws, has called a Special Meeting of the Congregation and Corporation for Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 10:00 AM via Zoom. The purpose of the meeting is to elect Elders, Deacons and Trustees to a term of office beginning June 1, 2021
 
No other business may be brought before the congregation other than the preceding item.
 
PLEASE NOTE there will be no children’s Sunday School that day due to the Special Meeting.
 
Read biographical sketches of the candidates …  2021 CANDIDATES BIOS

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FAREWELL KELLY LEPENSKE

We bid loving and prayerful farewell to Kelly LePenske

Kelly is now concluding her ministry among us.

 
Dear Members and Friends of First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown,
 
Months before I started my ministry here I made a few decisions with support from our Session. The biggest decision was to hire Kelly LePenske. I’m sure I haven’t made a better decision. I knew Kelly from the year she served with me as a Seminary Intern at my previous congregation. When I realized that Dick Herman would be retiring shortly after I began, I knew I was going to need some help. I called Kelly and asked her if she had any interest in coming to Moorestown.
 
The Personnel Team then interviewed Kelly for a full-time position as a pastoral associate. They were impressed with Kelly. Once she started her ministry here, the rest of you discovered how gifted, wise and grace-filled Kelly LePenske is. Someone once wrote a book about people who either fill or empty buckets. The image suggests that we’re either regularly building up others or tearing them down. Kelly is a bucket filler and she never fails to fill the buckets of others with grace.
 
Kelly will soon marry Joey Sponseller. After the wedding, Joey and Kelly will settle in Brooklyn to begin their married lives. Kelly is now concluding her ministry among us. I’m so grateful for all the support and help Kelly has given our Staff, our whole congregation and me. My bucket is fuller because of her and I will dearly miss my friend and colleague.
 
Kelly’s last Sunday with us is May 2 when she will preach at both services. After the 11:00 a.m. Contemporary service, we’re planning a Drive-Through Farewell for Kelly in the Main Parking lot from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. You’re invited to drive to church to say farewell to her. We also want Kelly to know how much we appreciate her years of ministry with us. Monetary gifts should go directly to Kelly. Use the enclosed envelope to forward your love gift. NOTE: This contribution will not be included as part of your 2021 giving to the church and is not tax-deductible.
 
Please pray with me for Kelly and Joey for their new marriage and their future. Thank her for her ministry. Like all good gifts, Kelly has come to FPC Moorestown through the generous open-handedness of our gracious God. We thank him for Kelly!
 
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor

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NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER

NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER – May 6th

The National Day of Prayer is observed annually on the first Thursday in May.

We invite you to participate in our National Day of Prayer
This year’s theme is: LORD Pour Out Your Love, Life and Liberty
 
This day of observance, designated by the United States Congress, asks people to turn to God in repentance and prayer. The National Day of Prayer has great significance for us as a nation as it enables us to recall and to teach the way in which our founding fathers sought the wisdom of God when faced with critical decisions. It stands as a call for us to humbly come before God, seeking His guidance for our leaders and His grace upon us as a people. The unanimous passage of the bill establishing the National Day of Prayer as an annual event, signifies that prayer is as important to our nation today as it was in the beginning. This year’s theme is “Lord, Pour Out Your Love, Life, Liberty” based on 2 Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 2 Corinthians 3:17
 

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CONTEMPORARY SERVICE RETURNS

TWO SUNDAY WORSHIP SERVICES RETURN

 

We have returned to two worship services. We are happy to be able to safely provide the experience of our Contemporary worship service once again!

 
Join us in worship for:
Traditional service at 8:30 am in the sanctuary
Contemporary service at 11:00 am in Miller Commons
 
Sunday School for ages Kindergarten to 6th grade will move to 9:45-10:45 am in Fellowship Hall.
 
In-person worship protocols remain the same:
  • Participants and worshippers are required to check in through Miller Commons
  • Masks are to be worn on campus
  • Health Screening Questionnaires and Waivers are to be completed for each person

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VBS 2021

Vacation Bible School 2021: ROCKY RAILWAY!

June 28th – July 2nd, 9:30 am – 11:30 am.
Children entering Kindergarten through entering 6th grade (FALL 2021).
Cost: $20 per child

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: June 9th

 
 
 

VBS Volunteers
ADULTS AND TEENS (7th grade and older): 

Interested in being a VBS volunteer? WE NEED YOU!

Please contact Holly Asciutto at hasciutto@fpcmoorestown.org or 856-235-1688, Ext. 116. She is excited to talk with you!

 
 
At Rocky Railway VBS, kids climb aboard for mountains of fun! On this faith-filled adventure, kids discover that trusting Jesus pulls them through life’s ups and downs!
 
In an effort to provide a safe, in person, Vacation Bible School for our children we have modified the times for VBS this year to 9:30-11:30. We anticipate delivering a fun VBS with the necessary precautions in place. We are working hard to bring a spiritually meaningful program to our community.
 
To help move forward here are some points we would like to highlight at this time.
  • Safety will be our highest priority, for both our children and staff. At no time will either be compromised. All efforts will be made to abide by state, local, and FPC Moorestown church guidelines that are in place at that time.
  • All children and volunteers will be required to wear facemasks when inside the building and while outside on church property. Social distance protocols will be enforced and handwashing will be encouraged.
  • VBS will be a creative modified version. The program will consist of Biblical teachings done in an engaging yet safe manner.
 
We encourage you to reach out with your questions. You can send questions or concerns to Holly Asciutto at hasciutto@fpcmoorestown.org. It is important, and our desire, to offer our children this valuable experience in a safe manner.
 
We continue to pray daily for our families. I am here any time to support and answer questions.
Thank you,
Holly and the VBS Committee
For more information contact: Holly Asciutto — 856-235-1688 x 116 or email hasciutto@fpcmoorestown.org
 

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KELLY AND JOEY WEDDING SHOWER

Drive Through Wedding Shower for Kelly LePenske & Joey Sponseller

KELLY AND JOEY WELCOME GUESTS TO THEIR DRIVE-BY WEDDING SHOWER

A little rain did not dampen spirits! Smiles, games, cookies, warm wishes for life long happiness and God’s blessings were in abundance today!

Thank you to all who joined us to make this a very special day.  Here are a few photos of the day, just click on one to open the gallery in full size!!
 
 
 

And here is the invitation!

Sunday, April 11, 2021 ~ 12:30-1:30 pm

The wedding is getting close! Kelly LePenske and Joey Sponseller will be married on May 15, 2021 in California, and we are gathering to wish them well after worship. COVID-style of course ..
 
DRIVE THROUGH
Taking no chance of COVID-19 transmission before The Big Day, we are happily presenting a Drive Through Wedding Shower for the bride and groom, who will be in attendance to receive your well wishes. Please enter the main church parking lot off of Bridgeboro Road from 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm.
 
“GETTING CARDED”
Because they will be moving to Brooklyn and their living situation is in flux, it is requested that envelopes with gift cards be dropped off at the shower. Volunteers will be there to safely retrieve it from your car. Guests are encouraged NOT to bring wrapped gifts, please.
 
Here are a few favorites Kelly and Joey have requested:
  • REI (they hike)
  • West Elm
  • Anthropologie
  • Strand Books
  • Books Are Magic
  • Ruggable.com
  • Amazon.com
  • Whole Foods
  • Cheesecake Factory (Joey’s fave)
  • Target (can’t go wrong)
  • Crate and Barrel
  • VISA gift cards (they always fit)
  • Panera Bread
  • Walmart
 
They are also registered online: https://www.myregistry.com/wedding-registry/kelly-lepenske-and-joey-sponseller-brooklyn-ny/2759868
 
If you can’t make it, you may leave your gift after worship that day or ahead of time in the church office. If you’d like to donate to the event or volunteer that day, contact Tamara Trzeciak at 856.308.6793 cell or tctrzeciak@gmail.com.
Best wishes to the happy couple!

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PASTOR UPDATE CORONAVIRUS LETTER 16

One Year Later – We’ve Come a Long Way

Dear Member and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
 
The world changed almost a year ago exactly. Do you remember where you were? I recall how quickly everything shut down in the middle of March of 2020. Since then, we’ve all had to adjust to new ways of working, going to school, shopping, and attending worship. The loss of life and the drastic negative economic impact of COVID -19 will continue to ripple among our community and the world for some time to come. While we continue to mourn the loss of human life and milestones we can’t get back, we also continue to be people who are rooted in the love and hope of the Lord Jesus. As Romans 8: 38 and 39 reminds us, nothing in all creation, not even COVID-19, can separate us from God’s love and purposes for our lives, for First Presbyterian Church, or the wider world.
 
While there are many encouraging signs that we’re headed out of the pandemic, we’re not there yet. In planning our Holy Week services, we’ve continued to prioritize the safety of our members, visitors and staff. As you review the 2021 Holy Week worship schedule, you’ll notice that there’s a mixture of in-person and live stream only. However, every service, except the Easter sunrise service, will be available through live stream.
 
Sunday, March 28th – Palm Sunday (in-person attendance and live stream)
  • 8:30 AM Contemporary Worship in Miller Commons
  • 11:00 AM Traditional Worship in the Sanctuary
 
Thursday, April 1st – Maundy Thursday (live stream only)
  • 7:00 PM Live stream Worship in Miller Commons (includes communion)
Beth Douglass (seminary intern) preaches
 
Friday, April 2nd – Good Friday (in-person attendance; overflow seating available)
  • 7:00 PM Tenebrae Worship in the Sanctuary
Frantz Constant (seminary intern) preaches
 
Sunday, April 4th – Easter Sunday (THREE services total)
  • 6:30 AM Sunrise Worship at the Cemetery Cross (includes communion).
In-person attendance is welcome. No live stream.
  • 8:30 AM Contemporary Worship in Miller Commons. Live stream only.
  • 11:00 AM Traditional Worship in the Sanctuary. Live stream only. (over)
 
Reflecting on all that’s happened at First Presbyterian Church within the last year, it’s not hard to see God at work in our lives. As difficult and discouraging as the disruptions of the pandemic are for us, I clearly see how the Spirit of God opens doors of opportunity for mission and ministry. In a recent Inquirer’s Class, three or four couples “found” us through our online worship. Though none have yet set foot on our campus, they were drawn to consider becoming members of FPC Moorestown through our expanded online presence.
 
We strive to keep in step with the Spirit for all the good that awaits us. There are two searches underway for a Youth Director and an Associate Pastor. Let’s regularly pray for these committees and their work.
 
As we prepare to welcome two new staff members, we’re saying good-bye and thank you to Kelly LePenske. Kelly and Joey Sponseller will be married in Santa Barbara, CA on May 15th. Leslie and I will be there to celebrate with Kelly and Joey as I have the privilege of uniting them in marriage. You’re invited to a drive-in Wedding Shower for Kelly and Joey on Sunday, April 11 from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. The invitation for this happy event is included. Kelly’s final day with us is Sunday, May 2nd.
 
Thank you for the numerous ways you’ve supported FPC Moorestown. Don’t let up on your generosity! Easter offerings may be mailed to the church, dropped off at worship or submitted through electronic giving. Please make sure to note “Easter Offering” in the memo line.
We serve Jesus, our risen Savior. The women who found his tomb empty on Easter morning, turned from it to carry the news of his resurrection to a dark and anxious world.
 
Gratefully yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 

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SEVEN LAST WORDS OF JESUS

Moorestown Ministerium Offers Virtual Good Friday Service

The Seven Last Words of Jesus

 
The Moorestown Ministerium, a ministerial organization that brings churches together to collaborate and serve the needs of the Moorestown community, will offer a virtual Ecumenical Good Friday service on the seven last words of Jesus.
 
his community service weaves scripture and music together to help us consider the very last hours of Jesus’ life. This worship experience will be available all day Friday, April 2, 2021 on Trinity Episcopal Church’s Seven Last Words webpage and on their YouTube Channel so that those seeking spiritual reflection for the day may participate at the time that is best for them. A worship guide will be linked from the YouTube video to assist participants and is linked below.
 
 
Good Friday is a holiday celebrated by Christians during Holy Week. It is observed as the day Jesus was crucified and so Good Friday is the day in which Christians stand before the cross and face the reality of the crucifixion, in preparation for the celebration of Easter Sunday as the day Jesus rose from the grave.
 
“For many years, Moorestown Christians of many different denominations and traditions have come together in one place to observe this solemn day. Although we will have to remember Good Friday in separate locations this year, we encourage all members of the community to come together by taking the time to participate in this service with those in their households,” explains The Rev. Emily Mellott of Trinity Episcopal Church, which has traditionally hosted the in-person service. “This year, because the service is virtual, we will be able to invite worshippers into many different churches through their internet connection. It also means we can invite people who would not normally be able to get to church physically on a Friday afternoon. In a difficult year, when death has come too close for many of us, this service allows participants to spend time reflecting together on Christ’s unlimited love for us shown in his confrontation with death, and gives us hope in this life and assurance of life eternal.”
 
The Moorestown Ministerium is grateful for the collaboration between all of the churches in the community and the following churches who contributed to the service:
  • Converge Church
  • Second Baptist Church
  • First United Methodist Church
  • St. Matthew Lutheran Church
  • Trinity Episcopal Church
  • First Presbyterian Church.
 
About the Moorestown Ministerium: The Moorestown Ministerium exists to reflect the love of God made known through Jesus Christ for all. It’s mission is: As a fellowship of Christian congregations and organizations in Moorestown, we reflect Christ’s love by fostering relationships among Christians, sharing in dialogue with leaders from our community and other faiths, working together for the good of our community, and supporting those in need. Additionally, the Moorestown Ministerium in conjunction with Live Civilly operates a food pantry at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church. Visit the Moorestown Ministerium Facebook page for more information and events:
 
 

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HOLY WEEK SERVICES

HOLY WEEK AND EASTER SERVICES

Palm Sunday, March 28

– 8:30 am, Contemporary Worship, Miller Commons (in person with live stream)
– 11:00 am, Traditional Worship, Sanctuary (in person with live stream)
 

Maundy Thursday, April 1

– 7:00 pm, Miller Commons (live stream only)
 

Good Friday, April 2

– 7:00 pm, Traditional Worship, Sanctuary with overflow seating in Miller Commons (in person with live stream)

 

Easter Sunday, April 4

– 6:30 am, Cemetery Cross (in person only)
– 8:30 am, Contemporary Worship, Miller Commons (live stream only)
– 11:00 am, Traditional Worship, Sanctuary (live stream only)

BETH DOUGLASS, SEMINARY INTERN

EASTER WORSHIP 2020 BRASS ENSEMBLE


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WJCMS CONCERT

WJCMS Concert Online

The West Jersey Chamber Music Society (WJCMS) presents “All Worlds, All Times,”

a free live-streamed concert featuring works for string quartet and quintet that explore the inspirations composers draw from countries and cultures outside their own.

The live video broadcast will be available for free on Saturday, March 20 at 7:30 pm. ET on the WJCMS page and the FPC home and live stream pages. See a listing of the performers and the repertoire on the “All Worlds, All Times” page.

The West Jersey Chamber Music Society (WJCMS) presents “All Worlds, All Times,” a free live-streamed concert featuring works for string quartet and quintet that explore the inspirations composers draw from countries and cultures outside their own.

The live video broadcast will be available for free on Saturday, March 20 at 7:30 pm. ET on the WJCMS page and the FPC home and live stream pages. See a listing of the performers and the repertoire on the “All Worlds, All Times” page.

Complete a free registration in advance! You’ll receive a reminder and a copy of the PDF program at concert time.

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YOUTH DIRECTOR SEARCH

Employment Opportunity

FPC Moorestown is searching for a Director of Youth Ministries

In his/her position as the Director of Youth Ministries, the director will be responsible for the planning, development, and implementation of programs and events for families with an emphasis on Youth from 7th through 12th grade.
 
Our goal is to create disciples of our children, youth, young adults and adults of every age. These disciples, in turn, will make disciples.
 

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ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING

PALM SUNDAY OFFERING

ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING

Serve the “least of these” among us by providing relief to those affected by catastrophic events, giving sustainable food resources to the hungry, and changing the structures that perpetuate poverty, oppression, and injustice.
 
In a world of disaster, hunger, and oppression millions of people lack access to sustainable food sources, clean water, sanitation, education, and opportunity. Gifts may be made online using the One Great Hour of Sharing drop down.
 

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ONLINE CHECK IN

Download the Church Center App;

In-person and Live Stream check-in on your phone

 
Members may check-in quickly and easily for worship from their smart phone. Download the “Church Center App” to your phone and follow the prompts to select our church.
 
It’s simple to download the Church Center app to your smart phone or device.
 
  • Go to your phone’s app store (iPhone users to App Store; Android users to Google Play)
  • Search for the Church Center App
  • Download.
  • When prompted, enter the church’s zip code (08057) or the name of First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown
 
Quickly and Easily From Your Smart Phone, You Can:
  • check in for indoor worship or events – including all family members at once
  • check in for Small Groups
  • make an online donation
  • link to upcoming events and announcements
  • update contact information
  • contact the church office
 
NOW LET’S GET CHECKED-IN!
When attending in-person:
  1. Prior to your arrival, open your Church Center App
  2. Select the “Check-In” icon
  3. Tap the service you are attending
  4. Check in yourself and your family members
  5. Upon arrival at the church, visit our check-in station
  6. Scan your QR code or ask a check-in volunteer to select you from the automatically generated list
 
When watching on live stream:
  1. Open your Church Center App from your home from your phone or device
  2. Select the “Check-In” icon
  3. Tap the service you are viewing (will say ‘Live Stream’ in the title)
  4. Check-in yourself and your family members
  5. That’s it! Our reports will tell us you were watching
 
Church Center Web
If you don’t have a smart phone, no problem. You can log onto Church Center easily from the web at fpcmoorestown.churchcenter.com. This way you can sign up for groups, see all of our events, give securely online, update your contact information etc., all from your computer. NOTE: You CANNOT Check-In using Church Center Web.

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INQUIRERS’ CLASS

Spring Inquirers’ Class

The Membership Committee held a Spring Inquirers’ Class virtually in March for those interested in learning more about First Presbyterian Church and possibly joining the congregation.
 
The following individuals have completed each of the three classes, shared their Statement of Faith with members of Session, and indicated their desire to join the congregation of First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown.
 

We Welcome to Our Church Family

  • Kim Andreola & Matthew Barnum (Lily)
  • Mark & Lori Bell
  • Thomas & Evelyn Cannon
  • Amit & Nikki Joshi (Layla, Vikram)
  • Ken Vartan (Luna Marie)

Exploring Your Journey of Faith

And Becoming a Member of First Presbyterian Church of Moorestown

No matter where you are in your journey of faith – whether you are new to the Christian faith, seeking or questioning, or if you desire a deeper faith – you are invited to participate in our Inquirers’ Class.
 
In our Inquirers’ Class you’ll learn about what we believe as a church, some of the ministries we have here, and discuss basic Christian beliefs. It is a great starting point to explore what we do here at FPC Moorestown and if this church might be the right church for you!

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LEADERSHIP NOMINATIONS

Serve Your Church as Elder, Deacon or Trustee;

Nominations being accepted

 
How Can You Serve Your Church?
 
The Nominations Committee is currently seeking individuals to staff the three Boards of the church: Elders, Deacons and Trustees. Please pray about where God may be calling you.
 
Fill out an online nominations form here …  NOMINATIONS
 
You may nominate yourself or someone else you feel would be a good fit for these positions. For questions contact Gil Warren, chair, of the Nominations Committee, or any Nominations Committee member:
  • Jenna Cole
  • Paul Gordon
  • Paul Grossmann
  • David Kahley
  • Susan Masiko
  • Kathy McIlroy
  • Gil Warren
  • Joyce Wenzke

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LENTEN BOOK STUDY

Lenten Group sign ups are OPEN; groups start February 21 week

For Lent 2021, we’ll be reading The Good and Beautiful Community by James Bryan Smith, a professor and Methodist pastor who has a heart for the church and spiritual formation.

 
The guiding questions Smith asks are: 1) how do we become more authentic Christ-followers, and 2) how do we become a beloved and vital community for others, no matter our differences? This book graciously and inspirationally speaks to our times and is rooted in scripture. With the focus unequivocally on Christ, Smith compels readers toward a renewed understanding of God, transformation and healing. There’s no political finger-wagging here. What you will find is a rich guide on how we can love courageously, surrender what doesn’t serve Christ or ourselves, and rediscover joy in community.
 
When It Starts
Sign ups begin the morning of Friday, Feb. 5. We invite all current small groups to consider reading The Good and Beautiful Community during our six-week church-wide study, beginning the first week of Lent (after Ash Wednesday, Feb. 17). Book groups start on Sunday, Feb. 21st and run through Easter.
 
Sign Up here
Effective February 5, SIGN UP HERE and see dates and times available: https://fpcmoorestown.churchcenter.com/groups/lent-book-groups-2021.
 
Want to start a group?
If you’d like to form a book group, please do! You can let Alison Mackey or Kelly LePenske know ASAP!
 
Books
You may order books yourself through AMAZON.COM or CHRISTIANBOOK.COM  A limited number of books will be available through the church office. Contact Alison at 856.235.1688, Ext. 113 or amackey@fpcmoorestown.org to reserve and purchase a copy. Books are $12 each and beautiful hardcover. Leaders, your copy is no charge.
 
Sign-ups and COVID logistics
Sign up online on our Events page or call Alison Mackey in the church office to join a group at 856.235.1688, Ext. 113. Sign-ups opened the morning of Friday, February 5th. Most groups will be online via Zoom. Groups are welcome to meet in-person, but are strongly encouraged to do so outdoors or in large, well-ventilated rooms with masks. Groups can meet indoors on FPC Moorestown’s campus in Fellowship Hall or Miller Commons.
 
Room Requests
Room requests can be made by contacting Jan Martin in the church office (856.235.1688, Ext. 133).
 
Contacts
To form a group, reserve a book copy, or sign up, contact Alison Mackey at amackey@fpcmoorestown.org or 856.235.1688, Ext. 113.

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KELLY LEPENSKE ANNOUNCEMENT

Aloha Greetings!

Kelly LePenske, Director of Congregational Ministries, shares a life update message with members of FPC Moorestown.


“Hi FPC. We’ve done a lot together and we’ve done well!” – Kelly LePenske
 
Kelly will be leaving FPC Moorestown in early May, Just before her wedding. Listen to Kelly’s message and let’s join together in congratulations to Kelly and her fiancé, Joey Sponseller, as they make plans to begin their lives as a married couple.


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CAPITA

Per Capita Apportionment

With 2021 underway, we are preparing

to pay our denominational per capita apportionment and ask for your continuing help in supporting the larger church.Members pay this $38.75 per capita recognizing that the Presbyterian Church (PC-USA) is a connectional church and we are part of a larger family throughout the country. This connection includes our Synods, Presbyteries,  and General Assembly.

Watch your mail this month for a letter from us, sharing specific information about this offering and how it benefits our church and the larger church.
 

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YOUR INVITATION TO OUR ANNUAL MEETING

Pastor Update, Coronavirus Letter 15

Your Invitation to Our Annual Meeting

January 31, 2021
 
Dear Members and Friends of FPC Moorestown,
 
Sunday, February 7th is the day for our family business. The first Sunday in February is the day for our Annual Meeting. This year, we’ll do our business differently than before, but it’s crucial that you plan to join us. Our Annual Meeting is scheduled to begin at 11:00 a.m. that day via Zoom webinar. This year, we won’t eat sandwiches, chips and cookies together as we normally do. It’s okay with me if you bring your lunch to our meeting this year!
 
Annual Meeting — The Annual Congregational Meeting will be held on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021 at 11:00 am via Zoom webinar. The purpose of the meeting is to share the Annual Report with members, receive the 2021 church budget, and approve the 2021 pastor’s terms of call. Find the webinar info on our eblast, online events page and website. The Annual Report will be available Sunday, January 31.
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86847661246?pwd=SVlwWXF1eTlPLzVqaEVEWEdFTXF6Zz09
Passcode: dFRap9
Webinar ID: 868 4766 1246
Passcode: 878234
 
When you join the Annual Meeting that day, you’ll only be able to see those who will present reports. You’ll be able to ask questions or make comments through the “Chat” feature. For any voting during the meeting, we’ll use the polling feature. If you need help, our Seminary Intern Beth Douglass will be available throughout the meeting.
 
Before that Sunday, I ask you to take ten minutes to watch a video our staff made recently. Jan Martin, our phenomenal office manager, authored a list of all the things we were able to accomplish in 2020, even as we faced many challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve combined Jan’s list with music by Martin and Christine Bass and many pictures from last year. You’ll praise and thank God as I did when I watched. Through us, the Lord did so much; and I’m certain that our staff and lay leaders will keep on adapting and innovating in 2021.
 
To view the video, go to our webpage and scroll down to the Feature Section: 2020 Year in Review. Click on the video: https://www.fpcmoorestown.org/
 
Please review the 2020 Annual Report before our meeting. It’s another record of God’s faithfulness and your support. I have some details to share with you about planning we’re doing for the coming months.
On Sunday, February 7th, worship with us at 9:30 a.m. either in-person or via live stream. Then get your coffee, your cookies and your sandwich by 11:00 a.m. I can’t wait to join you.
 
As we move into February and the start of the Lenten season, note our plans for Ash Wednesday on February 17th and our Church-wide Lenten Book Study:
  • The Journey of Lent begins on Wednesday, Feb. 17 with Ash Wednesday Worship at 7:00 pm. Worship will be in the sanctuary by live stream only. Earlier that day, we will hold two special drive-through events for imposition of ashes at 12 noon and 5:00 p.m. Participants will drive safely into the main parking lot and be greeted for prayer and, if desired, the imposition of ashes or oil, on the forehead or the back of the hand. Please wear masks.
  • Lenten Book Study: During Lent we’ll be reading The Good and Beautiful Community by James Bryan Smith, a professor and Methodist pastor who has a heart for the church and spiritual formation. How do we become more authentic Christ-followers? How do we become a beloved and vital community for others, no matter our differences? Visit the online events page, website and eblast for sign up information. Signs ups begin Friday, Feb. 5; groups begin Sunday, Feb. 21 via Zoom on safely in-person. Contact Kelly LePenske or Alison Mackey for questions at 856.235.1688.
 
Gratefully yours in Christ,
Stuart Spencer, Pastor
 

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REGISTRATION OPENS FOR STEP BY STEP PRESCHOOL

2021-22 Registration for Step by Step Preschool Opens in January

Now is the time to register for the 2021-2022 school year at Step by Step Christian Preschool, a ministry of FPC Moorestown.

  • Early registration for church members and current enrollees begins the week of January 11, 2021.  
  • Open registration for all others will begin on January 27, 2021.
 
 

Applications

Applications can be found online at PRESCHOOL REGISTRATION 

Our Classes

Classes begin in September 2021 and are available for 2 ½ year olds (must be 2 by April 1), 3-year olds (must be 3 by Sept 30) and Pre-K students (must be 4 by Sept. 30).  Step by Step offers flexible options for morning or afternoon sessions for 2, 3, 4 or 5 days a week, and is open to members of the church and surrounding communities.

Learn more

Visit the preschool’s web site for more information at STEP BY STEP PRESCHOOL or contact Preschool Director Amy Delgado at 856.235.1688, x132.


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A NOTE OF THANKS TO THE CONGREGATION

With Heartfelt Appreciation from the Trustees

We want to sincerely express our gratitude to the entire congregation for the year-end financial support we have received.

Thanks to your response to our appeals, our December collections significantly exceeded expectations and should allow us to close the year with a small surplus rather than a projected deficit. Any surplus, together with other budget relief funds that were already expected to be used for a 2020 budget deficit, is now available to reduce the projected deficit we face in 2021.

While we are still contending with financial challenges in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, your incredible response to our year-end appeal has brightened the picture meaningfully.

We are very appreciative of the sacrifices and efforts all of you make for the good of our Church and the missions we serve.

Jeff Legath, Trustees President


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PRESBYTERIAN WOMEN’S WINTER GATHERING

Presbyterian Women Offer Program

‘The Changing Face of Mission in the World’

Presented by our featured speaker, Linda Jagiela, FPC Administrator of Outreach. All are invited to an evening of fellowship, information, and inspiration.
 

Please join us on Monday, January 25 at 7:00 PM via Zoom.

Join Zoom Meeting

 

Meeting ID: 811 1846 5581
Passcode: 3P7F0M

 

Dial by your location:
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C)
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 646 876 9923 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 811 1846 5581
Passcode: 428910

As we have done in the past, we will be collecting cotton socks for clients of the Christian Caring Center. A box for socks will be outside the Commons Lobby throughout January.


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