South Plains Presbyterian Church

God so loved the world

Reflections From the Pastor PDF Print E-mail



Life is filled with milestones—birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, new jobs, retirements. There are “firsts”—first birthday, first day of school, first kiss, and first job. These different rites-of-passages mark our lives. However, not all milestones, not all “firsts” are occasions for celebration. Some mark the passage of time in a way that is not always pleasant.
It was not that long ago that I experienced one such life event. I remember the day well. I showed up for my appointment with my optometrist to have my annual check-up. I was aware that my vision was changing and knew that I would need an updated prescription. However, I was not prepared for the news that I needed….wait for it….BIFOCALS. I was shocked. I was not old enough to need bifocals. But, my next pair of glasses were—bifocals.
Your pastor is not as young as he looks (ha ha), nor as young as he might think he is. Recently, I have become aware of another milestone, another rite-ofpassage that tends to come with age. I am not hearing as well as I used to. I have always been sensitive to those with hearing issues, and have tried to accommodate them in any way I could. Now, I am joining that fraternity of men and women who struggle with hearing issues. The term “I hear you” has taken on a whole new meaning for me.
I find myself overwhelmed with noise in crowded places, while missing the conversation with the person in front of me. I become frustrated when I feel people are mumbling when in reality they are not. I have even caught myself just smiling and nodding my head when I have been unable to hear what another has said.
Over the past year, this has become more noticeable when I am trying to hear people making announcements or lifting up prayer concerns from the congregation. I constantly have to have people repeat themselves, which I do not like to do.
During the January and February session meetings, I raised this issue with the elders. It was discussed, and a decision was reached. During those times in worship when someone needs to make an announcement, or lift up a prayer concern, the usher will bring the cordless microphone to that person for him or her to use. This will help with making sure not only your pastor, but also others in the congregation with hearing difficulties, will be heard as well. I ask for your indulgence as we begin this new procedure. I know that many of you may feel uncomfortable using the microphone, or may not feel that you need it. You may not need it. But, I would rather you use the microphone and insure that your message is heard, than to have your words be ignored. Do not be intimidated, or surprised when the usher hands you the microphone. Please use it, and know that many of your brothers and sisters will appreciate your effort.
Pastor Kevin
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Presbytery of the James and Shenandoah Presbytery
The 2017 Adult Retreat
Let's Talk (& Listen): Biblical Hope for Today
Retreat Leader: Rev. Nancy Summerlin
Thursday, April 27, 2017 9:30am - 3pm
Massanetta Springs Conference Center
More information and registration form will be in the March newsletter


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Please contact Pat Valentine (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) if you would like to assist with Bible School
More information soon


Freezin' For A Reason! PDF Print E-mail

Fluvanna Penguin Plunge – Freezin’ for a Reason!


The third annual Fluvanna Penguin Plunge will be occurring on February 18 at the Lake Monticello Main Beach. This community fundraiser benefits five Fluvanna non-profits: Fluvanna County Habitat for Humanity, Fluvanna Meals on Wheels, Fluvanna SPCA, Lake Monticello Fire and Rescue, and FAST (Fluvanna Aquatic Sports Team). If you would like to register to be a part of the plunge, go to: or call 434-589-3752.
Spectators are also welcome to cheer on the folks who are braving the lake in the winter. If you would like to sponsor Barbara Shaffer, who is plunging in honor of the Fluvanna Meals on Wheels volunteers, go to https:// Campaign/2017fluvannapenguinplunge/
Fellowship PDF Print E-mail
If you are enjoying the fellowship of your church family after each
service, please consider providing snacks every once in a while.
Nothing has to be fancy and coffee has already been made. Signup
sheet on the kitchen door. Ask Bernice Gibson about joining
the Fellowship Committee. It takes a village here too!
February Fellowship
February 5 8:30 Sue Tracinski
          11:00 Kellee Eastwood
February 12 8:30 Mary Anne Fitzgerald
           11:00 Lynn Anderson
February 19 8:30 Leah Wayner
           11:00 Linda Harrison
February 26 8:30 Barbara Higginbotham
           11:00 Pat Valentine
Retirement News PDF Print E-mail



We celebrate Eleanor Dickerman and her nearly thirteen years of dedicated service to South Plains Presbyterian Church as organist/choir director. Eleanor has had a lifelong career in music, beginning with teaching stringed instruments and orchestra in the Charlottesville school system, playing in the Municipal Band of Charlottesville (principal flutist), and organ lessons with Robert Goodale. Eleanor has enhanced our worship services through her ministry of music. Eleanor’s final Sunday playing the organ and leading the choir will be Sunday, January 15. Please join us in expressing thank you, but not farewell, to Eleanor. She plans to worship with us and to continue to assist with the music library.


Worship and Music News Update PDF Print E-mail
• Wednesday - March 1 - Ash Wednesday worship services at noon and 6pm
• Sunday, March 5 - first Sunday in Lent - communion at both services. Choir sings at the 11am service
• Sunday, March 12 - second Sunday in Lent - choir sings at the 8:30am service
• Sunday, March 19 - third Sunday in Lent - choir sings at the 11am service
• Sunday, March 26 - fourth Sunday in Lent - choir sings at the 8:30am service
Many thanks to our generous congregation on our observance of Four Chaplains’ Sunday. We raised $470 in the free will offering for Presbyterians Caring for Chaplains and Military Personnel!
Thank you letter from Rev. Larry Greenslit:
Dear Kevin and members and friends at South Plains,
On behalf of the Board of Directors of the PCCMP, thank you for your gift to our ministry. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit with you - you are such a warm and hospitable congregation. I confess that I feel very much “at home” when I visit and hope that I will see you again, maybe next year.
Until then, blessings as you worship and work in the community around Charlottesville.
Oh, and sorry about the Cav’s loss to VA Tech. Must have ruined the day for some of you!
PW News Update PDF Print E-mail

Presbyterian Women News


You are invited to join us in studying Lesson Six of our new Horizons Bible study: Who is Jesus? - According to Hebrews.
Two options are available:
• Monday, March 13, 9:30am in Kirk Hall at South Plains
• Tuesday, March 14, 7pm at Molly Channell’s home - 2165 Beaverdam Road, Keswick (434-207-3598)
If you would like to carpool for either of these gatherings, please contact Barbara Shaffer.
We always welcome new members to join us at any point during the program year for Bible study, mission work, sharing each others’ joys and sorrows, and growing together in faith as Christian women. For more information, please contact Kellee Eastwood at 589-2705 or Barbara Shaffer at 207-4355.
Bits 'N Pieces PDF Print E-mail


• You’ll find Eleanor Dickerman seated in a pew on Sunday mornings instead of the organ bench. She was welcomed into our congregation on January 15.
Library Update PDF Print E-mail

Library Report



Looking Forward to Warm Weather: There Are 77 New Books for Reading on a Ship or a Plane or on a Sunny Beach or in a Backyard Hammock

Thanks to a generous donation, 77 entertaining books have been added to the Church Library. These are mostly novels that appeal to people who enjoy a good mystery that takes place in ancient or medieval times, and in more modern times. Here’s a sampling. Have you ever heard of Edith Mary Pargeter? You might recognize her pen name: Ellis Peters. She wrote a series of novels about the adventures of Brother Cadfael, a Benedictine monk at the Abbey in Shrewsbury. Cadfael is a fictional character based on her study of medieval history and her own experiences as a pharmacist’s assistant. Cadfael is a returned crusader who serves as an herbalist and physician for his brother monks. He’s sophisticated, intelligent, and curious. He uses his worldly experience and his knowledge of herbal medicines to solve intriguing mysteries.
We have 19 of her books.
How about Edward Marston? That’s the pen name for Keith Miles, an Oxford (England) graduate who majored in history. He has written novels that take place in the time of William the Conqueror, in Elizabethan, Restoration, and Victorian London. We have 10 of his books.
Leonard Tourney? He has written scholarly articles on 17th century British literature; but not to worry, we have seven of his nine historical novels set in Elizabethan England. Constable Matthew Stock must solve mysteries that occur in castles and travelers’ inns.
Lynda S. Robinson? She’s an American writer best known for a series of whodunits set in … ancient Egypt. Her fictional mystery solver is Lord Meren, “the Eyes and Ears of the Pharaoh.” We have four of her books. Ian Morson? His fictional puzzle solver is William Falconer, a Regent Master at Oxford University in the 1200’s who loves logic and reads Aristotle. Morson is a 1965 graduate of Exford and an expert in folk-life studies. We have three of his books.
John Mortimer you might recognize as the author of the Rumpole of the Bailey series that ran on PBS for many years. We have over a dozen of his books on the rumpled barrister who deals with complicated mysteries in court and with “she who must be obeyed” – his wife.
There are other books that provide light reading for vacation travel or just resting quietly on a staycation: Lark Rise to Candleford by Flora Thompson, The Talisman by Sir Walter Scott, The Last Days of Pompeii by Bulwer Lytton, The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann, and Quo Vadis by … do you know who wrote Quo Vadis? Henryk Sienkiewicz. The book is famous because of the movie but the author is not exactly a household name.
So next time you’re looking for a good whodunit to while away a rainy day, don’t run to the store … stop by the Church Library. Take the elevator down to the basement and turn right; a good read is at the end of the hallway.
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