South Plains Presbyterian Church

Honoring our traditions and building the future


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COME AND CELEBRATE WITH US


Every Sunday morning, the South Plains congregation gathers together to celebrate the most joyful event in history, the resurrection of Jesus from the dead; God’s awe-inspiring victory over sin and death.


We are a celebration people. We love to celebrate births and baptisms, confirmations and professions of faith, special birthdays and anniversaries, graduations and marriages, honors and recognition. Do you have a joy to share? Let’s celebrate. We like to include our happiness in Praise and Prayers during our worship service; and, of course, we break bread together afterwards, eating of the bounty provided by the Lord and shared generously by many in fellowship hour. Come, partake and see that it is good for brothers and sisters to dwell together in peace, sharing our joys and dividing our sorrows.

 
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Church Pictorial Family Album


We are producing a pictorial family album.  This directory is helpful putting names to faces, and certainly for new members.  Photography dates are September 11, 11am - 5:30pmSeptember 12, 2pm - 8:30pm and September 13, 10am-5pm.  You may sign up for an appointment in the church office beginning August 17, or you may sign up on line by going to the South Plains website and clicking on the link - https://www.securedata-trans14.com/ap/southplainespresbyterianchurch/index.php?page=10.

  

If you are signing up in the church office on Sundays, have some dates and times in mind that are convenient for you. You will receive a complimentary 8x10 portrait and directory for participating.  Additional portraits may be purchased at the time you are photographed.

 

If you are unable to make an appointment on those days, you may submit a picture by email or bring one to the church office. We’re also soliciting pictures showing events in the church to be included in the directory.



Any questions - Center of Excellence Team toll free number:  1-866-756-0281


 
Reflections From the Pastor PDF Print E-mail

 


As I have gotten to know many of you, I have come to realize the great diversity that is South Plains Presbyterian Church. We are diverse in so many ways: politically, socio-economically, and especially ecclesiastically. We live in a more fluid society than our parents. In the past, the faith tradition one was born into tended to be the tradition one remained in throughout life. 


 Today, Roman Catholics, Episcopalians, Methodist, Baptists, etc. along with lifelong Presbyterians make up our congregation. Each of these traditions has its own form of government or way of doing things. This "melting pot" of backgrounds often causes confusion about the way our church functions. 

In light of this, my articles in “The Reflector” over the next few months will focus on Presbyterian Polity. 

  • September – polity of the local congregation 
  • October – church councils 
  • November -- membership privileges and responsibilities 
  • January and February – the Reformed understanding of the Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper 


POLITY IN THE LOCAL CHURCH 


Presbyterians have a representative form of government. It is neither hierarchical nor congregational. When the founding fathers of our country sought a model to use for the new  government, it was ours they chose. The Session members, our board of elders are the primary council for the local church. They are responsible for the life and ministry of the congregation. The session sets policies, establishes financial procedures, hires non-clergy staff, manages property, receives and dismisses members, provides for the worship and nurture of the children of God, and oversees programmatic events. 


Under our constitution, the congregation has limited powers. Business to be transacted at meetings of the congregation shall be limited to matters related to the following: 

  • electing ruling elders, deacons, and trustees; 
  • calling a pastor, co-pastor, or associate pastor; 
  • changing existing pastoral relationships, by such means as reviewing the adequacy of and approving changes to the terms of call of the pastor or pastors, or requesting, 
  • consenting to, or declining to consent to dissolution; 
  • buying, mortgaging, or selling real property; 
  • requesting the presbytery to grant an exemption as permitted in this Constitution (G-2.0404). (G-1.0503)  


Item “e” concerns an exemption from the stipulation limiting an officer’s service to no more than six years consecutively. These items are the only matters that may be brought before. 


The congregation annually elects elders for a three-year term. Elders may serve two three-year terms, but may not serve more than six years consecutively. Once a member is ordained, they are ordained for life. The election procedure is not a political process like we see today. Rather, members are elected to serve on a nominating committee. The members of this committee pray, study scripture, brainstorm, and through the work of the Holy Spirit, bring a slate of officers to the session. The session upon receiving the slate, if there are no concerns, calls a congregational meeting. At this meeting the slate of officers is placed before the congregation for election. Nominees may be offered from the floor at this time. Service as an elder or trustee is not a popularity contest, but rather a calling, which is placed upon the heart of election of the congregation. We believe that God calls and sets apart individuals to serve and to do his work. 



Presbyterians believe that the will of God through the Holy Spirit is discerned through the work and discussion of the session. Sometimes, the elders serving on session may disagree with the decision of the council, but for the sake of the unity and peace of the church, support 


According to our constitution, on matters brought before the session, elders are to vote their conscience. “God alone is Lord of the conscience, and hath left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men which are in anything contrary to his Word, or beside it, in matters of faith or worship” (F-3.0101a). Elders are not to be influenced by the opinions of others. Rather, they seek the will of God through prayer and vote as they feel the Holy Spirit is leading them. Sometimes this results in the session having to make unpopular decisions. 


As the governing body of the church, decisions by the session are final.


Pastor Kevin

 
Adult Study PDF Print E-mail


Adult Bible Study starts again September 7th.


This coming session we will be studying "The Life of Paul for Today" by Lyle D. Vander Broek,published by the Westminster John Knox press. 


Some of you may remember this study from a few years ago when we dipped into it for the Lenten season Bible study. Now we plan to explore the life of Paul and the New Testament more completely. 


Throughout the Bible Study we will study the Word, consider commentaries, and apply historical and archeological information to what we read and learn. Please consider joining us for this exciting journey in the life of Paul and the early Christian church. 


Everyone is welcome. We look forward to growing together in the Spirit.

 
NEWS FROM PRESBYTERY OF THE JAMES PDF Print E-mail

MASSANETTA SPRINGS BIBLE & CHURCH MUSIC CONFERENCES - Glory to God is the title of thenew Presbyterian Hymnal. This will be the theme of the upcoming Church Music Conference (August 3-9). The Church Music Conference is one of the finest in the nation, offering training for all church musicians. The Bible Conference (August 3-8), a retreat of preaching, teaching and praise, is powerful and inspirational.


Music Conference: http://www.massanettasprings.org/conferences/church-music-conference/


Bible Conference: http://www.massanettasprings.org/conferences/bible-conference/

Read more...
 
PW News Update PDF Print E-mail

Join us on Monday, September 8 at 9:30am in the Kirk Hall Choir/Music Room for our daytime Presbyterian Women Bible study and meeting. 



For those of you who can’t make a weekday daytime Bible study, we are forming a Lake Monticello/Palmyra area PW Circle in the evening. We will be meeting on the second Monday (rather than Tuesday) of each month (September through May) at 7pm at group members’ homes. Our first meeting will be on Monday, September 8, 7pm, at Molly Channell’s home. If you would like to join this group or would like further information, please contact Barbara Shaffer 207-4355.

Our 2014-15 Horizons Bible study for both PW groups will be “Reconciling Paul: A Contemporary Study of 2 Corinthians”. Author Elizabeth Hinson-Hasty invites us to read Paul’s letter afresh in light of today’s issues. We will consider concepts of shared partnership, power in weakness, healing, reconciliation, and love both in Paul’s time and in our world today. Please join us as we gather together to learn from Paul, the Holy Spirit, and each other in the upcoming year.

Stamps for Missions - Please continue to bring in your stamp donations to the large goblet bowl in Fellowship Hall. These stamps are sent to Peggy Renhold and her Sunnyside team who sell them to dealers. The sale of the stamps was $4,266.78 in 2013, and the funds went to Presbyterian Churches in the Congo to purchase church school materials, pictures, and helping with expenses for conferences and workshops for pastors and students.

Commemoratives (can be Forever stamps), the larger or special subject postage stamps, are desired by dealers. The Forever stamps that are sold in grocery stores, etc. that have a flag and are very commonly found are not requested as they are so common and therefore cannot be sold. Please trim stamps, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch of single thickness of envelope. No need to soak the stamp from an envelope (that can damage the Forever stamps especially. Foreign stamps are welcomed, as well as picture postcards with stamps.

Please remember to visit our Equal Exchange Coffee/Chocolates cart in Fellowship Hall - your purchase of delicious items helps both farmers to earn a living wage and Presbyterian Women’s mission  project - a double benefit.
 
Bits 'N Pieces PDF Print E-mail



We had special visitors on Wednesday, May 7. The Rev. and Mrs. J. Edward Gayhart were on their way to Staunton and stopped by to see South Plains.


The last time they were here, Marion and John Thompson greeted them and took them to fellowship. Rev. Gayhart served here in 1952-53 and lived on the top floor of the Manse. Rev. Gayhart said that the congregation he served at South Plains mostly consisted of workers at the nearby farms. Some of the owners of those farms attended Grace Episcopal.


He is now retired and serving as a part-time Chaplain in Louisville, KY.  Ed and Marge loved seeing the sanctuary, so impressed that it is always open. They had a tour of Kirk Hall and were overwhelmed by the building and how much we have grown as a congregation.

 
Library Update PDF Print E-mail


RECENT DONATIONS ARE ENTERTAINING, INSPIRING, AND CONSOLING


Remember the Left Behind series of novels about the Second Coming? If you read some of the books but  didn’t finish the series, here’s your chance to catch up. Volumes 2 and 4 through 10 were donated in July. 

If you’re looking for an inspirational lift, check out A WEEK FROM TUESDAY by Matthew A. Rich. This book is subtitled “Joy Keeps Showing Up (Because Christ Keeps Showing Up).” Jana Blazek, a reviewer for “The Presbyterian Outlook,” wrote: “This book on joy is probably not what you expect. It is not a compendium of cloy reminders to count your blessings, nor is it a command merely to rejoice in all things. In fact, although this book does not set forth to even define ‘joy’, through Scripture, personal stories, and theological exploration, Rich cleverly shows that joy often shows up in places where it is least likely expected.”

An entire package of Stephen Ministries books and pamphlets provides practical advice on how to counsel those who are troubled by physical disabilities, job loss, burnout, divorce, parenting struggles, depression, and death. DON’T SING SONGS TO A HEAVY HEART explains how you can relate to someone suffering from illness or loss. Other booklets are titled A TIME TO GRIEVE, EXPERIENCING GRIEF, FINDING HOPE AND HEALING, and REBUILDING AND REMEMBERING. And finally, there is a gathering of healing prayers titled ALL WILL BE WELL, edited by Lyn Klug.In addition there are recent issues of “Biblical Archaeological Review.” 

The South Plains library now has 325 books plus a great many periodicals. Thanks to all those who donated so generously.
 
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