Pasadena Presbyterian Church



Alleluia Newsletter

December 2008

Go to:
From Me to You
Session Digest
Focus on Fellowship
Stewardship Ministry Update
2009 Pledge Cards
Financial Secretary's Report to Session: October 10, 2008
What's Happening in the Youth Group
Preschool News
Children's Church
Pasadena Presbyterian Women
Help Wanted
Advent & Christmas Event Schedule
Position Title: Director of Family Ministries (DOFM) from Infant to Senior Saints
Life Groups
Presbyterian Women Sock Tree
Presbyterian Women Christmas Card Greeting Tree
Sunday Worship Attendance
What's New at PPC
December Birthdays

From Me to You:

“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.”
(Isaiah 9:6)

CHRISTMAS means different things to different people. What, though, does it mean to God?

Lest we forget, Christmas is God’s idea:  it was His plan, even before He created the world, to come to us and become one of us (Ephesians 1:4; Galatians 4:4).  It was our need to truly know God’s love, be forgiven, and be brought back to God, that made His coming in the flesh necessary (1 John 4:9; Hebrews 2:14; Philippians 2:6-7).  It was our sin that sent Jesus to a cross to die in our place, and shed His precious blood, give up His perfect, sinless life, for us and our forgiveness (1 John 1:5-2:2; 1 Peter 3:18).  And it is by believing in Him, accepting God’s free gift of forgiveness, new and eternal life in Christ, we are saved!  (John 1:12, 3:16; Romans 6:23).

That’s wonderful news!  It’s the Gospel—the Good and Gracious message of God’s love for us in His Son, Jesus Christ! 

But Christmas isn’t just about what God did for us in Jesus; it really is about celebrating—worshipping—God Himself. The “names” the Holy Spirit through the prophet Isaiah gives to the to-be-born-500-years-later Messiah, Jesus, describe just who it is—who God is—who dwelt among us.  The four titles in Isaiah 9:6 are the reasons Jesus is entitled to be glorified and worshipped—not just on the day we celebrate His birthday (aka “Christmas”) but every day!

“Wonderful Counselor”—Jesus is shown throughout the four Gospels as living and declaring the amazing truth and wisdom of God.  Consider the incredible, life-saving and transforming wisdom of God given to us in the “sermon on the mount” (Matthew 5ff).  Let’s see Dr. Phil match that! 

To a broken world, and into our broken lives, God speaks His all-powerful healing, renewing, and transforming Truth in Christ:  He “counsels” us—literally comes alongside and even into our lives by His Holy Spirit and Word, to save us, and make us new creations in Christ!  (John 14:16, 17; 2 Corinthians 5:17). 

“Mighty God”—Too often we see our problems and challenges as bigger than anything; we feel helpless, isolated, abandoned in the face of overwhelming trials and threats, especially death.  In Jesus, though, God shows up and shows us that He is mightier than everything!  Jesus rose from the dead, in victory over our greatest enemies:  sin, the devil and death! (Romans 6:8ff; 1 Peter 1:3ff; Ephesians 2:4ff).  He is with us, and He will never let us go! (John 10:29; Matthew 28:20). No matter what we are facing, God is greater—Jesus shows and promises us that!

“Eternal Father”—the Gospel of Luke features a story about a father and his lost, runaway son.  We often refer to it as the parable of the prodigal son;  it is, though, really a story about the unending, unchanging love of the father for his renegade child:  it is a story that shows us God’s real love for us in Christ.  Isn’t it incredible to know that nothing we can ever do will make God love us any less (or more)?  His love for us is unchanging and unbreakable—unlike so much of the so-called love we experience in a selfish world and through too often broken families.  God loves us just as we are; and it is His love in Jesus that makes us into who He made us to be!

“Prince of Peace”—the world suffers and cries out for true, lasting peace.  Our lives often lack peace inside and out.  We try all sorts of substitutes—from comfort foods to numbing drugs—seeking peace amidst our going to pieces.  Jesus is the only one who can truly help:  His is the One who makes us one—whole, inside and out, again!  Fear, worry, suffering and brokenness all are no match for faith in Jesus, the Prince of Peace!

Celebrating the joy of Jesus with you, His beloved family at PPC, as we worship Him together this Christmas and every day!

In Christ,


Back to Top

Session Digest: October 28, 2008

    The stated meeting of the Session was opened with prayer by the Moderator, Carl Crawford, at 7 p.m.  Elder Edwards led a devotion centered on the thought that everything we do should be to God's glory from 1 Corinthians 10:31,32. columns
     The following items were considered, discussed, and voted on.
         1.  The Session met with Leslie Hughes, at her request, regarding a letter she had sent to Dr. Gerry Tyer of Presbytery and copied to Session. 
        2.  The Session voted to accept a suggestion from the Presbytery Committee on Ministry to hold an informal meeting seeking reconciliation with those who recently had sent letters of concern to Presbytery.
         3.  The Session voted to deny a written request by a PPC Member to call a congregational meeting to vote on reconsidering the call of the pastor.
         4.  Various minutes of previous Session meetings were approved.
         5.  Membership: Don and Debbie Breitweiser transferred to Pasadena Community Church; Anya Campbell admitted to baptized roll (baptized by Carl Crawford on October 26, 2008).
         7.  The September financial report was approved, showing a positive year-to-date balance, but indicating more expenses than income for September.
         8.  A minute for missions was approved (date TBD) for Mike Nahrwold (banjo player in the praise band) to invite the congregation to partner with him in upcoming medical mission to Kenya in January.
         9.  Continuing Education leave (2009) for Dr. Crawford was approved for January 20-26, 2009 to attend an E3Partners Global Conference in Dallas, and for July 23-August 3, 2009 to lead a church planting, evangelism and service mission trip to Quevedo, Ecuador. Continuing education funds will not be used for the mission trip.
        10.  The resignation of Lisa Cope as Elder was approved with thanks for her service and regret for losing her from the Session.
     The meeting was closed with a season of prayer at 10:20 a.m.                                                     Larry Oline, Clerk

(Session Minutes are public records and are available for review by PPC Member in the Church Office)

Back to Top

Focus on Fellowship


Our next Family Night Dinner is scheduled for 6:00 PM on December 3 

  Please come join us for another opportunity to experience Lucio and Sherry’s creations. Lucio and Sherry will be preparing a special menu: 

Homemade Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Beef  Au Jus

Mashed Potatoes

Green Beans Almandine

Bread Sticks

Seasonal Mixed Green Salad

Apple/ Pumpkin Pie & Brownies

Punch Fountain


We are looking for Breakfast Food Coordinators to enlist individual volunteers or small groups to provide breakfast foods on Sundays to be served outside Fellowship Hall.  Volunteers provide bagels, donuts, fruit, milk or O.J.  Once the list of volunteers and their assigned Sunday is compiled, the coordinator will contact the volunteers to remind them that their assigned Sunday is approaching.  If you are interested in this opportunity to become a Breakfast Food Coordinator, please contact Threse Hammond at 344-0223.


Please consider becoming a Covered Dish Dinner Coordinator by contacting Threse Hammond at 344-0223.  Coordinators are generally responsible for organizing the Covered Dish Dinner by recruiting volunteers for the following duties:
make coffee and lemonade
place placemats on tables and small trash cans under beverage and dessert table
wipe down tables & chairs after dinner, put chairs on top of tables, wash coffee and lemonade containers, clear dessert table and pitch or give away leftovers

In addition to recruiting volunteers for the day of the dinner, coordinators also ensure the dinner is listed in the Sunday bulletin.  Coordinators also help the hosting ministry keep an eye out for all of the “little things” when programs are held in Fellowship Hall during the dinner as well as alert Vicki when paper/plastic supplies need to be refreshed.

Threse Hammond, Fellowship Chair

Back to Top

Stewardship Ministry Update

Stewardship Update“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28 KJV)

We Need YOU!!!

We have many needs in the church for your time and talents.  Are you handy with a hammer, screwdriver, paintbrush or shovel?  Are you available to help set up church facilities for church functions?  We need you!  “Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.”  1 Peter 4:10.  Please speak with your elder-shepherd or contact the church office, 345-0148.

If you have any suggestions or questions about Stewardship matters, feel free to contact a member of the ministry. We thank you for your support as we work in all things for God’s glory.

PPC Wish List
Nature of Project Estimated Cost Recieved
Replacement of malfunctioning over-head lighting in the sanctuary. (In process) $3,500   $3,500  
Kitchen Floor Replacement (In process)  $2,750  $2,750 
Upgrade AV System in the Sanctuary (In process) $11,000 $11,000

Back to Top

2009 Pledge Cards

2009 pledges are now being received. Pledge cards are available on the tables in the sanctuary and in the church office.  Please contact Sergio Gonzalez or Bob Bates, if you have any questions.

Your response to God's grace in the form of your pledge will allow the Stewardship Ministry to prepare a budget which can maintain and grow the various ministries at PPC.  Our giving help us grow in God's grace.
"God is able to make all grace abound to you, that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed."  2 Corinthians 9:8

Back to Top

Financial Secretary's Report to Session: October 10, 2008

Financial NotesThe Financials for September show actual income $21,469.64 with expenses of of $37,420.59  leaving us $15,950.95 in the Red.  


Year to Date 2008
Actual Income   $ 352,146.61
Actual Expenses  $ 346,640.06
Black   $ 5,506.55

There were 3 Pay Periods in October

Contribution income continues below actual operating expenses.

PPC Foundation 
Pasadena Foundation $ 26,194.30
Wahl Scholarship   $ 49,945.67

Back to Top

What's Happening in the Youth Group

AntiochWell, November has been a great month for our Youth. Now we are looking forward to December. The Youth would like to invite the congregation to join us on Sunday, December 21st at 5:30pm for Christmas Caroling throughout the neighborhood around the church. We also hope to visit as many of our shut-in members as possible. I think if we all come together many can be blessed this Christmas Season. And we invite you to celebrate afterward in the Fellowship Hall for a time of Christmas snacks and goodies; hot chocolate and apple cider. Youth will not be meeting on Wednesdays in December.

God bless you all

Rob Taylor

Volunteer Youth Leader 

Back to Top

Preschool News

The pre-school children have had a wonderful November.  We held our own election here at Pasadena. The children had two candidates. Tutti is a giraffe that has Jesus in Preschool Newshis heart. He is very loving and promised to be their friend if he became president of Sonrise. Tutti’s song is “Make a Heart for Jesus.”  Dakota is a horse and he is brave and strong and is not afraid of anything because Jesus is always with him. He promised to keep everyone safe with Jesus’ help if he became president of Sonrise. Dakota’s song is “The Lord is My Helper, I Will Not Be Afraid.” The children voted, and Tutti was elected the President ofSonrise. It was a wonderful experience for the whole school.

The children learned about Native Americans and Pilgrims, and how they shared and celebrated together to give thanks to God for all He had given to them. We prepared our own Thanksgiving feast and celebrated together and gave thanks to God.  Our Thanksgiving family night was a success with 300 in attendance. We had a pizza dinner followed by a slide show presentation of the children. After the slide show the children walked down the center aisle in the sanctuary with the Samaritan’s Purse shoeboxes that they prepared with their parents and placed them at the “foot of the cross.”  Next they sang songs of Thanksgiving. It was a wonderful evening.

It is an important part of our ministry to provide educational opportunities to help our families continue to develop their parenting skills using Godly principles. We hosted a parent educational seminar to assist our parents in achieving their goals. The seminar was much appreciated by the many parents who attended.

You are all invited to come to our Christmas Pageant on Wednesday December 17th at 6:30 p.m. in the sanctuary. Come and see the children tell the Christmas story and sing praises to our Newborn King. Wishing you a blessed Holiday Season as you prepare for and celebrate the Birth of our Savior. - Laura Woodard, Director

Back to Top

Children's Church

Children's ChurchThe lessons throughout the month of December will center around the foreshadowing of the Messiah throughout the Old Testament, beginning with Creation. The children will see how Jesus' birth was the fulfillment of both prophecy and of God's promises to His people.

The children will be rehearsing the songs they will be singing during the Christmas Eve service.  They will be provided with music so that they can practice the songs at home, as well. 

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."  

Isaiah 9:6 "Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift."  Have a Christ-filled Christmas.     

Leslie Hughes

Back to Top

Pasadena Presbyterian Women: Activities for Month of December

Activities for Month of DecemberPresbyterian Women
Monday, December 1st at 10:15 a.m.             PW Communion at the Springs
Tuesday, December 2nd at  9:30 a.m.             Council Meeting in Boswell
Monday, December 8th at 6:30 p.m.                Rachel Circle – Home of Doris Macomber
Tuesday, December 9th at 11:30 a.m.              Esther Circle – Treasure Island Yacht Club
Tuesday, December 9th at 12:00 p.m.              Martha Circle – Lunch at Sam Seltzer’s
Tuesday, December 9th at 12:00 p.m.              Ruth Circle – Lunch at Sam Seltzer’s
Tuesday, December 16th at 6:30 p.m.              Lydia Circle – Home of Felicia Ragland

November 16th was a blessed Sunday.  Our Thank Offering was $1,586.00, which was fantastic.  Our speaker, Shirley Bragdon, challenged all to take a step forward in missions.  We dedicated the newly remodeled kitchen and know that Ruby Bortz would have been happy with all that was done.  A special thanks to Dave Terhune, who contributed a lot of time and energy and to Vicki Danz for overseeing the whole project.

Look elsewhere in the newsletter and on our bulletin board for information on the Christmas Card Greeting Tree and the Sock Tree, both sponsored by Presbyterian Women .

July 11-15, 2009 – Churchwide Gathering of Presbyterian Women in Louisville, KY. Following are 5 of the 10 reasons YOU should attend!  1. To Nurture Your Faith; 2. To Be In Community With Other Women; 3. To Broaden Your PW Involvement; 4. To Gather Resources and Learn Skills As A PW Leader, and 5. To Learn About Current Issues In The Church And The World. (Look for the next 5 in the January Alleluia Newsletter)  Registration begins in January.

In His Service
Patricia Watts, Moderator

Back to Top

Help Wanted

Volunteers are needed to help in the production of  " Second Love," a full-length drama scheduled for sometime early next year.

Jobs are simple, tasks lighter than you think. The cast—all from the congregation—is just about set and practice will begin shortly after the beginning of the year.

So what's needed?

You can pass out programs, for example. You can make phone calls to members of the congregation and friends you would love to invite. Your strong point might be staging, makeup, publicity, sound, finding clothes that fit into the scene from the 1950s. You might find others who need a ride to the church because driving at night is not especially what they want to do. You might want to paint a  scene  that best describes the God-centered focus of this drama (a script will be available) or even help the cast to practice their lines

No job of the 20 or so needed is  too small. It all depends upon the number of volunteers.

Maybe your skill is putting together posters. Photography. Filming. Or a DVD to keep. We'd even need those who can sew and possibly make a temporary curtain that will run the length of most of the stage.

This is your chance to serve.  Pray about it.  God has given something to you that you may serve others.

Phone Bob Chick (347-5710) or the church (345-0148).

Back to Top

Advent & Christmas Event Schedule

December 6th, 9:00pm  Hanging of the Greens
December 17th, 6:30pm  Sonrise Preschool Pageant & Reception
December 21st, 11:00am  Sanctuary Choir Cantata
December 21st, 5:30pm  Christmas Caroling
December 24th, 6:00pm  Family Candlelight Service
December 24th, 9:00pm  Lessons & Carols Candlelight Service

Back to Top

Position Title: Director of Family Ministries (DOFM) from Infant to Senior Saints

Purpose: To develop and equip leaders; to engage the community; to pass on faith; and to live well in Jesus Christ.

Responsibilities: In coordination with the Discipleship Ministry the DOFM will perform strategic planning and coordinate family ministries from infant to adult:

1.Recruit, Train and Coordinate teachers/volunteers for all age levels of Christian education(adult small groups, Sunday school, mid-week Christian education ministries, VBS, Youth, etc.) within the church.

2.Secure background checks for all teachers, substitutes and others involved in working with youth or children, including nursery staff and volunteers.

3.Research and select teaching materials, with the approval of the Discipleship Ministry.

4.Evaluate family ministries within the church at least every six months with the Discipleship Ministry.

5.With the chair and members of the Discipleship Ministry, keep track of budget expenditures, and make recommendations for further budget needs, including assisting in preparing the annual discipleship budget.

6.Communicate programs and opportunities through the church newsletter, bulletin boards, brochures and radio announcements.

7.Coordinate with the church office the joint utilization of all educational classrooms with other programs and uses of church facility.

8.Provide opportunities for families to grow in their faith. Plan and conduct family activities, develop workshops for parents and children.

Skills: In addition to having leadership ability, the DOFM should have both credentials and experience in family ministry and teaching.



(The congregation is asked to pray for and give to fund this position in 2009)

Back to Top

How Did Thomas Kinkade Become the Famous "Painter of Light" ™?

Find out in the DVD Thomas Kinkade's Christmas Cottage-Love is the Brightest Light of All. The cover says this is the true story in which he "not only discovers his calling as the 'Painter of Light'TM but also helps the town rediscover the true spirit of Christmas." Thom has just returned from college for Christmas and finds his hometown not doing well and his mother "dangerously close to losing the family cottage to foreclosure." A famous artist, played by Peter O'Toole, helps him to help the town and discover his calling.

Other DVDs: The Christmas Shoes (Rob Lowe), The Christmas Blessing (continuing that story); Christmas Child a Max Lucado Story, and The Christmas Card are also available.

Newest Christmas books include: The Christmas Shoes, The Christmas Blessing, The Christmas Hope, The Christmas Promise, all by Donn VanLiere and The Christmas Shoe Box by Francine Rivers.

For children: DVDs, including Veggie Tales: The Star of Christmas and Veggie Tales: The Toy That Saved Christmas and many books dealing with Christmas. Are your grandkids coming to visit? Be ready!
Laurie Smith,

Back to Top

Life Groups

Life GroupsTwo groups meet Sunday evenings 7-8:30pm-—at the Pilkington home (397-8487) and at the Treleaven home.  One group meets Thursday evening 7-8:30pm at the Gonzalez home (343-8008).  The fourth group is led by Larry and Alma Oline (344-8783) and meets at the Church on Thursdays from 2-3:30pm.  Please call the hosts for details. All groups are studying Be Complete, a guide for Colossians by Warren Wiersbe. Study Books and Informational Brochures are available in the Church Office. Attend a group that works for you!

Back to Top


EvagemissionWe here at Pasadena are blessed and privileged to partner with our missionary families, to lift them in prayer and support.  To learn more about the prayer concerns and praises of our missionaries, please pick up their letters available on the missionary wall in the front hallway of the church.  I have selected two for your prayers today.

The first is Michael Nahrwold.  He blesses us every Sunday in our praise band with his musical gifts and his banjo.  But did you know he will be going to Kenya this coming January on a medical mission trip?  Mike is a doctor, an anesthesiologist, and a teacher.  And although he is retired, he is still working to serve God and his fellow man on the mission field.  He will be in Kenya for about 4 weeks working with a small hospital there.

Please keep him in your prayers as he prepares for this trip.  Please pray that all of the required documents needed and requested will be delivered in the proper time.  Please add him to your prayer list as he prepares to be used by God in Kenya.  You will hear more about Mike’s upcoming trip on Sunday, December 7th.

The second is Rex Almquist of South East Asian Relief (S.E.A.R.).  He writes:

Dear friends and supporters of the Mission SEAR:

Locally in St. Petersburg, Florida, as SEAR prepares for Thanksgiving and Christmas, numerous families, many of them Bosnian, have approached SEAR asking for help when parents have lost jobs. Families with children have had their     electric cut off, and very soon will also have their water turned off because they have no money to pay for utilities.

Normally, SEAR has a little extra mission support to help at times needy families, but now SEAR is struggling to raise support to keep things going at minimal level in Vietnam and there is nothing to help with needs locally.

The real solution is to help families find work so they can support themselves, but SEAR is not an employment agency. Numerous phone calls have been made trying to find work for needy families, but jobs are extremely hard to find. Hotels and other businesses that normally hire extra individuals this time of year are not hiring.

SEAR really needs prayer that some funds would come in from somewhere to help local families. Support is also needed for Christmas programs planned for S.E. Asian and other children living locally.

Pray also for SEAR's work among children in Vietnam. The needs continue among street children, critically ill children, those with heart disease, and farming children facing severe poverty. NEEDS ARE INCREASING AMONG  CHILDREN IN VIETNAM.

These needs include: school scholarships, vocational training for poor street children, food, shelter, medical needs, heart surgeries, church planting, and youth ministries.

This is a special letter requesting prayer for SEAR and for the children SEAR serves, that the love of the Lord could continue to be put into their lives as a witness among those who still do not know HIM, the Lord Jesus who died for them. Pray for a special openness to the Gospel during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

BLESSINGS, working together for HIS Kingdom,
Matt. 18 : 5 & 14       Rex Almquist/Director of Ministry        The SEAR Board USA

God Bless You

Paul Rivard EM chair

Back to Top

Presbyterian Women Sock Treestocking

Presbyterian Women's Sock Tree will be available to hang your socks, begining Sunday, November 30th through Sunday, December 14th. The Tree will be located in the hallway next to the santuary. These socks will be taken to the Beth-El Mission to be distributed among the Children and Adults.

Thank You For Your Contributions

Back to Top

Presbyterian Women Cristmas Card Greeting Tree

Christmas Card Greeting Tree\

Back to Top

Sunday Worship Attendance

  8:30 a.m.    11:00 a.m.  Total
November 2 124 78 202
November 9 118 72 190
November 16
November 23 129 62 191

Back to Top

What's New At PPC



The Christmas Joy Offering is one of  the four special, PCUSA offerings received yearly:

Pentecost (seven Sundays after Easter)
Peacemaking (First Sunday in October)
One Great Hour of Sharing
(Lent, and especially Palm Sunday/Easter)
Christmas Joy (this year, December 21)

As God’s Love was made visible among us, so we, each year, express that Love in our gifts.

The Christmas Joy “helps support unmet needs of Families who have given their lives to the mission of the Presbyterian Church (USA), some in retirement, some while they continue to serve.”

Because we know His Love, we give with Joy!

"Hanging of the Greens"

wreathPlease come join us in our Sanctuary Saturday, Dec 6th from 9 am - noon to decorate for the Christmas season. Helping hands are needed, no prior experience necessary.  This is an all-age event!!!

Furniture Needed For CASA

A few of our parents at Pasadena Fundamental School are teaming up to furnish transitional apartments in one of our local shelters. They need your help!! If you have any furniture that you do not need...they do need it!!!

CASA is a shelter that assists women and children who are victims of abuse. CASA has many transitional apartments for the women and children to stay in for 18-24 months, allowing them the time to get their feet back on the ground.

Linda Burrows, Dena Minning, Robin Sams, Alison Payne and other moms are teaming together to furnish a CASA apartment. Items such as end tables,  dining table and chairs, a couch, loveseat, double or queen bed, dressers, pots and pans, TV stands, TVs, and bar stools are needed.  If you have anything to donate, please call Alison Payne 798-2129.  Thank you so much. 

Prayer Request E-mail List

Our PPC e-mail praise/prayer list is being revised. 

If you would like to be included on our e-mail list to receive current Prayer Requests, please send your e-mail address to the church office at Please be sure to put Prayer Request E-mail List in the Subject line.

Ronald McDonald House

Ronald McDonaldThanks to all who participated in the November 1st lunch at the Ronald McDonald House! It was a success and we plan on doing it again in the future.  Thanks to all who donated food,        finances, time and service: Anne Henderson, Terry Odom, Cammie Fine, Angela Silver, Brenda Taylor, Kathy Taylor, Laura Prosser, Pat Watts, Sara VanWyk, and Sara and Ruth Terhune!

Thanks!!! Pam

Back to Top

   Be Saved!
   and Updates
   Women of
   the Church
Layout was created using Adobe Dreamweaver CS3.