Pasadena Presbyterian Church



Alleluia Newsletter

December 2018

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From Me to You
Session Notes
Financial Report
Stewardship Ministry
Advent and Christmas Events
The Deacon's Developements
Praise Kids
Sunday School
Sonrise ECLC
Koinonia Ministry
Library News
Women of the Church
Sunday Worship Attendance
What's New at PPC

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 4 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 4 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!  MERRY CHRISTMAS!


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Session Notes

The Session met for their regular stated meeting of October 23, 2018. Shown below are items that were passed or discussed.
1. The action plans that were developed by each Elder through the ECO Flourishing Study will be discussed at a special meeting on November 27, 2018. Please be in prayer for this meeting.

2. Elder Hammond reported that the buyer of the 6720 Burlington property will purchase the home for $207,000. Closing will most likely occur during the week of 11-19-18. The owner intends to rent the property. The cash from the sale of the property will be a designated fund, until it is decided how to allocate it.

3. Several of our Elders attended the first meeting of a Mission Affinity Group meeting in Bartow on November 10, 2018 along with other central Florida ECO churches.

Respectfully submitted,    

Larry Oline, Clerk of Session

Session minutes are open records and available to any covenant partner of PPC upon request.

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Financial Report

OCTOBER 2018    Financial  Report                               

Account Name
General Fund Checking   $  14,011.50
Designated Fund Checking   (includes BIA) $  63,226.89
PRESCHOOL  Checking   $  11,827.84
PRESCHOOL MM   $    1,821.42


Income unavailable

Deacon’s Fund                                                      $   1,963.81

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Stewardship Ministry

We read in Philippians 4:17 what Paul wrote while discussing giving with the Philippians who supported him: “Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the profit that is increasing to your account.” By now, many of you have made your pledges, and have been fulfilling them. We greatly appreciate and need your support. We should also remember that it is God who supplies everything, and that giving back to God means we can please Him by being good stewards of what He gives. Thank you for partnering with us in doing Jesus’ work in His way!

Thomas Smith IV
Stewardship Ministry Chair    

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12/1 Hanging of the Greens, 9, AM                                     

12/02    First Sunday of Advent
Communion Sunday
Praise Kids/Youth, 3 PM  

12/08    Food Distribution, 9 AM                                                               

12/09    Second Sunday of Advent
Praise Kids/Youth 3 PM               

12/16     Third Sunday of Advent   
Christmas Cantata
Praise Kids/Youth 3 PM

12/19     Sonrise Preschool Christmas Pageant, 6 PM

12/23     Fourth Sunday of Advent

12/24     Christmas Eve Celebration & Candle Lighting Service for ALL ages– 7 PM  (nursery also provided) 

12/25      Celebrate our Savior’s Birth…MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!                      

Please Note:  The Church Office will be closed Dec 21 through January 1       

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The Deacon's Developements

The Deacon’s Developments
*The Deacons serve Christ by serving others for His glory and purpose*

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  John 3:16

Have a Christ Filled Christmas!!  


God loves you and so do we!!

Barbara Gonzalez          Mary Davis    Threse Hammond

Larry Hendry                  Michelle Loy    Terry Odom          

Please remember The Dollars for Deacons Offering Envelopes in the Sanctuary

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Praise Kids and Youth Group

We’ve enjoyed seeing how various insects and animals are special and how God created them and sometimes even used them to aid his people. We studied how the ravens fed Elijah. November brought studies of how God helped a more recent band, the Pilgrims.

Kids are separated into age-appropriate groups after they enjoy meeting together for a snack. The Bible lesson, Bible verse and teaching are all tailored for each age group which comes. Active games give younger students another way to remember the points of the story and the memory verse. Crafts provide yet another learning tool which is fun and memorable.

Call Laurie Smith and leave a message, for details.

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Sunday School

Breakfast With Jesus: Teacher: Larry Oline at 8:30am in Fellowship Hall
(Bible Study) Come have breakfast with us at 8:30am and stay to study God’s Word at 8:45am. We are currently studying the book of ACTS.  Class ends at 9:45. Come join us!

The “What Did That Sermon Say?”  group will resume in January 2019.

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Sonrise ECLC

We are learning a lot about kindness and giving. We collected shoeboxes full of gifts for operation Christmas Child as well as taking up food pantry donations and donations for Hurricane Michael victims. Our Sonrise families have been very generous and caring. The children are so excited to learn the story of the birth of Jesus as we practice for our Christmas Pageant. You are welcome to join us to watch our Christmas pageant on Wednesday, December 19th at 6 pm. We will enjoy refreshments in Fellowship Hall directly after our program. Thank you, Terry Odom, for directing our pageant. Your love and dedication to the children and families of Sonrise is a blessing to all of us. We are also thankful for the koinonia ministry for all the ways they support the preschool and make our events a success. 

The parents and staff continue to enjoy the coffee cafe ministry and look forward to that day of the week. Thank you Gene, Alma, Pat and Cookie for welcoming parents each Thursday and serving the families delicious coffee with a side of friendship and fellowship. Your ministry changes the atmosphere and culture of our preschool.  

Shirley McLeod, Director

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Everywhere you hear sleigh-bell songs and see Santa with a long line of children waiting to give him their Christmas lists. Toys R’nt US may not be open but you still see latest ’must-have’ toys advertised. 2000 years later there is still no room for Jesus among millions who have forgotten why they celebrate.

What would you say is the real meaning of Christmas? Peace, love, good news for all people, God with us, God saving us, equality, humility, giving generously, hospitality, acceptance, courage, caring for the homeless...? If we want to make Christmas spiritually significant, we must understand the spiritual significance it has for us. Discover the aspects of Christmas you are most passionate about, and then find ways to share your passion with others – in a loving and Christian way.

The Bible could simply say that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, but there are political upheavals; a young, homeless, pregnant mother gives birth in a stable; angels sing to shepherds and stars guide wise men across distant deserts. This has been choreographed by God himself. The action unfolds with Bethlehem center stage in the Universe, and a story is created to be retold and re-enacted. It is carefully balanced. Poor shepherds visit the baby as well as rich men. There are plots and subplots and an evil villain of a king. Danger lurks around dark corners, but the Light of the World cannot be extinguished, tiny and vulnerable though He is.

The story has been told to inspire a sense of wonder and mystery. It captures our imagination. Take time to immerse yourselves in the story. Ask each other, ‘which part of the story do you like the best? Which part is the most important to you? Where do you see yourself in the story?’ And then ask yourself which aspect you most want to celebrate with your family and friends this year?

The best antidote to all the commercialism is to keep the real story alive in your own mind. Talk about what you are going to give other people, rather than what you want to get. Keep plans and decorations simple and focus on the needs of the people around you who are struggling. Find ways to share what you have and involve others in the projects. See, feel, smell, hear and taste what the real story is all about. Maybe you can share a sense of wonder about God’s amazing love that would give his only son to be born as a fragile human being, just for you.

Ask the Holy Spirit to inspire your season; to help you put Jesus at the very center of everything you do; and to give you God’s perspective on all your plans. Then you will have a deeper understanding of the spiritual significance of this amazing event, and live in a deeper understanding of God’s love.

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Library News

The Reader’s Digest online site had some suggestions from real life about ways families have gotten their kids (and themselves) interested in reading: Here are some of the best:

1. A family reading time: (Established by Elizabeth and Gardener Lane) The whole family gathers for an hour to quietly read to themselves, no phones or computers, just reading for fun. The parents may not do work, though the kids can finish homework. Their kids enjoy it and usually read for fun instead of doing homework assignments. The family discovered there is time to read for pleasure. I think they could also say that the kids learned there is pleasure in reading.
2. Another suggestion from this family was to let the kids read what they like, not what you think they should be reading.
3. Not a book but the newspaper works: The husband had reading difficulties as a child. He was allowed to read the sports pages and fell in love with reading!
4. They also say to read books aloud together even into double digit years, if they want to keep on. Sometimes use a funny voice or accent for one of the characters. Make it fun. Write and staple together books of  things your kids have written: they, too, can be authors.
I’ve been wondering: With the advent of handheld devices, do little kids realize these items are equal to a cardboard and paper book that they are reading? In other words, is using one really an example for little ones? Do they think you are playing a game or doing anything else?

Pass these tips on to your kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, anyone with kids! 

 Laurie Smith, librarian

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Women of The Church  

WOMEN OF THE CHURCH – December 2018

WOC Communion at the Springs–Monday, December 3rd at 9:45am

WOC Committee Meeting—Tuesday, December 4th at 10:00am in the Boswell/Library

Rachel Circle — Monday, December 10th @ 7:00pm at the home of   Patricia Watts

Sarah Circle — Tuesday, December 11th @ 12:00pm at the home of  Aristeia Sowa

We have one day circle (that meets either at 12 noon or 1:00 p.m.) and one evening circle (that meets either at 6:30 or 7:00 p.m.). This is not like a club – all women of Pasadena Presbyterian Church are invited to come to either of the circle meetings. They are open to all women. We have bible study, fellowship and light refreshments. We do have a budget for each calendar year and your offerings help us to contribute to the missions that we support, local and foreign. If you want more details regarding Women of the Church, please contact Pat Watts for further information.

The sock tree is in the Patio hallway through Sunday, December 16, 2018. New socks for men, women and children are needed. These socks will be delivered to Beth-El Farmworkers Ministry in Wimauma, FL. Thank you all for your contributions.




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Boxtops for Education, Postage Stamps

Did you know that used postage stamps can have value to others? Ultimately, they will probably get to a stamp collector (called a philatelist) by way of a charity which sells them to companies which sell to beginning collectors. Also, they won’t end up in the landfill.
The stamps which are sold for charities are called kiloware because they are dealt with in bags or packets.
If you care to donate your posted postage to the women of the church, here’s how:
1. Look at your mail carefully. Only “Forever” or stamps with value numbers on them are needed, NOT non-profit or bulk.
2. Each stamp needs to have 1/3 to one half inch of paper all around the perforation.
3. Carefully open the envelope  by lifting the flap and also the side where it is glued to leave enough paper. This can
become second nature after a little practice. Stamp collectors are picky about the condition of stamps and want a paper edge left until a dealer can correctly remove the stamp.
4. Gently tear off the stamp with paper all around it.
5. Place your stamps in one of the baskets in the hallway near the patio entrance to the church. You will see examples of correct and incorrect stamps hanging from the basket. Box Tops for Education may also be placed in this basket. (See the May church newsletter online for details on that).
6. The women of the church send the stamps to charity.

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It WAS Shoebox Time

“Declare His Glory Among the Nations!”  Psalm 96:3
We will be making a difference in162 children’s lives.

Thanks so much for packing a shoebox!!

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Jan's Mission - Kenya 

Your prayers for my safe journey to Kenya were wonderfully answered.  Flights were smooth and on time.  No drunken brawls on the planes.  Yea!  With a little free time before going to the mission home, I was able to meet with kids I sponsored when they were in high school and later as they undertook vocational training.  Chacha sells gas canisters and is starting a school for needy children on the Tanzanian border.  Timothy is in training to work at a fancy restaurant in Nairobi.  Shadi is married and a father; he works with computers in a Nairobi business.

The children in Thika were all healthy, although the lump in Abigael's jaw has returned.  Arrangements are being made for her to see a doctor in Nairobi.  All the children received several t-shirts, lots of underwear, pajamas, booties made by Patti Strong, school supplies, and candy paid for by Vicki Danz.  Ten of the children received new, fluffy pillows. They were excited to get their photo albums too.

For Sunday lunch, they were treated to fried chicken and chips (French fries), their favorite.  Our seven Scouts put on a show for the family.  Lawrence lost a tooth.  Plans were made to dig a new "soft pit."  Hopefully, our outhouse will soon be eliminated along with its smell. 

My two 7th graders both failed to be promoted and have to repeat 7th grade.  We thought it best they transfer to the boarding school run by their church in Ruiru where they'll get lots of individual help with their studies.  If they don't pass 8th grade, they will not get into high school and their education will end.  It's very important these two girls get back on track.

Blessings to you all,


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Sunday Worship Attendance


October     28 73   
November  4     79
November  11  61     
November 18  67

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What's New At PPCNews

Women of the Church Sock Tree

Women of the Church Sock Tree
Collecting November 25-December 16, 2018 
To Benefit Beth-El Mission
All New Socks
All Sizes
For Women
Men & Children

Pictorial Directory

A pictorial directory is a powerful tool in our church to help each of us know each other better. Our last directory is out-dated and it is time for a new one. Please make an appointment to have your picture taken at the sign-up location at church on one of the sign-up Sundays.

Your participation will help the church and yourself. Every family photographed for the directory will receive a copy of the directory and an 8 x 10 portrait at no cost. Your will also have the opportunity to purchase additional portraits at the time of photography. So please, sign-up today!


July and I would like to extend our appreciation to everyone who has been standing with us in our move to Trinidad and beyond. We ask that you continue to pray for us and we will continue to lift our family at Pasadena Presbyterian Church up in prayer.

Emails to the Church

If you are attempting to contact us at PPC, please make sure you are using the correct email address for us  as  listed in the  weekly Flyer. If you send an email to us, but do not receive a reply, please call the OFFICE.
If you are not receiving emails from us, please make sure we have YOUR current email address.


We try to stay on top of prayer requests and concerns.  If you know of someone who is ill in our church family, please let the office know.  Even if the office is closed you can still leave a voice mail.  If you have a pastoral emergency, you can always leave a voice mail at the Manse at 727-368-5588.
In the event that Pastor Carl is on vacation, we always record the substitute’s name and telephone number on our outgoing voice mail message. Thank you for your help.

Facility Use Notice

PPC facilities are not ordinarily open in the evening for meetings or groups on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and all-day on Saturdays.  If your meeting or group is  affected by this new policy, you need to contact the church office to reschedule your use of the facilities to Tuesday or Thursday eveningsuntil 8:30pm.  If your group can’t change to meet on the nights when PPC is now open, you will need to   contact Pastor Carl to get keys and codes —you will be responsible for locking up and setting the alarm—or find another location off site.  

Please Help Keep God's Facilities Nice!




Dollars for Deacons Fund

Please Remember The Dollars For  Deacons Offering Envelopes in the Sanctuary.

Change of Address

If your address or phone number has changed, please let the office know.  This includes  your cell phone number and email address. Many times we are not informed of your new contact information and either we in the office are trying to get in touch with you or one of the elders or deacons have information to bring to you and cannot contact you due to the wrong information.  Please drop your new contact information on a slip of paper and place it in the offering plate or just call the office with an update. 

Thank you, The Church Office

Collect Aluminum Cans

Please bring in your  aluminum soda cans (rinsed) and put them in the blue recycling bin,   opposite the church kitchen door, as you come in to the Fellowship Hall. These cans will be sold to a salvage business and the money will go toward our youth ministries.  Thank you!

Format for Submitting Information To Be Printed

  • Submit information 2 weeks prior to date needed print ready.
  • Send information as an Electronic File MS Word Format.
  • Newsletter articles are always due by the 15th of the month.
  • Newsletter articles should be in Ariel and font no larger than 10.
  • Newsletter articles should be titled with ministry, month and year ie, “Library February 2017”.

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