Thursday, December 16, 2010

St. John's Epistle for December 16, 2010

Dear church members and friends of St. John's,

We welcome these new members into the church: Syntia Aibyah and her sons Shawn (age 2) and Shane (age 2 months) and her fiancee Stephane Onana. Synthia (pronounced Cynthia) is a Respiratory Therapist and she is currently going to school to become a Physician's Assistant. Stephane is a Respiratory Therapist as well and he currently works at TIRR. He is also  pursuing a Master's degree in Health care Administration. Synthia was reared in a Presbyterian Church in Cameroon and Stephane was reared as a Roman Catholic in Cameroon. Both of them join by Reaffirmation of Faith and we are happy to welcome them into our congregation.

Steven Leach will be ordained at First Church in San Antonio this Sunday afternoon and will move to Cape Town, South Africa, in January to begin his ministry at St. Philips Presbyterian Church in Cape Town. Our thoughts and prayers are with Steve and his family this weekend for this great celebration.

The Christmas Joy Offering will be received this Sunday, December 19. Speaking of giving, to date we have received $340,676 from 84 pledge units and we are grateful to all who pledged. Pledge cards are available in the church office and you may speak to Curtis or me if you have questions about the pledge process.

We are pleased to welcome our confirmands last Sunday. Drake Ragan and Olivia Mulder were recognized on December 12 during worship and at a reception afterwards in McPhail Hall.
 Congratulations to Drake and Olivia and their families.

Parents and youth mark your calendars for the following events in 2011. The St. John's PYF will go to the Conclaves retreat on March 4-6, 2011. Also, the week of June 6-11, 2011 has been reserved for a mission trip through PRESGOV. Cost for the trip will be approximately $1100-1200 (~$525 for airfare and $95/day for expenses) – this includes all costs except spending money. Participants will be required to pay $300 up front to reserve a slot. After a question about minimum age for participants is answered, the call for participants will go out.

Bob says, "Here is another one - Advent bells, as recorded apparently by the choir microphone December 4. The drone is probably the air conditioner, maybe next time we can plan ahead and do better. It is online at and unlisted so you can only see/hear it with this link."

Christmas Eve services will be held in this sanctuary at 6 pm and 11 pm this Friday on December 24. The 6 pm service will feature our children and youth and the 11 pm service will be a more reflective service. Do come and bring family and friends. All are welcome. Studies show people are more likely to attend a Christmas Eve service than a Sunday morning service. So do invite your friends and neighbors to join us for these special services.

At their meeting on December 15, your Session:

*Thanked the elders who are rotating off the Session: George Dobbin, Jenny Glover, Jo Ann Golden, Dave Nelson, Kathy Roth, and Brad Urquhart; and remembered with gratitude the service of Lois Stowell.

*Sustained the examination of these elders-elect who will be coming onto the Session in January: Libby Adams, Sean Coughlen, Kathie Hartzog, Tad Mulder, David Wintersgill. Oncoming elders Jennifer Durand and Evan Harrel will be examined later.

*Scheduled a "Draft Day" on January 9 after worship at which elders will go through the church rolls and determine whom will be recruited on each committee for next year.

*Heard an update on plans for new carpet to be installed in the sanctuary in early January, 2011.

*Prayed for those in our congregation who are ill or in in rehab and for those recovering from or facing surgery.

Here is a link to the December Issue of the Beacon.

Peace of Christ be with you,

Pastor Jon

St. John's Presbyterian Church
5020 West Bellfort / Houston, TX 77035
T. 713.723.6262 / F. 713.723-4015 / Email:
Worship Service: Sunday, 10:30 am / Sunday School: 9:00 am