First Presbyterian Church, Clarkesville, Georgia
me15, No.11
November, 2009
Sabbatical Update
Definition of Sabbatical: The word has its roots in the Biblical concept of Sabbath (to rest). Sabbath
keeping is setting aside time that God consecrates and makes sacred. It is a time for shifting gears in
order to rest, study, reflect, and travel so when pastor returns to the church, he/she is refreshed and
renewed in body, mind and spirit.
*My Sabbatical Theme is ‘A Time for Gathering In’. I propose to take a Sabbatical to become more
whole. The 2nd World War ruptured my family of origin. The losses, trauma and shame caused my
parents to leave Germany and immigrate to America with me in tow (I was 7). My parents never talked
about the war and rarely about family. It was as though our lives had no ‘before.’
I am now a wife, mother, grandmother and pastor, but I am not whole. This sabbatical is my journey
towards wholeness. Prayer, reading and reflection will sustain me on the journey. My context is
Greifswald, Germany, where I will partake in a Summer Sabbatical for pastors at the University
Institute. I will take seminars relevant to my journey, read Bonhoeffer’s ‘Cost of Discipleship’, and visit
the hospital in Hadamar, where my grandmother was exterminated by Nazi doctors.
I will reconnect with relatives, including a half sister who does not know I exist. Far away from my busy
pastorate, but less than 200 miles from my birthplace, I will gather pieces of myself. At journey’s end, I
will be more whole. I will share my story with my children and, preach to my flock about the need for
I have been meeting with a Sabbatical Planning Team (Janis Morrison, Kathy Palmer, Jan Peak,
Evelyn Waugh, and Tina Evans) since June, 2009.
Personnel Committee, Session, & NEGA Presbytery Committee on Ministry approved Sabbatical.
FPCC Staff (Connie Worley, Donna James, Pat Peterson, & Elaine O’Mary) support Sabbatical.
My family (Brice, our children, and extended family) support the Sabbatical.
I have been accepted to be part of a Pastor’s Sabbatical Semester in Greifswald, Germany at The
Institute for Evangelism & Church Development.
The Greifswald program timeline is April 6-July 17, 2010.
Dr. Darrel Guder, Dean & Professor at Princeton Seminary has agreed to be my ‘email conversant’
during the Sabbatical.
I will travel while in Germany in order to reconnect with long lost family which was torn apart by
WWII. Greifswald is 120 miles from where I lived as child and 190 miles from where I was born.
If at all possible, Brice will accompany me on the Sabbatical.
The Supply Pastor will be Rev. Tom Query, who has signed a contract to carry out pastoral duties
from Sun, April 4, 2010 to Sun, July 18, 2010. The cost is $200/wk (includes mileage).
Sabbatical Planning Team will continue to work with me to prepare congregation for my absence.
SPT is working on division of duties: “Who Does What List” for congregation.
I have applied for a Sabbatical Grant with The Louisville Institute (Lily Endowment).
*Italicized words above are part of Summary Statement, which was sent to Louisville Institute as part of my
application for a Sabbatical Grant.
With thanksgiving,
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.
Ecclesiastes 3:1
‘Bytes’ from Session Meeting, October 25, 2009
Session voted to accept another bequest from Estate of Catherine Erwin ($5,099.31).
Per earlier Erwin Estate request ( that money be used for Personnel), Session voted to put money into
Personnel Budget.
FH update & renovation plans from Terry Rogers read to Session.
Officer Christmas Party (Elders/Deacons) to be held, Thurs, Dec. 10, at Lisa’s house.
Need for a use of Fellowship Hall policy discussed and sent to Property Committee.
Children’s Christmas Pageant to be held Wed, Dec. 16
Due to Baptism Nov. 1, Communion to be served as people come forward (using small cups & pre-cut bread)
For Nine Months Ending September 30, 2009
Mortgage Reduction
Franklin House
Soup Kitchen/Souper Bowl
Pastors Discretionary
Launch A Kid
McAlpine-Kennedy Seminary Fund
Easter Lillies
NE Georgia Hour of Sharing
Mothers Day
Peace Offering
Senior Luncheon
Contributions Report
Tithes & Offerings
Total Expenditures
Listed Expenses include part of Pastor's salary ($5,000 /yr) and all of DCE salary
Whatever may be your task,
though you were working for
work at it heartily from the soul and cheerfully, as
the Lord rather than people. Colossians 3:23
Join us Sunday Mornings for Sunday School
There is something for everyone!
9:45-10:30 AM
Nursery (ages 0-3)*
*3, 4, & Kdg
1-6th grades
Youth Class
Youngish Adult Class
Speak Easy Class
The Diggers
The Seekers
Sylvia Heathcote, Jackie Vespi
Joan Gateley, Kathy Palmer
Desi Barrett, Anna Feeley
Michael James
Rotating Teachers
Brice Graves & Ted Childs
Al Peterson & Will Stucki
Joyce Tomanek
*Ages for children’s classes are determined by public school criteria, i.e., children who are 3
by September 1st.
All adult classes are ageless!!
Our Sunday School Offerings Go Near and
(see bulletin board in Sunday School hallway for more details)
Grace Gate
Angels on a Leash
Campus Crusade for
Christ in support of
John, Heather, and Jacob Martin
Children’s Chapel
Children: God be with you here.
Congregation: God be with you there.
These are the words that start our Children’s Church gathering every Sunday. With these
words, the children know that you are loving them and supporting them even though they are
not in the sanctuary. And they know that they are a part of the church family.
After we leave the sanctuary, there is prayer and time to get ready to enter the Children’s
Chapel. Once they are seated on the floor in a circle, we have our call to worship. The Storyteller says…
“This is a very special place. It is very special because God is here. In this place we have all
the time we need. So we don’t have to hurry. We can walk more slowly. And we talk more
softly, because someone might be talking with God, and we don’t want to disturb them.
This is a special place to be with God, to talk with God, to listen to God, and to hear the stories of God.”
And so begins their time of worship.
Christmas Pageant
Seems like only last week that the First Presbyterian Players were making their theatrical debut, but here it is time for the next production of our Christmas Pageant. This year’s pageant
is ideally suited for small churches with tiny budgets, and will have only 2 major practices.
Children, parents, and other interested parties will be receiving information soon about their
roles in the play.
Please put the following dates on your calendars:
November 29th Pageant practice & pizza
December 6th Pageant practice & pizza
December 9th Fellowship Supper
Right after worship
Right after worship
Supper at 5:30 PM
6:30 PM
Please note that practice is the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I know that is a busy time for everyone and many of you may be traveling, but if at all possible, please be present for that practice.
Connie Worley
Director of Christian Education
Instant Coffee
Powdered Gatorade
Powdered Hot Choc
Tea Bags
Slim Jim's
Ritz Crackers
Mini Bags Chips
Rice Krispie Treats
Bubble Gum
Little Debbie Snacks
Easy Mac
Microwave Popcorn
Granola Bars
Power Bars
Dried Fruit
Trail Mix
Canned Soup
Ramen Noodles
Small Pringles Cans
Canned Chicken
Instant Soup
Plastic Spoons
Clorox Wipes
Shaving Cream
After Shave
Soap/body wash
Mouth wash **
Fluffy Towel
Eye Drops
Sun Block
Dental Floss
Baby Powder
Hair Brush
Hand Sanitizer
Breath Mints
Contact Lens Clnr
Nail Files
Nail Clipper
** non-alcohol
AA & AAA Batt
Stress Ball
Writing Paper
Newspaper Articles
Paperback Books
Hackie Sacks
Yo Yo's
Jump Ropes
Jokes & Comics
Baseball Hats
Bug Off
Birthday Decorations
Board Games
Squirt Guns
Foam balls Small
All canned goods
should have pull-off tops
A Thornwell Home for Children offering will be received on November 22, 2009
Thornwell Home for Children is all about helping children and youth - caring for
them, nurturing them, helping prepare them to become the faithful individuals God
created them to be. Founded in 1875, today Thornwell is a vital ministry of the Presbyterian Church, serving children and families. Thornwell's referral network receives hundreds of calls from families in crisis and, each year, many children find
their way to the home. Most arrive battered and broken, frightened, full of sadness
and despair. At the Thornwell Home for Children, they are offered a safe haven; a
warm, loving, family-style community in which to grow and thrive. FPCC helps support this
home a not-for-profit organization - all services, programs, and ministries are made possible by
the grace of God, Presbyterian (USA) churches in 16 presbyteries and their individual members,
and other generous individuals and organizations.
This Year’s Flu Season
Dear Congregation,
In recent weeks, the developing situation regarding the spread of the
H1N1 flu is an understandable cause of concern for many. This
year’s flu season is predicted to be worse than usual in terms of the
numbers of people who are likely to get sick. Since this poses a serious health threat, many of us are wondering how we as a community of believers can
minimize the spread of flu viruses.
Influenza strains are spread through person-to-person contact. We could potentially
share the flu virus through tiny particles released as we sneeze or cough or touch an
infected surface. To help keep our church family as healthy as possible, we suggest
that you observe the best health practices by washing your hands frequently, using
hand sanitizer and, when sick, simply staying at home.
Our Sunday morning worship is a welcoming and joyous gathering as we share in a
spirit of prayer and thankfulness for the wonders of God’s grace. When Reverend
Graves invites us to share in the ‘Ritual of Friendship,’ she does not tell us precisely
how we are to do so. You may be fond of hugging or kissing the person beside you or,
more frequently, shaking the hand of your neighbors in the pews around you. However, if you are not feeling well or feel a cold coming on, other acceptable ways of extending a greeting is a smile, a nod, and a word of greeting.
During The Lord’s Supper, we celebrate our unity in Christ and share the bread and
juice as a means of communing with God and knowing Christ is present in the power of
the Holy Spirit. Our traditional way for distributing the elements, when Communion is
offered by Intinction (at the Lord’s Table), is to use the common cup and loaves of
bread. During this flu season we will, instead, offer bread cut in individual cubes and
juice in individual cups to be discarded in a vessel held by one of the elders.
We must go on living our lives, taking some precautions, but not stop living. The gift of
our Christian community is precious to us - may we continue worshiping God who
strengthens and sustains us through all things.
chili cook-off
First Wednesday
November 4, 2009
Bring your favorite Chili dish Or Brownies
Sponsored by FPCC Crossroads Youth Group
Youth will judge entries and award prizes.
Other food items needed if you don’t want to participate: Grated cheese, sour cream,
chopped onions, chives
crackers, hot sauce
If you are interested in cooking chili or brownies,
please contact Michael James.
Also let him know what “other foods” you will be
bringing so he can coordinate that as well.
[email protected]
706 754-1261
brownie bake-off
You are cordially invited
Our Annual
“Thankful Wednesday”
A Thanksgiving Celebration
At 1st Presbyterian, Clarkesville
Wednesday Nov. 18 at 6:00 p.m.
(with “Surprise Entertainment”)
The Church will provide Turkey, Dressing,
Gravy and Beverages.
Please bring a Side Dish or
Dessert (Pumpkin Pies encouraged).
Please join us for great food, fellowship, and together
We will praise God for our many blessings!
For transportation, contact Elaine/church office 706-754-
For questions or information, contact Mary Weese (706-754-
Dear Church Family:
I am writing to provide you all with an update of my ministry as Chaplain at Erlanger Hospital,
Chattanooga. I am very blessed to be getting this training as one of five Chaplain Residents in
this year of the Chaplain training program. We bring Pastoral Care to patients, their families and
even staff members all over Erlanger Hospital and the T. C. Thompson Children’s Hospital.
Once or twice each week, when on call, I get to minister to all areas of the hospital during a 24
hour shift. Erlanger is the only Trauma Hospital in the region of Chattanooga and we get patients
from Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Alabama who have suffered a trauma of some sort.
Many of these trauma patients are flown in by helicopter to the hospital from various places and
we get to meet quite a lot of people. Many of my hours are spent in the trauma area with distraught patients and family members.
When not on call, I have areas that I minister to including: Dialysis, Same-Day Surgery waiting
room, Medical /Surgical Intensive Care Unit and three floors of patients who have various illnesses or have had surgery and are recovering. We do see a lot of death and dying here, and
self-care is really important for me. I also minister on two floors of the Sisken Rehabilitation Hospital with people recovering from major trauma and illnesses. It is very challenging work.
All of my Master of Divinity work was completed in August, 2009. My fingers are crossed that I
passed three of the Ordination Exams which I took, and which Lisa so kindly proctored for me in
late August. Per the schedule of the PCUSA, grades from these Exams are to be released next
week. I will be taking the Exegesis Examination in January, when leave from work is available.
This year, I am spending deciphering my calling in detail, and feel led to Pulpit Ministry, but can
also see myself as a Hospital or Hospice Chaplain. I hope to begin looking for a Church Position
in the spring of next year.
It was my great honor to lead a man to Christ the other night. He had been in a coma for two
weeks and ‘awakened’. An atheist prior to his illness, he found God in the process and just
needed to find our blessed Jesus as well. This was an unusual opportunity that I feel blessed to
have had, as our goal as chaplains is to bring comfort, counseling and prayer to patients. God is
walking with me in the halls of this Hospital daily, and blesses me to be a care giver to the sick
and dying.
Other residents and I have become close friends. One other Presbyterian USA resident is here
who was a pastor for some 20 years, but is now training to be a Chaplain Training Supervisor. He
and I are close. There are also three other Residents, one is a Lutheran, one a Church of Christ
minister and one a Seventh Day Adventist minister. All of us have a Masters of Divinity Degrees
and are in some process of becoming ordained. We form a good support system and my partners
are blessing to be with.
I don’t know if Lisa told you that Dick and I remarried on September 11, 2009. We both realized
we made a mistake, and are very happy now. I call Dick my prayer warrior, as he sets a terrific
example with his daily prayer. He spends much time on his knees before God. He is a big support
for me and my ministry. Our marriage is on a much more stable footing this time.
I miss the Church in Clarkesville a lot. I have a void in my life in that area. We do attend a local
PCUSA Church near our home in Ringgold, GA but they are tiny and have no Choir, Sunday
School, or Presbyterian Women’s group. Some good news from my family is that my daughter
Clara got married in September to Sean Wright, the Army Ranger, who has been on the Prayer
list. Sean is to be deployed to Afghanistan in January. Clara has started her first job as an Occupational Therapist in Athens, GA and she and Sean are very happy. I saw my eight-month-old
granddaughter this weekend and three of my children. They are all well. One thing that my Chaplain training is teaching me is what is important in life. Our families are precious gifts from God.
Life is very fragile. My heart aches for those at the hospital who lose family members there so very
often, and this makes seeing my own family very precious occasions for me.
I hope to come back to worship with you folks very soon. I have appreciated being able to be
amongst you all, as I always feel the closeness of God when in the Church.
God’s blessings be upon each one of you. I miss you and hope to see you soon.
Sherrie McAllister
Congratulations to Sherrie McAllister!
For passing all 3 August Ordination Exams
(Theology, Worship/Sacraments, Polity)
Sherrie had already passed the Bible Content
And will take her Bible Exegesis Exam in Jan,
We are so proud of you, Sherrie!
New Address
Sherrie McAllister
336 Pebbleshores Drive
Ringgold, GA 30736-2921
Family Members and Friends who are in Military
Lt. Col. Alex K. Fulford
6816 Burbage Landing Circle
Suffolk, VA 23435
Ben Ervin
Lt. Col. Bob Snyder
1st Lt. Larry Williams
Spencer Griswold
SSgt. Matt Summers
PSC 9 Box 2000
APO AE, 09123
(Germany 4 months)
Justin Mosely
If you have time to send a card or
letter to one of our military persons,
that would be wonderful! Please let
us know the address of your loved
one or friend so it can be included.
Crawford Shane Caudell
S/Sgt Micah Bradford
PFC 2 Doria, Domnick
2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry
1st. Brigade
101st Airborne Division
Fort Campbell, KY 42223-5185
Timothy R. Palmer
HHC, 1-2 IN BN
APO AE09312
FPCC Home Touch, Nursing Home and Assisted Living List 2009
Fred Waugh
154 Granny Smith Circle
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Winky Arrendale
PO Box 261
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Ruth Robbins (Linda’s mother)
c/o Matt and Linda Jones
854 Syacamore Lane
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Olean Cathy
635 Washington Street
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Ike & Carolyn Smith
436 Gastley Road
Clarkesville, GA 30523
(Carolyn is sister of Dan Dixon)
Frances Childs (Ted Child’s mother)
Oak Heritage Nursing Home
P.O. Box 280
Baldwin, GA 30511
Gertrude Barrett
Magnolia Hills
504 Historic Highway 441 North
Demorest, GA 30535
Sarah Ferguson
Habersham West Nursing Home
P.O. Box 37
Demorest, GA 30531
Jean Towers (Mary Weese’s mother)
c/o Mary Weese
580 Beaver Lake Drive
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Suzanne “Suzi” York (Sarah Ferguson’s sister)
5808 Fieldstone Ct.
Clermont, GA 30527
Suzi lives with her nephew, Douglas Ferguson
Dear Church Family,
If you have time to send a card, make a call or pay a visit to any of the
folks listed above, that would be wonderful. If we have inadvertently
left someone off the list, please let the office know (706-754-2935).
Thank you.
181 Jefferson Street
Clarkesville, Georgia 30523
Telephone 706-754-2935 - FAX 706-754-3120
Minister - Rev. Lisa Graves: [email protected]
Music Director - Donna James: [email protected]
Organist - Patricia Peterson: [email protected]
Secretary - Elaine O’Mary: [email protected]
Director of Christian Education -Connie Worley: [email protected]
Youth Director – Michael James: [email protected]
Treasurer - Don Robinson
Assistant Treasurer - Pam Hill
Office Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Moderator - Rev. Lisa L. Graves
Class of 2009
Class of 2010
Jim Bruce
Stuart Delugach
Barbara Johns
Phoebe Martin
Darrin Johnston
Diane Mayes
Elder Emeritus - Dan Dixon
Class of 200
Cat Simpson
Mary Weese
P.O. BOX 354
Moderator - Joan Gateley
Class of 2010
Joan Gateley
Linda Head
Clerk of Session - Tina C. Evans
Class of 2011
Deanna Anglin
Tom Evans
Anna Feeley
Class of 2011
Phil Hull
Suzanne Harper
Dan Palmer