Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Forty Days of Lent Begin

A weekly e-newsletter of First Presbyterian Church of Brooklyn:

Main office (718) 624-3770 Email

THIS FRIDAY, February 19, 2010:

Come celebrate our First Concert, featuring THREEFIFTY DUO (, a classical guitar duo who seamlessly weaves their contemporary rock sensibilities within the rich fabric of the classical guitar. Tonight at 7:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary. $10 suggested admission per person which will be collected at the door.

THIS SUNDAY, February 21, 2010:

Rev. Stephen H. Phelps, our Interim Pastor, will deliver a sermon titled "Sinseriously." (Find Rev. Phelps' recent sermons online at his Web site,, under the sermons link. Printed copies also are available in the Narthex.)

The nursery will be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., with Christina and Patty.

Sunday School Topic: Isaac and Rebekah continue

ROOTS of OUR RELIGION: Rev. Phelps continues with an introduction to the Old Testament. Sunday's session will explore Kings in Confusion: Solomon, Schism and the Rise of the Prophet. The class meets in the Rose Room at the far end of the second floor of the church.

Other News:

First Church Staff Email Addresses Are Changing:

To simplify communications with the web world, we are finally changing our e-addresses to standard business formats. FPC's staff emails are built on the pattern <first initial + whole last name + church domain name> Most businesses use a similar pattern.

Rev. Phelps

Rev. Waltemath

Victor Forde, sexton

Although emails will get through to our church administrator Anne Solages at the initial+lastname address, Annie notes that the office will be better served with That is the address to begin using in preference to the old AOL address, fpc124.

Amy Neuner and Wil Smith did not have church-based AOL addresses. Messages to them can be sent to addresses formed on the standard pattern, but those messages will be forwarded to their preferred personal addresses, which have not changed.

Amy Neuner

Wil Smith

New boxes can be created very easily. Church projects—especially those aimed to serve or connect with people outside the church—can benefit when the public has a simple handle for them. For example, organizers of a summer puppet theater could have the e-mail box (That's an example, not a real address.) If you think a box would help your church work, please call the church office to have one set up.

Don't worry about emails sent to the old AOL addresses. They will all be received. We will maintain the old AOL account for the next few months so that nothing is missed. Nevertheless, why not change your address book now, while it's on your mind?

Lenten Practice Encouragement: Please join the confirmation class and mentors in their spiritual practice for Lent. See the attached letter from Rev. Beth about the meaning of Lent and its ability to make us appreciate the fullness of life. Choose a way to fast or a practice to take on then send in one reflection about how the experience of Lent made you appreciate the Fullness of life. If you want to receive reflections from others, send your email to Rev. Beth at

Updates on Margaret Grace: Go to

Consider signing a petition to help St. Vincent's Hospital (where Margaret Grace is a patient) stay open, so that New York state officials and those involved in its financial future understand it is important to many people:

Wednesday Evening Lenten Gathering: Every Wednesday during Lent, we will gather in the Sanctuary at 7:00 p.m. for music, reflection, and other spiritual practices befitting the season. Midweek-Boost will resume after Easter.

FPC Choir was selected to participate in The Pathmark Gospel Choir competition on Saturday, February 27th. The competition is held at the Winter Garden in the World Financial Center. Approximately 15 choirs from across the country and Canada compete from 1:30-5:00 p.m. Come and support our choir and enjoy an afternoon of great music!

Annual Police Appreciation Day: Please join us for our Annual Police Appreciation Day with the 84th Precinct, during our Worship celebration on Sunday February 28 at 11:00 a.m.

Women's Ministry: At the next Women's Potluck on March 7th, there will be great food, fabulous conversation, and Women of the Bible Trivia. Look forward to seeing you there.

Inquirers Class: Are you interested in learning more about First Church and Christian life patterns? An Inquirers Class will be held soon. For more information and to sign up, please contact Peggy Slowik at, (917) 400-6589, or Paul Austin at

2009 FPC Annual Report: Copies are available in the Narthex. If you would like to have the Annual Report mailed to you, please call the Church office at 718 624-3770 or email Annie Solages at An electronic version is also available.

2010 Offering Envelopes are available in the Narthex. If you would like to request (or unsubscribe from receiving) offering envelopes for this year or next year please call the Church office at 718 624-3770 or email Annie Solages at

Needed: Dick Turmail is in need of three strong people to help bring a beautiful convertible leather couch from Pacific Street to the Thurman Room. Please call the church office at 718-624-3770 if you can help Dick.


Rev. Phelps' introduction to the Old Testament continues during the 10 o' Clock Hour. Aware that some people can only come once or twice during this season, Rev. Phelps endeavors to make each session make sense to a first-time attender. Remaining classes will look at the books of the Bible in this manner:

February 28: The Major Prophets of Israel and Judah: Amos, Micah, Hosea and Isaiah

March 7: Speaking in the Face of Disaster: Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Isaiah of Babylon

March 14: Can You Be Blessed When Broken? Wisdom Literature: Job

March 21: More Wisdom: Psalms and Ecclesiastes

March 28: Big Questions the Bible Only Asks, Never Answers (Literature of 400 BC and later)

Classes are held in the Rose Room at the far end of the second floor.

The Heights Interfaith Shelter needs volunteer cooks and sleepers as backups for members of the three host churches (Assumption – January; Grace – February; Plymouth - March). If you wish to volunteer to cook meals for 12 (entree and dessert), or stay overnight in the shelter any Monday through Friday, your service is more than welcome. This is an extremely important effort for our faith community. If we did not have beds for these men, they would have to spend the night sitting upright on a chair. Contact Kathy Reynolds ( at Assumption, Mary Lou Wells ( at Plymouth and Vicky Schippers ( at Grace if you can help. If you have additional questions, contact Vicky Schippers ( or speak to Erik Brogger at First Church.

Job Bank: Do you have skills or know of employment? Contact Susan Schultz at to list your ideas on the FPC Job Bank. If you are able to help others with writing resumes and cover letters, please also let us know.

Piano and Organ Lessons: Customized piano and organ lessons for kids and adults by FPC organist Wil Smith. Contact him at or 646-320-0606 for info.

Haiti Disaster Relief Update:

First Church of Brooklyn has raised over $4,500 for Haiti's relief. Thank you so much for your generous donations. Please continue to support our Haitian brothers and Sisters.

How You Can Help?

Haitian Women for Haitian Refugee
1212 Ocean Ave #5A
Brooklyn, NY 11230

MEDICC is a multiplier. Your donation will touch the lives of people in Haiti and across the globe through the work of thousands of talented young health professionals trained in Cuba in the spirit of public service. To donate by mail, send a check to: MEDICC, P.O. Box 361449, Decatur, GA 30036.

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA)

To donate online:

Contributions by cash, check, or money order may be sent to:

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
P.O. Box 643700
Pittsburgh, PA 15264-3700

Partners in Health

To donate online:

Contributions by check – note "Haiti Earthquake Relief" in the memo line – may be sent to:

Partners In Health
P.O. Box 845578
Boston, MA 02284-5578

International Red Cross and Red Crescent

To donate online:


On the calendar:

Tuesday, February 23

Living with Loss at 6:00 p.m. in the Thurman Room. Contact Rev. Charles Monaco at 718-647-5479 or email at

Wednesday, February 24

Men's Breakfast at 7:30 a.m., at the Park Plaza Diner on Cadman Plaza. Contact Jim Palmer at

Wednesday Evening Lenten Gathering at 7 p.m. Sanctuary.

Thursday, February 25

Food Pantry, 10 to 11 a.m. To volunteer, contact Jane Woland at

FPC Choir Thursday night rehearsals at 7 p.m. All are welcome. For more information about FPC Choir please contact our Music Director Amy Neuner at

Who/where to connect:

Online Donations: Set up a recurring gift to the church through a secure online account.
On the church website,, go to the Site Credits/ Link tab. If you are setting up your account, click on the "First Church Donation Account Setup" link. To edit an existing gift, choose the "First Church Donation Login" link

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