Jul 012017


Second Mile Health Fair July 15

Second Mile Center, our Presbyterian Women children’s mission at 18391 Morang in Detroit, will hold its annual health fair on Saturday, July 15. Children and adults in the neighborhood will have free health screenings. Volunteers are needed for assisting the health care workers, making snow cones and popcorn, and helping with games. The shifts available are set up (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.), 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. and 4:00-7:00 p.m. Lunch for volunteers is provided. If you can help, please pick up a volunteer sheet from the narthex kiosk, or contact Ginny Hubble or Sue Carlson.

Health care kits are passed out to those completing the screening. These kits are extremely popular with attendees. If you can donate a kit or individual items, please place them in the blue tubs near the coat rack in the Hospitality Time area. Kit items requested include a toothbrush (individually wrapped), toothpaste (6.4 oz.), dental floss, shampoo and conditioner (15 oz. each), wash cloth and bath size soap, deodorant, and chap stick.

Volunteers needed for Fall Fest

One of First Farmington’s perennial favorite for families is Fall Fest. Block the family calendar now for Sunday, September 10. Plan on joining us for a special outdoor service followed by food, fun and fellowship for all members of the family! The Boy Scouts will be cooking for us again and we’ll be requesting side dishes from members. Watch for news from the planning committee on ways to get involved and join in the fun.

New Pictorial Directory coming soon

We’ve had new members and a new pastor since our pictorial directory was published in 2011 so it definitely time for a new one! Professional quality portraits will be taken in September and each family unit (size one or more) will receive one complimentary 8”x10” color portrait as well as the opportunity to purchase additional photos if you so desire. Watch for news on signing up for a photo session as well as volunteer opportunities. The plan is to distribute the new pictorial directory in the first quarter of 2018. Please contact Deborah Draper or Randy Edwards for more information.

Founder Festival Parade Float planned

Calling all volunteers! Eddie Matteson is heading up a crew to create a First Pres float for the Farmington & Farmington Hills Founders Festival Parade. The project will also entail assembling a cadre of volunteers to ride in or march alongside the float as it winds it way through downtown Farmington on Saturday, July 22. To join in the fun and find out how you can help, contact Eddie Matteson.

Crafters and Bakers Needed for Music Fundraiser

We will have another Music Ministry Fund Raiser on Saturday and Sunday November 11th and 12th at First Presbyterian Church.This year we are opening the event to outside vendors.Thank you for making last year’s sale so successful!Anyone who loves to do crafts, make jams, jellies or salsas, or bake holiday treats are welcome.Space size will be 10 feet by 10 feet.For more information or to reserve a space, please contact Deborah Draper.

Deadline for articles for the September FYI is Wednesday, August 16!

From the Pen of the Pastor

Summer is a season for carefree living. After nine month of laboring and making things happen you and your family are more than ready for a break, finally time to relax. And so we sleep in a little, plan vacations and slack on our schedules. And in the midst of all the fun what a welcome opportunity to return, restore and pay attention to your spiritual life. Thankfully, you can continue in the carefree style of summer and still enjoy a growing relationship with God.

This summer journey begins with a single step and so it is our stewardship which begins with our commitment to God. All that we do flows from that act. Following are some ways for staying close to God:

  1. Begin your day with prayer. Take a journal with you and indulge your creative side and write your prayer of the day.
  2. Invest in a devotional you’ll make time to read. The Presbyterian devotional – These Days – is a good one to begin with. It is one page with a central theme you can meditate on throughout the day.
  3. Keep the schedule. God is punctual. Do your best to take advantage of those minutes, as brief as they might be.
  4. Act on your belief. Do something together with the family or friends to minister to someone else. When you step outside your comfort zone to help someone else, you experience God’s love in a whole new way.
  5. Stay current with your tithe. To be a disciple means that my financial life will be inseparably connected to my worship. To be a lover of God is to be a giver; to be filled with the Spirit is to be filled with the very essence of our generous God.

When we give God our lives it also includes our treasure (our time, talent and money). According to Jesus, the places and people we give our treasure to are the keepers of our heart and the objects of our affection.

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Matthew 6:21, (NIV)

Remember, all that we have and all that we are is a blessing from God, to be used in accordance with God’s good and gracious will for us. See you in worship!

Peace & Grace, Pastor Eddie

Christian Education News and Events

Christian Education, Faith Formation, and Spiritual Enrichment Opportunities for all Ages!

July-August 2017


Sundays @ 10:15 am Sunday School for Grades K-5 in Room 207

Wednesdays @ 7:00 pm Vespers with Communion, Sanctuary (weekly through Aug. 30, except July 5)

NEW!! Thursday evenings, June 22 – August 17 “Stars in the Park” Come to Heritage Park on Thursday evenings between 6 & 7 p.m. Bring family and friends, lawn chairs or blankets, picnic fare and drinks. Meet at the top of the hill in front of the Amphitheater and enjoy a time of fellowship before the concert begins. (PLEASE NOTE: No alcohol is allowed in city parks. In the event of inclement weather, please meet at the Costick Center (on 11 Mile, just east of Middlebelt.)

July 28 – August 5 Presbytery of Detroit trip to Montreat Youth Conference, North Carolina, for those entering Grades 9 and above in Fall 2017. Contact Charon Barconey or Josh Archey for more information! The deadline to sign up is July 10th!!

July 31 – August 4, 9:30 a.m. – 12 noon “God & Me @ Sea” Vacation Bible School @ Antioch Lutheran Church. Join First Presbyterian, North Congregational and Antioch Lutheran for a week of Bible time fun that’s all about water! Creation, Noah’s Ark, Jonah and the Whale, Jesus Walks on Water, and the Disciples Fill their Nets are the stories about which we will learn, play, and sing! All Children entering Kindergarten through 5th grade are invited to attend. Adults and those entering Grade 6 and Up are invited to volunteer! Please contact Josh Archey if you would like to volunteer!

Please look for VBS registration info elsewhere in this newsletter, on the church website, and at the Info Table in the narthex!

Craft Supplies Needed for Vacation Bible School (VBS) July 31 – August 4. All donations are greatly appreciated!!

Needed Craft Supplies:

Acrylic Paint
Watercolor paint, including liquid
Tempera paint
Paint brushes (all sizes)
Eye droppers/pipettes
Paper bowls (1 per child)
Paper Towel tubes (1 per child)
Aluminum foil (3 rolls)
Plastic forks
Thin paper plates
Paper (Dixie) cups for paint
Washable markers
Crayons (including WHITE)
Permanent markers
Glue sticks
Liquid Glue—several large bottles
Wooden spoons (2 or 3)
Broom handles (2 or 3)
Several old funnels
Black construction paper
Construction paper
Clear Contact paper – several rolls
Tissue paper
White paper
Card stock
Thin Cardboard
Watercolor paper
Posterboard (black or blue or green)
Old ribbon – many colors
Rainbow yarn
Googly eyes
Old buttons
Scotch tape
Craft sticks
Orange sticks
White soap
Black shoe polish
Shaving Cream
Salt—several boxes
Rice—several bags
Spray varnish

Mission and Fellowship Opportunities

Summer Music has started for singers and musicians

This year at First Pres, Summer Music began on Sunday, June 4 and continues until Sunday, September 3.

Here’s how Summer Choir works: show up in the chancel at 9:15 am on Sunday to rehearse an anthem (either an easy one, or one we’ve sung before, or both). Sing it at the 10am service, and then return to sit with your family and friends in the pews for the rest of worship. All are welcome. If you sing with the choir during the year, you’re invited. If you don’t sing with the choir but want to sing for a week, you’re invited. If you’ve always wanted to sing with the choir, but never have, you’re invited. ALL are welcome! No long-term commitment required. Drop in and sing as you wish, when you wish.

We’re also looking for anyone who’d like to offer their gifts as a soloist or duet partner for summer worship as well. Do you play an instrument, and want to play it in church? Do you have a duet or trio to enhance our time together? We invite you to bring it to God. Just let Dr. Jerry know, so that we can schedule time to rehearse it and share it in worship. Remember: it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful!

Worship and the Creative Arts Ministry

Lord’s Supper Practice in the Reformed and Presbyterian Tradition
Many Christians know the early church celebrated communion every week. After all, the Lord’s Supper is how Jesus asked believers to be remembered. John Calvin, considered the Father of Presbyterianism, passionately advocated for believers to receive weekly communion. At FPCF the practiced had been once a month – on the first Sunday of the month – and for special liturgical seasons like Easter, Christmas and Lent. Theologically and spiritually, I’ve always been a strong advocate for celebrating the sacrament – The Lord’s Supper – as often as we gather to observe the Lord’s Day, which would mean on a weekly basis. The Directory of Worship, Book of Order W-2.4008 and 2.4009 supports that weekly celebration of communion would better convey the sacrament’s integral relationship with the preached Word. Further, Christ instituted the sacrament as a visible reminder of this nourishment and as a means by which to communicate his grace to us and we are always in need of God’s abundant grace. The Lord’s Supper should be cause for joy and gratitude.

But won’t a weekly celebration of communion cause this sacrament to lose its special character? Won’t it become routine and less meaningful? This is probably the most frequently voiced objection to weekly communion. At first, this might make sense; but upon further reflection the thought doesn’t hold. Do we apply this reasoning to other means of grace? Are we worried about praying too frequently? Reading the Bible too much? We rarely hear anyone object to sitting through sermons on a weekly basis. These practices become rote not because of frequency but because we become complacent – minds and hearts – and perhaps we need to recover this celebrative character.

At the Session meeting on June 21, the question was raised, “Why the need for officiating the Lord’s Supper more frequently?” A rich conversation ensued with the great majority on Session supporting the recent change to add a second Sunday, the third Sunday of the month by intinction, to the schedule when the community gathers to partake of the bread and the cup.

Elder Leslie Black, Mission Ministry Team, and Elder Jan Dennison, Christian Education Team, are sharing their reasons why adding another Sunday would be a wonderful gift to their communal experience with their sisters and brothers at FPCF.

Leslie: “I am strongly in favor of adding a communion opportunity to our monthly worship schedule. Like many others, I sometimes work on Sundays. I don’t work every Sunday but as is typical, it occurs in a rotation schedule. It has happened in the past that my rotation caused me to be absent on the first Sunday for several months in a row. During that time I do not partake of communion for all those months. It effectively removes it from my worship life. I have felt very disconnected to the church and especially to worship during those times. I would like to avoid that disconnect in future and I believe the addition of a second Sunday morning communion opportunity per month will help a great deal. Thank you for being considerate of the needs of congregation members.”

Jan: “I strongly advocate for FPCF to offer a second Sunday for the sacrament of Holy Communion.

“I am required to work a number of Sundays and during the winter months have gone several months without partaking in the Sacrament. These prolonged absences of Communion create a disconnect in worship, causing me to feel separated from God and First Pres. As a result, after consultation with the Pastor, I would attend local churches that offered Wednesday services to ‘get by.’ These experiences connected me with our Lord, but I still longed for the community with my church family.

“Today’s world presents many obstacles for people to maintain their spiritual lives. More and more jobs traditionally Monday – Friday are requiring weekend work. First Pres can reach out to both its current members and those in the community seeking a church family by offering another opportunity for Holy Communion during the month.

Grace and Peace.”

The benefit to celebrating the Lord’s Supper as often as each Lord’s day has tangible and spiritual benefits such as:

  1. An invitation to praise the Risen Christ
  2. An invitation to be nourished/refreshed by the Risen Christ
  3. An invitation to keep the unity

The Worship Ministry Team and Pastor Eddie hope and pray that it will be a means of grace and blessing to you as well. See you in worship!

Caregiving Ministry Update

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”(John 15:12)

Early in February, the Deacons and Pastor Eddie began exploring ways to strengthen and enhance our pastoral care ministry with the intent to be faithful to our Lord’s commandment as we enhance the sense of community by caring for one another. Therefore, and in order to provide caring connections with members and their families, friends of the church and strengthen the bonds with the church through meaningful relationships, the Deacons and Shepherds Ministry needed to restructure. It’s time to give our care ministry a fresh look and to take steps to maximize its impact. And this is where you play a vital part in assuring that this ministry becomes even more fruitful.

Last May, two information meetings were held on May 10 and 21 in which many attending enthusiastically endorsed the new structure. The Good News is that 33 persons, including eight active Deacons and two Elders, signed up to join and become Caregiver Cluster Leaders. This early expression allows us to create clusters made up of no more than seven units (a combination of family and/or individuals). Again, this is good news. Our hope is to invite and encourage more of you to sign up and help us make clusters of no more than four. For this to happen we would need 50 Caregiver Cluster Leaders. As you can see, we are short 17 of our targeted goal.

There is still an opportunity for you to answer Christ’s call and become an active member in this extraordinary ministry. Please take a moment to pray about this opportunity to help strengthen the Pastoral Care of one another by stepping forward now. We hope to launch this new ministry by mid-September. Please contact me, Mickey Seiler, or any of us, Sally Kirsten, Helen Thomas Lois Caito and Pastor Eddie to sign-up and become a part of Christ’s Caregiving Ministry. Thank you!

Mickey Seiler, mickseiler@comcast.net 248-668-9224
Sally Kirsten, sckirsten@hotmail.com 248-474-2366
Helen Thomas, hmmit@aol.com 248-896-2400
Lois Caito, lois.caito@att.net 248-476-5429
Pastor Eddie, eddie.jusino@farmington-pres.org 248-474-6170

Crafters and Bakers Needed for Music Fundraiser

We will have another Music Ministry Fund Raiser on Saturday and Sunday November 11 and 12 at First Presbyterian Church. Thank you for making last year’s sale so successful! This year we are opening the event to outside vendors. Anyone who loves to do crafts, make jams, jellies or salsas, or bake holiday treats are welcome.Space size will be 10 feet by 10 feet. We will have one booth for church members who want to participate but don’t have enough handicrafts or baked goods for a complete space. For more information or to reserve a space, please contact.

From the Mission Ministry Team…

Last fall, 15 of us went on a “mission crawl” to tour three of the organizations our church supports. Perhaps the most impactful was Second Mile Center in Detroit. Although several of us had been to Second Mile Center before, this was the first time any of us had toured the neighborhood where the kids live. Ruth Azar, the director of Second Mile, hopped on the bus with us and showed us the abandoned homes, the overgrown and garbage-strewn empty lots, the boarded up windows. We saw the paths where the children must walk to go to school and to Second Mile Center. We gained a real appreciation for the dedication of Ruth, the staff, the board and volunteers as they carry out the mission of Second Mile providing after school programs, summer activities, a computer lab, field trips and the Sign Mime Ministry. We are pleased to donate $3,000 from the mission budget.

We have two more opportunities to support Second Mile Center. On July 15 they will hold an all-day Health Festival. Ginny Hubble (a board member at Second Mile) tells us that they will need more than 100 volunteers to assist with the 150+ patients receiving health screenings. If you have a few hours of time or would like to contribute some items for the hygiene kits, please see Ginny or Sue Carlson. And on Oct. 7, Second Mile is holding a Clean Up (inside and outside) event. One of the activities will be “can sorting”. We are invited to bring canned goods to church for a few weeks before to help Second Mile folks.

By now, you’ve probably spotted the new critter-proof garden beds on the back forty of the church grounds. Gordon Seiler engineered the plan, which was carried out by Tom & Cathy Neal, Sarah Beth Simonds, Larry Gage, Mimi & Phil Cramer, Jerry Howe, Ev Randlett, Sharon Cressman, Emily & Chris Davis, Leslie & Irwin Moyna, Eileen & Chuck Crozier, Ellen & Jeff Ely, Eddie Matteson, Eddie Jusino, Nancy Cook, Rusty Soronsen, Manny Sharpe, Bill Vincent, Julie Cohen, Ron & Nancy Prieskorn, Rick Fuller, Pres Happel and Mickey & Gordon Seiler. The watering crew is now taking over and soon fresh vegetables will be taken to Alexander’s Food Pantry.

Delegates to Presbytery meetings often ride together, but that was not possible for Howard Caylor, Leslie Black and Eddie Jusino at the June 13 Presbytery meeting. That’s because each of their cars was filled with cereal (and juice and breakfast bars)! Thanks to everyone who brought food for the Cereal for the Summer program. All churches in the Presbytery were invited to bring breakfast items to the Presbytery meeting for distribution to kids who receive lunch (and often breakfast) at school during the school year but might go hungry during the summer.

Did you see the slide show? Tom Neal made a terrific PowerPoint showing the before and after of the efforts of the Rebuilding Together Oakland County, which he showed one Sunday after church. Since I can’t find a way to show a PowerPoint in this newsletter, please check out the photos on the Mission bulletin board. We invited the Muslim Community Mosque and the LOC Credit Union to join us — a great way to expand the good that this project produces as well as our efforts in the community. The volunteers put in over 1,300 volunteer hours on two homes in Farmington Hills! Many thanks to Tom Neal and Dan Cressman for heading up this effort. Volunteers from our church included Bill Vincent, Emily Davis, Rick Fuller, Mickey Seiler, Ron Prieskorn, Josh Archey, Cathy Neal, Karl Cressman, Jim Hubble, Eddie Jusino, Larry Gage and Jerry Scheel.

In July, the Mission Ministry Team will make a $500 contribution to Barnabas, a Presbytery-supported organization that focuses on encouraging youth to stay on the right path with tutoring, mentoring, recreational activities, and teaching skills of commercial painting, carpentry and woodworking. We will also donate $500 to HAVEN, a shelter for victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse in Oakland County that our church has supported for many years. The other non-profit receiving a $500 contribution in July is Sweet Dreamzz. This organization began in Farmington Hills and now helps kids all around the country by improving children’s health, well-being, and academic performance by providing sleep education and bedtime essentials to economically disadvantaged students and their families.

Please mark your calendars for these upcoming events (more details will follow in the Sunday bulletins as we get closer to the date):

July 30 & Aug.6: Our back-to-school project in support of Farmington Public School students in need this year will be to receive contributions for sneakers! All elementary kids are asked to keep a pair of tennis shoes at school for gym class. But some children only have one pair of shoes and their families cannot afford to buy a pair of shoes to leave at school. The FPS homeless coordinators will identify the children, measure their feet and purchase sneakers.

Aug. 6: 4th Annual End Homelessness Now 5K/10K Run for SOS, Southfield.

Sept. 10: Fall Festival! The band we all enjoyed last year will be back as will the barbeque by the Boy Scouts with “sides” from all of us plus fun and games. Watch for more information in Sunday bulletins.

Karen Linnell, Chair, Mission Ministry Team

Thoughts from outgoing PW Moderator Sue Carlson

At the end of June, I complete my third and final year as Moderator of Presbyterian Women at First Pres. I found this job satisfying and rewarding, as I always felt supported and encouraged by all of the members of PW as well as by all others in our church.

As I’m stepping down, I want to reach out again to those women who are not part of our Presbyterian Women organization. Perhaps you are new, perhaps you have been a member for a long time, or perhaps you are somewhere in between. I want you to know that you are very welcome to join us in any of our activities. No matter how busy you are, I think you will find that the friendship and fellowship PW offers will enrich your life. Rather than being one more responsibility on the calendar, you may find that it gives back to you in ways you didn’t imagine. Talk to anyone you know who is in a Circle, and see what they have to say about what it means to them.

We have five Circles, three daytime and two evening. All welcome visitors and new members of all ages. When the Circles start up again in September, please consider checking out one or more of them. Talk to our new PW Moderator Sally Kirsten, or to any PW member, including me, for help in deciding which one might be the right fit for you. The PW bulletin board in Knox Hall has information too. All you need to do is show up for a meeting once a month or whenever you can. All of the Circles offer fellowship, bible study, and opportunities for outreach in our community and in the world. Our five Circles are listed below (Circle leaders are in parentheses):

ACTS (Marcia Van Hamme) meets second Tuesday of the month at 9:30 a.m. in the parlor. Babysitting is available.
BETH (Ruth France) meets second Tuesday at noon in the library.
Deborah (Anne Fuller) meets second Thursday at 10:00 a.m. in Knox Fellowship Hall
Lydia (Kathy Brown) meets third Tuesday at 7:15 p.m. in the parlor or in homes.
Phoenix (Nancy Cook) meets second Tuesday at 7:15 p.m. in homes.

Presbyterian Women leaders for 2017-2018 are:
Sally Kirsten – PW Moderator
Nancy Cook – PW Vice Moderator
Martha Countegan – Secretary
Kathy Brown – Treasurer
Linda Clew – Vice Moderator, Justice and Peace
Jan Dennison – Vice Moderator, Mission
Ruth McKinnon – Vice Moderator, Study and Spiritual Relationships

In addition, Pam Jusino and Sue Carlson will assist with the PW Christmas program on Dec. 4, 2017. Ardis Scott will continue the PW card ministry, and Sue Carlson will continue as publicity chair. The PW search committee is Martha Countegan, Sue Carlson, Deborah Draper, and Shirley Kinsey.

Congregational Concerns

Welcome to our New Members

On Sunday, June 25 during the worship service, First Presbyterian Church welcomed four new members to their church family, bringing to 12 the number of new members who have joined in 2017.Our newest new members are:

Nubici (Isabelle) Fosi: Nubici transferred from the PCC Njamchep in Cameroon. She is a lifelong Presbyterian, raised in the PCC Njamchep and active in the youth and young adult groups before coming to the U.S. in 2010. She is a nurse currently working at Medilodge skilled nursing care facility in Farmington. Because she was so warmly welcomed here, she is making plan to have her three-month-old son Ethan Ndongai baptized at First Presbyterian Church.

David Schwartz: Dave transferred from St. John’s Lutheran Church in Romeo, Michigan, where he served as both an elder and deacon. He is a clinical dietitian working at the Henry Ford Health System. Dave has been married to Emily since 2009 and they moved to area six years ago. They have two children, Madeline Joy (age 2) and Connor Joseph (age 8 months). They learned about First Presbyterian Church through the internet and the close proximity of the church to their home.

Emily Schwartz: Emily joined First Presbyterian Church through reaffirmation of faith. She is a clinical dietitian working at Providence Park Hospital. Married to Dave since August of 2009.

Jean Winterbottom: Jean transferred from the First Presbyterian Church of Jackson, Tennessee. She was ordained as an elder and deacon at Westminster Church of Detroit and also served in both capacities at her church in Jackson. Some 40 years ago, she and her late husband Walter combined two families of four at their home on Power Road. She is retired from Ford Motor Company and a native of the Detroit area, returning “home” after 20 years in the Mid-South. She is looking forward to being an active member at the First Presbyterian Church here.

June Session Meeting Highlights

At its June 21 meeting, the Session:

  • Elected Sharon Cressman as Clerk of Session for a one-year term
  • Elected the following Officers of the Corporation:
    • President – Dale Countegan
    • Vice-President – Deb Jackson Lum
    • Secretary – Sharon Cressman
    • Treasurer (as of August 1) – Irene Sharpe
    • Financial Secretary – Jerry Scheel
  • Authorized the Communications/Technology Team to select a vendor to host audio recordings of the Sunday sermons for use on the church website.
  • Rescheduled the August Session meeting to Tuesday, August 15, 2017.
  • Authorized the Operations ministry to enter into a full-service accounting agreement with Church Shield.The Treasurer will provide oversight to the outside work.
  • Authorized renovations to the Cope and Herb Gardens overseen by the Worship Ministry.

We keep in our prayers

Names withheld from the web-version of our FYI.

Prayers for the grieving:
We hold in our prayers members who are homebound, in nursing homes, and assisted living:
And those serving in the military:

Kudos & Thanks

Kudos to Pam Jusino on her casting in the Kickshaw Theatre’s presentation of REALLY, with performances Thursdays – Sundays, June 29 – July 16 at TrustArt Studios, 7885 Jackson Road in Ann Arbor. In the age of selfies, REALLY examines the particular and diverse lenses through which we see ourselves, each other and our place in the world. For more information, check out the website: http://www.kickshawtheatre.org/.

HELP!! Kind souls helped with the church kitchen recycling during the SOS week in January. Thank you for that!

If you have a green recycling container from the church kitchen, would you please return it? We are short a couple.

Thanks for your help.

Special Request

The church office is seeking volunteers to assist with clerical and filing projects as well as records updating and research. If you are interested in helping out on a regular or even occasional basis or perhaps even just during the summer months, please contact Karen (Stewart) Spica in the church office at info@farmington-pres.org or 248 474-6170. Thank you for your consideration.


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