Monday, April 21, 2014

Different Donations

The beautiful amaryllis featured in yesterday's post are located in the church  courtyard next to the Agua Fria Room and in our Memorial Garden.  We have enjoyed the blooms throughout this Lenten season.  The plants were donated to the church by a member of the congregation whose original bulbs had multiplied over the years.

Similar donations could help us replace other plantings around the church which have reached the end of their lifespans.  We would prefer native, drought-resistant plants in order to conserve water.  Do you have succulents that are overrunning your flower beds, or cactus (like prickly pear) that can easily be propagated by cuttings?  If so, consider giving some of them to the church to take the place of an overgrown shrub.

If you have plants you would like to contribute, don't dig or cut yet - contact Bill Wentling or the church office and let us know what you have available, and we will discuss the best way to proceed with the donation.

Thank you!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter Sunday Service

We have a special service planned for tomorrow in celebration of our Lord's resurrection.  The handbell choir will play the introit, and the One Great Hour of Sharing fish boxes will be collected in the Joash box carved by Ken Lipp for that purpose.  Please join us if you can at 9:00 am, 12225 N. 103rd Avenue in Sun City, AZ.

The Presbyterian Mission Agency has this to say about One Great Hour of Sharing:

"Presbyterians have joined with millions of other Christians through One Great Hour of Sharing to share God's love with people experiencing need. Our gifts support ministries of disaster response, refugee assistance and resettlement, and community development that help people find safe refuge, start new lives and work together to strengthen their families and communities. The Presbyterian Hunger Program receives 36 percent of undesignated gifts, while Self-Development of People and Presbyterian Disaster Assistance each receives 32 percent."

If you are not able to deliver your One Great Hour of Sharing offering in person, you can also make an online gift by going to

Friday, April 18, 2014

Photos from the April 16 Fellowship Dinner

This was a special evening! We invited our new tenants, the members of the Emmanuel Baptist Church, to join us for pasta salad and an Earth Day-themed program about the importance of trees. The evening ended with the blessing of a new tree in the church courtyard.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

More on Recycling

Last month we went green in a different way for St. Patrick's Day by hosting our first electronics recycling pickup.  Here are a few more photos of the items people brought in to be processed by eGreen-IT Solutions, Arizona's only certified eStewards green recycler.

We have just received word that we sent them a total of 1485 pounds of recyclable material.  Way to go, everyone!   We will be holding another recycling event next year, so be sure to hang on to any of your obsolete electronics that quit working so you can dispose of them responsibly then.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Making a Clean Sweep

My sister, two of our cousins and I who all live in the greater Phoenix area take turns hosting our extended family for Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas dinners.  This year I’m in charge of Thanksgiving.

One of the many reasons I look forward to my turn as host for these occasions is that entertaining others forces me to take care of all the cleaning and repair jobs I’ve been putting off—tightening the loose knobs on the kitchen cabinets, washing the windows, shampooing the carpet, etc.  When I have a firm deadline to meet (this year, that’s November 26), I can no longer tell myself that I’ll wait to replace the dead rosebush out front until I have some spare time.

Hosting the recent Presbytery meeting had the same effect on many of us in the church.  First Bill Wentling, Tina Trowbridge and I toured the premises together, making a list of things that needed to be fixed or cleaned; then the congregation mobilized to deal with the most immediate items in order to make a good impression on March 29.

At the risk of overlooking someone who helped, I would like to thank:
  • Bill Wentling, Gabe Conwell, Harry Wilson, Don Berg, and Max McVicker—the “Saturday crew”—for painting and fiberglassing the fountain; hanging signs and pictures all over the campus; working with the plumber to get our bathrooms in shape; and handling many other painting and repair jobs both inside the church and out.  They also set up the courtyard for the day of the Presbytery meeting and formed the core of the group that took everything down on Sunday.
  • Tina Trowbridge, who personally deep-cleaned bathrooms, windows, mopboards, carpets, and much more, and supervised the Church Campus Cleanup activities on March 22.  Tina is our very own “white tornado.”
  • Everyone who showed up on March 22 for the cleanup day.  In addition to the Saturday crew and Tina, that group included Donna Roth, Dawn Nolan, John and Barbara Szantho, Marilyn Uithoven, Gene and Anita Downing, Sharyl Moen, Vonda Hagen, Rod Beale, Charles Sedgwick, Gloria Bouckenooghe, Diane Nestlebush, and Martha Porter.  Among other things, those present dusted and vacuumed the Sanctuary pews and restocked the pew racks with fresh materials; washed windows; cleaned the tables and dusted and vacuumed the chairs in Swain Hall; oiled the interior and exterior wooden doors; vacuumed carpets and upholstered chairs in the hallways and Fireside Room; and knocked down cobwebs from the corners of the rooms.
Everyone involved did an amazing job; I think that reflects the pride we all take in our beautiful church.  However, during the three weeks or so that all this activity took place, about half the workers who helped said variations of the same two things to me: “I didn’t know the church had gotten this dirty,” and “We should do this at least twice a year so it never gets this bad again.”

Amen to that!  I will be scheduling another cleanup day this fall to help get the campus ready for the annual influx of winter visitors (think “potential new members”!) and the holiday season.

Cleanliness may not actually be next to godliness in importance, but why take that chance?

  ~Beth Mabee

“Let everyone sweep in front of his own door, and the whole world will be clean.” 
 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe