April 2013 Newsletter

First Presbyterian Church of Macomb

April 2013 Newsletter

This newsletter is an online version at the present time.  We do plan a print version in the future.  In the meantime, if you would like to print a copy of this newsletter to share with someone who doesn’t have online access, click the following link to find a PDF version of the newsletter: April_2013newsletter



Please pray for the family and friends who mourn the death of Betty Clary who died on March 11, 2013.



At the March 13 meeting, Session

¯ Approved a motion from the Finance, Stewardship and Memorials committee to authorize a transfer of up to $100,000.00 of funds as needed from the Good News Fund to the Gloria Dei/Mid-America bank account to provide initial funding for professional services relating to the proposed capital improvements to be undertaken on the First Church building.

¯ Approved a motion from Service and Justice for Mission in Motion to take place at Spring Lake on April 28 from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. with funds directed toward the development of a new clinic to replace Eagle View Clinic’s services

¯ Heard from our treasurer Susan Rinehart that $ 21,296.83 in tithes, gifts and offerings were received last month and $ 32,659.20 were reported as expenses

¯ Approved the resignation of Susan Rinehart as treasurer with thanks for her service

¯ Discussed correspondence expressing concern for our sexton ; Pastor Kathy has issued an invitation to those expressing concern to become more involved pending Jim Gallagher’s written permission

¯ Heard in Pastor Kathy’s report the results of her consultation with an attorney in response to Jim Gallagher’s attorney’s letter to Pastor Kathy



Here is good news! Great Rivers Presbytery’s Administrative Council has announced that there will not be any increase in the Per Capita member contributions for this year. It remains the same as last year: $28 per member or $56 per couple. The announcement points out that over the last half decade Presbytery has not raised its portion of the per capita. In turn, this means that Presbytery has actually lowered its own per capita when both the Synod of Lincoln Trails and the General Assembly have had to increase their fees.

Per Capita contributions are the way we share the expenses of the PC(USA) system of government. The annual amount is a combined request from Presbytery, Synod and the General Assembly – of which each congregation is a part. For those who are able to do so, it is a tremendous help to the church if each person pays his or her own Per Capita amount, otherwise it is paid monthly from our church’s budget. For more information about Per Capita go to the website: www.greatriverspby.org.

Members can pay two ways: write a check to 1st Presbyterian Church and on the memo line indicate it is for “Per Capita,” or, place cash in one of the pew offering envelopes and under please specify note “Per Capita.”



We’re getting closer to the finish line!  As of Monday, March 25, we had received 73 pledge cards promising to return a total of $171,144.00 for God’s mission through First Presbyterian Church.  To those who have responded to God’s call:  thank you!  For those who have not yet responded: by now,you should have received a pledge card from one of the elders on the Session. If you have not received a pledge card, or have misplaced the one you received, you will find blank pledge cards next to the stack of worship bulletins (8:00 a.m. service) or in the sanctuary pew racks (10:30 a.m. service). You may place your completed pledge card in the Church Accountant’s inbox in the church office. Again, thank you, and, most of all, thanks be to God!




In recent years, the members of the adult lectionary class filled the table in the conference room at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday morning.  However, that is no longer the case.  Tom Dye, the leader, and Shirley George are the only two remaining members of this class that has been held for decades. Several of the long-time members have died.  Some have moved to warmer climates.  And, now, Tom and Sheilah Dye will soon be leaving Macomb and moving to Mesa, Arizona. Tom points out that this is only regularly scheduled Bible study that our church offers. Is this the end of the weekly class?



We will be having a Mission Trip Spaghetti Dinner on April 24, 2013 from 5:00 -7:00 p.m. Tickets are $7 for adults and $3 for children and they will be on sale every Sunday during Fellowship Time and immediately following the 10:30 a.m. service. Tickets can also be purchased by calling Will Wetzel at 309-833-3333 or emailing him at williamw@firstpresmacomb.org. Tickets will also be sold at the door.



A Fundraiser to Help Save Medical, Dental and Mental Health Services in McDonough County

McDonough County has the 8th highest poverty rate in Illinois. Access to health care services is a vital issue to our community. Everyone should have access to quality, affordable medical, dental and mental health care, regardless of income levels. But for many people, health care access is limited due to lack of adequate health insurance coverage. Not-for-profit providers  like the Eagle View Community Health System, which opened a clinic in Macomb in March 2008 and will be closing in early April 2013, can offer health services for a wide variety of insurers, as well as services based on a sliding fee scale depending on family size and income. First Presbyterian Church’s Service and Justice Committee invites you to join us in our outreach initiative to raise funds to contribute toward local efforts to replace the impending loss of these vital health services for residents of our community who need them.

When:              Sunday, April 28, 2013, from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Where:             Spring Lake Park

Who:                Church members and friends, neighbors, co-workers, relatives, young and old. Everyone is welcome to join in the fun!

Activities:        Walk, hike the trails, bike, jog, canoe, kayak or volunteer to help organize and facilitate these activities

Registration:   Pick up Registration Forms at First Presbyterian Church or contact the organizers at missioninmotion@firstpresmacomb.org.  Registration fee is $10.00 per person.  (Checks should be written to First Presbyterian Church with Mission in Motion in the memo line.)

Sponsorships:  Ask your friends, neighbors, co-workers and relatives to sponsor you with a donation.

Deadline:         Registration form and fee, along with Sponsorship form, should be returned to the Church Office on or before Sunday, April 21 so we can plan for parking, route marking, hydrating needs, and scheduling of volunteers to facilitate a GREAT AFTERNOON!



First Presbyterian Church will host the WIU Organ Studio Recital at 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 21st. The students, who are from the studio of Linda Andrews, will perform a varied program of organ works composed between the 17th and the 21st centuries.  Major composers represented will include English composer, John Stanley, French Baroque stylist, Louis-Nicolas Clérambault, German composers, Johann Pachelbel and Johann Sebastian Bach, and 20th century French composers, Marcel Dupré and Louis Vierne.  The program will also include contemporary works.  The students are at various levels of study and are enrolled in different majors in the School of Music.  Several are graduate and undergraduate piano performance majors who study with Tammie Walker. One student is a graduate jazz studies major. Others are majoring in piano pedagogy, music therapy, choral studies, and music composition. Linda has been teaching applied organ at WIU since the retirement of Anita Werling last year. Your attendance in support of these young professionals would be sincerely appreciated.




Dwayne Sebert is our new Sunday sexton.  Dwayne is the owner of the NuFoam Carpet and Janitorial business. For 26 years, he worked at the Red Ox restaurant as a dishwasher/janitor.  He says he likes to work!  Welcome, Dwayne.





May 12th is Mother’s Day.  Now is the time to honor your mom and all the important women in your life by giving Mother’s Day cards with the gift of life.  A $10 donation brings a lifesaving mosquito net or other health benefit to one family in Africa.  Any size donation is welcome!  Take as many cards as you wish.  Three thousand African children die DAILY from malaria, and those who survive repeated bouts with the disease often deal with life-long brain impairments.  Malaria is preventable!!!  Honor your mother, daughters, sisters and friends with a gift of life for African families.  The cards are available in the parlor/library at the Mother’s Day display late April through May 12th, Mother’s Day.  Checks may be made payable to PW.  Please contact Sheila Nollen if you would like more information at 837-1650 or nollen@macomb.com.




Front – Chad Walker, Jennifer DeJong, Connie Deener, and Dan Curtis.  Back – Ray Krey, Martin Meyer from Architechnics, Inc., Carla Bishop, and John Nelson.  Not pictured is committee member Paul Trimmer.

The Church Design Planning Committee, co-chaired by John Nelson and Ray Krey, held its first meeting with Martin Meyer of Architechnics, Inc. on Wednesday, March 20.  Together, the committee and Martin Meyer reviewed our Request for Proposal document and clarified our vision and goals. The committee then spent considerable time examining the church blueprints of each floor.  They reviewed in detail the use of each room in the church.  The ball is rolling!  We look forward to future updates from this committee.



Did you know?

  • 37,000  children in our congressional district live in poverty

  • 93 children are homeless in our county today

  • 87 households in our congressional district have annual incomes below $15,000

In 2010 we had first-hand experience with the problem of homelessness as we worked to resettle the households of the Shade Tree Mobile Home Park when the park closed. In vain, we searched for emergency shelter; for a building to rent or purchase that we might convert; for vacant land near schools and transportation on which we might build.  Thanks be to God, with leadership from the Shady Tree Homeowners’ Association, First Presbyterian, Wesley Methodist and other churches, Loaves and Fishes, social service and other helping agencies in the community, generous people stepped up to offer cash donations that provided makeshift but expensive accommodations, often in area motel rooms and sometimes in our homes.

Since then, the twin problems of poverty and homelessness have worsened in our area.  And still, we have no emergency shelter. Discouraged but not in despair, our Service and Justice Committee and Genesis Garden Board kept searching for an alternative, and found: PADS.

Briefly, the PADS model brings together churches and other agencies to share the burden and blessing.  PADS overhead costs are remarkably low: the shelter requires minimal equipment, is supplied by donations and grant funds, and is staffed for the most part by volunteers.  In a community-wide collaboration, a PADS shelter moves from site to site, night by night.  In the morning, PADS cleans and sanitizes the area used for meals and sleeping quarters, and restores the space to its daytime condition

How can you help?

  • Volunteer

  • Financial Donations

  • Continue the search for a  permanent stand-alone facility

  • Most of all, pray!

For more information call the church office or a Genesis Garden board member



The year was 1973, when Joanne Findley, with a generous gift from Jerry Purdum, was able to start the first bell choir at First Presbyterian Church, Macomb, Illinois. It is now 2013—40 years later—and the bell choir program is still going strong under the direction of Nancy Caldwell.  So let’s celebrate!

If, in the past 40 years, you had a chance to ring in a bell choir at First Presbyterian Church, please come join us and ring again with old and new friends as part of an alumni choir.  Forty years is a long time, so there are a lot of you out there.

When:  Sunday June 30, 2013 (Heritage Days weekend)

Where:  First Presbyterian Church, Macomb, IL

Time:  10:30 a.m. worship service

Rehearsal: Saturday, June 29, 2013, mid afternoon (TBA); Sunday, June 30, 9:00 a.m. to10:30 a.m.

Please email Nancy Caldwell by June 10, 2013, if you plan to attend. Nancy’s email is caldwellnj@comcast.net.



View our complete April calendar here.

April preparation and lector schedule

Lector/Usher 8:00 a.m. Worship

April 7          Earle Cramer        Judy Cramer

April 14         Sheilah Dye         Tom Dye

April 21         Tom Dye              Sheila Dye

April 28                                        Darwin Armentrout

Communion Preparation and Clean up 10:30 a.m. Worship

April 7, 2013         2nd Sunday of Easter          Janice Wayland/Donna Quesal

Lector 10:30 a.m. Worship

April 7          Deb McDaniel

April 14         Nancy Krey

April 21          Betty Kaspar

April 28         Steve Kline

Jazz Worship Schedule

Friday, April 5th  6:00 p.m.- Temptation

Sunday, April 14th 6:00 p.m. – Salvation

Sunday, April 28th 6:00 p.m. – Trust



The next Presbyteers meeting will be on April 17 at 6:00 p.m.  The program will be “Investigating Photography: A History of the Camera and Local Photographers” by Sue Scott from the Western Illinois Museum.  Committee members are Bill and Jean Lewis.  Pat Crane will call members.  Others who would like to make a reservation should call Pat at 313-2224.  Those attending should bring their own table service including glasses, cups, napkins and a dish to share. Bring your calendars.  We’ll be signing up for dates to co-host next year.




Spring Tea

Our annual Spring Tea is Sunday, April 21, at 2:00 p.m. in the parlor.  Please join us for yummy treats, election of officers, fellowship, and a time of remembrance of the sisters who left us in 2012.

Spring Gathering

The PW of the Presbytery Spring Gathering will take place on Saturyday, April 13, in Milan, IL, from 9:30 a.m.- 2:30 p.m.  The speaker, Alexis Maloof, will be speaking about her mission experience among Native Americans in 2012.  You can read two articles about this in the March/April 2011 Horizons magazine.  Register by emailing Lorraine Hathaway at lorraineh@mchsi.com or by filling out one of the forms on the hall table.  More detailed information is on the PW bulletin board.  So if you can’t help to clean the church after the rummage sale, try this wonderful alternative!

PW Book Discussion

An Invisible Thread by Laura Schroff  will be the title for our spring PW book discussion. It is the true story of an 11-year-old panhandler, a busy sales executive and a meeting with destiny.  The author writes, “Whatever made me notice him on that street corner so many years ago is clearly something that cannot be extinguished, no matter how relentless the forces aligned against it. Some may call it spirit. Some may call it heart. It drew me to him, as if we were bound by some invisible, unbreakable thread. And whatever it is, it binds us still.”  One critic noted that the story “shows us what’s possible when we are not afraid to connect with another human being and tap into our compassion.”  We’ll meet at noon on Wednesday, April 17 with Nancy Colvin leading the discussion. Bring a brown bag lunch and join us! A few books are available in the church library.

April Circle Meetings


         Thursday, April 25 at 9:30 a.m. at the home of Linda Miller.  Connie Deener will lead Lesson 8.


         Thursday, April 25 at 2:00 p.m. in the church parlor.  Hostess is Ruth Asbell; co-hostess is Marilyn Settles.  Pat Clements will lead Lesson 8.


         Wednesday, April 6 at 5:00 p.m. at the home of Lois Shane.  Note that this is a change in time and place from our schedule.  Pam Huston is the co-hostess.  Lois and Pam will lead the Food for Thought.


         Sunday, April 7 at 9:00 a.m. at the church in Fellowship Hall.




Traci Dewitt receives the Lions Club Volunteer of the Year Award.

“Growing up I knew the importance of giving back to others though my grandfather Glen Wilkins who was a member of the first Lions Club in Chicago, Illinois. He showed me that no matter how much or how little that you have there is always a way to give back.  I think that when I moved to Macomb that it was going to be important for not only me but also my family to be able to give back to the community so I joined the Lions Club when we moved from Plainfield, Illinois, and this past year I was awarded the Volunteer of the Year for the Macomb chapter. This is a great honor and one that I don’t take lightly.  I know the importance of helping those who need a hand up and not a hand out.”

 Traci DeWitt

Congratulations, Traci!


Deb McDaniel celebrates her 30th year at WIU.  Congratulations, Deb!








In this part of our newsletter, we want to share our joys and accomplishments. Do you have any graduations to celebrate?  Let us know.  Send in your joys, honors and happy milestones so your church family can celebrate with you.  Don’t be afraid to brag!  Send your joys to news@firstpresmacomb.org and include pictures if you have them.



verna smith

Verna Smith spends part of her Friday each week at church folding the bulletins for our worship services.  Thank you, Verna, for your dedication to this important task.  We appreciate you!


Miguel Mejia practices his cello solo, “Gigue” from Suite for Cello before worship service begins.  Thank you for sharing your talents with us, Miguel!

s&m2 s&m1 s&m3 s&m4

Although it was a snowy, snowy Palm Sunday, the Sunday Morning Circle prepared a wonderful meal featuring their world-famous Rummage Sale Sloppy Joes for the monthly Soup & More dinner.  Looks like they had a great time!


Linda Miller, Connie Deener, Dorothea Jewell, Sheila Nollen and others met with Gene Miller for several weeks to discuss The Art of Possibility by Benjamin and Rosamund Stone Zander.  The group enjoyed the challenges of examining Zander’s practices for possibility and finding ways to incorporate them into our lives. Thanks to Gene Miller for leading our study.

bread_1 bread_2 bread_3

Bread, bread, bread!  Mardell and Kent Harris are two of the volunteers who pick up bread from Hy-Vee, transport it to the church, unload it and place it on the tables in the library area where it is distributed by Loaves and Fishes.  Thanks, Mardell and Kent!


The Peace Pole appeared!  Does anyone know how it got here?



Several groups from the community meet in our church and each month, we’ll look at one. This month’s group is CASA.


Amber Beaulieu, CASA WIU intern, Vicki Duba, McDonough County CASA Coordinator, Joyce Hollenberg, CASA educator

Court Appointed Special Advocates for children are volunteers from the community who are appointed by a judge to speak for abused and/or neglected children in the court system.

Before being assigned to a case, CASA volunteers receive over 30 hours of training.  CASA volunteers help to determine what is in the child’s best interest and make recommendations to the court.

CASA in Macomb began not quite two years ago and found a home at First Presbyterian Church.

If you would like more information or would enjoy volunteering, contact Vicki Duba at 309-544-0003.  You can also visit the agency website at www.advonet.org.



Our new newsletter depends on YOU!  We all want to know what’s going on and that depends upon participation from all of us.  Share information from you, your group, or your committee.  Items for the May Newsletter should be emailed to news@firstpresmacomb.org  BEFORE April 25.  Pictures are welcome!