PCM Blood Drive for American Red Cross – Jan. 5th

Give the gift of life by donating blood to the American Red Cross. PCM’s upcoming drive is January 5th, 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. The drive is open to the public.

If you plan to donate, you can register online at the American Red Cross website at: https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive. Donors will be eligible to get a free T-Shirt while supplies last (see picture below).

In addition to donors, volunteers are needed who can help prepare the Fellowship Hall before the drive (that consists of stacking and moving the tables and chairs) and then restoring things after the drive (that also involves some cleaning up). Due to a limitation on lifting 5 lbs., blood donors cannot assist afterwards.

If you are interested in assisting with set-up or tear-down, contact Loren Illg or Michael Osborn.

Throwback Thursday & Photo Project

For the past Liturgical year, I undertook a year-long personal photography challenge to capture and document the life of our church. Beginning the first Sunday of Advent 2018 and finishing at the end of November 2019, I captured slightly more than 7,500 images. While I didn’t get to every activity, I feel I got the majority and was able to capture the faces and spirit of our congregation.

Working with the PCM Aesthetics Committee, I have a goal to create a collection of photos for display that chronicles the year. The plan is to have this photo collection ready for viewing at the start of Lent beginning on Ash Wednesday.

Although some of the photos you have already seen since they have been used on the PCM website, Capital campaign literature, brochures and on Facebook , my favorites have been held back in anticipation of the display.

To begin giving a sneak peek at some images I captured along the way, I’m borrowing the popular Instagram trend of “Throwback Thursday.” Each Thursday from now till February, I’ll be posting a photo from last year as a preview to the display. Here goes…

Throwback Thursday #tbt

Who remembers the adorable Startzell sisters dressed alike for Christmas?


Longest Night Service December 21

The full moon lit the evening sky last year during the Longest Night service.

I would like to tell you a little about the Longest Night Service, which will be on Saturday, December 21 at 6:30 pm. The Grief Ministry will host a light supper at 5:30 the same evening.

Sometimes this sort of service is called a “Blue Christmas” service. It is a gentle time of Scripture, song, and silence intended for the soothing and healing of the spirit. If you are stressed out by holiday preparations, you will find it refreshing. If you are grieving that you must go through Christmas without that special someone, you will find it comforting. If you are tired of (what I like to call) the “enforced merriment” of the season (“Be happy” whether you want to be or not), you will find it encouraging.

I always schedule it for the night of the winter solstice, when the darkness is longest. Our ancestors acknowledged the threat to the light of the sun and were glad when the daylight hours began to lengthen again the next day. The darkness of the solstice is a good metaphor for the dark night of the soul.

We will gather in the Sanctuary for this year’s observance on Saturday, December 21 at 6:30 pm. If you would like to join the Grief Ministry for a light supper beforehand, that will be at 5:30. It is our longest night, a good time to be present for one another.

Pastor Bob


Two Month Trial: Join The Choir For The Holidays

Georg Friedrich Handel (1685 – 1759) Composer of the “Messiah”

Have you ever thought about singing in the church choir? Why not give it a try for two months and come sing for the holidays! The choir will be singing a number of pieces this fall culminating in December with the Christmas Cantata and the presentation of Handel’s Messiah.

It does not matter your talent level or if you have sung in a choir before. If you enjoy music and have a desire to help lead Worship services and glorify God through singing, then please come join us. We’re a fun group and we will help you get started. All are welcome!

Btw, the Messiah is a “blast” to sing and could possibly be one of the most enjoyable experiences you will have in church (or at least in Worship).

Rehearsals are Thursday evenings at the church at 7:15 p.m. No advance notice needed, just show up and join in.

If you have questions, contact the Chris Krampe, PCM Director of Music.


PCM Golf League Wrap-up

The PCM Golf league had another successful season in 2019 and wrapped-up the 45th consecutive year the league has been in existence. It was a great summer of golf.

Our league winners this season were Eric and Janet Bremers. Congrats to the Bremers on the strong finish and ultimate win.

Fortunately we experienced only one rain-out and a couple of rather warm nights. But, through it all, we had lots of great fellowship and fun.

We’ll be back again next spring if you’ve ever thought about playing. The league play is handicapped and players of all experience levels are welcome. If you have any questions about next year, please contact Bill or Brenda Norton.

Below are some photos from 2019.


Meet PCM’s New Christian Education Director

Anne Weatherwax Director of Christian Education

Hello PCM Family!

I’d like to take a quick moment and introduce myself so you can get to know me a little better.  To begin with I am so blessed to be back at PCM once again; it has been 24 years since I was a member here before I moved away!  In those 24 years I had one more child for a total of three of my own, Victoria is now 28, Mirannda is 25 and Hunter is 22. I then added to my quiver when I married my husband John four years ago. Rodney is a 25-year old son and Courtney a 16-year old daughter. The newest loves of our lives are our amazing soon-to-be four-year-old identical twin grandsons James and River.  Life is so full and we are so blessed.

As I come to work here at PCM, I continue in my Master’s program at Liberty University Online as a Divinity student studying Discipleship and Religious Education.  My passions are spending time with my family and friends, crafting, reading, singing and taking every opportunity I can to tell anyone and everyone who will listen about God’s amazing grace.

Anne Weatherwax
Director of Christian Education


Education Series “Why Palestine Matters” begins September 22

PCM is excited to invite young adults, senior citizens, and those in-between to join me in a five-week Sunday School study this fall beginning Sunday, September 22nd in the fellowship hall at 9:00 a.m.

We will be privileged to have as our speaker, Muna Nassar from Bethlehem, the 2019 Presbyterian International Peacemaker on Sunday, October 6th. She works with Kairos Palestine, a Christian Palestinian movement which advocates for ending the over 50-year occupation of Palestine and achieving a just solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict.

While our beloved teacher, Mike O’Bradovich, takes a well-deserved break from his adult-education role on Sunday mornings, we will explore together the subject of Israel/Palestine today and the history behind it, using the newly-published study guide entitled Why Palestine Matters: The Struggle to End Colonialism.

The study guide was created by the Presbyterian Israel/Palestine Mission Network, a group of Presbyterians challenged by the church’s General Assembly in 2004 to explore the subject and speak to us members of the church on the topic. We are reminded by this publication that the Presbyterian Church has had a mission presence in the Middle East since the 1800s. We are also reminded by the Biblical scriptures that Palestine is where our Christian faith had its beginnings as did the Jewish faith. The third Abrahamic faith, Islam, also has its Palestinian connections. Today Palestine consists of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, the places we hear about regularly in our daily news along with news of the State of Israel.

The final Sunday of the series, October 13th, we will again be privileged to hear from a Palestinian speaker, Robert Massoud, a Palestinian Canadian whose family fled war in Palestine in 1947-1948.  You know Robert by reputation for Zatoun, his fair-trade company, whose olive oil we purchase each Christmas season.


Book Club For September

Here we are again!  Updating everyone on what the Men and Women’s Book Clubs are reading and discussing in September!

WOMEN’S BOOK CLUB:  The women are reading “The Day The World Came To Town….9/11 In Gander, Newfoundland”.  A true story and account of a community that exemplifies love, kindness, and generosity during one of the most horrible days in the life of our country.  Meeting times are at noon at PCM and 6:30 p.m. in a member’s home.  Contact Diane Frans at 402-572-1158 or dianefrans@outlook.com.

MENS’S BOOK CLUB:  The men are reading “It Can’t Happen Here” by Sinclair Lewis, a cautionary tale about the fragility of democracy.  Mark Frans is the person to contact for additional information at 602-677-1535 or markfrans@cox.net.

Be there or be square!
Diane and Mark Frans, The Reading Spouses

A Message About Mission Projects

The month of August has turned out to be packing month. We packed in a beautiful decorative way, 22 baskets for the silent auction to be held August 24th at Calvin Crest. Kudos to those creative Packers.

August 23rd your mission crew and its helpers will be packing 120 bags for the BART (Benson Area Refuge task Force) giveaway on August 24th we still could use dish soap and any warm coats for children.  This is an excellent time to check out the clearance sales for backpacks, an item we never have enough of.

School supplies were packed  by Debby Marsh, her grandson Kyle and daughter Amanda. Four trips with a loaded dolly were needed to pack her van. Then they took items to Edison School and unloaded it. Thank you to such an industrious family for all their hard work and this is just in time for the new school year.

Speaking of school supplies—”no more clipping” is the new motto for Box Tops for Education. The new upgraded version is pictured here and explained on the bulletin board in the Commons. There also is a list of acceptable items for Box Tops scanning. You may also go to their website for more information. In addition for your information Campbell Soup labels are no longer being accepted.

August 11th blood drive racked up 40 units of blood thank you Mike Osborne and Lauren Ilg, who were your hosts. the next blood drive at PCM will be in January and after hearing this
month menu you might all want to come. 60 egg salad quarters were donated by the now healthy Mary McLean and also on the table was fried chicken, potato salad, macaroni salad, brownies and chocolate cookies. Sounds like a party to me.

The Garden Mart staff has really been industrious this year. Each week a beautiful presentation of vegetables is available to all church members and anyone else who comes. We have a plethora of tomatoes, beans, zucchini, cucumbers, winter squash (spaghetti style) and even apples from the trees on our property. We still come up with about fifty pounds of leftovers that are picked up by Saving Grace food rescue every Monday morning and taken to pantries that afternoon. This particular Monday after our blood drive we had leftovers from that blood drive which included all the goodies I named above.