Stefka
ABOVE: Ann Stefka, Organist and Choir Director for over 30 years, retires.
Thank you SO very much for bringing beautiful music to our services!
We wish you all the best.


LeonardPulpit
ABOVE: Rev. Leonard Sponaugle, Pastor

BELOW: Brett Dening plays carillon

DeningPlaying

Kitchen.09.15
ABOVE: Preparing Meals to Share
BELOW: Ron Chizek
, Works on multi-media
MultiMedia


SESSION COMMITTEES

ADMINISTRATION,
PERSONNEL & FINANCE

Oakley Cole
Carol Larter, Co-Chair
Brenda Meador
Laura Ruehle
Jane Smith, Co-Chair

BUILDING & GROUNDS
Ronald Chizek, Chair
Oakley Cole
Ron Custer
Linda Hinkle
Sandy Lane

CHRISTIAN EDUCATION & SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT
Liz Custer, Chair
Emily Dening

MISSION, OUTREACH
& YOUTH

Brett Dening, Chair

MUSIC & WORSHIP
Craig Talarico, Chair
Sharon Ritzmann
Jane Smith

NOMINATING & STEWARDSHIP
Oakley Cole, Chair
Deacon
5 members from the congregation

TECHNOLOGY
Unfilled


FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
37 S. Market St., Johnstown, NY 12095
Ph: 518.762.8263 Fax: 518.762.2981
Email: office@johnstownpresbyterian.org

                

Serving You

OUR STAFF SERVING YOU
        The Rev. Leonard Sponaugle, Pastor
        Belinda Vair, Interim Organist and Choir Director for January
        Joanne Freeman, Secretary
        The Reverend Carter B. Adriance, Congregational Associate
        Zachary Gatto, Custodian

CHURCH OFFICE HOURS

        Monday / Wednesday / Friday — 8:30am to 12:30pm
        Tuesday / Thursday — 12:45pm to 4:45pm

OUR CHURCH OFFICERS
Session
        Ronald Chizek (2019)
        Oakley Cole
        Elizabeth Custer
        Brett Dening
        Carol Larter (2020)
        Jane Smith
        Craig Talarico
        Roger Ritzmann, Clerk of Session
        Vacant 3 year term
        Vacant 3 year term
Deacons
        Betsy Camarra
        Ron Custer (2020)
        Donna Davidson
        Emily Dening
        Sue Peck (2020)
        Sharon Ritzmann (2020)
        Ashley Ruehle (Youth)
        Laura Ruehle
        Donna VanAernam (2020), Chair
Treasurer
        Laura M. Ruehle

SESSION
The next regular meeting will be January 16 at 7:00pm.
—Roger Ritzmann, Clerk

THE MISSION COMMITTEE
Dave Ramsey's Smart Money Event starts on January 17 and runs for 9 weeks.
        76% of people live paycheck to paycheck.
        64% of Americans cannot cover a $1,000 emergency.
        The leading cause of divorce is money fights & money issues.
        Beginning January 17, the First Presbyterian Church of Johnstown will be holding a
                Financial Peace University (FPU) class to help address these issues.
        FPU is a 9-week program that teaches people to gain control of their finances by
                following biblical principles. It meets once a week and classes run 1.5hrs.

Please share with anyone you know who may benefit from learning how to take control of their mon-ey. If you would like more information, please contact First Presbyterian Church at 518-762-8263
Brett Dening @ bdening@outlook.com please include FPU in the subject. Or you can visit
http://www.FPU.com

Membership and class materials are currently available for $109 online at http://www.fpu.com/1052202. Our Mission Committee has already purchased 11 membership kits that are available for purchase at $85 each at the First Presbyterian Church of Johnstown.
—Brett Dening

ADMINISTRATION, FINANCE & PERSONNEL COMMITTEE
The committee will be meeting January 9 at 6:00pm.
—Jane Smith & Carol Larter

BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS
The committee met on Dec. 6th and the following items were discussed:
        We Installed a new heat thermostat in the Thrift Store.
        Repairs or Replacements being done to the Sanctuary audio system, Clinton St. door,
                Step on the Back Porch, as well as other items.
        The committee starting to plan projects to for the Spring.
The next committee meeting will be January 3 at 9:30am.
—Ron Chizek

WORSHIP & MUSIC COMMITTEE

Our new Mission Statement: To provide opportunity for meaningful worship for all. (It was lost, but now it is found!)
• We are starting to replace the wax candles with oil ones.
• Continuing to work on hiring a new Organists/Choir Director.
• Reviewed some of the items Ann over seen for Sunday Worship.
• Preparing for the Advent & Christmas Services.
The next meeting will be on Tuesday, January 2 at 4pm
—Craig Talarico

MUSIC NOTES
Choir rehearsal begins at 9:30am.
This is not an easy newsletter item to write. As most of you know, I am retiring as the Organist/Choir director here at the First Presbyterian Church. It's just time for me to do some different things— maybe even not go to church on a Sunday! I've been here for over 30 years and I've enjoyed it.
Working with different pastors has been challenging but also very rewarding. I've learned a great deal from each of them.
The members of the choir are wonderful people. They are all friends to me and to each other and they are all willing to work to make the music meaningful to all. They don't always like my music selections but they are still willing to work and make the music sound as good as it can.
Thank you to the choir, the members of the congregation and Leonard for making my time here so meaningful and so easy. It has truly been a pleasure to be part of this congregation for so long.
—Ann Stefka

DEACONS' NOTES
The committee will be meeting January 3 at 6:30pm.
A Time for Helping and Givin
g

A special Thank You to the congregation for purchasing and wrapping gifts for 3 families of John-stown, grade schools. A total of 9 children will enjoy a bright and Merry Christmas..
Our Service - Beginning in January 2018, the deacons will be initiating a new emphasis in our service to this con-gregation. The Book of Order states that "The office of deacon as set forth in Scripture is one of sympathy, witness and service after the example of Jesus Christ." We feel as deacons, to carry out this charge, we need to personally get to know everyone in the congregation by making contacts pe-riodically throughout the year. These conversations are a great opportunity to let us know if you have noticed that someone you know who usually attends church is missing or ill so that we can check on what their needs might be. This effort is not an attempt to keep track of individual church attendance, but a genuine attempt to make sure someone who needs help doesn't slip through the cracks. So, when you are approached by a deacon, take a minute to chat and get acquainted, for we think it will be an opportunity to bring us all closer together.
Prayer Chain
Do you need prayers or know of someone who might?
Kindly call the church office or any of Prayer Chain members with your prayer request, and they are: Ruth Carey, Donna Chizek, Mona Cole, Liz Custer, Carol Hadcock, Jane Smith or Donna Van Aernam. If you would like to be a part of the Prayer Chain, we would be happy to add you to the list.
—Donna VanAernam, Chairperson

CHRISTIAN EDUCATION & SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE
Please consider joining us at our next meeting on Jan. 14 at 11:45am.
Adult Christian Education will start back up in January, DTBA
Being Disciples: Essentials of the Christian Life by Rowan Williams.

—Liz Custer

COMMUNITY FREE LUNCH PROGRAM
Our Free Lunch to the neighborhood has expanded from one Saturday a month to two Saturdays each month! This is wonderful! This program / ministry is making a difference in our neighborhood. It is not just food that people are receiving. The companionship around the table is a joy to see and experience.
Of course, another benefit to this expansion is another opportunity for you to participate in mission. Please prayerfully consider helping out at our free lunch program and contact Helen Thompson for details.
—Helen Thompson
                                        LunchLogo

WHEN TO CALL THE PASTOR

Never quite sure when to call the Pastor?
Below is a list of occasions when the Pastor might be helpful:

When there is a serious illness
Before hospitalization or surgery
When a new baby has arrived
When death has occurred
When you are anxious about someone else
When a young person is about to leave home
When there are domestic troubles
When you face a difficult decision
When you are bothered about your Christian faith
When you are thinking about getting married
When you want to make your life count for more
Other ...
In doubt as to whether or not to call?
PLEASE CALL!!
If you do not call, we do not know.
Church office — 762-8263


pastersfirstpres

PASTORS OF FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, Johnstown, New York

TOP LEFT—Reverend Robert S. Magee, 1965
TOP RIGHT— Reverend Raymond A. Ketledge (1929-1957), pastor-emeritus,
and Reverend Nathaniel T. Goodwin, October 9, 1960,
after the formal presentation of the title
LOWER LEFT—Reverend E. Elwood Carey, 1969-1985
LOWER CENTER—Reverend Barry Paul Murr, 1986-1996
LOWER RIGHT—Dr. Earl S. Johnson, Jr., 1998-2011