Past Ten Weeks
Posted Oct 16, 2020
This Sunday is Youth Sunday! We are excited to have our Jr. and Sr. Highs leading both of our worship services this Sunday. Make a point to come, or tune in, to both of these special services!
We have also expanded our physically-distanced seating in the Sanctuary, converting what was overflow seating in the balcony into regularly available seating. Now, if we have walk-ups without registrations, they can join the service by video in the Chapel until they can (hopefully) be seated in a vacant spot in the Sanctuary.
Since we resumed in-person services once in July and then more regularly in August, we have always made space for walk-ups and never turned anyone away! So please continue to make your reservations for the Sanctuary service so that we can continue to have space to do that, and don’t hesitate to call the church if you have any trouble with the online registration form! Our MorningSong service in the FLC parking lot does not require registration, and we can safely sing together outdoors with masks! So, come!
Posted Oct 09, 2020
It was wonderful to have a congregation in the Sanctuary last Sunday! Thank you for your understanding and cooperation as we worship together in yet another new way during this pandemic. Registration for next Sunday, October 18 (Youth Sunday!) is now open at https://fpcspartanburg.org/events/rsvp-for-sanctuary-worship.
Remember that outdoor MorningSong no longer requires registration, but we do ask that you bring your own chairs, if you are able. We will have a rack of chairs available on-site, though, just in case. The weather is not looking good for this Sunday with the remnants of Hurricane Delta blowing through. If the MorningSong service has to be cancelled, notification will be sent out by email, text, social media, and the church website no later than 6pm on Saturday. If that happens, the service will happen livestream only.
Be sure you make your dinner reservations for Tuesdays at First (TAF) and Wednesdays at First (WAF) by Sunday! See below for more information on that.
Posted Oct 02, 2020
We are looking forward to our first in-person communion services since this pandemic began and our return to in-person worship services in the Sanctuary! We appreciate everyone’s understanding of the limitations of the space right now, and the need to limit our numbers in the Sanctuary in order to keep everyone there safe. We also appreciate your understanding of the adaptations we are having to make to be able to have these services inside. Don’t forget about the Hymn Sing before the service!
Were you not able to get into the Sanctuary service this week? Don’t like limited numbers? Want to sing in worship? Then MorningSong is the service for you right now! We have eliminated the need to register for MorningSong and are asking everyone to bring their own chairs. We will have a rack of chairs available for those that need one, but no chairs will be set up ahead of time. And because it is outside and everyone is in masks and properly spaced apart, we can all sing together! So come worship together in what is currently the most “normal” of our worship services in the FLC parking lot at 8:45am on Sunday!
Posted Sep 25, 2020
We are looking forward to all the new programming beginning in just over a week, including Wednesdays at First, a new Tuesdays at First, and in-person Sanctuary worship services, all kicking off the first week of October. Please be mindful that pre-registration is needed for most activities, including worship, but so far we have not run out of available space for any of our activities. Especially note below that the registration for Vespers this Sunday evening closes at noon today. So make sure you sign up and join us!
Posted Sep 18, 2020
This Sunday, MorningSong resumes in the Family Life Center parking lot. We will also resume the weekly MorningSong livestream on the church website and Facebook. Due to technical limitations of our outdoor equipment, we will not be livestreaming MorningSong to YouTube at this time, but the Sanctuary service will continue to stream on the church website, Facebook, and YouTube.
The Fall Edition of First News is in the mail and online. In it you will find information about the pastoral transition and search process, a letter from our Temporary Interim Pastor (starting Oct. 1) Lewis Johnson, and lots of new things happening at the church, including the return to in-person worship in the Sanctuary, and the return of our mid-week programming (now split between Tuesday and Wednesday). So read it carefully and sign up for stuff on time! In order to control numbers, arrange for the increased amount of setup and allow contact tracing (if needed) most events, including worship, now require pre-registration, for the time being.
Posted Sep 11, 2020
Today is, of course, a solemn day of remembrance in our country, as we mourn the tragic events of September 11, 2001. And as we mourn those lost on that day, let us also mourn the hatred and tribalism that led to those events, and let us all repent of that hatred and tribalism that we too often harbor today. And let us also celebrate the unity we found that day across all kinds of differences, and strive to find that unity once more.
Today I also got the pleasure of attending the dedication of the Mathematics Lab at Cleveland Elementary, the product of our Witness Season contributions earlier this year. This congregation blew past our Witness Season goals, just days before this pandemic set in in earnest. And it was so encouraging to see that math lab come to fruition, and to see so many FPC members there at the dedication. Good and important work is happening through our church, my friends!
Finally, this Sunday we bid farewell to Pastor Tom, as we celebrate his ministry with us and pray for his ministry in New York. I hope that you will all join in the streamed service on Sunday. It is going to be a very special service indeed. And Zoom congregation meeting afterward. We have upgraded our Zoom account to make sure we have room for all of you. So please sign in via Zoom for this important meeting. Information on a full Sunday of activities is below.
Posted Sep 04, 2020
This Sunday, September 6, we will have only one livestreamed service at 11am and no online Sunday School. We hope everyone will have a safe and enjoyable long weekend!
The following Sunday, September 13, will be Pastor Tom’s last Sunday with us. We will again have only one livestreamed service at 11am that day with a congregational meeting via Zoom (Zoom link) immediately after it for the purposes of electing church officers and formally requesting that Foothills Presbytery dissolve the pastoral relationship between Dr. Tom Evans and First Presbyterian Church. See below for information about activities that afternoon to celebrate Tom’s ministry with us and to say goodbye to the pastor who has led us so faithfully through these past eight years.
Posted Aug 28, 2020
This Sunday we celebrate our 2020 Confirmation class during our 8:45am MorningSong service. The confirmands have all made their professions of faith and been examined by the Session, and we are proud of the work they have done, even amid unusual circumstances this year. So, we are glad to finally be able to welcome these young people into full membership. Physical distancing requirements mean that things will look a little different this year, but we are thankful to be able to celebrate this milestone with them, in-person and with their families with them.
And you can join in online! If the technology all cooperates, we expect to livestream this service for the whole congregation (and more!) on Sunday. Tune in at the usual place on the church website: www.fpcspartanburg.org/live.
Posted Aug 21, 2020
Last Sunday was so very special as we had our first outdoor MorningSong service in the Family Life Center parking lot in the morning followed by the Blessing of the Backpacks/MacBooks that afternoon. It was so very good to see people gathered at the church, and I am looking forward to our second outdoor MorningSong this Sunday and the Vespers service Sunday evening. Make sure you sign up for that Vespers service by noon today, if you want to come.
Please note that we are not livestreaming these initial outdoor MorningSong services as we figure out this setup and how to make it best for those who are there. In the event of a weather cancellation of the outdoor service, we will do our “pandemic-usual” MorningSong livestream-only service from Fogartie Hall. One way or another, we will livestream the outdoor Confirmation service on the morning of August 20, even if it is just me holding a cell phone! But I think we can do better than that!
This week, we are excited to welcome our Weekday School children back to our church campus, under very careful COVID-19 precautions. We are taking every effort to make this a safe and wonderful year for these children. Please continue to be in prayer for that staff and those children, as well as all of those who are going to school and making school happen in new ways all around our community, country, and world.
Posted Aug 14, 2020
This weekend we pray for teachers, administrators, school staff, students, and their families as they return to school amid strange circumstances, navigating all sorts of new procedures. We pray for peace for all of them amid the uncertainty, and for safety, understanding, and grace as we all figure it out together.
Please also be in prayer for your leadership here at the church, and for all of us as we take more steps back into in-person activities at the church. We pray especially for our Weekday School staff as they prepare to safely welcome our youngest members and friends back for another wonderful year together amid these strange times.
May God grant all of us, wisdom, understanding, patience, flexibility, safety from harm, and grace in abundance to share with all!