- - - - NEWSLETTER FOR MARCH 2009 - - - -    


 First Baptist Church

224 Main St. Penn Yan, NY 14527

 (315) 536-9821 e-mail:

Rev. John R. Tharp, Pastor


Our Services of Worship and Praise

       Each Sunday at 10 AM, followed

   by Fellowship Hour and Church School


Mar. 1             “Who Are You?”

                        Matthew 16:13-20     


Mar. 8             “The Promise of Peace”

                        John 14:26-31


Mar. 15           “Roots of Conspiracy”

                        Matthew 26:14-16


Mar. 22           “The Heart of God Revealed”

                        Matthew 26: 36-46


Mar. 29           “The World ‘s Great Misunderstanding”

                        Matthew 26:57-67



March Greeters                                                   Lay Readers

Mar. 1    Marge Moulton & Margaret Mills             Matt Scutt

Mar. 8    Girl Scout Sunday: Stephanie Fulkrod, Brittany Griffin,

               Jayda Schroo,  Elizabeth Ortiz, Pat Ames

Mar. 15   Bob & Mary Fullagar                                 Necia Smith

Mar. 22   Charlie Miller & Matt Scutt                      John FM Tharp         

Mar. 29   George & Joyce Slocum                            Stan Ovens


March Birthdays:

1~ Nancy Tharp                                  17 ~ Meghan Fuqua

2~ Lisa Wood                                      18 ~ Charlie Miller

8 ~ Nancy Marion                               21 ~ Kathleen Bently

8 ~ Barbara Stewart                            21 ~ Mark Scheel

8 ~ Sherry Jensen                               23 ~ Old Rugged Cross

11 ~ Tammy Miller                             26 ~ Tom Burke



A message from Pastor John


“A Threefold Cord Is Not Easily Broken”


            These words are from Ecclesiastes 4:12. Even though they tell a truth about how to make a strong rope, their real intent is to tell us about the value of people working together. When we work with someone else, we tend to stay on task; we come up with better ideas; and we usually enjoy the work more. So powerful is this reality, Jesus taught that where two or three are gathered in His name, he would be in their midst. And he said that if only two agree about what they ask, God will hear and do what they ask. (Matthew 18:18-20)

            Some time ago, at a Midwestern county fair, a contest was held to see which draft horse could pull the heaviest load. One horse pulled a sled with a load of 4500 pounds. It was the winner and champion. The second horse managed to drag a load of about 4000 pounds. When the contest was over, one horse owner suggested that it would be interesting to see how many pounds the top two horses could pull together. When the animals were harnessed together they were able to pull 12,000 pounds! Together they had pulled 3500 more pounds that the total of their individual best pulls.


            Sometimes, it just seems easier to do things by ourselves. We have our system down pat. Other people might not do it like we do it. It takes a while to train someone else. There are lots of reasons why we go it alone. It may not be our style to “bond” with other people. When we think about it, it might have been easier for Jesus to be a “do it yourselfer.” After all, when the cards were down, his disciples abandoned him. They never seemed to understand him. They were frequently at odds over who was the greatest. I wonder if Jesus’ words on the cross, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing,” might have been addressed to his followers on any number of occasions. Never the less, Jesus called us to work together.

·         He spoke of himself as the vine and us the branches. (John 15:5)

·         He said that the love with which the Father has loved me will be in my followers. (John 17:26 paraphrased)

·         Following his resurrection, when Jesus talked with Peter on the shore, he asked him to “feed his sheep.” (John 21:17)


The church cannot grow stronger unless its people grow deeper. Deeper means stronger in fellowship, wider in service, richer in love, and more eager to share the Word with others. Doing this with others creates a strong cord which cannot be easily broken.

                                                                        Pastor John



American Red Cross Needs~n~Things


hand soap                    laundry soap                paper towels                Diapers sizes 4,5,6     

kleenex                        toothpaste                    feminine products


Items for donation may be left in the box marked “Red Cross Needs-n-Things” in the front of the sanctuary.



Mary & Martha Circle                                        

Tuesday, March 10     10:30 am

Dessert: Milly Bloomquist

Devotional: Erma Mullins

The Mary & Martha Circle is comprised of a group of women of the church that get together on the 2nd Wednesday of the month. The meetings are comprised of a devotional (everyone is invited to take a turn in leading), time devoted to a mission project, and lunch (bring your own sandwich, share a turn in bringing dessert for the group). For the next few months they will be tearing sheets into bandages that measure 5 inches by 10 yards. They are sewn together, rolled, and sent out to various 3rd world countries. The bandages are used for medical use as well as hung in the windows/doorways of operating rooms to keep out flies. The goal is to have 50 of these bandages to send out through the American Baptist International Ministries. All women of the church are invited to join!           



Fellowship Class

Wednesday, March 25 @ 12 Noon

Dessert: TBD

Devotional: TBD

The Fellowship Class is a Women’s Sunday School Class. They meet the 4th Wednesday of the month. Like the Mary & Martha Circle, everyone is invited to take a turn bringing a dessert for the group and to lead a short devotional.                                                     


Finger Lakes Association Meeting

Sunday, March 29 at PYFBC

The theme of the Association meeting this month will be “Spiritual Formations”. The speaker will be Dr. James Kerr, of United Church of Canandaigua.

Registration begins at 2:30 pm, the program at 3 pm, and a dish to pass supper will begin at 5 pm. PYFBC is the host and we are responsible for beverages and dessert.



News from Your Bd. of Missions!

As many of you know, we made 195 Super Subs on Jan. 31, to support Yates County Habitat. We cleared $1116 for Habitat. We thank you so much for your support in this project.

We also wish to thank the following for their help in assembling the subs: Shelly Hodge, Dave and Ashley Tillman, Betty Johnson, Mary Fullagar, Greg and Tammy Miller, Lisa Wood, Nancy Marion, Shelley Bicksler, Don and Kathi Lawrence, Ed and Rita Castillo.

We are starting to promote the AMERICA FOR CHRIST offering which will be taken in March. You gave $879  in “08. We have set a goal of $1000 for 2009. This may seem foolish in light of the economy. However, many more people are needing help in these difficult times. If one has shelter and food to eat, one is well-enough off to be able to help others. Please pray and consider giving as much as you can.

Our Advisory Council has asked each Board and Committee of FBC to come up with a Fun Activity for the congregation to participate in. Your Bd. of Missions came up with the idea that we take as many members and children possible to participate in the Open House at Camp Vick this Spring. More information will be provided.

Special dates for your calendar:

March 7 ~ “Life Cycles” A church development Conference at Marion, NY

            March 21 ~ Mission Advocates meeting at FBC Syracuse.

                        Your Bd. of Missions




Food for the Needy

Started some time around 1980, this program now distributes twice a month; the 2nd Wednesday at 6 pm and the 4th Friday at 9 am.  In the beginning, around 45 bags were given out for about 150 people. So far, in January alone 212 families were served.

In December 2008:

397 families were served (688 adults, 680 children and 59 elderly)

Year of 2008

2,786 families were served. This was an increase of 143 families over 2007.


All of this couldn’t be accomplished without you. Those volunteers who donate your time to pack and distribute the food and those who add a few items to your grocery cart each week. The need will always be there.

Cereal in large boxes             Tuna                Macaroni n Cheese                Canned Fruit

Cookies                                  Crackers         Canned Veggies                     Pasta & Sauce

The Backpack Program

Wednesdays at 5:45 pm FBC

This is a program that provides easy to prepare foods to school children over the weekend. Currently 560 bags are distributed between Penn Yan Elementary, Middle, Academy, Head Start, Keuka Lake School and Dundee Schools. Volunteers pack the bags on Wednesday evenings at 5:45 pm here at FBC. Farmers have been contacted about supplying fresh fruits and vegetables starting in May and continuing through harvest season.

Donations of money, plastic bags, mac & cheese, fruit cups and tuna are needed.



White Water Rafting Trip!

Soon the snow will melt and the

rivers and creeks will rise.

This makes for an awesome

rafting experience!



Our annual trip down the PA Grand Canyon is scheduled for Saturday. April 4.

Cost: $14 per person (includes lunch)

You will not be counted as going until you have paid in full!

Space is limited

Your payment of cash (no checks please) is due by March 29 to the Church office.


Available in the office are copies of rafting information and rafting attire.

 Be sure to pick yours up. Vital info is included that will help you have a more pleasurable rafting experience.



Congratulations to the Congregation of FBC of Penn Yan!


A couple of weeks ago, we had a visitor.

This person was so taken with our many projects and missions,

that a contribution was made to help continue with our work.

It is certainly pleasing that our projects and missions work were admired.

Give yourselves a pat on the back!



Bd. of Trustees Report

Trustees met on Feb. 10, 2009. Highlights of the meeting are as follows:


·         We will provide a letter to Milly’s Pantry that will enable them to get a 20C License, which will allow them to buy in bulk and repackage foods for the Backpack Program.

·         We will again participate in Celebrate Yates on April 19.

·         We looked at the list of back-up treasurers and made recommendations for continuation or noted a need for back-up.

·         Voted to accept a bid from REALE FENCE to enclose the air conditioner unit to try to deter vandalism to it.

·         Agreed to try Don Lawrence’s idea of having Memorial Sunday Bulletin covers.

·         Discussed the van route on Sunday mornings.

·         Discussed an action plan for the Every Member Canvas.

·         Dates to remember:

Feb. 26: Lenten Luncheons start at the Methodist Church

Feb. 28: Boy Scouts Pinewood Derby Weigh-in in the Great Room

March 20:Finger Lakes Association meeting here at 2:30 pm

March 23: Council of Churches meeting at PYUMC at 7:30 pm

April 2: First Baptist is responsible for serving the Lenten Luncheon.

The next Trustees meeting will be on Tuesday, March 10, 2009.





Is a warm, humorous and common sense video curriculum based on Dr. James Dobson’s best selling book, Bringing Up Boys. Boys are different than girls. Let’s embrace those differences and give our sons the faith based and spiritual upbringing needed to see them grow into strong, solid well rounded men.


Once again Eileen Modaffari will lead the group and she has been very busy promoting this to the schools and community. This video seminar is a 12-week series and is offered free of charge.  Classes will be offered Sundays (beginning on 3/15), at 11 am following worship service and Friday evenings from 6:30 - 8 pm beginning on 3/13. Space is limited. Please register by March 3, by calling Eileen at 759-3080 or call the church office at 536-9821.



The Board of Christian Education

           The Bd. of Christian Education is comprised of 8 persons of the church that meet monthly to plan activities and themes for the church school year. Currently, the children are learning about Jesus, His works, and disciples.


Our church is fortunate to have a rotation of teachers so that no one person is missing service for months at a time. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Cheryl Stewart, Diane DeLooza, Pam Scutt, Tammy Miller, Sue Willson and Eileen Modaffari for giving of their time and talents.


For the remainder of this school year there will be a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, Easter Egg Hunt and to finish off the year in June there will be Children’s day and Vacation Bible School. There is much preparation that goes into each activity. Volunteers must be coordinated to help, supplies purchased, and donations must be sought so as to keep costs down as much as possible. Please keep the Bd of Christian Ed in your prayers as they work together on these projects.


A special thanks needs to go out to Greg Marion for his many years of service to Christian Education. Greg no longer serves on the board, however, he still works closely with the current board and does most of the work with the children. He is a true asset to the church and our Christian Education department.






A special thank you goes out to Ken Gillette for crafting the wonderful gifts for the Utica Refugee Children and the children of Food for the Needy. Ken handcrafted sets of wooden blocks and Queen Anne Tea Table and Chairs. Thank You, Ken for your gifts!



St. Patrick’s Celebration

Sunday, March 15 @ 11 am


Bring your favorite Green Snack


Irish Blessings & Toasts                   Singing                        Entertainment