- - - NEWSLETTER FOR MARCH 2010 - - -    
Note: Due to technical difficulties, the April and May newsletters are unavailable. An abbreviated version of the May newsletter may appear here soon. Sorry for the inconvenience.

 First Baptist Church

224 Main St. Penn Yan, NY 14527

 (315) 536-9821 e-mail:

Rev. John R. Tharp, Pastor






Men’s Palm Sunday Breakfast

Sunday, March 28

Plans are under way for the annual Men’s breakfast. Be sure to call the church office at 536-9821 by Wednesday March 24, to reserve your spot. As usual all men are invited and welcomed to bring your children, grandchildren and friends.


Maundy Thursday Service

Thursday, April 1

Watch the Sunday bulletins for more information as plans get underway.


Ecumenical Good Friday Service

 “The Way of the Cross.”

Friday, April 2 @ Noon

St. Paul’s Lutheran Church

The Way of the Cross is a devotion adapted from a custom observed by Christian pilgrims who said prayers in Jerusalem at a series of places in that city associated with the passion of Jesus.


Traditional Easter Service

Sunday, April 4 @ 10 am

Join us Easter morning as we raise our voices in celebration!

The choir is preparing the following anthems:

“Sing Hallelujah!”, “Rejoice, The Lord is King”, and “The Blessing of Aaron”.


A Look at Lent


The season of Lent is a time when we prepare our hearts, minds, and souls for the sacred observances of Christ’s death on Good Friday and his resurrection on Easter. In Lent, we recognize we are simply dust and ashes without Christ, confess our sins to God, and we follow Christ to the cross, where we are made whole again. The English word “Lent” is derived from the Germanic root for “Long” because Lent occurs in spring, when the days lengthen.

Forty Days. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Sundays are excluded from the counting of the 40 days because they still remain “little Easters” even during this solemn season. The number 40 is significant because Jesus spent 40 days fasting, praying, and resisting temptation, as we are called to do during Lent.

One Focus. Our focus during Lent is solely on the cross of Christ. For it was on the cross that the sinless Son of God suffered and died for us that we might be fully forgiven and live forever with him in heaven. Reading Scripture verses about the events leading up to Christ’s crucifixion and putting a cross in a prominent place where we can see it often keep our focus strong.  

Three Disciplines. Traditionally these three disciplines are associated with Lent:

*Fasting. Skipping a meal once a week or refraining from eating certain foods affords us the opportunity to spend more time feeding on the Word of God and being spiritually nourished through prayer and meditation.

*Abstinence. Removing a particular bad habit, sinful indulgence or  guilty pleasure from our daily routine frees us to engage in activities that are God-pleasing and reflects in a small way the self-sacrifice that Christ endured for us.

*Almsgiving. Giving something extra during this time to our church, the poor and needy among us, to charities or other service organizations is a way to remember that Christ gave up everything to save us from sin, death, and the devil and to free us to live a new life in him.




Greeter’s                                                                                Lay Readers

7 - Joni Campbell, Gary & Keith                                           Cheryl Stewart

14 - Boy & Girl Scouts                                                           Judi Gibbs

21 - Jennifer Slocum & Brittany Griffin                                 Ed Castillo

28 - Margaret Mills, Jean Brewer & Polly Logan    Diane DeLooza




1 ~ Nancy Tharp                                 11 ~ Tammy Miller

2 ~ Lisa Wood                                     18 ~ Charlie Miller

8 ~ Nancy Marion                               23 ~ Richie Taylor

8 ~ Barbara Stewart                            26 ~ Tom Burke

8 ~ Sharri Jensen


Mary & Martha Circle 

On Tuesday, March 9, the Circle will meet at 10:30 am in the church library. They will be assembling bandages.  Bring a sandwich for lunch. Erma Mullins will share a devotion, and provide dessert.  All ladies are welcome!




The Bd. Of Trustees met on Feb. 16

Ÿ         George Schaeffer gave an update on Bill Crain’s Homeless Ministry for shower/laundry facility.

Ÿ         Stan Ovens will be retiring as Financial Secretary and Treasurer at the end of 2010. Diane DeLooza has been assisting and she will take over as Financial Secretary. We will need to appoint a Treasurer.

Ÿ         Custodial supplies - may seek donations from the congregation.

Ÿ         Stewardship letter - out of 100 letters sent out we only received 10 letters back with annual pledge.

Ÿ         The next meeting of the Bd. Of Trustees will be Tue. March 9.


Report from Your Bd. Of Missions

We wish to thank all of you who supported the SUPER SUB sale. A total of 120 subs were made. With the sales and donations, $872.14 was attained for Yates County Habitat for Humanity. We particularly want to thank Tammy, Greg, Kyle, and Eric Miller, Don and Kathie Lawrence, Judi Gibbs, Betty Johnson and Dave and Garret Tillman who worked hard in assembling the subs.


By the time you are reading this we will be in our promotion of the AMERICA FOR CHRIST OFFERING. We will collect the offering on March 21st.  We have a set of goal of $800 for this years offering.


We know you have had the disaster in Haiti on you minds and hearts. However there are many who need help in this country too. The AFC offering goes to support community centers, centers for the elderly such as the Fairport Home and centers for the disabled such as the Upstate Home as well as many other worthwhile projects which need our support. One such project is the PENNY PROJECT which we are participating in. We are trying to call attention to the fact that 14,000,000 (14 million) children and youth live below the poverty level in the USA. Please save your pennies and turn them in by April 30. All proceeds will go to MILLY’S PANTRY for the BACKPACK PROGRAM.


A reminder. We are still providing the SECRET PLACE for those who enjoy  and use it. If you can, please contribute $1.50 for the regular issue or $2.00 for a large print issue. If means prohibit you from contributing please continue to take and enjoy the SECRET PLACE.


One last reminder. We are still collecting used stamps, Campbell labels and General Mills “Boxtops for Education”. Every little bit helps another project.

                                                                                    Your Bd. Of Missions


Reports From Your Missionaries

Dr. Steve James, a BIM missionary in Haiti, worked 30 hours non-stop along with other members of the Haiti Health Ministry Christianville Clinic giving primary medical care to hundreds of injured people. The work was done even though the workers homes and the clinic had been destroyed. From then on Dr. James and his team of four took over the daily treatment of the injured who came in each day. This freed the local staff to set up a makeshift clinic in a nearby undamaged school. They used supplies and equipment salvaged from the damaged clinic.


Christy Engel our special missionary to the Dominican Republic has been organizing volunteers into primary care medical teams which she brings weekly from LaRomana, DR to Port-Au-Prince. Ketly and Vital Pierre, BIM missionaries to Nicaragua, were members of the first team.


BIM missionary Madeline Flores-Lapel remained in the Dominican Republic She and other Dominican partners are providing shelter and medical care to quake victims brought to the Conteras Hospital in Santo Domingo, DR.


In our last communication from the Niles in the Congo, we learned about a miracle that happened to friends of theirs in Haiti. The Niles had served as BIM missionaries in Haiti prior to going to Africa. Several friends from the IMA World Health organization were in meetings with their Hatian counterparts in Port-Au-Prince when the earthquake struck. The meetings were going on in the Montana Hotel which completely collapsed. For some 50 hours there was no word of their friends. On Thursday, Jan. 14, their friends were rescued from a “pocket” in the hotel rubble.


You can read the complete accounts of our missionaries in their emails found on the readers tables.


You will be pleased to learn that $65,000 in ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING funds have gone to Haiti.





What A Wonderful Farewell!

I cannot thank everyone enough for their gifts and support throughout my 26 years as a family member of this church. I know that even though I will be miles away, your guidance, love and prayers will be right there with me. Thanks Again!   ~ Beth & Jim


7th Annual Whitewater Rafting Trip

Saturday, April 10

April rafting season is just around the corner and so

it’s time to plan our next trip! Brian Schoeffler of

Christian Camping Services is ready to take us down

the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon! The cost is $14 per

person and that includes lunch. We will leave from the

church parking lot at 6:30 am. We have 15 spaces to

fill and need to have your reservation with cash payment by April 1.


Encouraging One Another - Small Group

Wednesdays in March

Beginning the first Wednesday in March and continuing through

the month, Cheryl Stewart will lead the group, picking up where

they left off in the fall.  Everyone is welcome to attend, you don’t

need to have attended the first sessions. Encouraging One Another

is open to anyone who wants to search the Bible for all the ways

God wants us to know he didn’t leave us to face life alone.


Seven from FBC

went to Baptist Temple in Rochester on Sat. Jan. 23rd, for a Stewardship Conference. Dr. Tony Campolo was the Key Note speaker. Some of Dr. Campolo’s Thoughts on Stewardship:


Ÿ         His definition of Stewardship is “Doing the Work of Jesus Here on Earth.”

Ÿ         He cited the old gospel hymn “I Surrender All.”

Ÿ         He challenges us with the statement “We Don’t Take Jesus Seriously!”

Ÿ         He asked the question “Is Jesus Serious About the Sermon on The Mount?”

Ÿ         He equated Discipleship with Stewardship.

Ÿ         He said “We are willing to be Christians Up To A Point!!”

Ÿ         Stewardship is Allowing Jesus to Say “This Is What I Want You To Do!”

Ÿ         He said “Jesus gave up power in order to express Love! We have a Loving God, not an All Powerful God.

Ÿ         Power Coerces!

Ÿ         God doesn’t use his power in Economics, in Politics, in Religion.

Ÿ         Authority comes from Love.

Ÿ         Jesus speaks to us with Authority!

Ÿ         He stressed Romans 8.

Ÿ         He said “Believer-ship should lead into Discipleship.”



Fill the Church with Lilies on Easter

To place a lily or other plant in church for Easter in memory or in honor of someone, please fill out the portion below and place in the collection plate, or you may leave it in the church office. Bring your chosen plant to church by Palm Sunday, March 28.

             Given by: _____________________________________________

             In Memory of: _________________________________________

             In Honor of: ___________________________________________





Many dates are open to reserve your chosen Sunday for your memorial bulletin.  

The cost is $10 for one Sunday. In purchasing Memorial Bulletin Covers, you will help defray some of the church’s operating costs and at the same time memorialize or recognize a loved one. Printed in the bulletin will be the information you provide below. Please send this form to the church office along with your payment.

            Date Preferred _______________  From ______________________

            In Honor of ______________________________________________

            In Memory of ____________________________________________



FROM OUR FILES: Thoughts on selecting a new pastor


“I wish for you just a glimpse of the beautiful dream that was in God’s mind when God created you.” This was  quote given to us by Rev. Dr. Bob Roberts at our recent Leadership Retreat.


            Dr. Roberts led us in a discussion to know and understand the many generations we have in our church. We have people from the GI generation through Generation Y covering birth years from 1901-1996. Each generation has its own way of looking at financial security, spending patterns, issues, organizational loyalty, time, giving, motivations for giving, local ministries, missions and tithing. We need to know, understand, and accept these differences so that we can work together for God.


God has a vision for our church. He has put us her to fulfill that vision. The question is, “Are we going to be a part of God’s future?”. We need to discover God’s vision for us so that we can be a part of God’s future. We did  a Bible study on “Vision.” It was amazing all that we discovered in the Bible. The vision for our church must be discovered, prayed about, shared, and affirmed. When a church has a vision of God’s purpose and works toward that vision, it grows.


There are three paths facing each church today -

A. Death, B. Maintainence, C. Growth.


There are ten marks of leadership to avoid paths A&B. They are:

1. Discover God’s vision, 2. Focus on Evangelism, 3. Enlist everyone, 4. Teach whole-life stewardship, 5. Modeling, 6. Discover real needs of the people and meet them, 6. Focus on specifics, 7. Pray without ceasing, 8. Emphasize worship and praise, 9. Give to missions away from home, 10. Expect surprise-expect something to happen.


Let’s all:

Seek the vision, work together with all generations and be a Living Church.