First Baptist   NEWSLETTER   Penn Yan   

First Baptist Church                                   JUNE 2013


From the Pastor


Dear FBC Family,


While the weather has not coordinated with the calendar so far, we carry on, in season and out, with the work God has entrusted to us. It would be easy look at all we are doing and satisfy ourselves that we are doing as much as anyone to help our community, feed the poor, visit the sick and incarcerated.


But the measuring stick we use is not those around us, but the call of the Holy Spirit. We are doing good and doing well in our community and I continue to brag about you all whenever I get the chance. But, we must always ask if we are being obedient to God's purpose and call for us.


We are addressing some perceived needs with new activities like the Handyman Helpers you've seen noted in the bulletin. Other areas of exploration include a float for parades, improving our presence in the local media, sponsor concerts and movie nights. Some of these may require a little investment and others just need someone to pick up the ball.


All of these require prayer. We need to discern what God wants us to do and then how the Spirit would lead us in it. I keep saying that in all we do, we need to keep the focus on Jesus. I say this, not because we don't, but because it's true and because it doesn't hurt.


Love and Blessings to all, Pastor Steve


News and Activities


Wish These Friends a Happy June Birthday!

11 - Bessie Bliss                     26 – James Best

25 – Diane DeLooza              29 – Calysta Conrad

25 – Stan Ovens


A Summer Gathering – June 9

…of theAmerican Baptist Churches of the Finger Lakes ~ at Reeds Corners Federated Church,4030 State Route 247, Canandaigua

  • 2:45 pm Registration
  • 3:00 pm Devotions, Debbie Kamm
  • 3:20 pm Speaker, Rev. Debbie Kelsey, ABC Missionary
  • 5:00 pm Pot Luck Supper
  • 6:00 pm Closing Announcements

*Churches Be ready to Share What God is Doing Among You*


Ladies Luncheon – June 11

The Mary Martha Circle invites all ladies of the church to attend their annual luncheon on Tuesday, June 11th at the Antique Inn. Call Erma Mullins at 536-0605 or Marge Cornell at 536-6607 by June7th to make your reservations. As always you are invited to bring a friend with you!


Family Picnic Day – June 16

…. in the Great Room immediately following our worship service. The Diaconate will provide ham and beverages. You are invited to bring your own table service and a dish-to-share. “Fun plans are in the making!”

A special note, Pastor Steve will provide “special music” at the morning worship service. We hope you will plan to attend this opportunity to come together as a church family!


Burning of the Mortgage, Congregational Meeting – June 23

From the Trustee's May Meeting:

Ø      Congregational Meeting: Sunday, June 23,  immediately following worship service regarding steeple roof replacement.

Ø      Mortgage Burning: immediately following the congregational meeting on June 23.

Ø      The Trustees will again be selling hot dogs & hamburgs on Wednesday evenings before the summer concerts June 26 – August 14.


Vacation Bible School - June 24 thru 28th

“Kingdom Rock – Where Kids Stand Strong for God” - Presented by an able crew under the direction of Sue Willson.

Anyone who can help - see Sue soon!

Check out the details below!


Hey Men!

It's time to start planning for the AB Men NYS 2013 Gathering - “Fearless in Christ” - August 9, 10 & 11, at the Keuka College Campus, Featured Speaker: Rev. Terrence K. Porter, Senior Minister at Pilgrim Baptist Church, Red Bank, NJ

Small Groups - Youth Program – Workshops - Great Food - Fishing

See Don Lawrence for more information and/or registration forms, or you may visit


Making Sandwiches -or- Feeding the men

We have been asked again to provide sandwiches for the Friday night meal at the American Baptist Men & Boys of New York State Conference at Keuka College on August 9th. If you would be willing to donate sandwich fixings, money to purchase them or to help make sandwiches, please speak with Kathie Lawrence. Thank you.

*Mark your calendars now, the date to assemble the sandwiches will be Friday, August 9th at 2 pm in the church kitchen.


“Handy-Man Helpers”

Members of our American Baptist Men's Group are volunteering to do small repair or clean-up jobs for folks who need this kind of help in order to maintain their homes. If you have something like a leaky faucet, plugged gutter, or lamp that needs a new cord, we can help you. Please phone the church office at 315-536-9821 to add your name and needs to our Job List and we'll get back to you.


Hearts & Hands Ministry  -

Are you interested in reaching out to our congregation and community in times of both Celebration and Heartache? If you are, this ministry is for you! We are gathering items to put into Blessing Bags/Baskets to be given as a “hug” to let others know we share in their joy and in their time of need. If you're interested in making a donation some suggested items include:  Hershey Kisses & Hugs ~ Chocolate Bars ~ Frozen Casseroles ~ Cookies ~ Crackers ~ Tea ~ Cocoa  ~ Lap Blankets ~ Bubble Bath ~ Soaps & Lotions  ~ Puzzles Books ~ Gift Cards ~ Small Stuffed Animals ~“Coupons” for House/Yard Work/Transportation ~ Slipper Socks ~ Coloring Books & Crayons. Of course monetary donations are always appreciated.


Help Wanted: Treasurer

Stan Ovens is retiring as Treasurer after 22+ years in the position. We greatly need someone to “learn the ropes” and take on this responsibility on

July 1, 2013. In the hopes that additional information will help inspire someone to step up and try this important position in the Church, here's a listing of the duties of Treasurer:

  1. Sign checks as needed (payroll and regular monthly bills will be handled online by the Bookkeeper).
  2. Review and sign all paperwork submitted by the Bookkeeper.
  3. Return signed paperwork to Bookkeeper for filing.
  4. Present monthly reports to Trustees.


We have hired Jan Hafner as our Bookkeeper. Her duties include:

  1. Prepare payroll.
  2. Accounts payable (including all required tax forms).
  3. Monthly bank reconciliation.
  4. Provide paperwork to Treasurer for signature.
  5. Provide monthly reports to the Treasurer.
  6. Keep filing up to date.


Please prayerfully consider how you might be able to help the Church. Let a Trustee know if your heart has been touched to take on this position.


Take Note: The Trustees have adopted a “Church Endowment Fund Investment Policy Statement”.  A copy is posted on the bulletin boards for viewing.



Vacation Bible School


Vacation Bible School 2013 -June 24 thru 28th, 8:30 am to Noon


“Kingdom Rock – Where Kids Stand Strong for God” At Kingdom Rock, your kids are invited to enter the epic adventure that empowers them to stand strong! They'll learn that God's victorious power isn't a fairy tale – but a source of strength for them every day, as they experience God's word in fun and unforgettable ways that make biblical truth applicable to real life!


Highlighted Bible Personalities will be:

King David, Mordecaie, Esther, Nehemiah , King Josiah


Arts & Crafts

Sculpting, painting, scratch design, castle building


Kids, here are the characters you will meet

Truman, Duke, Swift, Sir Valiant, Victoria


Transportation, breakfast, and snacks provided

Families are invited to join us daily at 11:30 am


CAll the church office at 536-9821 to request a registration form, or pick one up on the table at church.

Register by June 19th please.


Mission News


CONGRATULATIONS!!!  You donated $275.32 to the “PENNY PROJECT”. That will help the “BACKPACK PROGRAM” feed kids and youth through the summer weekends. We have been requested to continue to accept pennies throughout the rest of the year by several members of the congregation. When you have accumulated enough pennies that you want to turn in, bring them to church. The PENNY JUG will be on the altar rail each Sunday.


We will also continue to collect food items for the “BACKPACK” program through the rest of the year. We estimate that between 100 and 150 cereal bars came in during April. Becky Bloomquist Holder gave you MUCHO THANKS! They have never received so many cereal bars at one time since they've been doing the “BACKPACKS.” Watch you bulletins each month to see what new items is the “spotlight” item.


We received a THANK YOU from BACONE COLLEGE for your donation. American Baptist Home Mission Society sent a THANK YOU for your generous AMERICA FOR CHRIST OFFERING of $876.


A Special Note: You know that we contribute to Cameron Community Center which is located in one of the poorest areas of Rochester. In their latest communication, Cameron tells of the kids and youth who attend Cameron programs becoming interested in the “PENNY PROJECT”. Over 99% of the children and youth involved qualify for free/reduced lunches at schools. Setting a goal of $100, they collected $110.57. They gave their funds to the Galisano Children's Hospital at Strong. It is truly amazing what God can do through even the poorest of us.


One Great Hour of Sharing

We will be receiving the ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING offering on June 23rd. We have set a goal of $750. this offering is for disaster relief such as for Hurricane Sandy and the Japanese Tsumami. Please give prayerfully and generously.


SHARING BRINGS JOY!    The phrase rolls easily off the tongue, but it is no trite cliché. It expresses profound spiritual truth-truths about a living and caring God-truths about a joyous generosity that moves through the human experience as we relate to others and God.


SHARING BRINGS JOY TO US!    Generous giving practiced as a regular habit, teaches us joy. We see ourselves as part of an effort expressing God's love for the world.


SHARING BRINGS JOY TO OTHERS!   For 64 years, recipients of the ONE GREAT HOURS OF SHARING relief and support have known comfort and joy through your giving. Families receiving Disaster Relief, families getting pure water supplies and children going to a new school building are examples of joyful recipients.


SHARING BRINGS JOY TO GOD!    As you make your offering to the OGHS this year, please remember the many ways your gifts bring joy - - to you as a child of God, to all of God's other precious children and especially to God.


From Tim & Patti Long

The Longs sent us pictures of the kids at Monte Horeb School in Tijuana celebrating the first day of spring. Special dances were a part of the celebration. Be sure to see the pictures on the Mission Bulletin Board.


Roberta Stephens

Roberta’s journal has several interesting anecdotes. One is about tithing the Japanese way. Something is given every Sunday for their offering. To give once a month, as many of us do, is considered an offense to God! Another is how it took a year and a half before the $115,000 the Shokei Church received from the OGHS could be used to help replace the church building destroyed in the 3/11 earthquake. With so much devastation in the area, no architects, carpenters or building materials were to be had. This delay was hard on us Americans who expected the funds to be used immediately! It was even harder on the Japanese being asked to explain the delay.

Be sure to read Roberta's journal on the Mission Bulletin Board.

From the Dioconate


The Board of Deacons is readying for the busy months ahead. We are beginning by reorganizing the Usher/Greeter Committees. The new Head Usher/Greeters are: Greg Miller, Erma Mullins, Stan Ovens, and Judi Scheel. The committee members helping are: Lyle Conrad, Trevor Conrad, George Jensen, Cliff LaBarr, Charles Miller and Charlie Watkins. The members will aid with microphones, collect offerings, and gather requests and notices for the pastor. If you can help or have questions, please call Charles Watkins at 536-9814.


VP Carrie Ahearn reports that the small groups “Getting to Know You” project with Rev. Sanden is going well and will progress for several months as is convenient for members. Homes or the church will be used for meeting places. Call Carrie at 315-759-8808 for more information.


The Deacons were delighted to hear from Tommy Tharp saying he had earned his Master of Divinity Degree from Gardner Webb University in North Carolina along with a surprise trip to the Holy Land from his parents who will accompany him. Best wishes Tom!


We are pleased with the success of the Monday evening project, “Dinner with the Ahearns” held in the church dining room, where they serve nutritious food with nutritious fellowship. If you have not attended, give yourself a treat.


The need for a visitor sign in book at the ramp-side entrance of the sanctuary has been brought to the attention of the Board.


Keep Sunday, June 16th date for the Annual Church Picnic at the church, right after the Sunday Service. Fun plans are in the making. Watch the Sunday bulletins for more information.


Church Historian and Deacon Richard Johnson reports that a brass memorial plate acknowledging the gift of the beautiful Weber piano in the sanctuary by Wilma Bishop is finished. Wilma, a long-time member of our church, has given a gift that is not only enjoyed by our members, but also by the many folks in the community who come to hear the concerts. Thank you Wilma!


Suzie Willson will direct the 2013 VBS program again this year. The theme is, “Kingdom Rock-Where Kids Stand Strong for God”. Deacon Lyle Conrad will direct the art and craft portion of the program. It has been learned through the years that for many children this is the only experience they have to learn about God. This is our chance to truly witness locally. Many, many hours go into preparation for VBS by our own church members. Last year, when a small boy asked his teacher, “Who is this Jesus guy?” it was an eye opener! The Holy Nudge has been given!


Memo from Barbara Stewart, President; and Carrie Ahearn, Vice President: As Deacons, our job is to bring you God's message. We are looking for ways and means to facilitate this end. If you have ideas or concerns, we want your input. Let us know.


~ A Letter ~


Here is a letter form long-time church member Paula Washburn via Barbara Burke.


Dear Barbara, Thank you so much for your nice, newsy note of 2/4/13. I grew up attending the First Baptist Church of Penn Yan and many of my classmates did as well. There will always be many wonderful memories of what I still consider “my church”.


Recently, I have been attending First Baptist Church here in Webster. I was pleased to learn that Pastor Sanden is a good fit for you all. Much of what you wrote about seems to mirror our pastor and church life. Tis' a good experience! Contending with a very painful eye condition for most of this winter, I am now one very happy person to be feeling almost like new. My best regards to all and God Bless!


Thank you for your prayers.

Paula Washburn

182 Seasons Trail Apartment B, Webster, NY 14580

(Paula would surely enjoy hearing from our congregation)


A Prayer for Flag Day – June 14


On this special day, O Lord, we praise you for the nation and the flag which flies over our land. As we look to the stars on the blue field, we are mindful of the heavens and your creation. As we look to the stripes, we remember the rays of your light and your truth. May this awareness, light and truth permeate our lives and the way in which we relate. Help us, O God, to pray and to know that this flag represents one nation under God. May your divine wisdom be manifested in the thoughts of our president and in our legislative, judicial, and military leaders. Bind us as one in strength and in your love. As our flag has carried the message of human rights and religious freedom throughout the world, may it continue to do so in the days and years to come. This we pray in the holiest of names. Amen.

                                                  (From: United States Air Force Chaplain Service)



First Baptist Church                                                Church Staff      

   224 Main Street                                                       Rev. Stephen M. Sanden       

   Penn Yan, NY 14527                                                 Barbara Stewart: Music Director

   Phone: 315-536-9821                                               Carrie Ahearn: Organist

   E-Mail:                                   Peggy S Smart: Secretary


   Office Hours: Mon thru Fri 9AM - Noon  


Church Officers                                                        Our Schedule

   Moderator: Nancy Marion                                       Sunday Worship - 10 AM

   Vice Moderator: Rick Willson                                 Sunday School - 10:15 AM

   Church Clerk: Cheryl Stewart                                  Adult Sunday School - 11 AM

   Church Treasurer: Stan Ovens

   Finance Officer: Diane DeLooza

   Missions: Ed Castillo

   Trustees: Sheryl Robbins

   Deacons: Barb Stewart

   Christian Education: Greg Marion

   ABW: Diane DeLooza