- - - - NEWSLETTER FOR JUNE/JULY 2008 - - - -    


 First Baptist Church

224 Main St. Penn Yan, NY 14527

 (315) 536-9821 e-mail:

Rev. John R. Tharp, Pastor





June 1             Live Strong

                        Isaiah 51:7-8 & Nehemiah 6


June 8             Create in Me a Clean Heart

                        Psalm 51


June 15           Remember Who Loves You

                        Luke 15:11-22


June 22           God is Willing to Forget – Are You?

                        II Corinthians 5:16-19


June 29           Take Out the Garbage, Leave it Out!

                        James 1:19-27



Serving the Church in June:

Date                Lay Readers                                                  Greeters

June 1             Barbara Stewart                      Eileen & Christian Modaffari

June 8             Shane Furman             Miller Family

June 15           Barbara Burke                        Clancy Family

June 22           Margaret Mills                       Scheel Family

June 29           Marge Moulton                      Conrad Families



Serving the Church in July:

Date                Lay Readers                                                   Greeters

July 6                                                              Diane & Beth DeLooza

July 13                                                            Christine Conklin & Shelley Bicksler

July 20                                                            Stan & Cindy Ovens

July 27                                                            Nancy, John F.M., Tom Tharp




When we lived on Cape Cod, this statement was often found, in some form, in the scrimshaw offerings of the gift shops. Customarily these were etched on whale bones or on ivory. More importantly, this message was on the minds of the fishermen and women who plied the waters of the Atlantic to make a living. Storms could come up fast and, even with the advance warning systems, fishing crews were lost with depressing regularity.

We do not need to go to the Atlantic or to the Aleutians to feel the overwhelming power of nature. The recent cyclone in Myanmar and earthquake in China added to the tornadoes in our own southern states demonstrate the powers and dangers of the world in which we live. The courageous words of the Psalmist come to us: “We will not be afraid, even if the earth is shaken and mountains fall into the ocean depths; even if the seas roar and rage and the hills are shaken by the violence.” (46:2-3)

On May 25th we honored our veterans and had a service of remembrance for those who were victims of the holocaust. Two world wars and the extermination of millions of people are demonstrations of the massive evil of which humankind is capable. When we add in the atomic bomb, bio-weapons, and potentially, space satellite lasers, we begin to shape a more powerful definition to the phrase: “depraved indifference to human life”. On May 19, the “Democrat & Chronicle” carried the story of mass executions carried out by South Korea against its own citizens in 1950, with the knowledge of U.S. advisors. Only this January (2008) was there an official apology by the retiring president, Roh Moo-hyun.

Last month we had an excellent CROP walk in our village, netting more than $12,000 (pretty good for us). Our church, with the help of others, has taken four loads of clothing, household items, and (57) bicycles to the Karen refugees in Utica. Our church continues its strong tradition of excellent mission giving. We pray, do mission trips, train people in Christian ministry, study the Bible, and offer a wonderful Christian Education program. But what is all that against the over powering reality of evil and need in the world today?

Can God be serious (?) that a baby in a manger and the crucifixion of an innocent man can make a difference against the powers of evil and the rampant indifference to human life. There is a huge battle for the souls of women, men, and children. Yet God has given us the weapon of love, the message of Jesus Christ, and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit so that we can go forth with the conviction that God will use us as ambassadors of peace.

In the face of huge waves of violence and need, our boat may seem very small indeed, but our Captain is 100% able.

                                                            Pastor John



Highlights of the Board of Trustees Meeting: May 13, 2008

¨       Received the report from the Ad Hoc Investment Committee and agreed to accept their recommendations.

¨       Finalized plans for cleaning the basement.

¨       The trustees met with Sean Ahearn and listened to his research about improving the audio-visual service in the sanctuary.

¨       Peggy has contacted the Step Aerobics people and asked that they move their equipment to the basement. This was where they originally were told to store their equipment.

¨       George Schaeffer from the Food for the Needy program, met with the trustees to talk about renovating the basement to better meet their needs. They would help fund the project. George envisions using that space for packing the bags for the Backpack Program.

¨       Mark Lawrence has offered to do a fund raiser concert for us in September.

¨       There was discussion about planning the Stewardship Campaign early this year.





Highlights of May 2008 meeting of the Investment Committee

for Endowment Fund of FBC

The motion from the congregation at the ’08 Annual Meeting to possibly use moneys from the Endowment fund to pay down the Mortgage on the new addition was discussed in depth.

In light of the use of the interest and dividends from the Endowment Fund to support the Local Budget, it was unanimously adopted to keep the use of the Endowment Fund as is for the time being.

The condition of the Endowment Fund will be reviewed again in September.





Finger Lakes Baptist Association Meeting

First Baptist Church of Manchester ~ Sunday, June 1

Registration begins at 2:30 p.m.

Hymn Sing at 2:45 p.m.

Devotions at 2:55 p.m.

The Rev. Bill Carlsen and others will give a report on the

New Baptist Covenant meeting that was held in Atlanta.

A dish-to-pass supper begins at 5 p.m. followed by adjournment. Desserts and beverages will be provided by the host church.

Remember to bring a canned food to be donated to the local Food Cupboard.



All-Church Outings!


Hike the Outlet

Sunday, June 15, 3 p.m.

Get your family together for a hike. We will meet at the church at 3 p.m. and leave for the outlet trail. Our plan is to hike as far as the falls, then pause for a cook-out. All the food and beverages will be provided by the organizing committee! Contact Eileen Modaffari at 694-8267 if you have any questions.


Go Fish

Saturday, July 26, 3 p.m.

Let’s go fishing at the boat launch. We will meet at 3 p.m., fish for a while and then have a dish-to-pass cook-out. Chaperones or parents are needed to help with the fishing experience. Contact Eileen Modaffari for more information at 694-8267.


Camping at Watkins Glen State Park

August 23-24

This event is still a little way out, but we need to have your RSVP by June 15, to reserve camping spots. Parents and chaperones are definitely needed, maybe some camping gear to borrow. Everyone is invited, young and the young at heart. We will be organizing a committee to help with the planning of activities, games, hikes, campfire sing-alongs, food, etc. Contact Eileen Modaffari at 694-8267 to reserve your spot and to help with the planning.




Has your child explored the exciting adventure of Camp Vick? Camp is a place where your child will experience a positive and supportive Christian environment with children from across New York State.

From June through August, a new theme such as Creative Arts, Sailing Camp, Equestrian, or Frontier Survivor, is introduced each week. Each week, is packed full of fun activities, adventure and growth. Make a week of your child’s summer a memorable one.  Call Beth DeLooza at 536-3162 for more information regarding the theme weeks, enrollment and fundraising for Camp Vick.





Special Interest Missionaries.


The Finger Lakes ABW Ministries is emphasizing these two missionary families for 2008-9.


The Rev. Richard & Mrs. Susan Harding                             Birthdays

Cordova Community Christian Center                                  Susan – 10/16

PO Box 713                                                                            Richard – 12/17

Cordova, AK 99574


Dr. James & The Rev. Debra Kelsey                       Birthdays

Via Cappello 21A                                                        Debra – 12/25        Luke – 2/16/94

35027 Noventa Padovana PD                         James – 11/26        Ben    3/21/96



The Hardings have ministered in Cordova, a remote, commercial fishing town, for many years. The population is 2500 people (in the summer 5-6000!) Due to its isolation and transient population, they have to deal with a lack of social connecting, loneliness, depression and alcoholism among adults and teens. They run a restaurant ministry – the only place in town where alcohol is not served. There are also social and evangelistic activities for children and teens. Richard has recently retired after 25 years as pastor of Cordova Community Baptist Church. Their son, The Rev. John Harding is now the pastor.


The Kelseys assist the Evangelical Christian Baptist Union of Italy in ministry to English speaking immigrants, particularly African congregations. This includes local church ministry and theological and ministerial training of leaders. Debbie is also involved in urban mission and helps the Union to develop ministry among women trafficked for work in the sex industry.





Saturday, June 7, 2008 ~ 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. ~ First Baptist Church, Manlius, NY


Come and hear our special guests…

Rev. Vincent Harris, a commissioned American Baptist home missinary, ministers on the “back side” of Thistledown Racetrack in Cleveland OH. Vincent was ordained by Delaware St. Baptist Church (now Fay Road Baptist) in Syracuse and was active in ministry in central NY before gong to Thistledown in 1996. In all of his work, having the heart of a servant is very important to him. “I love to serve people,” he says. “I’m here because people need my help.” Vincent’s deep commitment to compassionate service developed during hard times in his own life when God and caring Christians ministered to him. He describes himself as living proof of the wonderful grace of Jesus Christ.


            Rev. Ray Schooler has served in local church ministry in several capacities (including Pastor at Kenmore Baptist Church in Kenmore, NY) and also served AB Churches as a General Board member and President of the Board of International Ministries. It was in this role that he discovered a passion for global missions and now serves as Director of Church Relations for IM. Ray says of a trip he made while IM Board president: “I saw our missionaries in Thailand who are engaged in vital ministry, as well as the results of ‘mission done right’ in the indigenous mission work in Burma. This exposure ‘sold’ me on the value of what IM is doing, and it changed my life.”


Plus hear about Regional Ministries and get plenty of inspiration, education, and encouragement! You don’t have to be a Mission Advocate or Pastor to come. Anyone interested in mission is welcome! For more information: Mary Schwarz, 315-469-4236, ext. 10. Email:




To the Congregation,

The ProAction/Yates Office for the Aging is interested in holding a lunch program at our church. It would include meals delivered to our facility on days of our choosing. The meals would be served in individually packaged containers that are packed each morning according to the number of meals we request. At least 5 volunteers would be needed each time. The cost is on a donation basis and is $2.50 for people 60 and over and a non-donation cost of $5 for those under 60. The primary focus is seniors, however, all ages are welcome. A lunch program at our church can help increase fellowship and most importantly allow those who may be isolated the opportunity to spend time with others in the community.  Contact the church office at 536-9821 if you are interested in this serving opportunity.



4 ~ Laverne Chaapel                          19 ~ Ann Perry                              Birthdays are good

5 ~ George Slocum                             23 ~ Gerry Lane                            for you. Statistics

5 ~ John FM Tharp                            25 ~ Diane DeLooza                     show that the people

11 ~ Bessie Bliss                                25 ~ Warner Gibbs                       who have the most

16 ~ Tom Tharp                                  25 ~ Stan Ovens                          live the longest!

26 ~ Jim Best                    ~ Larry Lorenzoni



3 ~ Bill Gillette                                   20 ~ Guy Love

12 ~ Christian Modaffari                    21 ~ Margaret Hartwell




Worship Committee

We are seeking people who might be interested in helping plan and orchestrate our Sunday morning worship services. How many times have you had an idea or suggestion for a sermon topic or for a song that would have tied in perfectly with the message Pastor Tharp presented that morning? Maybe you’re interested in drama and would enjoy seeing a skit once in a while. Perhaps you are a great organizer and love to plan or you would like to take part in PR to promote upcoming special worship events to reach out and bring in some of the un-churched in our community. Maybe you are interested in technology and would like to make some powerpoint presentations. As you can see, the possibilities are endless. So, we’re asking you to prayerfully think about the gifts God has given you and consider being a part of our Worship Committee. If you are interested, or would like more information, please contact Pastor Tharp, George Jensen, or Pam Scutt.



Family Day Service

Sunday, June 15 at 10:30 a.m.

This year the Family Day Service will be held at the Izaak Walton League

in Branchport.  We will start the service a little later to give folks a chance

to get there and for those in need of transportation, the van will leave

from the parking lot at 10 a.m.

Following the service we will have an all-church picnic! The hotdogs, rolls, lemonade and watermelon, will be provided by the Deacons. Please bring a dish-to-pass and your own table service. As always, it will be a fun time for all – we even have the Water Balloon Slingshot returning by popular demand. So be sure to mark your calendars – you won’t want to miss this event!

VBS – Local Mission Project

This year our VBS staff and kids will support a local mission project.



Rushville Health Center

People Helping People


Rushville Health Center serves the surrounding communities by providing health services to low income and immigrant families. Our project in VBS will be to collect items that these children and families can use. Check over the list below and drop off your donations to the office at anytime.

Please be sure to mark your donations for VBS Mission Project.


Toothbrushes             Band-aids                                Soap                           

Toothpaste                  Antibiotic creams                   Kleenex

Dental Floss                First Aid items                        Hydrogen Peroxide

Cavity Fighting Mouth Rinse                                     Hand Sanitizer



Vacation Bible School

June 30-July 3

This year the VBS theme is Ancient Jerusalem Marketplace, and the kids will be here soon! The staff have been busy planning and preparing but they can’t do it all without your help. They need donated items to help bring home the message to these kids. Check over the list below and see if you can’t help in some way. Thanks!


Beads ~ tassels ~ jewelry ~ small jingle bells ~ small sea shells ~ artificial plants & flowers ~ old striped sheets ~ Holy Land Artifacts ~

teachers ~ helpers



Blankets for Injured Iraqi Children

A request came to Meghan Fuqua, from her father in the Air Force, stationed in Utah.  He sends word of a need and an ongoing collection of all types of blankets that can be shipped out from his base to troops stationed in Iraq. Blankets may be shipped to: Robert N. Fuqua II, MSGT. USAF

Nondestructive Inspection Section Chief

388 EMS Hill AFB Utah

DSN 777-2832

The blankets are then sent out via carrier and are delivered to the troops that have contact with Iraq’s injured children of all ages.