- - - NEWSLETTER FOR DECEMBER 2009 - - -    

 First Baptist Church

224 Main St. Penn Yan, NY 14527

 (315) 536-9821 e-mail:

Rev. John R. Tharp, Pastor



Our worship services for December


Dec. 6              “From You Will Come a Leader”

                        Matthew 2:1-12


Dec. 13            “He Will Be Called a Nazarene”

                        Matthew 2:16-23


Dec. 20            “The World Upside Down”

                        Luke 1:46-56


Dec. 24            “Old Story - Fresh Light”

                        Luke 2:8-20

                        7 pm Christmas Eve Candlelight Service


Dec. 27            “The Presence of God”

                        Luke 2:22-38




6 ~ Greg, Tammy, Erik & Kyle Miller

13 ~ Pat Ames

20 ~ Ed & Rita Castillo

24 ~ Dauda Abubaker, Lyle  Conrad, Charlie Miller, Marion Perry

27 ~ Stan Ovens & Greg Marion



December Birthdays                                                              

1 ~ Marge Moulton                            15 ~ Joyce Slocum

1 ~ Peyton Hansen                             17 ~ Paul MacDougall

4 ~ Kyle Miller                                   31 ~ Darryl Johnson

9 ~ Deb Eveland                                 31 ~ Virginia DeLooza




Friday, December 11 - 6:30 pm


The children will help make a Nativity Cloth Mural with adults help.

We need your children and grandchildren to create.

We need you, the adults to help with cutting and gluing.

Popcorn, punch and Christmas DVD to watch



Sponsored by Your Bd of Missions


Mary & Martha Circle - Out To Lunch

All ladies of the church are invited to join The Circle as they go out to lunch to the Antique Inn this month. The date is set for Tuesday, December 8, at noon. Last year we had a WONDERFUL time with 18 of us! Contact Marge Cornell at 536-6607 if you would like to attend .


Say Cheeese!!!

In January 2010 Olan Mills will be here to do a pictorial directory. Our last directory was done in 2002. It’s been 8 years and we’ve changed a bit over the years. Watch for sign-ups, we anticipate that the photo date will be on Wednesday, January 13.  Circle that date on your calendar NOW, to keep the day open for our directory.


Visit to Juanita Culver

In October, a small group of caring individuals traveled

to Victor, to pay a visit to Juanita Culver. “Thank you so

much for planning the trip to visit me.“ Juanita wrote in

a card sent to the office. “It meant so much to visit

with you all.“ So, we thank the traveling threesome of

Margaret Mills, Erma Mullins and Pastor John for taking the time

to brighten Juanita’s day and let her know we are thinking of her.


Report of the Board of Trustees for November

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


Ÿ         We met with Penn Clark and Myron Glick who enlightened us with their upcoming events for the Wellspring Church and asked for permission to use the building for these events. A youth gathering will happen from March 19-21.  Their annual Leadership Conference will be held here from May 23-25. They also requested that their church service be allowed to move to 3 pm, as it is getting dark early and travel is a concern. The Trustees voted and passed on each of these requests.

Ÿ         Stan Ovens reported that our finances are in the black.

Ÿ         There was also discussion on ways to use our building during disasters and ways its use can help the needy people of Penn Yan.

Ÿ         We discussed plans for activities during the Stewardship Drive and ways to reach the inactive people on our membership roles.

Ÿ         We are trying to locate keys that have been signed out and not returned. Some have been returned through our efforts.

Ÿ         We discussed forming policies to ensure safety and security in our building.

Ÿ         We are looking for an organist and talked about the need to increase the organist’s salary.

The next Trustees meeting will be on Tuesday, December 8, 2009.


Bd. Of Mission Report

For those of you who weren’t in church on the first two Sundays of November, you missed HALLELUJAH SUNDAY!!! To date the WMO has received $1,349.53 which is above our goal of $1000 and the WMO of 2008. HALLELUJAH! HALLELUJAH! HALLELUJAH!  We thank all of you generous mission-minded givers. You are truly to be praised.!!


On December 11, your Board of Mission is sponsoring a Church Family-Fun Pre-Christmas Party!!! You are all invited. We are asking the children of the church and any of your grandchildren to make a Nativity cloth mural. We would like adults to help the kids cut and glue. We will follow this activity with punch, popcorn and a kid’s Christmas DVD. We hope many of you will participate and help all have a good time.    


We will start the “PENNY FOR MISSION” project after the New Year. More information will be given in the January newsletter.


Our last special offering of 2009 will be taken on Dec. 13. The RETIRED MINISTERS AND MISSIONARIES OFFERING is to remember and honor our retired ministers, missionaries and those relatives who have special needs. This year’s goal is $1000.


We received the following thank you:

            Springbrook                            $450

            Keuka College Fund              $350

            Keuka College Chaplaincy     $150


......... Your Board of Missions


Missionary News

This month we received a very interesting letter from Wayne Niles in the CONGO. A condensed version follows:


There are times in our lives when we are called on to do things that are against our better judgement. Each summer I face a quandary that makes me betray my personal standards.

It is now the dry season in Congo. Cool weather means folks can grow vegetables that don’t make it in the rainy season’s heat. Folks want to grow EGGPLANT! I can’t stand eggplant.


In our Devru project we help folks learn how to grow vegetables which is very profitable. We show them how to prepare soil, sow seeds, and care for the crop. We often provide tools. We give them seeds. Invariable they insist on growing eggplant. I rejoice in women being able to grow tomatoes, carrots, onions etc. But why eggplant?


Ponduk, an important dish in Congo is like boiled spinach. It is made from Cassava leaves, pounded to pulp and cooked with oil, spices and other additions such as fish or hot peppers. A good friend makes a very delicious version so tasty that I insisted she come and show us her technique. One day she arrived with all the necessary ingredients: a large quantity of Cassava leaves, palm oil, onions, hot peppers and eggplant!

So it is with resignation that I use funds you send our way to help my Congolese brothers and sister grow more food knowing a small portion will be used to grow something I would not allow in my house. Despite me, the Lord is blessing their efforts. On their behalf, I thank you.


Wayne Niles

For the completer letter and photos, see the reader’s table.



The Jessup Education Fund Committee has awarded Tom Tharp a scholarship to help him pay tuition and fees at Colgate Rochester Crozier Divinity School. He is a full time student there and is studying to become a Christian Minister. American Baptist Churches USA will match the scholarship, doubling its impact. Tom was questioned extensively by the committee prior to the award of the scholarship.

Committee members are: Judi Gibbs, Beth (DeLooza) Travis,

Rev. Douglas Passage, Ed Castillo and Jack Clancy.


A BIG Thank You!

To all who contributed to the World Mission Offering!

Because of your generosity, as of November 8, $1,365.01 has been received.





Now is the time to indicate your preference for a Memorial  bulletin cover.

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 information to the church office along with your payment.


            Date Preferred _______________  From _______________________


            In Honor of ______________________________________________


            In Memory of _____________________________________________



In Our Community


Pancake Day

The Yates County Habitat For Humanity annual Starshine Celebration Pancake Supper, will be held on Friday, December 4. Servings will be 11am-1:30pm and 4:30pm-7pm at St. Michael’s Church Dining Hall. Ticket prices are $18-Family, $6-adult, $4-5~12 years. The menu will be pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, juice, coffee, tea or milk .


Christmas Concert

The Community Chorus will hold it’s annual Christmas Choral Concert on Sunday, December 13 at 3 pm in our sanctuary. This year’s theme will be “A Medieval & Renaissance Christmas Concert” featuring a “Ceremony of Carols”, traditional and madrigals and a sing a long.


Cookie Walk

The 2nd annual Holiday Cookie Walk to benefit the Keuka Comfort Care Home will take place on Saturday, December 19, from 10 am till the cookies sell out at the First Presbyterian Church.