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Rio Rancho Presbyterian Church

1004 24th Street SE, Rio Rancho, NM 87124   (505) 892-6664    

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Category Archives: Weekly Witness

July 4, 2020 Weekly Witness

Online Worship

Click link below on our website’s home page each week.

Either click here or go to https://rioranchopresbyterianchurch.org/ anytime to view this week’s Sunday worship. (Spelled-out link is at the end of this email). Once you land on the page, please scroll below photos at the top of each page. There are separate links for both this week’s and previous weeks’ found there.

 A Word From Our Treasurer

During this period of quarantine, we have reminded you of the importance of keeping up with your pledge to the church … and you have responded admirably! So much so that in May we A.L.M.O.S.T. broke even, which is wonderful news. Thank you for all you have done!

But now for the bad news! June hit us like a ton of bricks with two large bills for insurance and payroll taxes which came due, with a second installment of taxes due again in July.

So the battle is not over. Please remember to send in your pledges on a regular basis. We are still an active, on-going church, trying to meet the needs of our members; and our church leaders are doing a phenomenal job in that regard. For instance, we may be closed but we still celebrate Communion and we are conducting VBS as usual. But such growth and service are only possible with your continued support.

Thank you for all you continue to do.
Thom Hinks, Treasurer

 2020 Scholarships of GRACE Recipients

5th Year:
Jack Mishos: Senior, University of New Mexico – Major: Psychology

4th Year
Socorro Tafoya: Senior, Curtin University (Perth, Australia) — Major; Business Law and International Relations

3rd Year
Matuke Fomukong: Junior; University of New Mexico – Major: Health Medicine and Human Values
Alexander Mishos: Sophomore; Central New Mexico (CNM) — Major: Mechanical Engineering

2nd Year
Valerie Langwell: Sophomore; University of New Mexico – Major: Athletic Training

1st Year
Anwi Fomukong: Freshman; University of New Mexico – Major: Mechanical Engineering
Cameron Mitchell: Freshman; Central New Mexico (CNM) – Major: Undeclared
Adam Pitts: Freshman; University of New Mexico – Major: Education/Mathematics

 Youth Sunday is July 12!

On Sunday July 12, our youth will be leading us in our online worship service. We will hear from two of our seniors, Anwi Fomukong and Adam Pitts. We are grateful for all our youth – another blessing in our midst!

While We Are Away

Mike and Kathy Thayer and Aloy and Marv Bamberg having been working each week on our grounds. Clearing brush, cleaning up the landscaping, and maintaining weed control are among the things they are doing. In addition, they are cleaning and landscaping the strip of land just south of our parking lot. It is looking wonderful! Many thanks for their hard work and dedication to this ministry.

June 27, 2020 Weekly Witness

June 27 Weekly Witness for Website

 Online Communion Next Sunday July 5th at 11

We will observe the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper on Sunday, July 7 at 11 am via Zoom. During this time we will also be recognizing our Scholarships of Grace recipients. 

For communion, please have a bread like food and a cup of something to drink (juice, water, tea). 

 If you would like to attend, please email Pastor Kathy Westmoreland.

General Assembly News

The 224th (2020) General Assembly, like many other gatherings, has had to go online. On June 20 commissioners gathered online to elect our new co-moderators. You can read more about this here.

When they reconvened this past week for two days, they took these actions.

RRPC’s Virtual Relay for Life

Register as a team member – pick a project or activity (biking, swimming, hiking, reading, sewing, whatever), pledge to finish it anytime between now and September 14, and join the RRPC team. Sponsors can go to participants’ pages to support them. Our team is now 5 members strong – join us.

Other ways to support Relay and our team are:

Buy a limited-edition t-shirt now through July 10, 2020. Two shirts (the other one is lavender) are available for purchase for $30 each, and $15 of each one sold will go directly to our team’s fundraising efforts. Click here to purchase.  

Donate discarded clothes/shoes/furniture/furnishings to Albuquerque Relay’s summer yard sales. Proceeds will go toward our team’s $goal. Call 505.379.7846 or email Karin (ktrujillo@comcast.net) to arrange a pickup.

Dedicate a luminaria for $10 by clicking here. Karen or Christie will decorate them to your specs, or bags can be mailed to you to decorate. You can dedicate the bags in honor of, in memory of, or in support of a loved one. Then join us for a luminaria drive-through later this summer (location/time TBA).

Christie Alison (505.867.9707) and Karen Payne (505.559.4760), 2020 Co-Captains

Click to email.

Thanks from Tyler Landon, 2020 (Chandler, AZ)

Tyler wants to pass along thanks for the graduation cards from us and sends best wishes to the Youth group. Tyler and his family moved to Chandler 3 or 4 years ago.

 One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

If you have not had an opportunity yet to make a donation to the One Great Hour of Sharing offering, this week will be the final week one. We want to mail in our congregation’s donation this month. Please make the check to RRPC and put One Great Hour in the memo line. You will be supporting our efforts in hunger, self-development of people and disaster assistance.

With grateful hearts,
Cyndie Tidwell and Crystal Mitchell, Co-Chairs, Mission Committee

Learning Group for Race Education

A group has formed for online learning/discussion about race. We will be reading, So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. We will meet twice a month on Wednesday at 11am. The first date will be determined once everyone has the book. Kaitie Leffler will be facilitating. If you would be interested in being a part of this please contact Pastor Kathy.

June 20, 2020 Weekly Witness

Not Quite Time Yet

At its June meeting, the Session reassessed the situation regarding in person worship. Since there have been no changes to the restrictions for houses of worship or stay-at-home guidance for those vulnerable to COVID, we will not be reopening for worship. The Session will continue to monitor the situation. The Session appreciates your prayers and support as they seek to lead in ways that are in the best interest of our whole congregation.

 VBS Last Chance

But first, click here for an introduction to VBS by our own Chela and Nico!

What is the Theme? “Jesus Is Coming” This no-cost VBS is being done in a new way–with an online original production–for families of children pre-K through 5th grade.

When Are the Weekly Videos Released? by 3 pm every Sunday, June 21 through July 20. You will receive a link to a video that guides you through Music, a Bible story, a Craft, a Science Experience, and a Challenge for the week. You will pick up your VBS weekly packets from Rio Rancho Presbyterian Church every Sunday from 3:00-4:00pm or Monday from 9:30-10:30am.

You may go at your own pace at a time convenient to you. And we look forward to sharing in photos of your children’s experiences!

On any Sunday throughout the five-week period, parents will also be able to help Sandoval County families by bringing peanut butter, jelly, or individually-wrapped bar soap for Storehouse West.

Click here to register

 RRPC’s Virtual Relay for Life

There will be no in-person Relay in Albuquerque this year. All events will be virtual – so our team just got started early. Active participants will pick a project or activity (biking, swimming, hiking, reading, sewing, whatever), pledge to finish it anytime between now and September 14, and join the RRPC team. Sponsors can go to participants’ pages to support them.

Other ways to support Relay and our team are:

Donate discarded clothes/shoes/furniture/furnishings to Albuquerque Relay’s summer yard sales. Proceeds will go toward our team’s $goal. Since normal donations outlets have been closed, stuff to donate may have piled up since many of us have had more time to organize and clean out. Just call 505.379.7846 or email Karin (ktrujillo@comcast.net) to arrange a pickup.

Dedicate a luminaria by clicking here. Order the traditional white bag and Karen or Christie will decorate them to your specs. You can dedicate the bags in honor of, in memory of, or in support of a loved one. Then join us for a luminaria drive-through later this summer (location/time TBA).

Please join us for RRPC’s summer relay!

Christie Alison and Karen Payne, 2020 Co-Captains

Thank you!
Christie Alison and Karen Payne, 2020 Co-Captains

Congratulations to Our 2020 High School Grads!

Faith Formation (FF) celebrated our four local high school graduates with yard signs, hand-delivered by Pastor Kathy and FF Chair Dave Shambach. Only Anwi and Ariel were home at the time of the impromptu delivery.

One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

During this time of crisis with the COVID-19 pandemic threatening, we are reminded that the most vulnerable in our midst suffer first, most, and longest. For over 70 years, One Great Hour of Sharing has supported the most vulnerable among us. Because of our support, the Church is able to deepen its commitment to serve. In the days ahead, staff of Self-Development of People, the Presbyterian Hunger Program and Presbyterian Disaster Assistance will be working with presbyteries to identify and support essential congregational ministries, especially in anti-poverty work. The Church’s response to the present crisis will begin with the most at-risk communities across the country and around the world.

Through One Great Hour of Sharing, we extend shelter to those who have no place to stay, offer compassion to those who have pain — be it physical, emotional, or spiritual — and we set a feast, with God, for those who lack access to enough food to eat.

During these uncertain times, we depend on our Church, faith, family, and God’s grace to see us through. Please give generously to One Great Hour of Sharing by mailing a check to the church with OGHS in the memo line. We are the Church, together.

With grateful hearts,
Cyndie Tidwell and Crystal Mitchell, Co-Chairs, Mission Committee

 

Learning Group for Race Education

A group has formed for online learning/discussion about race. We will be reading, So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. We will meet twice a month on Wednesday at 11am. The first date will be determined once everyone has the book. Kaitie Leffler will be facilitating. If you would be interested in being a part of this contact Pastor Kathy.

Scholarships of Grace

Did COVID-19 restrictions mess up your plans? The restrictions certainly changed the Scholarship Committee’s plans. Three of our major scholarship fundraising events were canceled. While the Scholarship Committee has enough reserves to give the full $550 scholarships this year, we need to raise at least $12,000 over the next 2 years. The number of scholarship recipients is projected to increase from 8 this year to 14 in 2022.

The Scholarship Committee was formed in 2013 when we were looking for a way to let the youth of our church know that they were still part of our church family after they graduated high school. We noted that many of our youth, after high school graduation, sort of disappeared as they went off to trade school or college. The idea of a scholarship program took hold. We wanted the scholarship to be large enough to make a difference, yet we had to be able to fund the program each year.

The first scholarships were awarded in 2014 to 6 students. In 2015 we added honorariums for students who had a major impact in the life of our church but did not qualify for a ‘Scholarship of GRACE’ because they did not join our church family until after their high school years. $500/year/student for up to 5 years was decided as the appropriate amount. (This has since been increased to $550/year/student). It was also decided that we didn’t want to just ask for donations but rather to raise the money through ‘fundraisers’.  Due to the support and generosity of our church, we have been able to award the full scholarships each year and, in 3 of the years, add a little extra. In the 6 years that we have awarded scholarships, we have given out $28,050 to 16 different students.

COVID-19 has forced us to change how we ‘fundraise’ for the scholarship program. Instead of having large dinners/dances and selling tie-dyed items at the annual Shepherd of the Valley Chili Fest, we will be having a series of ‘food to go’ offerings. ‘Desserts to Go’ on Pentecost was the first of these offerings. The response to ‘Desserts to Go’ was fantastic. We plan to hold a ‘food to go’ fundraiser about every 6 to 8 weeks the rest of this year. In addition, we are preparing a catalogue of our tie-dyed inventory. We should be able to take orders later this summer. The Scholarships of GRACE only works because of your generous support, the dedication of our committee members and those who help with our ‘events’.

Thank you!
Laura Gonzales and Don Underwood, Co-Chairs

June 13, 2020 Weekly Witness

Online Worship

Click link below on our website’s home page each week.

Either click here or go to https://rioranchopresbyterianchurch.org/ anytime to view this week’s Sunday worship. (Spelled-out link is at the end of this email). Once you land on the page, please scroll below changing photos at the top. There are separate links for both this week’s and previous weeks.

 If you haven’t done so already, Click Here to Register for Online Vacation Bible School!

But first, click here (and scroll down past the page’s sliders) for an introduction to VBS by two of our talented younger members.

What is the Theme? “Jesus Is Coming” This no-cost VBS is being done in a new way–with an online original production–for families of children pre-K through 5th grade.

When Are the Weekly Videos Released? by 3 pm every Sunday, June 21 through July 20. You will receive a link to a video that guides you through Music, a Bible story, a Craft, a Science Experience, and a Challenge for the week. You will pick up your VBS weekly packets from Rio Rancho Presbyterian Church every Sunday from 3:00-4:00pm or Monday from 9:30-10:30am.

You may go at your own pace at a time convenient to you. And we look forward to sharing in photos of your children’s experiences!

On any Sunday throughout the five-week period, parents will also be able to help Sandoval County families by bringing peanut butter, jelly, or individually-wrapped bar soap for Storehouse West.

Click here to register

Starting Monday June 15 Virtual Relay for Life

Cancer is not quarantining; and even though we are still apart we want to continue our Relay tradition to fight cancer as one church family.  Since we can’t have an event like last year’s, please join us for the next 2 months for a virtual Relay.

As a participant. Pick a project or activity and pledge to do it over two months’ time (June 15-August 17) for $1 per increment. You can walk, swim, or bike x-number of miles by August 17 @$1/mile. Or read a certain number of books or make masks. You choose your activity! Then go to relayforlife.org–>join a relay–>scroll down and select Relay for Life of Central New Mexico–>join this relay. Or click here. Once you have joined, tell about your pledge in the Why I Relay section on your page and then email a link to your page to Outreach.

As a sponsor. Support participants in their chosen activity listed on their personal page in the Why I Relay space. Sign up for an amount to support them at $1/per activity. Once we get all participants signed up, we will provide their personal page links in a separate email.

Or click here to sponsor the entire RRPC team.

If you get bogged down at any point in the process of enrolling or donating, please call 800.227.2345 for help. They are very friendly and appreciative of the community’s continued support in these times.

Thank you!
Christie Alison and Karen Payne, 2020 Co-Captains

News From Our Sisters and Brothers in Caibarién

Dear friends: God has been so good with us!! We are OK just waiting for the moment to be together in the Church again. Meanwhile we have two super news to you:

First: yesterday the Cuban President announced that the epidemic is almost controlled and the country will begin the opening in 3 phases: in the first one Churches will be allow to open having controls inside the building (distances, masks, etc) but that means that we are so close to reopen the Churches and for us is a good new after almost 3 months closed. Of course I am thinking in the big party we will have to celebrate this after the service where we celebrate the presence of God during this awful time.

Second: tomorrow June 13th we celebrate the first year of our purified water system. During this year we served the community 3 times a week and during the epidemic we opened every day to support people in the midst of the disease. We served to the community during this first year 258,260 liters of purified water. It is one effort but is great to serve and to be visible for the people in this way.

Thanks for your love and support, God is good all the time and is so nice to work knowing that we are not alone because God and all of you are with us!

Blessings,
Pastor Edelberto Valdés

One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

One way that OGHS money is spent — recent grants were made by the Presbyterian Mission Agency to the COVID-stricken Navajo Nation in parts of AZ, UT, and NM. Click here to read.

Our RRPC congregation has been faithful to the call for this special collection every year during Lent, but we couldn’t worship in person during our normal Lenten collection time.

Please mail a check to the church with OGHS in the memo line.

With grateful hearts,
Cyndie Tidwell and Crystal Mitchell, Co-Chairs, Mission Committee

Learning Together: A Group for Race Education

As mentioned in last week’s Weekly Witness, a group is forming to engage in race education. Kaitie Leffler has agreed to facilitate the group, which will probably be along the lines of a book club in format. We are still working out details about materials and time, but if you think you might be interested, please contact Pastor Kathy.

Scholarships of Grace

Click here for a video of the highlights of the desserts-to-go campaign. Thank you!

Laura Gonzales and Don Underwood, Co-Chairs

June 6th 2020 Weekly Witness

Online Worship

Click link below on our website’s home page each week.

Either click here or go to https://rioranchopresbyterianchurch.org/ anytime to view this week’s Sunday worship. (Spelled-out link is at the end of this email). Once you land on the page, please scroll below changing photos at the top. There are separate links for both this week’s and previous weeks.

 

Celebration of the Lord’s Supper is Tomorrow, June 7

As you know, our celebration of the Lord’s Supper will be Sunday, June 7 at 11am via Zoom. Remember, if you don’t have Internet you can also call in to the gathering. If you’d like to attend, please email Pastor Kathy Westmoreland.

 

One Great Hour of Sharing

OGHS…yes, that’s the one with the sweet fish banks for kids and adults! Our RRPC congregation has been faithful to the call for this special collection every year during Lent, but we couldn’t worship in person during our normal Lenten collection time.

Our RRPC congregation has been faithful to the call of this special collection every year, and we hope a virus doesn’t stop us form supporting these initiatives. Click here to read more about OGHS, and then please mail a check to the church with OGHS in the memo line.

With grateful hearts,

Cyndie Tidwell and Crystal Mitchell, Co-Chairs, Mission Committee

 It’s Time to Register for Online Vacation Bible School!  Click here to register

 

When Are the Weekly Videos Released? 3 pm Sundays, June 21 through July 20

 

What is the Theme? “Jesus Is Coming” is the theme of this FREE VBS done in a new way–an online original production–for families of children pre-K through 5th grade.

Each week at 3 pm, starting June 21 and ending July 20, you will have a video link that guides you through Music, a Bible story, a Craft, a Science Experience, and a Challenge for the week. You will pick up your VBS weekly packets from Rio Rancho Presbyterian Church every Sunday from 3:00-4:00pm or Monday from 9:30-10:30am.

You may go at your own pace at a time convenient to you. And we look forward to sharing photos of your children’s experiences!

On any Sunday throughout the five-week period, parents will also be able to help Sandoval County families by bringing peanut butter, jelly, and individually-wrapped bar soap for Storehouse West.

Click here to register

 

The PC(USA Responds to Nationwide Unrest

The Rev. J. Herbert Nelson, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly, and The Rev. Dianne Moffett, President and Executive Director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency, issue statements regarding the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.

Please click on the links on their names above to read them.

 

Scholarships of Grace Dessert Results

Over $1,500 was raised! Scholarships of Grace only works because of your generous support, the dedication of our committee members, and those who help with our events.

Thank you!
Laura Gonzales and Don Underwood, Co-Chairs

 

Storehouse West Mission Opportunity!

Soap for Storehouse West – need for individually-wrapped bar soap to give out with hygiene items. They may be dropped off at church on Mondays between 10am–noon. The outer front (south) doors will be unlocked during these hours so you can put the soap in the blue box in the breezeway. 

 

See and Hear Our New Organ…Online!

Chuck Roth’s and Nancy Leffler’s musical slide show is now available. We hope it brings another dimension to the new organ than what you have been able to experience through our online services. A special highlight is how the talented Chuck and Craig Kelley installed new speakers for the organ. Go to our website and click on the video on the Music page to learn more about it! (To find it on our site, hover over the Worship tab, click on the Music drop-down, and scroll below the header photos. Link spelled out at the end of email.)

 

Pentecost Photo Montage

Click here for a delightful review of smiling friends celebrating Pentecost or other past occasions. (The spelled-out link is at the end of this email. Or to get to it manually, the link is on the far right side of the website home page on which you land, under the search bar.) Thank you for sending in your photos!

 2020-2021 Book Club Reading List

We will resume in-person meetings in the fall if we can; if not, we might meet online. So, if you’d like to get a head start on next year’s reading, click here.

 

Coming Soon Relay for Life Virtually!

Cancer is not quarantining. Even though we are, let’s continue our past year’s performance against cancer as one church family.  Please join us this summer for a different approach, a virtual Relay! There are two ways:

As a participant. Pick a project or activity and pledge to do it over two months’ time (June 15-August 17) for $1 per increment, then seek donors to sponsor your activity, either whole or in part. For example, pledge to walk, swim, or bike 100 miles by August 17 for $1/mile. Or read a certain number of books or make masks. You choose! Then go to relayforlife.org,à join a relayàselect Relay for Life of Central New Mexicoà join this relay. (Previous participants may be asked to login here.)

As a sponsor. Support participants’ efforts at $1 a _____ (insert ‘mile’/’book’/’mask’/’whatever, your choice’) by going to each person’s Relay for Life page. Once we get started, we will provide all participants’ personal pages links.

At any point in this process, either as a participant or a donor, you can call 800.227.2345 for help.  They are very friendly and grateful for the community’s support. Watch for more details as we continue to plan.

Thank you!
Christie Alison and Karen Payne, 2020 Co-Captains