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Pastor’s Pen - September 2019

With campaign signs vying for precious real estate and attention all across Memphis, we are all well aware that an election is forthcoming. Citywide elections will be held on October 3 for Mayor, City Council, and municipal court positions. Early voting begins on Friday, September 15 and runs through to Saturday, September 28th.

When there is an election on the horizon, we can confidently ready ourselves for a Public Meeting of MICAH! On Sunday, September 15 from 4:30-6:00p at Mount Vernon Baptist Church Westwood (620 Parkrose Road), we are  hoping to see upwards of 2,000 Memphians come out to demonstrate our shared power to those who are seeking our votes.

This public meeting is a culmination of a years work within the areas of Economic Equity, Education Equity, and Intercultural/Immigration Equity. The work is far from complete, but at these large meetings we are offered a chance to pause and share with the wider Memphis community all that this diverse, faith-based coalition has done to promote justice in our city.

In addition to sharing and celebrating our progress, we will give candidates running for public office and other community guests an opportunity to affirm their support for our work and their willingness to join us in the struggle for equity.

Roughly 3 years since MICAH’s inception, this coalition, now standing at 58 organizations, has sought to break through the barriers that systematically prevent us from thriving. Task force participants have spent tireless hours envisioning ways to break through decades of disinvestment in our schools, our public transportation system, and our historically marginalized neighborhoods and citizens. With this vision, the theme for this year’s meeting is:
’Breaking Through: Partnering for Power. Acting for Justice.’

MICAH is seeking major investments and reinvestments, both in real and social capital, from our potential representatives in each of our areas of work. To demonstrate our dedication to the cause of justice and equity in Memphis, MICAH needs all of our member organizations to put our bodies together in a singular time and space. It is in our numbers that we see the reach of our power.

John Rutkauskas and I have made a big claim in the number of people from Shady Grove we believe can be at this meeting! We pledged that 40 of us - church members, friends, family, you name it - will be there! We need YOU to help fulfill this pledge. This is a chance to stand shoulder to shoulder with brothers and sisters from across the city, and to let your presence be known in this new power movement! As the October elections approach, this is a chance to join with other justice-loving voters and, together, Break Through!

Registration is highly encouraged! You can register in the church office immediately following worship or find the event at

Be Blessed and Be a Blessing,

Rev. Will

Sunday School
Adult Sunday school meets at 9:30am in Room 13.
Children's and Youth's Sunday school meets every Sunday during worship.

A second option for Adult Christian Formation will be offered Sundays: 9:30a - 10:20a, beginning on September 22. The class, led by Henry and Janet Bartosch, will be a book study on Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, MD, a Harvard educated surgeon. This book, an easy read and still on the NYT’s best seller list since 2014, examines the independent self versus the inevitable dependent life as we age. It includes optimizing health and well-being, living arrangements and end-of-life decisions, as well as, many anecdotal stories to make his points. It's focus is to live each day in autonomy with meaning and purpose. This is a good book for families with aging parents and/or for those of us already experiencing the challenges of
 aging. Classes will begin on September 22nd, and meet on 09/22, 09/29; 10/6, 10/20,10/27; and 11/3 and 11/10 to cover all 8 chapters.  A limited number of books are available in the church office for $10.

Choir Practice
Choir will resume the Wednesday, September 4th, at 7:30 PM.  Please make plans to join us then!

Join a Team
Team meetings are Sunday, September 8th after church.  Please consider getting involved!

Sausage Biscuits
The Formation Team will offer sausage biscuits for sale to raise funds for the annual St. Luke's Christmas Dinner.  They will be offered Sunday, September 8th and will cost $3.00.  Your support greatly appreciated!

Session Meeting
Will meet Monday, September 9, at 6pm, in Room 13.

Birthday Luncheon
The birthday lunch will be Wednesday, the 11th, at noon, at Caritas Village.  Honorées are Mary Alice Brake, Janet Bartosch, and Kitty Cannon.

Book & Movie Group
Will meet on Thursday, the 19th, at 7 pm, to discuss Say Nothing.  Marilyn Smith will lead the discussion.

Saturday Supper
On Saturday, September 21st, come serve at St. Luke's United Methodist Church on Highland @
Mynders. Plan to stay from about 3:00 pm to about 5:30 pm. Call Susan Baldwin with questions 605-7704.

Knitting Group
Will meet Sunday, September 22, from 2pm-3:30pm at the church.

Tai Chi for Health
Every Monday, at 6pm, in the fellowship hall. Free, open to the community.  Suitable for all levels and can be done seated. Call Cynthia Mealer for questions at 833-1746.
Food Pantry
16oz. jars of peanut butter are needed. Your donations make a huge difference!

Mustard Seed
Don't forget to stop in the store after worship on Sundays!

Please remember Shady Grove in your will.


Usher Duties
The session has encountered difficulty in filling volunteer spots for Sunday morning responsibilities, particularly those of offering counter and building closer. A plan has emerged, with support of the session, to expand the duties of our Sunday ushers to cover these areas.

The 4 ushers for a Sunday will be asked to pair off and each pair take a task. Both counting and closing can be done immediately after the service and takes about 10 minutes.

Counting the offering is a matter of counting everything that is collected in the offering plates, filling out the brief form provided, putting everything in the safe and closing the door. Angie recounts on Monday, so no pressure to be perfect.

Closing the church, right after worship or whenever you are ready, is a matter of making sure all perimeter doors are locked and the lights are off in the sanctuary. All doors are locked with a hex key located at each entrance. The closers are not responsible for locking the main entrance doors facing the parking lot or setting the alarm.

Thanks to everyone who helps with these easy, yet crucial tasks. They are a great blessing to the life of the church.
Prayer List

Prayers for Healing and Wholeness
Roy Shirkey
Anne Graves
Phil Smith
Regina Rastall
Jessica Keith
Colleen Whirley
Carol Bizot
John & Claudia Rutkauskas
Sandra and Ned Smith
Laura Flippin
Teresa Robinson
Janet Baldwin (Susan Baldwin’s mother)
Chuck Cambell (Friend of Sonny)
Anges Sanders (Avalon’s sister)
George and Darlene Gray (Nancy Gray)
Sandy Smith (Ned and Sandra Smith)
Polly Heimburg
Lynn Douglas (Shelley Gray)
DeAnn Pace (Ann Miller)
Rosalind Walker (Ann Miller)
Amy Waddell (Ann Miller)
Marie Johnson
Gaye Hazel (Angie Wagner's aunt)
Darrell Willis (Carolyn King's friend)

Prayers for Peace and Comfort
Meredith Walsh and Kyle Tingley

Prayers for the Grieving
The Family of Barry Gilmore (King Family friend)
Sarah Strong and family

Prayers for the Human Condition
All affected by gun violence
Immigrant communities and families seeking asylum
Copyright © 2019 Shady Grove Presbyterian Church, All rights reserved.

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