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Beloved Hazelwood Friends,

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! My heart is so full as I write this last Pastor Post!

Thank you for calling me to serve alongside you as your Interim Senior Minister. Thank you for your willingness to try new things and think about new ways of being church. Thank you for your care and respect for me as your pastor. Thank you for the warm welcome you gave me when I first arrived. And thank you for your continued affirmation and support of my leadership. Serving as an interim brings a lot of extras beyond the “normal” duties of a pastor, while also being separated from my family. It is hard but very rewarding. I told you when I first came that I had no personal agenda; everything I would do was to help Hazelwood become the best it could be in preparation for the arrival of a new pastor. That has certainly been true, and we have done a lot of great work together during my time with you!

Thank you for your generous giving to the Disciples special offerings throughout the year. Thank you for your continued enthusiastic support for Winnie’s Kids. Thank you for the outpouring of donations for the Afghan refugees at Camp Atterbury last fall and the beginning of winter, even as you continued to give generously to the many local missions you have supported for years. Thank you for the large monetary gift we gave to support a refugee family in resettling in Muncie. It truly means so much to a pastor to see a congregation look beyond their own needs to the needs of others.

Thank you so very very much for your generous response to my email just this past Saturday about the urgent financial need of beloved members and their extended family. Hazelwood received $3,820 JUST from what was given Sunday and Monday morning! And I highly suspect that more gifts will be arriving in the mail or in the next few Sundays. For privacy, I am not mentioning the family’s name here, as this newsletter goes out to a wider audience, but those of you who are a regular part of the congregation know to whom I am referring. I assure you that the recipients are so very very grateful for this outpouring of tangible love in their time of need.

Thank you also for your generosity to me at Christmas with gifts and cards. Thank you for allowing me to walk with you in your times of grief and pain. Thank you for your understanding and compassion when I had to adjust how I do things due to my painful spine condition, which suddenly became acute last fall, as well as your prayers for pain relief and endurance. Thank you for your kindness and sympathy when my mother-in-law died at the end of January in South Carolina. Thank you for your prayers while I was so sick with COVID recently. And thank you to the many individuals who checked on me and those who dropped off food and other items I needed. Thank you for your current prayers for my dad in North Carolina. Thank you for the cards and gifts I received Sunday; the low-maintenance plant from the congregation is perfect for me. I should be able to keep it alive as a reminder of this lovely congregation!

Thank you in advance for your prayers as I travel to be with Disciples colleagues next week. Because of the horrible flights that were available, I am driving to New Orleans, but breaking the travel up over three days to not strain my back. This is an event that was originally to happen in September of 2020, but COVID canceled it. So, to say I have anticipated it for a long time is quite an understatement!

I know many of you want to know what is next for me. After my trip to New Orleans with a stop in Louisville for a dentist appointment afterwards, I will return to Muncie to start packing up my rental house. I also have some behind-the-scenes details to organize and pass on to Rev. Eric. I’ll be back and forth between Muncie and Louisville until all of my work in Muncie is complete, hopefully no later than mid-October. I have my lease here through the end of October, so I have some cushion there. I expect to make a trip to see my dad in October as well, but I can move it up to September if the need to go sooner becomes apparent.

I have a closing retreat at my seminary in Lexington in mid-November with my Ministers THRIVE Support Group, which will have been together monthly (via Zoom) for three years at that point. In November, I’ll also be getting settled back home and getting things organized there after being away so much of the time for over two years. Then, after Thanksgiving, I will finally have my much-needed spine surgery, which will have a three-month recovery that includes a lot of physical restrictions. Fortunately, I WILL be able to walk but normal activities will be limited even more than I am currently experiencing. So, I am thinking of November-February as unpaid sabbatical/sick leave time. And then, I will see what God has in store for me after that!

This is the first time in my 11 years of ministry that I will have the ache of leaving a congregation without the counterbalance of the excitement in getting to know a new one. Thus, it will definitely be different! I’ve never gone this long without being employed since I was 17 years old, so that, too, is a whole new experience! I had the opportunity to spend over 2 hours with Rev. Eric last week, and I am so VERY excited for the new partnership of ministry and mutual care that Hazelwood is beginning with him next week. I have been praying for your new pastor, whoever she/he would end up being, since at least January, and I feel God has truly answered my prayers – and yours – in a wonderful way!

Two things on a practical note:
  • If anyone can donate an hour of your time to help me pack later in September or early October, let me know, and I’ll contact you privately to come up with a mutually good time.
  • If anyone has a cleaning person to recommend, please let me know. I will need to hire someone to do a thorough cleaning of the house once I have emptied it out.
This has gotten long, but thank you for reading! Even though it has not been easy, it has certainly been an honor and privilege to serve alongside this congregation during the last 13+ months. I consider every congregation I have served as part of my extended church family, and Hazelwood is no exception! I will always hold all of you dear in my heart, and I look forward to remaining connected with those of you who have “friended” me on Facebook – as a friend, no longer your pastor. And I look forward to seeing where the Spirit leads Hazelwood as you continue seeking to be the light of Christ in Muncie and beyond.

Shalom,
Rev. Pamela
Sunday Worship begins each week at 10am, in-person and online, streaming via Facebook. Click HERE to go to our Facebook page.

For those of you worshiping online, click HERE after Friday to find the upcoming Bulletin.

Sunday, September 4
Guest Minister, Rev. Diane Zehr

When we feel discouraged we can trust that 'the light' is already among us and not waiting to come. This can give us hope that God is actively working to bring about the best for God's creation.

Sermon Title: The Hope We Need
Scripture: John 1:1-14, 16
To see information about the songs we will be singing this Sunday, click here: http://www.hazelwoodchurch.org/worship-songs-this-week/

To watch past services, you may go to Youtube by clicking HERE.
To see just the scripture and sermons from each week, click HERE.

Note of Appreciation

Dear Hazelwood,
Thank you for your donation of $200 to Special Olympics Indiana. Our athletes gain self-confidence and self-esteem as well as receive much-needed health screenings free of charge because of the generosity of donors like you.
Through programs of sports training and competition, individuals with intellectual disabilities are proving their abilities, not their disabilities.
Sincerely,
Jeff Mohler, President/CEO
Special Olympics Indiana
Sympathies to Winnie Mucherah Muhiga and family on the passing of her mother, Merceline Mucherah, in Kenya.
Prayers requested for these Hazelwood participants (alphabetical by last name):
  • Earl Bruning
  • David Cartwright
  • Jeff Clary
  • Ruthanne Devroy
  • Jeane Garrett
  • Mariangella Glaze
  • Lois Gross
  • Louise Maley
  • Marcia Miller
  • Pat Patterson
  • Rev. Pamela
  • Jairen Rees
  • Bill Ritchie
  • Leah Ritchie
  • Ron Smith
  • Judy Thomas
  • Mark Wages
  • Molly Wantz
  • Annie Yingst
Prayers requested for these friends and family of Hazelwood participants:
  • Marianna Gill's mother, Kitty Tilton
  • Donna Dye's granddaughter, Heather Kruger
  • Rhea Morgan's sister, Joyce
  • Rev. Pamela’s father in North Carolina is not doing well. A blood test revealed internal bleeding but further tests are needed to determine what is causing the bleeding.
Note, the friends and family list will re-set at the first of every month. At that time, we request confirmation that the one being named has given permission to continue to be listed on this newsletter prayer list, in order to honor their personal agency and privacy. Thank you for understanding the importance of this in the digital age.

Last Sunday's 'Thank You' Reception & Congregational Meeting

Many thanks to Steve Cartwright, Gary Edmonds, Jane Johnson, Glen Sulanke, and Ann Wolfe for their part in helping with the 'Thank You' Reception for Rev. Pamela. We appreciate her time with us, and the beautiful cake was a tasty way to say farewell!


At the congregational meeting, Rev. Eric Brotheridge was unanimously approved as our new Minister. His first day in the office will be Tuesday, September 6th, and his first Sunday with us will be September 11th. We look forward to our time together with Rev. Eric, continuing our mission of “Sharing Christ with our community through service and relationships.” 
 
Our sincere thanks to the Search and Call Team for their diligent work during this process: Tony Gill, Joanna Hahn, Winnie Muhiga, Jason Ratts, and Ann Wolfe. Also appreciated is the guidance given by our Associate Regional Minister, Carolyn Reed.

2022 Nominating Committee

The 2022 Nominating Committee has begun the task of finding candidates among the active participants in the Hazelwood congregation to serve in the following positions:
  • Vice-Moderator
  • Treasurer
  • Board Secretary
  • At-Large Board Member
  • Elders
  • Deacons
  • Trustees
  • Preschool/ELC Committee
Please take some time over the next couple of weeks to prayerfully consider who in our congregation may be a good fit for these open positions. If you would like to recommend someone, click HERE to submit a recommendation form no later than today, August 31.

The members of the Nominating Committee are: Mary France, Jason Hahn, Felix Muhiga, Glen Sulanke, and Judy Van Fleet.

Book Study Beginning Wednesday, September 7

Connection and discussion are ways Indiana region clergy and laypersons can tackle race, faith and how they intersect. To facilitate that connection, the Indiana region will host a book study and discussion on the book: Stakes is High: Race, Faith, and Hope for America by Michael W. Waters. Pastor and activist Michael W. Waters blends hip-hop lyricism and social justice leadership to speak on behalf of an awakened generation crying out against racism. Through the pain and hard, but holy work, you will hear the call to join the faithful struggle for justice. We will gather virtually to share and discuss the book.

Click HERE for more information and to register to participate.

September 25: Church-Wide Field Trip!

Join our new Youth Ministry Assistant, the Epiphany Action Team, and other Hazelwood Friends on an outing to the Levi & Catharine Coffin State Museum in Fountain City on Sunday, September 25. You may recall that on June 19, our Board Moderator, Joanna Hahn, shared a little in worship about how Levi and Catharine, dedicated Quakers, were influenced by their Christian faith to turn their home into the "Grand Central Station of the Underground Railroad," serving as a refuge for Freedom-Seekers.

This historic site has been named one of the TOP 25 HISTORIC SITES in the US! It serves as both an important piece of our nation's history and a valuable tool for Christians today to reflect on Christ's call to action on behalf of others. Joanna will serve as one of our guides, and we are planning to provide group transportation from the church. We will also offer the chance to be part of a group order from Jimmy John's to be delivered to the church for a quick lunch after worship before we head out no later than 11:30am. We expect to return to the church no later than 3:30pm, possibly sooner. Plan now to join in the fun and fellowship of this learning opportunity, and watch future newsletters for more details.

Calendar

Wed., August 31: Preschool Team, 3pm, Zoom
Thurs., September 1: Rev. Pamela's Last Day at Hazelwood
Mon., September 5: Labor Day- Church Office Closed
Tues., September 6: Rev. Eric's Office Hours Begin
Wed., September 7: Elders, 5:30pm, Zoom
Youth, Young Disciples Time resumes September 11, which is also Rev. Eric's first Sunday with us. And you will also be able to meet our new Youth Ministry Assistant, Brooklyn Wolf, who will be working with Rev. Eric in planning learning times, fun activities, and missions opportunities for you, your friends, and your family!

Plan now to attend the field trip with Brooklyn and Rev. Eric on September 25 (details above). Look for information in next week's newsletter on how to order your Jimmy Johns lunch for that day, too.
The Preschool/ELC staff is in the home stretch of preparations for their new school year to kick off next week, beginning on Tuesday, September 6. The ELC is still in need of a couple part-time workers, so please contact the Director, Angie Lopez, if you are interested, or pass this information on to anyone who might be. Hours are flexible.
YTD Receipts through July 2022: $138,843.43
YTD Expenses through July 2022: $
139,005.95


YTD Outreach Disbursements through August 2022: $42,106.21
   New Church Development: $571.15
   Easter Offering: $905
   Christian Ministries' Food Pantry: $78.90
   Sleeping Room Project: $590
   Winnie's Kids: $19,000
   Week of Compassion: $2,356.16
   Muncie Afghan Refugee Resettlement Committee: $13,170
   Congregational Benevolence: $3,820
   Sulanke Trust Outreach: $5,435
      -Christian Ministries of Delaware County: $400
      -A Better Way: $400
      -YWCA: $400
      -Second Harvest Food Bank: $400
      -Motivate Our Minds: $400
      -Children's Clothing Center: $400
      -Muncie Mission: $1,635

      -Habitat for Humanity: $400
      -First Choice: $400
      -Muncie Soup Kitchen: $400
      -Special Olympics: $200
To make a financial gift online via Givelify, click here:
https://giv.li/cv3bky
 
After you are in the Givelify site, to designate a gift to something other than the general fund, choose "Other" and then type in the message box to let us know to which fund you are donating.
Please submit items for the newsletter by Monday at noon each week.
Rev. Pamela J. Pettyjohn, Interim Minister
Stefanie Petty, Office Administrator
Rhea Morgan, Bookkeeper
Marianna Gill, Worship Coordinator
Lori Rhoden, Organist
Angie Lopez, Director of Weekday Preschool and Early Learning Center
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