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First United Presbyterian Church
Tuesday April 5, 2016


Death and Taxes

We always say it: “what a difference a year makes”.  This time last year Ashley and I did our taxes for the first time having to navigate the nuances of being clergy.  This time last year I was finishing my Easter sermon, (probably something about Jesus and new life) and then leaving you as we prepared to welcome Asher into the world.  This time last year I was thinking about the previous year and how I felt things had gone during my first Holy Week as an ordained pastor.  So what is different this year?  I do not know.  Actually, that is not true; I do know.  What is different is that we continue to meet the challenges of living into the promise of the Resurrection.  We continue to explore what it means to be disciples and not just followers and fans.  We continue to design and redesign the building and its spaces.  What is different is that we are still in the midst of a frustrating time in the life of the church.  Old things are dying and new things are being born.  Some of the old things are worth holding on to, while others mask our insecurities.  Some of the new things are worth holding on to, while others mask our fears.

It is a tough time.  Birth is not easy, there is pain involved, and something must be given up for the space of new life.  Death is not easy, there is pain involved, and something must be let go for the space of sorrows.  So it should be no surprise that Resurrection is not easy, there is pain involved, and something must die so that something may be born anew. 

Yes, things are changing, some for the better, some to explore, and some simply for the sake of change.  Not all of these changes are permanent, nor are they all great ideas, but they are attempts to see what may be good for us moving forward.  From those that are not good, or fail, we take time to learn from and see how we may do better bringing similar ideas forward in the future.  Ultimately, what we will find is that there is nothing new that we bring, only different approaches and with different enthusiasms and understandings. 

In this Easter season, may you find newness in your understanding of the amazing gift of Jesus Christ, especially of his death and resurrection, and be filled with great enthusiasm as we together discern our discipleship as the hands and feet of the body of the Lord.  Trusting in what you have seen and heard from the first disciples keep your faith strong and enjoy the moments of being in God’s grace.

Happy Easter and blessings to you all.

Pastor Jeff   



In memory of Nancy Harding:  Larry & Val Close; Gloria Alldredge; Vi Hightower.
In memory of Gloria Harner:  Philip & Katie Throm; Gary & Bev LeMaster; Paul & Mary Lee Muniz; Rich & Elaine Marmon; Gloria Alldredge; Larry & Val Close; Vi Hightower.
In memory of Jack Creekmur:  Paul & Mary Lee Muniz.
In memory of Delores Highsmith:  Paul & Mary Lee Muniz.
In memory of Raymond Adams, Sr. - Tiddles Hedrick.
Beginning in April our UPtown Dinners will be once a month on every 3rd Wednesday.  (This month on April 20).  Hosting this month will be the Elders.  A sign-up sheet is in the Narthex or call the office.

Trivia Night/Silent Auction is slated for Tuesday, Mary 3.  If you have any items or baskets you would like to donte, strat bringing them to the office.  Also, a bake sale will be available.

We are also offering raffle of a child's quilt, winner to be drawn on Trivia Night.  Tickets are $.50 each or 3 for $1.00.  Size is 50" x 60", constructed by Alice Bilderback and quilted by Bonnie Krupp.  Tickets available in the Narthex or the office.

Please notify the office of any high school or college graduates from our congregation this year. 
Everyone, We thank you so much for going to The Empty Bowl.  Because of your participation the Collinsville Woman's Club was able to present the Collinsville Area Food Pantry with $12,565.55.  We are so happy and proud as you should be too.  Thank you again.  Sarah Ross

To my church family:  I want to thank you for all the prayers and support I have received while away at college.  The gift boxes are especially appreciated!  Austin Dellamano

Thank you:  We would like to thank our church family for the cards, calls, and memorials for my brother Jack Creekmur and Chuck's sister, Delores Highsmith, and especially for your loving prayers.  We feel very blessed to be part of our church family.  In His love, Anne & Chuck Tennant

From the Outreach Committee:  Thanks for everyones contributions during Lent for bus passes and gas cards for the Food Pantry.  Amount raised was $375.15. 
Notes from February, 2016

This Session meeting was the first combined Session and Committee meeting.  All members of the committees headed by the Elders, as chairperson, met in the Sanctuary for the beginning of the meeting.  This began with Joys and Concerns, a Devotion and a State of the Church by Pastor Jeff.  Then all broke into the three main committees, Stewardship, Discipleship and Mission with committee members, and further into individual committees.

In each meeting, the goals and suggestions for implementing the goals were discussed and as I listened to 2 of the groups, it was found that many of the projects could be combined.  This combining could add strength to our church.

Jodee Kleb, Clerk of Session

Weekly Worship Opportunities
Sunday Morning Worship
Sunday Service:
Coffee 7:45 - 8:45
Sunday School 9:00
Worship Service & Children's Church 10:00
Our previous Sunday’s worship service is broadcast on Charter Cable Channels 18 & 994 at 11:00 a.m. on Friday mornings.
Apr 3 - Worship
Aor 8 - Bellefontaine Cemetery Tour
Apr 10 - Worship
Apr 12 - Session
Apr 17 - Worship
Apr 20 - First UPtown Dinner
Apr 24 - Worship - Youth Sunday
May 3 - Trivia Night
May 25 - Red Cross Blood Drive
Please email Birthday Updates to: or call 344-1109

10 - Asher Young
11 - Garrett Kneedler
13 - Anna Dellamano
16 - Barbara Esker
18 = Allyson Burr
21 - Grant Benson
24 - Kendallyn Kneedler
25 - Leo Kunz (99 yrs old) 
Please email Anniversary Updates to: or call 344-1109

8 - Brad & Stacy Kneedler
11 - Tom & Sarah Ross
18 - Larry & Val Close 

We Lift Up in Prayer to God…
Please email your prayer concerns and updates to: or call 344-1109

Gerald Cummins; Ruby Campbell; Monique Kingsbury, Louise Nichols.

If you want information printed in the May 2016 Presenter please send your information to the office by Wednesday, April 27.
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First United Presbyterian Church

201 E. Church Street
Collinsville, Illinois
618-344-1109 Email: