Stewardship in Action – January 2015


Van Wyck Presbyterian Church                Published Quarterly – January 2015 – Volume 19

“Nothing happens in the church until someone gives something.  According to the Word, God did exactly that.  God gave us grace, undeserved and unconditional love.  God did not allow that offer to expire, but continues his covenant to give us grace, unendingly.”        –Ed Krause—


A Tribute to Bill

We are deeply saddened by the passing of our interim minister, the Rev. Dr. William “Bill” Johnson, who died on November 24, 2014.

Bill inspired us with each sermon and his own deep spirituality so much so that the Stewardship Committee designed its’ Fall campaign around his repeated mantra – “Simplicity and Celebration.” He was truly a servant of the Lord.

He bravely fought cancer while preaching each Sunday from our pulpit messages of joy, simplicity and thankfulness. He asked us to work towards personal spiritual growth and prescribed generosity over and over again. He so easily connected with the young people of our congregation and always took time to laugh and learn from them.

The following excerpt is from Bill’s obituary:

Episcopal Bishop U. T. Holmes wrote, “The power of Christian ministry lies in the sacramental person who possesses the capacity to communicate the love of Christ…that exhibits itself in his life.” That is Bill.

Bill is deeply missed by our congregation. However, we thank God that we had the privilege to get to know him and Sandy, to hear his incredible messages of faith, and to witness his walk with our Lord.

We continue to keep his family in our prayers.

– Julie Graham, chairwoman,

and The Stewardship Committee

The Search Process

In December 2014, the Van Wyck congregation approved the following people to serve on the Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC):

Craig Denton

Stuart Graham

Pat Oglesby

Claudia Thompson

Richard Vaughan

On January 14, 2015, the committee met with Mark Verdery (General Presbyter/Stated Clerk) and Jeannie Bickett (Associate Pastor, Unity Presbyterian Church).  Mark and Jeannie outlined the search process and will guide us through each step of the process.

The search process will take between six and 12 months.  Below are the next steps:

  • Commissioning of the Pastor Nominating Committee (February 1st)
  • Congregational event (February 22nd)
  • Completion of the job advertisement
  • Post the job advertisement on national search database
  • Evaluate the potential candidates

One of the most important steps in the process is getting feedback from the congregation.  After services on February 22nd, we will provide lunch and engage in a discussion about the direction of Van Wyck Presbyterian Church.   The search is an exciting step to begin the next chapter in Van Wyck Presbyterian Church.  Please join us and participate on February 22nd.

The committee will try hard to communicate to the congregation about the search.  If you have any questions along the way, please do not hesitate to ask us.

Yours in Christ,

Stuart Graham, Chair of PNC

Worship Committee Report

The Worship Committee met on November 10, 2014, to discuss our plans for the Advent and Christmas Season. The Christmas Eve Candlelight Service and the Children’s Pageant were discussed in detail, and Julie Graham was asked to join our meeting to discuss the pageant. A decision was made that Julie and her committee would be responsible for the pageant and the Worship Committee would assume responsibility for the Candlelight Service.

Our committee selected the families to light the Advent Wreath during Advent Season and wanted to choose families who had never had this opportunity. Those lighting this year were:

Sam and Laine Ardrey

Sam and Camille Dunlap

Rob and Carol Johns

Georg and Eloise Williams

Thank you for your contribution to worship services during this season.

These services were held on Christmas Eve at 5:30 p.m. and the Children’s Pageant was well presented by the children. Our church is very proud of our precious children and their importance to our church family. The Candlelight Service was beautiful and conducted by Ken Cook, Camille Dunlap and Claudia Thompson. Our sincere appreciation to these three for a great presentation and most meaningful worship experience. Our church is always full during the Christmas Eve Service with members and visitors who come to worship the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

December 13 was a very busy day as we met at 4:30 p.m. to carol to our shut-ins and seniors. We had a good group of people to join in the caroling and sang to four different people. Beautiful gift bags with many goodies were prepared by Rob and Carol Johns. Our choir and other members who carol always come away from caroling having received a gift from those we visit. The day continued with our annual soup and chili meal and fellowship with one another.

Communion was prepared and cleaned afterwards on November 23 by the Worship Committee.

The Worship Committee is grateful to Dr. Craig Butler for continuing to minister to our congregation each Sunday.

Many thanks to our choir members who worked diligently each week to prepare beautiful Christmas anthems during the past months. Our choir is very appreciated and contributes so much to our worship services.

As we look back over the past year, we are thankful for the many blessings our church family has received. We remember with much love our former minister, Dr. William J. Johnson, and the blessings he brought and gave to our church family. His much-too-short time with us was truly a gift from God. He will forever remain in our hearts for the lessons he taught us and the love he gave to each of us.

Our committee will be meeting very soon to select our Ushers and Greeters for the coming year.

Happy New Year from the Worship Committee, filled with God’s blessings,

—Janesta Williams, Chairperson

Elders Class of 2017

In November 2014, the congregation nominated the following to serve as Elders:  Janet Campbell, Mike Helms and Carol Leedy.

Strengthening Committee Report

To begin the Advent season, on December 6, thirteen members and friends of VWPC braved the cold rain to attend “The Magic of Christmas” presentation by the Charlotte Symphony, Charlotte Oratorio Singers and Children Choir.

Once again we marveled at the wonderful performance and questioned how each year the musical program is completely different music from the previous years. After the performance, we enjoyed supper at Midtown Sundries in Indian Land.

If you are interested in attending the 2015 performance, please mark your calendar for the Saturday matinee, December 5, at 2:30 p.m. and SAVE THE DATE. This performance is well worth your time and money, and will definitely put you in the Christmas spirit.

Our church was represented in the Van Wyck Christmas Parade on December 13. Once again, several members (young and old) marched carrying our church banners and handed out candy to the children. VWPC was one of many churches participating in this fun parade.

Bulletins continue to be mailed and website managed on a weekly basis.

The Strengthening Committee looks forward to the New Year. Please watch the bulletin for upcoming events.

We have been so blessed this past year and we ask God’s blessings for each of us during this New Year Happy New Year to all!!

—Lynne Jones and Claudia Thompson, Co-Moderators

Christian Education Committee Report

A big Thank You to all our Sunday School teachers for 2014.  We appreciate all the time and effort that you put in each lesson.

The Christian Education committee threw a Christmas party for our children.

The children and Ken Cook did a great job telling the Christmas Story on Christmas Eve.   Julie Graham had a lot of fun organizing the play.  We all will look forward to the performance for 2015.

Over the next few months, the Christian Education committee will look at different ways to organize and offer opportunities for the congregation to participate in activities outside the 11 a.m. service. We have opportunities to increase participation. Each of you will have the opportunity to give feedback on what the congregation would like to support.  Please stay tuned.


—Stuart Graham, Chair of Christian Education

Check out the website for the calendar of events of our church and community.  Sunday morning worship service bulletins are now on-line.  Visit the website and click on the Sunday’s date or previous dates to read the bulletin on-line.

Report from Presbyterian Women

There are some important dates coming up for Van Wyck Presbyterian Women that we would like for you to put on your calendar.  Our PW group meets the third Monday of each month at 10:00 a.m. in the McSpadden Fellowship Hall at the church.  We invite all women in the church to join us.  If you would be interested in attending a PW group to meet in the evening or other time because of work and schedule issues please contact Pat Oglesby at or 803-517-0775.

The annual Easter Breakfast will be on Easter Sunday morning, April 5th at 9 a.m.  We hope that you and your family can come and enjoy the fellowship.  We will be serving breakfast casseroles, grits, biscuits and gravy, fruit and coffee and juice.  We will have a sign- up sheet available at church in March and would appreciate your contributions to this annual event.   Please put your name, how many are coming and what you can bring.

On Saturday, April 11, Providence Presbytery Presbyterian Women will hold their Annual Spring Gathering here at Van Wyck Presbyterian Church from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.   Women from the 58 churches of Providence Presbytery will come to Van Wyck that day for a worship service, business meeting, a luncheon and fellowship.  Please be in prayer for the success of this meeting and please let any member of the PW of our church know if you are willing to help with this event.   We are looking forward to hosting this meeting and sharing our beautiful facilities and our community with these ladies.

During the past months the PW has continued to minister to those in need in our church by providing meals when needed and by uplifting shut ins and others with cards and prayers.

We invite you to join us for our Tuesday morning bible study led by Laine Ardrey.  We meet in the McSpadden Fellowship Hall at 10 a.m. every Tuesday.  We are now starting a study by Max Lucado on the book of Romans.   This has become a wonderful  opportunity  for spiritual growth, studying God’s word and fellowship.  Please join us!  Approximately 20 women are now attending this bible study class.

Looking ahead to next Fall we are planning our annual Fall Retreat to Montreat on Monday, October 12 through Wednesday, October 14th.  We stay at South Carolina Inn at Montreat and have a devotional time and lots of opportunities for fellowship, shopping and eating, of course!   The room rates are very reasonable and breakfast is available (delicious and very cheap).  Please see Lynne Jones to make your reservation now if you plan to go as we need to send in our deposit asap.  The one night deposit is refundable until 60 days prior to the trip.  For details please see any PW member.   This will be a beautiful time to be in the gorgeous North Carolina mountains.

All women of the church are invited to attend our meetings, which are held on the third Monday of each month at 10:00 a.m. in the McSpadden Fellowship Hall.

— Pat Oglesby, Presbyterian Women Moderator

Grounds & Maintenance

Trees – Carl Halas and his team from Halas Arborists trimmed the dead tree limbs on the church property in early December.

With Spring just around the corner, the committee will be scheduling an outdoor cleanup day.  Check the bulletin for the date and time.

–Jack Leedy & Richard Vaughan, Co-chairs

 Tea Time

Please mark your calendars for Sunday, August 16, 2015, for our annual Sunday Tea and Silent Basket Auction, organized by the Stewardship Committee. More details to follow.

Lighting the Way”

Kudos to Glenda Manus! She’s published another one! This book proves to be just as good as the first one — “Sweet Tea and Southern Grace.”

We are so proud of you, Glenda!

Treasurer Report

We are gearing up for a great 2015 at Van Wyck Presbyterian Church!  This year’s Stewardship Campaign “Simplicity and Celebration” asked you to remove the clutter in your life—on the inside, in your mind and in your heart, and on the outside, in your home and surroundings. We are led by 2 Corinthians, which says, “Each man should give what he decides in his heart to give…for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Your support in making our church’s campaign a success is much appreciated and without commitments like yours, we could not go into the New Year with confidence that our ministry in the community could continue. It is not too late to make your pledge if you have not done so already.  Let’s join in prayer that God will lead us through 2015 with energy and enthusiasm for shared ministry.

In addition to your general fund pledge, this campaign challenges you to “Make a Payment” of $676.32 or more over the course of 2015 on our fellowship hall building loan.  With your help, we are hoping to pay off the $38,000 balance and be rid of the $8,000 per year line item that “clutters” our budget.

During our campaign, we unveiled “Easter Cross”, a colorful, detailed painting by our own talented Camille Dunlap that so beautifully captures a VWPC tradition.  A framed print is in the McSpadden Fellowship Hall.

2014 General Fund Budget    = $116,220.00

 1st Quarter (January – March)                                =  $   27,840.00

2nd Quarter (April – June)                       =       31,149.37

3rd Quarter (July – September)              =       26,131.50

4th Quarter (October – December)         =       35,126.00

Total Giving for 2014                               =    120,248.87

Ahead Adopted Budget                          =        4,026.87

Total Expenditures for 2014                   =    100,409.79


Expenditures UNDER Giving Amount    =  $    19,840.08

As of January 20, 2015, the principal loan balance is $38,157.51. We have received “Make a Payment” pledges for 2015 of $16,000 and if you wish to give to the Building Fund, please indicate on your check “Building Fund”.

 2014 Special Offerings

One Great Hour of Sharing                =   $    756.00

Mother’s Day Offering                        =         657.00

Dimes for Hunger                                                =      1,242.02

Those who contribute in cash are encouraged to use the pew envelopes in order to be credited for your contributions. Pew envelopes are available and you can pick up a supply from the basket in the vestibule.  If you would like to take advantage of the direct deposit program, please see me for details.

 As church treasurer, I want to thank you for your continued faithful support in the ministry of Van Wyck Presbyterian Church.

May rich blessings from our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Linda Vaughan, Church Treasurer


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