April 2009 “Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.” (Psalm 62:5-6)
Royal Palm Christian Church Services for… on April 5th at 8:30 & 10:45 a.m. Maundy Thursday Service on April 9th at 7:00 p.m. followed by a Prayer Vigil lasting through 3:00 p.m. on April 10th
Saturday, April 11th, at 10:00 a.m.
April 12th Services at 6:30 a.m. (in the garden) 8:30 & 10:45 a.m. Breakfast at 7:15 a.m.
VIEWS AND REVIEWS “THE BEST OF TIMES” If you read the newspapers or watch the news on TV you are not likely to get the impression that we are approaching the best of times. To the contrary, things look pretty bleak. The Iraq War has dragged out over six years and the war in Afghanistan has gone on even longer. Despite all the deaths and destruction,
there is no decisive end in sight for either conflict. Here at home the economic situation is the worst the country has seen since the 1930’s. Some companies are closing while others are making major cutbacks. Unemployment is the highest it has been in years. The future is uncertain. But we are an Easter people. Because we believe that Jesus was raised from the dead we declare that the future is not bleak and uncertain. Instead it is guaranteed by God. Despite the present state of the world, there is no reason for despair. There is no crisis so big that God cannot overcome it. Certainly God may not work on our schedule or work in the way we would have chosen. But God does work even in the most desperate of situations to bring life and light. The resurrection of Jesus is an event that declares that even when there seems to be no hope there is hope in God. The resurrection declares that even when all we can see with our eyes is tragedy, God can turn it into victory. The resurrection declares that even when all appears to be covered with the dust of death, God can bring forth life. The resurrection declares that even when there seems to be no future, with God the future is filled with promise. The worst of times can be the best of times because Jesus Christ rose from the dead. For those of us who are Christians, Easter is not just one special day each year. Rather it is the theme of our lives. We see in the wondrous, grave-robbing resurrection of Jesus a sign for what God has in store for us. “We will be like him,” scripture tells us (1 John 3:2). Like the resurrected Christ! Because of this we can face set-backs, hardship and tragedy with confidence in the transforming and redeeming power of God. Plan to be with us in worship on April 12th – Easter Sunday – and bring your friends. Let’s all celebrate the hope giving resurrection of Jesus. Grace and Peace, Craig
PRESCHOOL NEWS FROM SUZANNE The third time was a charm. After two rainouts we were able to complete our Trike-aThon to benefit St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Our little ones brought their bikes, trikes, scooters, and even a wing mobile to ride and raise funds for this great children’s hospital. Our total collected to date is $1,887.00. Thanks, our children and families are amazing. Stop by our entrance bulletin board to enjoy some photos of this fun event. We are all enjoying the arrival of spring – flowers are blooming, eggs are hanging in the halls, spring colors are abundant, and we are all preparing to celebrate Easter. Registration for summer school and the new school year is underway and classes are filling. Information and paperwork can be obtained from the preschool office, or call 954-753-2445 with questions.
APRIL HAPPENINGS 4/2 & 3 Graduation Photos for VPK students 4/6 - 9 Preschool Closed for Spring Break 4/10 Good Friday – all closed 4/14 & 15 Children’s Sharing with Pastor Craig 4/22 Earth Day 4/23 Take Your Child to Work Day 4/24 Tunes from the 2’s – 9:45 am Ms. Adrienne & Ms. Laura’s Classes 4/29 3’s Spring Sing – 9:45 am 4/30 Ms. Ero’s Nearly 2’s Sing – 9:45 am
RPCC extends an embracing welcome to MICHELLE MARTIN who joined the church on March 29th. Michelle loves the church for its friendliness, hospitality and the feeling of being at home. She arrived in the U.S. from Jamaica six months ago, passed the tests for R.N. and currently works as a nurse at Northwest Medical Center. She lives with her parents, and she has four siblings. Michelle said that she was very active in her church in Jamaica and would love to get involved at RPCC as much as her schedule permits. We are proud to have Michelle as the newest member of our congregation.
APRIL ANNIVERSARIES 4/7 4/12 4/13
Michael & Diane Wead John & Donna Linn Romeo & Ruby Espiritu
4/4 4/5 4/9 4/11 4/12 4/13 4/14 4/17
Shelby Suelzner Emma Winston Marcus Harris Jr. Donna Pruner Ashley Ehlebracht Olga Tocuyo Aida Arias-Thurlow Edward Casas Jeremy Greenfield Alyssa Sikora Patti Johnson Scott Johnson Robin Wooldridge Emilie Richardson Steven Bramley Robert Rutkauskas Missy Snyder Douglas Lucas Reggie Ghann
[We apologize if your name is not on the list. the office to update your information!]
MAUNDY THURSDAY SERVICE “WASH AND BE WASHED” Through the centuries, washing of the feet has been a solemn ceremony during Holy Week. It exemplifies the story of the Lord Jesus becoming a servant (John 13: 3-11), and shows us how to be as His disciples. At our Maundy Thursday service everyone will have the opportunity to wash some one's feet and, in turn, also have their own feet washed. It can be vulnerable, humbling and risky, but if you surrender yourself to the process by assuming the roles of both Jesus (who wanted to wash) and Peter (who refused to be washed but finally relented) there is the possibility of a miracle of transformation. And that is what Holy Week is truly all about. FOLLOWED BY A PRAYER VIGIL Then Jesus went with his followers to a place called Gethsemane. He said to them, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." "Stay here and watch with me." After walking a little farther away from them, Jesus fell to the ground and prayed. Then Jesus went back to his followers and found them asleep. He said to them, "Stay awake and pray." (Paraphrased, Matthew 26:36-40) You are invited to keep watch with Jesus and to pray, following the Maundy Thursday service thru Good Friday at 3:00 p.m. Please join this prayer vigil for at least a half hour time period or more. You may pray from the church garden, the sanctuary, home or your workplace. A sign up sheet is posted in the Narthex. If you would like more information, please call Loni Skipper, Coral Wiedman or Alice Price.
EASTER FAST Easter is a story of grief and joy. We grieve as we remember Jesus’ painful and humiliating execution and burial, but we rejoice as He rises from death and we are given new life. This is a sacred time of year for Christians. As we grieve and rejoice we yearn for an even closer relationship with our Lord. The Elders of RPCC, in order be more humble in service to the Lord, have committed to fast from Maundy Thursday to Easter Sunday. In both the Old and New Testaments, fasting is a sign of commitment and repentance in order to increase faith, especially when accompanied by prayer. Fasting may be total or partial – avoiding certain foods or eating smaller than normal quantities. The Elders encourage the congregation to join in the fast. Your fast may be one meal or it may be many as you prepare to humble yourself before the crucifixion and rejoice in the resurrection.
JUNE 7TH – 11TH Dinner is available 5:30 p.m. Program starts at 6:30 p.m. If you’d like to volunteer for Vacation Bible School, call Mr. Mike (954-972-2299). Watch for registration information!
PARENT’S NIGHT OUT The Christian Women’s Fellowship for an evening of FOOD, FUN and FELLOWSHIP… for children of ALL ages. Save the date…Saturday, April 25th, from 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. Child Care services will be provided for: $20 for the first child, $10 each additional child ($40 maximum per family). Dinner and snacks will be provided.
PROPERTY CLEAN UP
“BREAKTHROUGH” The camp directors have begun preparing for this summer’s camp adventures! The dates for the various camps are listed below, and camp registration forms are available on the youth room door. In order to receive a discounted Camp Fee, all camp registrations should be turned in before May 3rd. Adults…there are camp counselor positions available also. If you haven’t ever been to camp, find time to speak to Coral, Libby, Ingrid or Cheryl…they have first hand experience! Camp Genesis Camp CYF Conference 3rd Grade Camp Junior Camp Chi Rho Camp
Grades 5th – 7th 9th – 12th 3rd th 4 - 5th 6th - 8th
Dates 6/7 – 12 6/14 – 20 6/21 – 25 6/28 – 7/2 7/19 – 24
MOTHER’S DAY GIFT FAIR SATURDAY ~ APRIL 25TH 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. RPCC Fellowship Hall
Cost $285 $295 $245 $245 $280
We’re going to be doing some “light housekeeping” on Good Friday afternoon and we welcome all who are willing to lend a hand. We want to make sure that our playgrounds are ready for the Egg Hunt on Saturday and the garden is ready for the Easter Sunrise Service. We’ll be working from 1:00 to 4:00 on Friday, April 10th. In fact, think about coming by for the Good Friday Prayer Vigil (from 12:00 – 3:00) and then joining us. If you have questions, please call Karyn (954-340-6616).
Southern District Assembly “ONE” This year the assembly is going to be held here at RPCC on Saturday, May 30th, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Pray about how you can help share our embracing hospitality with our Brothers and Sisters in the Southern District.
The Christian Men’s Fellowship will be hosting their Annual Spring Chicken Barbecue on Saturday, May 2nd, from 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. Join us and other families and friends for some food, fun and fellowship. An adult platter includes: chicken, coleslaw, beans, roll and a beverage, and costs $5.00. The child platter includes: hot dog or chicken, chips and a beverage, and costs $3.00.