Category: Newsletter

A Peoria Presbyterian is honored

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​For a better understanding of my article, The Presbytery of The Grand Canyon is the group of Presbyterian Churches from just north of Casa Grande (this includes the Indian churches on the Pima Reservation) to the southern Utah state line. From Yuma to the New Mexico west state line).​Every year, the Presbytery sponsors a recognition program and luncheon to honor a single person or a married couple, 70 years of age or older. This is the 33rd Senior Service event. Members are selected for the service in their church and community.

​This year, SENIOR SERVICE AWARD HONOREE FORM PEORIA PRESBYTERIAN IS; CLEO (HOLLY) BURKETT. Cleo joined Peoria Presbyterian as a young girl in the late 1940’s or early 1950’s. In 2010, after her husband passed away, Cleo moved back to Peoria from Youngstown, Ohio. In her early years, she helped in Bible School and was active in youth group. Cleo is an ordained Elder, has served on Session and has been a member of Session committees. Cleo was a member of our Hand Bell Choir and the Chancel Choir until recently, when she turned in her car keys, which some of should follow the same move. Cleo has now moved into Amathest Garden Independent Living facility, north of Bell Road.  

​For Cleo’s community service, in her younger years, she was the head drum majorette at Peoria High School. She volunteered for the Southwest Animal Shelter, caring for small animals. Cleo also helped ion a soup kitchen preparing ford to the needy.

​We are honored to have Cleo receive this award from Peoria Presbyterian. She was honed at a luncheon on March 30th, along with other honorees. Each honoree is singled out and recognized with a script of their accomplishments and read at the luncheon. This was held at Valley Presbyterian in Scottsdale.


 ​​​​​Your Church Family,

​​​​​Ken Johnson, Clerk of Session

Categories: Newsletter

Preschool News

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April showers bring May flowers

April is all about spring time and growing. The kids are growing not only physically, emotionally but spiritually as well. They are learning about spring time, the weather and how Jesus died for our sins.

Graduation is fast approaching, it will take place on Wednesday May 24, 2017 at 10:00 am. All are welcome to attend this special time for our Pre-K- kidos. We will have light refreshments following in fellowship hall.

You might have noticed a preschool donation box in the sanctuary, we are asking for donations of any kind as in, art supplies, paper goods, snack items etc. Thank you for your continued support.

Best regards,

Sunshine Tinker


And from Donna and the preschool committee:

After several months of indicating that she was going to retire, Lynn Hawkins, our previous preschool director officially retired on March 3rd.  We asked Sunshine to be the new director and she graciously accepted.  Ms. Sally and Jessica are continuing to assist Sunshine.  We look forward to continuing the important mission work of our preschool and thank all of our church members for their continued support!

Categories: Newsletter

Session News

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For a change, we had a full crew.  There was not a lot of formal action, but a lot of talk.

Mary Lynn Walters, representing the Presbytery Committee on Ministry, met with us to discuss Pastor Terry’s upcoming year as our interim pastor.  Pastor Terry excused himself, so session members would be free to express their personal feeling of his performance over the past year.  He might as well have remained in the room, because all discussion was positive.  Pastor Terry agreed along with all the Elders, to extend the pastoral Contract for an additional year.  The general feeling is, “WE ARE GLAD YOU ARE HERE, PASTOR TERRY ALONG WITH YOUR WIFE, BARBARA!”

Donna Davis, Church Treasurer, reported from January 1st through March 7th.  Our expenses results in a deficit, however, do not push the panic button yet.  It could have been worse.  We had some hidden (over looked) expenses that were carried over from 2016.

John and Katrina Guy planned a breakfast for prospective new members on

March 26th, after worship.  Obviously, it has, at this time, already taken place.  Hopefully, you were able to make it, and sorry if you missed out.  Anyone interested in the Presbyterian Policy was invited to attend, present members included…needing to refresh our minds.  Thank you to the John and Katrina for opening up the “soup kitchen”, it is much more than soup.

The Pastor’s, Deacon’s and all committee reports were received and approved.

Ken Johnson, Clerk of Session

Categories: Newsletter

Back in time with Ken

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The Four Browning Sisters

Of the four Browning Sisters, two were active in P.P.C.  Ruth Boggs was 96 in 1982, our 90th anniversary, as Larry had written in a recent Church Chatter. Article.  Ruth was a quiet person, so I do not have any good stories on Ruth.

Josephine (Browning) Deatsch was the mother of Mary M. Wilhelm, our longest continuous member, but now deceased.  Josephine loved to witness for her Lord.  At some point in her life, she lived in Wickenburg, AZ.  In earlier days, Wickenburg was a tough town of cowboys and miners, especially on Saturday nights.  Josephine told about going to Wickenburg bars and scolding the men inside, “Why aren’t you home with your wife?”

Once upon a time, several years ago, I taught a Jr. High Sunday School class.  Now our Elder, Mickey (Ryan) Gilsdorf was in my class.  Mickey never gave me any trouble as she was well behaved.  However, that was not the case with one the boys that gave me a problem until I told him he was      on his way to his mother’s class.  In plain English, I was about to kick him out of class.  I had no more trouble from him.

Someone on the Christian Ed Committee got the bright idea of teachers trading classes.  I went from the Jr. High class to the Sr. Adult class.  My thoughts were, “Oh man, these older people know more that I do.”  But, it turned out okay.  Josephine Deatsch was in the class.  She was life saver as she loved to talk and she knew her Bible.  At the start of the class period, when a question was asked and I might not know the answer, I would say, “Josephine,   what do you think about it?”  I hardly had to say another word, except for  “Well, it’s almost 10:45, time to close with prayer.”

Whew…what a life saver she was.  

The other two Browning sisters were not as active in P.P.C. as Ruth and Josephine.  One was a grade school teacher I the Peoria School System.  The other was a dorm mom at a college.  We all get set in our ways and opinions.  In later years, the four sisters all lived together in Sun City; three had become widows and one had never married.  I am thankful, that before I was married, I was not asked to be their live-in handyman.  Enough said and enough written.

Categories: Newsletter

Thank you for everything

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It is with a grateful heart, I thank each and every one of my church family.  During the days after the death of my son, and even today, you have been the support I need.  Without asking, you have reached out to me.  I will never fully be able to tell you how much I needed you and how very thankful I am to have such a church family.

The service was wonderful.  You accommodated the many guests, not only to make them comfortable in the church, but also in the fellowship hall.  Terry was a wonderful support to all my family and his message touched us all.  Eric, I swear you were playing and singing to me.  It touched me in ways I have yet to be able to articulate.  The reception was nurturing and welcoming to a very large group.  

Keep the smiles and support.  It is unique and makes this church who we are.

Thank you all,   Marti Schlagel and Family

PS:  My girls said after the service, they no longer worried about me being alone.  I will never be alone with a church family, such as I have.  Warmed my heart!

Categories: Newsletter

Easter Egg Hunt Supplies Needed

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It’s that time of year again and the Easter Bunny could use your help.  Christian Ed is seeking donations of Easter candy (no chocolate please), plastic eggs and hard boiled eggs.  Please have your donations in by April 7th, so we can prepare for the annual Easter egg hunt!

Categories: Newsletter

Peoria Presbyterian Church 125th Anniversary Raffle Quilt

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The Sewing Circle will be raffling off a beautiful donated quilt in honor of our 125th Anniversary. The tickets will go on sale for $1.00 each or 6 tickets for $5.00 starting April 1, 2017 at the “Old Time Gathering”. Tickets will continue to be sold until the winning ticket is drawn after church on Mother’s Day, May 14, 2017.


Categories: Newsletter

My first Anniversary at FPC

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It’s been a year since I first preached here (March 13, 2016).  I didn’t know then that I would be your interim pastor.  I preached upon the kind invitation of Pastor Pat Young who had retired at the end of February.   And then I led the Maundy Thursday service, preached on Easter Sunday, and was hired by the Session to officially begin on May 15, 2016.

It’s been a wonderful year for both Barbara and me.  We love the church, love the friendships we have established, and deeply appreciate how you’ve taken both of us into your hearts.

We had a series of congregational desserts when I first arrived,  and I had a chance to listen to more than 60 of you talk about your dreams for the future.  I learned that the church had been in a downward spiral in membership and finances in recent years.  In that sense this church was typical of many Presbyterian churches across the land.  There aren’t many churches  in our denomination  that are growing or even holding their own.  Someone at the desserts said, “I guess the last person out should turn off the lights.”

After hearing both fears and dreams at the desserts, I thought a lot about what the goals of my interim should be.  Should I help the church begin to prepare for a decent burial?  Could we do at least do something to  hold our own?  What?

And then this past fall the most amazing thing began to happen.  Attendance picked up.  Finances picked up.  Prospective members began to attend.  This marvelous development was surprising to me.  I guess I should never be surprised at the energizing and renewing power of God’s spirit.  But I was.

So as we near our 125th anniversary celebration, it is clear to me that this church can  grow and be stronger five years from now than it is today.  My one overriding goal in the second year of our interim is to do all within my power for the church to have the wherewithal down the road  to call a full-time pastor.

My vision is for the church to call a young man or woman full of spit and vinegar who can tend to the present flock and attract newer (and younger) families.


I found this welcome message on the website of Coventry Cathedral in Britain.   It’s what I think we are about:


We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, widowed, gay, confused, filthy rich, comfortable or dirt poor.”

“We extend a special welcome to wailing babies and excitable toddlers.”

“We welcome you whether you can sing like Pavarotti or just growl quietly to yourself.”

“You’re welcome here if you’re ‘just browsing’, just woken up or just got out of prison.

“We don’t care if you’re more Christian than the Archbishop of Canterbury, or haven’t been to church since Christmas ten years ago.”

Sing like Pavarotti? Well, you’re welcome at Coventry Cathedral. 

We extend a warm welcome to those who are over 60 but not grown up yet, and to teenagers who are growing up too fast.”

“We welcome keep-fit mums, football dads, starving artists, tree-huggers, latte-sippers, vegetarians, junk-food eaters.”

“We welcome those who are in recovery and those who are still addicted.”

“We welcome you if you’re having problems, are down in the dumps or don’t like organized religion.”

“We offer a welcome to those who think the Earth is flat, work too hard, don’t work, can’t spell or are here because granny is visiting and wanted to come to the Cathedral .”

“We welcome those who are inked, pierced, both or neither”

We offer a special welcome to those who could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down their throats as kids or got lost in the city centre and wound up here by mistake.”

Categories: Newsletter