Michelangelo's God
Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church Newsletter
Weekly Happenings at SHPCSeptember 4, 2014

Evolving Church begins with...

Evolving God?


What do we know about God, and how do we know it?  The Hebrew scriptures teach us that God is Creator of heavens and earth, that God sent a flood to wash the earth clean from evil, and that God gave the Promised Land to God's people. Taken literally, these teachings can be problematic. The Hebrew Bible also contains some of the most beautiful poetry ever written about God (e.g., Psalm 42). The New Testament teaches us that God sent Jesus to reveal God's kingdom, that God is concerned with all people, especially the poor, that God is love, and that God is still speaking to teach and remind us how to be God's people in the world.  


This Sunday, September 7, 2014 at 9:30 a.m., we kick off our fall series on Evolving Church by exploring our ideas and beliefs about God. Our confirmands-to-be will be with us in church, beginning their confirmation journey. We will welcome our new pastoral intern, Lora East, and celebrate the sacrament accompanied by the SHPC Singers. Our texts will be Psalm 42, 1 John 4:7-8, and John 14:15-27.


In This Issue
Bible Study
Paul's Blog
Justice Garden Farm Stand!
Confirmation Classes
Let's Talk
Ceres Garden Party
Photos of Bon Voyage!
Pedaling for Protein
Take Wil and Betty Dinner
Greeters Needed
PDA Homebuilding Trips
SFTS Horizons Bible Study
Suicide Prevention Hotline Training Class
Quick Links
Bev piano
A Note from 
Pastor Bev       

This is going to be an exciting weekend for Sleepy Hollow church! 


The place to be this Saturday morning starting at 9 a.m. is at the corner of Butterfield and Green Valley Court for our first ever Justice Garden Farm Stand!  Tell all your neighbors to come on down, select beautiful organic veggies, and support local hunger programs with their donations.  This is a dream come true for the Garden and Green teams. We are so grateful for the start up grant from the Interfaith Sustainable Food Collaborative, the generous support of our Presbytery's Hunger Task Force, and for the countless hours put in by our own wonderful garden managers and volunteers. We are living our mission here to feed the hungry and seeing dreams come true!


Then Sunday morning, we start our Evolving Church challenge series, along with Confirmation Class for our 11 and ups, and Let's Talk.  A few of you have asked me how we can possibly take on hot topics and stay friends.  This Sunday at our first session, with the seasoned leadership of facilitator Shannon Mong, we will figure that out.  


Wow!  We are all going to be learning and growing a lot this fall!

It is my great joy to serve this vibrant church!


 Fall Calendar


Thursday, September 4
       7:30 p.m.        SHPC Singers Rehearse at church 

Friday, September 5
        12:00 p.m.      Bible Study

Sunday, September 7
          9:30 a.m.      Evolving Church Begins: Evolving God?
        Confirmation Class begins in church and concludes at 11:30
        10:30 a.m.     Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk - about hot topics and stay friends
                             with Shannon Mong

Thursday, September 11
       7:30 p.m.         SHPC Singers Rehearse at church 

Friday, September 12
        12:00 p.m.      Bible Study

Sunday, September 14
          9:30 a.m.     Evolving Church Continues: The Lordship of Jesus
                             Confirmation Class #2
        10:30 a.m.     Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk - What We Can Do About Bullying,
                             with Betsy Fox

Thursday, September 18
       7:30 p.m.        SHPC Singers Rehearse at church 

Friday, September 19
        12:00 p.m.      Bible Study

Sunday, September 21
          9:30 a.m.    Theological Education Sunday - 
                             Lora East preaching
                            Confirmation Class #3
        10:30 a.m.     Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk - Saving the Planet, 
                             with Doug Eisinger

Thursday, September 25
       7:30 p.m.        SHPC Singers Rehearse at church

Friday, September 26
        12:00 p.m.      Bible Study
          7:00 p.m.      Ordination to Ministry of Hannah Dreitcer

Sunday, September 28
          9:30 a.m.    Evolving Church Continues: 
                            Big Tent -- Who are God's People?
                            Confirmation Class #4
        10:30 a.m.    Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk

Thursday, October 2
       7:30 p.m.        SHPC Singers Rehearse at church 

Friday, October 3
        11:45 a.m.      Bible Study to SFTS for Bentley's Senior Sermon

Sunday, October 5
                             Confirmation Class Celebration
        10:30 a.m.     Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk 

Thursday, October 9
       7:30 p.m.        SHPC Singers Rehearse at church

Friday, October 10
        12:00 p.m.      Bible Study

Sunday, October 12
          9:30 a.m.     Evolving Church: 
                            Sacred Texts: Alive, Stone Tablets, Both?
        10:30 a.m.     Coffee and Refreshments - All Welcome!
        10:45 a.m.     Let's Talk 

Bible Study - Friday Sept. 5
Psalm 42, 1John 4:7-8, John 14: 15-27
Bible Study meets at noon on Fridays in the Pastor's office.  Whatever your experience with the Bible might be, you are welcome to come and learn and make meaningful friendships.  
Don't Touch That Dial ... or Should I?

Getting to the airport, boarding a plane, checking in or out of a hotel, grabbing a quick sandwich, and reaching for a ringing cell phone lodged in my pocket aptly describes a day in my life right now. Sounds busy doesn't it? Sometimes being busy takes us into an orbit where it is hard to hear God, to notice God, or feel God's presence.


In our Bible Study last Friday Pastor Bev led us in a discussion about turning the volume down on the world so we could hear God. 

Hearing God, she reiterated, is a learned skill and we need to work on it. We need to make it a priority. God has promised "I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way thou shalt go" Psalm 32:8,9. God could have also added "so listen up!"


The best way to hear God is to be in God's presence. Kick aside the distractions for a bit. Be still. God often speaks in a whisper or through a thoughtful nudge. James 1:19 says "Let every person be swift to hear and slow to speak." When we spend time in a dialed down zone we can focus on real priorities -- things that matter-- and things God is calling (and equipping) us to do.


I love the phrase "the only thing that matters is what really matters."


So as I head to the East Coast this week I am going to vow to listen for God and pay attention to what really matters. I am going to try to dial down the volume of the world. Why don't you join me? Let's make sure that we're affecting the world rather than letting it affect us.


"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect" (Rom 12:2)..."For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (Luke 12:34).


Now is the time to put all this into practice.


Dialing down ... Paul



Please Remember in Your Prayers
Praying Hands

The Rev. John Scott, former pastor of San Geronimo PC, and his loved ones, for blessed assurance of God's presence and comfort;

Carolyn O'Hara, for healing, and for strength and support during her recovery;

Evan Peltzman, for healing and complete recovery from a broken heel, and for strength and support during his recovery;

Andrea Proster, for healing, and her sister Nancy Elberg, for strength in companioning her;

Clyde Ongaro, for healing;

Jerry Lambert, for healing, and for blessed assurance of God's constant presence;

For the unhoused community as we approach winter without a permanent shelter in Marin County, and for our local government, for the wherewithal to create and fund a permanent shelter;

For all those struggling with mental illness, and their loved ones;

For all those struggling with addiction and dependency, and their loved ones;

For all those struggling to make ends meet, with housing and food insecurity, and with financial stress;

For all those living in places of darkness and violence, for peace, shared humanity, and hope.


Please take time this week to pray for those on our list.


Back to the top

Come One, Come All to the
SHPC Farm Stand 
Saturday, September 6th at 9 a.m.!  

The Justice Garden has enough produce for the first farm stand of the year! Join us starting at 9:00 a.m. this Saturday, September 6th on the corner of Butterfield and Green Valley Court. Please encourage family, friends, and neighbors to stop by to pick up delicious organic produce from the SHPC Justice Garden in exchange for donations. Proceeds from the farm stand will go to local hunger programs.







SHPC Confirmation Class
with Charles Wei, M. Div., Pastor Bev, and Lora East

Confirmation class starts this Sunday, September 7th during worship and continues for the four Sundays of September. Confirmation class is open to those 11 and up who are interested in learning more about church and religion, asking questions/talking about life and whatever is going on, and having fun!  


Here are our topics for open-ended discussion:

September 7 - God, Holy Spirit, and Holy Communion

September 14 - Jesus, Baptism, and Reconciliation

September 21 - Taking Care of the Planet and Each Other

September 28 - The Bible, Church, and Other Faith Traditions


We'll start upstairs at 9:30 and continue downstairs after the service with art, discussion, Q&A, and fun.  We'll try to wrap up by 11:15, but the fun may last longer!  And save the date:  we'll celebrate our confirmands with special worship on Sunday, October 5 at 9:30 a.m.


Let's Talk! Fall Discussion Series
Kicks Off September 7th 
10:45 am

In our increasingly polarized culture,
is it possible to dive into charged topics and emerge friends?  Can we learn from people who don't see eye to eye with us on key issues? We're going to show the world it can be done!  

Don't miss our kick off Sunday, September 7 at 10:45 a.m.
Shannon Mong will lead us as we build skills for engaging in authentic conversations about topics that matter. 

Coming up:
- Sept. 14 - What to do about bullying? with Betsy Fox
- Sept. 21 - Saving the Planet with Doug Eisinger
- Oct. 19 - Israel/Palestine with Rev. Kate Tabor, PCUSA missionary
- November - End of life, heaven, and afterlife
- December - Religion and Science - can they talk?

Watch the calendar for dates and topics.

Richard Peltzman
Matt Ehlen
Cathy Sarkisian
Fred Morfit

Ceres Garden Party and Fundraiser
Sunday, September 7th
3:00-6:00 pm


Friends, Family, Neighbors & Colleagues please help Ceres to raise $15K for the Youth Program by joining in celebrating the second annual Garden Party Fundraiser on 

Sunday, September 7th!


The McLaughlin family is hosting a beautiful Garden Party for family and friends that will include music, inspiring menu & silent auction:


McLaughlin Home

58 Marina Boulevard

San Rafael

Auction items include gorgeous pottery, a variety of wine, dinner at your home cooked by Chef Trudy and the Ceres teens, a day of pampering, SF Ballet, beautiful jewelry, a special Marin evening out, and much much more..

Buy Tickets Now!

$20/advance & $25/door (under 21)

$40/advance & $45/door (21 & over)


please click on donate and specify 'Garden Party'


send a check to:

Ceres Marin

PO Box 151049

San Rafael, CA  94915


For more information about our Garden Party or general information about The Ceres Community Project of Marin please visit www.marin.ceresproject.org or contact Linda Dovbish at lindad@marin.ceresproject.org



With thanks,

Steve Derr



Photos From Bon Voyage Party for John and Patty Sanders!

Thank you to our Deacons for the beautiful Bon Voyage party for John and Patty Sanders, who have sold their home in San Rafael and are embarking on a year or two of travels.  It was a lovely celebration!

Pedaling for Protein
September 20th - 25th

Patty Sanders, the Hunger Action Enabler for Presbytery of the Redwoods, would like to bring to your attention the following information about Pedaling for Protein:


We are just a couple of weeks away from our Pedal for Protein bike tour benefiting grassroots food pantries in our Redwoods Presbytery. We have 13 riders for the 6 day tour and more coming to join us on the last day, Thursday September 25. Last day riders can join us anywhere along the way from our start at Tomales PC (47 miles) to Sausalito. Or, join us at the following churches: Pt. Reyes Station (31) miles), San Geronimo (19 miles), First Presbyterian San Anselmo (12 miles), or Redwoods Larkspur (8 miles). Sign up before August 31 on the website www.imathlete.com/events/PedalforProtein and save $$.


The goal is to raise $20,000 for two local food banks, which supply food to smaller, grassroots food pantries. You can support us with direct donations (make your check out to the Presbytery of the Redwoods and mark it for Pedal 4 Protein).  Click on these links for more information: 


Presbyterian Hunger Program AND Presbytery of the Redwoods 


While most of the riders will be from the Presbytery of the Redwoods, one staffer from the Presbyterian Hunger Program will also participate. Bryce Wiebe, associate for Enough for Everyone, will attempt to raise $10,000 for the hunger program's national and international grant projects.


The group will stay with various churches along the way and at these churches Wiebe will speak about the hunger program and the One Great Hour of Sharing offering, which helps fund the program. 


With thanks,

Patty Sanders


Right now we need cooks for a couple of Wednesdays in October, and the months of November and December are wide open for sign ups. Thank you and bless you for taking a hot meal and your love to Wil and Betty on Wednesday nights.

Greeters Needed for Sunday Mornings: September 14, 21, 28 and all of October

Help with our ministry of hospitality by signing up to be a greeter!  All you have to do is get to church by 9:15, light the candles, and hand out bulletins with a smile. Thank you to all who have signed up so far!

Jody Brockett Schmetz, 
Worship Elder

sign up here 

Time for a Homebuilding Mission Trip Before June 2015?
Check Out the PCUSA - Presbyterian Disaster Assistance
Opportunities On-Line

If you are hankering for an opportunity to share your gifts by building homes and can't wait for our own Mexico Mission trip next June, the Presbyterian Disaster Assistance state-by-state opportunities list is the place for you to surf possibilities!  You can team up with churches in New Jersey or New York for Superstorm Sandy rebuilding, or go to the Gulf region, where we are still doing Hurricane Katrina rebuilding, or go to many other sites where storms, tornadoes, or other disasters have created a need for rebuilding.

Click here for more information.



San Francisco Theological Seminary:
Horizons Bible Study
Saturday, September 13th
1:00-4:30 pm

San Francisco Theological Seminary will once again be hosting the annual Horizons Bible Study, and all Presbyterian women are invited to attend. 


Horizons Bible Study

Saturday, September 13, 2014

12:30 - 1:00 pm check in

1:00 - 4:30 pm Bible Study Day Program

San Francisco Theological Seminary

105 Seminary Road

San Anselmo, CA 94960


Registration Cost: $20.00


The 2014-2015 Horizons Bible Study Topic is Reconciling Paul: A Contemporary Study of 2 Corinthians, by Elizabeth Hinson-Hasty. The bible study will be led by Rev. Irene Pak, author of Suggestions for Leaders, the companion piece to Hinson-Hasty's book. 


Please go to tinyurl.com/RegisterHorizons to register.


Thank you and we hope to see you there!


Charles Wei

Communications Associate

San Francisco Theological Seminary

(415) 451-2805 charlesw@SFTS.edu


Training Class for Marin Suicide Prevention
September 16th - November 18th

Hotline volunteers needed! Learn the art of communication. Learn to listen and make a difference.

Fall Classes:

September 16th through November 18th

Tuesdays, 7:00-10:00 pm

one Saturday: October 11th 10:00 am-5:00 pm


For information call: 415-499-1193 ext.3003

Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church, 
100 Tarry Road, San Anselmo, CA  94960
Allie Duro, Editor/Office Administrator
E-mail us at shpchurch@comcast.net or call us at 415-453-8221