Mission Team Departs

 

DSC_0238Our Dominican Republic team left Nashville on November 1st to  serve with our mission partner, Solid Rock International, through November 7th at la Clinica Cristiana de la Salud Integral in San Juan de la Maguana near the western border shared with Haiti.  Our 8-member team consists of 2 internists, 3 nurses, 1 pre-med student, and 2 others with incredible servants’ hearts.  This team will spend their time travelling to remote barrios away from the clinic to provide services to both children and adults.  These daily clinics involve basic health exams and assistance with medical conditions such as high blood pressure and vitamin/iron deficiencies as well as parasite infections.

Solidarity with Christians in Iraq

The Outreach Foundation“On June 10, the Islamic State of Iraq (ISIS) entered Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq. Before 2003, Mosul was home to 35,000 Christians and one of the five Presbyterian churches in the country. The Nineveh Province, in which Mosul is found, includes the largest concentration of Christians (many in small villages), churches and monasteries (some dating back to the fourth century).

Soon, many of the remaining 3,000 Christians made their way to Erbil and Kirkuk, perhaps anticipating what would be the devastating pronouncement by ISIS on July 19: convert to Islam, pay an unspecified tax or be killed. In the weeks leading up to that announcement, the homes and businesses of Christians were marked with the Arabic letter “n” for “Nazarene,” the designation for Christians in the Quran. The mass exodus of Christians, religious minorities and moderate Muslims from Mosul was heavily monitored by ISIS, and no one was permitted to leave with any possessions or money. By the end of the month, ISIS had complete control of the city, and the Assyrian News Service published a list of 45 churches or religious sites destroyed or taken over by ISIS. On that list was the historic Presbyterian Church, one of the oldest Protestant churches in the Middle East.

On July 26, the pastor of the Kirkuk Presbyterian Church appealed to partners like The Outreach Foundation for help as the internally displaced made their way along the 100 mile road from Mosul to Kirkuk.  Their main efforts now are focused on 12 Christian families who are living at the Kirkuk Presbyterian church, spread out through their classrooms, offices and fellowship center. They are also assisting another 50 families at other churches in Kirkuk.” 

Original Source: The Outreach Foundation

Through the generosity of FPC members, your Disaster Response Committee chose to respond to this humanitarian crisis by sending $15,000 to be administered by, and dispersed through, The Outreach Foundation in support of the relief work of its in-country partner, the National Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Iraq.  Upon receipt of that gift, the following note arrived at FPC:

 September 11, 2014

Dear friends at First,

I arrived home from Israel and Palestine late last night and was greeted in the office this morning with news of First’s generous gift in support of our Presbyterian partners in Iraq who are reaching out to care for their displaced neighbors, both Christian and Muslim. Thank you for strengthening their hands! The Kirkuk church has 12 families living in their building and are caring for another fifty families being hosted by other congregations.

We received the sad news from Pastor Farouk in Baghdad that a member of his church was killed by  a car bomb yesterday.

Amidst the violence and loss, Presbyterians are showing and sharing Jesus’ love. These are our brothers and sisters, and they are dear friends. Thank you for praying for them, encouraging them and helping them to be salt and light to the glory of God.

Grace and peace,
Rob Weingartner
Executive Director

We ask you to lift up prayer those Iraqi Christians and all others around the world experiencing persecution for their beliefs in our God.

10 Years of Bryant Crisis Nursery

Ready for Mission Service?

First Presbyterian Church (FPC) offers mission service opportunities throughout the year.  You can learn about serving locally by contacting our Missions Office (615.298.9593) or by checking out any of the ministries funded in our mission budget that appear here.  Each of these organizations offers volunteer opportunities for groups or individuals and range from one-time to ongoing opportunities.

If short-term travel abroad appeals to you, we are presently accepting registrations for trips to the Dominican Republic (Nov 2014), Jamaica (February 2015), Haiti (February 2015) and East Africa (July 2015).  Read more about any of these trips from the links found here.

If you’re ready to register for a trip with FPC , click here.  For trips available through our partner, The Outreach Foundation, check out their offerings online as well.

Habitat Fall Build

George Awad - Manal HakeimPlan to join us this fall on Saturdays or Sundays from September 20 – October 12 as we build another Habitat for Humanity home in southeast Davidson County.

Our partner family, George Awad and Manal Hakeim, are originally from Egypt.  George has lived in America since 1995 while his wife and children only since 2011.

The family currently lives in an old one‐bedroom apartment. They struggle with mice and cockroaches, “and we need more space,” George says. “I want a Habitat home because it’s affordable and because I trust Habitat.

Both George and Manal have attended Habitat’s HomeWORKS classes to learn about home ownership and have enjoyed the opportunity to build relationships with future neighbors who were also in the class. “We will all help each other and keep each other safe,” George said about his future neighborhood. “Thank you so much to everyone for helping us to buy our own home.”

Registration for build and food volunteers begins in August.

FANTASTIC CRANKIN’

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Congrats to the Vorhaus Family for winning 3rd place in the “Other” flavor category for their C3 entry: Coffee ~ Caramel ~ Coffee Bean

See you all next summer!

Caring for Homeless Families

Safe Haven Family ShelterOur church still has volunteer openings to serve as an overnight host at Safe Haven Family Shelter.  This facility is the only shelter in Nashville allowing homeless families to remain together during overnight lodging and on their road to stable, permanent housing in the community.

Check out the schedule of openings below and contact Mary Earthman at  mearthman@bellsouth.net to sign up for an open date.

 

Serve as overnight host

  • Monday, August 4
  • Monday, October 6

We invite you come alongside these families for just one night. Individuals or couples are welcome to serve as hosts; all Overnight Host volunteers will need to attend an orientation session unless they have served recently at the newly remodeled facility (1234 3rd Av S).

Register for Mission Camp!

2013 fpc mission camp

During June 23 – 26, rising 4th-6th graders will have the opportunity to serve with Mission Camp!

Children will have the chance to put the gifts and talents God has given them to use by working directly with various missions throughout Nashville. Mission Camp is a wonderful progression from traditional VBS allowing children to experience first hand how the gifts God has given them may touch the lives of others.

Registration deadline is Noon on June 9 so don’t miss out!  Register for Mission Camp!

Hours: 9:00 AM- 2:00 PM

Campers will bring a sack lunch daily as well as a few items to donate to their agency.

Pray for Cuba Mission Team

Cuba Flag MapThe Cuba mission team will visit our in-country partner, the Dora E. Valentin Reformed Presbyterian Church (DEVIPR), in Matanzas province from May 16 – 23, 2014.  They will visit various outreach and home mission churches of the DEVIPR, the ecumenical seminary in Matanzas, and other church partners in Havana as well as the Cuban Council of Churches.

June 8 – Ice Cream Social

2014 MOB Ice Cream Craankin'

 

Tickets available at the church beginning on May 11.  Look for the marked table in Courtenay Hall on Sundays or purchase at the church Welcome Desk on weekdays.

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