Pastors Mark Dicken & Tara Keen
2637 McCool Road, Portage, IN 46368
Issue IV April 2018
APRIL WORSHIP THEMES
April 1 Easter
Celebration of the Lord’s Supper
APRIL FOOLS, SATAN! Pastor Mark
John 20:1-9, 1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Psalm 118:14-24
April 8 FROM FEAR TO JOY Pastor Tara
April 15 PASS THE RESURRECTION BISCUITS Pastor Mark
April 22 NO GREATER LOVE Pastor Mark
April 29 WHERE’S YOUR FRUIT? Pastor Mark
Looking for a way to get more involved or an easy way to help? Starting April 22nd, we will be offering short training for ushers and greeters after the 1st service. No prior experience necessary! Meet at the Welcome Center immediately following first service April 22nd. For more information, see Steve Massow or Tara Keehn.
Happy April Birthday to…
01 Lisa Hoover 11 Alice Kurth 18 Stephen Miller
01 Sophia Dearing 11 Jeff Kaiser 18 Kim Coates
02 Melissa Medina 11 Vicki Mason 21 Sydney Wasz
03 Jill Ryan 12 Mike Liesch 24 Hannah Medina
03 Kyle Adkins 12 Laura Piontek 26 Joy Azad
07 Carlella Rogers 13 Sherry Pinarski 27 Kris Bailey
07 Mark Long 14 Bob Kellams 28 Amber Welch
07 Ann Packard 15 Melvin Owens 30 Chuck Mason
08 Ron Hall 15 Kathy Manteuffel 30 Wendy Smith
09 Virginia Lockenvitz 15 Pauline Brown 30 Gabrielle Sullivan
10 Erica Bush 16 Danah Peterson
10 Lily Hamilton 16 Lorri Davenport
Happy April Anniversary to…
26 James & Karen Helmecy
26 Art & Alice Kurth
Sundays @ 10:00am Sunday School
Wednesdays @ 11:30am Brown Bag Bible Study
Thursdays @ 6:00am Breakfast at Schoops
Youth & MPK Meeting Dates
April 8 -12:30-2
We'll be shopping for gifts for Operation Christmas Child. You must have a signed youth liability waiver in order to come on this trip.
April 22 - 12:30-2
Earth Day Projects
Women’s Bible Study
Our Women's Bible Study continues through the rest of April. We meet on Wednesday's at 6 pm and are currently going through Church of the Small Things by Melanie Shankel. Please join us even if you've missed the first couple of sessions. For more information contact Kate Blakely at 574-621-0070 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
1st Friday Fellowship will meet on Friday, April 6, at 5:00 p.m. at:
Jade Garden (Chinese cuisine)
3022 N. Calumet Avenue
R.S.V.P. to Sandra Robinson at 764-8433 no later than April 5th.
Your contributions to the Portage Township Food Pantry continue to be a blessing to over 200 food-challenged families in the local community. Thank you so very much, from the people receiving this food and also from the board and volunteers who operate the pantry. Our own Margi Hamstrom, who represents Portage First on the pantry's board, has extended her thanks and has also asked that we fulfill a special need during the month of April. Instead of food this month, Margi is asking that we donate any of the following items which people are unable to purchase with food stamps: bar soap, toothpaste, dishwashing liquid, deodorant, and liquid hand soap.
Thanks again for your thoughtful donations!
Yours in Christ,
the Missions and Outreach Committee members
Welcome Spring! It is so nice to see the grass turning green and to see spring flowers emerging. The trustees have been busy with some projects around the church. Hopefully you have noticed the fresh paint job in the fellowship hall and in the education wing. The southwest door was realigned and new door stripping installed. Projects in the works include upgrading the 2 door refrigerator for a new 3 door refrigerator. The kitchen is getting a face lift with new cabinet labels, some painting and possibly a new vinyl floor and baseboards this year. Also Classroom #8 received a new TV/DVD player. A new handrail is planned for the north door entrance. Our 5 year planning ideas include: 1. replacing fellowship hall flooring ($6000+); 2. Replacing education wing flooring ($6000+) 3. Kitchen ovens (double decker on rollers ($6000+); 4. 60” gas 6 burner range with 24” griddle ($4000+); 5.Electronic church sign.
In Deuteronomy 12:12-14 God calls his people to worship from a single central location so that being said it’s important that we maintain our church properties to the best of our abilities. On May 12 we have scheduled an all-church clean-up day. There will be a sign-up sheet on the connection center with one (1) hour opportunities to help on this day and/or during the week. We look forward to a great morning working together and want to thank our church family in advance for volunteering for this project. Connie Ellefson, chairman
Samaritan Purse (Operation Christmas Child). One big Thank You to the United Methodist Women for allowing me to speak at their March meeting. Your monetary gift and donation of items to fill the shoe boxes was very much appreciated. We also had a good time making first aid kits using the recycled medicine bottles donated by our church family. For some children, this will be the first time they will have seen first aid items like band aids. Collections of child appropriate items will continue to take place throughout the year. Let’s share the good news of Jesus with gifts from the generous hearts at Portage First. Connie Ellefson
The flowers beds have been weeded and raked of the old “fall” leaves and now our spring flowers are beginning to bloom. Unfortunately while cleaning out the flower beds and flower pots, numerous cigarette butts, candy wrappers & chewing gum were found. It is very disheartening to find garbage in the flower pots and flower gardens since it takes a lot of time to keep our church properties looking nice. Therefore, I’m asking that everyone make an asserted effort to avoid throwing unwanted items in the flowers beds and flower pots. Your cooperation will be greatly appreciated.
Connie Ellefson, landscaping
UNITED METHODIST WOMEN
April 6th @ 9:30 am
The flowers are blooming and so is
the Gospel message through Child Evangelism Fellowship
Join us for a morning of fellowship, breakfast snacks
and our speaker Chris Corwin. Learn how this Fellowship
is spreading the Gospel message. through various
activities, to children.
ALL women of ALL ages are invited to come!
Child care will be provided, as needed, please call
the church office (762-3846) by Wednesday April 4th.
It’s that time of year again! You guessed it…..RUMMAGE SALE!
• Thursday, April 19th (9a-6p)
• Friday, April 20th (9a-3p “Fill a Bag Day”)
• Sunday, April 15th – Table setup, bring in all the goodies
• Monday, April 16th – Open/empty all the goody boxes
• Tuesday, April 17th – Pricing, tweaking
• Wednesday, April 18th – Bring LARGE goodies from barn, pricing, TWEAK! TWEAK! TWEAK!
We can use as much help as possible! Helpers that donate 8 (combined) hours of time M-F will receive a FREE dinner during sale hours. YUM! M-F are also helper preview days! That’s right! If you want first pick, come lend a hand emptying boxes, sorting, and having an all-around good time! And as always, there will be food!
There are other jobs available if the “rummage” part isn’t your thing! Sign-up sheets will be at the Welcome Center for a variety of ways to help. We will especially need “homemade” desserts to accompany the dinners AND for the bake sale.
All proceeds go out to several missions. Donations are ALWAYS welcome and can be dropped off at the back of the church. ☺ Let’s make this the best sale ever and show what we can do!
PANCAKE BREAKFAST FUNDRAISER
COME SUPPORT OUR CUB SCOUT PACK 487.
APRIL 7TH 8 to 11 AM. ALL PROCEEDS BENEFIT OUR SCOUTS
Exciting News from Portage First UMC Endowment Committee
How often do you hear that funds are available for you to use to support the ministries of Jesus Christ and this church? Our Endowment Committee is pleased to announce that through proper management of Portage First UMC Endowment Fund, we are able to do just that!
By way of history, it took just one member, Lulu Gundrum, to make a loving bequest to Portage First UMC. That gift resulted in the establishment of our Endowment Fund and our resulting committee. The fund has been used over the years to support the ministry of this church. Examples of its use have been to assist funding of the renovation of the Sunday school wing, the coffee bar, as well as purchases of musical instruments and sound systems.
During the past several years, the committee has focused on ensuring that the Endowment Funds have been properly invested in order to provide annual distributions. Our current intent is to disburse 5% of earning assets within the fund every year. This year $12,673.73 is available for consideration for grant requests. We have tried to make the grant request process as easy as possible. A written request must be submitted to the Endowment Committee for review. This is accomplished by completing an Endowment Fund Grant Application. Copies of the application are available at the Connections Center or may be obtained through the church office. A copy of the Endowment Fund Grant Request Process is attached to the application and explains the steps necessary to complete the application. The deadline for consideration of funds available this year is April 30, 2018.
We ask that you prayerfully consider the ways in which these funds can spread the word of Jesus Christ when you complete an application. Potential uses to consider include (but are not limited by) Missions, Evangelism/Outreach, Education, Music, Worship and Arts. Feel free to think outside the box and be creative. Although the deadline is April 30, 2018, don’t let the lack of information we may require prevent you from submitting an application. If we need additional information, we will reach out to you after the application has been submitted.
We realize that many of you do not know the purpose of our Endowment Fund. We intend to devote more time in the coming year to educate you on the fund. The following excerpts from our charter provide a glimpse that we wanted to share with you:
Portage First UMC Endowment Charter
The primary purpose of this Endowment Fund is to provide a means for members and friends of The Church to make gifts and bequests to provide a permanent endowment of financial support and living memorials.
Gifts to the Endowment Fund will be held in perpetuity, if not otherwise designated by the donor, with income to be used to further Christian ministry and mission. Income from the Endowment Fund shall be used to assist The Church in fulfilling its purposes in Christian ministry and mission.
This Endowment Fund and resulting income is intended for purposes that are not a part of the local Churches’ established programs, which are funded, or should be funded, through the annual operating budget of the church and the regular giving of those attending. It is not intended that Endowment Fund income provide for local Church general operating expenses.