Pastor’s Note for August 1st

Manna in the Wilderness

The Table of Our Lord We once again gather at the Table on Sunday, some actually in the sanctuary, but many more of you still participating from your homes. We rehearse the stories told and retold many times. We tell stories of manna in the wilderness and stories of meals shared by the familiar people of Israel’s centuries-long story of trust in the Holy One. We tell stories of Jesus’ meals with new acquaintances or old friends or disciples who called him Teacher. We tell stories of the meals of the new fellowships of the churches in Corinth and Ephesus and Philippi. We tell stories of the meals shared by Christians in congregations and church orders across time. All these stories are stories about how the Creator and Redeemer has chosen to enjoy fellowship with us and to encourage us [...]

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Pastors Note for Sunday, July 25th

July 25th icon

Dear Church Friends, As the upheaval caused by the pandemic begins, we hope, to subside, we see in the news a host of aftershocks that continue to reverberate through the world. Researchers are concerned that some of the progress that had been made in alleviating global hunger has now been reversed, with some areas of the world facing chronic shortages of affordable food.  World Vision notes that nearly 9% of the world’s people go to bed hungry most nights.  And researchers in Oregon note that nearly ¼ of Oregon’s population now find themselves food insecure, without the assurance of sufficient reliable food for themselves and their families. It can be overwhelming to read these statistics, and to envision the scope of the need and the impacts on individual lives.  Faced with all this, people sometimes find themselves at a loss [...]

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Pastor’s Note for Sunday, July 18th

Robert S. Duncanson, Owl's Head Mountain, 1864

Dear church friends, “Come away to a deserted place by yourselves, and rest awhile.”  These are Jesus’ words to the disciples, encouraging them to take up the pattern that he practiced, with involvement with people in the wider world interspersed with time to withdraw and rest, for prayer and renewal.  Being incarnate in the world as one of us, he knew what it is to be weary at times, to give of ourselves in certain seasons until there is a need to pull back and recharge. Summer may bring a chance to come away to one of the quiet places in nature, whether watching the birds on the patio, on a walk around the neighborhood, or in travels to the mountains or coast, where we can set down the usual pattern of our days, lay aside our screens, and rest [...]

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Pastor’s Note for Sunday, July 11th

The Rainbow

As we begin to emerge from the pandemic, there is a sense that things won’t go back to the way they were, as so much has changed.  Some of the changes may be good to retain, while others will be happily cast off as we embrace a wider life again.  As the direction ahead is still taking shape and as yet a bit hazy, the Scripture reading for this Sunday offers a path through ways as yet unknown. The reading is from Ephesians 1:3-14, and gives a sense of the mystery of God’s purposes and will, the direction God has for our lives and for all of life.  The writer Coleridge called Ephesians “the divinest of human compositions,” and Scottish commentator William Barclay called it “the queen of the Epistles,” as it encapsulates our hope in Christ, and gives a [...]

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Pastor’s Note for Sunday, July 4th

How are you doing, church? If you are anything like me, the heat makes you tired and grouchy.  The youth and youth leaders who have been at Camp Attitude this week have put me to shame. They are out serving kids and families with great attitudes in 90-degree heat all day. Praise God for their inspiration and example!  In the meanwhile, if you are feeling depleted and are in need of a word of hope and encouragement, I hope you’ll gather among God’s imperfect, beloved, (and occasionally grouchy) people this Sunday to be fed by God’s Word and fed at God’s table. I’ll be preaching on Mark 13 and Jesus’ command to travel light and I assure you there is a word of grace and liberation in it for us all.  Before you prepare for the July 4th festivities, please [...]

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Pastor’s Note for Sunday, June 27th

Christ Raising Jairus’ Daughter

 Lamentations 3: 22-24 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, God’s mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in God.’ As we begin to emerge and re-engage as the pandemic season eases, we’re grateful for how God has brought us through all the challenges that the past year has held.  At times, we’ve been weary as so many things that seemed firmly in place have been swept away by so much change. Scripture reminds us that while there are troubles for each day, God also gives mercy and strength sufficient for each day.  We recall how the manna was given to the Israelites in the wilderness, just enough for each day.  And this seems to be echoed here; mercy [...]

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Church Officer Nominating Process

In preparation for the election of Elders, Deacons, Trustees, and Congregational Nominating Committee (CNC) members at a Congregational Meeting to be held in the Fall, your help is needed. The CNC will send information on officers and members currently serving, including those whose terms are ending in January of 2022. Please help by sending the response forms to suggest names for consideration, along with supporting information to hello@firstpresportland.org You can even suggest your own name if you have an interest in this form of ministry. Links will also be available in email blasts. Sunday, June 27th is the deadline for reception of suggested names. Thank you in advance, for your thoughtful responses. CNC Response Form 2021 [...]

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Nursery Thank you!

You have generously showered the babies at the church with love! Thank you to every person who gave gift cards and purchased items through Amazon to help refresh the church nursery. Additionally, many volunteers have helped clean, paint, and decorate to ensure safety and hospitality. Thank you one and all for your investment in the littlest disciples at FPC. The church nursery really does look fabulous. I can’t wait to give you a tour in the fall when we reopen both our nursery services and Sunday school. Parents and Grandparents, please know that we are cooking up some amazing, faith-filled, fun programming for the fall. We pray you will entrust your babies, children, and youth to our care as we share in helping them know Jesus’ love for them more fully. With love and in hope, Pastor Carmen [...]

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The Tuesday Women’s Book Club

Read a Book

The Tuesday Women’s Book Club will meet on June 1st at 11 am. June will be the end of our season before the summer break. We will meet again in September. You will have an opportunity to tell us your favorite book and author and give a brief description of it. After the meeting, there will be time for a Zoom chat with your book friends. Questions? Please contact the church office at hello@firstpresportland.org [...]

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Worship Services are Open!

We are delighted that in-person worship is now possible.  Reservations are no longer required, and these guidelines are now in place as we gather: In response to rising virus numbers in our region and recent guidance from the County, Oregon Health Authority, and CDC, our church is again requiring that all those attending worship and any other events inside the church keep masked at all times to help keep vulnerable members safe.  (Masking will again be regardless of vaccination status).  We regret the need for this, but the church has families whose children are not yet able to be vaccinated, and there are immunocompromised family members of those wishing to attend. Greeting time and refreshments after services will be on the plaza outside, as we will not be eating or drinking inside (with the exception of briefly unmasking to partake of [...]

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Join Us for Streaming Sunday Services


Every Sunday at 10:30 am

First Presbyterian Church
1200 SW Alder Street
Portland, Oregon 97205

Tel: (503) 228-7331