For Easter 2019 First Presbyterian Church of Forney agreed to donate $15 for every Easter plant or lily that was purchased. The Easter plants were used to decorate the sanctuary for Easter morning worship. The sales generated $485! For the second year in a row, the church council voted to send the donations to Camp Gilmont. Camp Gilmont is a Presbyterian camp in east Texas (Gilmer). The church has a long history of sending campers to summer camp and to the various retreats held there. We will have youth attending summer camp there this summer, and are blessed to continue our great relationship with this important ministry!
The church council is working through a visioning process. The process will set up the church with specific steps to work toward as we prepare for our 150th anniversary in 2022. The council expects the visioning to be complete by summer 2019.
We strive to be an inclusive fellowship of disciples serving our community.
For now, the group has adopted a new Vision Statement: We strive to be an inclusive fellowship of disciples serving our community.
Inclusive: We strive to accept ALL of God's people.
Fellowship: Nurturing the Body of Christ. Being together is important. Knowing and being known.
Disciples: We learn from Jesus and desire to be more faithful followers in his Way.
Serving Our Community: We desire to continue the congregation's long tradition of serving our community, with special emphasis on local needs and supporting our schools.
Strive: We don't always get it right, but this is who we hope to be and what we try to do, to the glory of God.
During the Christmas Eve Service 2018, the church's offering collected $508. 100% of the offering was designated as a gift to the Clay Jones Legacy Foundation, which uses part of their funds for college scholarships for graduating seniors of Forney ISD.
In January, the First Presbyterian Church of Forney council voted to add to the $508 to make the total gift $1000 (which equals one scholarship from the Clay Jones Legacy Foundation). The additional funds were drawn from offerings the church receives from the AA groups that meet at the church, receipts from the Kroger Community Rewards Program, and proceeds from our annual Epiphany Celebration Lunch. In total, $1000 was gifted.
The church is blessed to be a blessing to our community, and is especially proud to support the educational goals of Forney students in memory of Clay Jones, who grew up in our congregation and whose legacy continues to impact thousands across the state of Texas.
For the fourth year in a row, First Presbyterian Forney held a celebration for Epiphany. The celebration and meal marks the transition from the Christmas Season (the 12 Days of Christmas from Dec 25 through Jan 5) to the Season of Epiphany. Epiphany is always on January 6, the day that marks the "epiphany" or manifestation of Christ as the Savior of the World. Epiphany Season lasts from January 6 until Mardi Gras, the Tuesday before Lent begins on Ash Wednesday.
Our celebration was held after the morning worship service and included a meal provided by members of the church, a reading of the story of the wise men giving gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, a choir anthem "The First Noel" set to the tune of "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring," and a reading of the wonderful story "The Legend of Old Befana" who was too busy sweeping her house and porch to go with the wise men to see Jesus.
An offering was received, proceeds of which were given to the Clay Jones Legacy Foundation.
We decorated the tree with ornaments similar to those used on our Sanctuary tree--symbols of Christian faith such as angels, butterflies, and crosses.
In 2018 we expanded our Christmas traditions to include the City of Forney Christmas Tree project. The trees were donated by Lowe's and were decorated by various groups or families from the community.
Our beautiful tree did not win the prize, though we are pleased that the proceeds from the contest were donated to one of our partners, The Sharing the Love Foundation.