Monday, November 12, 2012

Community Thanksgiving Eve Service



A large crowd was on hand to give thanks and share pie at this event sponsored by EPC and three other churches on Thanksgiving Eve. More than $650 was collected for Elbert County Coalition for Outreach (ECCO). 

ECCO is a volunteer organization working to empower residents of Elbert County toward self sufficiency. 


The Thanksgiving Eve event is part of EPC's ongoing effort to promote authentic Christian community. For more on what that means and what else is being done in that area, click here.

Also, watch for another community event sponsored by EPC and other churches in July: The Second Annual Community Worship in the Park. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Youth help make all things new on mission trip


Y2K paints everything in sight at Angel House

In late July/early August the EPC Y2K youth group traveled to Fort Collins Colorado to participate in Group Workcamp's "Week of Hope."  The group spent the week serving the residents of Loveland and Fort Collins. 

The main project for the week was painting the headquarters of "Angel House" an organization that provides transitional housing and other services for homeless families. Some of our youth also helped out with a relief agency that provided food and other household goods to the victims of the nearby wildfire. 

But all work and no play would have been no fun. So if some of the paint went astray, so be it. The group also had a lot fun with games, ice skating and going to Water World on the way home.  

Next year's mission trip will be to the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. Compassionate outreach is one of the three most important things we do at EPC, with involvement by every age group. To find out more about EPC's efforts to show the deep love of God for all people, click here.

To find out more about the Y2K youth group and all the great things we're doing, click here

Sunday, August 26, 2012

New Women's Bible Study Coming Up In January


Starting January 7: Join us for a new Beth Moore study on James, the brother of Jesus.


James: Mercy Triumphs by Beth Moore provides a personal study experience five days a week plus viewer guides for the 8 video sessions of this in-depth women's Bible study. 

James, Jesus' own brother, started out as a skeptic. See how one glimpse of the resurrected Savior turned an unbeliever into a disciple. Bible scholars compare James to the prophet Amos. In other ways, James more closely resembles the Book of Proverbs than any other New Testament book. Topics in this study include: joy, hardship, faith, reversal of fortunes for rich and poor, wisdom, gifts from above, single-mindedness, the dangers of the tongue, humility, and prayer. 
This seven-week bible study will start on Monday, January 7th and run the 1st and 3rd Monday's of the month through April 22 from 7pm-9pm. Location to be announced.  The cost is $25 per participant which will cover the session workbook and the DVD set. 

Please RSVP to Susan Leonard 303-646-3232 or susanleonard@iglide.net.  Payment will be due by December 9th. Make checks payable to Susan Leonard.



Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Story, The Whole Story, and Nothing But the Story


We're journeying through the Bible together in 31 weeks. Come join us!

“The Bible is central to our faith,” said Dr. Bruce Spear, EPC pastor, "but many people are intimidated by its scope and size. The Story gives us a way to journey from Genesis to Revelation together in 31 weeks, so everyone understands God’s story and how their own stories fit in.”

The Bible is the best-selling book in history, but how many people in the Elizabeth area are actually reading it?  A Gallup survey reports the average American household has four Bibles. However, research by Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life (2008) found that only 16 percent of Americans read the Bible every day.

Elizabeth Presbyterian Church is hoping to reverse this trend by taking 31 weeks to read carefully-selected sections of the Bible sequenced in chronological order. (A list of daily readings and weekly themes will help people to journey through their own Bibles.)  We want the people in our congregation, as well as anyone else able to join us for these 31 weeks, to realize the incredible love God has for them and how their story is found in His story.

The Story Church Campaign is a unique program providing up to 31 weeks of curriculum for children, teen and adult Sunday school and up to 31 weeks of corresponding sermons. When accompanied by reading through the five age-related books (The Story, The Story: Teen Edition, The Story for Kids, The Story for Children, and The Story for Little Ones), the entire church can be literally on the same page for 31 weeks. Week One, Genesis 1-8, "The Creation" begins this week.

For more information on The Story at EPC, including the schedule and chart of references, and also including a helpful guide for parents who wish to go through the program with their children at home, click here.

EPC would like to invite you to experience The Story. Sunday services are at 8:30 (traditional), and 10:30 (contemporary). And Saturday evening services are at 5:30.  

Learning to read the Bible, not just for information or knowledge, but as a means of living the life with God as portrayed in the Bible, is part of what we mean by Spiritual Transformation. For more on Spiritual Transformation, click here.

For more information about The Story, visit www.thestory.com




Danny Oertli "Dancing with Orphans" concert raises $1,100
for Zimbabwe Mission Partnership

Christian singer, songwriter, guitarist Danny Oertli put on a great show Friday, Aug. 24 at Creekside Community Church in Elizabeth. Touched by the music and the desperate need of the orphans in Zimbabwe, the crowd dug deep into their pockets and put $1,100 into the hat when it was passed.

Mixing his Christian songs with songs from other genres, along with some great humor and testimony from his own life, Oertli kept the audience in his spell for about an hour and a half.

Oertli, who has performed many times at Dare2Share, Promise Keepers, Billy Graham and other major gatherings, and has released several CDs, is also an author with a new book and a great testimony about how God helped him live through a heart-rending tragedy. Oertli lost his first wife, Cyndi, after a three-year battle with cancer, leaving him, their daughter, Gracie and adopted son, Jack, alone to face mysteries greater than he'd ever experienced.

His book as well as a very stirring song on his latest album, is titled Mommy Paints the Sky (NavPress) and is a story of hope breaking through grief, and the amazing healing power of God.

The benefit concert was organized by representatives from Elizabeth Presbyterian Church (EPC), along with Creekside and other churches in the Elizabeth area that have been networking together for about a year.

Youth and adults from several of the churches were on hand, as well as a large group from New Hope Presbyterian Church in Castle Rock. New Hope, along with EPC, is a partnering church in the Zimbabwe Mission Partnership (ZMP). 

Every penny of the proceeds will benefit the ZMP and go directly toward helping to feed and care for 1,000 orphans a day. For more on the ZMP, visit www.ZimPartnership.org.

For more on EPC's strong emphasis on compassionate outreach, bringing the love of Christ to hurting people in our community, our region and around the world, click here.





New Saturday evening option for worship to begin September 15.

This fall on Saturdays at 5:30 pm we will offer you another opportunity to gather with God's people. This service will have a 15-minute message, the Lord's Table every week and worshipful music for prayer and praise. Now you can plan your weekend so you can be in church either Saturday evening or Sunday morning.


Friday, July 13, 2012

EPC folks head to Coors Field

Rockies beat Marlins 3 to 2 on Faith Day – and thousands stay for Third Day Concert.

A group from Elizabeth Presbyterian Church was among many, many church groups on hand August 19th to watch the Rockies beat the Marlins 3 to 2 in a well played game. The winning pitcher was Ottavino. Betancourt got the save. And Pacheco got his second home run.

But the highlight of the day, at least for the church groups, was the concert after the game. Third Day, one of the biggest Christian rock bands in the country, gave an outstanding performance. This is the group that Billboard magazine once called "not only one of the best Christian bands of the 90s but one of the best rock bands, period." The multi-platinum-selling rock band has played to millions of fans in numerous sold-out arenas around the world and has garnered 25 No. 1 singles. And the group did not disappoint.

Also part of the magic was testimony by Eric Young, Jr. who hung back after the game to answer questions, talk about his faith and how it has guided him through the ups and downs of his career in baseball.

It's all part of the annual Faith Day at the Rockies, and part of EPC's ongoing work to build authentic community. For more about our efforts to uphold authentic Christian community, and what that means, click here.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Community "Worship in the Park" draws 180 on hot July morning


On Sunday, July 1, EPC combined with Creekside Community, Peace in Christ Lutheran/Episcopal and the United Methodists of Elizabeth churches for a first-of-its-kind community worship service. About 180 worshippers gathered at the Rodeo Arena in Casey Jones Park as the combined worship bands filled the air with music, and the crowd joined in song and prayer. Following the service, many stayed to fellowship together and enjoy a potluck lunch in the shade. 

Authentic Community is one of the three major philosophies of Elizabeth Presbyterian Church. To learn more about our efforts to build "authentic community" within our congregation and within our surrounding community, please click here.



ELEPHANT ROCK RIDE A BIG SUCCESS FOR TEAM ZIMBABWE

Preliminary results from the June 3 event in Castle Rock show that 57 people rode for Team Zimbabwe, helping to raise about $30,000 for the Zimbabwe Mission Partnership (ZMP) and its orphan care center in northeastern Zimbabwe. 

The care center has been feeding about 1,000 children, most of them orphaned by AIDS, every single day. But in recent years, funding has run low. Forming Team Zimbabwe to ride in the Elephant Rock Cycling Festival, which draws about 8,000 riders each year, has been a great blessing.

At the time of this report, this year's ride had raised $32,000. More money was coming in, but expenses remained to be paid. So a final report showing actual dollars that will be available to help the children will be released soon. 

The Zimbabwe Mission Partnership is a group of churches of the Denver Presbytery that has banded together to help meet the desperate needs of these orphaned children. Elizabeth Presbyterian Church is one of the founding churches of the partnership and has a long, highly valued relationship with the other churches of the partnership, and with many Zimbabweans we have met and grown to love along the way. To learn more about the partnership, and about how you can join Team Zimbabwe for next year's ride, click here.

BLACK FOREST CLASSIC CYCLING EVENT ALSO BENEFITED ZMP

One week prior to the Elephant Rock, another cycling event was held to raise funds for the orphans. The Black Forest Classic, sponsored by Creekside Bikes of Parker brought in $2,300, every penny of which will go to the orphan care center. For more information about Creekside Bikes and the Black Forest Classic ride, click here

The ZMP is just one of the many ways Elizabeth Presbyterian Church is involved in Compassionate Outreach. For more about our mission efforts, click here

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Register soon for VBS, June 4 - 8


With its National Parks theme, Vacation Bible School is going to be a great time this year at Elizabeth Presbyterian Church. And your kids are invited!

VBS will be held each morning, June 4 through 8, from 9 am till noon. To register, just call 303-646-4825 between 9 am and noon on a weekday.

Send your kids. Invite the neighbor kids. It promises to be a memorable experience for all. VBS is just one of the many ways EPC works to foster a true sense of community – within the church and in the neighborhood all around us. To learn more about our efforts to build "authentic community" click here.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Benefit concert draws 100 and nets over $2,500




Emily Spear and Aaron Likness gave a masterful performance of classical song and piano April 14 in a benefit concert for orphans and desperately poor children in the Linjiang area of northeastern China. 

About 100 people were on hand at New Hope Presbyterian Church in Castle Rock to enjoy a program ranging from light, comedic opera pieces to powerful piano compositions. Ms. Spear, an accomplished soloist with a Master of Music from New England Conservatory, sang pieces by Charles Ives, Douglas Moore, Leonard Bernstein and Samuel Barber. Mr. Likness performed several movements from Ives' Piano Sonata No. 2, as well as accompanying Ms. Spear. 

Proceeds from the program so far have risen to over $2,500 with donations continuing to come in by mail from people who were unable to attend but want to support the children. 

All proceeds are going to Threshold Ministries which operates an orphanage known as Hope House located on the Yalu River, the border between China and North Korea. The ministry also delivers food, help and hope to desperately poor families in the region around Linjiang, a remote and mountainous area. For more on Threshold, click here.

The concert was sponsored by Threshold and Elizabeth Presbyterian Church, which is now the home church of Cindy Reynolds who founded Threshold. The church also provides office space, administrative and financial support of the ministry.

Threshold is one of the many ministries supported by EPC. For more on the church's missions click here.

A special thanks is owed to New Hope Presbyterian Church for the donated use of their wonderful sanctuary and concert-class grand piano. 


Friday, March 23, 2012

Arias for Orphans concert to benefit children of Linjiang, China




A benefit concert for the orphaned, abandoned and desperately poor children of Linjiang, China will be held at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, April 14 at New Hope Presbyterian Church in Castle Rock.

Emily Spear, an accomplished classical soprano with a Master of Music from New England Conservatory, with Aaron Likness accompanying on piano, will perform pieces from Bellini's La Sonnambula, Mozart's Sonata in C Major, and Bernstein's I Hate Music!, among others.

Ms. Spear has performed roles in The Medium, The Pirates of Penzance, Hansel and Gretel and many other operas. An active recitalist, she has performed numerous new music premiers including the New England premier of Steve Reich's Daniel Variations, and the world premier of selections from Mohammed Fairouz's Bonsai Journal.

Mr. Likness is an enthusiastic advocate of modern and contemporary music whose repertoire ranges from Bach to Boulez. He has appeared in solo and ensemble performances throughout the Boston area and in live broadcasts from WGBH Boston's Fraser Studio. Likness also studied at the New England Conservatory where he won the John Cage Award for his contributions to the Boston new music scene.

All proceeds of the concert will go to Threshold Ministries which operates an orphanage known as Hope House located on the Yalu River, the border between China and North Korea. The ministry also delivers food, help and hope to desperately poor families in the region around Linjiang City, a remote and mountainous area. For more on Threshold, click here.

The concert is sponsored by Threshold and by Elizabeth Presbyterian Church. EPC is now the home church of Cindy Reynolds who founded Threshold. The church also provides office space, administrative and financial support of the ministry.

New Hope Presbyterian Church, where the concert will be held is located one mile west of I-25 (exit 184) on the corner of Meadows Parkway and Prairie Hawk Drive.

The suggested donation for the concert is $10 per person.

To see a video trailer about the concert click here.

Threshold is one of the many outreach ministries supported by EPC. For more on the church's missions click here.

Experience Holy Week


Join us during Holy Week as we seek to make the life and work of Jesus real for our lives. On Maundy Thursday, April 5 at 7 p.m., come discover the humble servant spirit of Christ in the washing of feet. On Good Friday, April 6 at 7 p.m., take hold of the reality of his saving work on the cross – the taking away of our sins. And on Easter morning, be with us as we seek to live the victory and joy of the resurrection together.

These worship services are part of our ongoing work to help each other grow spiritually, day by day, on our journeys into a more intimate relationship with God. For more information on Spiritual Transformation as part of the life of EPC, click here.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Making Way for the Future


The first week of January, the house across Pine Street, no longer inhabitable, was demolished to make room for parking space – a required first step toward building a new sanctuary and community center.

The property was purchased by EPC in 2007, along with the lot just to the west of it. In the future, these properties would be needed to provide the extra parking space required by the Town of Elizabeth to accommodate a sanctuary with a larger seating capacity.

Briefly, the two-phase plan was to build a new sanctuary to the south of the current sanctuary. In the second phase the current sanctuary was to be torn down and rebuilt to be a fellowship hall, a youth center and a mission center with space for seniors to gather, as well as other groups from the community. To learn more about EPC's building plans, click here.

When building plans were delayed due to financial concerns and a change in the church's pastorship, the house was pressed into service for the church. For a while it was used as a rental property. Then it was used as free housing for a family that had lost its home due to foreclosure. After sitting vacant for a year, it was determined to be uninhabitable so, rather than leave it vacant and run down, the decision was made to scrape the property.

Because "authentic community" is such an important part EPC's reason for being, a fellowship hall such as the one planned has long been a part of the church's vision for the future. With the demolition of the old "blue house," we moved one step closer to that vision.




If you're going to ride the Elephant Rock June 3, 
ride it for the orphans!

Team Zimbabwe is firing up to ride for the orphans of Zimbabwe in the 25th annual Subaru Elephant Rock Cycling Festival on June 3. The Elephant Rock takes place in Castle Rock, Colorado, and attracts about 8,000 riders each year.

It's time to start spreading the word to every cyclist you know. The more riders and sponsors we get, the better able we will be to help the Zimbabwe Mission Partnership continue feeding about 1,000 orphans every day.

All a rider has to do is visit www.zimpartnership.org and register to ride in the Elephant Rock. Registration and payment of entry fees can all be handled easily online.

The AIDS pandemic in Zimbabwe has left thousands of children with no parents, no means of feeding or clothing themselves or providing for their medical needs. With one of the highest HIV rates and one of the worst economies in the world, the children are left to fend for themselves, often with twelve-year-old children trying to care for their younger brothers and sisters.

Team Zimbabwe is a fundraising arm of the Zimbabwe Mission Partnership, a group of churches of the Denver Presbytery (including EPC) who have banded together to meet the desperate needs of orphans in northeastern Zimbabwe. The ZMP is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, as well. The ZMP operates the Heather Chimhoga Orphan Care Center and two satellite centers now providing daily meals for about 1,000 children. Clothing, school fees and medical support are also provided.

Team Zimbabwe is rolling into its third year in the Elephant Rock and is gaining momentum. As other sources of revenue dwindle with the US economy, this may be the brightest hope these kids have.

You can join Team Zimbabwe by riding and raising funds, by helping a rider raise funds, by sponsoring a rider, or by becoming an official Team Zimbabwe Sponsor. For more information on riding, fundraising and sponsoring visit www.zimpartnership.org.

The Zimbabwe Mission Partnership is just one more way that Elizabeth Presbyterian Church is involved in Compassionate Outreach. For more on our efforts in this area, click here. EPC is one of the founding churches in the partnership and has a long a highly valued relationship with the other churches in the partnership, and with many Zimbabweans who we have met and grown to love along the way.

So, if you're going to ride the Elephant Rock, ride it for the orphans! And spread the word to cycling enthusiasts far and near. Let's make this the biggest year so far for Team Zimbabwe.


Monday, February 13, 2012

"Ladder to God" Sermon Series


On February 12, Dr. Bruce Spear began a new sermon series, entitled "A Ladder to God." For six weeks, ending March 25,  he will be teaching from 2 Peter 1:3-10, covering the eight qualities Christians must strive to achieve, in increasing measure, if they desire to be transformed into the image of Christ, dwell at the center of God's love, and "participate in the divine nature."

According to Dr. Spear, "God's call for Christians to be spiritually transformed appears throughout the Bible. Being a Christian," he said, "is about more than being saved. God created us to be in a loving relationship with him, to know him intimately and learn to hear his voice. We get there by meeting and walking with Jesus, letting him teach us and change us."

The apostle Peter, who learned many hard lessons from Jesus, spells out a clear path, a ladder with eight rungs, that can lead to this loving relationship with a God whose heart's desire is for us to love him and receive his love. Building on the foundation of faith, Peter calls us to add goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and love.

You are invited to join us for this not-to-be-missed series. For more information on spiritual formation, click here. To hear previous sermons in this series, click here.


Ash Wednesday Service ushers in season of Lent


On Wednesday, February 22, we began the season of Lent, a 40-day period of preparation leading up to Easter, which comes on April 8. Christian tradition calls for marking this first day of Lent with ashes on our foreheads – to remind us that we are dust, and to dust we will return. In other words, we are reminded of our mortality and the deep need for repentance. Many attended the service and went away "showing their ashes."

During Lent, we are called to fasting, moderation and spiritual discipline as we prepare our hearts to celebrate what Christ accomplished for us through his death and resurrection.

As you observe this long-standing Christian tradition, you might want to pick up a daily Lenten devotional book by C.S. Lewis. They're available in the narthex. And check out the weekly Lenten devotional blog by Pat Russell as she reflects on each of the sermons in Pastor Bruce's new series, A Ladder to God. To see the blog, click here.


Family Movie Night at EPC
On Saturday night, February 25, several families showed up to enjoy Rio, a funny, animated movie with a great soundtrack by the creators of Ice Age.

EPC is a place for families to learn, grow AND HAVE FUN together. Family is an important part of what we mean when we talk about authentic community, one of our three main guiding philosophies. For more on authentic community click here.