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First Word




God’s Garden
Let us love one another for love is of God.
I John 4:7

We are in the process of receiving the cremains of those who have not been claimed at our local funeral homes by family or friends. The Property Team has already interned 25 of these remains and we have a record of those identities. David Key has assisted us in ordering a plaque for this new section of our garden. When that plaque arrives and we receive the final cremains and digital record, we will have a service honoring those who will rest in our garden.

The Property Team has also ordered and is placing some new shrubbery to enhance that corner of the Memorial Grounds. Thanks to the leadership of Roger Beattie over the past year and to our Property Team, (currently led by Rusty Renfroe,) this place is a continuing peaceful place for all who enter. A gift of $1,000 was given by our Presbytery to help cover the stones and the plaque for this newest venture.

Many of you gave Tempe’ your names to contact when we should have our service to remember all those who will now be in “God’s Garden.” You will be contacted when we have the plaque and the final cremains and you can join us if you are free. We are now  considering that service may be around the first of February.

In the future, as cremains are given to us by the local funeral homes, there will be regular services honoring the lives of those children of God. We will simply offer a time and date so that anyone who would like to share that moment of hope would be welcome to join us. God’s Garden is not a community resource, but rather is an arrangement we have only in cooperation with our two funeral homes. Please speak to Rusty if you have any questions about our memorial gardens.




The Mission and Service team and our three Guatemala travelers thank everyone for their generosity in support of Tempe', Elsa, and Cameron's trip to visit our sister church in Guatemala, Camino a Canaan.  Our July and August “Dollars/Week” offering raised $1,255—most ever!  You also made special contributions of $533.  Added to the $444 we carried over from Sunday lunch donations last year, that yields $2,232 to help defray our travelers' expenses. 

Now our representatives are focusing on planning for the trip upcoming next month.  On September 17, they attended a Presbytery-sponsored gathering in Asheville. There they learned more about their itinerary and special requirements for the journey.  Our coffee-loving Tempe', for example, will need to bring her own for her visit to our partner congregation's village, where coffee  is too expensive for regular consumption.  Elsa and Cameron are a little apprehensive about the strange “bugs” that come with travels to a less developed area and will be bringing a preemptive medicine kit.    All are excited about exploring the possibilities for closer relations with our partner church, and, as Elsa says, with the opportunity to see first hand the immensity and diversity of God's world and the  place there is in it for each member of His family.

So as we count down to their November 9th departure, we pray that they travel safely and that they are enabled and inspired in ways that give our Guatemalan friends a good idea of who we are as a congregation here in Western North Carolina. 

Welcome new Elders 


Nancy Browder, Linda Keenum and Kathy Maps have all consented to serve as elders for our next term. This is a class of women, but it is with intention as our Congregational Care & Outreach, Mission & Service and Christian Education Teams all need sessional leadership and these are teams that tend to be led by the voices of women. (Yet, we are more than happy for male influence in all our teams!) All three women are already very involved in our congregation, and are in the process of considering where their gifts are best suited for our congregation. We thank them for their
discernment and their “Yes.”


Our Chapel during Advent

- Our new Mission Statement -

growing in FAITH, serving with HOPE, sharing GOD'S LOVE




If you are interested in a name badge see Jim Geary. Cost is $10.00.  



We would like to honor all those who have served in  the military by including you on  military board. 
Please contact Jim Geary at 421-7280 or e-mail at