E Courier June 17, 2019

Ketchen-up . . . 

It was sometime Saturday night that tornadoes ripped across Central Indiana.  In the path of that storm was tiny Bentonville in Northern Fayette County.  Yesterday afternoon E.Anne was looking at Facebook and saw a post made by a lady who was just a young girl during our years of ministry with Center Christian Church in Rush County.  Rush County is the county immediately west of Fayette County.

This lady posted a photo of the Bentonville Christian Church building which was destroyed on Saturday night by a tornado.  Her photo showed a painting of Jesus still hanging on the wall of the building’s auditorium.  In her post she stated that her parents had been married in that building in 1960.  She said that in her parents’ wedding photo you could see the painting of Jesus.

Yesterday evening I had a phone conversation with a friend from Rush County.  We both wondered if the Bentonville Christian Church would be able to survive the loss of their building.  I sure hope this congregation will survive.  A church is far more than a building.

Yesterday in our second worship service the parents of Marc Hall were visiting with us from out of town.  His parents have worshiped with us on other occasions.  On his way out the door, Marc’s dad said to me . . . “This is a good church.  It feels like home.”  

I will often have people say to me . . . “This is a beautiful church.”  I will often replay . . . “Yes, and we also have a really nice building.”  Some people will understand what I am saying while others just give me a puzzled look.

Marc’s dad had it right.  He wasn’t talking about our building.  He was talking about our congregation and about the worship experience.  We are truly blessed with a good church.

Yesterday I concluded my annual sermon series on marriage and the family.  As you know, this series focused on the word “cherish.”  The six sermon titles were . . . “Cherish the Plan, the Person, Your Protégé, Your People, the Path and Your Position.”  Very easily I could preach a sermon series on the theme of “Cherish Your Church.”  In fact, I just might develop that sermon series for later in the year.

The First Christian Church of Francesville is a blessed church.  God has been so very good to us in so many ways.  We have good, solid leadership among our elders and ministry team leaders.  We have so much talent when it comes to teaching and music and other skills.  We have been blessed with a fine building.  We have been blessed to participate in mission work around the world, but more than anything else we are blessed in that Jesus has made us a loving family.  I can’t express how much I appreciate the people who are the First Christian Church.  As I look across the congregation on a Sunday morning, I don’t just see members and attendees.  I see friends.  I see friends with whom I have been blessed for the past 34 plus years to share life . . . both the joys of life and the struggles.  I feel so blessed to be a part of the First Christian Church.

Let’s always do our best to love and support one another.  Right now we have families within our church family who are hurting for various reasons.  Let’s love and support each other . . . this is what families do.  Let’s always be the eyes and ears and the hands and the heart of Jesus.

William & Robin Butler: Just a moment ago I mentioned that we have been blessed to participate in mission work around the world.  Since 1988 the church has been supporting William & Robin Butler who work with Pioneer Bible Translators in Papua New Guinea.  Since the early 1980s they have been working to translate the Bible into a language which had previously been an oral only language.  Until the Butlers moved to PNG this language had never been a written language.  There was no written alphabet.

This coming Sunday (6/23) a celebration will be held in a jungle village called Yar.  The Waran people will celebrate the completion of the Waran New Testament Translation.  The First Christian Church has been a part of this great ministry.  We are blessed.  Please pray for the Waran people.  Pray for their health and safety as they celebrate.  Pray that God’s word will continue to impact the Waran people so that lives are saved for eternity.  Pray that Satan will be prevented from doing his work.  Pray that God will be glorified.

I have written enough so let me just say again . . . we are a blessed people.

Love, Jim


The church extends its sympathy to Harold Hooker and his family at the death of his son.  Ed Hooker passed away on Friday evening, June 24.  Please keep this family in your prayers.

Harold Hooker

P.O. Box 116

Francesville, IN  47946

Thank You

Dear FCC Family, 

We would like to say thank you for the cards, words of encouragement, many visits and especially for all the prayers said on Danny’s behalf.  We also appreciate the monetary gift that was given to us while Danny is recuperating.  It really was a big help to us.  What a blessing to be part of such a loving church family.  

Danny & Charmi Bishop

Dear FCC Family,

Thank you for supporting us after the passing of Tracey Zarse.  We really appreciate it.  We also appreciate the sharing of your building and the funeral dinner.  Thank you for the cards, the singing at the funeral and all those who attended the celebration of life ceremony.  

The Tracey Zarse Family

Dear Christian Frineds, 

We thank you so much for the memorial service for our brother, Don Davis.  We have many good memories of First Christian Church and the warm and good people associated with your church.  My husband & I were married here 65 years ago and we just celebrated that 65th Anniversary!  Our Mother loved this church and the friendly folks who she enjoyed seeing every Sunday.  Thank you for all your kindness to our large family today.  God bless all who assisted with the service and lunch. Our sincere thank- you.

Richard and Sharon Haby

The Foundry 

 The first thing on the summer schedule for Foundry students each year is to serve with the VBS program. We had a tremendous response to the “day camp” format that VBS took this year and I am super thankful and proud of the middle and high school students that volunteered their time to interact with and mentor elementary students. Their presence and energy are vital to the program and I think they learn and have a lot of fun as well.

 Next up is this Wednesday’s annual Turkey Run state park trip for middle school students entering grades 6th thru 12th. We will be leaving the church at 8:15 am and will return by 3:30 pm. On the trip, we will hike, eat, swim, play some games and have a devotional. Admission is $2 to the park, for those who want to swim it is $3 for pool access. Lunch and transportation are provided. We need permission forms turned in by noon on Tuesday.

 On Sunday, June 30th, we will be having a movie night at the Foundry for middle and high school to watch the Tim Tebow produced film, “Run the Race”. We will have some time to eat dinner and have games available starting at 6 pm. The movie will start at 7 pm. After post-movie discussion, students can be picked up at 9:15 pm.

 As we try to stay connected through the summer, remember that @thefoundrysm on Facebook and Instagram is where you can find reminders and photos for the Foundry.

Summer Camp at The Ark: The time is NOW! Get registered for the summer camp of your choice soon. High School is attending Merge Week and middle school can choose between Edge Week and Thai Huts. A 75% scholarship is available to all campers. Ask Adam or myself for the coupon code.

Jeremy’s #: 219-204-0422

The Spark

 Summer continues to quickly roll along, and at this point both of our VBS programs have come and gone.  Last week we held our elementary VBS program.  A total of 75 elementary students attended the program, which we titled “The Big Picture”.

 This year we followed a new style of program that resembled more of a day camp experience as opposed to a traditional VBS program.  It took place over the course of only three days, but each day consisted of nearly 6 hours of lessons and activities, which were held in a variety of locations.

 The title of “The Big Picture” comes from the concept of taking a step back to look at the structure of the Bible as a whole as well as the story of God’s plan for salvation from start to finish.  While it’s important to dig in to uncover the wisdom that is found in each passage of scripture, it’s also important to understand the overall context in which we find each passage.  We spent day one looking into the story of creation and how sin then entered the world.  On day two, we looked into the Old Testament and more specifically at the sacrifices made by the high priest in the tabernacle.  We then wrapped things up on day three by considering how Jesus came to earth to serve as the ultimate sacrifice.

 I again want to thank the many people that made our VBS program a great experience for the kids who attended last week.  Thank you to those who worked side by side with the kids as group leaders, those who worked as station leaders for games, crafts, and service stations, those who worked preparing meals each day, those who provided transportation, and our many middle school and high school helpers.  A big thank you also goes out to those who allowed us to use their homes as a location for some of our activities.

Adam’s #: 317-430-4827

Upcoming Events

June 19 – The middle school youth will have an outing to Turkey Run State Park. 

June 23 thru 27 – Adam will be leading a week of church camp at The ARK.

June 28 thru July 5 – Adam and his family will be taking a week of vacation.  

June 30 – The middle and high school youth will have a movie night.

July 7 – The elders will meet at 8:00 p.m.

July 8 – The church board will meet at 7:00 p.m.

July 14 thru 19 – Jim & E.Anne will be serving on the staff of Edge Week at The ARK.  Jeremy and Adam will be helping with the music.

July 20 – A church family will be using the fellowship hall for a bridal shower.

July 21 thru 26 – Jeremy will be the dean of Merge Week at The ARK.

July 28 thru Aug 3 – Jeremy and his family will be taking a week of vacation.  

Aug 2 – The middle and high school youth will have an outing to Pine Lake.  

July 28 – The Membership Ministry Team will be hosting an ice cream social.

Aug 4 thru 20 – Jim & E.Anne will be a part of a group of 6 traveling from the church to work at TCM’s Haus Edelweiss in Austria.  

Aug 11 – The elders will meet at 8:00 p.m.

Aug 12 – The board will meet at 7:00 p.m.

Aug 25 – A church family will be using the fellowship hall for a bridal shower at 2:00.

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