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Vol 48, #8 August, 2008


ON THE WAY
with Dr. David D. Swanson
Dear FPCO Family and Friends,

One of my professors in seminary said the key to being a In the time I spend with couples, this is often a problem.
good pastor was learning to be “a keen observer of life.” You It most often starts with children. Once children come along,
have to watch what is happening and somehow interpret those couples tend to drift. They invest all their time in their children,
events in light of God’s revealed Word. As I was trying to do but not each other, and they lose that sense of connection and
that recently, I “observed” something in the Wall Street Jour- partnership. Before too long, spouses start feeling as if the oth-
nal that I found telling. It was an article on the front page of the er does not know them or understand them. How could they?
Personal Journal section and the title was: They are leading separate lives.
I say this as a means of challenging you to think about your
More Couples Find Marriage Leaves Them Alone Together marriage and to encourage you to sign up for the FPCO mar-
riage retreat this November. Leigh and I will be leading this
Now, I don’t know about you, but when I read that, my event, and it is our prayer that God will use it to renew and re-
first thought was, “Great!” In my marriage, I am always trying store the marriages of many in our church and community. The
to find balance in my life such that I can find time with Leigh. theme is “marriage matters.” I believe that it does, and if you
The headline seemed to suggest that more couples were find- do, then I hope you will make that weekend a priority so that
ing that time alone with each other and, as a result, marriages you can connect with your spouse even as you live in a culture
were better. where that is happening less and less.
Sadly, that was not what the headline meant. It actually
meant that more and more couples are leading separate lives With joyful expectation in
even though they are “together.” A Penn State University study the Lord, I write
followed 2000 couples – one group in 1980 and the other in
2000. They found the likelihood of couples spending time Under His Mercy,
together doing things such as visiting friends, sharing recre-
ational activities, dining, shopping or sharing projects around
the house had fallen by 28% in those 20 years. In other words,
couples are together, but they do more and more things apart. David
To be clear, I think couples need to have healthy lives in-
dependent of each other. We all need outside same-sex friend-
ships to support and strengthen us. However, good marriages
are found when husbands and wives partner in life together.
It is in that partnership that emotional bonds are formed. It is
how couples connect.

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A FRESH ENCOUNTER
WITH GOD
By Rev. Donna McClellan

Would you like to experience a fresh encounter with the 3. To act as a resource for the persecuted church.
living God? Are you seeking a more intimate relationship with Acts 4:31
God? Would you like to access more power from the Holy Spirit 4. To be a means of personal deliverance. Acts 12:4-5
in your daily life? 5. To serve as a means of suggesting missionary
Several of us are meeting weekly this summer to pray and operations. Acts 13:2-3
prepare for the Prayer Ministry. You are welcome to join us any 6. To be a first step in a new work for Christ. Acts 16
Wednesday, from 6:30 – 7:30pm, in the EMC Resource Room. Somehow I think that the purposes for prayer meetings in
Together we have prayed, looked at various prayers in the Bi- 2008 are not that different from the purposes Spurgeon out-
ble, and shared our own experiences in prayer, but mostly…we lined in 1868. God has not changed, and our need to depend on
have prayed. And God has met us! God and to look to Him for guidance has not changed either!
I am excited to announce the start of a weekly prayer meet- One of the things I most appreciated from his sermon was
ing here at FPCO. We will meet beginning September 3 in Lee this quote; “It is a very useful thing for Christians to pray with
Fellowship Hall from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Please join us for our first each other, even apart from the answer.” Our desire for our
meeting as we will have a short time of worship, hear David prayer ministry is not just to get answers, but to encounter God
Swanson bring us a word on prayer and as we spend time to- in ways that will deepen our faith and give us strength for the
gether as a church in prayer. journey (both personally and as a church.).
Cleat Simmons, who is leading our efforts, shared some Please keep Cleat Simmons, Barbara Francis, Cary Burchak
thoughts taken from a sermon Charles Spurgeon preached in and myself in prayer as we (along with others) continue to pray
1868 on prayer citing Acts 1:14; “They all joined together con- and plan for this ministry. We know that the enemy is not at all
stantly in prayer.” Here is a summary of what Spurgeon sees as pleased with these new efforts on prayer and we are dependent
the purposes of the prayer meeting from that sermon. on God and His power to lead us and provide victory. n
Purposes of the prayer meeting
1. To encourage a discouraged people. Acts 1:14
2. To serve as an appointed place to receive power WEEKLY PRAYER SERVICE
from the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:1.
Wednesdays; 6:30 – 7:30pm
Lee Fellowship Hall
Beginning September 3

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SUNDAY DISCIPLESHIP OFFERINGS
BEGIN SEPTEMBER 14
Our fall programming is moving from Wednesday nights to Sunday afternoons beginning September 14 through
November 15. Please plan to join our time of study and community from 4:30 – 6:30pm. Adult classes require reg-
istration, which can be done online at www.fpco.org/register.
For registration assistance, contact Lori Needham at 407-423-3441 x1463 or lneedham@fpc.org. For general ques-
tions, contact Donna McClellan, Associate Pastor for Discipleship and Spiritual Formation at 407-423-3441 x 1488.
No traffic, plenty of parking, relaxed weekend schedules…Plan to spend you Sunday afternoons with the Son.

lay leader, Kim Allen. Registration will be limited, and there is


The Bethel Series
a $25 fee to cover the cost of study materials.
The most purchased, yet least understood – The Bible.
The Bethel Series is an intensive study of the Bible which will
assist you in developing:
FIT..Faith, Integrity & Technique
• a comprehensive view of the Bible Become FIT (Faith, Integrity & Technique) – Why should
• an understanding of the historical background we be healthy and fit? We are told in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Do
which shaped the biblical events you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who
• an ability to discern the major themes of is in you, whom you have received from God?
scripture which show the purposes of God for You are not your own; you were bought at a price. There-
His people fore, honor God with your body.” Join in with others to learn
This September, a Bethel class will be offered on Sundays, how to be good stewards of our bodies so we may serve His
from 4:30-6:30pm. This class will require some reading and purpose. Simon and Kris Morgan, along with a nutritionist will
homework and the study will be on the Old Testament team complete the team to provide basic education and motivation
taught by Revs. Donna McClellan and Sam Knight along with to be FIT! Class fee is $25 per person and child care is available
with a reservation.

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Focus on the Family Program: Cross Training for Students
How to Drug Proof Your Kids This program is for middle and high school students look-
It’s easy to think, “not my kid.” Just know that seventy ing for an intense discipleship experience.
percent of “not my kid” used alcohol last year! Perceptions are Requirements include: Parent approval, one Scripture
dangerous. In today’s culture, the only true defense is educa- memory verse a week, read and answer questions from one
tion and open communication with your child. This program is chapter of assigned reading a week, keep a prayer log, journal
for parents of children ages 8 through 13. of your TAG (time alone with God), take notes at all Bible Stud-
How to Drug Proof Your Kids is a small-group study pro- ies, sit on one of the front two rows in worship services, submit
gram. Together with other parents, you’ll go through one of the to a Code of Conduct for the semester, sign a covenant of com-
best drug prevention curricula around. You’ll learn why kids mitment, and attend at least 10 of 12 meetings. A fee of $45
use drugs, strategies for communication, how to identify warn- covers materials, class will meet from 5-6pm and registration
ing signs, tools to help your kids respond to peer pressure, how closes after the 2nd meeting. For more information, contact
to deal with current drug use and more. Most importantly, Rachael at raldrich@fpco.org or 407-423-3441 x2350.
you’ll learn how to strengthen relationships with your kids that
act as a constant preventative against drug use.
Classes begin Sunday, September 14, from 4:30 – 6:30pm, Child Care and Family Dinners
and conclude November 16. Registration is limited to 20 par- While parents are engaged in study, child care will be pro-
ticipants, and the cost for the study materials is $30 per per- vided by reservation for children through Pre-Kindergarten. To
son. Questions about the program should be directed to lay make a child care reservation, please call the Early Childhood
leader, Ellie Kiesling at 407-694-7364. Payment for materials Ministry office at 407-423-3441 x2250 or email mvilar@fpco.
will be collected at the first session on September 14. org. Family style meals will also be available to enjoy in Lee
Fellowship Hall or grab to go and enjoy at home. Menus will be
available on September 14 and you may pay at the door.
Sonday Times for Children
Sonday Times is a time for children, Kindergarten thru 5th
grade, to come together for incredible sound and music expe- SAVE THE DATE!
riences, fun and crazy recreation and relational and engaging
Bible study. A joint effort by the Worship Arts and Children’s
Ministries, your kid couldn’t get a better way to spend Sunday
afternoons and time with the Son.
Programming will take place between 4:30 – 6:30pm, from
September 14 through November 16. Between 4:30-5:30pm.
October 8, 2008 • 9am – 1pm
kids will be experiencing music in ways in which they have
Lee Fellowship Hall
never dreamed. Song, drums, bells, and who knows what else
will come resounding from the rooms as kids learn and partici-
pate in music in creative, fun and interactive ways. At 5pm they
will transit to be with our Children’s Ministry staff for some
energy-filled games that will not be forgotten. To be followed
by Bible study that will bring practical help from God into the
kids’ daily lives.

Life Group Meeting Space


For existing Life Communities, Discipleship & Spiritual
Formation will provide appropriate meeting space for your
group to gather on Sunday afternoons. There are many great
studies available for check-out. If you’d like to review the study
offerings in the Resource Center or reserve meeting space, con-
tact Lori Needham at 407-423-3441 or lneedham@fpco.org

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INDESCRIBABLE SUMMER EXPERIENCE
FOR COLLEGE-AGE STUDENTS
By Tyler Zieba

College Group meets once a week on Thursday nights in the by examining creation. After watching only a few minutes of his
homes of different families within the church. It is a time where videos, you will come to the incredible and overwhelming con-
college-age students can come together for fellowship and to clusion that we as humans are pretty small in the grand scheme
really dive deeper into the heart of God. We’re really learning of creation. To try and comprehend just how big and how great
and experiencing together who God is, and how we can live the the universe as we know it really is, leaves me with a headache
life God has called us to on our different campuses around the and in complete awe of how big God must be to have created it
country. I know that for me, and many other students who are all. It’s also comforting at the same time to know that as minus-
involved in campus ministries at our schools, it’s tough to be cule as we are, the God of the entire universe chooses to have a
back home for the summer and not really plugged in to a com- relationship with us.
munity. It truly is refreshing to be around people my age and The God of all creation knows us and cares about us more
talk about things that matter to God. than we could ever imagine. I have enjoyed the college group so
We have been going through a Louie Giglio video series much, and really look forward to what God is going to do within
called Indescribable, which in all honesty has been blowing my our small community that will have a lasting impact on the dif-
mind. Louie is an extremely passionate speaker who will ignite ferent campuses represented there. If you’d like to be a part of
in you a passion to really seek after the heart of God. He has a our Thursday Summer College Group, contact Rachael Aldrich
love for astrology, and Louie presents the magnificence of God at raldrich@fpco.org. n

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i n a
semhap Clark r
with C
bridging the gap between
teens & the adults in their lives
By Steve Schneeberger, First United
Methodist Church

Do you ever wonder what it would be like to go back to high school? Chap
Clark did. He spent one year at Crescenta Valley High School in Southern
California observing and participating in the lives of teenagers. What he discov-
ered led him to draw some conclusions that radically altered assumptions about
how this age group develops. He recorded his findings in a riveting book called
Hurt: Inside the World of Today’s Teenagers.
Chap will share his conclusions and solutions with Central Floridians
September 9, 10 and 11. Chap is an associate professor of youth, family and culture
and director of youth ministry programs at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasa-
dena, California. As well as being a two-degree seminary graduate, Chap holds a
Ph.D. from Denver University in Human Communication specializing in relation-
ships, teams, and organizational and family systems. He will bring his expertise to
all who will listen, most notably high school faculty, parents, and those that voluntarily work with young
people. He will speak at a local public school on Tuesday night and Wednesday afternoon, First Presbyterian
Church on Wednesday evening and Lake Highland Preparatory School on Thursday morning.
“There needs to be a movement that changes the way in which we motivate and encourage teenagers”,
says Steve Schneeberger, the Executive Director of the Youth Ministry Institute, one of the sponsoring
organizations that is spearheading this effort. “We think we are supporting students while, in actuality, we
have created a culture that devalues them.” The Youth Ministry Institute offers a two-year training program
for youth ministers from across Florida.
In addition to the Youth Ministry Institute and the partnered venues, Parents Make a Difference is a
major supporter of this event. This underscores the great importance of parents in initiating healthy change.
They are the primary role models in the lives of their children. First United Methodist Church of Orlando and
The Episcopal Cathedral of St. Luke have also joined together in sponsoring this effort.
First Presbyterian Church will host Chap on Wednesday, September 10, 7-8:30pm in Lee Fellowship
Hall. The event is open to the community, welcoming all parents, teens and those who work with teens. ■

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Madagascar!
I don’t think I want to go to

By Rev. Sam Knight

“I don’t think I want to go to Madagascar!” were the words of my new passport was ten days. I knew that
I used to my wife in the same sentence as telling her I had been God was taking away my excuse. God was do-
invited to go by Don Brown. The idea of going on an overseas ing amazing things and I had not even arrived
trip was exciting, the thought of spending time in the southern in Madagascar yet. This was just the beginning.
hemisphere was exciting, the possibility of seeing real dancing The group of thirteen Presbyterians arrived
lemurs was also exciting, but I just did not want to take the time in Antananarivo the capital of Madagascar with
to go. Overseas mission is not an area of ministry that I was great expectancy. Nine of our group were from
passionate about. I know it is important, I believe the church is Central Florida, one from Washington State,
called to be involved in the proclamation of the gospel across the one a PCUSA missionary in South Africa and
world, but I also know that other people were called to do that two from Alaska. We were greeted by Dan and
and not me. As the discussions and prayers continued, both Elizabeth Turk, a PCUSA missionary couple, who FPCO sup-
Jennifer and I felt that if I was supposed to go then the Lord port in Madagascar as they partner with the denomination,
would reveal that in a clear way. As I made further inquires I The Church of Jesus Christ in Madagascar (FJKM). After what
discovered that my passport (British of course) had expired. I seemed to be a brief rest we were on the move again. Our first
would need to have a new one, and the timing as such would stop was Ivato Theological College. The students and faculty
become my excuse not to go. Everyone knows how long it takes gathered in their chapel to worship and greet the overseas visi-
to get a passport, and the fact that I could only deal with the tors. With the help of interpreters each member of the group
British embassy in D.C., well that would only add to the delay. I was introduced. Each member of the team shared where they
shared with Don Brown that next Sunday the problems with my were from, their role in the church and our excitement of see-
passport. The application had been sent and my expectations ing God’s work in Madagascar over the next couple of weeks.
were very low. Don said we should pay for it to be expedited and Still struggling with being there, I stood to share that I was
pray. I was not very hopeful. The next morning Jennifer calls from Orlando, FL but originally from Wales. Immediately Rev.
saying that a package had just been delivered and it was my Jean D’Elinivo, the former head of the evangelism department
passport. From the day I sent off my application to the return for the FJKM, shared that the first missionaries to Madagas-

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car were from Wales. In 1818 David Jones and Thomas Bevan
of the London Missionary Society began sharing the gospel to
the people of the island nation. At that point I stopped arguing
with God and accepted that I was in the right place at the right
time. Everywhere I went I began to meet people who had been
in Wales though various partner ministries.
The FJKM is a fast growing denomination that finds it ori-
gins in a merger of three Christian groups; French Reformed
Church, London Missionary Society and Quakers. The church
reported around four million members last year, but now esti-
mates a number closer to five million. Fifty-two new church de-
velopments have been initiated since 2007, and the evangelistic
outreach efforts are seeing thousands come to faith in Christ.
The church has several departments, each with a practical vi-
sion for sharing Christ to the people of Madagascar. Dan and
Elizabeth Turk minister within the Development department to impede the willingness and ability of those called to serve.
using their knowledge, gifts and experience to help both prac- The many pastors that we met each shared the joy of serving
tically and spiritual, in the development of the island. During Christ in the communities they were ministering, even despite
our time the group was exposed to the varied aspects of min- many congregations being unable to support them financially.
istry that Dan and Elizabeth are involved in. Tree nurseries; We visited three children’s homes, one of which cared for chil-
tree grafting; citrus cultivation projects; HIV/AIDS awareness; dren with disabilities. Another home, Akany Avoko, was work-
family planning; clean water projects; Peer Education teams; ing to help children who had come from some of the most dis-
to name but a few of the areas of practical help the Turks are turbing backgrounds. The home was partnering with various
undertaking as part of their ministries including Habit for Humanity to help them estab-
ministry to the people. Each lish a new life for themselves. Dan Turk shared with me that
of the projects are in conjunc- if Malagasy people are given event he smallest of opportunity
tion with opportunities for they will use it to better themselves and their community. There
sharing a saving knowledge of were many different experiences that I was able to be part of
Christ. including visiting with the national AIDS committee and mem-
I encountered Elizabeth bers of the Theological Training committee charged with train-
Turk (pictured right) at her ing ministers of the gospel. We witnessed a feeding ministry to
most passionate while visiting children in the center of the capitol run by Pastor Helivao. Over
a water project in the remote three hundred children are provided a meal of rice and beans. It
villages of Tsaramikatra. She was here that I experienced the greatest of heartache and one of
spoke with conviction of the the most poignant moments of the visit. The team began hand-
need for clean water and sani- ing out the metal bowls with children reaching out hands held
tary living conditions. I visibly high trying to get a bowl of food. At first I was dismayed by
saw the differences between some of the older children pushing to get a bowl overshadow-
villagers where there was no ing smaller children at their feet. I resisted giving those a bowl
clean water supply. Every op- believing them to be almost rude and aggressive. But as one
portunity Elizabeth had, she shared with men and women re- took hold of a bowl his immediate reaction was to sit and begin
garding the problems of large families with little time between feeding his little brother. I was ashamed at my judging spirit
each new mouth to feed and the shortages of food. We met a and my western assumptions of greed. Under the conviction of
mother of nine who had been the first in the village to undergo the spirit I realized this was an image of what the kingdom of
a tubaligation. Dan was in his element amidst the trees of the God should be. How desperate are we to push toward the giver
Moramanga nursery project. The group was shown examples of of life that we may feed others with the rich nourishment of the
grafting, citrus trees being developed for optimal fruit produc- saving grace of Jesus Christ.
tion and educational projects for farmers all through the minis- The trip to Madagascar gave me an insight into the wider
try of the FJKM and in the name of Christ. scope of God’s kingdom, a greater appreciation for overseas
A great deal of the extensive ministries of the FJKM that missions and a greater understanding of what God calls each
we were privileged to experience and witness were related to of us to do in community in which we live. Sharing the good
the devastating poverty that the island nation experiences. This news of Jesus Christ is not that hard to do. We so often over
poverty certainly impacts the church and her ability to minister complicate something that is a simple as telling someone else
in ways that we in the west would. This, however, does not seem that Jesus loves them. n

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FRUIT TREE Victor Randriamanivo is a dedicated Christian farmer at Ambatosa-
foina near Andramasina about 50 km to the SE of Antananarivo, the capi-
tal of Madagascar. Like many in his area, he works hard and grows rice,

EXTENSION IN some manioc, sweet potatoes, potatoes, and vegetables. Most of what
Victor and his wife produce goes to feed their family of six children. They
try to sell enough to have money for clothes, medicines, and school fees.

MADAGASCAR Every year, from October through March or April, there is not enough
rice to eat. People, like Victor and his family, reduce the number of meals
they eat to two or less a day, relying on starchy manioc for calories.
Since 2007, Victor has been taking part in a Presbyterian Church
By Dan Turk, Missionary
(USA)-sponsored fruit program partly funded by the Presbyterian An-
swer to Hunger (PATH) of Central Florida Presbytery. The fruit pro-
gram is designed to introduce good varieties of fruit trees, good orchard
practices, and fruit tree propagation techniques.
Many of the varieties used were developed in Florida, such as
Flordaprince peach and Sunraycer nectarine. Both of these are low-chill
varieties, meaning that they need less cold to produce good crops of
fruits compared with standard varieties. Through a collaboration with
ECHO at N. Ft. Myers FL, my colleagues and I have introduced over a
hundred varieties of fruit trees to Madagascar. Many will be distributed
to farmers like Victor after they have been evaluated and propagated.
This program is simple: provide a limited number of highly moti-
vated farmers at several locations with good varieties of fruit trees, lots
of training and frequent follow-up. The trainings focus on orchard es-
tablishment and management, and how to propagate fruit trees in fam-
ily tree nurseries. A technician visits each of the 9 participating farmers
A delivery of new trees from the Turk’s nursery makes its in the Andramasina area each month to see how the trees are growing
way to an outlying clinic where fruit trees will soon dot
and to provide technical advice and encouragement. The trainees
the landscape.
do not receive a lot of trees or a lot of equipment. The training will
enable them to produce their own grafted trees. A few will likely
set up their own tree nurseries to provide grafted trees and advice
to other farmers in the area. The income the farmers receive from
their fruits and from the sale of grafted fruit trees will help pro-
vide added income to their families. The fruits will also help their
families with extra nutrition. The hope is that in the future these
families and others will not have periods when they go hungry.
Victor’s enthusiasm became evident after the first training. At
that training, each participant received 12 grafted fruit trees (citrus,
peaches, nectarines, and apples). The training covered generalities
of grafting so that they would know what was special about graft-
ed trees and how to take care of them. Victor took home cuttings
from an apple tree at the training site and grafted root sprouts of
an apple tree at his home. We knew when we saw the successfully-
grafted tree that Victor would go far with grafting, especially after
getting hands-on grafting experience at the second training. Now
Victor has a tree nursery with peach and citrus rootstocks. He is
beginning to graft his own trees.
Recently the participants decided to form their own fruit as-
sociation in order to spearhead the promotion of fruit trees in
their area. Many other farmers in the area have requested that the
church include them in the program. The challenge in the coming
year will be to provide Victor and the other participants with the
technical assistance, especially through focused trainings, to en-
able them to realize their own goals and dreams in the fruit tree
domain and to help their neighbors. n
Elder Don Brown looks on as Dan Turk explains the plants growing in
the|FJKM
10 nursery that are soon to be distributed across the country.
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Reflections of a TCS Dad
with Three Graduates – “I’d do it again!”
By Cliff Shepard, The Christ School

Next to handing your first child the keys to the car, few de- dren graduated from The Christ School, notwithstanding my
cisions in parenthood are scarier than deciding where and how own initial reservations, is primarily a story of knowing when
your children will be educated. As a young father, I had all sorts to listen to your wife and her instincts.
of ideas about getting my kids the best possible education. Aca- The journey began for us when my wife, Mary, told me she
demics were my primary focus. Candidly, a Christian educa- wanted us to check into a new school opening in downtown Or-
tion was not a priority for me, as I had never experienced a truly lando that she saw an ad for in the newspaper. I was more than
Christian school where top-notch academics weren’t sacrificed. skeptical, given that the school would have no track record, no
You simply can’t have both, or so I thought. other parents to question and nothing but faith to offer as reas-
Fortunately for our family, there is one secret to a happy surance. But having learned that sometimes you simply have
marriage that I learned pretty early on – listen to your wife. For to say “yes” to your spouse to preserve the peace, I went along
any of you newer husbands out there, you might want to stop with her for the tour and interview. It was a defining moment
right here and take note. The story of how all three of my chil- in our marriage.

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Upon arrival at the First Presbyterian campus for TCS we Christian Athletes, that helped her overcome her shyness and
were greeted by Joanne Fleming, the current Director of De- blossom into a young woman who can and does comfortably
velopment, and one of the most genuine people I have ever share her faith with others. She went on to involvement with
met. I can honestly say that it was her direct answers to some Student Venture and FCA in high school, lettering in three var-
tough questions from me that turned me from skeptic, to be- sity sports and serving as her student government chaplain.
liever, to founding member of the school. I learned that day Spencer, my most recent TCS grad, is now a tenth grader at
and many days since that if you hear it from Joanne, you can Lake Highland. While he hasn’t had the benefit of years upon
take it to the bank. which to reflect back on his TCS experience, he was quick with
But this story is not just about how our family came to the an answer to my question about what he liked most. “The field
school, but more about what happened after we enrolled. The trips,” he said without hesitation and with a big smile. But
answer, for our kids and for us, is that we all embarked on a then, without additional prompting, he added, “it really helped
successful journey that has literally established the foundations me get ready for high school.” And so it has, as he is carrying an
for a lifetime of success and learning, anchored by the Christian honors GPA into his sophomore year.
principles that are at the core of the school’s mission. With all three of our children, TCS was both a foundation
My oldest son, Tyler, now a 20 year old junior at FSU, be- and a stepping stone. All entered Lake Highland upon gradu-
gan TCS as a third grader back in 1996 as one of 52 students in ation, all have flourished academically, spiritually and per-
the school’s first year of operation. Back then the school was sonally, and all have made us extremely proud parents. But
small enough where all the parents knew one another and we without fail, when they talk about their educations, as they did
all shared the joy of the school’s successes. Then, as now, one of recently while we were out boating over the fourth of July holi-
the important fund-raising events for the school was The Mane day, the talk always comes back to their teachers at TCS. Names
Event golf tournament and auction. While I had known Tyler like Miller, Sorrow, Burchak, Crimmins, Leadbitter, Allen and
was learning and doing well, I remember very specifically when Marvin are regulars around our house – even years after they
I knew TCS was something special. taught our children. That they are is a testament to both their
In his second year, weeks before The Mane Event, Tyler own personal excellence and the leadership at TCS that brought
made a special request for the auction. He wanted us to bid on them to the school.
a movie and dinner night with one of his teachers, Mrs. Susan Tyler is now a DJ at WVSF in Tallahassee and will be pur-
Sorrow. While this may seem a small thing, the mere fact that suing a degree in broadcasting. Morgan is following a similar
my son would want to spend time with any of his teachers out- path with a double major in communications and business, and
side the classroom was an eye-opener for me and totally unex- Spencer is pursuing a path that could lead to a career in music.
pected. It certainly wasn’t the kind of teacher-child relationship But the TCS influence is not limited to my children.
I experienced. Now, after all my children have graduated TCS and
But the real eye-opener came when so many other parents moved on, I myself am serving on the school’s board of di-
experienced the same kind of requests from their own kids. rectors. It is my hope to give back to the school that gave so
Whether it was dinner and a movie, being read a bed-time story much to my kids and to see to it that the tradition of excel-
or experiencing a cooking adventure, opportunities for our chil- lence continues. It is a tradition worth preserving for genera-
dren to spend time with their teachers outside of school were tions to come and if I had it to do all over with my own kids,
in high demand. To this day, Tyler cherishes the memory of his I’d do it again! n
dinner and movie with Mrs. Sorrow as one of the highlights of
his years at TCS.
My daughter, Morgan, a freshman at FSU, was also enam-
ored with her teachers at TCS. But it was her spiritual growth at
TCS that left the biggest impression on me. Morgan has always
been a great student, but it was her play with the girl’s basket-
ball team, which went undefeated for two straight years under www.thechristschool.org/admission
Coach Mark Lansing, and her involvement with Fellowship of

www.fpco.org | 13
14 | www.fpco.org
LEADING BY
EXAMPLE
How FPCO’s Nettie Mosley Overcame Adversity to Lead a Life That’s Inspired a Congregation

By Kristin Davis

Sitting in the lobby of the Edington Ministry Center, Nettie Nettie leads a team of nine men to create this same com-
Mosley doesn’t appear to have a worry in the world. She sweeps fortable environment for members and guests. Even as the only
her short, wiry brown curls out of her face with her hand and woman on the team, she says she’s never felt outnumbered. “I
smiles brightly. Tiny lines form around her eyes and mouth. tell the guys, ‘You don’t intimidate me, I’ve been working with
These lines and the wise look behind her eyes are the only indi-
cation of her age of 67. Everything else about her appears to be
as youthful as ever, down to the hearty chuckle that engulfs her
entire body every time she laughs.
As carefree as Nettie is, no one would ever know that she
is the woman in charge of preparing all 209,000 square feet
of the First Presbyterian Church of Orlando’s facilities for the
thousands of Bible studies, events, meetings and programs held
there each year. But as supervisor of Special Services at FPCO,
that’s exactly what she does…and has done joyfully every day
for the past 33 years.
“We work behind the scenes,” Nettie says with a South-
ern drawl she’s held on to since moving from Dothan, Ala.,
to Orlando as a teenager. It’s just another part of the charm
she brings with her to work every day. Nettie sets up for every
event, whether a wedding, funeral or a Bible study, and makes
sure everything is spotless, from the kitchen to the bathrooms. guys all my days.’” The guys she refers to are her four sons and
She also stays long after the last guest leaves to get things back grandson, who she and her husband Clifford raised as their
into working order. own. “It was a challenge,” she says. “I had to be firm as the only
Although her co-workers say that her role is arguably one of girl figure.”
the most important at the church, it’s not always the most glam- This strong sense of self, along with her faith, has gotten
orous, or recognized. But she doesn’t do it for the recognition. “I her through many rough patches in life, including the loss of
don’t care if it’s a homeless person or a church member [walking her eldest son and 25-year-old grandson to cancer. They passed
through these doors], I want them to come here and feel a sense away just two years apart from one another. Although Net-
of love and care.” FPCO is not Nettie’s church home—she attends tie struggled with the loss, she says it strengthened the bond
Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church every Sunday—but she still between the other family members, and brought them all to a
considers it home. “To me, they are family,” she says. deeper sense of faith. “I trust God,” she says firmly. “I know
continue on page 16

www.fpco.org | 15
“The job here is not so much
what I do, I do it to glorify God,”

ent popular and soul music. At Christmastime, she says


they couldn’t afford Christmas ornaments so they would
make their own out of brown paper bags and newspa-
pers. Despite her humble beginnings, she says she al-
ways had everything she needed: “We didn’t have televi-
sion; we just had each other… and a lot of church.”
Now, with a family of her own, her priorities still re-
main the same: God, family and friends. Her children,
now grown, live nearby and visit often. Nettie spends
God don’t make no mistakes.
much of her free time with her husband, who she de-
He had a better plan. I’ve
scribes as the love of her life. That wasn’t always the case
learned to accept the things I
though: “I didn’t like him right away,” she admits. “He’d try to
cannot change.”
talk to me and I just wasn’t interested.” Determined, Clifford
That wasn’t the first
found out where Nettie lived and befriended her sister. After
time Nettie was faced with
some convincing from her family, Nettie gradually began to
a problem beyond her con-
spend more time with him. Not long afterward, he told Nettie
trol. When she moved with
he planned to ask her parents for her hand in marriage: “I said,
her parents and siblings
‘You have to ask me first.’”
from Alabama to Orlando
The two have been married for 48 years and Nettie has
as a teen, she was met
become more than just a wife to Clifford. She is also a caregiver.
with segregation and ra-
After a medical condition caused Clifford’s right side to become
cial discrimination. “On
paralyzed, Nettie began performing daily tasks, such as cook-
the corner of Orange and
ing, for him. Every morning, Nettie wakes up at 3:15 am to
Church [Street], some of
pray for an hour before cooking him breakfast. After work ev-
the water fountains had
ery day, she cooks him dinner as well. Although she’s happy to
‘colored’ and ‘white’ la-
help, she says that Clifford works hard to do things for himself
beled on them,” she says.
and has never let his paralysis keep him from living a normal
“[And at] some stores, you
life. But normal is hardly a word anyone would use to describe
had to go out back to or-
the lives of either Clifford or Nettie. On any given day, Nettie
der.” She also remembers
can be found strolling through the halls at FPCO, coordinating
walking several miles to school, while other children rode by
several big events simultaneously and smiling for no particular
her on a bus for whites-only. But Nettie never let it get to her,
reason at all.
although she never understood why she was being treated like
“Most people can tell if I’m not feeling good because I’m
a second-class citizen.
always joyful and bubbly,” she says. “It’s not a put-on; it’s just
“I don’t see color,” she says. “I have a love for God and—be-
the way I am.” She can be spotted by the walkie-talkie fastened
cause of that—I have a love for people. I felt sorry for the people
to her belt, with its constant stream of voices asking her ques-
that called [black] people names as if they weren’t human. But the
tions, for help or panicking about a child that had gotten sick on
Bible says to pray for those people because you can’t change them.”
the playground. She turns the volume down whenever anyone
She adapted this positive outlook from her parents, who she says
approaches to speak to her, so that they know they have her full
taught her to be grateful for what she had rather than envious of
attention, and that she cares about what they have to say.
what she didn’t. Her father was a sharecropper while her mother
Her love and respect for others comes from a lifetime of
took odd jobs doing housework for others. Nettie is the seventh
Christianity—she was baptized at age 8—and a desire to find
of ten children who grew up together in the same household. The
ways, great or small, to serve the Lord, she says. She ministers
four boys shared one room and the six girls shared another. “It was
to the church staff, her friends and family every day. Many of
a good childhood,” she says. “We were all so close.”
the church staff even joke that if Senior Pastor Dr. David Swan-
The family would work together to raise their own veg-
son ever missed a church service, Nettie could step in and de-
etables and meat. For entertainment, they would play games
liver a sermon to blow the roof off.
together after church such as jump rope or hide-and-seek. They
“The job here is not so much [about] what I do, [but that] I
would also gather around the radio at night, listening to differ-
do it to glorify God,” she says. n

16 | www.fpco.org
Whois?
Who is?

Power
Pres e nce
Kn owl e dg e
H oly
Ju st
U n ch an g ing
Tru th
M ercy
S ove re i g n
Fait h fu l Fir s t Pre s byt e r ian Ch u rch of O rl a n d o
Fall Se r m o n S e ri e s
D r. D avid S wa n s o n

Tradit io n al: 8 : 3 0 & 1 1 am in S a n c t ua ry


www.fpco.org/sermons Ge n e s is : 8 : 3 0 & 1 1 am in Fe llow s h i p H a l l

www.fpco.org | 17
WEEKDAY SCHOOL CHILDREN
NOW ENJOY PLAYING
SAFELY IN THE SHADE
By Pam McComb, Assistant Director Weekday School

Weekday School has had the privilege of attending early A 7’ X 7’ X 6’ hole was dug, and a reinforced steel and con-
childhood educational conferences to gain knowledge of the crete base was poured for the foundation of a new 25 foot center
most recent and up to date advances in the field. During the pole of the structure. Brackets were bolted to the three walls of
conference that was held in November, 2006, one of the work- the buildings, ranging from 10 to 30 feet high to hold the cables
shops provided information on the area of sun protection for of the colorful shade sails. The sails were ordered and made
children. Shades like these will protect children from 98% of in Australia and shipped back to Orlando to be installed. The
the suns harmful rays, skin that is unprotected can be damaged structure was completed in May.
by the suns UV rays in as little as 15 minutes. We, at Weekday School, are very blessed to have had this
Our school has a playground for our classes, which is locat- opportunity to be able to provide much needed protection to
ed between Allen and Yowell Halls in the courtyard which faces our children. It not only provides protection from the sun, but
Church Street. We decided that we would apply for a grant from also a colorful and fun area in which our children can learn and
the Dr. Phillips Foundation to install a shade structure over this play. We are grateful to the Dr. Phillips Foundation for their
area. This was done in the Fall of 2007, contacting companies support and assistance with this project.
under the guidelines of the Foundation to receive bids for the Weekday School also has other sources of support, such as
structure. Approval from the Foundation was obtained in De- the Magruder Foundation, which has supplied funds to assist our
cember, 2007. We then started the process of securing approval families with scholarships for tuition assistance for over 20 years.
from the City of Orlando, which has firm restrictions on color Weekday School would not be the school that we are today without
use in the downtown area. Approval was obtained and the con- these foundations and others who continue to support the work
struction began in March. we do to teach, nurture and show Christ’s love to our children. n

18 | www.fpco.org
THE AMAZING COLLECTION:
The Bible, Book by Book
By Lori Needham, Women’s Ministry

The Women’s Ministry Council is excited to announce a


new study offering to all women of the church that will be in-
teresting, informative, and designed for all students in all walks
of life and levels of spiritual maturity! Beginning in September,
we will start this sixty-six book journey with the first five books,
or The Pentateuch, Genesis through Deuteronomy.
How will The Amazing Collection help you?
• It will cause you to know and understand the big
picture of God’s Word.
• It will acquaint you with the entire Word of
God, not just bits and pieces.
• It will make every other Bible study you do
more meaningful.
• It will give you confidence in the truth of
God’s Word so you won’t be deceived.
• It will open your eyes to God’s work through-
out history and in your life today.
• It will lay a spiritual foundation that will
benefit you for life!
This will be a study that we will support through the
book of Revelation. We hope you will make a commitment
to join other women as we learn the purpose, theme, history
and spiritual application of each book of the Bible.
The study is offered Thursday mornings beginning Sep-
tember 11, from 9:30 – 11:30am with child care offered by
reservation. Or, you may attend on Monday evenings begin-
ning September 15, from 6:30 – 8:30pm.
We are also excited to announce a special “Amazing Col-
lection Premier” on Saturday, September 6, from 10am to Register at www.fpco.org/register or pick up a registration
noon. Come and learn about this wonderful study as we host form in the Welcome Center. Don’t delay! Mark your calendar
one of the authors, Patsy Harley. She will share details about now and plan to attend the commencement and reception with
this study and how God is using it in places beyond our imagi- the Bible study the following week. n
nation! Following her presentation in the Sanctuary, we will
conclude our time together with a reception in Lee Fellowship For more information:
Hall where you will have a chance to pick up your materials if Rev. Donna McClellan at dmcclellan@fpco.org or
you pre-registered or it will be an opportunity to register and 407-423-3441 x1488
receive the materials that day. Invite your friends, neighbors,
Lori Needham at lneedham@fpco.org or
co-workers and family to join you in authentic Bible study that
407-423-3441 x 1463
will make a difference in your life.

www.fpco.org | 19
NEWS & NOTICES
Congratulations to: Jennifer and Nate Hutchins on the death of his grandfa-
ther, Gardner Hutchins, on June 26, 2008.
Lynda and Josh Tomlinson on the birth of their son, Cody
Joshua Tomlinson, on May 8, 2008 in Los Angeles, CA.
Proud grandparents are Donna and Jesse Garcia. Online Member Community
MyFPCO.org is a community where you can connect with
Mary and Richard Solik on the birth of their son, Jona-
other FPCO members outside of Sunday morning. Con-
than Alex Solik, on May 12, 2008.
nect with other FPCO members through blogs, participate
in forums and group discussions and have the opportu-
Susie and Kyle Taylor on the birth of their daughter, Ad-
nity to upload photos and videos to share with other com-
dison Leigh Taylor, on June 10, 2008.
munity members. Please feel free to log on, look around
and join our social community. Here are some topics be-
Cindy and Taylor Bodine on the birth of their son, Luke
ing discussed:
Benjamin Bodine, on June 20, 2008. Proud grandpar-
ents are Linda and Richard McCree. How do we know when we are being obedient to God?
Are fertility treatments, including IVF, Biblically “al-
Bridget and John Skinner on the birth of their daughter, lowed” and okay with God?
Lauren Marie Skinner, on June 26, 2008. How does your faith intersect with your politics? Do they?
Should they?
Endsley and Thomas Hewitt on the birth of their son,
Pierson Clark Hewitt, on April 11, 2008. Proud grandpar-
ents are Caren and Bob Hewitt. All Ground is Holy When you Follow Jesus
The Women’s Retreat on
Julia Bailey and Daniel Hendrickson who were married June 6 – 8 offered ninety
June 21, 2008. Julia is the daughter of Mike and Linda women a respite from
Bailey. hectic schedules and to
be part of a transforming
Sympathy to: weekend of “Walking with
Jesus”. The topics of sur-
Mary Damon and Malcolm Clayton on the death of her render, suffering, silence
sister, Hallie Quinn, on June 14, 2008. and surprise permitted
each participant a time
Dawn and Guy Neff on the death of her father, Dan
to evaluate our walk with
Thompson, on June 17, 2008. Mr. Thompson was the
Him. All ages and gen-
grandfather of Courtney (Chad) Milam.
erations were represent-
ed – from young adult to great grandmothers! Three
Rhonda and Cleat Simmons and Lou Anne and Phillip
generations of God’s girls in one family traveled this
King on the death of Jim Glenn on June 19, 2008. Mr.
weekend to be together and for some, it was a ‘first’ ex-
Glenn was the grandfather of Nathan & Emma Simmons
perience at a retreat! Retreat leaders, Donna McClellan
and Turner and Alexandra King.
and Leigh Swanson, provided solid biblical messages
with something for everyone to glean. The women who
Carole Foote on the death of her mother, Viola Helzer, on
shared personal testimonies affirmed God is with us at
June 19, 2008.
all times. The weekend may be gone, but the God mo-

20 | www.fpco.org
ments, peaceful surroundings and the friendships made Attend “Rock the Universe” Concert
are forever stamped in our memory or journals.
on September 5
The Student Ministry will provide transportation to Uni-
Unity Sunday School Class Welcomes versal Studio’s “Rock the Universe” on Friday, September
You to Join Them 5. This is an event filled with extraordinary music and un-
forgettable faith, where the biggest names in Christian rock
Dr. Tony Frilingos leads this class in Bible study, reflect-
take the stage. Purchase tickets at www.rocktheuniverse.
ing the historical perspectives as well as current life ap-
com. The church bus will leave at 4:45pm and return at
plications of the Scripture. One class member recently
12am. For more information and to reserve seats, contact
wrote, “Our teacher, Tony Frilingos, takes the Bible to a
Rachael at 407.423.3441 x2350 or raldrich@fpco.org.
new level and gives you points to really think about. I was
searching for an in-depth class and that is exactly what
Unity offers. Our class has also offered me new friend- DivorceCare Session Begins September 18
ships. Outside of class we have gotten together occasion-
Our divorce recovery ministry provides a structured
ally for parties and breakfast. I cannot say enough of how
support program to help you learn to cope with the
much I have enjoyed this class.” Newcomers are welcome
changes taking place caused by divorce and separation.
to attend the Unity Class which meets Sundays at 9:45am
DivorceCare is a weekly evening support group where
in 330-A in the Edington Ministry Center. For Sunday
you will find encouragement and wise counsel as you
School information please contact Rev. Donna McClellan
seek healing and balance in your own life. DivorceCare
at dmcclellan@fpco.org or 407-423-3441 x 1488.
for Kids helps children ages 5-12 cope with their own
responses to this family change. Register at www.fpco.
God is with Us Wherever We Go org/register or call Sharon at 407.423.3224, x1159.
Camp Wee Ones, held
in June, helped one, two Columns Newsletter Offers
and three year olds be-
Alternative to Mail
come “Earth Explorers”
on a safari, into the Rain- As part of our effort to “go green”, the Columns is now
forest, under the sea, and available electronically. The Columns will continue to be
back in time to visit the mailed to every member unless you register to receive the
land of the dinosaurs! newsletter via email. To request the electronic option,
please complete the form at www.fpco.org/paperless.
“Hadley absolutely loved
Camp this year. She asked to go everyday and wanted to
go back as soon as I picked her up. Going to “camp” re-
June ‘08 Giving Snapshot
ally made her feel like a big girl. Hadley made binoculars
General Operating Contributions Budgeted Surplus
to hunt jungle animals, a lion’s mane, a zebra craft, and
(Deficit)
many more animal crafts. I cherish all of them!”
June Gifts $433,539 $486,041 $(52,502)
Year-to-date Gifts $2,957,501 $3,233,256 ($275,755)

Cross Training Class Begins September 7 Cash In Bank $334,013 Line of Credit $0
This fall semester, high school and middle school students Immeasurably More Outstanding Balance $6,114,649
will have the opportunity to experience intense disciple-
IM June Gifts $56,064
ship through Cross Training which begins September 7.
Registration closes after the second meeting. To register, IM Year-to-date Gifts $649,632
pick up a registration form in the Student Ministry office (net of 10% tithe to Missions)
or call Rachael Aldrich at 407.423.3441 x2350 for more Contact Dr. Keith Wright for a full revenue &
information. expense summary

www.fpco.org | 21
REGISTRATION OPEN NOW!
By Dr. Rebecca Bedell

Children’s Music is excited about our latest addition—an early


childhood music program called MusikGarten. Registration is now
open online at fpco.org/register
MusikGarten Fall Schedule 2008 MusikGarten is the preeminent early childhood music educa-
tion program in which the curricula cover children from birth to age
nine; offering parents a complete nine-year developmental plan.
Level A: Tues 10am AYH 211 The curricula include: Family Music, The Cycle of Seasons, Music
Babies- Wed 10am AYH 215 Makers, which includes piano introduction, as well as specialty pro-
11 months Thurs 10am AYH 215 grams like Nature Trail and God’s Children Sing. Each class is age-
specific and will include a CD, music book, and some will include an
instrument pack for the child to take home. We chose this program
because we wanted an educationally sound music curriculum with
Level B1: Tues 10am AYH 213 a spiritual component that could be a part of every class. The pro-
12-23 mo Wed 10am AYH 217 gram is based on meeting the developmental needs of children as
Wed 4:30pm AYH 211 they grow. Throughout the curriculum, favorite songs, stories, and
dances are revisited—building on what the child needs to help them
grow and develop into successful students. We want to invite you
and your children to join us for MusikGarten classes. Children learn
Level B2: Tues 11am AYH 211 best through moving and listening, and MusikGarten classes will
2-3 years Wed 11am AYH 215 help them grow and develop into successful students.
MusikGarten classes are structured by age groupings. We are of-
Sat 10am CLC 324
fering several sections of each level. We are happy to announce that
all children enrolled in ICCC and Little School will participate in this
renowned program as an integral part of their school day!
Level C: Wed 6:30pm AYH 211 The registration deadline is August 15. Classes will start Septem-
4 & 5 years Sat 11am CLC 324 ber 2 and end November 22. There is a registration fee of $60 per
child, and each child must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
If you have questions, please contact Stephanie Mixner at
407-423-3441 x1186 or smixner@fpco.org n

22 | www.fpco.org
A MILESTONE:
Believe the Unbelievable
By Carol Welker, Director of Children’s Ministry

If back in 1997 you would have told me


that today, in 2008, I would be finishing my
12th year of camp, I probably would have told
you that you were crazy. And yet that is exact-
ly where I find myself. Now you must totally
understand what camp involves. Not only is
it nearly 200 elementary school age kids plus
a plethora of junior and adult counselors
away from home for a week, it is all the plan-
ning and writing and creating and detailing
in order to even make it to the actual week.
For 12 years, themes have come that have
been relevant, teachings and worship writ-
ings have been inspired, afternoon devotions
have opened hearts, friends have been made
and God’s spirit has moved.
If that is not unbelievable enough,
think about this. Kids that came 12
years ago are now in college, 85% of
our junior counselors came as camp-
ers, some adults have actually been
back 8, 9 even 10 years, kids from
Fort Myers, Atlanta, and all over Cen-
tral Florida come to camp…and God
X[b_[l[
j^[kdX[b_[lWXb[
has been welcomed into hundreds of
kids lives.
As I look back, I am absolutely keep doing camp as long as I
blown away by God’s faithfulness. am physically able. Who knows,
Every year, yes, there have been in- maybe heaven is a lot like camp.
credible challenges; yet God has con- A community of folks together,
sistently seen us through each challenge with grace. Every year living out their faith daily in joy, praise, and worship to God.
the question of how or why puzzles us; yet consistently God O’kay, so it’s probably got better air conditioning and the food
has answered those questions with wisdom. Every year you ask is probably better and it’s most likely not so smelly after a few
yourself, can I really do all of this again; and yet God consis- days! But in theory they are both Holy Ground.
tently provides the strength and creativity to reveal Himself. Twelve years of the seeming unbelievable, and yet it is
Camp is so much more than a summer activity or a week documented truth. Seen, experienced, and life altering. Isn’t so
away, it truly is Holy Ground. My life has been and will forev- much of God that way? So believe in a God who has done and
er be different because of camp and with God’s backing I will will continue to do the unbelievable. n

www.fpco.org | 23
PRAYER
WORSHIP
COMMUNITY
These are the essential elements of our Christian life through which First
Presbyterian embraces all who join us in committing our lives to seek,
share and serve…all to the glory of God. We extend to you Christ’s love
and invitation to bear witness in His name. Our church offers opportu-
nities and encouragement to bring light into your life, our community
and God’s kingdom.

First Presbyterian Church of Orlando PERIODICALS RATE


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The First Presbyterian Columns (USPS 604-040) is published once
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Church. Circulation: 4750. (3750 by US Mail, 1000 by on
campus distribution). Periodicals postage paid at Orlando,
Florida. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to COLUMNS,
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POSTMASTER: Time Sensitive Material
FPCO Main Office: ( 407-423-3441 Please Deliver by July 28, 2008
www.fpco.org

Traditional Services: 8:30am & 11am


Genesis Services: 8:30am & 11am
Sunday School: 9:45am