Check the Calendar for a complete list of upcoming events.
Tuesday, May 2nd
The Presbyterian Women’s Morning will meet at 10:00am in the Parlor at the Church. The evening circle will meet at 7:00pm at the home of Mimi Reynolds. (Contact the Church Office for directions). All women of the church are invited to attend either circle.
(1st Wednesday of Every Month)
We welcome our neighbors and friends to join us on the First Wednesday of the month at 6:00pm for a FREE meal and friendship. Come meet the members of our church and feed your body and your soul. This month's dinner will be a grilled chicken breast, green beans, rice and dessert.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT FELLOWSHIP MEAL at 6pm
May 3— Community Meal—Grilled Chicken Breast
May 10 — Baked Ziti
May 17 — Savory Pot Roast
May 24 - Chicken Dumplings
May 31 - Chicken, Pasta, Salad
To RSVP—Just fill out a yellow card located in any pew in the sanctuary during our next worship service or send Cyndi a quick note at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to share in fellowship with our church and community. The cost is $5 per meal with a max of $15 per family.
CHIMES REHEARSALS —CHIMES IS ON HOLD UNTIL THE FALL.
YOUTH BIBLE STUDY at 6:45 after dinner
CHOIR - Wednesday night Practice is @ 7-8pm -- We would love to have more young voices if you can find the time to help us out!
Sunday, May 7th! Join us for Sunday School at 10:00am,
Worship at 11:00am and a Pot Luck Dinner in the Grove at 12:00pm.
May Meeting is a time to enjoy fellowship with other members and to celebrate
the history of RRPC! Please bring a dish to share, a gallon of tea or lemonade,
and chairs and blankets to sit on. Spread the word to former members to come
and reconnect with their RRPC family!
February 23rd - May 25th
Thursdays at 6:30 pm
Grief Share has begun another 13 week series of classes. The only cost is $15 for the workbook and we meet in Room 216 in the New Fellowship Building. Anyone is welcome to come and experience the fellowship and comfort of a group of people who have lost a loved one and are going through the grief process. The program is Christian focused and uses a weekly video, discussion and workbook for study. It is lead by several facilitators from Rocky River including Julia Alexander, Bill & Connie Smart, Mimi Reynolds, and Pam Sciascia and has support from Hospice of Cabarrus County counselors and pastor Neal Carter. If you or anyone you know needs this service, please call the church office to sign up for this class at 704-455-2479. Thank You!!
Sunday May 14th
3:00 to 5:00 pm
Sunday, May 21st
This month the Men’s Breakfast will be held on the same Sunday that we will worship at Bellefonte, but the breakfast will still be held here at RRPC.
As always, we welcome ALL men in the congregation to join us—husbands, fathers, sons, grandfathers and brothers. What a great opportunity for fellowship among our men.
SUNDAY MAY 21ST.
This has become an annual tradition (see below), and this year marks a milestone for Bellefonte as they prepare to celebrate 150 years of service to Harrisburg and the surrounding communities. Please join us for worship at 11:00am at Bellefonte Presbyterian Church and plan to stay afterward for a luncheon with our Bellefonte family.
Neal will be preaching, our choir will be singing, and we hope to see our former pastors Rev. James Murray and Rev. Dr. Corey Ingold there as well. The meal is something new this year—and we would really like to see a lot of our members attend. Let’s show our support of Bellefonte by worshipping together and enjoying a delicious meal and fellowship afterward.
May 22nd at 7:00 pm
The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah
Rocky River Readers will be discussing Kristen Hannah's novel The Nightingale at our meeting on May 22nd at 7:00pm in the church parlor. The Nightingale brings to life conditions in France during the German occupation in World War II. The men were off at war leaving the women to deal with the occupation, the lack of food, and the horrors of war. The Resistance Movement and the bravery of the people are also highlighted in this book. We hope you will join us to discuss this book.
If you would like a more detailed listing that gives information on the subjects of the books as well as biographical information on the authors, please email Marie Morrison at email@example.com
If you love to read and discuss books, we hope you will join us for some meetings.
The third Sunday each May is “Bellefonte Sunday” when the congregations of Rocky River
and Bellefonte Presbyterian Churches worship together. In even-numbered years, like 2016, the congregation at Bellefonte is invited to worship at Rocky River. In odd-numbered years, like 2017, our congregation is invited to worship at Bellefonte. This annual joint worship service is also an exchange of pastors since the minister of the visiting church preaches and the visiting choir sings.
This year, Bellefonte Sunday will be May 21st at Bellefonte Presbyterian Church when Neal will preach and our choir will sing.
During the ministry of Rev. James Murray, the session invited Dr. Davis to preach at September Meeting. He replied that this would leave his congregation without a minister that day. The session responded by inviting the Bellefonte congregation to come to September Meeting. There were also joint officer training classes with Rocky River, Bellefonte and Harrisburg churches during Mr. Murray’s pastorate.
After Rev. Dr. Corey Ingold became our minister, he and Dr. Greg Davis, pastor at Bellefonte, discussed worshipping together. The Bellefonte session invited us to worship with their congregation. On April 18, 1999, at a called meeting of the Rocky River session a motion was passed to accept the invitation to worship together at Bellefonte Presbyterian Church on May 23, 1999. It was purposefully set as a worship service without any extras—no refreshments, no meal, no communion served. This way each congregation could look forward to the fellowship of worshipping together without the stress of other activities. During Rev. Dr. Kyle Hite’s ministry, these annual services continued. At some point, the two ministers decided to have two joint special services together each year. The two congregations have the Ash Wednesday service at Rocky River and the Maundy Thursday service at Bellefonte.
Bellefonte Presbyterian Church was organized in 1867 by Rev. Dorland of what was referred to as the “Northern Presbyterian Church.” The black members of Rocky River Presbyterian Church were now free and ready to organize their own congregation.
This year marks a milestone for Bellefonte as they prepare to celebrate 150 years of service to Harrisburg and the surrounding communities. Please join us for worship at 11:00am and plan to stay afterward for a luncheon with our Bellefonte family.
Neal will be preaching, our choir will be singing, and we hope to see our former pastors Rev. James Murray and Rev. Dr. Corey Ingold there as well. The meal is something new this year—and we would really like to see a lot of our members attend. Let’s show our support of Bellefonte, our sister church, by worshipping together and enjoying a delicious meal and fellowship afterward.
Tip: The members of Bellefonte pronounce the name of their church this way---
Bell – like ringing a bell
Font – like the various scripts available when printing
What is May Meeting? How did it begin?
Sunday, May 7, 2017 is a special day at Rocky River Presbyterian Church, and we invite you to come and worship and eat dinner with us. It is our annual “May Meeting.” Don’t worry – it’s not a “meeting.”
May Meeting evolved over the years and is a variation of a tradition the early settlers brought from the Church of Scotland. In the earliest days of our congregation, when there was not a full-time minister, the Synods of New York or Philadelphia sent Presbyterian ministers to churches in the backwoods of North Carolina in the spring and in the fall to hold the sacrament of communion and to baptize children and adults since these sacraments could only be performed by an ordained minister. It seems that the spring communion service has always been the first Sunday in May. The fall communion service has moved around to different dates. September Meeting is now the second Sunday in September.
May Meeting begins with Sunday School classes for all ages at 10 am. The worship service at 11 am includes communion. During the early days of our church, which was organized in 1751, the sacrament of communion was not observed as often as it is today. There was a seriousness associated with this sacrament. Prior to May Meeting Sunday, there were Preparatory Services each evening for a week to prepare the hearts of the members for the Lord’s Supper. For many years the Scottish tradition of giving
those who had attended the services a token which they would turn in on the Sunday morning of May Meeting in order to receive communion. The theory was that only those who had attended the Preparatory Services were mentally and spiritually ready to receive communion. For much of the twentieth century, there were Preparatory Services on the Thursday and Friday evenings prior to May Meeting. No tokens were distributed or required on Sunday, but it harkened back to this earlier tradition. Due to decreased attendance, the Preparatory Services were discontinued some time ago.
Dinner in the Grove around two long wire tables between the sanctuary and playground follows the worship service. Folks bring favorite foods to share along the table. There is no organization to the food. Each family just puts all the foods they bring together on the table so they can find their empty dishes later! Plates, utensils and napkins are scattered along the length of the table so there is no specific starting place. You can just peek in and see something you want to eat, ask the person closest to the table to let you jump in and get what you want, then move out. Or you can walk down the length of the table and find what you want to eat. Tea, water, juice, lemonade, colas that folks bring are placed on a table where ice and cups are available.
For many years, families ate together whatever food their group brought. Different families staked out specific areas of the grove and returned to those family spaces year after year. In 1949, the Wilcox Education Building was dedicated at May Meeting. This was a long-awaited event, so the Women of the Church organized everyone coming together to gather around a single long table instead of splitting up into family groups. It was such a success and so much fun being together that the current tradition we enjoy was born.
May Meeting has always been a time for special events at our church. For many years, babies were baptized at May Meeting. Records from the 1800s show that some years there were over thirty children baptized and many people united with the church at May Meeting. The current sanctuary was dedicated at May Meeting in 1861. As noted above, the Wilcox Education Building was dedicated in 1949. In 2013, the ground-breaking for the new education building was at May Meeting and that building was
dedicated on May Meeting in 2014.
The spring down the hill from the playground is owned by the McCachren family. When Rocky River Presbyterian Church built its third sanctuary in what is now the cemetery behind the current (4th) sanctuary, the McCachren family gave the congregation use of the spring as long as there is a church at this location. Families in those early days got water from the spring to have with their May Meeting meals. Walking down the hill on those wide steps to the spring was a May Meeting tradition for children and families for many years – and possibly still is a tradition for some.
Until around 1980, there was also a worship service about 1:30 on the afternoon of May Meeting. Again, a decrease in attendance led to the demise of this tradition. This service probably started when families coming from long distances who maybe did not get to worship services every week wanted the opportunity to worship a second time on that special day.
The roots of May Meeting go very deep at Rocky River Presbyterian Church. It is one of the traditions that is unique to our congregation. May Meeting has evolved over the years to the special Sunday we now know, but it has always been a special time that draws those who love this church back year after year. There are people who come back “home” to Rocky River every May Meeting. Others who have only heard of our church through family stories often develop a new tradition of coming to May Meeting to feel a kinship with past generations of their families. Many families end the day with a walk in the cemetery. At
May Meeting more than any other Sunday, the connection is felt to earlier members of our church and the “cloud of witnesses” who have sat in those same pews we now occupy.
The Kick Off for Operation Christmas Child was a success! We packed 39 shoeboxes for Samaritan's Purse and are well on our way of beating last years goal of 100 shoeboxes packed! RRPC members and friends donated so many items for the shoeboxes that our original goal of filling 20 boxes doubled to 39! God is good at RRPC!!!
We still have empty shoeboxes in the vestibule. The deadline for filling a box is Nov. 6th.
Please remember to check with the office BEFORE you plan your event to make sure the room/rooms that you need are available. We are having a lot more activities at the church—(both members and non-members) and everything has to be approved by the church administrator. We try to post all of our activities on the calendar on the website, but don’t assume that a room is available just because you don’t see it on the website. Always check with me before you book an event!
Reserving the Church Bus—The same policy holds true for reserving the church bus. Please do not make plans to use the bus until you check with me. I have a sign up sheet in the office that we use to keep track of who is using the bus and when. When we know that a group needs the bus, we can make sure it is running properly and by booking in advance we avoid any confusion or double bookings.
If you or a group you are a member of, are using the buildings after hours, can we ask for your help in making sure that all of the doors are pulled/pushed shut? Please double check the doors after you walk out to make sure they have locked properly.