• published a newsletter

    ReadFirst Church Alert
    February 24th, 2021

    5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

    1  Grounding:  Each Other

    In our darkest hour, it’s hard to find hope. God is with us. Our worship series, “Grounding,” continues with a message from Psalm 77, where we learn again to put our hope in God and get a chance to share the stories of God’s providence with each other. Join us in person or online!


    2 Update on COVID restrictions in worship

    We understand that the ongoing COVID restrictions in worship are tiresome. We are certainly looking forward to a day when they’re no longer necessary.  Until then, we continue to evaluate what we’re doing and looking for ways to improve.  With advice from the Otero County Health Department, we will no longer require masks from worship speakers at the front of the sanctuary, as long as sufficient 20-25 foot distance is maintained between them and the front row of worshipers. Unfortunately, there’s no way to push back out praise singers for now.  We’re treating our special musicians on a case by case basis, though we’re urging them to sing with a mask whenever medically possible.  It’s not much, but it’s a step forward toward normal-ish.


    3 MOPS in 2021

    MOPS will meet next wednesday March 3rd at 6 p.m. for dinner and discussion. Moms of children under 5 and their children are encouraged to join us for dinner and discussion, with activities for the kids in the church nursery. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office. Aricka would also like to ask if there is any seasoned momma (mom of a grown adult) that would like to join our meetings as a mentor mom. A mentor mom is a mom that has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and prays for MOPS moms. They are meant to be at every meeting to offer advice and hope. If you are interested, please let Aricka know.


    4  Coffee & Crafts

    Join the Children’s Ministry for a fundraiser. Coffee & Crafts is an event where you pick out the craft you would like to make, prepay a week before the event and come have fun! We will have a few options for a free craft so feel free to bring the kids! The event is March 6th from 10-2pm. We will ask that you come in shifts as we can only have a max capacity of 50% in the fellowship hall. Follow the event on Facebook for more information.


    5 Quick reminder

    Commitment sheets and $50 deposit are due by the end of February for any you planning to join us for our summer mission trip to Nashville. If you have any questions, please call the Church Office at 384-2852.



    Find us!

    YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en

    1. published a newsletter

      ReadFirst Church Alert
      February 17th, 2021

      5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

      1  Evan Almighty 

      Bring a friend to the church parking lot this Friday night, February 19, for our next Carpool Cinema.  We’re watching Evan Almighty from the warmth of our cars.  (Please note: If weather temps are too low for the projector to operate, we’ll postpone to the following Friday night, February 26. Watch Facebook for updates.)


      2 Grounding

      God is faithful, even when we’re not. That’s our hope this Sunday, February 21, at 10 a.m., as our worship series, “Grounding,” continues with a message from Daniel’s prayer (Daniel 9). Our sin can’t keep God away, but it does damage if we don’t confess and seek forgiveness. We’ll celebrate the Lord’s Supper postponed from last week, and we’ll hear guest vocalist Hannah Smith singing, “It’s Quiet Uptown,” from the musical Hamilton.


      3 MOPS in 2021

      MOPS will meet on the first Wednesday of March again at 6 p.m. for dinner and discussion. Moms of children under 5 and their children are encouraged to join us for dinner and discussion, with activities for the kids in the church nursery. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office. Aricka would also like to ask if there is any seasoned momma (mom of a grown adult) that would like to join our meetings as a mentor mom. A mentor mom is a mom that has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and prays for MOPS moms. They are meant to be at every meeting to offer advice and hope. If you are interested, please let Aricka know.


      4  Coffee & Crafts

      Join the Children’s Ministry for a fundraiser. Coffee & Crafts is an event where you pick out the craft you would like to make,  prepay a week before the event and come have fun! We will have a few options for a free craft so feel free to bring the kids! The event is March 6th from 10-2pm. We will ask that you come in shifts as we can only have a max capacity of 50% in the fellowship hall. Follow the event on Facebook for more information.


      5 Summer mission to Nashville 

      Our follow up meeting for youth interested in our summer mission trip will happen this Sunday, February 21, after worship, in the sanctuary. Your commitment sheets and $50 deposit are due by the end of February. If you have any questions in the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to trip leader Brandon Bass.


      Also….Pastor MJ completes first year of conciliation training

      Pastor MJ has completed her first year of conciliation training.  This is a program of our ECO national office, training pastors and elders within the presbyteries to work with churches in times of crisis.  The training also includes conflict coaching for individuals who may find themselves in conflict at home or work and needing help moving forward. If anyone in the church or community would benefit from such coaching, just call the Church Office.


      Find us!

      YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

      Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

      Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

      Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en



      1. published a newsletter

        ReadFirst Church Alert
        February 14th, 2021

        5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

        1 Grounding

        Our new worship series, “Grounding,” begins this Sunday, February 14, at 10 a.m., as we acknowledge the inescapable truth that we are all sinners in need of Jesus. In this series, we’ll spend time considering our own sinfulness and prepare ourselves to see the significance of Jesus’ loving sacrifice on Calvary. This Sunday, we begin with, “A Harvest of Righteousness,” from Hebrews 12:1-11, about the ways in which God uses hardship to discipline us. We’ll hear, “These Feet Got Joy,” from a special musical ensemble, and we’ll celebrate the Lord’s Supper.


        Cold weather alert: This Sunday is forecasted to be very cold, and some of you may not be able to get out. If you choose to join us from home on our YouTube channel, please gather some bread and juice ahead of time so you can share in the sacrament with us.


        2 Nashville or bust

        About 10-12 high school youth have expressed interest in our summer mission trip. On Sunday, February 21, after worship, we will have a follow-up meeting for any other interested youth. Your commitment sheets and $50 deposit are due by the end of February. If you have any questions in the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to trip leader Brandon Bass. 


        3 Coffee & Crafts

        Join the Children’s Ministry for a fundraiser. Coffee & Crafts is an event where you pick out the craft you would like to make,  prepay a week before the event and come have fun! We will have a few options for a free craft so feel free to bring the kids! The event is March 6th from 10-2pm. We will ask that you come in shifts as we can only have a max capacity of 50% in the fellowship hall. Follow the event on Facebook for more information.


        4 God’s House: Exodus! 

        In our next God’s House unit, kids learn to trust God with their fears as they hear the stories of the Exodus, when God sent Moses to lead his people out of slavery into freedom. Beginning Sunday, February 21. Kids have a Sunday off to join their parents in worship as we celebrate the Lord’s Supper together.


        5 Some important dates this summer

        Here are some important dates you’ll want to get on your calendar for the summer:

        • Church Camp at Ponderosa, June 7-12, Monday through Saturday
        • Vacation Bible School, Sunday through Thursday, June 20-24, 6-8:30 p.m.
        • High School Mission Trip, July 17-24, Saturday through Saturday


        Find us!

        YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

        Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

        Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

        Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en


        1. published a newsletter

          ReadFirst Church Alert
          February 7th, 2021

          5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

          1 “Remember your baptism and be glad…”

          We remember the baptism of Jesus, as well as our own, this Sunday, February 7, in worship online or in person. Remembrance of baptism is an opportunity for us to remember and recommit to our faith and church. If you haven’t been able to make it back to worship in person since reopening, this would be a great time to join us. 


          2 Nashville or bust

          Our current 8th-12th graders are invited to join us for our 2021 summer mission trip to Nashville, happening prayerfully (fingers crossed) during the week of July 17-24. If you’re a youth interested in participating or an adult interested in chaperoning this epic trip, please join us for an informational meeting on Sunday, February 7, at 11 a.m. in the Church Sanctuary following worship.


          3 MOPS in 2021

          MOPS meets tonight, February 3, at 6 p.m. for dinner and discussion. Moms of children under 5 and their children are encouraged to join us for dinner and discussion, with activities for the kids in the church nursery. MOPS will be meeting on the first Wednesday of every month. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office.


          4 God’s House: Forgiveness

          This Sunday in God’s House, kids learn a lesson of forgiveness from Joseph as he forgives his brothers. 


          Please note: We’ve become aware that very few (really no one, as far as we know) is taking advantage of the online God’s House lessons we’ve been posting to the church website. To make the best use of our Children’s Minister’s time, we will be discontinuing the online lessons, unless we hear from you parents.


          5 Streaming problems

          We’ve been experiencing problems with our streaming on Sunday mornings for the last two weeks. We believe we have the problem fixed, but please keep us posted if you see anything amiss.

           

          Finally, a note from Pastor MJ about prayer requests in worship--

          Since last March, our online worship service has been a tremendous blessing to those who’ve been unable to attend worship in person. It’s allowed us even to reach additional households with the great Good News of Jesus’ love for all His Father’s people. Still, online worship has its limitations, and one of those limitations is in full display every Sunday when we ask for prayer requests. Worshipers watching or listening from home can’t hear many of the prayer requests being offered up in the sanctuary. This is inevitable. To repeat or publish those prayer requests would push the limits of privacy, given that the service remains available to the public--all the public--on YouTube. We need the freedom to offer up what’s on our hearts within the intimacy of the gathered church. We’d lose that if we went too far in announcing or repeating every prayer request, especially where community members’ health issues are involved. The bottom line is that online worship will never be the same as in-person worship. It just can’t be. So, until those who want to gather can do so, we live with the limitations. We get our vaccines and wear our masks and do all we can to limit the spread of COVID-19, so that, soon, hopefully very soon, we’ll be able to gather together as one body again.



          Reminder…



          Find us!

          YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

          Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

          Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

          Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en

          1. published a newsletter

            ReadFirst Church Alert
            January 27th, 2021

            5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

            1 Our “Guest Preacher” 

            This weekend, our national church (ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians) is meeting for our national gathering...virtually, of course. Your leaders are meeting Saturday to hear speakers and set vision for the year, and, on Sunday morning, our “guest preacher” will be our Synod Executive, the Rev. Dr. Dana Allin.  Dana is a fabulous speaker, and I know you’ll gain much from his message to us.  We’ll also have the privilege of installing Greg Holt as a new elder on Session.  Please join us online or in person!


            2 Annual meeting:  Five Bright Lights in a Dark Year

            After worship, we’ll stay for a brief celebration of ministry in our annual meeting.  We’ve titled this meeting, “Five Bright Lights in a Dark Year,” and asked all of our ministry teams to find five ways in which God blessed our church’s ministries during an otherwise difficult year.  Some ministry teams found way more than 5 bright lights, and some struggled to make it to 5.  Come see what they’ve lifted up.  As a matter of business, you’ll also get to see the 2021 budget and vote to approve Pastor MJ’s terms of call (aka salary package) for the year.


            3  God’s House: God Helps Joseph Interpret Dreams

            Join us in person or online at www.firstchurchlajunta.org/gods-house-at-home.


            4 MOPS in 2021

            We will plan on resuming MOPS February 3rd and meet on the first Wednesday of every month. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office.


            5  The Chancers, the Cheats, and Church Drop Outs

            “Chancers, the Cheats, and Church Drop Outs: A 4 Week Class on Struggles with Faith” is for everyone and anyone who’s struggled to believe and stay engaged.  Please the registration link  https://www.facebook.com/events/235506514684801/ and let us know you’re coming and how you’re like to participate (in person or via Zoom link).

             

            Reminder…

            Our current 8th-12th graders are invited to join us for our 2021 summer mission trip to Nashville, happening prayerfully (fingers crossed) during the week of July 17-24.  If you’re a youth interested in participating or an adult interested in chaperoning this epic trip, please join us for an informational meeting on Sunday, February 7, at 11 a.m. in the Church Sanctuary following worship.

            1. published a newsletter

              ReadFirst Church Alert
              January 20th, 2021

              5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

              1 Our 21 Days of Prayer continue

              Our “21 Days of Prayer” continue.  We invite you, this Friday, January 22, to spend time (an hour, a morning, all day) fasting as you pray for yourself and the world around us.  You can still grab a prayer guide on Sunday morning or by emailing the Church Office at office@lajuntapres.org. If you signed up for a prayer partner, you’ll be hearing from us on Thursday morning.


              2  God’s House:  Joseph goes to jail

              Jail?  For good and faithful Joseph?  It’s Injustice City, but Joseph’s faith in God pulls him through.  Learn all about Joseph’s jail time this Sunday in God’s House.  Join us in person or online at www.firstchurchlajunta.org/gods-house-at-home.


              3 MOPS in 2021

              We will plan on resuming MOPS February 3rd and meet on the first Wednesday of every month. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office.


              4  National gathering weekend & Congregational meeting

              Every January, our ECO churches host a national gathering. This year, you’re all invited, January 29-31, since the gathering has gone virtual. Learn more at https://econationalgathering.org/.  Church leaders will participate that Friday and Saturday, and we’ll all be there in worship on Sunday, January 31, as our Synod Executive Dana Allin preaches for us (virtually, of course).  Our worship service that day will include the installation of new elder, Greg Holt, and we’ll follow with our annual congregational meeting.


              5  The Chancers, the Cheats, and Church Drop Outs

              “Chancers, the Cheats, and Church Drop Outs: A 4 Week Class on Struggles with Faith” is for everyone and anyone who’s struggled to believe and stay engaged.  Please the registration link  https://www.facebook.com/events/235506514684801/ and let us know you’re coming and how you’re like to participate (in person or via Zoom link).

               

              A reminder…

              Our current 8th-12th graders are invited to join us for our 2021 summer mission trip to Nashville, happening prayerfully (fingers crossed) during the week of July 17-24.  If you’re a youth interested in participating or an adult interested in chaperoning this epic trip, please join us for an informational meeting on Sunday, February 7, at 11 a.m. in the Church Sanctuary following worship.


              Find us!

              YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

              Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

              Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

              Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en


              1. Feb
                3
                Wednesday, February 3rd  •  6:30–8:00 pm (GMT)
                1. published a newsletter

                  ReadFirst Church Alert
                  January 13th, 2021

                  5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

                  1 Our 21 Days of Prayer

                  What better way to begin the new year than in prayer?  You’ll be invited this Sunday and for the next 21 days to commit to daily prayer.  A prayer guide will be available in worship on Sunday, or simply email the Church Office at office@lajuntapres.org,

                   and we’ll deliver a copy of the prayer guide to your home.


                  2  God’s House:  We love Joseph

                  Remember Joseph?  His coat of many colors?  His dreams?  His faith in God?  This Sunday, January 17, our God’s House kids begin a new unit on one of our favorite Old Testament figures--Joseph.  The first lesson is (appropriately) “Joseph Annoys His Brothers.”  Join us in person or online at www.firstchurchlajunta.org/gods-house-at-home.


                  3 MOPS in 2021

                  We will plan on resuming MOPS February 3rd and meet on the first Wednesday of every month. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office.


                  4 It won’t be Nashville without you

                  Our current 8th-12th graders are invited to join us for our 2021 summer mission trip to Nashville, happening prayerfully (fingers crossed) during the week of July 17-24.  If you’re a youth interested in participating or an adult interested in chaperoning this epic trip, please join us for an informational meeting on Sunday, February 7, at 11 a.m. in the Church Sanctuary following worship.


                  5 So bare

                  Hey kids, Pastor MJ’s door needs a little pizzazz for the new year.  Bring her your artwork on Sunday morning!


                  Find us!

                  YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

                  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

                  Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

                  Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en

                   



                  1. published a newsletter

                    ReadFirst Church Alert
                    January 6th, 2021

                    5 Things to Know this Week @ First Church

                    1 Back to the church!

                    We return to in-person worship this Sunday, January 10.  Thanks to everyone who worshiped from home as we weathered December’s COVID-19 surge together.  Please be reminded that we’ll still be wearing our masks (unless you have a medical waiver) and social distancing between households for the foreseeable future.  These are small sacrifices to make for the sake of the health and safety of our church family.


                    To celebrate our return to in-person worship,  we launch “21 Days of Prayer.”  We begin with “Prayer First” from Luke 10:38-42, with special music from Matthew Beard, singing , “Aria.” Our worship will include a celebration of the Lord’s Supper. Our online presence will continue on our YouTube channel, “First Church of La Junta, Colorado,”, so there will be multiple ways to engage this prayer experience.


                    2 Beginning the year in prayer

                    What better way to begin the new year than in prayer?  You’ll be invited this Sunday and for the next 21 days to commit to daily prayer.  A prayer guide will be available in worship on Sunday, or simply email the Church Office at office@lajuntapres.org,

                     and we’ll deliver a copy of the prayer guide to your home.


                    3  God’s House:  We love Joseph

                    Remember Joseph?  His coat of many colors?  His dreams?  His faith in God?  On January 17, our God’s House kids begin a new unit on one of our favorite Old Testament figures--Joseph.  The first lesson is (appropriately) “Joseph Annoys His Brothers.”  Join us in person or online at www.firstchurchlajunta.org/gods-house-at-home.


                    4 (new!) Bible Study opportunity

                    Join Don Klinkerman tonight and for the next on Wednesday nights at 7 p.m., beginning January 6, for a study of Paul’s letters to Colossians and Philemon. Log in tonight for a brief meeting to find out the study plans and make arrangements to get a book.  Here’s the Zoom link: 

                    https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85773701318?pwd=bW1ycEo2S1N5Qkl4NDRnWFY0UGtnZz09


                    5 MOPS in 2021

                    We will plan on resuming MOPS February 3rd and meet on the first Wednesday of every month. For more details find us on FB at First Church MOPS or contact Aricka in the church office.


                    Also...Our Angel Tree coordinator Cathy Lease extends an extra warm thank you to everyone who shopped for gifts for kids in our community.  An extra special thanks too to the gift deliverers--Melanie Jones, Patti Aldea, and Lisa Smith.


                    Finally, a quick reminder….We’re receiving our Christmas Offering through January 10.   You can drop off a check or make your donation online from the church’s website firstchurchlajunta.org.


                     


                    Find us!


                    YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXTs_9jRVMSXuzpfEIJKknA

                    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lajuntapresbyterians

                    Twitter: https://twitter.com/FirstChurchofLJ

                    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/firstchurch_lajunta/?hl=en