Baby Jesus Examines the King's Gift of Gold
Mary, the Angels, Baby Jesus, and Joseph in the Manger
Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church Newsletter
Weekly Happenings at SHPC    
December 22, 2016
A Blessed Christmas to All!
Candlelit Christmas Eve at 7:00 p.m.
Christmas Morning at 9:30 a.m.
A Little Child Will Lead Us - Isa. 11:6
     All are welcome for a candlelit service of hope, peace, love, and joy this Saturday, December 24, 2016, at 7:00 p.m., the holiest night of the year. Come sing carols and let your spirit be stirred by guest soloist Charlotte Phillips, our own Stephen Iverson, and our SHPC Singers.  

     Christmas Day, Sunday, December 25, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. - come fancy or in your p.j.s and feel the joy!   
In This Issue
Quick Links
Bev piano
A Note From 
Pastor Bev

Once every five years we celebrate Christmas Eve on Saturday night and return the very next morning to celebrate Christmas Day in our Sunday service.  This is that special year! When you attend both of these services, you really feel like you've experienced the joy of Christmas!  

One of the challenges of life, and especially of this season, is to enjoy each moment mindfully.  We don't want to wake up December 26th and think, wow, that went by in a blur.  We especially don't want to get to the end of our own times here on Earth and think, wow, that went by in a blur. Here at church we practice waking up to the sacred in the here and now, and practice living with hope, peace, love, and joy moment by moment.  

Looking back over this miraculous year, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for each of you and for what we have created together, guided and energized by the Holy Spirit.  May each of you and your loved ones experience the blessings of Christmas, and may God bless you. 

With Christmas love and joy,

December/January Calendar
Friday, December 23rd
 5:00 p.m.

NO Bible Study - off until January 6th
Yoga - "Om for the holidays"
Saturday, December 24th
7:00 p.m.

Candlelit Christmas Eve Service
Sunday, December 25th
9:30 a.m.
                 10:30 a.m.
Christmas Morning Service of Joy
Coffee and Fellowship -- All are Welcome!
December 26th-30th 
Holiday Break
Sunday, January 1st
9:30 a.m.
10:30 a.m.

Fresh Start Service with Holy Communion
Coffee and Fellowship -- All are Welcome!
Advent/Christmas Season of Peace  
Advent Wreath designed by
Merle Ongaro

Candlelit Christmas Eve - Saturday, December 24 at 7 p.m. This is a child-friendly service without children's program.  
No fellowship after the service this evening.

Christmas Morning Service of Joy - Sunday, December 25 at 9:30 a.m.  We do have children's program and fellowship today.

New Year's Day - Sunday, January 1st at 9:30 a.m. Fresh Start Service with Celebration of the Sacrament of Holy Communion

NO Bible Study -  Friday, Dec. 23 or Dec. 30
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Please Remember in Your Prayers

The children and families on our angel tree, most of whom are living in poverty and without the basics, for their basic needs to be met, and for dignity, love, and hope;
Those who are lonely or depressed at the holidays, for God's presence to comfort them and bring them hope, and for the church to provide warmth and friendship;
Ara Jo, who perished in the Oakland warehouse fire, and all those mourning the loss of Ara Jo, including Nancy Elberg, Nancy's nephew Grant Gleason, and Ara Jo's extended family and loved ones, may God's peace and comfort wash over and accompany them in their grief.
Our Muslim neighbors, subject to Islamophobia and hate crimes;
Our country,  for deep healing, and for a way forward where we live our values of justice and equality for all people;
The world's poor, all who suffer from disruptive climate change, and our planet;
The refugees and displaced, almost 1 out of 100 people in the world today, for safety, homes, and the basics of life;
Laurie O'Hara and her family, for God's loving presence and comfort in mourning the loss of her mother, Carolyn;
Kelsey Lopin, for healing and full recovery from complications of Lyme disease, and for God's abiding presence, comfort, and love;
Steve Derr's Father, for recovery from stroke, and God's presence, and for the family, God's comfort;
Ryan Burk s, son of  Warren and Jackie Burks, for healing, and for strength and hope for his family;
Praying Hands
Andrea Proster, sister of Nancy Elberg, for complete healing, and for Nancy for continued strength in companioning her;
Betty Swalberg, for God's presence and peace, and  Wil Swalberg, for God's comfort and community support;
Paul Lambert's Mom, blessed assurance of God's constant presence; 
The PC(USA), as it strives to speak up effectively for justice for all people, especially the vulnerable and marginalized;
Dr. Doug Tilton, our PC(USA) mission co-worker in Southern Africa;
Our church community, renew us and grant us fortitude to continue to bring light to a dark world.

Please take time this week to pray for those on our list.
Thank You 
I want to take a moment to thank you so much for your wonderful and supportive prayers, thoughts and condolence cards. We truly appreciate your kind words and prayers during this tough time. We are back in NC with my dad for Christmas and it's good to be here with him. We look forward to seeing you in January. 

Merry Christmas to you and yours,
Laurie O'Hara, AJ and Isabel
Children's Christmas  Pageant 2016 -
A Little Child Shall Lead Us
Jessie, the child leader

Aiden, the snake handler
Paige, the lion

Kalli, the lamb
Heidi as Mary

Reagan as baby Jesus
Natasha as the prophet Isaiah

The Child leader makes peace
3 Kings Max, Winston & Jack
Angel Piper brings glory to shepherds Aiden, Flynn & Rowan 
Rhys as Joseph w/baby Jesus
The holy mountain
The Blechen family lights the advent wreath (Cooper as innkeeper, Heidi as Mary)
Jessie tames Aiden's snake for the baby Jesus as Nathaniel, Rhys, Coda, and Mina watch

Pledge News -
A note to our faithful readers - All are invited to participate in the pledge drive in any amount to show your support for the church and its peace and justice ministries.  Please consider SHPC in your year-end giving and click on Doug, below, to let him know of your gift.  Thank you for helping to build a kinder, more just and peaceful world!
Thank you to 48 pledgers for pledging $131,500 to the life of church in 2017! We are getting close to last year's finish of 55 pledgers and $135,000, and also nearer to our goal of $148,000.  Your Finance Elder and the Session have begun the budget process for 2017 and would like to balance the budget without making major cuts when Session next meets on Wed., January 4.  This would be a great time to pledge your support!

Just click on  Doug  to pledge by email. Pledges in any amount are very much appreciated.  

With gratitude,
Doug, Finance Elder and Stewardship Chair

Children's Gift Program

Thank you so much to all who have supported the Angel Tree!  You have brightened many children's holiday!

                  --Frankie Eakes
Justice Garden 2016 Year-End Donations to Hunger Programs
Your support of the Justice Garden and Farm Stand Made this Possible!
Through your donations to the Farm Stand and countless hours supporting this year's Justice Garden, we were able to raise a total of $3,200 that will go to the following six organizations!  Thanks for your support in making this year a success!

$1,600 - Marin Food Bank
$   500 - Pedal for Protein
$   500 - Interfaith Sustainable                   Food Collaborative
$   200 - Presbyterian Disaster
               Assistance (Syria)
$    200 - Short School
$    200 - Marin I nterfaith Street 

--Patti Vance, Mission Elder

The Marin Interfaith Street Chaplaincy is one of the six worthy organizations which our Justice Garden is funding this year. The Chaplaincy provides spiritual and emotional support through three main avenues -Fostering Community, Being Present, and Building Bridges of Support

Mission: To bring compassionate spiritual support to the unsheltered and precariously housed people in Marin County.

Vision: The Marin Interfaith Street Chaplaincy (MISC) creates a movable sacred space where all are encouraged and empowered to be fully authentic, express the full range of their emotions, and extend faithful support to one another. By co-creating sacred space on the sidewalks and in the service organizations where the members of the Street Community already are, MISC encourages a deeper realization of community, extending beyond conventional labels and judgments. This community seeks to recognize the sacred spark in each person, encouraging creative expression and responsible civic involvement. We envision a community in which nobody is seen as "less-than" and all life-giving traditions and ways of life are honored.

If you would like to learn more about the Marin Interfaith Street Chaplaincy, click here.

Yoga Friday Dec 23, 5-6:15pm  

"Om for the Holidays" WITH KAREN 

Dec 23, 5pm-6:15pm will be a special holiday class -  "Om for the Holidays" - bring family and friends as we stop to celebrate the true heart of the holiday season. It is a free class, but we will have a donation basket for programs that feed the hungry. 

Session Report from the Clerk of Session
    Monthly Meeting - December 14, 2016
Clerk/Personnel/Nominating - Dennis Latta: Personnel committee met last week and will be scheduling staff reviews starting in early 2017; Nominating committee will be meeting early in January.  Building and Grounds Elder Fred Morfit has moved to Colorado, and his resignation from Session was accepted with recognition of his contribution to the church.   ANNUAL MEETING of the CONGREGATION PRELIMINARILY SET FOR FEB. 12, immediately following worship.

Finance - Doug Eisinger:  Year-end projections, Stewardship update and projection, and Proposed Budget 2017 were discussed in detail.

Building and Grounds:  Guest Richard Peltzman updated Session on the LMP sunshade proposal.

Family Ministries - Janel Stewart:   Friday, December 2 Advent Art evening event was a great success with 16 youth happily creating art for the sanctuary guided by liturgical artist Jody Brockett; Sunday, December 4 Youth Cooks for REST/ Food 4 Good event went very well as did Sunday, Dec. 11 garden event, with appreciation to Judy Ford and Jen Gauna; Children's Pageant Sunday, December 11 was a delight with 23 youth from 11 families and over 100 in attendance; January youth events to be scheduled with Sandra starting Jan. 8th.  
Mission - Patti Vance:  Justice Garden disbursements to hunger programs reviewed by Session and Garden Team was commended by Session for its excellent and faithful work to care for the planet and feed the hungry.  Patti also updated Session on the Environmental Leadership/Youth Event planned for Friday, April 21, with hopes that Cynthia Scharf can return to participate.

Worship - Jody Brockett:  Advent attendance has been terrific, with over 100 the last two Sundays; feedback on the youth window art has been very positive; next year we need to start earlier on scheduling and publicizing the Music Fest, which was excellent, with appreciation to Hallie and Stephen, the choir and the Millar family.

Deacons - Kit Argilla:  Deacons have prepared a Fellowship Voluneer Thank You basket for the holidays and will present it this Sunday in worship.

Moderator - Pastor Bev:  We are receiving wonderful feedback from within and outside our church community about our Dec. 4 service with the Islamic Center. Balance of report postponed to next meeting, Wed. Jan. 4th, due to lateness of the hour.
--Dennis Latta, Clerk of Session
Solar Grant

Thank you to the County of Marin and our own Supervisor Katie Rice for a $3,000 grant towards the SHPC Solar Panel Project - a key step forward in greening the church and environmental leadership!
Women's REST Program

 Thank you to Wendy, Sharon, Millie, Carolyn, and Jan for setting a table of hospitality, hope, and dignity for the unhoused women of REST!

REST Program Needs You

Thanks to the many volunteers who make it possible for our unhoused neighbors to sleep in a safe location with delicious food in their bellies!

We will continue to host meals through April.  To  read more information about REST and to sign-up online, please click on this link:   

SHPC  will continue to organize Middle and High School students to contribute to REST -- this year youth will prepare soup and bread for our REST guests. For more info, contact Jennifer Gauna at

If you have questions, please contact Shannon Mong at (phone is 415-279-2402).  
In advance - thanks for your support of this year's REST evenings!

Wil LOVES an invite for lunch or dinner!

Thank you and bless you to all who have reached out to invite him over for a meal.  You are lighting up his life!

And thank him for his faithful and continuing FOOD BARREL MINISTRY.


Fellowship time is organized by your Deacons. We need everyone to sign-up about 3-4 times a year. 
Click below to sign up: 

January:   Robin's Parish
Sign up now and keep the hospitality

Don't be shy, Greeting is a Treat!
We are in need of greeters to sign up through the signup genius website. 

Help with our ministry of hospitality by signing up to be a greeter! All you have to do is get to church by 9:15, light the candles, and hand out bulletins with a smile. Thank you to all who have signed up so far!

Thank you all for your continued support,

Jody Brockett, 
Worship Elder

Wishing each and every one of you a
Merry Christmas, filled with God's love, peace, strength, and comfort!

   --Paul Lambert
Paul Lambert is a member of SHPC who travels extensively for his career as a producer of Broadway-bound musicals.  He is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute who studies the Bible daily and attends our Bible Study whenever he's in town. He posts this blog each week no matter where he is, to the delight and comfort of many.  SHPC thanks you, Paul.
Women's Weekend ~ January 20th-22nd, 2017
Click here for more information and registration

From our own Jen Boynton:
Come hear the music play!  Come to the Cabaret!

Enjoy an evening of Broadway song and dance by MMTC performers and other outstanding members of the Marin theater community while raising funds for our wonderful Playhouse and MMTC!  

The evening includes wine & beer, appetizers, raffle prizes, and a fabulous silent auction. Auction items include airline tickets, Disneyland passes, dinner parties, a private tour of Pixar, ballet and theater tickets, and more! 

Doors open at 7pm, performance at 8pm
Sleepy Hollow Presbyterian Church
100 Tarry Road
San Anselmo, CA  94960
Katie Brendler,  Editor
E-mail us at or call us at 415-453-8221