Dear Friends,

Our meeting on May 31 is incredibly important! An affirmative vote will allow us to “encumber our property” with debt long enough for our pledges to come in over a three year period of time, when the money will all be spent within a few months (many of you may have used a construction loan to build your own homes until you could secure a mortgage when the construction was finished and the property assessed).  Please recognize that the $600,000 loan total may never be reached, and we know the sustaining debt (if any) will be much more manageable. Presbyterian Investment and Loan Program is fully supportive of our project and actually excited for the good work our congregation is engaged in as we reach out to the community and look to a very exciting future! Sunday’s service celebrates the Pentecost Fire! We look to the ways it has touched me as a pastor in my call to preach the Word, and it looks to the ways the Spirit has moved through this whole project.

Please read this to consider and pray about before worship tomorrow and before we engage in our congregational vote on Sunday, May 31:

Project 2020: Congregational Meeting on May 31

On Sunday May 31, we will hold a very important congregational meeting and vote. Due to a lot of work by many in our congregation and others, we are now ready to start construction and bring our Project 2020 vision and dreams to reality!

At the virtual congregational meeting we will (1) provide an update on Project 2020; (2) provide information and answer questions on the construction bridge loan; and (3) ask for a vote to approve proceeding with the loan.

***This meeting will be held on Sunday May 31 at 11:15 and clicking on [Zoom link].***

Please plan to join this Zoom meeting!

 

Background

We have been approved and are ready to close on a flexible construction bridge loan of up to $600,000 from the Presbytery Investment Loan Program (PILP). These funds will cover costs during the construction phase of Project 2020. It allows us to pay construction costs while we accumulate pledges and other funding through December 2022. This is a typical approach to funding a construction project. We will start drawing on this loan as construction begins.  The 3.6% interest rate is calculated based on only the amount we need to borrow, and there is no penalty for prepayment.

  1. Our intention is to pay the bridge loan back as pledges and other donations are received and convert only a manageable amount to a regular loan. Any remaining loan balance (i.e., residual debt) will convert to a 20-year loan at 3.4% interest. We consider debt service in the range of 5% of our annual budget to be manageable.
  2. This bridge loan would encumber our church property (that is, use church property as collateral to secure the loan) and requires a vote of the congregation. We are confident in our ability to use this loan during construction while incurring manageable residual debt. Our goal remains to manage the project to zero debt.
  3. There are a number of factors that will impact the residual debt, if any, including the accuracy of the initial cost estimate; actual cost of the project; pledge fulfillment rate; decisions to defer scope; and additional gifts and grants that may be received.
  4. Taken together, our pre-campaign gifts, pledges, and grant amount to more than 80% of our original Phase 1 construction estimate.
  5. Note also that the Denver Presbytery has given us a grant of $121,500 toward Project 2020 with the possibility of additional grant funding.

 

Action

At the congregational meeting, you will be asked to vote to approve securing a construction bridge loan in the amount of up to $600,000 from the Presbytery Investment Loan Program (PILP).

 

Please feel free to contact Pastor Paula, Matt Nixon, Meryl Eddy or Bob Gaskins with questions.

 

Project 2020: Congregational Meeting on May 31

On Sunday May 31, we will hold a very important congregational meeting and vote. Due to a lot of work by many in our congregation and others, we are now ready to start construction and bring our Project 2020 vision and dreams to reality!

At the virtual congregational meeting we will (1) provide an update on Project 2020; (2) provide information and answer questions on the construction bridge loan; and (3) ask for a vote to approve proceeding with the loan.

***This meeting will be held on Sunday May 31 following the 10 AM virtual service on Zoom. Please contact admin@eternalhills.org to receive an invitation. Attendance will require registration!***

Please plan to join this Zoom meeting!

 

Background

We have been approved and are ready to close on a flexible construction bridge loan of up to $600,000 from the Presbytery Investment Loan Program (PILP). These funds will cover costs during the construction phase of Project 2020. It allows us to pay construction costs while we accumulate pledges and other funding through December 2022. This is a typical approach to funding a construction project. We will start drawing on this loan as construction begins.  The 3.6% interest rate is calculated based on only the amount we need to borrow, and there is no penalty for prepayment.

  1. Our intention is to pay the bridge loan back as pledges and other donations are received and convert only a manageable amount to a regular loan. Any remaining loan balance (i.e., residual debt) will convert to a 20-year loan at 3.4% interest. We consider debt service in the range of 5% of our annual budget to be manageable.
  2. This bridge loan would encumber our church property (that is, use church property as collateral to secure the loan) and requires a vote of the congregation. We are confident in our ability to use this loan during construction while incurring manageable residual debt. Our goal remains to manage the project to zero debt.
  3. There are a number of factors that will impact the residual debt, if any, including the accuracy of the initial cost estimate; actual cost of the project; pledge fulfillment rate; decisions to defer scope; and additional gifts and grants that may be received.
  4. Taken together, our pre-campaign gifts, pledges, and grant amount to more than 80% of our original Phase 1 construction estimate.
  5. Note also that the Denver Presbytery has given us a grant of $121,500 toward Project 2020 with the possibility of additional grant funding.

 

Action

At the congregational meeting, you will be asked to vote to approve securing a construction bridge loan in the amount of up to $600,000 from the Presbytery Investment Loan Program (PILP).

 

Please feel free to contact Pastor Paula, Matt Nixon, Meryl Eddy or Bob Gaskins with questions.

This week is our final week covering “Resurrection Stories.”  Next week we “Flash back” to when Jesus shared that he was sending the paraclete to be present with us in our work after the resurrection. Of course the disciples didn’t understand at the time, but it was made pretty obvious on the day of Pentecost! This year we celebrate Pentecost on May 31, and it will be the continuing work of the Holy Spirit to keep us united despite our distance!

But for this week, we hear Jesus offer Peter — the ROCK — redemption for his denials on the day of Jesus’ trial and crucifixion. And then another gentle reminder to: Follow Me.  What does “Follow Me” and “Feed my Flock” look like in the time of Co-Vid?

 

Our Opening Hymn and the response to our sermon is a wonderful hymn with lyrics worth thinking about.  The problem is with this hymn: lots of words, and it moves very fast! This week we will be singing different verses in two parts of the service. As an opening hymn, and to invite you into the theme of “follow me,” we hear the voice of God calling us into service:

Opening Hymn Will You Come and Follow Me (The Summons)    Glory to God Hymnal, p 726, vs 1-3

Verse One

“Will you come and follow me if I but call your name?

Will you go where you don’t know and never be the same?

Will you let my love be shown; will you let my name be known;

will you let my life be known in you and you in me?”

“Will you leave yourself behind if I but call your name?

Will you care for cruel and kind and never be the same?

Will you risk the hostile stare should your life attract or scare?

Will you let me answer prayer in you and you in me?”

“Will you let the blinded see if I but call your name?

Will you set the prisoners free and never be the same?

Will you kiss the leper clean, and do such as this unseen,

and admit to what I mean in you and you in me?”

Our sermon focuses on Peter’s guilt and grief, which Jesus addresses with the comfort of food and fellowship in John 21 (a continuation of last week’s reading). Something was holding Peter back. Something was keeping him from serving God in the way Jesus had called him to. Peter had returned to fishing because it was comfortable and he was pretty good at it.  He was not comfortable with becoming a leader, the one to build the Resurrected Body of Christ into the Church; thus Jesus’ gentle reminder to “Cast your nets on the other side of the boat.”Then in a meaningful one-on-on discussion, Jesus asks Peter three times “Do you love me?”  We know the story — we know Peter says “Yes, Lord! You know I love you.”  It’s the same answer we give when Jesus calls to us, “Do you love me?”  But just affirming our adoration and love of Jesus is not enough; Jesus calls for action — “Feed my sheep; tend my flock; feed my lambs.”  Then Jesus simply adds, “Follow Me.”  That’s our dilemma these days. How do we “Follow” in this time of Co-Vid?   We have always been a congregation that loves to worship together; this week we really contemplate that Jesus never once said “Worship me.”  He asked of Peter and the discples, and he asks of us to “Follow me.” CEH has found a new way to use her building and the beautiful space we have been given. You’ll get to see just how this is working out in a new ministry in the footage at the end of our sermon as we have figured out how to “Cast our nets on the other side of the boat.”

Here then, are the lyrics to the fourth and fifth verses of that same hymn — The Summons.  Imagine verse four is Jesus calling you and questioning you; your answer is verse five.

Four

“Will you love the ‘you’ you hide if I but call your name?

Will you quell the fear inside and never be the same?

Will you use the faith you’ve found to reshape the world around,

through my sight and touch and sound in you and you in me?”

Five

Lord, your summons echoes true when you but call my name.

Let me turn and follow you and never be the same.

In your company I’ll go where your love and foot steps show.

Thus I’ll move and live and grow in you and you in me.

I hope slowing these lyrics down and giving you a chance to ponder them prior to worship on YouTube on Sunday will help make the service more meaningful to you. We work very hard to make a theme evident through each worship service, and knowing it in advance perhaps will help that theme “stick” a little more.

I’m getting ready to offer a few more fellowship opportunities via zoom for our adults. These will be based around interests, so stay tuned.  Some thoughts are moving our “Sinners & Skeptics” class to Zoom for engaging and challenging discussion about our doubts and fears and questions.  Other opportunities will be about parenthood support, grief support, etc.  Please let me know what you are interested in by texting, calling, or emailing me personally.  I really miss connecting with each and every one of you each week. I want to support and encourage your during this time, so I pray you will reach out if you are struggling or drowning or even just feeling a little lost.

 

Peace in Christ,

 

Rev. Paula

Presbyterian Church of the Eternal Hills
10 AM Worship
May 10, 2020

Join our worship by clicking the buttons on the top of this website. The buttons will take you to our YouTube page, where you will want to make sure you are watching the May 10 service.

Theme:  Cast our nets from the other side of the boat!

Gospel Reading                              John 21:1-14

Sermon Series, Resurrection Stories; This week, “A Gentle Reminder”

It’s easier to go back to doing things the way we are used to doing them. It’s comfortable. After the resurrection, Peter and several disciples returned to fishing from a boat for fish, when Jesus had called them to “Fish for disciples!” All they needed was a gentle reminder from Jesus, who showed them again that they will do much more than they expected, by casting their nets on the other side of the boat. The Church universal finds itself in much the same place: a new world seems to be before us. Will we go back to the way we are used to doing them? Or will we, also, find ways of casting our nets on the other side of the boat?

Each week we have been repeating some newer praise songs to help us learn them so we can sing together when we return. This song, originally recorded by Casting Crowns, have lyrics that are seemingly meant for these days of CoVid Crisis, uncertainty, and grief over the loss of so many things (freedom to be out and about, fellowship with our friends, jobs, security).  Outside of worship, I want to give you a chance to read these lyrics and let them sink in.

I Will Praise You in this Storm, as recorded by Casting Crowns  (CCLI Song # 4543620/CCLI License # 1670495)

I was sure by now, God you would have reached down

And wiped our tears away, stepped in and saved the day.

But once again, I say amen that it’s still raining

As the thunder rolls I barely hear your whisper through the rain “I’m with you”

And as your mercy falls I raise my hands and praise

The God who gives and takes away, and I’ll praise you in this storm

And I will lift my hands/ That you are who you are /No matter where I am /

And every tear I’ve cried/ You hold in your hand/ You never left my side

And though my heart is torn/ I will praise you in this storm

I remember when I stumbled in the wind / You heard my cry you raised me up again

My strength is almost gone how can I carry on if I can’t find you

As the thunder rolls/ I barely hear you whisper through the rain

“I’m with. . .”

 

Current Announcements

More announcements at bottom of blog post!
Check in on our FaceBook
Please register for the Special Called Congregational meeting on May 31 at 11:00 AM via Webinar. Email church office to receive invite: admin@eternalhills.org

Our Passing of the Peace each week has included a personal challenge to help you pass the peace when we can’t be together for hugs and handshakes. SO, this Week: write a card or letter to someone you haven’t seen in a while and share the peace of God with them. Call the church office at 970-887-3603 if you’d like to write one of our elderly members who is still homebound during the “Safer at Home” recommendations. ALso, if possible — CALL YOUR MOTHER!  🙂

I’m also challenging each of you to memorize our benediction, which comes from Genesis and is a great way to remember that no matter how far apart we are by distance, God will watch over us and keep us close.  This week I’m using the KJV for the wording: Benediction       Mizpah (Gen. 31:43):  “May the Lord watch between thee and me while we are absent, one from the other.”

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Announcements:
Congregational Meeting via Zoom Webinar, May 31 to vote on moving forward with engaging the Presbyterian Investment and Loan Program Construction Bridge Loan.
Online classes are available by Zoom (subscribe to classes admin@eternalhills.org):
Monday: Lectionary Discussion on the upcoming scriptures
Tuesday: Exploring the Wilderness of Genesis and Exodus
Wednesday: High School Breakfast Club zoom at 12:30
Thursday
Middle School Check-In, via Zoom 6:00 pm
Ya Ya Check In (Young Adults) Happy Hour, via Zoom 8:00 pm
During this time of economic distress, please remember to send in your regular pledges. Your offerings will help us offer continuing Sunday morning worship.

Online Giving: Two Easy Ways to Give

1. Go to our website at www.eternalhills.org and click the Give Now button.

2. Download the free “GivePlus Church” app (displays as Give+ by Vanco) from App Store or Google Play; enter Eternal Hills when prompted and then select.

This online giving system is provided through the Presbytery Foundation and used by churches across the country. You can specify the fund (e.g., general fund, Project 2020) you wish to donate to. In addition, you will receive a receipt and your giving is tracked. The provider, Vanco Solutions, meets or exceeds all industry standards to safeguard your data, so your financial information is secure. Note that there is a 2% online processing fee; on the payment page, you have the option to cover those costs.

As always, regular pledges via check or auto bank transfer (ACH) are appreciated; simply mail them to:

Church of the Eternal Hills
PO Box 300
Tabernash, CO 80478-0300

Thank YOU for your generosity and support!

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And don’t forget that when you use your dedicated Safeway Shop Smart and City Market cards, CEH receives rebates that are put back into missions that serve our community!

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Celebrate Recovery Grand County would like to invite your congregation to watch the Celebrate Recovery Live Stream from Winter Park Christian Church at 6:45 on Friday evenings. Go to the Winter Park Christian Church Website to tune in.

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HOW YOU CAN HELP OUR COMMUNITY DURING THE COVID-19 CRISIS

Food donations:

Non-perishable items can dropped off at Church of the Eternal Hills, Monday through Friday, 10 am – 4pm
Items needed for the food pantry include:
Spaghetti sauce
Cereal and oatmeal
Tortillas (they have a longer shelf life than bread)
Crackers
Canned chicken, tuna and Spam
Peanut butter, jam/jelly
Rice
Pasta and pasta sauces
Packaged pasta, rice, or potato sides (such as mac and cheese, rice-a-roni, instant potatoes)
Canned meals with a protein (e.g. ravioli, chili)
Canned starchy beans
Canned veggies (FYI – the pantry typically has a lot of green beans and corn)
Canned fruit and fruit cups
Soups
Monetary donations for food pantry / Saturday mobile food pantries are used to purchase additional food and produce to round out the bags and boxes being distributed.  Checks should be made out to Church of the Eternal Hills, earmarked “Outbreak of Kindness” or “Food Pantry.”  Address: PO Box 300, Tabernash, CO 80478

Support for Stay-At-Home and Vulnerable Populations

Monetary donations can be donated to Grand County Rural Health Network, earmarked Outbreak of Kindness. The Network is acting as a fiscal sponsor and guarantees 100% of these dollars go to the Outbreak of Kindness.
Donations support: medication and food delivery for people who don’t have the ability to pay; administration of the volunteer group as decided by the core team (such as marketing, purchasing masks for volunteers, etc.)
Donations can be made:
Check to Grand County Rural Health Network, in memo “Outbreak of Kindness”. PO Box 95, Hot Sulphur Springs, CO 80451
Online at https://gcruralhealth.ejoinme.org/MyPages/DonationPage/tabid/60210/Default.aspx; donation category is Outbreak of Kindness

 

Participants in our virtual services each week are:

Rev. Paula Daniel Steinbacher, Liturgy, Sermon; Tony Rosacci, guitar, vocals; Traci Maddox, piano; Chorus: Traci Maddox, Sarah Lantermans.

James Steinbacher, Audio, soundtrack; Emily Lantermans, audio editing; Stephen Steinbacher, camera, lighting, directing, editing.

CEH CoVid Chorus: Bass, Matt Nixon; Tenor, Dave Maddox; Alto, Linda Brumagin; Soprano: Lori Ouri; Accompanist, Traci Maddox.

 

We are celebrating Resurrection Life in our sermon series through Pentecost:

Resurrection Stories

This week, May 3:
“Christ Became Present to them in the Breaking of the Bread”

This week is Shepherd Sunday, and our children of CEH have a surprise for you! I hope you’ll enjoy hearing Psalm 23 in their own voices.

Our Gospel Reading is Luke 24:13-35 (the walk to Emmaus) and will include Home Communion. This time, you get to use elements from your own home and family. Coffee and Toast? Juice and Crackers? Wine and Bread? It’s your choice! Gather your “Bread and Cup” prior to our 10 AM premier on FB or YouTube (use the buttons on the top of our ceh home page at www.eternalhills.org) and you will understand when to share them at your home. If you can, please take a picture of how you are worshiping at home, and what your “Home Communion” looked like and send to cehsocialmedia@gmail.com so we can share them on Instagram and FB. Include your name and location!

I’ll “See” you tomorrow morning at 10 am for worship and Home Communion!

Love in Our Resurrected Lord,

Rev. Paula