Newsletter – May 10, 2023

Welcome to our weekly e-gram! Read on to discover what’s happening in our church family this week and beyond.

Church News

This Sunday, May 14, we will recognize the high school and college graduates who are part of our congregation or closely related to someone in the church. The following young adults are graduating this spring and summer:
  • Annie Ballew graduated from Valdosta State University last weekend with a Bachelor of Business Administration with a double major in finance and applied economics
  • Rafael Evatt-Machado will graduate from Georgia College and State University this summer with a Bachelor’s degree, a major in history, and a minor in philosophy
  • Paul Yoon will graduate from Peachtree Ridge High School. He plans to attend Georgia State Univerity in the fall and major in computer science
  • Perry Westbrook, grandson of Marilyn Parks, will graduate from Duluth High School. He plans to attend Piedmont College, where he will major in business and will compete on the swim team
Please join us for this special service of recognition, and for cupcakes and punch afterward. If you would like to bring a congratulations card for any of the graduates, we will have a basket to collect them.

This Sunday, we will continue our celebration of the six Sundays of Easter and the joy of the resurrection. Our guest preacher this Sunday is Rev. Jabari Butler. Jabari is an ordained Disciples minister and a worship and prayer leader at the Ray of Hope. He was the Regional Moderator for the Georgia Disciples several years ago, and currently serves on the Regional Board and as a Regional Elder. We look forward to Jabari’s message! See you Sunday, in person or online.

Mental health challenges are common – 1 in 5 adults experience a mental illness each year. Many people in our country, our community, and even our church family sometimes struggle with depression, anxiety, and other mental health challenges. Unfortuately, too many people do not receive treatment for their mental health challenges. Please remember that each and every one of us is a beloved child of God, and you are worthy of love, acceptance, and fulfillment. Showing up, just as you are, for yourself and the people around you is more than enough.

How can you support those who are struggling with mental health challenges? Learn as much as you can about the challenges they face, and listen non-judgmentally when they share their feelings and experiences. Check in regularly. Listen with your full attention, Offer verbal encouragement to help them see the good things in their life. Help connect them to professionals who can support them, and continue to be with them as they journey through these challenges. Learn more about mental health challenges, treatment, and support resources at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website

“Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.”  ~I John 4: 7

During this time of transition for LFCC, the Pulpit Committee invites all of us to a time of intentional prayer for our congregation. Each Wednesday at 7 pm, you are encouraged to pause for a few minutes to pray for God’s guidance as we search for an interim minister and continue the work of discerning God’s path for our church. You can pray wherever you are, in whatever way feels most comfortable for you. If you are not able to pause and pray Wednesdays at 7 pm, please choose a different time to set aside for intentional prayer for LFCC. We need all of our prayers to guide our church forward. 
The Pulpit Committee has been interviewing candidate for interim minister over the past several weeks, and will have a report for the Leadership Council and Board soon. Once we get an interim in place, the committee will begin the process of finding a settled minister. If you have questions or ideas about the search process, please talk to Committee Chair Frank Hawkins, or any of the committee members (Andrew Jensen, Marilyn Parks, Candace Richardson, and Lee Thompson as ex officio member). Please be in prayer for the Pulpit Committee as they do this important work for the congregation.

Let’s eat! We will gather Tuesday, May 16 at 6:30 pm at Ted’s Montana Grill, 1250 Scenic Hwy, Suite 1720, Lawrenceville, GA for dinner and fellowship. Please let Anna Harrison know if you plan to join us. See you there! 
The Elders and Deacons will meet immediately after worship on Sunday, May 21 to follow up on our February planning meeting and March training with Rev. Denise Bell, to look forward into the summer and fall, and to choose a chair for each group. If you are a deacon or elder, please plan to stay after worship for this important meeting. We will conclude no later than 1:15 pm. This meeting will replace the Board meeting scheduled for May 21 at 6 pm; we will conduct any needed Board business at this meeting. 

Barbara Bagwell is celebrating her 95th birthday today (May 10). You can help her celebrate by sending her a birthday card. Here’s her address:

  Barbara Bagwell
  Manor Lake Assisted Living
  3769 Kallie Circle  #418
  Dawsonville, GA  30534

Image source: Grease (1978) by Thank You (23 Millions+) views. Shared on Flickr under Creative Commons license 2.0

The youth are planning an all-church movie night on Saturday, May 20, starting at 6 pm. Come join us to watch “Grease” – and feel free to dress up if you’re so inclined. Refreshments will be available to purchase as a youth fundraiser. Please mark your calendar and plan to join us for this fun night together! 

The Disciples Women’s Fellowship met on Tuesday, May 9 in the church conference room. The group decided not to meet in June or July. The next DWF meeting will be Tuesday, August 8 at 1 pm in the conference room.

Disciples Women in Georgia are invited to attend one of two Spring Conferences with the theme  “Celebrating Women: Honoring Our HERstory Then and Now.” The one closest to us is on May 20 at New Hope Christian Church on Old Norcross Road from 11 am to 2 pm. The registration cost is $25. Several of our women are interested in attending. The featured keynoter is Rev. Nancy Oliver and the musician is Rev. Ann Haines. Please register at
Camp registration for counselors and applications for camp counselors are now available online at The camp registration deadline is May 15! If you are registering a camper, remember the church will pay half of the registration cost for members and children of members. Please talk with Rev. Diane or Marilyn Parks before you register a child who qualifies for this discount.

All campers and counselors receive a camp t shirt. This summer we have a special t-shirt for the 60th year, designed by a camper. We are selling these t-shirts to others. The deadline to order is Monday, May 15th. If you would like one, please give your name, address, and t-shirt size to Marilyn Parks. The cost is $25.00 and will cover the cost of the shirt and shipping. Marilyn will be able to deliver to most of you. Any extra funds will go to camp.

Thank you for your generous gifts to support Camp Christian in so many ways. We want to make you aware of some other ways to support camp if you choose to. Please consider these an opportunity for those who wish to support camp, but don’t feel like you have to.

An Amazon Wish list with items summer camp can use has been created. If you buy an item from this wish list, choose the registry address to have it shipped directly to camp. In addition, the camp needs unscented Clorox or equivalent: Pine sol or equivalent; packages of 6-12 rolls of toilet paper (for septic systems); packages of 2-8 rolls of paper towel (storage is limited at camp so both toilet paper and paper towels are easier if they are packaged in smaller quantities); Amdro ant killer bait granules-shaker type container (does not require water) or equivalent; wasp and hornet spray; and heavy duty 33 gallon trash bags. If you purchase any items from this wish list, please bring them to church and give to Marilyn Parks. She will transport all items to camp on May 18.

Thanks for your support of Camp Christian and the young people whose lives are changed at camp!
Help get Camp Christian ready for the Summer 2023 camping season. Specific tasks include painting (bathhouse, pool house, shutters on cabins, possibly other places); painting picnic tables and 2-3 seater benches with arms; repairing cabin roofs; cleaning and repairing steps to Peachtree suites and steps to office; cleaning windows on front of Woodland; washing the cabin trashcans, brooms and dust pans; cleaning the lake storage shed; and cleaning the cabins and director’s bungalow.  

Tentative dates for camp work days are during the week beginning May 30 or the week beginning June 4. Definite dates will be announced soon.
Thanks for all your contributions to the e-gram. Please send any information for next week’s e-gram to Rev. Diane ( no later than Tuesday at 5 pm.

Sunday, May 14
Mother’s Day

9 am: Choir Rehearsal
10 am:  Sunday School
11 am: Worship and Graduate Recognition (Rev. Jabari Butler preaching)
12 pm: Cupcakes and punch to honor graduates

Tuesday, May 16
11 am: Medicare Workshop at church
6 pm: Let’s Eat (Ted’s Montana Grill)

Saturday, May 20
Time TBD: All-church Movie Night (“Grease”)

Sunday, May 21
Pentecost Special Offering
9 am: Choir Rehearsal
10 am:  Sunday School
11 am: Worship (Rev. Dr. Diane Bales preaching)
12 pm: Elder and Deacon Meeting

Check the calendar of events on our church website at to stay updated on what’s happening in our church community.  If you have events to add, go to and complete the form. The password is LFCC2023Event. If you have problems with the form, please contact JT Clements or Rev. Diane.

Greeter: Molly Ballew
Communion Meditation: Rev. Peggy Adams Edge
Elders: Anna Harrison and Frank Hawkins
Deacons: Nancy Groves and Annie Ballew
Scripture: Rev. Peggy Adams Edge
Communion Preparation: Hoyt Huff

*If you are interested in serving as a worship leader or greeter, please contact Marilyn Parks
For Sunday worship and other online meetings, use this link:
Zoom Meeting ID: 628 463 3067 Password: 1234

For those who DIAL IN, Call (646) 558-8656
Community News


As summer approaches, the co-op is focusing on feeding children who will not have access to school breakfast and lunch once school is out. This week’s focus is on breakfast items. The most-needed items include
  • Pop Tarts
  • Granola bars
  • Fruit bars
  • Individual cereals
  • Oatmeal packets
For more information about the co-op, please check their website:


Keep up with the latest news going on in our region and our general church. Click the links below to find the latest news within the Disciples!

General Church:
Prayers and Concerns
Our high school and college graduates
Barbara Bagwell’s 95th birthday (May 10)
Kayla Lee’s birthday (May 13)
Tony Ramirez’s birthday (May 15)

Immediate Needs (names in bold are newly added)
Our world

Our church family and friends
Our pulpit committee, as they interview interim minister candidates
Camp Christian directors, counselors, and campers
Victims of recent shootings in Texas, Oklahoma, and many other places

The family of Kris Jensen

Ongoing Needs
Our members and friends at home, including Odessa Adams and Barbara Bagwell
Our family and friends with ongoing health challenges
Students/teachers/administration of Gwinnett County Public Schools
Those affected by COVID-19
Flo Carroll
Patricia Saturday
Ada Mullinax

Martha Ann Wages
The Yoon Family
Peg and Wes Morgan
Chris Klimshuk and family
Kali Parks (Marilyn Parks’s granddaughter in Florida)
Rev. John Lambert (former minister of LFCC)
Rev. Peggy Edge (Anna Harrison)
Sadie Severt (Harrison family friend)
Mardell Brown (Mabel Simmons)
The Carroll Family
Connie Worrel’s sister, Pat
Regina Halvorson (Chris Klimshuk)

If you have an update to the prayers and concerns, please let Rev. Diane know ( 
That’s all we have for this week! Please be in prayer for the church and all its members, that we continue to do what the Lord has called us all to do. God bless you all! 
follow us on facebook!
First Christian Church of Lawrenceville (Disciples of Christ)
3495 Sugarloaf Parkway
Lawrenceville, GA 30044
Rev. Dr. Diane Bales, Associate/Youth and Families Minister
Kim Peeples, Music Director
J.T. Clements, Communications Coordinator