Newsletter – May 24, 2023

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

Church News

A sound like a mighty wind. Tongues of fire. Speaking in many languages. This Sunday, we will celebrate Pentecost, when the disciples received the Holy Spirit and began their mission to preach the Good News. We will celebrate with some special decorations, music, and reading. You are encouraged to wear red on Sunday to mark Pentecost. Rev. Diane will be preaching; you may want to read Acts 2: 1 – 21 in preparation. See you Sunday, in person or online.

During May, we are focusing on mental health at LFCC.  People with mental health challenges may face rejection, bullying, or discrimination. Too many of them delay or avoid getting the help they need because of the stigma surrounding mental illness.  Even though most people can be successfully treated, less than half of the adults in the U.S. who need services and treatment get the help they need – and the average delay between the start of symptoms and receiving treatment is 8 to 10 years.

How can we make sure people know that it’s ok to struggle with mental health challenges, and that treatment is available? According to the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), we can all reduce stigma by learning the facts about mental illness, by seeing the person and not just their mental health challenge, and by pushing for better policies and services to help those who struggle. 

If you know someone who is struggling with a mental health challenge, there are resources right here in Gwinnett County to help. Check out NAMI Gwinnett and Viewpoint Health – Gwinnett County Mental Health Support to learn more about the local resources available. Find more information 
more about mental health challenges, stigma and ways to reduce it, mental health treatment, and support resources on the 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


In the beginning, every church was new. It’s right there in the Book of Acts. Early disciples came together, sharing all things in common, breaking bread with glad and generous hearts. God was doing a new thing:  creating a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world. In the beginning, Jesus sent out disciples, two by two, not to “plant”  churches, but to proclaim good news, to experience the hospitality and wisdom of neighbors all around.

At New Church Ministry, we believe God is calling the whole Church back to becoming new… back to becoming who we are: a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world. Your gifts to the 2023 Pentecost Offering help ensure our movement continues to embody the Disciples of Christ vision: to be and to share the Good News, witnessing, loving and serving from our doorsteps to the ends of the earth. Half of your gift supports the local new church movement through the Georgia region. The other half supports New Church Ministry efforts across the United States and Canada to equip, train, and empower new leaders. 

So, thank you. For participating in the new thing God is still doing — just as in the beginning. We will receive the Pentecost Special Offering this Sunday, May 28. Please give generously to support new church ministry.
The Pulpit Committee is completing some final interviews of candidates for interim minister, and expects to have a candidate to present to the Leadership Council at the June 4 meeting. If the Leadership Council approves the candidate, there will be a called Board meeting and then a congregational meeting to vote on the candidate. More information about the candidate will be shared as soon as the Pulpit Committee finishes their final interviews. 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.

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. 
We have an opportunity as a congregation to learn more about how the Lawrenceville Co-op food bank works by spending a Saturday morning volunteering. We’re looking for 4-6 people (or more) who would like to volunteer from 9 am – noon on a Saturday. Once we know who’s interested, we will find several dates that are available for the c0-op and decide which one works best for the group. Rod Baker and Rev. Diane have committed to volunteer. If you’re willing to join us, please contact Rod at or 404-273-1444. 
The Medicare workshop scheduled for Thursday, May 25 has been cancelled due to low registration. If you are interested in attending a future Medicare workshop, please talk to Andrew Jensen ( 

The CWF/DWF do not plan to have a regular meeting during June or July. The group has planned a meal for the Wages family after the funeral on Friday, May 26. If you would like to help, these are a couple of things you can do. Let Marilyn know if you can help out.
  • We will meet at the church after the 2:00 pm funeral service at Wages and Sons to finish getting ready for the meal.
  • Volunteer to clean up and put things away
  • If you would like to make a donation toward food cost, please give it to Kim Peeples
Thanks to all of you for your support during times of loss.
On Sunday morning, June 11, we will take time in worship to commission all those going to Camp Christian this summer from our congregation – campers, counselors, directors, storytellers, and other volunteers. Mark your calendars and plan to join us as we send them off to camp with our prayers and best wishes. 

If you haven’t registered your kids for Camp Christian yet, there’s still time! Camp registration is still available online at The final camp registration deadline is June 1. (Campers who register between now and June 1 will receive a t-shirt only if one is available.) 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.

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. The next camp work day is Friday, June 2. Some tasks include painting picnic tables, 2-3 seater benches with arms, and other things; cleaning and painting windows on front of Woodland; washing the cabin trashcans, brooms, and dust pans; cleaning the lake storage shed and washing the life vests; cleaning the cabins, directors’ bungalow, and bathhouse; and placing sand under the ping pong tables. Please talk to Marilyn Parks if you’re able to help with a camp work day.
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 28
Pentecost Special Offering
9 am: Choir Rehearsal
10 am:  Sunday School
11 am: Worship (Rev. Dr. Diane Bales preaching)

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: Jeanie Morgan
Communion Meditation: Rev. Dr. Hoyt Huff
Elders: Anna Harrison and Karen Jensen
Deacons: Nancy Groves and Andrew Jensen
Scripture (Acts 2: 1 – 21): Jeanie Morgan
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 continues to focus on feeding children who will not have access to school breakfast and lunch once school is out. This week’s focus is on snack items. The most-needed items include
  • Peanut butter crackers
  • Granola bars
  • Fruit bars
  • Chips
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
Julie Lee’s birthday (May 27)
Karla Johnson’s birthday (May 29)
Matt Hall’s birthday (May 29)
Mabel Simmons’s birthday (May 31)
Tadd & Debbie Huff’s anniversary (May 21)
Josué & Pamela Evatt-Machado’s anniversary (May 24)
Matt and Barbara McElhannon’s anniversary (May 24)
Richard and Rose Williams’s anniversary (May 27)

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
The family of Martha Ann Wages

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
The family of Kris Jensen
Grace Aguwa and family, as they mourn the death of her eldest sister
Flo Carroll
Patricia Saturday
Ada Mullinax

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! 
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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