Thursday, December 22, 2005

New Phillips Book

Your Tenth readers may be interested to know that the dating book that Sharon and I have written will be out in a week or so. (See it at It is titled: "Holding Hands, Holding Hearts.") It originated with dating seminars we gave at Tenth, and the book is dedicated to our beloved singles of City Light.

Rick Phillips

Prayer Request

Please pray for my 30 year old nephew Bob, diagnosed today with choroidal melanoma, cancer of the eye. He will receive radiation treatment January 6 in hopes to avoid removing an eye. Also pray cancer cells have not migrated to the liver.

Ten Day Bach

I am listening to ten days of continuous Bach music on the BBC radio. Click here to go to the site.

From the Lips of a Child

Erica Esterly telling the story of Jesus' birth: "And there was no room for them in the B&B."

From the 1980 Annual Report

The Joyful Sound (singles fellowship)

Our present program consists of four activities. First, we have a fellowship breakfast and SS class every Sunday morning beginning at 9:30. Second, every Friday night or Saturdy we have either some type of social event or some type of service project. Third, we have two retreats each year. Fourth, we have a new program on Sunday evenings after the worship service in which a group meets in a local home. Its purpose is the edification of Tenth members through fellowship and the evangelism of unbelievers in the city.

Go Gamecocks!

South Carolina (my alma mater) plays Temple tonight. I'll be there. Do you know what elder is also a USC (the real USC) grad?

Anti-Narnian and Illogical Devotion

A friend in my previous church connected me to an interesting website, "Arts and Letters." Click here to get to it. Two interesting articles on the far right column to note: one on "Philip Pullman does not like Narnia," and another by Umberto Eco on the new pagan cult devotees.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Reading List

I just sent a selection of books I've read fairly recently at someone's request. For you to consider as well.

Gilead, Marilynne Robinson
The Narnia Chronicles
Vet in Harness, James Herriot
Every Living Thing, James Herriot
Nicholas Nickleby, Charles Dickens
Heavy Weather, P. G. Wodehouse

Icarus in the Boardroom, David Skeel
Muslims & Christians at the Table, Bruce McDowell
Koop, C. Everett Koop
The World’s Last Night, C. S. Lewis
Leadership & Self Deception, the Arbinger Institute
The Peacemaker, Ken Sande

From the 1979 Annual Report

Tenth Pre-School

Tenth Pre-School had its ninth year of service to the community. There were twenty-six children in the spring semester, seventeen in the summer program and twenty-two in the fall semester... Due to the growing need among families for both parents to work, we received an increased number of calls inquiring about the length of our daily hours. After considering this need, the board voted to offer an extended-hours program this year in addition to the full-day and half-day program already being offered. There are now students enrolled in this new program.

Respectfully submitted,
Emilie Putnam

Neighborhood Film Outreach

The purpose of this ministry is to meet some of Tenth's center city neighbors. Since many center city people are film buffs, this classic film series was started about one year and a half ago to attract them. Many Tenth members are film buffs, too (elder Holman Jenkins is a walking encyclopedia), so we felt this was an area of common interest. The series is not directly evangelistic - we don't show Christian films - but rather pre-evangelistic... The films themselves often are a good springboard for informal discussions about Christian views...Attendance has averaged between 20 and 35 people, the majority being neighborhood, rather than church people. These visitors range from young film students to senior citizens who see this as a friendly, inexpensive evening. The regular core of about eight Tenth members seeks to greet all these visitors.

Phil and Debbie Barackman


There are other movies playing besides Narnia. One is Pride and Prejudice. Click here for a review by Derick Thomas.

Lewis Patron Saint?

Click here to read a paper by Ryken the Younger presented to the C. S. Lewis Society in Oxford in 1995.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

TenthWomen Conference in the News

This also came in through byFaith email (If you want to get the emails, go to

The Annual TenthWomen Conference: “Living with Hope in a Lonely World,” will be on Saturday, February 25, 2006, at Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Penn. Jayne Clark (MAR, Westminster Theological Seminary) will be speaking on how to remedy loneliness through our union with Christ. Registration fee $35, High School students $10, College/Grad Students $20. Scholarships available. Pre-ordered lunches available $10. More information available at

End of the Spear

This also came in by way of byFaith:

New Movie: 'End of the Spear,' the Gospel to the Jungles of Ecuador
"End of the Spear" is the story of Mincayani, a tribesman from the jungles of Ecuador. When five young missionaries are speared to death by the Waodani in 1956, a series of events unfold to change the lives of not only the slain missionaries' families, but also Mincayani and his people. Fifty years later the story has been made into a movie that will be in theaters beginning January 20, 2006. PCA member Matthew Lutz is a part of the cast. For information on the movie, including clips, go to

Ministry Transitions

I've posted in the Comments section ministry transitions in the PCA (i.e. ministers changing churches). You'll find Kevin Smith in the list.

Take a Brief Survey on the PCA

This came in from byFaith magazine. The survey literally took me less than 60 seconds.

Would you help us with a very brief survey? We'd like to know what characteristics or attributes you believe are important to the PCA's vitality. What must we do better: Is it evangelism? Mercy ministry? Is there a need for us to become a warmer, more inviting denomination? We're well known for being biblical and Reformed. Is there anything else that's needed? This will only take a few seconds, please click here and give us your thoughts: We'll report the findings in the next issue of byFaith magazine.

Service Bulletins

Dot's got the service programs posted on the church website for both Christmas Eve services. On front page of the site, you will see a list of events and the opportunity to click "program" for those services.

Sunday's worship bulletin is also posted on the regular section.

Mississippi Missions

The following are going on a short-term missions trip to Mississippi. The trip itself is from December 27-January 7.

Aaron Snethen (leader), Linda Barbour, Keith and Brooke Crowley, Kim Dengler, Jeff Fisher, Sue Hoyt, Francis Shin, Martin Troutman, Tom Witmer and Gary Zatkins. They will serve one week in Biloxi and one in Gulfport.

Cookie Tale

Pat Canavan is the Cookie Flash. Though he may seem slow of foot most times, when the call is made that cookies are available, he is not merely the first to the desk, but already is feasting upon them. Sue Hoyt brought a tin in yesterday. Nancy announces, "Cookies are...," and there is Pat before she can complete the sentence. Fortunately Sue was still there and made him turn them over to me. When Phil came, I held them to them to floor too low for him to go.

Narnia Review

Ginger, Sarah, and I saw Narnia last night and give it high marks. I think the producer did a good balancing act of making the movie tense enough for adults to enjoy and children not to be terrified by. Most criticisms I read are by adults who complain about not being moved enough by Aslan. My guess is that most children will find him compelling. We liked the beavers especially. If you've never read the book, you will be pleased with the scenes. If you've read the book, you will be aghast that the movie deletes the most famous lines of the book:

"Then he isn't safe?" said Lucy.
"Safe?" said Mr. Beaver. "Don't you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you."

Why, why, why were those lines omitted?

Living Church

No Living Church this Sunday. (That's an odd sounding statement.) But here is the schedule for January.

1 - Alpha Pregancy Services report
8 - Public reception of new church members from the Communicants Class
15 - Install new Deaconesses
22 - Install new Deacons
29 - Install new Elders

New Shepherds and Servants

The elders, deacons, and deaconesses elected Sunday are:

Elders: Tom Elliott, Paul Grant, Fred Hill, Bill Langford, Tim Peterman

Deacons/esses: John Blanda, Chris Bracey, Jesse Hubley, Tom Jackson, Barbara Kasper, Dan Kunkle, Virginia Murphy, Katherine Preston, Janice Roberts, Dottie Swinand, Martin Troutman, John Voorhis, and Mimi Warburton

Nominating Committee members elected: Tom Lehman, Chris McFarland, Karen Sharrar

Trustees for the year will be: Clive Stockdale, Frank Harder, Ron Ferner

Congregational Meeting

We did have a successful congregational meeting on Sunday. Well over 300 (maybe 400) attended. All candidates were elected and budgets approved. I'm just thinking out loud, but maybe our Friday night meetings ought to be forums for discussion and then have the official meetings the following Sunday?

Monday, December 19, 2005


I'm dashing off to see Narnia...

Budgets Met

Praise be to God, donations have come in to assure that we will more than meet the Church Ministry (General) Budget and the Missions Budget. We are close to meeting the Building Improvements Budget (about $20,000 shy).


Nurseries will be available for all Sunday services but NOT Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve.

Bulletin Announcements Deadlines

If you want anything in the bulletin for this Sunday, it must be sent to Dot by 10:00 am Tuesday. Email her at The same for next week as well.

Holiday Schedule

Dec 23 Offices closed
Dec 24 Family Service at 4:30; Candlelight service at 7:30
Dec 25 All regular worship services; children's SS classes will be combined; the two classes in FH will meet (History of Presbyterianism and 2 Corinthians) at 9:00 and invite others to join. I don't know yet if any classes are meeting at 11:00.

Dec 26 Offices closed
Dec 30 Offices closed
Dec 31 Service of testimonies begins at 9:00; Communion at 11:30
Jan 2 Offices closed

Bedtime Reading

If you would like to read my sermon from last evening, "Joseph's Dream," you can access it by clicking DMC Messages on the right column.