Thursday, July 29, 2010

Assisting Suicide

Peter Lillback has written a helpful article on the subject of physician assisted suicide. By the way, the article is in byFaith magazine, which you can subscribe to both on line and by mail. Check into it when you go to the site.

Barnhouse's Shooting Lesson

Phil left me with an old Christianity Today article by Richard Mouw on a lesson he learned from Walter Martin who learned it from Donald Grey Barnhouse. Click here to read it.

The Impact of One Child

Now that Phil has moved, I can start catching up with a backlog of tasks and papers. People keep saying to me, "You must be really busy now." Not really more than before. You have to understand, Phil is the one who gave me the most work to do! Anyhow, here a piece from Cora that she found from the book, Whose Child is This?, by Bill Wilson.

Edward Kimball, a shoe clerk and a Sunday school teacher in Chicago, loved boys. He spent hours of his free time visiting the young street urchins in Chicago's inner city, trying to win them for Christ. Through him, a young boy named D. L. Moody got saved in 1858. Moody grew up to be a preacher.
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Pastoral Selection Committee Report

This past Sunday, George McFarland gave a report for the Pastoral Selection Committee. Here is a copy of the report.

On behalf of the Pastoral Selection Committee, this morning I would like to update the congregation on the progress of the committee. The committee has been meeting on a fairly regular every other week basis since the end of April, and though it is still early in the process, we are meeting our goals, if not exceeding in some areas.

Several weeks ago in the evening service, Dr. Tripp gave us a practical formula for what we need as individuals. I think this also applies precisely to the place where we are at Tenth in our search for a Senior Minister. The equation went like this: DP (Divine Power) plus DC (Divine Compassion) equals EYN (Everything You Need). In this transition time, it is comforting to know that God has the power and all the resources to lead us to another senior minister. He, by his Spirit, is already working in that man’s heart to move him toward Tenth. We likewise believe that God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness, and certainly we feel as a committee inadequate to assume the task of making a right selection. Christ is Lord and King of his church and we are simply servants and vehicles that he will use to accomplish his will for Tenth. Coupled with his power is his great compassion. God cares for Tenth. He has not abandoned us – he is not mad at us. In the first half of the year, we learned through the sermons from Romans 8 of God’s great and abiding love for us. It is very assuring that God knows our needs far better than we can ever know ourselves.
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Holes in the Church

To give an idea of the "hole-making" work being done for the elevator. I looked through the nursery door (in the small hallway with the coat racks between Delancey lobby and Reception Hall and saw the kitchen on the next floor. I suppose that is the reason we are not allowed to use the kitchen.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Moving Day 8/3

My wife and I are moving to Philadelphia from Nashville. We don't know anyone in Philadelphia and we need help moving into an apartment on Fairmount Ave. on Tuesday August 3. We need at least two guys who can move furniture into an upstairs apartment. We are offering $50 each. If you can help us give me a call on my cell phone 706-405-1529. Any help will be appreciated. email:


Session Report

Last night we had our monthly session and diaconate meetings. Before the meetings, Frank Harder and Pat Canavan took some of us on a tour of the construction work. it was fascinating to see some of the original brickwork and ceilings of the original buildings, as well as to see holes leading from one area of the middle building into another room of the Delancey building. Anyhow, work continues to keep pretty much on schedule.

The session held a conference call with a person who will be coming to the church September 30 to conduct seminars on estate planning. This is being sponsored by the Stewardship Committee of Tenth. Be looking in the next month for more information about this. Bruce Owens, the speaker who works for MTW (Mission to the World), made the interesting point that we give attention to being good stewards of what God has given us during our lives, but usually do not think about being good stewards for what happens when we die - namely, how to distribute our possessions in a way that will honor God.

We also approved recommending a new Tenth member, John Sullivan, to be received Under Care of Philadelphia Presbytery. This is the first step an individual takes towards preparation for ordained ministry.

Pat Canavan reported that 86 students completed their Bible and catechism memory work this  year.

John Park is finishing up his internship at Tenth with TIF (Tenth International Fellowship) this month. Enrique Leal will move into his position at the beginning of August.

The Family Life Committee has been working on a policy document for providing "Child/Student Security" and it was adopted.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Deadline Approaching

Do you realize that Sunday is August 1? It will already be August! Of course, with the weather we have been having you would have an easier time believing we are at the end of August.

Anyhow, if you have been saying to yourself, "I need to send in that note or photo for Cora's memory book," Sunday will be your last day to do so. Unfortunately we cannot give a last second opportunity like we did for the Ryken memory book. Our memory book producer, Emilie Park, is expecting a child in September and for some baffling reason is determined to have all the work done well before then. You can email her the material at But again, no later than Sunday, August 1.

Monday, July 26, 2010

At Even, Ere the Sun Was Set

Two Sunday evenings ago the concluding hymn was actually a baptism hymn. Paul Tripp and I have no idea how it got into the service, particularly as it had nothing to do with his sermon about the compassion of Christ as exemplified in Mark 6:53-56 (a synopsis of Jesus healing the sick). But the tune (Angelus) caught the ear of one worshipper who recognized it. She sent me the words she expected to hear, which are found in the old Trinity hymnal. The hymn is "At Even, Ere the Sun Was Set" by Henry Twells. I share it with you.
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Room for Nursing Moms

The C6 room in the Catacombs is set aside for nursing moms during both morning services and allows them to view the service on the TV monitor in privacy. This room has been arranged for this use during the elevator and nursery construction. C6 is the room directly across the assembly area from the bookstore. If you are walking into the Catacombs from the middle stairway, it will be the first room on the left.


God heard your prayers for Ghana and the evangelistic crusade in Accra. Six hundred and ninety eight people accepted Christ!

The Bible Society of Ghana has donated 40 Bibles for the new believers. I don't need my calculator to know they need more. Keep praying!

An Ordained Ordination

Congratulations to the Reverend Philip Kirkland, who was ordained last night during the evening service. Phil, who is the Director of our Tenth International Fellowship, was ordained as an Evangelist, serving under Mission to the World. He is raising support now to move onto the field. If you were at the service last night and qualify as an old-timer at Tenth, you noticed an influx of former Tenth members attending the service. Phil served as an intern at our daughter church, Christ the King in Conshohocken. The church canceled its own evening service to come out and support Phil who served them well for a number of years.

Now, do you want to know the real fun that was going on? Adam Brice, who planted Christ the King, was suppose to preach. Adam is now planting his second church in Lafayette, Indiana. He intended to fly out in the afternoon, and did make it to Minneapolis but no further. Our storms here prevented his flight from coming in. So, John Muhlfeld, who was on the progam to lead the ordination part of the service, quickly put together a previous sermon to come to the rescue. Only, he was not expecting a traffic jam on the Schuykill! He received directions from someone on a cell phone to take an alternate route in and arrived minutes before the service. When the evening service sermon is posted, be sure to listen to his message. You will have no idea that he had not prepared the sermon well in advance and arrived well in advance. John, by the way, pastors Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harleysville.

By the way, if you are traveling to the midwest, keep an eye out for Adam. He might be thumbing for a ride.

Elevator Project Report

No matter how you come in to the church buildings, you will see evidence of the elevator project. There is the temporary ramp on the front steps. The basement area outside of the Catacombs is under reconstruction, Half of Reception Hall is blocked off with temporary walls, as is Fellowship Hall. Speaking of Fellowship Hall, the kitchen is no longer available, at least through August 6.

Pray for the work to continue to move along. It pretty much is on schedule to finish mid-September, but we are familiar enough with reconstruction to know that passing the scheduled date is common. Pray for the workers, who have been doing a great job in this heat.

Sunday Coming

You may have noticed that Bruce McDowell is preaching this coming Sunday. His sermon title is "Blessed Are the Poor," taken from Luke 6:20. I am eagerly anticipating his message. I asked him to preach a sermon that he has preached on one of his mission trips. I thought it would be good to get a feel of what he does on his many trips, most of which end up with his leading hearers to Christ.

Sunday is also a communion Sunday. Be preparing your hearts to receive this sacrament.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Worthy Sermons?

To access the manuscripts of my last two sermons - "The Worthy Calling" and "The Worthy Manner" - click here.

Welcome, Ian!

Neal and Hannah Robbins are pleased to announce the arrival of Ian Andrew Robbins, born Friday, July 23, 7 lbs, 13 oz, 20 1/4 inches long.