Next Wednesday we will celebrate the day 242 years ago, when 56 members of the Continental Congress signed a document we call the Declaration of Independence. But did you know that only one of those 56 men was a pastor, actually a Presbyterian pastor? He was the Rev. John Witherspoon, born in Scotland and served a number of churches in Scotland, before being invited to become the president of what was then the College of New Jersey, in the town of Princeton. In 1776, he was elected to as part of the New Jersey delegation the Continental Congress, and was appointed as the first chaplain to congress.
The last line of the Declaration of Independence states, “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” Signing this document was an act of treason to the British Crown. The penalty for treason was death, but the Rev. Witherspoon is quoted as saying, “For my own part, of property I have some; of reputation, more. That reputation is staked, that property is pledged, upon the issue of this contest; and although these gray hairs must soon descend into the sepulcher, I would infinitely rather that they descend hither by the hand of the executioner than desert at this crisis the sacred cause of my country.”
This Sunday in worship, Paul Holstein and Annitta Perrish will sing as a duet “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and then will lead the congregation in a medley of patriotic hymns. Pastor Beth is preaching on Mark 5:21-43, and her sermon title is “Quiet Desperation”. The Rev. Dr. Connie Peake will be assisting her in worship. We will be celebrating the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, and as I send out this note we still need two elders to help serve. If you would be willing to help, please contact Karen Greene in the church office.
Once again I would remind you of Uplift Uptown in Marion Square Park, on Saturday, July 7, from 4:00 to 7:00 presented by Marion Cares and the Marion Community Churches. Worship and live music will be provided by local church teams. There will be family activities, free food and drinks. We will be providing some of the beverages. If you would like to contribute to the cost of those drinks, make a check out to FPC with “beverage purchases” in the memo line.
Finally, the July/August First Press is available by clicking here. Paper copies are available around the church building.
Stay in One Peace,