Church News

Wednesday, November 22, 2017


Dear Faith Family, 

As we open our hearts to being thankful, this mindfulness of the abundance in our lives brings us to thoughts of each of you. We are grateful for your service and love of Christ and we count it a blessing to come along side you in this mission. Thank you for all that you do from teaching Sunday School to opening the church for meetings and events, for preparing communion to preparing fellowship meals, for keeping the building maintained to maintaining records and finances. You do amazing work for the kingdom and for this faith family. 

The bounty in all of our lives is amazing and when we stop this week to give thanks to our Heavenly Father, we can also ask to be reminded of how to share those blessings with others. Our congregation has given itself to the ministry of Operation Christmas Child (by the way, we did finish packing and delivering 200 shoe boxes to the local distribution site. Our brothers and sisters there who we work with each year were so excited for us about accomplishing that goal! How sweet that they shared in our joy with us.) Coming up we have the opportunity to give and work with another mission oriented event, Feed My Starving Children, on Saturday, January 27, 2018. Every week in worship and ministry we all have the chance to give to each other the blessing of our presence and love and concern as we live out our faith in Jesus Christ here at SVPC, in our families, and in our world. 

Today through Saturday the pastor will be taking family time off. The office will be closed Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving. 

We look forward to seeing you Sunday for our celebration of Thanksgiving. 

A blessed Thanksgiving to you all! 

The Staff of Shepherd of the Valley Presbyterian Church


It will soon be time to adorn our Sanctuary with festive poinsettias as has been our tradition for many years. We are offering you the opportunity to help us and order in honor or memory of a loved one. Poinsettias are $23 each and will be available for you to take home following our Christmas Eve Service. As in times past, your payment is due along with your order. Thank you! 


"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." - John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Friday, October 27, 2017


Great work last week on our Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes!


Thank you for all your help, donations, and prayers that help make this ministry a beautiful experience and for reaching far across the globe to offer the love of Jesus to a hurting world. We finished up 100 of our 200 box goal for this year. Our youth have already set up their work station in their new space (thanks to all who made that possible, especially Miss Donna!). We are still in need of items to fill our boxes so donations are still being accepted. Our Youth Team will shop for those specific items needed to fill out the gifts for specific ages. We want to use the items we have already collected and just fill in with new purchases to make the most use of what you have already shopped for.


So here is what you can do:

- donate for extra items that are needed.

- donate for the $9.00 shipping cost of each box.

- be excited and patient with our messy process of completing these gifts.

- pray that these shoeboxes will be useful tools to open doors for the proclamation of the gospel, giving The Gift that lasts forever.

- pray, also for all those who are participating in some way in this ministry and for the process of collecting, transporting and delivering of the boxes to their rightful destinations.


Our Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Dedication will be during worship on Sunday, November 19th . Then our youth will deliver them to our local drop-off site and help pack and serve in that location as these boxes are readied to be delivered to Atlanta and then on to countries far and wide. Thanks again for your support of this ministry!


Martin Luther – Rebel for God!


The 500th anniversary of the Reformation is October 31, 2017. (And you thought that date was only good for getting candy and scaring people!) 500 years ago, Martin Luther had had enough of what the Catholic Church was cooking! Back in that time, a Dominican priest named Johann Tetzel, acting on commission of the Archbishop of Mainz and Pope Leo X, was in the middle of a huge fundraising campaign in Germany to finance renovations to St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. The Roman Catholic Church spread the word that forgiveness of sins could be obtained by purchasing "indulgences".


Martin Luther was so fed up with the Church's actions, he wrote the 95 Theses and nailed them to the front door of the Church! Copies of his document were quickly translated from Latin to German and distributed throughout the region. A copy made its way to Rome, where efforts failed to convince Luther to come around to the dark side. So, in 1521 Pope Leo X excommunicated Luther from the Catholic Church. Luther didn't let that get him down though, in fact, it spurred him to refuse to recant his writings before the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V of Germany. Charles would not be outdone and issued the famous Edict of Worms (what a title!) which declared Luther an outlaw and a heretic and gave permission for anyone to kill him without repercussions.


Luther snubbed that edict because he was employed by Prince Frederick the Wise of Saxony who protected him. Frederick chose not to enforce the Edict of Worms and allowed Luther to translate the Bible to German over the next 10 years in the safety of his Wartburg Castle.


In a final effort to get to Luther, Charles V revoked the provision that allowed any ruler of a German state to choose whether they would enforce the Edict of Worms. But by that time, a number of princes and other Luther supporters issued a protest declaring that their allegiance to God trumped their allegiance to the emperor. These folks were the first "Protestants"! How about that? And Reformed Theology was unleashed with the heart of the message being "Jesus is the only Way to Salvation! You can't buy it, God gives it to all who believe in Him!"


Happy Reformation Day (Oct. 31) !

Friday, April 21, 2017



Sunday, April 23, 3:00 PM

Reception to Follow

Thursday, April 13, 2017


As we have been on this Lenten journey together, renewing ourselves in Christ, we have also taken part in the ECO's (Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians) Great Commission, Great Compassion Lenten Giving. These funds will go to The Outreach Foundation in support of the Presbyterian Church of Syria. In the weeks that we have been focused on this Emergency Relief Fund, we have seen Syria's war that has raged on for 6 years intensify even more. More and more people are being left homeless, wounded and even worse. Food is scarce, as are warm places to lay their heads and now terrible weapons are being used on these people. Our Presbyterian brothers and sisters are working tirelessly to bring assistance to all who are in such desperate need.

This will be our last week for this offering. Please write your check to SVPC marked for Lenten Giving, and place in the offering plate or mail to the church. We ask you to give generously above and beyond your normal giving on this wonderful Resurrection Sunday! 


Easter is the greatest opportunity to invite friends and family or those you meet in the community to be a part of the worship of our Lord God and our new life in Christ. See you this Sunday!

Friday, April 7, 2017


Join us for an Easter sunrise service

6:30 AM Easter Sunday

(followed by a light breakfast)


The Bessemer Music Club Meeting


Wednesday, April 12, 10:00 AM


The program will feature Eamon Griffith, who is the Alabama Federation of Music Clubs First Place Piano Collegiate Winner.  Join us for good food and good fellowship!


Garden Cross Dedication

WHEN: Between Sunday School and Worship

WHERE: Service outside, weather permitting

We will focus on the meaning of the bare wooden cross that will be covered in flowers the next week on Resurrection Sunday!


Choir Cantata and Children's Palm Processional  This will lead us through a remembrance of Holy Week, "The Seven Last Days."


Church-wide Lunch and Easter Egg Hunt following the worship service (hosted by our Youth)



The Church office will be closed


Sunday, April 9

9:45 AM: Sunday School

10:30 AM: Cross Dedication

11:00 AM: Worship - Cantata

12:05 PM: Easter Egg Hunt & Lunch

Friday, March 10, 2017


A trip to Tennessee is planned for Monday, April 24th to Tuesday, April 25th. The Tennessee events include the Tennessee Aquarium, IMAX movie, various shows and a play at Crossville, Tennessee at the Cumberland County Playhouse ("A Second Chance").


Reservations must be made by Wednesday, March 15th with a $100 deposit. The deposit will be credited toward the total cost of the trip. The total cost is $225 for a Double Room and $275 for a Single Room. The cost covers all but one lunch and one dinner on the road.


Please contact the church for more information.


Easter Egg Hunt and Lunch immediately following worship


Palm Sunday, April 9th


Sponsored by our Youth for all our little ones, friends, and family.


All are welcome!


How lovely is our sanctuary on Easter morning adorned with beautiful white lilies given in memory or honor of a loved one. If you would like to participate, each potted lily wrapped in white with a white bow is $21.00. This may be paid by check made payable to SVPC and marked "for lilies." An order form will be included in the Sunday worship bulletins Sunday, March 12th and 19th. Orders must be paid for and completed by the 19th. If you have any questions, feel free to call the church office (565-7025). Thank you for helping to make such a glorious day even more beautiful!

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


Ash Wednesday Service


This is a special time of prayer and repentance, and the imposition of ashes.

Friday, January 13, 2017


Feed My Starving Children


The Bessemer/McCalla Kingdom Builders will be hosting a Feed My Starving Children packing event on Saturday, January 21st. SVPC participated the last two years and we were all so glad that we did. Please call the church if you are interested in helping this year.


Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding God's children hungry in body and spirit. The approach is simple: children and adults hand-pack meals specifically formulated for malnourished children, and then these meals are shipped to their distribution partners. FMSC meals have reached nearly 70 countries around the world through the years.


We will join as a community to pack food that will be sent out to nourish those who are starving. If you plan to volunteer, we thank you so much for committing your time. If you are unable to be present at the event, please pray for the volunteers, the FMSC organization, and the recipients of the Manna Packs - may they be filled in body and spirit.


Also, please give generously. We need sponsorship and donations in order to make this event happen. It truly costs thousands of dollars to get it all done. Pleasant Hill Methodist hosts this great ministry for our community so if you or someone you know is interested in corporate sponsorship, contact Monica Harbarger at You may also give through SVPC and mark your check for FMSC (Feed My Starving Children).


Presbyterian Women General Meeting


Our PW General Meeting has been changed from Sunday, January 22nd to Sunday, February 12th, immediately following worship. The whole church is invited to join them for lunch and a very special and informative program.


On this new date, February 12th, we will be hearing from Rev. Anna Kent who is on the staff of ECO, A Covenant Order of Presbyterians, and of which we now belong! Anna is Director of Mission Affinity Groups with ECO and she will be speaking to us about them since we are part of the covenanted life of ECO. Rev. Kent will also be preaching at our 11:00 worship service.


All are invited to enjoy a lunch hosted by our Presbyterian Women and then stay for this great opportunity to learn about the denomination of which we now belong.


Ice Skating

Monday, January 16, 2017 – MLK Day


Kids 10 years old and under need a parent with them. We will leave the church at 11:00 and return at 5:00.  The church will cover the cost of the skating but you are asked to bring money for food and snacks.  Please call the church to make reservations.


Apologetics Seminar


Sundays, January 15, 22, & 29 and February 5

6:30 PM (Soup Supper at 5:30 PM)

Session has invited Judge Eddie Vines to share with us in four one-hour sessions dealing with some basic questions of our Christian faith and more. Judge Vines decided not to run for re-election this past fall because he has been pursuing a theological degree at New Orleans Theological Seminary. Join us for these sessions and a soup supper preceding. Please call the church office or email to sign up for supper, childcare, and the class.