The Record

Second Presbyterian Monthly Newsletter - May 2018

Second Presbyterian Church is building a Christ-Centered Community Through Inspirational Worship, Education Ministry and the Power of Service.


The life of an urban church is filled with comings and goings. People come and get involved in the life of the church. People join a committee, take on a ministry, host a coffee hour, attend an adult education forum or serve in a ministry. They make friends and enter into a whole range of conversations, investments, connections and spiritual ties.

We become close. Our spiritual friendship grows. Our fellowship helps us become better Christians. The deep, ongoing sense of communion with others enables us to grow and become more fully the body of Christ.

Then people get transferred or make job changes or choose new career paths. Some families move to the suburbs or to another state.

When a family leaves, they take a spark of themselves with them; a spark that was vital in sharing life together. Wherever they go, they take our way of being church and being community with them to other congregations. With each move, our church spreads the good news to every state and region. Our outreach continues to impact the lives of others.

We still keep in touch. We e-mail our church newsletter to those far away, we send cards and remember special birthdays. They send cards at Christmas time, some continue their offerings from afar.

Despite the geography, our bonds continue. Despite the distance, our love grows. With each name remembered, a prayer is offered up. Our spiritual fellowship and friendship are the dearest part of being the church. We know deeply that we are related to each other through our faith, hope and love in Jesus Christ.

People will search for truth of God in any number of miraculous and exotic and esoteric ways. If they would take a step and become involved in the life of the church, they would experience the miraculous presence of God.

They would be blessed by the real presence of the One who told his disciples that “the kingdom of God is in your midst” (Luke 17:22).

David Neff



On the first Sunday of May, the Ghanaian Presbyterian Fellowship and Second Presbyterian Church come together to celebrate the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. All are invited to share in the Congregational Potluck after the service. Please bring your favorite dish to share and enjoy the favorite dishes of others!

During the Congregational Potluck, tables will be set up for a Mission Fair. Since our congregation is a missional church, please consider joining a committee:

  • Worship and Music
  • Children and Young Adult Education

  • Recreation and Adult Education

  • Community Outreach

  • Communications
  • Hospitality

  • Facilities


On Mother’s Day, we cherish and honor the gifts of all women. Pastor Neff’s sermon will focus on the ascension of Jesus (Luke 24:44-53). The sacrament of Baptism will be celebrated as Elike Senam Okudzeto, son of Dr. Edem Okudzeto and Dr. Nana Fenny, will be welcomed as a member of Christ’s body, the Church. The Men's Association will host the girls and women that day by serving as ushers, greeters, liturgists and readers. They will also honor our women by presenting corsages. A festive catered meal and reception is planned. Please join us for this special Sunday!


Second Presbyterian Church will host its annual Spring Sale. The hours of the sale are from 9:00 a.m.—1:00 p.m. Plants, flowers, books and jewelry will be available for purchase. If you would like to pre-order plants, please see either Jane Tiffen or Barbara Crawford. For more information, please call the church office (312) 225-4951.


We will celebrate the lively and empowering spirit of Pentecost on Sunday, May 20th. We will remember the amazing spirit of the first multicultural church in Jerusalem (Acts 2: 1-21) as we cherish that same spirit alive in the church today!

All are invited to wear an item of red clothing that Sunday, as a symbol of the Holy Spirit.


This year, the annual Pentecost offering will be received on May 20th. The Pentecost offering helps the church encourage, develop, and support its young people, and also addresses the needs of at-risk and unchurched children in the community.

Within the rapidly growing South Loop neighborhood are many opportunities for our congregation to expand and grow. The demographics show that the South Loop neighborhood is overflowing with children and youth. These families need educational programs for adults, and spiritual formation for their children. Families need opportunities to volunteer and give back to the community; to make a difference, and help others in need. Families need a social sense of community and belonging that the church can provide.

Many of these activities are currently being undertaken by our pastoral assistant, Leslie Deslauriers, who has spearheaded efforts that include community outreach and program evangelism to children, young, parents, singles, college students and others living in the neighborhood. Leslie has brought many gifts to worship, fellowship, education, and mission. Her enthusiasm and passion for the gospel and spreading its word have been well-received, sowing the seeds for future growth.

Please consider a generous gift to the Pentecost offering to help the ministry of our congregation to move forward. Dig deep, give faithfully, as God has blessed you. Our future depends upon faithful giving to continue the important work we undertake every day in our community.

Donation envelopes will be placed in the pews and may also be found in the box of offering envelopes distributed at the beginning of the year.


The Great Commission will be remembered in worship on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. “Go into all the world and make disciples of every people, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.” In obedience to the Great Commission (Matthew 28: 10), we will baptize _________, the child of Dr. Lauren Rosen and Dr. Amoah Korang.

We will also thank the Second Church Quartet on this, their last Sunday of the season. Members of the Quartet include Sherry Watkins, Marysa Abbas, Stan DeCwikiel and Steve Hobe.


Second Presbyterian Church will host the International Chamber Artists in a concert in the sanctuary at 7:00 p.m. on June 2. The International Chamber Artists is led by CSO pianist Patrick Godon (who played for us in the dedication of the new piano). Cost is $15 for adults. All are welcome.


The Session voted to receive the resignation of music director Jay Yau on March 20th. Jay has brought his creation vision and musical artistry to the church for nine months. He will return to his former position St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Naperville. Upon tendering his resignation, Jay wrote:

It is with sadness that I must inform you for of my resignation at the end of the choir season. Many changes have taken place in the past year. I came into this job when I was preparing for different things in the future. As you all know, the future never goes to our plans, and can only be left up to God. I do hope in the short time I have been with you that I have added to your worship, and hopefully encouraged all of you to sing. Second Presbyterian is such a special family, and I truly hate to leave. But my circumstances require it. Please keep in touch and know that I am always available to help in any way I can.

Jay’s final Sunday will be on Sunday, May 27th. Please greet Jay and share your thanks and appreciation for a job well done!


Mark your calendars for Confirmation Sunday on June 3. Andy Ochiabutor and Tru Annafi will be confirmed as members of Second Presbyterian Church during worship. There will be a special Coffee Hour hosted by the Children and Young Adult Education Committee to celebrate our newest members! All are welcome to join in our joyous celebration.


Sunday School for all children and youth will end on Sunday, May 20th for the summer. We will resume Sunday School classes on Sunday, September 9. Special thanks to all of our teachers and volunteers: Lauren Rosen, Amoah Korang, Linda Johnson, Helen Smith, Eric Annafi, Barbara Crawford, Chioma Ochiabutor, and Leslie Deslauriers.


On Tuesday, May 8th, the spirituality book discussion group will meet at Old St. Mary’s Church at 9:15 a.m. to discuss The Road to Character written by columnist and author David Brooks. On Tuesday, June 10th, Prayer: Our Holiest Longing by Ronald Rohlheiser will be discussed at Old St. Mary’s Church at 9:15 a.m. Please join us for these discussions before the group takes a break for the summer.


Chicago Food Depository Volunteer Opportunity

Second Presbyterian Church has reserved six slots to volunteer at the Chicago Food Depository on Wednesday, May 30, from 1:00-3:45 p.m. Volunteers may sign up by calling Volunteer Services at 773-247-3663. Please let them know you are volunteering with Second Presbyterian Church. If you have questions, please contact Vicki Reynolds at 312-203-4933.

Youth Summer Reading Program Volunteer Opportunity

The Community Outreach Committee is planning to offer a Youth Summer Reading Program for youth in the neighborhood. If you are interested in being involved, please contact Vicki Reynolds, 312-203-4933 or the church office.

Farmer’s Market Volunteer Opportunity

The Farmer’s Market begins June 14 and runs through September 27 and is held in the church parking lot. Volunteers are needed for set-up, take-down, hosting the Second Church booth and helping with the Kids Zone. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Jane Tiffen, Vicki Reynolds or the church office.

Lunch Bag Program

Volunteers are always needed to help with the Lunch Bag Program which Second Church hosts each week Tuesday through Friday. Volunteers are needed between 9:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Volunteers are also needed to pick up food donations at Panera Bread and Pret A Manger early mornings or evenings Monday through Thursday. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Vicki Reynolds, 312-203-4933 Substitute volunteers are also needed.


The Forgiveness Discussion Group—led by the Reverend Theola Jones—will meet on Sunday May 6th and Sunday June 3rd at 12:45 p.m. All are welcome to this spirited and spiritual discussion. For more information, please contact Reverend Jones.


In the first Quarter 2018, our operating performance is close to plan. Giving is tracking last year’s performance very closely and giving is $10,000 above plan, which is a cause for celebration.

What is not going well is that Per Capita contributions are nearly 30% under our required contribution. 52 members out of 103 have not made their contributions. Some members have paid multiples of their required contributions, church accounts for us only being 30% short of where we need to be even though 50% have not paid yet.

Expenses are very close to budget. Low gas prices helped us to offset our extended cold spell.


Calling all singers! The Summer Choir will begin rehearsals on Sunday, June 3rdh at 10:00 a.m. Directed by Mark Veselack, the choir will sing each Sunday during the summer, accompanied by a member of the Second Church Quartet. No experience is necessary, just a desire to sing. All are welcome to each rehearsal.


Come sing, O Church, in joy! Come join, O church in song!

For Christ the Lord has led us through the ages long!

In bold accord, come celebrate the journey now and praise the Lord!


Long years have come and gone, and still God reigns supreme,

Empowering us to catch the vision, dream the dream!

In bold accord, come celebrate the journey now and praise the Lord!


Let courage be our friend, let wisdom be our guide,

As we in mission magnify the Crucified!

In bold accord, come celebrate the journey now and praise the Lord!


Come sing, O church, in joy! Come join, O church, in song!

For Christ the Lord has triumphed through the ages long!

In bold accord, come celebrate the journey now and praise the Lord!


Ruth Duck


May 6-- Psalm 66:8-20; 1 Peter 3:13-22; John 14: 15-21

May 13-- Psalm 47 or Psalm 93; Ephesians 1: 15-23; Luke 24:44-53


Please join us for Bible study on Sunday mornings at 9:30 a.m. in the Library. The curriculum is “Living the Word”. A different lesson is highlighted each Sunday morning.

On Tuesday afternoons at 1:30 p.m., the Reverend Dr. Joel Tolliver continues teaching on the book of Genesis. Please join us for this informed and inspiring discussion. All are welcome.


Congratulations to Marco and Antonia Alberto on the marriage of their son Marco Jr. to Maya Savala on April 13.

May 27th, Dr. Lauren Rosen and Dr. Amoah Korang will have the baptism of their infant child who is due on May 18th.


The Board of Deacons would like to invite everyone to an "All Church Potluck" every first Sunday of the month.

Our next potluck is Sunday, May 6th. Bring your favorite dish to share at the potluck. All dishes are welcome!

We ask in order to minimize the cleanup afterwords, you bring your favorite dish in a foil pan or a dish you will take home. The foil containers will be put in the recycle bin.

If anyone would like to help serve or has any questions please feel free to contact or Barbara Floyd at 312-485-0362.

Thank you for all you do!

Barbara Floyd


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All children and youth ages 9-13 are invited to come to Summer Camp at the Geneva Center in Rochester, Indiana. Summer Camp is July 29-August 3. If you are interested in sending your child to camp, please attend the parents’ meeting on Sunday, June 10 at 12:45 p.m. in the North Parlor. More information will be available at the meeting.

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Through our association with Presbyterian Church (USA) we are part of the largest Reformed denomination in the United States. This membership gives us: Training and recruitment of ministers; participation in overseas missions; the fellowship and advice of the Presbyterian Congregation worldwide; the ability to lobby in Washington and at the United Nations; the support of our area Presbytery and Synod; the services of the Presbyterian Foundation. ..and much, much more.

All for only $33.61 a year?

These are tremendous benefits are paid for through an annual Per Capita Assessment. This year it will cost us each $33.61 for the entire year, less than a dime a day. We are obliged to pay $33.61 to Presbyterian Church (USA) on behalf of every single active member. Even though some members have contributed MULTIPLES of their Per Capita, we still need to raise more than $1,100 to meet our congregational obligation.

Please give now! $33.61


There are new giving buttons on the church website. New buttons include Lunchbag program, Weddings and Unrestricted Endowment Gifts.


Young Hearts: On Saturday, May 5th, all members and friends ages 21-40 are invited (with their children) to join us at Leslie and Adam's apartment (1130 S. Michigan Ave. Apt 3315) for a meal and fellowship at 12pm. Please let Pastoral Assistant Leslie Deslauriers know if you plan to attend by Thursday, May 3rd. You may call, text or email Leslie at (615)630-2495 or

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Do you feel like you’re missing out on information on the church? Have you missed a worship service that you would have liked to attend? Be sure to read your monthly newsletter, check your email, read the announcements in the back of your bulletin, check the church calendar (on the website and the bulletin board outside of the kitchen, and above the water fountain) and check social media. The calendar on the church website is a google calendar and you can even sync your phone or tablet so that you’ll never miss another church event! If you’d like more information or would like to update your contact information, please contact Pastoral Assistant Leslie Deslauriers ( or call the church office (312) 225-4951.