A Place at the Table - The Kingdom of God at Work

Hunger Poster .jpg

About the Hamilton Dream Center:  

From January to July 2019 the Food Pantry at the Hamilton Dream Center helped the same number of people as we helped in all of 2018. 

Every Tuesday & Thursday we run a food & clothing bank that is open to individuals & families from across the city.  

We have a special concern for the working low income population that are still living at or below the poverty line but may be turned away from other food banks. 

Clients visit monthly for food and clothing. When they check in, they sit with the volunteer who reviews their information, talks to them, and offers to pray with them.  

The summer is the time that we receive less food donations, but our clients still need to eat.  Click here for the list of items for donation to the Hamilton Dream Center

Currently the food pantry needs: 

INSTANT COFFEE, coffee mate, 

canned milk,

flour, sugar, salt, oil, rice, 

spaghetti sauce

TOILET PAPER, laundry detergent, 

dish soap, bars of soap

shampoo, deodorant, pads & tampons

ketchup, mustard, relish, 

spices, oatmeal,

school snacks, granola bars,

juice boxes, 

peanut butter, CANNED MEAT

Baby formula & food,

Diapers especially sizes 3&4

 The clothing bank takes ladies, men’s and children’s clothing. WE ALWAYS HAVE A NEED FOR MEN’S CLOTHING. 

The Hamilton Dream Center

627 Main St E. Hamilton ON L8M 1J5




PMC Bursaries 2019

Photo by Alexander Andrews on Unsplash

Photo by Alexander Andrews on Unsplash

The Philpott Memorial Church Bursary Committee aims to support students who are pursuing post-secondary studies and have financial need. We have three bursaries available to qualifying students in post-secondary studies: for Bible College, Health Sciences & the Arts. Our Bursary Committee will consider all applications and recommend that the successful candidates receive a maximum of $1,000 for a full-time student and $500 for a part-time student. Amounts may vary with the number of applications received. Bursaries will be awarded once per school year. After approval by the Board of Elders, a cheque will be made payable to the student.

To qualify, a student must be a member or adherent of PMC, and active in the life and ministry of PMC. Alternatively, any member or adherent of PMC who was active in the life and ministry of PMC before moving away to school, and who still considers PMC to be his/her home church.

Please email or mail completed application forms to our church office: info@acommunityofgrace.org.  If you have any questions, please contact Larry MacDonald: (905) 627-1245 or email lmacdonald119@cogeco.ca.

Deadline for application is August 1, 2019.

Larry MacDonald (chairman)

Criteria for Awarding a PMC Bursary

Danby Bursary:

1.  Must be a member or adherent of PMC

2.  Must be active in the community and ministry at PMC

3.  Must be needing support to attend Bible College or Seminary classes


Smithson Bursary:

1.  Must be a member or adherent of PMC

2.  Must be active in the community and ministry at PMC

3.  Must be taking courses in health sciences.


Arts Bursary:

1. Must be a member or adherent of PMC

2. Must be a student who is enrolled in a post-secondary arts program:  1 or more of art, music, literature, drama, film, dance, photography, film making, etc.

3. Must be involved in an active way as an artist, musician, writer, actor, dancer, or photographer.


        1.   Applicants must fulfill the above criteria

2.   An online application may be filled out at any time during the current year but by August 1, 2019. An applicant cannot apply more than once in a fiscal year.


a.   The Bursary Committee will review the applicants for all bursaries and approve a list of recipients by September 30.

b.   The list of the proposed bursary recipients will be given to the Elders Board for their approval at the October Board Meeting. 


i.     Danby & Smithson Bursaries: The Capital fund treasurer will inform the Bursary Committee how much money is available from the Bursary investments to be paid out to the bursary applicants.  The amount available for each bursary will be divided amongst the applicants for that bursary, at the discretion of the Bursary Committee.

ii.    Arts Bursary: $500 a year will be available to one recipient per year until the overall fund is depleted.


a.   The Elders Board will review the applicants at the October Board Meeting.

b.   A list of recipients will be approved.

c.   The Elders board will provide a list of recipients to The Capital Fund Treasurer who will do the appropriate bookkeeping, process the cheque for each recipient and mail it to them by November 1.

Online Bursary Applications



Nominating Committee

Photo by Jonathan Meyer on Unsplash

The Nominating Committee is accepting nominees (or more simply put - your recommendations or suggestions) for Elders and Officers to serve next year.  For the upcoming term we are in need of Elders (3) and Treasurer re Mission Fund. Please use the ballot provided, to submit your suggestions or send an email to Tracy Laqua, Chair of the Nominating Committee, at decoratortracy@icloud.com.    The deadline for submissions is Monday, June 3, 2019.

Family Ministry Intern - Summer 2019

Photo by  rawpixel  on  Unsplash

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Philpott Memorial Church is an evangelical church, belonging to the Associated Gospel Churches, situated in downtown Hamilton.  We are a historic church of 125+ years in the urban core of the city.  Our staff team is made up of both paid and volunteer positions covering:  worship arts, urban ministry, inter-generational family ministry from children to young adults, prayer and spiritual direction, and seniors visitation.  We currently have an interim senior pastor.

PMC is looking for a theological student to complete a 4-month summer internship focused in family ministry.  We want to offer a seminary student the opportunity to develop church ministry skills while gaining an understanding of an inter-generational model of discipleship.  This is a paid position.


  1. Plan and lead a mission week of intentionally inter-generational service experiences in July and August.  This will be done in collaboration between Family Life and Urban Ministries.

  2. Prepare for and lead Kids Worship segments in Sunday morning services and support the Summer Sunday School Leader.

  3. Contribute to the further development of our family ministry strategy through things like:  youth leadership planning; faith family partners; resource development for parents and grandparents; volunteer training development, etc.

  4. Additional areas of ministry involvement will be considered based on the interests of the student.

The Family Life Pastor will provide supervision to the successful candidate, with input from other staff members.


The successful student should be enrolled in or have just completed training in a Christian seminary.

Duration:  16 weeks – beginning Monday, May 6 to Friday, August 23, 2019.  40 hours per week.

Contact Person:  Jan Mutter, Family Life Pastor, E-mail:  mutter.jan@gmail.com

Summer Sunday School Program Facilitator – Job Posting

Photo by  Ben White  on  Unsplash

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

Summer Sunday School Program Facilitator – Sunday June 30, 2019 to Sunday Sept 1, 2019.

Philpott Memorial Church is looking for a Program Facilitator for our Sunday morning program for children JK-Gr 6. 

The Summer Sunday program will be built around

“The Ten Commandments”

An honourarium will be paid for this job.


Click here to access the Job Posting

Renegotiating Faith: An interview about the youth and faith research (Sept. 11, 2018)

Photo by  Helena Lopes  on  Unsplash

Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

Renegotiating Faith: The Delay in Young Adult Identity Formation and What It Means for the Church in Canada is a new body of research investigating the transition time when many Canadian youth leave the church. The research also provides simple strategies for how faith communities can help youth maintain a vital faith identity. In this podcast, Karen Stiller interviews head researcher Rick Hiemstra about what the research revealed, and what parents and churches can learn.

Listen to this podcast:  https://www.evangelicalfellowship.ca/Podcasts


Communal Reading of Scripture at PMC


When Fuller Trustee Bill Hwang heard the scripture being read, he found a new way to engage scripture that helped him rediscover his faith. "The public reading of scripture is home to me," he says.

A new growth group has started meeting Wednesdays from noon – 1 pm in the auditorium at Philpott Memorial Church. We are meeting to corporately read through God’s Word.

Did you know that you can read through the Bible in about 80 hours?  

Come and read joyfully in community with us and be a humble listener to what God has to say. Be in love with God’s Word, in love with Jesus Christ and follow him.  

All are welcome.

Contact Jan Mutter for more details:  mutter.jan@gmail.com

Mother's Day Prayer

Photo by Sue Zeng on Unsplash

Photo by Sue Zeng on Unsplash

Mothers’ Day Prayer – Philpott Church 2018

Lord, on this day set aside to honor and remember mothers, we give you thanks for our mothers. We are grateful that you chose to give us life through them, and that they received the gift of life from your hands, and gave it to us. Thank you for the sacrifices they made in carrying us and giving us birth.

We thank you for the women who raised us, who were our mothers in childhood. Whether birth mom, adopted mom, older sister, aunt, grandmother, stepmother or someone else, we thank you for those women who held us and fed us, who cared for us and kissed away our pain. We pray that our lives may reflect the love they showed us, and that they would be pleased to be called our moms.

We pray for older moms whose children are grown.

Grant them joy and satisfaction.

We pray for new moms experiencing changes they could not predict.

Grant them rest and peace as they trust you for the future.

We pray for pregnant women who will soon be moms.

Grant them patience and good counsel in the coming months.

We pray for moms who face the demands of single parenthood.

Grant them strength and wisdom.

We pray for moms who enjoy financial abundance.

Grant them time to share with others.

We pray for moms who are raising their children in poverty.

Grant them relief and justice.

We pray for step-moms.

Grant them patience and understanding and love.

We pray for moms who are separated from their children.

Grant them faith and hope.

We pray for moms in marriages that are in crisis.

Grant them support and insight.

We pray for moms who have lost children.

Grant them comfort in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

We pray for mothers who aborted their children.

Grant them healing and peace.

We pray for moms who gave up their children for adoption.

Grant them peace and confidence as they trust in your providence.

We pray for adoptive mothers.

Grant them joy and gratitude for the gift you have provided.

We pray for girls and women who think about being moms.

Grant them wisdom and discernment.

We pray for women who desperately want, or wanted, to be moms.

Grant them grace to accept your timing and will.

We pray for all women who have assumed a mother’s role in a child’s life.

Grant them joy and the appreciation of others.

We pray for those people present who are grieving the loss of their mother.

Grant them comfort and hope in Christ’s resurrection.

We pray for those who serve mothers in need, like Save the Mothers, Sister Care, Living Rock and many others. Give them wisdom, perseverance and strength, and compassion to continue their work.

In all of these, we thank you for your great love to us, and pray for continuing guidance, discernment, patience, and hope. Amen.

~~Adapted from WorshipHelps: A collection of resources and commentary for those who plan and lead weekly Christian worship

Mere Sexuality: Rediscovering the Christian Vision of Sexuality

Photo by  Marc Schäfer  on  Unsplash

Photo by Marc Schäfer on Unsplash

“Mere Sexuality:  Rediscovering the Christian Vision of Sexuality”                    by Todd Wilson

Pick up and read this ‘easy to engage’ book to work through a whole range of biblical, theological, cultural and practical questions related to human sexuality.

Here is a quick outline of the chapters:

Chapter 1 – discover the definition of ‘mere sexuality’, the Biblical and historic Christian view of human sexuality;

Chapter 2 – look at Jesus and his sexuality;

Chapter 3 – ask how sexuality relates to our identity;

Chapter 4 & 5 – look at the meaning of marriage and the purpose of sex;

Chapter 6 – re-discover Biblical friendship and celibacy; and

Chapter 7 – consider living out mere sexuality, faithfully.

Published by Zondervan 


Recommended by:  Jan Mutter, Family Life Pastor

 “The TECH-WISE FAMILY” by Andy Crouch


Making good choices about technology in our families is more than just using internet filters and determining screen-time limits for our children.  It’s about building character, wisdom, and courage rather than accepting technology’s promises of each and instant gratification.  It’s about developing our heart, mind, soul, and strength when we’re tempted to settle for entertainment and consumer satisfaction.  And it’s definitely not just about the kids.

Alongside in-depth original research from Barna Group that shows how families are wrestling with technology’s new realities, Andy Crouch takes parents beyond the typical questions of what, where, and when to show us that in a world full of devices, there’s a way to choose a better life than we’ve imagined.

Published by BakerBooks

Recommended by:  Jan Mutter, Family Life Pastor


Trusting God: a testimony

Photo by  Emily Morter  on  Unsplash

Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash

A testimony by Bruce Repei

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Bruce Repei has made a career for the past thirty years as a head scenic artist, art director, and designer in the professional theatre business.  For the past five years, he has also had a studio on James St. N., where he produced his own artwork.  He is known and loved by many in the community for his work teaching the PMC art class for over a decade, as well as a more recent class for seniors at the YWCA.  This is his story of losing sight but finding a new depth of faith.


I’ve been a believing Christian since the age of ten, but at some point in the past few years, I began to notice a growing sense of spiritual restlessness.  I felt like I never had the kind of spiritual life that you read and hear about.  I always felt there could be a better experience.  I wanted that closeness to God and that shower of blessings that the scriptures describe, but I always figured I was not worthy of it—or else I would have known it by now.  

A few years ago, pastor lane spoke about being “haunted by God.”  This began happening to me.  I would wake up in the middle of the night thinking someone was there.  I was never afraid even though it felt surreal or supernatural.  It was as if someone was trying to tell me something but no words were heard.  Someone was there.  It was the Holy Ghost haunting me.  

This was a good haunting.  I was quite moved by this and began to pray for something to happen that would make me a better person and Christian.  I asked myself what would I want from God as a spiritual blessing or gift if I had the chance.  I decided that my greatest spiritual weakness was a lack of courage, so that is what I prayed for.  I honestly believe that my answer came in the form of the trial I would soon go through.  I learned that when you ask God to do something you had better stand firm and be prepared.  


Spring 2016

In the spring of 2016, I started to notice my eyesight slipping.  It was harder to focus.  I got new glasses prescribed and by the time I picked them up they failed to work for me.  The doctor determined that I had low eye pressure.  The doctor tried some treatments, but every treatment failed.  Sometimes my vision would return, only to fail again shortly afterward.  I was coasting up and down with hopes and disappointment.  


Summer 2016

In the summer of 2016, Pastor Lane was teaching a series of sermons from the book of Job.  This was never a favourite story of mine because I always looked on Job as someone with special favour from God.  Each Sunday, I would take my seat in the balcony and listen to the woes of Job while at the same time in noticing that my sight was diminishing a little more each week.  

I’ve never been known to have a quick temper, but one night lying in my bed I felt a real anger at what was happening to me.  I was never a person who got angry at God, but now I was asking God, “how could you let this happen to an artist?”  I had just turned sixty-five.  I was looking forward to launching into more painting, more teaching, and a rewarding time ahead.  Instead, my retirement gift was blindness—received with some bitterness toward God.  


August 16, 2016

Taking what I thought was the mature approach to my anger, I decided that anger was not the right path and that it would only lead to my own misery.  As Christians, we are always taught to look for the good purpose in all things, including our troubles and trials. I struggled to see where there was any good in an artist losing his vision.  I was at a dead end and could not imagine my life without sight or the ability to do my artwork.  I was forced to challenge God.  

I prayed, “Lord I know I can’t be angry at you about this.  I don’t believe you would allow this to be cruel or to punish me.  I do believe you must have some purpose in this awful circumstances you have placed me in.  I am helpless and unable to understand any purpose for goodness here.  Show me what you want me to know."  


August 17, 2016

The next morning as I was checking my email, I saw a message from a man I had worked with in previous years in the theatre business.  I was a little surprised because I didn’t remember getting any messages from him before, so I was curious what he had to say.  There was no text in the email, just an image of a stone tablet with the words “Psalm 73” carved into it.  I had never known this man to talk about God or scripture, so this was a surprising message.  

At this time, my vision was poor but still good enough that I could read using a magnifying glass.  I had a Bible in my studio which Pastor Mike Mileski had given me.  It was a special edition with beautiful abstract artwork and a very easy to read text.  I read from it every day before I set to work on my painting.  

On this day, I decided to read Psalm 73, hoping to discover why my colleague had sent it to me.  I started reading about Israel and the ungodly prospering.  This didn’t seem to have anything to do with my situation.  Reading further, the Psalmist expresses frustration and admits his unworthiness to God.  I could relate to that more.  The next verse was one which I had heard and read many times before without too much notice:

Nevertheless, I am continually with thee. You hold me by my right hand.  You guide me with your counsel and afterward, receive me to glory.  Whom have I in heaven but you, Lord, and there is nothing on earth that I desire more.  My heart and my flesh fail me but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.  It is good for me to be near God...I will put my trust in the Lord God that I may tell of his works.

I was reading while standing at my drafting table, but when I read these words, I slumped down into a chair because I felt my knees weaken.  I was so overcome by the words I read; it was as if I had never read or heard them before.  At that moment, as I sat in my studio, it felts like someone put a cloak around me.  A wave of peace and reassurance washed over me.  I felt peace I had never known before.  This was the “peace that passes all understanding” which comes only from God.  This was the Holy Spirit answering my prayer.  Psalm 73 told me what I needed to know.  

The Lord is with me, always at my right side holding my hand.  He will guide my footsteps and prevent me from falling.  When my life on earth is over, I will stand with him in heaven because I am just as worthy in God’s sight as Job.  I have no doubt of all this because the Lord has given me the courage to believe it fully.  

After reading and taking in the words of Psalm 73, I said out loud in my studio, “What more could I possibly want?”  I re-read Psalm 73 several times right after.  I had never had a verse that I might refer to as my “life-verse.”  Now I had my own life verse because Psalm 73 changed my outlook on life forever.  


Fall 2016

In the days and weeks that followed, I read psalm after psalm.  I discovered that I could listen to someone read the psalms on YouTube, which was easier than struggling with my sight.  I was amazed that the theology that weaved its way through the psalms.  Several of them bolstered my faith and my reverence for this great book.  I always read the daily devotional reading and commentary by Charles Spurgeon.  His insight into the human condition combined with his knowledge of theology is remarkable.  Many days he would offer up a psalm which would prove to be exactly what I needed to have that day.  

In the year that followed, there were many efforts to fix my sight.  I underwent four surgeries and received countless injections in my eyes.  With a newfound peace and courage, I was able to go through all these ordeals knowing that the Lord was always with me.  With the help of excellent, caring doctors, I didn’t need to worry.  


Spring 2017

By the spring, it seemed at first that the surgeries had succeeded.  The relief was short lived.  The pressure problem had been fixed, but a new problem appeared in the form of calcium deposits on my cornea, which were clouding my vision.  I was just ready to get new glasses after waiting a year, only to find out it was not possible until the calcium was dealt with.  This involved another specialist and more delays.  I had been dealing with my life very well up until this time, but the combination of everything seemed to drag me down ‘til I felt depressed and very discouraged.  

August 17, 2017

One particularly bad day, I went to see what my friend Charles Spurgeon had to say.  I was really counting on something meaningful to help me see my way out of this depressed state.  

Instead of a psalm, this day’s reading was from John: the story of Lazarus.  “Why Lazarus?” I thought.  That didn’t seem to offer any help on this day.  Spurgeon told how Christ is telling us that our trials, troubles, and illnesses are not forever, that there is a time for these things to end.  That promise from God changed my mood from discouragement to hope and promise. I now had the promise that my long series of trouble with my sight would have an end.  That was good enough for me.  I had made it through the past year, and I knew I was a better person than before.  I don’t think the old me would have come through the year as well.  


The story continues

In September of this year, I had an operation to remove the calcium from my cornea.  It was successful, but the condition has quickly returned since then.  Once again, I find myself unable to get new glasses, parked on the sidelines with hazy vision.  I am disappointed, but not without hope.  I have hope because of the many prayers on my behalf and the peace and courage that get from my Saviour who holds my right hand.  

I am in awe of what God has done for me this past year.  I am in awe of how God has moved in my life since I asked him to do something for me.  I am richly blessed with a loving wife, daughters, and a family who care about and for me.  I have a church filled with caring people who have prayed for me.  I have everything I need; I know not everyone is blessed the same way.  I don’t know if I will have my sight restored to where I can read and write and create art again.  Even if I don’t, I know that God will have a plan for me and I will never be left without him.  

I once asked what the Lord wanted me to do.  I found my answer in Psalm 73, which says. “I will tell of thy works.”  This is why I am telling my story.  I have yet to meet a person who did not face some sort of trouble, trial, illness, fear, and so on.  I want people to know that you can be deeply blessed and assured by just opening your heart and asking God to do something for you.  If you read Psalm 73 and do what the psalmist says by putting your trust in the lord, your life will change more than you can imagine.  Whoever you are—rich or poor, young or old, you and I can be as richly blessed and stand as worthy as Job in God’s sight.  

Wonder and worship


By Jesse Hill

Last week, Ami sang a very nice song in our worship service titled “Build My Life.”  Here are the words to the chorus (emphasis added):

Holy, there is no one like You  

There is none beside You  

Open up my eyes in wonder  

Show me who You are and fill me  

With Your heart and lead me 

In Your love to those around me

-”Build My Life” by Housefires

We also sang a song by Matt Redman called “Mercy” which includes the line “May I never lose the wonder, O the wonder of Your mercy.”  

I’ve been thinking lately about the idea of wonder.  More specifically, I’ve been thinking about what it means to have a sense of wonder or awe in the context of worship.  What role does wonder play in our worship?  Should true worship instill us with a sense of wonder or does wonder prompt us to worship?

It seems to me that without a sense of wonder, worship would be a purely cognitive exercise.  Wonder is one of the elements which distinguish worship from mere understanding.  Worship happens when we allow ourselves to be in awe or wonder at the things we understand about God.  Wonder is the thing that makes it possible to sing about amazing grace instead of simply saying that God is gracious. 

Many of the truths of our faith are simple but have an unfathomable depth.  For example, we know that God is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love (Psalm 145:8).  We can state these things as basic descriptors of God, but we can also state these same attributes from a position of wonder.  It is one thing to know that God is compassionate, but it is another thing to have experienced his compassion and to state this from a position of awe or wonder that he could be so compassionate.  

To take another example of simple truth with great depth, consider the idea that God is holy.  Scripture describes God as being holy quite often, and today we often sing songs and pray prayers which say the same.  We know that God is holy, but there is a profound difference between knowing that God is holy and being in awe or wonder at his holiness.  Consider Isaiah’s response to God’s holiness: “Woe is me, for I am ruined because I am a man of unclean lips and live among a people of unclean lips, and because my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of Hosts.”  (Isaiah 6:5). 

It is one thing to understand something about God, and another thing altogether to consider that same thing with a sense of wonder.  I don’t believe it is possible to worship God in spirit and in truth without some sense of wonder.  

In a culture that values analytical intellect in the forms of hard rules, statistics, and empirical evidence, we are unaccustomed to applying our imagination (or, our creative intellect) in worship.  As a result, we have developed a strong orthodoxy but have somehow disconnected this from the sense of wonder that orthodoxy should instill in us.  God is himself awe-inspiring, so if we are able to understand him without a sense of awe, there must be something awry.  

How can we develop a sense of wonder?  The most obvious answer is to have an experience with God that is somehow greater than learning about him, much as Isaiah did.  This is why both of the songs I referred to above are phrased as prayers asking God to open our eyes in wonder or to keep us from losing our sense of wonder.  If you do not have a sense of wonder at who God is, a good step would be to ask him to reveal himself to you in a greater way.  However, I believe there are also some spiritual practices we can make use of to help us better respond to God’s self-revelation.  

I believe we better develop a sense of wonder whenever we apply our full self (body, intellect, and emotion) in considering and responding to who God is.  A good starting point is to apply our creative intellect by imagining the truths we know about God.  We need to apply our imagination in worship, not by daydreaming and fabricating fictions, but by trying to apply and envision what we already know about God. 

Psalm 104 is an example of what I mean.  The psalm begins by describing God in his heavenly setting, saying that he is “clothed with majesty and splendor; he wraps himself in light as if it were a robe.”  And that he “makes clouds his chariot” and “flames of fire his servants.”  

If you asked me to describe God before reading this psalm, I might have given an answer based on my understanding or my concept of God.  If you asked me again after reading the psalm, my answer would be different, because the imagery in the psalm engages my imagination, and instills me with a sense of wonder at who God is.  It isn’t so much that the psalm helps me to understand something new, but more than it helps me to imagine or envision God. By engaging my imagination, the psalm helps me to experience a sense of wonder at the truth I already know.  

The remainder of Psalm 104 is a poetic description of God’s act of creation.  The psalm personifies many elements of the earth, saying that the waters of the sea fled and hurried away when God rebuked them.  The psalm says that the sun knows when to rise and set—as though the sun had some ability for thought.  Obviously, these descriptions are not meant to be taken literally, but to help us to better imagine and wonder at God’s real act of creation and at his continued work in the natural world.  

Psalm 104 and other passages like it help us understand how we can develop a sense of wonder in worship.  I imagine this psalm might have been written as the psalmist sat in a field imagining what it must have been like when God created the world.  Or perhaps it was written on the way home from a reading of Genesis or even Job at the tabernacle.  Either way, the psalmist clearly took great care to apply imagination and creativity in considering God as Creator.  

We can do the same thing in worship.  The next time you read scripture, or sing songs in church, or pray, try to apply not only the analytic part of your intellect but also the creative part of your intellect.  Try to apply your five senses to the truth you are contemplating.  If you are singing about God as creator, try to imagine some aspect of creation: what did it look like for God to create the moon by drawing dust and rocks together in orbit around the earth?  If you are singing about the sacrifice of Jesus, try to really imagine the horror of the crucifixion with all of your senses: what did it sound like that day?  What did the wood of the cross feel like?  If you are singing about the work of the Spirit in the global church, imagine the Spirit whispering truth to many people, and that truth echoing around the world with ever-increasing volume.  Imagine, as Paul did, the spirit forming the church into the image of Christ.  Perhaps, as you engage your senses in contemplation, you will find that the rest of your being is also drawn into worship and that you begin to wonder at who God is and what he has done.  

Wonder is an essential part of worshipping God. I pray you are able to experience God in a way that invokes a sense of wonder, and that you will be able to apply your whole being in responding to him in worship.  

May my meditation be pleasing to Him; I will rejoice in the Lord

-Psalm 104:34




Looking Back: the PMC Homecoming Event

The PMC 125th Anniversary Homecoming Event (a.k.a. an old-fashioned church picnic) was a wonderful time for all involved.  There was food, music, and games for young and old.  Old friends reconnected, and new friendships were formed.  Thank God for His faithfulness over the past 125 years!  

What's your SHAPE?


Would you like to have a better understanding of your role in the Kingdom?  Would you like to know how your gifts, experiences, and personality make you uniquely suited to serve others?  

The S.H.A.P.E. inventory is designed to help you get a well-rounded perspective on who you are and what God has called you to.  If you'd like to understand your own role or get some ideas of how you can get involved at PMC, we encourage you to download the SHAPE inventory and fill it out.  Hard copies are also available Sunday mornings at the Welcome Desk.  

When you're finished, you can keep the results to yourself if you like, but we'd love to see what you learned.  You can leave hard copies at the Welcome Desk or email info@acommunityofgrace.org.  

Click Here to download the SHAPE Inventory.  


The Breakfast Club


Join us at The Breakfast Club Sunday morning in the Vine Building for interactive discussion and good food. All are welcome.

The Beatitudes - It doesn’t come through clearly in English translations, but the phrase “and he began to teach them” in the original language means that this was an intentional and formal time of teaching. Jesus is holding a class and purposefully teaching His disciples the essentials of what it means to follow Him. This is information Jesus wants us to know and put into practice as His followers so that we can experience the blessings He wants to share with us. If we fail to understand and practice what Jesus is teaching in these few verses we will be building lives on a foundation of sand rather than solid rock (Matthew 7: 24-27).

The Breakfast Club 2017-18 starting September 17 In the Vine Building, 9:15 for coffee.

Philpott Church is a community of grace, rooted together in the gospel, that exists to glorify God by making more and better disciples of Jesus Christ who are committed to the celebration of God, the cultivation of deeper faith, and the restoration of our community, our city, and the nations.  "We long to see you, so that we may be mutually encouraged by each others'  faith" Romans 1:11-12

Facilitators for the discussion:
Mick Brown, Dean Billings, Caroline Sears,
David Harvey

For further info: contact Val Harvey at 905-628-6572 or valerieharvey456@gmail.com
or Pat Major at pekmajor@gmail.com

Urban Ministry Volunteer Opportunities


1.  “Recharge”…a Drop In center
A number of us from Philpott have been meeting almost weekly, at this collaboration between the Chaplain’s office of the Salvation Army and PMC Urban ministry.  This is a great opportunity to meet folks who spend a lot of time on the street (some are homeless) whom we bump into as we walk up the stairs to enter the church. 
Currently, we have been meeting on Fridays at 12:30pm but are looking for volunteers on other days and evenings.  If you could see yourself volunteering to meet with folks off the street for a Morning, Afternoon or Evening session (2hr) please contact Geoff Beatty.
Needed: complete puzzle sets, used guitars, picture books (travel etc.), paint or drawing supplies
2.  One-2-One English Conversation Partners (bringing Newcomers and the Philpott Community together)
You don’t have to be a teacher to get involved in this great opportunity to meet an international.
1. Join us as a conversation Volunteer: Mondays from 6:30-8pm in the Atrium
2.  Submit your name as a conversation partner who is ready to meet regularly during the week with one of our Newcomer friends.

3.  Furniture Distribution Ministry - Do you know someone who needs Furniture but can't afford it?  Philpott church has a container where our donated inventory includes furniture & kitchen supplies for distribution among newcomers & needy of our city. Check out the Google doc for inventory: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1XeNoOemKUBs_pf9dQ8vvMeMDg3WXfdq1UHQXEMd5jnQ/edit?usp=sharing.

For more information, contact Geoff Beatty: geoffsidy@gmail.com Cell: 289-775-1648.

Alpha Course - Ever wondered what it's all about?


Alpha is an opportunity to explore the meaning of life in a relaxed, friendly setting. The Alpha course includes ten meals and an amazing weekend getaway that comes halfway through the 10-week course. The course meets once per week.

Alpha has become a worldwide phenomenon, now in 164 countries, where millions of people have come to explore the meaning of life. 

During each session people enjoy great food, laughter and learning in a fun and friendly atmosphere where no question about life and God is seen as too simple or too hostile. Questions like; is there a God? Why am I here? Where did I come from? Where am I going?

A - Anyone interested in finding out more about the Christian faith can be a part of the Alpha experience.

L - Learning and laughter. It is possible to learn about the Christian faith and to have fun at the same time.

P - People meeting together. An opportunity to share a meal, get to know others, and to make new friends.

H - Helping one another. The small groups give you a chance to discuss issues raised in the talks.

A - Ask anything. Alpha is a place where no question is too simple or too hostile.



The PMC Podcast

Photo by  Álvaro Serrano  on  Unsplash

Did you know that PMC has a podcast?  We do!  All of our Sunday morning messages are available on our website, but you can also subscribe to them as an iTunes podcast.  Click here to subscribe, or search for Philpott Church in the iTunes store.  You can also listen on Google Play.

Until now, we had only used our podcast to share Sunday morning messages.  This past Sunday's message proved too long for the time allotted, so today we've used our podcast channel to share a conversation between Lane and Jesse on the idea of Christ descended from the Apostles' Creed.  You can listen on iTunes or listen on the web

Let us know if you enjoyed hearing a non-Sunday podcast, or if there are issues you'd like for us to talk about as a future podcast episode.  

What a Beautiful Name

Photo by  Alex Blăjan  on  Unsplash

Photo by Alex Blăjan on Unsplash

-by Jesse Hill

One of the things I’ve discovered in studying scripture is that many of my favorite passages seem to have been plagiarized.  For example, many of the Psalms seem to have been partially copied from Canaanite praise songs.  When I first learned this, I was distressed.  But when I continued my study, I found that these plagiarized Canaanite songs had been altered in key ways when they were brought into the collection of Isrealite psalms.   

Why would the Psalm writers take songs written for pagan gods and alter them to praise the true God?  

Picasso has been quoted as saying “good artists borrow, great artists steal.”  One reason for the psalmists to have appropriated the songs and hymns of their Baal worshipping neighbors is simply that they absorbed the style and lexicon of the time.  A more compelling reason might be that by reworking the pagan hymns, the psalmists identified the ways in which YHWH is different from Baal; a statement intended both for the Canaanites and for the Israelites.  


Our worship never happens in a vacuum.  Every time we ascribe worth to God, we do so within our own cultural context.  Our challenge, then, is to identify the idols within our own culture and to consciously change the narratives of our time to proclaim the name of the true God.  

An interesting New Testament example of this comes from Peter’s impromptu sermon to the Sanhedrin in Acts 4.  In Acts 4:12, Peter says of Jesus:

“There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people, and we must be saved by it.”

This phrase was probably one of the better-known phrases of Peter’s time, as it was written on Roman coins minted by Caesar Augustus (the name Augustus means “worthy of reverence and worship”).  Augustus minted coins with this phrase in order proclaim himself as the sole savior of humankind.  By quoting the phrase to describe Jesus, Peter identified Jesus as the true Savior and Son of God and Augustus as an idol and a false messiah.  


We recently introduced a new song at PMC; “What a Beautiful Name” by Hillsong United.  The lyrics of this song come in part from Peter's sermon in Acts 4.  The song proclaims the name of Jesus as beautiful, wonderful, and powerful.  The bridge of the song says that He has no rival or equal, and that His name is above all names.  

When we sing this song, we are taking up a task common to the people of God throughout history.  We are both demoting every false, would-be god, and exalting the one true God.  


I think of the psalmists and of Peter and I wonder, can I do what they did?  Can I name the false gods of this age and make their deceptive stories true by retelling them in a way that exalts Jesus?