Celebrating 10 Years in Our Building

On January 27, 2008, the East Woods congregation realized the fulfillment of a long-standing dream. We hosted our first worship service in our newly constructed church campus and dedicated it to the glory of God and the blessing of our community. 

On January 7th, we celebrated our 10th anniversary in this building.  We worshipped God together and cut cake to renew our dedication and that of our wonderful campus. The Fellowship Commission hosted the party in our Evergreen Hall following our 10 AM worship service.

Please click on the link to watch Scott, Melanie and Marin Phillips share some memories of this time in the life of the church.  

God's blessings on East Woods Presbyterian Church and its members!

Welcome, Bakers!

East Woods would like to introduce and welcome Caleb “Bake” and CarrieAnn Baker to our church family.  Bake is our Student Ministries Teacher and CarrieAnn is our Family Ministries Directory.  

The Bakers began a life in ministry while working with the traveling theater group Covenant Players, and they continued to serve together for the first 9 years of their marriage using drama as a means to encourage, challenge, and grow spiritually. Upon settling in Portland almost 11 years ago they have found work in the non-profit world and service industry, with several ministry opportunities in area congregations. 

CarrieAnn comes to us from her recent work as Faith Formation Specialist at Rose City Park UMC. After attending Pacific Lutheran University, and her raveling drama ministry work for 13 years, she continued her work in drama becoming the Head Drama Director for a youth drama troupe with a local non-profit. She also stepped into the role of Community and Family Educator for Northwest Family Services, serving with them for 9 years. She continued her ministry efforts volunteering for Women’s Ministry, Children’s Ministry, and Small Group Leadership with the churches she attended. 

Caleb “Bake” found a gift and service becoming an automotive mechanic after his time with the Christian drama ministry. Taking on roles in children and youth ministry with the church communities they have been a part of in the area, Caleb’s natural “performer” shines and intrigues all those with whom he has the opportunity to explore this life of faith with. His love of music, humor and competition have been assets in working with the young and young at heart. 

At 18 years of marriage “Bake” & CarrieAnn decided to adopt, and after 3 years finalized the adoption of their children Mayfrances (age 12) and Amos (age 9), but not before a surprise gift of their birth child Montgomery Grace (10 months). Mayfrances is a fun loving and brave girl learning how to “role with the punches” in life having recently been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and all the changes being a pre-teen. Amos is a wildly imaginative boy who enjoys stories and all things “army”. And Monty is full of smiles as she is discovering all that she can do in this first year of her life! 

Adventure, creativity, learning and connection are some of the things that drive the Bakers as they walk their journey of faith.

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New Members

East Woods Presbyterian would like to introduce you to our new members that join our church on September 10th.  Please welcome each of them when you see them at church. 

Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.

Romans 15:7

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For the One

Sung by Abby Melo

During our service on August 13th, Abby Melo sang this song for Offertory. 

This was to be her last time with us until she came home from college at Christmas. 

This song is written by Jean Johnson and Paul McClure from Bethel Music in Redding, CA.  The words are poignant and Abby sang them beautifully.  

Unfortunately, our service recording was poor.  So, we had her come over to the Bloss house and re-record it.

As many of you know, Abby was suddenly struck with Guillain Barre Syndrome, a rare disorder in which her body's immune system attacks her nerves.  She is at Foothill Presbyterian Hospital in Glendora, CA receiving treatments for it.  We hold Abby and her family in prayer during this time and pray for her complete recovery to health.  

In the meantime enjoy this recording of "For the One".

Night Strike - Loving People Because People Matter

Then thermometer said 104 degrees.  You could feel the humidity rising.  People were tired, hot, and weary.  And yet, Night Strike continued.  And several people from East Woods were there to be a part of it.

Night Strike is a community gathering that mobilizes volunteers/services, meets felt needs, and develops relationships that transform lives. It is a unique opportunity for people to spend time under the Burnside Bridge every Thursday night to love people because people matter. It is an opportunity for members of Portland’s homeless community to hang out, enjoy a hot meal, receive a free haircut or shave, have their feet washed and have their old shoes/clothes/sleeping bags replaced. It is also a chance for you to come down and share in the experience, help serve the needs of the homeless in our community, and more importantly, invest in lives and build relationships with the people you meet.

For several of the East Woods participants this was their first experience.  But each of them said they would return.  We hope you will consider Night Strike, as well.  For more information please click on this link:  NIGHTSTRIKE

East Woods Attendees (pictures below): Ronda and Dale Peterson, Roberta Schlechter, Gwen Wagner, Keith Bloss, Christine Harington, Jeff and Alex Kennedy, Maddie and Everett Kennedy and friend, Mackenzie, Carson Dunn, Chris Lashley,  and Andrew Bither and friend, Danny. 

A Lesson in Humility

Excerpt from the August Newsletter, by Pastor Bill Sperry.

The Believe series and curriculum has been a joyful experiment for me, and I hope it has been meaningful for those of you who’ve participated in Sunday services, Connecting Time discussions, book studies, or youth and children’s ministries.As I prepare my final sermon in the Believe sermon series, focusing on the virtue of humility, I’m planning to share a story of humility that has personally filled my spiritual tank during these past few weeks. It’s a story of a distracted pastor, a lost iPhone, and a humble man named Michael who brought the pastor and the iPhone back together again. 

In July, Ben, Will and I joined the East Woods Youth Group for a bus ride and train ride to the Portland Zoo. It was a great day, right up until the literal last minute, when I accidentally left my iPhone on the #65 C-TRAN bus at the Fisher’s Landing station. Two days later, I was contacted by C-TRAN with the good news that my phone had been turned in to Lost and Found and was ready for pick-up. It was fully charged and in perfect condition. 

Two days after I reclaimed my phone, a small, blue slip of paper fell out of the case. And, on that paper was Michael’s name, phone number, and a short note clarifying that he had found my phone and could be contacted.The short version of the story is that I contacted Michael and, within an hour of the writing of this article, I plan to meet this hard-working African-American man near Parkrose to treat him to lunch and a “thank you” handshake. 

When we connected by phone, he said, “I didn’t write the note with the hope of receiving a reward. This is my reward – the chance to make a connection with another person and know that everything worked out alright.” Wow! Philippians 2:3-4 says this, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.” Michael has been a great and living example of those words during the past few weeks.

Sharing God's Love

Sunday, July 30th

During the week of July 23rd, Pastor Bill met with Michael in person to shake hands and get to know each other better.  In that meeting, Bill learned that Michael had been on the bus on the day the phone was found because he didn't have a car and was actively saving money to afford one.  Before the two parted company, they shared a prayer asking God to provide the means for Michael to have the right car at the right time to help meet his family's needs.  

On the way home from the meeting, God stirred Bill's heart to help Michael get a car.  So, Bill reached out to Bob Pfeifer, an expert at finding the "right car".  And as a gesture to help Michael realize that God is alive and well and working in his life, Pastor Bill asked Bob if he could find a good car for Michael that matched the amount he had been trying to save and - if possible - could be presented in four day's time.  Bob had the right contacts and, with God's help, worked some miracles.  By Sunday morning, Bob had a "golden chariot" ready to present to this young man and his family.

During the Sunday morning service on July 30, Pastor Bill shared the story as an example of humility, introduced Michael in person to the congregation, and expressed his gratitude for the return of his iPhone.  Then, following the Benediction, as an additional surprise, Bill presented the newly found car to Michael with witness from the congregation.  It was a beautiful moment conveying the humility, gratitude, and love that God teaches us to share with one another.  And what an ending to our 30 week series on "Believe".  It was as if the Holy Spirit brought everything together and said, "This is how it is to think, act, and be like Jesus Christ."

There was barely a dry eye in the entire church.

Enjoy the pictures below.  They tell the story of Michael receiving his car.  They also tell the story of some amazing people letting the Holy Spirit guide their lives.  

Family Project at Clark County Food Bank

On Wednesday, July 19, this group of volunteers from East Woods did such an awesome job working at the Clark County Food Bank! We repacked 2000 lbs. of food - first around 600 lbs of cherries and then around 1400 lbs of pet food! 

Kudos to Cathy Roeper and Jeff Kennedy for bringing this great group together representing our ministries to children, youth and families!

A "Thank You" Flag from the Navy

On Sunday, July 2, Chief Michael Carmichael and Pastor Bill folded and presented an American flag, certificate of dedication, and letter of appreciation to the East Woods congregation that has given flight to my chaplaincy with the Navy and Marine Corps.  

The flag was flown with a Harrier squadron based in Bahrain as part of the country's anti-terrorism campaign Operation Inherent Resolve.   The letter of appreciation was written by my chaplain predecessor with the 6th Engineer Support Battalion, Chaplain Gene Monnin, who was mobilized in Bahrain during the past year.  

We appreciate the men and women of our armed services.  We are grateful to share our Pastor with them.