Presbyterians Today

OCT 2018

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P r e s by te r i a n s To d ay OCTOBER together. One year, the children and youth carved the pumpkins; another year, adults did when there were no children or youth. One year, a local farm heard about the "pumpkinfest for God," as it became known, and invited the church to glean their pumpkin elds. And yet another year, the church's mission team allotted money to support a little boy's pumpkin business. His mom later told me how surprised her son was when he came home from school to see a crisp $100 bill and a thank-you note from the church in his rusty tin lockbox. No matter how the pumpkins were secured or who carved them, though, one thing has been clear to me. God can take our passions and turn them into minis- tries. I mean, really, I never thought my love for carving pumpkins would be used to reach out to a community. But it did. So what gives you joy? What are your inter- ests? Don't push them aside. Rather, see how your passions can connect with God's purposes — and start letting your light shine. Donna Frischknecht Jackson is editor of Presbyterians Today and a rural pastor in Washington County New York In addition to pumpkin carving she loves all things pumpkin-flavored from co•ee to potato chips (yes she discovered them in a general store in Vermont) Source: PC(USA) Research Services, Presbyterian Panel Report, – . Graphic by Jerey Lawrence When did members become Presbyterian? 47% 53% Raised in the PC(USA) Joined later in life a piece of candy, because after all, Halloween just isn't Halloween without candy. A church family who didn't agree with Christians acknowledging Halloween even stopped by to see the good word presented in a new way. They, too, took pictures. Over the years, the Presbyterian pumpkins have become a beloved tradition along with the Methodist cider and hot dogs. There have been many different messages and many ways in which the project came Do you have news to share as to how God is at work in your community? Send stories – words to editor@pcusaorg PC(USA) Snapshot DONNA FRISCHKNECHT JACKSON Inspirational messages carved in pumpkins every Halloween, pictured here and on the cover, have become a tradition at First United Presbyterian Church.

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