TPPC News and Notes

The following are news and notes of interest to the Takoma Park Presbyterian Church community. Times and locations of events listed here are subject to change without notice. Please contact the church office at 301-270-5550 or for more information and confirmation.

An archive of past articles is also available on this site.

Note: Links with the text "(PDF)" require the Adobe Reader to access the URL, which is available free from Adobe.


December Special Events at TPPC

Advent and Christmas are busy times at TPPC. Here's a list of activities for the month of December:

Alternative Gift Fair
The 21th Annual Takoma Park Alternative Gift Fair will be held on Saturday, December 7, from 12 - 4pm at the Don Patti Memorial Gym at Takoma Park Presbyterian Church. For more information access the Alternate Gift Fair website.
Special Christmas Music Service
Join us for a special service of music as our choir (with soloists, orchestral ensemble and harp) performs the Christmas Oratorio by Camille Saint-Saeës on Sunday, December 8. Worship starts at 11 AM. For more information, access the TPPC Choir page.
Christmas Pageant Rehearsal
All children and youth are invited to join us for a rehearsal of our annual Christmas Pageant on Sunday, December 8, 11-12:30pm in the TPPC Assembly Room.
Annual Youth Christmas Pageant
All are welcome to attend our annual Christmas classic. Please join us in the TPPC Assembly Room on Sunday, December 15, starting at 10 am.
Christmas Caroling
Join us for caroling at Victory Tower on Sunday December 22, from 3-5:00 pm Meet 2:45 pm in TPPC assembly room or 3:00 at Victory Tower (7051 Carroll Ave).
Christmas Eve Services (Dec 24)
5:30 PM - Family Friendly Candlelight Service with carols and opportunities children to participate
8:00 PM - Candlelight Service

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“Just Thanks” In-Home Potlucks

We are changing the format of the “Just Thanks” potluck from an all-church after service potluck which has typically occurred the Sunday before Thanksgiving to a set of in-home potlucks two weeks before Thanksgiving.

SAVE THE DATE: Sunday, November 17, 6-8 p.m. for the in-home "Just Thanks" potluck dinners at a church member's home.

Hosting people in our church family is a great way to practice the Christian discipline of hospitality. Hosting at potluck is not about how big or small your home is, or whether you have matching dinner plates -- it is about lovingly opening your home to others with joy and gratitude. If you are interested in hosting, please let us know.

Responsibilities of hosts include inviting all attendees personally via phone or email, opening your home to others, providing non-alcoholic drinks, and providing feedback to the organizers.

All active church members and friends will be invited -- you do not need to opt in. However, if you are not sure if your contact information is already provided to the church, contact

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AIM Update

AIM's upcoming trainings include how to build a team to act together whether it's for your church, community, school or AIM. The training will be at Takoma Park Seventh Day Adventist Church on Tuesday, November 12 from 7-8:30 pm. The church is located at 6951 Carroll Ave and has plenty of parking behind its building.

AIM will also do a training on "Raising Money for Anything" at the Takoma Park Seventh Day Adventist Church Wednesday, November 20 at 7 pm. Money is a means for living out one’s values in the world. Organizing money is one of the most effective ways to make things happen. The James Company, which has helped congregations and non-profits raise over $1 billion, will train leaders how to raise money in a respectful, relational way. Anyone from congregational stewardship campaigns, PTAs, etc., are encouraged to attend.

Contact for more information.

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Accompanying Migrants on the Mexican Border

Recently, Ruth Noel was part of a Presbyterian Peace Fellowship program accompanying migrants on the Mexican border. She gives details of her experiences in a Church Life article available on this website. (PDF)

Ruth also preached about her mission in a recent sermon, also available on this website. (PDF)

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We Need Your Help…To Get A New Roof!

Roof Donations Accepted The roof over TPPC's sanctuary has served the church well – it's a slate roof that is over 90 years old! – but it is now in desperate need of repair. With other critical repairs, such as restoring the masonry on the exterior of the church and replacing damaged wood around the stained-glass windows, the total cost of this project is about $220,000.

Thanks to generous gifts, large and small, we have only about $6,000 more to go on the down payment! We still need your help to raise these remaining dollars so that work can get started while the weather is conducive.

If you would like to contribute to the down payment, please make a check out to TPPC with "Roof loan down payment" in the memo line. You can drop it in the collection plate on Sunday, or mail it to:

Takoma Park Presbyterian Church
310 Tulip Avenue,
Takoma Park, MD 20912

As a reminder, we are pursuing a low-interest 3.75 percent loan through the Presbyterian Investment and Loan Program (PILP). Our church's Vision 2000 loan – which funded improvements like the elevator, ramp, stained glass window frames, Education Building windows, asbestos removal, and sanctuary sound system – is also through PILP.

Thank you for supporting our new roof campaign!

Status of Our Slate Roof

Roof Donations Accepted The Sanctuary slate roof is 98 years old (typical life expectancy of slate is 80-100 years). We replaced one section of the roof in 2016 and have tried to patch other problematic areas as needed. The photo shows a Property Committee member examining the roof.

Water is getting in through some leaks in the roof, but also - and more problematic - through gaps in the mortar. Work on repairing the mortar ("tuck pointing") must be done before the weather turns cold; night time temperatures must stay above 50 degrees for the mortar to set correctly.

Earlier this spring, a section of the stairwell ceiling (to the right of the front entrance) fell down. If you look closely, you can see the exterior stones right next to the wooden joists. Water leaks in through gaps in the mortar, goes directly onto the plaster ceiling and walls, and falls onto the stairs.

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Obituary for Former TPPC Pastor Miles

An obituary for former TPPC pastor Tom Miles' is linked below:

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Emily Welty reflects on ICAN's Nobel Peace Prize

The 2017 Nobel Peace Prize was recently awarded to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. Former TPPC Youth Director Emily Welty and her husband Matthew Bolton were both heavily involved with getting the nuclear weapons ban treaty passed by the United Nations as ICAN members.

Read Emily Welty's reflections on the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons being awarded the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize at the WCC Pilgramage Blog.

Emily was a former TPPC youth director, and Emily and Matthew were also married at TPPC.

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TPPC Has a New Boiler

Earlier this month a new higher efficiency hot water boiler was installed to heat the Education Building. Repairs were also made to the steam boiler which heats the Sanctuary. These repairs were long overdue, and needed to be completed before the cold season begins. Session is taking out a loan to help cover the $50,000 cost. Your support is needed to help defray the cost of the new heating system. If you have questions about the new boilers (or any Property matter), email

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TPPC and Boy Scout Troop 33 Celebrate 95 Years Of Scouting

TPPC and Takoma Boy Scout Troop 33 just celebrated 95 years of scouting together! Troop 33 was established in 1920 in partnership with TPPC, making it one of the longest continuously chartered Troops in the nation. The Troop has a proud history of service to the church family, community and the nation.

In December 2015 the City of Takoma Park issued an official Mayoral Proclamation �RECOGNIZING THE 95TH ANNIVERSARY OF BOY SCOUT TROOP 33 IN TAKOMA PARK�.�Thank you TPPC for your faithful support of the many scouts and families of Troop 33!

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TPPC Adopts Resolution of Committed Racial Mindfulness

A Resolution of Committed Racial Mindfulness was adopted by our Session at its May meeting. The resolution grew out of discussions by a small group of TPPC members and friends who have been meeting to discuss how our church can respond to pervasive racism in our country. Our concerns were sparked by recent killings of African American men by law enforcement officers in Ferguson, New York, Cleveland, Baltimore, and elsewhere. These matters reflect how deeply white privilege and racial prejudice is embedded in our society and communities.

To read the resolution, access 2015-05_TPPC_Resolution_of_Committed_Racial_Mindfulness.pdf (PDF)

The resolution commits our church to undertake a program of "committed racial mindfulness" to raise our knowledge and understanding about racism and its effects, heighten our commitment and capability to oppose racism, and make us more effective messengers of conscientious racial mindfulness in our communities. The centerpiece of the Resolution is a commitment to develop and implement a program for training in committed racial mindfulness. The program would start by training leaders in our congregation and other churches, and then widen to include other members of our congregation, other congregations, and community groups.

For more information, access Committed Racial Mindfulness Ministry Page or the CRM Information page.

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