Year in review…2011
Submitted by Kathleen Good & Ken Zeleny
PMC is the place to be! Our 2011 was an eventful year filled with inspiring, meaningful worship services, our monthly potlucks, engaging Sunday School classes, service projects and other activities. Here are a few of the highlights and even a lowlight.
On a blistery January 29, PMC was warmed by the a cappella singing group ‘Sons of the Day.” Based in Harrisonburg, VA the group was founded in 2003 to “Present the gospel in an approachable way by combining songs of faith and everyday life…” They have performed in a wide variety of settings including several concerts at PMC. They performed their farewell concert on April 24 and PMC is grateful for being included in their final tour. Thanks for the music!
?????In the very cold month of March, the Hospitality Commission hosted a Spaghetti Dinner, turning the fellowship hall into an “Italian Bistro” complete with red checkered table clothes and flowers on all the tables. There were several guests from the community who attended.
?? April 15th brought another concert to our sanctuary, “Behold the Lamb.” An evening of good Mennonite a cappella singing was enjoyed by all.
We congratulated our talented Emily Kolb on her successes on stage and her graduation from CAPA.
The Indian Benefit Dinner and Auction has been one of PMC’s most popular fund raising projects since it’s inception on Murray Avenue when Ken Zeleny approached Sushil Ganguly with the idea. Year after year Sushil Ganguly and his assistant chef Bernie Good along with a slew of dedicated volunteers have worked tirelessly to make this a success. This year was no different! Lynda Stucky organized a wonderful collection of items to auction and Tracy Baton persuaded us to bid high as the auctioneer. Karen Howard never missed an opportunity to remind us to invite our friends and family.
August brought The Mennonite Convention to Pittsburgh! After years of planning, downtown Pittsburgh became a sea of bright black and gold backpacks, Mennonites from near and far and Menno Tea being sold in local convenient stores. Our youth group did not have to travel far this time to enjoy the excitement and activities of the convention. ??
August also brought a freakish storm to Pittsburgh the day of the beginning of the Convention which caused headaches for our administrator Ken Zeleny. The storm caused major flooding in the Day Care area of the building. There was also water damage in the Community Room and a leaky roof. Not related to the storm but our freezer which was storing freezer pops for the convention youth also went on the fritz! Ken worked diligently to resolve these problems and a special thanks goes out to Bernie and Kathleen Good, Dawn Zuckerman and Guy Smith who spent hours getting the Day Care Center in order so it could reopen the following day. A minor miracle!
Vacation Bible School- Taste and See:God is Good was held on August 8 – 11. Under the direction of Alison Gernand the children had fun learning and celebrating food and God’s bounty. This year adults also had the opportunity to attend an adult session. Friday’s activity included a meal and worship.
PMC’s Annual Retreat brought us to Laurelville Retreat Center where were we were blessed by beautiful Autumn weather. The theme this year was “The Rhythm of Life” which gave a whole new meaning to the term “movers and shakers.” Food, fellowship and fun were the main objectives of the retreat. Andrea Wetherald and the Retreat Committee did an excellent job in making this an uplifting experience. Any event that can get Pastor Bender and Pastoral Intern Joel Wildermuth dancing had to be a joyful event.
Recent college graduate Ben Stucky returned to the congregation to share he would be joining the Mennonite SALT program and would be serving in Kenya. A flurry of activity followed as Ben planned a Coffee House fund raiser featuring the talents of the Stucky Boys, Zachary Good, Holly Pruett and PMC’s locally and nationally known gifted performers Brad Yoder and Keith Hershberger. Delectable desserts and an auction helped Ben raise funds to accomplish his mission.
On October 8th PMC along with PRISM under the direction of Sandeep Thomas and Randy Kolb had an Apple Festival at the farm of Dan Hunsberger. The event included making apple butter and apple cider, a tour of the farm and a chance to milk a cow.
On October 22 PMC held it’s annual Fall Festival. Games, food, face painting and activities provided an enjoyable day for all. This event is sponsored by the Education Commission.
On December 18 PMC held it’s Christmas service and Christmas Banquet. This year PMC was honored to have as their guests the Bhutanese-Nepali Church. The service featured a jubilant choir under the direction of Holly Puett, a liturgical dance, festive songs by the Bhutanese-Nepali choir and Scripture readings.
The fellowship hall was transformed into a holiday wonderland with the aromas of several hams prepared by our master chef Everett Ramer and other goodies prepared by the congregation. Christmas cheer filled the room as we enjoyed fellowship, good food and all those wonderful desserts.
As we brought the year to a close we remember that we are a family of God and look forward to a new year to serve each other, our community and our world.