This year within the Valley Forge Presbyterian Church community, we will be considering how the metaphor of organic growth helps us to understand our identity and calling as humanity in relationship with the God who was, is, and always will be. What does good and true life look like within the eternal ryhthms that exist within God's Creation?
In August 2017, we reflect on Jesus' Parable of the Sower and Soils, considering that we are the soil in which God works. Our spiritual (and physical, mental, and emotional) health and growth are not just about what God does FOR us or TO us, but about what God does THROUGH us. Hardness of schedule and heart, hidden rocks of unresolved struggle, and weeds of negativity impact our ability as soil to grow into fruitful people.
In September and October 2017, we reflect on Paul's invitation to the Ephesians to uproot the weeds of negativity (bitterness, wrath, anger, clamoring, slander, and all malice) from our lives so that they do not take over and choke out our growth and fruitfulness.
In November and December 2017, we consider Paul's invitation to the Philippians to make room within ourselves for seeds of new fruitfulness and to help them take root by intentionally reflecting on what is true, honorable, just, pure, pleasing, commendable, excellent and praiseworthy.
In January through March of 2018, we consider Paul's description to the Galatians of the interconnected attitudes and actions of a good and fruitful human life: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
In April through June of 2018, we will redefine our understanding of ourselves as "blessed." To be "blessed" does not mean to be fortunate or favored above anyone else, but is a descriptor of people who allow and nurture God's work of growing world-shaping fruit through them. We will consider what it means for us to be a fruitful and blessed people by reflecting on Jesus' teaching known as "The Beatitudes": "Blessed" are those who are poor in spirit, who mourn, who are meek, who hunger and thirst for righteousness, who are merciful, who are pure in heart, who are peacemakers, who are persecuted, who are reviled and slandered.
As we consider that our life is found not in withdrawing from or judging the world, but in being as fruitful as we are able in the midst of the world, we trust that we will grow together individually in spiritual understanding and capacity, AND, that we will grow together in the interconnectedness of caring and encouraging relationships within our life together as this community. ALL are welcome to join us on this journey of Growing Together!
The Valley Forge Presbyterian Church community was chartered on March 17, 1956 and grew quickly along with the neighborhoods and industry of King of Prussia. Over the last six decades, the VFPC people have gathered in celebratory and grateful worship, committed to learning and teaching what the Scriptures say about God and humanity, and putting those grateful hearts and learned understandings into action with works of common good. The VFPC community has known the ups and downs of the human experience, and has cared for one another through it all.
At this time in our history, we are seeking a balanced approach to our life together in which we honor our history and traditions, yet also seek fresh expressions of what it means in this day and age to be a welcoming, hospitable, and intergenerational community of neighbors who celebrate, learn about, and act out the loving and unconditional goodness of God.
With our best efforts to set down judgment and to live enlightened by the reality of God's love for all, we are hoping and praying that God will lead more of our neighbors and friends into a place of unconditional belonging with us; for the stronger our community becomes, the more effectively we can love and serve King of Prussia and beyond as a force for God's unconditional, eternal, and transformative good!
The only requirements for joining as a member of VFPC are to profess one's faith that the love and truth of God were revealed in Jesus, and to commit to participating in our life together and our good work to the best of one's ability. Those who aren't yet ready to make this profession and commitment are certainly most welcome to participate in the celebration, learning, and doing until if and when ready.
Tim Dooner, Pastor: Tim is husband to Blair and father to Maggie, Emmie and Etta. He was ordained as a Presbyterian Minister in 2008 and has served as the pastor of VFPC since December 2016. Tim enjoys time with family and friends, Pearl Jam concerts, Philadelphia sports, and the story of Superman.
Lynne Klepacki, Director of Discipleship, Office and Preschool: Lynne is wife to Bob and mother to Bobby, Matthew and Katelyn. Lynne has served VFPC since 2008. In her free time, Lynne enjoys reading and time with friends and family.
Art Henry, Minister of Music: Art attended both Temple University and Chestnut Hill College. Previously, Art was an ordained minister in the Salvation Army and participated in S.A. music programs, including playing in the New York Staff Band. Art has served VFPC since 2011. Art is also an elementary and middle school instrumental music teacher and plays the Tenor Horn in the Princeton Brass Band.
Bob Klepacki, Sexton: Bob is husband to Lynne and father to Bobby, Matthew and Katelyn. Bob has served VFPC since 2005. In his free time, Bob enjoys gardening and FISHING.
The leadership of our congregation is shared by the pastor, the board of Elders (a.k.a. the Session), and the board of Deacons. In our denomination, the Presbyterian Church USA, the leadership potential of all is affirmed, and no one is excluded from leadership due to race, gender, orientation, or age. The pastor is to in all things teach faithfulness to God and equip the members of the congregation for individual and corporate ministry within their daily living.
The ministry of the elders is to measure the life of the congregation against God's good will for our community, and to discern new ways of being faithful to our calling and identity as those who celebrate, learn and act out God's goodness in the world. This ministry often, but not exclusively, takes shape within the committees of the congregation. VFPC elders currently serving are: Royal McGeorge, Mary Jo McQuate, Donna Newell, Sandy Rodman, Mike Henry, Don Higgins, Dave Wilkie, Sujoy Gonsalves, Betsy Develin, Bob Douglas, Florence Sangster, and Gail Moore.
The ministry of the deacons is that of compassion, witness, and service, sharing in the love of God for the poor, the hungry, the sick, the lost, the friendless, the oppressed, or anyone in distress. This ministry often, but not exclusively, takes shape as the deacons are in relationship and regular contact with members of congregational Care Groups. VFPC deacons currently serving are: Jeanne Fee, Barbara McElvogue, Jean Friedman, David Ford, Kathleen Merritt, Lynda Schmitz, Cheryl Faix, Karen Gershanick, and Barbara Roback.
A: Our parking lot entrance is off Independence Road. Using 227 Independence Road (19406) as a destination in your GPS/Maps App will get you closest to the entrance.
B: A set of concrete steps leads from the parking lot to the main level of our campus.
C: The Sanctuary and Main Office are handicap accessible by entering through the Fellowship Hall doors at parking lot level and taking the elevator up to the main level.
D: The entrance to the Office Area and the front of the Sanctuary.
E: The entrance to the Narthex and rear of the Sanctuary.
F: The Christian Education building includes the Nursery, VFPC Preschool, Chapel, Library, and Neighborhood Meals on Wheels office.