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      a church that practices fruitful living

      March 2019 newsletter

       Passionate worship 



      Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the season of Lent, which is the 40 days leading up to Easter. This holy season within the Church is meant to be a time of refocusing on our spiritual practices as a way of preparing for Easter. We begin the season of Lent with Ash Wednesday, March 6, at 6 p.m., which is meant to remind us of our need for forgiveness and our mortality, both problems solved by the resurrection of Christ.

      We’ll be worshiping in the style of Taizé. The Taizé Community is an ecumenical Christian monastery in France. One of its trademarks is the singing of distinctive and prayers during candlelit services. Taizé music highlights simple phrases, usually lines from the Psalms or other pieces of scripture, sung repeatedly. The repetition is designed to help meditation and prayer.

       Lisa Cardwell, music director 

      Our chancel choir and advanced handbell choir will be leading worship on March 3, Transfiguration Sunday. The handbell choir will be introducing a new anthem “Sing Them Over Again to Me,” purchased in memory of John Mansell.

      The season of Lent is a special time in the church year. With it brings opportunities for music participation. Again our chancel choir, handbell choir, beginner handbells, and Joyful Tones chime choir will be leading Holy Week worship services. Our beginner handbells and Joyful Tones will begin rehearsals on March 10. They will rehearse weekly until Holy Week. Many thanks to those assistants who mentor our beginner handbell members weekly so that they can play their very best.

      Our chancel choir and advanced handbell choir will be leading worship at both Holy Week services. Our beginner handbell choir will play on Good Friday (April 19) and the Joyful Tones will play on both Maundy Thursday (April 18) and Good Friday services.

      During these two services, the chancel choir will be singing “Awake, Alone in Gethsemane,” a favorite (and difficult) anthem and “Song of Sorrow.” The advanced handbell choir will be leading services by playing “The Cross” and a new arrangement of “The Passion Chorale,” purchased in honor of Keith and Lisa.

      On Easter Sunday, two new anthems will be introduced: “Easter Carol” (chancel choir) and “Majestic Alleluia” (handbell choir) purchased in memory of Wendell and Florine Williams.

      All four groups will be working many hours to bring their very best to these powerful services. They do this because of their love of God, His Church, and the deep meaning of Holy Week. They come to rehearsals so that they can bring life to powerful music that leads us to the cross and to the love that Jesus had for us all. We hope you can join us in worshiping our Lord and Savior.

       Greg McNair, worship elder 

      Our Lenten journey on the road to Easter is about to begin.

      The month of passionate worship starts on Sunday, March 3, as we observe the Transfiguration of the Lord. We will celebrate the Lord’s Supper. This link will remind you of the significance of that day of Jesus’ baptism:

      Lent officially begins with Ash Wednesday on March 6. We will have a worship service at 6 p.m. with intinction of ashes, reminding us of the temporary nature of our earthly existence.

      During the five Sundays of Lent — a season of reflection, soul-searching and commitment — we will get glimpses of Jesus’ final days of walking Earth as a man and perhaps feel some of what he experienced along the way to his crucifixion. We hope our worship services will touch you in a deep and meaningful way.

      Please come and join us this month in worshiping God and thanking him for his wonderful gifts — especially our salvation and his amazing grace and abundant love shown to each of us.

      If you or your child would like to help in some way as a worship volunteer, please let me know. There is a gift-of-service form on our church website that you can use, too.

      The community Lenten lunch series at Foley United Methodist Church offers additional worship and fellowship opportunities on Thursdays at 11:30 a.m. from March 7 through April 11. The speakers — pastors from area churches — will focus on the theme “Christ’s Last Words From the Cross.” On April 4, Jody Beth Melton, Swift’s commissioned lay pastor, will offer the closing prayer.

      Most people are looking forward to the arrival of spring toward the end of the month, and that brings an uptick in activities in the church and community. It also boosts people’s spirits after plenty of foggy and gray days during winter.

      Saturday, March 16, at 1 p.m. in the sanctuary

      The service will be followed by a reception in the fellowship hall with assorted finger foods.

      Ronnie’s mother, our beloved Nancy Hope, and Ronnie’s sisters, Denise and Lynne, will be in town for this celebration. To provide food or to assist in any way, please contact Pastor Jody Beth, 213-6625.

      at Foley United Methodist Church

      Lenten lunches will begin Thursday, March 7, at Foley United Methodist Church, 915 N. Pine St., and will continue through April 11. Lunch will be served beginning at 11:30 and a short program will begin shortly after noon with music, prayer and a short devotional. All are welcome to attend. A $5 donation for lunch is suggested. Topic for March 7 is “Forgiveness,” with the Rev. Dr. Nolan Donald, pastor at Foley United Methodist Church, speaking. Other speakers:

      ■ March 14 — Jonathan Wallace, First Presbyterian Church of Foley
      ■ March 21 — Shawn Kennedy, Genesis
      ■ March 28 — Bishop Russell Kendrick, Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast
      ■ April 4 — David Zandt, Peace Lutheran Church
      ■ April 11 — Father Zoghby, St. Margaret Catholic Church

       Radical hospitality 

       This Sunday, March 3

      Join us for a bratwurst (and hot dog) lunch after the 10 a.m. worship service on Sunday, March 3, as we celebrate our winter members and visitors. Brats, hot dogs and buns will be provided. Please sign up with Pastor Jody Beth to bring a side or dessert, or to help with setup or cleanup. There will be a basket for offerings to cover costs.

      Will not meet Thursday, March 7, at O’Charley’s, due to the Lenten lunches beginning.
      Please see schedule for Lenten lunches in the newsletter.

      Thursday, March 21 • 6:30 p.m.
      Vallarta Mexican Restaurant — 1145 S. McKenzie St., Foley
      Here’s a link to the restaurant’s website.

      We’ll be going to Vallarta Mexican Restaurant in Foley at 1145 S. McKenzie St., next to Winn-Dixie.

      (We had planned to go to the new Pirate’s Cantina Mexican Grill on U.S. Highway 98 in Lillian, but it was destroyed by fire on March 15.)

      Mary McNair will be coordinating carpooling for any who want to do so. We ask that you please confirm with Mary (text or call 251-295-5267) if you plan to come, even if a maybe, by that morning so she can make seating arrangements.

      Our group is growing ever since the girls and guys meet at the same place, although we sit and visit together separately.

      Come join us this month. Couples or singles are welcome. Join us and suggest new places for us to try.


      Tuesday, March 19

      Join us for a time of appreciation for the Swift family that settled in this area in the 1800s. This will be a day of fellowship, worship, history and a box lunch. Everyone is welcome. Reservations are required.

      ■ Foley First folks will meet at their church at 10 a.m. to carpool.
      ■ Foley and Swift attendees will meet at Swift Presbyterian Church at 10:30.
      ■ Worship in the original building
      ■ Presentation by Debbie Schmidt on the history of the church and the Swift family
      ■ Box lunches from Honey-Baked Ham in the church’s fellowship hall
      ■ Drive to Swift School in Bon Secour at 12:30 p.m., pausing outside for a short history
      ■ Arrive at 1:00 at the Swift-Coles Historic Home for guided tours

      Admission to the Swift-Coles home is $10. The main floor is accessible by ramps, but the second floor is reached by climbing stairs. The box lunches will be from Honey-Baked Ham for $10. It will include a sandwich, pickle, chips, cookie, and beverage. You must choose between:

      ■ Ham classic — ham, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, savory mayo, and hickory honey mustard on a flaky croissant
      ■ Turkey classic — turkey breast, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, savory mayo, and hickory honey mustard on a baker’s roll

      If you have questions, call Pastor Jody Beth Melton at 213-6625.

      Reservations need to be received by March 15.

      If you don’t have a printed sheet, you can write your name, phone number and lunch choice — ham or turkey — on a piece of paper and attach $20. Make checks payable to Swift Church. Mail registration and money to: Swift Church, 23208 Swift Church Road, Foley, AL 36535.

       Mission and service 


      The Swift Church session met on Feb 18. They began with prayer concerns and prayer.

      ■ Chuck Carneal led a discussion regarding finances.

      ■ The logo committee presented three options for a Swift Church logo. One overall design was agreed upon and the committee will get with the designer for some modifications.

      ■ Fellowship — There will be a bratwurst and hot dog lunch after worship on March 3 to celebrate our winter guests.

      ■ Also, fellowship is working with youth for a fish-fry fundraiser in downtown Foley. The date and location are being worked out.

      ■ Received informational reports

      ■ Heard oral reports from buildings and grounds, children’s ministry, missions, youth and worship.

      ■ Discussed repairs on the south end of church parking lot.

      ■ Closed with prayer.


      The fellowship deacons, Kathy Knipe and Tina Sprouse, are taking a new approach to our Sunday morning fellowship time (after 10:00 service). We are asking the congregation to participate in either providing a snack, drinks, or help with cleanup afterward. Coffee will still be provided by Swift. We would like to provide a sweet snack and a healthful snack each Sunday morning. If you are able to participate in any way, please sign up on the sheet located in the fellowship hall or call Tina Sprouse at (251) 510-5444. Reimbursement for expenses is available.

       Pate Cardwell and Al Sprouse, mission elders 

      Our Swift food pantry served 27 families on Feb. 13 and 22 on Feb. 27. Thank you to all who make this mission such a great success.

      Souper Bowl Sunday was a big success for all. The soups, chili, bisque, breads, and desserts were all fabulous. In addition, the donations at Souper Bowl for the food pantry totaled $550.

      A special thank-you to David and Denise Angle. They were instrumental in having the local Michigan Club donate an SUV full of groceries to the food pantry.

      With the many volunteers who help with the food pantry, a few more volunteers are still needed. Contact Mary Ard at (251) 988-5549 or Tina Sprouse at (251) 510-5444 and your talent can be put to good use.

      Our upcoming mission will be for One Great Hour of Sharing, beginning in March and concluding on April 21. This special offering supports Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, Presbyterian Hunger Program, and self-development of people nationally and internationally.

       Intentional faith development 

       Brett Cardwell, elder/children  Tara  Morrow, elder/youth 

      ■ SWAG (formerly Kids’ Club) is for children in grades K–4.
      ■ GΦG is our youth group for ages fifth grade through high school.

      Both groups meet at the church and have a lesson, games and a small meal.

      The following are the dates for both SWAG and GΦG:

      March 17 — 4 to 6 p.m.
      April and May — to be determined

      ■ Refuel, our periodic Wednesday night youth group meeting, is from 6 to 8 p.m. You are encouraged to invite your school friends, neighbors, etc. On March 6, Ash Wednesday, we will attend service together and then have dinner in the youth room.

      ■ If anyone would like to prepare a meal for children or youth, please let Teresa Thomas or Tara Morrow know. 

      Our youth participated in a bake sale held in February with the youth at Orange Beach Presbyterian Church. The sale raised $760, which will go toward costs for the Montreat Youth Conference in June.

       Susan and Daryl Pichoff, leaders 

      The class meets in the fellowship hall on Sundays from 9 to 9:45 a.m. and is led by Susan and Daryl Pichoff.

      We would love for you to join us as we look at Adam Hamilton’s “When Christians Get It Wrong,” a video-and-discussion series. We will look at why so many younger people are distancing themselves from the church and rejecting Christianity. We will have a bite and share our thoughts on this topic.

      We have great discussions and good snacks.

      If you have questions, please let me know. Contact Susan at or 251-233-9486 (phone or text).

       Cheryl Jensen, leader 

      We continue our chronological study of the New Testament. We have studied about half of Acts and are now studying James and Galatians. Oh, how much fun it is to study the “how-to” books of the Bible. We welcome you to our class, which meets at 9:00 on Sunday mornings in room 2 in the annex.

      Sunday evenings, Thursday mornings

      Sunday evening and Thursday morning Bible study groups are continuing a weekly study on the book of Genesis. “Invitation to Genesis,” a disciple Bible study, includes a DVD, a leader’s guide, and participant books. The study books are $15 and as always, scholarships are available. Please let facilitators Pastor Jody Beth and Philip Melton know if you will be able to be a part of this group; 251-213-6625 and 251-213-6505.

      Times are: Sundays, 5:30 to 6:15 p.m.; and Thursdays, 10 to 11:30 a.m. (11:15 on the first Thursday of each month so that participants may attend the “Two or More” fellowship lunch — and, in March and April this year, the community Lenten luncheons).


      We are blessed to have so many people who would like to be part of Bible study and fellowship at Swift Church. Here is a current listing of the groups that are meeting. All of them are open to people visiting and/or joining the group, whether you are a member of Swift Church or not. For more information, contact the leaders or the church office.


      Sundays, 9 to 9:45 a.m., adult Sunday school class, room 2 in the annex, continuing a chronolgical study of the New Testament. Led by Cheryl Jensen

      Sundays, 9 to 9:45 a.m., Snacks with Susan and Daryl, fellowship hall, led by Susan and Daryl Pichoff; topic varies. The class usually watches a DVD and discusses informative topics.

      Sunday evening (5:30 to 6:15) and Thursday morning (10 to 11:30), Bible study groups meet weekly. They are studying the book of Genesis. Contacts are Pastor Jody Beth and Philip Melton, 251-213-6625.

      Thursdays (first Thursday of month), 11:30 a.m., “Two or More” fellowship lunch at O’Charley’s in Foley on South McKenzie Street. (No gatherings in March and April.) Contact is Lee Mansell.

      Thursdays (third Thursday of month), 6:30 p.m., Butterfly Girls and Guys’ Night Out fellowship dinner at area restaurants, different place each month.

       Extravagant generosity 


      “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others,
      faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”
       — 1 Peter 4:10

      March 3 — Mike and Lynn Barnwell
      March 10 — Kim Whitchard and Judy Walker
      March 17 — Lee Mansell and Jane King
      March 24 — Danny and Paula Brewer
      March 31 — Norm and Debbie Schmidt

      March 3 — Sully Curry
      March 10 — Cadi Cardwell and McCoy Cooper
      March 17 — Lainey Thomas
      March 24 — ZoeyLynn and Zadie Grace Barnwell
      March 31 — Sully Curry

      NURSERY VOLUNTEERS (if needed)
      March 3 — Ginny Kleinschmidt and Tara Morrow
      March 10 — Pate and Brett Cardwell
      March 17 — Megan Curry and Debbie Schmidt
      March 24 — Tracy Akins and Lisa Turner
      March 31 — Jane King and Carlie Sims

      March 3 — Debbie Schmidt
      March 10 — Pastor Keith
      March 17 — Pate Cardwell
      March 24 — Debbie Schmidt
      March 31 — Teresa Thomas

      March 3 — None due to the Lord’s Supper
      March 10 — Jane King and Carlie Sims
      March 17 — Teresa and Ella Thomas
      March 24 — Lezli and Kenny Thomason
      March 31 — Debbie Schmidt and Megan Curry

      Tara Morrow

      Devery Thomas

      Please contact Susie Alexander to reserve your date.

      Flowers can be offered for a special occasion, birthday, anniversary, in memory of someone special, or just because you want to. They don’t have to be an expensive bouquet or arrangement, but something out of your own garden can be just as beautiful. We keep a calendar in the office so that you can check to see if your date is available.

      You can reach Susie at 251-943-4145 or at


      Swift’s food pantry continues to operate on the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month, from 10 a.m. until noon. We appreciate your extravagant generosity by your donations of nonperishable foods and paper products.

      Here are suggestions of what we need the most: canned fruit, breakfast cereal, peanut butter, jelly, canned soup, spaghetti sauce, spaghetti noodles, rice, canned pasta.


      To the precious folks of Swift Presbyterian Church,

      Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you did to bless my retirement. My family and I sincerely appreciate it.

      Most of all, thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve alongside of you these past years. I am so thankful for the friendships made, and I pray God’s continued blessings on you all.

      Thank you again,

      Tammy Ladnier

      Until recently, Tammy Ladnier was administrative assistant at the Presbytery of South Alabama office in Daphne.


      You may have noticed this box in your bulletin. Using your “smart phone” and this box you can connect to the church’s online giving page. You can set up for automatic donations of your tithes or one-time gifts to a number of funds benefiting ministries of Swift Church. Use this by either entering your credit/debit card information or your checking account information. Of course, this is a secure website.

      You can also do the same thing by clicking a donation link on the church’s website.

      Swift Church Preschool 

      School telephone: 251-200-3840

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      23208 Swift Church Road
      Foley, AL 36535
      Phone: (251) 943-8367


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