Dearest Faith Community Near and Far-

Happy New Year! 

This past Sunday we wrapped up our series asking the question ‘”how does a weary world rejoice?” As we continue into this near year, we did so this past Sunday through a ritual our congregation has at the beginning of the year. Our Star Words, or words of intention, were received. Many of us were able to see a word that could be part of our lives this year, a potential way to be guided in our faith walk, in our prayer lives, and how we live out our faith. Every year, the congregation as a whole receives a star word. Our word as a faith community for 2024 is CONFIDENCE. This Sunday, we are going to dive into this word as we think about what is to come in 2024. I hope you will join us! Also, if you weren’t here this past Sunday, you still have the opportunity to receive your star word in worship this month. If you would like a star word but are not able to make it to worship in person, please let me know. I’ll send you a word in the mail. 

This past October, I attended a conference with the Reformation Project. While there, I watched a documentary called 1946: The Mistranslation that Shifted Culture. The documentary is about the first time that the word homosexual was in the bible. The documentary was incredibly well done and informative. Ever since watching it, I have wanted to watch it with you and have a discussion about it afterwards. Well, we have the opportunity to do so. On behalf of the session, we are inviting you to join us for a viewing of the movie on either Saturday, January 13 at 11am or Sunday, January 14 after the congregational meeting. I have linked the trailer and website for folks to look at before joining us further down in this newsletter. I do pray you will consider coming to learn with me. I found the documentary to be very well done, very informative, and helped me deepen my own understanding of scripture. 

This past week, we had an amazing team of college students from Marquette University serving in our community. What an amazing group! Unfortunately, they had to leave earlier due to the crazy winter storms that have been hitting this weekend. This group is hoping to come back for their spring break. Whether or not they make it to our site again, they will continue to serve and help people rebuild their lives after natural disasters. It is what they do! We have another team preparing to join us in the near future. Friends, please be in prayer for the teams who are coming our way and for the families whose homes they are helping to rebuild. Each team will help a family rebuild their lives after Hurricane Ian. What a gift! 

Dates to Remember

  • Saturday-Workday- 9-11 to do some indoor cleaning and putting up the decorations from the Advent/Christmas season.
  • Sunday morning schedule: 8:30- Sacred Space, 9:30- Fellowship, 10:00- Worship
  • 1946: The Movie- January 13 at 11am and January 14 after congregational meeting
  • January 14-Congregational Meeting after worship

Making Headway

We’re making some headway on some more projects around the church. 

  • Shower permit has been sent back to engineering. Praying we receive the final report over the course of the next week or two. 
  • Cement pads have been added to the exterior doors of the main building and concrete has been added the pavilion.
  • This past week, the walls went up around the screened in porch at the pantry, new electrical was installed, and an AC unit was installed. Hoping to have the quote for stucco this week and the garage door will be installed over the next 10 days. Pictures to come on our Facebook page of the project! Hoping we have a little leftover from the grant to purchase a new commercial refrigerator for the pantry as well.  Thank you Charlotte Community Foundation for the grant to expand our pantry!

Friends, I am really looking forward to this year. I pray you are too.

Happy New Year-
Pastor Devon

ps…Fridays and Saturdays are the two days I am taking off every week. This isn’t always working great, but I am really trying hard to take these days off each week. If I do not get back to you, please know I will on Mondays.


Come and learn with us! After the documentary, we will have time for a conversation about the movie. Hoping you will be willing to learn with us! 
Saturday, January 13 at 11am, pizza and conversation to follow. 
Sunday, January 14 after the congregational meeting, pizza and conversation to follow. 

To watch the trailer, click HERE and you will be taken to the youtube page. 

To learn more about the documentary, click HERE to visit the webpage. 

Worship with Wintergarden
Sunday, January 14, 2024

Sacred Space Meditation Service @ 8:30 am
at the Fountain in the Garden

(we are trying to get this live on Facebook, but it hasn’t worked yet. We will keep trying.)
Fellowship (light continental breakfast) @ 9:30 am
Worship following about 10:00 am

In the Sanctuary and on Facebook Live
+++++How to access the bulletin:
Bulletin HERE
How to Access Services Online:

Join us on Facebook for Worship Services
Remember, you don’t need a Facebook Account
to join us for worship. 
You can also click HEREfor the Facebook link.

Sunday, January 14, 2024
Fellowship @ 9:30 am
Relaxed Traditional Worship @ 10:00 amSermon: Star Word: ConfidenceScripture Lesson:  Isaiah 40:26-31
Every Monday – Lectio Divina
Every Tuesday & Friday – Wintergarden Bees
Every Wednesday Food Truck Delivery
Every Thursday Food Pantry 12-4pm 
Jan. 13: Coffee, Conversation, and Workday-Taking down decorations in Sanctuary
Jan. 13: Around 11am folks are invited to join us for the documentary 1946.Jan. 14: Congregational Meeting immediately after worship. It should be a quick one! Folks are invited to stay to watch the documentary 1946.
Jan. 23: Homeless Coalition meal at 4:30pm
Jan. 25: CNS Care N Share (Every 4th Thurs.)
Jan. 26: Family Fun Night (Last Friday of every month)
In order for us to do Sacred Space, we need some folks to show up by 8:15 to help with set-up. If we don’t have help with set-up, we will not be able to continue Sacred Space. In addition, we have been trying to get it online, but have had issues. We will keep trying. Thanks for your help and understanding. 
FOOD PANTRY VOLUNTEERS NEEDEDPlease contact the church office at 941-743-5335 or email at

With the pantry cover completed and the weather cooling down a little, we invite you to come volunteer with us on Thursdays. Bring a friend to help! 

Also, we are in need of translators. If you know anyone who speaks Spanish, Ukrainian, or Russian, we are in need of assistance.
Interested in joining our Garden?
Garden of Eatin’ – Food Forest
For more information click HERE
At Wintergarden Presbyterian Church
we’re eager to pray with you!  

Please let us know how we can pray by submitting a Prayer Request online (link below). Prayer requests are emailed to Pastor Devon once submitted.
Prayer Request
Lectio Divina for January 15, 2024All are welcome to join us as we continue to engage in the spiritual practice of Lectio Divina together as a community. Maybe you can add Lectio to your New Year’s resolution list 😉

This Week’s Scripture: Proverbs 29:18

We will gather via Zoom for an intentional time of listening, reflecting, responding, and resting in the Word of God. We will meet on Mondays from 8-9am. 

Here are some details about Lectio Divina. 

Lectio Divina, literally meaning “divine reading,” is an ancient practice of praying the Scriptures. During Lectio Divina, the person listens to the text of the Bible with the “ear of the heart,” as if he or she is in conversation with God, and God is suggesting the topics for discussion.

There are four movements for Lectio Divina: 
1. Lectio: (Listening to the Word of God or Reading God’s Word)
2. Meditation: (Reflecting on the Word of God)
3. Oratio: (Responding to the Word of God)
4. Contemplatio: (Resting in the Word of God)

Here is the Zoom Link: 
Join Zoom Meeting: Click HERE 

Meeting ID: 878 3208 0869
Passcode: 396015
+16465588656,,87832080869#,,,,*396015# US (New York)
Facebook for Wintergarden Presbyterian ChurchFacebook for the Garden of Eatin’ at Wintergarden Presbyterian Church