A Note from the Pastor


                                    Lord, bless my home this Christmas,

                                      May its foundation be God’s love;

                                         May all its beauty and charm

                                           Flow from heaven above.

                       “Bless My Home” by Helen Kitchell Evans, second verse


Ms. Evans poem presents the Christmas presents of hospitality, love, peace, and presence while circling back to Jacob’s proclamation in Genesis:  “Surely the Lord is in the place.” (Genesis 28:16)

Jacob’s words also inspired the hymn “Surely the Presence,” which you may hear played on the organ here  https://binged.it/2BWDlPh

The wonder of music is an important part of worship.  It expresses the matters of our hearts, things for which we can barely find words; it lifts us to the fringes of glory, and gives words when we cannot find a way to say things.  Music holds our memories. “In the Garden” was a favorite of many of our grandmothers, and as soon as we sing, “I come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses,..” we can almost see and hear our grandmothers’ voices.  “Because he Lives” gives us courage to face our tomorrows in difficult times. The “Doxology” and “Gloria Patri” focus our praise on our triune God.

Lyrics express our theology, and the melodies, fanfares and major and minor keys express our hearts.  

On Monday night, the Church Council approved the purchase of a new organ for our sanctuary.  It will be a Rodgers Artist 599 three manual organ in medium oak.

When Hurricane Florence passed through Surfside, water came in our organ, destroying it.  The pipes were waterlogged and the windchest was filled with gallons of water. We had the roof repaired immediately where the water entered and called the company that services our organ to come and help us know what to do.  We were hopeful that drying out the wood and some polish and tuning and everything would be alright. But that was not the case.

Original estimates to repair the organ were very, very high, mostly because we have an analogue organ and parts are hard to come by.  It is an antiquated organ, and even if we could find parts (ebay, craigslist, old organs), there was no guarantee of when we would have them and certainly no warranty.  We began to explore other options.


Our trustees asked Sherri and Chuck Boschen, Mary Moller and Linda Manning to go on field trips to hear other organs and research possibilities.   They listened, they prayed, they listened. Then, they made recommendations to the Trustees.

They recommended we purchase a new, digital organ.  They gave a range of options, from organs costing $120,000 to $71,000.  For each suggestion, they offered specs, pros and cons.

The Trustees listened and asked questions.  In the end, they opted for the Rodgers Artist 599 model.  It is new and will have a 10 year warranty on parts and 3 on labor.  Sherri, our organist, and Mary, who also plays our organ, are pleased with the quality and with the possibility this new organ offers.  It has a greater range of musical options and a better sound than our current organ.

They presented the organ choice to the Church Council, who after asking questions, voted unanimously to purchase the organ.

So you may ask:


  1. Will it use the pipes?  What will happen to the pipes?

This organ will not use the pipes as installed.  In time, if we want to, the pipes can be attached for an additional fee.  The pipes will be returned to their original places after the organ is installed for aesthetics and in anticipation of future choices.  


    2. When will it be installed?

A dedicated 20 amp electrical line is being added this week and installation will begin Monday, December 10 and will be concluded by December 12.


    3. How much will it cost?

Installed, the organ will be $77,940.00.


    4. How are we paying for this?

Mrs. Doris Shoebridge very generously bequeathed a sum of money to the church. We seek to be good stewards of her gift, and believe that she would have been glad to support worship in this way.


    5. What about insurance?

Our insurance company is not excited to pay for the organ as there is a line in our policy about wind driven rain versus regular rain.  We continue to negotiate with the company, and any money paid from the company will be returned to the Shoebridge bequest, as stated in the motion to make the purchase by the Church Council.  


    6. How can we be involved?

You may donate to the Organ Purchase!   We want to be good stewards of the Shoebridge bequest and challenge our congregation to contribute to the purchase of the organ.  You may make gifts in honor or memory of someone or you may make a Merry Christmas donation or a gift. Mark your gift: Organ Fund.  


A gift to defray the cost of the organ blesses us today and tomorrow.  



Pastor Scarlett