Pastor Ed’s Letter for February 21, 2024

Pastor Ed and Jane

Congregants, Friends & Members:

 Grace and peace to you from Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

 The stay in New York has been longer than expected. Your prayers during this time have been felt and appreciated.

 The visits with the doctor will continue into the unforeseen future with periodic tests, reviews, and adjustments to the treatment plan.

 I originally hoped to be back in the pulpit on Sunday, March 3. Sometimes the best laid plans are no match for medical surprises. Sadly, after much discussion with Jane, I have made the decision to step away from Lely as Pastor, effective February 29, 2024.

 While this was not an easy decision, it is the right one.

Without going into too much detail, some side effects will require an adjustment to the prescribed medications. This will necessitate a longer stay than expected. In addition, we will need to have the flexibility to visit New York and stay as needed without distraction. This is only fair to Jane and fair to you as a congregation as well.

 This saddens me for a couple of reasons. First, I have always seen the potential for growth in Lely Presbyterian Church as it relates to ministry and outreach. The growth that took place in a relatively short time was exciting and invigorating.

 Secondly, and more importantly, I need to be completely focused on Jane’s health and welfare. In the coming weeks we may need to remain in New York due to further follow ups with the doctor.

 While the original plan was to serve at least through June 30, those plans have changed. Our lives and the way we see the world has changed.

 Serving Lely Presbyterian Church has been a complete and utter joy! Seeing Lely Pres thrive, welcome new congregants, and engage the community for Christ has been so rewarding! Thank you!

 Lely elected a talented and committed Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) to lead the calling of the next pastor for the church! Please keep the PNC in your prayers as they engage in serious work to find the right person to lead the congregation into the future!

 I want to thank the Personnel Team and the Session for their constant support, prayers, and graciousness. They provided full and partial compensation throughout January and February and have been understanding and so supportive! Thank You!

 Melana Scruggs, General Presbyter for Peace River Presbytery, has been incredibly supportive and has been a tremendous resource for the Session. She has provided names for pulpit supply, moderated Session, and continues to provide incredible guidance! Thank you, Melana!!

 Finally, thanks to Kris Feldmann, Lely’s Administrative Associate. She continues to serve the church with dedication and commitment. She is a treasure to keep and the church should do all it can to provide the resources needed to do so!

 You celebrated Lely’s 50 years of work and ministry and have the laid the groundwork for the next fifty years!!! Moving forward will require risk, innovation, and trust in the Holy Spirit! You are in my prayers.

 My hope is that there will be an opportunity to have a Sunday or another appropriate time in the future to say thanks and good-bye to you in person!

 Thank you for your love and support during this difficult and worrisome time. And above all, thank you for the honor and privilege of serving you during these last three years.

 Welcome to Lely Presbyterian Church!

Welcome to Worship!

Welcome Home!

I remain a Servant of Christ…..

 Sincerely,

 Ed Brandt, Pastor

Pastor Ed’s Letter for February 14, 2024

Pastor Ed

Congregants, Friends & Members:

 Melana’s sermon hit the bullseye Sunday! Spiritual experiences don’t always happen on mountain tops or during retreats. The splendor and impact of God’s love changes hearts during least expected moments and in planned experiences.

 Serving as an Elder and Deacon is transformative for the individual who answers the call as well as for the congregation served! We lift up in prayer Vernon Bennett, who was installed as an Elder and Kathy Sell who was installed as a Deacon. Each answered a call of God to serve Lely Presbyterian Church in their respective capacity. The Elders and Deacons for Lely Presbyterian Church need your prayers as they govern the church and care for the congregants!

 A huge thanks to Cherie Millsom for spearheading the winter concert series! This past Saturday, Peter Simon tickled the ivory and presented an amazing combination of poetry and music to all attending!

 The next concert will be on Saturday, March 9 at 2:00 pm featuring Joe Hrin on Saxophone!!

 Be sure to make time for “Bread and Broth” that begins on Wednesday, February 21 at 11:00 am in Kemp Hall. This is a sacred time with a simple meal and spiritual reflection on the sacrifice of Christ!

 Rev. Dr. Tim Halverson will fill the pulpit on Sunday, February 21 and 28! Time brings a high degree of energy and dynamism to preaching and Lely is fortunate to welcome Tim to Lely!!

 While in New York, there has been a great opportunity visit other houses of worship. I have heard great preaching and also picked up some tidbits and ideas that would enhance worship at Lely. Looking forward to sharing them upon our return!

 Jane and I return to Naples on February 27 and I am looking forward to being home and back in the pulpit on Sunday, March 3! The sermon theme will be: “The Difficult Sayings of Jesus: You must be Slave of All!” based on Mark 10.35-45. This will also be Communion Sunday.

 And on this Ash Wednesday, we begin our journey to Jerusalem!! May it be a meaningful and Holy time!! Be sure to attend the 11:00 am Ash Wednesday Service today!!

 

Pastor Ed’s Letter for February 7, 2024

Pastor Ed

Congregants, Friends & Members:

The 50th Anniversary Weekend, by all accounts, was amazing!!

 Rev. Harold Brown, Pastor Emeritus; Rev. Dr. Ted Land, former Interim Pastor; Rev. Jim Kirk, former Pastor (via video); Rev. Dr. Melana Scruggs, General Presbytery; and over a hundred congregants and friends made a weekend to remember!

 And, thanks to Bonnie Kluttz and the entire planning team for attending to every single detail from name tags to programs to dinner selection to making sure all anticipated needs were met! Thank you!!!

 Jane and I know we missed a special evening and thought about you and kept you in our prayers that weekend!

 Thanks to Ted Land for leading worship, preaching, and presiding over the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper! Ted reminded us that Lely Presbyterian Church is helping people to find Jesus as they search for meaning in life.

 People are searching and looking for hope in all kinds of places. For fifty years, the congregation of Lely Presbyterian Church has helped families and individuals find peace, comfort, acceptance, forgiveness, compassion, a deeper spiritual life, a clearer understanding of Jesus, and a host of other wonderful and positive aspects of life! We are the beneficiaries of people who made this campus possible and we too have a responsibility towards the next generation of people we will never know!

 The important thing is that we know Jesus and for our Lord, we do this!

 This coming Sunday, February 11, Rev. Dr. Melana Scruggs, General Presbyter for Peace River will fill the pulpit. She has been a tremendous resource to Lely in filling the pulpit with great preachers! Thank you, Melana!

 Looking forward, Lely Presbyterian Church will observe Ash Wednesday with a service at 11:00 am in the sanctuary on Wednesday, February 14. Every Wednesday through Lent, please gather in Kemp Hall for Bread and Broth at Noontime. This will be a time of reflection, a simple meal, and spiritual fellowship!

 Jane and I plan to return to Naples around February 25 or 26. Your prayers continue to be appreciated and we are grateful for your care and love!

Welcome to Lely Presbyterian Church!

Welcome to Worship!

Welcome Home!

 

I remain a Servant of Christ…..

 

Sincerely,

 

Ed Brandt, Pastor

Pastor Ed’s Letter for January 31, 2024

Pastor Ed

Congregants, Friends & Members:

 Fifty Years Old! WOW!

 Do you remember when each of us thought of 50 as old?

 We are so grateful for the vision of Moorings Presbyterian Church.

 That congregation saw the growth taking place in the East Naples area and took the leap of faith to plant a congregation on St. Andrews Boulevard.

 That foresight paid off! Lely Presbyterian became a church home for seasonal and year-round residents. Children gathered for Sunday School; adults assembled to sing; preachers stood in the pulpit and preached; congregants gathered on Sundays; and numerous memorable personalities populated the parish on St. Andrews Boulevard!

 Bonnie Kluttz and her team have worked tirelessly to ensure a stellar celebration commemorating 50 years of ministry! You will find a video below guesstimating sermons, attendees, finances, and ministries for Lely Presbyterian Church!

 I have one favor to ask: Please take lots of pictures on Saturday at the dinner and on Sunday during the 50th Worship Celebration! Text the pics to 302-932-9861.

 Be sure to thank Bonnie and her team! And also be sure to express your appreciation to Kris in the office for how she has played all utility in-fielder catching all requests that came her way!

 The strength of any organization are the people. The people make the church….not the building! The strength of Lely are the people and Lely Presbyterian Church is blessed beyond measure by the many different and talented folks who comprise the congregation!

 Have a fabulous dinner and an inspiring worship service commemorating 50 years of ministry! You are in our prayers and we are grateful for your concern and prayers!!

 Welcome to Lely Presbyterian Church!

Welcome to Worship!

Welcome Home!

I remain a Servant of Christ…..

 Sincerely,

Ed Brandt, Pastor

Breaking News! New Music Director at LPC

We are delighted to announce that Carl Granieri, whom many of you saw leading the concert at Lely on January 6, has agreed to step in as our Music Director for as long as it takes for us to find a permanent one.

He is a most accomplished musician, and a deeply committed Christian, who loves to serve churches when and where he can.

He loves to nurture musical talent in others and can’t wait to meet with our choir this week and work with them to sustain the wonderful progress they have made under Bob & Glenn.

Pastor Ed’s Letter for January 17, 2024

Pastor Ed

Congregants, Friends & Members:

A huge thanks to Rev. Dr. Randy Moody for the inspiring sermon on Sunday! God is full of surprises!!! And life is also full of surprises! Because of what God does for us through Jesus Christ, I echo the words of Paul in Philippians:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4.6-7).

Day to day living can easily be influenced and affected by anxiety. Jesus told us to not worry about tomorrow. Life tosses so many things into the air and we have no idea where they might land.

Life seems to be a constant wandering in the wilderness with glimpses or periods of enjoying the promised land of the day. And no matter where the travels of life take us, God is guiding us through valleys and onto mountain tops; through the foliage of fear to the highlands of hope!

Sunday, Lely said thank you and good-bye to Bob and Glenn who brought a world-class approach to music ministry. Their dedication and love of the Lord was evident as they ministered to each of us through music in worship. Our prayers are with them as they enjoy a welcomed retirement on the Jersey shore!!

Sunday, January 21, Lely welcomes Carl Granieri as interim Music Director as well as Tim Halverson to the pulpit for the 10:00 am service! Lely is grateful to Rev. Melana Scruggs for assisting in arranging pulpit supply! And Lely’s Personnel Team has been working tirelessly to ensure the right people are in the right place from Sunday to Sunday!

Finally, be sure to register for the 50th Anniversary Dinner scheduled for Saturday, February 3 at New Hope Ministries on Davis Blvd., beginning at 4:00 pm. The Anniversary team, led by Bonnie Kluttz, is working overtime to ensure a memorable evening!! And then be sure to attend the 50th Anniversary Worship Service on Sunday, February 4th at 10:00 am!!

Click Here to Register for the 50th Anniversary Dinner

Your prayers continue to be appreciated as we meet with doctors formulate the treatment plan for Jane! Please know Jane and I are grateful for your support!

Welcome to Lely Presbyterian Church!

Welcome to Worship!

Welcome Home!

I remain a Servant of Christ…..

Sincerely,

Ed Brandt, Pastor

 

Click Here to Pics from Last Sunday

This Week in Photos January 11 2024

Pastor Ed’s letter for January 10, 2024

Pastor Ed

Dear Congregants, Friends, and Guests:

A huge thanks to Bonnie Hartley and Kerry Stallard for leading the worship service on Sunday.

The decision to move to one service at 10:00 am was a tremendous help to the leadership team conducting the service. The service will continue at 10:00 am.

Thanks for the prayers and understanding the need to travel to New York early to avoid any possible weather delays.

Jane and I are not sure of how long we may be in the Big Apple. Meetings and tests are scheduled for this week and next. Your prayers are greatly appreciated.

Bob and Glenn’s last Sunday with Lely will be on Sunday, January 14. Their leadership, expertise, commitment, and love of the Lord has been evident from day one! From the weekly rehearsals to the special cantatas and arrangements for instrumentalists added a fine touch to Lely’s music program. Thank you Bob and Glenn!!

A huge thanks also to Jeff Witte presenting the Minute for Mission regarding the Stewardship Campaign as well as thanks to Dayle and Mike DeAngelo for “Why They Love Lely!” Click Here to Download the PPT Presentation from Sunday’s Town Hall

You will find a video below of the Year In Review for Lely Presbyterian Church!! Enjoy!!!

Welcome to Lely…..Welcome Home….You Belong Here!!

I remain a Servant of Christ….

Sincerely,

Pastor Ed

Pastor Ed’s Letter for January 1, 2024

Pastor Ed

Happy New Year and Hello 2024!!

Bonnie Kluttz did a great job reminding all of us of the upcoming 50th Anniversary Dinner, planned for Saturday, February 3, 2024 from 4:00-8:00 pm at New Hope Ministries! Tickets are $25 pp and you can either send a check to the church office or go to Click Here to Register and Pay Online.

Seeing previous clergy who served Lely Pres such as Ted Land or Harold Brown and hopefully Jim Kirk will be joyous and bring back many wonderful memories!

A huge thanks to Bonnie Hartley for baking the Sticky Buns for Sticky Bun Sunday!!! They were delicious and well appreciated!! Many hands do a lot of work every weekend to ensure coffee hour and refreshments! Thanks to all who arrive early, stay late, and make sure coffee is plentiful!!

Saturday, January 6 kicks off the Winter Concert Series at 2:00 pm with Carl Granieri with Voyces in Concert. Carl was blessed blessed to be Musical Director for several of Atlantic City’s biggest Casino Hotels over a 40 year career. Playing piano and conducting his 40-piece CGO Superstar Orchestra at the Sands, The Showboat, Caesars, Bally and Harrah’s Casinos he backed a “who’s who” of classic stars including Tony Bennett, Bob Hope, Julio Iglesias, Rod Stewart, Aretha Franklin, Natalie Cole, Diana Ross, Johnny Mathis, Mannheim Steamroller and many others. VOYCES is a CGO “Pay it Forward” ensemble showcasing young singers in 5-part close harmony. YOU WILL WANT TO SEE THIS!!

Thanks to Cherie Millsom for working so hard to put the series together!!

And before the concert, please gather on Friday morning, January 5 at 11:00 am to take down the Christmas decorations! Lunch will be provided!!

Sunday’s sermon focused on hope and hope is needed as we cross the threshold into 2024!! We are a people of hope because of what God has done through Jesus Christ!!!

Friendlies Luncheon is January 4, at 12 Noon at KC’s Parrot 41 located at 3340 Tamiami Trail East. Contact Bonnie Kluttz at 239-777-8978 for additional information

Your prayers are appreciated as Jane and I return to New York January 8-20, 2024 for follow up tests and consults. The guest speaker for January 21 will be Rev. Tim Halverson. You got me in the pulpit on January 7!!!

Welcome to Lely…..Welcome Home….You Belong Here!!

I remain a Servant of Christ….

 

Sincerely,

Pastor Ed