2019 ECSJ: Nineveh Presbyterian Church: Home of Johnny Hart’s Creative Prayer!

The 2019 East Coast Spiritual Journey continues…

It was pouring rain this morning but I took a drive out to Ninevah, about 20 miles, to attend the 9:30 am Morning Worship at Ninevah Presbyterian Church. The seed to do so was planted nearly 4 years ago while attending the Johnny Hart Memorial Christian Fellowship Breakfast on the Thursday morning preceding the 2015 Dick’s Sporting Goods Open. Hart, a cartoonist, created his biggest success B.C. in 1957 and 12 years later his caveman golfer became the logo for the PGA TOUR’s B.C. Open at En Joie Golf Course in Endicott, NY.

What drew me to Nineveh Presbyterian Church was Hart’s biblical path to receiving Jesus into one’s life on the church website (see link below) under the heading ‘Looking for a Sign from God?’

The Church, the community present, and the Service drew me in immediately on Trinity Sunday, a week after Pentecost Sunday…Faith leading to Grace… the Prayer of Confession followed by the Assurance of Pardon and the Passing of the Peace… which was folks coming out of their pews to warmly welcome me and everybody else which set the tone for the spiritual experience… Pastor Adam Demetros led a short Children’s Time with an eloquent explanation of the 3-leaf shamrock representing the Trinity—God the Father, Jesus His Son, and The Holy Spirit. Add a stem and the shamrock becomes a cross symbolizing the death and resurrection of Jesus.

With Pastor Adam Demetros; note the 'Sensational Sermons' award on the shelf. Very appropriate!

With Pastor Adam Demetros; note the ‘Sensational Sermons’ award on the shelf. Very appropriate!

Pastor Demetros’ sermon was quite moving starting with the gospel from Genesis 1:1-13… In the beginning God created… and noting the start of the Gospel of John—In the beginning was the Word… which describes the character of God as an artist, a creator… a Creator of Unity… everything has a starting point in God who created something out of nothing… something good out of a void, out of chaos… quite similar to what He does in our lives as Creator—Redeemer–Sustainer along with Jesus and The Holy Spirit.

Not only was there unity in God’s creation but also there was variety; day and night; waters and sky; land and seas; son, moon, and stars… One Earth, many creations! In the beginning we were called together because in the beginning was our One God.

Such a beautiful celebration with piano playing, choir singing and passing of the microphone to share prayers for family, friends, and strangers alike. A true Christian community indeed. As a Catholic I thought the Service ended rather abruptly with no communion and a final ‘Praise the Lord and Alleluia!’ But the fellowship continued…

May Bobby & Johnny Hart live another eternally gifted life!

May Bobby & Johnny Hart live another eternally gifted life!

After taking some pictures (imagine that!) I was inspired to pay my respects to the grave of Johnny Hart and his wife Bobby at the nearby Ninevah Presbyterian Cemetery. I will end with the Scriptures noted on their headstone first Bobby’s and then Johnny’s:

John 20:29: “Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.”

Mark 11:22: And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.


(Andy Reistetter; 6/16/19; Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

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