Mountain Shadows Introduces On-Line Giving

Now you can give to the church directly from this Website! No more check writing or bringing cash for the offering plate!

See the BIG RED “Give >>> button on the Home Page. Just click on it!

You will be taken to a donation page. Enter your offering amount for your selected fund directing where the offering should be used; then enter your bank or credit card information and you’re done.
It’s convenient and improves efficiency for yourself and the church-truly a Win-Win!
In addition, you can create an account with a password to save your giving information. Offerings for all amounts are accepted beginning at $5.00. Your offerings can be set up as a one-time, weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.
Try it- it’s easy, you’ll be surprised.
The Finance, Stewardship Teams recommend that you consider establishing an automatic donation account.

No Means No!

No Means No!

No in-person gatherings and no off-campus meetings of any kind in the church's name are allowed to take place during the continuing church closure period. This is a mandate, faithfully and firmly determined by the Session of Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church, for the protection and safety of God's people. No exceptions are allowed. None. No in-person Home Communion visits, no in-person spiritual care visits, no in-person Ministry Team meetings, no Mission-related outings, no face-to-face encounters of any kind are allowed to take place in the church's name through at least the month of August, 2020. The COVID-19 disease is on the rise. It is deadly. Our congregation is at high risk for the disease. Please, for the love of God and your neighbor, take this seriously. No means no.

Faithful Allies Address Racism Juneteenth (June 19)

Faithful Allies Addressing Racism: Juneteenth (June 19) 2020 on Zoom

Facilitator: Pastor Rachel Srubas Report by Therese M. Griffin

On June 19th Mounatin Shadows presbyterian Chruch congregants had a prayerful morning, listening to our Lord, and each other.

They read articles and a poem by MSPC Church member, Barbara Gray. They reflected and shared as they discerned: how is God calling us to respond to systemic racism and dismantle white privilege?

How could I have white privilege? I once worked in a factory. Oh, I had the opportunity of saying, "Twenty-one, white, and free." As a young adult, I was naive because I thought anyone could say that, simply adding their own skin tone to the statement. Not true. I had no idea that the term “white privilege” refers to the unearned advantages that are enjoyed by some of us at the expense of others.

Our Reflective Questions included these:

Are you being called to organize the next steps to dismantle white supremacy?
Are you being called to join an organized antiracist effort?
What had your faith got to do with the next steps you'll take?
What has your church got to do with it?

Top Row: Rachel Srubas, Therese Griffin, Charmaine Piane Dame, Barbara Gray, Madeline Bosma
2nd Row: Jayne Raffety, Elizabeth Houle, Dennis Nelson, Denise Edwards, Mary Ann Bulter
3rd Row: Laura Carey, Kathy Moyer, Ginny & Harvey Durand, Dorothy Grimm, Karen Thomas
4th Row: Suzie Phelps, Joy Lewis & Chuck Sherman, Shirin McArthur, Jospeh Panessidi, Nan Nasser



Worship Service Videos

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 Click Here > for Recorded ZOOM Sunday Worship Service March 7, 2021

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Online Worship and Communion in Real Time Sunday, October 4, 2020

Click Here > Worship Service September 27, 2020

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The YAV's Have Arrived!

The YAVs Have Arrived! Volunteers in Tucson

Six young women have arrived in Tucson to begin a year as Young Adult Volunteers (YAV’s), in an ecumenical faith based period of service provided by Presbyterian Church (PCUSA).  Under the auspices of Presbytery de Cristo the women will work with 6 different area agencies, addressing the root causes of poverty.  These volunteers are between the ages of 19-30 and go through a process of applications and interviews to be selected for this program.

Emma will work with The Inn, a short-term hospitality ministry that hosts asylum seekers en route to their sponsors in other parts of the USA.  Haley will take part in the Community Home Repair Projects of AZ.  Katie is serving at Keep Tucson Together, a free immigration legal clinic.  Laura is working with the same project as Haley.

Two women who were not able to attend a recent visit to Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church are serving a border ministry in Agua Prieta, Mexico as support to Primavera Foundation which provides pathways out of poverty.

Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church in North Tucson Catalina will be supporting these volunteers throughout their year.  A large collection of essential items for home living was gifted to the 4 women who attended a recent service at MSPC and the church will work with  these volunteers throughout the year.

MSPC is Centered in Christ, Caring for Community.

YAVs Emma HaleyKatie Laura

2020 YAV's   Emma, Haley, Katie, Laura at MSPC sharing their experiences with congregants

New Solar System at MSPC Operational

Mountain Shadows is going GREEN! A new 12.96 KW solar system has been installed in the area just east of the Education Building.

The new system will produce electricity that exceeds our average demand. This will erase our “carbon footprint,” allowing us to care for our environment.

Over time, we will also reduce our energy costs. We will see modest energy savings over the next 15 years as the system pays for itself.

After year 15, Mountain Shadows will own the system and our energy cost savings will exceed $2,000 per year.

This system was purchased by a new Mountain Shadows member, Bruce Clark.

Bruce has a passion for using solar to reduce the use of coal and gas to produce power, which improves the air quality we breathe.

We are blessed to have Bruce as part of our congregation, and thank him for this generous gift.

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English Language Learners at Amphitheater High School “The road to college is paved with books.”

Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church volunteers continue to work with 9th, 10th, and 11th grade ELL students to accelerate reading proficiency.  Pictured above is librarian Taryn Burlison in front of the Star Wars display, one of the most popular reading topics for all students.

“Reading coaches” meet their assigned student selected by instructor Julie Faulkner in the library. After selecting a book somewhat above their reading level, they are helped one-on-one with pronunciation and comprehension. Testing occurs in class at the end of the week.

This work is critical for immigrant youngsters in order to meet challenging state standards. Hopefully they can be mainstreamed in time to graduate with their class.  Mission connector Dennis Nelson notes  ”Coaches claim their day at Amphi is the best day of the week.”


Refugee English Language Learners

As an extension of Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church’s refugee welcome family project, Dennis Nelson and five others formed the “Amphi Reading Roster” and began reading one-on-one with refugee children in grades 9 and 10.  Some of the students are just arriving in Tucson and many others are reading well below their grade level, this work is both critical and rewarding.

Volunteers spend 30 minutes with a student selected by Katherine Engel, Amphi teacher and English Language Learning  (ELL) coordinator.  We go to the school library and the student selects a book of interest.  Volunteers work with 2 students in a one-hour time frame, concentrating on pronunciation and memorizing sight words. One of our favorite phrases is “Look at my mouth as I say this word.”

A related MSPC project dubbed “Faith in Action” involved collecting children’s books for “Reading Seeds,” a Literacy Connects program. The program provides books for youngsters to select and take home.

Note you do not have to be a member of MSPC to be involved in this important project.  If you would like to read with refugee students, you are welcome.  Contact the chur

A Refugee Family Story

Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church (MSPC) in Catalina, Arizona, is centered in Christ, caring for community. With that in mind and as part of the church Mission and Outreach team, Elizabeth Houle and Dennis Nelson volunteered to help resettle a single parent refugee family of eight. Momma Sifa fled the Democratic Republic of the Congo as a teenager and later married her husband in a U.N. camp in Tanzania. All her children were born in the camp; the oldest is now seventeen. The father’s resettlement document has not yet been processed but the family remains in weekly contact with the father through face time.


There is a difference between an immigrant and a refugee. An immigrant is foreign born, a non citizen who enters the country without inspection, or arrived temporarily, overstaying the time allotted by a visa.

Refugees work with organizations to complete applications, with the intention of leaving their homeland due to severe persecution. The process takes anywhere from 18 months to a year, includes interviews, medical screening, security clearance, and the assignment of a US partner to help with relocation. Refugees can be referred by the UN, US Embassy, or a nongovernmental organization (NGO).

In August 2016, The Tucson Refugee Ministry (TRM) helped bring MSPC’S mission team together with Sifa and family. The family was placed in an apartment where they were oriented to appliances, and other ways things operated. They had food and medical benefits but needed to repay a huge travel loan. There is limited cash assistance, bus passes, a work permit and now a green card for Sifa, plus the opportunity to become a citizen of the USA five years after they live and work here.

MSPC members signed on to help with this huge transition. We completed background checks, Refugee Resettlement 101 Training, and started work on TRM’s checklist for volunteers. So many things for us to learn and participate in! The apartment has 3 bedrooms, a bathroom, and a kitchen that extends into a family room. The family had to learn how to cook on the stove, do without a washer and dryer, shop for food, use the bus for transportation, and speak the English language. A welcome basket supplied by people at MSPC contained all kinds of home-based items.

Our job was to help them with English, shopping and apartment living, plus an introduction to Tucson social and cultural life. Some of us even accompanied Sifa and children to medical appointments to help communicate. The children were enrolled in the local school system, daycare options were arranged as needed, and regular visits that were educational and social took place. Trips to area attractions took place, the oldest son balanced education with the need to find a job, and Mom adapted baby breast-feeding and other child rearing skills necessary to get a paying job.

Shortly after her arrival, Momma Sifa announced that she was pregnant! During what was supposed to be a late pregnancy checkup, Elizabeth found herself in the delivery room when her namesake Elizabeth came into the world. That’s a story in itself, but now U.S. Citizen Elizabeth is walking, Mom has secured a job, and the children are doing well.

We enjoyed much fun stuff with the family: Refugee Thanksgiving night at Amphitheater High School, a visit to Apple Annie’s Farm, Christmas at La Encantada and Tohono Chul Park, and much more. Last spring, Denny- now Babu (“grandpa”), took the boys to Biosphere 2. He had quite a time explaining Biosphere 1!

Our time with Sifa and family has been rewarding beyond description. To love, laugh, and be part of a young family’s life is truly a gift from God. If you wish to learn more about this program contact MSPC 520-825-7858 for more information.

Young Adult Volunteers (YAVs): a year of service for a lifetime of change

The YAV program is open to people from ages 18-30 who are ready to commit to intentional living (simple living), social justice, spiritual formation and vocational discernment. The Tucson Borderlands YAV program has been in operation since 2003, and about 60 young people have participated by serving alongside local partners such as Primavera, Community Food Bank, and House of Neighborly Service. They can even partner with Frontero de Cristo and live their year in Mexico. Presbyterian Church (USA), supporting congregations and presbyteries along with some placement agencies share the funding of the program. It costs $22,000 per student, and each participant is asked to raise $4000 for that goal.

Mountain Shadows Presbyterian Church in Catalina has supported this program for several years. Participants explore God’s calling while living as part of a Christian community in sites around the world as well as here in the US. MSPC has invited the YAVs to attend services and speak about their opportunities. A welcome basket was gifted to the most recent foursome including items typically appreciated in simple living.

Each YAV receives a regular stipend, housing, transportation assistance, and student loan repayment during the year of service. In the YAV house in Tucson there is a long dining table that originally served as a communion table at Ghost Ranch ( a retreat and education center owned in New Mexico, run by the Presbyterian Church). It was repurposed in 2012 and donated to the YAVs as a place to share meals.

An average week in the life of a YAV includes 32-36 hours a week working with the assigned local partner. Other 4-8 hour days are meant for focusing on community life. MSPC looks forward to another year of work with these dedicated people and learning of their experiences.

2020-2021 Women's Bible Study

     Presbyterian Women Horizons Bible Sudy


Into the Light by P. Lynn Miller

The 2020–2021 PW/Horizons Bible study, Into the Light: Finding Hope Through Prayers of Lament, art and text by Lynn Miller and Suggestions for Leaders by Dee Koza, revives lament as a proper theological response to the difficult situations of our world.

One of the foundational points of the study is that, in scripture, lament usually leads to hope. After crying out to God, the one who laments remembers God. And while that doesn’t fix things in the moment—the injustice, the loss, the wrong still exist—the one who laments is strengthened to face the world and to hope.

When we lament, we move from suffering to faith. In our faith there is hope. We lament in order to hope. Recovering lament may be one of the church’s most timely gifts to the world. 

This bible study begins in November. All Women are invited to attend.       

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