Monthly Newsletter

Monthly Newsletter

Find out what is going on at Second in the monthly newsletter available online or throughout the church building.

Advent Sermon Series
Sunday, December 16 - "Enter the Story"

Change Your Christmas

Advent 2018 Sermon Series

This December at Second, you are invited to join us on a journey of faith and discovery. The Season of Advent is an annual opportunity to align our priorities with God’s vision, to prepare ourselves to the joy and wonder of Christmas, and to feel again the thrill of hope and new possibility. Observing Advent changes the way we celebrate Christmas. This year, worship with us each Sunday as we focus on the ancient stories that continue to inspire and transform us!

"Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word..." (Luke 2:29)

On this first Sunday of Advent, we encountered two faithful souls who knew what it meant to wait. Simeon and Anna teach us to lean into this season of expectation and to patiently prepare for God’s moment of arrival.


    “And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?”   (Luke 3:10) 

    Children sing at the 9:30 and 11 a.m. services.

    On this second Sunday of Advent, we are cast into the desert with John the Baptist, where we hear a message of repentance and change. John creates a sense of urgency in our waiting and asks us to consider a hard-hitting question: what must change in my life in order to reflect God’s will and way? This Sunday, our children’s choir and handbell ensemble lead us in music along with the sanctuary choir at 9:30 and 11:00. Join us on the journey!
  • DECEMBER 16 (CHRISTMAS MUSIC SUNDAY) - “Enter the Story”

    “Then Mary said, ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.’”  (Luke 1:38)

    Christmas Music Sunday is at 9:30 & 11:15 a.m. services

    On this third Sunday of Advent, we remember God’s invitation to Mary to give life the Word of God. Mary said yes! Which invitations is God inviting us to consider and how can we say yes to God? This is also our annual Christmas Music Sunday, with services at 9:30 and 11:15 a.m. led by our Sanctuary Choir and Festival Orchestra along with Dr. John Allegar on the organ, with Dr. Michelle Louer conducting. It will be a day of celebration of the season, and you’ll want to arrive early to get a seat and to hear the orchestral prelude, which will begin fifteen minutes before the start of each service. Come and worship with gladness and song!
  • DECEMBER 23 - “Worship Fully”
    “The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.”  (Luke 2:20)
  • DECEMBER 30  (8:15 & 10 a.m. services) “Christmas and the Cross”
    Dr. Jim Riley Preaching

Christmas Joy Special Offerings
A Perfect Gift this Advent Season

Christmas Joy Special Offerings

A Perfect Gift this Advent Season

In the lead up to Christmas, many of us spend time in search of the perfect gift — the gift that communicates to friends and family how much we know and love them. We search our memories for indications of what gift might cause the faces of our loved ones to light up. We scour the stores and shops, hoping to come across the thing that will communicate a depth of love that our words cannot.

As important as gifts to loved ones are, we have an opportunity to give gifts that help many people we do not know through the Christmas Joy Offering. These gifts in particular draw us back to the manger and God’s perfect gift to us — Jesus Christ.

Jesus came to live among us, bringing light into darkness, and reconciliation to God and to one another. A perfect gift from a gracious God.

During this Christmas and Advent Season, we celebrate leadership; past, present and future through support of the Christmas Joy Offering. We do so because church leaders greatly impact our lives of faith, walking with us down the path to be more like Jesus. We want those church leaders and their families who find themselves grappling with a critical financial need to have the resources they need which are provided through the Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions. We also support the offering to help our future leaders in the church and world, like those educated at our Presbyterian-related schools and colleges equipping communities of color. Supporting these students helps the whole church develop leaders who reflect the wideness of God’s intended diversity.

For those supported through the Christmas Joy Offering, this help is truly a gift from above.  May our gifts, and the leaders who receive them, point us always to the truth of the one whose birth we celebrate, Jesus Christ — the truly perfect gift.

To learn more about the Christmas Joy Offering, please visit:

Theology on Tap
Tuesday, December 18

Theology on Tap

A Deeper Conversation About Faith, hosted by Young Adults

Theology on Tap is hosted by Young Adults, but is for any person who wants to attend. We meet (generally) the fourth Tuesday of the month for conversation and catch up, as well as for deep conversations about theological topics. Some of our previous topics have centered around the Bible, resurrection, grief, and faith. The speakers vary on a month by month basis. There are alcoholic and non-alcoholic options, as well as snack foods. 

All are welcome to come and share in the rich conversation. 

December 18: Hope
Speaker: David Chaddock

If you have any questions please feel free to contact Rev. Meagan Findeiss or Rev. Owen Gray

January 22: Compassion
Brian Shivers

February 26: Justice
Lake Fellows

March 26: Mercy and Forgiveness

April 23: Love
David Berry

May 28: Wisdom
Chris Henry

Bethlehem Labyrinth
Wednesday, December 19 - Sunday, December 23

Bethlehem Labyrinth


Here is place to pause in quiet prayer and contemplate the unfolding mystery of God’s incarnational love. The path before you, the candlelight around you, the soft music floating through the air will give you space away from the rush of the season to listen to God’s still small voice and be renewed. Interactive prayer stations around the labyrinth make this a perfect place for children to engage the story.




Christmas Eve Services
Monday, December 24

Christmas Eve Worship Services

Monday, December 24

Join us for one of our four services. If you can't make it in person, join us online! All services will be live streamed.
  • 4 p.m., Children and Family Service, led by the Children of Second
    Dawn Waddell, organ
  • 7 p.m., Service of Lessons, Candles and Carols, led by the Youth of Second 
    Dawn Waddell, organ; Second Winds Ensemble, Rick and Candi Granlund, directors
  • 9 p.m., Service of Lessons and Carols, Rev. Chris Henry preaching
    Sanctuary Choir, Festival Brass & Organ
    Prelude begins at 8:40 p.m.
  • 11 p.m., Service of Lesson and Carols with Holy Communion, Rev. Chris Henry preaching
    Sanctuary Choir, Festival Brass & Organ
    Prelude begins at 10:40 p.m.

Glimpses of God
A Congregational Art Project
Through February 1

Glimpses of God

A Congregational Art Project


God’s presence and love emanate from every living creature and every corner of the world. We asked our congregation, “Where do you see God?,” and this exhibit curates those responses. Visit and add to this interactive exhibit.

Making a Year End Gift

Making a Year End Gift

Contribute Now

Your year-end contribution to the church can take the form of cash, check, or stock. For your convenience, you can contribute online through You may also be eligible to make a Qualified Charitable Contribution directly from your IRA. 

To be tax deductible for 2018, there are several deadlines to keep in mind. Mailed contributions must be post marked on or before December 31. If hand-delivered, we must receive the gift in the church office by Friday, December 29. Stocks need to be contributed by December 24 to insure the transaction is finalized by the December 31.

This may also be a good time to establish or review your estate plans. Please contact Rev. John Koppitch for information about making a bequest to the church.

Please check with your financial and/or tax adviser before making any final decisions.

Unfolding the Mystery of… Church Finances

Actually, there is no mystery to church finances. Eighty-five percent of our $4.5 million General Fund budget comes from member contributions. And what is that money used for?

At Second Presbyterian Church, nearly everything we will see, hear, and experience during the Advent/Christmas/Epiphany seasons is supported in whole, or in part, by General Fund contributions. Worship services, music programs, children and youth activities, mission outreach, and fellowship opportunities; heating expenses, snow removal, building maintenance, and building security; the salaries of all who plan, set-up, clean-up, tear down and implement our holiday events (including our pastors, musicians, administrative and support staff, and the Facilities team).

Even the Website you are visiting right now!

Giving to the General Fund is the single-most effective way to support our church financially because these contributions fund all of our ministries of worship, mission, discipleship and fellowship. Every gift matters. Every contribution counts – no matter the size. You can also help us plan for next year’s ministries by making a pledge of financial support for 2019. Go to

Rewired Men's Event
Friday & Saturday, February 1 & 2


An Event for Men presented by Men@Second


Register Now

Most of us have wondered at one time, will I ever be “good” enough?

Men often get caught in this performance trap. We might think that God wants us to live trying always to be good enough. But true Christianity is not about acting good.

Rewired is an event for men to move away from a life of performance and live free to be the men God has created them to be.

Cost of event including pizza, snacks, and continental breakfast $35.

Rehm Guild Luncheon
Tuesday, March 26, Noon

Rehm Guild Luncheon


Disaster Response
Speaker: Allison Curts, Indiana Conference of the United Methodist Church

Please make a reservation no later than noon on the Thursday before to Pat Slichenmyer or by calling (317) 873-4161. 

Tuesday, April  23
Speaker: Karen Archbold, Director and Composer
Children’s Christian  Music
Please make a reservation no later than noon on the Thursday before to Pat Slichenmyer or by calling (317) 873-4161. 

Sundays, 10:30 a.m.

Meet us in McFarland Hall.


Parents visit; children gather. Join hands in service to God and BE SECOND to the world.

Comfy corner seating at low tables offer child forward mission activities and parent gathering spots during the 10:30-11 a.m. morning fellowship time.

Please join us!

All-Church Gathering
Sunday, January 27


Register for Lunch

Rev. Christopher Henry will present a "State of the Church Address" and will have a running slideshow of pictures during the presentation.

Lunch Reservations:  $12 Adults,  $6 Grade 6-12, $4 age 4 to grade 5, free under 3.
Deadline to register: Monday, January 21 at noon

Sundays, 5 p.m.
McFarland Hall
Begins January 6, 2019


Dear Friends,

Worship is at the heart of everything we do at Second Presbyterian Church—the place where we gather in community, offer our praise and thanks to God, hear and share the gospel message, and receive nourishment and strength for the journey of faith. I am grateful for the gift of worship that equips, inspires, and sends us as disciples of Jesus Christ.

It is a joy for me to share plans for a new Sunday evening worship experience at Second Presbyterian Church. Beginning on Epiphany, January 6, 2019, you are invited to "Together@5", a new worship service held in McFarland Hall on Sundays at 5:00 p.m.

Together@5 will be relaxed in style, lively in spirit, and relational from start to finish. I look forward to sharing more details about Together@5 as January draws nearer.

As we build enthusiasm and make plans for this new worship experience, we want to be good and faithful stewards of our resources. The discernment process which resulted in a vision for Together@5 also led us to decide to bring our other Sunday evening worships services to a close. Families@Five will hold its final service in the chapel on November 25th. Second@Six will hold its final service in the Sanctuary on November 11th. Both have provided wonderfully meaningful worship for many years, and in the weeks ahead we will give thanks and celebrate the good gifts received and shared through the communities built in those services.

Together@5 will, in many ways, highlight the best parts of Second's past Sunday evening services. The space of McFarland Hall will also give us freedom to worship in completely new ways. I hope you will join me at 5:00 on January 6 when we, as a community of faith, begin this new thing together.

With peace and grace,

Chris Henry

CenterPoint Renovation

CenterPoint Renovation

On Monday, December 17, we will begin the renovation of CenterPoint, and Rooms 354, 355, and 356. During this renovation all of the HVAC will be upgraded. Anticipated completion is March 4, 2019. This temporary inconvenience will provide opportunities for growth for CenterPoint.

Rev. Christopher Henry
Senior Pastor

Rev. Christopher Henry

Rev. Christopher Henry
Senior Pastor


Below is a playlist of short videos to help you get to know Chris and his family a little better:

Rev. Chris Henry came to Second from Shallowford Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, where he served as Senior Pastor for seven years. He is a graduate of Duke University (B.A. in Religion) and Columbia Theological Seminary (M.Div.). He has served the wider church in a variety of capacities, currently serving as a member of Columbia Seminary’s board of trustees, the advisory board of NEXT Church, and on the board of the Alliance for Christian Media.

Chris has a passion for preaching that both inspires and challenges all to faithful living in complex times. He believes that churches have the capacity and the mandate to be places of transformation in the lives of individuals, the surrounding community and the world.

His wife, Rev. Sara Hayden, has served since 2014 as Ministry Associate for the 1001 New Worshipping Communities movement of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The couple has two sons, Samuel and Benjamin.

Q&A with Chris Henry

1. Why are you considering the call to come to Second?

Because I truly believe that God is calling us to join in ministry together. While I have never experienced God’s call as a flash of lightning or thundering voice from the heavens, I believe God does speak to us in palpable ways. For me, this has most often come in conversations with those who know and love me best and in the subtle but steady form of experiences that point the way forward. Since last summer, I have seen and heard God’s call to consider this unique ministry opportunity.

2. What intrigues you about our congregation? What opportunities most excite you?

Second Presbyterian Church is, without a doubt, a leading congregation of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and of mainline Protestantism. I am intrigued and inspired by the incredible history of this congregation and its vital role in shaping the future of faith in our nation. The vision and leadership capacity of Second Presbyterian can be a catalyst for renewal both within this congregation and far beyond. I am also excited for opportunities to engage in meaningful dialogue and action on the issues that face Indianapolis and the wider culture. I believe that God has gifted this church in such a wide variety of ways, and I believe that God’s gifts always come with a call to use them in the service of others.

3. What leadership positions have you held?

In addition to serving as senior pastor of a growing congregation for the last seven years, I have had the opportunity to provide leadership to the Presbytery of Greater Atlanta through its Coordinating Council and Examinations Commission. I have also enjoyed serving our denomination and am now a member of the Board of Trustees at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia and on the Advisory Board of the NEXT Church movement.

4. What would you say have been your greatest accomplishments at your current church?

The Shallowford congregation has really experienced remarkable growth over the last seven years. We have increased from a membership of 717 to a membership of 1,048 in that time, and our annual budget has increased by 61%. Among those who have joined the Shallowford congregation in that time, many are young families or have young children. This has contributed to a sense of renewed energy and vitality in the church. Still, I think perhaps the greatest accomplishment of our time together has been the genuine sense of intergenerational community that has emerged. I love serving a church with active members at every stage of life, and particularly enjoy watching relationships form among those representing different life stages. Shallowford has grown deeper and wider in our time together.

5. What is your favorite thing about being a pastor?

Baptisms! Also, the amazing privilege of walking with people and communities through every joy and sorrow that life can bring, and representing the presence of God with them in each moment. I continue to be astounded that God has called me to serve in this way. Astounded, and grateful.

6. Why did you feel called to ministry?

Church has always been home for me. When I was a freshman at Duke University, I began to sense that God was calling me into ministry. I considered whether that might be mission work, academic pursuits, or a ministry of advocacy. And then, I felt called back home to the place where my call was formed. In the intervening years, I had fallen in love with the power of the spoken word. And so, I discovered the gift of preaching and the joy of serving congregations…it was a perfect fit!

7. What appeals to you about being part of PC(USA)?

The PC(USA) is my theological home because it has shaped my faith and my life. I was born nine months before reunification, and so I am roughly as old as the denomination, which seems fitting. I love being part of a denomination that takes the Bible seriously, that honors different and even divergent perspectives, that believes God calls us to live faithfully, and that trusts in God’s sovereign love.

8. What is your favorite Bible passage?

Honestly, it depends on the situation! For me, the letters of Paul have been formative and instructive. I am especially drawn to his letter to the Romans. I am challenged by his instruction at the end of the letter, Romans 15:7, “Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.” What would it mean to welcome others just as Christ has welcomed us?! How might that bring glory to God?

9. Tell us about your family.

I grew up as the second of four children and am the son of a Presbyterian minister and a clinical psychologist. Since August of 2008, I have been married to Rev. Sara Hayden, who is on our denomination’s staff as part of the 1001 New Worshipping Communities movement. We have two sons—Samuel is four and Benjamin is one. We are loving the energy of two young sons and missing some of the sleep that once came so easily!

10. What do you enjoy in your free time?

A few years ago, I decided to become a runner. I hated it for three months, then I fell in love with it. Now, I try to carve out time for running, which is good for body, mind and spirit. I love watching college basketball (mostly Duke basketball), eating out with friends and reading a good biography or novel.

11. What is your favorite food?

Is coffee a food? If so, I’ll go with that. If not, I would say that Indian cuisine is a current favorite—I love the spices and preparation methods of good south Asian food.

12. Who are your favorite sports teams?

I was fortunate enough to experience a men’s national basketball championship my freshmen year at Duke. As one who had been a fan since I was seven years old, that was a highlight of my college years. I still try to get back for a game or two each year. While I follow professional sports, my allegiance is somewhat thin. I do like the Carolina Panthers (growing up in NC) and the St. Louis Cardinals (where my brother lives)…but I guess I should say Colts and Pacers, right?

Letter from Rev. Chris Henry:

Dear Friends,
Though we have not yet had the opportunity to meet, you have been in my heart and mind for several months now. I am filled with hope and anticipation for the journey that is ahead of us, and I am deeply honored to be nominated to serve as your next Senior Pastor. In conversation with friends, mentors, and colleagues around the nation and particularly in exploring this potential call with the faithful and gifted members of your Pastoral Nominating Committee, my vision of Second Presbyterian Church has grown in clarity and depth. I know that to serve as your pastor means building on an extraordinary foundation of Christian witness, worship, mission, and discipleship. I know that to join in your ministry means becoming part of one of our nation’s most vibrant and gifted congregations. Your contributions to the city of Indianapolis, the Presbyterian Church (USA), and the Christian Church around the world, are truly remarkable. I am humbled and I am grateful.

I have been deeply blessed by the privilege of serving for seven years as Senior Pastor of Shallowford Presbyterian Church in Atlanta. We have experienced wonderful growth and have seen the power of God at work in broad and deep ways among us. I continue to find my ministry at Shallowford both rewarding and challenging, and the congregation has been a community of grace for our family. Still, from my first conversation with your PNC co-chairs, I could sense that God’s Spirit was on the move. With the eyes of my heart, I could see the possibilities ahead. Since that time, you have not been far from my mind or my prayers. As others came and went, this potential call remained like a steady drumbeat that began to sound like God’s own voice. I am convinced that God was, and is, calling me to Second Presbyterian Church.

My partner in this journey of life and ministry, and the most spiritually-centered person I know, is Sara Hayden. We will celebrate our tenth anniversary in August. The greatest joy of our life together is the gift of being parents to Samuel and Benjamin. Sam is a wise and kind four-year-old who loves to be exploring outside or listening to a good story. Ben, who turned one on March 10, is on the verge of walking and loves to follow his big brother around. We join you as a family and look forward to making Second our church home.

From my earliest memories to my most recent worship experience, church has been the place where I have met God. In congregations of faithful believers who gather regularly to be sustained and sent out, I have witnessed the risen Christ. In strangers who become sisters and brothers, I have seen the Spirit weave the fabric of community together in profound ways. In the power of sacred words read and shared, I have come to believe in a living God who is still speaking. My prayer is that our ministry together will be a testimony to God’s grace at work in the world. I can’t wait to get started!

With gratitude and joy,

Pastoral Nominating Committee: Karen Buttrey, Co-Chair, Jerry Hallett, Co-Chair
Beth Bedwell, Carolyn Dederer, Bob Getts, Shadreck Kamwendo, Bud Melton, Eric Mercer, Anne Nobles,
Bill Sando, Kristine Seufert and Cindy Swider

Who is Chris Henry?

I cannot think of a greater blessing for Second Presbyterian church than to have Chris Henry step into the role of your soon-to-be Senior Pastor. Your storied congregation will soon discover that you have called one of the most gifted Christian leaders of this generation. Chris is a rare combination of high intellect and warm-heartedness. He preaches a message that challenges the mind, nourishes the spirit, and encourages discipleship. He also has a swell sense of humor and genuinely enjoys every aspect of ministry. He is beloved by centenarians, babies in the nursery and everyone else in between. He loves them all right back.

Chris and I have known one another since he came to work as seminary intern at a church I served as pastor in Atlanta. The congregation immediately fell in love with him. When he graduated from seminary (at the top of his class), he was ordained as our Associate Pastor, a job he fulfilled as if he already had twenty years of experience under his belt. He was a great colleague from the start. After he became pastor of his own congregation in Atlanta, his tenure there was soon marked by strong numerical and spiritual growth on the part of the membership, a flourishing children and youth program, and broad, effective outreach into the community.

You will love Chris and his wife Sara Hayden, an especially gifted minister herself who knows more about new church development than anyone else around. Their family is filled with love and delight, and their splendid little boys, Samuel and Ben, will soon steal your hearts.

All of this is to say that the Second Presbyterian Pastoral Search Committee has found for you a genuine treasure. I have no doubt that Chris will lead you well into a new tomorrow and a deeper life in Christ.

To God be the glory!

Rev. Dr. Joanna M. Adams 
Pastor Emerita, Morningside Presbyterian Church, Atlanta, GA

I am thrilled that Chris will be the next pastoral leader for Second Presbyterian Church. I have always found Chris to be a person of high integrity and humility. He is an excellent leader who is authentically himself both in and out of the pulpit. I look forward to what happens in the next season of Second Presbyterian Church’s life.

Rev. Shannon Johnson Kershner
Pastor, Fourth Presbyterian Church, Chicago, IL

From the day I met Chris Henry as a freshman at Duke, I knew that God had given us someone very special. As a student, Chris always took the most demanding courses and pushed himself to prepare as best he could, because of his great respect for the mission of Jesus Christ and the part he was to play in that mission.

After watching him thrive in seminary, I got to see Chris dive into pastoral leadership. Testing himself in a variety of church situations, Chris showed what good judgment God had used in calling and equipping someone like Chris to lead the church.

And now Chris has been called to one of the grand congregations in his denomination. Chris Henry is just the right person to lead Second Presbyterian into the future. Hey, Second Pres, hold on to your hats. With Chris Henry as your pastor, you will end up miles from here!

Will Willimon
Former Dean, Duke University Chapel, United Methodist Bishop, Professor of the Practice of Christian Ministry, Duke University