Presbytery Youth Council Needs You!

 

Join Youth Council!

If you are a young person in grades 9-12 (or if you know one) and you have an interest in youth and church leadership, we need you! It’s that time of year again when we are taking applications for the Presbytery Youth Council.

The Presbytery of Coastal Carolina Youth Council is a unique opportunity for 9th – 12th graders to gain (and share) valuable leadership skills, learn more about the Presbyterian Church (USA), get to know other youth from the Presbytery, and serve the church in an important and challenging way.

Our Youth Council currently plans several events and there will be youth activities happening in each community.

A few things to make note of as you apply for Youth Council:

  •  Each member is asked to serve a two year term. You may “renew” when your two year term is up, or you may rotate off after one year if necessary.
  •  All members must be present at the October Presbytery meeting where we as a council are installed.
  •  Members are asked to be present for at least two youth council events. This includes planning meetings before events. We will schedule those closer to our events.

Our Current PYC Schedule for the 2017-2018 year:

  1.  End-Of-Year Overnight (for incoming & outgoing PYC)  Friday, May 12- Saturday, May 13, 2017 at Little Chapel on the Boardwalk (Wrightsville Beach, NC)
  2. PYC Planning Retreat & Training THURSDAY, August 10 – FRIDAY, August 11, 2017 at Camp Monroe (Laurel Hill, NC)
  3.  Tentative “All-Girls Slumber Party”*  Friday, August 18 – Saturday, Aug. 19
  4. Presbytery Meeting, Saturday, October 14, 2017 in Fayetteville
  5.  Senior High Retreat,  November 18 – 20, 2017
  6.  Middle School Retreat,  March 10 – 12, 2018

If you or someone you know would be a good fit for our Youth Council, please download the application below and return it by August 1, 2017.

If you have any questions, or if you are an adult wishing to serve on the Youth Council, please contact Erin Wehrmeister, presbyccyouth@gmail.com or (910) 578-7724 .

Youth Council Application 

APPLY NOW TO BE PART OF YEAR END PLANNING EVENTS

Peacemaking Scholarship Essay 2017

Seek and pursue peace it. Proverbs 34:14

The Mozell Howie 2017 Peacemaking Scholarship for High School Seniors

The Peacemaking Committee of Coastal Carolina Presbytery
will offer two $1,000 scholarships to high school seniors enrolling in college by the fall of 2017. All essays must be received by 5 p.m. on April 25.

Here is the Printable Flyer for use in your congregation. (PDF)

Rules for Scholarship Consideration:

1. The student must be a senior in high school.
2. The student must be active in a Presbyterian Church in Coastal Carolina Presbytery.
3. The student is asked to submit an essay in response to the following question:
What do you see as the most pressing peacemaking issue of our time,
and how wil you seek to address it through your studies and beyond?
4. Essay must be typed, properly referenced, not exceed 1,000 words and include the student’s name, contact information, home church, and college they are attending.
5. All essays must be received by 5 p.m. on April 25. *Email submission is preferred.*
6. The winners will be notified and then presented with their award at a regional presbytery meeting.

Scholarship Essays must be submitted to:

Rev. Whitney Wilkinson
Cameron Presbyterian Church
P.O. Box 68
Cameron, NC 28326
or by email to
revwhitney@cameronpresbyterian.org

Questions?

Contact Whitney Wilkinson by email or at (910) 245-7901

NJ Mission Crew Helps In Lumberton

NEW JERSEY CHURCH MISSION CREW COMES TO LUMBERTON

On January 8-13, 2017, a mission work crew of seven members from Manasquan Presbyterian Church, Manasquan, New Jersey, came to show support to the citizens of Lumberton who are affected by flood damage from Hurricane Matthew.  Ages of the work crew ranged from 60 to 80 years.

They worked faithfully pulling up damaged floors, removing sheet-rock, insulation, window and door frames, and hauling debris outdoors onto large piles for collection.  They gutted four houses on the south side of Lumberton.  The tools and equipment they purchased to do their work were left with United Methodist Disaster Response to assist other relief groups on their mission trips there.

Mission Team from NJ
members from Manasquan Presbyterian Church, Manasquan, NJ at work in Lumberton, NC

The Manasquan work crew distributed appropriate donations to churches and other groups actively working on rebuilding, stocking food banks, distributing clothing and necessary items, and providing outreach to the community. They also donated knitted items and coloring materials for children.  Thanks to Bill Fury and his work crew for their dedication and faithfulness.

Dinner with Misison Team
Representatives from the Central Community and Stated Clerk, Bill Reinhold of Presbytery of Coastal Carolina honored the team with an appreciation dinner.

Thursday night before their departure, representatives from the Central Community and Stated Clerk, Bill Reinhold of Presbytery of Coastal Carolina honored them with an appreciation dinner. We are very grateful for the support we are receiving in the community.

If you would like to sponsor a mission group for recovery work or know someone who is interested, please contact: Clarence G. Page, Central Community Mission Coordinator, 910-301-1088.

Montreat 2017

The Youth of the Presbytery are headed to
Montreat Youth Conference
in 2017 for Week 6

July 30-Aug 5, 2017 (link to Montreat Page)

More information here (2 pages)

Still Spots Available — Contact Erin ASAP
Initial registration and $150 deposit is due by March 28, 2017.
Full payment and all forms due by April 1, 2017.

Montreat Youth Conference 2017 Theme

Montreat Youth Conference Leaders and Speakers:

For More information:

Erin Wehrmeister

Associate for Youth Ministries
Presbytery of Coastal Carolina, 807 West King Street,
Elizabethtown, NC 28337
Office (910)862-8300 or Mobile (910)578-7724
presbyccyouth@gmail.com

Vibrancy in the Old and Ideas for the New

The New Church Development  Committee

invites you…

To be inspired.
To dream.
To be encouraged.
To have renewed hope.

Pastors and leaders are invited to come and explore the possibilities as we discover together what it means to be a vibrant church and what the key ingredients of a vibrant church look like.

  •        Whether your church is already active and alive,
  •        Whether your church is barely staying afloat,
  •        Or whether your church is somewhere in-between…

This day-long workshop is for you and those in your church who aspire to have a deeper and richer faith journey, for those who want to believe that there is still more..

Vera White of 1001 New Worshiping Communities will be facilitating, along with the Rev.’s George and Beverly Thompson, Transformation Coaches from our own presbytery.  Together we will learn and discuss how we can bring new vibrancy to existing churches and birth new worshiping communities within our presbytery – and maybe we can even see how the two can intertwine and work together.

Our goal is to once again awaken our spiritual imaginations as we listen and discuss and learn how new vitality and vibrancy can be rekindled in our congregations.  This kind of thinking and talking takes leaders to a new level of leadership.  We want our leaders to be empowered to be able to share the vision of what the church can be!

We would love for you, and anyone in your church who you think has a heart or desire for seeing beyond what current situations say is possible, to join us to dream larger.

When:                              Saturday, February 18th, 9:00am – 3:00pm

Where:     Highland Presbyterian Church, 111 Highland Ave., Fayetteville, NC
Lunch will be on your own – with an intriguing assignment!

Pre-registration is important, please call the presbytery office at 910-862-8300 x 1

More information will be forthcoming.  For any questions you can contact Rev. Sally Henry at:  sallyahenry@me.com or call her at 910-502-1033.

Open the Printable Flyer

Middle School Retreat March 2017

Middle School Retreat March 11-12, 2017

Please join us for this year’s Middle School Retreat, March 11-12, 2017 at Camp Kirkwood. The retreat will be led by youth and adults of our Presbytery and our Presbytery Youth Council. We will have keynotes, worship, music, and fun recreation options around the camp.

The retreat begins with registration Saturday morning between 9:00-10:00am followed by a Welcome and Keynote. We will conclude after worship Sunday morning no later than 11:30 AM.

FRIDAY OPTION:
This year we are offering the option of arriving on Friday evening. The program will not officially begin until Saturday morning, but realizing some of our groups have far to travel, we offer this opportunity.

The cost is $25 extra per person (for breakfast and housing) and we ask that you not arrive before 8 PM Friday night. We will have snacks available Friday night and a gathering space available. If you want to take advantage of the Friday evening option, you must register BEFORE FEBRUARY 20th.

About Camp Kirkwood:
Camp Kirkwood consists of 195 acres of pristine nature and is just outside of Watha, North Carolina. The camp has eight cabins (with heating/ac and indoor bath facilities) which are scattered though the camp and each is capable of sleeping 8-10 persons bunk style.

Near the main lodge, where we will have keynote and meals, there is an eight-acre lake which is canoe and kayak accessible. One highlight of the lake is its breathtaking Vesper Dell which seats approximately 150 people.

Camp Address:  2015 Camp Kirkwood Rd.; Watha, NC 28478

For More information please contact:

Erin Wehrmeister (“Wear-My-Stir”) presbyccyouth@gmail.com

Office (910)862-8300 or Mobile (910)578-7724

Central Community January Gathering

Central Missional Community (CMC) Winter Gathering

Saturday, January 21, 2017
8:30 am is Registration, Meeting starts at 9am – 2:30 pm
Peace Presbyterian Church,
3203 Ramsey Street, Fayetteville, NC 28301

Pre-Registration Online here: Now to January 18, 2017
Please see the images below promoting these exciting activities
and/or open the Promotional Packet with Announcements

Meeting Packet and Agenda Click Here

Officer Training will be part of the gathering.
Contact:
Sandy Thomas, chcothomas@yahoo.com, 910-988-1369
Clarence Page ClarencePage@presbycc.org, 910-301-1088

This is considered a Presbytery meeting for members of the Central Missional Community so those sessions  unable to send a commissioner or pastors unable to attend should request an excused absence prior to January 19, 2017.  Thank you.

2017-central-winter-gathering_page_01

2017-central-winter-gathering_page_02

2017-central-winter-gathering_page_03

2017-central-winter-gathering_page_04

Open publicity packet to see remaining announcements including:
  • Invitation to join a Mass Choir for the next central meeting.
  • Information about the recipients of the morning offering (HASM, Inc. and W.H. Knuckles Elementary of Lumberton)
  • Chilli Cookoff with prize money for Missions
  • Homemade dessert Bake off with prize money for Missions
  • Confirmation Retreat Feb 3-5, Central Community offering 20 Scholarships
  • Conf on Congregational Vitality and New Church Development Saturday, February 18, 2017, 9:00am – 3:00pm in Fayetteville
  • June 2017 Central Community Gathering at MacPherson
Volunteers Needed for Doctor of Ministry Project:

8-Week Online Self-Care Seminar for Seminarians, Clergy, Pastors and Church Leaders (Begins Approximately the Week of January 23, 2017)

Please see this flyer about this project. Contact: Sandy Thomas, chcothomas@yahoo.com

This project is supported by Presbytery of Coastal Carolina’s Stated Clerk; Chair of CPM; and Chair of COM.

Officer Training 2017

2016-2017 Community Officer Training Events

Officer training is for new and returning ruling elders and deacons.  Interested church members may also attend if preregistered.

Your pre-registration is needed as we plan for handouts and food.  Register here online and bringing a check, payable to the Presbytery, for your registration.

Online registration:

To Register please click on the appropriate online registration form below.

DATES & LOCATIONS—West Community

January 7  (Saturday) POSTPONED to Jan 21
at Mt Pisgah Presbyterian in Broadway (Sanford/Lillington area)
2300 Mt. Pisgah Church Rd, Broadway, NC 27505
Register by Tuesday, Jan 17
Register for this training by Clicking Here
Registration is $12/person. Checks are preferred.tions

Central Community dates/Locations
  • January 21 as part of the Central Community Gathering in Fayetteville will be some officer training. Please see the promotional packet.
BOOKS/CALENDARS  Will NOT Be offered for sale.
  • Please order your Book of Order, Book of Confessions and Calendar through your church office or online at store.pcusa.org
  • Bring a Book or Order and a Book of Confessions with you.
    Please be sure it is dated 2013 or later.
For more information, contact a Mission Coordinator:
Central – ClarencePage@presbycc.org
West – LauraLupton@presbycc.org

If you are looking for training as a clerk of session, please check out our YouTube videos for Clerks.

Disaster Response Information

Information about how can you or your congregation assist in disaster recovery, rebuilding and response following Hurricane Matthew….

DO NOT DONATE CLOTHING
(Thank you for thinking of people but clothing is not needed at this time.)

Printable flyer for use in Congregations and Session Meetings
(this flyer was distributed at the Presbytery meeting)

FEMA Information

Any individual who has suffered loss or damages due to Hurricane Matthew is encouraged to register with FEMA for assistance online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov , by downloading the FEMA mobile app, or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). For those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), the number is also 1-800-621-3362. For people using TTY, the number is 1-800-462-7585. These toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice. Operators are standing by to assist individuals in multiple languages. The registration deadline is December 9, 2016. There are several assistance programs available for the under insured, displaced persons, and more. If in doubt, please register.

Opportunities for Volunteers

Please use www.CrisisCleanUp.org to register your work group and find ongoing work sites where your particular skills are needed and welcome.  This site helps you track volunteer hours and coordinate with other groups so that any particular site is not overloaded while another goes neglected.

Almost half of the Habitat for Humanity homes in Fayetteville were severely damaged by Hurricane Matthew’s floods Saturday. Of 154 homes built by the organization, 95 were affected and 66 are in “desperate need.” Fayetteville Area Habitat for Humanity said it needs donations and volunteers to help the homeowners rebuild. Contact Fayetteville Area Habitat for Humanity, Inc.
P. O. Box 3166 • 310 Green Street Fayetteville, NC 28302  (910) 483-0952  office@fayettevillenchabitat.org As of 10/26 more volunteers are still needed for this work with the Habitat Homes.

Many groups are needing additional “walk-in” volunteers. Please go to NCVOAD (ncvoad.org) website to learn of opportunities.
https://www.ncvoad.org/cms/opportunities#ob

Groups are calling Presbytery staff saying, “We want to send a work group on dates A to B, what church might host us for that week?” If your church is willing to host a group in a needed recovery area, please let Laura Lupton or Bill Reinhold know, we will put groups in touch with you directly.  Groups could also be hosted in a vacant rental home or similar situation.

Long term recovery needs will grow over time and more opportunities will be announced and posted here and please go to NCVOAD Site listed below.

Supplies – Materials Donations

Most helpful are gift cards and financial support. This helps the local economy and people can purchase the exact items they need for recovery.

Urgent need in Lumberton and other hard hit areas for

  • Baby wipes, Baby food, Diapers and formula
  • tooth brushes, tooth paste
  • Water and Gatorade type beverages,
  • Non-perishable food, Ready to eat meals
  • Laundry pods
  • Clean up buckets (Kits of the Heart) are in urgent demand.The “ingredients” are here: pda.pcusa.org/page/kits/ andcwskits.org/assemble-kits/emergency-cleanup-buckets/ has a handy shopping list to print out… and options on delivery/drop off.

CAUTION: Please only collect items that you KNOW ARE NEEDED (Ask) and for which you have a destination to receive the items collected. Do not just collect items that you assume are needed, call and ask first. Do not just drive somewhere and assume there will be a drop of point.

Shelter space is needed in the Robeson County Region. Apartments for rent, guest houses, etc.

Warehouse space is needed to receive deliveries of food and water and other supplies. BUT THIS IS A HUGE undertaking and not for the faint of heart. If you know of space, we may be able to locate people to manage it.

NOTE: Used Clothing donations CLOG the system, require huge amounts of storage space, ofen arrive dirty or with infestations and are not helpful except for New socks and New Underwear and diapers.

Urgent need to restock the Clean Up Buckets – this is a great congregational project:

CleanUpBucketFullLearn how to make clean up buckets at pda.pcusa.org/page/kits/

Financial Donations are needed for use in the region through these recipients:

  • Presbytery of Coastal Carolina, 807 W King Street, Elizabethtown, NC 28337 “Disaster Relief” call the office to use credit cards for donations 910-862-8300 Funds donated to Presbytery will be distributed to churches offering aid and churches that are rebuilding.
    Churches simply need to contact Gayle to request funds.
  • Presbyterian Disaster Assistance welcomes donations online at
    presbyterianmission.org/ministries/compassion-peace-justice/pda/
  • Church World Service online donations at cwsglobal.org
For Information about regional responses from all aid groups
  • ncvoad.org this website will tell you “who is doing what where”…. they also have a daily coordinating Conference Call to enable groups to speak to each other about needs, donations, drop off sites, volunteer opportunities, etc.
  • nc211.org United Way’s 211 helps individuals find help
  • Dial 211 from any phone if you do not have internet.

Communication/Coordination:

Please report/share needs, available volunteers, and available material donations to these contact persons for coordination and assistance:

News From Haiti:

The heart of Haiti beats strong following Hurricane Matthew

 Pastoral Prayers:

Pastoral prayer in storm and exile – Hurricane Matthew   pres-outlook.org/2016/10/pastoral-prayer-storm-exile-hurricane-matthew/

Call to prayer in the wake of Hurricane Matthew 
pda.pcusa.org/pda/resource/prayer-hurricane-matthew/

************************

To add to this list or update information, please send complete details to LauraLupton@presbycc.org

Last Updated: 10/31 at 2:00PM

2016 Fall Senior High Retreat

Senior High Retreat
Senior High Fall Retreat 2016

We are thrilled to open registration for our Fall Senior High Retreat, November 19-20, 2016. We will be enjoying some Sabbath time at Camp Kirkwood and sharing some group time with Rev. Whitney Fauntleroy from Chestnut Street Presbyterian in Wilmington, NC. We do have an option for groups to arrive on Friday night if it is more convenient. Please use the registration packet below to register. If you have any questions, please email or call Amy Hodges, presbyccyouth@gmail.com or 910-520-7934.

Senior High Retreat Registration

PCC Youth Medical Form

PCC PYC Covenant and Photo Release

Confessing Peace

Confessing Peace

Peace is not just a reaction to conflict and war.  Peace is the heart of the Gospel, and the heart of who we are as Presbyterians.  Join us as we explore themes of peace and reconciliation, and our call to be peacemakers, in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Book of Confessions.

The Peacemaking Committee is delighted to share this resource with you and your faith community.  It is our hope that this video and its accompanying discussion guide help you:

  • More deeply engage with the PC(USA) Book of Confessions, and the call to peacemaking woven through each confession.
  • Intersect Presbyterian and Reformed theology with an ethic of peacemaking and reconciliation.
  • Critically engage with issues of peace and reconciliation in your own communities, our nation and our world.
  • Explore new and courageous ways to be a person of peace as a follower of Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace.

You may play the video as a whole to see the scope of peacemaking in all of our confessions, or do a more in-depth study of a few confessions at a time, pausing to discuss and engage with each one.  Whether you use this video for small group study, for home reflection, as a powerful tool in worship, or listen to its peaceful call in your car, we pray that it is a blessing and call to action for you and your community.

Don’t miss the  discussion guide.

May the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.

The Peacemaking Committee of the Presbytery of Coastal Carolina

Proposed Amendments to the Constitution

Each time the General Assembly meets it receives suggestions for amending the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (USA). After study and debate some of these suggestions are sent to the Presbyteries for vote. Our Presbytery will debate and vote on these items at the March 4, 2017, Presbytery meeting at First Church, Morehead City.

This year the General Assembly has proposed:

  • one amendment to the Foundations of Presbyterian Polity,
  • 10 amendments to the Form of Government,
  • a complete rewrite of the Directory for Worship, and
  • two amendments to the Rules of Discipline.

All of these sections are found in the Book of Order. 

The Office of the General Assembly has prepared an online booklet listing all of these changes together with the rational offered by the Presbytery or Synod which proposed each item and the advice given to the General Assembly by the Advisory Committee on the Constitution. In previous years the Office of the General Assembly (OGA) printed copies of these booklets and sent to the presbyteries for distribution to minister members and commissioners from churches in the presbytery.

Now that so many presbyteries distribute their information electronically, the OGA has determined that the cost of printing and mailing these amendment booklets is prohibitive. The OGA can no longer afford to do that printing and mailing therefore those who desire to read to proposed amendments will need to read them online or download and print them.

Click on the link below to open the booklet.

Download the Proposed Amendments to the Constitution.

2-Cents-A-Meal Zomba School in Malawi Africa

The Zomba CCAP School in Malawi Africa receives support from the Two-Cents-A-Meal (CentsAbility) offering collected  throughout our presbytery. This report is from the Associate Pastor at St Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church in Wilmington which recently visited the school.

Bryant Holmes is the chair of our hunger committee that oversees the fund disbursement. Learn more about our other recipients at
presbycc.org/2014/hungerinfo/  and how you can apply for a hunger grant.

Letter page 1

 

Zomba2

Zomba3You can learn more about how St Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, NC connects with the school at their webpage:
sacpc.org/tag/chuluchosema/

See also the recent update on the impact of these Two Cents a Meal funds in Haiti.  Thank you for your support.
presbycc.org/2016/2-cents-meal-work-matthew-28-project-update/

Even Small PEACES are Important…Calling All Peacemakers

Presbytery’s Resource Center wishes to share the following resources that can promote discussion about current moral issues and provide peacemaking guidance during the process. How does our religion impact our actions?

Please contact the Presbytery office (910-862-8300, ext. 5) if you’d like to borrow a resource or have a question.

Youth

1)      Peace DVD Especially for Youth – This DVD is designed to be used as a 6-session series of studies on peace for youth.  Youth will be encoPEACE DVDuraged to ask and answer the question, What can one person do to bring about peace in today’s world? Jesus’ sermon on the Mount is used as a guideline for the study. The study guide outlines for each session, including DVD segments, scripture passages, discussion questions, and an assignment.

2)      A Song of Peace – sung by the Zehnder brothers can be found on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXaOynkWi8Y&feature=youtu.be

 Adult

  • Reclaiming Civility in the Public Square by Cassandra Dahnke, Tomas Spath & Donna Bowling– This book explores 10 rules that promote civility in the public square.  10 Practical steps to help bring us into relationship with each other once again are shared in the book.  It explores a topic whose importance cannot be underestimated. As Lincoln said, “A nation divided cannot long endure”. The authors maintain that we can survive our division if they are handled with civility and respect. They are fully aware of the differences between groups that often lead to political friction and they offer constructive suggestions for all of us.

2)      Season of Peace Bible Study – free download at https://www.pcusa.org/resource/season-peace-bible-study-full/  .

Session 1: The Things that Make for Peace

Session 2: Finding Peace

Session 3: Practicing Peace

Session 4: Extending Peace

Session 5: Living Peace

 3) In Defense of Civility: How Religion Can Unite America on Seven MorIn Defense.bookal Issues That Divide Us, by James Calvin Davis. Book. From “the big four” (abortion, homosexuality, euthanasia, and stem-cell research) to war, poverty, and the environment, this timely book considers religion’s impact on moral debates in America’s past and present. James Calvin Davis argues for religion’s potential to enrich both the content and the civility of public conversation. This book will interest all concerned citizens yearning for more careful thinking about the role of religion in public debate.

Click here to see a TV interview with James Calvin Davis.

4)      American Politics and Christian Responses (downloadable study at http://www.thethoughtfulchristian.com/Products/TC0519/civility.aspx

What happened to civility in public discourse? While civility has long been a factor of Christianity and even in American politics, more recently it seems that our society and many of its leaders suffer from an appalling lack of it. When everyone is screaming at each other it becomes difficult to conceive of a different, better way of thinking about politics and public debate. This three-session, adult study by James Calvin Davis considers ways to think about political discussion between people who disagree in light of the four virtues of civility and the principles of civility found in Christianity. Session three of the study provides guidelines and applications for practicing civility.

5)    The Things that Make for Peace – Bible study (free download) – https://www.pcusa.org/resource/things-make-peace-complete-bible-study/  – The Things That Make for Peace is a five-week adult study for small or large groups to be used during A Season of Peace or any time of the year. It focuses on the inner and outer path to peace as foundational to faithful discipleship. Each session has a “dig deeper” section for study through the week.

Download PDF

6)  Neighbor: Christian Encounters with “Illegal” Immigration by Ben Daniel – Book. Using a blend of travel narrative, interviews, theological insight, and biblical scholarship, Daniel tackles the controNeighbor.bookversial issues that surround undocumented migration in the United States by taking the reader to the spiritual, legal, and geographical front lines of the immigration debate. Here, the political becomes personal and talking points have a human face. The result of this journey is a compelling argument that encourages Christians to meet undocumented migrants as neighbors and as friends. Study questions are included.

To listen to Ben Daniel’s interview about this book on WJK Radio with Dan and Jana, click here.

Praying that you find the peace of Christ in every step! – Kaye Bledsoe

ARE THERE OTHER RESOURCES YOU’VE USED AND WOULD LIKE TO TELL OTHERS ABOUT?  LET ME KNOW!

Highlights from the 222nd GA (2016) Portland

Highlights from the
222nd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) Held in Portland Oregon

***********************************

The following summary of GA222(2016) is available formatted as a bulletin insert for use in your congregation’s bulletin or newsletter.

*************************** The Insert’s Text begins *****************

The Presbytery of Coastal Carolina sent nine commissioners to the 222nd General Assembly of the PC(USA) in Portland, Oregon from June 18th through June 25th.  This assembly proved to be very uplifting as we experienced a renewed Hope in our Calling.  This assembly celebrated our diversity as we discerned our way forward as a denomination.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

·         On the 60th anniversary of making women eligible to be pastors, and the 85th anniversary of ordaining its first woman elder, the PC(USA) made history again, electing two women as co-moderators for the first time.  Denise Anderson, a pastor from National Capital Presbytery, and Jan Edmiston, a presbytery executive from Chicago, were overwhelmingly elected Co-Moderators of the 222nd General Assembly.

Sunday, June 19, 2016
  • Nearly 2,500 participants in the GA spread out on Sunday to worship in about 30 congregations stretching from Vancouver, Washington, to Salem, Oregon.
Monday – Tuesday, June 20 & 21, 2016
  • The commissioners were busy in their various committees debating and voting on issues to bring before the assembly for approval.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
  • Fifty years after it was birthed in South Africa by the Dutch Reformed Mission Church during its battle against apartheid, the Confession of Belhar is now included in the Book of Confessions of the PC(USA).  After a four-year-long process of study and periodic votes, this assembly voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to make Belhar our denomination’s 12th recognized confession, the first originating in the global south.  The historic moment was greeted with tears of joy by many in the Oregon Convention Center, including Allan Boesak, a co-author of Belhar who was moderator of the DRMC when it was adopted.
  • A slimmer, less restrictive Directory for Worship for the PC(USA) was overwhelmingly approved Wednesday by GA222.  The directory, which is part of the Book of Order, now goes to the denomination’s 171 presbyteries, a majority of which must ratify it to be adopted.
  • Also on Wednesday, with tears and prayer – and a remarkable apology from Stated Clerk Gradye Parsons – GA222 unanimously passed a comprehensive policy to protect children, youth and vulnerable adults.
Thursday, June 23, 2016
  • Several recommendations that would have drastically changed the structure and operation of the PC(USA) were rejected Thursday by GA222.  Commissioners instead adopted a compromise plan that would create a vision team and a separate administrative commission to address those matters.  By a vote of 480-86, commissioners authorized the creation of a 12-member Way Forward Commission, which would have sweeping powers “to study and identify a vision for the structure and function of the General Assembly agencies.”
  • Declining a proposal to admit to and apologize for harming the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning community, commissioners to GA222 instead opted to express deep regret for ways that those minorities of “God’s beloved children” have been led to feel that they stand outside the grace of God and are unwelcome in the denomination.  At the same time, the resolution expresses the deep sorrow of all in the PC(USA) who have left the fellowship of the church, and expresses appreciation to those who have maintained relationships despite profound disagreement.  Calling for deeper conversations about theological differences, the resolution adopted by a 463-51 vote calls upon Presbyterians to seek reconciliation and to reach out to those who have been marginalized across the spectrum of theological understanding.
  • A decision two years ago that would have reconfigured and reduced the number of synods in the PC(USA) was rescinded by a 421-158 vote.
Friday, June 24, 2016
  • J. Herbert Nelson was overwhelmingly elected Stated Clerk of the PC(USA) in an historic vote, becoming the first African-American elected as the top ecclesial officer of the nation’s largest Reformed body.
  • The PC(USA) will continue its investment in fossil-fuel companies after overwhelmingly turning back an overture to begin divestment immediately.  Instead, it will continue the process of selective, phased, divestment that begins with full corporate engagement.
  • After several hours of debate, commissioners voted to send to presbyteries a proposed amendment to the Book of Order that would restore the previous nomenclature for ordered ministry.  If approved by a majority of the denomination’s 171 presbyteries, those now called teaching elders would become ministers of Word and Sacrament; ruling elders would be elders; and commissioned ruling elders would be commissioned lay pastors.  The vote was 320- 218 to return to language in use prior to 2012, when the new form of government was adopted.
  • After a debate that stretched over the dinner hour, GA222 approved a lengthy report containing a re-evaluation of the PC(USA)’s historic support of a two-state solution in Israel/Palestine.  The document, “Israel-Palestine: For Human Values in the Absence of a Just Peace,” says the PC(USA) “should advance those efforts that best accord with its values . . . including, but not limited to, that of two sovereign states—Israel and Palestine.”
  • After a six-year discernment process throughout the denomination, GA222 approved a lengthy report underscoring the centrality of peacemaking to Christian faith and promising to “practice boldly the things that make for peace.”
Summary Notes
  • During the assembly there was intentional Bible study, prayer, and worship that commissioners found life giving. There are numerous items not mentioned in this summary. The work of the assembly is exhausting but our commissioners are available to speak in your congregation about their experiences in Portland.

For more information on these items and other business conducted at the assembly, please see www.PC-Biz.org

************* End of Bulletin Insert Text **************************

Videoga222-circle_1280w of worship, plenary sessions and more are online at
oga.pcusa.org/section/ga/222nd-general-assembly-2016/

 

The commissioners from our Presbytery to General Assembly were:

TEACHING ELDERS:
East Community: John Causey, Pastor, Shallotte PC
Central Community: John Bryan, III, Stated Supply, Iona PC
West Community: Laura Lupton, West Mission Coordinator, PCC
At Large: LaVera Parato, Pastor, Antioch PC, Jacksonville

RULING ELDERS:
East Community: Mebane Boyd, Winter Park PC
Central Community: Rosia (Gerri) Freeman, Haymount PC
West Community: Naomi Newton, Silver Hill PC,
At Large: William Millar, St. Pauls PC

YOUTH ADVISORY DELEGATE:
Alex Fisher, Westminster PC, Fayetteville

 

General Assembly Commissioners. Not Pictured Alex Fischer
General Assembly Commissioners. Not Pictured Alex Fischer.

Our commissioners will be giving a formal report at the October Presbytery meeting in Fayetteville.