223rd General Assembly of the PC(USA)
The 223rd General Assembly (2018) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) was held June 16-23, in St. Louis, MO.
Commissioners and advisory delegates from all 170 PC(USA) presbyteries, and other delegates and observers from around the world, converged on the America’s Convention Center in downtown St. Louis for celebrations, deliberations, and inspirations in support of the denomination’s biennial gathering.
The Presbytery of Giddings-Lovejoy served as host to the 223rd General Assembly (2018), united under the theme “Renewing the Vision: Kindom Building for the 21st Century,” from Matthew 6:25-33, and included rich worship services, the election of Co-Moderators, action on a plethora of overtures, and much more.
Read news from the 223rd General Assembly>>
General Assembly Approves Administrative Commission for Synod of the Covenant
On Wednesday night, June 20, 2018, the 223rd General Assembly of the PC(USA) meeting in St. Louis overwhelmingly approved creating an Administrative Commission to help deal with disorder in the Synod of the Covenant.
This action was a result of an Overture from the Presbytery of Cincinnati in which the Presbytery of the Miami Valley and three other presbyteries in our Synod concurred. The authority given to the new Administrative Commission is to look into the reasons for the discord between the Synod and its presbyteries and help find ways to resolve them. The Commission may engage mediation resources if needed, and may also take original jurisdiction of the Synod if warranted.
The final vote of the General Assembly was 514-6 in favor of setting up the Commission.
Presbyterian/Catholic Habitat Build Blitz Week June 23-29
Catch the Building Spirit, the Presbyterian/Catholic Habitat for Humanity partnership, now in its 26th year, will begin construction on this year's house on Sandy Drive in Trotwood. Blitz Week (when the main structure of the house is built: framing, siding, roofing, etc.) will begin June 23 and will run through June 29. Construction will continue throughout the summer to complete all the rest of the house.
(This is a change from the previously announced build in Huber Heights, where rezoning issues have delayed construction. Catch the Building Spirit plans on helping with this house build on Shull Road when things come together on that property.)
If your church is interested in participating with labor, hospitality, or financing, please email Hank Baust, Presbyterian Coordinator for Catch the Building Spirit, or call 937-429-0360.
Habitat Houses through Catch the Building Spirit is a designated network of Presbytery of the Miami Valley.
Colombian youth praise band coming to our area in July/August
The Presbytery of the Miami Valley, working through its churches and Networks, anticipates and awaits the visit of the nine members of the MAJUP Youth Praise Band from the Iglesia Presbiteriana de Cartagena, Colombia to our area during the months of July/August 2018.
MAJUP (Ministerio de Alabanza Juventud Presbiteriana, or Presbyterian Youth Praise Ministry) is a praise band consisting of seven youth and two adult leaders from the Cartagena Church. They have made the focus of their ministry both praising God through lively music in Spanish and English, and seeking wider awareness of the decades-long conflict in Colombia and efforts to bring a lasting peace. Our presbytery is prepared for MAJUP to come as a group to be with us in Ohio and possibly to travel to Michigan as well.
The expected duration of the MAJUP visit is about 4-5 weeks, taking place between early July and early August 2018. Current planning anticipates the group’s arrival about July 3 and departure about August 6, pending their receiving visas. A number of opportunities are being planned to engage Miami Valley Presbyterians with MAJUP.
Learn more about MAJUP's visit to the Miami Valley>>
UNITED THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY, DAYTON
Summer Preaching Seminar August 7-9
Preaching in a Time of Dissonance: A Four-Part Harmony will be the theme of the 17th Annual Summer Preaching Seminar at United Theological Seminary, Dayton. The seminar will be held August 7-9 at the UTS Trotwood campus and will feature Dr. Richard Eslinger, Professor Emeritus of Worship and Homiletics at United Theological.
"Preachers today have their work cut out for them. Our congregations are polarized politically, racially and culturally. How can preachers navigate this territory with integrity and hope? Beginning with a love of Scripture, the practice of preaching also demands the virtues of authenticity, truthfulness, prophetic passion and pastoral compassion. The 2018 Summer Preaching Seminar proposes that these virtues create a musical blend that can guide congregations and leadership into greater harmony amidst cultural discord."
Learn more and register>>
LOMBARD MENNONITE PEACE CENTER
Two Chicago area educational opportunities
Mediation Skills Training Institute August 6-10
Lombard Mennonite Peace Center has trained thousands of church leaders from a wide range of denominations in the skills that are needed to deal with conflict in the church setting through its Mediation Skills Training Institute for Church Leaders.
The institute includes lectures, discussion, and guided practice in role-plays. Active and practical in focus, the sessions emphasize hands-on skills training and real-life role-plays based on the kinds of conflicts faced by participants.
Learn more and register>>
Clergy Clinic in Family Emotional Process begins October or November
With today’s rising level of anxiety in society and its resulting impact on families, there is little doubt that such anxiety will impact the church with increasing intensity in the years ahead. The resulting elevation of pressures within congregations and the increasing demands which that places on clergy make it imperative that leaders step back occasionally from the fray to assess their own capacity for managing themselves in a calmer, more differentiated way.
Clergy Clinic in Family Emotional Process is designed to enhance the ability of participants to function as self-differentiated leaders within their own ministry setting. It will provide a safe forum for processing challenging situations in one’s ministry, while also facilitating reflection on a way of thinking about the human condition which has implications for all aspects of life.
Learn more and register>>
Presbyterian Peacemaking Travel Study Seminars
The Presbyterian Peacemaking Program sponsors travel study seminars to different parts of the world to provide Presbyterians with the opportunity to learn firsthand from our partners about efforts for peace, justice and reconciliation in contexts of conflict, injustice and oppression. Participants return from these travel study seminars informed and transformed by their experiences, ready to share stories and bear witness to all that they have seen and heard.
Travel study seminars are planned in partnership with World Mission staff and mission co-workers and in cooperation with our partner denominations and organizations.
Participants in the Peacemaking Program’s Travel Study Seminars will be inspired by experiences in cross-cultural and global contexts that are addressing peace and justice issues, equipped to bear witness to all that they have seen and heard and to strengthen their peacemaking witness, and connected to partners engaged directly in peacemaking and justice work.
Learn more about the Travel Study Seminars for 2018-20>>
Presbyterian Women's Churchwide Gathering August 2-5 in Louisville
The Presbyterian Women’s Churchwide Gathering, to be held August 2–5 in Louisville, KY, will mark the 30th anniversary of Presbyterian Women.
"Arise, shine, your light has come!" (based on Isaiah 60:1) is the theme for the Gathering. Held every three years, PW’s Churchwide Gathering is an event that celebrates and can deepen your engagement in all that Presbyterian Women does. Participants enjoy workshops, tours, forums, resource gathering (and shopping!), plenary sessions with inspiring speakers, worship and more.
PW’s triennial Business Meeting will take place just before the Churchwide Gathering (August 1–2), where budget, leadership and programmatic emphases for the next triennium are decided.
Learn more about the PW Gathering and register>>
Synod Assembly Highlights
The Synod of the Covenant Assembly and Commissioner Retreat was held at the Weber Center, Adrian, MI, on March 15-17.
Read Synod Assembly highlights>>
A resource for churches: On Calling An Educator
The revised On Calling An Educator manual is now available online in downloadable format. The manual is designed to be a resource for Presbyterian churches that are considering calling an educator to be a part of the church staff. In addition, this is also a resource for Christian educators who are responding to a call from God to educational ministry in the church and are seeking a position. Congregations and educators will find guidance in these pages for their separate and mutual journeys toward providing the best leadership for the important task of education.
Download On Calling An Educator>>
Regarding Ruling Elders
Ruling elders are called to ministry in partnership with teaching elders. Within this calling, ruling elders have responsibilities in several areas of the life of the church including exercise in leadership, governance, spiritual discernment, and discipline. This monthly PC(USA) series seeks to lift up the specific responsibilities while also providing an opportunity for Ruling Elders to reflect upon how they are lived out.
Connect with Regarding Ruling Elders>>
NEXT Church offers new resources for ministry
NEXT Church is a network of leaders across the Presbyterian Church (USA) who believe the church of the future will be more relational, more diverse, more collaborative, more hopeful, and more agile. NEXT Church provides space for hopeful conversations about the theology, culture, and practice of ministry in a time of adaptive change.
Get ministry resources>>
New initiative seeks to create 1001 new worshiping communities
The 220th General Assembly declared a commitment to a churchwide movement that results in the creation of 1001 new worshiping communities by 2022.
Across the PC(USA), God is raising up leaders in churches and presbyteries who are creating new worshiping communities. They are taking on new and varied forms of church for our changing culture. Primarily they are seeking to make and form new disciples of Jesus Christ, to change and transform the world.
Learn more & get involved>>
Northminster Mission Fund
Grants up to $5,000.00 are available to individual Congregations, Congregations in Partnership, Designated Presbytery Networks, and Validated Ministries of the Presbytery of the Miami Valley, for the continued purpose of building up the body of Christ. Pending available funds, grants may be renewed for one year.