The Valley Bridge
The weekly newsletter from the
Presbytery of Minnesota Valleys
June 28, 2017
 We are congregations who seek to be a collective expression of the Body of Christ, 
joyfully participating in Christ's ongoing life and work. "Therefore encourage one 
another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing." 
(I Thessalonians 5:11)
Congregation of the week: July 2-8
First Presbyterian Church of Osakis
Pastor: Randy Knuth
Clerk of Session: Shari Maloney
Secretary: Dianne Majerus
Custodian: Keven Withers
Organist: Ellen Bangtson
Treasurer: Shirley Helberg
Session Members: Ellen Bangtson, Don Larsen, Barb Neumann, Shirley Helberg, Matthew Herberg, Ron Majerus and Randy Neumann
Deacon Members: Ilene Olson, Eva Withers, Madelyn Hale, Jan Krmpotich, Joan Bischoff and Deb Cody
 
We are blessed to have a new pastor leading our congregation. Prayers are appreciated for our members who have recently been hospitalized, who are in nursing homes or assisted living and those dealing with medical issues.
 
Each month, we host a Community Meal to bring awareness to our church and congregation. In our front yard is a Lending Library, which shares the opportunity for the community to take a book to read or leave a book to share with others. We are huge supporters of our community Backpack Attack program, which provides nourishment to students in our school district over the weekends during the school year and in summer months. We recently started a Bible and Prayer Study group held Thursday mornings. Our men gather monthly for a Men's Breakfast. Our other fun activities in the next couple of months is our Annual Pie and Ice Cream Social held in July and our outdoor worship service and congregations summer picnic in August.
Pam out, Karen and Deb are pinch hitting

Stated Clerk Pamela Prouty had surgery on June 27 and will be unavailable until August 1. In the meantime, please contact Associate for Administration Karen Lange or Presbytery Moderator Deb Hess with any questions or concerns. 
Karen:  karen@minnesotavalleys.org or 320-235-7910 at the presbytery office
Deb:  gmc1953dlh@aol.com or 507-829-6411
Celebrations from the Session Records Review in Windom

Blue Earth: To celebrate Pentecost, we placed red helium-filled balloons on every other pew, and nearly everyone wore red. We will have a float in the Giant Days Parade in July

Round Lake: On April 23rd, the Round Lake and Brewster congregations joined together for worship and a potluck dinner celebrating their 125th anniversaries. Round Lake will have a catered dinner following a concert of sacred music on July 30th.

Iona: VBS and a congregational picnic

Lake Crystal: Thanksgiving Day Feast - an annual mission meal open for anyone at no cost on Thanksgiving Day

Winnebago: A major undertaking at our church over the past year or so was the total replacement of the heat plant for the church. This was accomplished with financial help from many of the organizations and groups within the church and individual donations, and so having very little impact on the church's budget and savings. Many individuals also donated time and labor to accomplish this project in a timely and financially responsible manner.

Kasota: We just celebrated confirmation with a class size of eight students with two of the students being baptized as adult baptisms

Fulda: We will have eight students and two chaperones going on a mission trip July 9-14 to Rapid City. They will be partnering with local organizations to meet ongoing needs in the community.

Windom: The First Presbyterian Church of Windom is going on their second year of holding our regularly scheduled worship service (May and October) at the Good Samaritan Center in Windom. These services are for all church members and center residents that are able to participate. Our congregation is small enough to incorporate our service in their chapel and include any residents and staff that would like to attend. We have had wonderful attendance and many positive comments. We will be continuing this community outreach on an annual basis.
God Chat Apps: A Life of Prayer
Saturday, October 7, 2017
9:00 - 3:30
Hope Presbyterian Church
Spicer

Email Karen Lange to register. Cost: $10 if preregistered by September 22
Plenary Speaker: Rev. Kara Root
Breakout session topics:
  • Centering Prayer
  • Spiritual Practices
  • Yoga, Meditation & Prayer
  • Introduction to Prayer
  • Tech Tools for Prayer
2017 Summit Meeting
God Chat Apps: A Life of Prayer
Steering Congregations to Formational Resources

The Commission on Congregational Transformation and Development exists to resource congregations. We have identified six critical areas: discipleship, evangelism, mission, spiritual leadership, stewardship and worship. Each area has one or two individuals who serve as point persons. The point person's goal is to steer you in the right direction toward valuable resource. Please let us know how we can come alongside of your congregation.


Discipleship: Pam Bush, pambush@woodstocktel.net , 507-823-4697
Discipleship: Anne Veldhuisen, aveldhuisen@gmail.com , 507-215-5617
Evangelism: Candace Adams, revadams@hotmail.com , 320-796-2650
Mission: Richard Lawrence, richlawrence66@gmail.com , 320-260-9639
Mission: Darlene Scherbing, darlenescherbing@yahoo.com , 320-292-2610
Spiritual Leadership: Tom Voigt, tvoigt1960@hotmail.com , 612-875-6398
Stewardship: Rick Hauge, rdhmnara@mchsi.com , 507-829-5227
Worship: Darin Seaman, pastordarin@fpcstcloud.org , 320-251-8277
Presbytery office hours are 7:30 - 3:30 Monday - Friday.
Office will be closed on Friday, June 30; Monday, July 3; 
Tuesday, July 4; Friday, July 7
Lakeshore Center at Okoboji,  October 13
Pastors and CREs: Here is a great opportunity for you to spend a day with preacher/teacher/author Tom Long.  He will be in the area to teach a class for the new Academy and will be doing this day long workshop at the Lakeshore Center at Okoboji on Friday, October 13
Discover Presbyterian Mission in Pakistan

During the week of September 4-9, 2017, Veda Gill, Executive Director of Presbyterian Education Board in Pakistan (PEB), will be in Central Minnesota and is looking for opportunities to acquaint God's people with the vital work being done in educating some of Pakistan's poorest children, both Christians and Muslims. This work was started by Presbyterian missionaries in the 1850s and continues to this day. Veda is looking for pastors, mission groups, PW members, or interested church members who could receive initial information about PEB in preparation for a follow-up visit with a larger church group at a later time. If you would like to sit with Veda and hear the good news from Pakistan, please contact Lynn Miller at 320-492-3341 or lynn.miller@friendsofpeb.org.
PC(USA) pastors and commissioned lay pastors encouraged to apply for matching funds to attend financial literacy and leadership events and training

The Presbyterian Foundation is accepting applications for a newly established Church Financial Leadership Grant. Grant applicants must be a pastor, commissioned lay pastor (CLP), or leader of a 1001 New Worshiping Community within the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Funds are available for those pastoral leaders seeking to gain a better understanding of church financial vitality and management of their congregations.

The application deadline is June 30. More info
Do you hear a call to a new role in church leadership? 

In response to a need for accessible educational opportunities for church leaders, the Presbytery of Minnesota Valleys along with two other presbyteries and the Synod of Lakes and Prairies have developed an exciting new course of study called "The Academy." 
 
Maybe God is calling you to respond to a specific need for a Commissioned Ruling Elder in your church. Or maybe you feel a hunger for personal spiritual growth. Perhaps you are a current CRE who feels you could benefit by a refresher on certain topics.
 
Courses may be taken as a series with the goal of meeting the requirements of becoming a Commissioned Ruling Elder, or individual classes may be audited for personal education and growth.
 
Hurry! The first classes start at Synod School in July, so registrations are being taken now. Check out the link for the brochure or visit the registration website for more information about the courses and the quality teachers. Questions may be directed to the presbytery office, or Academy board members: Rev. Elaine Boyd and Kathy Knips.
To register, go to:  https://www.regonline.com/theacademy
For more information:  www.thepresbyterianacademy.org
The brochure
Pastoral Leadership Opportunities

The following congregation within the bounds of our presbytery is currently seeking pastoral leadership:

Randall Presbyterian Church, Randall, Minnesota  
- Pastor
   Ministry Information Form - 03892.AC
First Presbyterian Church, Foley, Minnesota - Interim Pastor
   Ministry Information Form - 03882.AAO

The Ministry Information Forms for these opportunities are posted on the Church Leadership Connection web site --  http://oga.pcusa.org/section/mid-council-ministries/clc/

Additionally, there will be other opportunities arising in the near future. Please keep your eyes open as Fulda begins a pastoral search. 
Six New Things
Know someone who should try The Outlook?
Dear reader, 
 
As a friend of the Presbyterian Outlook, you already know about the Outlook's independent and balanced coverage of the issues, people and events shaping our church and the world. 
 
But what about your colleagues? 
 
We'd like to invite you to send THREE free issues of Presbyterian Outlook to any colleagues or friends you think would benefit from the insightful news reporting, feature articles, reviews and resources included in every issue of the Outlook. 
 
 
To take advantage of this special offer, just complete the form at the link below and submit the addresses of friends you'd like to receive three free issues. They can be colleagues, fellow parishioners or friends from your church community.
 
Now published 18 times a year, Presbyterian Outlook has been recently redesigned and expanded. Your recipients will find articles to prompt thoughtful conversations on complex issues, resources for ministry and much more.
 
 
Grace and peace, 
 
Jill Duffield 
Editor, Presbyterian Outlook
Big Tent - July 6-8 - Saint Louis - More info
Synod School 2017 - July 23-28 - Storm Lake, Iowa
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