Presbytery of Lake Huron
Bi-Weekly Brief 
"The mission of the Presbytery of Lake Huron is to partner with congregations, helping people to know, grow, share and serve as disciples of Jesus Christ." 
August 21, 2019 
We Pray For 
We Lift Up In Prayer...
All of our churches currently in transition .

Mission Co-Workers:
The Rev. Dr. Lucy Der-Garabedian who is serving in Lebanon.

The Rev. Cathy Chang  and family who are serving in the Philippines.

Michael and Rachel Ludwig , our Mission Co-Workers who are serving in Niger.



For those Teaching Elders (Ministers of Word and Sacrament) and Commissioned Ruling Elders (CREs) who are celebrating Ordination or Commissioning Anniversaries in August and September:

The Rev. Leslie Piper (8/1) - Interim Pastor of Bay City-First
Elder Kathleen Rowe (8/1) - Commissioned Ruling Elder of Tawas-Tawas Area
The Rev. Dr. Stephen Shugert (8/1) - Honorably Retired
The Rev. David Eshleman (8/3) - 50 years - Honorably Retired
Elder Shaun Hardimon (8/11) - Commissioned Ruling Elder of Swartz Creek-Mundy
The Rev. Glenn Grant (8/15) - Pastor of Grand Blanc-Kirkridge
The Rev. Ken Hetzel (8/16) - Honorably Retired
The Rev. Ted McCulloch (8/20) - 30 years - Pastor of Saginaw-First and Presbytery Stated Clerk
The Rev. Charles Marquardt (8/29) - 20 years - Honorably Retired
The Rev. Ron Vredeveld (9/1) - Temporary Supply of Beaverton-First
Elder Don Wixson (9/3) - Commissioned Ruling Elder of Croswell-First
The Rev. Katia Gruening (9/7) - 5 years - Pastor of Sandusky and Yale-First
The Rev. John Becker (9/17) - Honorably Retired
The Rev. Matthew Schramm (9/19) - 15 years - Pastor of
The Rev. Timm High (9/20) - Interim Pastor of Midland-Chapel Lane
The Rev. David Weber (9/25)  - Interim Pastor of  Davison-St. Andrews

Presbytery Office
Dan Saperstein
From The Lions' Den

The Rev. Dr. Jan Edmiston is not only the former Co-Moderator of the General Assembly and the General Presbyter for the Presbytery of Charlotte, but she also writes one of the very best blogs on ministry - "A Church for Starving Artists" (  One of her recent posts is one that we need to hear and discuss in our congregations and sessions. I share it here:

The Congregational Divide

What makes some congregations thrive and some congregations falter?

I work with 96 congregations of different sizes and contexts that stretch across seven counties.  Every day I spend time thinking about the churches that seem to be dying and the churches that seem to be alive with possibility.  And the divide between them is obvious and not-so-obvious.

The obvious:
  • Congregations in growing neighborhoods have the capacity to swell in numbers, as opposed to rural and urban areas where the population is decreasing steadily, usually because of a lack of jobs.
  • Congregations with a large endowment have the ability to keep a full-time pastor, even if their regular weekly donations are stagnant. They can and do tap into their savings.
  • Congregations with larger memberships (and "larger" is relative) still appear to fill the pews on Sunday mornings, especially if their sanctuary seats between 100 - 200 people.
The not-so-obvious:
  1. Congregations who do make decisions based on "saving money" are going to die within the next ten years.  I'm looking at you Pastor Search Committee hoping to hire a retired pastor to avoid paying pension and health benefits.  
  2. Congregations who plan their ministries around "getting people to join" are going to die within the next ten years. You are not fooling anyone.  We know you started a preschool "to bring in the young families" instead of starting a preschool to serve the children in your neighborhood for their own sake.  We know that the only reason you are offering community dinners is "to attract the neighbors" rather than offering hospitality with no strings attached.
  3. Congregations who consider strategic plans without prayerful discernment are going to die within the next ten years.  So many times church programs happen because they are the pet projects of particular members when - maybe - those programs are no longer relevant or effective.
Thriving congregations make decisions this way:
  • They invest their money in the best possible leadership trusting that effective ministry funds itself when the community is impacted for good.  And this not only includes the paid leadership.  They also invest in leadership training for unpaid volunteers.
  • They offer ministry that's informed by the needs of the community.  It's about serving the neighbors, not bringing in new members for the sake of survival.
  • They pray together.  They seriously pray that God will guide them in their planning, that God will open their eyes to the needs around them, that God will empower them to take on audacious goals for the sake of the Kingdom.  They take the time to discern what God is calling them to be and do in this time and place.
Children born today will be 25 years old on August 14, 2044.  Will there be a church for them?  (Thank you HH.)

Thriving congregations are more fearless than not.  They especially do not fear failure.   Let's try it and see what happens.  Maybe it will work and maybe it won't but God will use it either way.

If we are too tired or too comfortable or too fearful, our congregations will never thrive.  And we might look back 25 years from now and wonder where we went wrong.  (Re-read #1-3 above.)

And if you need another reason to embrace a new way of being the Church: Thriving congregations are more fun.

Dan Saperstein, E xecutive Presbyter
Boundary Training

As the summer moves along, keep  Wednesday, September 18, on your calendars. Once again Boundary Training will be provided. The training will take place at  Kalamazoo-First. The Rev. Fran Lane-Lawrence, the Stated Clerk of Lake Michigan Presbytery, will lead the training. 

There is no cost to the event and lunch will be provided.

This training is required for all pastors and CREs.  If you did not attend either of the last two year's training events this is the final opportunity to attend. Again, this is a requirement for service, so it's important to attend. If you are new to the presbytery you must complete training within three years.

NOTE: You must register online no later than September 12th. Click here to register.
September Presbytery Meeting Updated Information

In case you did not receive the following notice last week here is some important updates about the September 17th stated meeting of presbytery. 

TO: Members of Presbytery
FROM: Ted McCulloch, Stated Clerk
This is an early notice for our next stated Presbytery meeting, scheduled to be held on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church, 1250 Watson Road, Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858.
Our scheduled guest preacher and leader for our equipping time was to be the Rev. Dr. Clifton Kirkpatrick, former Stated Clerk of the General Assembly. He was to lead us in a discussion from the Being Reformed curriculum ""Race and Reconciliation." Unfortunately, Rev. Dr. Kirkpatrick has had to re-schedule and will join us in December instead.
To accommodate that change, the equipping time discussion for December has been moved to the September meeting. So for the September 17 meeting, we will be using the book Neighborhood Church for our equipping time. This is the book that was distributed at the June presbytery meeting. (See picture above for reference.) We have plenty of copies in the presbytery office so any commissioners that do not have a copy may contact Rose Onan at 989-799-7481 x6 to obtain one.
That means, as much as possible, please read that book before the September meeting. 
A full call to the meeting plus all the usual documents, including the docket will be sent out at the normal time during the first week in September.
Yours in Christ,
Ted McCulloch, Stated Clerk
2019 Directory

An updated copy of the 2019 Directory is now available for download on our website. As a reminder, to ensure your privacy we password protect access to this  document.

Click on Directory at the bottom of the link list on the left side of our homepage and enter the following information when prompted:

***** The login information was included in the version sent to our mailing list. For privacy, we have not included that information on the version we post online. For the Username and Password, please contact
the Presbytery Office. **** 

Please take a moment to review your information and if there are any changes that you would like made contact Rose Onan at or 989-799-7481 x6.
2019-2021 Book of Order

The presbytery is now taking orders for the latest edition of the Book of Order at a discounted rate of just $8.
This book is Part II of the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). This volume contains the Foundations of Presbyterian Polity, the Form of Government, the Directory for Worship, and the Rules of Discipline. Additional information is provided to the reader through the inclusion of Received Ecumenical Statements of Guidance and Articles of Agreement.
Your order will be available to be picked upon arrival at the Presbytery Office or at the September Presbytery meeting.
Contact Rose Onan at or 989-799-7481 x6 with any questions.

Click here to place your order before August 30th.

Free PDF versions are available for download from the PC(USA) Store here.
New Mission Co-Worker
Lucy Der-Garabedian

We are pleased to announce that we have another Mission Co-Worker in our presbytery. We ordained the Rev. Dr. Lucy Der-Garabedian nearly 26 years ago and she has been a member of LHP since; much of that time serving as a military chaplain. Recently she took a call as a Mission Co-Worker in Lebanon where she was born. We are working on setting up a time to have her join us via Skype at an upcoming presbytery meeting. 

Click here to read more.
Save The Date
Flint Documentary

The " Flint" documentary by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance will be premiering on September 12 at the beautiful and newly restored Capital Theater. Details in upcoming Bi-Weekly Briefs.
You're Invited
Fenton-First Offers Classes

Fenton-First is offering two events this fall that are open to all who are interested.

Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace will run September 18 - November 13.

Parenting the Love and Logic Way will run September 18 - October 23.

Click here for more information.
Confirmation Retreat
Presbytery Wide Confirmation Retreat

What: Junior and Senior High Youth Confirmation and Spiritual Retreat
When: September 20-21
Where: Bay Shore Camp in Sebewaing

All junior and senior high youth in the presbytery are invited to a confirmation retreat September 20th and 21st at the Bay Shore Camp in Sebewaing. The Presbytery has provided a grant to cover half of the expenses so that the cost per participant is only $35 for an overnight stay, meals, instructional materials and recreation.

We will have at least two adult chaperones, the Revs. Philomena Ofori-Nipaah and Scott Kroener. We may need additional chaperones if we have more attendees than anticipated so please consider volunteering if needed. There is no charge for chaperones but a background check will be required. The fee for which will be covered by the presbytery. 

Registration closes on September 3, 2019 and payment is due by September 10th. Once you register you will receive an invoice from Rose Onan within one business day. Payment may be made via check or credit card.

Click here to register.
Presbytery Training
Learn How To Save a Life

NOTE: The deadline for registration is noon on Friday, August 23rd. No registrations will be accepted after that time.

The presbytery is offering training to church officers and members to prepare for the four emergencies you are most likely to encounter at home or at church.   The training dates are:

Saturday September 14 at Korean Presbyterian, 5560 McCarty Rd., Saginaw  989.792.8280


Saturday September 21 at St. Andrews 8192 Davison Rd.,  Davison  810.653.6824
You will learn how to perform CPR on someone who is not breathing, how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) on someone who is having a heart attack, how to respond to someone who is choking and how to properly use a fire extinguisher. You may register for one of the four class times offered. There will be morning and afternoon CPR/AED/Choking sessions with lunch and fire extinguisher training for the entire group in between. Please note that the CPR/AED/Choking sessions are limited to 18 people per class to ensure adequate equipment and trainer interaction.   The classes are offered on a first-come first-serve basis at a cost of $22.50 per person.
Due to the need to have confirmed participants, payment of $22.50 per person including lunch is due within 5 business days of registration. Once you register, you will receive an invoice via email from Rose Onan with the amount due.
We cannot issue refunds for cancellations after August 31st.
Morning Session
8:45-9:00 AM     Registration
9:00-11:30 AM   Friends and Family Adult CPR and AED Infant, Child and Adult choking   (max 18 people)                    
11:45-12:30 PM  Lunch
12:45-2:00 PM    Fire Extinguisher Training - a video followed by participants actually using a fire extinguisher to put a small controlled fire
2:00 PM              Departure
Afternoon Session
11:15-11:45 AM  Registration
11:45-12:30 PM  Lunch
12:45-2:00 PM    Fire Extinguisher Training - a video followed by participants actually using a fire extinguisher to put a small controlled fire
2:00-4:30 PM      Friends and Family Adult CPR and AED Infant, Child and Adult choking   (max 18 people)
4:30 PM              Departure
If paying by check, make them payable to Presbytery of Lake Huron and mail to:   Presbytery of Lake Huron,   PO Box 6129, Saginaw, Michigan 48608-6129. If paying with a credit card please call the Presbytery Office after you have registered online.

Multiple people may be paid with one payment method but a separate registration is required for each participant.
Note: CPR and AED training will provide participants with the skills to assist someone who is not breathing and to effectively use and AED or help someone who is choking. This training will not qualify participants to receive an American Red Cross CPR certification.

Click here to register.


For additional information on how to prepare your church, please visit the Emergency Preparedness page on our website.

Connect With Other Churches In The Lake Huron Presbytery

There are so many wonderful things going on in all of our congregations.  Several of our churches have set up Facebook pages to help spread the good news not only to their members but to all who may be interested.  Liking other church Facebook pages is a great way to connect with others in the presbytery and to share ideas with each other.  Here are some of the churches that have Facebook pages:

Camp Westminster

If your congregation has a page and it is not listed here, please contact Staci Percy at

'Like' Us On Facebook

The presbytery has a Facebook page and would like you to join us.  Get updates and information faster. Connect with others to share ideas and to post information about events happening in your congregation.  Join us today! 

Contact Information

Staci Percy

Communications Manager/Recording Clerk

P.O. Box 6129

Saginaw, MI 48608-6129 

989-799-7481 x2

In This Edition
In Our Prayers
From The Lions' Den
Boundary Training
September Presbytery Meeting Changes
2019 Directory Updated
Book of Order
New Mission Co-Worker
Flint Documentary
You're Invited
Confirmation Retreat
Save a Life
Connect With LHP Churches

Who We Are
About the
Bi-Weekly Brief

Hundreds of elders, educators, and church leaders read the Presbytery of Lake Huron's email sent out every other week. 

You can reissue or modify this content for your own church bulletin or newsletter, without crediting the Bi-Weekly Brief, but please credit any organizations, photographers, etc, that we credited.
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Commission on Preparation for Ministry
August 21
10:00 am

Commission on Ministry
August 28
11:00 am

Office Closed For Labor Day
September 2

Personnel Team
September 9
10:00 am

September 9
1:30 pm

Presbyterian Women
September 12
10:00 am

Mission Coordinating Committee
September 16
1:30 pm

Stated Meeting of Presbytery
September 17
9:30 am

Boundary Training
September 18

Commission on Ministry
September 25
11:00 am

Details on these meetings can be found on the presbytery's website on the calendar.