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." 
July 10, 2019 
We Pray For 
We Lift Up In Prayer...
The Rev. John Jeffrey, former member of our of our presbytery, who's wife Saundra Jeffrey passed to the larger life last week. Her funeral was held at Flint-First(Click here to view her obituary.)

Elder Liz Long, Commissioned Ruling Elder of Ithaca-Lafayette who recently fell and broke two ribs.

All of our churches currently in transition.

Mission Co-Workers:
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 July and August:

The Rev. David Blackburn (7/1) - Honorably Retired
The Rev. Jim Neumann (7/1) - Pastor of Saginaw-Second
The Rev. Linda Williams (7/1) - Parish Associate of Bay City-Westminster
The Rev. Tom Schacher (7/17) - 25 years - Member-At-Large
The Rev. Jim Offrink (7/25) - Honorably Retired
The Rev. Annie Duncan (7/27) - Temporary Supply of Swartz Creek-Mundy
The Rev. Robert Carnes (7/29) - Co-Pastor of Fenton-First
The Rev. Lindsey Carnes (7/29) - Co-Pastor of Fenton-First
The Rev. Noel Snyder (7/31) - Member-At-Large
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

Presbytery Office
Dan Saperstein
From The Lions' Den

There was a time - I believe it was in 2016 - when I hesitantly reported to the Presbytery assembly that there were at that time no active searches for installed or interim pastors in our congregations. That is a rare circumstance for a presbytery our size. And it doesn't last long.

Currently, 17 of our 46 churches are in some stage of pastoral transition. Six of those churches have active pastor nominating committees (PNCs); three have active interim pastor search committees (IPSCs); three recently acquired interims; four have not yet organized for an interim search; and one is forming an Associate Pastor Nominating Committee (APNC). Another four of our churches do not have pastors and have no plans (and in some cases no resources) to seek one.

That is an extraordinarily large number of churches in transition. There are a number of reasons for this surge in pastoral mobility:
  • An improved economy allowing pastors to move with the assurance that their spouses can find gainful employment, and won't be "underwater" on home mortgages;
  • The onset of the baby-boomer retirement bubble. In 2016, it was reported that over one-half of PCUSA pastors were 55 and older, and the median age has only increased since. Only 23% were under 45 years of age. While many pastors will continue to serve beyond retirement, we are starting to see the beginning of a large wave of retiring ministers.
  • The shrinking size and resources of our congregations. For the first time, fewer than one-half of our congregations can sustain a full-time pastor. As that number increases, pastors who require full-time employment must seek new calls.
(For a more complete explanation of this phenomenon, see this article from the Presbyterian Outlook: .)

Our smallest churches have been the hardest hit. With the recently announced departure of the Rev. Doug Abel from Vassar, there we be only two Ministers of the Word and Sacrament serving the fifteen churches in the Thumb - only one of whom is installed (Rev. Katja Gruening). Only two of those churches can sustain a full-time ministry, which increases the difficulty in attracting new pastoral leaders.

In my June 12 column, I wrote,

The reality is that many of our churches are moving from full-time to part-time pastoral contracts or are without a pastor for extended periods of time. This is a trend that will not change, regardless of the giftedness of our pastors and congregational leaders. What is called for are new models of being the church that rely less on pastoral leadership and more on congregational initiative; and new models of congregations sharing resources for ministry.

In other words, we can mourn the passing of the church we knew growing up, or we can see our shifting demographics as an opportunity to envision new ways of being the church that are better suited to our shifting roles and resources. Now, more than ever, we need to break out of our old models of pastoral leadership, our assumptions about what makes a "successful" church or ministry, and most importantly, passive consumerist models of church membership.

Our churches have been beautiful vessels in which the gospel was kept and treasured. Now those vessels are cracking, and the gospel, rather than being lost, is being poured out into the world. While those vessels are worth protecting and repairing, the emerging reality is that it will be in the world - not in our churches - where new generations are likely to discover the gospel, and, in God's time, recapture it in new vessels that won't resemble the old any more than a butterfly resembles a caterpillar.

Dan Saperstein, E xecutive Presbyter
Planning Calendars

The Presbytery Office will place a bulk order for the 2019-2020 Presbyterian Planning Calendar for individuals and churches. Pre-orders are now being taken.
Cost per calendar is $9.00 and all orders must be pre-paid with payment needed by July 26, 2019. Unfortunately, there are no cancellations after that date.

Click here to place your order.  
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.
You're Invited
Swartz Creek-Mundy Celebrates 175 Years of Ministry

The congregation and leadership of Swartz Creek-Mundy are honored to invite all to a "Celebration of Memories" on Sunday, July 28th at 3:00pm at the church which is located at 3506 W. Grand Blanc Road, Swartz Creek, MI 48473.

Guest speaker will be the Rev. Dr. Dan Saperstein. Executive Presbyter. A reception will be held in the Fellowship Hall to greet past and present acquaintances immediately following the service.
Presbyterian Women
PW Logo
Lake Huron Presbyterian Women News

Plans for the 2019 Lake Huron Presbyterian Women Fall Gathering are ongoing. We are excited to have a representative from Women at Risk, International (WAR,Int) to be our presenter at the gathering on October 19, 2019.  The gathering will begin at 9:30 AM with registration at First Presbyterian Church in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. In addition to the WAR presentation the day will include LHPW Mission Fair, business meeting, worship and lunch. The theme for the gathering is "Hope, Making It Possible by Donating Our Time, Talent, and Treasure". 

The mission of WAR is to give voice to the silenced cries of women and children around the world by creating circles of protection and dignity around brokenness. Hurting women find a safe place to turn their stories of crisis into stories of hope. 

WAR, Int'l offers these at-risk individuals the opportunity to live life with dignity. WAR is known for their fight against human trafficking. It also addresses fourteen different risk issues that women and children face today in over thirty countries including the USA. For more information about WAR take a look at their website,

Look forward to seeing what Presbyterian Women are doing throughout Lake Huron Presbytery. You will see during the mission fair. The mission fair and WAR party will be from 11:35 until 12:30. The WAR party will give you an opportunity to purchase WAR, Int'l products. When you purchase their products you are purchasing safety for vulnerable women and children. 

Chris Wolf has agreed to lead the worship service which be immediately after lunch. Communion will be served during the worship service. An offering will be collected to be donated to a local mission to be determined by the host church. 

Click here for the the registration form. Please return on or before October 1, 2019. 

Presbytery Training
Learn How To Save a Life

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
Planning Calendars
Confirmation Retreat
You're Invited
PW News
Save a Life
Connect With LHP Churches

Who We Are
About the
Bi-Weekly Brief

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Presbytery Council
July 10
10:00 am

Planning, Vision, Equipping Team
July 11
12:30 pm

Presbyterian Women
July 25
10:00 am

Personnel Team
July 29
10:00 am

Mission Coordinating Team
August 12
1:30 pm

Presbytery Council
August 14
10:00 am

Commission on Preparation for Ministry
August 21
10:00 am

Personnel Team
August 26
10:00 am

Commission on Ministry
August 28
11:00 am

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