Participating in Christ’s Mission in the World
By Chris Lieberman, Relationship Coordination Director 
The Church’s life and mission are a joyful participation in Christ’s ongoing life and work.

God who creates life also frees those in bondage, forgives sin, reconciles brokenness, makes all things new, and is still at work in the world. To be members of the body of Christ is to be sent out to pursue the mission of God and to participate in God’s new creation. God’s kingdom is drawn into the present by our actions.

Through its mission in the world, the church seeks to bear witness to God’s reign through the proclamation of the gospel, acts of compassion, work for justice and peace, and the care of creation. The church’s mission is shaped and nourished by the Word and Sacraments, and represents the living out of our prayer for the world.

In this newsletter’s mission section below, we highlight several examples of mission among us. Look for information about:
  • Mutual Mission Cuba Team
  • JEMM Medical and Dental Team
  • Presbyterian Women Mission Opportunities
  • Presbyterian Social Ministries 
Spring Stated Meeting of the Presbytery
Tuesday May 7 at 9:00 a.m.
The Spring Stated Meeting of the Presbytery is set for Tuesday, May 7 at 9:00 a.m., at Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center.  Join as we worship and fellowship together, meet new minister members, share ministry highlights, and conduct official business. Don McGarity, Area Relationship Coordinator for Area One, will be our morning preacher. Lunch will be provided at a cost of $10.00 per person (paid at the door, cash or check payable to Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center). Watch your emails and the website for meeting materials later in the month.
Application for 2020 General Assembly Commissioners
Applications are now being accepted for Commissioners and a Young Adult Advisory Delegate to the 224th General Assembly, which will be held June 20-27, 2020, in Baltimore, Maryland. The Nominating Team encourages ruling elders, teaching elders, and young adults to submit applications for participation in this amazing opportunity to serve the church. If you have questions, please contact Patti Phillips, Nominating Team Chair, at (386) 288-5660 or ; Joe Rigsby, Volunteer Management Committee Chair, at (904) 480-0683 or ; or Sandra Hedrick, Stated Clerk, at (904) 612-9766 or .
Welcome Rev. Don Johnson as Pastor of Woodlawn Presbyterian Church
Woodlawn Presbyterian Church is pleased to share the wonderful news that the Rev. Don Johnson will begin his call as its Pastor on April 7! Born and raised in South Carolina, Rev. Johnson is a 2005 graduate of Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary at the Interdenominational Theological Center. He has served churches in Maryland, South Carolina, and, most recently, in Savannah. He enjoys playing golf, is teaching himself to play the guitar, and values spending time with his wife, Rene, and their family. He is looking forward to sharing his passion for the Word of God with Woodlawn and the community that it serves.
Dana Riley Accepted as Candidate for Ministry
On March 19, Dana Riley of Riverside Presbyterian Church was received as a Candidate for the Ministry of Word and Sacrament under our care. Dana is finishing her second year at Columbia Theological Seminary. Dana (second to the left) is pictured here with Rebecca Langer, Carol DisGiusto, and Joe Medearis (her presbytery liaison).
Welcome Back Rev. John Harland!
John Harland, Honorably Retired, recently transferred back into our presbytery and is available for pulpit supply preaching . John has over 60 years of experience as a pastor in a variety of ministry settings, including time spent in Germany and Tokyo. John was an interim pastor at the Plantation Chapel on Amelia Island and provided pastoral care as a parish associate at First Presbyterian Church, Fernandina Beach, from 1999-2008. We welcome John back into the Presbytery of St. Augustine. 
Installation News
You are invited to the Service of Installation of the  Rev. Joy Laughridge as Pastor of Lakewood Presbyterian Church in Jacksonville. It is requested that teaching elders in attendance and ruling elders commissioned to pastoral service wear robes and red stoles and process in together if possible. Please meet in the narthex fifteen minutes prior to the beginning of the service.
Sunday, April 7, 2019
4:00 p.m.
The celebration continues with a reception after the service.
Lakewood Presbyterian Church
2001 University Boulevard W.
Jacksonville, Florida 32217
Congratulations to Rev. Jo Anne Dyson who was installed as Pastor of Fort King Presbyterian Church, Ocala on March 24!

Rev. Dyson is pictured here with Fort King member Sue Payne. Rev. Chris Lieberman, who served as one of the church's interim pastors, preached the installation sermon.

Visit the presbytery's Facebook page for more installation photos!
Update on Proposed Amendments to the Book of Order
Though not every presbytery has voted, the outcome of all the amendments has been determined based on the number of votes to date. The amendment to G-3.0101 was defeated, and all others were approved. This outcome is consistent with our presbytery's vote at the Winter Stated Meeting. The amendment to G-3.0101 would have prohibited anyone acting on behalf of the PCUSA or one of our churches to publicly endorse or oppose individuals running for public office. It is likely that the amendment did not pass because a similar prohibition is already provided in federal law. We will provide more information about the effect of those amendments which have passed and the availability of the 2019-2021 Books of Order in our next newsletter. If you have questions, please contact Sandra Hedrick at Click here to see the current voting tally.

Four Reasons to Consider the Digital Disciples Project
Prepare to welcome new visitors to worship! We don’t know their names yet, but you will get to know them soon. 

The presbytery is pleased to offer an opportunity to partner with a Social Media Consultant who specializes in working with churches. Your congregation can learn about how churches can use and benefit from social media and increase the number of visitors at your church . As this pilot project evolves within our presbytery, watch for updates and stories from congregations that are participating in the Digital Disciples project. Visit our website for more information. or email Chris Lieberman or Marigrace Doran with any questions.

As we work to strengthen our presbytery's Facebook presence, please take a moment to visit our page by clicking on the Facebook icon, and like / follow us. We hope to see you share and comment on our posts.
Update from Mutual Mission Cuba Team
By Diane Watkins
The Cuba Team had an awesome trip as we visited six congregations in the Matanzas Presbytery for worship and fellowship who are all are very interested in partnering with their Presbyterian brothers and sisters from the St. Augustine Presbytery. What they most want from us is friendship and caring. Each of our team members came away with a strong desire to develop this relationship in a meaningful way. At least two congregations have expressed interest in having a church-to-church partnership with a Cuban congregation. In addition to our visits with congregations, we met with faculty and students at the Seminary in Matanzas. We were also able to spend time enjoying the Cuban culture, including music programs, art galleries, the beach, and historical sites.

The team would love to share our experiences with your congregation. Please contact Diane Watkins at to arrange a presentation.
Visit the Mutual Mission page on our website (link below) to read more about the Mutual Mission Cuba Team trip and check out some photos which share the team's activities throughout the week. The video clip is Pastor Beidy Casa Aragon, Associate Pastor at Iglesia Central de Matanzas.

JEMM Medical and Dental Mission Trip
Renee Mills with the Jamaica Ecumenical Mutual Mission office (in Jamaica) reported that the volunteer team of 22 from the US and 5 from Jamaica (pictured) treated a total of 721 persons during the March 10-15, 2019 JEMM medical and dental mission trip. This includes:
  • 358 persons seen for medical treatment
  • 126 persons seen for dental hygiene exam, education, and prophylaxis
  • 167 persons seen for dental extractions (418 teeth & root tips and 359 partial/broken tooth extractions)
  • 70 persons seen for dentures (54 full dentures, 44 partials, and 7 repairs).
Presbyterian Women Mission Projects
The Presbyterian Women are always busy with donations and fundraisers for Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center, Mission Haven, Days for Girls, and so many more worthy missions. We encourage your churches to have a designated “Undie Sunday” when churches collect girl’s and women’s underwear for Days for Girls (contact Gayle Bone for information 352-219-2507).

As our Presbyterian Women continue the Horizons Bible Study, God’s Promise: I Am with You , we are learning that God is with us in our uncertainty, our discouragement, our powerlessness, and our trials. Studying with other Christians strengthens our faith and helps us reach out to others as Presbyterian Women have always done.
Presbyterian Social Ministries Donates Clothes to Philippines
By Teri Ketchum, CEO 
Presbyterian Social Ministries began sending children’s clothes to the Philippines back in 2017. Our partnership began with our bookkeeper who is from there. She knew of the many needs back home, the surplus we have here, and put them together for a natural fit. This was the start of PSM having an international mission alongside our local one. We were invited to visit, received a gracious gift from a donor who funded the trip, and off we went! We also partnered with Dress a Girl Around the World , a project in which women take ordinary pillow cases and create beautiful dresses for girls. We shipped 12 large boxes of clothing and filled our spare suitcases to bring many more with us. We shared clothing, food, and prayers with each family. Presbyterian Social Ministries is not directly affiliated with the presbytery, but it was founded by Ruling Elder Dave Tuttle, who recently retired as CEO. The organization is currently housed at Murray Hill Presbyterian Church. Pictured is Teri Ketchum , CEO.
Youth Triennium Update
As of March 20, there are 28 youth registered for Triennium, and four adult advisors / chaperones have been identified! There is room for up to 50 people on the bus; so if you haven’t registered your youth members yet, a bit of room is still available, but the absolute registration deadline is May 15. The plan is to leave Jacksonville on Monday, July 15, and return on Sunday, July 21. Email if you have any questions.
Update on Youth Ministry Coordinating Council
The following seven people have agreed to serve on a short-term Youth Ministry Task Force to work on an organizational model and mission goals for an ongoing Youth Ministry Coordinating Council within the Relationship Coordination Committee: Forrest Foxworth (Director of Youth and Their Families, First Presbyterian Church, Fernandina Beach); Lexi Green (Director, Camp Montgomery); Brian Mitchell (Director of Youth and Young Adults, Lakewood, Jacksonville); Laura Sambito (Director of Christian Education, Highlands United, Jacksonville); Breanna Sooter (Director of Youth Ministry, Riverside, Jacksonville); and Brooke Tucke r (Director of Faith Formation, Trinity, Palm Coast). 
Thank you for making our first annual Board of Trustees-sponsored Work Day a success. We welcomed members of our Board and volunteers from many of our churches, including McIntosh, Hodges Boulevard, Kanapaha, Palms, Memorial, and Westminster. We installed the new chicken coop, cleaned and repaired the outdoor kitchen, planted the camp garden, installed hammocks, and spring cleaned the cabins.

A special thank you to all of the congregations who supported us during our Montgomery Madness Sunday . We’ve received just over $3,000 in offerings to date, and we could not be more thankful for your continued support of MPCC. For those congregations who would like to know more or want to schedule someone from Montgomery to come visit, please let us know.  We are happy to come share the good news.
  • The Forum on Youth Ministry, April 23-26, 2019 at Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, NJ - A conference for leaders who minister to young people. This year's theme is MOVEMENT: Mission, Body and Justice.

  • Engaging Aging in Today's World, May 22, 2019 at St. Leo Abbey near Dade City, FL - A regional conference designed for both older adults and for the leaders who do ministry with and for them. Hosted by the Presbyterian Older Adult Ministries Network (POAMN), in collaboration with the Adult Lutherans Organized for Action.
  • Big Tent, August 1-3, 2019 in Baltimore - Join the movement of Presbyterians in Baltimore for a Big Tent like no other. The theme, Called to a Movement beyond Institution, will emphasize our hope of the Gospel and its power to challenge institutional conventions. Big Tent will provide a place where our Presbyterian polity and identity is the foothold by which we proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ in action and answer the call to discern the will of God together.
  • The Art of Yes, and ..., November 14-16, 2019 at Epworth-by-the-Sea in St. Simons Island, GA. A conference sponsored by South Atlantic Puerto Rican Region of the Association of Presbyterian Christian Educators.
Be sure to check out the classifieds page of our website to check out employment opportunities within the Presbytery of St. Augustine. If you have a position you would like us to post on the classifieds page, please email .

Blue Hymnals Available
First Presbyterian Church of Palatka has about 75-100 blue Presbyterian hymnals they would like to donate. If your congregation is interested, please contact the First Palatka office at (386) 328-1435 or via email . The presbytery office also has a supply of blue hymnals that are available. Email us at if Jacksonville is more convenient.

  • April 6 (12:00 - 4:00 p.m.) – Jubilee Party and BBQ Luncheon at Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center
  • April 7 (4:00 p.m.) - Service of Installation, the Rev. Joy Laughridge, Lakewood Presbyterian Church, Jacksonville
  • April 21 - Easter Sunday!
  • April 23-26 - Forum on Youth Ministry, Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, NJ
  • May 7 (9:00 a.m.) - Spring Stated Meeting of the Presbytery at Montgomery
  • May 22 (8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.) - Engaging Aging in Today's World Conference, St. Leo Abbey, Tampa
  • June 16 - Camp Montgomery Summer Camp Begins
  • July 16 - 20 - Presbyterian Youth Triennium 2019, Purdue University
  • August 1-3 - Big Tent, Baltimore, MD
  • October 1 (9:00 a.m.) - Fall Stated Meeting of the Presbytery at Montgomery
  • November 14-16 - SOAP APCE Conference, Epworth-by-the-Sea, St. Simon's Island, GA
Celebrating With You!
If you are celebrating a milestone anniversary as a congregation or in years of ordination as a Minister of Word and Sacrament, please let us know. Email Marigrace Doran so that we can include your milestone in The Connection.
The Presbytery of St. Augustine Connection Newsletter is a publication of the Presbytery of St. Augustine. It is written and designed by Communications Coordinator Marigrace Doran. Editorial assistance is provided by Stated Clerk Sandra Hedrick, Relationship Coordinator Director Chris Lieberman, and other presbytery leaders.

Masthead photo by Will Barnwell
The mission of the Presbytery of St. Augustine is to support our faith community, so that together we may witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ.