Blackhawk Presbytery


February 24, 2020


Tuesday, April 14
Click for:
Read the Latest Issue of 

NEW Discounted Bundles for the latest Children's books from 
Great way to stock your church library!

Introduction to
Family Systems Thinking
"Conviction and Courage
in an Age of a Regressing Society"
Dr. Peter Steinke

Presbytery Assembly Recap
Lift Every Voice And Sing!
The well-attended Presbytery Meeting in DeKalb on February 11 was filled with several highlights:
  • Worship featured parting words by General Presbyter, Rev. Dr. John Rickard who reminded us that God's salvation is woven through our individual stories as we connect with each other and do our part to further God's kingdom on earth. John was also honored with gifts, presentations and thanks for his 18 years of service to Blackhawk Presbytery and Stronghold. 
  • Rev. Beth Wagner began our year-long series "The Church in Transition" with reality checks, challenges and talk of canoes and sailboats...
  • Following a successful examination, the Presbytery warmly welcomed Jenny Hubbard as she looks forward to her ordination and installation as Minister of Word and Sacrament to Au Sable Grove Pres. in Yorkville.
  • Presbytery was also delighted to Commission three new Pastors: JD Buchenau to Pontiac First, Faith Herout to Morris First and Mike Engle to Winnebago First. Congratulations to Pastors and congregations!
  • Approved with sadness the request from Oregon First Presbyterian to dissolve their congregation and appointed an Administrative Commission to work with them in this process.
  • Voted to concur with three Overtures to General Assembly including one originating from two Blackhawk pastors ("Regarding Worship Resources for Ministering to Veterans")  
See  the website for minutes and Facebook for photos!
Coins for Kenya
In January 2020, representatives from Blackhawk, together with their Imenti partners, distributed food in Rwarera, Kenya.  People there had survived a drought, but were left in such poverty that they could not afford seed to plant their land.  Over 300 individuals eagerly stood in line to receive food.  However, they expressed even more elation at the announcement that they would be given seed to get them back to sustaining their own lives.
We are pleased to announce that through the generosity of churches, many, many coin-givers, the Presbytery assembly offering ($1,015!) and individual donors, we were able to meet the GOAL and wire $5,100 (US) to Kenya in time for the planting season. THANK YOU, EVERYONE!

Let's Go Fishing!
One Great Hour of Sharing Fishing Derby

It's O-fish-ial! RCLPC* is REEL excited to challenge you to a One Great Hour of Sharing Fishing Derby. No license or fishing gear required, just fill your fish banks with coins, currency and checks and your congregation may win bragging rights for: the largest fish (the fish bank that contains the most money), the heaviest fish (the fish bank that weighs the most), and total catch (overall gifts from a congregation).

Don't let this opportunity be the one that got away. Take the bait and dive into this challenge! Get hooked on sharing God's love with our neighbors in need! When we all do a little, it adds up to a lot!
Derby Rules and Regulations:

TO ENTER: Collection begins February 26 and continues through April 5. Submit your congregation's name and totals for largest fish, heaviest fish, and total catch by April 15 to or mail to Blackhawk Presbytery P.O. Box 199, Oregon, IL 61061. It is the responsibility of the contestants to report their earnings (no exaggerating the size of your fish!) by April 15th.  Presbytery Mission Committee will announce the bragging rights when results are all in.

*Ridgefield-Crystal Lake Presbyterian Church (aka rickle-pick) 

First Installment Well Received - 
Be Sure to Attend Again in April!

Make plans now to attend a full year of learning focused on the church of the future. Your church in the future. You know change is necessary, but how to begin? Not for Pastors only - it is the responsibility of all church leaders to explore, dream and embrace. CLICK HERE FOR A COPY TO SHARE.
Our Condolences to the
Family of Rev. Kay Cushman
Kay Kienstra Cushman, 79, of Princeton, IL passed away on Saturday, January 18, 2020 at her home. She was a Member at Large of Blackhawk Presbytery and served as Interim Pastor for the Princeton First Pres. church from 2002-2004. Please offer prayers for her family and see the full obituary here
UDTS Presents 2020 Woods Lecture
Please click here below to see information for the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary's 2020 Woods Lecture which will take place on March 23rd.  

This year's Guest Speaker will be Rev. Jonathan E.L. Brooks (  This full day event is free and open to the public, however, pre-registration is requested (also at link).  If planning to attend please register by Monday, March 16th. We hope to see you there.
Know PAM?
The Presbyterian Association of Musicians (PAM) believes that formative and collaborative experiences with God and neighbor nurture relationships and create community.

Registration is open for the annual PAM Worship and Music Conferences at Montreat in June! 2020 is the 50th anniversary of PAM and we are excited to bring you this conference which features clinicians from PAM's past and new faces of PAM's future. Also within the workshop we will be offering a Confirmation course for middle youth (entering or exiting 8th grade) and their mentors to prepare them for Confirmation at their home churches. 
See their website for all information.  Scholarship money is available, too! 
Our Vision and Values
     Grounded in the biblical image for human community, as disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ, we challenge and support congregations to be thriving faith communities by facilitating competent leadership and resourcing to energize ministry and mission.
     As Christians, guided by the principles of love, trust, open communication, and genuine relationships, we value each other as sisters and brothers in faith in all our varied theological understandings. Therefore, we relish respectful discussions of differing opinions as a necessary part of discerning the will of God.