“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
Arthur Ashe
19 June 2020

Greetings in the name of Christ our Healer,

It has been a season of change. A season of despair. A season of grief and a season of hope. As I write to you, Governor Cuomo is preparing to deliver his last “daily briefing”. I have not been here long enough to know much about his politics. What I do know is that he has been consistent in his leadership of New York during this time, and I have learned much from his style of leading during a crisis. One of many takeaways: STABILIZE. REOPEN SMARTLY. REBUILD & RECREATE .

We have stabilized. We are beginning to consider what “reopen smartly” means to each of us. It is very contextual and very much about keeping God’s people, who are under our care, safe and free from both infection and exclusion. It is a tough balance. It is a leadership call, based on Session action and approval, which includes instituting and supporting all necessary protections.

We are dedicated to resourcing you the best way that we can as we move through reopening and reimagining. The ZOOM gatherings that HRP offered this week on buildings and worship were well-attended by over 100 people at each! A video of the presentation as well as the PowerPoint slides are now available on the HRP website. The recording of Daycare Centers from Monday’s ZOOM is also available.

·           Information for the Holmes Camp online worship services being offered June 28 th , July 26 th and August 30 th is available on their website www.holmescamp.org and on the Presbytery calendar. In addition, Cindy Kohlman, the current moderator of PC(USA), will be making a worship service available for July 5 th which will include communion. Information and links will be available soon.

·            The 224 th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) officially begins this evening. Go to the HRP website for information on how to livestream. Our prayers are with our commissioners as they forge a new territory of online GA. Luke, Connie, David, Jeff & Erin – God’s peace and blessings from us all!

·           In our quest to continue to resource your congregation, you will be receiving a short survey soon. Please help your presbytery leadership to help you and fill it out as soon as you receive it. 

·           Looking for some study leave ideas? Be part of the launch of the newest Presbyterian Foundation offering, the Church Financial Leadership Academy (CFLA). The CFLA is an E-learning platform designed to help pastors institute best practices for church financial leadership, introduce new models of giving and stewardship, and offer new ways to talk about money and form generous disciples within your congregation. Visit www.churchfla.org for more information.

·           Reimagining is the perfect situation in which you could utilize a Coach. HRP has offered to pay for the first 6 sessions of coaching. To take advantage of this, view the video about coaching and fill out the information form, both available on the HRP website.
Energy. Intelligence. Imagination. Love.

Peace to you and may you continue to count God’s blessings on this journey.

Deb Milcarek