“What is now proved was once only imagined.” – William Blake

2 July 2020

Sisters and brothers in Christ,

From lament into hope. That was the apt theme of the 224 th General Assembly, held for the first time virtually this past weekend. And that seems to be the theme of our lives together as leaders of the church. Or perhaps more descriptive; from lament into hope into lament into hope into lament into hope……

It is a good time to rest. It is a good time to access alternate worship services; call your colleagues and ask them to welcome your congregation one Sunday – and then do the same for them. A reminder of the link to the worship service offered by the “former” co-moderator Cindy Kohlmann and others from the Synod of the Northeast for this weekend, which can be found here:  https://www.presbyteryofboston.org/Resources/COVID-19-Resources/Worship-Services

Remember that the burden to care for the congregation is not the Pastor’s alone, and that has never been more true than in these times in which we find ourselves. Sessions must lead. Ruling Elders must lead. Pastors must lead. None of us can do this alone. We all need to walk through these days – together – hand in hand with the One for whom we labor.

Several congregations are moving toward partial reopening of buildings. The ZOOM gathering that addresses in-person/virtual combination worship is posted on the HRP website. You have been creating your reopening plans, and we would love to share these among congregations. While each of your plans would be specific to your own context, it could be helpful to see what others are doing. Please email them to Stated Clerk, Susan DeGeorge at susandegeorge@hudrivpres.org . They will be gathered and made available soon.

Do take time to fill out the survey that was sent out to Stated Clerks and Pastors last week. It will be resent this week. We only need one per congregation, but this information will guide the direction of the presbytery through upcoming months and provides critical data for upcoming decisions. If you do not receive a survey, please contact christine@hudrivpres.org . It will only take 5 minutes of your time.

The personnel committee and council of Hudson River Presbytery has approved a position description to fill the Communications Director position formerly staffed by Noelle Damico. The description can be found attached and on the HRP website under the “Employment” tab. There are also other positions being advertised from around the presbytery.

While Lamentations 5: 20-21 seems to be the order of some days, hope survives. You have seen it; you have experienced the glimmers. And the outgoing Co-Moderators consistently returned to the Ephesians 3 passage, “Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine”. May it be so-

Peace and continued blessings,

Deborah Milcarek
General Presbyter