March 21, 2016
Inside this Edition

Lenten Season Reflections

David Lamotte Presenting in April at Gathering for Church Leaders

Mission Summit 2016

Presbyterian Stewardship Seminar at Knox PC

Discussion on Immigration at Woods Mem'l PC

LGBT Choral in Tiffany Series Concert at Brown Mem'l Pk. Ave. PC

Ring in the Spring - Community Handbell Festival at Second PC

Organist Frederick Swann in Tiffany Series Concert at Brown Mem'l Pk. Ave. PC

Ashland PC seeks a Christian Educator

Maryland PC Offering Free Lectern

Mental Health First Aid Workshop 

Spring Gathering of the Presbyterian Women in the Presbytery of Baltimore 

HopeSprings seeks an Administrative Coordinator

ICJS: Imagining Justice in Baltimore Lecture 

Committee and Commission meetings will be held at the Presbytery's office (unless noted otherwise.) 

Steering Committee will meet at 1pm on Wednesday, Mar. 30.

Committee on Preparation for Ministry will meet at 3pm on Wednesday, Apr. 20

Committee on Ministry will meet at 2pm on Thursday, Apr. 21

Transitions Team will meet at 2pm on Thursday, Apr. 21.

Commission on Spiritual Leader Development  will meet at 10am on Tuesday, Apr. 5.

Commission on Thriving Congregations on Tuesday, Mar. 29 at 2pm.

Commission on Reconciliation will meet 6:30pm on Wednesday, Mar. 30.

Cuba Partnership will meet a 2pm on Wednesday, Mar. 16

Our Shared Ministry 2016 
Thank you to the following congregations who have pledged toward Our Shared Ministry 2016. Our aim is not just to reach a budget goal of $225,000 but also enlist the participation of all of our congregations. And, we believe that this can happen. 
Please send your Shared Ministry pledge and become a part of our collective mission.

Brown Mem'l Woodbrook
Christ Our King
First & Franklin
1st of Annapolis
1st of Bel Air 
Good Shepherd
Hunting Ridge 
Light Street
Mount Paran
Prince of peace
Roland Park

by Mary Gaut, 
Interim General Presbyter

In this Holy Week the world around us is, as always, a study in contrasts.  The emerging spring holds the promise of simple pleasures of walks in the neighborhood and backyard burgers.  Hardly a day goes by that the news doesn't carry a story about a breakthrough medical advance.  The musicians, writers and artists among us bear testimony to the creativity and resilience of the human spirit.  Opening day in Oriole Park is right around the corner.  But woven into all the beauty and light is a violent and ugly spirit, born of fear, that threatens to overwhelm the world's longing for a hopeful future.  So often it is the darkness that seems to have the upper hand as much as it has the media's attention. 

In the Gospel, the week that begins with the Hosannas of Palm Sunday is also a study in contrasts.  Those of you who were preaching or hearing sermons two days ago were, no doubt, reminded of how the little rag tag procession of Jesus' followers entering Jerusalem was in stark contrast to the pomp and circumstance of Pontius Pilate entering on the other side.  As the week progresses the narrative holds in tension Jesus' resolute faithfulness and trust with all that competes against it:   the demands of empire and the confusion and uncertainty of Jesus disciples the explosive violence of the crowds.  In this sacred story as well, the darkness appears to have the upper hand. 

The Easter narrative of the light of God's love breaking through both quietly and spectacularly is the defining story for those who would follow Jesus and be agents of God's hope. The good news of resurrection proclaimed on the first day of the week trumps the perceived finality of death. In the midst of the most complicated and dangerous of seasons it offers hope that vaults the disciples out of their complacency and fear to challenge the darkness with the conviction that will never be the final word.  This is the church's story proclaimed in word and sacrament, liturgy and song.  There is something about it all that moves the most casual of Christians to want to be part of it on Easter morning. 

But, as each of you reading this knows, the truth of Easter is not a moment in time to be celebrated once a year.  It is a truth that must be lived day in and out in our own complicated and dangerous season.  If and when we do it well people want to be a part of it not just on Easter Sunday but 24/7.  They are hungry to be in community with others who challenge the lie that the darkness will win.  There is no room for anxiety or laziness in the Easter story.  The Good News of Easter energizes us to move out from the comfort of our sanctuaries and confront the hatred and violence that are tearing at the fabric of our community.   For Christ is risen indeed and lives in and among us. Don't just believe it.  Trust it and live it for it is not only our hope.  It is the hope of the world.   Let us collectively proclaim it this Sunday and then live it in all the weeks to come. 

taff Directory

Take Note/Act Now

Presbytery  .  .  . and the Wider Church   

Wat ch the  "The Servant Teacher," a meditation on  Isaiah 50:4-9  with TE Ken Kovacs, pastor of Catonsville Presbyterian Church.  

David Lamotte  at Clergy Retreat 2016 -- award-winning songwriter, speaker, author and activist -- will be featured in a presentation entitled Worldchanging 101: Challenging the Myth of Powerlessness during the Gathering  for church leaders  to be held April 6-7 at Bon Secours Retreat and Conference Center, Marriottsville.  View the Retreat Schedule and Register now!     

The Commission on Reconciliation invites you to attend Mission Summit 2016 from 10am-2pm on Saturday, Apr. 23 at Christ Memorial Presbyterian Church in Columbia. For details, click Mission Summit 2016 .

Do you long for your church's members to enjoy  the  spiritual rewards of a generous life?   On Saturday, Apr. 30 --  t he  Presbyterian Foundation  and  the  Board of  Pensions will sponsor a seminar  designed    to m ove your c hurch  toward  spiritually based  culture  of  generosity.   This stewardship event will be held 8:30am to 1:30pm at Knox Presbyterian Church.  The cost is $10pp. Click Generosity.


Woods Memorial Presbyterian Church invites you to attend a discussion from 5-8pm on Sunday, Apr. 3 about the refugee crises around the world. The event, sponsored by The Adult Education and Missions Ministry, will include a viewing of "Salam (Hello) Neighbor."  Click Salam  for details.

LGBT CHORAL CELEBRATION. The Tiffany Series at Brown Memorial Park Avenue Presbyterian Church in Bolton Hill is hosting an LGBT Choral Celebration at 3pm on Sunday, Apr. 3 featuring Baltimore's New Wave Singers; Potomac Fever, the D.C. Gay Men's Chorus' "tight harmony" ensemble; and Philadelphia's SheWho, a women's ensemble.  A free reception will follow the event. Tickets $15 ($5 students) at  Click LGBT Choral for flyer.

Catonsville Concerts at 3 presents the Baltimore Choral Arts Society with "Choral Gems" at 3pm on Sunday, Apr. 17 at Catonsville Presbyterian Church. The concert is free, and donations are gratefully accepted.  For details, call 410.747.6180

Think warm weather and join Second Presbyterian Church's "Ring in the Spring!"-- A Community Handbell Festival on Sunday, Apr. 17. Choirs are invited to perform at the concert and individual ringers are welcome to join the  ensemble rehearsals on Wednesdays, beginning in March. For details: Beau or 410.830.9988.

Renowned organist Frederick Swann will present a recital on Sunday, Apr.24 at Brown Memorial Park Avenue Presbyterian Church in Bolton Hill, sponsored by The Tiffany Series.  Free reception following the concert.  Tickets $15 ($5 students) at . Click Swann for details.

Ashland Presbyterian Church seeks a Director of Christian Education.  You can read the job description by clicking Ashland.

Maryland Presbyterian Church has a wooden lectern. All items are free to any church.  Interested? Call the church office at  410.825.0719.  

Take the course, save a life, strengthen your community.  Mental Health First Aid Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016 8:30am- 5pm at Harundale Presbyterian Church in  Glen Burnie.  Cost to members of presbyterian c hurches: $25.  To register, email  Debbie Schmidt Click   Mental Health  to learn more about this event. 


The Spring Gathering of the Presbyterian Women in the Presbytery of Baltimore  will be held from 9am to 1pm on Saturday, Apr. 2 at  Catonsville Presbyterian Church.  This year's event entitled "Hope & Change," will feature a guest speaker from  Hope Works Domestic Violence Center. To register, click PWP.

IMAGINING JUSTICE IN BALTIMORE: The Institute for Islamic Christian and Jewish Studies presents "Imagining Justice in Baltimore: A Jewish Perspective" at its Manekin-Clark Lecture at 7pm on Tuesday, Apr. 5 at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum. Click ICJS for details.

taff Directory

 Mary Gaut
Interim General Presbyter

  Deb Milcarek
Assoc. for Reconciliation 

Susan Krehbiel
Dir. of Congregational Advocacy

William Nickels III
 Assoc. General Presbyter

Debbie Ingram Schmidt
Assoc. for Spiritual Leader Development
Deborah Greene  
Dir. of Communications

Catherine Blacka

Judy Johnson
Ministry Group Staff

 Wanda Morgan
Dir. of Events/Services