Hudson Happenings
H u d s o n  R i v e r  P r e s b y t e r y
In This Issue
February 21, 2019
Presbytery News & Events
Installation of Deborah Milcarek as GP
Sunday, March 3, 3-5pm 

The Hudson River Presbytery warmly invites you to a

Service of Installation for

Ruling Elder Deborah Milcarek
as General Presbyter

March 3rd, 3:00 - 5:00pm

                            Reception to follow

If you are interested in joining the combined choir for Deb's installation, please email Choir Director Matthew Rupcich at  Tenor, Baritone, and Bass voices especially welcome.  Singers will practice the music independently and gather at 1:45pm to combine musical forces just prior to the installation service.
Register for Hudson River University, Mar. 16
Vital Communities of Faith:
Inside Resources, Outside Ministry Opportunities
Are you a congregational leader who needs help with Christian education, stewardship or doing social justice ministry in your church?

Saturday, March 16, 2019
9:30 am - 2:30 pm
Stony Point Center

Opening Worship and Keynote Speaker, the Rev. Aquellah Ligonde, Pastor at Far Rockaway Presbyterian Church and Consultant with Youth Ministry Architects.  Read the full schedule of workshops and leaders and register.

This university is open to all... old and young... any church members, officers or friends from any of our HRP congregations! The best part is that tuition is FREE!!! There will be a cost for lunch ($15) but any and all instruction and materials will be at no charge.
Register today! 
HRP's Stated Clerk + NE Synod on Divestment from Fossil Fuels
From Susan DeGeorge:
The last two Synod of the Northeast assemblies have passed and then affirmed policies around climate change and divesting from fossil fuels. Their Stated Clerk, Nancy Talbot, has now written to presbytery leaders asking that we inform all congregations of this action and calling on each congregation in the synod to do the work of discerning their own calls to divestment. The presbytery has to report back on what has been done within 12 months. As you do this work, would you please share the process you've used and the decisions you've made with me so that I can include it in that report?  The synod letter can be found at this link.  It contains some starting resources for congregations as they focus on this issue.
Stony Point Church Administrative Commission Invites Questions and Comments
At the January 19, 2019 meeting of the Hudson River Presbytery, the Administrative Commission of the Stony Point Presbyterian Church presented, for a first reading, a proposal for the use of the property of the former Stony Point Presbyterian Church. The Administrative Commission proposed gifting the property for the creation of the Sweetwater Cultural Center, to "promote the education, health, and welfare of indigenous or native peoples and to preserve their cultures and ceremonial practices locally, regionally and around the world." The full proposal presented at the January Presbytery meeting can be read in this document, pp. 17-27.

The Presbytery meeting provided a forum for rich discussion, but we realize that many of our members, not able to be at Presbytery meetings, may nonetheless have questions, concerns, and suggestions. Further, new ideas may arise between the January meeting and the March meeting when the proposal will be offered for a vote. The Administrative Commission would welcome any communication from members of our Presbytery. Please do not hesitate to contact us at, and we will reply as quickly and as fully as we are able.

We would also welcome the opportunity to meet with any congregations, or their Sessions, prior to the March meeting. For those who wish to engage the questions surrounding native peoples and the Presbyterian Church further, we also lift up the seminar "Indigenous Rights and Colonial Wrongs: Acknowledging our Settler Colonialist History," offered as a part of Hudson River University at the Stony Point Center on March 16th.
Pastoral Sabbath at Stony Point, Feb. 27-28
Led by Rev. Leslie Mott, the    Pastoral Sabbath Retreat is a time for clergy "to come away by yourselves and rest for a while," so that we may return renewed to those we serve.

Those attending receive materials for reflection and study and have the opportunity to engage in gentle yoga class, guided meditation, group and individual spiritual direction, and prayer. 

In this second year of the two year Synod Innovation grant, in order to extend the grant funding as long as possible, it is necessary to introduce tiered pricing for the Pastoral Sabbath.  The cost for a participant is approximately $150.00 for accommodations and four meals.  A partial scholarship of $75.00 would be offered to those whose finances would otherwise preclude them from this opportunity, and a limited number of full scholarships will be available through the Fall.  Please indicate on your  registration if you are in need of scholarship funds.  If you have any questions, please contact Rev. Leslie Mott:
Presbyterian Women's Ash Wednesday Retreat,
March 6

Join Presbyterian Women for their annual retreat, "Restored Relationships," led by the Rev. Jennifer Rodriguez, 10:00am - 1:00pm at Stony Point Center. Spread the word with this flyer!

Bring a bag lunch or pay $10 for Stony Point's lunch. 
Board of Pensions: How Fiscally Fit Are you? March 9
How fiscally fit are you?  Join the Board of Pensions and other plan members and seminarians to learn how to get your financial house in order.  From debt reduction to estate planning basics, from clergy call to tax basics, this one day seminar will set you on solid ground.  Run from 8:30-5:00pm and held at Princeton Theological Seminary, seating is limited and registration closes on February 18.  Register now!  Share the flyer!
Get Innovative:  Challenge-to-Change!  Applications due Mar. 15
Each year Challenge-to-Change grants offer congregations and ministries within the presbytery the opportunity to try something new, as long as these ideas are congruent with the presbytery's vision statement.  So how about it? 

Challenge to Change offers grants of from $200 to $7000 dollars to help bring Christ's love to others in new ways -- from helping start a community dinner program to an interfaith discussion group to renovating unused space for a new, broader purpose. Your imagination is the only limit.  The grants are awarded annually and may be renewed for up to three years.  So start innovating! Applications are due on March 15, 2019.  To learn more, check out the Challenge-to-Change document on the HRP website under the "Grants" tab. Questions?  Contact the  Rev. Cathy Surgenor, Chair of the HRP Grants Committee.

Congregational News
Hugh B. Price, Esq. to speak, Feb. 24
Mt. Vernon Presbyterian Church welcomes special Black History Month speaker, Hugh B. Price, Esq. to worship on Sunday, Feb. 24 at the 11:00am service.  All are welcome. 

Over the course of his career, Hugh B. Price has held an unusual array of positions of leadership and service as an executive, advocate, teacher, author and board director in the nonprofit, private and public sectors.

Career Highlights
- President and CEO of the National Urban League from July 1994 until April 2003.
- John L. Weinberg/Goldman Sachs Visiting Professor of Public and International Affairs in the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University from 2008 until 2013
- After graduating from Yale Law School in 1966, Mr. Price began his professional
career as a legal services lawyer representing low-income clients in New Haven,
CT. During the turbulent late 1960s, he served as the first executive director of the
Black Coalition of New Haven.
- Editorial board member of The New York Times
- Vice president of the Rockefeller Foundation

Mt. Vernon Presbyterian is located at 199 North Columbus Ave. in Mt. Vernon, NY.  Come and celebrate Black History Month with us!
5K Chocolate Run/Walk, April 28
The 5th Annual Chocolate 5K Run and 5K Walk is a unique race that combines the love of 2 American Favorites --- Running and Chocolate!  $25 to enter. (Prices increase after April 15).  All proceeds benefit Bethlehem Presbyterian Church Community Mission and Outreach Programs!  Learn more!  Races start at 9am.

Our scenic course takes you through the picturesque roads of New Windsor and Cornwall, NY with the addition of a small cross country trail segment (Very Unique for a 5K Race!). There will also be a free children's race. We have appropriately called It "The Cocoa Challenge". This 1/4 mile run is open to all children 10 and under with candy bars and finisher ribbons awaiting all children that cross the finish line. Learn more and register now!

Rural and Migrant Ministry Says Thanks!
There's so much that happens through RMM; and it's hard to keep up, but we wanted to take a moment and share with you some of the important steps you helped make possible in 2018.  Click here for all the good news!
Regional and National Events
Holmes Logo
Confirmation Retreats in March and April
Rev. Martin McGeachy & Rev. Bryan Breault will be leading confirmation retreats, March 22-23 and April 12-13.

Bring your confirmation classes to Holmes for a weekend to explore faith and enjoy fellowship with youth from other churches!  Learn more!
Undoing Racism, March 18-20
Stony Point Center is pleased to again host the "Undoing Racism Workshop", developed by the People's Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB) and organized by VCS, Inc. PISAB's workshops have affected hundreds of thousands of people across the United States. Through dialogue, reflection, role-playing, strategic planning and presentations, participants analyze structures of power and privilege and learn strategies to organize for justice.  Advanced registration is required! Click here for more details and links to register.
Princeton Forum on Youth Ministry,
April 23-26

Join other youth leaders, directors, and pastors April 23-26
on the campus of Princeton Theological Seminary for a 4-
day youth ministry conference.

We believe that lives and
communities will be transformed when theological
reflection meets practical application. Learn more!
PC(USA) Peacemaking Seminar Trips to Central America and Philippines/Hong Kong in 2020

Central American Migrant Trails, Feb. 17-28, 2020
aims to help concerned Presbyterians better understand the immigration context we are facing in the US with our Central American brothers and sisters and why they take the risk of embarking on this dangerous journey north with children in tow. Learn more.

Root Causes and Current Challenges of Forced Migration and Labor Trafficking, May 4-15, 2020
Since 1974, the Philippine government systematized its labor export program, in response to increasing unemployment and underemployment and social unrest...
Almost 7000 workers per day, leave the Philippines to work in land-based and sea-based jobs. The labor force of Hong Kong domestic workers consists mostly of Indonesian and Filipina women. Learn more. 
Save the Date! Board of Pensions Program for Churches, May 19
The Board of Pensions hosts annual Benefits Connections at locations across the nation to engage Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) churches in important benefits conversations and to help them be the best employers they can be.  Save the date for the next Benefits Connections East Coast gathering, May 19 in New York City!  Get more information.
Resources for Education, Liturgy & More!
Meditations on Faith at Midlife
For many people at midlife the pace of life is so frenetic and full that we do not take the time to "let the land lie fallow." But it is especially at this juncture that many want to ask some hard questions of God and of ourselves. Leonora Tubbs Tisdale presents this devotional book of reflections to help people at midlife reflect and navigate through some of these questions.

The fifty meditations in The Sun Still Rises take the reader on a journey through challenges that many people face at midlife, such as job loss, the quest for personal and vocational identity, illness (cancer), war, a parent's dementia, and the death of friends. It also traces the joys that come with rediscovering nature, relishing long-term friendships, and growing older. Each entry ends with a Scripture citation and questions for reflection.

Learn more about this book that will release in March and order at Westminster/John Knox Press. 
Pastoral and Spiritual Care in a Digital Age: The Future Is Now  
HRP's own Kirk Bingaman, Associate Professor of Pastoral Care & Counseling at Fordham and Parish Associate at Scarborough Presbyterian Church has a new and achingly relevant book out that you will not want to miss.  Order it now!

Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing what it means to be human. Given our increasing merger with machines, we have therefore entered uncharted territory and an era of unprecedented change. For pastoral and spiritual care providers, religious faith communities, clinical practitioners, and educators, immediate theological reflection is needed, focusing on the potential existential threat and opportunity, and what will constitute human personhood in an age of technological enhancement. Preserving our humanity in a digital age will require intentional focus on strengthening the neural circuitry associated with focused attention, mindful and compassionate awareness, and social and relational intelligence, even as we put to good use the emerging digital technologies.  
Cory & the Seventh Story, by Brian McLaren
In this story co-written by Brian McLaren and peace activist Gareth Higgins, and illustrated by award-winning artist Heather Lynn Harris, a young raccoon named Cory watches as the Old Village is taken over by six stories of fighting and fear. Cory searches for a better way, a seventh story of peace and belonging ... and discovers how to make a difference.

In the spirit of classics like Douglas Wood's The Old Turtle series and Kenneth Graheme's The Wind in the Willows, Cory and the Seventh Story invites kids and adults into conversations about what's going wrong in the world and what we can do to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Order the book.
Webinar Series: Money Conversations in the Church
The Presbyterian Foundation is offering a series of webinars in 2019 on engaging church givers in stewardship and money-related conversations. Pastors, business administrators, stewardship chairs, treasurers, session clerks, and others involved in the financial life of the church are invited to register. The workshops are free. You can sign up for the whole series, or just topics that interest you the most. Learn more.
Seeking and Finding
Free Choir Robes!
FRE  choir robes in nice condition. 
Quantity:  Blue 20, Red 13, Gray 15, Off White 15.  Each comes in varying sizes.

Contact Sandra Larson, Interim Pastor, Union Presbyterian Church (NOTE "l' as in Larson) Mobile:  503-302-1040.  
Hymnals, Bibles, and an upright piano available
The Grahams Presbyterian Church in Pine Bush has the following items available for the asking. 53 blue, 1990 Presbyterian Hymnals, 78 red 1946 hymnals The Hymnbook, 15 Bibles, and an upright piano. If interested, contact Bruce Baker at
Handbells for Sale!
Schulmerich Handbells for Sale (used; need refurbishment)
5 Octaves (C3 - C8); purchased between 1963 and 1977
Cases included
Six clear plexiglass music stands included
Handbell music included

$10,000 (brand-new 5-octave set would cost approx. $24,000)! Buyer to pick up or to pay for shipping. Photos available upon request.

Contact: Jason Charneski, Director of Music and Organist, Rye Presbyterian Church, 882 Boston Post Rd., Rye, NY 10580  Phone: 914-967-0842, ext. 16; email:
Free Junior Choir Robes!
Do you have a Junior Choir aching to make their debut on Easter Sunday in resplendent verdancy?  Or a middle school class needing costumes for a Wicked visit to the Emerald City?  Gilead has you covered--or will.

Gilead Presbyterian in Carmel has 16 Junior Choir robes for boys or girls, sizes ranging from smallest (fitting up to 3'8"height) to largest (up to 5'5"height).  Free!  Just like Grace and Will!  Contact Martin at or 845-216-8129. 
Employment Opportunities
Presbyterian Peace Fellowship Seeks PT Comms. Manager
The Communications Manager will compellingly represent PPF's values and priorities through written and visual communications; develop and carry out a communications strategy and plan through social media, the website, and written materials; maintain the website; and manage the internal communications of PPF.  Learn more about this 10 hour a week position.
All Souls Port Chester Seeks PT Christian Educator
All Souls Parish/The Presbyterian Church of Port Chester, NY is looking for a part-time Christian Educator to facilitate our Sunday Morning children's program.  The position is four hours a week with 2.5 of those hours being on Sunday morning from 9 -11:30 am.  The salary will be $18-$20 per hour commensurate with experience.  Please send a cover letter and resume to
All Souls Port Chester Seeks PT Permanent Secretary
Must have excellent telephone manner, organization skills and be proficient in MS Word. Must be able to prioritize and work on multiple projects.   Work hours are 20 hours per week/4 hours per day at an hourly rate of $20. Please send resume to
Yorktown Presbyterian Church Seeks Music Director
Yorktown's next Director of Music Ministry will provide collaborative leadership in the music and worship life of our church.While we believe we are looking for the traditional skilled organist, keyboardist, and choral director combo working between 30 - 40 hours weekly, we are open to discussing other models with you. Our Director of Music Ministry will bring a passion to music in the service of worship, and will be an approachable, flexible, and creative member of our worship design team.  Read the full job description.
FPC Yorktown Seeks PT Adult Childcare Provider
Child Care Help Needed-The First Presbyterian Church of Yorktown is seeking an adult childcare provider for 2-3 Sundays/month and for "special services as needed". Must be 18 or older. The position reports to the FPCY Childcare Coordinator, and works alongside co-caregivers, from 8:15am-noon. Pay is $15/hour. Contact Michele Mosca 914-227-7237 or
Share Hudson Happenings
Why not share Hudson Happenings with your friends so that they can get in the groove of all the latest presbytery news?  HH will help them plug in to events, connect within and beyond your congregation, and discover useful and inspiring resources for life together.

Filled with links to local, regional and national news as well as information on fabulous educational and advocacy events, it's your "one stop" for interesting news and events in Hudson River Presbytery, Synod of the NE and PC(USA). So why not share it with your friends?!  And with the link below, your friends can also subscribe to other e-updates from the Presbytery! Again, just invite them to go to or share this groovy pic of me -- one click and they'll be headed in the right direction!