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
November 8, 2018
Presbytery News & Events
Urgent Call to Prayer for Cameroon from PC(USA) Stated Clerk 
The Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II on November 7 wrote to the church:

In Cameroon, clashes between separatists and government forces have left many dead. Most recently a group of armed men entered the campus of the Presbyterian Secondary School (PSS) at Nkwen, Bamenda, and abducted 78 students and three staff members, according to a statement by the Rt. Rev. Samuel Fonki, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Cameroon (PCC). We rejoice in the release of the students less than 24 hours after their abduction, but continue to pray for staff.

Please learn more and pray for our brothers and sisters and this nation in turmoil.
Presbytery Meeting, December 4  
Save the date for the next Presbytery Meeting which will be held at Stony Point Center.  It will be the first meeting with our HRP's newly elected General Presbyter, Deborah Milcarek. 

At this meeting, the Presbytery will elect a Stated Clerk. The Book of Order and our own Manual require that we have a Stated Clerk and our manual sets the term of election to three years.

The Rev. Dr. Susan De George, the current Stated Clerk, has indicated her interest in serving another term.  Susan has received positive annual reviews during her service as the Hudson River Presbytery Stated Clerk. This nomination process necessitates a more extensive evaluation of the Stated Clerk before that meeting. Presbytery members will be asked by the personnel committee to give input via an upcoming email.

Nominations from the body for the position of Stated Clerk are in order but need to be evaluated by the Personnel Committee.   Nominations for this position (with resume attached) must be submitted by letter [Personnel Committee c/o Hudson River Presbytery Office] or email to the Personnel Committee via Rev. Paul Seelman, its Chair [] by November 10, 2018.    
Pastoral Sabbath at Stony Point, Nov. 28-29
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:
HRP Legacy Grant Writing Workshop, Dec. 1
Is your church exploring a creative, effective idea for reaching out to your community in  the near future? Does that idea reflect Hudson River Presbytery's Core Values (Partnership, Hospitality, Justice, Passion, Curiosity, Honesty, Joy, Generosity, Inclusivity). Is your council/session prepared to support this effort with energy and financial resources? Your congregation may be eligible for a Legacy Grant to help make this idea a reality.

To find out more, send one or more representatives to our Legacy Fund Workshop on December 1, 2018 from 9:00a.m.-2:00p.m. at the Calvary Presbyterian Church, 120 South Street, Newburgh. Lunch will be provided.  REGISTER NOW.
The workshop will provide guidance on whether your idea meets the Legacy Grant Criteria, how to write a grant application for this and future grants, and developing a business plan. All applicants must send a representative to this annual workshop or to a similar one to be considered. It will be helpful to review the Legacy Grant information available under Grants on the HRP website before attending the workshop. Bring your questions with you. The workshop will be led by Catherine Hoselton, Assistant Vice President for Sponsored Programs at SUNY New Paltz.

The Legacy Grant can range from $10,000 to a multi-year grant of $100,000. The applicant/s must be able to provide 20% of the cost of the project.
We look forward to seeing you at the workshop!  Register today! 
Be Inspired:  Challenge to Change Grants
Janis Upeslacis chronicles how a HRP C2C grant helped one congregation renovate its kitchen and stay connected to the community.  What might a C2C grant help your church do?

FPC Wappingers Falls (FPCWF) supports a number of programs that reach out to their local community. Each month they host a Free Community Dinner and schedule speakers and activities to complement the meal. In addition, they sponsor a Food Pantry and a Thrift Shop, all three of which serve the disadvantaged in their neighborhood.

Their hope was to produce a pamphlet that would publicize all three programs in a single flyer for distribution into their community. In addition, they wanted to create a new church logo that would provide a more professional look to their flyer with the hope that their outreach ministries would be better associated with their church. FPCWF applied for and received a $3,600 Ch 2 Ch grant to help them reach out to the community.  Read more
NY Art for Justice Forum, Nov. 16 
Presbytery Prison Partnership invites you to participate in the New York Art for Justice Forum which will take place at Columbia University on November 16, 2018.

The Forum will explore the role of the arts in addressing mass incarceration and criminal justice reform in three areas: Youth, Arts in Prison and Arts in Community.

Panelists and breakout facilitators will include legislators, thought leaders, and practitioners from the arts, advocacy, and corrections. The event will culminate with an art exhibition and reception. Learn more and register!  
RMM's Rural Women's Assembly, Dec. 15
The Rural Women's Assembly is a unique gathering of rural women and their allies across NYS. It is created and directly led by women from across an array of cultural, racial, geographic, and age groups - all committed to hope, justice and empowerment. At the Assembly, women and girls from across the State gather with their allies to listen to one another's stories, share strategies, nurture one another, and build a strong network for change. The Rural Women's Assembly is where we learn how we can make a difference throughout our lives, our families' lives, the life of our communities, and within the State. The Mid-Hudson/ Catskill Rural Women's Assembly will take place on December 15th, at the Eleanor Roosevelt Center at Val-Kill in Hyde Park. Learn more.
Congregational News
First Presbyterian Church of Philipstown Invites HRP Members to Vigil Against Anti-Semitism and Hate, Nov. 10
There will be be a community UNITY candlelight Vigil from 7:45-8:15 pm on Saturday Nov 10 hosted by Philipstown Reform Synagogue on the campus of St. Mary's in the Highland's Episcopal Church. The vigil will remember victims of the shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue in the Squirrel Hill community of Pittsburgh and offer the opportunity to stand in solidarity against Anti-Semitism and hate in all its forms in our town, our country and the worl d.

The vigil will be outdoors (weather permitting). The clergy of Philipstown welcome and invite our fellow clergy and the congregations they serve as well all residents in sister towns/villages to join us. If you are unable to bless us with your presence we welcome you to join us in spirit by offering prayers between 7:45-8:15 p.m.
Rev. Debbie Bronkema to Lead Writing Retreat
Come away from the busyness of your life to experience creative writing as a spiritual practice. Join Debbie Bronkema at Cedarkirk Camp, January 28-29, 2019 in Florida.  When we write creatively, we open ourselves to grow in spiritual practices like attentiveness, intentionality, empathy, and gratitude - gifts we want to grow as disciples of Christ. The creative output and sharing during this event will build a remarkably close community and lead to conversations of remarkable spiritual depth. Challenge yourself creatively and spiritually, and leave with a sense of peace at having drawn closer to yourself and to God.  Learn more.
Regional and National Events
Bearing Witness: Tools for Advocacy, Nov. 10
On Saturday, November 10, from 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM join in this day of education on advocacy with leaders from the PC(USA) Office of Public Witness, the UN Office, and the Poor People's Campaign at First Presbyterian Church in the City of New York .

Learn ways to strengthen our Christian voice and to mobilize for advocacy on a wide variety issues and concerns in our city, state, country, and around the world.  Register Now!  And share this flyer to invite others!
Peacemaking Trips to Rwanda and Russia/The Ukraine;
Apply now

Presbyterians interested in learning about conflict and reconciliation, from both an active and historical perspective, have an opportunity to do so by participating in one of the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program's travel study seminar series upcoming in Spring 2019. Reconciliation Work in Rwanda: Healing the Trauma of the Genocide, March 11-23, 2019.  Deadline for application has been extended to November 15. Learn more.  And there is the Peacemaking on the Frontline in Russia and The Ukraine, April 22 - May 6, 2019.  The deadline for applying to this trip is December 15.  Learn more about the Frontline trip.
Holmes Camp and Conference Center Online Fall Fundraiser
Over the years, Holmes has celebrated with a fall benefit fundraiser. With many changes underway for Holmes, the board decided that hosting an event this fall would spread everyone too thin. While the fall benefit is a wonderful chance to connect with camp friends, it is massively expensive. This little break is a chance for all of us to catch our breath, but we still need your help. We will miss the event this year, but on the bright side every dollar donated will help the ministry at Holmes.  Click here to donate.
Thanksgiving At SPC's Second Annual Traditional First Nations Potluck Feast
All are welcome at SPC's Second Annual Traditional First Nations Potluck Feast and Intertribal Ceremony honoring the harvest season, aka "Our BIG, FAT Native American Thanksgiving -- A Second Helping"!  [All Details]
The event is free and open to the public; please bring a dish to share!  Festivities begin at noon on Thursday and will go into the evening with teaching and song circles. Guests are invited to stay over for Friday morning's discussion circle on white supremacy and the Doctrine of Discovery. To book overnight accommodations, go to, and use code "Thanks."
Resources for Education, Liturgy & More!
Why Religion, New Book on Grief by
Elaine Pagels

" Why Religion," a new book by Prof. Elaine Pagels of Princeton University, asks how hearts can heal after tragedy.  Religion scholar Elaine Pagels, known for her work on the Gnostic gospels, lost her young son to terminal illness and her husband a year later in an accident. Her new book combines memoir and biblical scholarship to reflect on loss and faith. 

Her 30 minute interview with Terry Gross of Fresh Air is a must-listen experience of honest and healing conversation about living through and with trauma and grief.
Longest Night Liturgy
At Christmastime, some church members and leaders may be struggling with depression, anxiety or grief. A "Blue Christmas" or "Longest Night" service can bring comfort to people who are lonely or suffering and lets them feel the congregation's love and support. 

This issue of Presbyterians Today discusses how to deal with church conflict, ways of raising generous children and other meaningful themes.

Many PT articles can be read and shared online.  Check out the latest Nov./Dec. issue.
Seeking and Finding
Hopewell Presbyterian is Seeking a Few Large Print Hymnals 
and NSRV Bibles 
Hopewell Presbyterian is look for a few copies of The Presbyterian Hymnal large print edition, along with a couple large print NRSV Bibles for immediate use to help members fully participate in worship.  Might you have some hymnals and bibles to share?  Contact Rev. Russ Ducan at
Choir Robes Available!
First Presbyterian Church of Jeffersonville has 17 choir robes available for free or freewill offering.  Please contact for more information.
Employment Opportunities
Irvington Presbyterian Seeks Full-time Church Administrator
The Irvington Presbyterian Church is seeking a full-time Church Administrator, to begin in early Jan. 2019. Assisting the pastor and staff, the position includes a variety of responsibilities that support the church operations, including maintaining financial records, preparing church communications published in print, on the web, via email and social media and supporting the director of the on-premises early childhood center. Salary $35k-$40k with benefits. To view detailed job description, visit .
Presby Church of Mt. Kisco Seeks Sunday School Coordinator
Sunday School Coordinator needed to help nurture the faith of the children of the Presbyterian Church of Mount Kisco. The position is approx. 10 hours per week with competitive salary. Experience in Christian Education in a Reformed church setting desirable. For more information, contact or call 914.666.7001.

PT Interim Music Director Sought by FPC Yorktown
Seeking part-time Interim Music Director to provide musical leadership to Presbyterian Church in northern Westchester County. Music Director will direct and rehearse choir on Thursday evenings and provide service music on piano and organ at two Sunday Morning services. Send inquiries, or resume and cover letter to:, or mail to: Interim Music Director Search, First Presbyterian Church of Yorktown 2880 Crompond Road, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598.

Share Hudson Happenings
Hudson Happenings is more informative on all things Presbyterian than this kitty is cute!  Why not share HH with friends in your congregation to 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 send this sweet photo of this little kitty peeking out from the leaves -- come on, who can resist clicking?! (the link is embedded).