Keeping you Connected

January 2024

minner-article image

Rev. Minner Serovy

Mary, "Minner" Serovy passed away on Tuesday, November 28, 2023, in Minneapolis. Click here to read an article by the Presbyterian Foundation.

The Service of Witness to the Resurrection for Minner will be Saturday, February 17 at 2:00 p.m. at Collegiate Presbyterian Church, 159 Sheldon Ave, Ames, IA 50014.

Gone for Good? Negotiating the Coming Wave of Church Property Transition

The next decade will see many churches selling or repurposing their property. How can we engage this work faithfully?

Join Outlook Editor/Publisher Teri McDowell Ott in a conversation with Mark Elsdon, an entrepreneur, nonprofit executive, author and speaker who focuses on the intersection of money and meaning.

60-minute webinar

February 15, 2024 at 7:00 p.m. EST

More Information & Registration

Active in Matthew 25

Giddings-Lovejoy Presbytery pays $718,000 debt in act toward reparative justice

The “mountain of debt” was incurred by a Black church during presbytery-directed building transfer in the early 2000s.

Ryan Landino walked into the Lovejoy United Presbyterian Church in Wood River, Illinois, knowing that some 100 nervous people were waiting there – and another 81 online – to hear what he had to say. Landino, presbytery leader of the Giddings-Lovejoy Presbytery, would explain how 17 years ago their presbytery orchestrated an arrangement that benefitted two White churches while leaving a Black church burdened with substantial debt for years.

The question that hung in the air that hot August evening was: What, if anything, might the presbytery do to repair the harm done to the members of Third Presbyterian Church of St. Louis? Read the article by Patrice Gaines.

2024-pns-ThomasHartley image

PC(USA) church in Iowa embodies Matthew 25 across generations

Interacting with the community is all about expanding the ‘relational kin-dom of God’

by Alex Simon and Rich Copley | Special to Presbyterian News Service

LOUISVILLE — “Church is service,” says Thomas Hartley, interim director of Children’s and Family Ministry at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Iowa City, Iowa.

In that spirit, the church “embodies” the Matthew 25 Movement of the Presbyterian Mission Agency, according to the Rev. W. Robert Martin III, pastor and head of staff of the church that relocated to a new facility designed to help the church interact with its community. Find out more.

The PC(USA)’s first-ever Matthew 25 Summit opens with powerful and prophetic preaching

2024-pns-RevHodariWilliamsM25Summit-500x375 image

The Rev. Hodari Williams, team leader of the host New Life Presbyterian Church, urges everyone to tug off cloaks of invisibility

LOUISVILLE — Growing up in the 1980s, the Rev. Hodari Williams was a fan of Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger comic books — especially Cloak, whose superpower was becoming invisible when he wore his robe. Read more.

Above: photos provided by Beth Buckwalter-Miller, executive presbyter of the Presbytery of Minnesota Valleys. Beth reported that the sanctuary was at capacity (300 people) during the summit.

Folx from three churches in the Presbytery of East Iowa participated in the historic Matthew 25 Summit.

The Synod office would love to hear if you attended the Matthew 25 Summit. Send us an email and let us know about your experience.

-The Synod of Lakes & Prairies was the first mid-council to join Matthew 25-

Livestream of the Matthew 25 Summit

Click here to watch.

Also check out more stories from the event!

The Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis entreats Presbyterians to organize to end poverty

Innovative worship opens second day of the PC(USA)'s Matthew 25 Summit

The Rev. William Yoo explores the Matthew 25 church that never was and the one we have today

'C'mon, church! Won't you dream?

Matthew 25 Upcoming Events

Check out events that are scheduled post-Matthew 25 Summit to provide ways to further engage with the Matthew 25 Vision. Click here.

Download the Matthew 25 app

Being Matthew 25 on the App Store (


The Matthew 25 app is designed to connect you with resources to help you strengthen relationships, transform your communities, and bring alive your commitment to serve those in your town/city and the world.


We hope that this app serves as another way to inspire ideas, foster connections across the church and community, and provide you with the resources you need to actively engage in the world. Wherever you are, whatever your context may be, you have a use for this app.


Our app is divided into four sections:

Home: Your home base for announcements, new resources and for other ways to connect and engage with the Matthew 25 vision.

Resources: Discover resources to guide, support and amplify your ministry to your community and the world.

Find a Church: Search for other Matthew 25 churches by Name, City, State or Zip.

Join: Join the Matthew 25 journey with us. This section of the app guides you through the process of becoming a Matthew 25 church, mid-council, or organization. 

Iowa City Handbell Choir Festival, April 12-13, 2024

St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Iowa City will host a Handbell Choir Festival from

April 12 – 13, 2024, co-sponsored by the North Central Region of the Presbyterian Association of Musicians and Area 8 of the Handbell Musicians of America. All churches with handbell ringers 18+ are welcome to attend.

Participants will learn skills to revitalize and/or rebuild handbell ministries and create community. In addition, we’ll ring in a massed bell choir under the direction of Stevie Berryman, handbell director at First Congregational Church Houston. Her innovative, play-based methods have made her a sought-after educator and clinician at area and national handbell festivals. Click on the button below for more information and to register. 

Board of Pensions

Attention Churches with a Non-Installed Pastor who works at least 20 hours


Did you know that you can offer the Minister's Choice Board of Pensions Benefit to your pastor for 10% of your pastor's salary? This benefit does not include health insurance. The Pastor's Participation Benefit that includes health insurance has a cost of 39% of the pastor's salary. But for pastors who may have other options for health insurance, Minister's Choice allows them to continue to accrue pension benefits and gives them access to some other benefits as well. Read more

You're invited to:


Join other Presbyterian Women from the Synod of Lakes and Prairies for a monthly round table discussion on issues prominent in today’s world.


Sit & Sip events will be held via Zoom on the last Saturday of each Month from 11 a.m. to noon Central Time. 


Please register by contacting Kathleen Keefer at and a Zoom link will be sent to you a few days prior to the event along with any “study” materials to aid our discussions.

We are on Facebook! Find us at Synod of Lakes and Prairies Presbyterian Women.

Photo by Pablo Merchan Montes via Unsplash.


Presbytery of Missouri River Valley seeks Stated Clerk

Applicants may complete the application and return it, along with a resume or PDP, references, and a cover letter, to Rev. Nancy Ross-Hullinger by February 15, 2024. Please share this with anyone you think may be interested. Thank you!

Stated Clerk Description & Application

Recording Clerk needed for the meetings of the Presbytery of Central Nebraska

Seeking a Recording Clerk to take minutes for all presbytery meetings. To find out about meeting dates, compensation, and qualifications for the position,

email Eddie Mariel, Chair of the Personnel Committee.

PC(USA) Positions Work for the Church

Church Leadership Connection (CLC)

Presbyterian FoundationWork for the Foundation

Omaha Seminary
UDTS-logo image
logo_color image

Before we go ...

Happy New Year!

Feb. 10 is Chinese New Year, the year of the Dragon.

Chinese New Year is also known as Lunar New Year and Spring Festival; celebrated by many East Asian cultures.

Photo by Thomas Despeyroux on Unsplash.

Helpful Links

Presbyteries in the Synod

Presbyterian Women in the Synod

Office of the General Assembly

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Board of Pensions

Hillcrest Family Services

Nebraska Presbyterian Foundation

PC(USA) News

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance

Presbyterian Foundation

Presbyterian Mission

Presbyterian Outlook

Presbyterian Publications

Special Offerings

Synod of Lakes and Prairies

Presbyteries and churches share your news with the Synod!

Keeping In Touch is a monthly publication of the Synod of Lakes and Prairies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

To subscribe email: