In This Issue
News around the Synod of Lakes and Prairies
Conferences, camps, resources
News of colleges, universities and seminaries
News around the PC(USA) and more
Just one more
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November 17, 2017

News around the Synod of Lakes and Prairies
After 45 years, Lukens plans
to retire from stated clerk post
Michael Lukens Michael Lukens is a theologian, a civil rights activist, a Bonhoeffer scholar, a parliamentarian and an expert in Presbyterian church law. But soon, for the first time in 45 years, he will not be the stated clerk of Winnebago Presbytery. "As of December 31, I'm history," Lukens said recently from his home in De Pere, Wisconsin. "Stated clerk is a part-time job, and I've always dropped everything to do what needed to be done." But now, his study of the German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer will take precedence. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by David Lewellen can be found at "Lukens Retires." (Photo by Barbara McClure-Lukens.)
Koon begins service as synod's
Jim Koon director of financial services
The Synod of Lakes and Prairies has named its treasurer, Jim Koon, as its acting director of financial services. Koon began serving in that position Nov. 1, assuming the operations function of the synod's business office.
Alex DeVeyra and Jackie Palmer, effective Oct. 30, are no longer employed by the synod. DeVeyra had been the synod's director of financial services and Palmer had been business manager.

Koon can be reached at 651.357.1144, or by calling 651.357.1140, extension 201. His email address is .

Earlier this week the synod began its search for a permanent director of financial services.  A complete job listing for the position can be found at " Service Opportunity ."
Lilly Foundation supports young-adult ministry set to launch in Madison
Pres House, a student-oriented campus ministry in Madison, Wisconsin, will launch in mid-2018 an experimental young-adult Pres House Logo community, thanks to a three-year, $310,000 grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. as well as financial support from local, regional and national Presbyterian organizations. "We are excited and grateful to be the launching pad for this ministry," said the Rev. Erica Liu, co-pastor at Pres House. "While our focus remains on students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, we think we are in a good position to be an incubator for a new model of ministry that we envision as an independent community." Pres House, officially the Presbyterian Student Center Foundation, is working to design the young adult/young professionals ministry for 23-to-29 year olds, many of whom live in the downtown area near the university's campus. The complete story from Pres House can be found at "Lilly Supports Ministry."
Northern Plains moderator notes
changes in presbytery structure
The Rev. Donna Monteith, moderator of the Presbytery of the Northern Plains, noted, when writing about the presbytery's structure, that the presbytery is "undergoing a change that seems only slightly less monumental" than the Reformation. "We no longer have the old committee structure that was dictated by the Book of Order; we now have 'Pods,'" Monteith wrote. "These Pods have divided up the functions deemed necessary to the functioning of the presbytery, and people who have a passion for those functions are invited to specialize in doing them," she added. Monteith's complete column can be found in the November edition of Light of the Northern Plains, the presbytery's newsletter. It's at "Presbytery Pods."
Current edition of The Sower posted online
Sue Kimball, moderator of Presbyterian Women in the Synod of Lakes and Prairies, encouraged readers of The Sower to "spend some time in Sower Logothought ... to meet with God ... and ask, 'Where have I been, with who, and what have I participated in that has given my life long-term benefits?'" The Sower is the newsletter of the group. Kimball's complete column, and the newsletter, can be found at "Meeting with God."
Conferences, camps, resources
Creation Justice offers resources
for Native American Heritage Month
Creation Justice Creation Justice Ministries is seeking prayer for the stewardship of public lands during Native American Heritage Month. Creation Justice Ministries, which started under the umbrella of the National Council of Churches, notes on its website that the month is "a time to meditate on the rich wisdom, spiritualities and cultures of Indigenous Peoples. Yet, Native American heritage is in peril. Sacred sites, petroglyphs, ancient cliff dwellings, plants and wildlife important to traditional lifestyles, and delicate watersheds need our protection." The site offers a variety of resources for church leaders and can be found at "Native American Heritage Month."
APCE plans 2018 annual event in Louisville
APCE The 2018 annual event of the Association of Presbyterian Christian Educators is planned Jan. 31 through Feb. 3 at the Galt House in Louisville. The event promises interactive plenary sessions that will engage and challenge attendees, mini-plenaries, resource-filled workshops, and worship with spirit and imagination. Complete details can be found at "Annual APCE Event."
UDTS looks for participants
in Young Adult Ministry program
Annete Huizenga, dean of the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary, is asking friends in ministry to help her find gifted  UDTSLogo candidates for the seminary's Young Adult Ministry Scholars program. She asks, "Who do you know who has gifts for ministry and mission among young adults ... desires to use and develop those gifts in God's service? ... would enjoy living and working on a diverse Christian university campus? [and] would thrive in graduate courses in leadership, worship, and discipleship?" She then states, "We want to invite such gifted people to join our Young Adult Ministry Scholars (YAMS) program. UDTS gives these scholars the opportunity to earn a theological graduate degree while actively working with other young adults on a college campus." Huizenga's complete letter can be found at "YAMS Program."
Applicants sought for the coming
YAV application year's YAV program
The Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) program of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is a faith-based year of service for young people, ages 19-30, in 22 sites around the world and in the United States. YAVs accompany local agencies working to address root causes of poverty and reconciliation while exploring the meaning and motivation of their faith in intentional community with peers and mentors. YAVs serve during the academic year, August to July. The application process for the YAV program is underway. Details are at "Young Adult Volunteer."
Clearwater Forest joins
effort of #GivingTuesday
Clearwater Forest, a Presbyterian camp and conference center located in the center of Minnesota lake country, has joined #GivingTuesday, a  Clearwater Logo global day of giving Tuesday, Nov. 28. According to the Clearwater Forest newsletter, the giving event "harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide." For Clearwater Forest, "Changing lives in God's woods and waters is our main focus for all we do." The complete newsletter, which identifies some of Clearwater Forest's goals and fund-raising efforts, can be found at "Clearwater Forest."

Winter Pastors School set

in February; now in new location

The 2018 version of Winter Pastors School, the annual winter education event of Omaha Presbyterian Seminary Foundation, is slated Feb. 5-8, and this year takes place at Calvin Crest Retreat Center near Fremont, Nebraska. The featured speaker is Gene T. Fowler, a pastoral theologian and church pastor who currently serves the Irondequoit Presbyterian Church in Rochester, New York. More complete details can be found at "Winter Pastors School."
Registration open for NEXT
Church gathering in February
Registration for the 2018 NEXT Church national gathering is unverway. Titled "The Desert in Bloom," the event takes place Feb. 26-28 in  next church Baltimore. The gathering features church leaders, both pastors and lay people, sharing stories of their experiences of ministry, new ideas, and conversations about ministry in today's environment. Creative worship centers us around God's presence. Details and a link to registration can be found at "NEXT Church 2018."
Mosaic of Peace Conference
set in Holy Land next spring
The Mosaic of Peace Conference is planned next spring, April 29-May 12, in the Middle East, giving participants an opportunity to encounter the diverse people of the region, its history and current situation, engaging with those who seek its peace. Applications for the conference are now being accepted. Details can be found at "Mosaic of Peace."
Sand Bur Consulting plans bi-vocational ministry incubator next year
Increasingly, congregations can no longer afford a full-time, fully-supported pastor.  And pastors are needing to wrestle with tough  Sand Bur Interim questions about how to sustain themselves while being faithful to their sense of call.  The Sand Bur Consulting's Bi-vocational Ministry Incubator provides a safe space where pastors can dig deeper into these questions, hone skills for doing ministry in a different way, develop tools to guide a congregation into making a transition into a more shared model of ministry, and find the courage to explore options. The Incubator, which includes monthly day-long gatherings, takes place over eight months and offers skill-building, peer support and mentoring. A brochure is available at "Incubator."
News of colleges, universities and seminaries
Gnadinger is first woman
to fill president post at Carroll
Having spent her career at church-affiliated colleges, Cindy Gnadinger is ready for a new challenge as president of Carroll University in  Cindy Gnadinger Waukesha, Wisconsin. "We were intrigued by her background, her creativity, and her energy level," said the Rev. Deborah Block, a Carroll trustee who led the search committee for the Presbyterian-affiliated school. Gnadinger's work at all levels of education, including beginning her career as an elementary school teacher, gives her "the full picture of the educational world and the many roles that educators play." She becomes the first woman to fill the president's post at the school, which is one of seven Presbyterian-related institutions in covenant with the Synod of Lakes and Prairies. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by David Lewellen can be found at "Gnadinger."
McCord, Adams most recently named chaplains at APCU schools in synod
Adams McCord Church ties may be looser and students may be less religious than in past generations, but most Presbyterian colleges and universities still believe in the role of a campus chaplain. Within the past year, two Presbyterian schools in the upper Midwest have filled vacancies, committing institutional resources to giving students spiritual guidance. "I'm thrilled to serve at a Presbyterian institution where the theology of the church can be lifted up and honored," said the Rev. Dr. Candace Adams, who started as the new chaplain at Jamestown shortly before the current school year got underway. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by David Lewellen can be found at "Chaplains." (At right are Adams, top, and Elizabeth McCord, chaplain at Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin.)
News around the PC(USA) and more
PC(USA) 2020 Vision Team recommendations take shape
The 2020 Vision Team continues to struggle for clarity -- figuring out exactly what to report to the 2018 General Assembly of the  GA 223 Presbyterian Church (U.S.A); how to say not too much or too little; and how to make its work resonate with congregations. The 2016 General Assembly gave the 2020 Vision Team a directive to develop "a guiding statement for the denomination and make a plan for its implementation with all deliberate speed." The Vision Team has set up a four-person writing team - the team's deadline to submit its report is Feb. 16. The complete Presbyterian Outlook story by Leslie Scanlon can be found at "Visioning."
Hardwick resigns from PC(USA)'s Theology, Formation, Evangelism ministry
Chip Hardwick The Rev. Charles (Chip) Hardwick announced this week his resignation as the director of the Theology, Formation and Evangelism ministry in the Presbyterian Mission Agency (PMA) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Hardwick's final day at the Presbyterian Center is December 12 and, as of this writing, he has not accepted another call. "I'm still discerning where God might be calling me," he said. "There are some irons in the fire and I'm hoping to get back closer to congregational ministry, but I don't know yet what's coming. I'm counting on our God who provides to provide the next right thing at the right time." The complete Presbyterian News Service story by Gregg Brekke can be found at "Hardwick Resigns."
About 25% of new worshiping
communities are immigrant communities
Writing in the November issue of New Church, New Way, the newsletter of the 1001 New Worshiping Communities, Vera White  New Church, New Way noted, "Laws and attitudes about immigration are in a state of flux throughout the nation. Anxiety is mounting in new immigrant communities." White, who is coordinator of the 1001 effort, goes on to note, "Approximately 150 of the 402 currently active new worshiping communities, or more than one-third, serve primarily new immigrant groups. Many of these immigrants come from families that have been Presbyterian for generations and are deeply committed to worshiping in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)." White's complete column, and newsletter, can be found at "New Church New Way."
PDA director calls disasters
of past few months 'devastating'
Writing in the Presbyterian Justice & Peace newsletter, Laurie Kraus, notes, " The past few months have been devastating for communities  Justice & Peace News in the U.S. and abroad. Catastrophic hurricanes, earthquakes, wildfires and the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history have torn lives apart, destroyed homes and livelihoods; leaving physical and emotional scars that may never heal." Kraus, who is director of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, adds, "You've made it possible to send National Response Team members to Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and Las Vegas, where they provided a ministry of presence." The current issue of Justice & Peace focuses on recovery efforts. Kraus' column, and the newsletter, can be found at "Devastating Disasters."
NCC calls for sensible gun measures
The National Council of Churches has issued a call for sensible gun measures. In a statement issued this week, and published by the National Council Office of the General  Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the NCC noted, "Our hearts are broken once again with the news of another mass shooting in our nation. [On Sunday, Nov. 5], 26 worshipers at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, were killed by a man armed with a semiautomatic rifle. ... We pray for these victims and their families, for their fellow parishioners, friends, and neighbors, and for all of our sisters and brothers in the Southern Baptist Convention, the denomination to which this congregation belonged. These killings took place on a day set aside for worship and praise like every other Sunday, in a place like other small and large towns in every state across the country." The complete statement can be found at "Another Mass Shooting."
Just one more
Presbyterian memes
Your editor is pretty sure you've seen them on Facebook. That's if you have Presbyterian friends. They're Presbyterian memes. You know memes. They're an activity, concept, catchphrase or piece of media that spreads through the Internet. (Yes, your editor knows he copied part of that from Wikipedia, but it's expedient today.) But did you know there's an actual website where you can find them? And did you know that website has links to other, sometimes humorous content? Your editor did not. Now he does. It's at "Presbyterian Memes."