Presbytery of Northern Kansas Newsletter -
June 15, 2021
PNK News/Events
Called Meeting on June 29th
Ruling Elder Rod Seel, Moderator of the Presbytery of Northern Kansas, has issued a call for a special meeting of the presbytery at the request of Teaching Elders Celeste Lasich of First Presbyterian Church of Hays and Martha Murchison of Sunrise Presbyterian Church of Salina and Ruling Elders Stephanie Reynolds of St. Andrews Presbyterian Church of Topeka and Roxie Baer of First Presbyterian Church of Riley as provided in the Ecclesiatical Bylaws of the Presbytery (B-2.02.0200). 

This special presbytery meeting will convene at 9:00 a.m., Tuesday, May 29 via Zoom. The official notice of the meeting will be sent to all sessions and teaching elders of the presbytery at least ten days in advance of the meeting and will include details on the limited items to be considered.  

Please mark your calendar and watch for additional information.
PNK Pastors' Retreat -- Tuesday, August 31 - Thursday, September 2 -- Rock Springs Conference Center

PNK Education Day -- Saturday, September 18th -- Sunrise Presbyterian Church in Salina -- for all PNK Presbyterians 

2021 PNK Presbytery Retreat -- Sunday, October 17th - Tuesday, October 19th -- Rock Springs Conference Center -- Everyone is invited!

Fall Presbytery Meeting -- Tuesday, October 19th -- Rock Springs Conference Center

PNKS Youth Work Camp!
Youth are invited to participate in the Presbytery of Northern Kansas’ Youth Work Camp at Heartland Center from August 1-6, 2021. It includes the work camp, fun activities at Heartland Center, and a one-day visit to Worlds of Fun. Youth who have completed fifth grade through those who have completed twelfth grade are eligible to participate. We also need adult volunteers to accompany our Presbytery leaders on the trip.
The cost per youth is $255. The Presbytery will pay one-third of each youth’s fee ($85). We encourage churches that are able to pay one-third of the fee, as well ($85). That means youth could pay as little as $85 for this whole week of fun!!

Please find the registration form and liability release below. All materials, including payment, must be received by June 15th.
Healing the Heart
A Virtual Afternoon Pastor's Retreat
June 24, 2021, 1:30 – 4:30 PM
Sponsored by the Presbyteries of
Missouri Union, Giddings-Lovejoy, Northern Kansas, and Southern Kansas
"Where there is sorrow, there is holy ground." - Oscar Wilde

Strengthening our skills in grief work is essential in these days of constant uncertainty and pervasive loss.
Our faith story gives us perspective and meaning. There are also stories of our bodies that are woven into our experiences.
Within our Christian tradition, there are way of praying and moving that are being re-discovered, especially in light of neuroscience. Knowledge of how we are created brings wisdom and compassion.
Simple practices involving our whole selves better equip us to welcome grief as an opportunity to deepen and transform us and those we serve.
Moving to Higher Ground: Practices for Healing
Summer Soul-stice 2021
Every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and fig tree, and there shall be none to make him afraid. Micah 4:4
This year’s Summer Soul-stice at First Presbyterian Church in Salina will again engage speakers from across the country along with a few more local favorites exploring the “after-time” of our year of COVID with its lock-downs of separation and paralyzing political polarity. How do we move forward? How do we open to our new normal? In other words, how do we begin to actively and intentionally heal, individually and in community? All three sessions will be moderated by Paula Fried, PhD in psychology, actively practicing in Salina, and a community leader. 
There are two options for participation in this year’s program: online and in-person. Sessions are scheduled to go online at 12 noon on June 16, 30 and July 14 on the First Presbyterian Church website ( on either Facebook or YouTube. Each session can be accessed any time after it has gone live. You can also join us in-person at First Presbyterian Church, 308 S. 8th, at 12 noon, as we watch the sessions together followed by a discussion. 
Newest Addition in the Resource Center
NATURE: Our First Way of Knowing God by Beth Norcross
Includes 7/7-10 minute downloadable videos with Study and Discussion Guide.
If you are interested in using this resource,
Call the Resource Center toll free 877-777-5310 or local 785-825-1655 
or email
FYI: We have made some changes to the Resource Center Catalog webpage.

Newest Resources option and a Seasonal/Topical Resources option.

Find them at:
Leadership Opening
Westminster Presbyterian Church in Topeka seeks an Administrative Assistant who can work closely with our leadership team, councils, committees, and members by handling clerical duties and providing administrative support while maintaining confidentiality, exercising sound judgement, and setting priorities appropriately.

Interested parties can send their resumes to or call the church office at (785) 357-0339.
Clerks of Session Reminder:
Session Record Review Checklists and Other Materials due by Monday, June 21st
This year rather than packing up the session minute books, the church register and checklists and heading off to one of four area gatherings, clerks have been asked to submit their checklists to the stated clerk by Monday, June 21. The Clerks’ Reports & Review Committee (CR&RC) approved this alternative for reviewing 2019 and 2020 session records. Early in May, clerks and moderators of sessions received the checklists and information for completing the work and submitting material to Stated Clerk Bob Frasier.
To have another eye on their work before submitting them--Clerks are encouraged to invite another knowledgeable person to sit down with them, their session minutes, and the church register and go over the checklists. The goal is to have one more person providing input, asking questions and confirming the work of the clerk. While this is not required, it is encouraged that clerks of session take this extra step. The second person might be the pastor or other moderator of their session, another elder in the congregation, or the clerk of session of a neighboring church in the presbytery.
Once most clerks have submitted their material, (CR&RC) will be scheduling small group electronic gatherings for clerks to report on their reviews and share insights. A response form is including with the information sent to clerks to provide information to schedule the small groups.
Clerks are encouraged to contact the stated clerk Bob Frasier ( / 785-479-6308) if they need assistance or have questions. Plan ahead to get your checklists and other material submitted by Monday, June 21.
The stated clerk’s report to the October presbytery meeting will include a listing of sessions whose records have been reviewed and those that have not. The report will not note any exceptions that have been noted.
The Good News
Filling the Musical Gap:
One way in which technology makes worship music happen when a pianist isn't available
From First Presbyterian Church in Sylvan Grove

Eight years ago, our longtime pianist announced her retirement. When faced with the possibility of not having a regular pianist for Sunday church services, our church turned to technology to help fill the gap. The electric piano we were looking at cost $3800 from Tom’s Music in Concordia, Ks. We sent out letters asking for donations from members and previous members. We received $2585 and covered the remaining cost with memorial money. 

We purchased a Yamaha Clavinova electric piano. This instrument has a multitude of possible functions including the ability for a pianist to play and record an unlimited number of songs. Our long time pianist graciously returned and recorded some 40 hymns and service music for us to utilize in the absence of a live musician. We were fortunate in that our retiring pianist had played with the New York Symphony and had played and studied abroad. She recorded beautiful music for us.

We made up a sheet with the recorded hymns and page numbers and placed them beside the hymnals in each pew. The congregation (and pulpit supply) knows to look on that sheet if we do not have a live pianist that Sunday. We have utilized this recorded music two or three Sundays per month. We have trained three or four individuals to operate the piano and play our service music even through they cannot play the piano. On Sundays where we have a live pianist, the congregation can sing their favorite hymns from the hymnals.

Our electric piano has worked out very nicely for us and we are working to record more music. As it stands now, we only have a live pianist twice per mo. We no longer feel the stress of trying to find someone else as we have our plan B…not to mention the cost of savings for two or three Sundays. I would encourage any congregation to look into this possibility if they find themselves facing the shortage of live musicians.
Update from Clinton
The Clinton Presbyterian Church is coming along nicely, with sheet rock and a stage placed in the Sanctuary and stone work along the bottom of the exterior.
Please contact the Presbytery Office with any joys or concerns you would like to have added to the PNK Prayer List.