Issue 151 | August 8, 2019
Click on an underlined title to go to the full article
Register here for the Aug. 24 Presbytery meeting at Bluestone! Advance registration, which is the only way to pay online, ends Aug. 16.
Want to stay Friday night?
Lodging is $26 per person, and dinner, which begins at 6:30 p.m., is $11; payment should be made by cash or check upon arrival Friday night to Mark Miller. Guests must bring their own linens/sleeping bag, towels and toiletries; other suggested items are bug spray, a flashlight, a small extension cord and three-prong adapter for items you want to plug in, and a lawn chair for Friday night's campfire. Call Amy Robinson at the office (304-744-7634) or email office@wvpresbytery.org by Wednesday, Aug. 21 to register.
I love Big Tent. That’s our denomination’s educational event/family reunion that happens every other year between General Assembly meetings. This year at Big Tent, I had something happen to me that has never happened before. I was the only white man (OK, old white man) at a table of eight. When I realized what was happening, I thought, “This is the future.”  
9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 7 in Fayetteville
Join the Presbytery of West Virginia for the 6th Annual Small Church Conference Saturday, Sept. 7 at Fayetteville Presbyterian Church. Sometimes the phrase “small church” can cause us to hear or see a subliminal message. Small church can subconsciously translate as less church. While the human and financial resources available may be less, that does not mean the smaller church is any less “spirit filled” or less engaged in God’s work. That is why this year’s theme is “Little is much when God is in it.”
Application deadline: Sept. 23
The General Assembly will meet June 20-27, 2020 in Baltimore, and the Nominating Committee is  seeking folks to represent PWV. Needed are Minister of Word & Sacrament and Ruling Elder Commissioners as well as a Young Adult Advisory Delegate (YAAD) . Click here for an application, which is also included in the headline link.
Planning calendar update
We had planned to distribute planning calendars at the Aug. 24 Presbytery meeting. However, we have just learned from the PC(USA) Store that calendars will not be arriving in Louisville until next week or the following week (the week of the meeting), so they will not be shipped to us until after that. Once they do arrive here, those who have ordered will be contacted to let them know when they can pick up their order. Please note: the new Books of Order are here. If that's part of your order, please let us know ASAP if you'd like to get it at the Presbytery meeting or wait until your calendars arrive.
2-6 p.m. Sept. 29 at Bridgeport Presbyterian
Last year, several communion trainings were offered across the presbytery; however, moving forward, the intent is to provide one event a year as there is need. Thus, this is the 2019 event. All sessions, particularly those whose churches do not have pastoral leadership, are invited to recommend and send 2-3 ruling elders in good standing. Register by Sept. 19 through the link or by contacting Maureen Wright.
More from Presbyterian Youth Triennium 2019
“I went to Triennium not knowing where I was with God. I had struggled for months to try and find my faith. I ended up leaving Triennium with a new mindset, and I am now growing in my faith,” said one PWV youth attendee. “Triennium helped me realize that not all people are bad and that there is still love in the world. That love is surrounded by God, and to me, that’s the most heartwarming thing on Earth. I’ve learned that God brings peoples together in ways nothing else can. Thousands of people from all around the world came to one spot and loved each other without thinking twice, and that’s a beautiful thing.”
Click here to read our first report from the event.
Community eager to start another year of after-school care
At Community Presbyterian Church in Arthurdale, a program called Folks Educating, Telling, Caring and Helping (FETCH) offers very affordable after-school assistance with child care for school-age children. FETCH provides snacks upon arrival as well as homework support and allows students to participate in supervised and structured activities. The new school year begins on August 15, and the church looks forward to another successful year of supporting local families with this much-needed service.
Bob and Kristi Rice, PC(USA) mission co-workers in the South Sudan, are coming to Charleston and Fairmont in September. Come hear them speak about South Sudan and how God is moving in that part of the world! They will be at Charleston First Presbyterian for Sunday school and worship on Sept. 29 and at Fleming Memorial Presbyterian in Fairmont on the evening of Sept. 30.
The Rock Forge Presbyterian Church has a beautiful building in Morgantown with a gorgeous sanctuary. The church has a long history of ministering to the poor and hurting of the area. Although there are only seven who can come to worship, the people of Rock Forge Presbyterian Church are committed to making a difference in their community. They are a welcoming group with a warm sense of camaraderie.
This year, after hearing Bluestone Program Director Sarah Specht’s presentation at the May Presbytery meeting, the Session of Frankford Presbyterian Church agreed to try to find a kid to send to camp since we have no children in the church, using some of our money budgeted for local outreach. We contacted the principal of Frankford Elementary School to see if she had any suggestions of a child or children who might benefit from a week a camp.
Condolences
Weston Brown Guthrie, a former pastor at Ronceverte Presbyterian Church, passed away July 28 at Skyline Nursing Home in Floyd, VA, following a faithful life of ministry and service. Besides Ronceverte, the 86-year-old Pulaski, VA, resident also served several Virginia churches after being ordained in 1976 following a career in education. Click here for his obituary. Donations may be sent to Draper’s Valley Presbyterian Church Mercy Ministry Fund, 2755 Old Baltimore Road, Draper, VA 24324. Please keep Rev. Guthrie's family in your prayers.
Synod offers three-part webinar for church leaders
Oct. 7-9 in Mount Pleasant, PA. Registration deadline: Sept. 24
This annual conference is an opportunity for small church pastors (both seminary-trained and lay pastors) to gather for renewal, education and fellowship around the ministry done in small churches. This year's presenters include our own Ed Thompson, Synod of the Trinity's Sue Wonderland and GA Co-Moderator Vilmarie Cintron-Olivier. Cost is $125 for people in churches with 125 members or less, $150 for those in churches with 126-200 members and $300 for everyone else. Additionally, the free Timothy Track is available for pastors in their first five years of small church ministry; it is limited to 10 participants.
One year into providing their  First Reading: The Old Testament Lectionary Podcast , Revs. Rachel Wrenn and Tim McNinch, Emory University  Hebrew Bible doctoral students, are delivering a weekly tool for preachers who crave practical sermon help on the Old Testament passages found in the  Revised Common Lectionary .
Healthy Congregations is an ecumenical and interfaith organization providing resources based on Bowen Family Systems Theory to think more clearly about families, relationships and faith communities. Its annual Leadership Series features eight one-day seminars that meet monthly September-May (minus December) online, exploring topics to help leaders to work through challenging issues or conflict. Discounted rates for individuals and groups are available through Aug. 15.
Job opening
Lehigh Presbytery church seeks Pastor/Head of Staff
College Hill Presbyterian Church in Easton, PA, is searching for a Pastor/Head of Staff. If you need any additional information, have any questions or know of someone who might be interested, send an email with the subject line PNC Inquiry to jmbp@ptd.net.
From the Stated Clerk
In retirement, strong boundaries make strong churches
In the past year, I have spent more time in Boundary Training than at any other time in my career. This has led me to think about the evolution of Boundary Training. Even the current title of the events, Healthy Boundary Training, reflects the changes. These events used to be called Sexual Misconduct Prevention Workshops.The focus was on preventing sexual misconduct, so the content was often presented in lecture form with careful sharing of definitions, specifics on what to do and not do, and often included shadowy video from the 1980s or earlier. Sometimes, as an afterthought, a few minutes at the end might be spent on a wider question of boundaries. Over the past six to eight years, these workshops have evolved.
9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 24
at Village Chapel Presbyterian
Soul Shop provides both inspirational and practical tools to help congregational leaders form safe organizations for those who are impacted by suicidal depression. Hosted by Soul Shop Director Michelle Snyder, this workshop will address some of the primary obstacles to dealing with suicidal desperation, statistics/facts about suicide, and how ministries can create a supportive environment while fundamentally altering the way people deal with this subject and one another. Cost is $50, which includes lunch and materials; you can now pay by Paypal on our website . Register by Oct. 11.
We invite you to print and include this newsletter in your bulletins or newsletters, share it with your congregation and distribute it widely. We hope it is helpful for your congregation and community. Click for the AUGUST newsletter in two-sided color, two-sided black-and-white, color booklet or black-and-white booklet.
  • Trees of Life tree planting campaign
  • Plant native trees
  • Huntington-Charleston Solar Co-op
  • Selecting 2020 benefits
  • PC(USA) Special Offering calendar
WVMAW mission groups visit the county
By Erin (Perkins) Johnson, Pt. Pleasant Register
Despite the days when temperatures hit the 90’s and days when the rain pours, a group of individuals do not waiver from their work to help those in need. So far this summer, visiting mission groups from the West Virginia Ministry of Advocacy and Workcamps, Inc. (WVMAW) have completed approximately 14 volunteer projects around Mason County.
The PCUSA Parent Loan program was designed to serve PC(USA) members seeking assistance with the expenses of dependents attending college in the United States. To be eligible, a parent must be an active member of a PC(USA) church, a U.S. citizen or permanent U.S. resident and the full-time parent or guardian of a dependent who is enrolled at least half-time at an accredited US college. Loans are for $10,000/year up to a $75,000 lifetime cap; there is a 6 percent interest rate with repayment 60 days after final loan disbursement. The application deadline is September 1.  
Oct. 23-25 at Princeton Theological Seminary
"Leadership in a Time of Division and Fear" is the theme for this conference open to both clergy and lay leaders. Keynote speakers are Dr. Emilie M. Townes, the dean and Carpenter Professor of Womanist Ethics and Society at Vanderbilt University Divinity School; Dr. Cynthia Rigby, a professor at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary and co-chair of the Reformed Theology and History Unit of the American Academy of Religion; and Mihee Kim-Kort, a PhD student in religious studies at Indiana University in Bloomington and an ordained Presbyterian minister. Cost, not including lodging: $195.
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