Issue 162 | February 7, 2020
Click on an underlined title to go to the full article
Register here  for next Saturday's Presbytery meeting at Riverlawn Presbyterian Church in St. Albans! Advance registration, which is the only way to pay online, ends today at noon.
“What worries me most is that we – the church – will become so focused on survival that we will forget what our mission is.” The quote comes from Brian Blount, the president of Union Presbyterian Seminary. I think he’s right. Survival can become all consuming. What if we can’t pay our bills? What if we can’t pay the presbytery minimum salary? What if we can’t find a pastor? What if we have to replace the roof? What if the furnace breaks down in the winter or the air conditioner fails in the summer? The continuing focus on these kind of “what if” statements become an all too familiar litany when we focus on our survival.
9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. March 28 at First Presbyterian Church, Charleston
This year’s Festival of Faith will feature Presbyterian Outlook Editor Jill Duffield as the Keynote Speaker, focusing her presentation on what people beyond our walls are saying about us, members of the Presbyterian Church (USA). She will also lead one of the many workshops we will offer; plus, there will be fellowship, learning, and worship for all. Complete workshop and registration information will be available soon online and by email. The early registration deadline, which will save you some money, is Thursday, March 12. 
  • Statistical Report submission deadline
  • 2019 PC(USA) Clerk's Annual Questionnaire
  • 2020 Session Record Reviews/Listening Events
  • Board of Pensions tax resources
  • Festival of Faith workshops
  • 2020 Per Capita
  • 2020 Shared Mission Pledge Request
  • 2020 Special Offering Calendar
March 6-8 at Cedar Lakes Conference Center
This retreat for those in grades 6-8 will use themes from some of the Avengers movies to explore our identity as children of God, where we belong, and how we are accepted and called to accept others. Registration deadline is Monday, Feb. 24. Information, including a registration form, is in the above link, on the Presbytery website and has been sent by email to pastors, session clerks, youth leaders and Christian educators. Please contact Susan Sharp Campbell at 304-645-4568 or with any questions. 
Starting Something New: Discerning God’s Call in the Places God’s Sent Us will be the next Expanding Your Ministry Toolbox course. Taught by Michael Gehrling of PC(USA)'s 1001 New Worshiping Communities, it will look at ways of engaging in our particular contexts and neighbors as a way toward new forms of witness and mission. You can participate in person at the Presbytery office or by Zoom from the comfort of your own location. Cost is $50, regardless of the option chosen. Register by Thursday, Feb. 27. We hope to offer a recording of this event in the future as well.
By Fred Pace, The Herald Dispatch
After more than 70 years, the Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church at 469 Norway Ave., in Huntington conducted a closing celebration service Sunday. Cinda Harkless, the current pastor, said the church was faced with the hard questions about their sustainability and made the decision to permanently close.
Intergenerational Day of Service
On Saturday, Feb. 1, 28 participants of all ages from four Presbyterian churches in the Huntington area (Enslow Park, First, Highlawn and Rome) gathered together for the Presbytery's first Intergenerational Day of Service. Good things were accomplished, and a good time was had by all. (Click on each photo for a full-size version, and click here to see all of Highlawn Presbyterian's photos from the day.)
ABOVE: Baking tasty treats for First Steps Recovery Center
Many of the young participants made cards for our troops overseas.
Dismantling a wall of shelves at The Salvation Army. As one mom said of the intergenerational mix, " Thanks to the ' older' fellas in this picture for teaching our boys how it is done!"
From East-Central Africa to Fayetteville
Leisa Wagstaff, a Presbyterian Mission worker in South Sudan will visit Fayetteville Presbyterian Church on Sunday, March 1. All are invited to a free 5 p.m. pizza dinner, at which she'll share her story. For anyone interested, she will also be at the church's worship service that morning. For more on Leisa, click here; for more on the event, call Pastor Bob Wood at 304-881-9610. 
FEMA hosting a half dozen webinars on its Nonprofit Security Grant Program
One of the few FEMA grant programs that congregations may qualify for is the Nonprofit Security Grant Program, whose main purpose is to support physical security enhancements like surveillance systems, physical access control equipment, impact resistant doors and gates, intrusion detection sensors and alarms, exterior lighting, physical perimeter security, and screening and inspection equipment. It also promotes emergency preparedness coordination and collaboration between public and private community representatives.

Interested? Connect to one of these one-hour webinars, all of which begin at 2:30 p.m. Registration is required to participate.
  • Feb. 12: 1-866-454-4207, code 368026#
  • Feb. 26: 1-877-446-3914, 289309#
  • March 5: 1-866-454-4207, 368026#
  • March 12: 1-866-454-4207, 368026#
  • March 19: 1-866-454-4207, 368026#
  • March 26: 1-877-446-3914, 289309#

  • Encourage the West Virginia Legislature to support Power Purchase Agreements

  • Faithful Climate Action Fellowship deadline is Feb. 14

  • Presbyterians for Earth Care’s Lent devotional is now online
We invite you to print and include this newsletter in your bulletins or church newsletters, share it with your members and distribute it widely in your community. Click for the FEBRUARY newsletter in color or black-and-white.
By Kayla Hawthorne, Point Pleasant Register
The Presbyterian Church in Point Pleasant serves the community in many ways — including helping to feed and clothe families. The food pantry and clothes closet are open to the public every Wednesday from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. In 2019, the food pantry served 450 families, or 1,360 people, according to church members and volunteers George Dowell and Donna Lambert. To be eligible to receive food packages from the church, an identification with a name and address is needed. Eligible families must live from Lakin to the Cabell County or Putnam County lines.
Charles William Shafer Jr. passed away on Jan. 31, 2020. He was a former Commissioned Lay Pastor at South Hills Presbyterian Church, preached at many other churches in the Presbytery of West Virginia and was a long-time member at First Presbyterian Church of St. Albans. Visitation and services were held at First Presbyterian, St. Albans, on Feb. 5. Click here for his obituary. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the memorial fund at First Presbyterian Church, 201 Kanawha Terr., St. Albans, WV 25177.
Job openings
Administrative secretary
Rock Lake Presbyterian
Seeking a professional, self-motivated and confident person to perform clerical duties in church office. Successful candidate is Christ-centered, has people skills, is a problem solver and computer literate. A background check is required. Please send resume with references to RLPC, Attn: A&F Committee, 901 Village Dr., South Charleston, WV 25309 or Call 304-768-4141 with questions.
Director of Music
First Presbyterian, Bluefield
This salaried employee will work with the pastor to lead the church’s music programs to the glory of God. All applicants should send a resume with references to or First Presbyterian Church, Attn: Personnel Committee, 208 Tazewell Ave., Bluefield, WV 24701. Call 304-327-9727 with questions.

Casting Crowns "Only Jesus" tour
with special guest Matthew West
7 p.m. March 10 at Big Sandy Arena, Huntington
Tickets begin at $26, with group discounts available. Call 304-696-5990 or visit
Choir robes looking for a new home

First Presbyterian, Nitro has 34 maroon choir robes with white stoles that are in good condition that they would like to donate to a church or ministry in need. Interested? Contact the church office by email or call 304-755-3242 from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday through Thursday. 
Presbytery directory information still needed! Only one third of churches have submitted theirs to date
As the Presbytery is updating our directory, in order to ensure our information is current, we ask for your clerk of session, pastoral leader or church secretary to please fill out the directory contact form; if there is not a contact person for a particular position, please let us know. If your church’s information has not changed from the 2019 directory, tell us. Please send your 2020 information no later than MARCH 2 to Amy Robinson, Presbytery of West Virginia, 520 Second Ave., South Charleston, WV 25303 or
The 2020 Montreat Youth Conference, July 11-18, will provide opportunities for youth in our churches to connect with hundreds of high school youth from across the country to engage in faith conversations exploring who God is and who we are. Youth currently in grades 8-12 are invited, though space is limited as the Presbytery only has room for 14 people, including adults.
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Editor's Note: In order to keep PWV News fresh, articles will generally run for two consecutive issues. If you would like a piece to run longer, please update (with refreshed content, new wording and/or a different photo) and resubmit.