Presbytery of Cayuga-Syracuse
5811 Heritage Landing Dr., 2nd Floor
East Syracuse, NY  13057
(315) 632-5698

August 23, 2018
Dear Friends of Cayuga-Syracuse Presbytery,

Welcome to this week's edition of our e-letter, Presbytery Matters. Our goal is to highlight things going on throughout the Church: within our Presbytery, in our congregations, as well as in the Synod of the Northeast and across the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). We hope that these are things that will be helpful, informative, challenging, encouraging, supportive. In other words, we hope that these things will matter. Your input is valued, and your comments are always welcomed.
Mission Stories
We want to hear from you!!!
Send any mission stories from your congregation that you would like to share to:

Deadline is 12 p.m. on Wednesdays for the current week's edition of Presbytery Matters.

We want to share your stories, missions, activities and more. Also, make sure to like our Facebook page by clicking the "Like us on Facebook" tab at the top of this letter.
Joys and Concerns around the Presbytery
In our prayers together this week...
  • Pray for those that are cleaning up following last week's heavy rains and flooding. Torrential rains dropped several inches on communities in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. Hundreds of homes and businesses were flooded. Newark Presbytery leaders say two churches were damaged by high water.
  • Several fatal and serious car and motorcycle accidents have been reported in Central New York this week. Please keep the families of the victims in your prayers.
  • Westminster Presbyterian Church in Auburn shares the joy of having wonderful summer substitute worship leaders who provided meaningful and spirit-filled worship experiences during Pastor Patrick Heery's family care leave. Thank you to: Audrey McNally, Rev. Janet Newman, Shavonn Lynch, Kimberly Patch, Rev. Nancy Bidlespacher and Rev. Larry Bell. Patrick returns September 4. 
In the cycle of prayer for our Presbytery, please pray for these congregations, faith communities, and individuals: Our Presbytery (the Leadership Team, Work Groups, Committees, and Mission and Ministry Teams), the Synod of the Northeast and General Assembly staff.

If you'd like to share a particular joy or concern with the Presbytery, please contact:

From Our Leadership Team
Why :
Healthy pastors and church workers promote safe, healthy churches. Training/refreshing every three years is a standard "best practice" for Boundaries Awareness and this is a local, convenient opportunity to bring yourself "up-to-date."
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 24, 2018
Liverpool First Presbyterian Church, 603 Tulip Street, Liverpool, NY 13088
All pastors and CLP's currently serving churches in Cayuga-Syracuse, pastors/elders on pulpit supply list, church elders, educators and youth ministry and human resources representatives
$15 for lunch for Cayuga-Syracuse participants
$40 for lunch and registration for non-Cayuga-Syracuse participants 
(This training event is being jointly offered and subsidized by the Leadership Team and Ministry  Work Group.)  
Contact Heather Brown at Liverpool First Presbyterian Church at 315-457-3161 or
October 17, 2018 
More information:
Linda Russell at 
Nancy Wind at  
About the presenter:
David Olsen, PhD, LCSW, LMFT
David has served as the executive director of the Samaritan Counseling Center for the last 32 years. He has been an adjunct professor of family therapy at Sage Graduate School, and is an ordained minister in the American Baptist Churches and provides consultations and training for a number of judicatories.

Attention : Clerks of Session   
Records Review sessions have been scheduled for the following dates and venues:
 Thursday, October 4 -- United Church of Fayetteville
 Thursday, October 11-- First United Church of Fulton
 Thursday, October 18 -- First Presbyterian Church of Liverpool
Thursday, October 25 -- First Presbyterian Church of Auburn
Thursday, November 1 -- Westminster Presbyterian Church of Syracuse
Was your church damaged by flood waters?
A member of the National Response Team for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) called our presbytery on August 17 to see if any churches in Cayuga-Syracuse had sustained damages from recent flooding events in Central New York. If your church was damaged by flood waters and needs assistance to recover, please email our Leadership Team Chairperson Linda Russell at and you will be connected with the PDA.

Other Voices from the Presbytery
"Being a Matthew 25 Church"
Theological Student Advisory Delegate report from the 223rd General Assembly
Shavonn Lynch, an Inquirer in the Presbytery of Cayuga-Syracuse, attended the 223rd General Assembly this June as our Theological Student Advisory Delegate (TSAD) and served on the Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations Committee.  
Shavonn is a member and deacon at Westminster Presbyterian Church of Auburn and a student at Northeaster Seminary in Rochester. Due to her work schedule, Shavonn was not able to report in person at the August 14 presbytery meeting but gave us permission to share the attached message she delivered from the pulpit on August 12.  In her message she reflects on how this General Assembly modeled being a Matthew 25 Church and Kingdom building for the 21st Century through engagement, as called for by the 222nd General Assembly.

Read her message here
Around the Presbytery
What: The Collamer United Church will hold its annual rummage sale.
When: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday September 14 and 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday, September 15
Where: Vollmer's Greenhouse across from the cemetery on Route 298 in Collamer (2 miles east of Carrier Circle; or ½ mile west of Exit 7 off from Route 481.)
The sale will offer a wide variety of great bargains from the nearly new to the nearly antique. There will also be a food counter and a bake sale so shoppers can snack while searching for treasures.

Attention teachers, child care providers, parents and grandparents:

Westminster Nursery School (17 William St., Auburn) is holding a massive going-out-of-business sale from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, August 25. Items include educational toys, child-size furniture, books, learning sets, puzzles, riding toys and much more.

Join Us for InterFaith Works  Dinner Dialogues
Interfaith Works Dinner Dialogues will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, September 27, 2018.   
Diverse groups of 8-12 guests gather together for a friendly, facilitated conversation about faith and spirituality at homes across Central New York. Participation is free. Your host will provide a simple vegetarian meal. 
Around the table, over food, people of diversity share a meal, and with facilitated questions, offer their personal thoughts about life, faith and spirituality. A trained facilitator guides and moderates the dialogue so participants feel comfortable sharing. Dinner Dialogues provide a space where people can learn about the faith and spiritual traditions of others first-hand. Through facilitated conversation, dialogue participants gain an understanding of other people's beliefs and often find more similarities than differences. Interfaith dialogue helps us understand our own faith and the faith of other people. It helps to create a deep awareness of the connectedness of all faiths and an appreciation for their distinctiveness. Interfaith dialogue is an antidote for some of the ills facing religion today.

The dinner is a symbolic act of tolerance, respect and understanding. Eating together is an outward expression of unity among diverse individuals with varied beliefs and religious traditions.    
To participate, email Gracious Moyo at or call (315) 449-3552, ext. 111. For more information, call Daryl Files at (315) 449-3552, ext. 208, or email
Register by September 14. Download Registration Form Here

Around the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
International peacemaker to share the latest on the Syrian refugee crisis
  Dr. Mary Mikhael to visit U.S. churches this fall

By Rick Jones
Presbyterian News Service
LOUISVILLE - Dr. Mary Mikhael is a familiar face in Presbyterian circles. For years, she has met with churches, synods and seminaries about the ongoing crisis in Syria. This fall, she returns to the U.S. once again as an international peacemaker.
Dr. Mikhael is the first woman to become president of a seminary in the Middle East. From 1994 to 2011, she was president of Near East School of Theology (NEST) in Beirut, Lebanon. Since that time, she has worked to improve the lives of Syria's displaced and refugees.
"Our major service in Lebanon is to educate children from the camps, to rescue them from getting lost on the streets and being exploited," she said. "We face many challenges due to the violence, wars, killing and destruction."

5811 Heritage Landing Dr., 2nd Floor
East Syracuse, NY  13057
(315) 632-5698
"I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them
bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing." John 15:5
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