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

Jan. 24, 2019
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 about the mission stories from our Presbytery's worshiping communities. What mission work are you involved in? How are your members working in the community? What story would you like to share with others in the Presbytery?
 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 Pastor Louise Barger, interim at First United Fulton. On Saturday she was stranded in St. Louis, Missouri with pneumonia. She went home to spend two weeks with her family and celebrate Christmas. Please keep her in your prayers that she feel fit as a fiddle soon,  and for traveling mercies as she makes her way back to Fulton. 
In the cycle of prayer for our Presbytery, please pray for these congregations, faith communities, and individuals: First, Cazenovia; First, Chittenango; United Church of Collamer; Pebble Hill, DeWitt; First United Church of East Syracuse

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

Photo of the Week
Weedsport First Presbyterian Church took advantage of Sunday's cold weather. It was too cold outside so the children made "snow" indoors. See more photos on the church's Facebook page. 

To have your photo considered for "Photo of the Week," post it to your church's Facebook page and tag the Presbytery of Cayuga Syracuse's Facebook page.
From the Leadership Team
Triennium 2019
From Leadership Team Chair Linda Russell
Yea! I am thrilled to announce that Leigh Anne Herd and Tracie Folley from First Presbyterian Church in Liverpool will serve as co-chairs of the 2019 Triennium PYT team for Cayuga-Syracuse. Leigh Anne will be our primary registrar assisted by Tracie. Triennium dates are July 16-20 (plus an additional travel day on both ends).   
Leigh Anne writes:
"Tracie and I are very excited about this year's Triennium! We will be working with other leaders from our Presbytery to form a delegation to head to Purdue in July. We are having a late start, so we need to move quickly. We need all names of youth and adults who are planning to attend Triennium by Feb. 15."
If you have students who are interested in attending this mountain-top experience for youth entering 9th grade through graduated 12th grade, please send the name of your church, the names and contact information for each student, and the name of a contact person in your church along with their cell phone and email to:
Basic Triennium information can be found here. For information on local arrangements, contact Leigh Anne at (315) 727-0178 or
Child/Youth Protection Policies
From the Ministry Work Group
Churches are reminded of their obligation to establish a child/youth protection policy. If you already have a policy in place, or as soon as you create one if you still need to do that, send your policy to presbytery c/o for the presbytery files.
For reference and examples, here are links and downloads to policies from:
Amendments to the Book of Order
The 223rd General Assembly proposed 10 amendments to the Book of Order (BoO) that presbyteries must vote on. Cayuga-Syracuse will vote on these amendments at its stated meeting on Feb. 9, 2019. To prepare for this vote, a task group of the Records and Overtures Work Group of the Leadership Team studied these amendments and prepared a summary overview with recommendations for your consideration. This summary document, along with the complete amendment document provided by General Assembly can be found below:
Annual Statistical Reports
Deadline: Feb. 1, 2019 
"I just finished mine, and was pleased to see that the new format is MUCH easier than in the past."  
                                                -- Jill Fandrich, Clerk of Session, Westminster-Auburn
Everything you need for completing the annual statistical report for your church is on-line and available now. Click here for the link.  That will take you to "Statistical Reporting and Frequently Asked Questions." Click the link for "Go to the Online Statistics Entry System" to enter the Church Statistics System.  
The deadline to submit your report is Feb. 1, 2019.  More detailed information can be found here. Thank you so much for your service. Last year all but three churches were able to submit their reports on time. Let's try for 100 percent this year. We can do this. Please let me know if you have any questions. I will try to answer them, or I will put you in touch with someone who can.
Linda Russell
Chair, Leadership Team
Presbytery Meeting
Our next presbytery meeting is scheduled for  
Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019  
at First Presbyterian Church of Chittenango.  
Registration at 8:30 a.m.  
Call to Order at 9:30 a.m.  
Lunch will be $7.
Child care reservations are due to  by Tuesday, Feb. 5. Limited WiFi will be available. Watch for the docket mailing going out next week.

Around the Presbytery
What: Pastors Lunch
When: 12 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 29
Where: Robinson/Elmwood church 
Participants are asked to bring their lunch. The group will be discussing the book, " Canoeing the Mountains "  by Tod Bolsinger. 

Seeking participants for LAMP trip to Puerto Rico 
Latin American Mission Partnership (LAMP) has planned a trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico April 11-18, 2019 leaving from Syracuse.  
The group is still accepting applications for both youth and adults that would like to participate in this trip. The group will embark on this trip to assist with projects that involve clean up and rebuilding projects from destruction that still remains from the hurricane.
The deadline to submit an application is January 26. 
The cost for the trip is $1,100 and payment due dates are included on the application, which can be found by clicking here.  
LAMP highly encourages youth (minimum of 14 years old) to participate in this trip as it is an experience of a lifetime and many amazing memories are made through experiencing a new culture. It is not necessary to know the Spanish language; there will be translators available.  
For questions, please contact Julianne Pease at (315) 430-4536 or by email to To see pictures of past LAMP trips, visit its Facebook page.

Witness to Injustice: Unraveling Native & U.S. relations, offered by Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation
What: All are invited to join Pebble Hill Presbyterian's Witness to Racial Reconciliation Team's special class
When: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26.  
Where: Pebble Hill Church at 5299 Jamesville Road, in DeWitt
Cost: Free
Registration: Registration is requested as space is somewhat limited by calling  
(315) 446-0960 or emailing  

This two-hour class i nvites participants to experience symbolically the impacts of colonization and conquest on indigenous peoples, and to enter into the story of reconciliation and healing that emerges from our collective experience.
It uses participatory education to raise awareness of the historic relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in the part of the world now known as the United States through the use of meaningful quotes, and blankets that represent Turtle Island (the Western Hemisphere), we explore a shared history that most people never learn.
It is a way to engage in a conversation about the European colonization of Turtle Island and deepen our understanding of the denial of Indigenous peoples' nationhood throughout U.S. History.
Quotes from recent participants:

"The experience was very valuable."

"Beginning with the Caribbean meant a lot to me as a woman from Jamaica."
Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation, a program of the Syracuse Peace Council, is a grassroots organization of Central New Yorkers. Noon supports the sovereignty of the Onondaga Nation's traditional government and their Land Rights Action. Noon joins in their call for justice, reconciliation and healing. Noon believe that the community has a great deal to learn from the Onondagas about living more peacefully with one another and more harmoniously with the Earth.

First Presbyterian Church of Skaneateles
hosts 2 Super Bowl events

What: Super Bowl Sunday Tamale Benefit
When: Feb. 3. Orders will be taken on Jan. 27
Cost: Suggested donation $20 per dozen or $10 per half dozen
Fundraiser supports EFWA's Winter Survival Campaign
Selection: Pork, chicken, vegetarian and vegan

What: "Souper Bowl Sunday"
When: Feb. 3
Everyone is encouraged to bring a can of soup or a dollar for "Souper Bowl Sunday." All collections donated will go to the EFWA's Emergency Food Pantry. Collection bins will be located at the front entrance and Sims Room.  

First Presbyterian Church of Skaneateles is located at 97 E. Genesee St., in Skaneateles                    
What: Spaghetti Dinner 
When: 5 to 6:30 p.m. Feb. 11  
Where: Weedsport Presbyterian Church, 8871 S. Seneca St.  Cost: Free  
Notes: Gluten-free and regular past available. Donations graciously accepted for the Presbyterian Youth Programs. Bring your friends. Everyone welcome.

Around the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
So, you want to volunteer in a disaster area? Here's how
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance offers one-stop shopping for scheduling mission trips,
and lodging

By Rich Copley
Presbyterian News Service

LOUISVILLE - When Mother Nature rages, Eden Roberts knows her phone is going to start ringing.

"They want to go to the place they saw on the news," the Mission Specialist for Hosting and Volunteer Management for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) says. "After (Hurricane) Sandy, they all wanted to go to New Jersey where the boardwalk got torn down. Now, Mexico Beach ( the Florida town where Hurricane Michael made landfall in October) - everybody wants to go to Mexico Beach."

In those moments, Roberts usually must tell people "not so fast," because professional first responders need to do their work first. But for people who want to go help in areas impacted by headline-making natural disasters - and even some that have not made national news but need help all the same - Roberts and the PDA call center are the place to go.

Continue reading...
Presbyterian Foundation adds Ministers of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Foundation Board of Trustees plan calls for greater diversity among staff, board - and the people the Foundation serves

By Robyn Davis Sekula
Presbyterian Foundation

LOUISVILLE - Four Ministers of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion joined the Presbyterian Foundation in 2018 to help the Foundation better understand and serve the needs of the entire Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Adding the Ministers of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is part of an overall strategic plan for the Presbyterian Foundation adopted by the Board of Trustees in 2015. The plan calls for greater diversity in all ways, including staff members, board of trustees and in those served by the Foundation.

"Each minister of diversity, equity, and inclusion is someone who is deeply connected in the church and has extensive experience in congregational life," said Rev. Dr. Tom Taylor, President and CEO of the Presbyterian Foundation. "We are so grateful for their willingness to serve and glad for their connections and willingness to represent the Foundation."


It's time to order your Presbyterians Today
2019 Lenten Devotional
Awakening to God's Beauty - A Lenten invitation to pray with art

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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