Presbytery of Cayuga-Syracuse
5811 Heritage Landing Dr., 2nd Floor
East Syracuse, NY  13057
(315) 632-5698
April 12, 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!
From the Leadership Team
Presbytery Celebrations

The Presbytery Leadership Team cordially invites you to attend and help celebrate... 
  • The ordination of Jenna Heery as a Minister of the Word and Sacrament at 4:00pm on Saturday, April 14 at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Auburn, NY.
  • The installation of Rev. Daniel McCollister as Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of King Ferry, NY at the church at 3:00pm on Sunday, April 15.
  • The recognition of the Rev. Peter Shidemantle (Pastor, Pebble Hill PC) and Dennis Baldwin, Esq. (member of the United Church of Fayetteville) as special honorees at the InterFaith Works Leadership Award Dinner on Tuesday, May 1.Both men have been long-time supporters of InterFaith Works' mission of affirming the dignity of each person and every faith community and the work it does to create bridges of understanding among those of different faiths, ethnicities, races and backgrounds. (Contact Linda Russell at 315-632-5698, ext. 1, by Sunday, April 15 regarding dinner tickets.) 
Presbytery Commissioners to
General Assembly

The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) meets biennially in even-numbered years. It consists of commissioners elected by each of its 173 presbyteries , half of whom are ruling elders and half ministers of the Word and Sacrament. The GA is full of activities: business sessions, committee meetings, an exhibit hall, daily worship services, and mission tours sponsored by the Committee on Local Arrangements.

The assembly acts on hundreds of items of business, which it receives through the reports and recommendations of various assembly entities, and through overtures from synods and presbyteries.

Our presbytery commissioners and their committee assignments this year are:
  • Rev. Diane Monger, #8 Environmental Issues
  • Elder Rebecca Wind, #12 Middle East issues
  • Shavonn Lynch, Theological Student Advisory Delegate (TSAD), #7 Ecumenical issues
  • Rachel Kilts, Young Adult Advisory Delegate (YAAD), #6 Polity
The 223rd General Assembly (2018) will be held in St. Louis, Missouri: June 16 - 23.

Please keep Diane, Rebecca, Shavonn, and Rachel in your prayers as they read and digest enormous amounts of homework in preparation for this service.
Background Checks

Effective April 1, 2018, background checks done through Presbytery will be processed by Paula Lamberson through the Presbytery's bookkeeping office. For more than eight years the good folks in the office at Robinson Elmwood United Church have handled this service, graciously and professionally, and the Presbytery offers them our profound thanks! Going forward, we will follow the same basic procedures except that requests should now be sent to Paula at Questions? Contact Linda Russell at
315-632-5698, ext. 1.

Planning Calendars for 2018-2019

Churches and individuals wishing to order Presbyterian Planning Calendars through the Presbytery's bulk order should email their request to Linda Russell at by May 1. The actual price will be determined by the shipping cost but should be similar to last year (approximately $9.00 per calendar). The goal is to make calendars available at the May Presbytery meeting, but that date is earlier than last year's meeting and delivery will depend on when the calendars finish printing and become available for shipping. Any questions, call Linda at 315-632-5698, ext. 1.
Joys and Concerns around the Presbytery
In our prayers together this week...
  • Pray for all affected by the school bus accident that killed 27 children and 3 adults in the foothills of the Himalayas in the Kangra Valley in India. Prayers for families, first responders, rescue efforts, recovery for the injured passengers, comfort for the grieving, and safer road conditions.
  • Pray for the family of the Rev. Buddy Monahan, pastor of Westminster Church in Odessa, Texas, and chair of the PC(USA)'s Advocacy Committee for Racial Ethnic Concerns, who died on March 27 in an automobile accident. Buddy was 52 years old and much loved in the denomination, for which he was a tireless advocate for justice and inclusion. Let us commend this child of God home. You can read more about Buddy in this Presbyterian News article.
In the cycle of prayer for our Presbytery, please pray for these congregations, faith communities, and individuals: Isaiah's Table, Syracuse; Korean Church of Syracuse; Park Central, Syracuse; Robinson Elmwood United Church, Syracuse; South Valley, Syracuse.

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

Around the Presbytery
Earth Day Concert

Park Central will host a very special concert to celebrate Earth Day, on Saturday, April 21, at 7 pm, featuring the folk stylings of Dan Berggren--storyteller, poet, songster, and friends of nature. Dan will perform original music written to underscore our relationship with, and responsibility for, the earth and everything with which we share this planet we call "home."

Donations will be accepted at the door. Please plan to join Park Central for an enjoyable and meaningful celebration of life and hope. Park Central is located at 504 E. Fayette Street, Syracuse, NY 13202.


The Ordination of  
Jenna Lynn Heery

Westminster Presbyterian Church, Auburn

April 14 @ 4 pm

Jenna Heery was approved by our presbytery to be ordained to her specialized ministry of caring for grieving families and exploring with them the possibility of organ donation.

On April 14, at 4 pm, Jenna will be ordained by the Cayuga-Syracuse Presbytery at Westminster Presbyterian Church, where her husband, Patrick, pastors. It's located at 17 William Street, Auburn, NY 13021. All are invited to join Jenna for this sacred moment in her calling. The Rev. Richelle Goff, pastor of Auburn United Methodist Church, will be preaching. The Rev. Janet Newman, honorably retired member of the presbytery, will be offering the charge. A reception will follow. Come and celebrate with Jenna and Patrick on this momentous occasion!   

You always may keep abreast on happenings in and around the Presbytery by
checking the Presbytery events calendar ( and the

A message from Vanderkamp

Syracuse University Brass to Play Benefit Concert for Vanderkamp
The Award-winning Syracuse University Brass Ensemble (SUBE) of over thirty-five professional level brass and percussionists and directed by Dr. James T. Spencer will play its spring Pops Concert at the United Church of Fayetteville, 310 East Genesee Street, Fayetteville, on Sunday, April 22 at 3:00 PM. Free-Will offering proceeds will benefit Vanderkamp by providing "kamperships" and support for the center's community-based year-round programs.
Vanderkamp Center, located near Cleveland, New York, off the north shore of Oneida Lake, is an 850-acre site and includes forests, fields and a private lake. As a Christian ecumenical retreat and camp facility it offers five weeks of a summer camping experience that parents and children alike agree is a "one of a kind experience!" Summer of 2018 the themed camp weeks will include the ever popular Outrageous, Ninja Warrior, Adventures, Strangest Things, In Middle Earth and All Faith Kamp.
Vanderkamp offers facilities and support for retreats, meetings, and gatherings.  Full meal services are offered to groups, but kitchens are located in each of the retreat lodges for those wanting to cook their own meals. Programs are offered for anyone from a solo retreater to a group of 150! Vanderkamp has a pristine private 45-acre lake that all can enjoy. Everyone is welcome to roam the network of trails for hiking, or biking - or head down to the lake for canoeing, kayaking, or row boating during your stay. Or come just for the day.
The SU Brass Ensemble will once again delight concert goers with musical selections that include some of the ensemble's favorites: Fanfare for Full Fathom five (based upon Shakespeare's The Tempest), Jesus Christ Superstar, Alexander's Ragtime Band, Scene One from Swan Lake (Tchaikovsky), Pirates of the Caribbean, Blades of Toledo (trombone favorite), and Sparks (Xylophone solo), amongst others.  This spring the ensemble has been invited to be a "showcase" band at the Great American Brass Band Festival in Kentucky, where they will perform many of these pieces.To learn more about Vanderkamp visit their website.

Around the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
'Here's my Heart' named 2019 Presbyterian Youth Triennium theme

Theologically rich topic to help teens explore longing for passion and action

by Paul Seebeck | Presbyterian News Service

Presbyterian Youth Triennium (PYT) director Gina Yeager-Buckley loves the juxtaposition of the recently unveiled "Here's my Heart" 2019 PYT theme.

From actual lyrics in the hymn "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing," it is a bit of a departure from past PYT themes that have traditionally been based on Scripture.

But the seemingly more internal focused theme is rich theologically for this moment in time when some young people are marching, demonstrating and speaking out.

Continue reading...

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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