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

July 4, 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
May the road rise to meet you

First Presbyterian Church Mexico held a blessing of bicycles on Saturday, June 29. Elizabeth had her bike blessed.    

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 all those who fought for our country. We are so blessed to live in the home of the free because of the brave. Happy Fourth of July. Have fun and stay safe.
  • Please pray for Dick Tuttle, husband of Sharye Skinner, who is battling pancreatic cancer.
  • Pray for all those who battling depression and other mental health diseases. May God comfort them and guide them in their path to healing.
  • Please pray for all those traveling this holiday weekend and this summer. Pray that they make it to their destinations safely.
  • Please pray for Jim Russell, the brother of elder Douglas Russell. Jim is battling esophagus cancer.
In the cycle of prayer for our Presbytery, please pray for these congregations, faith communities, and individual:  Northminster, North Syracuse; Onondaga Hill; Faith United Church of Oswego; Presbyterian Church of Otisco; New Hope, Parish

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

Photo of the Week
The First Presbyterian Church of Chittenango bell choir traveled to Lancaster, Pennsylvania this weekend for the 2019 Handbell Musicians of America--Area 2 Festival Conference & Younger Ringers Festival. View more photos from their trip 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.
Special Meeting 
Call for a Special Meeting of Presbytery on July 10, 2019
The moderator of the Presbytery of Cayuga-Syracuse, the Rev. Tom Oak, has called for a special meeting of the Presbytery, as has been properly requested by several different individuals, for Wednesday, July 10, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church of Liverpool (603 Tulip Street, Liverpool, NY 13088) for examining Benjamin Fitzgerald-Fye for ordination and membership, for approving the call of First Presbyterian Church of Scipioville to Mr. Fitzgerald-Fye as their pastor, and for approving the call of the Rev. Karen Chamis to serve as our Presbytery's Resource Presbyter.
There will be an opportunity to meet and greet Benjamin Fitzgerald-Fye and Karen Chamis beginning at 10:00 a.m., with the meeting being called to order at 11:00 a.m. 
The entire call and purpose of the meeting can be read here. 
 For more details and to read documents for meeting, visit the Presbytery's website 
From the Leadership Team
PC(USA) Ordination Exams 2019: 

Each year presbyteries are required to submit to General Assembly the names of persons willing to read ordination exams. As part of the Northeast Region, Cayuga-Syracuse readers will be evaluating exams the week of October 7-11, 2019 and we have been asked to provide one (1) ruling elder, one (1) teaching elder, and one (1) alternate reader.

The Leadership Team will appoint exam readers at its meeting on July 22, 2019.

Elder Linda Van Buskirk, one of our 2018 exam readers, has prepared information about expectations and training for this role which can be found here. If you would like to be considered as an exam reader, please send your name to Leadership Team Chairperson, Lynn Jacques, at by July 15, 2019. 
Around the Presbytery
Thank you, well wishes 
The congregation of Amboy Belle Isle Church celebrated Pastor Gail Banks' retirement on Sunday,  June 23.  The Rev. Dr. Ginny Smith on behalf of the Committee of Ministry shared with the congregation.  Many others also shared well wishes. The congregation presented Gail with thoughtful gifts and hosted a wonderful luncheon.

2019 Lodi Summer Camp for Refugee children is happening now 
Lodi Summer Camp is an annual summer camp organized for refugee children initiated by Korean Church of Syracuse . This year is the 10th year anniversary of the camp.   Each year, more than 1 5 0 children from about 10 different countries have attended the camp, and about 100 children accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. 
This year the camp has about 80 volunteers from several states, including Penn sylvania, New Jersey, California and Florida . The volunteers come to learn how to do refugee ministry .
The camp would like to invite the Cayuga-Syracuse Presbytery churches to join their ministry efforts and share this joyful and gracious moment. It is a wonderful opportunity to experience such true "mission" in the United States of America. Anyone can visit to witness God's work and join as volunteers. Here are some details regarding the camp:
  Theme: To t he Ends of the Earth ( Acts 1: 8 )
Date: Today and Friday  
Time: 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
Location: Cornerstone Christian Church at   713 Catherine St., Syracuse  
Contact: 315-474-8346,  
The church also seeks donations and prayers:
Donations can be made payable to "Korean Church of Syracuse" and sent to 1800 E. Genesee St., Syracuse, NY 13210
Also please pray for this camp so that all attending children can know God and accept Jesus Christ as their Savior.
What: Blessing of the Animals
When: 10 am. Sunday, July 14
Where: First Presbyterian Church of Mexico, 4361 Church Street in Mexico


PC(USA) Mission co-workers Charles and Melissa Johnson
to present at Liverpool First Presbyterian Church

Charles and Melissa Johnson are PC(USA) Mission co-workers who are working in Zambia. They are on interpretation assignment in the USA this summer, and will be in town at Liverpool First Presbyterian Church at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 17.  You are invited to come, listen and learn about their mission activities in agriculture training and women's health in Lundazi, Zambia. 

Liverpool First Presbyterian Church mission committee will provide the core meal at 6:30 p.m. Please bring a salad, fruit or desert dish to pass. Then around 7:15 p.m. we will gather in fellowship hall to hear their stories and see how God is at work at this unique intersection.

Please let Liverpool First Presbyterian Church know with a quick note by July 14 to if you plan to attend, for meal planning.

Read more about the Johnsons at their PC (USA) mission site. From there you can read their newsletters to see what they have been doing as PC(USA) mission co-workers in Zambia, or contribute directly to their specific mission ministry.


What: Blessing of the Pets
When: 9:30 a.m. Sunday, July 21
Where: Westminster Presbyterian Church, 17 William St., Auburn

Westminster Church will have some fun with a Presbyterian-style "blessing of the pets"  during a special outdoor worship service. The Blessing of the Animals will recognize the special bond we share with animal friends and companions, and will be blended into the morning worship on the church's front lawn. All God's creatures (two footed, four footed, no-footed, paws, claws, talons, or other) are welcome (on leashes or in carriers, please). For information, call 315-253-3331.

What: Vendors wanted for 11th Annual Tailgate Festival
When: 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 3
Where: First Presbyterian Church of Auburn, 112 South St., Auburn
Open to crafters, artists, antiques, garage sale items, farmers, etc.
Coffee, drinks, baked goods, and Chicken BBQ available day of sale.

To reserve a space:
Cost: $15
Deadline: Aug. 1
Call: (315) 252-3861

Application can be downloaded on the church's website.

Around the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
How much outreach can a small church do?
As it turns out, plenty

By Rev. Dr. David Imhoff
Special to Presbyterian News Service

LOUISVILLE -- Ft. Caroline Presbyterian Church, which I serve as interim pastor, is 60 years old and has long passed its "glory days." It's in the Arlington area in Jacksonville, Florida, a neighborhood in the midst of transition. When I arrived nearly four years ago as the part-time ecumenical pastor, we were worshiping alongside about 20 people. We have only two couples in their 50s; most worshipers are 70-98 years of age.

When I arrived we had two outreach ministries. One provided volunteer drivers for Meals on Wheels; the other is support for a neighborhood ecumenical food bank. About a year ago I was approached by a "meal serving food stocks" ministry for the community that I had worked with in a previous congregation I had served. It seems their church was closing up and they were asked to leave. After discussing the idea with the session, this is what happened next and is still going on:

Every second and fourth Saturday morning we serve a hot breakfast to anyone who walks in - typically about 250 people. After they're done eating, guests and others who don't want to eat right away take a number and, when their number is called, they take home food boxes full of meat, canned goods, bread, and fruit. Each family receives two very large boxes of food - too heavy for most to carry to their cars.

From loneliness to connection
Writer: Presbyterian Youth Triennium community makes all the difference

By Amy Merchant
Special to Presbyterian News Service

The song echoed on the hill as candles illuminated the field. If a candle had trouble lighting, neighbors gladly shared wisdom and expertise on how to get the candle to stay burning.
I was 16 and experiencing my first Presbyterian Youth Triennium. As I worshiped with new friends from all over the world, it felt as if I was standing on holy ground. During the week my emotions had transformed from anxiety to peace, and from loneliness to connection. The peace of God was for sure in our midst that night.

I felt peace and I felt connected, partially because I think PYT is intentionally designed to help youth experience the best of healthy Christian community. There are a variety of reasons as to why the event is successful. For myself though, in 2007, it was the community that made all the difference and has kept me coming back for more.

The adults I met that week were both patient and empowering. The friends I made were adventurous and honest. These were different than my church relationships in Oregon, and I felt safe enough to bring all of myself to the table so to speak.

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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