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

July 18, 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

Thank you God for all your creatures

The First Presbyterian Church in Mexico held a Blessing of the Animals on Sunday, July 14.
They had six dogs and two horses.

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...
  • Please pray for for Triennium 2019, that all who are participating in this unique experience will find themselves in a closer, deeper relationship with God, who loves with all God's heart.
  • Pray for the family of the Rev. Pamela Gnagy whose mother, June Gnagy, age 93, passed away on June 28th
  • Pray for Pastor Benjamin Fitzgerald-Fye and the Rev. Karen Chamis as they prepare their hearts, bodies and minds to take on new roles in August.
  • Please pray for Dick Tuttle, husband of Sharye Skinner, who is battling pancreatic cancer.
  • 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 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:

Photo of the Week
Pastor Garrett Anderson answered a quiz question incorrectly Saturday and had to pay the penalty of breaking an egg on his head at Liverpool Church picnic. 

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 Associate Stated Clerk 
Sexual Harassment Prevention Training

Last year New York State adopted legislation requiring all employers - including all churches - to adopt a Sexual Harassment Policy by Oct. 9, 2018. State law also requires that Sexual Harassment Prevention Training must be provided by the employer -- by each church -- by Oct. 9, 2019, and on an annual basis thereafter.
Each church is asked to document in its session minutes: (a) that the church has adopted a Sexual Harassment Policy, and (b) that sexual harassment prevention training has been conducted by the Oct. 9, 2019 deadline.
Current samples of training can be found here:
Other helpful links include:
These links can also be found on the Presbytery's website under the Resources tab, in the Policies section.

Invitation from Pyongyang Presbytery

Pyongyang Presbytery has invited Cayuga-Syracuse to send a delegation of four adults to visit their churches and attend their presbytery meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2019, although the exact length and dates of the visit are still being worked out.  
The Korean Partnership M&M Team is currently looking for three persons, pastors or elders (preferably at least one of each), who would be visiting Pyongyang Presbytery for the first time. If you have a possible interest in this opportunity, please contact Linda Russell at or 315-730-6930.
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.

Benevolent Care Fund Grant applications:
The Benevolent Care Fund Grant applications are now being accepted through Nov 1, 2019.   

The purpose of this fund is to provide benevolent grants to institutions that assist in the care of elderly persons within the bounds of the Cayuga-Syracuse Presbytery. 

Examples of previous requests are: food gift cards for shut-ins within the church community, senior lunch programs, "Music and Memory" program for nursing home residents, replacing dining room chairs and driveway/parking improvement at senior centers.

The application form can be found on the our website. Completed applications can be submitted to Leadership Team Chairperson, Lynn Jacques, at

Around the Presbytery
Presbyterian Women's USA Mission Experience explores Central New York

The Presbyterian Women's USA Mission Experience to Central New York began Friday evening with a dinner at the Geneva Presbyterian Church. 

Twelve of the 16 Synods are represented on this tour. 

The theme is "Standing on the Shoulders of Strong Women." 

During the week the women will be learning the part that CNY played in the history of our nation regarding civil rights, women's rights and human rights. They will learn the impact that the Erie Canal had and what the "burned over district is."

Following dinner and worship, the group heard about Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, the first woman doctor in America, and graduate of Geneva Medical College. After the program the women walked to the park across the street to participate in a Lights for Liberty Vigil - they sang the new hymn "Christ You Spoke to Us of Children" by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette.  Joining hands in a circle all the women offered their prayers for the children in the detention centers, and their families, for Border Patrol officials and people with political power.  

Saturday began with a visit to the Erie Canal Museum - to our surprise, our docents were Dan from the Taunton Presbyterian Church and Laurie Sanderson, known to many in C-S as the wife of retired pastor Sandy Sanderson. Then it was off to lunch and a stop at the home of Matilda Joslyn Gage in Fayetteville. 

The women got on the bus for a quick trip up to Oswego for a visit to Safe Haven, where 982 refugees from WWII were invited to be the guests of President Franklin Roosevelt. Our tour guide there was retired pastor from the Baltimore Presbytery, Oswego town native and board member at Safe Haven, the Rev. George DeMass. 

The evening ended with a picnic at the Hannibal Community Center, prepared by folks from Mexico, New Hope and Fulton Presbyterian churches. Dinner featured CNY foods, includingt Hoffman and Gianelli meats, salt potatoes, Grandma Brown Baked Beans, assorted salads even one featuring Oswego County apples and of course strawberries and ice cream for dessert. 

Presbyterian Pastor Jeannine Haven and Hannibal native, made sure all the last minute details were tended too at the Center while Rita Hooper traveled with the women.   Leadership Team chair Lynn Jacques bought greetings from C-S presbytery. 

Stay tuned for future info on the PW trip - they will be spending a day in Auburn, visiting Rochester to volunteer at some mission sites and taking part in a host of other activities and events. You can follow them on Facebook.


Adm inistrative Assistant Needed      
An admi nistrative assistant is need for the United Church of Fayetteville , which is located at 310 E. Genesee St., in Fayetteville.

Here's the details:
  • About 20 hours per week
  • 14 hours in July and August
  • Coordinate operations of church office
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational, social media, & technology skills required for newsletters, weekly bulletins, database & website entries
  • Must be self-motivated, organized, exhibit teamwork & confidentiality
  • $15 per hour
  • Job description can be found on the church's website. 
  • Respond with cover letter and resume by July 22 to

What: Chicken BBQ 
When: 11 a.m. until gone on Saturday, July 20 
Where: Columbian Presbyterian Church, Route 11 & Route 20 in LaFayette
Cost: Half chickens $6  or Full dinners $11
"The best chicken anywhere!"


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.)
Here's My Heart: Triennium 2019
Thirteen people from Cayuga-Syracuse are participating in the Presbyterian Youth Triennium that is held on the campus of Purdue University until Saturday.

We have four students from Liverpool: John Pfeffer, Kaleb Pfeffer, Simon Van Houte and Samantha Gallagher; three students from LaFayette: Carolyn Redmore, Jenna Reese and Rebekah Reyburn; four Global Partners from South Korea: Ju Eun IM, Eun Ji KIM, Mujin AN and Myungjun JANG; participating inTriennium.

The Rev. Shawn Reyburn (LaFayette) and Marianne VanHoute (Liverpool) are adult advisors.
The theme for Triennium 2019 is "Here's My Heart."

Below are stories from Triennium:

Y outh work yields unexpected riches
Triennium is a place for international reunions

By Paul Seebeck
Presbyterian News Service

WEST LAFAYETTE, Indiana - When Richard and Pam Reid began to lead the youth group at First Presbyterian Church in Defiance, Ohio, they never knew how rich they'd become.
Those riches are on display at the Presbyterian Youth Triennium, when 16-year-old Pamela C. proudly made a flag of her home country to display on the world map at the Global Partners exhibit space.

"That's Pam's namesake," Richard said of Pamela, who traveled here with the Maumee Valley Presbytery.

'We are here, we are ready, and we are eager to see what God is about to do'
Triennium's opening worship infused with youthful joy and enthusiasm

By Mike Ferguson
Presbyterian News Service

WEST LAFAYETTE, Indiana - More than 4,000 youth and their chaperones clearly energized by having arrived at Purdue University for the 2019 Presbyterian Youth Triennium worshiped together Tuesday night through movement, singing, prayer, confession - and by hearing thoughtful, heartfelt preaching.

"God's bigger than anything we can imagine," the Rev. Cindy Kohlmann, co-moderator of the 223rd General Assembly, told worshipers.

"We believe God calls each of us to ministry," said her fellow co-moderator, Ruling Elder Vilmarie Cintrón-Olivieri. "We encourage you to have fun, make memories - and tell us all about it."

After a drama team told snippets of their personal stories, their leader, the Rev. Mark Montgomery of Norwalk, Conn., assured worshipers that this week, God will write a new story on their heart. The theme for Tuesday was "Tune my Heart."

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
Copyright © 2018. All Rights Reserved.