November / 26 / 2019
"What do you find yourself waiting for during this Advent season?

Rev. Dr. Craig Howard
Our Presbytery - Our Work
Weekly Prayer Basket Update

  • Please pray ... for Steven Shaw who is recovering from serious injuries he suffered in an automobile accident.
  • Please pray...for the family of Camille Ogden in her passing from this life
  • Please pray....for safe travels of those returning home for Thanksgiving
  • Please pray...for UKirk and all college students as they prepare for Semester Finals
Click on the prayer basket to find our current prayers.
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Parish Paper

Dear White Christians Book Study
As part of our Matthew 25 initiative, I would like for you to join me in a presbytery wide book study using the book, Dear White Christians: For Those Still Longing for Racial Reconciliation by Jennifer Harvey. Jennifer will be our speaker and lead a workshop on the book at the February 6 th Presbytery Gathering. I am encouraging everyone to read this book over the next couple of months. Use the study guide to help guide your thoughts and reflections. 
The book can be purchased on Amazon in paperback or Kindle. The Kindle version is only $1.99! A study guide can downloaded for free here:
I am looking forward to a robust conversation during the February presbytery gathering!
Rev. Craig M. Howard
Upcoming Team Meetings
NOTE: Meeting locations are as follows: Oaks - is the meeting room next door to the presbytery office; St.Andrew - refers to the Board Room of St. Andrews on the second floor, directly above the presbytery office; Pres - refers to the Presbytery Office Resource Center; Ladue - refers to Ladue Chapel; WG - refers to Webster Groves Presbyterian, Kirkwood - refers to First Presbyterian of Kirkwood. Contact the office at 314-772-2395 if you are unsure where you will be meeting.
Week of: Nov. 27 to Dec. 3

No Meetings Scheduled
Week of: Dec. 4 to Dec. 10

No Meetings Scheduled
Many Ministry Teams will recess in December. Please check with your Team Moderator, for a definitive meeting schedule for December.
Honorably Retired Pastors Reminder of
Christmas Luncheon & Fellowship
Thursday, December 5...Details Found Here
2019 Holiday Office Schedule

NOVEMBER: Closed on Thursday and Friday, November 28 & 29 for Thanksgiving.
DECEMBER: Closed on Tuesday, December 24 and Wednesday, December 25 for Christmas; Closing at noon on Tuesday, December 31, and all day Wednesday, January 1.
Uprooting Hunger - 2019 Presbytery Wide Goal
Faith Des Peres sets an example as a Presbyterian Hunger Program Action Congregation
As a Hunger Action Congregation,  Faith Des Peres Presbyterian Church  is taking aim at food insecurity in greater St. Louis by providing food for school children and other vulnerable populations.
Volunteers from the church come together to assemble sacks of food that are distributed to students in the School District of University City who might have trouble getting meals outside of school hours.
Continue to read this PMA Featured Article Here
Uprooting Hunger - Hunger Action Team
In 2019 the presbytery will work toward establishing Certified Hunger Action Congregations. This  handout will be helpful to your congregation, as we journey together.
We welcome any questions you might have - email us at or call 314-772-2395.
We celebrate, in thanksgiving, our 20 Certified and 25 Covenanting Congregations for their dedication to eradicating hunger in their communities!
Questions on how to get your congregation involved email us here.
Ministry Teams News & Activities
The Time to Give is Here
GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world on  December 3, 2019  and every day. It was created in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good.
Consider these Presbytery Ministries in giving this holiday season.
  • Light for the Darkness, formerly Caritas/2MIPeople, is a mental health ministry of Giddings-Lovejoy. We try to bring the light of Christ into the darkness of mental illness. We believe and live John 1:5: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” Learn more about this ministry by clicking here.
  • UKirk - St. Louis - began in January 2015 as a ministry of the Presbytery of Giddings - Lovejoy. UKirk, or "university church" is a worshiping community that sings, reflects, prays, and celebrates communion together. UKirk serves together, plays together, and rejoices in Christ together. And, you are welcome to worship, play, and serve with us! Learn more by clicking here.
Tips For Having A Creation-Centered Holiday       
  • Enjoy simple family traditions, create new ones.
  • Give recycled and battery-free gifts.
  • Use environmentally-friendly wrapping paper.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle decorations.
  • For meals and parties, use locally grown, vegetarian options, organic, and free-range food.
  • Attend worship and holiday activities at a faith community.
Gift Giving Guide for the Earth Care Shopper - Found Here.
("TIPS" is offered by the Earth Care Team of the presbytery, composed of the eight Earth Care Congregations in the presbytery. Contact: , 314-941-9378.)
Joshua Transformation Training
Uniting Churches for Violence Prevention
Sat., Dec. 7 | 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Joshua Transformation Training will take place at the Beloved Community United Methodist Church, located at 3115 Park Ave., St. Louis, Missouri 63104. Directions found here.
Training Topics include:
  • Developing A Neighborhood Alliance Against Violence.
  • Neighborhood Assessments, Program Development, and Faith Based Grant Writing: Crafting Violence Prevention Programs.
  • Creating Neighborhood Jobs: Faith Based Business Development
  • Starting Ground Zero Violence Prevention Programs
There is a registration fee: $49.00   Blessed are the Peacemakers
2020 Women of Faith Nominations Sought
Racial Equity and Women’s Intercultural Ministries is seeking nominations for the 224th General Assembly’s Women of Faith Award. This award seeks to honor women who are working in their congregations and communities to make systemic change. The focus of the award at this GA will be “Women Who Disrupt Systemic Poverty”. If you know of a woman in the PC(USA) who is doing the work of disrupting systemic poverty, please take a moment to nominate her for this honor. The deadline for nominations is January 8, 2020. Details can be found here.
Monthly Vlog

The Presbytery of Giddings-Lovejoy Stewardship Team welcomes you to join them as monthly they dig deep into what Stewardship means, as a community of Faith.
A Place of Grace Creativity Challenge
There is still time to register for one of the 2020 Creativity Challenges! You won't believe how much you could learn from this experience! Three of the four folks who took the 2019 Creativity Challenge are registered to take it again in 2020!!! We would LOVE for you to join us! There are a few openings at the evening challenge, more openings at the morning challenge, and the afternoon youth challenge is WIDE OPEN! Click for details! Check out the Fact Sheet Flier for more information, and feel free to post it on your bulletin board or share the post from the A Place of Grace Facebook Page!
Congregational/Event Happenings
Lutesville Presbyterian Church
Breakfast with Santa
Sat., Nov. 30 | 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Santa's menu includes pancakes and sausage! Admission is one non-perishable food item to be donated to the Marble Hill Food Pantry. Lutesville Presbyterian is located at 106 Railroad St., Marble Hill, Missouri 63764. Directions can be found here.
Advent Sing
Sun., Dec. 1 | 7 p.m.
First Presbyterian Church-Jackson is hosting an Advent Sing the evening of December 1st at 7:00 p.m. The evening will feature music from First Presbyterian Church-Jackson, Westminster Presbyterian Church-Cape Girardeau, First Presbyterian Church-Perryville, St. John's United Church of Christ (Fruitland), and Emanuel United Church of Christ (Jackson). A reception will follow. Directions can be found here.
New Hope Presbyterian Church
Cookies with Santa
Fri., Dec. 6 | 6:30 p.m to 8 p.m.
All are welcome to join us in enjoying a visit with Santa, cookies and hot chocolate, games and crafts . Call 636-936-2200 for more information. Directions can be found here.
First Presbyterian – Brighton
Annual Cookie Walk & Christmas Country Store
Sat., Dec. 7 | 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The First Presbyterian Church of Brighton will have their annual Cookie Walk & Christmas Country Store on Saturday, December 7th, from 9:00 to 12:00. There will be over 30 varieties of homemade cookies at $6.00 a pound including diabetic cookies, candies, peanut brittle, and other delicious items will be available.
The complete flyer can be found here . Directions can be found here.
LoveJoy United Presbyterian
Christmas Cookie, Candy, and Bread Sale
Sat., Dec. 7 | 10 a.m to 12 p.m.
Come do your Christmas Cookie Shopping! We'll have a wonderful assortment of cookies, candy, and bread. Treats will be sold at $9 per pound or as priced. LoveJoy United Presbyterian Church is located at 2550 Rock Hill Rd, Wood River, Illinois 62095. Directions can be found here.
St. Charles Presbyterian Church
2 nd Annual Christmas Cookie Walk
Sat., Dec. 7   | 10 a.m to 1 p.m.
The Second Annual Christmas Cookie Walk Sale will be held on December 7 from 10:00 am to 1:00 p.m. There will be Christmas cookies sold by the pound! Candies, jams, jellies, pickles, craft items and quilts also available for purchase. For a $2 donation you can enter as an "early bird" shopper at 9:00 am, St. Charles Presbyterian Church in Fellowship Hall, 131 Gamble Street, St. Charles, MO 63301(Behind Lindenwood University) Directions can be found here.                                                                         
Sponsored by SCPC Presbyterian Women; all proceeds to fund mission projects. For more information call 636-946-4467
Second Presbyterian - Advent Vespers
Sun., Dec. 8 | 4p.m.
On Sunday, December 8 at 4:00 pm at Second Presbyterian Church readings and music give those gathered an opportunity to pause and reflect during the chaotic month of December. Acclaimed St. Louis jazz pianist Carolbeth True and percussionist David True offer improvisations on a variety of Advent carols, including familiar favorites. The Second Church Choir, the Second Church Handbell Choir, and organist Andrew Peters will provide additional music offerings. The church is located at 4501 Westminster Place in the Central West End, St. Louis, 63108. The Vespers is part of the Couts Music Series and is free to the community. For more information call 314-367-0367 or Directions can be found here.
FREE Hymnals Available
Southminster Presbyterian Church, Crestwood, has 196 The Singing Church hymnals. These hymnals were published by the Hope Publishing Company. These need a new home and are free to whoever will come and claim them. First come first serve, must take all of them. Please contact, Bill Thomas at 314-323-8041, if you are interested.
Space For Rent in Imperial
1600 square foot space, five rooms and common room, second floor. Perfect for office, preschool, daycare, etc. Rent all or individual rooms. Located at Rock Presbyterian Church, Imperial, Missouri. Call 314-420-9477
For the asking, a barely used (5X, maybe) Collegiate preachers cold weather cloak from the '70's; MSRP $520. Fits someone (any gender) around 5'10". E-mail with request.
Complete List of Educational Opportunities: Found Here
Continuing Education Classes Announced
Union Presbyterian Seminary Theological Institute Upcoming Continuing Education Events offered January through March 2020, can be found by Visiting their Events page
Congregations Can Get up to $50k to Help Their Pastors Find Renewal
Applications available for the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Program from the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Program
Congregations seeking renewal for their pastor are invited to apply for the  Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Program  at  Christian Theological Seminary  in Indianapolis, Indiana.
According to a news release from the program, congregations may apply for grants of up to $50,000 to underwrite a renewal program for their pastor and for the pastor’s family. Up to $15,000 of the funds are available to the congregation to help cover costs for ministerial supply while the pastor is away
APCE Annual Event
Little Rock, Arkansas - Jan. 29 to Feb. 1
Invitation from Annual Event Co-chairs
“See I am sending you out,” Jesus boldly announces to seventy of his disciples in the Gospel of Luke. Likewise, this January, you are invited to Little Rock, Arkansas, to escape the cramped boxes of conventional church programs and to explore “discipleship through retreat, mission, and justice ministries.” 
This coming January 29 – February 1, join us in Little Rock for an “outside the box” APCE Annual Event! Bring your ideas, questions, imagination and passion as we discover together how God is sending us out to make disciples through retreat, mission, and justice ministries. Learn more here.
Discovering Renewal
Finding Renewal in the Everyday
A Montreat Conference Center Event
April 13–16, 2020
 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthews 28:11
Our culture values hard work over rest. Burnout is rampant. Our jobs, obligations, and churches often expect us to work relentlessly. Hard work is good, but is it our ultimate goal? We often preach about the importance of Sabbath, but how often do we take our own advice? We need time to breathe, think, and engage our senses. We may need to discover the feeling of renewal. Discovering Renewal will focus on seeking respite in everyday experiences.
Pilgrimage:  A long journey to a sacred place
as an act of devotion.
YOUR ARE INVITED to be part of the 2020 Joining Hands Partnership 20th Anniversary Peru Pilgrimage. This pilgrimage includes journeying to the coastal, mountain and rainforest regions of Peru, to meet with our Joining Hand's Partners, to hear updates about the socio/economic context of Peru, to experience historical and cultural events and places, and to join with Red Uniendo Manos Peru (Peru Joining Hands Network) and others in a 20th Anniversary Celebration.
This Pilgrimage will be framed by daily bookends of morning and evening prayer and reflection on our Matthew 25 Pilgrimage Theme: When Did We See You?--Where and when do we experience the Christ 
Presence of compassion, love and justice in the people and places along the journey and in each other?
It will be a pilgrimage of listening and learning and accompaniment of our partners and returning to our congregations and groups to continue the pilgrimage of love and justice.
This year there will be two options for participating in the Pilgrimage:
-Participation in the whole journey: August 1-15, Weeks 1 and 2 or
-Participation in Week 1 only.
See the flyer for specific cost and deadline details. Found here.
For additional information or an application, please contact:
Ellie Stock: or (314) 521-8418 or
Mark Strothmann: or (314) 779-6940
Empowering Commissioned Pastors Conference
With the enthusiastic support and participation of our Co-Moderators, Vilmarie and Cindy, the Synod of the Sun Commissioned Pastors Network is sponsoring a conference for commissioned pastors (formerly known as commissioned lay pastors or commissioned ruling elders), to be held May 13–16, 2020, at Canyon Creek Presbyterian Church, Richardson, Texas.
so facilitators can better plan the event.
Expect registration to open on December 1 .
A New Earth: Thinking Theologically about Environmental Justice
June 14-28, 2020

Millions of youth from around the world have participated in climate strikes and environmental justice campaigns over the last few weeks. Presbyterian-related Monmouth College (Illinois) invites high school youth to continue their efforts by applying for the 2020 Lux Institute for Youth. June 14-28, 2020, theologically curious high school students from around the country will focus on environmental justice: diving deep into the world of theological and biblical studies, intentional community, vocational discernment, and worship.
Application deadline: January 1, 2020 - Priority consideration for applications received before December 1, 2019
224th General Assembly (2020)
Hands and Feet Service Opportunities
During the 224th General Assembly (2020) and as a part of the OGA’s Hands and Feet initiative, The Center: Mission Outside the Box will offer hands-on service opportunities for GA-affiliated visitors, family members, youth groups, and friends. We will offer up to four service options, from 8:30–noon, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, June 22, 24, 25, and 26. 
Find our more by clicking here.
Current Support Ministry Position Openings
Administrative Assistant - LoveJoy United

Young Adult's Co-Coordinator - Pendo Presbyterian

Christian Educator - First Presbyterian -Edwardsville

Children, Youth and Family Ministry - Second Presbyterian
Full-Time Director of Youth & Children’s Ministry - First Presbyterian, Columbia, Missouri (Missouri Union Presbytery)