475 Riverside Drive Suite 1600, New York, NY 10115
Happenings In & Around the Presbytery of NYC
T his newsletter is ordinary published on the 2nd and 4th Friday of each month. All items for potential inclusion must be submitted via email to newsletter@presbynyc.org by noon on the Wednesday before the newsletter in published. All items are subject to review and editing. Timely submission does not guarantee inclusion.

Information, articles and links in this newsletter are provided for information only to the congregations and members of the presbytery. Nothing in this message should be construed as the official position of the presbytery unless noted as such.
From the Office of the Presbytery of New York City
Building's New Visitor Security System
B eginning Monday, September 30th the InterChurch Center will implement its new visitor security system. Anyone visiting the office will need to have informed the office in advance of your visit so that you can be pre-registered as a visitor. Once you have been checked in at the front desk in you will receive a pass that you must scan at the newly installed turnstiles just before the elevators.

This visitor security system will stream line the visitor check in process and help enhance security in the building. If a guest is pre-registered by the staff person you are visiting, a visitors' pass will be issued as he/she checks in. If you are not pre-registered, building security will have to contact the tenant to verify an unregistered visitor in order to issue a visitor pass during normal business hours.

Once the new security system is in place, only the visitors who are pre-registered in the security system will be given access to the building after 5pm during weekdays and weekends/holidays.

The entrance doors at 475 Riverside Drive will be lock at all times. Visitors must use the 61 Claremont Avenue entrance at all times to enter the building. You are able to leave the building through those doors. You are asked to p lease be aware of your surroundings when exiting the building using the Riverside Drive doors. DO NOT hold the door open for others to enter the building through those doors.

We expect the new security system may have some kinks to iron out in the beginning, and so, we are asking that all individuals visiting the office let us know in advance so that you can be pre-registered. All committees meeting in the building must let us know in advance, if you are inviting visitors to your meetings. This way their name(s) can be aded to the committee roster for your meetings. Please do not give the building staff or the presbytery staff a hard time as we navigate this new system. Let me know if you have any questions.

Yzette Swavy-Lipton
From the Justice Ministry Committee  (formally known as the Committee on Witness to Society and the World (CWSW) )  and the Advocate for Justice Ministries
The Justice Ministry Committee (formally known as the Committee on Witness to Society and the World (CWSW)), calls your attention to several upcoming events and activities.

The New York City Council is scheduled to vote in October on a proposal to close the jail system on Rikers Island and build borough-based jails in The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens.The Justice Ministries Committee, Presbyterian congregations and inviduals, have supported and participated this campaign.The Justice Ministries Committee encourages you to:
  • Read about the plan proposed by #CLOSErikers
  • Find your Councilmember’s contact information
  • Call your Councilmember and tell them you support the #CLOSErikers plan to shrink the jail system, improve conditions for anyone who remains detained, and invest in communities.
  • Share this call to action with family members and friends
  • Call your Councilmember again!

Young people led the way on Friday, September 20 as millions of people, including people of faith, went on strike to demand that world leaders act boldly on climate change, end the era of fossil fuels, and transition to a renewable energy future. GreenFaith and other organizations are organizing a follow-up webinar to set action steps to continue organizing as people of faith for climate justice. There are two options: on  Monday, September 30 at 8:00 pm EDT or on  Monday, October 7 at 12:00 PM EDT.

Next meeting – October 5
All are welcome to attend the meetings of this group which explores the reality that people are wrongfully incarcerated. The group seeks to support individuals who remain incarcerated and who are returning citizens. It advocates for compensation and healing for those who have been wrongfully incarcerated and released. The group meets at Mt. Morris Ascension Presbyterian Church(15 Mt. Morris Park West, Corner 122 Street in Harlem) on the first Saturday of each month from 10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon. The next meeting will be Saturday, October 5. Call 212-534-6925 for more information.

Presbyterians for Just Immigration suggest  opportunities for becoming involved with immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers.  Sign up to receive action alerts, information, and resources.

Other upcoming events and activities that can be found in the full newsletter include:

For more information about any of these events or to have your congregation’s justice-related events included in future email newsletters or on the  Presbytery of New York City’s Justice Ministries Facebook page, contact Mark Koenig
Free Youth Ministry Training Sessions
NYC Presbytery, CM&N, and  Ministry Architects  would like to invite you to two (of three) remaining FREE Youth Ministry Training Sessions for Fall 2019.

  • September 14th 12 Noon - 3 PM- Far Rockaway Presbyterian Church 896 Central Ave. Far Rockaway NY 11691
  • October 5th 12 Noon - 4 PM- Far Rockaway Presbyterian Church 896 Central Ave. Far Rockaway NY 11691
  • November 23rd 9 AM - 3 PM- Location TBD

Each session will begin with lunch at 12 noon. Everyone is asked to bring lunch for themselves or for their whole church group. The trainings are based on youth ministry fundamentals and foundations for small and large congregations. It will be a great time to network and connect with other ministries in our Presbytery! Our time together will be fun, engaging, and interactive. No matter the size of your youth group (even if you don’t have any youth but need support in understanding how to reach them)…all are welcome!! This training is for adult youth leaders ages 18 and up. Youth leaders younger than 18 must be accompanied by an adult over 18.

Each session will cover different topics. You and your group are invited to attend one, two or even better all three sessions! Topics covered at each session are:

Saturday, October 5th, 12 Noon - 4 PM
Far Rockaway Presbyterian Church
896 Central Ave. Far Rockaway NY 11691
  • Creating a Christian Formation Path: Ages & Stages, Milestones, Core Competencies
  • Making it R.E.A.L.: Teaching Tips and Classroom Management, 

Saturday, November 23rd, 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM, Location to be determined
  • The Vision: mission statements, core values, target audience, 3-year goals, 1-year benchmarks, next steps, YM org chart, 
  • Healthy/Unhealthy Boundaries  

 Hope to see you there!

Please contact Rev. Aqueelah Ligonde at  asligonde@gmail.com  or 917-225-5191 if you have any questions and to RSVP .
Orientation to Vital Congregations for Sessions - October 8th 10 -1
This event is open to those sessions still wondering if they want to be participate!
Five of our pastors will serve as Facilitators to cohorts of congregational leaders in participating congregations from the Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens: Phil Tom, Grace Bowen, Patrick O’Connor, Krystin Granberg, and Clive Neil. All have been through training this past week and will facilitate this Vital Congregations Initiative (VCI) over the next two years.
The Facilitators and I are inviting Ruling Elders of VCI congregations and those still interested in participating to be oriented to the schedule, the tools, the Facilitators, the cohort groups, have lunch and fellowship together, and answer any other questions you may have about this two-year initiative that the Presbytery of New York City will launch in January 2020. Some preliminary meetings with Facilitators will take place this fall.

Why be engaged?  This is a crucial time to awakening to what the Spirit is saying to God’s people. God is calling the church to give witness to what God is doing in our lives and our neighborhoods today. Many churches are in decline and younger generations see no relation between what we say and what we do and choose not to be part. Yet, among us people are showing up where justice and mercy is called for, building bridges of love and welcome instead of hatred and rejection. Congregations are acting upon what they hear the Spirit saying in Scripture for such a time as these in which we live. Vital Congregations is an  initiative,  not a program or guaranteed outcome. It calls us to re-turn attention to God, follow the example of Jesus Christ, and receive the courage and counsel of the Holy Spirit. We do it not alone; congregational leaders will meet monthly in cohort groups for fellowship, prayer, conversation, and discernment t ogether .

You will meet our Facilitators at the Presbytery meeting September 28 at Holmes. But plan to participate October 8 th .
Orientation to Vital Congregations for Sessions (Elders, Moderators/Pastors)
Tuesday, October 8, 10-1
Good Shepherd-Faith Presbyterian Church (152 West 66 th  Street, Manhattan)
Vital Congregations launches in January, sessions should be ready to lead
Cohort Groups of Congregational Leaders are Being Formed Now First Cohort Groups meet once this year, then monthly beginning in January
Lead by
Five Facilitators (listed below) and the Executive Presbyter (All have received training by national PCUSA staff to facilitate VCI). We may have a visit by one of national team members
Facilitator for Bronx Congregations Cohort
Krystin Granberg
Facilitator for Brooklyn Congregations Cohort:
Clive Neil
Facilitator for Queens Congregations Cohort
Patrick O’Connor
Facilitators for Manhattan Congregations Cohort
Grace Bowen
Phil Tom

Your Cohort Facilitator will be contacting your congregational leaders. Expect this contact.
This event is also open to those sessions still wondering if they want to be part.
An orientation packet will be provided with time for questions and answers.
A link to the calendar of our work together is below
Questions: Direct to your Facilitator or the Executive Presbyter ep@presbynyc.org
R egarding Ruling Elders
The latest issue of Regarding Ruling Elders has been posted online. Read the article "I Shall Not Want" in  English Korean , and  Spanish
Your Financial Donations Help Recovery Efforts for Hurricane Dorian
P resbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA)  stands ready to respond and already is responding to the devastation the storm left behind in the Bahamas. 

The hurricane, which lurked in the Atlantic Ocean for nearly two weeks, has put both PDA’s national and international response teams to work. The Rev. Jim Kirk, Associate for National Disaster Response, says that is not unusual for Atlantic hurricanes, which can often hit countries such as Mexico, Cuba and Caribbean islands as well as the U.S. Mainland and Puerto Rico.  

The Rev. Edwin González-Castillo, Associate for Disaster Response and Refugee Ministry–Latin America and the Caribbean, says he began making contacts in the Bahamas before the storm struck the island nation over the Labor Day holiday. 

González-Castillo says PDA is working with the Rev. Stephanie Gottschalk, executive director of Bahamas Methodist Habitat, as well as  ACT Alliance   and  Church World Service  to respond to Dorian, which left parts of the country with devastation that reminded Kirk of tornado damage. 
Come to The Table Synod Gathering, November 8-9
T he Synod gathers every year to encourage the connection, fellowship, worship, and discernment of the leaders that make up our Synod. In the even years we gather in Synod Assembly — to affirm our connectional identity, to set goals and to handle necessary governance. In the odd years we gather at Come to the Table — to learn together about and be encouraged by the missional and ministry innovation being led by Presbyterians and other partners of our regional community.

The event will Include time with Cindy Kohlman, Co-Moderator of the 223rd General Assembly and Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival.

Register today! Visit the Synod's website for more information on the workshops and the gathering?

The Synod invites all to Come to the Table 2019!
Disaster Chaplain Certification and Religious Literacy & Competency in Crisis Settings Three Day Training
Monday, November 11 through Wednesday, November 13, 2019
8:30AM - 5:00PM Daily
New York Disaster Interfaith Services 4 West 43rd Street
Training Room #415, New York, NY 10036
Attendance is limited to 25 participants • Register by October 18 th
R egistration is now open for Disaster Chaplain Certification and Religious Literacy & Competency in Crisis Settings  Co-sponsored by NYDIS (New York Disaster Interfaith Services) and New York VOAD , through a partnership with NDIN, religious leaders and spiritual caregivers of all faiths are invited to take this three-day training. New York City area participants who complete this certification can volunteer as disaster chaplains with NYDIS. NDIN can also assist unaffiliated volunteers in finding disaster spiritual care volunteer opportunities in local communities across the United States. Emergency managers and disaster mental health professionals may also take this course to develop their knowledge of disaster spiritual care best practices.

NYDIS, the American Red Cross of Greater New York and Disaster Chaplaincy Services of New York, are the only organizations currently approved to provide crisis chaplaincy or disaster spiritual care in NYC by either NYC Emergency Management, New York State VOAD (Voluntary Organization Active in Disaster) or NYC VOAD.
Who Is My Neighbor?
T he New York State Council of Churches is holding five seminars around New York State entitled "Who is Our Neighbor?". The first seminar is in White Plains on October 22 at Pace University Law School.

The Seminars help houses of worship think about their mission, address barriers to building a racial and economically inclusive communities, and use their property to build housing, schools, community and arts center, day care and other ministries. Obviously, offering re-entry housing is part of this picture among other supports. If you are a house of worship of any faith who is already doing this community development work, please come and tell others of your work.

Immigration, addressing wealth inequality, investment in poor people, a Green New Deal, and criminal justice reform are among the issues that the New York State Council of Churches is working on in this coming legislative session. Contact Rev. Peter Cook, Executive Director of the New York State Council of Churches at 508 380-8289 or  pcook@nyscoc.org   for more information.
Continuing Education at Princeton Theological Seminary
L earn While You Lead
Through the Office of Continuing Education, Princeton Theological Seminary offers ministry leaders opportunities for theological formation, spiritual renewal, and leadership development. Pastors, ministry professionals, and volunteers will find a place to network, share ideas, learn and grow in a spiritually rich, Christ-centered environment—both on campus and online. Learning opportunities include on campus  events , original educational resources found on  The Thread , and online courses of study such as  CTM – The Certificate in Theology and Ministry. Upcoming Con-Ed oppertunties include:
  • Sustaining the Preaching Life
  • The Art of Transitional Ministry
  • Women in Ministry Conference
  • Independent Studies for Ministry Professionals
  • The Princeton Forum on Youth Ministry
The Presbytery extends its prayers to:

  • Elder Linda Simms, (University Heights) following death of her mother Doris Simms this month
  • Family and friends of Ruling Elder Luis Andrini, (St. Luke's Presbyterian Church), who recently passed away
  • Continued prayers for both Rev. Alice Hermanus-Rampengan (Indonesian Presbyterian Church) and Elder Marvela G. Hermanus as Marvela continues to provide care for her mother.
  • Rev. C. Herbert Oliver - health concerns
  • Rev. Mark Koenig's wife Tricia as she continues to recover from surgery
  • Rev. Ted Voelker - health concerns
  • Luis Rodriguez - health concerns
  • Jang Tessalee, Thai Fellowship (health concern)
2019 Presbytery Meeting Dates and Material Deadlines
Stated Meeting
Saturday, September 28, 2019
Tuesday, December 3, 2019
Material Due (by 5:00 PM)
Friday, September 13, 2019
Friday, November 15, 2019
2019 Commission on Ministry Dates and Material Deadlines
All material for COM's consideration must be emailed to the commission at com@presbynyc.org
COM Meeting Dates
Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Tuesday, December 10, 2019
Tuesday, January 7, 2019
COM Material Due Dates
Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Tuesday, November 26, 2019
*FRIDAY, December 20, 2019 (early)
On Calling a Pastor
On Calling a Pastor , is a resource for pastor nominating committees and mid councils is now available. Each section of the manual builds upon the next to walk users through the call process highlighting the partners in the call process, polity, using the CLC system, and emphasizing the need for spiritual discernment. The resource is in PDF format. It may be read online or downloaded and printed. "On Calling a Pastor" includes videos, links to online resources, case studies, and "teach the teacher" Power Points for those training pastor nominating committees. Download the full handbook or individual chapters. You may also watch supplemental videos. To access the video links from within the PDFs, click on the icons found in the various chapters.

The Church Leadership Connection (CLC) staff is here to serve you. If you need any assistance or have questions, contact them by phone at 888-728-7228, ext. 8550, or by email at clcstaff@pcusa.org .
Employment Opportunities Within and Around the Presbytery of NYC
Congregational Searches on PC(USA)'s CLC System
The following congregations in our presbytery are currently engaged in active searches:

  • First Presbyterian Church of Forest Hills - Interim Pastor, Full-time
  • First Presbyterian Church in the City of New York - Pastor, Full-time
  • Fort Washington Heights Presbyterian Church - Solo Pastor, Part-time 
  • St. Augustine Presbyterian Church - Solo Pastor, Part-time

More information on these positions can be found on the PC (USA)'s Church Leadership Connections (CLC) website.  Click here for CLC's website .


Congregational Searches
Stay Connected to the Presbytery of NYC
Help your congregation's members stay connected with the latest news and opportunities in and around the presbytery by subscribing to Happenings In & Around the Presbytery, the Presbytery's electronic newsletter. Keep members updated and apprised of Presbyterian events, resources, grants, and opportunities.  Have members fill out the contact information form so that their email addresses can be added to our subscribers list.  Click here  for the Contact Information Form. Once completed return the form to the presbytery office or email it to Yzette Swavy-Lipton .
Need an address or phone number for a church or a member of the NYC Presbytery? No need to call the office to get that information. You only need to log into the Presbytery ACS Database System and viola, the information is right at your fingertips.

If we have your contact information in our database you only need to create an account within the ACS System. If we do not have your contact information  click here  for the Contact Information Form. Once completed return the form to the presbytery office or email it to Yzette Swavy-Lipton so that you can be added to the database.

The ACS Member login Instructions will walk you through the process of creating an account. Once you have setup an account there is an option to download ACS's Church Life App for your mobile phone (iPhone and Android).