October 1, 2020
Foothills Newsletter
Our new Associate for Shared Mission
& Ministry
The Rev. Pressley Cox is no stranger in this presbytery, having been heavily involved in the shared life of the presbytery in a number of capacities since coming to Foothills Presbytery as the Chaplain of the Cascades Continuing Care Retirement Community in 2012. Since then, Pressley has served on the Inspiration and Support Committee and the Equipping the Saints Committee, seeing that committee through the consolidation with other presbytery committees into the “kitchen sink” Committee of Shared Mission and Ministry that we have today. As chair of the CSM for the past four years, she has also served on the Coordinating Council, and therefore should be well-known to many. 
The search committee, after a national search that drew a significant number of candidates, chose a well-known and local person for this position. Pressley’s gifts, personality, and clearly-demonstrated leadership in shared ministry in this presbytery very much impressed the search committee. The search committee unanimously, enthusiastically, and without reservation recommended her hire.
Pressley comes to us from Eastminster Presbyterian Church where she has served as the Stated Supply Pastor for over seven years.   Before her work in Foothills Presbytery she served as the Designated Pastor of Children, Youth, and Young Adults at Providence Presbyterian Church in Charlotte, NC; and as Associate Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in York, SC. 
Pressley earned her Bachelor’s degree in Religion/Christian Education from Presbyterian College, her Master of Arts in Religious Education from Lutheran Southern Theological Seminary, and her Master of Divinity from Columbia Theological Seminary. Pressley has a strong sense of call to the ministry of Christian Education and currently serves as moderator of the Advocate ministry for the Associate of Presbyterian Church Educators (APCE). She has been an independent writer for Montreat Middle School small group manuals and Chalice Press “Inside Out” curriculum. Pressley is married to Ben and they have three children- twin girls in 9th grade and a son in 8th grade. 
Foothills Presbytery
Stated Meeting #115
November 10 at 10 am

Orientation for Commissioners and Ministers
on November 5 at 5:30  

We have been asked
to share this information with
all Pastors:

Pastoral visits are allowed*
and welcomed at PRISMAAnMed Health, and Spartanburg Regional Hospital Systems.

Preference is for visits to be during regular visiting hours.

Present yourself as clergy when you arrive, and be prepared to follow COVID-19 precautions upon entry.

*Most still adhere to the one visitor at a time policy.
Staying Connected:

Our next Town hall Opportunity for Pastors to check-in
and support each other
(via Zoom) is on

October 13, at 3:30 pm 

We will center our time in prayer, check-in with each other, share ideas, and connect resources. 

Book Study (virtual)
Pastors, Educators,
CREs, & Ministry Leaders

Led by the
Rev. Christi O. Brown & Marjy Marj
  • Marjy is the author of Same Elephants: a book about friendship, diversity and the importance of representation.
  • Christi is member-at-large in Foothills and a Professional & Personal Development Life Coach with Authentic Leadership Coaching LLC.

Wednesday, October 7
12:00 - 1:15 pm

Board of Pensions earns national recognition for diversity and inclusion work

The Board of Directors of The Board of Pensions of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has been recognized nationally for making diversity and inclusion a priority — both throughout the agency and in its own makeup. The Board is one of 10 finalists for the annual NACD NXT awards, presented by the National Association of Corporate Directors, whose membership represents over half of the Fortune 1000. Read More
SC5 Presbyteries Minister/Educator
Virtual Retreat (Zoom)

‘A Word in Its Season’: Effective Speech in the Bible and Our Fractured Political Moment

Rev. Samuel Adams, PhD
Oct 27 & 28
** There is no cost for the participants. **
Tuesday 2 Sessions (Morning & Afternoon)
Wednesday 1 Session (Morning)
This retreat will examine speech in the Bible, from the prophets to the sages to Jesus himself. We will look at different forms of speech and how the biblical authors discuss effective rhetoric, especially the prophets and ancient sages responsible for wisdom literature. Then we will consider our current moment of polarization and how church leaders might engage complex, difficult issues. A session will also be devoted to online speech and how one might be a faithful witness to the Gospel in the age of social media.

Session I – “Persuasive Speech in Wisdom Instructions, Prophetic Works, and Our Fractured Political Moment”
Session II – “The Invocation of the Bible in American Political Rhetoric”
Session III – “Effective Online Witness in the Era of Polarization (and Covid)”

Reading of 2019 Session Minutes

To: All Clerks and Pastors
Please drop off your 2019 minutes including the Clerk's Guidelines for Session Minutes Review Form & the Financial Review Form at the Presbytery office to be reviewed by a committee member. A copy of the minutes will be acceptable this year if you would prefer not to leave your minutes' book at the office.

Leave the minutes, along with your name and contact information, on the counter inside the door during office hours, Monday-Thursday 9:30-4 pm. They will be quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours.
You will be notified when the review of your minutes has been completed. If you leave copies and would like for them to be shredded, please indicate this on a post-it attached to the minutes. A copy of the review sheet with comments, corrections and suggestions will also be available for pick-up at this time.
BE SURE to fill out the Clerks Guideline for Session Minutes Form in detail. Please include dates where check list items can be found to assist the reviewers. Tabs for each item are helpful and strongly suggested. Post-its work well as tabs.
Thank you for your faithful service!

Representation and Review Committee
FALL 2020 Session
SC Lay School of Theology
Sponsored by the Five Presbyteries of South Carolina
Things will look a little different this session! Since we were unable to meet at Presbyterian College because of restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the planning committee arranged for this session to be held at the newly renovated Charleston Atlantic Presbytery offices in North Charleston,SC, formerly Park Circle Presbyterian Church. This building will allow for plenty of social distancing and safe, comfortable classrooms for our fall semester.

We humbly request that you follow the North Charleston mandated guidelines and wear a mask at all times while inside, the exception being at meal times. We also ask that you refrain from participating in Lay School if you are not feeling well and/or have tested positive for the virus within 2 weeks of class. The refund restriction will be waived if you become ill with COVID after registering or the refund deadline has passed.

Lodging has been arranged at the Holiday Inn Express in North Charleston, less than 2 miles from the Presbytery complex. The Holiday Inn is offering a free shuttle service between the church and the hotel. We hope you will enjoy joining us in our new surroundings for study and fellowship in the name of our Lord.
Create a meaningful Advent plan for your ministry setting

Have you started
planning Advent?

Foothills Presbytery is offering a 5-week Cohort experience to help you design Advent for 2020.  

Each cohort of 8-10 participants will meet for 5 weeks during October creating tangible plans for the season of Advent. Cohort will determine best day and time for meetings.

 Each participant will come away with an individualized plan for Advent based on their ministry setting. The plans may include virtual, in-person, or hybrid worship as well as educational components. The experience also includes a 1:1 coaching with a Ministry Architects consultant.The total cost of this Continuing Education Cohort is $430 per person. Recognizing the financial burdens that some churches are facing at this time, Foothills Presbytery is pleased to offer investment option pricing for those interested.

  • Green Option– Name your price! Does your church have extra money for continuing education? Any amount above $430 will help support someone else.
  • Blue Option– $430 (This option covers the full price of the program)
  • Red Option– $250 (This option provides a discount for those who may not have as much in their 2020 continuing education budget)
  • Purple Option– $50 (This option provides a deep discount for churches that are facing significant financial burdens)
Virtual Worship Service
Available for your Church

Foothills Presbytery's Committee on Shared Ministry, Worship Committee, and Music Ministry Peer Group, are pleased to offer a free, downloadable online worship for your congregation to use at any time.
The service is centered on Psalm 46, with the theme, "Listening for the Word of God." It is the collective effort of over 30 presbytery church leaders, and is designed to offer words of hope, wisdom, and unity during a time when despair and distance intimidate the Church.
It is our hope that this service offers respite for ministry leaders who have been tirelessly generating online content during the pandemic. The service is 41 minutes long, allowing time for your church to add announcements or other congregation-specific worship elements.
The service can be downloaded as an mp4 file from this Google Drive link and uploaded to the streaming platform your congregation uses for online worship.
For questions, please contact our Stated Clerk & Presbytery Leader Debbie Foster, dfoster@foothillspresbytery.org. May this service glorify God, remind us of our unity in Christ Jesus, and give us continued strength and hope for the journey. 

At Foothills, we have traditionally had an annual recognition and celebration of the lives of ruling elders, teaching elders, and teaching elder spouses who have died during the last 12 months. A few years ago we moved this to our November presbytery meeting in honor of All Saints. 

We ask presbyters to give prayerful recognition of the life and service of those ruling elders, teaching elders, and teaching elder spouses whose lives on earth have ended.
If you know of any Ruling Elders, Teaching Elders, or Teaching Elder spouses that have passed from November 2019 until now and should be honored at our November 10, 2020 Presbytery Meeting, please notify us by email to wtempleton@foothillspresbytery.org.
Join us!
Youth Ministry Leader's ROUNDTABLE
Tuesday, October 6
12:00 - 1:30 pm 
Zoom link will be emailed to the group.
The next gathering of Foothills

10:00 am
Wednesday, October 7
by Zoom
Anti-racism Training
What’s Essential: Discerning the Church’s Work Amid the Twin Pandemics of Structural Racism & COVID-19
October 23–25, 2020
REGISTER NOW for this special VIRTUAL retreat as we examine the weariness of the world and the move to REJOICING that comes through our faith and hope in God!

The retreat format will be hosted online for virtual and local gathering "pods" to allow flexibility for participants and our evolving situations.
Rev. Amos Disasa (FPC Dallas), Dr. Bill Brown (Columbia Seminary), Dr. Raj Nadella (Columbia Seminary), Rev. Dr. Kathryn Threadgill (Vital Congregations)
Rev. Dr. Danny Murphy (Trinity Presbytery), Rev. Debbie Foster (Foothills Presbytery)


DATES: October 7, 14, 21, and 28, 2020, at 7:30 p.m (ET)
VENUE: Virtual Online
This series is a combination of the planned WMI Conference and our annual McClure Lecture in World Mission and Evangelism, co-sponsored by Continuing Education at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

For more information and to REGISTER ,
Interested in having a Zoom Video Conference Meeting,
but you don't have an account? The Presbytery can help!
If you have a request, please have your Pastor or Clerk of Session contact LeAnne White (via email) and include the following information:

  • Name of person making request
  • Church
  • Phone
  • Date for Zoom Meeting 
  • Time (begin and end) no more than 2 hours
  • Approx number of those attending

2020 September/October Horizons
Digital Version is now available!

September/October 2020
Faith and Politics

Across the street and across the globe, our daily lives have been upended by the coronavirus. Whether it’s by city or state mandate, advice from our healthcare providers, direction from our employers or at the behest of our sessions, it’s reasonable to say that our lives look much different today than in February. The early months—February and March—found us stunned, wondering how long it would be until we returned to normal.

We’ve made Montreat@Home a balance of contemplation and creation. There are daily opportunities to listen and cultivate your faith as a community, even in the midst of social distancing.

Leaders will be given access to activities, guides, videos, and other resources that will equip them to lead an adjusted conference for their youth whenever they are able to gather together in whatever capacity they are able or allowed.

Learn more about Montreat@Home here
Contact Susie Burns, Director of Church Relations, at susieb@montreat.org or 828.419.9814 with questions about the program.

The last session of Mediation Skills Training Institute for Church Leaders for this year will be November 16-20, 2020. This outstanding 5-day event helps participants deal more effectively with interpersonal, congregational, and other forms of group conflict. The tentative dates for next year are March 1-5, May 3-7, June 21-25, August 2-6, October 4-8, and November 15-19, 2021. No decision has yet been made with regard to returning to an in-person format, so attendees will need access to a device with both a camera and a microphone. Questions? Contact the Lombard Mennonite Peace Center at Admin@LMPeaceCenter.org or 630-627-0507. To receive a $200 tuition discount for the November 2020 session, register no later than October 16. Register ONLINE for any of our events scheduled for this year. 

“You are my witnesses,” declares the LORD,
“and my servant whom I have chosen,
so that you may know and believe me
and understand that I am he.
Before me no god was formed,
nor will there be one after me.
I, even I, am the LORD,
and apart from me there is no savior.
I have revealed and saved and proclaimed—
I, and not some foreign god among you.
You are my witnesses,” declares the LORD, “that I am God.”
Isaiah 43: 10-12
There is a well-known legend about a Rabbi named Akiva. He was born in the first century just a few years after Jesus lived out his earthly life among the people of Israel.

Late one afternoon, as the sun was beginning to set in the west, Rabbi Akiva was walking along the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. As he walked to Capernaum, he used his time to meditate and recite scripture. As the legend indicates, he was meditating upon the portion of scripture (above) where the Lord says through the prophet Isaiah, You are my witnesses.
Rabbi Akiva was so focused upon the text that he didn’t realize that instead of taking the turn toward the city gates of Capernaum, he followed the path toward a large gate of a Roman fortress. Just as the sun was setting, Rabbi Akiva grasped what happened. It was then that he heard a loud voice coming down from the perch above the gate. It was the voice of the Roman Century Guard standing on the top of the wall. The guard shouted down,
“Who are you? What are you doing here?” Read More
Mark your Calendars for these Upcoming Events

1 Committee on Ministry meeting
6 Council meeting and Youth Roundtable
7 Music Ministry Leaders meeting and "I'm Still Here" Book study
13 Staying Connected Pastor Town hall meeting (Zoom)
15 Christian Educators meeting (Zoom)
27-28 Minister/Educator VIRTUAL Retreat
28 Investment Committee meeting

November 10 - ZOOM Meeting

February 16

May 15

Nov 9, 2021
9:00 am - 2:00 pm Foothills Presbytery Stated Meeting # 118
Resource Center of Foothills Presbytery