November 16, 2023

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During the weekend of

Nov 10-12, 2023,

150 youth and 45 adults gathered at Asbury Hills for the PYC Middle School retreat.  

The theme for the weekend was “Called to the Table” based on Luke 14:15-23. 

Rev. Lindsey Wells Peery served as keynoter and Trey Duncan served as the music leader. As part of the activities, the participants engaged in a community action project. Every church group donated food items that were used to pack over 90 Thanksgiving food bags.  These bags were given to the Mt. Zion Food Pantry in Sandy Springs, SC to serve to families during the week of Thanksgiving.  In addition, the youth collected an offering of $1003.25 that will be used to purchase turkeys and other perishable items for the bags.  

Abundance and Gratitude

Highlights from our

124th Stated Meeting of Foothills Presbytery

On November 14, 2023, Ministers, Elders, and guests gathered for our 124th Stated Meeting of Foothills Presbytery at First Presbyterian Church in Anderson. We convened with a warm welcome from the Rev. Dr. Dennis Tedder and numerous volunteers from the congregation.

Our meeting began by centering ourselves in worship. The Stewardship Task Force and the Worship Committee designed the worship service around “Abundance and Gratitude.” The Rev. Dr. Maren Sonstegard-Spray, Transitional Associate Pastor at First Church, Anderson, provided the sermon entitled, “Enough,” based on Exodus 16: 1-5 and 13-30. During communion, we remembered the saints who entered the Church Triumphant since last November as the Rev. Debbie Foster, Presbytery Leader and Stated Clerk of Foothills, spoke each name. Attendees brought donations of grains (oatmeal, grits, cereals) as a sign of God’s abundance and provision to those who need it most. The donations will go to Hope Missions of the Upstate. Located one block from First Presbyterian Church of Anderson, Hope Missions serves a hot breakfast every morning to over a hundred homeless men and women.

We transitioned into the day's business joyfully led by our Presbytery Moderator, the Rev. Trish Gwinn (Grace Covenant).  Read More

Photo Credit: Rev Lynn Miller

Candidate Langley Hoyt,


Candidate Sarah Cornell,

Fair Play

Welcome to the Rev. Dr. Maren Sonstegard-Spray, Transitional Associate Pastor at First, Anderson.

(Transfer from New Hope Presbytery.)

Welcome to the Rev. Dr. David Torrey, Transitional Pastor at

Pickens Church.

(Transfer from Trinity Presbytery.)

We can meet the challenges of today and the possibilities of tomorrow by cultivating a MORE THAN imagination that constructs new patterns, models, and approaches in Christian education so that faith formation shapes identity, nurtures meaning-making, and engenders faithful living in today’s world.

Nov 30 - Dec 2

Elder REFRESH Training

This workshop, led by Rev. Tom Malone, is for newly ordained Elders and those who have previously served. It will focus on the four areas on which our Book of Order requires each new officer to be examined:

1) Personal Faith

2) Reformed Doctrines and Beliefs

3) Presbyterian Polity

4) Duties of the Office of Elder or Deacon


February 3 at Providence Church

More details coming!

Good Hope Presbyterian Church - Sunday Morning Worship on the shores of Lake Hartwell at Saddlers Creek State Park (11/5/23)

From the Stated Clerk: Debbie Foster: 

  • Changes in Foothills Presbytery's Terms of Call for Pastors 
  • Changes to the Book of Order (PCUSA)
  • Changes in the PCUSA Board Pensions Health Care Plan for Retirees and Pastors

The Mattoon Presbyterian Church celebrated its 145th Church Anniversary on November 11. The theme for their anniversary program was “We Have Come This Far by Faith.”  

The following are photos from the grand unveiling and dedication of Mattoon’s historic marker in the Hampton Pinckney neighborhood.

Foothills Peer Ministry

Christian Educators Gathering - this

Monday, Nov. 20 at Easley Church

No Gathering in December.

Next gathering is January 8.

Youth Leaders Roundtable

December 7

12 noon

Location TBD

Music Ministry Leaders 

No Gathering in December.

Next meeting is January 10

at 9am - Zoom

Resources we have found challenging & inspirational:

Nazareth Church will begin a new holiday tradition this December and participate with thousands of other cemeteries in Wreaths Across America. The purpose of the event is to honor all veterans who served in war or peacetime. The event is sponsored by the Battle of Cowpens Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). 

Nazareth Cemetery has 254 veterans going back to the Revolutionary War. Each will have a wreath placed on their resting place from December 16th until the first week in January.

The commitment of Nazareth is to allow the organizers to access our grounds and to identify the veteran’s graves that will be decorated. They are confident that Nazareth members will respond with full support and participation in the event. However, they will need the help of other sponsors from the community. They are asking for everyone to visit the Wreaths Across America website and follow this link to go directly to Nazareth’s dedicated page

Full Flyer



The Presbyterian Promise Scholarship is a commitment by Presbyterian College (PC) to recognize students for their merit and affiliation with the Presbyterian Church. PC seeks to develop students academically and spiritually in this signature scholarship. Students who are of members of Presbyterian churches will receive a scholarship for a minimum of $20,000 per year for up to four years—that’s an $80,000 commitment to you. For more information and to apply visit our site:




Click the button below to view the October - 

On the Road to GA226 Newsletter 

On the Road to GA226 Publication


Presbyterian Women’s Annual Mission Fund (the Mission Pledge) makes possible every mission, program and resource of PW. Give now to support Presbyterian Women’s witness in the world.

Presbyterian Women’s Church-wide Gathering

August 8-11, 2024 in St Louis, MO 

Are you making plans to attend?  

Want to know what happens at such a gathering?  Click video on the right!

Registration is now available online and we encourage you to do it now before the November 30 early bird registration deadline.   



Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions at all! 


Foothills Presbytery Office


What Child is This?: The Perfect Gift- Leadership Past, Present and Future

This is the theme for the 2023 Christmas Joy Special Offering: Leadership Past, Present, and Future. The Christmas Joy season is December 3-24. If you haven’t received your resource packet, go to or call 800-728-7228, ext 5047

$25 per person - Saturday Day of Training with lunch

Click HERE to learn more!

Save the Date!





will be

February 23 & 24


Forest Lake Church

Columbia, SC

Charleston Atlantic Presbytery BUS transportation to St. Louis!

Transportation—Kelly Tours:

• Trip to St. Louis, MO takes 12 hours & 37 minutes. Bus will depart August 7, 2024

• Bus seats 56 passengers, to be comfortable we are looking for 40 ladies to commit. Last time we picked up ladies in Columbia & Spartanburg.

• There will be a Relay Driver and regular driver due to regulations.

Read More Here

Bridge for Early Career Preachers to Expand with Lilly Endowment Inc. Supplemental Grant


Richmond, VA (November 3, 2023)—Union Presbyterian Seminary recently received a grant of $249,920 from the Lilly Endowment Inc. to expand The Bridge for Early Career Preachers. The program was developed with the support of an earlier grant from Lilly Endowment made through its Compelling Preaching Initiative.

The Bridge for Early Career Preachers provides resources, continuing education, and a supportive community for those who are moving from aspiring to active preaching ministries. The Bridge’s cohort approach invites a group of early career pastors each year to focus on peer coaching, digital technology for preaching, preaching on significant social issues, and preaching with diverse communities.

The supplementary grant will enable The Bridge to expand its next four cohorts and focus on recruiting a diverse cohort. Read More

Regarding Ruling Elders: A Monthly Series for Serving Faithfully

Studying Scripture and the Issues of Christian Faith and Life

Baptism is a life-defining event that emphasizes a commitment from God to God’s family and from us to God’s creation. It is not a checkbox occurrence, but a lifetime process that is complete only in death. Therefore, it is important for the leadership of the church to keep the commitment of baptism always present as it gets involved in Christ’s mission by “studying Scripture and the issues of Christian faith and life.”

Most baptismal services in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) include liturgies that echo the Book of Common Worship and ask the congregation two questions:

“Do you, as members of the church of Jesus Christ, promise to guide and nurture this person by word and deed, with love and prayer? Will you encourage her/him/them to know and follow Christ and to be faithful members of his church?” READ MORE


Healthy Congregations Workshop

9 am to 4 pm at

Grace Presbyterian Church, Fort Mill

Healthy Congregations uses the insights of family systems theory to help church leaders become more effective stewards of their congregations. This workshop was developed by Dr. Peter Steinke and is based on the work of Dr. Edwin Friedman, author of Generation to Generation: Family Process in Church and Synagogue.

The Healthy Congregations workshop is designed to equip leaders to respond to the presence or potential threat of anxiety in a congregational system in ways that prevent destructive conflict and help the church stay focused on its unique mission and purpose. This workshop will help you:

  • Learn how you as a leader can influence the health of your congregation – how to detect and avoid unhealthy patterns of living together in community
  • Learn how to keep anxiety from becoming infectious
  • Gain confidence in responding to challenges and opportunities
  • Learn how to put limits on invasive behavior, manage reactivity, and overcome sabotage
  • Discover how leaders can function as the congregation’s immune system
  • Learn to focus on strengths, resources, options, and the future

Learn More

Click here to see additional 

Available Jobs

on our website.

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Ferncliff Mission Trip

Oct 12, 2023

By Garrett Johnson

In my preparations to develop a newsletter article concerning the events of the Ferncliff Presbytery Mission trip, I found myself at a “loss of adjectives.” After some difficult mental grappling, I recalled the docent of the Museum of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, which gained notoriety in the struggle for our civil rights mentioned and defined the word “Liminal Space.” According to the Cambridge Dictionary in my library, the definition of “liminal” is as follows: “of or at the limen or threshold; of the first stage.”

I realized that I was in a “liminal space” in that I had never been a participant in a church/faith-based mission trip. To be sure, being a military retiree has presented me with ample opportunities to live, work, and enjoy many different nations, states, and communities. READ MORE

Mark your Calendars for these Upcoming Events



20 Representation & Review Committee meeting and Christian Educators Gathering

23-24 FP Office closed for Thanksgiving!


4 Antiracism Ministry Team meeting

7 Committee on Ministry meeting & Youth Roundtable

11 CPM Student Connect - Zoom

12 FP Staff Development Day - Office Closed

Foothills Presbytery Calendar

2024 Foothills Presbytery Stated Meetings

February 20, 2024, at Fountain Inn

May 18, 2024, at Limestone

August 3, 2024 (Virtual)

November 12, 2024

Resource Center of Foothills Presbytery

Stewardship of Creation Connections August-September, 2023 Newsletter