The Valley Bridge
We are congregations who seek to be a collective expression of the Body of Christ, joyfully participating in Christ's ongoing life and work. "Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing." 
(I Thessalonians 5:11)
Congregation of the Week of February 21-27
Lakes Area Presbyterian Church of Baxter
Session: Edith Alvarez, Richard Dosh, Betty Ehrhardt, Hope Johnston, Martha Look, Budd McCulloch, Lynn Olson, Kenneth Spangler and Kathy Wood.
Clerk of Session: Lynn Olson
Church Pianist: Nancy Skoog
Volunteer Church Secretary: Martha Look
Pastor: Rev. Mark Ford

Worship: We are currently offering Sunday Worship in-church, via Zoom and short range, low frequency radio service for cars parked near the church.
Communion is offered to all once a month and in church using pre-packaged elements in response to COVID-19 provisions.

Mission: We have been providing scholarships for Guatemalan Pastor's Children, Secondary Education Students in Pakistan and funds for Camp Clearwater Forest and locally, Timber Bay Youth Ministries. Funds were provided to raise a floor in a Christian Church in Pakistan above flood and sewage water levels.

Prayer concerns:
  • Friends of the Congregation suffering with the COVID-19 virus.
  • Successful global development and administration of COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Worldwide peace.
  • Recovery for all from weather and other natural disasters.
Looking for a volunteer to proof the Valley Bridge on
Wednesday afternoons. Please contact Karen Lange.
Notes from Kathy

Not much to report, been on the job a less than a week. I can tell you all that there is a lot going on in the Presbytery. Lots of work to do and many faithful volunteers who are dedicated to the call to improve the church at all levels. Sometimes we are successful and other times not so much, but we all keep trying. There are some openings on committees, if you feel that God is calling you to serve in a new way let me know. I'm sure there is a challenge waiting for just your gifts.

I'm currently trying to find a schedule that works for the most folks. I will try to available most Mondays and Thursdays. Then I will have another floating 1/2 day that will change depending on how meetings are scheduled. At least that's my plan to start. My contact information: e-mail me at kterp101@yahoo, call or message my cell 320-815-8158. I look forward to working with everyone and getting to know the folks that I haven't been acquainted with yet.

Stay warm & safe.


Kathy Terpstra
Gap Executive Presbyter
Westminster Presbyterian Church of Worthington makes the news, all because of chickens?

Short Survey from Transformation & Development

The Commission on Transformation and Development is working to make sure we are serving you and your churches the best we can in this next year. In order to best serve you, we need to hear from you! Please take this brief survey so we can plan our events and opportunities to serve the greatest needs of our Presbytery.

WANTED: Youth Mission Trip ideas and information. If you wouldn't mind sharing info and ideas, please contact Randy Knuth, Pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Fulda.
Based on the Presbyterians Today 2021 Lenten Devotional
Lenten Gathering 7:00pm Wednesdays via Zoom

Hosted by: First Presbyterian - Brewster, First Presbyterian - Iona, Bethel Evangelical Presbyterian - Reading, First Presbyterian - Round Lake and Westminster Presbyterian - Worthington

Feb 24. Shalom: The Way to Justice
        Galen Smith
Mar 3 Shalom: The Way to the Promise of Peace
        Del Bulloyt                     John 14:15-16, 27  
Mar 10 Shalom: The Way to Healing
        Bob Bartlett
Mar 17 Shalom: The Way to Hope
        Deb Klaassen
Mar 24 Shalom: The Way to Repairing
        Jim Krapf

Contact Karen Lange for the Zoom link
Help People Improve their Lives

With your donations to the One Great Hour of Sharing offering during Lent, you are a channel of Christ’s love. The more money given in our Presbytery, the more funds will be available for Self-Development of People grants in our Presbytery. Last year we were able to award a grant for just under $6000 to support education for the children of Somali refugees in St. Peter.

You can become more personally engaged by serving on our Presbytery’s SDOP Committee. There is a place for you in this ministry if you have a compassion for struggling people and value the approach of self-development, not just hand-outs. We can better serve our communities by having additional representatives from across the Presbytery. Please contact Rev, Andy Davis, chair of the Commission on Presbytery Life, if you or someone you know would like to serve.

The majority of the committee is to be people of color; they do not have to be Presbyterian. But the majority of the committee needs to Presbyterians, including the chair. If we get more members we can set up a rotation system so people would serve for three year terms.

Responsibilities of the members include: 1) Certification training (required every three years; we are due this year; virtual training is scheduled for April 10 from 10:00-12:00) 2) Soliciting donations to the One Great Hour of Sharing offering which funds SDOP grants  3) Soliciting applications for grants (this may include reaching out to congregations or community organizations through various means of communication--when we can, in-person informational meetings could be the best) 4) Review applications to see if they met the criteria, including conducting an on-site or virtual visit (this process may include working with the applicant to revise the application). 5) Submit the application to the national office for their approval  6) Make sure the checks are sent. 7) Review the project (usually six months later) and submit a report to the national office.
Beginning January 1, 2021 the standard mileage rates are:
56 cents per mile for business use
16 cents per mile for medical, or moving purposes
14 cents per mile for service of charitable organizations
2021 Per Capita
$43.00 Total
$28.52 for Presbytery
$5.50 for Synod
$8.98 for GA
Worship Opportunities

If you are interested in having someone new give a Sunday Message via Zoom or have something recorded to show, here are some PCUSA mission co-workers currently in the states who would be willing to do a sermon or talk about mission on Sunday or another time. They are open to share their stories with anyone interested.

Any groups that might like to have a guest, please contact one of these folks. Do you have a Bible Study group or maybe your Presbyterian Women's group? Think about it!

This might even be a good idea for Lenten services. Please consider using this wonderful resource available to your congregation. 

In this time when we are home a lot and not traveling around, wouldn't it be fun to travel virtually and learn about the world through the eyes of these wonderful people. Please consider using them and their information. They are so willing and anxious to connect with you. Let your congregation be blessed by them.

Kathy Terpstra

Eliane Menezes
Eliane Menezes: Mission co-worker in Guatemala, Serving with the National Union of Presbyterian Women of the National Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Guatemala (IENPG)
Contact: Eliane Menezes (
Tyler Holm
Mission Co-worker in Malawi since 2013, Serving at the University of Livingstonia, College of Theology

Betsey and Eric Moe
Mission co-workers in Guatemala
Serving with the Presbyterian World Mission and CEDEPCA
Contact Betsey Moe (
Jose Jones
Mission co-worker in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Serving at the Presbyterian Community of Kinshasa (CPK) Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Contact Jose Jones (

Cheryl Barnes, Malawi
My name is Rev. Cheryl H. Barnes. I am currently serving in Malawi, Africa as an Education Facilitator.  I would like to forward a taped update of my work for use to Facebook or Lenten services. Please let me know the procedure for getting this update to you. My email address is

Ryan and Alethia White - Iran
Your kind invitation to Mission Coworkers to contribute to congregations within your presbytery was passed on to us through Louisville and we would be happy to be involved! If that is something that you are still looking for, please let us know how we can best help. We are very comfortable either creating video messages to send to congregations or joining a church live online, having done both often enough especially in the past year. Our family has been living in Berlin, Germany since 2014 and working with the Iranian Presbyterian Church here in the city. Our work now includes various projects and partners in Berlin and Germany, mostly based on migration practices and the role of the church. We are also expanding our work to include partners across Europe around the issues of migration and racism, although this is still relatively new.
Below our signature is a link to our PCUSA web page in case that is helpful. Please feel free to be in touch with any questions or ideas! 

Rev. Ryan and Alethia White
Iranische Presbyterianische Gemeinde Berlin
Richardstr 97
12043, Berlin
TEL: +49 176 280 379 69
Presbyterian Church (USA) Mission Co-workers
To subscribe to our letters click here
Elmarie and Scot Parker, Lebanon
My husband, Rev. Scott Parker, and I are based in Beirut, Lebanon serving with partners in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. We are very interested in discussing with you how we may be of service to you all at this time. We do have some internet limitations, but we have found some good work-arounds that we can discuss as we see what interests a church might have for our involvement in worship.
We look forward to hearing from you! 
In Christ’s Peace,
Rev. Elmarie E.R. Parker
PCUSA Regional Liaison to Iraq, Syria, Lebanon
Lebanon Mobile/WhatsApp: +961 76-375-823
USA Mobile  (for Spring 2020): +1 971-888-2590
Skype: elmarie.parker
Skype Phone #: 503-213-3532
Lebanon Mailing Address:
The National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon
Att: Rev. Elmarie Parker
P.O. Box 70/890
Antelias – Lebanon 
USA Mailing Address:
1015 Oak St. #63
Silverton, OR 97381 

Melissa Johnson - Zambia
Mary Nebelsick let me know that the Presbytery of Minnesota was looking for mission co-workers to connect with your congregations. I would love to participate! I already have a YouTube moment for mission ready to go or I would be happy to discuss any other options. I am including the link to the presentation so you can take a look and decide if you would like to share it with some of your congregations.

I look forward to hearing from you. 
Melissa Johnson
+260 97 7969328 (Zambia)
+1-210-218-9847 (U.S.)

Betsey Moe - Guatemala
My name is Betsey Moe, and my husband and I are (fairly) new mission co-workers with CEDEPCA in Guatemala. We are currently residing in Spokane, WA. Thank you for reaching out to mission co-workers in the PC(USA)! I'd love to talk with you about opportunities for virtual sharing in your presbytery. I'm open to preaching, a minute for mission, informal Zoom coffee hour, etc. A few of my co-workers at CEDEPCA are fully bilingual and would be open to participating as well -- if congregations would like to hear firsthand about what is going on in the aftermath of the hurricanes, for example.

One idea is that I am already preaching for a congregation in Denver on Transfiguration Sunday (Feb. 14) and would be happy to record that same sermon for another congregation. 

I have a YouTube channel that shows a sampling of what we could do. If you go to "playlists," there are also links to CEDEPCA videos that may be shown in congregations.

I look forward to talking more with you!
Betsey Moe
(509) 951-7837

Jose LaMont Jones - Congo
I am available and am at your disposal.
I am (pandemic permitting) on my way to the Democratic Republic of Congo to work with the schools of the Presbyterian Community of Kinshasa. We are in the throws of our Congo Mission Network Virtual Conference and I also include a link to a video presentation I put together a couple weeks ago to give you an idea of what I do (will do) and with whom I will work when I get to the DRC. The link is:

Mark and Miriam Adams US/Mexico Border
My spouse Miriam Maldonado and I serve as Mission Co-workers on the US/Mexico border in Agua Prieta, Sonora and Douglas, AZ.

Mary Nebelsick of PCUSA World Mission shared your invitation to Mission Co-workers to join some of the congregations in the Presbytery of Minnesota Valleys to provide worship leadership via a recorded message, a sermon, or a talk highlighting their mission work etc.  

Check out this video by Steve Jeeter of National Community Church in Washington DC

We would be honored to participate.

Mark S. Adams
PCUSA Mission Co-worker
Serving with Frontera de Cristo

Rachel and Michael Ludwig, Niger
We heard that you are looking for videos to offer to the churches for worship. We have some available, if they are helpful for your worship services, please use them. 

It is a little helpful to know when they are used so that we know where connection has been made with a congregation. It is not absolutely necessary though. 
Sermon - with Scripture reading from Romans 12:1-8 (Theme: Offering ourselves to God in worship with perspectives from Niger)
Children’s sermon to go with the above sermon - 4 mins.
Learning from our neighbors - local ways of using scraps for toys (4 mins)
Learning from locals - local ideas for practical handwashing (4 min)
Recent Sermon - based on John 4:5-26 and Proverbs 25:25 (Theme: Being open for mission means being vulnerable and listening)
Peace be with you,
Rachel and Michael Ludwig
Prayer List

  • For Rev. John Lindholm, retired pastor, Fergus Falls, health concerns
  • For Rev. Mark Chamberlain, retired pastor, Willmar
  • For Rev. Bob Bartlett, First Presbyterian Churches of Brewster & Round Lake
  • For Rev. Michael Roys, retired pastor, Winnebago

Pray for Our Occidente Partners in Guatemala
  • For the families of the three Occidente pastors that have recently died
  • For those who have contracted the Covid virus
  • For the "Men in the Mirror" program. Men from Occidente that MVP supported financially to attend the classes are sharing the information they gained with different churches in the eastern and central parts of Guatemala. They, along with the chaplains of the national Presbyterian church, are training Christian policemen in what they learned from "Men in the Mirror."
Pastoral Leadership Opportunities

First Presbyterian Church, Lake Crystal; First Presbyterian Church, Kasota - Pastor, yoked parish
Ministry Information Form - 03709.AB1

Maine Presbyterian Church, rural Underwood - Solo Pastor
Ministry Information Form - 03870.AB0

Faith Presbyterian Church, Silver Lake - Solo Pastor
Ministry Information Form - 03851.AC3

First Presbyterian Church, Slayton - Pastor
Ministry Information Form - 03805.AB0

Hope Presbyterian Church, Spicer - Solo Pastor
Ministry Information Form - 09565.ADO

First Presbyterian Church, Winnebago - Interim Pastor
Ministry Information Form - 03811.AA1

Ministry opportunities are posted on the Church Leadership Connection website --
Meet our Presenters and Preview the Workshops

On March 2, the Presbyterian Foundation will present a Day of Learning covering practical tools for stewardship and financial sustainability.

10:30 a.m. CST - Church Mission and Sustainability with Stephen Keizer and Rev. Gail Monsma

Ensuring the long-term viability of your church mission in the face of evolving cultural pressures means it is important for churches to develop creative and comprehensive stewardship programs.

This workshop will provide ideas for creating a culture of generosity through a comprehensive stewardship program. We will talk about how people give, donor motivation, how to craft your mission story, leadership’s role in stewardship, provide giving tools as well as discuss how planned giving fits into a stewardship.

1:00 p.m. CST - Virtual Campaigns and Online Giving with Rev. Ellie Johns-Kelley and Karl Mattison

2020 forced everything into a distanced and virtual environment. Stewardship included. There are some blessings in disguise. Join us to call out some of the most important lessons learned for conducting efficient and effective stewardship campaigns. In this seminar, we will share the top five features that we can leverage from a virtual stewardship campaign and how we can effectively use these tools going forward. The pandemic has been a miserable experience, but let’s grasp and grow from lessons learned.

4:30 p.m. CST - Practical Tips for Church Budgeting with Olanda Carr and Rev. Dr. Jonah So

In this workshop we will cover the basic items to consider when creating a
church budget. An overview of the various types of church budgets – zero-based, program, line-item, and narrative – will be provided. Additional time will be allocated to the narrative budgeting process, including beginning steps and resources.

Questions? Please contact the Presbyterian Foundation at
40th Annual Ecumenical Rural Ministry Conference
“Engaging and Ministry with Cultural Traditionalists”

The 40th Rural Ministry Conference will be held via Zoom on Monday, March 8, 2021. For further information:
Living Well, Leading Well

A monthly series of virtual workshops sponsored by Mount Olivet Conference & Retreat Center promoting wholeness, wellbeing, and renewal in our personal and professional lives. Each workshop will be taught by specialists in the areas of counseling, biblical studies, peace-making, and pastoral ministry.

Thursday March 11, 6:30-8:30pm | $20 Register here.
Formation for Mission: Dipping into the Well of PC(USA) Resources

A Spring Learning Opportunity for Presbyterians

March 13-14
This weekend class offers participants the opportunity to learn more about the breadth and depth of resources available for Presbyterian church leaders. This course provides the opportunity to interact with a number of national staff people for the PC(USA) and to become acquainted with the resources their offices offer to aid and further the ministry of local congregations. 

How do I register or find more information?