A Friendly Reminder . . .

In an effort to help maintain social distancing to combat the coronavirus, the Presbytery office is currently closed to visitors. Most staff are working remotely and email will be monitored and answered in a timely manner. Emergency contact information can be found at the end of this communication. Stay safe!
In this season of thanksgiving, we would like to extend our appreciation and gratitude for the multitude of ways you support the mission and ministry of the Presbytery of Western North Carolina.

The PWNC staff wishes you and your family a very safe, healthy and blessed Thanksgiving holiday.
November 20, 2020
It has been brought to our attention that numerous emails are being circulated impersonating both our General Presbyter, Byron Wade, and our Stated Clerk, Cam Murchison. If you receive any type of email communication "asking for a favor" - please know that it did not originate from either party and delete it immediately. We apologize in advance for the inconvenience.
Free Monthly Seminars Offered

The Soul Repair Center at Brite Divinity School is offering a series of free monthly webinars designed to support veterans who have experienced moral injury in their service to country. Center director, the Rev. Dr. Nancy Ramsay who now lives in Black Mountain, describes the webinars this way. “The programming is to provide resources for religious leaders, chaplains (military, VA, and hospital), and professional caregivers who seek to support veterans and their families affected by moral injury. There are very few congregations in the PCUSA without such veterans since moral injury is a new term for injury as ancient as war. There are also lots of resources at the site. All webinars will be available at our site after they air and they’ll also be on the VOA YouTube channel.”

The next webinar is on “COVID and the implications of Moral Injury for effective chaplaincy with Medical First Responders in civilian and VA hospitals” and will be useful to any pastor whose congregation includes persons working in hospital settings. More information and registration available here.
Funding Available
If your church has suffered any damage from the recent flooding caused by Hurricane Eta, please be in touch with the Presbytery office. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance has limited funding available to assist our churches with any necessary recovery or repairs.

Fall is upon us and that means cooler weather is around the corner! Read the communication recently sent out by our Task Force on Returning to Face-to-Face Gatherings in PWNC to be informed about current recommendations for worship in these uncertain times.

Help us reach 1,000 subscribers! PWNC now has a YouTube channel! Help us reach 1,000 subscribers by subscribing to the "Presbytery of Western North Carolina." Please share this exciting news with your church membership and help us stay connected!
Need A Substitute Preacher Before Advent?

Act now to get your pre-recorded video sermon by General Presbyter Byron Wade. It comes from the Gospel of Matthew which correlates to the Revised Common Lectionary for November 22nd (Matthew 25:31-46). The video is in .MPG format and is in Google Drive and Dropbox.

If you would like to use this for your pre-recorded worship service, please email Byron or call/text him at 828/430-1515.
This year's "Giving Tuesday" will take place December 1st. Giving Tuesday started 9 years ago by the New York 92nd Street Y, and was conceived as a way to create a national day of giving at the start of the holiday season. Since its founding, Giving Tuesday has inspired charitable giving around the world, resulting in greater donations, volunteer hours, and activities that bring about real change in communities. (Consumerreports.org)

Want to make a difference? For those of you participating this year, PWNC would like to encourage donations to the following ministries of Presbytery. Checks should be made payable to PWNC and sent to the attention of Lisa Pressley at the Presbytery office (114 Silver Creek Road, Morganton NC 28655). Please earmark your donation with the respective bold text listed below:

PWNC Hunger 5-Cents-a-Meal fund: These funds are distributed twice per year to support food ministries throughout the presbytery and our partners in Guatemala and Malawi. Many of our partnering food ministries have experienced increased need this past year due to the negative effects of the pandemic on our economy.

Ebenezer Institute of Learning, Nkhoma, Malawi: As a presbytery, we have been instrumental in the founding and on-going support of this school. Initially established to attract and retain qualified staff at the neighboring hospital, which we continue to support, this school has become a bright star in the region - attracting students far and wide. https://www.ebenezernkhoma.com.

You may support the students in one of two ways (or both). Please consider making a gift to the Dorothy McKenzie Scholarship Fund; this is an invested fund whose annual returns are used to provide for the education of students at the Ebenezer Institute of Learning in Nkhoma Malawi.

Or, you may support the school directly by marking your gift as “Annual Scholarship.” The annual cost for a student to attend is $300, but you may give less, or more, than that amount.

Guatemala: Support of the Guatemala COVID Relief Fund will ensure that families in our partner presbyteries, Sur Occidente and Suchitepequez, have access to food and essential items such as medicine.

Hands and Feet of Asheville: this organization is the only Young Adult Volunteer [YAV] site of the Presbyterian Church USA in the region. During their year of service, the Young Adult Volunteers at Hands and Feet of Asheville live in an intentional community and work at least 32 hours per week serving regional non-profit organizations. Your support of this work will bolster the Young Adult Volunteer program and provide the participants with an expansive experience in their discipleship. Please mark your gift “Hands and Feet.”

UKirk@WCU: Presently, this is our Presbytery’s only actively supported campus ministry site. This ministry to the students of Western Carolina University is headed by Rev. Noah McIntee, who runs a coffeehouse on campus that provides a way for students to live their faith through practices that reflect it. In a humble cup of coffee, this ministry pours a little bit of empathy, support, justice, responsibility, and honesty for students seeking respite and refuge. Please mark your gift “UKirk@WCU”. For more information, visit: https://ukirkwcu.org
Campus Ministry Conversations

Many conversations happen each week at our ministry. As a service-based ministry, we welcome students from all over - not just those seeking a group-ministry experience. The more they come, the more we get to know them. And the more we get to know them, the more we talk.
A student asked me how to talk to her family about politics. She's an undecided voter but her family and the family of her boyfriend are all very pro-Trump. At the time, she didn't know how she would vote. We had a follow-up talk later - after she had voted - and she felt good about her vote and about talking to her family.
Our weekly Bible Study this semester has been examining themes of racial justice in the Bible. We've looked at Peter & Cornelius, divisions between the widows of the Hebrews & the Hellenists, the instructions from James on equality, and the role of the Good Shepherd in administering equity. For this week's lesson, the group asked if we could discuss "Is Jesus a Socialist?"
Another student asked for help making sense of the Christianity of his Greek Orthodox parents. We talked about the Cappadocian Fathers, the Greek triskelion, and the influence of Eastern thought on such central ideas as the Trinity.
For the second time this semester, one of my staff has been quarantined due to coronavirus contact tracing. The positive case came from her fiancee who is a regular at the coffeehouse and with whom I had a conversation on the day he tested positive. He wasn't wearing a mask and neither were his circle of friends in the coffeehouse. At least two others of them tested positive although (mercifully) they have all recovered.
With these and countless others, conversations abound at UKirk WCU. Please keep all the staff and students in your prayers as they enter this final stretch of hybrid classes which ends on Nov. 20 when they go fully online to wrap up the semester.
Noah McIntee
UKirk WCU & Hillside Grind Coffeehouse
Presbyterian Campus Ministry at Western Carolina University
Do you want to earn a discount on summer camp tuition? 

Join us for a Virtual Summer Savings Event where you can learn about the people, places, and programs that turn a summer at Camp Grier into a lifetime of memories. This is a great opportunity for returning families as well as folks that are new to Camp Grier. You will receive $50 off tuition for each child that you register for camp by attending and can learn how to earn even more savings by helping us host a future event. Events will last between 30 to 45 minutes. 
CE Scholarships Available

The Christian Education Committee has a limited number of scholarships available to assist participants with attending the 2021 APCE Virtual event that's being offered February 4-6, 2021. Registration is $100 per person. Depending on the number of applicants who apply for assistance, the committee will cover 50%-100% of your registration cost. Educators and pastors are encouraged to attend and apply, with preference given to educators first for funding. (Funding is limited to 30 applicants.)

If you are interested in applying for a scholarship, please complete this application, and return it to the Presbytery office by December 4th.
Sessional Records

Due to COVID-19, all face to face Sessional Records reviews have been suspended for 2020. Read how this process will be handled in the following communication from Cam Murchison, Stated Clerk:

COVID-19 Information

A special section has been designated on Presbytery's website to share information relative to COVID-19. Click here to access material that has been pooled for our members and churches, and to find helpful resources for ministering in times like these.
November 26-27, 2020 ~ Thanksgiving Holiday

December 24-31, 2020 ~ Christmas Holiday

January 1, 2020 ~ New Year’s Holiday
January 18, 2020 ~ Martin Luther King Holiday
Monday - Thursday: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Friday: 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Rev. Dr. Byron Wade ~ 828/430-1515
Rev. Dr. Cameron Murchison, Jr. ~ 404/556-8041
Rev. Billy Robinson ~ 828/448-2153
Presbytery of Western North Carolina | 828.438.4217 | www.presbyterywnc.org