Presbytery of St. Augustine

Montgomery Ugly Sweater Trail Run

On Saturday, December 9th Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center will host its first annual Ugly Sweater Trail Run! This new event will feature a fun Trail run through part of its beautiful 167-acre property, local craft vendors, breakfast with Santa, crafts for young people, games, music and more!

You can register for this event by visiting https://montgomerycenter.org/ugly-sweater-trail-run/ or by calling their office at 352-473-4516.

Pricing
Trail Run: $30 (FREE for children 10 and under)
***Price goes up to $35 week of event and $40 the day of***
Breakfast with Santa: $10 (FREE if you signed up to run our 5k)
Extra Ugly Sweater Shirts: $12

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Christmas Joy Offering Webinar

While it feels like fall has just begun, soon we will enter the joyous season of Advent and celebrate the wondrous gift of Jesus Christ, our Savior.

“With Christ at the center this holiday season, we can follow in his example of servant leadership by serving our brothers and sisters in faith. Through the Christmas Joy Offering, we are able to support those in our community and give them the gift of hope,” says The Rev. Jonathan H. Reinink of the Special Offerings Presbyterian Mission Agency. 

To help church leaders organize this season’s Christmas Joy Offerings at their congregations, PC(USA) Special Offerings is hosting a webinar on Wednesday, November 15th at 1 p.m. The session will cover the 2017 Christmas Joy Offering, its materials and promotional opportunities, and much more. 

You may sign up for the webinar by visiting https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/5471323077400898305. 

Funds from the Christmas Joy Offering help the Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions provide critical financial assistance to eligible workers in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and their families, and to qualifying retired church workers and their families.

 The Christmas Joy Offering also supports the education and development of our future leaders at Presbyterian-related racial ethnic schools and colleges. These schools are dedicated to creating opportunities and environments for racial ethnic students built on a foundation of Christian values.

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Young Adult Volunteer Opportunities

blue-green-orange-logoThe application period for the Young Adult Volunteer program, a faith-based year of service for young people ages 19-30, is now open! We encourage you to pass along this information to young adults and youth and campus ministry leaders who may be interested. 

The Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) program is a faith-based year of service in 22 sites around the world and in the United States. YAVs accompany local agencies working to address root causes of poverty and reconciliation while exploring the meaning and motivation of their faith in community with peers and mentors. 

Program benefits include a regular stipend, housing, transportation and student-loan repayment options throughout the duration of the service year. For more info, visit the FAQ tab at the top of the YAV homepage. Also, following @yavprogram on social media is a great resource. 

Below are important dates to know for the 2018-19 application season. The YAV application can be accessed here.

  • October 1st - Applications Open
  • January 1st -Round 1- (All sites available, early placement)
  • March 1st - Round 2 – (Most sites available, final date to apply to international sites)
  • June 1st - Round 3 – (National sites only, limited spots available)

If you have any questions about the application process, specific site placements, etc., please email yav@pcusa.org

Highlights from Fall 2017 Stated Meeting

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Download highlights in PDF format

We held our Fall Stated Meeting on October 3, 2017 at Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center.  Fall was truly in the air, with morning temperatures in the low 70s and a wonderful breeze all day!  Over 150 persons attended, including guests and MPCC staff. Friendships were renewed, and new friendships have begun.

Our morning preacher was Ron Watson, who changed his text to Psalm 34 in light of the previous day’s news of a mass shooting at a concert in Las Vegas. Ron spoke of the senseless suffering of God’s people in Las Vegas and in other recent times of pain and disaster, including devastating hurricanes. He reminded us that the Lord “is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Jesus is still the Lord of the world, and the Holy Spirit can still be trusted.  We are called to engage the events of the world in service and as people of peace. After Ron’s message of hope, we celebrated the Lord’s Supper, led by new presbytery members Joyce and Chris Lieberman.  Our wonderful musician was once again Rick Roberts, Director of Music at Fort King Presbyterian Church.  The offering taken for the Presbyterian Disaster Assistance program was $1,120.

Highlights of the presentations and actions during the meeting that was opened by our Presbytery Council Moderator Ralph Moulder and continued after worship by our Moderator Jeff Welch included:

  • We welcomed new minister members: Roger Dunnavan (Memorial parish associate), Joyce Lieberman (synod stated clerk and executive), and Chris Lieberman (Fort King interim pastor). The chair of First Ocala’s pastor nominating committee spoke regarding the church’s call to Ron Watson as its new head of staff. New member Debra Henning, who serves as the stated supply pastor at First Crescent City, was unable to be present.
  • Larry Green (Westminster) offered a tribute to the life and ministry of the Rev. Dr. Marvin Lutz, who died on April 23, 2017. 
  • Leslie Cox (Memorial) was received as a candidate for ministry under the care of our presbytery. Leslie attends Columbia Theological Seminary.
  • We elected commissioners and a young adult advisory delegate for the 223rd General Assembly to be held in St. Louis in June 2018. Sandra Hedrick was elected to a new three-year term as stated clerk, and Ed Kelly was elected as assistant stated clerk.
  • Also on the recommendation of our hard-working Nominating and Representation Committees, we elected synod commissioners and more than 125 individuals to initially serve on the commissions and teams that make up our new presbytery structure. 
  • We recognized our ministers serving in validated ministries outside of a Presbyterian congregation, and we welcomed two newest Certified Christian Educators, Debbie Abbott (Hodges Boulevard) and Anne Reid Broos (Memorial). We also participated in the commissioning of ruling elder Bea Newhart for continued pastoral service to the First Presbyterian Church of Reddick.
  • We received the 2018 Asking Budget and amended it to include increased support to the Florida Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Network (FLAPDAN).
  • We clarified and approved the recommendations of the Administrative Commission (AC) for the Nueva Esperanza Presbyterian Church. Under the plan, the congregation members will apply to become a part of the 1001 Worshipping Communities of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The AC will remain in place until the necessary steps are taken and the congregation is dissolved.
  • We heard reports from MPCC’s Executive Director and the chair of its Executive Board and the moderator of the special task force appointed by the Trustees and Presbytery Council. The new date and time for the capital campaign kick-off dinner is Thursday, October 12 at 6:00 p.m. The presbytery voted to express its intent to the task force that the date for the goal of raising firm pledges of $700,000 be extended four additional months, to April 30, 2018.
  • We approved revisions to the Manual of Operations relating to Mutual Mission, the St. Augustine Disaster Assistance Commission, and the staff positions of Relationship Coordination Director and Bookkeeper.
  • The four area relationship coordinators (Gary Hardesty, Joe Rigsby, Earle Sickels, and Sheryl Sumlin-Walker) met over the lunch break with the churches and ministers in their areas. 
  • We received reports from Mutual Mission, Presbyterian Women, the Permanent Judicial Commission, and others. Clark Simmons made a report on behalf of the Board of Pensions. Other presbytery action was taken as recommended in the published reports provided in the docket.
  • We enjoyed lunch on the grounds, including caramelized pork loin with apple, scalloped potatoes, green bean casserole, spinach and cranberry salad, cornbread muffins, and dessert (apple bites, cookies and ice cream).

Next Meeting: The 2018 Winter Stated Meeting of the Presbytery of St. Augustine will be held at South Jacksonville Presbyterian Church on February 3, 2018, at 9:00 a.m. 

-by Sandra Hedrick
Stated Clerk

Hurricane Irma Recovery Information

f_jacksonville_flood_170911.nbcnews-ux-1080-600As recovery efforts continue in the wake of Hurricane Irma, the St. Augustine Presbytery Disaster Assistance Commission, in coordination with the Florida Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Network (FLAPDAN), wishes to share important information to everyone affected by the storm.

 
 
Legal Aid Hotline for Irma Survivors (free legal advice for those who can’t afford an attorney)
1-866-550-2929
 
Home Cleanup Hotline for Hurricane Irma
From now through September 30, call the number below for help with home cleanup. As they are able, reputable and vetted relief agencies may assist you and your neighbors cut fallen trees, remove drywall, insulation, flooring, furniture, appliances, tarp roofs, etc. All services are free, but service is not guaranteed due to the overwhelming need.
 
It is important to understand this hotline CANNOT assist with social services such as food, clothing, shelter, insurance, or questions about FEMA registration. Volunteers work free of charge and provide the tools and equipment necessary to complete the work. To request help: Call 1-800-451-1954
 

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance—Hurricane Response Information

 

 

 

 

 

 

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Response to Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey

You shall be . . . the restorer of streets to live in. —Isaiah 58:12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hurricane Irma, a record-setting storm, is now dissipating, but the devastation is just starting to be known.

Members of PDA’s National Response Team will arrive in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina this week to provide aid, assess damage, and offer spiritual and emotional care for those impacted by the winds and flooding. While PDA has already been in contact with presbyteries throughout Florida and Puerto Rico, the Church remains mindful of the areas where contact has, so far, been difficult to make. Once the information arrives from the Florida Keys as well as the Caribbean islands nearly wiped from the map, the destruction of this storm will begin to be fully known.

There are years of recovery ahead. Will you help extend the hands of Christ by standing in the GAP? — Give. Act. Pray.

GIVE:
PDA’s emergency response and specialization in long-term recovery is fueled by your generous gifts. Designate gifts to: Atlantic Regional Hurricanes DR000194. You can also give with a credit card by visiting presbyterianmission.org/GIVE-Irma or by calling 800-872-3283.

PDA is still in need of support for mucking out and rebuilding efforts in the Gulf region after Harvey. Thank you to those of you who have already directed gifts to (DR000169-Harvey).

ACT:
Download the bulletin insert here.
Put together Gift of the Heart kits for survivors in the affected areas — hygiene kits and cleanup buckets are especially needed. For more information, go to pda.pcusa.org/page/kits/.
Contact the PDA Call Center to be notified of volunteer opportunities. Call 866-732-6121 or email pda.callcenter@pcusa.org.
Learn how your congregation can help families that have lost everything. Stay informed and like us on Facebook or visit pda.pcusa.org. Be sure to share updates with your congregation.

PRAY:
God of help and hope, in the challenging days, months and years to come, work through us to bring relief and respite from urgent need,comfort and the hope of peace for those who grieve the loss of family, home and safety, and faith to walk on through weary days of rebuilding. May we be steadfast in love, stronger than death,and thus, with those whose lives we seek to sustain, together bear witness to your redeeming love.
Amen.

(For a more in-depth prayer, click here.)

For more information, visit presbyterianmission.org/pda

Fall Stated Meeting of the Presbytery

Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center

88 SE 75th St.

Starke, FL 32091

(352) 473-4516

montgomerycenter.org

Jeff Welch, Moderator

JOIN US FOR:
 
-Worship and Fellowship
-Meet New Minister Members
-Area Gatherings with Area Coordinators
-Receive Offering for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance
-And Much More!
 
Preacher: Ron Watson
Co-Celebrants: Joyce and Chris Lieberman
Pianist: Rick Roberts
 
Presbytery Docket Deadline: Thursday, Sept. 21st. Please submit reports and docket information to the Stated Clerk at sandra@staugpres.org.
 
Display Space: If you would like a display table, please email requests to the Stated Clerk no later than Sept. 25th.
 
Registration: The registration tables will open at 8:15 AM. Training for new commissioners will take place at 8:45 AM.
 
Excuse Requests: Teaching Elders, Certified Christian Educators, Committee Moderators, and Ruling Elder Commissioners who are unable to attend should submit an excuse request to the Stated Clerk by email to sandra@staugpres.org or by phone at (904) 612-9766 (cell).
 
Lunch: Lunch will be provided at a cost of $10 per person.
 
Child Care: Child care will be provided. If you will need child care, please call Kris Weaver at the MPCC office at (352) 473-4516 by Sept. 25th to provide the number and ages of children who will be coming with you.
 
Additional Commissioners*: Churches sending additional ruling elder commissioners for one year which began with the 2017 Spring Stated Meeting (number in parentheses is total):
 
 
Lake Shore (2)                      
Lakewood (3)                        
Marion Oaks (2)                     
Mayport (2)                            
McIntosh (2)                           
Memorial (3) 
 

Middleburg (2)
Mikesville (2)
Murray Hill (2)
Nueva Esperanza (2)
Ocala First (3)
Orange Park (2)
 
*Churches send additional commissioners to ensure that we have “parity” between teaching elder and ruling elder commissioners.

Hurricane Irma Update


As recovery efforts begin in the wake of Hurricane Irma, the St. Augustine Presbytery Disaster Assistance Commission (SAPDAC) is in the process of contacting all churches within the presbytery. We are grateful that no extremely serious damage has been reported thus far. Some of our churches are in areas that may be without power for some time.
 
We continue to work closely with the Florida Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Network (FLAPDAN) and are expecting visitors from Presbyterian Disaster Assistance. We continue to pray for everyone impacted by Hurricane Irma and will send updates from FLAPDAN and others as we receive them.

Updates & Information from FLAPDAN: As a member of Florida VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster), FLAPDAN is seeking church volunteer teams who would like to assist in clean-up efforts. Volunteer Teams are currently needed for tarping, debris removal and muck outs. Florida VOAD recently adopted a national platform called Crisis Cleanup to coordinate the efforts of volunteers who want to respond after a disaster.
 
If volunteer teams would like to assist, FLAPDAN requests all members to register for Crisis Cleanup and to watch two mandatory training videos (both links are provided below).

Individuals who would like to assist should register at 
www.volunteerflorida.org/irma/ or join with a local trusted disaster organization such as the American Red Cross or a church volunteer team that is using Crisis Cleanup (see above).

For those who suffered property damage, you may call 800-451-1954 to register your need for assistance through Crisis Cleanup.


FLAPDAN has also asked us to share the following information:

Disaster Distress Helpline: The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) is a program of the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) which provides crisis counseling and support for anyone in the U.S. experiencing distress or other behavioral health concerns related to any natural or human-caused disaster. Calls (1-800-985-5990) and texts (text “TalkWithUs” to 66746) are answered by a network of independently-operated crisis centers around the country, who provide psychological first aid, emotional support, crisis assessment and intervention, and referrals to local/state behavioral health services for follow-up care & support.

American Red Cross: The American Red Cross Safe and Well website is a free public reunification tool that allows individuals and organizations to register and post messages to indicate that they are safe, or to search for loved ones. The site is always available, open to the public, and available in English and Spanish. There are a number of ways to use this service:

·         Registrations and searches can be done directly on the website.

·         Registrations can also be completed by texting SAFE to 78876. Messages exist in both Spanish and English.

·         To speak with someone at the American Red Cross concerning a missing friend or relative, please contact 1-800 Red Cross (1-800-733-2767).

 
 

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Bulletin Inserts Available

The Presbyterian Disaster Assistance has put together a bulletin insert as it is relying on the generosity of Presbyterians to provide financial and hands-on support to help the whole church stand with these communities and the Presbyterian family as it responds to its neighbors. 

To download a PDF copy of the bulletin insert, please click on the image below:

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New Book of Order Available for Download

The amendments proposed by the 222nd General Assembly (2016) and approved by the presbyteries are now included in the NEW Book of Order (2017-2019)

While physical copies are on backorder through pcusastore.com, you may download a PDF version of the new Book of Order free of charge.

The NEW Book of Confessions, which includes the new Confession of Belhar, is available for pre-order through pcusastore.com at a 40% discount now through its “publish date” of Oct. 13th.

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