Highlights of 2017 Spring Stated Presbytery Meeting
Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center
By: Alexandra (Sandra) Hedrick, Presbytery Stated Clerk
May 2, 2017

The mission of the Presbytery of St. Augustine is to support our faith community, so that together we may witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

At our Spring Stated Meeting, we witnessed to the gospel of Jesus Christ in worship, prayer and fellowship. We reaffirmed our new mission statement, approved a revised Manual of Operations, welcomed new minister members, and made new friends. Over 140 persons attended, including guests and Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center staff.

During worship, we heard and participated in “The Word of the Lord – The Sermon in Song.” We celebrated the Lord’s Supper, led by Dawn Conti. Our wonderful musician was Rick Roberts, Director of Music at Fort King Presbyterian Church. The offering taken for the Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center was almost $1,300!

Highlights of the presentations and actions during the meeting led by our Moderator Jeff Welch included:

We welcomed several new minister members, all of whom are “honorably retired” – Tom Borland, Eric Chavis, Steve Hulsey, Cliff Lyda, Dick Menzel, and Jack Swann.

Joe Albright (Geneva) offered a tribute to the life and ministry of Herbert Meza, who died on February 9, 2017.

We approved a revised Manual of Operations, including a change providing that 12 (rather than 11) persons will be elected “at-large” to the new Coordinating Council. The document entitled “Implementing a New Structure” (cut and paste this link to view: http://bit.ly/2pcFKwz) describes the path for completing this part of our transition. A final version of the approved revised Manual of Operations will be posted to our website in the near future.

We voted in the affirmative on each of the proposed amendments to the Book of Order sent to us by the 222nd General Assembly. Our vote has already been reported to the Office of the General Assembly!

We approved the revised 2017 Operating Budget (cut and paste this link to view approved proposal: http://bit.ly/2pCzLUn).

We approved an “exception” as specified in the Book of Order (G-2.0504c) to permit Hunter Camp, currently Associate Pastor at the Memorial Presbyterian Church, to be considered as the next installed Pastor of the church.

Joe Rigsby announced that the Nominating Committee will soon circulate applications for service as commissioners to the General Assembly (June 16-23, 2018) and to the Synod of South Atlantic Commissioner (term begins in 2018). In addition, his committee and the Representation Committee will be hard at work to identify and nominate leaders to serve in our new presbytery structure that will be fully in place on January 1, 2018.

Among the exciting news from Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center is the opportunity for everyone to participate in its ministry by being a part of “Montgomery Day” (the first Sunday in June). A Montgomery Day flyer is attached here for use by congregations and individuals – cut and paste this link: http://bit.ly/2qDBDuI.

The Presbytery Council reported that it has approved four individuals to serve as Area Relationship Coordinators during the “Bridge Period”: Gary Hardesty (First Alachua/Honorably Retired), Joe Rigsby(Honorably Retired), Earle Sickels (Calvin/Honorably Retired), and Sheryl Sumlin-Walker (Halifax Health and Hospice Parish Associate – Trinity).

Reports were made on behalf of Presbyterian Women (Carol Graff, PW Moderator – Hodges Boulevard); the Mutual Mission Committee (Bob Bell – First Perry); This Child Here Ministry (Ukraine) (Robert Gamble – Presbytery of Newton); Texas Presbyterian Foundation (TPF) (Jake Wilson) and Westminster Communities of Florida (Walk Jones – Presbytery of Central Florida). Kathy Broyard of the Florida Presbyterian Disaster Assistance Network made an appeal to churches to house disaster/storm recovery volunteers.

We took action to ensure that Presbytery Council (soon to be called “Coordinating Council”) minutes will be included in stated presbytery meeting packets.

When the meeting adjourned, we enjoyed lunch on the grounds, including barbecue chicken, fully loaded potato salad, baked beans, macaroni and cheese, cheddar biscuits, and chocolate and vanilla pudding bowls. We thank our Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center staff for the warm hospitality!

Next Meeting: The 2017 Fall Stated Meeting of the Presbytery of St. Augustine will be held at Montgomery Presbyterian Conference Center on October 3, 2017, at 9:00 a.m.

*Invitation to Host: We are still looking for a church or group of churches to host the 2018 Winter Stated Meeting on Saturday, February 3.  The meeting space needs to accommodate 140-190 attendees for welcoming refreshments, worship, business meeting, and lunch. The church’s ability to provide child care on site will be a factor when considering the proposal. Space is also needed for table displays. If you have questions or would like to volunteer your church (or a partnership of churches in your area), please contact Stated Clerk Sandra Hedrick (cell: 904-612-9766) or email sandra@staugpres.org by May 31, 2017.

Rev. Alexandra (Sandra) Hedrick, Presbytery Stated Clerk
sandra@staugpres.org – 904-612-9766 (cell)