09-12-17 Presbytery Meeting in Red Wing, MN

9-12-17 Presbytery Meeting in Red Wing, MN

9-12-17 Presbytery Meeting in Red Wing, MN

Our Farewell to Stated Clerk, The Rev. Bill Davnie


EMerge November 16, 2018

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EMerge is a newsletter of the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area. Through most of the year it is published weekly and distributed to congregations, teaching elders, ruling elders, church members, committees and friends of the presbytery. Please send submissions and address corrections to office@ptcaweb.org.
November 16, 2018
Presbytery news  
November meeting takes place
at new time; work of many noted
No break!
Witness to faith!
A lot of business!
Thank you all for coming!
That's a one, two, three, four, and five-word summary of the Nov. 13 meeting of the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area. Following is the longer summary.
The Presbytery met at New Life Presbyterian Church in Roseville at a new (and experimental) time, 2 p.m. The Presbytery will be seeking to measure the impact of that time in the weeks to come. The eyeball test, however, showed a strong and diverse attendance from across the Presbytery, with a higher turnout of teaching elders than ruling elders.
The complete meeting summary is at "November Meeting."
Congregational Development Grant applications are now available
Congregations interested in expanding mission and ministry can apply for up to $20,000 through the Congregational Development Grant program of the Presbytery LogoPresbytery of the Twin Cities Area. The presbytery anticipates that use of these funds will result in revitalized congregations, new forms of ministry in the presbytery, healthy partnerships, and most importantly, changed lives. Applications will be accepted beginning in January. The deadline for applications is March 1. Additional information and the application form are available at "Congregational Vitality."
Scholarships are available
for 2019 NEXT Church gathering
The Committee on Congregational Vitality of the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area is providing up to five $500 scholarships for those attending the 2019 Next Church gathering March 11-13 in Seattle. By Dec.  NEXT Church15, those who plan to attend should submit a letter of application to the presbytery explaining why they plan to attend the conference. The committee will review the letters at its December meeting and notify scholarship recipients in early January. Up to five scholarships will be awarded, with a maximum of one scholarship per church. The committee is asking those who attend the gathering to prepare a report for the May presbytery meeting.Letters should be sent to the presbytery office, 2115 Cliff Drive, Eagan, MN 55122. Digital letters may be sent to office@ptcaweb.org.
Jeff's Jottings
This Is It! (Mallory, Part IV)
By Jeff Japinga
Executive Presbyter
Jeff JapingaFor a while, Mallory wondered if she'd simply misread that strange sense inside of her -- that sense of longing for something she could actually believe in that could give her some stability and rootedness. Somewhere that could help her ask the pressing questions of her life? She'd thought that place could be church, a place she'd known in her past. But the church of the present hadn't seemed to quite live up to the longings she had.
So she'd tried a few places on a few Sunday mornings. Deep down, Mallory knew that these brief, episodic encounters probably weren't entirely fair to the church, but she wasn't quite sure how else to do it. Even what it meant to belong seemed to elude her, if only because so little in her life really was about belonging. A place to belong. A place for her to belong, and not some made-up version of herself that seemed acceptable.
She'd about given up, to be truthful, until she met Alisha at lunch one day.
The complete Jottings are at "Mallory's Search."
Around the presbytery   
Holiday Fair Trade Market set
Nov. 17-18 at New Life Presbyterian
Fair Trade Market New LifeChange lives; make the world a better place; find meaningful and unique gifts; and finish your Christmas shopping by Nov. 18. That's what New Life Presbyterian Church in Roseville is offering with its Holiday Fair Trade Market that runs Nov. 17-18. The market features handcrafted fair-trade gifts and food items from all over the world, including jewelry, baskets, rugs, knit products, home decor, foods, crafts, and more. The market is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 17 and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 18. Soup and snacks will be available. Details are in a flyer at "Holiday Fair Trade Market."
First of South St. Paul will celebrate
communion around art-filled table
First Presbyterian Church of South St. Paul will celebrate communion Sunday, Nov. 25, around a table adorned with artwork from six months of collaboration with the Jewish Women Artists' Circleexploring the topic of community. Circle member Teapotartist Aimee Orkindesigned a tablecloth and asked artists to create a unique muslin placemat to form a border around the table. Artist Angela Heider created a ceramic teapot, and a cup for each artist, asking, "What fills your cup?" She then incorporated the responses into the teacups. The exhibit, that now includes the tablecloth, placemats, teapot and cups, closes at the end of November. It is available for viewing anytime during church hours and other times through appointment. The more complete story, including more photographs, is at "Collaborative Art."
Westminster Austin plans Festival
of Nativities Nov. 30, Dec. 1
Westminster Presbyterian Church of Austin, Minnesota, will conduct its Festival of the Nativities on Friday, Nov. 30, and Saturday, Dec. 1, presenting outreach to its community by bringing focus to the birth of Christ. The festival runs 4 to 8 p.m. each day. The event is non-denominational, intergenerational and free for everyone. The festival features lighted displays of nativities, vocal and instrumental Christmas music, children's activities, and refreshments. Details can be found at "Festival of the Nativities."
Boundaries training scheduled Jan. 14; online registration available
Level I boundaries training is planned Monday, Jan. 14, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Oak Grove Presbyterian Church in Bloomington. This training is Boundaries 1required for all teaching elders in the presbytery, and is also appropriate for youth directors, Christian education staff, music staff, ministry volunteers, and people serving on church personnel committees. The training provides basic foundations and frameworks for healthy and safe Christian communities in terms of ministry relationships, finance, social media and confidentiality. Questions can be addressed to the instructor, the Rev. Anna Kendig, at akendig09@gmail.com. 
Resources, conferences ...
Regarding ruling elders: Letting God
Ruling Elder Resourcebe God in church
Joan Gray, who has served as a teaching elder in 12 congregation and also was the moderator of the 217th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), writes this month's installment of Regarding Ruling Elders, a resource provided by the Office of the General Assembly. Gray writes, "The struggle to be in control is a kind of addiction that is part of our fallen human nature. Even the most passionate lovers of God must deal with layer upon layer of what spiritual writer, Thomas Merton, called the 'False Self.' This is the self that is always protecting and building up ourselves. It is part of our fallen nature to always be taking care of those systems, people and things that give us what we want, that make us feel comfortable and happy. When we stubbornly insist on our own way it is obvious that we are not centered on God." Gray's complete column is at "Letting God be God."
News of the wider church  


Office of Immigration Issues
visits U.S.-Mexico border
Immigration IssuesAsylum-seekers crossing the Santa Fe Bridge from Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, to El Paso, Texas, have gotten used to the long wait. What used to take hours for processing now takes days as Central Americans, in search of safety, find themselves camped out on the roadsides and the bridge itself. Amanda Craft and Teresa Waggener, with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)'s Office of the General Assembly, recently returned from spending several days in El Paso, meeting with other migrant support groups and people along the border. The complete story by Rick Jones of the Office of the General Assembly can be found at "Immigration Processing." 
Princeton seminary report examines
its historical connection to slavery
Princeton seminaryWork on the Princeton Seminary and Slavery report began in the spring of 2016. The Rev. Dr. M. Craig Barnes was in his third year as president and wanted to make more progress in seminary conversations on race. "Some thought race was an optional concern, for people of color," Barnes said. "Others didn't want the conversations to be too binary," expressing concern for Latino and Asian American students. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by Paul Seebeck can be found at "Slavery Connection."
PC(USA) stated clerk calls
for prayers for Cameroon
The Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson II, stated clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is calling for prayers for the nation of Cameroon. Nelson writers, "I urgently call you to prayer for our J Herbert Nelsonpartners and friends in Cameroon, a nation still wrestling with the impact of past division by colonial powers into French-speaking and English-speaking regions. Concerns among English-speaking citizens that they are treated as second-class citizens in this majority French-speaking nation have spawned separatist movements. Clashes between separatists and government forces have left many dead." Nelson's complete statement can be found at "Prayers for Cameroon."
National, international church leaders urge engagement with political leaders
Representatives from the World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches are urging faith groups to engage with their political leaders. Jim Winkler, president of the national council, and Dr. National Council ChurchesPeter Prove, executive director of the WCC Commission of the Churches on International Affairs, appeared Monday on "Coffee with the Clerk," a weekly Facebook Live broadcast with the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson II, stated clerk of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Winkler and Prove joined Nelson in Washington, D.C., to discuss the impact of the recent election results and discuss the role of various faiths in the work on Capitol Hill. Prove and Winkler say efforts to speak with members of the Trump administration have not been easy. "Churches making up the national council have not had access to the highest levels of government these last couple of years," Winkler said. The complete story by Rick Jones of the Office of the General Assembly can be found at "Engaging Political Leaders."

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