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EMerge, Dec. 14 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
December 14, 2018
Presbytery news  
Information needed now
for Presbyterian Youth Triennium
Wendy Griffin is once again the registrar for the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area delegation to the 2019 Presbyterian Youth Triennium that takes place  this coming summer, July 16-20, at Purdue University New Triennium Logoin West Lafayette, Indiana. In an invitation to presbytery, Griffin writes that the presbytery "is forming a delegation to travel to PYT, and we need your help as we make plans for next summer." She is asking congregations to send an e-mail to, indicating whether or not they plan to send youth to participate in the presbytery's delegation. If congregations do plan to participate, Griffin would like to have an estimate of the number of youth. She added that adults are needed to accompany the delegation and she's seeking names of those who are or might be interested. Griffin's complete "invitation" letter can be found at "Presbyterian Youth Triennium." A Triennium information sheet is at "Going to Triennium."
January presbytery meeting
will explore ministry impact
So how is your congregation doing, you're asked?
You pause for a moment, and then you say, Well, we lost a few more members last year, and we're having a hard time balancing the budget again. We're older, to be sure. But we're good people, and we're trying hard.
That is who you are, after all. But is it all you are? And all you want to be? What if there were a better way to describe your church and ministry in ways different than just membership and budgets? What if you could identify different indicators of vitality?
The complete meeting preview is at "Ministry Impact."

Jeff's Jottings
What are you looking for?
By Jeff Japinga
Jeff JapingaExecutive Presbyter
It seems the perennial question of Christmas shopping, at least for those of us who wander into crowded stores, uncertain either of where that one particular gift might be across the vast display of shelves and product -- or uncertain what it is we're looking for at all. Can I help you with what you're looking for?
But it's not just this year's trendy, elusive electronic gadget we're looking for, is it? Like the people who flocked to the desert to hear the firebrand John the Baptist, the subject of this week's Art and Faith in Advent, the question reaches far deeper into our soul.
The complete Jottings are at "Searching."
Around the presbytery   
Spirit of Life Church plans
special Christmas programs
Spirit of Life Apple ValleySpirit of Life Presbyterian Church in Apple Valley will offer four different special Christmas programs this month. They begin with two programs on Sunday, Dec. 16, including a cantata of nine anthems performed by the congregation's choir during the 10 a.m. worship service. The children and youth present their Christmas pageant, "'Twas the Night before Christmas," at 6:30 p.m. Subsequent special programs follow on Dec. 21 and Dec. 24. The complete story is at "Spirit of Life Christmas."
Moms Demand Action plans
'welcome back' for legislators
Moms Demand ActionMoms Demand Action and Everytown for Gun Safety are planning a "Welcome Back Minnesota Legislators" advocacy event on Tuesday, Jan. 8, the first day of the 2019 Minnesota legislative session. The event begins at 10 a.m. The Rev. Brennan Blue of St. Luke Presbyterian Church is organizing a group from St. Luke to join in the event. Others are invited to join that group or bring a group of their own. Additional information about the event is available at "Moms Demand Action." Additional information about the St. Luke group can be obtained by contacting Blue at 952.473.7378 or 612.518.7737.
Wallis will speak, lead panel
on interfaith perspective on racism
Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners and author of "America's Original Sin: Racism, White Privilege, and jim wallisthe Bridge to a New America," will deliver a keynote address and moderate a panel of local anti-racism experts on Saturday, Jan. 12, at Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church, 511 Groveland Avenue, Minneapolis. The event addresses the devastating impact of racism on local communities and the nation. Panelists are Anika Bowie, vice president of the NAACP of Minneapolis; the Rev. Dr. Curtiss DeYoung, CEO of the Minnesota Council of Churches; Jaylani Hussein, executive director of CAIR-Minnesota; and Sondra Samuels, president and CEO of Northside Achievement Zone. Additional information, along with ticket information, can be found at "Race, Religion and Response."
Director of 'Trigger' will present
the film in January at Oak Grove
TriggerDavid Barnhart, award winning film director, will present his movie, "Trigger: The Ripple Effect of Gun Violence," at Oak Grove Presbyterian Church in Bloomington on Saturday, Jan. 19, at 2 p.m. The movie, funded by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, was a seven-year project and has been selected for the Martin Luther King Jr. D.R.E.A.M. film series. "Trigger" examines the effect a shooting has on a family, the community and society. The presentation, an effort of Oak Grove's Social Justice Committee, is open to the public.
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. Boundaries 1This
training is required 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
Resources, conferences ...
Minnesota Valleys slates training eventsfor church, community leaders
The Rev. Samuel Son, manager for diversity and reconciliation for the Presbyterian Mission Agency, will be the speaker for the first in a series samuel sonof training events planned by the Presbytery of Minnesota Valleys that run January through May. The first event is titled "Hopeful Conversations About Human to Human Relationships: Moving beyond hatemongering, fear, scarcity and miseducation" and takes place Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the presbytery office, 4055 Abbott Drive, Willmar. The event, which runs from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. will equip participants to return to their communities with enhanced listening attitudes, equipped to enhance relationships in diverse communities. Additional details about this event and upcoming training sessions can be found at "Training Events."
Tyler, Rochelle Holm send
greetings from Mzuzu, Malawi
Tyler and Rochelle Holm, Presbyterian mission co-workers in Mzuzu, Malawi, located in southeastern Africa, presented their Christmas greetings this past Holms in Africaweek with prayers of praise and prayer requests. Tyler is a lecturer in systematic theology, church history and Greek at the University of Livingstonia, a private university which is part of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian, and Rochelle is manager of the Centre of Excellence in Water and Sanitation at Mzuzu University, a government university located in Mzuzu. The Holms, who have spent time in the Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area, blog frequently at "Holm in Africa." Their complete greetings note can be found at "Merry Christmas." Information about their service with the Presbyterian Mission Agency can be found at "Mission Connection." Donations are accepted at "Specific Contributions."
ACSWP announces call
for sermons on Jerusalem
As part of a study of Jerusalem approved by last summer's General Assembly, the Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy  and the Racial Equity Salt and LightAdvocacy Committee are announcing a church-wide call for sermons on the meaning of Jerusalem for Christians today. ACSWP Co-Chair, Rachael Eggebeen, noted that the Assembly acted, "mindful of the unique spiritual and religious significance of Jerusalem to Christians, Jews, and Muslims and of the need for free unfettered access to Jerusalem's holy sites," and that this gathering of sermons would be "an unprecedented way to gauge that significance for Presbyterians." The complete story can be found in the latest edition of Salt and Light, the newsletter of the ACSWP, at "Sermons on Jerusalem."
Monmouth College offers free,
2-week program for high schoolers
Monmouth College, a Presbyterian-related college in Monmouth, Illinois, offers a unique, two-week, summer program for high school students. And monmouth collegeit's free. It's called Lux Summer Theological Institute for Youth, and the upcoming program, concentrating on hunger and poverty issues, has the theme, "A Place at the Table: Thinking Theologically about Hunger and Poverty." The Rev. Jessica Hawkinson, Monmouth's chaplain and director of the program, describes the program as "wonderful - and free!," adding that it "gives high school students from around the country a chance to immerse themselves in big theological questions." This year's program runs June 16-30. Details can be found at "Thinking Theologically about Hunger and Poverty."
Austin Channing Brown headlines
2019 Winter Forum in Wisconsin
Austin Channing BrownAustin Channing Brown, a leading voice on racial justice, will be the keynote speaker at the 2019 Winter Forum of the Wisconsin Council of Churches planned in March in Madison. Channing Brown is the author of the autobiographical "Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness." She is committed to exploring the intersections of racial justice, faith and black womanhood. Her presentations infused with justice, pop culture, humor and truth-telling. Details can be found at "2019 Winter Forum."
Ecumenical Advocacy Days planned
in early April in Washington, DC
The website of Ecumenical Advocacy Days notes, "The history of engaging in "good trouble" is embedded in our faith tradition and our history as a nation and Advocacy weekendin the world. In the Bible, we read stories of the midwives who resisted Pharaoh and preserved the lives of Hebrew baby boys. We see Moses challenging the authority of Pharaoh, and Jesus overturn tables run by money changers." In the spring, Ecumenical Advocacy Days will draw on the "good trouble" pioneers from the civil rights era and inspiration from young leaders. The event is planned April 5-8 in Washington, D.C. Details can be found at "Good Trouble."
Service opportunities ...
 is seeking a part-time family ministry coordinator to lead and equip the members of congregation to nurture children, youth and families toward Christian maturity and service. The position is approximately 20 hours per week. The complete position description and application information can be found at "Family Ministry Coordinator."
News of the wider church  


Moving ahead with implementation,
A Corp board gets some friendly advice
PCUSA logoAs the board of directors for A Corporation, the corporate arm of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), prepared to meet this week at the Presbyterian Center in Louisville, a three-page letter of advice and encouragement awaited. Labeled a welcome letter to the Moving Forward Implementation Commission, the letter - signed by the leadership of the General Assembly Way Forward Commission, the All Agency Review Committee and the Way Forward Committee - was also sent to A Corp members. Attached to the letter is a 10-item "to-do" list created by the Way Forward Commission just before the start of the 2018 General Assembly. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by Mike Ferguson can be found at "Moving Forward."
Porter demonstrates effect of 'Doctrine of Discovery' with blanket exercise
One day recently the Rev. Irvin Porter invited about four dozen staff working at the Presbyterian Center to stand on the blanket of their choosing among about 20 covering a conference room floor. As he and threeIrv Porterothers read from a script created by the group, Roots of Injustice, Seeds of Change: Toward Right Relationship with Native Peoples -- which outlined the cruel effects of the Doctrine of Discovery on Native Americans -- an assistant periodically rolled up corners and edges of the blankets until there was scant room for participants to stand. As the blanket exercise played out, crowd members, playing the part of the up to 30 million Native Americans present in what Europeans called the New World when Christopher Columbus landed on Caribbean islands more than five centuries ago, took a seat as disease, warfare, broken treaties, forced migration and mandatory boarding school took their toll. In the end, a half-dozen people remained standing on the gathered-up blankets. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by Mike Ferguson can be found at "Effects of the Doctrine of Discovery."
American Indian women break barriers
in PC(USA); more effort needed
With Native American women installed as executives in such places as the Synod of Lakes and Prairies, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is becoming a more diverse denomination, but there's still work to be done, said the Rev. Danelle Crawford McKinney, a Presbyterian Women board member. McKinney, whose great-grandfather was one of the first Native American Presbyterian pastors in Dakota Presbytery, is a student rights specialist at Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, Kansas, and an enrolled member of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate. The complete Presbyterian News Service story by Gail Strange can be found at "More Needs to be Done."

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