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May 28, 2015
The Synod of the Trinity * Enews

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Part 1: Small Church Residency Program a helping hand in West Virginia

First-call pastors fresh out of seminary school witNancy Didway 2h plenty of enthusiasm and desire looking for a congregation to begin their ministry. Small churches searching for a preacher to lead them in new and exciting directions. Seems like a match made, well, from heaven.

It’s the kind of relationship that is fueling the Small Church Residency Program within the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Formerly known as “For Such a Time as This,” the Small Church Residency Program places fresh-out-of-seminary pastors into churches where one is needed with the hope of giving the pastor a starting point and also revitalizing the congregation with which it lands. Currently, there are five churches in the Presbytery of West Virginia that participate in the program.

“The thing that I have just wondered at and that’s been marvelous to see is the new perspective that these younger pastors have brought to the churches,” said Pastor Craig Butler, who is the Transitional Associate for Congregational Support at the Presbytery of West Virginia.

To read more about the Small Church Residency Program, click here.

Part 2: Pastors, congregations thriving under Small Church Residency Program

Change can be hard. After all, change involves a different way of doing things and sometimes even a new person wElizabeth Campbell-Malekeho is leading those changes. It can be a frustrating and difficult time for individuals who have been doing things their way for many years. And when there’s a whole group of people dealing with the change, it can lead to an even more trying time for the person who is leading that change.

“Change” is the backbone to a pastor placement program that is currently being used by five churches in the Presbytery of West Virginia. Called the “Small Church Residency Program,” it places recent seminary graduates into churches where a pastor is needed with the hope of giving him or her a starting point while also revitalizing the congregation where he or she lands. Formerly known as “For Such a Time as This,” the program is the brainchild of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and is working in churches nationwide.

To read more about how these first-time pastors are making a big impact in their new homes, click here.

Church of the Mountain a haven for hikers on Appalachian Trail

Its name pretty much says it all. The Presbyterian Church of the Mountain is just that – a congregation located in the Appalachian Mountains in Delaware Water Gap, PA. What the name doesn’t tell you is that the congregation opens its doors tChurch-of-Mountain1 2o complete strangers, providing shelter any time of the day, 365 days a year.

The Church of the Mountain is located in eastern Pennsylvania along the Delaware River, which makes up the state border with New Jersey. Hikers will know Delaware Water Gap as a town that sits on a trailhead, or entrance, to the Appalachian Trail. They will remember the Church of the Mountain as a place that offers necessities for the weary walkers who are on an excursion along the 2,200-mile path that stretches from Maine to Georgia.

To read more about the ministry of the Church of the Mountain, click here.

First PC of Beaver Falls regroups after avoiding devastating fire

There are new pew cushions at First Presbyterian Church of Beaver Falls. There’s also a new coat of paint, and the stonFirst-PC-fire-trucke areas inside the large, Gothic sanctuary are sparkling once again. It was all part of an eight-month project that was not in the plans for the congregation but that will be a constant reminder of a disaster averted.

A fire in the engine panel of the church’s elevator resulted in an estimated $200,000 in smoke damage to First PC of Beaver Falls in early September. It caused that week’s worship service to be held outside in a tent, redirected the congregation’s weekly community meal to another church in town and eventually moved about four months’ worth of Sunday services to another part of the building. But all in all, First PC of Beaver Falls has survived the challenge and has, if anything, actually gotten stronger because of the situation.

To read more about how First PC of Beaver Falls has regrouped following the smoke damage to its building, click here.


Did you know?
Camp Lambec serves the presbyteries of Beaver-Butler, Lake Erie, Kiskiminetas and Shenango. Its name comes from the initials of the six bodies that purchased the camp in 1947. That list includes the presbyteries of Lake County and Ashtabula County in Ohio and Mercer County, Butler County, Erie County and Crawford County in Pennsylvania.

Carlisle still making a difference in Honduras


The Presbytery of Carlisle mission team, working with the Presbyterian Church in Honduras, returned recently from another fulfilling week in Central America. Over the years, the presbytery has nurtured a deep spiritual and practical relationship with its Honduran brothers and sisters.
Carlisle reports that its long relationship with its Presbyterian friends in Honduras will continue. Unfortunately, Carlisle also reports some sad news from Presbyterian World Mission concerning the denomination’s continuing mission work in Honduras.
Read more here.

John Bell of Iona Community visiting West Virginia in June

John BellThe Nurture Committee of the Presbytery of West Virginia is hosting John Bell of the Iona Community in Scotland at First Presbyterian Church of Charleston, WV, on Friday and Saturday, June 19-20.
For more information, click here.

PDA continues to answer call amid storms


Presbyterian Disaster Assistance is responding to the massive flooding that is especially affecting Texas and Oklahoma. One Great Hour of Sharing funds have been sent and eight members of the National Response Team are currently in Texas. Please pray for all who have been affected by flooding, those who remain in harm’s way and for those involved in responding to needs.

To learn more about the work being done by PDA during these disasters, click here.

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