eLink News

This Week

  • December 9- 1:00 PM Christian Education Committee, Presbytery Office

News from the Missionaries in the Nile Valley

New Update from Ingrid Reneau in Nairobi, Kenya

“thanks for your prayers…Got the ok to go to Yei for a week, so leaving Monday morning to attend YTTC graduation, board meeting, Scripture Union Conf with the youth at YTTC, and to follow up on some items there…will also be in Juba for a couple days, following up items there as well…, still taking iron 3 times a day and other meds, so feeling stronger, but not quite 100%…but very thankful to be able to go at all…greetings to all and thank you for all your prayers.”

Letter from Debbie Blane
Rev. Debbie Blane, mission co-worker, has sent her November letter, which will be posted on the Presbytery web site this week. Her blog can be found athttp://debbiesjourneycontinues.blogspot.com.


News from the Presbytery Office

Prayers
Rev. Willis McGill, retired member of Presbytery passed away last week. We apologize that we were not able to send notice of his arrangements out in time.

Winter Weather
It’s that time of year again when travel can be difficult. Please call before stopping by the office. There are times when the Presbytery staff are not able to make it to the office due to weather conditions, or need to leave early to make it home safely.

Mission Giving Deadline
It is not too early to begin reminding people that contributions for the year 2009 must be given to the church by December 31, 2009 or mailed in an envelope postmarked December 31, 2009. Monies received after the start of 2010 cannot be attributed to the 2009 year. The deadline for monies sent to the Presbytery office must be postmarked by Tuesday, January 5, 2010.

New IRS Mileage Rate
The IRS mileage rate for 2010 will be 50 cents per mile.

LEADERFEST REGISTRATION BROCHURE – available later this week on the Presbytery home page http://www.shenango.org.
A copy of the brochure will also be sent to all church secretaries to copy and give to officers and leaders.

Submit Salary Changes to the Board of Pensions Online!
Church treasurers can now submit salary changes or confirm salaries online through a new feature on Benefits Connect, the Board’s secure benefits web site. To register, go to the Pensions website, http://www.pensions.org. Under the Benefits Connect logo, click “register” and follow the step-by-step instructions for creating your user profile and establishing your password. (NOTE: This is for submitting info to the Board of Pensions. You must still submit a Terms of Call worksheet to the Presbytery.)

New Resource List Online
Debbie has published a new list of resources available in the Resource Center. Visit our homepage, http://www.shenango.org, and click on the big blue button that says “Visit the Resource Center” to bring up a PDF of the newsletter.

Tuba City Manse Destroyed by Fire
Many from our churches have supported the work of Pastor Norma, from the Tuba City and Kayenta Churches in Arizona. On December 3rd, Pastor Norma, her daughter and granddaughter were forced out of the manse by a fire. They lost everything except the clothes on their backs and two laptops. Please keep their family in your prayers, as recovery efforts are just getting started.

News from Our Churches

Congratulations

Congratulations to Rev. Lori Holstein Cotten who was married this past Sunday to the Rev. Ralph Cotten, a neighboring United Methodist pastor in Sharpsville.
Retiring
Rev. Bill Blacksmith is retiring as pastor of Highland Church in New Castle effective December 31. Bill and Linda will continue to live in the area and the Presbytery will recognize his honorable retirement at the February 23 meeting at Grove City College.

Grief Support Group
Pastor Hurray of Mountville Presbyterian Church will be leading a Grief Support Group that will begin on Wednesday, January 6th at the church. They will meet for an hour (11 AM to NOON) for six weeks to be a support group that will include reflections on how others deal with grief, sharing our grief, praying about our grief and what the Bible offers to help us with our grief, action plans to deal with our grief and a service for saying not only good bye, but so long! There will be room in the group for sharing. Take home papers will be provided to work on grief at home between meetings. Please call Pastor Hurray to sign up for the group at 724-368-1102.
Bethlehem Experience
All are invited to the Wampum Presbyterian Church for the Bethlehem Experience, a walk through dramatization, on December 12 from 2-4 and 6-8, and also on December 13 from 2-5 PM. This is free and a gift to the community.

Special Christmas Concert

The Wade Raridon Singers (http://www.thesingers.org) will be performing a free Christmas concert, December 13th at 4 PM at Northminster Church, 3424 Wilmington Road, New Castle, PA. Featuring many alumni from Youngstown State University’s Dana School of Music, the singers will perform pieces by Holst, Shaw/Parker, and other classic choral composers. Their masterful voices will touch your heart in a special way and spiritually bless you. Don’t miss it! Mark your calendars and plan to join Northminster for this special event.

Work Trip to Houma, LA
Mt. Jackson Presbyterian Church is planning our work trip south and would like to invite other churches to join us. This year we are going to the Presbyterian Disaster Camp in Houma, LA. The camp in Pearlington, MS is closed. There are no longer any camps in Mississippi. The dates of the trip are Saturday, February 13 – February 20. They do not start working until Monday. We plan to leave Saturday and arrive in Houma on Sunday. The cost of the camp is $20 per day for room (pod) and meals plus the cost of the vans. We figure it will be approx. $275 pp if you are riding in the vans. Please let us know by December 31 if you want to join us this year for Katrina relief. Please contact Bill Gwin at wlgwin@att.net or 724-667-8321.

Workshops, Conferences and Local Events

Joy to the World! The Music and Poetry of Christmas

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary Choir, under the direction of the Rev. George E. Tutwiler, Organist – Choirmaster, will present this musical program on Tuesday, December 15 at 7:30 PM in Hicks Memorial Chapel Sanctuary. It is free and open to the public with a reception immediately following.

Christmas Vespers at Westminster College
“Telling the Story: Lessons & Carols” will be presented on Sunday, December 13, 2009 at 7:00 PM in Orr Auditorium. Come and join us as we celebrate. Rev. Jim Mohr will deliver the message entitled “What Difference Does It Make?” Punch and cookie reception will follow in the art gallery and lobby. Offering proceeds will support the Chapel Office Spring Break Work Trips.

Continuing Education Opportunity
Westminster College will host a live broadcast of “Main Themes in Orthodoxy: How an Ancient Tradition Illumines Our World” presented by Dr. Edith M. Humphrey, the William F. Orr Professor of New Testament, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. These seminars will take place on January 13, 20, and 27, and the cost to attend at Westminster College is $35.00. For a copy of the brochure, contact the Presbytery Office.

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