The Presbytery of Shenango

eLink News

Coming Events:

January 16- 7:00 PM Committee on Ministry, Neshannock PC
January 17- 1:30 PM Evangelism Committee, Presbytery Office
January 23- 9:30 AM Steering Committee, Presbytery Office

 

EP Activity This Month

Our Executive Presbyter, Ralph Hawkins, preached at Hillside church in Greenville (Jan 7) and will preach at First New Castle (Jan 14).  He will charge the congregation during the pastoral installation at Trinity church in Mercer (Jan 21).  He will present two training workshops for Ruling Elders at LeaderFest (Jan 13) and will lead a pastor retreat for Lake Erie and Western New York presbyteries (Feb 5-7).  Ralph welcomes opportunities to preach or bring greetings during a worship service, as well as opportunities to visit Session and Deacon meetings.   Schedule a Sunday or a meeting time by contacting him at 724-528-1610 or ralph@shenango.org.

 

Stated Clerk Updates

– TE Catherine Craley will be installed as pastor of Trinity church in Mercer on January 21.
– TE Jordan Rimmer has started his ministry with the Northminster church in New Castle and will be installed by the presbytery in April.  Jordan transfers to Shenango from Beaver-Butler Presbytery, our immediate neighbor to the south.
– TE John Lersch (HR) is preaching for the Moravia congregation during the winter and spring.  John grew up in Shenango and has returned to our area in his retirement after years of pastoral ministry around the country.
– Carolyn Moss has begun service as Temporary Pastor of Slippery Rock church in Ellwood City, pending her examination and ordination by the presbytery in February.  Carolyn has been a candidate under the care of our Committee on Preparation for Ministry and has been a Ruling Elder in the New Wilmington church.
– RE Donna Heard will be commissioned by the presbytery at its February meeting to serve as pastor of the Word Centered congregation in Sharon, having previously served there as an assistant pastor.
– Pastor Nominating Committees are actively searching for Teaching Elders for the Clen-Moore and First New Castle congregations.

(TE = Teaching Elder; RE = Ruling Elder; CRE = Commissioned Ruling Elder; MAL = Member at Large; HR = Honorably Retired; PNC = Pastor Nominating Committee)

 

It’s time for Annual Reports again!  

The GA online statistical program is located at http://oga.pcusa.org/stats.  Clerks will use the same “user name” and “password” as they have used the past few years.  Please note the the password should contain an “!” and is case-sensitive.  The deadline for entering your statistical information is February 13, 2018 at midnight.    If you have forgotten your user name and password, please call or email the Presbytery office. (Note: If you changed your password from what was assigned by the denomination, we will not have that new password.)  There is a “Frequently Asked Questions” page available to help with most common questions.

Presbytery annual reports are available on the “Resources” page of the Presbytery website.  They are downloadable as WORD and EXCEL files and the completed forms can either be mailed to the office or emailed to Autumn at office@shenango.org.  The deadline for completing these forms is January 31, 2018.  Several churches have not been able to complete their reports by the January deadline in the past, please note that in order for your deceased elders to be included in the special service at the February presbytery meeting, your Necrology form MUST be received at the office by February 9th!

WMI Lecture

The Egyptian Church Post Arab Spring: Challenges and Opportunities will be presented on Saturday, February 3, 2018 (10:00-11:00 AM) at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary featuring The Rev. Dr. Andrea Zaki, President of the Protestant Churches of Egypt, General Director of the Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services (CEOSS).   Visit https://www.pts.edu/Egyptian-Church-Post-Arab-Spring for more information.

News From the Churches

GriefShare Program

No matter what the circumstances, grief recovery is a painful process.  A GriefShare seminar/support group is being hosted and sponsored by Calvin Presbyterian Church.  The program will be facilitated by Ginny Brest.  The first session is scheduled for Sunday, February 4 from 1:300-3:30 p.m. in the church parlor.  The group will meet each Sunday afternoon (except April 1, Easter Sunday) for 13 weeks, concluding on May 6 .  While participants are encouraged to complete the 13-week program if possible, attendance is not mandatory each week.  The program is free and open to anyone in the community (and beyond) because we understand how deeply grief and loss hurts people and families.  This is a place where many people have found they can begin to put their lives back together again.  The program is open to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one to help them through the grief process.  If you, or someone you know, would benefit from this program, please contact Ginny Brest at 724-758-3838 or the church office at 724-758-4258 or by email at calvinellwood@gmail.com.  You can also view the GriefShare website at www.griefshare.org for additional information.

eLink News

Coming Events:

January 13- LeaderFest, New Wilmington Presbyterian Church & Westminster College
January 15- OFFICE CLOSED

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018! 

Click here to join the 175+ people already registered for our annual LeaderFest event coming up on Saturday, January 13th!  There will be a special keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Franklin of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler, as well as many workshops surrounding the theme of Discipleship.  Note: Online registration will close at 3:00 PM tomorrow afternoon, however registrations will still be accepted at the door on Saturday morning.

 

EP Activity This Month

Our Executive Presbyter, Ralph Hawkins, preached at Hillside church in Greenville (Jan 7) and will preach at First New Castle (Jan 14).  He will charge the congregation during the pastoral installation at Trinity church in Mercer (Jan 21).  He will present two training workshops for Ruling Elders at LeaderFest (Jan 13) and will lead a pastor retreat for Lake Erie and Western New York presbyteries (Feb 5-7).  Ralph welcomes opportunities to preach or bring greetings during a worship service, as well as opportunities to visit Session and Deacon meetings.   Schedule a Sunday or a meeting time by contacting him at 724-528-1610 or ralph@shenango.org.

 

Stated Clerk Updates

– TE Catherine Craley will be installed as pastor of Trinity church in Mercer on January 21.
– TE Jordan Rimmer has started his ministry with the Northminster church in New Castle and will be installed by the presbytery in April.  Jordan transfers to Shenango from Beaver-Butler Presbytery, our immediate neighbor to the south.
– TE John Lersch (HR) is preaching for the Moravia congregation during the winter and spring.  John grew up in Shenango and has returned to our area in his retirement after years of pastoral ministry around the country.
– Carolyn Moss has begun service as Temporary Pastor of Slippery Rock church in Ellwood City, pending her examination and ordination by the presbytery in February.  Carolyn has been a candidate under the care of our Committee on Preparation for Ministry and has been a Ruling Elder in the New Wilmington church.
– RE Donna Heard will be commissioned by the presbytery at its February meeting to serve as pastor of the Word Centered congregation in Sharon, having previously served there as an assistant pastor.
– Pastor Nominating Committees are actively searching for Teaching Elders for the Clen-Moore and First New Castle congregations.

(TE = Teaching Elder; RE = Ruling Elder; CRE = Commissioned Ruling Elder; MAL = Member at Large; HR = Honorably Retired; PNC = Pastor Nominating Committee)

 

It’s time for Annual Reports again!  

The GA online statistical program is located at http://oga.pcusa.org/stats.  Clerks will use the same “user name” and “password” as they have used the past few years.  Please note the the password should contain an “!” and is case-sensitive.  The deadline for entering your statistical information is February 13, 2018 at midnight.    If you have forgotten your user name and password, please call or email the Presbytery office. (Note: If you changed your password from what was assigned by the denomination, we will not have that new password.)  There is a “Frequently Asked Questions” page available to help with most common questions.

Presbytery annual reports are available on the “Resources” page of the Presbytery website.  They are downloadable as WORD and EXCEL files and the completed forms can either be mailed to the office or emailed to Autumn at office@shenango.org.  The deadline for completing these forms is January 31, 2018.  Several churches have not been able to complete their reports by the January deadline in the past, please note that in order for your deceased elders to be included in the special service at the February presbytery meeting, your Necrology form MUST be received at the office by February 9th!

 

 

 

eLink News

Coming Events:

January 3 – LeaderFest Early Bird Deadline
January 8 – Mission Giving Deadline for Churches (must be postmarked by this date!)
January 13- LeaderFest, New Wilmington Presbyterian Church & Westminster College
January 15- OFFICE CLOSED

 

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018! Tomorrow is the Early Bird Deadline!!!

Click here to register online, print brochures & bulletin inserts, and learn more about our annual LeaderFest event coming up on Saturday, January 13th.  There will be a special keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Franklin of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler, as well as many workshops surrounding the theme of Discipleship.  Please join us!  Early bird registration, as well as the group discount, ends on January 3rd!!!

 

It’s time for Annual Reports again!  

The GA online statistical program is located at http://oga.pcusa.org/stats.  Clerks will use the same “user name” and “password” as they have used the past few years.  Please note the the password should contain an “!” and is case-sensitive.  The deadline for entering your statistical information is February 13, 2018 at midnight.    If you have forgotten your user name and password, please call or email the Presbytery office. (Note: If you changed your password from what was assigned by the denomination, we will not have that new password.)  There is a “Frequently Asked Questions” page available to help with most common questions.

Presbytery annual reports are available on the “Resources” page of the Presbytery website.  They are downloadable as WORD and EXCEL files and the completed forms can either be mailed to the office or emailed to Autumn at office@shenango.org.  The deadline for completing these forms is January 31, 2018.  Several churches have not been able to complete their reports by the January deadline in the past, please note that in order for your deceased elders to be included in the special service at the February presbytery meeting, your Necrology form MUST be received at the office by February 9th!

 

Developing Emergency Plans At Church

All churches should engage in emergency planning so that when an incident occurs, staff and church leaders follow safe procedures. Potential emergencies can arise from acts of God (hurricanes, snow storms), accidents (electrical fire, flooding), and acts of man (violence, infectious disease). While creating a plan can seem overwhelming, breaking down an emergency plan by potential emergency and discussing possible responses can make the task less onerous.  Read the rest of the article.

 

 

 

Hurricane Response

Even as Presbyterian Disaster Assistance began working toward recovery after Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria followed close behind, weaving a path of devastation, wiping out islands in the Caribbean and bringing damaging winds and storm surge to Florida.  Years of recovery lie ahead, and your commitment will help PDA extend the hands of Christ.  PDA is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by the One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

You can send your special offerings and gifts through the Shenango Presbytery office (4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143).  Please designate gifts to DR000169-Harvey, DR000194-Irma, or DR000194-Maria.  We will forward all gifts on to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

For more information, updates, and resources (such as a bulletin insert), please visit http://pda.pcusa.org.

 

Help for Puerto Rico

Help Presbyterians in Puerto Rico recover from hurricane Maria and enable them to minister to their neighbors.

Pastor Adolfo Santana- Cordero is the pastor of the PCUSA church in San Juan and personally friend of Beth Creekpaum (of the Sandy Lake church) through the PCUSA’s CREDO program.

He reports they are in desperate need of:

  • Batteries:  AA, AAA, 9V, C, D
  • Flashlights
  • Solar lamps
  • Bug repellent (NON aerosol)
  • candles

If your church is interested and willing to collect and mail these items to Adolfo and his church, please contact Beth at TheOtherRevCreekpaum@gmail.com for mailing/shipping instructions.

If you personally would like to donate items for mailing or contribute money to help defray the cost of mailing these items to Puerto Rico, please deliver to the Presbytery office and Beth will post them to Puerto Rico on your behalf.

Thanks for your generosity!

 

News From the Churches

Boar’s Head Festival at First, Sharon

First Presbyterian Church in Sharon and the Shenango Valley Chorale Madrigal Singers will hold their 10th annual Boar’s Head and Yule Log Festival on Sunday, January 7, 2018, at 3:30 PM.  This beautiful recreation of a medieval festival is complete with costumes, staging, and plenty of Christmas carols.  It’s a perfect way to celebrate Epiphany and bring to a close the Advent and Christmas seasons.  The Festival is free, and a “meet and greet the cast” reception will follow the Festival.

eLink News

Coming Events:

December 20- 1:30 PM Evangelism Committee, Presbytery Office
December 21-January 2 OFFICE CLOSED for the holidays
January 3 – LeaderFest Early Bird Deadline
 

Mission Giving Deadline

The deadline for the Presbytery Office to receive mission moneys for the 2016 calendar year is coming soon.  Monies must be postmarked by December 31, 2017 for INDIVIDUALS, and postmarked by Wednesday, January 8, 2018 for CHURCHES.

 

Sudan Hunger Offering

Between the offering at the November presbytery meeting, Giving Tuesday, and other monies received at the office designated for the Sudan Hunger Offering, $7,090.20 has been received to date.  Donations are still being accepted.

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018!

Click here to register online, print brochures & bulletin inserts, and learn more about our annual LeaderFest event coming up on Saturday, January 13th.  There will be a special keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Franklin of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler, as well as many workshops surrounding the theme of Discipleship.  Please join us!  Early bird registration, as well as the group discount, ends on January 3rd!!!

 

It’s time for Annual Reports again!  

The GA online statistical program is located at http://oga.pcusa.org/stats.  Clerks will use the same “user name” and “password” as they have used the past few years.  Please note the the password should contain an “!” and is case-sensitive.  The deadline for entering your statistical information is February 13, 2018 at midnight.    If you have forgotten your user name and password, please call or email the Presbytery office. (Note: If you changed your password from what was assigned by the denomination, we will not have that new password.)  There is a “Frequently Asked Questions” page available to help with most common questions.

Presbytery annual reports are available on the “Resources” page of the Presbytery website.  They are downloadable as WORD and EXCEL files and the completed forms can either be mailed to the office or emailed to Autumn at office@shenango.org.  The deadline for completing these forms is January 31, 2018.  Several churches have not been able to complete their reports by the January deadline in the past, please note that in order for your deceased elders to be included in the special service at the February presbytery meeting, your Necrology form MUST be received at the office by February 9th!

 

Developing Emergency Plans At Church

All churches should engage in emergency planning so that when an incident occurs, staff and church leaders follow safe procedures. Potential emergencies can arise from acts of God (hurricanes, snow storms), accidents (electrical fire, flooding), and acts of man (violence, infectious disease). While creating a plan can seem overwhelming, breaking down an emergency plan by potential emergency and discussing possible responses can make the task less onerous.  Read the rest of the article.

 

 

 

Hurricane Response

Even as Presbyterian Disaster Assistance began working toward recovery after Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria followed close behind, weaving a path of devastation, wiping out islands in the Caribbean and bringing damaging winds and storm surge to Florida.  Years of recovery lie ahead, and your commitment will help PDA extend the hands of Christ.  PDA is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by the One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

You can send your special offerings and gifts through the Shenango Presbytery office (4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143).  Please designate gifts to DR000169-Harvey, DR000194-Irma, or DR000194-Maria.  We will forward all gifts on to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

For more information, updates, and resources (such as a bulletin insert), please visit http://pda.pcusa.org.

 

Help for Puerto Rico

Help Presbyterians in Puerto Rico recover from hurricane Maria and enable them to minister to their neighbors.

Pastor Adolfo Santana- Cordero is the pastor of the PCUSA church in San Juan and personally friend of Beth Creekpaum (of the Sandy Lake church) through the PCUSA’s CREDO program.

He reports they are in desperate need of:

  • Batteries:  AA, AAA, 9V, C, D
  • Flashlights
  • Solar lamps
  • Bug repellent (NON aerosol)
  • candles

If your church is interested and willing to collect and mail these items to Adolfo and his church, please contact Beth at TheOtherRevCreekpaum@gmail.com for mailing/shipping instructions.

If you personally would like to donate items for mailing or contribute money to help defray the cost of mailing these items to Puerto Rico, please deliver to the Presbytery office and Beth will post them to Puerto Rico on your behalf.

Thanks for your generosity!

 

News From the Churches

FREE Church Choral Music

Sheet music, cantatas, hymnals.  Browse a nice assortment of general, Christmas, and Easter selections and take what you like.  All for FREE!  Church is located in New Castle.  Call 724-674-5209.

 

Podium Needed

Word Centered is looking for a podium (for someone shorter in height).  If you have one to donate, please contact Donna Heard at 724-699-4170.

 

Grief Support Group

It is important to understand grief, to learn coping skills and to have a determination to survive the loss.  Hold on to hope and gather with others on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM at Shenango Presbyterian Church (3144 Wilmington Road, New Castle).  Rev. Andy Shaffer, Chaplain at SouthernCare Hospice will facilitate the group.

 

Boar’s Head Festival at First, Sharon

First Presbyterian Church in Sharon and the Shenango Valley Chorale Madrigal Singers will hold their 10th annual Boar’s Head and Yule Log Festival on Sunday, January 7, 2018, at 3:30 PM.  This beautiful recreation of a medieval festival is complete with costumes, staging, and plenty of Christmas carols.  It’s a perfect way to celebrate Epiphany and bring to a close the Advent and Christmas seasons.  The Festival is free, and a “meet and greet the cast” reception will follow the Festival.

Annual Reports

It’s time for Annual Reports again!  

The GA online statistical program is located at http://oga.pcusa.org/stats.  Clerks will use the same “user name” and “password” as they have used the past few years.  Please note the the password should contain an “!” and is case-sensitive.  The deadline for entering your statistical information is February 13, 2018 at midnight.    If you have forgotten your user name and password, please call or email the Presbytery office. (Note: If you changed your password from what was assigned by the denomination, we will not have that new password.)  There is a “Frequently Asked Questions” page available to help with most common questions.

Presbytery annual reports are available on the “Resources” page of the Presbytery website.  They are downloadable as WORD and EXCEL files and the completed forms can either be mailed to the office or emailed to Autumn at office@shenango.org.  The deadline for completing these forms is January 31, 2018.  Several churches have not been able to complete their reports by the January deadline in the past, please note that in order for your deceased elders to be included in the special service at the February presbytery meeting, your Necrology form MUST be received at the office by February 9th!

eLink News

Coming Events:

December 20- 1:30 PM Evangelism Committee, Presbytery Office
December 21-January 2 OFFICE CLOSED for the holidays
January 3 – LeaderFest Early Bird Deadline
 

Mission Giving Deadline

The deadline for the Presbytery Office to receive mission moneys for the 2016 calendar year is coming soon.  Monies must be postmarked by December 31, 2017 for INDIVIDUALS, and postmarked by Wednesday, January 8, 2018 for CHURCHES.

 

Sudan Hunger Offering

Between the offering at the November presbytery meeting, Giving Tuesday, and other monies received at the office designated for the Sudan Hunger Offering, $7,090.20 has been received to date.  Donations are still being accepted.

 

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018!

Click here to register online, print brochures & bulletin inserts, and learn more about our annual LeaderFest event coming up on Saturday, January 13th.  There will be a special keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Franklin of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler, as well as many workshops surrounding the theme of Discipleship.  Please join us!  Early bird registration, as well as the group discount, ends on January 3rd!!!

 

Developing Emergency Plans At Church

All churches should engage in emergency planning so that when an incident occurs, staff and church leaders follow safe procedures. Potential emergencies can arise from acts of God (hurricanes, snow storms), accidents (electrical fire, flooding), and acts of man (violence, infectious disease). While creating a plan can seem overwhelming, breaking down an emergency plan by potential emergency and discussing possible responses can make the task less onerous.  Read the rest of the article.

 

Stated Clerk Updates

– TE Bill Blacksmith (HR) recently died in Indiana, Pa.  Bill served the Highland church in New Castle.

– TE Elizabeth Wallace, formerly Associate Pastor at Christ church in Ellwood City, is now serving as Temporary Pastor of the Wampum church.

– TE Catherine Craley has been elected pastor of the Trinity church in Mercer, transferring her minister membership from Mission Presbytery in Texas.  She began her ministry this month at Trinity and will be installed on January 21, 2018.

– TE Jordan Rimmer has been elected pastor of the Northminster church in New Castle, transferring his minister membership from Beaver-Butler Presbytery.  He will begin his ministry at Northminster in the new year.

– Honorable retirement was recognized at our recent stated presbytery meeting for TE Bill Crooks (Trinity) and TE Andrew Jillson (Northminster).

– TE John Creekpaum (MAL) and RE Nancy Aubel (Northminster) we recently added to the presbytery’s approved Pulpit Supply list.

– Clen-Moore, First New Castle, Moravia, and Slippery Rock churches are each searching for pastors.

 

(TE = Teaching Elder; RE = Ruling Elder; CRE = Commissioned Ruling Elder; MAL = Member at Large; HR = Honorably Retired; PNC = Pastor Nominating Committee)

 

 

Hurricane Response

Even as Presbyterian Disaster Assistance began working toward recovery after Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria followed close behind, weaving a path of devastation, wiping out islands in the Caribbean and bringing damaging winds and storm surge to Florida.  Years of recovery lie ahead, and your commitment will help PDA extend the hands of Christ.  PDA is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by the One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

You can send your special offerings and gifts through the Shenango Presbytery office (4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143).  Please designate gifts to DR000169-Harvey, DR000194-Irma, or DR000194-Maria.  We will forward all gifts on to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

For more information, updates, and resources (such as a bulletin insert), please visit http://pda.pcusa.org.

 

Help for Puerto Rico

Help Presbyterians in Puerto Rico recover from hurricane Maria and enable them to minister to their neighbors.

Pastor Adolfo Santana- Cordero is the pastor of the PCUSA church in San Juan and personally friend of Beth Creekpaum (of the Sandy Lake church) through the PCUSA’s CREDO program.

He reports they are in desperate need of:

  • Batteries:  AA, AAA, 9V, C, D
  • Flashlights
  • Solar lamps
  • Bug repellent (NON aerosol)
  • candles

If your church is interested and willing to collect and mail these items to Adolfo and his church, please contact Beth at TheOtherRevCreekpaum@gmail.com for mailing/shipping instructions.

If you personally would like to donate items for mailing or contribute money to help defray the cost of mailing these items to Puerto Rico, please deliver to the Presbytery office and Beth will post them to Puerto Rico on your behalf.

Thanks for your generosity!

 

News From the Churches

Evensong at Unity

Sunday, December 17 at 6:30 PM, come and sing the beloved carols in the beautifully decorated sanctuary of Unity Presbyterian Church (1857 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, Mercer).  Dinner is at 5:30 PM to which ALL are invited.

 

FREE Church Choral Music

Sheet music, cantatas, hymnals.  Browse a nice assortment of general, Christmas, and Easter selections and take what you like.  All for FREE!  Church is located in New Castle.  Call 724-674-5209.

 

Podium Needed

Word Centered is looking for a podium (for someone shorter in height).  If you have one to donate, please contact Donna Heard at 724-699-4170.

 

Grief Support Group

It is important to understand grief, to learn coping skills and to have a determination to survive the loss.  Hold on to hope and gather with others on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM at Shenango Presbyterian Church (3144 Wilmington Road, New Castle).  Rev. Andy Shaffer, Chaplain at SouthernCare Hospice will facilitate the group.

 

Holiday Events at First, Sharon

  • The Shenango Valley Chorale, under the direction of Stephen Barr, will present its annual Holiday Concerts on Friday, December 8th, at 7:30 PM in the Chapel at Westminster College, and on Saturday, December 9th, at 7:30 PM in the Sanctuary of First Presbyterian Church, 600 East State Street, Sharon.  The Chorale will be joined by a chamber orchestra, the Shenango Area Youth Choir, under the direction of Julie Kerr, and the Chorale’s Madrigal Singers.  Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for students, and children 12 and under are free.  Tickets may be purchased at the door.
  • The Black Sheep Players will present “A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Play” in the Fellowship Hall of First Presbyterian Church in Sharon on Saturday, December 16th at 7:30 PM and on Sunday, December 17th, at 2:30 PM.  The play is based on the beloved Charles Dickens novella, and takes place in a radio studio.  The audience becomes the “live” audience for the “live” radio broadcast.  Tickets are $15 for adults.
  • First Presbyterian Church in Sharon and the Shenango Valley Chorale Madrigal Singers will hold their 10th annual Boar’s Head and Yule Log Festival on Sunday, January 7, 2018, at 3:30 PM.  This beautiful recreation of a medieval festival is complete with costumes, staging, and plenty of Christmas carols.  It’s a perfect way to celebrate Epiphany and bring to a close the Advent and Christmas seasons.  The Festival is free, and a “meet and greet the cast” reception will follow the Festival.

eLink News

Coming Events:

December 6- 1:00 PM Christian Education Committee, Presbytery Office
December 8- 9:00 AM Preparation for Ministry Committee, Presbytery Office
 

Mission Giving Deadline

The deadline for the Presbytery Office to receive mission moneys for the 2016 calendar year is coming soon.  Monies must be postmarked by December 31, 2017 for INDIVIDUALS, and postmarked by Wednesday, January 8, 2018 for CHURCHES.

 

Retiree Breakfast

Our SECOND retired pastor breakfast will take place this Thursday, 8am, at Ryder’s Restaurant on Route 208, just west of New Wilmington.  Dutch treat this time!

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018!

Click here to register online, print brochures & bulletin inserts, and learn more about our annual LeaderFest event coming up on Saturday, January 13th.  There will be a special keynote presentation by Dr. Stephen Franklin of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler, as well as many workshops surrounding the theme of Discipleship.  Please join us!  Early bird registration, as well as the group discount, ends on January 3rd!!!

 

Stated Clerk Updates

– TE Bill Blacksmith (HR) recently died in Indiana, Pa.  Bill served the Highland church in New Castle.

– TE Elizabeth Wallace, formerly Associate Pastor at Christ church in Ellwood City, is now serving as Temporary Pastor of the Wampum church.

– TE Catherine Craley has been elected pastor of the Trinity church in Mercer, transferring her minister membership from Mission Presbytery in Texas.  She began her ministry this month at Trinity and will be installed on January 21, 2018.

– TE Jordan Rimmer has been elected pastor of the Northminster church in New Castle, transferring his minister membership from Beaver-Butler Presbytery.  He will begin his ministry at Northminster in the new year.

– Honorable retirement was recognized at our recent stated presbytery meeting for TE Bill Crooks (Trinity) and TE Andrew Jillson (Northminster).

– TE John Creekpaum (MAL) and RE Nancy Aubel (Northminster) we recently added to the presbytery’s approved Pulpit Supply list.

– Clen-Moore, First New Castle, Moravia, and Slippery Rock churches are each searching for pastors.

 

(TE = Teaching Elder; RE = Ruling Elder; CRE = Commissioned Ruling Elder; MAL = Member at Large; HR = Honorably Retired; PNC = Pastor Nominating Committee)

 

Fireside Chats

In addition to our spring and fall overnight Pastor Retreats, our pastors gather throughout the year for Fireside Chats — single-topic mini-retreats for learning and crowd-sourced wisdom.  Pictured here, a dozen of our pastors recently gathered in Sharon to discuss issues of mental health and ministry.

fireside chat 11 2017

 

WMI Announces New Associate Director

WMI is pleased to announce that the Rev. Balajiedlang Khyllep will be joining our staff in January as the new associate director, bringing a missionary heart and cross-cultural skills to WMI. Bala is a product of mission in the state of Meghalaya, India, and brings a broad range of mission experience in India and the U.S. to the work of WMI. He received his bachelor of divinity at Serampore College, where he was the president of his class. He received his Th.M in homiletics from Princeton Theological Seminary. Bala has served as a pastor in South Dakota for the past four years and will join PTS in January. Expressing his excitement for Bala to join WMI, Hunter Farrell said: “Bala’s range of cross-cultural skills and his pastor’s heart will make him a valuable asset to WMI as we seek to engage churches in our area more fully with God’s work in the world. We look forward to welcoming Bala to WMI!”

Hurricane Response

Even as Presbyterian Disaster Assistance began working toward recovery after Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria followed close behind, weaving a path of devastation, wiping out islands in the Caribbean and bringing damaging winds and storm surge to Florida.  Years of recovery lie ahead, and your commitment will help PDA extend the hands of Christ.  PDA is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by the One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

You can send your special offerings and gifts through the Shenango Presbytery office (4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143).  Please designate gifts to DR000169-Harvey, DR000194-Irma, or DR000194-Maria.  We will forward all gifts on to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

For more information, updates, and resources (such as a bulletin insert), please visit http://pda.pcusa.org.

 

Help for Puerto Rico

Help Presbyterians in Puerto Rico recover from hurricane Maria and enable them to minister to their neighbors.

Pastor Adolfo Santana- Cordero is the pastor of the PCUSA church in San Juan and personally friend of Beth Creekpaum (of the Sandy Lake church) through the PCUSA’s CREDO program.

He reports they are in desperate need of:

  • Batteries:  AA, AAA, 9V, C, D
  • Flashlights
  • Solar lamps
  • Bug repellent (NON aerosol)
  • candles

If your church is interested and willing to collect and mail these items to Adolfo and his church, please contact Beth at TheOtherRevCreekpaum@gmail.com for mailing/shipping instructions.

If you personally would like to donate items for mailing or contribute money to help defray the cost of mailing these items to Puerto Rico, please deliver to the Presbytery office and Beth will post them to Puerto Rico on your behalf.

Thanks for your generosity!

 

News From the Churches

FREE Church Choral Music

Sheet music, cantatas, hymnals.  Browse a nice assortment of general, Christmas, and Easter selections and take what you like.  All for FREE!  Church is located in New Castle.  Call 724-674-5209.

 

Podium Needed

Word Centered is looking for a podium (for someone shorter in height).  If you have one to donate, please contact Donna Heard at 724-699-4170.

 

Grief Support Group

It is important to understand grief, to learn coping skills and to have a determination to survive the loss.  Hold on to hope and gather with others on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM at Shenango Presbyterian Church (3144 Wilmington Road, New Castle).  Rev. Andy Shaffer, Chaplain at SouthernCare Hospice will facilitate the group.

 

Holiday Events at First, Sharon

  • The Shenango Valley Chorale, under the direction of Stephen Barr, will present its annual Holiday Concerts on Friday, December 8th, at 7:30 PM in the Chapel at Westminster College, and on Saturday, December 9th, at 7:30 PM in the Sanctuary of First Presbyterian Church, 600 East State Street, Sharon.  The Chorale will be joined by a chamber orchestra, the Shenango Area Youth Choir, under the direction of Julie Kerr, and the Chorale’s Madrigal Singers.  Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for students, and children 12 and under are free.  Tickets may be purchased at the door.
  • The Black Sheep Players will present “A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Play” in the Fellowship Hall of First Presbyterian Church in Sharon on Saturday, December 16th at 7:30 PM and on Sunday, December 17th, at 2:30 PM.  The play is based on the beloved Charles Dickens novella, and takes place in a radio studio.  The audience becomes the “live” audience for the “live” radio broadcast.  Tickets are $15 for adults.
  • First Presbyterian Church in Sharon and the Shenango Valley Chorale Madrigal Singers will hold their 10th annual Boar’s Head and Yule Log Festival on Sunday, January 7, 2018, at 3:30 PM.  This beautiful recreation of a medieval festival is complete with costumes, staging, and plenty of Christmas carols.  It’s a perfect way to celebrate Epiphany and bring to a close the Advent and Christmas seasons.  The Festival is free, and a “meet and greet the cast” reception will follow the Festival.

 

Register for LeaderFest 2018

The Master’s Plan

We’ve all heard the alarming statistics about the church’s demise in American culture.  Even though the population is growing, the church seems to be dying.  While many of the reasons are complex, one of them is very simple.  We have moved away from the Master’s plan, Jesus gives us a very clear model for the church and discipleship through his life and ministry.  Join us as we explore what it means to be disciples charged with the task of making disciples.

Saturday, January 13, 2018
8:30 AM – 1:30 PM
New Wilmington Presbyterian Church & Westminster College

 

All leaders are welcome to hear our guest speaker, Rev. Dr. Steve Franklin!

Steve Franklin has served as the Senior Pastor of Meridian Presbyterian Church in Butler since 2010.  He is a 2006 graduate of Westminster College, a 2009 graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, and he completed his doctorate in congregational transformation at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 2017.  Steve’s thesis focused on the impact of gospel-centered discipleship on the renewal and growth of the local congregation.  Over the last 8 years, Meridian has experienced tremendous growth and renewal.  While the church has more than doubled in size, the real growth has been found in their renewed approach to Biblical discipleship.  Married in 2011 to Laura, they now have two young sons, JD (3) and Colt (1).  If he isn’t working or playing with his sons, you can find him training for a distance race, chasing his goal to reach all 30 Major League Baseball Stadiums, or relaxing on a golf course.

 

 

All relevant information, including costs, can be found in our brochure.

 

A Few Notes on Registration:

Pay online! Individuals and Groups may now pay their registration fees online using the same form!  Individuals must use the coupon code “earlybird” to receive their discount (expires 1-3-2018).  Want to pay online for 2 regular registrations and 1 young leader once the early bird expires?  It’s easy…just enter the numbers in the “pay online” section and click the buttons beside each choice to add multiple types of registrations to your shopping cart!

Group discount! Churches may send as many leaders as they’d like for only $100 (but all must be registered by January 3…it will be $25 per person after that).  If you are registering a group from your church, simply upload a file (download an Excel spreadsheet here that you can fill in) with a list including each individual’s registration information, and mail a check to the office or select “Church Registration” to pay online before the discount deadline.  After January 3rd, simply enter the number of individuals under the “Regular Registration” option to pay for the group online.

Young leaders! Once again, we are encouraging churches to send young leaders (ages 14-22) to LeaderFest. Cost is only $5/person.

Online registration has now closed, but you can still register at the door on Saturday morning!

For more information, please e-mail Andrea Hall, moderator of the Christian Education committee, at andreabhall@gmail.com or contact the presbytery office at office@shenango.org or 724-528-1610.

eLink News

Coming Events:

December 4- 9:00 AM Leadership Development Team, Presbytery Office
December 6- 1:00 PM Christian Education Committee, Presbytery Office
 Mission Giving Deadline

The deadline for the Presbytery Office to receive mission moneys for the 2016 calendar year is coming soon.  Monies must be postmarked by December 31, 2017 for INDIVIDUALS, and postmarked by Wednesday, January 8, 2018 for CHURCHES.

 

Hickman Gratitude

“Jesus kept showing up in Caitlyn Hickman’s mailbox as she recovered from heat surgery.  Thank you to all the churches in Shenango Presbytery for revealing to our thirteen year old with special needs just who and what the church is.  We are so grateful.  She ‘gets it.’  Thanks for your encouragement, prayers, cards and creativity!” — Revs. Lisa and Jason Hickman

hickman-gratitude.jpg

WMI Announces New Associate Director

WMI is pleased to announce that the Rev. Balajiedlang Khyllep will be joining our staff in January as the new associate director, bringing a missionary heart and cross-cultural skills to WMI. Bala is a product of mission in the state of Meghalaya, India, and brings a broad range of mission experience in India and the U.S. to the work of WMI. He received his bachelor of divinity at Serampore College, where he was the president of his class. He received his Th.M in homiletics from Princeton Theological Seminary. Bala has served as a pastor in South Dakota for the past four years and will join PTS in January. Expressing his excitement for Bala to join WMI, Hunter Farrell said: “Bala’s range of cross-cultural skills and his pastor’s heart will make him a valuable asset to WMI as we seek to engage churches in our area more fully with God’s work in the world. We look forward to welcoming Bala to WMI!”

Khyllep

Hurricane Response

Even as Presbyterian Disaster Assistance began working toward recovery after Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria followed close behind, weaving a path of devastation, wiping out islands in the Caribbean and bringing damaging winds and storm surge to Florida.  Years of recovery lie ahead, and your commitment will help PDA extend the hands of Christ.  PDA is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by the One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

You can send your special offerings and gifts through the Shenango Presbytery office (4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143).  Please designate gifts to DR000169-Harvey, DR000194-Irma, or DR000194-Maria.  We will forward all gifts on to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

For more information, updates, and resources (such as a bulletin insert), please visit http://pda.pcusa.org.

 

Help for Puerto Rico

Help Presbyterians in Puerto Rico recover from hurricane Maria and enable them to minister to their neighbors.

Pastor Adolfo Santana- Cordero is the pastor of the PCUSA church in San Juan and personally friend of Beth Creekpaum (of the Sandy Lake church) through the PCUSA’s CREDO program.

He reports they are in desperate need of:

  • Batteries:  AA, AAA, 9V, C, D
  • Flashlights
  • Solar lamps
  • Bug repellent (NON aerosol)
  • candles

If your church is interested and willing to collect and mail these items to Adolfo and his church, please contact Beth at TheOtherRevCreekpaum@gmail.com for mailing/shipping instructions.

If you personally would like to donate items for mailing or contribute money to help defray the cost of mailing these items to Puerto Rico, please deliver to the Presbytery office and Beth will post them to Puerto Rico on your behalf.

Thanks for your generosity!

 

News From the Churches

Blue Christmas Services

Join these area churches on Sunday, December 3rd for a quiet, contemplative service as an alternative to the more traditional gatherings as a way to care for those who are sad or struggling while those around them are caught up in celebrating:

  • Shenango Presbyterian Church, New Castle at 4:00 PM
  • New Wilmington Presbyterian Church at 5:00 PM

 

FREE Church Choral Music

Sheet music, cantatas, hymnals.  Browse a nice assortment of general, Christmas, and Easter selections and take what you like.  All for FREE!  Church is located in New Castle.  Call 724-674-5209.

 

GriefShare Program

No matter what the circumstances, grief recovery is a painful process.  A GriefShare seminar/support group is being hosted and sponsored by Calvin Presbyterian Church.  The program will be facilitated by Ginny Brest.  The first session is scheduled for Sunday, September 10 from 1:30-3:30 p.m. in the church parlor.  The group will meet each Sunday afternoon for 13 weeks, concluding on December 3.  While participants are encouraged to complete the 13-week program if possible, attendance is not mandatory each week.  The program is free and open to anyone in the community (and beyond) because we understand how deeply grief and loss hurts people and families.  This is a place where many people have found they can begin to put their lives back together again.  The program is open to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one to help them through the grief process.  If you, or someone you know, would benefit from this program, please contact Ginny Brest at 724-758-3838 or the church office at 724-758-4258 or by email at calvinellwood@gmail.com.  You can also view the GriefShare website at www.griefshare.org for additional information.

 

 Grief Support Group

It is important to understand grief, to learn coping skills and to have a determination to survive the loss.  Hold on to hope and gather with others on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM at Shenango Presbyterian Church (3144 Wilmington Road, New Castle).  Rev. Andy Shaffer, Chaplain at SouthernCare Hospice will facilitate the group.

#GIVINGTUESDAY

Giving Tuesday is a day dedicated to supporting ministry and mission both locally and around the globe.  On Tuesday, November 28th join Shenango Presbytery as we support our South Sudanese brothers and sisters.

South Sudan is in the midst of a terrible humanitarian crisis following years of violence and struggle.  Your donation can help the peacemakers, such as Achol Majok Kur (who visited with us in September), feed their neighbors.  Any monies donated will be forwarded directly to our mission partners in South Sudan to purchase food items, which they will then deliver to places like the Orphan’s Home Center in Juba, IDPs in UN camps, local churches, and more.

You can give online by clicking the donation button below.  Simply input your donation amount next to the “South Sudan Hunger Relief Matching Offering” option.

 

 

You can also mail your donation to the office at 4197 New Castle Road, Pulaski, PA  16143.  Simply write “Giving Tuesday” or in the memo portion.

If your congregation is already planning a special gift for the offering at the Stated Presbytery meeting that evening…Thank You!

In sharing our blessings, we celebrate the true meaning of this season!