NETHER PROVIDENCE – A presbytery whose membership displays variety met not too long ago at Wallingford Presbyterian Church.
Several hundred pastors and elders from the Presbytery of Philadelphia, the oldest within the nation, joined for his or her quarterly assembly. From dedicating Ministry on the Edges to a sermon on “Love in a Time of Rumors and War,” the gathering mirrored the altering church.
“Wallingford Presbyterian last hosted the Presbytery meeting several months before I arrived,” stated Rev. François Lacroix. “We appreciated the chance to welcome everyone again.”
Founded in 1717, the Presbytery is dwelling to a few of the earliest Presbyterian church buildings within the nation. It consists of roughly 130 communities of religion with greater than 30,000 members in Bucks, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.
Representatives of every church had been invited to attend pre-meeting discussions, vote on pertinent agenda objects, take part in a worship service and be part of for a meal. Wallingford Presbyterian final hosted the occasion in July 2013 and Bryn Mawr, Media, Newtown Square, Springfield, Swarthmore and Wayne Presbyterian church buildings have additionally had the glory.
The agenda included a number of personnel objects. Executive Presbyter Rev. Ruth Santana-Grace, put in in 2013 as the primary lady to go the Presbytery, was referred to as for her second five-year time period. As employees chief, she is charged with offering imaginative and prescient, nurture and encouragement to advertise the Presbytery’s ministry and her hopes for the subsequent 60 months embrace supporting congregational partnerships, creating platforms to share tales and strengthening and updating the church’s mission all through the realm.
“We must be resilient and generate new life,” she stated. “We must be a Jesus people beyond the parameters of our culture.”
Rev. Randy Barge, pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Olney and the present vice-moderator, was elected moderator for the approaching yr. His tasks will embrace chairing the 2019 Presbytery conferences. Vijay Aggerwal, an elder at Wayne Presbyterian Church, was chosen as vice-moderator.
The physique additionally obtained a report relating to Chambers Memorial, the 125-year-old Presbyterian church in Rutledge which in 2016 thought-about merging with Princeton Presbyterian (now Tree of Life Church) in Springfield. Based on its historical past and involvement locally, Chambers will proceed its presence within the borough.
A panel dialogue on validated ministries targeted on the Christian Association on the University of Pennsylvania, Korean Church Network, Rydal Park (a 62+ group in Abington) and the board of pensions. Topics included partaking with first era faculty college students and members of the LGBT group, coordinating communities of religion and ministering in a Presbyterian-sponsored setting the place almost half of the residents are Jewish.
Rev. Dr. Beth Hessel, Executive Director of the Presbyterian Historical Society, led the worship service by focusing her sermon on gratitude. Noting “our country is divided in two” and difficulties reminiscent of local weather change and the “senseless war in Yemen” pressure the nation past its borders, she famous the information in 2018 is in some ways akin to the dying and destruction described in sure chapters of the Bible. Amidst the ugly rhetoric, nevertheless, are phrases of saving grace.
“Jesus warns us not to join in the madness,” she stated. “God fills us with hope and love. God’s grace is the final word and that is indeed good news.”
For extra data, go to www.wallingfordpres.org and www.presbyphl.org.
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