Swainsboro Apts. – Be An Angel 2014

angel_7288cBe An Angel 2014 (Flyer for Churches)

Drop off gifts at Presbytery office, Lyons PC, or White Bluff PC by  Wednesday, December 3, 2014.

Thanks for your support of this important ministry!

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Next Stated Meeting

Date: February 13, 2015
Time: 9 am Registration/10 am Meeting Begins
Place: Epworth by the Sea, St. Simons Island

The handbook will be available at Events -> Stated & Called Meetings

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More Than None

by Alan Dyer
Alan will be offering a workshop on this topic at our 2015 Leadership Development Conference scheduled for February 12-14.

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A little over two weeks ago I traveled to Montreat, North Carolina to participate in a Montreat Institute for Church Leadership conference titled, “More than None: Engaging the Religiously Unaffiliated.” The week’s topic stemmed from a 2011 Pew Research Study that found that 20% of American adults now consider themselves “nones” – meaning they claim no particular religious affiliation. That number jumps to 32% when looking only at American adults ages 18-30. Now given that you are reading this post on the Savannah Presbytery blog it is likely that your (and admittedly my) initial reaction to such statistics is one of alarm. We are church people. We love our faith communities and want others to love it as well! So what is “wrong” with these nones we wonder? Will God’s church still even exist in fifty years if these trends continue? How do we “fix” this “problem”!?

The week did not attempt to offer a magic formula for reversing the trends of the nones. Rather – as the conference title suggests – it did propose that there really is MORE to the “nones” than simply being persons who are religiously unaffiliated. They are people like you and me who have questions/doubts/etc. and many of them yearn to find communities (even churches!) where they are not judged but rather authentically loved and welcomed.

Rodger Nishioka, Associate Professor for Christian Education at Columbia Theological Seminary, was the “Theological Responder” for the conference. In one of his keynote responses he proposed that there is a right question and a wrong question churches today and people of faith everywhere need to be asking. The wrong questions are the ones listed above: How do we fix this problem? What are we doing wrong? How do we get them back in the pews? Will the church survive? These are human questions but wrong questions, Rodger says.

The right question is what are we doing this day to be faithful followers of Jesus Christ? When we as individuals and as a church seek to answer this question each and every day then we change the whole conversation. We stop operating from a place of human fear and begin operating from the place of hope and love that we find only in Triune God. When we place this question at the center of who we are then the nones – and perhaps even we ourselves – might finally feel at home.

So…what are you and the community of faith to which you belong doing today – perhaps even this very moment – to faithfully follow Christ’s call?

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Henry Memorial To Host Rev. David Loleng

10.25.14_HMPC Loleng Event

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First Savannah Endows Scholarship Marking 20 Year Pastorate of Stephen Williams

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Stephen Williams has served as pastor at First Presbyterian Church, Savannah since 1994. To celebrate the anniversary the congregation held a gala party at the Isle of Hope Marina on September 5. The program included remarks by the chair of the Pastor Nominating Committee, Judge Louisa Abbot, the Clerk of Session, John Tatum and Associate Pastor, Will Shelburne.

Randy Calvo, representing Columbia Theological Seminary, acknowledged the gift of almost $24,000 establishing a scholarship fund at Columbia that will be named in honor of Claire and Stephen Williams.

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