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July 19, 2007

Synod of
Lincoln Trails
Presbyterian Church (USA)


Around the Synod

The Youth Fellowship of Rushville (Ind.) First Presbyterian Church experienced a Youth Mission/Heritage trip this spring. They shared a night at PYOCA Campground and were thrilled on the high ropes course, a tour of the General Assembly Offices in Louisville, and a visit to Bellewood Presbyterian Home for Children. The group took $100 worth of sports equipment and 40 pairs of shoes from Changing Footprints as a mission gift. The youth and adult leaders returned home inspired with a fuller understanding of the church in action.

Carol McDonald,
Synod Co-Executive



A Word from the Co-Exec: Looking Ahead to Fall

It’s July already! I’m not sure what happened to June, and I know that the all-too-short time between Independence and Labor Days will fly by before I know it. In fact, as I try to enjoy the hazy days of summer (they never seem to be lazy anymore!), I’m already anticipating all the things on the autumn horizon:

The 2006-07 class of potential commissioned lay pastors will "graduate" on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007. This means it’s time to prepare for the 2008-09 class; application forms are available from the synod office (contact Carol McDonald or Kristi Miller) and from the presbyteries of Blackhawk, Chicago, Great Rivers, Southeastern Illinois and Whitewater Valley.

Group 18 of the New Pastor Support Group will begin Nov. 26–28, 2007. Invitations are being mailed now to pastors ordained to the ministry of Word and Sacrament since November 2005. Leadership for this new group will be provided by John Rickard, Executive Presbyter of Blackhawk Presbytery; David Lindemer, Pastor of Dayton Memorial Presbyterian Church in Wabash Valley Presbytery; and Carol McDonald, Synod Co-Executive.

Registrations are already coming in for Interim Pastor Training Oct. 29 to Nov. 2, 2007. The location is Mercy Center in St. Louis, Mo. Don’t wait until the last minute to register; you may be disappointed! Click here for more information and a registration form.

The Synod of Lincoln Trails supports small membership churches in several ways. We support the North Central Wee Kirk Conference which will be held at Pokagon State Park in Angola, Ind., Sept. 25–27, 2007. Click here to download a brochure and registration form. The theme of this year’s conference is “The Great Commission,” based on Matthew 28:18-20. Plenary speakers include Glenn McDonald, Eddie Knox, and Carol McDonald from our synod. Other leadership from within our synod will include Yunchun Han, Gordon Page, Lisa Mays, Bill Hambright, and Owen and Donna Wrzeszcz.

We also support the Conference for CLPs at Montreat Conference Center. This year’s conference is Oct. 24-26.

Back by popular demand...the 24-Hour Leadership events! The Leadership Development Team of the synod is planning three additional 24-hour events for this fall: Oct. 14–15 at Fatima Retreat Center in Indianapolis, Nov. 4–5 at Eastland Suites in Urbana, Ill. and Nov. 12–13 at Stronghold Conference Center in Oregon, Ill. in partnership with Blackhawk Presbytery.

The Leadership Development Team has also produced its first Leadership Forum newsletter. Click here to download a copy. We look forward to their continued work.

There will be a meeting of the Synod of Lincoln Trails on Friday, July 20, 2007. At that meeting, commissioners and those gathered will be led by the Personnel Committee in a time of reflection and mission discernment. We will also hear a report from the team engaged in an administrative review process for Midwest Hanmi Presbytery.

Also at that meeting, the Standing Committee on Leadership Development will review applications for Prophetic Action and Biblical Literacy grants.

When I was new in ministry, things really did slow down in the summer months. It occurs to me that it’s a sign of the electronic age in which we live that nothing seems to stop anymore – ever. I’ll confess...even as I type these words, I’m already looking forward to a winter snow day!

Carol McDonald
Synod of Lincoln Trails

Mark Your Calendar! 2008 Synod Meetings:

Saturday, Jan. 26, 2008, Eastland Suites Hotel & Conference Center, 1907 N. Cunningham Ave., Urbana, IL 61802, 217-367-8331

Friday, April 18, 2008, First PC, 602 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801, 217-367-8357

Saturday, July 19, 2008, Eastland Suites Hotel & Conference Center, 1907 N. Cunningham Ave., Urbana, IL 61802, 217-367-8331

Friday, Oct. 17, 2008, First PC, 602 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801, 217-367-8357


Please continue to remember our sisters and brothers in Midwest Hanmi Presbytery in your prayers as they struggle with some internal issues.


Help wanted. First Presbyterian of Champaign, Ill., is looking for a permanent youth leader. This is a full time position. Click here for a job description, or email Jackie Sowers-Pinkowski for more information.

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News from PC(USA)

Stated Clerk joins in call for farm bill that "strengthens rural communities." Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assembly Stated Clerk the Rev. Clifton Kirkpatrick joined a number of religious leaders July 17 in a letter sent to the speaker of the United States House of Representatives pressing for a reform-minded farm bill. Click here for the full text of the letter.

The Presbyterian Hunger Program of the PC(USA) also is taking action on the farm bill and has a web page dedicated to advocacy for trade justice and a better farm bill, and a page to subscribe to farm bill updates and alerts.

Youth Triennium kicks off with plea to be "God’s agents of disruption," breaking down categories that divide. More than 4,000 Presbyterian teenagers from all over the country and around the world streamed into the Elliott Hall of Music on the campus of Purdue University July 17 for an exuberant kick-off to the 2007 Presbyterian Youth Triennium. More

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