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Presbytery of East Tennessee E-Newsletter
July 2008
In This Issue
July Devotional
PET Calendar
Connect with Campus Ministries
Board of Pension News
Global Village Interfaith Youth Conference
Coaching Transformation Network
Bridge Refugee Services
Officer Training Event
Hunger Action!
Environmental Stewardship
News and Events Around the Presbytery

July Devotional

Children of Promise

By the Rev. John Gay, Madisonville

"I can't wait to grow up!" runs the refrain from childhood.  Boys and girls running around, playing games and (preferably) getting wet while they do it...eating ice cream cones and slushies while the juice dribbles down their chins with a huge multi-colored grin...running across the grass with not a care in the world as to whether there's a hole or something more sinister out there, accompanied by a whoop - this is the stuff of kid's lives during the summer.
To read the rest of the devotional, click here.
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PET Calendar
2008 Presbytery Meetings:
Tuesday, August 19 @ 10:00am - Northside, Chattanooga (packet deadline: July 31)
Saturday, November 15 @ 10:00am - Location TBA
(packet deadline: Oct. 28)

July Mission Team/Committee Meetings:

New Vision Committee - 7/1, 10:00pm @ First, Sweetwater
Committee on Ministry - 7/8, 11:00am @ Mars Hill
Equip Mission Team - 7/10, 10:00am @ Mars Hill
Serve Mission Team - 7/10, 12:00pm @ Cracker Barrel in Farragut
Outdoor Ministries Team - 7/12, 10:00am @ John Knox Center
Committee on Nominations - 7/14, 10:00am @ First, Sweetwater
Small Church Ministry Group - 7/15, 10:00am @ First Sweetwater
Committee on Preparation for Ministry - 7/17, 12:00pm @ Fairfield Glade Community
Older Adult Ministry - 7/23, 9:30am @ Mars Hill
Budget & Finance Group - 7/28, 6:00pm @ PET office
Coordinating Council - 7/29, 10:00am @ Epperson

Events at John Knox Center:

Dates and online registration  for Summer Camp 2008 are available at the JKC web site. Once there, click on Summer Camp.  Scholarships for camp are available.
For the latest meeting and events information,
go to the presbytery website: www.presbyteryeasttn.org

and click on the Calendar of Events link.

Church Info-Pak Deadlines for 2008:
                  July 18
                  Oct. 17
These Info-Paks include information for pastors and sessions, notices of churchwide events, resources for church educators, and the presbytery calendar.  Info-Paks are mailed to all churches, affiliated colleges and agencies, at-large and retired ministers, and current members of PET mission teams and committees.


Connect with Campus Ministries
By the Rev. Kally Elliott, Presbyterian Center UTK
I am the campus minister at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.  Being part of this "connectional church", I am hoping to keep college students connected with the PC(USA) by asking each church in the Presbytery to please let me know if they have students coming to UTK in the fall.  I would love to contact new Presbyterian students and let them know that the Presbyterian Campus Ministry is here to welcome them and make their transition to college life a little easier.  We are an active, worshiping, mission-oriented campus ministry and we want to reach out to new students!  Please help me (and other Presbyterian campus ministers at other campuses) reach out to new students by letting us know if you have students coming our way!  Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.  Thank you!!!
Advent DinnerIn Christ,
Rev. Kally Elliott
Campus Minister, Presbyterian Center UTK
Those attending UT-Chattanooga can contact the Presbyterian Campus Ministry there at (423) 265-2227 or pcmutc@bellsouth.net
Board of Pensions News
BOP Fall Seminars
Location: First Presbyterian Church, Sweetwater
Growing Into Tomorrow... Today Seminar
Sept. 9 & 10, 2008
Holistic retirement planning for Benefits Plan members age 50 and older.  For more information, click here

Render Unto Caesar Seminar Sept. 11, 2008
Clergy tax and terms of call issues.  For more information, click here.  
Global Village Interfaith Youth Conference
Stony Point Center, Stony Point, NY
The youth of your church are invited to come to Stony Point Center to celebrate our global connection and make interfaith friendships in the Global Village Interfaith Youth Camp, Thursday, July 31 - Sunday, August 3, 2008
The Camp is for teenagers interested in peacemaking, nonviolence, and interfaith friendships.
For more information, click here. For the registration form, click here.
We Want Your News!
The purpose of this newsletter is to provide you with the information and support you need to keep in touch and connected with your fellow Presbyterians in East Tennessee. This monthly publication features news and events from around the presbytery, resources to assist you in your ministry, and devotionals authored by our members.
We invite you to share your news with us!  All articles and news items must be submitted by the 20th of the month prior to publication. Send your information to Dana Hendrix, preferably in electronic format.  Her e-mail address is Dana@presbyteryeasttn.org.
Spread the News!
Don't keep the good news of our presbytery to yourself!  You can easily forward this newsletter to others (friends, family, church members, etc.) by using the convenient "Forward email" link at the bottom of this newsletter.  To help them get on the list to receive our newsletter directly every month, you can tell them to go to our website -- www.presbyteryeasttn.org -- where we have a sign up button right in the middle of our home page.  We appreciate your help!
By Carl Schlich, Interim Executive Presbyter
Advent DinnerThe 218th meeting of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) is now over, "except for the shouting" as my friend Albert Ray used to say about momentous events happening in our growing up part of the world.  What's done is done.  So we move on, remembering and reacting. But, I hope, also celebrating.
It is so tempting to limit the picture of actions of General Assembly to one or two items of interest because of their provocative nature, like those pertaining to issues of sexuality and chastity.  But, so much more happened, so many more decisions made, so much more to feel good about that we will miss, if our vision is narrowed and limited. Also, there is so much to be distorted by limiting what we know and experience to what is said by rumor or from misguided and narrowly informed press. We have much more to celebrate!
I encourage all to look into the information available on the internet from the www.pcusa.org/ga218/ website to find detailed information about items and announcements that are to be celebrated.  For instance, it was announced that donations jumped by a total of $8 million in new gifts and pledges since May 31 in the denomination's Mission Initiative: Joining Hearts and Hands. The campaign has now raised pledges totaling $33 million as it nears the end of the $40 million effort to renew the church for mission. This flies in the face of so many nay-sayers who prophesied huge failure in this effort of the Presbyterians for mission.  We celebrate!
To read more of Carl's observations of the 218th General Assembly, click here.
Coaching Transformation Network
By the Rev. Lina Hart, Associate Executive Presbyter for Equipping Congregations

Your Presbytery now has 15 people (pictured below) who have training to become a Coach for Congregational Transformation.  On June 3, 2008, at First Presbyterian Church in Sweetwater, these elders and ministers from around the Presbytery gathered with consultant Steve Boots for a day-long training event.  They learned more about what Coaches can and cannot do, the process for how they work with congregations interested in exploring Transformation and the skills helpful in that process.  It has been recommended that they be commissioned at the August Presbytery meeting to serve as the initial members of the Coaching Transformation Network.

To learn more about the Network and the transformation process, click here.

Transformation leaders

Bridge Refugee Services Dinner, July 15

Bridge logoFor more than 25 years, the U.S. government has asked Bridge Refugee Services to resettle hundreds of the world's refugees in East Tennessee. Victims of religious, political, or ethnic persecution, these families have come from places as varied as Sudan, Russia, Haiti, Vietnam, Rwanda, Iraq, and Columbia. Willing to work, go to school, pay taxes, and share their diverse cultures with us, these oppressed men, women, and children come prepared to contribute richly to our community. They have suffered much. Will you help us welcome them?
To resettle refugees in Knoxville, Bridge depends on sponsors-churches and other organizations-who will serve refugees as a friend, guide, and temporary financial supporter. Imagine being uprooted - as these families have been - from almost all that you know and cherish:  home, livelihood, language, friends, and culture. Will you consider sponsoring a refugee family in Knoxville? The need is urgent. This summer alone, we expect to receive more than 200 refugees.

To learn more about sponsorship, we invite you to join us for dinner at 7:00pm on Tuesday, July 15th, at New Covenant Presbyterian Church. Please RSVP by e-mail to Marilyn Bresnan (bridgeref@aol.com) no later than July 10th. For more information, feel free to contact Marilyn at 540-1311 ext. 116. We appreciate your concern for "the least of these," and we look forward to meeting you.
Officer Training Event, Aug. 2
By the Rev. Lina Hart, Associate Executive Presbyter for Equipping Congregations
Officer trainingOfficer Training is an ongoing experience for leaders in any size church.  Often Moderators use Session meetings or Committee meetings to enlighten leaders with new trends in the church or to challenge officers with interpretations of Book of Order matters.  Often moderators have annual Officer Training courses to school church leaders on the basics of Presbyterian theology and tradition.   Often churches leaders attend such presbytery events as Loaves & Fishes, coming away better equipped and inspired for serving in their local congregation. Often we hear that our elders, deacons and educators need refresher courses to keep honing their skills and vision for serving.
To this end the Equip Mission Team, through its Small Church Ministry Team, is offering an Officer Training Event on Saturday, August 2, 2008, at the First Presbyterian Church in Cleveland (433 Ocoee Street) from 9 am - 1 pm with lunch
For more information on the training event and how to register, click here.
Hunger Action!
By Deborah Phillips, Hunger Action Enabler 

FISH Dedication

FISH Hospitality Pantries' Advisory Council members participated in the dedication of the FISH Northwest Pantry/Food Warehouse: L-R Laura Contreras, Holy Ghost Catholic Church Pastoral de Cojunto; Deborah Phillips, PET Hunger Action Enabler; Rev. Shirley Kincaid, Wallace Chapel AME Zion Church. FISH Hospitality Pantries receives guests on site and is a sister organization to FISH, which delivers bags of food to the hungry in Knoxville through participating local churches.
Please keep those Cents-Ability offerings coming! It is work like this that the offering supports. Several pantries that need our support have called to say that their shelves will be bare in the next couple of months. Thank you for supporting our Presbytery's Hunger Program.
For more information, please contact Deborah@presbyteryeasttn.org
Environmental Stewardship
Wednesday Night Suppers Go "Green"
According to The Open Door, the newsletter of Bethel Presbyterian Church in Kingston, members of the church have made a concerted effort to reduce the amount of waste produced at their Wednesday night suppers:
Recycle symbol"Many thanks to everyone who brings their own reusable plates and utensils. Marge Hettrick reports that our trash has been reduced from a 55-gallon bag at the March supper to a 35-gallon bag in April and finally a 30-gallon container at the May supper. Our goal is to get down to a 5-gallon container for our waste material from the Wednesday night suppers. Bringing reusable plates, glasses and utensils from home not only saves oil products (Styrofoam and disposable plastic) and wood (paper products), but also helps the kitchen clean-up crew get through faster if they don't have to wash your eating implements. Diane Griffin is also collecting vegetative scraps (no animal products) for her chickens. Many of us are enjoying fresh eggs from these happy, healthy, cage-free chickens. Many thanks to both Marge and Diane."
Also reported in the newsletter is an effort to help the environment while raising funds for the building fund:
"Marilyn Harris reports that over $550 has been cleared for the building fund from the sale of reusable microfiber cleaning cloths. Many people are finding that these cloths make excellent gifts. In some cases, these gifts have generated more orders. Great idea, Marilyn!"
News and Events Around the Presbytery
"Middle Kingdom" Picnic on Aug. 17
The churches of the "Middle Kingdom" (those located in the region between Chattanooga and Knoxville) will have a picnic at Epperson Presbyterian Church, Tellico Plains, on Sunday, August 17 at 5:00pm. There will be worship and picnic and fun - Epperson will supply the meat and drinks and everyone else can bring what they want. 
Northminster Seminar "Liberating"
"I have been liberated today", says one man after attending "Spirituals and Slave Interpretation of Scripture" at Northminster Presbyterian Church, Chattanooga on May 31. This man, an African American in his eighties, is a lifelong Baptist in the community. Over 40 people from three Baptist, one Methodist, one UCC and two Presbyterian churches participated in the conference presented by Drs. Luke Powery, professor at Princeton Seminary, and Emerson Powery, professor at Messiah College. Northminster offered this five-hour program through a grant from the Equip Mission Team of the Presbytery. To read more, click here.
New Providence Begins Moving Dirt
New Providence ChurchNew Providence Presbyterian Church in Maryville is preparing to move some dirt on its property.  The church, on the corner of West Broadway and Lamar Alexander Parkway, is currently in a capital campaign and facilities project that will take a four phase approach over the next five to six years.  To read more, click here.
Bethel Member Receives FTE Fellowship 
Hannah Sherrod, a member at Bethel Presbyterian in Kingston, was one of 50 undergraduate students and 200 seminarians nationwide chosen to receive a $2000 fellowship from the Fund on Theological Education, which is an ecumenical ministry supported by gifts from the PCUSA. To read more, click here.
VBS "God's Big Backyard" Available
Erin Presbyterian Church has the VBS kit "God's Big Backyard" if any other churches are interested. Contact Leslie at the church office (588-5350) if you would like to use it.
Quick Links

Mission Team Blogs: 

The Tool Box - Equip

Resources for ministry, conference announcements, grant application forms, etc.

Care Cafe - Support

Special events for clergy and their families, area clergy lunches, conference info, link to BOP, etc.