Presbytery of Middle Tennessee E-Newsletter
In This Issue
Highlights of Special Called Meeting
Reception for Philip Beisswenger
LEAD 2015
2014 Statistical Report Deadlines
Presbytery meeting

NaCoMe Winter Youth Retreat 2015
Grades 6-12 Welcome

February 13-15, 2015
NaCoMe Camp & Conference Center
232 Sulphur Creek Rd, Pleasantville, TN 37033

Theme: "Because He First Loved Me"

Registration Check-In
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Click here for Registration Form and more information

If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Deb Krueger, or 931-729-9723.

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January 23, 2015
  January 10, 2015
by Therese Howell, Stated Clerk

The Special Called meeting was held on January 10, 2015 at Glen Leven Presbyterian Church in Nashville.  The following are the highlights of this meeting:

  • Commissioners were welcomed to Glen Leven Presbyterian Church, Nashville, by members of both Glen Leven and the Coordinating Committee.  The Coordinating Committee members handled registration, and members of Glen Leven provided generous hospitality.
  • Delicious and plentiful food and fellowship was enjoyed by commissioners and guests prior to the start of the meeting and during the period of ballot counting.
  • Commissioners and guests gathered at tables in the fellowship hall for a time of discussion on the proposed amendments to the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). 
  • After a break, the presbytery reconvened in the sanctuary for worship.  Leading worship were Dr. Mark Bryan, pastor of Glen Leven Presbyterian Church, and Dr. George Marchinkowski, Colleague minister (Head of Staff) at St. Mungo's United Church, Bryanston, South Africa.  Dr. Teddy Chuquimia and Dr. Sandra Randleman presided over the serving of the Lord's Supper.
  • Therese Howell, stated clerk, presented the proposed amendments to the Constitution.  After a time of debate, members of the Coordinating Committee handed out ballots to the 176 registered teaching elders, ruling elders commissioned by their sessions, and other ruling elders with voice and vote. 
  • Members of the presbytery's Permanent Judicial Commission collected and tabulated the ballots.  All amendments were approved by the presbytery;  Click here for a breakdown of the votes.
  • The meeting was adjourned with a prayer by Warner Durnell, Executive Presbyter.
By Warner Durnell, Executive Presbyter


One action taken at the Special Called Meeting of the Presbytery of Middle Tennessee on Saturday, January 10th, was to vote on  Amendment 14-F, the proposed change in language of W-4.9000 in our Book of Order regarding the definition of marriage.  That lone action taken by the Presbytery, 92 "yes," 84 "no," was reported the next day in Sunday School classes, worship services, and session meetings throughout our region.  The Tennessean, Nashville's newspaper, found our vote on this issue newsworthy, and printed an article about it in its Tuesday, January 13th issue, which garnered no little attention.  As word of our Presbytery vote spread, a numbered of concerned Presbyterians communicated with the Presbytery Office, voicing largely (but not exclusively) criticism and disappointment. 


In the process of fielding calls, emails and letters of dismay, I discovered that more than a few among us are laboring under the mistaken belief that our Presbytery's vote in this matter has settled the issue for our Church; and it has not.  Our Presbytery's vote is but one of 171 votes to be cast by presbyteries all across the country between now and June of this year, and it will require 86 presbyteries voting in the affirmative for Amendment 14-F to be added to our Book of Order.


In an effort to dispel some of the misinformation being bantered about regarding this particular proposed amendment to the Constitution of the PCUSA, permit me to make the following two points: read more.

Reception for Philip Beisswenger
Mission Co-Worker from Guatemala
Come visit with Philip Beisswenger, Guatemala Mission Co-Worker
Friday, February 20, 2015
12:00 Noon
Presbytery of Middle Tennessee
618 Grassmere Park Dr., Suite 2
Nashville, TN 37211

The Guatemala-Peten Covenant Committee (GPCC) of the Presbytery of Middle Tennessee is sponsoring a lunch reception for Philip Beisswenger, our Guatemala mission co-worker, on Friday, February 20, 2015 at 12:00 noon. 

Philip Beisswenger was the Pastor of Eastminster Presbyterian Church in Nashville for many years.  For more than 4 years he and his family have been full time mission workers in Guatemala.  Philip will be sharing information about his work and the partnership between the Presbytery of the Peten, Guatemala and the Presbytery of Middle Tennessee.  Please join us for this exciting gathering.  Please RSVP to if you plan on attending.

To read Philip Beisswenger's blog, click here.


LEAD 2015
Learning, Enrichment And Development

Presbytery of Middle Tennessee and Christian Education Committee



LEAD 2015

 (Learning, Enrichment and Development)


Saturday, February 28, 2015

8:00 am to 2:30 pm

  Westminster Presbyterian Church

         3900 West End Avenue

                Nashville, TN


Click here for the LEAD packet, or you can find it on the presbytery website.  In the packet, you will find keynote and workshop descriptions, registration information, and (NEW!) ideas for getting the most out of LEAD. The first page of the packet is ideal for printing and posting around your church.


Keynote speaker:

Rev. Dr. Elizabeth Caldwell - Teaching Children the Bible (so they don't have to unlearn it later)

Workshop Leaders and Topics:

Amy Jill Levine - Hearing Jesus' Parables Anew

Katherine Hande Smith - Church Hospitality

Proctor Chambless - Understanding Ordination Questions

Gina Yeager-Buckley - Youth Ministry

Warner Durnell - Sabbath Keeping Especially for Teaching Elders

Scott Danemiller - Committee Leadership

And MORE!!


Registration fee is $25 person if postmarked on or before February 9, so get your registrations in now! (NOTE: The registration fee will go up to $30 if postmarked after February 9)


Questions? Don't hesitate to contact Suzie Lane at or Sophie Maness at



2014 Statistical Report Deadlines


The 2014 Statistical Report information has been mailed to churches.  The deadlines for the reports are as follows:

Thursday, February 19, 2015 - deadline for churches to file their report online

Friday, February 27, 2015 - deadline to send the reports to the Stated Clerk to file

March 21, 2015 - for the Clerk's Annual Questionnaire ("CAQ")

Instructions for the Session Annual Statistical Report can be found on the Presbytery's website.

Please contact Therese Howell, Stated Clerk, if you have any questions.

We would love to hear what is happening with
in your church.  We would like to include stories/photos/events in upcoming issues of the Presbytery's e-newsletter.  Share your good news!!  Next deadline for articles is February 6, 2015.

Linda Griffis, Administrative Assistant
Presbytery of Middle Tennessee