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Office of the General Assembly
Before the opening plenary of Big Tent 2017, participants came together for a time of gathering and community building. But it was anything but the usual meet and greet.
While some 600 Presbyterians are gathered here this week for worship, fellowship and topical workshops at Big Tent, 27 others are here for a very different purpose: seeking their next call to ministry in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Como territorio de los Estados Unidos, Puerto Rico es un paraíso tropical donde se pueden escuchar las olas del mar o admirar las hermosas montañas. Pero eso «puede ser malinterpretado», dice Luis J. Ocasio Torres, Moderador del Presbiterio de San Juan, «esta gente está bien, miren lo hermosos que son los hoteles».
As a U.S. territory, Puerto Rico is a tropical paradise where one can listen to the ocean waves or admire the beautiful mountains. But that “can be misinterpreted,” says Luis J. Ocasio Torres, Moderator, San Juan Presbytery, as in “these guys are doing fine, look at how beautiful the hotels are.”
The Rev. Jan Edmiston, Co-Moderator of the 222nd General Assembly (2016) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), returned early last week from a trip to Syria with a delegation from the church’s Compassion Peace and Justice ministries. Following the chemical weapons attack in Idlib and the retaliatory airstrikes by the United States military, she issued a prayer for the people of Syria and the world.
Every year, an average of 200 Presbyterians gather in Washington, D.C. for Advocacy Training Weekend as an opportunity to worship, attend workshops and fellowship with other Presbyterians and Christian denominations. But this year’s attendance for Compassion, Peace and Justice Training Day is hitting record levels and people are still signing up with less than two weeks to go.
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), A Corporation, has teamed with the Insurance Board and Praesidium to help PC(USA) church councils and members of churches prevent child sexual abuse. The partnership has launched a toll-free Abuse Prevention Helpline (866-607-SAFE) to provide assistance to church councils and church families in their efforts to keep predators away from children
The Committee on the Office of the General Assembly (COGA) began the third and final day of its March 21–23 meeting “still riding a lovely high” from the previous night’s service of worship,” in the words of the Rev. Wilson Kennedy, COGA’s vice moderator.
Hundreds of people packed the sanctuary of Iglesia Presbiteriana de Puerto Nuevo on Wednesday evening to celebrate and worship. It was an historic gathering of the Presbyterian Mission Agency and Office of the General Assembly. This was the first time the interim executive director, Stated Clerk and Co-Moderators had worshipped together in Puerto Rico.
Members of the Committee on the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board gathered this morning in a joint session, joining staff members in a series of “Community Conversations” to discuss how the church can move forward during changing times. Among the issues discussed were cultural shifts, the decline in church membership, and faithfulness and sustainability within the church.