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Arab and Israeli women use creativity to work toward a just peace

Working for a just peace in Israel-Palestine can’t be left only to the governments, or even the diplomats. Sindyanna of Galilee, a Presbyterian Mission Agency global partner and grassroots group of Arab and Jewish women, is working together to share its vision of peaceful co-existence in the region.

Eco-Palms: Creativity and caring for Creation in trying times

If ever a year was appropriate to be deemed tohubohu it was 2020. It is hard to believe after all that has happened, that it could even possibly be time to turn our attentions toward planning for Palm Sunday. But even in such a state, with so many things looking different, including how we worship together, life continues.

As micropantries pop up, creativity is key

First Presbyterian Church in Springfield, Illinois, has a history of providing social services for the community. So having to shut down its traditional food pantry in 2020 as a COVID-19 precaution was tough for members. “That was really hard because it’s such a significant ministry in our congregation,” said the Rev. Susan Phillips, the church’s pastor.

Boston church gets creative with the arts

A Boston church is showcasing the works of artists, musicians, writers, photographers and others as a way to glorify God and God’s grace.

‘A call-and-response opportunity for everybody’

The Rev. Aisha Brooks-Lytle enjoys nothing more than cheering on the Herculean online worship efforts being made each week during the pandemic by churches of the Presbytery of Greater Atlanta where she is the executive presbyter.

Minute for Mission: PCUSA World AIDS Sunday

Ministering faithfully in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic has called for creativity and solidarity. Who would have predicted that producing masks would be a part of fighting HIV and AIDS? The Church of Jesus Christ in Madagascar (FJKM), the PC(USA)’s partner church, has been committed to fighting HIV and AIDS since 2001.

The risky business of singing

Since the beginning of time, people have turned to song to express joy’s heights and grief’s lows. In Exodus 15, Moses’ sister, Miriam, sang after crossing the Red Sea. Her song of praise is considered to be one of the oldest pieces of biblical literature. Later, David composed songs of praise and lament that would fill the Psalms — a treasured hymnbook for thousands of years used by Jews and Christians alike. Centuries later, singing both in the home and in public worship became one of the defining marks of Reformation worship. According to the Rev. Dr. David Gambrell, associate for worship in the Office of Theology and Worship in Louisville, Reformers especially emphasized singing the Psalms because it was a way to sing God’s Word together. “If you think about a time before we had projection screens or copy machines, singing was a way for the whole people of God to participate,” he said.

Crestfield camp thrives through community partnerships

In a normal year, Crestfield Camp & Conference Center would be the summer home for more than 600 youth campers and nearly 3,000 conference and retreat attendees. But 2020 was anything but normal. Christian camps throughout the country had to rely on outside-the-box thinking for survival through the summer. For Crestfield’s executive director, Gene Joiner, survival mode came head-on: He joined Crestfield in January 2020, and in mid-March the pandemic hit, effectively shutting down the facility.

‘I stir the pot a little to promote creativity’

Congregations looking for ways to be the church together during and even after the pandemic might well find what they’re looking for in the early church practice of house churches.

Crisis & Creativity

Creative endeavors — music, painting, baking, writing — can be a powerful outlet in times of crisis to free the mind from routines and foster growth.