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office of the general assembly
Several Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) mission co-workers and other employees are moderating workshops and leading discussion groups at the People on the Move partner conference which convened Sunday in Rome, Italy.
On Saturday the Unification Commission took its first major step toward unifying the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency, combining communications ministries in the two entities as well as the Administrative Services Group. Their senior leadership has until the commission’s next meeting Nov. 12 to determine who will run the combined efforts and to whom that leader will report.
The Unification Commission had two main items for discussion during its Sunday meeting: what commissioners have learned after 17 consultations with various groups, boards and committees; and preliminary talks about what needs to happen ahead of the unification of the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency on July 1, 2025.
Dividing its time almost evenly between closed and open sessions on Sunday, the Unification Commission — which is working to unify the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency — voted to approve a timeline to complete its work by the 227th General Assembly in 2026.
On Saturday the Unification Commission, which is working to unify the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency, unanimously approved a 2025-26 Unified Budget Process that features the development of key unified priorities to help lead development, beginning in 2025, of a unified budget among the PMA, OGA and the Administrative Services Group.
Following an 8 p.m. dismissal on Thursday evening — which was the first day of what will be a three-day meeting of the Unification Commission at the Presbyterian Center — commissioners reconvened on Friday in closed session to continue their discussion around personnel and budget matters, on which no action was taken Friday morning.
“Defining what constitutes mission and how mission is funded and who has fiscal authority are fundamental questions that are beginning to arise for us,” said the Rev. Scott Lumsden, a member of the Finance Work Group within the Unification Commission, which seeks to combine the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency.
The “What’s the Secret Sauce?” conference sponsored by the Presbyterian Mission Agency’s 1001 New Worshiping Communities and the New Church Development Commission of the Presbytery of Greater Atlanta recently welcomed more than 80 participants in a dozen languages with barbecue from three countries and a joyous worship service. Colleagues in the Office of General Assembly and the PMA’s Racial Equity & Women’s Intercultural Ministries were also partners in the event.
Meeting Saturday for the sixth time, the 12-member Commission on the Unification of the Office of the General Assembly and the Presbyterian Mission Agency — the Unification Commission for short — learned during an online gathering the timeline for the work ahead and shared some of the progress made by a pair of the commission’s four work groups.
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) communications staff were among those decorated Thursday night during the Associated Church Press Best of the Church Press Awards ceremony held in Chicago. See the results here.