From the desk of Pastor Dan:
I am grateful for the opportunity I had to represent Green Hill and South Alabama Presbytery at General Assembly. I was not a voting Commissioner. I was an Overture Advocate. I resourced the church orders committee (one of 21 committees) when they took up the following question: Should a Session or a Presbytery be allowed to publicize their views of scripture or ethical expectations of future church leaders in their operational manuals?
The Committee and the General Assembly gave a resounding “no” to the above question. It was their collective wisdom that if our overture won the day the resulting call process might keep certain groups and individuals from fair consideration for church office.
The General Assembly in Pittsburgh decided many issues by simply “not taking a stand”, one way or the other. The status quo became a safe stance. Many on the left side of the church were disappointed. Many on the right heaved a sigh of relief. “No harm done” is a suitable tag-line to describe the 220th General Assembly.
The question remains, however; how safe are we, as Presbyterians, as a Church in the Reformed tradition, from a full-fledged surrender to 21st century cultural values?
I am looking forward to the Summer Gathering of the Fellowship of Presbyterians in Atlanta, August 22-24, at Peachtree Presbyterian Church. In Atlanta there will be no exhausting fight for the survival of traditional Christianity. I anticipate sweet worship with those of like mind (about the authority of scripture and unreserved acclaim for Jesus Christ as only Lord and Savior in this world). It should be a time marked by 1) a concern for responsible and accountable shepherding of Christ’s Church, by Elders and Clergy alike; 2) promotion of an Evangelism that proclaims Christ as Savior as much as the promotion of social justice and works of righteousness, 3) a renewal of the church based upon an understanding of biblical theology and a new appreciation for the Confessions of the Church; and 4) inspiration to courageously and creatively become an effective witness for Christ in a clearly post-Christian world.
I wonder what the difference in energy and spirit and hope there will be, if any, between the two gatherings?
If you would like a more complete rundown of what actually took place in Pittsburgh, read the bulletin insert supplied recently at Sunday worship. A copy is available on the table in the Narthex.
- Joyfully received Harlie and Beth Dockens as newest members of the church by reaffirmation of their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The Dockens are most recently from Ft. Campbell, KY where they met Lisa and Travis McIntosh who enthusiastically recommended Green Hill to them. The Dockens have three children: Brooke (rising 4th grader), Brandi (4 years old), and soon to be 2 year-old little Emily.
- Received Brooke Dockens as a candidate for baptism and active membership pending her profession of faith to the Session. Baptism tentatively set for July 29th.
- Enthusiastically reactivated the membership of Linda Gordon, a vital member of Green Hill from the 80’s.
- With sad regret accepted the resignation of long-time members and elders of the church, Jean and Buster Voss.
- Unanimously approved a letter be sent to the Board of Pensions (USA) opposing the Board’s new plan to insure same-gender employees of PC(USA) churches.
- Petitioned the Presbytery of South Alabama that our presbytery urge the Board of Pensions to seek relief of conscience for churches that oppose the Board’s new plan for insuring same-gender partners on moral/biblical grounds.
- Approved request from Girl Scout Troop 9296 for use of two rooms on Mondays, 6:30 – 8:00pm
- Donated the old church sign to the scout troop and cub pack; to be located near the scout hut.
- Set September 9th following worship for a meeting of the congregation for purpose of electing three members of the annual nominating committee.
- Received the following information from the Christian Education Committee: Sunday School Rally Day is September 9th, Bible Club resumes on Wednesdays beginning September 19th and will run through March 20th; Barbara Villarreal expects to start a new small group on basic biblical teachings using material from Campus Crusade for Christ (start date to be announced)
- Congregational Care announced Wednesday Fellowship, Prayer, and Bible Study will resume August 1st
- Budget requests from Session committees needed by September 30th
- The next meeting of the Session is August 12th
- Elder Kimberli Fougeron was elected as Commissioner to Presbytery for the August 17/18 meeting at Spring Hill, Mobile.
FELLOWSHIP OF PRESBYTERIANS SUMMER GATHERING
The Fellowship of Presbyterians Summer Gathering is nearly here! Presbyterians from all over the South will meet in Atlanta, Georgia, from August 23 to 24. This event will bring together those who are hearing and answering God’s call to a new way of being a church, through celebration, joyful theological exploration, and hope-inspired mission vision. See http://www.Fellowship-Pres.org for more information.
GREEN HILL GOOD NEWS DEADLINE FOR SEPTEMBER
The deadline for submissions to the September 2012 church newsletter is Tuesday, August 21. Items can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, or dropped off in the church office. Many thanks to all of our contributors.
GREEN HILL CAFÉ
The Outreach Committee has assumed responsibility for providing refreshments each Sunday morning for Green Hill Café. The Outreach Committee invites anyone who would like to host the Café to sign up for a Sunday on the sheet in the Fellowship Hall. Thank you for your support of this activity which we hope will help grow our Green Hill Family.
PRESBYTERIAN HOME FOR CHILDREN
Get an early start on Christmas by ordering your holiday cards from the Presbyterian Home for Children, and make a donation to this worthwhile cause at the same time. The Presbyterian Home is taking orders now through August 15 for Christmas cards to be delivered in September. This year’s card features a beautiful image of Mary, Jesus, and the Star. See the Home’s website, www.phfc.org, for more information.
ADDICTED TO CHRIST MEN’S CONFERENCE
He quit the mob to follow Jesus, and he has an offer you can’t refuse! Former mafia boss Michael Franzese is now a man on a mission, determined to use the experiences of his former life for the benefit of others. Franzese will be speaking at The Grace Place on August 17 & 18. Call 334-347-5214 for tickets and more information.
COMMUNITY BIBLE STUDY
The Community Bible Study at First Baptist Church will begin on Monday, August 20. The study meets from 10am to Noon on Mondays and will be covering Colossians, Galatians, & Hebrews. For more information, please call 334-494-2039.
ALABAMA PRESBYTERIAN CURSILLO
Registration has begun for the Alabama Presbyterian Cursillo, and you are all invited! Cursillo is a three day retreat designed for Presbyterians who desire to renew their faith and develop a deeper understanding of their relationship with Christ. This year’s event will be held at the Beckwith Retreat and Conference Center from September 20 to 23. Please contact the church office at 334-347-9530 for more information.
Hello ladies! Are you ready for fall? The PW is, and the Coordinating Team (CT) is already hard at work planning our events and missions for the coming year. To kick things off, Bible Study will begin on Thursday, September 13, at 10am, and will continue on the second Thursday of each month. This year we will study the General Epistles. All ladies in the church are welcome to join us!
FAMILY BOWLING NIGHT
Please join the Green Hill Church Family on Saturday, August 18 at 4pm for Bowling Night. Instead of bringing the bowlers to the alley, we’re bringing the alley to the bowlers! That’s right! It will be a night of virtual bowling, and other games, in the Fellowship Hall using Wii video game systems. We have the food and the fun planned, we just need you!