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1013 8th Avenue
Seattle, WA, 98104
United States

(206)762-1991

The mission of Seattle Presbytery is to participate, in word and deed, in God’s transforming work through the Gospel of Jesus Christ: †by strengthening the witness and mission of our congregations and members and by building strong partnerships with each other and the larger Christian community.

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News

Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival

Seattle Presbytery

Leaders from around the country are coming together to build the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival. 

The organizing focus over the next few months is simple: educating folks about the Campaign to build long-term commitment in building a Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival and getting folks signed up to participate in the 40 days of Moral Resistance and civil disobedience during the Spring of 2018. The goal is to get 1000 folks in each of the 25 participating states to pledge their commitment to the campaign. 

Consider completing the online Pledge Card (the online Pledge Card). 

Learn more.

Read more from Presbyterians Today: Can we help end poverty?  

5-Month Guided Prayer Retreat

Seattle Presbytery

What are the Spiritual Exercises?

The Spiritual Exercises are an invitation to renew and deepen our relationship with Jesus Christ through prayer and meditation on Scripture. The Exercises are not intellectual exercises – teaching a set of theological propositions, but rather a series of prayerful meditations on Scripture that help us to clarify and deepen our devotion to Jesus Christ.

What does the commitment look like?

We meet one Saturday a month from January to May. A commitment to a daily time of prayer. You are provided with guided prayer exercises to aide you in your daily times of meditation and prayer.

Facilitated byRev. Denise EasterRev. Dianna KunceRev. Dr. Bob Slater

Location: St Mary on-the-Lake Peace & Spirituality Center, Bellevue

Cost: (includes retreat materials and snacks).  Pay in full before January 1 for discounted rate.  For payments after January 1, $50 deposit due at time of registration with installments beginning January 27; to be paid in full by May 19. Payment plans & Scholarships available upon request.

Early-Bird (Before January 1) $390

General Registration, $450

Married Couple, $750

Retreat Alumni, $350

Dates of January to May 2018 5-Month Guided Prayer Retreat:

Saturday, January 27, 2018 – 9AM to 3:30PM *lunch provided

Saturday, February 24, 2018 – 9AM to 1PM

Saturday, March 24, 2018 – 9AM to 1PM

Saturday, April 21, 2018 – 9AM to 1PM

Saturday, May 19, 2018 – 9AM to 1PM

Optional Wrap-up Retreat: Saturday, June 9, 2017 – 9AM to 2PM | $55

Registration: Download Registration Form and mail to:  
RMNW, PO Box 12243, Mill Creek, WA 98082

Download flyer.

Navy Chaplain Corps - hiring for active & reserve duty

Seattle Presbytery

Learn more about answering a call to lead and serve as a Navy chaplain.

Download flyer.

http://www.navy.mil/local/chaplaincorps/

Navy Chaplain Candidate Program Youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL73D183509EFD07B0

Navy Chaplain Candidate Program Facebook Page:

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/group.php?gid=18516032502&ref=ts

Contact:

Matthew DeVillers
Lieutenant, US Navy
Navy Recruiting District Seattle
Chaplain Liaison/Recruiter
Office Phone: (206) 632-0064

CongregationU: Free online training course through Jan. 10, 2018

Seattle Presbytery

Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.
— Desmond Tutu

At CongregationU, we want to offer some hope in light of the tragic shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, that took 26 lives and wounded many more last Sunday.

From now through January 10, 2018, our “Active Shooter Situations in Church Settings” online training course is available FREE to churches and faith-based organizations.

In this course, your clergy, staff, volunteers, and members will learn:

·     How active shooter situations differ from other emergency situations  

·     What to do when faced with an active shooter situation

·     How to work with law enforcement during an active shooter situation

·     The importance of planning and preparing for emergency situations

·     Specific challenges churches present in active shooter situations

Our mission is to educate congregations about relevant, timely topics through e-learning. In the wake of this tragedy, we hope this training course can be a bridge for knowledge and awareness, to help congregations as they seek to protect their facilities and the people within. 

Set up a free account

Anti-Racism Training & Education Opportunities

Seattle Presbytery

In September, nearly 150 people from multiple churches attended the Crossroads Anti-Racism Training offered by Seattle Presbytery. It was a powerful and transformative day of education, reflection, and equipping. For those who attended the training, we are planning to offer a follow-up discussion in early 2018 (more details coming soon). If you were unable to attend the event, look for more opportunities for anti-racism training and education later next year. For more information, please contact Haley Ballast.


More resources:

Regarding ruling elders: Cultural humility

November 16, 2017 by Presbyterian News Service

(OGA) A well-meaning worshipper says to the visiting Asian American pastor, “Your English is very good!” even though English is the pastor’s first language. It grieves her.

A white pastor fakes a Spanish accent and another colleague laughs—while I stand stunned, and grateful that none of our Hispanic or Latino/a colleagues are present.

I made my own gaffe recently when I assumed that a Korean pastor I met had a green card while serving in this country. Instead, he is an American citizen and has pastored his Presbyterian church here for almost a decade. I apologized as soon as I realized my error, but still ….

As an Asian American who lives and moves in a multiracial, multicultural context, one would think that I would “get” diversity on an enlightened level. But, not really. I struggle, make mistakes, and worry about what I’ve said or done. I’m still learning. We all are.

We used to employ the phrase “cultural competency” to describe the ability to effectively and respectfully interact with people of different cultures and races. But more widespread and helpful now is the phrase “cultural humility.” Rather than assessing a skill, and labeling one competent or not, it describes a stance—a rich and freeing one. It is a stance rooted in the servant-hearted way of Jesus Christ.

Adopting a stance of “cultural humility” with someone of a different race, class, or culture means that I choose to be “other oriented.” I seek to be teachable, because I know that I have something to learn from this person. I acknowledge that there are unjust, systemic power imbalances in this world—and in relationships because of them—and I try to be sensitive to the impact that they can have on any interaction.

Read more.

"So You Want to Grow Spiritually?"

Seattle Presbytery

A message from Rev. Renee Notkin, Union Church:

Ted Thwing, a ruling elder of University Presbyterian Church and Union Church, recently published a book entitled, "So You Want to Grow Spiritually?"

Ted interviewed 200 people to determine the causes of the spiritual growth they've experienced across various periods of their lives. The interviews provided not only the data for evaluating the importance of factors that contribute to spiritual growth but also a rich tapestry of wisdom and insight about how these causes are woven into the experiences of life.

This book is not written as a report on the project. Rather, it is intended to draw insight from the interviews to provoke thinking and discussion about spiritual growth. You will find it useful in reflecting on your own spiritual growth as well as on the spiritual growth of those who know you and those you lead.

Available through Amazon.

Waymarkers Offerings: Iona Pilgrimage & Rewilding (wonder) Retreats

Seattle Presbytery

Waymarkers is offering more local retreats to the Pacific Northwest and a pilgrimage to Iona, Scotland in 2018. These offerings, which are rooted in Celtic Christianity and wisdom traditions, invite the participant into a recovered sense of the sacramentality of the natural world, and to practice prayers and postures that create a sense of interrelatedness and divine communion through the wild edges of our lives. 

Learn more online.

BelPres Behind the Scenes: Featuring Bob Wallace

Seattle Presbytery

Bob Wallace (Photo: Wallace Properties)

Bob Wallace (Photo: Wallace Properties)

Posted on October 3, 2017 by Linda Enkema

That’s the kind of dramatic headline that gets our attention these days, although we might ask, “What kind of a person has a name like Presbytery?”

The headline is correct, though, except the Presbytery mentioned was drowning in red ink, not water and is not a person but a group of Seattle-area Presbyterian churches, including BelPres. The member churches meet on a regular basis, worship together, enjoy community, encourage outreach and mission, and come alongside one another in various ways.

How did our Presbytery survive red ink?

I’d like to tell you a true story of the behind-the-scenes service of long time BelPres member Bob Wallace.

Back to our Presbytery. Nine years ago, there were a number of local Presbyterian churches (about five) that had closed over the years due to low attendance. The Seattle Presbytery, which owned the properties, was managing them and was losing about $100,000 each year in doing so. At that time, Scott Lumsden, the new Presbytery Executive (“CEO” of our presbytery), and Bob Wallace became acquainted. They realized together that Bob could be of great assistance because of his extensive commercial real estate experience in his business.

Bob became Co-Moderator of the Presbytery’s Property and Finance Committee and also coached Scott Lumsden in both property management and finance. Scott recalls many sessions with Bob about whether to sell or lease a property, and Scott learned how to manage these properties effectively. Bob always insisted that they have a plan for the funds that would come. According to Scott, Bob would “hold our feet to the fire” concerning good planning, patiently teaching along the way. Scott added “the other members of Property and Finance Committee also did a lot of work. However, Bob is one of the main reasons why Seattle Presbytery has turned the corner financially.”

Read more.

Profound Change After War

Seattle Presbytery

From Rev. Kelly Wadsworth, Seattle Presbytery:

From October 1-31, 2017, I am spearheading an important project for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans in our Greater Seattle congregations.

Profound Change after War” is a way for service members to reflect on their own spiritual encounter and transformation from their own perspective.

Participation involves a 40-60 minute in-person interview describing “an experience when you recognized that you had been profoundly changed by war.” In honor of our veterans, each participant will receive a $75 Amazon gift certificate.

Visit www.profoundchangeafterwar.com for more information. The attached flyer provides additional details and is available in hard copy as well.

As a Teaching Elder in the Seattle Presbytery and as an Army Chaplain who served with the 1-161 INF BN in Balad, Iraq (‘07-‘08), I am the lead on this project. I am happy to speak further with congregations about why profound encounters are a critical piece of our national conversations.

Download flyer.

Wheelchairs for Nigeria

Seattle Presbytery

Our Mission

Nigeria has more polio than anywhere in the world. Tens of thousands of children and adults spend their lives crawling on the ground. Tragically, no one is doing anything in a significant way about it. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been given by the Gates FoundationRotary International, and others for polio eradication, which is absolutely wonderful. But very little is being done for the victims.

Dr. Ron Rice, a retired Presbyterian pastor, and his Nigerian partner Ayuba Gufwan, who walks on his hands from polio, have built and donated over 13,500 wheelchairs to Nigeria's polio survivors. They have their own shop in Jos, Nigeria, with 49 employees, where they build these 3-wheeled, self-pedaled "tricycles" out of bicycle parts for $150. Five of the employees are handicapped themselves. This is by far the largest wheelchair ministry in all of Nigeria, a country that is half the population of the U.S.

Read more.

Compass at First Presbyterian Seeking Donations

Seattle Presbytery

Compass at First Presbyterian is a partnership between Compass Housing Alliance and Seattle First Presbyterian Church with funds provided by a grant from the City of Seattle.

Compass at First Presbyterian is currently seeking donations for specific items.  Read more.

The program serves our community by:

  • Providing 100 new shelter beds for individuals age 18 and older
  • Offering daytime and evening access to support services
  • Serving men and women; pets are welcome
  • Ensuring smooth and safe operations through an on-site manager

Our enhanced shelter model removes several barriers for people transitioning off the street by partnering overnight shelter with 24/7 on-site support services and intensive case management. In addition to services, we serve both male and female identifying people, offer room for storage of possessions, and welcome pets.  This combination of shelter and services enables us to meet people where they are and build a supportive community to help people  currently living in tents or encampments to move toward stability.

Additional Resources:

Hurricane Harvey Relief

Seattle Presbytery

LOUISVILLE – Hurricane Harvey may have been downgraded, but the torrential rains are still pounding parts of Texas. Historic flooding has forced rivers and streams from their banks, submerged homes, churches, businesses and roads, stranding thousands of people.

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance is maintaining constant contact with Mission Presbytery and the Presbytery of the New Covenant.

Read more.

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance is the emergency response and refugee program of the denomination, committed to the long-term journey of recovery of communities adversely affected by a crisis or catastrophic event. It is funded by One Great Hour of Sharing and raises designated funds for responding to specific disasters.

To support recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, click here. You’ll be taken to the PC(USA) website to donate securely and quickly.

If you prefer to mail a check (please designate Disaster Relief – U.S. Hurricane Response, DR000169), send it to:

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
P.O. Box 643700
Pittsburgh, PA 15264-3700

You may also call 800-872-3283 Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (EDT), to donate by phone.

Visit the PDA website for continuing updates.

Pacific Northwest Culture and Religious Identity Courses

Seattle Presbytery

Seattle University's School of Theology and Ministry

Two Seattle Presbytery (Rev. Scott Anderson & Rev. Kelly Wadsworth) ministers will teach the Presbyterian specific segment of these courses.

Courses begin September 28, 2017
Deadline to register is September 15, 2017
Professional Development Student Cost: $210 per course

Part I class dates are Sept. 28, Oct. 26, Nov. 30 from 6-9pm.
Part II class dates are Jan. 11, Feb. 8, Mar. 8 from 6-9pm.

Books and/or scholarships may be available to students. Please contact tricem@seattleu.edu for more details.


Pacific Northwest Culture & Lutheran Identity I and II

This two-course sequence will prepare students to become fluent within their own ecclesial tradition, and within the complex cultural challenges and opportunities that the Church experiences today in this region. The focus is to assist students in: Identifying and analyzing the pressing questions and responses to being Church in this region; enlarging their ecclesial fluency in matters of life, worldview, faith and witness in the Pacific Northwest; refining their sense of relevant Gospel witness where theology meets life every day, including any synodically authorized ministry. Sources will range from ELCA social statements to interdisciplinary analyses, from poetry to prose, from local history to international Lutheran service around the world. All of these sources will assist students in living into the question of identifying the markers for a Lutheran Cascadian sensibility in this dynamic region of the world.


Pacific Northwest Culture & Presbyterian Identity I and II

The focus of this two-course sequence is to assist students in: Identifying and analyzing the pressing challenges and responses to being religious in this region; enlarging progressive theological fluency in matters of life, worldview, faith and witness in the Pacific Northwest; and refining relevant leadership acumen that anticipates and is responsive to the societal challenges in this region, which likewise impact the country and the world. 

The two-course sequence provides an enhanced learning environment inclusive of two kinds of students: Students in degree-seeking programs at STM (MDiv, DMin, MAPS, etc.), and non-degree seeking professionals from throughout numerous walks of life, who participate in the life of their community. Distinct from a course on the history, polity or doctrine of a particular tradition, this course will prepare students for fluency both within the Presbyterian tradition, and within the complex cultural challenges and opportunities that religion experiences today in this region. Sources for this two-course sequence will range from social statements to interdisciplinary analyses, from in-class guests to an assessment of global efforts with local impact. All of these sources will assist students in identifying the markers for a Cascadian sensibility in this dynamic region of the world.


Pacific Northwest Culture & United Methodist Identity I and II

This two-course sequence enables students to develop an ecclesial competency in the faith, order, life and work of the UMC. Pacific Northwest Culture and United Methodist Identity will prepare students to become fluent within their own ecclesial tradition, and within the cultural challenges and opportunities that the Church experiences today in this region.  This sequence, taken in the first year of the M.Div. program, is a bookend requirement toward the United Methodist Polity, History, and Doctrine courses (STMA 5860, 5870, & 5880), which rediscover the theological challenges of contemporary United Methodist - Wesleyan identity alongside the place and authority of the historical statements of the United Methodist experience for being Church in the world today.


Pacific Northwest Culture & UUA Identity I and II

This two-course sequence is designed in partnership between the School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University (STM) and the specific religious communities with longstanding commitments at this School for graduate theological education. The focus of this two-course sequence is to assist students in: Identifying and analyzing the pressing challenges and responses to being religious in this region; enlarging progressive theological fluency in matters of life, worldview, faith and witness in the Pacific Northwest; and refining relevant leadership acumen that anticipates and is responsive to the societal challenges in this region, which likewise impact the country and the world.  

The two-course sequence provides an enhanced learning environment inclusive of two kinds of students: Students in degree-seeking programs at STM (MDiv, DMin, MAPS, etc.), and non-degree seeking professionals from throughout numerous walks of life, who participate in the life of their religious community. Distinct from a course on the history, polity or doctrine of a particular tradition, this course will prepare students for fluency both within the Unitarian Universalist tradition, and within the complex cultural challenges and opportunities that religion experiences today in this region. Sources for this two-course sequence will range from social statements to interdisciplinary analyses, from in-class guests to an assessment of global efforts with local impact. All of these sources will assist students in identifying the markers for a Cascadian sensibility in this dynamic region of the world.

Learn more.

Download bulletin insert.

Download poster.

Download postcard.

Click here to register

 

Message from Seattle Presbytery

Seattle Presbytery

Dear sisters and brothers,

Greetings in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ!

This past weekend we were front row spectators to the very face of evil as white supremacists, neo-Nazis and “alt-right” gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia. Once again this country’s centuries-old sin emerged from the fringes of society and leapt to the front page of newspapers, the screens of our televisions and electronic devices and conversations in our gatherings.

Racism, we were reminded, is alive and well and thriving.

Not since 1963 when Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote his Letter from a Birmingham Jail expressing his deep sorrow and disappointment in US clergy for not uniting their voices in the struggle for civil rights, has the call to Christians been clearer. There is no place for hatred, racism or white supremacy, especially by those who dare to identify as followers of Jesus Christ. We must be resolute, clear and united in this message.

Our recently adopted Confession of Belhar writes, “We believe that any teaching which attempts to legitimate such forced separation by appeal to the gospel, and is not prepared to venture on the road of obedience and reconciliation, but rather, out of prejudice, fear, selfishness and unbelief, denies in advance the reconciling power of the gospel, must be considered ideology and false doctrine.”

The Dutch Reformed Church in South Africa, where this confession came from, learned that the work of facing and naming evil, speaking truth to power and beginning the work of undoing institutional racism begins with us, the church.  We need to examine how we have been complicit in maintaining structures that provide privilege for some but not all, how we have allowed the Gospel to be co-opted by those who espouse racist ideologies, how we have kept silent when our voices could be living water.

This is not about being political. This is about being faithful.

The Presbytery of Seattle is sponsoring the Crossroads Anti-Racism Training on Saturday, September 23. (Update: Registration deadline extended to September 10.) It has been completely underwritten in the hope that at least half of our churches will participate. We cannot pass up this opportunity to begin the challenging task of facing evil head on, and do this as the body of Christ. But I need you at this event.

Let’s learn how to talk about the sin of racism.

Let’s together live the faith we profess.

 

Scott Lumsden
Seattle Presbytery

Shelley Dahl Memorial & Celebration

Seattle Presbytery

A witness to the resurrection and celebration of life

SHELLEY DAHL

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 10:00AM

Mercer Island PC, 3605 84th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA.

In lieu of flowers, Shelley requested gifts be made in her memory to either the Presbytery of Seattle or the Women’s University Club of Seattle.

Please join the family at the Women’s University Club immediately following the service: Women's University Club, 1105 6th Ave, Seattle, WA.

Would you like to strengthen your New Testament Greek skills?

Seattle Presbytery

Study group for rebuilding skills in New Testament Greek

Dear friends,

A bunch of us are meeting twice a month with an extremely effective Greek teacher. We are finding that not only is our Greek improving, but we are also enjoying the whole thing.

Our teacher, Rene Williams,  has taught Greek and Hebrew at Fuller for three decades. She has a great sense of humor, explains things extremely well, and makes us feel that we are capable of learning whatever Greek we want to learn.

Since April five of us (plus Renee) have been working through various NT passages verse by verse. Renee sends emails in advance to help us with the passages.

In the meeting, we talk about the verses and she gives further information to help us figure it out. 

This method works well for people like me (who have a long way to go) but it also seems to be very valuable for the ones who know more. It is a great format for teaching people with different levels of understanding. The two hours feel like one hour.

We meet on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays.

Up through the second Tuesday of September (9/12) we are meeting from 6pm-8.

Starting on the 4th Tuesday of September (9/26) we will be meeting from 3:30 to 5:30, since the Hebrew class will be going from 6pm through 9:30 (which, by the way, any of us can audit. It is free if you went to Fuller, and for the rest of us it is $240.00. See their website).

We meet in a class room at Fuller (two blocks south of Northgate).

Cost:  I put my hat on one of the tables. People put into it what they decide to and it goes to Renee. Fuller donates the space. 

If you have studied NT Greek in the past, we would love to have you join us. Please email me and I will give you further information: alanbrucebeasley@gmail.com.  Also please email me if you can’t do it right now, but want to do it in the future.

God bless,

Alan Beasley

 

Book of Order 2017-2019

Seattle Presbytery

A free downloadable PDF version of the Book of Order 2017-2019 is now available online. This book is Part II of the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and contains the Foundations of Presbyterian Polity, the Form of Government, the newly approved Directory for Worship, and the Rules of Discipline. Additional information is provided to the reader through the inclusion of Received Ecumenical Statements of Guidance and Articles of Agreement.

Download free PDF version.

Whitworth Office of Church Engagement: The Calling Initiative

Seattle Presbytery

The Calling Initiative

The Vision

The Lilly Foundation has invited Whitworth’s Office of Church Engagement (OCE) to submit a proposal for $1.5 million to launch a new initiative that will explore what it means to be "called" by God to kingdom work in a post-Christendom setting. By post-Christendom we mean a situation in which Christianity and the church no longer hold a position of cultural privilege and power.

We are choosing to identify this as "the Third Way," which echoes the language used during the early Christian period. The Christian movement was neither religiously pluralistic and syncretistic, as Rome was, nor was it culturally and ethnically isolated, as Judaism was. It embodied a "Third Way," which proved to be highly effective in the ancient world.

We are inviting your church to become a ministry partner with us in exploring what a "Third Way" identity and ministry may look like today.

The Commitment

Ministry partners are invited to step into the Calling Initiative by committing to a one year discernment process. Thereafter, a multiyear commitment to the Calling Initiative is asked from ministry partners by the OCE, for the intention of deepening relationship. The one year discernment process includes the following chronological commitments and begins in the Summer of 2018, with annual openings thereafter, e.g. Summer of 2019.

  1. Partner with the OCE
  2. Recruit a cohort of at least five people to participate in the Academy of Christian Discipleship’s "Third Way" track. The track explores and explains how the apostolic church (AD 40-90) and early Christian movement (AD 90-300) established a new way of living in the world, based on the gospel, and how we can rediscover this way for the contemporary church.
  3. Participate in a process of discerning what your church needs and what it may mean to become a "Third Way" church, especially with reference to the six working groups mentioned below. Participation in the Academy will assist in this process.
  4. Consider a multi-year commitment to participate in one or more of the following working groups, which will depend upon what your church needs. The goal here is to develop and deepen "Third Way" ministry in a post-Christendom setting. The six working groups we are considering include:
    • Secular vocation and Gospel faithfulness (Col. 3:14-17)
      Goal: Transform secular vocations for kingdom work
    • Worship: Old, New, and Global (Romans 12:1-2)
      Goal: Transform worship by exploring how the church can renew her vision of God
    • Intergenerational Discipleship (Malachi 4:6)
      Goal: Transform churches by challenging people of all ages to join together in fulfilling the Great Commission
    • Impact on the City (Jeremiah 29:4-11)
      Goal: Transform cities by exploring how churches can become salt, leaven, and light at the local level
    • Evangelism (Matthew 28:18-20)
      Goal: Transform how followers of Jesus understand, live, and practice the Good News
    • Hospitality (Leviticus 19:18, 34)
      Goal: Transform communities by welcoming strangers (immigrants and refugees), orphans, and widows into the church body
  5. Continue to participate in the Academy of Christian Discipleship and collaborate with other partner churches within each group.

Read more.