Guatemala Partnership Task Force

Chair: Rev. Kathy Gorman-Coombs

Guatemala Task Force 1When hearing about the Albany Presbytery/Mam Presbytery partnership, people often ask, “What do you mean by partnership? Why not just do mission trips?” But working in partnership with our brothers and sisters in Guatemala is so much more than “doing mission” . . . it is about relationship, about learning more about God as we learn more about each other. The work of bringing together 3 cultures (ours—mainstream Guatemalan—and Mam) and 3 languages is incredibly more challenging than one might imagine. In fact, on human terms alone—it would not have been remotely possible. But with God’s help, and the interceding of the Spirit—amazing things happen.

Recent events have included:
A Mutual Women’s Retreat between women of the Mam Presbytery and Women of Albany Presbytery (in July 2014), where we explored together what it means to be a woman of faith, and learned some things about Domestic Violence, a problem that is present in both our cultures.
A Mutual Youth Retreat, where youth gathered for Bible study, fellow ship, and worship, and also joined together in delivering Eco filters (water filters) to people in the Quiche community, another indigenous group, filters that had been provided through gifts from Albany Presbytery congregation.

Future events in the works are:
An official “delegation” to attend the January 2016 Mam Presbytery meeting and together to embrace a new partnership agreement.
Bringing some Guatemalans here for a Presbytery meeting.
A Men’s Mission Trip in February 2017

Ongoing work we are doing to connect through the year:
Sharing children’s artwork, through photographs taken and shared by e-mail and on Facebook (to participate, please send us an e-mail)
Shared scripture lessons and prayers on Sunday October 4, 2015 (World Communion Sunday). To participate in this, check back at this website in the next few weeks.
Praying for one another, individually and at Presbytery meetings and other gatherings.
Offering an “Eco filter” for use at Albany Presbytery churches, along with a Renewal of Baptism liturgy, to highlight this ministry and remind us all of how significant an issue clean pure water is for so many people in the world.