What Does It Take to Offer Hospitality to an Individual with Disabilities by Connie Vooys

Our churches are called to welcome all.  In Luke 14:21, Jesus says: “Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.” Do we do that?  Perhaps we do invite them in, but once people come, what do we do to help them feel welcome?   We say we are hospitable, but are we?  Do we truly welcome everyone into our churches or are there … [Read more...]

March 8: A Solemn Day of Remembrance by Kate Kotfila

One year ago on March 8, 2017, 56 teenage girls are locked in a room in a government-designated safe house for troubled teens. The night before one girl tried to escape. To punish her and deter others, they are not allowed to leave the room. Bathroom visits are not permitted. Food is not provided. Soon a fire breaks out (maybe one of the girls seeks to force the hand of the state-run facility. She … [Read more...]

What does it mean to live together in a Christian community? by Arthur Fullerton

As Albany Presbytery works to strengthen and build community among our members, one of the first questions that arises is “what does it mean to be in community?” Living in community generally means that we think about our actions in relational rather than transactional terms. Rather than trying to maximize the benefit from a one-time transaction, we try to maximize the value of our long term … [Read more...]

We Welcome Rev. William Schram Back to Albany Presbytery

We are delighted to welcome Rev. William (Bill) Schram back to Albany Presbytery.  Bill was a previously a member of Albany Presbytery and we wanted to catch up and share more about him with everyone. Before we get started, can you tell us a little bit about where you grew up, any siblings, etc? I grew up in Pelham, NY, just north of the Bronx. I have two younger brothers and we grew up … [Read more...]

UN Youth Leadership Conference Dominated by AlbPresby Delegates by Christy D’Ambrosio

2018 High School Youth Leadership Seminar at the United Nations in NYC During the school winter break 40+ youth and 10 adult chaperones from churches all over NYS traveled to NYC to attend a seminar facilitated by Solomon Starr (theologian, educator, activist, musician and performer) at the Church of the Covenant (next door to our hotel and around the corner from the UN). The focus this year … [Read more...]

Thank You! Results of Combined PDA/Guatemala Water Filter Offering by Kathy Gorman-Coombs

Last week I attended my first meeting of the CEDEPCA USA Board, which is a USA branch of CEDEPCA whose purpose is to interpret the mission of CEDEPCA in the US, and to raise funds to help in their ministry.  The meeting was in Galveston, TX, so it was a nice respite from the cold (though I am writing this on Wednesday, February 21, and it’s 70 in Scotia, same as it was a week ago in Galveston) . . … [Read more...]

Reflections from the February 10th Presbytery Meeting at the Hamilton Union Presbyterian Church in Guilderland

Reflections from the February 10th Presbytery Meeting at the Hamilton Union Presbyterian Church in Guilderland, NY. Please share this information with all those interested in the work and opportunities happening in the Albany Presbytery. You may use the following URL to embed the directly into your communications: https://albanypresbytery.org/feb-10-presbytery-meeting/ The 316th Stated … [Read more...]

Are Guns Our Idols? by Earl S. Johnson, Jr.

In the many violent attacks on our schools and colleges this year, one common element in most of them has been the choice of guns (especially automatic weapons) as instruments of attack and destruction. Why then do so many people still trust in these same guns to protect their children, even to the point of wanting to arm teachers in schools and colleges to protect them? The psalmist argues … [Read more...]

Reflections on the Winter Spiritual Retreat

Reflections on "Meet Me at the Well" Participants in our winter spiritual retreat offered the following words two weeks later: It was an incredibly wonderful and meaningful experience that I hope can be replicated annually.  ~Scott DeBlock I wished I had been able to attend the 2nd day, because I was gaining a sense of reflection, closeness to God, and the fact that I did need that time, … [Read more...]

Constructive Workshop Feedback by Ted Wright

On January 20, over forty elders and clergy took part in a Constructive Workshop.  They shared personal views regarding the report of the Synod Administrative Review Committee. On February 10, during our presbytery meeting, several workshop participants wrote  these brief reflections: Care-filled speaking! Care-filled listening! Thank you. ~Laura Rogers Thank you for providing this … [Read more...]