We Need You — You Can Make a Difference! by Jerry McKinney

We Need You! This is an exciting—and challenging—time in the life of Albany Presbytery.  During these last three years of intentional transition we have been seeking ways to be more faithful and responsive to God’s call to be the Church of Jesus Christ. Do You Know What Albany Presbytery Does? There is more going on than you may know! Earlier this year, after several months of discussion … [Read more...]

Reflections on the Sept. 12 Special Meeting of Presbytery by Ted Wright

Thirty teaching elders and twenty ruling elders gathered in Ballston Spa to receive the first report from the Staffing Process Advisory Team (SPAT): convened last June by the vice-moderator-elect in response to a presbytery action. SPAT gave its rationale and proceeded to initiate a series of “patient, worshipful, and collaborative conversations” aimed toward clarifying goals and priorities, … [Read more...]

How Can You Make a Difference? Wizard’s Wardrobe by Debbie Fagans

Obviously the answer to that question can take many forms, but I’m prejudiced. I think a great answer is by tutoring at the Wizard’s Wardrobe! We are a one-on-one after school tutoring program that was started by members of First Presbyterian Church and others. We work on reading, writing and thinking skills, in addition to reading to the student to increase listening vocabulary. Starting with … [Read more...]

Reflections on Truth Commission on Poverty in NYS by Keith Barber

I wasn’t sure what to expect heading to Schenectady for a Truth Commission on Poverty in New York State, one of several to be held across New York and in other states in an effort to find reconciliation of the current glaring disparity in the distribution of wealth in our country. The concept is suggested by the example of  truth and reconciliation commissions held South Africa to seek new unity … [Read more...]

Two Missions in Albany Presbytery Receive 2017 Presbyterian Women’s Thank Offering Grants by Charlotte Hasselbarth

This past spring Presbyterian Women (PW) give out annual Thank Offering grants. PW groups throughout PCUSA collect financial donations in the fall of each year to fund Thank Offering Grants. This is usually third mile giving. The tradition is that each woman gives in a tangible way to express her gratitude for the special blessings in her life. In the fall of 2016 enough money was collected to … [Read more...]

Creation Care Begins With Self Care by Larry Deyss

Creation Care is not just about caring for the earth. Creation Care is also about us.  It is about you and me.  We are part of creation. We need to be nourished by the very earth for which we are to exercise care.   I cannot think of anything that is more important for us to do during these angry and anxious times than to do the work of self care, and not neglect it because we are too busy with … [Read more...]

Women Learning Together in Guatemala: Day 2-3 Domestic Violence Conference by Kathy Gorman-Coombs

Final Reflections:  Days 2 & 3 Woven throughout our time together were short moments of experiencing and learning about different kinds of “self-care,” led by Mary Flammer.  Soothing self-touch, ways of caring for our physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional selves, focused breathing were among the suggestions, which were appreciated and enjoyed by all. Following a break, the … [Read more...]

Women Learning Together in Guatemala: Day 1-2 Domestic Violence Conference by Kathy Gorman-Coombs

Reflections Written after the Conference was over Day 1-2 The women coming from the North arrived at about 3, looking beautiful and refreshed, not at all as if they had just been travelling for 9 (and some of them 14) hours.  After they’d gotten lunch (and the rest of us had the requisite “refrescoes” (snack that’s more like another meal), we began as an entire gathered group. We began … [Read more...]

Women Learning Together in Guatemala: Day 1 Domestic Violence Conference by Kathy Gorman-Coombs

Women Learning Together in Guatemala:  Training Church  Leaders in Guatemala to Teach others about Domestic Violence Day 1 of 3:  Thursday August 17, 2017:  Reflections on the First Day of the Conference A few weeks before my first trip to Guatemala, in 2007, I was in a panic about having promised to lead a workshop on Domestic Violence with the women of Huitan, the village we had been invited … [Read more...]

A son of the South reflects on Charlottesville by Arthur Fullerton

As a child of the south, I grew up spoon fed the myths of the Confederacy and southern heritage. In sixth grade I won third place in a statewide oratorical contest with a talk about Robert E. Lee. I heard stories of my great great grandfather who was a surgeon for the Arkansas forces fighting the Yankee invaders, of doors with musket balls still embedded and walls with cannon balls still lodged in … [Read more...]