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Updated: 1 hour 36 min ago

Eco-Palms: a celebration of triumphal entry and environmental justice

5 hours 9 min ago

January 28, 2015

Eco-Palms partner amid stand of palms in Mexico. —Bryce Wiebe

Presbyterian News Service

Rick Jones

LOUISVILLE

It is estimated that nearly a thousand congregations across the country will be waving 1 million ecofriendly palm fronds as Holy Week observances begin this year. As churches of all denominations remember Christ’s arrival in Jerusalem, palm fronds will play a key role. But have you ever wondered where the fronds come from and how important they are to the people who harvest them?

New Books for Lent from Rowan Williams and Feasting on the Word Series

6 hours 49 min ago

January 28, 2015

Westminster John Knox Press

Louisville, Kentucky

Two new books are now available for the Lenten season from Westminster John Knox Press. Meeting God in Mark from Rowan Williams explores the essential meaning and purpose of Mark’s Gospel for beginners who may be curious about the Gospels and want to learn more, as well as for those who’ve read the Gospel many times before and want to see it in a fresh light.Also available is the Feasting on the Word Lenten Companion—edited by David L. Bartlett, Barbara Brown Taylor, and Kimberly Bracken Long—which provides both lectionary and non-lectionary pastors with an additional resource for Lenten sermon and worship preparation. 

PC(USA) Presidents: Affirming the Call for Racial Justice

8 hours 9 min ago

January 28, 2015

Special to Presbyterian News Service

Michael K. Thompson

Columbia Theological Seminary

Recently, The Huffington Post published “An Open Letter to Presidents and Deans of Theological Schools in the United States.” More than thirty African American deans and presidents of Theological Schools signed the letter regarding racial justice issues including Dr. Deborah Flemister Mullen, our Dean of Faculty and Executive Vice President. You may read the letter here.

The Presidents of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) seminaries, including our Interim President Bill Scheu, wrote a response affirming this call “to arise from the embers of silence and speak up and speak out as the prophet of old, ‘let justice run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream’ (Amos 5:24).”

Tighter fiscal control for Presbyterian Youth Triennium

Tue, 01/27/2015 - 14:02

New measures are underway after an audit revealed a financial loss for the 2013 Presbyterian Youth Triennium despite record-breaking attendance.

January 27, 2015

Presbyterian News Service

Emily Enders Odom

LOUISVILLE

While the 2013 Presbyterian Youth Triennium (PYT)—held July 16–20—attained record-breaking attendance of more than 5,000 young people, those numbers don’t tell the full story. The event resulted in a financial loss, even with revenues higher than budgeted.

Raleigh congregation partners for education in South Sudan

Tue, 01/27/2015 - 12:00

World Mission partnership brings primary school its first professionally trained teachers.

January 27, 2015

Presbyterian News Service

Kathy Melvin

Raleigh, NC

Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, N.C., and Presbyterian World Mission are working with local partners to provide quality teachers for children at Maleng-Agok Primary School in South Sudan.

Voices from the border and beyond

Tue, 01/27/2015 - 10:00

Along the U.S.–Mexico border, a Presbyterian congregation becomes home to women and children fleeing violence and poverty.

January 27, 2015

Rosa shares her story. —Paul Seebeck

Presbyterian News Service

Paul Seebeck

Tucson, AZ

Patti was 6 years old when she first heard the sound of a gun—6 years old when she first saw a man killed. Later, when her father was taken away to be brutally tortured, she and her family knew it was time to escape. They came to the U.S.

Lifelong servant of the church, Elizabeth-Ann ‘Betty’ Nicholson, dies at 81

Tue, 01/27/2015 - 07:00

January 27, 2015

Betty Nicholson in 1969. —Courtesy of Bob Nicholson.

Presbyterian News Service

Seattle, WA

Elizabeth “Betty” Nicholson died peacefully from cancer January 19. 

Jimmy Carter, Russell Moore and Harry Jackson: Bridging the racial divide

Mon, 01/26/2015 - 12:00

January 26, 2015

Religion News Service

As protests against police brutality and the killing of unarmed black men continue from coast to coast, religious leaders are spearheading church-based gatherings to find ways to bridge America’s racial divide.

Marcus Borg, leading liberal theologian and historical Jesus expert, dies at 72

Mon, 01/26/2015 - 10:00

January 26, 2015

Religion News Service

Marcus J. Borg, a prominent liberal theologian and Bible scholar who for a generation helped popularize the intense debates about the historical Jesus and the veracity and meaning of the New Testament, died on Wednesday (Jan. 21). He was 72 and had been suffering from pulmonary fibrosis.

Rehabilitation or incarceration?

Mon, 01/26/2015 - 07:00

The challenges and rewards of prison ministry

January 26, 2015

—File photo

Presbyterian News Service

Rick Jones

LOUISVILLE

Those who choose to go into Christian service will tell you that the call to ministry can be very loud and lead you down a path you never expected. God can take you out of your comfort zone and place you in a situation you have never been exposed to. But the blessings can be overwhelming. 

Company of New Pastors announces upcoming webinars

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 12:00

Feb. 24 and March 3 events are geared to pastors and congregational and mid council leaders.

January 23, 2015

Members of the Small Church Residency Program class of 2012 outside the chapel at the Presbyterian Center. —Ken Meeks

Presbyterian News Service

Emily Enders Odom

LOUISVILLE

“The Small Church Residency Program: Where the Needs of Christ’s Church and the Gifts of First-Call Pastors Meet,” a free webinar hosted by the Company of New Pastors (CNP), will be offered Feb. 24 at 2:00 p.m. EST.

Ralph Abernathy: Martin Luther King Jr.’s overlooked ‘civil rights twin’

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 11:00

January 23, 2015

Religion News Service

In a scene in the movie “Selma,” the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. sits in a jail cell wondering where the civil rights movement is headed. His cellmate, the Rev. Ralph Abernathy Sr., responds with a lesson from the Gospel of Matthew about the futility of worrying.

Eight ministries awarded DREAM Grants

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 10:00

Missional ventures in synods of Alaska-Northwest, Puerto Rico, Rocky Mountains, Southwest

January 23, 2015

The Synod of Puerto Rico will use their DREAM Grant to create a leadership formation initiative for youth and young adults. — Erin Dunigan

Special to Presbyterian News Service

Paul Seebeck

communications strategist

LOUISVILLE

Eight new missional ventures in churches and presbyteries have received DREAM Grants from the Presbyterian Mission Agency.

British churches to celebrate Magna Carta’s 800th birthday by reasserting its Christian heritage

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 08:40

January 23, 2015

Religion News Service

CANTERBURY, England

Churches here are planning a major campaign to reassert Britain’s Christian heritage on the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta.

Border towns like Douglas and Agua Prieta reflect complicated immigration struggle

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 07:15

January 23, 2015

Office of the General Assembly

Toya Richards Jackson

Director of Communications and Assistant Stated Clerk

Douglas, Arizona

The complexity of the American immigration debate couldn’t be more apparent than it is from Pan American Avenue in the border town of Douglas and from Internacional, the street directly across in Agua Prieta, Mexico.

A steady stream of cars, trucks, vans, and other vehicles line up to enter the United States Customs and Border Protection port of entry headed south into Mexico and north into the U.S. The people are diverse and they wait patiently to cross, generally for business or pleasure; commerce or recreation.

Black churches offer scholarships to students at Michael Brown’s alma mater

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 07:00

January 23, 2015

Religion News Service

Wellston, MO

They filed into the gym Monday (Jan. 12) for an assembly about graduation and applying for colleges — an intentionally vague description that wouldn’t be out of the ordinary for a senior class.

Instead, the seniors at Normandy High School learned that full-tuition scholarships would be given to 11 of them in honor of Michael Brown, who graduated just days before he was fatally shot by a Ferguson police officer.

Praying with few words

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 12:20

Evangelism conference participants seek connection, intimacy with God.

January 22, 2015

Disciple-Making Conference participants are learning that silence and solitude are preparation for hearing God speak. —Paul Seebeck

Presbyterian News Service

Paul Seebeck

St. Petersburg, FL

After two days of teaching on solitude and silence, conference goers heard these words, from the Sermon on the Mount, as they resonated throughout the room: 

“Whenever you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret.” (Matt. 6:6 NET)

Christian writer Margaret Feinberg shares breast cancer struggles, lessons on joy

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 12:00

January 22, 2015

Vertigo. Anemia. Depression. Receding gums. Early menopause. A double mastectomy.

These are just a few of the many terrors that Margaret Feinberg hid from the public after receiving a breast cancer diagnosis in 2013 before age 40. While the popular Christian author’s books have sold nearly a million copies and she speaks to more than 80,000 people each year, she couldn’t find the words to share this part of herself.

Holy Week Pilgrimages At Ghost Ranch

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 07:00

January 22, 2015

Becky Chamberlain

Abiquiu, NM

Discover the many benefits found in the ancient art and practice of Christian pilgrimage during Holy Week, April 2 - April 5, 2015 at Ghost Ranch Education & Retreat Center in the painted desert of northern New Mexico.

Journeying in Hope (Viajando en Esperanza)

Wed, 01/21/2015 - 12:44

January 21, 2015

Walk with undocumented persons surviving along the United States-Mexico border in this video documentary produced by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s Office of the General Assembly. Journeying in Hope, which includes a companion print series, spotlights the immigration issue and amplifies efforts by the PC(USA) and its faith partners to provide sanctuary and support.

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