News from the Presbytery of Western New York
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Presbytery of Western New York
Pastoral Care for Teaching Elders

Several people have expressed a concern that our new way of being a Presbytery does not seem to have a person responsible for the pastoral care of our Teaching Elders.  This responsibility lies with the Committee on Ministry.  COM has gathered a team of caring people to carry out this important task.  In Erie and Niagara Counties, Lance Brown and Dave Smith will serve as pastor to pastors.  Bruce Archibald will do the same for the southern tier.  If you have concerns please feel free to contact them or the Presbytery Office.

Lance Brown 695-5883,  Dave Smith 836-2408, Bruce Archibald 581-1856

Niagara/Northeast Branch Meeting

Join churches and clergy, including retired and at-large, on February 29, at 6:30 p.m., at North Church.
Food, fellowship, worship and connecting. Simple meal at 6:30 p.m. No charge.
We’ll eat, pray and get to know one another, closing by 8:00 p.m.
This is not a business meeting. Church members    attending can be church officers or not. For planning purposes, we ask that folks register by email or text by February 22 to
Stuart Buisch or Mary Beth Karr:   (716-713-6488)        (716-870-6276)

PYC Hunger Banquet

Sunday, March 6
5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Orchard Park Presbyterian Church
(Fellowship Hall)
4369 South Buffalo Street
Orchard Park, NY  14127
RSVP by March 4 to:
(Linda Babcock ~ 863-2801)
PYC Youth and Advisors are cordially invited to enjoy - or not, depending on your “world” classification - a meal, activities and a speaker about hunger.  Be prepared to leave with a full tummy or the same empty feeling which 85% of the world’s population goes to bed with each night.
Admission = $1.25 per person which is the amount that 1.4 billion people in developing countries live on per day.  We will be passing a plate!
Guest Speaker: 14 year old Serene Shibly who visited a Syrian Refugee Camp in Lebanon over Christmas Break!
Special Worship at Crittenden Presbyterian Church

On Sunday March 13, 2016 at 10 a.m. Crittenden Presbyterian Church is having a special worship to honor and thanks those who have lead worship, been a member, or have needed our church through the 110 years of worship at Crittenden. 
Synod of the Northeast Updates

The Mission and Ministry Commission Grants over $300,000 and Takes Steps to Make Sure that Our Diversity is Represented 

The Synod Mission and Ministry Commission met the last weekend in January. It was a spirit-filled gathering in which we accomplished so much work in 24 hours--all with a combination of seriousness, joy, laughter and fellowship. We began and ended with worship focusing on the words and ideas of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is remarkable how much his words still resonate with the ministry of the Synod today.

The Commission is committed to making sure that the diversity of this Synod is represented at Commission table as well as the Synod Assembly. To this end it determined to bring forward to General Assembly an Overture related to G-2.0301 -- "Ruling Elder Defined" and a request for an Authoritative Interpretation. Read more on these overture and financial commitments made to our Synod-wide Networks and ministries...

You are Invited!
Service of Reconciliation between the Presbytery of New Brunswick and Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church
April 24, 2016, 4:00pm, Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church
The Synod of the Northeast is organizing a Service of Reconciliation to celebrate the healing of a century-old wound inflicted by the Presbytery of New Brunswick upon Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church (WSPC) involving the forced resignation of a former WSPC pastor, the Rev. William Robeson. Teaching and Ruling Elders, and members of congregations are encouraged to attend.
You are invited to attend this service between the Presbytery of New Brunswick and Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church. This worship experience is the final step in a process which included a formal apology by the Presbytery to Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church on January 13, 2015 and the paying off of approximately $175,000 of mortgages on the Paul Robeson House by the Synod of the Northeast.

Welcome to the Gun Violence Prevention and Response Network! 

At its January 29-30 meeting, the Synod Commission approved the formation of a new Gun Violence Prevention, Action and Response Network.  The Network seeks to connect and gather Presbyterians Synod-wide who are passionate about gun violence issues and recognize the need for the church in the Northeast to add its unique voice, in both word and action, to the conversation surrounding the gun violence epidemic. 
Network members have already begun to engage at the national level by advocating for signage forbidding the presence of guns on PC(USA) property, as recommended in the Gun Violence Prevention Overture approved by the 221st General Assembly (2014).  The Network has plans to develop and compile materials to educate, resource, and mobilize individuals, gospel communities, and presbyteries on the issues. With members from five presbyteries so far, the Network would love to hear from anyone who would like more information or wants to be part of this ministry. Contact us! 

Are You Called to be a Mediator? Mediation Network Hosts Training!
April 25-29, 2016, Stony Point Center

Are you a person with the rare but necessary gift to walk alongside people in conflict? Do you want to hone that gift and use it in the church? If so, you might be called to serve as a Mediator in your presbytery or within the Synod of the Northeast. 
We have created a Mediation Network that can provide Mediators to walk alongside churches or groups and committees in presbyteries to help solve conflicts before they reach the level of a remedial complaint. Our goal is reconciliation in Christ by mutual agreement. Matthew 5:25 and the Rules of Discipline in the Book of Order urge us to do everything we can to settle our differences, even on the way to court. 
Many people who have filed remedial complaints have said they did so because no one heard them. Our job is to hear all parties so that those of us in disputes don't become so angry that we are locked into a position, unable to provide space to hear God's voice...Read more about the Mediation Training and to sign up!

Re-Entry and Prison Ministry Network Conference Opens Registration!
May 6-7, 2015, Stony Point Center
This event will focus on the trauma of incarceration and how it impacts three areas of re-entry: jobs, housing and family reintegration. We will also explore which trauma-informed ministries are addressing these areas effectively. Most of the speakers will be men and women who were formerly incarcerated. 
Our primary purpose is for faith communities throughout the Northeast to learn and share effective re-entry ministries throughout New York, New Jersey, and the six New England states. What's being done in Bangor, ME may be useful in Trenton, NJ. Methods that help formerly incarcerated people in Buffalo better adjust to life on the outside may be directly applicable in programs in Providence, RI.
All are welcome!
Paracletos and Coaching in our NEXT and Present Church
By Tom Tate
From NEXT Church
Our annual statistical report to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) this year records 156 members at Plaza Presbyterian Church. Many are older. Many are no longer able to get to church. Some have moved to be closer to family members but won’t give up their membership; and we won’t give up on them, either.

Forty-eight people worshiped at Plaza on Transfiguration Sunday 2016. Twelve of them were not yet members – four were first time visitors; four attend regularly but have not joined; four are choir section leaders. All of us gathered around the communion table for the last part of worship where we sang and prayed together, celebrated the Lord’s Supper, received the blessing, and passed the peace. Fifteen minutes following worship many of us were still visiting, not yet ready to head home.

Without a coach for the past few years that Sunday experience might never have happened.
Jeff Krehbiel, pastor of Church of the Pilgrims in Washington, D.C. and our coach, came into our lives in June 2013 as part NEXT Church’s Paracletos experiment. Coaching was part of the vision for that program and a concrete way NEXT came along side us to support us in ministry.

In September of 2013, after only a couple of months of coaching, and following a summer in which we were unable to use the sanctuary because in air conditioning problems, we engaged in a two-week process in which we removed some pews, moved others, and changed the look and feel of our sanctuary. (You read that right – only two-weeks for a transformation of our sanctuary.) Today, worship in our seventy-year-old sanctuary has a fresh intimacy for us. It’s almost as if the change has communicated in a way that stimulates us with creative ideas for embodying the values of the Gospel.

Click here to read more.
February 16
E-Newsletter Mailing List

Do you forward this weekly email to other members of your congregation when you receive it? Send those email addresses to and they will receive this newsletter directly each week!
Clergy Celebrations

Happy Birthday!
Roosevelt Haynes - 2/17
Drew Ludwig - 2/21

Ordination Anniversary:
Jon Rieley-Goodard - 2/16/1992
Tracy Daub - 2/20/1994
Carla Kline - 2/20/2011
Mary Lee Talbot - 2/21/1981
Dorothy Pearman - 2/21/1999

Happy Anniversary!
Jeffrey & Beth Grove - 2/16/1980
David & Patricia Kunselman - 2/19/1966
Today in the
Mission Yearbook:
Around the Presbytery

February 18
Festival of Faiths with Network of Religious Communities at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church

February 21
Yuki Numata Resnick, Violinist & Violist, Performs at Clarence Presbyterian Church

February 21
Decho Saxophone Ensemble Performs at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church

February 24
Lenten Suppers and Health Care Conversations Begin at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church

March 4-5
You've Gotta Have Art Festival at Clarence Presbyterian Church

March 6
Women's Mini Retreat at Hamburg Presbyterian Church

March 20
Chicken Barbeque Spring Dinner at Lockport Presbyterian Home

Submit your church events to be listed at
Volunteer Opportunities

Bethel Presbyterian Church is currently looking for volunteer musicians and vocalists to aid in their worship. Looking for all instruments, from accordion to zither and everything in between - contact Ben Pawlak via email.
Job Postings

Part-Time Secretary,
Bacon Memorial

Bacon Memorial Presbyterian Church, located at 166 59th Street, Niagara Falls, NY, is looking for a part time secretary (20 Hrs Mon – Fri 9 am-1 pm).  Please call the church at 283-5744 for more information or to get an application.

Parish Administrator – Calvary Episcopal Church, Williamsville

Vibrant church seeks dedicated professional with excellent organizational and communication skills in key role facilitating life of parish. Proficiency in MS Word, Excel, Publisher or similar graphic design.  Prepare worship bulletins, announcements, e-newsletters, maintain parish records, databases, website, social media postings. Coordinate volunteers, assist Rector and staff. Ability to maintain confidentiality, attention to detail, and hospitable demeanor, interacting with parishioners, clergy, guests and vendors. Open to all religious affiliations, but members of parish inelligible. 30 hrs/week with benefits. Resumes to Rev. Dr. Judith Lee, Calvary Episcopal Church, 20 Milton St, Williamsville, NY 14221 or by email.

Shared Youth Director

Two Presbyterian churches in the suburbs of Buffalo, NY, (North Presbyterian and University Presbyterian) seek an enthusiastic Youth Director possessing good sense, tireless energy, and great organization to lead our youth in grades 7 through 12 in Christian fellowship.

The successful candidate will plan and supervise monthly fellowship activities with educational and fun programs that reflect our mission statement and maintain communications with all participating youth between fellowship activities in a way that builds a sense of caring Christian community.

Compensation will be $1,100 per month based upon an estimated need to dedicate 24 to 36 hours, with an average of 30 hours, per month to fulfill the requirements of the position.

Please contact Lee Broad at (716) 839-0767 or at for more information and/or position description. Resumes will be accepted until 5:00pm, Monday, February 15, 2016.

Buffalo City Mission

Our brothers and sisters at Buffalo City Mission are looking for candidates for current employment opportunities to serve on their team.  They asked us to spread the word, and they mentioned the following positions:  Food Service Attendant; Thrift Store Clerk; Major Gifts Officer; Manager, Donor Relations; Resident Coordinator – Buffalo City Mission; and Resident Coordinator – Cornerstone Manor.  More information is available on their website by clicking here. 

Part-time Christian Education Director (20 hours/week, salaried)

First Presbyterian Church of Buffalo is hiring a part-time Christian Education Director to facilitate growth and retention of Sunday school classes, serve as representative to the Christian Education Committee and moderate monthly meetings, help with the recruitment and training of volunteer Sunday school teachers and nursery staff, plan Adult Christian Education programs and facilitate classes when required, and assist with special ministries and events during the program year.

The ideal candidate will be organized, motivated, and visionary, with a passion for Christian Education ministry that nurtures the faith of its participants; and demonstrate the ability to prioritize, problem solve, manage change and multiple projects, and have an inviting and approachable demeanor and the ability to lead, engage, and encourage others.

Send resumes to First Presbyterian Church, One Symphony Circle, Buffalo, NY 14201 or

MacAlpine Presbyterian Church - Vibrant and diverse East Side congregation seeks pastor to preach and lead Sunday worship; moderate Session; provide visitation and conduct funerals.  30 hours per month.  Monthly compensation and mileage provided.
Contact Deborah Leeper, 834-1345.

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