Synod of the Northeast focuses on Leadership Development and Partnerships

The Synod of the Northeast meets as an Assembly biennially.  In between the Synod Assembly gatherings the Synod Mission and Ministries Commission meets quarterly to conduct the business of the Synod.

The Mission and Ministry Commission met on January 25 and 26 in Albany.  The Commission is divided into three working groups and the Leadership Team.

Highlights of the meeting

Synod Moderators Conference – The Moderator of the Mission and Ministry Team, Warren McNeil and the Moderator of the Synod, Jacinth shared their reflections on the Synod leader conference in Montgomery Alabama. As part of the conference they participated in visits to many civil rights historical sights including the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, which is the first memorial dedicated to the legacy of enslaved black people, people terrorized by lynching, African Americans humiliated by racial segregation and Jim Crow, and people of color burdened with contemporary presumptions of guilt and police violence.

Theological Reflection Institute with Cuban Presbyterians – A group from the Synod traveled to Cuba to learn how the Synod and the Presbyteries of Cuba could reconnect.  Their proposal is to establish a theological reflection institute with the Iglesia Presbiteriana-Reformada en Cuba. The Institute would be held at a central location in Cuba and the learning would take place with each learn from our Synod being paired with a learner from the IPRC.  The commission approved moving forward with this project. More information will be coming this year.

Leadership Development – The Commission has approved the establishment of  Servant Leadership Training Institute.  The focus of the training is intended to be broad enough to include those who will lead in a variety of areas within a presbytery including COM, CPM, Presbytery Council and others. The Institute will meet monthly for 10 months I n the Princeton, NJ area. More information will be available soon.

Networks – Two Networks were approved for continual funding – The Norther New York COM Network and the Coaching Network.

Puerto Rico Partnerships Taskforce – The Commission in the past has committed funds for the Puerto Rico Presbyterians recovery work. Moderator elect Leslie Latham will be training to Puerto Rico with members of two congregations and leaders from the Synod to begin working on the homes of two elderly women, and building relationships with a congregations in the mountains of the Presbiterio del Noroeste.

Young Ministry Leaders – The Young Ministry Leaders Gathering took place in November with 35 people participating.  The plans are underway for the 2019 gathering

Grant Approved – The Commission approved several Innovation, Emerging Communities and Ecumenical Grants

  • Innovation Grant – Twenty Thirty Dream Hub – First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica, Queens
  • Emerging Gospel Community Grant – C.A.F.E. Para El Alma – Rev. Nidia Fernandez, Ewing, NJ
  • Innovation Grant Walking Together & Walk with Me – Londonderry Presbyterian Church, Londonderry, NH
  • Emerging Gospel Community Grant – Martin Luther King Community Presbyterian Church, Springfield, MA
  • Ecumenical Grant – Cantico Nuevo, Ecumenical Choir , for performances of multimedia, bilingual, Biblical cantata, Manos Indocumentadas (Undocumented Hands). The cantata focuses on biblical passages that speak of God’s intention and call for the care of immigrants.

The next Synod Mission and Ministry Commission is May 3 &4.