Preliminary Minutes of Trinity Presbytery for Fall 2018
MEETING IN REGULAR SESSION
NEW JOURNEY CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
SEPTEMBER 28-29, 2018
BILLY RAY (BILL) JONES, ELDER, MARSHALL CPC
OCTOBER 21, 1933 – NOVEMBER 14, 2017
Clayton d. lester, elder, Bertram cpc
August 2, 1922 – July 1, 2018
REV. HUGH L. PARSONS
MAY 17, 1934 – APRIL 18, 2018
Ruth delane ruble, elder, Bertram cpc
October 10, 1918 – November 21, 2017
TRINITY PRESBYTERY OF THE CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
NEW JOURNEY CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
SEPTEMBER 28-29, 2018
GENERAL AGENDA FOR PRESBYTERY
(Times are approximate)
CALL TO ORDER 1:00 PM 9:00 AM
DEVOTIONAL 1:15 PM
GENERAL BUSINESS 1:30 PM
RECESS 3:20 PM AS DECLARED BY MODERATOR
READING OF MINUTES 5:30 PM
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2018
CALL TO ORDER – MODERATOR LINDSAY
CERTIFICATION OF QUORUM – Stated Clerk
ADOPTION OF REVISED PROGRAM AND AGENDA
DEVOTIONAL - ELDER JIM CARROLL
APPOINTMENT OF ENGROSSING CLERK/PARLIAMENTARIAN
RECOGNITION OF FIRST TIME DELEGATES AND VISITORS
HEARING OF EXCUSES
WELCOME AND ANNOUNCEMENTS – REV. GARY SCHWITZ
SEATING OF VISITING MINISTERS
SEATING OF ADVISORY MINISTERS
Rev. Jeff Gehle, Red River Presbytery
HEARING OF DENOMINATIONAL REPRESENTATIVES
Representative of the Children’s Home
MTS representative Rev. Dr. Gloria Villa Diaz
HEARING OF FRATERNAL REPRESENTATIVES
COMMUNICATIONS – Page 5
SELECTION OF RECIPIENT OF PRESBYTERY OFFERING
APPOINTMENT OF RESOLUTIONS COMMITTEE
REPORTS FROM MISSION SYNOD DELEGATES – Page 6
REPORTS FROM GENERAL ASSEMBLY COMMISSIONERS – Page 7
REPORTS FROM YOUTH ADVISORY DELEGATES – Page 9
REPORT OF THE HOUSTON PROPERTY COMMISSION – Page 10
REPORT OF THE COMMISSION TO MOUNT HOPE – Page 11
LETTER TO MOUNT HOPE COMMISSION – Page 11
REPORT OF THE COMMISSION TO ORDAIN & INSTALL GARY WAYNE SCHWITZ –Page 12
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION – Page 12
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF FINANCE – Page 14
REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIAL CONCERNS – Page 20
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF MISSIONS – Page 21
REPORT OF THE TASKFORCE ON ORDAINED CLERGY – Page 23
REPORT OF THE PRESBYTERY COUNCIL – Page 25
REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON PROBATIONERS – Page 29
REPORT OF THE STATED CLERK-TREASURER – Page 30
REPORT OF THE TASKFORCE ON THEOLOGICAL & SOCIAL CONCERNS - HANDOUT
REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON RESOLUTIONS
READING, CORRECTION, APPROVAL AND ADOPTION OF THE MINUTES
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2018
CALL TO ORDER
RECOGNITION OF VISITORS NOT IN ATTENDANCE FRIDAY
HEARING OF EXCUSES
RESUME THE BUSINESS OF PRESBYTERY
- From the Stated Clerk of Presbytery del Cristo – This is to inform you that at Presbytery del Cristo’s meeting on March 8-9, 2018, Rev. Pablo Mata was removed from the roll of ministers and his ordination revoked in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
Lynn L. Thomas, Director of Global Missions
August 22, 2018
The Cumberland Presbyterian Church is an international denomination. Our General Assembly is an annual event where Cumberland Presbyterian commissioners from around the world are asked to attend and make decisions. The decisions made at General Assembly impact all CPs worldwide. The voice of CPs outside the USA is important. The Cumberland Presbyterian Church has five presbyteries outside the USA. Based on their size those five presbyteries can constitutionally send 22 commissioners to General Assembly. It is cost prohibitive for our presbyteries outside the USA to send their full complement of commissioners. The three Colombia, South America presbyteries send one commissioner each. The Asia presbyteries are stronger financially and yet they find it challenging to send commissioners to General Assembly. In order for a commissioner from outside the USA to come to General Assembly in the USA it costs as much as $2,000 to $3,000 for each commissioner or a total of about $60,000 for all non-US commissioners.
The Missions Ministry Team and Ministry Council have done some brainstorming about this challenge. We believe participation from CPs outside the USA in General Assembly is important. Several good ideas have been discussed: 1.) Presbyteries in the USA budget for all their commissioners to attend General Assembly, but it is often the case some of those approved do not attend. Presbytery could donate money from the budget for the last year's commissioners that did not attend General Assembly to a denominational fund to help non-US commissioners attend a future General Assembly. 2.) US presbyteries could make a donation each year when electing their commissioners that would go to a denominational fund to help non-US commissioners attend General Assembly.
We would like to encourage your presbytery to refer this communication to an appropriate Presbytery committee or board and see if there is something your presbytery can do to help us truly be a global denomination at future General Assemblies.
Lynn L. Thomas Director Global Missions
Cumberland Presbyterian Church
REPORT FROM MISSION SYNOD DELEGATE, REV. DUANE DOUGHERTY
April 20, 2018
Mission Synod met at the Cumberland Presbyterian Children’s Home in Denton, TX. We elected Rev. Leslie Johnson as moderator and Rev. Randy Hardisty as stated clerk after voting to accept the resignation of Rev. Mary Kathryn Kirkpatrick.
Rev. Johnson gave a devotion, then reported on his activities as moderator and his observations about our synod. One of the highlights was the creation of a third presbytery in Colombia.
We approved the requests for three ministers to work outside the bounds of their presbyteries.
Rev. Milton Ortiz represented the Missions Ministry Team and spoke of new church development. In an effort to support this work, Mission Synod voted to give $12,000 toward this program.
Mission Synod will meet by teleconference in 1019 and will meet within the bounds of Choctaw Presbytery in 2020.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your delegate.
Rev. Duane Dougherty
pastor delegate, Trinity Presbytery
REPORT FROM MISSION SYNOD DELEGATE, ELDER JOHN DOUGHERTY,
April 20th I attended the Mission Synod at the Cumberland Presbyterian
children's home in Denton Texas.
The meeting was opened by Reverend Leslie Johnson.
We accepted a letter of resignation from Reverend Mary Katheryn Kirkpatrick as moderator of the Synod and then we elected Reverend Johnson as the new moderator.
Reverend Johnson then gave a short devotional and afterwards gave a moderator’s report on what he had been doing this past year and the many churches he had visited and their needs.
We elected new board members and then approved three letters from Pastors who wished to preach outside their Presbytery.
We then heard from Reverend Milton Ortiz who is the team leader of the Missions Ministry Team of the General Assembly of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He asked if the Synod would help in the creation of new churches. He asked for $12,000 and we approved it.
The Synod will hold the 2019 meeting by teleconference and the 2020 meeting will be held at the Choctaw Presbytery.
I really appreciate the opportunity to represent Trinity Presbytery.
John C Dougherty III
REPORT OF GENERAL ASSEMBLY COMMISSIONER REV. DR. GLORIA VILLA DIAZ
To: Trinity Presbytery
REF: Report from the 188th General Assembly of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
I had the honor to represent Trinity presbytery to the 188th General Assembly of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Norman, OK Duties to be fulfilled were to participate in most of the activities planned, such as the celebration of the 200 years of Choctaw Ministry, joint communion services with the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in America, the Run for Fun, and the luncheons. As commissioner I was assigned to the Committee on Chaplains and Historical Foundation as well as chair of the Credentials Committee.
Acceptance, compassion, and true Christian love summarizes my personal experience at the General Assembly. The brothers and sisters from the Choctaw Nation were celebrating 200 years of Christian relationship with the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. They also shared their crafting and the meaning of their dresses. Our youth were taught how to play some of their traditional youth games. They included the nature, stories of God’s grace between them and other ethnic groups as well as the presents through all the worship service they led. Besides this historical celebration, the two Cumberland Presbyterian Churches agreed upon meeting at the same time and same location, though not the same rooms, to enjoy friendship, communion, meals, and chatting conversations.
Great news came from both Bethel University and Memphis Theological Seminary. A Private donor has funded the support of Cumberland Presbyterians who attend Bethel University and then explore ministry through Memphis Theological Seminary. It is part of our prayer for younger ministers coming from this or other presbyteries from our denomination. For sure God is faithful and is calling our female and male teenagers to serve as evangelists, pastors, teachers, etc.
The approval of the recommendations made the present aware of the great task the Cumberland Presbyterian Church has in front. The denomination confirmed that the Master of Divinity is the level of education required to ordain licentiates to ministry, here in the U.S.A. Also, the General Assembly approved the proposed timeline for action recommended by the Unification Task Force CPC/CPCA. Because of the discussions, one can infer that there is a great need of developing a sounding anthropology for Cumberland Presbyterians.
My praises go to Jesus Christ for God’s faithfulness with the denomination for more than 200 years. Trinity presbytery, the churches, ministries like New Day in Christ, and the world witnesses this work of God. May we Cumberland Presbyterians see God at work here on the earth and join with Jesus Christ to serve in what we have been called to do every day in each place where we are.
Gloria Villa Diaz
REPORT OF GENERAL ASSEMBLY COMMISSIONER, REV. JACK HOLT
The 2018 General Assembly was held in Norman Oklahoma, a very appropriate location to share the History of the Choctaw Nation. A joint CPA and CPCA celebration was held commemorating 200 years of ministry with The Choctaw Nation.
Part of the Worship was led by the Choctaws’ and Native rituals were demonstrated in the process. It was enjoyed by all present.
Reverend Dr. Jay Earheart-Brown was elected as Moderator
The Reverend Buddy Pope was elected as Vice Moderator
A joint CPC/CPCA Communion service was held Sunday evening with retiring Moderator David Lancaster, West Tennessee Presbytery, bringing a sermon “What about these bones” based on Ezekiel 37:1-14
Unification Task Force
Approved a proposed timeline for action for unification of the CPC and CPCA denominations. Encouraged the Unification Task Force and Ministry Council to establish a viable network of communication so that they may continue to work for a successful unification.
Theology and Social concerns
Joined with the chorus of other denominations in denouncing the abhorrent treatment of those attempting to apply for asylum or enter into the United States from our southern border, particularly the practice of dividing children from their parents, contributing to terror, uncertainty and unnecessary cruel suffering to families of God’s beloved.
The next meeting of the General Assembly will meet in Huntsville, Alabama on June 9-14. 2019. The meeting will be held concurrently with the CPCA General Assembly.
Respectfully submitted, Rev. Jack Holt
REPORT OF YOUTH ADVISORY DELEGATE, CHLOE MARTIN, CONCORD CPC
My name is Chloe Martin, and I attended the 188th Cumberland Presbyterian General Assembly in Norman, Oklahoma. I learned a lot of valuable things during my time at General Assembly, and I would like to thank the Presbytery for giving me the opportunity to do so. I was placed on the stewardship committee as a youth advisory delegate. We discussed important topics such as budgets, tithes, and the Our United Outreach committee. I learned so much about how the church handles money, and it is something I will always carry with me, however, these were not the only things that I will take with me from the week. The theme of General Assembly was celebrating 200 years of ministry with the Choctaw, and I learned so much about the Choctaw culture. I attended a Choctaw worship service and a cultural celebration. I heard traditional stories, sang songs in Choctaw, and participated in a traditional snake dance! I really enjoyed having the opportunity to immerse myself in the Choctaw culture and learn so much more about it. Another aspect of General Assembly that I am thankful for is the amazing people I got to meet. I met other youth advisory delegates that are now my best friends in the whole world! The youth advisory delegates there challenged me to grow in my faith and dig deeper into why I am a Cumberland Presbyterian, and it has since changed my outlook on everything in the church. I am so thankful that I met the people I did because they are now some of my best friends and Christian accountability partners. Again, I would like to thank the Presbytery for sending me because this experience changed my life.
REPORT OF YOUTH ADVISORY DELEGATE NATALIA RODRIGUEZ,
My name is Natalia Rodriguez, and I attended the 188th General Assembly in Norman, Oklahoma. When I had first arrived at Norman, I wasn’t even aware of what presbytery I was in and what General Assembly was exactly. Through the week, I not only learned about all of our different presbyteries, but I learned about how the denomination really runs. I’d really like to thank my presbytery for giving me the amazing opportunity to go to General Assembly and learn about all the things our denomination does.
I was in the Theology and Social Concerns/ Unification Task Force Committee, and I got the chance to talk and learn about how our denomination is working for a successful unification of the CPC and the CPCA, and how they’re working to develop a position statement on the issues of human sexuality.
I also got the opportunity to meet other youth in our denomination that I still continue talk to. With society continuing to change, it is difficult to find people that really care about God and our churches as much we do, so I really believe that getting chances like these to meet people that really care is really important and an opportunity that simply cannot be wasted. I once again would like to thank my church and presbytery for allowing me to meet so many of my new friends and learn about our denomination and how it’s decisions are made.
REPORT OF THE HOUSTON PROPERTY COMMISSION
The Commission met via email on July 17, 2018 to receive and consider a formal offer for Trinity
Presbytery’s property in Pearland, Texas. In attendance were James Webb (Chair), Rev. Fredy Diaz, Chet Dickson, and Ladd Daniel. Also included in dialogue was our Broker, Jason Kieschnick from Zann Commercial Brokerage, and our attorney, David Baker, from the firm of Murray-Lobb.
On July 17, 2018, the commission received an offer of $2,095,000.00 from a buyer’s representative, Patrick Brett Dodd, and after consideration and counsel, elected to present a counter offer of $2,500,000.00 to the buyer’s representative. On July 20, 2018, the commission received a buyer’s counter offer of $2,300,000.00, and after review by our broker and in consultation with our attorney, on July 25, 2018, elected to accept the offer from the prospective buyer.
On August 2, 2018, the commission received an inquiry regarding property tax liability for the parcel, and in consultation with our Attorney Mr. Baker, and attorney Steve D. Moore, Jackson Walker, Austin, TX, the commission agreed that Presbytery will be responsible for potential rollback taxes for up to five years prior to the sale of property, according to state code:
Tex. Tax Code Sec. 11.201. ADDITIONAL TAX ON SALE OF CERTAIN RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION
PROPERTY. (a) If land is sold or otherwise transferred to another person in a year in which the land receives an exemption under Section 11.20(a)(6) [i.e., “11.20(6) the land that the religious organization owns for the purpose of . . . construction of a new place of regular religious worship . . .], an additional tax is imposed on the land equal to the tax that would have been imposed on the land had the land been taxed for each of the five years preceding the year in which the sale or transfer occurs in which the land received an exemption under that subsection, plus interest at an annual rate of seven percent calculated from the dates on which the taxes would have become due.
On August 3, 2018, on motion and in prayer, the Commission approved that Ladd Daniel would act as representative of the Presbyterial Commission to sign the Commercial Contract for Sale. The contract was executed and submitted to the buyer, and copied to Paula Hayes, Stated Clerk, Trinity Presbytery. The contract includes a $1,000 earnest money deposit, and a 100-day feasibility period for the benefit of the buyer in effort to rezone the property.
Respectfully submitted, James Webb, Chair
Ladd Daniel, Commissioner
REPORT OF THE MOUNT HOPE COMMISSION
TO TRINITY PRESBYTERY MEETING SEPTEMBER 28, 2018
The Mount Hope Commission met in Huntsville, Texas on August 11. Members of the commission are Rev. Duane Dougherty, chair; Rev. Rusty Rustenhaven; Elder Nancy Abernathy; Rev. Donald Nunn; and Rev. Mary Kathryn Kirkpatrick. A quorum was present.
Mount Hope continues to have worship services every Sunday at 1 p.m. The message is brought by Rev. Chad Hlavaty who is an ordained member of the New Life congregation in Henderson. In January, 2016, Chad completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Education. He works as a coach and teacher for Gilmer ISD. Chad married on July 7, 2018. He shares Bible based messages that are consistent with Cumberland Presbyterian theology. Following the worship service there is a time of discussion and fellowship. Communion has been served twice since the spring meeting of Trinity Presbytery. Rev. Dougherty and Elder Tremble conducted the communion portion of the service.
The commission discussed the recent activities at Mt. Hope and took action by receiving a letter which shares the activities of the July 22, 2018 worship service at Mt. Hope. That letter is attached to this report. The commission voted to receive three new members into the Mt. Hope congregation.
It is exciting to witness the worship and Christian learning occurring in the service. Ministry is happening at Mount Hope Cumberland Presbyterian Church. We encourage the ministry at Mount Hope and request your prayers for its future success.
Duane Dougherty, Chair
Mount Hope Commission
LETTER TO MOUNT HOPE COMMISSION
July 22, 2018
To the Mt. Hope Commission:
We had a congregational meeting at the end of the worship service today at Mt. Hope Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Colby Brooks and Matthew Alden Brooks were baptized and then they made their profession of faith in Christ. They desire to become members of the Mt. Hope congregation. Amy Brooks also wishes to become a member by transfer of letter from the Marshall Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Amy explained that they loved the Marshall church, but it is over an hour from where they currently live. The congregation voted to receive them as a show of support. We request that the commission vote to add these new members to the church role at Mt. Hope. We also had communion with the congregation. We had 13 in attendance. This will be the last Sunday that I will be able to attend Mt. Hope before I move to Fort Worth at the end of the month. I was assisted with prayer by Elder Mary Trimble during these parts of the worship service. Rev. Chad Hlavaty shared a message from Romans 8 on professing faith. Chad was married to Kaylah on July 7. She has moved to Gilmer and will teach school there. Gwen Jorgenson who is normally present was not there because of scheduled visitation with her mother in the Dallas area. She has attended Trinity Presbytery Church Camp for two years in a row and has loved the experience. Mt. Hope is ministering to its community.
Rev. Duane Dougherty
Moderator, Mt. Hope Commission
REPORT OF THE COMMISSION FOR ORDAINING GARY WAYNE SCHWITZ AND INSTALLING HIM AS PASTOR OF NEW JOURNEY CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
Commission Members were Rev. Mary Kathryn Kirkpatrick, Rev. Don Nunn, Rev. Rusty Rustenhaven, and elder Randy Kennedy. The worship service was held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, March 11, 2018, at the New Journey Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Longview, Texas. Beginning the service were the Rev. John McCarty with a call to worship and the Rev. John Lindsay leading the confession of sin and assurance of pardon.
The musical worship leaders were Nancy Abernathy, piano; Marcia Ross, organ; and, Cheryl Crafton, song leader.
Rev. Mary Kathryn Kirkpatrick delivered the sermon entitled “Would you like to become God’s Child?” based on John 1:10-15.
Following the sermon, Licentiate Gary Wayne Schwitz took his place at the front of the sanctuary and the members of the commission proceeded with the ordination.
Rev. Steve Turner joined with the commission in the installation of Rev. Gary Wayne Schwitz as pastor of New Journey Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
The newly ordained Rev. Gary Wayne Schwitz led the congregation in a celebration of the Lord's Supper.
Respectfully submitted by
Rev. Mary Kathryn Kirkpatrick
Chair of the Commission to Ordain and Install Gary Wayne Schwitz
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION
The Board of Christian Education met on Saturday, August 11, 2018 at 9:00 am at the First Presbyterian Church in Huntsville, TX. Members present were Shannon Martin, Charelle Webb John Lindsay, Duane Dougherty, David Dean, David Montoya, Daryl Johnson, and Marvin Terrell.
The meeting was opened and closed with prayer.
A proposed budget of $38,900 was sent to the Board of Finance.
Trinity Presbytery standing rules for the board were reviewed and updated. We plan to finalize these in our meeting in January 2019.
The participation in the presbytery’s events that were held in 2018 were reviewed as well as denominational events. The theme of our 2018 summer camp was “Grow”. Brian Martin developed the curriculum to challenge the campers in ways to grow their spiritual life and concluded with ways to grow the church. The top ten ways that were proposed and approved by the group are included at the end of this report.
Plans for our 2019 events were discussed including promoting events, registration, and informing churches, parents, and campers about them. Also discussed were ways to involve CPCA churches in our events. Dates and plans for Camp and Winter Retreat were reviewed.
That Trinity Presbytery Youth Winter Retreat be held at Camp Gilmont on January 19–21, 2019 with Fredy Diaz as Director, and the cost be set at $50 for each participant.
That Trinity Presbytery Youth Camp be held at Camp Gilmont during the week of June 16–21, 2019 at a cost of $300 for those registered by April 30, 2019 and a cost of $325 until May 31, 2019 and $350 after that date. Brian Martin will serve as Director and Marvin Terrell as Coordinator,
The role of Youth Advisory Delegate to General Assembly was discussed.
That Sophia Trianna (Nueva Vida), and Darcie Webb (Houston) be approved as Youth Advisory Delegates with Daniela Macias (Nueva Vida) and Camila Arias (Marshall) as alternates to General Assembly June 10–14, 2019 in Huntsville Alabama.
Dates of other future youth events are as follows.
- February 16-19, 2019 Youth Evangelism Conference – Nashville, TN
- June 23-29, 2019 CPYC – Bethel Univ., McKenzie, TN
- July 16-20, 2019 Triennium – Purdue Univ., Lafayette, IN
- January 2019 Kaleo- (Year long program to help young people explore God’s call on their life.) TBA
Additional Christian Education Events:
- October 5-6, 2018 Pastors Retreat
- December 27, 2018 – January 3, 2019 Guatemala Young Adult Mission Trip. Cost $1600.
Cumberland Presbyterian Trinity Presbytery Church Camp 2018
Ten Ways to Grow the Church
- Having a youth delegate on session
- Small groups in homes
- Work with other Churches (Cumberland and other Churches in Community)
- Increase Social Media Presence (Examples: Provide online or physical question boxes at local churches, local churches set up Instagram and Facebook accounts, etc.)
- Service projects (Examples: give out Bibles, community service, etc.)
- Expanding worship opportunities (Examples: Offer two Church services at different times such as morning and afternoon, provide sermons projected toward a younger group, provide Contemporary services)
- Provide a Church Bus that brings people to the services.
- Youth groups/ministry (Examples: Game nights for youth, Food, Lock-ins, etc.)
- Prison ministry
- Provide visitor follow up
REPORT OF THE BOARD OF FINANCE
28 September 2018
The Board of Finance met on August 11, 2018 at 9:00 a.m. in Huntsville, TX at the First Presbyterian Church.
As requested, the Board reviewed the duties of the Board as stated in the Presbyterial Standing Rules. No changes were recommended at this time.
The Financial Report of the Treasurer was reviewed and found to be in good order.
Budget requests from the Boards and Committees of Presbytery for 2019 were reviewed and adjusted as necessary. Presbyterial apportionments were also set for 2019. (See attached proposed budget for 2019 and corresponding apportionments.)
Recommendation: That the proposed budget, in the amount of $238,352.00, and apportionments be approved.
On motion the Board voted that upon sale of the Austin First Church property the Presbyterial Treasurer will recapture from the proceeds all expenses involved with maintaining the property, as well as unpaid presbyterial apportionments for 2017 and 2018. It is anticipated the sale will be finalized in October for 2.6 million.
Rusty Rustenhaven presented a written update on how the Marshall congregation is using the Ministry Initiative Grant funds from the Presbytery to advance their ministries.
Respectfully submitted, James Webb, Chairman
2019 PROPSED BUDGET[[PASTING TABLES IS NOT SUPPORTED]]
PROPOSED 2019 APPORTIONMENTS[[PASTING TABLES IS NOT SUPPORTED]]t