Presbyterians Today

AUG-SEP 2018

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Pr e s by te r i a n s To d ay | AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018 5 Source: PC(USA) Research Services, Presbyterian Panel on Congrega- tional Vitality, 2017. Graphic by Jeffrey Lawrence 85% of Presbyterians say their church has helped them find and use their spiritual gifts. 85% of Presbyterians say their church has helped them find and use their spiritual gifts. sharing with them what I heard in a class in seminary I originally didn't want to take. "The kingdom of God is near." I smile as I look at this book on my desk. I need to drop a note to Dr. Blount, who is now president of Union Presbyterian Seminary, thanking him for the impact his class had on me. Little did I know that God was giving me the tools for this kin-dom building moment the church is in right now. Our communities are changing. What isn't changing is God's love. It's still an all-inclusive love that is inviting us to be part of the work of welcoming all. Yes, I am excited about our church today. And yet as excited as I am, I can't help but to think of the old saying that reminds me we are so close, yet still so far. Donna Frischknecht Jackson is editor of Presbyterians Today and a rural ministry networker in Washington County, New York. Do you have news to share as to how God is at work in your community? Send stories, 150–200 words, to PC(USA) Snapshot Getting to know you During a midweek supper and prayer gathering at Bardstown Road Presbyterian Church in Louisville. Emily, 10, participated in writing prayer requests on strips of fabric. The fabric was tied to a wooden cross that stood in the fellowship hall. As the adults hesitantly scribbled a prayer, Emily didn't think very long at all. She wrote: "I hope I get to know some people at the church better." And, of course, she signed off with several hearts. How can your church bring young and old together this fall? Share your ideas with Presbyterians Today at What Presbyterians are saying In one of the worship services at General Assembly, we were told by the preacher, Floretta Barbee-Watkins, to "distress the comfortable and comfort the distressed." This statement is what I believe the church is moving toward. My hope for our denomination is that we see this state- ment through to the end. — Anni-Maxine Quaye, Westminster Presbyterian Church, Albany, New York Donna Frischknecht Jackson

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