Sunday, July 4, 2010

219th GA: Presbyterian Voices for Justice Awards Luncheon

Over a hundred people attended the Presbyterian Voices for Justice Awards Luncheon held Sunday in the Hyatt Regency Hotel Nicollet Ballroom A. Guests we welcomed by the Reverend William Dummer, Presbyterian Voices for Justice (PVJ) Co-Moderator, who immediately recognized Vice Moderator Elect the Reverend Landon Whitsitt. Whitsitt brought greetings on behalf the General Assembly and its Moderator the Reverend Cindy Bolbach.

The Reverend Catherine Snyder, PVJ Coordinating Team Member, offered the Invocation.

As guests were eating, PVJ Secretary Mitchell Trigger and PVJ Treasurer Darcy Hawk (in drag as Sophie Witherspoon) humorously pressed the need for financially supporting the mission of Presbyterian Voices for Justice through memberships and gifts.

PVJ CT member Sylvia Thorson-Smith introduced the speaker, the Reverend Mary Elva Smith. Smith was the Director of Women’s Ministries in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) from2001-2006 and is currently serving as Acting General Presbyter for the Sierra Mission Partnership. Smith’s meditative speech invited guests to prayerfully and meditatively reflect on where they have come from and where they are going on the justice journey and to examine what it means to be a Presbyterian Voice for Justice. During her presentation she invited those present to read in unison the Mission Statement of PVJ, to think about the Great Ends of the Church, to examine the role and size of Presbyteries, Synods and our national Offices, and what it means to be a Presbyterian in the 21st century. She also challenged those present to be nurtured by the Spirit and nurture the spirit of PVJ.

After Smith’s presentation representatives of various progressive groups were invited to introduce themselves. Among those represented were Presbyterian Affirming Reproductive Options, the Presbyterian Health, Education and Welfare Association, That All May Freely Serve, More Light Presbyterians, Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, Presbyterians for Earth Care, Soul Force, and others.

The Reverend Bebe Baldwin spoke about the first award recipient, the Kwanza Community Presbyterian Church, Minneapolis, recipient of the Whole Gospel Congregation Award. The award was presented “in grateful recognition for ‘bringing saving freedom to body, mind & soul’ through the Good News of Jesus to all the people of the community”. The Reverend Lika Galloway, Co-Pastor (along with her husband Ralph) of the Kwanza Community Church, accepted the award on behalf of the congregation.

TPVJ Acting Co-Moderator Colleen Bowers presented the Andrew Murray Award to Ann and Manly Olson, long-time active Presbyterian leaders at congregational, presbytery, and national levels. The award was presented “in grateful recognition of their commitment and passion to social justice for all of God’s people in their service to the entire Church.”

The Reverend Sylvia Carlson, another member of the PVJ Coordinating Team, offered the Benediction.

1 comment:

Doug said...

Thank you John! You've given a great, quick report on our luncheon, while I've been too involved in other things. I'm going to link to this, and just add a few tidbits of my own. Thanks again!

Doug King