Monmouth Presbytery’s Mission Working Group has been re-convened and re-energized with old and new members. Terry Chapman is serving as our Convener. Read more below or download the Mission Working Group Charter
The purpose of the Mission Working Group of Monmouth Presbytery is to communicate and interpret mission initiatives of the presbytery, its congregations, the “wider” church (Synod of the Northeast and General Assembly) and other partners, e.g., Bread for the World and National Council of Churches.
The Mission Working Group is accountable to the Presbytery of Monmouth. It relates to the Ministries Division Steering Committee for coordination with other committees and groups as appropriate; to the Administrative Division Steering Committee for funding; and to the Communications Team for assistance in communicating.
The Mission Working Group was formed in 2006 to equip the congregations of Monmouth Presbytery to do mission. The group chose hunger, peacemaking and environment for its initial focus. The Cents-Ability initiative was launched in the first year. Other initiatives, including Connections with PC(USA) Mission Co-workers and Interfaith, were added later. The Mission Working Group offered several presbytery-wide events: a Bread for the World Offering of Letters workshop, an environmental event co-sponsored with GreenFaith, a Peacemaking event, and a workshop on Barnegat Bay with the Littoral Society. It also administered the Peacemaking funds of the presbytery, promoted the presbytery’s World Mission Connections initiative, publicized interfaith and ecumenical events, and sponsored visits from mission co-workers.
After its first and only chair, Elder Sue Smith resigned at the end of 2011, no one took her place and the group has not been meeting. The result is that most—if not all—of the important functions and activities which are still needed have fallen by the wayside. These include the presbytery’s World Mission Connections and Homelessness initiatives and the oversight of Peacemaking funds. There is a need for revitalized and centralized support of our congregations as they do mission. It is time to revive and strengthen the Mission Working Group in order to better encourage our congregations to carry out more mission: on their doorsteps and around the world. In late 2012, the Mission Working Group was reactivated.
There are many mission initiatives that are available but not necessarily known to our congregations. In fact, there are so many good things out there that it is hard to know where to begin! The Mission Working Group will use various tools and strategies which may include the presbytery website, a catalog of mission initiatives, the weekly presbytery newsletter, visits to sessions and congregations, an overview presentation to be made available to the churches, and regional mission gatherings. The Mission Working Group will also facilitate the sharing of mission opportunities and experiences among congregations.
The Mission Working Group has the following responsibilities:
- Continue to administer the Mission Working Group annual budget and presbytery Peacemaking funds.
- Oversee and interpret mission initiatives of Monmouth Presbytery. At present, these include Cents-Ability, Connections with World Mission Co-workers, and Homelessness.
- Interpret and promote church-wide offerings (One Great Hour of Sharing, Pentecost, Peacemaking and Christmas Joy.
- Continue to promote initiatives from the PCUSA (some of which we already support). These include many from Compassion, Peace and Justice (Presbytery Hunger Program, the Peacemaking Program, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, Self-Development of People, Office of Public Witness, Advisory Committee for Social Witness Policy, the United Nations Office). Examples of these initiatives include Earth Care Congregations, Enough for Everyone, and Joining Hands.
- Promote other initiatives from our partners. Examples include Living Waters for the World and Bread for the World Offering of Letters.
- Serve as a clearinghouse for mission programs and projects of the congregations of Monmouth Presbytery, e.g., Forked River’s Crested Crane Coffee, to spread the news to other churches. Provide a vehicle for sharing stories from the congregations.
- Oversee the Cents-Ability Grants Committee.
- Oversee and support the work of the Hunger Action/Stewardship of Creation Enabler.
- Promote and sponsor interfaith and peace-building events and initiatives of PC(USA) and other affiliated or local organizations.
The Mission Working Group will communicate information about mission to the congregations of Monmouth Presbytery through the following:
- The presbytery website. The goal will be to make it easy for users to find information about mission opportunities and to share their own mission initiatives and stories with the rest of the presbytery (which was the original intent of the Mission Café).
- Social networking.
- The presbytery newsletter. The Mission Working Group will share news and stories about mission via the weekly newsletter. For example:
- Visits from PC(USA) mission co-workers.
- Events being held at our congregations.
- Stories of what congregations are doing, e.g., Jacksonville’s Living Waters for the World project.
- Special events and conferences related to mission.
- An overview presentation on mission opportunities (similar to the presbytery video that was produced in 2011) to be made available to congregations.
- A catalog of mission initiatives that will make it easier for sessions and mission committees to see what is available).
- Visits of PC(USA) mission co-workers and other partners in mission.
- Financial scholarships to support attendance at mission-related conferences and training.
- Personal contact. We will explore ways of extending personal and sincere contact.
- Hospitality events about mission to be held at regional areas around the presbytery.
- Annual mission events.
Sue Boyce (Plumsted), Terry Chapman (Forked River), Howard Dunbar (Farmingdale), Dana Eglinton (Jacksonville), Sherri Martin-Hutchins (Media Consultant, Plumsted), Joe Ritacco (Matawan), Carol Robb (Plumsted), Nancy Tindall (Allentown), Phyllis Zoon (Hunger Action Enabler)