This past weekend Cambrian Presbytery held its winter meeting. Of note is that this marked the 35th anniversary of the amalgamation of Kenora-Rainy River Presbytery and Superior Presbytery into Cambrian Presbytery.
We met at First Church United in Thunder Bay (part of the First-Wesley Pastoral Charge). THe meeting opened with morning prayer and communion Friday morning at 8:45. AFter greetings and opening procedures we broke into committee meetings for the majority of the day. In the late afternoon we returned to plenary session to deal with minutes of past meetings, hear about KAIROS (with a focus on Earth Hour), hear from the group that is heading to Zambia later this spring, and hear what the 4 Zones of the PResbytery had been up to.
After supper we had the first of two theme presentations. The theme this meeting was issues around Mental Health. THe first theme presentation was hearing the recovery story of a survivor of mental illness. It was a terribly powerful presentation, moving all to silence. THe other theme presentation was Saturday afternoon when we were treated to Photovoice -- a project where several mental health consumers were sent to the streets of Thunder Bay to take pictures portraying their journey through mental illness and recovery.
THe rest of Saturday was committee reports and business. AMong the highlights:
- Morning worship included a covenanting with the new PResbytery Youth Minister
- COSA (Christian Outreach and SOcial Action) had two presenters: Rev Neil OTke from Street Reach Ministries (inner-city Thunder Bay) and Hubert Den Draak from the Nolalu Eco Centre who spoke about the need to make serious environmental changes in our lifestyle.
- COSA also brought forward motions calling on PResbytery to reduce mileage (5% in 2008 and a further 10% in 2009) and to purchase carbon offsets for al reimbursed mileage.
- Red Lake and Cochenour United Churches will be amalgamating into one congregation, to be called Chikuni United church THey will be exploring what to do with their buildings.
- Stewardship filled us in on financial matters, including the 2007 results of givings to the M&S fund
- WE heard who will be taking leadership roles in Cambrian for 2008-09 as the nomination report was given (the chair will be Rev Gord Waldie)
AS always, our meeting concluded with worship on Sunday morning with the host congregation. Rev. Susan Ivany of Westminster United in Thunder Bay preached on issues of spirituality, mental health, mental illness and the church.
THe next meeting of Cambrian Presbytery will take place during the Conference Annual Meeting in Morden at the end of May. Gord will be installed as chair at that time.
FOr more information about the meeting (complete with pictures) read Cambrian Calls Plus