There is great joy to be found in meaningful commitments. The “I Dos” at a wedding show covenantal promise and primacy. The “I Dos” of the baptismal vows declare a willingness to be known as God’s own. The “I Dos” of ordination proclaim a person as an active disciple of Jesus the Christ. Each “I Do” invests in a way of being and serves as a guide for what is worthy of our precious lives.
In July 2022, the Session and Deacons of The Presbyterian Church in Geneva gathered for a joint meeting of the leadership teams. We learned, laughed, prayed, cried, and sought wisdom to show us the way to be most faithful as a gathered people of God in such a time as this. We consulted Scripture, took note of our church history as well as current mission statements, acknowledged the deep needs of our neighbors, and recognized the extraordinary potential of making meaningful commitments. At the end of this gathering, the present members of Session unanimously voted to say, “We Do!”
We do believe in the focus, purpose, message and meaning of the Matthew 25 movement of the Presbyterian Church (USA). We will focus our shared ministry on the priorities of this movement:
*Building Congregational Vitality
*Dismantling Structural Racism
*Eradicating Systemic Poverty
We choose to be a member church of this national community. We will do so recognizing the unique gifts, challenges, capacities, and place this church holds in the community of Geneva, NY.
We do also recognize and celebrate the fully beloved nature of God’s people who identify in the LGBTQ+ community. We will delight in covenantal love shared. We will be open to receiving gifts offered by all of God’s children. We will advocate for those who are made vulnerable by unjust systems of exclusion. We will seek to share a community that passionately attempts to represent the diversity and beauty of the kin-dom of God. We choose to pursue this vision as a member church of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians.
This entire fall our congregation has shared in both worship and education focused on the Biblical foundations for inclusion, service, and engagement in the world. We have learned and been reminded that the principles which inform both “Matthew 25” churches, and the Covenant Network, are Christ-like.
This Sunday, November 20th, 2022, we are making public and official the formal affiliation of The Presbyterian Church in Geneva, NY, with both the Matthew 25 movement of the PCUSA, and the Covenant Network of Presbyterians.
These meaningful commitments will serve as touchstones along the way as our congregation together creates, participates, and celebrates the next season of ministry in this church which has always sought to love God and our neighbors.
With joy and expectation, together we serve.
The Session of The Presbyterian Church in Geneva, NY
Rev. Colin E. Pritchard (Pastor and Head of Staff)