This communication is on behalf of the Office of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Director's Reflection

When Hate Hides Under the Cover of Christianity
By The Rev. Robina M. Winbush,
Associate Stated Clerk and Director of Ecumenical Relations

Robina WinbushRace in the United States has long been a church-dividing issue, ever since Richard Allen and a group of African descended Christians walked out of the St. George’s Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia because of continuously being subject to segregated worship practices. In 1816, Bishop Allen and his followers founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church in response to the existing racism. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has its own long history of racism inclusive of its participation in the genocide against indigenous persons in the U.S., participation in slavery and Jim Crow atrocities, and too often exercising a theological practice of privilege that seeks to maintain white supremacy. There have been moments and seasons in which we have struggled to challenge these systems, but too often the impetus for compromise has weakened these efforts. (Read more)


By Katie Archibald-Woodward
Candidate under care of San Gabriel Valley Presbytery

I retell the story of my six months in Bossey time and again. Each time my eyes light up with the same delight and my heart swells with the same love, as the memories rush to the forefront of my attention, just as they do now. (Read more)

Circles of Grace

By Rev. Dr. Steven H. Shussett,
Pastor of St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Allentown, Pennsylvania

As a Presbyterian now three weeks into serving an Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) church, I’ve come to see my ministry under the Formula of Agreement as a series of concentric circles.  Each overlaps in my circumstance, and yet is independent, informing one another and yet unique. (Read more)

Upcoming Events

September 20-26, 2015 Week of Peace in Palestine, Israel
The Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum (PIEF) of the World Council of Churches invites member churches, faith-based communities, and civil society organizations around the world to join together in 2015 for a week of advocacy and action in support of an end to the illegal occupation of Palestine and a just peace for all in Palestine and Israel. Congregations and individuals around the globe who share the hope of justice shall unite during the week to take peaceful actions, together, to create a common international public witness. Resources available on the WCC website.

October 25, 2015 Reformation Sunday
Resources abound to help recognized Reformation Sunday while uplifting the unity of the church. The World Alliance of Reformed Churches and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America have some resources to consider if planning an observance. More resources will be shared as they become available.

January 18-25, 2016 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Called to Proclaim the Mighty Acts of the Lord.
It is not too early to begin planning for an ecumenical worship service to celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Materials are available for download

January 27-30, 2016 Churches Uniting in Christ Plenary
Building a Beloved Communion. St. Louis Missouri. As details emerge, they will be shared on the CUiC website.


The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, a project of the World Council of Churches, is an international network of churches and church-related organizations committed to campaigning together on common concerns. Current campaigns focus on HIV and AIDS and Food. They have resources on HIV/AIDS, including a faith response, available for download on the website.


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Ecumenical Partner Updates

Formula of Agreement Partners

Leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS) expressed gratitude for a move by the Obama administration to begin releasing some detained mothers and children seeking asylum in the United States. - See more at the ELCA website.

The Reformed Church in America held their General Synod in early June 2015. The Church provided a News Summary on its website. The Rev. Dr. Brian Pulson, pastor at First Presbyterian of Libertyville, Illinois, represented the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) at the RCA General Synod. He wrote this report on the experience.

The United Church of Christ finds a buyer for its downtown Cleveland, Ohio headquarters. The Church has signed a twenty-year lease with the building’s new owners, thereby committing itself to remaining in downtown Cleveland. The press release stated the sale is being made as part of a “continuous effort to bring in more financial resources to advance the mission and ministry of the United Church of Christ.” The sale was covered by

Ecumenical Fellowship Updates

Christian Churches Together lifts up relevant issues on their website this month regarding Presidential candidates. Visit the website and learn what our sisters and brothers in Christ are doing around poverty and the crisis created by an unjust immigration system.

The National Council of Churches is urging member churches to take action around the recent increase in burnings of black churches. NCC has reinstituted a Fund first established in the 1990s to help rebuild churches and has helped member churches access materials published by to help faith leaders educate congregations about race based violence.

In response to the 2013 call to join a Pilgrimage of Peace and Justice, the World Council of Churches is committed to helping build a Just Community of Women and Men to help end violence against women. WCC believes that the experiences, perspectives and participation of both women and men are equally needed for the transforming renewal of church and society. Just gender relations are essential as we respond to climate change, build an economy of life and promote just peace and human dignity. Learn more about this project at the WCC website.

The Human Trafficking Working Group of the World Council of Reformed Churches met at University Presbyterian Church in El Paso, Texas in July 2015. Individuals from Brazil, Cuba, Argentina, India, Guyana, Taiwan, United Kingdom and the United States participated in the event.
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