The 112th stated meeting of the Presbytery of the James was held on October 15. The meeting, which was the first truly hybrid meeting, was held at Westminster (Richmond) with 57 present in person and 140 participating by Zoom. There were 89 minister members, 85 ruling elders representing 49 congregations, and 23 others totaling 197.
Moderator Dan Jordanger (Providence, Gum Spring) called the meeting to order at 9:30 a.m. and led the presbytery in prayer.
Melissa Phillips (Salisbury), moderator of the Examinations Committee, welcomed new ministers to the presbytery:
- Rev. Karen Allamon (Shenandoah Presbytery), pastor of Madison Church
- Rev. Kimberly Clayton (Presbytery of Greater Atlanta), interim pastor, The Presbyterian Church, Fredericksburg
- Rev. Hannah Creager (Eastern Virginia Presbytery), director of Christian formation, Tuckahoe Church
- Rev. Russ Kerr (Salem Presbytery), campus minister, VCU
- Rev. Sai Hyung (Alex) Lee (Presbyterian Church of Korea), covenant pastor, Lord Jesus Korean Church
Ruling Elder Steven Hicks (Mitchells) was elected stated clerk for a 3-year term.
Morning worship included the installation of the stated clerk, the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, and the reading of the Necrology. Rev. Ashley Diaz Mejias (Voices of Jubilee) delivered the message with music provided by the WPC Band led by Jennifer Morgan.
The body divided into groups to hear preaching by two candidates for ordination to the ministry of the Word and Sacrament:
- Sarah Godbey (Presbytery of Charlotte) to serve as chaplain in the Bon Secours system
- Leigh Anne Ring (Salisbury) to serve as presbyter for relational care for the Presbytery of the James
Each was approved.
The presbytery approved COM’s request to create two parish models as presented in the packet. The presbytery approved that COM be granted commission powers to form administrative commissions to commission ruling elders for pastoral service after the person has completed appropriate training and examination.
The Committee on Nominations presented names for open positions and all were approved:
- Commission on Ministry
- Rev. Susan Steinburg (Providence, Gum Spring)
- Rev. Sandra Libhart (South Hill)
- Rev. Gordon Mapes (Chester)
- James Lucket (Fredericksburg)
- Milton Brown (First United)
- Robert Lynn (Chester)
- Committee on Preparation for Ministry
- Rev. Joshua Andrzejewski (First, Richmond)
- Rev. Kelly Kaufman (Olivet)
- Rev. Kelley Connelly (UKirk, VCU)
- Rev. David Frost (Swift Creek)
- Rev. Nicole Ball (First, Richmond)
- Chad Wayner (South Plains)
- Jerome Wilson (Blackstone)
- Tessa Schuman (Salisbury)
- Permanent Judicial Council
- Rev. Jim King (Salisbury)
- Leadership Connections Team
- Amanda Healy (Second, Richmond)
- Mission and Service Team
- Rev. Mary Jane Winter (at large)
- Rev. Nancy Summerlin (HR)
- Linda Gueringer (First United)
- Tom Edmonds (Second, Richmond)
The presbytery took time to read the Sexual Misconduct/Harassment Policy as required by policy.
The business of the day included the following:
- Adoption of the Balancing of Commissions Proposal for 2023.
- Presentation of the 2023 budget for its first reading.
- Creation of an administrative commission to assist Trinity Church in dissolving the congregation.
- Approval of Ruling Elder Marjorie Clark (Second, Richmond) to serve as Region E member on the Committee on Nominations and the Committee on Representation.
- Adoption of a motion to sell the former Lakeside Church property to Lakeside Preschool and Childcare, Inc., for $250,000.