Christian churches organize themselves in a variety of ways. As a congregation within the Reformed tradition, and part of Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), we are governed by councils. We believe that organizing ourselves this way is in accord with the biblical witness we receive, and that the mutual support and accountability it brings helps the local congregation, and the church as a whole, to be faithful to Christ’s mission.
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has four councils: the session, the presbytery, the synod, and the General Assembly.
The session is the council for the local congregation, and is composed of elders: both ruling elders—members of the congregation elected for service—and the congregation’s pastor (also known as the teaching elder or minister of word and sacrament).
The session’s primary responsibilities are to make sure that: the word of God is truly preached and heard; the sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper (Holy Communion) are rightly administered and received; and the covenant community of Christ’s disciples—gathered at the First Presbyterian Church of New Haven—is nurtured.
Beth Aura Miller
Sarah Harris Wallman
2023 Nominating Committee - Members at large
The Session met on June 20, 2023. Beth Aura Miller opened with a devotion and prayer.The Session had a discussion reflecting back over the past programming year and looking forward to the coming year.
Pastor J.C. posed questions to us personally and as a congregation – what we delighted in and what energized us. Areas shared included our love for worship; the energy our children bring to the service; the creative and visual arts that add to our worship experience; the Family Huddle – for families and adults; the monthly friendship hour; our work with IRIS as well as our other mission outreach – Columbus House and CCA; and small groups and Bible study to build on our personal AND community faith relationships.
The Elders are excited about our summer preaching schedule and hearing from various church family members. After the Sunday service on July 23rd, all will be invited to “Bring Your Own Brunch” to share a meal and be in community on our church lawn.
Finally, we have all been blessed by the amazing gifts Pastor Jinny has brought to our congregation as our Interim Minister of Faith Formation for the past two years. The Session thanked her for helping us recognize new possibilities in our congregation’s Faith Formation – for all ages. Pastor Jinny will be ending her ministry with First Pres on July 16th and we will be welcoming Pastor Rachel Martin who will be joining us in August.