Opening The Doors...

  Opening the doors

Opening the doors

Traveling Together

  Traveling Together

Traveling Together

Proposed Docket

Click here for pdf version of proposed docket.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018
Shepherd of the Hills
11500 W. 20th Avenue
Lakewood, CO 80215-1224

WiFi access: SOTHmedia-guest Password: godspeed

4:00 p.m. Registration begins - Please sign in at the Registration Table to Obtain your Ballot

Please take time to meet and greet Rev. Dana Hughes, Transitional Presbytery Pastor.

4:00 p.m. Pre-Assembly: Committee on Ministry

Church Template: Minor/Vulnerable Adult Protection and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Policy and Procedures - Overview

5:00 p.m. Meal and Fellowship

5:50 p.m. Announcements

6:00 p.m. Presbytery Assembly Convenes

Call to Order and Opening Prayer: John Anderson

Welcome to Shepherd of the Hills: Dan Dolquist and RE Karen Kingman

Assembly Business:

Welcome to new ruling elder commissioners and corresponding members: John Anderson

Omnibus Motion: John Anderson

Introduction of Transitional Presbytery Pastor: Wanda Beauman

Partnership of Zimbabwe & Denver Presbyteries: Ruth Huff and Rob Habiger

Assembly at Worship
In order that we might celebrate the diversity of our congregations, worship has been designed by and will be led by our host church. Therefore, you may experience something that is unfamiliar or different from how you experience worship in your home church. Help us to celebrate this diversity in our Presbytery as we worship together today.

Rev. Dana Hughes - Message
Isaiah 43:1-13: “FEAR NOT!”

Committee on Ministry

Ian Cummings – Language Exception: Sandy Safford

Motion: COM requests that the language requirement in G-2.0607c. Book of Order, be waived pursuant to G-2.0610 Book of Order, for Rev. Ian Cummins, providing a path for him to be ordained and installed as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the PC(U.S.A.) should he receive a call.

Introduction of new minister members: Randi Henderson, Amy Petre‘-Hill

Minister of the Word and Sacrament Minimum Compensation - 2019

Nominating Committee: Susan Boucher

Council Report

Finance and Property: Keith Moore

Motion: Council moves that the Presbytery approve the Proposed 2019 budget.

Personnel: Bruce Spear

Treasurer: John Boettiger

Council Reports

Leadership: Nancy Dixon

Racial Ethnic Diversity: John Yu

Mission and Ministry: Sandy Smith

Board of Pensions: Clayton Cobb

Ghost Ranch: Rev. Skip Herbert, Carrie March

Stated Clerk Report: Olivia Hudson Smith


Click here for pdf version of the Omnibus.


The Omnibus Motion is a process intended to speed action on routine or non-controversial matters. Any item may be withdrawn from the omnibus motion upon request of any member of the assembly. Items remaining are adopted without discussion when the motion is approved. Items from committees or other reports will be recorded in the minutes as part of that committee or staff person’s report.

RECOMMENDED ACTION:          That the Presbytery votes to:

1.    Approve the Docket as distributed, with such changes as may be announced at the start of the assembly.

2.    Enroll the Corresponding Members that are introduced, and grant to them permission of the floor. The names and presbytery of membership of such persons must be written on the attendance roster or given to the Stated Clerk.

3.    Approve the minutes of the August 11, 2018 Presbytery Assembly as posted on the Presbytery website, except for any changes in the attendance roll that may be required.

THE STATED CLERK RECOMMENDS that the Presbytery vote to:

 Receive the report of the Stated Clerk:

Receive the report of Council establishing the dates and locations of the 2019 assemblies:

1.    January 22, 2019, Wheat Ridge Presbyterian Church; March 26, 2019, Genesis Presbyterian Church, Littleton; May 28, 2019, North Highland Presbyterian Church, Denver; August 10, 2019, Church of the Eternal Hills, Tabernash; October 22, 2019, Wellshire Presbyterian Church, Denver.

2.    Voting on the Proposed amendment to the Constitution of the PC(U.S.A.):

January Assembly:  18-B.1, 18-B.2 Renunciation of Jurisdiction; 18-G. Disciplinary Offense; 18 – H.1, 18-H.2 Time Limit.

March Assembly:  18-A – Election of Ruling Elders and Deacons; 18-C – Officers; 18-D Membership of Presbytery; 18-E – Pastor, Counselor, and Advisor; 18-F. Welcoming to the Table. 





Presbytery of Zimbabwe & Denver Presbyteries

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~ Welcome ~

Joe Nyamutumbu, our honored guest and delegate from the Presbytery of Zimbabwe shares this glimpse of his life with us:

I was born in a small village north east of Harare. Age 62 on November 20!!!!  I am married to Beaulah and we have four kids. Nigel, Natalie, Jackie and Kimberley.  Nigel works as the Programmes Manager for MAZ (Media Alliance of Zimbabwe). He is married to Tatenda and they have twin daughters.  Natalie is an SAP (IT) consultant in Joburg, South Africa.  Jackie is a missionary with Women of Hope International and is based in Memphis, Tennessee.  Kimberley is in high school.  Beaulah was a banker for twenty years but is now a caterer.

I worked in a bank (Standard Chartered Bank) for twenty years in the IT department heading their IT in Africa, UK and USA.  I then moved to a courier company, DHL where I was Regional IT manager for fourteen countries in Southern Africa and Indian Ocean Islands. Then moved to general management.  I left DHL on retirement and started IT and Business consultancy. I'm also exploring renewable energy and tourism!

I'm an Elder of the Presbyterian church of Highfield in Harare.  I'm the chairman of the BIU (business and investment unit) which oversees the agri-business of the church (horticulture) and cattle, property development and Vocational training.  I'm the chairman of the Lovemore House Vocational Training College.

I'm a BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) ( discussion leader.   I support Arsenal football (soccer) club in England where I did my tertiary education!  In the USA I vaguely follow basketball and baseball though I have lost touch. I prefer our rugby to American football!!


Click here for pdf version.

Partnership of Zimbabwe and Denver Presbyteries

Presbytery of Zimbabwe Central Fund update

The business lines of the Presbytery of Zimbabwe’s Central Fund are “growing”.  The pictures below, taken by the 2018 Delegates at Vimridge attest to this.  Two greenhouses are in full operation producing and selling tomatoes while cabbage is being grown on land next to the greenhouses.

In addition to the greenhouse operations, the Central Fund has over thirty head of cattle at Gloag Ranch with plans to grow the herd and produce fattened cattle for sale.

Joe Nyamutumbu, who is visiting Denver Presbytery in October and November, is the Moderator of the Business Investment Unit which overseas these business operations.

Committee on Ministry

Click here for pdf of written report.

At its stated meetings on September 10, 2018, and October 1, 2018, the Committee on Ministry received information and took the following actions: (*indicates items for Assembly approval)

Stated Clerk: Olivia Hudson Smith reported on a change of insurance for the Presbytery and 23 of the congregations from GuideOne to Brotherhood Mutual as of September 1, 2018. Olivia reported that she met with the clerks of session on September 22, 2018. The agenda included the new Clerks Questionnaire which is now separate from the Statistical Report, completing and filing tax exemption request with the state and renewal with the Secretary of State, review of the Minor/Vulnerable Adult Protection and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Policy and Procedures template for churches by Diane Ritzdorf, and proposed amendments to the PC(USA) Constitution that Presbytery will vote on at the January and March Assemblies.  Discussed the *October Assembly and the various items including voting by ballot regarding the COM motion on Ian Cummins, which requires a ¾ vote of the voting members.

She will attend the Mid-Council gathering in Chicago in October.

Council: Olivia Hudson Smith reported that Council has hired a Transitional Presbytery Pastor, Rev. Dana Hughes who will begin on November 1, 2018. Transitional Presbytery Pastor, Rev. Dana Hughes will be at the October Assembly and will preach. There will be a time before the Assembly for meeting and greeting Rev. Hughes.


Task Forces
Church Policy Task Force: Diane Ritzdorf reported that the team has completed a template of the Minor/Vulnerable Adult Protection and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Policy and Procedures as a guide for congregation that will be posted on the website. COM will share information on the Minor/Vulnerable Adult Protection and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Policy and Procedures template for churches at a Pre-assembly event on October 23, 2018 at 4 p.m.

Commissioned Lay Pastor Ministry Team: CJ Biewenga reported that the team would begin the annual review of CLPs in November.

Pastoral Care Team: Bill Sanders.  Sandy reported that the team continues to follow-up on past referrals.  The team is walking with their team member, Tim Mooney, following an automobile accident while he awaits further testing.

Moderator request:  Sandy Safford asked volunteers to help with distributing ballots at the registration table during the October Assembly.  Ken Furlow and Sherry Kenney have agreed to help; Paula Steinbacher will help beginning at 5:00 p.m., but another volunteer is needed. 


TEAM B: Heather Cameron
Informational Update: The team has completed a Triennial Visit with Church of the Eternal Hills, and the 6-month review with Interim Rev. Dwight Blackstock, First Presbyterian Church, Aurora. First Presbyterian Aurora’s PNC was elected with a diverse representation and is beginning its work.

Amy Petré-Hill, newly ordained and installed Associate Pastor at Mountain View United Church, will be introduced by Charla Musgrave at the October Assembly.

Dan Dolquist reported for Heather Cameron - Action items: The team moved to approve the new terms of call for Ashley Seaman Taylor to return to a full-time position from the half-time position that was approved earlier this year.  The team approved the full-time terms through January 31, 2019, contingent on: 1) Property and income tax resolution; 2) resolution of the FEIN identification number; 3) Providing a current financial report showing both liabilities and revenue; 4) Written approval or response by the Session to the Triennial Report. Approved

TEAM C: Ken Furlow
Action Items: Columbine United Church has identified a candidate for the Associate Pastor position, Jill VanderWal, and developed terms of call, pending approval by the congregation.  The team moved that the committee approve the terms of call. Approved (pending congregational acceptance of the call).   

Informational Update:  The team has reviewed the renewed terms of call for Rev. Whitney Dempsey, Temporary Supply Pastor, First Presbyterian Church, Georgetown. The team will present renewed terms of call for Rev. Whitney Dempsey at the next meeting.  In addition, the Triennial Visit with First Presbyterian Church Georgetown is scheduled for October 21, 2018. 

Columbine United Church’s PNC for an Associate Pastor has identified a candidate and has scheduled a candidate weekend September 21-23, 2018.  The team will conduct goodness of fit interview. Columbine began the search process using the United Church of Christ process, and is now switching to the Presbyterian process.  The candidate is a minister member of the PC(USA). 

TEAM D: Diane Ritzdorf
Informational Update: Peoples Presbyterian Church invited a candidate for a neutral pulpit for the Designated Pastor position.  The COM screening team and Peoples’ Designated Pastor Nominating Committee (DPNC) both felt that the candidate is a fit.  Terms of call may be forthcoming during the middle of the month and will be distributed to COM members via email for discussion and vote. 

There is no installation date for Christopher Spotts at First Presbyterian Brighton.

Church of the Hills is engaged in discernment regarding whether they will go through the call process to call Temporary Supply Pastor, Susan Boucher as the called Pastor. The team has received the twelve questions and the congregation will begin completing the Ministry Information form.

The Triennial Visit with United Church of Idaho Springs is complete.

TEAM A: Jon Sutterlin
Informational Update: Shepherd of the Hills has completed the Ministry Information Form (MIF) with minor changes.  The team will conduct an email vote to approve the MIF as changed. Shepherd of the Hills’ Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) has received a first group of 32 Pastor Information Forms (PIF) and is currently receiving a second group. 

The Team is preparing for a six-month review of gretchen Sausville at Arvada.


Respectfully Submitted, 

Olivia L. Hudson Smith  

~ End of Committee on Ministry Report ~

Committee on Ministry

Committee on Ministry requests of the Denver Presbytery Assembly a three-fourths (3/4) vote of the Presbytery pursuant to G-2.0610 Book of Order, Accommodations to Particular Circumstances to waive a requirement for ordination in G-2.06.

Action Item: To waive the language requirements for Rev. Ian Cummins, providing a path for him to be ordained/installed as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the PC(USA) should he receive a call.

The Committee on Ministry (COM) recognizes the special circumstances in this particular church and congregation of Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church and Rev. Ian Cummins who has faithfully served as pastor for 15 years as a minister ordained in the American Baptist Church.  Actions of COM are honoring the original agreement between parties and recognizing Ian as a known partner in ministry in the Presbytery of Denver.  We know of his professionalism, his authentic Bible teachings, his quality preaching, and his faithful service in ministry.  Ian is a servant minister among us who wishes to affirm his call to become ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA). 

Members of COM, members of the Session from Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church (Montview), and Ian Cummins met on July 9, 2013 and created a Resolution of Reconciliation regarding The Rev. Cummins and requirements to be completed to be assessed suitable to be received into the membership of Denver Presbytery as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Presbyterian Church (USA).  This process was initiated in order to address the unique circumstances of Montview and Rev. Ian Cummins, an American Baptist ordained Minister.  The requirements of that Resolution were: “The Rev. Ian Cummins will take the ordination examinations and, upon successful completion, will be interviewed by a sub-committee of the Committee on Ministry, an interview to assess suitability for being received into membership as a Minister member of Denver Presbytery in areas such as polity, theology and so on.  After affirmation of this sub-committee, he will be eligible to circulate his Personal Information Form (PIF).  Montview, following Rev. Cummins becoming eligible to circulate his PIF, will nominate a Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC).  If the PNC discerns that God is calling the Rev. Cummins and if he is led to accept election to serve as a pastor at Montview, COM agrees to set aside the issue of Rev. Cummins’ previous interim service at Montview and authorizes the PNC to move directly to nominating Rev. Cummins to the congregation without going through the ordinary search process of posting a position announcement and interviewing of candidates.  If and when Montview decides to call Rev. Cummins as an installed pastor, COM will support Montview’s decision and the process leading to his call in the event that this matter should reach the floor of Presbytery.  We agreed to work together to fully understand the Book of Order and Presbytery Policies including policies relative to Terms of Call.” (Minutes from the Meeting of Resolution of Reconciliation, July 9, 2013)

On April 13, 2018 a sub-committee of the COM conducted an interview with Rev. Ian Cummins to determine whether the terms of the Resolution of 2013 had been met.  COM was represented by Elder Ken Furlow, COM Liaison to Montview; and Elder Sandy Safford; COM Moderator; also present were Rev. Russ Kane, Moderator, Committee on Preparation for Ministry; and Rev. Olivia Hudson Smith, Stated Clerk, ex-officio.  COM recognizes that Rev. Ian Cummins has fulfilled the requirements that were given in the Resolution in 2013 by taking and satisfactorily passing the ordination examinations as of January 27, 2018 (per Exams Transcript, Iliff School of Theology), answering questions regarding Presbyterian polity and theology, sharing his sense of Call and his Statement of Faith, expressing an understanding of the ordination questions and the willingness to renounce his Ordination in the American Baptist Church.  COM is therefore validating the commitment of The Rev. Ian Cummins and Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church in completing the requirements of that Resolution agreement of 2013.

With the exception of G-2.0607c The Rev. Ian Cummins has in good faith met the requirements of the PC(USA) Book of Order G-2.0607 for Final Assessment and Negotiation of Service.Evidence of readiness to beginx ordered ministry as a minister of the Word and Sacrament shall include:”

a)    Demonstrated wisdom and maturity of faith, leadership skills, compassionate spirit, honest repute, and sound judgment

b)    Transcripts from Iliff School of Theology show his Minister of Divinity Degree in 1998. Ordination documents show his Ordination in 2001, to ‘standard ordination’ in the American Baptist Church (this ordination does not require a specific ministry setting).  In 1998, Ian Cummins was ‘commissioned’ for ministry service at L’Arche Religious Community by the American Baptist Church.  Letter of Good Standing in the American Baptist Church of the Rocky Mountains, is on file.

c)    Rev. Cummins has not completed a course of study including Hebrew and Greek.  COM believes that there are good and sufficient reasons for an accommodation to the particular circumstances of Rev. Ian Cummins to waive the Greek and Hebrew course study requirement of G-2.0607c.  This will require a three-fourth vote of the Presbytery Assembly. (G-2.0610 Book of Order) 

d)    Rev. Cummins has completed all of the ordination examinations in the PC(USA) , the first time and all with satisfactory grades.

  • Bible Content – September 2, 2016

  • Bible Exegesis – January 27, 2018

  • Church Polity – January 23, 2015

  • Theology – July 27, 2017

  • Worship & Sacraments – January 31, 2014

Waiving the language requirements of G-2.0607c with an affirmative ¾ vote of Denver Presbytery will allow the way forward for Rev. Ian Cummins to negotiate for service as a minister of the Word and Sacrament (similar to a certified candidate) ready for examination by Denver Presbytery for ordination. (BOO G-2.0607)  Rev. Cummins may then circulate a Personal Information Form and work with the Pastor Nominating Committee of Montview to discern that God is calling the Rev. Cummins and if he is led to accept election to serve at Montview he may be called as an Installed Pastor of Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church.  COM has previously waived the issue of Rev. Cummins’ previous interim service per the Resolution of Reconciliation of July 9, 2013.  Once a call has been discerned and issued, Rev. Ian Cummins will once again stand before this body for a normal examination of a candidate for ordination to a called/installed position of Denver Presbytery. 

MOTION: To waive the language requirements for Rev. Ian Cummins, providing a path for him to be ordained/installed as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the PC(USA) should he receive a call.


Committee on Ministry

Click here for pdf version.

1. The 2019 base minimum salary and housing in Denver Presbytery shall be $49,590 (2% increase of $972). NOTE: These are revised each year.

2. When a manse is furnished for the pastor’s use, the annual minimum for 2019 shall be $36,105 (2% increase of $708).

3. The "study leave" period minimum shall be two weeks, including 2 Sundays, may be cumulative for 3 years.

4. The "continuing education" minimum shall be $1000 per year.

5. The annual vacation minimum shall be 4 weeks, including 5 Sundays.

6. Churches shall be instructed on the importance of meeting pastor ministry and mileage expenses through an accountable reimbursement program.

7. Churches in the Presbytery whose ministry location puts them in the area of extreme housing costs, consider ways to face this burden. Such approaches may include "equity share" investments to reduce the cost of a monthly mortgage payment, purchase of a manse or other creative financing approaches.

8. The funding of Board of Pension dues for plan participants should be determined by each congregation working with plan participants who elect optional coverage. Financial tools such as IRS Part 125 plans (healthcare reimbursement accounts, Health Flexible Spending Account, Health Reimbursement Arrangement, etc.) or other tools discussed in IRS Publication 969 may be useful to both parties.

9. The Presbytery strongly recommends that each Session and installed pastor plan for a Clergy Renewal. If there is no plan for a Clergy Renewal, there are resources available to assist that conversation, and if the congregation has a Clergy Renewal (Sabbatical) Plan, it should be reviewed each year to be sure session, congregation and Minister are “on track”.

APPROVED by Committee on Ministry: October 1, 2018

APPROVED by the Presbytery of Denver __________________

Committee on Ministry 

Statement of Faith - Randi Henderson

Holy Scripture tells us God created heaven and earth and all things in it, pronouncing creation good. I trust in the creative Word of God, active now as in the beginning, sustaining and nurturing what is seen and unseen. I also believe that freedom is part of God’s good creation. In it, we find the seeds of our own creativity, yet human freedom seems an illusive thing. We make a choice that seems good, but it brings a consequence we didn’t expect; our freedom doesn’t feel so free. The tradition calls this conundrum sin, or sometimes evil, and it’s far more complicated than just knowing the difference between right and wrong. The distance we sense between our freedom and God’s is real and far greater than we can cross on our own. The tradition calls the closing of this gap grace, and it comes to us purely as a gift. For reasons beyond my ken, God exercises freedom by choosing to be and stay in relationship with us. It’s that constancy of God’s love that gives me hope we, too, can experience the freedom to love fully.

From the beginning, God has been singing a love song to our sin-sick world, calling us back. The song has taken many forms, from a freedom march out of Egypt to a heavy-hearted lament on the road to Babylon. Holy Spirit has whispered the song through the still, small voice of silence, and shouted it out in the true, but painful words of prophets. God’s melody of love for the world finally took root in one young woman and the song took a human form, to live and walk among us in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. I believe that Jesus is the perfect revelation of a human life made full in God, and that he was and is both – fully and truly a man, fully and truly God. During his earthly ministry, Jesus was a healer and a teacher, a working man and a mystery man, as comfortable at a party as at prayer. Jesus proclaimed a simple gospel, challenging every earthly power: “The Kingdom of God is near – turn around and trust the good news!” He showed women and men, by his example, what love looks like – freedom and justice for the oppressed, the forgotten, and the sinner alike, not on some distant day after we die, but now! And for the audacity of loving so indiscriminately, he was arrested and executed. But love doesn’t die, and the song didn’t end. In his life, death, and resurrection, Jesus closed the gap for us, making a new kind of life possible.

Creation’s reconciliation to God is sure, though not yet complete, and we who follow Jesus have been invited to join in the chorus. That’s what I believe the church is: the full chorus of voices empowered by Holy Spirit to show and tell what we know of God’s love because of Jesus. In his life, what he said and did, through his song of love for both God and for us, Jesus showed us God’s plan of freedom –a world where every creature is connected to and interwoven with all the others, belonging to something vastly more wondrous than any part, bound together by Holy Love.



Click here for pdf version of Nominating Report


Your Presbytery Nominating Committee is pleased to recommend the following people to be elected to the positions and for the stated terms as follows:

Presbytery Moderator
Class of 2019
Ruling Elder Wanda Beauman (Peoples)

Presbytery Vice-Moderator
Class of 2019
Minister of Word & Sacrament Justin Spurlock (Grace)

Class of 2019

Minsters of Word & Sacrament John Yu (True Light)
Class of 2020
Minster of Word & Sacrament Joel Adams (NW Denver Missional Community)
Ruling Elders: Jo Culbertson (Central), Pat Queen (Green Mountain), Kendal Mullins (Wellshire)

Committee on Ministry
Class of 2019

Commissioned Lay Pastor Sandy Safford (Byers) as Moderator

Class of 2021
Minster of Word & Sacrament Louise Westfall (Central)
Ruling Elders: Rick Kesler (Arvada), CJ Biewenga (Elizabeth)

MWS Rolfe Granath (HR)

Committee on Preparation for Ministry
Class of 2019
Minister of Word & Sacrament Russ Kane as Moderator

PZDP Committee
Class of 2020
Minister of Word & Sacrament Ruth Huff as Moderator (At Large)

Class of 2021
Ruling Elders Rob Habiger and Jean Hart (both from Central)

Highlands Camp Joint Committee:
Class of 2021
Ruling Elder Geoff Noble (PCOC)
Ruling Elder Roxanne Bennett (Providence), Stephanie Fritz (Central)

In addition, the Nominating Committee is still seeking volunteers to serve on the Committee of Ministry and the Highlands Camp Joint Committee.  Please contact committee members (Susan Boucher, Verniece Vafeades; Cindy Moorman, Ethan Raath or Dave Goss) if interested.  

Respectfully submitted,

David Goss
Nominating Committee Moderator


Council Report

Click here for pdf version of Council Report.

At the stated meetings on September 4, 2018, October 2, 2018, and Special Meeting via Zoom October 10, 2018, the Presbytery Council provided information and took the following actions: (*indicates items for Assembly approval)

Jean Demmler, acting as Moderator pro tem (at the request of Presbytery Moderator, John Anderson) moderated the meetings.

Personnel Work Group Report: Bruce Spear
Report from Interim Presbytery Pastor Search Committee Chair – Louise Westfall
Louise reported on the search committee’s process and discernment in recommending Rev. Dana Hughes as the nominee for the Interim Presbytery Pastor. She thanked the committee for their diligence and thoroughness during the process. She outlined Dana’s characteristics and qualities that led the committee to the recommendation.

Louise excused herself and Bruce Spear, acting as ex-officio to the search committee moved that Council obtain the services of Rev. Dana Hughes as Interim Presbytery Pastor. The motion was amended to change “Interim” to “Transitional” stemming from comments made by Dana and her explanation of the difference in terminology and focus. The motion as amended was Approved.

Bruce brought a motion on behalf of Personnel to approve the terms of service and position description for Rev. Hughes with the change of wording to “Transitional” and an addition to the terms of service of 2 weeks of non-accumulated leave for service to the greater church to accommodate Dana’s prior commitment to the greater church. Approved.

Bruce reported that the Committee on Ministry conducted a goodness of fit interview with Dana and approved her, as fit should she request a transfer of membership to this Presbytery.

On behalf of the Work Group, moved a 3% cost of living adjustment (COLA) in 2019 for Presbytery staff. Approved. The adjustment was based on the Social Security increase for 2019 and other factors including increased pricing.

Treasurer’s Report: John Boettiger
John reported that the 2017 Audit review is nearing completion. For the month ending July 31, 2018, the net cash surplus is $61,361.00, less depreciation resulting in an actual net surplus of $49,475.00 resulting in a budget deficit of $(153,887.00) year to date. John provided the financial statement for the period ending August 31, 2018. The total revenue for August was $77,509.00 and the total expenses were $48,131.00 less depreciation expenses and restricted releases resulting in a net cash surplus of $38.00.

Mission and Ministry Work Group: Sandy Smith
Sandy brought an action for approval, moving on behalf of the Work Group the approval of the Youth Triennium Task Force formation with Sandy Safford, Cindy Moorman, and Bill Davis. Approved. Sandy moved on behalf of the Work Group that Council recommend to Presbytery that annually, as part of the budgeting process, a tithe on the annual grant from the Colorado Trust be administered by the Work Group. Disapproved. Bill Davis moved that $20,000 from reserves be allocated to Mission and Ministry. Disapproved. Council recognizes the Work Group’s concern that there are fewer mission dollars each year from congregations to support Mission Partnerships, Covenant Communities and Task Forces and considered strategies to address the problem. There was consensus that the issue of mission funding should be addressed in the upcoming visioning process.

Presbytery Staff Leadership and Officer Reports

Acting Head of Presbytery Staff: Amy Mendez
Amy offered a written report highlighting her work during August, including preaching and helping Bethel prepare for a 90th anniversary celebration. She will not attend the Mid Council gathering or the Synod of the Rocky Mountains Assembly in October but will attend the Kaleidoscope Stewardship Conference September 23-26, 2018 in St. Louis, MO. After attending the event, Amy recommends that Council encourage congregations to send their finance persons to next year’s gathering and notes that there are scholarships available. She is moderating the Immigration Task Force in Dee Cooper’s departure. Amy attended the Highlands Camp Committee meeting and reports that because of an incident the camp is in jeopardy of losing its license. In addition, the camp is short $150,000.00 for 2018.

Amy reported that the Myanmar fellowship has dissolved its relationship with First Presbyterian Aurora. The fellowship is greatly reduced because of the loss of membership over the PC(USA) stance on homosexuality and members relocating to more affordable locations. Pastor Andrew Thang is seeking a new direction for his ministry. He will start a new ministry with Burmese refugees at First Presbyterian Englewood with the blessing of Rev. Troxler and the Session.

Stated Clerk Report: Olivia Hudson Smith
As of September 1, 2018, the Presbytery’s insurance coverage switched from GuideOne to Brotherhood Mutual which will result in a cost saving. Of the 24 congregations under the umbrella, 23 will go with Brotherhood Mutual, and will now carry individual insurance with separate umbrella coverage. There will be a review with clerks of sessions on September 22, 2018. Proposed amendments to the Book of Order were received. Voting by the Presbytery must take place on or before by June 23, 2019, but preferably by May 10, 2019 for printing purposes. The amendment document will go out with the October Assembly documents. Voting on the proposed amendments will occur at the January and March Assemblies. There will be a ballot vote at the October Assembly. Volunteers from the Committee on Ministry will distribute ballots during registration. On behalf of the Leadership Work Group, Rev. Jimmy Hawkins as the keynote speaker, has been secured for the fall 2019 event at Highlands.

Communications and Administrative Manager Report: Beth Carlisle
Beth reported that the Presbytery is holding a Treasure Sale at the Grant Street location of items that did not move to the new location. The sale is open to congregations and will be held on Sunday, September 23rd from 1:00-6:00 p.m. and Monday September 24th from 9:00 a.m. until done. Subsequently she reported that the Grant street building is empty and is now in the hands of the new owners. She thanked Wesley Jones for the work in helping to make the move possible.

The staff has planned an Advent Luncheon and Minister’s Communion for December 12, 2018, at Wellshire Presbyterian Church. The Transitional Presbytery Pastor will preach.

Presbytery Vice-Moderator Report: Wanda Beauman
Wanda offered her thanks for everyone who helped make the August Assembly a success. She thanked Bruce Spear, the Elizabeth congregation for their hospitality and welcoming of the Presbytery, the guitarist and choir for their participation in worship. Wanda thanked John Yu for bringing a strong message.

Presbytery Moderator Report/Assemblies Work Group: John Anderson
Jean entertained a motion on behalf of Council that council allocate $400.00 to Trinity to cover the costs of pulpit supply for two weeks while John Anderson, Presbytery Moderator traveled to Zimbabwe, representing the Presbytery as part of the delegation this year. Approved

John discussed the possibility of adopting a statement about the use of sacred funds from the death of one congregation to bring life to another congregation. After discussion, Council agrees that the use of such funds should be a part of the larger visioning conversation.

Finance and Property Work Group: Keith Moore
*Keith Moore moved on behalf of the Work Group that Council recommend to the Presbytery that the Presbytery portion of per capita be fixed at $19.55 for 2019 and 2020. Approved. This two year fixed increase represents a slight increase of .20¢ over the 2018 Presbytery per capita amount.

Keith moved on behalf of the committee that it approve reimbursement of the cost of plumbing repair at the Lakewood property of $513.82, paid by the Lighthouse property user for an emergency repair. Approved.

The Work Group provided a draft of the 2019 Presbytery budget for Council review. There are still some adjustments to make before a vote can be taken to recommend the Presbytery Assembly approve the budget. The largest issue is that because of the estimated income of the Colorado Trust, a deficit budget will likely need to be proposed. Keith Moore will attempt to obtain a firm figure from the Colorado Trust as the Work Group continues to finalize the budget for a vote by Council to recommend to the Assembly. An adjusted draft will be sent to Council members on October 8, 2018. The Council will hold a meeting by Zoom at 4:30 p.m. on October 10, 2018, to discuss the revised draft and subsequently an email vote may be taken should the Council agree the draft is ready to place on the October 23, 2018, Assembly agenda.

Budget Discussion: Keith Moore and John Boettiger addressed questions raised by members; including discrepancies in wages for the staff compared to what is reported in the 2018 revised budget; amount budgeted for vital congregations, COM and CPM secretarial compensation, Lakewood property expenses and insurance, and CPM expenses. John will make revisions and corrections and issue a revised draft on October 11, 2018. Bruce Spear, Personnel Moderator will make corrections to staff wage calculations with a notation on incorrect 2018 figures. *At which time Keith will move on behalf of the Finance and Property Work Group that Council recommends the proposed 2019 Budget to Presbytery for approval. Once the revised, proposed budget is disseminated, Council approved that voting members present for discussions will have 24 hours within which to cast their votes.

Long Term Initiatives Work Group: Chris Wineman
Chris thanked Beth and Wesley for their efforts during the move. Chris highlighted that two grants have been awarded. A seed grant of $7,500.00 for Dan Dolquist’s Wild Village new worshiping community and a Growth Grant of $25,000.00 for Joel and Juli Adams’ ministry. The New Worshiping Community (NWC) Guidelines will be discussed with the leaders of the various NWC for recommendations. If Council has any questions or suggestions, LTI would like to hear those. Chris stated that if the Presbytery wants to participate in the 2019 Vital Congregation initiative, it would have to make a serious effort immediately to have 10 congregations sign on for the three-year commitment, as the deadline is November 1, 2018. Chris reports that the New Worshipping Community Guidelines are being discussed with new worshipping communities and will be presented to Council at a subsequent meeting. The Work Group will review the Vietnamese Fellowship application for the next phase of funding from 1001 New Worshipping Communities.

Vital Congregations Revitalization Initiative: Bill Davis
Bill reported on his meeting with Kathryn Threadgill and Simone regarding hosting the West Coast Vital Congregation conference in May 2019, which is distinguished from congregational participation in the initiative that Chris discussed in the LTI report. Two possible locations for the conference identified are Montview and Trinity; the decision will be up to Kathryn. The timeframe for the event is May 6 – 8, 2019. Based on their visit, Kathryn Threadgill and her team have decided on Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church as the host church for the Vital Congregation conference.

Racial and Ethnic Diversity Work Group: John Yu
John highlighted the Fearless Dialogue event on September 14, 2018, primarily focused on congregations in the Northwest quadrant of the metro area. Council is invited to participate. Amy reports on behalf of the Work Group. The Work Group proposes to hold the next Fearless Dialogue event on November 2, 2018. The location of the event has not been determined but the event will be held in the central region of the Presbytery.

Nominating Committee Task Group: Wanda Beauman
On behalf of the Task Group, Wanda moved that Council recommend to Presbytery that Lemuel Velasco be elected to serve on the Nominating Committee of Presbytery. Approved

Leadership Work Group: Ki Park
On behalf of the Work Group, Ki moved that $1000 coming from the Synod of the Rocky Mountains to the Presbytery be allocated to the Work Group for leadership scholarship for the fall 2018 event. Approved. Nancy, Leadership moderator, appeared via Zoom and reports that final planning is underway for the November event. They are attempting to secure a piano player. Scholarships are available and the Work Group does not require involvement if someone contacts the staff and requests a scholarship to register. She noted that no one on Council has registered to attend.

Relations and Communications Work Group: Jean Demmler
Adrian Miller from the Colorado Council of Churches was present at the September meeting and reviewed several of the initiatives that have made it onto the ballot for November. Olivia reported that she voted in the affirmative to support a ballot initiative for mental health care to raise $45 million dollars by a tax increase. This ballot measure is restricted to the City and County of Denver. Jean reports that The Colorado Council of Churches has issued a voter’s guide on referendum and ballot issues that it is supporting. She announced these guides will be available at the October Presbytery Assembly. Jean also offered copies of the PC(USA) policy on election reform, Lift Every Voice, adopted in 2008. Two ballot questions, Amendments to the Colorado Constitution Y and Z, address the problem of gerrymandering voting districts by establishing non-partisan commissions to map districts after the 2020 census. These amendments are congruent with recommendations in the PC(USA) policy.

Respectfully submitted:

Olivia L. Hudson Smith
Stated Clerk


Finance & Property

Proposed 2019 Budget, click here.


Click here for pdf version.

With the retirement of Rev. Tom Sheffield as Presbytery Pastor on November 30, 2017, the Council appointed an Interim Presbytery Pastor Nominating Committee consisting of the following members:

TE Louise Westfall, Central Presbyterian Church, Moderator
TE Joel Adams, NorthWest Denver Missional Community
TE John Anderson, Trinity Presbyterian Church (Council Member)
RE Wanda Beauman, Peoples Presbyterian Church
TE Katie Robb Davis, Wellshire Presbyterian Church
RE Dietmar Fritsch, Eagle River Presbyterian Church
RE Lemuel Velasco, Divino Salvador Fellowship
Non-Voting Personnel Committee Liaison: TE Bruce Spear, Elizabeth Presbyterian Church 

The Council also approved of contracting with Dr. Corey Schlosser-Hall, Executive Presbyter of the Northwest Coast, for consultation throughout the search process. 

The Presbytery was well served by this prayerful and hard-working team. We appreciate their perseverance in what turned out to be a longer assignment than originally anticipated. They recommended to Council the name of Rev. Dana Hughes as Transitional Presbytery Pastor with a start date of November 1, 2018.

At their September 2, 2018 meeting, the Council of the Presbytery of Denver unanimously voted to extend the appended terms of service and position description to Rev. Hughes which she has accepted. The Council also introduced Rev. Hughes to the Denver Presbytery with the appended announcement describing “her deep, relational faith and commitment to follow Jesus; her compassion for people and desire to build community across human differences; her experience and articulate understanding of transitional ministry; and the warmth and humor evident in her conversation born of hope and a deep trust in God’s unconditional love and redemptive purposes.” (Louise Westfall)

The Presbytery Staff has very ably carried the work of presbytery forward for an entire year while we were without a Presbytery Pastor. We owe a debt of gratitude to Rev. Amy Mendez who served as Temporary Head of Staff as well as Pastor for Church Development and Multi-Racial Ministries, to Stated Clerk Rev. Olivia Hudson Smith and to Communication and Administrative Manager, Beth Carlisle. They worked long hours and through many days off to not only fulfill their own responsibilities but to also fulfill most of of the Presbytery Pastor responsibilities in areas such as COM, CLP ministry team, CPM, Highlands Camp, Nominating Committee, Council work groups, ZMP, PZDP, visiting congregations regularly for preaching and other ministry, Synod of the Rocky Mountains, General Assembly, administering the Special Needs Fund, weekly emails and announcements, responding to the bereaved, and supporting work of the Pastoral Care Team.

Pastoral Care of Presbytery Members was provided at the request of Council by Rev. Bill Calhoun as a first responder and by Rev. Bill Sanders and the Pastoral Care Team of COM. The Council appreciates very much this “behind-the-scenes” continuation of Tom’s ministry for the past 12 months.

Motion: A 3% cost of living for all presbytery staff in 2019. The Council at their October 2, 2018 meeting voted unanimously for a 3% cost of living increase for all presbytery staff in 2019. Rationale: The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that both total compensation costs as well as consumer prices rose 2.9 percent over the year ending June 2018. The Social Security cost of living adjustment will be 2.8% in 2019.

Respectfully submitted by,

Bruce Spear
Personnel Work Group of the Council of Denver Presbytery
Christine Beitzel
Bill Davis
Jean Demmler
Peter Hulac
Karen Yarberry 

Transitional Presbytery Pastor

Click here for pdf version of Terms of Service.

Click here for pdf version of job description. 

Treasurer's Report

Click here for August Financials.

Click here for Audit Report.

Click here for flyer.



Leadership Retreat November November 9-10, 2018.  

BENEFITING Pastors, Musicians, Educators, Leaders of your congregation—
Elders, Deacons, & Others. Especially members of your Worship Committee

WHEN: November 9-10, 2018 Friday Registration begins at 4:00 pm | Program wraps up at 3:00 pm Saturday

WHERE: Highlands Camp & Retreat Center in Allenspark, Colorado

FEATURING • Rev. Jana Childers, PH.D., Dean of San Francisco Seminary, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Professor of Homiletics & Speech Communication.

REGISTER: WWW.HIGHLANDSCAMP.ORG |REGISTRATION $90—Lodging & Food $45—Day Rate (No Lodging) |Group discounts & scholarships available

TOPICS INCLUDE: Agape as Unifier Holy Spirit to go between us & bind us together Practices we do in and beyond worship to be open to people with different points of view. Plus: Worship Wiki Why we do what we do in worship & what are some different ways to do it.

Featuring: Rev. Jana Childers, PH,D., Dean of San Francisco Seminary, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Professor of Homiletics & Speech Communication.

Stated Clerk Report

Click here for pdf version of Proposed Amendments to the Constitution - Book of Order

Approved by the 223rd General Assembly (2018) and recommended to the presbyteries for their vote.

Below is the schedule for Denver Presbytery to vote on these amendments:

January Assembly:  18-B.1, 18-B.2 Renunciation of Jurisdiction; 18-G. Disciplinary Offense; 18 – H.1, 18-H.2 Time Limit.

March Assembly: 18-A – Election of Ruling Elders and Deacons; 18-C – Officers; 18-D Membership of Presbytery; 18-E – Pastor, Counselor, and Advisor; 18-F. Welcoming to the Table.