Hosting a Presbytery Meeting

Thank you for thinking about or actually hosting the Presbytery Stated Meeting

1. We need the following information as soon as you know it:

  • Lunch menu (please offer a vegetarian option or be able to accommodate special requests – egg salad or veggie and cheese sandwich or lettuce salad with veggies and at least one of the following: cheese/hard-cooked egg/kidney beans/garbanzo beans are some possibilities)
  • Cost per person for the meal plus snacks and childcare—usually $7-8
  • When you want to close reservations.
  • Any special parking instructions

2. Plan on between 125-150 people. About 20 people will come who have not registered (if people are thoughtful enough to register). The lunch lines can be long. Some ways to prevent that are 1) Have 4 buffet lines instead of one table with 2 lines. Have the food on the individual lunch tables when the people come down to lunch, so all they do is sit and start eating. This works well for everyone but the vegetarians.

3. You will receive an excel file with the reservations after the close of registration. Reservations close 1 to 2 weeks prior to the meeting. You tell us when you would like them closed because you will need to know a number to buy food. Any reservations made after that date may be charged extra for lunch or you may tell them no lunch. You will receive phone calls after reservations are closed. You may decide whether you wish to let them have lunch or not. The presbytery will need to know who calls (we bring nametags). Reservations may be canceled up to three days before the meeting. Payment is expected for cancellations made less than three days ahead.
4.  If a person has not made a reservation it is not necessary to provide lunch to the individual; although you may wish to provide a list of areas close by where they can obtain lunch. Because of our limited time for lunch, we suggest that you seat people and serve them at the tables or have at least three serving lines. Some of the churches have found that having the lunch already on the table when everyone walks in works really well and saves everyone standing in line. This is difficult with hot food, but it is something to think about.
5. We would appreciate your having a Hospitality Room available for those who need to visit or conduct business outside the Presbytery meeting. It would be nice to have coffee and water available and cookies or leftover snacks from morning coffee.
6. The host church provides babysitting for the day of Presbytery. People who need this service must let you know when they call in their reservations.
7. We will need several tables for Presbytery materials. They should be in a highly visible location. You should have two tables for taking the lunch money. Two tables for registration. Two tables for Resource Center materials. And two tables for presbytery church folders and addition items (ie. Books of Orders, Mission Yearbooks, Calendars). One table for name tags. The Presbytery office will let you know if additional tables are needed for displays, approximately one week before the meeting. Anyone calling you for tables should be referred to the Presbytery office.
8. People needed:

a. Two to four in the parking area to direct, answer questions, and help carry in meeting materials

b. Five to six hosts/hostesses to greet, answer questions, and direct people

c. Five to work at the lunch money table and (if not manned by the presbytery staff) sign-in table

d. Four to collect the offering during worship with one of them counting the offering with Leslie Keusch who will then give the amount to the moderator to report to the presbytery

e. One or two to work the projector, DVD player, laptop (powerpoint) and sound.

f. One or two people to take pictures. Please send them to the presbytery office.

g. If you have someone in your church who is familiar with presbytery meetings, it would be good to have them sit at the registration table.

 9. The lunch tables should be well marked and easy to see. One person standing at the end of the table who can direct people to the shortest  line and at another table, four people seated who will check off names and take lunch money. These four people should each have a partial copy of the master reservation list (a-e, f-j, etc.). If you want to use tickets for dinner, the Presbytery office can provide them.

Please have the following items available at the lunch money table:

  1. cash for making change
  2. reservation lists; the presbytery office can provide an Excel spreadsheet of the reservations.
  3. nametags (the presbytery office will provide name tags) and they don’t have to be at the lunch table if your church has room for another table else where.

10. In the front of meeting room or sanctuary (but off to one side) the Clerks will need a table, two chairs, a microphone if possible, and a wastebasket.

11. A screen for projecting powerpoint presentations is needed. Also a projector, if possible. The presbytery can borrow a projector if needed.

12. Microphones are needed in the middle of the sanctuary so that people who wish to speak can get to a microphone easily. If you are unable to provide these, please let the Presbytery office know.

13. Directional signs for the following are very helpful:

    a. restrooms

    b. refreshments

    c. sanctuary

    d. church office

    e. registration

    f. displays

    g. hospitality room

14. Remember, it is likely most people will arrive hungry and will appreciate a snack while they socialize. Departing snacks are also a welcome treat.

15. The presbytery has a CCLI License and if you need to copy hymns you should call the office for the license number to print/display on the copies

16. Finally, it is a tradition for the pastor to introduce the Presbytery to his/her church and share a piece of its history. If appropriate, identify ways the facilities were designed or remodeled to be more accessible to people who are physically, visually, or auditorially impaired. In addition to announcing the location of restrooms and any other pertinent information, please let people know where the hospitality room is and that it will be open all day. Please limit this to five minutes.

As with anything that goes well, there are many details and much to be done behind the scenes.  Please feel free to call the Presbytery office, 888.271.6567, or send an email message at office@lakemichiganpresbytery.org should any questions arise.