Topics in this eDIGEST:
- FEATURED: PC(USA) story highlights Mental Health Referral Panel at Grand Rapids – Westminster
- NOTE: Presbytery sets 2021 per capita rate, minimum terms of call
- REMEMBER: Registrations due this week for Boundary Training and Urban Plunge
FEATURED: PC(USA) story highlights Mental Health Referral Panel at Grand Rapids – Westminster
Posted September 25, 2020
By Mike Ferguson | Presbyterian News Service
Westminster Presbyterian Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has developed a proven and comprehensive method to help members and friends receive quality mental health services when they need them the most.
The church established its Mental Health Referral Panel, which refers people to the best-qualified mental health care and has a funding component, after members were inspired by the life and death of a baby boy in 2012. When the boy’s father, a Westminster member, sought counseling, his experience was anything but healing and he asked the pastoral staff for a good referral.
“Our pastor at the time didn’t feel he had the expertise” to offer the parishioner counseling said Philip Gibson, a church member and retired county mental health provider who helped form the panel and has watched it grow. “We thought, ‘What would this look like if we have a panel of providers that pastors could refer to with confidence?’”
To date, the Mental Health Referral Panel has connected 134 members and friends of the church with the mental health care they need, according to Gibson. More than $83,000 has been distributed to pay for services for people whose insurance won’t cover the services or who otherwise couldn’t afford them.
And, Gibson said, “today the need for counseling is greater than it’s ever been.”
NOTE: Presbytery sets 2021 per capita rate, minimum terms of call
Decisions to set the presbytery’s 2021 per capita rate at $23.00 per person and to define the minimum terms of call for new pastors were made at the Presbytery of Lake Michigan’s September 19, 2020 Stated Meeting.
Per Capita Rate
The total 2021 per capita rate is $35.23 per person. That rate includes $8.98 for the Office of the General Assembly, $3.25 for the Synod of the Covenant and $23.00 for the presbytery. Click here for a summary sheet with the 2021 per capita rate plus a summary of what the annual rate was in previous years.
Minimum Terms of Call
The 2021 minimum terms of call was set at $36,115 plus free use of the manse and payment of actual utilities by the church OR $46,970 combined salary and allowance for housing and utilities. The compensation package also must include full participation in the Benefits Plan. See the attached file for the Commission on Ministry policy regarding minimum terms of call.
REMEMBER: Registrations due this week for Boundary Training and Urban Plunge
Boundary & Ethics Training
One session of this course – mandatory for all teaching elders active in the ministries of the Presbytery of Lake Michigan — will be offered from 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday, October 7 via Zoom. Click here to complete the online registration form due by October 2. Training materials will be sent to the email address provided during registration.
Urban Plunge Remix 2020
The annual event hosted by the Youth Strategies Committee usually brings youth from across the presbytery together for a weekend of worship, service and fellowship. This year, youth who participate in the one-day event on Saturday, November 7 will do local service project during the day then join a virtual worship experience later in the evening. Click here to see a video promoting the event and here to see an event agenda. Advance registration for the event is due by Thursday, October 1. Youth leaders should click here to register their group.