The mother of First Presbyterian Church’s new pastor was among a cadre of Presbyterian women, teaching elders and ruling elders who took part in the installation service last Sunday of the Rev. Mindy Douglas as the 12th pastor of this historic Durham church.
First Presbyterian at 302 E. Main St. has been downtown downtown since 1871. In the 1960s when people and churches were taking flight to the suburbs, its congregation decided to continue its ministry from the heart of the city.
The Rev. Minnie Sue Douglas, mother of the new pastor, is a retired teaching elder in Foothills Presbytery in South Carolina where Mindy grew up. She led the Litany of Gifts, as well as asked the constitutional questions that are part of the liturgy for this service.
The Rev. Mindy Douglas is not the first clergy woman to serve at First Presbyterian, but she is the first to serve as its senior pastor and head of staff.
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The service that included Holy Communion featured music led by Kathy Parkins, minister of music, and the church choir. Guests musicians were Kent Foss, on trumpet, and Lesley Curtis, soprano.
Other participants in worship, included:
▪ Clergy: The Rev. Dr. Michelle Bartel, coordinator of Theological Education and Seminary Relations for the Presbyterian Church (USA), who delivered the sermon. Also, the Rev. Katie Crowe, pastor Trinity Avenue Presbyterian; the Rev. Franklin Golden, pastor Durham Presbyterian; the Rev. Marilyn Hedgpeth, associate pastor First Presbyterian; the Rev. Hinson-Hasty, senior director Theological Education Funds Development for the Presbyterian Church (USA); the Rev. Mitzi Lesher-Thomas, parish associate Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian in Chapel Hill; and the Rev. Chris Tuttle, pastor Westminster Presbyterian in Durham and vice moderator of New Hope Presbytery.
▪ Ruling elders: Courtney Chavez, Church of Reconciliation in Chapel Hill; Mary Donna Pond, Chapel in the Pines in Chapel Hill; and Phyllis Supple, First Presbyterian Durham.
The Rev. Mindy Douglas was called as pastor at First Presbyterian on Feb. 14. She came to the church after having “planted” Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church in Chapel Hill.
Before that, she served as associate pastor at University Presbyterian Church in Chapel Hill and interim associate pastor for Camp Ministry at University Presbyterian.
She has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Erskine College in Due West, S.C., and a master of divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary (now Union Presbyterian Seminary) in Richmond, Virginia. She is currently pursuing a doctorate at Duke Divinity School.
She lives with her husband, Tim, and son, Tyler, in southern Chapel Hill. She enjoys walking, dancing, reading, singing, music, being with friends and learning.
Food running out
Word has come from the pantry at Meals on Wheels of Durham that the shelves are almost empty.
While MOW has a caterer for daily meals, the ministry makes weekend meals in house.
At this time, 80 clients receive two extra meals each Friday and depend on these to get them through the weekend.
During summer months when children are out of school, MOW likes to make food available to children as well, but the Food Bank where MOW gets food is hard-pressed to handle this extra demand. So direct donations of particular food items to MOW can help hungry children.
Here is Meals on Wheels needs:
▪ Fruit cups, unsweetened, individual size.
▪ Applesauce, unsweetened, individual size.
▪ South, low sodium if possible in pop top cans.
▪ Canned meals like spaghetti in pop top cans.
▪ Peanut butter/cheese cracker snacks.
▪ Tuna and crackers packages.
▪ Granola bars and juice boxes.
▪ Breakfast and nutrition bars.
Items can be dropped off at Meals on Wheels, 2522 Ross Road, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays.
Dinner and a movie
Durham Congregations in Action is sponsoring “Sitting at God’s Table,” a documentary on inter-religious dialogue by faith leaders from the Triangle.
The event will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 21, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 1737 Hillandale Road. Supper included, $7.
Five religious leaders from the Triangle spiritual communities discuss their diverse perspectives on current questions of the day. In an extended dinner conversation, they share personal views, challenging questions, intimate stories and significant insights about the ways religion functions in society today.
Ellen Shepard, the filmmaker, raises her own questions of spirituality, ethics, and belief, inviting her guests into space to illumine both commonalities and differences among them.
Leaders featured include Imam Shakil Ahmed of Cary Masjid; Bishop Michael Curry, Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina; Rabbi Lucy dinner, Temple Beth Or, Raleigh; Dr. David Halley, Hayes Barton Baptist Church, Raleigh; and Father Mark Reamer, Community of St. Francis of Assisi in Raleigh.
Q&A will be led by the filmmaker and local faith leaders.
The Durham Rescue Mission, whose mantra is “Mending Shattered Lives Since 1974,” observed one of its most joyous occasions recently, Victory Program Graduation.
Twenty-two men and four women received certificates of completion from the mission’s one-year recovery program.
“This milestone is the result of hard work and dedication on the part of each graduate,” said Ernie Mills, founder of the mission.
“Many of them have never finished anything in their lives,” he said. “These men and women were in crisis when they came to the mission and they have courageously fought against addictions, homelessness and abusive relationships and other bad choices in their past. Today, they have hope and a bright future. Today, we encourage them to continue in the things they have learned.”