Community Learning Day
Saturday’s learning opportunity features Ruling Elder Elona Street-Stewart, Co-Moderator of the 224th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
We will be hosting a community event – not a called business meeting – to welcome keynote speaker Elona Street-Stewart and learn more about Mission as Formative Leadership – Inside and Outside the Church.
Elona Street-Stewart, Delaware Nanticoke tribe, was elected in June 2020 as Co-Moderator of the 224th General Assembly, along with Gregory Bentley, pastor of Fellowship Presbyterian Church, Huntsville, Alabama, becoming first American Indian to this position. She is a ruling elder and Synod Executive for the Synod of Lakes and Prairies, having already been synod program staff for over 20 years. Elona has also served the PCUSA on racial justice matters in mission development, denominational policies, and education programs since 1980. She has been engaged for four decades in grass root and national advocacy on racial equity, Indian education, family empowerment and public policy. Elona has received many honors, including Minnesota American Indian Parent of the Year 1998, a national Women of Faith Award from Presbyterian Women in 2010, and a Peacemaker Award in recognition of Mahatma Gandhi’s 147 th birthday. She was the first Native American elected to an urban school board in Minnesota, serving on the Saint Paul School Board for three terms, and is the first to be installed as a synod executive in the PC(USA) and now also as Co-Moderator of the General Assembly. Macalester College conferred an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters for Elona in June 2021. An Upward Bound student from Philadelphia and Occidental college graduate, Elona and her husband, Rev. David Stewart, have 4 children and 4 grandchildren.
After her presentation, Rev. Street-Stewart will host a half-hour Q&A discussion, moderated by Rev. Dr. Jacqueline Taylor.
We will then pause for a brief “Lunch Bunch” to catch up with one another before breaking into groups to discuss topics that may be of interest to you.
Afternoon workshops beginning at 12:30 include:
+ The Maryland Environmental Human Rights Amendment led by Luca Grifo-Hahn, a young adult leader in the Student Campaign for Environmental Human Rights. It is a moral imperative that we protect the basic human dignity of access to a healthful environment. Pollution and degradation is disproportionately concentrated in communities of color and low income neighborhoods. The Environmental Human Rights Amendment seeks to ameliorate this disparity by empowering Marylanders, state and local governments to protect and defend the right to a healthful environment and stable climate. This workshop will discuss in more detail what the Environmental Human Rights Amendment is, why it is important, how to pass it, the environmental and social justice implications that it will have, and what role the people can play in passing it.
Luca Grifo-Hahn is a Maryland native and recent graduate of St. Mary’s College of Maryland. He has been involved in a number of initiatives and campaigns throughout the state of Maryland in environmental and political arenas. Currently, he is serving on the Maryland Sierra Club’s Legislative Committee and is working in partnership with the Maryland Campaign For Environmental Human Rights to pass this crucial Amendment. He is also serving as the coordinator of the Intercollegiate Student Campaign for the Environmental Human Rights, where he works with an ever growing coalition of colleges and universities across the state of Maryland to empower young people to promote the active participation of their school communities in integrating and understanding the values and principles of environmental human rights and to demonstrate to Maryland legislators how much this Amendment means to the youth.
+ The Dakota Presbytery Partnership Summer Learning Camps with special guest, Rev. Fern Cloud. The Baltimore Dakota Steering Committee (BDSC) is excited to announce the signing of a new 5 year extension to our partnership with the Dakota Presbytery. The document was signed on October 2 nd at the Fall Dakota Presbytery meeting in Sisseton, South Dakota. Past BDSC Chair, Chrystie Adams, and BDSC Chair, Bob Steppling, were in attendance and spoke with the members of the Dakota Presbytery about the history of the learning camps and the process for requesting a new learning camp. Chrystie and Bob were approached about having two new camps. To start these camps will require a commitment from a Baltimore Presbytery church to become a partner church and also other members from the Presbytery will be needed to apply as staff members for these camps. To find the right partner churches and other staff members, the BDSC will be having a workshop on November 6 th during the “open space” of the Presbytery Learning Day. The Rev. Fern Cloud, pastor of the Pejuhutazizi (Yellow Medicine) Presbyterian Church and Stated Clerk of the Dakota Presbytery will be in Baltimore to answer questions from the Dakota Presbytery perspective. The workshop will address current camps and proposed camps and what is required of a partner Church and members that are interested in attending as staff. This unique mission is based upon working together with our partners to establish and strengthen relationships between our two presbyteries. Please prayerfully consider joining us in this wonderful experiential partnership. Please visit our website at baltimoredakotalearningcamps.org
+ Ministry Group Kaleidoscope, Led by Dr. Renee Mackey, MG Convener Chair. An imaginative look into the turning cycles of the five Ministry Group outcomes as seen through a kaleidoscope lens. Discover some interesting MG trivia and creative ways of living out God’s calling in ministry. Come ready to share one exciting thing about your MG. Not sure of who/when/why/what? We’ll answer those questions too. Let’s celebrate the diversity and creative genius of who we are as God’s people.