Calvary Presbyterian Church
120 South Street - Newburgh, New York 12550
- Phone:  (845) 562-8730

"A place of RENEWAL in a RENEWING city."

Good Tidings: Fall 2006

From the Pastor

Good things continue to happen at Calvary Church as we seek to discern God’s purposes for our faith community at the corner of Grand and South Streets. The Presbyterian minister-author, Frederick Buechner, once wrote that one’s true vocation lies where one’s deep passion meets the world’s deep need. In some sense, that is true for a church as well, and we have made some strides in the direction of discerning more clearly our shared vocation. We have crafted a provisional mission statement (yes, it’s too long, but it’s part of the process of prayerful thinking in which we are engaged), and we have continued to re-open our church doors to the community. Fresh faces join us for worship and work. . . even in the summer!

To be sure, the financial situation is a chronic concern, and we seem to be entering “a season of leanness” in that regard. The session believes, however, that we must pass through such a time—of risking well-stewarded resources—if a new season of mission and purpose is to have birth among us, if our deep passion for Christ’s justice and love are to meet the city’s and the world’s deep need for precisely such love and justice.

Most of you have read or heard previously of the rehearsals, concerts, and other performances that have begun to occur in our building in recent months, of Rural Migrant Ministry’s Youth Arts Program, not to mention the Health Fair and the Blood Drive that took place last spring.

What you may not have heard, however, is that, twice in recent months, a group of “20-30 Somethings,” who are more or less connected to our church, have met for socializing and challenging conversation. . . or that the Opera Company of the Highlands will soon have
office space inside the South St. door. . .
or that there will be another blood drive in October. . . or that Cornell University Cooperative Extension will sponsor a “Strengthening Families” program in the upstairs classrooms (a direct fruit of last Spring’s health fair).

During the summer, the session voted to enter a contract with Marilyn Kaplan, a preservationist architect and former Newburgh resident, to do a “conditions study” of the church building. Her report will assess the building from steeple top to foundation and outline a plan for needed repair and renovation. This report is a necessary step if we are to seek financial partnership for future ministry and mission. The Skinner pipe organ project will be adjunct to this study.

And finally, let us not forget, worship, teaching and learning, fellowship, counseling, and community participation continue, all part of our efforts, by the grace of God, to bring the passion of our faith to bear on the world’s deep need.

Be well, and God’s peace,

Deke Spierling
Pastor and Teaching Elder.

In Memorium

Jo Dutcher, August 26,2006
Jean Mackey, August 27, 2006

“I am the resurrection and the life.”

Mum's the Word... Not!

There will be a fall Mum sale to benefit the Calvary Church budget. Plants will be available for autumn enjoyment—by previous order. 9-inch plants in rust, yellow, or red, will be sold for $7.00 each. Orders must be made no later than Friday, October 13th.

For further information, call Elizabeth Heath, 534.5887.

North River Listening Room

The North River Listening Room is on the calendar for three Friday evenings between now and the holidays: October 13, November 10, December 8th. Performance begin at 8 p.m. and a donation is $10 is requested. Come and enjoy coffee, refreshments, and a variety of music. Jeff Wilkinson is coordinating these events. A press release about NRLR reads, in part:

The North River Listening Room will launch its first official season with legendary song poet Jack Hardy. The show begins at 8 PM. Suggested donation is $10. Coffee, tea and baked goods will be available for purchase.
North River Listening Room was started by local singer/songwriter Jeff Wilkinson, along with a few other local musician friends. The series brings local and nationally touring artists to Newburgh for an evening of
music each month. "There is a real shortage of what I call 'listening rooms' in the area, places where the focus is on the music," Wilkinson says. "There are lots of bands who play in New York City who would love to come up to a beautiful place like this and play for an appreciative audience."

This concert is the first in a monthly series.

Homecoming Sunday

The third annual Homecoming Sunday is scheduled for October 15th. It’s a day for members, former members and friends, and guests to participate in worship and fellowship. The Partners for Sacred Places team and others are helping to plan this event, as a day to celebrate our church’s life, by the grace of God, and to look toward that future that God has in mind for us.

Plan now to attend. . . and to invite other to join you!

Fall Rummage Sale

The annual Fall Rummage Sale will take place on Friday and Saturday, October 6 & 7th, with set-up occurring earlier in the week. Doris Strakosch (565.8577) and Marilyn Draxton (561.8237) are coordinating this year’s sale, and they look forward to having the help of many volunteers, both experienced and new!

Lightly-used toys and household goods are welcome, along with other “flea market” items. Clothing should be clean and usable, not torn or stained. Please note that, in consideration of the volunteers, NO DONATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER NOON ON THURSDAY, OCTOBER 5TH.

Let’s join to make this fall’s sale a real service to the community, as well as a time of fellowship for all who work together on it.

Circle of Conversation

The adult Circle of Conversation will reconvene beginning Sunday, September 10, at 9 a.m. in Fellowship Hall.

We’ll begin with some “inside baseball,” that is, brief looks at two items that roiled the waters at the General Assembly in June: “Scruples” in the matter of ordination, and language about the Trinity. Come and find out!

Later in the fall , we plan to welcome leaders from several other faith communities to learn from them. Watch the Sunday bulletins for further information.

The “Circle” enjoys thinking outside the box, and often outside the books, and we welcome new hearts and minds!


The Presbytery’s annual event of encouraging and equipping church leaders and members for discipleship wlll take place on Sunday afternoon, October 15, at Stony Pt. Center. Workshops will include such topics as Teaching Stewardship, Mission Planning, Diversity at Worship, Spiritual Development, Contemporary Worship.

Registration information will be available in Sunday bulletins or the church office, as well as on the Presbytery website: Let’s carpool!

Talent, Anyone?

PresbyBuild is a project of a dozen Presbyterian Churches in eastern Orange County, including Calvary Church. Together, we are working to complete a second PresbyBuild house at 202 South St., in cooperation with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh.

Habitat houses require the labor of minds, hearts, and hands, as well as dollars. In order to provide some of the latter (as we did on the walk for Housing last Spring), the PresbyBuild Committee will sponsor a Dinner and Talent Show on Saturday, October 21st, at the Bethlehem Church on Rt. 94 in New Windsor. The dinner will begin at 6 p.m., and the Talent Show will follow at 7 o’clock.

Do you have talent to share—singing, dancing, juggling, a truly funny story? If so, call Dave Mason, 562.0954, before September 15th.

Strengthening Families

Cornell University Cooperative Extension will sponsor “Strengthening Families,” a seven-session program for Newburgh parents and youth, ages 8-14 years old. It is designed to help parents prepare the teenage years, avoid problems with drugs and alcohol, and strengthen family communication and problem-solving.

The program will include a free family meal, parent workshops, youth activities, family discussions and games. It will occupy some of our church space on Wednesday evenings, beginning October 11th. For further information, or to register, call Eileen Hodges or Sandra McIntosh, 344.1234.

Fall Calendar

Visit our calendar HERE.


Copyright © 2011 Design by Sue (Entire content of this website)
Send mail to  with questions or comments about this web site.
Last modified: June 27, 2011