Grace Presbyterian Church 113 Hargrove Road, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401 - PO Box 1234, Tuscaloosa, AL 35403 205-758-1193

Grace Presbyterian Church Blog

Feb. 2016 Session Summary

February Session Report

 The Session of University Presbyterian Church met on Thursday, February 18, 2016.

Members Present: Becki Evans, Chris Poole, Jerry Lamme, Nicole Varnado, Darryl Thornton, Ralph Lane, Sandy Wolfe. Clerk: Nancy DuPree. Moderator: Cathy Hoop. Members Absent: Adam Miller, Cathy Andreen.


  • The Session met with Avery Smith and unanimously voted to recommend Avery to the Presbytery of Shephards and Lapsley’s Commission for Preparation for Ministry as an Inquirer in the process towards ordination as a teaching elder in the PC (USA). Avery shared their faith journey and sense of call. Everyone was very excited to hear of Avery’s acceptance (with scholarships) to both Louisville and McCormick Theological Seminaries. The Session laid hands on Avery and prayed together, thanking God for the gifts Avery brings to God’s church. Darryl Thornton offered to be Avery’s liaison for the candidacy process. Avery will serve as an intern for UPC this summer.

  • Chris Poole offered to sponsor Antonio and Keith Estipona as they will be introduced in worship on Sunday, February 21.

  • Everyone was reminded about Empty Bowls on February 26.

New Business:

  • Sandy Wolfe gave an overview of the UPC/CPC Exploratory Committee Meeting. While the overall experience of worship at Covenant was largely positive, there were glitches with children’s Sunday school classes that need to be resolved. Concerns about the sound system were expressed. Both churches would love to see the choir at the front of the church. Rev. Ben Acton, liaison to CPC, provided additional resources for the committee and a brief overview of how a merger takes place. Discussion was had concerning proxy voting.

  • Cathy discussed the plan for the luncheon on February 28, when all UPC attendees will be invited to participate in facilitated small group conversations to share hopes and concerns regarding the possible future with CPC.

  • The Finance Committee has hired a new bookkeeper, Tina Powell, who began working on February 15.