Blackhawk Presbytery
Wednesday, November 25, 2020
Supporting Thriving Faith Communities in Northern Illinois
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Blackhawk Presbytery
1922 N. IL Rte. 2
P.O. Box 199
Oregon, IL 61061



COVID-19 Information



Please submit YOUR ideas to
Use the Presbytery list of Remote Worship Options (June update) to experience worship on Tuesday...Thursday...Friday...
(Please let us know if your options have changed)
  • Learn how to share the peace in American Sign Language with this easy video.
  • Share a brief video of congregation members' 'selfies' - perhaps around a theme (see Pentecost selfies - RCLPC)
  • Pre-record a special worship message for children so parents can share at the most opportune time (Geneva and Elgin)
  • Communicate regularly with your congregation (and potential visitors) via a updated COVID specific letter on your website
  • Involve the whole church in a mission project - gather warm weather gear for distribution as winter approaches
  • Don't forget to alert your local paper of your community outreach efforts - they are looking for positive stories to report!
  • Need help with technology in the church? Check your local Tech/Trade school or Community College - investigate an unpaid internship.
  • Share a Monday morning email with prayer requests (Elgin)
  • Do 'drive-by' visits to members while video-taping their greetings from a safe distance (*unprofessionally combined with a simple movie app) (see Fulton's)
  • Engage your youth in helping with technology ideas and plans* 
  • Ask church members to report "What have you been doing during quarantine?" - share via mailed newsletter & online too (from Kankakee First)
  • Need to have a session meeting, but not everyone is computer savvy? Try a conference call (Presbytery uses People just call a number from their phone, enter a simple access code and join the call.


(Latest added at the top) 

A Policy Statement on Pastoral Services During the Covid-19 Pandemic

Adopted by Presbytery Assembly Nov. 10, 2020

A long-standing article of faith in the Presbyterian Church (USA) is that "God alone is Lord of the conscience." In keeping with that principle, if a pastor in Blackhawk Presbytery is asked to perform a service or attend an activity which they feel could potentially lead to his or her contracting Covid-19 or endangering the congregation, they shall be given the right to either abstain from that service or to find a safer alternative means of performing that service. No Session or congregation may use such an incident as grounds for changing that pastor's employment by the congregation in any way.

  • Actual sample plans you might want to consider borrowing or re-tooling for your situation (ordered by size of congregation from small to large - church names changed):
  1. Spruce Presbyterian Church (small)
  2. Galena First Presbyterian 
  3. Birch Presbyterian (medium)
  4. Elm Presbyterian (medium)
  5. Maple Presbyterian (larger/multiple services) Note: they did a poll to see who may attend each service and who would probably continue remote worship - excellent idea
(Thank you to the anonymous churches who shared their plans!)

Blackhawk Presbytery COVID-19 Response Task Force:

Eric Heinekamp (Transformational General Presbyter / Stated Clerk)

Chuck Johnson (Presbytery Moderator)

Catherine Martin (COM Moderator)

Alex Regets (Manteno Community, Pastor)

Ron Barkby (Elgin First, Elder)