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News, events, updates, and tidbits from the Presbyterian Historical Society. Use tags to read related articles or sort by author for similar posts written by PHS staff members and volunteers.

January 20, 2021

Margaret Flory was a pioneer in mission work for the Presbyterian Church. Throughout her long career with the Board of Foreign Missions, she created several cross-cultural ecumenical programs for youth, believing that that “the American church has much to learn from the rest of the world.” One of these programs, Junior Year Abroad, was one of the first study abroad programs in the country and allowed students to serve in places such as China, Brazil, India, Ghana, and the Philippines.

I recently processed Flory’s collection of personal papers as Record Group...

January 19, 2021
Rev. Perla Belo, via diginitymemorial.com

Over the Christmas break we learned of the passing of Rev. Perla Dirige Belo, the first Asian American women ordained in the PC(USA). She was interviewed by Alice Brasfield in 1985 as part of a PHS series of interviews of ordained women. You can...

January 15, 2021
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Fifth General Synod of the United Church of Christ., 1965. Pearl ID: 143453

There are a plethora of items in our collection that relate to racial justice, and to the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Today we are choosing to highlight Dr. King’s sermon, "...

January 14, 2021

"As Christians, you expect women to serve the church. Women are the slaves of the church. Women raise money, serve as mistresses to some of you delegates at this convention--"

The speaker from the Chicago Women's Liberation Union was interrupted by noise among the delegates to the 182nd General Assembly. She went on, and was interrupted again.

"We arrange flowers, serve dinners, teach Sunday school, pour coffee, sing in the choir, and care for children while men attend conventions like this. If you will be quiet, I will continue. Your...

December 30, 2020

--By Richard W. Reifsnyder

When the church re-elected J. Herbert Nelson as Stated Clerk of the General Assembly in 2020, there was no doubt of the strong visible leadership they expected him to exercise. Despite the humble title, the Clerk was the “Head of Communion,” charged with “constitutional and spiritual leadership for the life and witness of the church” and the “chief ecumenical officer” who “speaks to and for the church in...

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