LOUISVILLE — The Office of the General Assembly — feeling the same financial pressures that are stressing the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) across the board — has announced the elimination of seven positions.
The job cuts come in expectation that revenue from the denomination’s per capita budget, which funds the Office of the General Assembly, will decline by about 5 percent next year.
Four people — three senior administrative assistants and a document specialist — lost their jobs in the downsizing. Two other staff members have voluntarily accepted separation agreements, and one vacant communications position is being cut.
Clifton Kirkpatrick, the PC(USA)’s stated clerk, said in a news release that the responsibilities of some existing positions also are being reconfigured in the downsizing. The change, he said in the news release, will help the church be more efficient, but “it comes at a very high price with the loss of beloved friends and colleagues.”
The OGA cuts are the latest in a series of cutbacks at the denomination’s national headquarters — including a $9.1 million downsizing about a year ago in which about 75 staff members from the General Assembly Council lost their jobs.
In the months since then, Linda Valentine, the GAC’s executive director, has, with the support of the elected General Assembly Council, reconfigured significantly the organization of the national staff and brought in considerable new blood.
At the same time the OGA cutbacks were being presented, and in what was described as “a move unrelated to the downsizing,” Kirkpatrick also announced the hiring of a new associate for certification and Christian vocation.
Martha Miller, an elder and Christian educator, will begin work June 4.