Riverside Presbyterian Church (RPC) is part of the largest Presbyterian denomination, the Presbyterian Church USA.

While the Session governs the church locally, we are regionally governed by the Central Florida Presbytery, composed of over 70 churches in Central Florida.  Central Florida Presbytery is part of the Synod of the South Atlantic.  Every two years, commissioners from every Presbytery in the United States gather to meet at the General Assembly.  More information on church governance can be found at PCUSA.org.

Our pastor is a member of the Central Florida Presbytery and is not a member of our church.


RPC is locally governed by the Session. The Session is made up of 14 members, called elders, who are nominated, elected by the congregation, ordained and installed. They each serve 3 year terms and serve as moderators and members of the Commissions. The pastor serves as the moderator of the Session. We have a democratic system based on the needs of the commissions and the votes of each elder. The Session meets on the third Tuesday of the month. The Session has created the Board of Deacons and the Commissions to help do the work of the church. The Board of Deacons and the Commissions provide minutes of their meetings as well as other reports to the Session each month.


Board of Deacons

The Board of Deacons is made up of 12 members, called deacons, who are nominated, elected by the congregation, ordained and installed. They each serve 3 year terms and serve as moderators and members of the Commissions. Deacons are the “shepherds of the church” and provide support to church members. The Board of Deacons meets on the second Tuesday of the month.



The Session has created 9 commissions.  Each year, our pastor appoints the moderator/chair for each commission.  A commission year begins with March.  A commission is made up of at least one Session member, at least one Board of Deacons member, at least one Presbyterian Women member, and “at large” members of the congregation.  The commissions meet once a month.

Ambassadors Commission To plan and coordinate programs to foster church membership maintenance and growth, including but not limited to:
1. Visitor Growth
2. Membership Growth
3. Volunteer Growth


Care & Support Commission

To manage all programs of nurture and care of members of the congregation, including but not limited to the following:

  • Set policies for programs which offer care to the members of the congregation
  • Oversee the Caring Friends program, providing care and support to the sick, shut-ins and bereaved church members
  • Help maintain lists of shut-ins, widows and widowers, and those who are in nursing homes
  • Oversee the prayer chain and the prayer groups
  • Oversee receptions for funerals when appropriate
  • Develop programs that meet the emotional needs of the congregation, such as support groups
  • Handle all similar and related matters concerning the care, nurture and support of the members of the church


Education Commission

To oversee the educational program of the church, including but not limited to the following:

  • Recruit and train church school teachers and youth leaders
  • Oversee the ordering of equipment and supplies for church school and youth programs
  • Oversee the allocation of classroom space
  • Facilitate the extended session
  • Promote camp and conference experiences for all ages
  • Facilitate all small group educational studies and Bible studies
  • Handle all similar and related matters having to do with the educational and study programs of the church


Fellowship Commission

To oversee all fellowship experiences of the congregation, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Plan for church suppers
  • Oversee the “coffee and conversation” gatherings after church services
  • Work together with volunteers to provide meals as requested
  • Assist other commissions with programming for fellowship events dealing with special themes
  • Oversee any special receptions
  • Oversee the church kitchens, making sure that there are materials and provisions for all fellowship events
  • Handle all similar and related matters concerning the fellowship of the church


Outreach, Missions, and Evangelism Commission (OMEC)

To oversee the outreach programs, mission programs and the evangelism of the church, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Consider and recommend support, financial and otherwise, of local, national and international missions and ministries
  • Assist in planning for mission trips
  • Bring to the Session recommendations for special offerings
  • Develop and implement programs of evangelism
  • Recommend any new programs of outreach, mission and evangelism to the Session
  • Handle all similar and related matters concerning the outreach, mission and evangelism of the church


Personnel Commission

To oversee the paid personnel of the church, including but not limited to the following:

  • Interview, hire and dismiss non-clergy staff
  • Maintain up-to-date job descriptions for all employees
  • Hold annual reviews of all staff and make recommendations concerning salary or benefit adjustments to the Session
  • Review the Personnel Manual on an annual basis
  • Make recommendations to the Session concerning any gifts or bonuses
  • Hear and address any complaints and/or suggestions from church employees
  • Make sure that all employment practices are within government laws and guidelines
  • Handle all similar and related matters concerning the paid personnel of the church


Property Management Commission

To oversee the maintenance of all the church property, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Work in conjunction with the church custodian and maintenance personnel to see that the buildings and grounds of the church are kept in good repair
  • Make sure church is in compliance with all state and county codes
  • Make contact with contractors for maintenance and repairs that require specialized expertise beyond the scope and job description of the church’s maintenance personnel
  • Maintain proper and adequate insurance for church property
  • Acquire supplies and equipment for maintenance of the property as requested by custodian and maintenance staff
  • Handle all requests from outside groups concerning use of the facilities
  • Consult with committees having to do with new buildings and renovations
  • Handle all similar and related matters having to do with the property of the church


Stewardship & Finance Commission

To provide care and custody of all the funds and financial concerns of the church, including, but not limited to the following:

  • In conjunction with the church treasurer, to maintain adequate fiscal records and to prepare appropriate financial reports for Session review
  • Recommend fiscal policy
  • Oversee the financial stewardship program and campaign of the church
  • Prepare the annual budget
  • Make financial recommendations concerning the acquisition of land or buildings, and seek loans for such if necessary
  • Oversee the disbursement of funds in both the general fund and all special or designated funds
  • Oversee an annual audit or financial review
  • Handle all similar and related matters concerning the finances of the church


Worship & Sacraments Commission To assist in the planning and scheduling of all gatherings for worship:

  • Establish policies for baptisms, funerals and weddings
  • Order and arrange all materials and supplies necessary for worship, and to maintain supplies in the sacristy
  • Prepare the elements for communion and arrange for communion for shut-ins
  • Acquire ushers and greeters for services; sound and video technicians
  • Oversee a program for training of ushers in CPR in the event of emergency
  • In conjunction with the organist/choir director and pastors, to oversee the music program for worship services
  • Arrange for pulpit supply
  • Handle all similar and related matters having to do with the worship of the church


Presbyterian Women Together, with our sisters in Christ all over the world, we share the following statement of purpose: Forgiven and freed by God in Jesus Christ, and empowered by the Holy Spirit, we commit ourselves:

  • to nurture our faith through prayer and Bible study
  • to support the mission of the church worldwide
  • to work for justice and peace
  • and to build an inclusive, caring community of women that strengthens the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and witnesses to the promise of God’s kingdom.

Presbyterian Women of Riverside is composed of five circles, meeting at various times during the month, led by our Coordinating Team.  All members come together at our General Gatherings.

For more information about Presbyterian Women, please visit the denomination’s website at pcusa.org/pw.


Nominating Committee The Nominating Committee of Riverside Presbyterian Church is a committee of the congregation.  As such it reports directly to the congregation and does not serve as a committee, commission or sub-committee of the session.