The Presbyterian Mission Agency Board (PMAB) today (Feb. 6) approved a proposal from four key staff that they be allowed to develop a plan for the ongoing ministry of Stony Point Center in New York for the board’s consideration in April. The agreement—temporarily, at least—gets the PMAB out of an acrimonious bind that threatened to derail its April 5-7 meeting here. “We realized this was not going in a positive direction,” PMAB Executive Director Linda Valentine told the board’s Finance Committee. “So last week we initiated conversations, acknowledging there’s been misunderstandings which have affected people’s perceptions of each other. There has also been fundamental disagreement on some of the facts.” Those issues include the clarity of various PMAB actions in recent years related to Stony Point, financial statements and projections, and the feasibility of Stony Point’s current business plan. Since September 2011, the board has been considering separate incorporation of Stony Point, which has a history of financial instability that has been slowly improving under the leadership of co-directors Rick and Kitty Ufford-Chase. In 2012 the board voted to “affirm the path and process to establish Stony Point Center as a separate legal entity.” Though the action stated “this is not an incorporation proposal…” the board appointed a Transition Task Team (TTT) to develop a formal incorporation recommendation. In 2013, the transition team made its recommendation, which was then referred to an Evaluation Team, a procedure mandated by the PMAB’s predecessor General Assembly Mission Council in 2007 after it considered a separate incorporation proposal for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance. The Evaluation Team’s assessment of the TTT proposal was harshly critical and the growing tension between various parties has been palpable. With the PMAB meeting looming, on Feb. 3 Valentine, the Ufford-Chases and Deputy Executive Director for Mission Roger Dermody wrote a letter to PMAB Chair Matthew Schramm proposing “that the four of us, together with our colleagues, will work together collaboratively to develop a proposal to bring to the April Mission Agency Board meeting.” Specifically, their proposal will: