Spring Meetings of New York Conference Associations
Registration is Open for NYSOM’s Church History
Retiree Boundary Awareness Training
2022 Boundary Awareness Training
Culturally Responsive Ministry Training
Holy Joe’s Café Sees Greater Need to Russia-Ukraine Conflict
Commission on the Global Church: David Southard, Sr. Award for
Excellence in Global Mission Work, Dr. Gordon Comstock Healthcare Award
Keeping in Touch and Staying Safe
PRC’s Webinars for February/March 2022
A Special COVID-19 Happenings will be sent this Friday.
Orient Congregational UCC
Photo by: Rev. Dr. Donna Schaper
From early in my life when I became more spiritually aware, and since the time I intentionally chose to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, I believed that I (well, actually we) was (were) called by God to incarnate unconditional love in my (our) life (lives). Being more like Jesus has been my life goal.
Recently I’ve had some new thoughts about this. Does trying to be like Jesus mean that I think I can achieve that. I’m older now than when I first heard the call to discipleship, and life has shown me, I can’t. I can try, but I can’t be like Jesus. And that makes a colossal difference.
Don’t get me wrong. I am profoundly grateful for the grace that God has shown me. I praise God for the unconditional love God has offered me. But I have come to a place where I believe “conditional love” is important… more than important, essential… to have in my life. I also now believe that discipleship in this life means we are to love one another conditionally. God will continue to love all of us unconditionally (at least, I believe so). However, conditional love calls each of us individually, and all of us as a global community, to accountability. Unconditional love does not require us to “order our steps” in any way. Conditional love does. When a bully invades another country, kills, and declares sovereignty, a disciple of Jesus Christ does not respond with unconditional love. Rather, a disciple demands accountability. Likewise, when we witness a bully inflicting pain on another person, a disciple of Love, does not respond with unconditional love, but rather with a demand that they “order their steps” to honor the sacredness of all life. And hardest of all, when a bully causes us pain, we should not respond with unconditional love. Real love means we call everyone, including those we love, to accountability. God’s unconditional love for each of us is certain. Loving one another is something different.
Repent or Perish- Tough, Jarring words for this moment in history and in this lenten journey
Luke 13: 1-9
“Nothing can Trouble…God Alone Fills us… Be With God”
UCC Webinar—Getting Ready for Earth Sunday: Resources for Congregations.
With the recently released report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the dire situation faced by our world has never been clearer. To help meet this moment, Creation Justice Ministries has created an ecumenical resource to assist churches. The resource is entitled “Weathering the Storm: Faithful Climate Resilience.” It specifically helps churches respond to the question, “How can our churches be hubs of resilience, helping our neighbors weather the physical and spiritual storms of the climate crisis?” The resource can be used year-round and is also particularly useful in preparing for Earth Sunday (April 24th). In this webinar, Avery Davis Lamb, Co-Executive Director of Creation Justice Ministries, will introduce the resource and talk about specific ways churches can deliver a powerful message and experience on Earth Sunday. Even if you can’t make the scheduled time of 1 pm ET on Wednesday, April 13th, still sign-up, and we will send you a recording.
Current New York Conference Covid protocol for all conference events:
Because of our love for one another, and out of an abundance of caution you will be required to:
1.Wear a mask for all indoor activities.
2.Show proof of vaccination and booster (at check-in at Silver Bay), or
3.Show a negative PCR or Rapid Covid test within the last 72 hours (home tests not accepted)
Please bring a kite to Annual Meeting for a special event.
Speakers will be shared online. Plenaries will not. Online voting will not be available.
Spring Meetings of New York Conference Associations
Genesee Valley Association
Saturday, April 30
9 a.m – 12 p.m. (no lunch)
First Congregational Church of Canandaigua, UCC 58 North Main Street, Canandaigua, NY 14424
Please join us in worship and celebration!
May 19th at 6:30 pm.
Registration is Open for NYSOM’s Church History
Registration is now open for the third 20-hour core ministry course of spring 2022, “From Resurrection to Reformation: A History of the Christian Church (1-1650).” Rev. Steven Johnson, Ph.D., will be teaching it on 9 Wednesday evenings from 6:45 – 9 pm, beginning after Easter, on April 20. For more information, click here . If a scholarship would help you participate, reach out to Marjorie Purnine at email@example.com. Learning event and short course information will be coming soon.
RETIREE BOUNDARY AWARENESS TRAINING
The New York Conference will be instituting a new Boundary Awareness Training (BAT) curriculum designed to meet the specific needs of retired ministers who are still engaged in occasional ministry tasks like pulpit supply, weddings, and funerals. This training will also be open to active ministers who are contemplating retirement within 18-24 months. The training content will assist “soon-to-retire” ministers with skills for a successful personal and professional departure from ministry as well as provide tools for maintaining healthy boundaries with a former congregation.
For currently retired ministers, this training will fulfill your association’s boundary awareness requirement. For those “soon-to-retire” ministers, continuing education units will be provided, but it will not substitute for your association’s BAT requirement.
This Retiree BAT Training will be conducted online via Zoom and registration will be $25. Registration for upcoming 2022 sessions will begin in April. Watch the weekly Happenings for the registration link. Should you have questions about BAT requirements, please contact your association Committee on Ministry.
then click on each training for more information and to register
CULTURALLY RESPONSIVE MINISTRY TRAINING
In 2017 the Thirty-First General Synod of the United Church of Christ passed a Resolution that
“calls upon all the judicatory and educational settings of the denomination to include the study of cultural diversity/sensitivity and institutional racism in clergy preparation and continuing education, and as a requirement for maintaining standing for all persons engaged in authorized ministry within and on behalf of the United Church of Christ.” (GS-31 Resolution #10)
In support and compliance with this General Synod Resolution, the New York Conference has developed a Culturally Responsive Ministry Training (CRMT) program for all authorized ministers. The entire diversity curriculum will consist of 3 distinct cultural training modules, with a different module offered every two years. The first module, “Culture & Race” will be offered beginning in April 2022. Subsequent modules, “Culture & Sexuality/Gender” and “Culture & Disabilities” will be offered in 2024 and 2026 and all will continue a rotating basis thereafter. Each Association Committee on Ministry in the New York Conference has now adopted this training program as a mandatory requirement for all authorized ministers.
Each 6-hour CRMT session will be conducted online via Zoom and registration will be $55 per authorized minister. A variety of training dates and times will be available and registration for upcoming 2022 sessions will begin in April. Watch the weekly Happenings and the conference website for upcoming registration links and information. Should you have questions about this new training requirement, please contact your association Committee on Ministry.
Holy Joe’s Cafe Sees Greater Need Due to Russia–Ukraine Conflict
Holy Joe’s Café is seeing an urgent increase in the need for coffee and support for U.S. military chaplains in response to the Russia–Ukraine conflict.
Holy Joe’s Café has supported U.S. military chaplains since its origin at a UCC church in Wallingford, CT in 2006. The organization provides coffee to military chaplains to help them make connections with active-duty military personnel. The simple act of providing coffee to soldiers gives chaplains a comforting way to reach out to troops and often initiates conversations that might not have occurred in the regular daily routine, giving these troops a place to talk, share concerns, and get guidance that can help keep them mentally and spiritually healthier in their work.
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