Dale L. Bishop, Executive Minister of Wider Church Ministries and a member of the five-member UCC Collegium of Officers, has informed the WCM Board and the search committee for that position that he will not be a candidate for re-election.
Bishop was elected to a four-year term in 1999 and would have been eligible to succeed himself twice for a maximum of three terms. General Synod 24, meeting in Minneapolis next July 11-15, will call by election two of the five Collegium officers: Bishop's position and that of Associate General Minister.
The current Associate General Minister, Edith Guffey, has stated that she is willing to serve another term.
"I still feel called to this work," she says. "I continue to be challenged and feel that there are still things that I can contribute to our common life and work."
"My decision has to do with the fact that I've been doing this sort of thing for 23 years," says Bishop. "I've enjoyed it, but there also comes a time when you feel that you've reached a point of completion."
"I feel that I've done what the church called me to do, that is, to look after the overseas ministries of our church during the transitional period," Bishop says. "I feel very good about what I've done. We have a wonderful staff and an engaged board and that's a good feeling. So it's a good time for someone else."
Position applications and supplemental materials are available by writing to the Rev. Erv Bode, United Church of Christ Search, P.O. Box 1177, Newburyport, MA 01950; e-mail email@example.com.
The deadline for receiving complete position applications is Tuesday, Dec. 31, at the same address.