UCC ‘Mission: 1’ countdown reaches 111 day milestone
Written by Staff Reports
July 12, 2011

At about noon EST today, the UCC’s “Mission: 1” campaign flashed a fleeting preview of what it will look like the first 11 days in November.


For one second, the beginning of the campaign – in which the UCC pledges to make good on its "that they may all be one" motto with a campaign to collect more than 1 million food and household items for local food banks and marshal its 5,300 congregations to advocate for hunger-related causes worldwide – was 111 days, 11 hours, 11 minutes and 11 seconds away.


Affirmed unanimously by the UCC's 90-member Executive Council in March, "Mission: 1" plays on the prevalence of the number "1" in the Nov. 1-11, 2011, timeframe (11-1-11—11-11-11).


“It’s one of our ‘Big Hairy Audacious Goals,’” the Rev. Geoffrey A. Black, UCC general minister and president, told delegates and visitors to General Synod 28 in Tampa, Fla., on July 4. "If you've ever yearned for the whole UCC to walk hand in hand to achieve a common goal, this is the answer to that prayer."   

In addition to collecting more than 1 million food and household items, the overarching goals of “Mission: 1” are to gather online contributions of more than $111,111 for Neighbors in Need, offerings that will be shared for hunger-action purposes with agencies of justice and compassion nationwide; and to offer more than 11,111 letters to Congress, asking the government to reform U.S. foreign assistance in a way that more effectively benefits hungry and poor people worldwide.


The latter piece will also provide a final push to Bread for the World's 2011 "Offering of Letters" campaign.  

"Our hope is that 'Mission: 1' will prove to be a game-changer in how we think of ourselves as one church in shared mission," said Black. "This is a recognition that every local church is a center of mission and collectively we have power to make a huge impact."

In the March presentation to the Executive Council, the Rev. J. Bennett Guess, UCC communications director, emphasized a need for success tools that transcend membership numbers and dollar donations.

“Our numbers focus really needs to be on our impact in the world, those we serve,” said Guess. “We also need to address the need for transparency and accountability. Did we actually achieve what we said we were going to achieve?"

To learn more about “Mission” 1,” please visit <ucc.org/mission1>.


Rev. J. Bennett Guess
Executive Minister, Local Church Ministries
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland,Ohio 44115