Dear Committee on Ministry colleagues,
By this time next week, conference and association staff from across the denomination – along with members of the national staff, UCC partners, and Committee on Ministry representatives – will be making their way to San Antonio, Texas for the biennial AM21: Authorizing Ministry in the 21st Century.
Hosted by the MESA Ministry Team, AM21 is an important opportunity for conference staff to collaborate and share wisdom related to ministerial authorization, oversight, and search & call. This year’s AM21 will focus on the materials developed to date by the Habakkuk Group for the next edition of the Manual on Ministry. In San Antonio, AM21 attendees will join the Habakkuk Group’s ever-widening discernment circle as they bring wisdom, contextual perspective, and feedback to the drafted Manual on Ministry for its continued development.
We hope that you too – each of our Committees on Ministry – will join this discernment circle by participating in an AM21 regional event in 2017, scheduled for four different locations around the denomination next year:
· March 2 – 3 in Manchester NH
· April 24 – 25 in Chicago IL
· September 21 – 22 in Denver CO
· October 23 – 24 in Philadelphia PA
Your engagement and feedback in 2017 at the regional AM21s will be vital for the next edition of MOM to support the work of Committees on Ministry. Please talk with your COM colleagues and your conference staff about attending the regional AM21 most convenient to your conference. While the events are regionally located, they are not geographically limited; any UCC member can register to participate at any of these events. Online registration will be announced 2 – 3 months prior to each regional AM21 via the COMma e-newsletter.
Also in 2017, the MESA Ministry Team will offer online Committee on Ministry trainings twice monthly on a variety of topics. We will use the Zoom platform for these trainings; registration and connection information will be shared in advance through COMma. Already you can mark your calendars for the first two Zoom trainings in January 2017:
· “Bridging the Transition between Manuals on Ministry” on January 19 from 7:00 – 8:30pm (eastern);
· “Ministry of Committees on Ministry” on January 31 from 3:30 – 5:00pm (eastern).
We ask your prayers for those who will be gathering soon in San Antonio, and we look forward to seeing you at a regional AM21 event over the next year.
Peace to you and a blessed Thanksgiving,
The Rev. Rachel G. Hackenberg
Minister for Committee on Ministry Resources & Conference Support
Ministerial Excellence, Support & Authorization (MESA) Team
Local Church Ministries, United Church of Christ