About Faithful and Welcoming Churches:
Important Conversations Happen
in Covenant Community
By Rev. Dr. Monica Ouellette,
Associate Conference Minister

Our theme for our Annual Gathering in June was Building the Neighborhood. This year we offered workshops on a variety of topics and Front Porch discussions around a variety of topics. We were blessed to have Rev. Bob Thompson, President of the Faithful and Welcoming Churches, join us for one of the Front Porch discussions. Our discussion centered around what it means to be Evangelical, Conservative, Orthodox and Traditional (ECOT) in the United Church of Christ. The message that Rev. Thompson and I conveyed to the group was that in the United Church of Christ there is room at the table of grace for everyone - progressive, moderate and conservative congregations. When we are in dialogue with one another we are living into our covenant with one another, and the conversation is richer, deeper and grace-filled.  

IKC Connects with COMs

Committee on Ministry is one of the most complicated and important parts of the work of any association within the United Church of Christ. I have the privilege and duty of being the chair of the committee for the Kentuckiana Association. It is an honor to serve with the other members of the committee who all understand the importance of the work we are doing.

With the release of the new Manual on Ministry from MESA, our work has become easier and more difficult. In order to foster communication, the sharing of resources, and to provide some consistency between our associations, ACM Toni Hawkins has organized monthly COMCast internet calls. The COM chairs (or a representative of each committee) spend some time each month comparing notes about our work. We are able to share our struggles and joys. This is not easy work, but it is rewarding! It is also much easier to do this work when we have a community to assist with the discernment process.

The COMCast meetings are such an opportunity to build this community.
The work of each COM is to accompany those that feel called to ministry on their journey to discern and strengthen their particular gifts and to help them match their gifts with the needs of the church. Given the changing state of our Indiana-Kentucky Conference (like many others within the UCC and other mainline protestant denominations) we are striving toward ways to work smarter, not harder. Part of that comes with being adaptable and the COMCast is one vehicle that allows this. If you or your COM is not yet participating, please reach out to Toni, it has given me helpful support in this work of the church.

Samantha Jewell
Chair of the Kentuckiana COM

To learn more about COMCast meetings, you can contact Associate Conference Minister Rev. Dr. Toni Hawkins via email at
Spiritual Healing:
History & Practice

At its Twelfth Synod in 1978, The United Church of Christ recognized spiritual healing as a “valid ministry of the church.” The UCC subsequently included services for healing for use with an individual and a congregation in its Book of Worship.

Rev. Dr. Doug Busby, a medical doctor and UCC minister, is offering to preach and lecture about spiritual healing and conduct healing services in UCC settings. The healing service which he uses mirrors those in the UCC’s Book of Worship, with some modifications that draw more cogently on elements of Jesus’ healing ministry and contemporary practices in spiritual healing.

Doug has had a career-long interest in spiritual healing. Between periods of serving in intentional interim ministry, he has written extensively on spiritual healing and familiarized many churches of the UCC and other Protestant denominations with it. He is now working full time in this area of the healing ministry.

Doug can be reached at or (219)548-2509. His address is 2508 Pebble Beach Drive, Valparaiso, IN 46383. He does not charge any fee in his healing ministry, although he anticipates reimbursement for travel expenses.
INKY Women: Called

The Indiana-Kentucky Conference Women's Board met this month, as they often do, in the Indianapolis office of the IKC to pray together and discuss the work of the women in our Conference. Traditionally, the board would be vetting nominations of new officers and focusing on putting together a guiding curriculum for the year, one that would be distributed to the associations' women's boards, a web of connection.

Instead, we considered what the future of INKY Women, as the board colloquially calls itself, might look like. We had little choice, nominations have not rolled in, members of each association are not present.

You'd expect that what sounds like the typical story of decline among mainline church structures would have meant that our chat was solemn and defeated. You'd expect that we would trade stories that lament how things used to be, and why can't they just stay as they were.

MID Spotlight

Kyle Reaka
Kentuckiana Association

I belong to Saint Andrew UCC in Louisville, KY. I did my field education there last year, serving as the Student Pastor. During that placement, I helped to lead worship, lead the youth group, and sat in on committee meetings, among other things. I have been doing a summer CPE at Baptist East Hospital and working on weekends to make ends meet, so it has been tough to attend too frequently as of late. I am grateful for a loving and supportive congregation that understands my absence!

I am finished with all of my seminary coursework; I attended Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary for my MDiv. The best part of my seminary experience, aside from the wealth of knowledge and experience that I attained, was the wonderful community. I am very thankful for all of the staff, faculty and students at LPTS that work so hard to make their seminary community an accepting, loving and inclusive place.

Offered in Indianapolis on the Butler south campus in Shelton Auditorium, you are invited to engage with this informative and important seminar series, "Religion and Incarceration."

The first public discussion in the four-part series will ask, "Why are black Americans disproportionately incarcerated in America?"

The keynote speaker, the Very Reverend Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas, is Dean of the Episcopal Divinity School and Professor of Theology at Union Theological Seminary; she also serves as Canon Theologian at the Washington National Cathedral. Author of  Stand your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God ( see the book on Amazon here ), she researches womanist theology, sexuality, and the black church.

This first event in the seminar series will be held September 24 at 7 pm. More information about this and the other events and themes can be found here on the Butler University web site:
Upcoming Events
IKC Women's Board
Women's Retreat

Do not miss this opportunity to spend sabbath time in partnership with other women from the IKC.

The INKY Women's Board hosts this retreat as a way to tell each other our stories, identify our common goals and needs, and to be in the women-centered spaces where we can reconnect and regenerate our spiritual energies. This yearly retreat is a highlight for those seeking sabbath time and refreshment.

It's not too late to register, but spots are limited.


September 27-29
Beech Grove, IN
WISE Congregations for
Mental Health Conference

The IKC is happy to offer scholarships for those interested in attending this one-day conference, at which attendees will:

•Hear stories by persons who have been affected by mental health challenges
•Learn about mental disorders, suicide, and minority mental health
•Learn the steps to become a WISE (Welcoming, Inclusive, Supportive, and Engaged) Congregation for Mental Health
•Receive practical steps to start a mental health ministry
•Worship together, share, and meet new people with a common interest

If you're interested in the IKC scholarship available to help pay for attendance at this event, contact the IKC office at (317) 924-1395, or email


November 2, 2019
Phoenix, AZ
Help Hungry Children

August 22, 2019, 4:30-6 pm
Noblesville, Indiana
KCC Annual Assembly


October 24-25
Morehead, Kentucky
For a complete list of our events, click below!
Support the Ministries of the IKC UCC with your donation.
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