Disciples Together

Regional News of the Christian Church in the Upper Midwest

September| 2022

October Celebrations

Rev. Joshua Patty

Regional Minister and President

October is a month filled with special things in nature, in sports, and in the church.  While I’m sure you’ll enjoy some seasonal treats, the changing leaves, and more, I hope that you’ll find meaningful ways to participate in some important October church activities too.

October 2 is World Communion Sunday.  Communion is central to our worship.  On the first Sunday each October, Christians of many traditions around the world are invited to join at the table.  I hope we each take this opportunity to celebrate the richness and meaning of the Lord’s Supper… and that we support anti-racism and pro-reconciliation efforts through the Reconciliation Special Offering, which is also received at this time each year.

Our region’s annual All Congregational Gathering will be held on Saturday, October 15 at the Christian Conference Center.  Our planning teams have worked to create valuable learning, worship, and fun activities that day.  I hope that many of you will join that day in person as we seek some answers to the question, “What now, Church?”  And I hope that resources and inspiration from that day will spread throughout our region in the months ahead.

October is also Minister Appreciation Month.  We are blessed by the gifts and service of many ministers in our region.  Please find ways and make time in October to share your gratitude with your ministers through cards, calls, gifts, or other signs of appreciation.  And, on behalf of our region, let me offer thanks to all of the servant leaders spreading Christ’s love, healing, forgiveness, peace, and hope – you share gifts of light in this aching world.

Where in the Upper Midwest is Josh?

Josh's travels take him across our four-state region to share in worship, support, and celebrate your ministries! Here's where Josh's travels have taken him in the last month.


  • August 21 - Worship with First Christian Church, Albia, IA
  • August 28 - Closing worship with Indianola Heights Christian Church, Des Moines, IA
  • September 9-10 - UMW Committee on Ministry
  • September 11 - 125th Anniversary worship with Central Christian Church, Waterloo, IA
  • September 18 - Worship and installation of minister with Central Christian Church, Marshalltown, IA; Building dedication, Pleasantville Christian Church, Pleasantville, IA
  • September 19-20 General Commission on Ministry (online)

2022 Regional Calendar


For more details go to the Regional website:



Sept 19-21 Senior Adult Retreat

Sept. 22 Regional Operations Council Online

Sept, 25 Reconciliation Offering Received

Sept 26-28 Pastor Camp

Sept 30-Oct 2 UMW Fall Women's Retreat

Oct. 2 Reconciliation Offering Received

Oct. 15 All Congregational Gathering

Oct. 27 Regional Operations Council Online

Nov. 4-6 Chi Rho Retreat

Nov. 11-12 Committee on Ministry

Nov. 18-19 CMEP Retreat

Nov. 18-20 CYF Retreat

Regional Prayer Calendar

Video Archives

More Regional videos

More Disciples videos

General Assembly 2023

Learn More Today
News Around the Region

Come be Disciples Together at the Christian Conference Center in Newton for the 2022 All Congregational Gathering. Spend the day with Disciples from across the Upper Midwest in fellowship, worship, and learning as we explore ideas about how to be the church in the world today!

Learning Session

Learning Sessions will take on a completely new form this year with three topics options during each learning block. Presenters will cover innovative solutions that they've employed to deal with some of the problems congregations are facing today. Topics for the sessions include: Christian Education, Worship, Resource Sharing, Church Finance, Leadership/Innovation, and Mission. For each topic, three ministry concepts will be presented with time allowed for discussion at the end. 


We will open and close our day with worship together. 

  • Opening worship will include a processional of banners representing the congregations of the Upper Midwest. 
  • Music will be led by musicians from First Christian Church, Coraville/Iowa City. 
  • We will celebrate the ministries of the region and offer our struggles in prayer together as we listen to how God is calling us to serve the Upper Midwest.

Food, Fun, and Fellowship Fair

Lunch will be provided free of charge as we enjoy games and activities on the grounds of the CCC. Activities for all ages and interests will be available as well as space for fellowship with your Disciples friends from across the region.

Child Care and Children's Program

Child case will be provided during the opening worship, learning sessions, and business session.  Nursery care for children up to age 6 will be provided as well as a school-age children's program.  Closing worship will include activities for all ages.


A brief business session will take place immediately before the closing worship session.  Business will include announcement of the 2022-2023 Operations Council members and a presentation and vote on the 2023 Regional Budget.  To nominate clergy representatives for the Operations Council elections, submit names here.  To nominate lay leader representatives for the open geographic areas of the region, submit names here.  

Pre-Register for this Free Event

Join FCC Minneapolis for our next installment of our VOICES online speaker series as Rev. Dave Bell (Minister for Indigenous Justice, Center for Indigenous Ministries - DOC) presents a brief history from the early development of the Doctrine of Discovery to the early years of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

To learn more about what the Doctrine of Discovery is and why this discussion is relevant, please visit https://www.fccminneapolis.org/home/voices/

Registration Required

Upper Midwest Fall Women's Retreat

When: Fri., Sept. 30-Sun., Oct. 2

Where: Lake Koronis Assembly Grounds, Paynesville, MN

What: Retreat is a time for taking a break from your daily life, work, and responsibilities and finding peace in a natural setting at Lake Koronis.  It is also an opportunity for finding new friendships, laughter, and healing.  Retreat also challenges us on our understanding of friendship, faith, belief, God, and our roles in the world.

  • Wendy Manual, the keynote speaker, will touch on the topic of retreat which is "Family is as Family Does."
  • In addition, there will be opportunities to hike, meditate, read, discuss a book, share snacks, do puzzles, play games, craft, pray, chat, challenge, speak up, listen, or just sit and Be.
Register Today

Reconciliation Offering

The Reconciliation Ministry Special Offering is received each year in congregations on the last Sunday in September and the first Sunday in October (in solidarity with World Communion Sunday). Funds generated by this special emphasis are used throughout the year to provide grants to ministries and congregations actively developing and implementing programs that promote our Church’s Pro-Reconciliation and Anti-Racist identity. These programs and efforts seek to reveal, re-educate, and remove systemic and structural barriers in our communities that serve to deny the image of God and human thriving based on race.

News Around the Denomination

DMPCC Fall 2022 Classes

Journaling to Heal

Saturdays, September 10 - October 8 (virtual via Zoom)

Mondays, September 26 - October 24 (in person, DMPCC)

Registration deadline:

Saturday class - September 3

Monday class - September 19


Pastoral Care Specialist

Begins September 2022 and ends June 2024


We are exploring offering our popular Pastoral Care Specialist Program virtually!


If you or someone you know has wanted to this training but the drive to Des Moines has been a barrier, please contact Chris Waddle at cwaddle@dmpcc.org.


Spiritual Experiences in Dreams: Our Dreams & Dreams in the Jewish and Christian Scriptures

Thursdays, October 6, 13, 20, & 27 (virtual)

Registration deadline - September 29

(CEU: .8)


Ministry with the LGBTQ+ Community: What it Really Means to be "Welcoming and Affirming."

Fridays, October 7 & 14 (virtual)

Registration deadline - September 30

(CEU: .6)


A Taste of Sabbath

Friday, October 28 (in person, DMPCC)

Registration deadline - October 22

(CEU: .3)


For more information and a complete list of classes click HERE.


HELM Calls Interim President

The Board of Directors of Higher Education and Leadership Ministries is excited to announce that the HELM Executive Committee has extended a call to the Rev. Ronald J. Degges to serve as Interim President.  

With great joy and anticipation, the General Board at the February 2022 meeting received Rev. Terri Hord Owens’ desire to serve a second term as General Minister and President (GMP).  Over the past five years Rev. Hord Owens has challenged the denomination to “imagine God’s limitless love” as we seek to be the church we say we are – “a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world.”  She has also challenged us to “imagine” what the church could be like in years to come.  Following the General Board’s enthusiastic acceptance of her intent, a Review/Search and Call Committee of twelve General Board members was formed to lead the review of Rev. Hord Owens.

You can assist the review team by sharing your thoughts in this survey.

DCEF Offers Holy Places Grants

Disciples Church Extension Fund is offering Holy Places Grants to help congregations purchase their first real estate property to use as a place of worship. The grants, which amount to the lower amount of 20% of the acquisition cost or 50% of the annual income distribution of the Holy Place Fund, provide a “boost” to help. For more information, contact your regional Building and Capital Services Advisor. 

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