Volume 17, No. 22 | June 9, 2021

COMMAntary
Equipping a courageous Church alive with Christ’s transforming love
It's Annual Meeting Week!
Workshops started on Monday and have been really well received! Both attendance and participation have been great, and there is still one more workshop this evening and three more tomorrow! 

We know you have received many emails about Annual Meeting but there are a couple more really important ones coming that you need to have to join meetings. Tomorrow three emails will be going out and you will receive them if you are registered for the various offerings.

Friday Clergy Seminar Details – This email will go to all registered clergy and will give you all the details to login to this meeting as well as a link to a document that the presenter, Susan Beaumont, has provided to help guide you through the session.

Friday Delegate Sessions – This email will go to all registered delegates and will give you a login link for the 1 pm business meeting and the 7 pm worship and State of the Conference session. 

Saturday Sessions – The 10 am keynote session, the 1 pm panel discussion on racial justice work, and Saturday evenings concert and social time are open to everyone (clergy, delegate and visitor) who has registered. This email will include details about Zoom meetings, a document for the keynote session and the link that has been available for workshops throughout the week that will also be used for this days events.

Sunday Worship – The 10 am Annual Meeting worship service will be available three different ways:

Our hope is that we can join as one big courageous church as we worship and praise our God. We will be having Holy Communion as part of our service, so please have any elements you require ready to go that morning. Lastly, here is a worship flow document for you to print off if you want to follow along on paper.

As always, if you have any questions or need help with any of this, please email Sandy Kellen at sandyk@uccmn.org.

  • View the list of workshops, presenters and the details HERE
  • Register for the Annual Meeting HERE
  • Read the reports of the Conference and voting items HERE (see right sidebar).
Conference News & Events
Plymouth Congregational Church of Minneapolis and United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities invite you to a virtual dialogue June 22 at 7 pm on “Reimagining Public Safety: Confronting the Problem of Policing.” Scheduled three days before Derek Chauvin’s sentencing, faith and community leaders will seek to understand the ways Black and African immigrant communities in the Twin Cities can ensure public safety for the most vulnerable amid patterns of police brutality. 
 
Panelists include local leading voices that bring a wealth of experience and expertise to issues of policing, policy, and public safety in these communities:
 
  • Rev. Dr. DeWayne Davis, lead minister at Plymouth Congregational Church, Minneapolis
  • Rev. Nekima Levy Armstrong, JD, civil rights attorney-activist, scholar, and former Minneapolis mayoral candidate
  • Jaylani Hussein, executive director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MN)
  • Moderated by Rev. Dr. Gary F. Green II, assistant professor of pastoral theology and social transformation at United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities, St. Paul

“Taking a Stand with Indigenous Water Protectors":
National UCC Offers Climate Justice Webinar on Line 3 in Minnesota

Buses and carpools are being organized from around the country to go to the headwaters of the Mississippi in Northern Minnesota so that people of conscience can join Indigenous-led nonviolent actions to stop the expansion of a massive oil pipeline.

While not all of us can go in person, all of us can act in other ways to support this vitally important cause. The Line 3 Expansion is a tar sands oil pipeline project under construction that, if completed, would cross a hundred waterways. It would also pass near the border of multiple Native nations and across hundreds of miles of treaty-protected land, which those communities depend on for drinking water and wild rice gathering.

The Minnesota Conference UCC has hosted two visits of Conference members and ecumenical friends to one of the Line 3 encampments in Palisade, and several local churches & pastors in our Conference have been engaged in this issue.

In the UCC’s next Creation Justice Webinar on Monday, June 14, at 12 noon (CDT), you’re invited to learn more about Line 3 and what faith communities can do to stop it. Featured speakers will include the Rev. Jim Bear Jacobs from the Minnesota Council of Churches, Nina Berguland from the Youth Council and Indigenous Council for Earth Guardians, and Joe Meinholz from Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light. Even if you can't make the webinar’s scheduled time on Monday, June 14, you can still sign-up, and a recording of it will be sent to you. SIGN UP NOW FOR THE WEBINAR.
Joys & Concerns
Ruth Ellen Campbell, wife of the late Rev. Henry A. Campbell, mother of both the Rev. Sarah Campbell and Rev. Hank Campbell, and grandmother of the Rev. Hannah Campbell-Gustafson, passed away Sunday, May 30. Ruth was a lover of the arts, committed to social justice, and devoted to her family. The Minnesota Conference holds Sarah, Hank, Hannah, and the rest of their families in prayer. Read her obituary here.
 
Nathan Holst, a Member in Discernment in the Minnesota Conference and a Licensed Minister currently serving as Minister of Faith Formation at Peace UCC in Duluth, announced the birth of his second child on Monday morning. The Minnesota Conference offers hearty congratulations to Nathan, his partner Sarah, and their families. We also welcome Harrison “Sunny” Bailey into the world with joy.
Resources & Clergy Clusters

  • The BIPOC Clergy Cluster meets Thursday, June 10 (quarterly on the second Thursday of the month). To receive the Zoom link to the cluster meeting and/or get an invitation to the Facebook group, email Rev. Nikki Frontz.


  • The Conference website offers a wealth of resources related to Covid, racial justice, and more.

  • Send story ideas, insights and more to communications@uccmn.org. COMMAntary is published on Wednesdays; submissions are due the Monday prior to publication at noon.

  • The United Church of Christ National Setting is offering financial assistance to local churches whose ministries have been challenged by the pandemic. See the process.

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This newsletter is brought to you by generous contribution to Our Church's Wider Mission.

The Minnesota Conference United Church of Christ (UCC) equips a courageous Church alive with Christ’s transforming love. Through advice, support, and resources, we strengthen the 126 congregations throughout the state to do the redemptive work of God in the world.