Summary Notes of the April 24, 2019 Conference Board Meeting
- The financial report from Treasurer Christian Creyer as of the end of the 1st quarter indicated that PNEC investments regained much of the losses suffered in the 4th quarter of 2018. Revenues are behind the budgeted amount but not as far behind as at this point in 2018
- As the Board requested at its last meeting, Rev. Bates drafted her personal thoughts and vision for the future of the Conference. Her primary goals include 1) establishing methodologies for increased inter-congregational activities and support, 2) increasing the capacity for stewardship and generosity, 3) developing and streamlining processes for support of members and improving relationships throughout the Conference. Initial steps already taken include securing a $16,000 grant from the Council of Conference Ministers to streamline the Search and Call Ministry, and a request to the AMC groups to invite all their congregations to meet together for fellowship, mission and/or worship. Also, the Congregational Vitality Team will develop a means by which to share best practices on the website and Facebook.
- Some items on the agenda of the Spring Conference meeting include nominations, approving standing for the Resurrected Life Community Church in PNEC, a ministry expo, conference visioning and worship led by Resurrected Life Church. Board members were asked to volunteer for roles as greeters, ushers, etc. at the meeting.
- Members were reminded to register for the Board retreat to be held at St. Francis Center for Renewal on 5/31 and 6/1 if they have not already done so.
Decisions Made / Actions Taken
- Our guests at the meeting, Rev. Greg Edwards, Sr. Pastor and Associate Pastor Franklin James of Resurrected Life Community Church, were introduced and they shared some history of the church. It has been in existence in Allentown for 16 years, and they run a Community Development Corporation, a Learning Center and a Freedom School. They began exploring the UCC as a potential affiliation about 3 years ago and that led them to request standing in PNEC. The Authorization Working Group of the COM made a motion to approve them as a UCC congregation. The Board unanimously approved this motion and directed that it be finalized by a vote of the bodyat the 5/4/19 Conference meeting.
- The Board accepted and affirmed the findings included in a report titled, A New Ecology of Generosity created by the Giving Task Force of the National UCC’s Development Committee.
- Recommendations from the Nomination Committee to fill vacant committee positions were approved as follows: Staff and Personnel, Class of 2020 - Rev. Becky Thomas, Class of 2021 – Barbara Davies; Committee on Ministry, Authorization Working Group, Class of 2020 – Karen Ezzo and Amanda Muschett; Committee on Ministry, Oversight Working Group, Class of 2021 - Kaye Lentz
Next meeting dates:
Spring Conference Meeting, May 4, 2019, Fall Conference Meeting, November 2, 2019 Submittd by, Helena Lindquist, Secretary
SAVE THE DATE
PNEC Fall Conference Meeting - Saturday, November 2, 2019
St. John United Church of Christ, 22 Atlas Road, Northampton
Keynote Speaker: Tod Bolsinger, PhD
Canoeing the Mountains: Christian Leadership in Uncharted Territory
Interim Ministry Network
Effective Transitional Ministry Training
A One-Day Session
May 24, 2019 from 9AM to 5PM
Penn Northeast Conference Office
Registration Deadline: May 6, 2019
Fee: $200 - cost partially underwritten by OCWM gifts to PNEC
Scholarships available from the Longsdorf Fund
Bonnie Bates is inviting you to a Zoom Conversation
with the Conference Minister
May 22, 2019 from 2 to 3PM
Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 651 938 481
Lancaster Theological Seminary Discover Day
On Thursday, May 23, 2019, Lancaster Theological Seminary will host DMin Discover Day. We would love for prospective students to join us! This is a great opportunity to experience our Doctor of Ministry program by sitting in on a class and getting to know current and former students.
This event is open to all so feel free to share this information with anyone who might benefit from attending.
The Rev. Dr. Stephen J. Wolma, Director of Admissions and Financial Aid
Lancaster Theological Seminary
JOINT PNEC/PSEC DISASTER MINISTRY TEAM
Monday, May 13⋅6:30 – 8:30pm
Zion Union Church, Maxatawny, PA 19539
You are invited to join with others who are passionate about helping our neighbors through
. We will learn more about -
- The UCC Disaster Ministry program and how you and your church can be involved.
- What our Conferences are involved in at this moment.
- How our churches can be more prepared.
We will also explore how our Conferences can work together to achieve our mission.
If you are expecting to participate please respond to
, so we can prepare for your attendance.
Disaster Response Coordinator
One tap mobile: +19294362866,,408553048# US (New York)
Dial by your location: +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)
Meeting ID: 408 553 048
for the most recent issue of
, the FEMA Region III Recovery Coordination newsletter. This issue highlights Pre-Disaster Recovery Planning in Delaware, FEMA Integration Team in West Virginia, the Region III Private Sector Readiness Day and Tabletop Exercise, new initiatives in Pennsylvania and Ellicott City, MD, and various tools, resources, and trainings to enhance capabilities to support disaster recovery needs and resiliency.
For Up-To-Date Information click the link below
Amigos de Guatemala
In April the Amigos de Guatemala had a wonderful celebration for the completion of the multi-use facility and clinic in Monte Margarita. Approximately 80 people were in attendance to help us rejoice in this accomplishment. We collected close to $2,000 in donations that night!
The team is excited to continue the project by conducting medical exams for the community. We will supply the clinic with medications and medical supplies. Our main purpose will be to educate the community about the need for clean water and basic medical care for infants.
A spin-off of the Amigos is a non-profit called Glasses for Guatemala. It was started by Garred and Megan Greenberg, children of Dr. Marna Greenberg of the Amigos. They have taken thousands of glasses to Guatemala. They train a few people in a community to diagnose the correct lenses for the residents. Their biggest joy is seeing a person’s smile when they can see clearly for the first time! They say if people can see, they can learn to read; if they can read, they can be educated; if they are educated, they can improve their way of life. We are very proud of their work.
MINISTRY TRAINING UPDATES (Continuing Education)
ALL Authorized Ministers, please note:
We will be identifying these kinds of continuing education opportunities – The policy is effective January 1, 2019. If you have any questions, please contact the Penn Northeast Conference Office at 610-826-3113.
for list of current and up-coming opportunities!
Theology Matters: Curriculum Resources for ALL Ages
Friends in Ministry,
Have you ever had questions about Faith Formation in your congregation? The PNEC Faith Formation Ministry Team is sponsoring a SPECIAL EVENT for YOU! Please see the flyer below and share it with your Faith Formation team. This event will be geared to assist with planning the 2019-2020 year in the following ways:
- Adult Small Groups, Confirmation, Children, and Youth, and will include multicultural resources, as well!
Continuing Education hours are available for attending.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact your Faith Formation Ministry team. If you have an interest in helping with the event and others, we welcome your input.
Yours in Christ,
Janet Newett, for the Faith Formation Ministry Team
To register and pay, please click on the link below:
The United States
June 12, 2019
Led by Rev. Dr. E. Allen Richardson
Professor of Religious Studies
Cedar Crest College, Allentown
9AM-Noon at St. John’s UCC, 183 S. Broad St., Nazareth
9AM – registration
9:30AM – training begins
11:30AM – questions & answers
12 Noon - conclusion
This training fulfills the
Cultural Competency Training requirement for Authorized Ministers
ALL ARE WELCOME!!
Welcoming Diversity Training
Jordan United Church of Christ
1837 Church Road, Allentown, PA
May 28, 2019 and May 29, 2019
Fee: Both Days $100
Fee: Single Day $60 (May 28 only)
Day one of this training(May 28) fulfills the Anti-Racism Training requirement for Authorized Ministers.
ALL ARE WELCOME !!
Day one of the training will focus on personal growth and development.
Day two will provide participants the time to think strategically about how to manifest their commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in the work and behaviors of church leadership, within congregation and the community served.
Children's Sermon for May 12
- by Rev. Dave Quinn
Items needed: egg, picture of a chicken; apples or blueberries, picture of a tree, or a bush. Show kids the egg, and ask where eggs come from. Eggs come from a chicken(show picture) Show kids apples or blueberries and ask them where they come from--apples come from an apple tree, blueberries grow on bushes. If you wanted an egg, you wouldn't go to a tree, would you? If you wanted apples/blueberries, you wouldn't go to a chicken, would you? In today's Bible reading, some people ask Jesus if He is the Savior, sent by God. Jesus doesn't say "Yes," and He doesn't say "No," either. What Jesus says is: "The things I do, show Who I am" That is Jesus' way of saying-if you go to a chicken, you look for an egg, not an apple. If you go to a tree, you look for an apple, not an egg. And we can tell that Jesus is the Savior by what comes from Him-the way Jesus holds the children in His arms, and blesses them. The way Jesus shows kindness to people that everybody else looks down on. The way Jesus prays, even for the people who nailed Him to a cross. just like you can see that it's chicken, by the egg that comes out of her, you can tell Jesus is God's Savior, by what "comes out" of Him--the things Jesus does, that show His love and mercy.
May 10 from Noon to 1PM - Muhlenberg College, Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding -
PLEASE NOTE ... Second Friday! -
Tell Me Why You Said That: Listening to Hear - The Rev. Dr. Susan Yoder, The Barn Faith Community, Bethlehem. Held in Seegers Union, Rooms 111-112 - of Muhlenberg College. Free and open to the public Bring your lunch or purchase it at one of Muhlenberg's tasty dining venues. How do we engage in meaningful dialogue in a time of great division within our country? How do we engage in conversation with people who articulate their beliefs quite differently than we do? Avoidance is not the answer. Come and learn some valuable tools to help you build bridges instead of burning or blowing them up!
--May 11 - Evangelical & Reformed Historical Society President's Reception
- 3 to 5PM - Falkner Swamp UCC, 2077 Swamp Pike, Gilbertsville, PA - join ERHS president Richard Berg at America's oldest German Reformed church for an inspiring afternoon of history! - Keynote: Rev. Dr. Lee Barrett - kindly RSVP to
or call 717.290.8734
- The Chapel of Four Chaplains invites you to the
3rd Annual Veterans Mental Health, Opiod & Suicide Prevention Symposium - Keynote Speaker: Lisa Thomas Laury - "An Opiod Conversation"
RSVP by May 10 -
Free & Open to the Public...to read more
May 21 - Introduction to Self-Care - 6 to 9PM (dinner provided)
Chester County Government Services Center, 601 Westtown Rd, West Chester, PA 19380
This Introduction to Self-Care training will explore the physical and emotional aspects of workplace stress, including working in high stress situations for extended periods of time. The course will also discuss and identify self-care and wellness practices with participants, begin to establish self-care plans, and discuss resources and support options - includes small group discussion and interactive exercises - appropriate for anyone who would like to begin to practice self-care in any setting.
The Lehigh Conference Of Churches--"Valley Over The Edge"
-76 rappelers will be going over the edge at Two City Center in Allentown. Adventurous participants will rappel down an eleven-story building by raising $1,000 or more to secure their spot on the ropes. To request more info, email
or contact Becky LeaShomb at 610-433-7220 ext. 6106 -
several PNEC pastors are "going over the edge." You can go online to support them in their efforts and give to a great cause!
--June 8 - 7th Annual Muslim Funday
- (Raindate is June 9) - 10AM to 7PM at Covered Bridge Park, 2465 Wehr Mill Rd., Allentown - delicious food, exciting rides - website
June 17 -
Christian White Supremacy - 7PM - Metropolitan Community Church of the Lehigh Valley,
1401 Greenview Dr., Bethlehem - Rev. Dr. Gregory Edwards - Free and open to the public
June 18-20 -
Registration Open for the 22nd Global Youth Justice Training Youth/Teen/Student/ Peer Court Diversion Programs --
in Las Vegas, Nevada -
--June 25-28 at First Cong. UCC, Madison, WI - Uniting Church & Community Through Music & Art - 12th Biennial National Conference of the United Church of Christ Musicians Association
Jubilee Breakfast Ministry Fund Raising Brunch for the Homeless
May 11 from 8:30 to 10AM
Zion UCC, Allentown
Tickets: $10 each; age 5-12/$5
for informational flyer and how to purchase tickets
Research indicates people who are struggling with thoughts of suicide are increasingly turning to faith leaders for help and support, even before they will seek care from mental health professionals. Faith leaders play a key role in suicide prevention and postvention care.
This new resource aims to provide faith leaders with feasible, practical, research-based actions they can adopt immediately to help save lives and restore hope in faith communities nationwide. The competencies, informed by leaders from diverse faith communities and experts in the suicide prevention field, help to integrate and coordinate suicide prevention across sectors and settings, like faith-based organizations and places of worship, a goal of the Action Alliance’s
National Strategy for Suicide Prevention
The 21st Century Church and
Rev. Dr. Leonard Sweet
June 10,2019 from 9AM to 4PM
Quakertown United Methodist Church
$20 per person includes
continental breakfast and full lunch
Based on Len's long-awaited sequel to the
Rings of Fire
Methodist Revival Tent Meeting
Quakertown UMC under the Tent
Guest Preacher: Leonard Sweet
Free Entry for Everyone
8AM to 8PM
ONLINE UCC History, Theology and Polity Course June/July 2019
This Course meets the requirements as set forth by the UCC Polity Teacher's Network and will be offered online in June/July 2019. The instructor will be Rev. David Gaewski, Conference Minister of the New York Conference, UCC. Classes will begin at 9:30am and end at 3:30pm EST on the following dates: June 8,15,29 and July 6. The platform utilized will be Zoom Video Conferencing (zoom.us) The tuition will be $495. For more information contact course instructor, Rev. David Gaewski,
Payments should be sent no later than May 31st to: UCC Polity Course, Attn: David Gaewski, 5575 Thompson Road, Dewitt, NY 13214. Make checks payable to David Gaewski.
A syllabus is available upon request. Laity, Members in Discernment and Privilege of Call candidates are all invited! The course will be cancelled if we do not obtain seven registered students. A student is considered registered when full payment has been received. Students who cancel enrollment will receive reimbursements up until June 3rd. Please note several recent courses reached maximum capacity.
An Invitation to receive the message of Rev. Gary Dorrien at Lehigh University on Sunday, May 19 at 4 p.m.
New National Coordinator for Proyecto Encuentros de
Gracia y Bienvenida
Please join me in welcoming Rev. Rhina Ramos, the new part-time National Coordinator for
Proyecto Encuentros de Gracia y Bienvenida
.. She will work from Oakland where she lives. She will report to Rev. Michael Schuenemeyer
Rev. Rhina Ramos is an ordained UCC minister leading an open and affirming Spanish speaking congregation in Oakland since 2011. Rhina was born in El Salvador and grew up during the civil war. Embedded in her heart is the voice of San Romero de Las Americas denouncing oppression from the pulpit. Rhina graduated from Hofstra University Law School in 1995. She also obtained a Masters in Divinity from the Pacific School of Religion in 2003. While in NY, she practiced labor law for 5 years recuperating thousands of dollars in unpaid wages for immigrant workers. Rhina is too an experienced Community Organizer that has led programs and campaigns to promote educational equity, labor rights, LGBTQ human rights, international solidarity with El Salvador, and domestic violence awareness. Rhina is also one who travelled from Oakland to Orlando to assist our response to the PULSE nightclub massacre.
Proyecto Encuentros de Gracia y Bienvenida is a grant-funded project under the Health and Wholeness Advocacy Office of Justice and Local Church Ministries. It advances Open and Affirming (ONA) ministries in the UCC among predominantly Latinx churches and congregations with Latinx members or outreach. It engages scholars, pastors, and leaders to develop intersectional resources and implement effective strategies to grow the ministry’s network and partners. Funding for this position is currently secured through the end of 2020.
With Hope & Faith, Rev. Traci D. Blackmon
Associate General Minister, Justice & Local Church Ministries, The United Church of Christ
Walking with Joy
Giving Thanks for the Healing Ministry of Gestalt Pastoral Care
June 29, 2019
Registration/Gathering at 9AM
Program 9:30AM to 4PM
Zwingli UCC, 350 Wile Ave., Souderton, PA
If you have questions about Gestalt Pastoral Care, you may call Becca Yoder Stephens at 484-529-8369.
St. Peter's UCC in Pine Grove is traveling to Mission Central in Mechanicsburg on July 27th. Mission Central is a mission of the Susquehanna Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. They are a fantastic resource for disaster ministries and much more, who are continuing to assist in the flood recovery efforts in eastern PA. The purpose of the trip is to do some work around their warehouse.
The group from St. Peter's be leaving their church at 7:45 am and working in Mechanicsburg from 9am-2pm.
To get more information and to register please contact Pastor Jason Stump at
Lake Institute on Faith & Giving
Faith, Intervention, and Learning Organizations
, Managing Director of Education and Engagement
For many of us, faith involves an openness to the possibility that God intervenes in the world. In ways large or small, through a variety of means, many people of faith have a hope and expectation that God will redirect our course. In my own tradition, anticipating Holy week and Easter, I have been giving a great deal of consideration to the ways in which God patiently teaches us to prepare for and receive that intervention.
A Resource for All Congregations...
Is your congregation looking for help with... Fundraising, Stewardship, Relationships in Ministry, Strategic Planning for Congregations, Church Finances or any other topic?
Global Ministries Mission Personnel are coming to a summer camp near you!
Summer church camps are formative experiences for children and youth and can be a great opportunity to connect and learn about God’s global mission. Global Ministries is excited that there will be more than a dozen mission personnel this summer visiting UCC and Disciples summer youth camps in more than 30 regions and conferences throughout the U.S. and Canada!