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Anniversary Message from Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson

Anniversary Greetings!

October is upon us, and MCC congregations around the world are celebrating the 43rd anniversary of MCC’s founding!

Just today, I talked with our Founder, Rev. Troy Perry, on the eve of our anniversary, and he told me about his recent trip to the UK to visit our churches in Manchester, Glasgow and Bournemouth. He was so excited about speaking before the Scottish Youth Parliament and being interviewed by The Times of London for their Scottish edition. He was amazed as ever by the global reach of MCC into the hearts and lives of those who yearn for the inclusive gospel of Jesus Christ!

As we observe this milestone, I’d like to call to mind four things today:

FIRST: If your church has not yet signed-up to receive a special, designated Fellowship Sunday Offering to support the work of MCC’s International Task Force, it’s not too late to participate! Simply choose a date to receive your anniversary offering, then write to me and let me know your church will be participating.

SECOND: If your church has already signed-up, remember to visit the 2011 Fellowship Sunday webpage for your online resources, including an anniversary prayer, a newsletter article, a bulletin insert and an anniversary press release.

THIRD: In addition to your gift to our Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign, I invite you to click here to learn more about our International Task Force.

FOURTH: How shall we observe MCC’s 43rd anniversary? Celebrate joyfully! Thank God for those who paved the way for us, knowing that we are surrounded by “a great cloud of witnesses.” Remember the journey we’ve shared together. Pray for God’s wisdom upon our International Task Force, and ask God’s blessing upon MCC’s future. Lift your voice in song and praise, and lift up our brothers and sisters around the world. Give generously! Worship enthusiastically! Serve God passionately!

And let us exclaim with the Psalmist, “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the House of the Lord!” (Psalm 122:1)

With anniversary blessings,
Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson
MCC Moderator

P. S. Remember, when you write to me at , I’ll add your church to the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetters List — churches that are leading the way in support of MCC’s growing and emerging international work.

 

Here’s How To Participate In The 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign:

1. 2011 Pacesetter Churches agree to receive a special, voluntary offering as part of our denomination’s 43rd anniversary during October on a Sunday of your choosing. These offerings will support the important work of MCC’s International Task Force and strengthen MCC’s growing international ministry for decades to come.

2. Simply write to MCC’s Moderator, The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, at  and let her know your church will participate in the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign.

3. When you write, be sure to include your church’s name and location, your pastor’s name, and the date you will receive your special Fellowship Sunday Offering.

4. As soon as we hear from you, we’ll add your church and pastor to our 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetters list — recognizing their leadership in “setting the pace” for the future of MCC’s ministry to our world.

MCC Headline News – September 28

MCC

Headline News
Tearing Down Walls. Building Up Hope.



 

Governing Board Appointment Announcement
MCC’s Governing Board is pleased to announce the appointment of Kareem Murphy to the Governing Board. Kareem will serve a two-year term until the 2013 General Conference XXV in Chicago, Illinois (USA). At such time, the General Conference will elect a Lay Person to complete the remaining three years on this unexpired term, ending at 2016 General Conference XXVI.

Kareem Murphy

Please visit our MCC Governing Board webpage to read a short bio of Kareem Murphy. We thank all applicants who inquired and/or submitted an application for consideration to this appointed position. Kareem will join us for our next scheduled MCC Governing Board meeting on October 18, 2011 at 5:00 pm (EDT).
Please join us in welcoming Kareem Murphy!

 

Office of Formation and Leadership Development Announces Associate Director

Rev. Dr. Mona West states, “I had the privilege to work alongside Kharma as a volunteer when we implemented the new credentialling system with the REVM program. More recently in my current role as the Director of the OFLD, I have called on her numerous times to serve on ordination interview teams and advisory boards. I know her to be a person of great integrity, and she has a passion for leadership development–especially clergy development–in MCC.  I am excited about the ways her creativity and professionalism, as well as her training and experience, will shape the future of the OFLD and MCC. It’s going to be a joy (and a lot of fun!) to have her as a team member!”

 

Kharma holds the Master of Divinity degree from Lancaster Theological Seminary, where she is currently on the Board of Trustees.  She completed her Doctor of Ministry degree at Episcopal Divinity School, writing a thesis titled, Queering Church: Integrating Queer Theology in Congregational Life in Metropolitan Community Churches.  She is currently the chair of MCC’s Theologies Team and was accepted as a participant into the inaugural Moderator’s Leadership Mentoring Retreat in January 2010.  From 2003-2005, she participated in the First Parish Project, funded by the Lilly Endowment, for the purpose of supporting young clergy as they transition from seminary to serving their first parish as solo or senior pastors.

 

Send your congratulations to .

 

The Office of Formation and Leadership Development is grateful to the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation for a generous grant to fund this position.

Rev. Dr. Mona West Introduces the Office of Formation and Leadership Development
Mona West-New

The Office of Formation and Leadership Development was formerly known as Clergy Development. The change in the name represents the larger vision that MCC has for leadership development in our
denomination. As our name states, we believe that leadership has a formative component to it, which includes not only education, but spiritual development and community. Clergy development, including working with seminary students, conducting the REVM (Readiness for Vocational Ministry Retreat) and issuing licenses to practice for currently active clergy is still at the heart of what the Office of Formation and Leadership Development does. We have also expanded our work to include the development and launch of a leadership training program for MCC laity called L.E.A.D. (Laity Empowered for Active Discipleship).

In addition, we have partnered with the Moderator’s Office to develop Leadership Mentoring Retreats and with the Office of Church Life and Health to create the next level of church summits in the areas of programming and worship.

The OFLD functions globally through faculty teams and volunteer coordinators who assist in creating and implementing leadership development protocols that are indigenous to each country where there is an MCC presence. The current paid staff for this office are Rev. Dr. Mona West, Director, Rev. Dr. Kharma Amos, Associate Director, and Ritchie Crownfield, Executive Assistant.

Theologies Team Invites You to Participate in Survey

 

Since our first meeting in December 2007, we have been working on a number of projects that support our vision of equipping everyone in MCC to be both reflective and practical theologians.

Descriptive Theologies Project

We’re excited to announce the launch of our new Descriptive Theologies project, designed with three goals in mind:

1.     To provide an accurate picture of practices “on the ground” in our churches around the world;

2.     To facilitate our understanding of who we are as a denomination/movement; and,

3.     To help us identify areas where the MCC Theologies Team may assist our churches.

Friend? Member? Clergy? Board Member? Elder?
We want to hear from you!

Our goal is to survey as widely as possible, soliciting responses from every individual associated with MCC in any way. Our short questionnaire has three sections for you to describe your experiences around baptism, to tell us what you were taught, and to tell us about your current beliefs around this important topic.

Continuing on work begun at the 2007 General Conference in Phoenix and the Holy Conversations congregational resource, we’ve designed our first surveys around the Sacrament of Baptism. Visit the survey page, and choose the Baptism survey for individuals.

 

The password for the survey is Baptism2011.

It is case sensitive, so make sure to use a capital B and lowercase letters for the rest.

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Making Headlines!
Governing Board Appointment Announcement
OFLD Announces New Associate Director
Rev. Dr. Mona West Introduces the OFLD
Theologies Team Survey
Correction from Previous Issue
U.S. Board of Pension Applications Due
Clergy Retreat Update
2012 Women’s Conference
Upcoming Events

Correction from Previous Issue

Oops! We inadvertently misspelled one of the L.E.A.D. candidate’s names. Here is the correction: Ken Keate, All God’s Children MCC, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

 

U. S. Board of Pensions Applications Due:
5 October 2011

Please see the previous issue of Headline News for the full description of this opening. Hear are the basics for applying:

 

We have 1 (one) non-clergy opening on our National Board, which carries a four-year term. Investment knowledge, marketing, communication and/or technological skills would perfectly complement our Board make up.

 

Our deadline to receive resumes/references is 5 October 2011. Please send to Devon Avery, President, UFMCC BOP: .

 

Clergy Retreat Update

 

Clergy Retreat 2011

Thirty clergy from places as far away as Hawaii and Canada gathered at Delray Beach, Florida (USA), on 12-14 September for a clergy retreat. There was opportunity for people to network and connect
as well as to enter into silent reflection and renewal. We also had some great intellectual stimulation from our plenary speaker, Diana Butler Bass. She shared material from her new book Christianity After
Religion, which included statistics about the ways in which Christianity as we have known it is changing – shifting to what she and others are calling ‘the age of the Spirit’ with a focus on personal experience as the primary source of religious authority. Based on the feedback, the OFLD will begin offering clergy
retreats on a yearly basis at a variety of locations. We hope to see you at the next one!

The OFLD is grateful to MCC Austin for providing a $1000 (USD) grant that allowed four MCC Clergy to attend the retreat. We also want to say thanks to Rev. Dr. Robert Griffin and the Sunshine Cathedral for their assistance with the retreat.

 

2012 Women’s Conference

Women's Conference 2012
The Holy Trust Conference:

Together in the Struggle for Justice

2-5 February 2012

Sarasota, Florida

Church of the Trinity MCC (Sarasota, Florida), in partnership with

Metropolitan Community Churches and The Fellowship, presents The Holy Trust Conference. The focus is women empowering women to assume leadership roles in their communities by developing the trusting relationships essential to achieving social justice. This conference is open to women, transwomen and those who identify themselves as women who are
interested in improving their leadership skills and connecting with others in the common pursuit for social justice.

 

Clergywomen are eligible to receive continuing education units. This
conference is intentionally designed for all women, both clergy and lay
leaders.

 

Keynote speakers are Rev. Dr. Elder Nancy Wilson and Bishop Yvette Flunder. Early registration deadline: 1 November 2011. For more information and to register, click here.

Upcoming MCC Events 

Church Summit

11-12 November

Worship Summit

Registration Deadline:

18 October

 

Young Adult Leadership Mentoring Retreat 2011
28-31 October

Young Adult Leadership Mentoring Retreat

 

A list of future MCC events will be available soon.

MCC Leaders Respond to Resignation of the Rev. Mark Bidwell

 

From the Office of the Moderator
Metropolitan Community Churches
For Immediate Release: 29 September 2011

Metropolitan Community Church Leaders Respond to
Resignation of the Rev. Mark Bidwell

Top leaders of the Metropolitan Community Church expressed shock and sadness about recent events that the Rev. Mark Bidwell was in the company of Mr. Steven Fitch when Mr. Fitch apparently died of a drug overdose.  Details of the September 21 events came to attention through a police report that became public on September 27.

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderator of the Metropolitan Community Church, said, “We are deeply saddened whenever drug addiction impacts an individual or a community.  No community across this country is immune from the scourge of illegal drugs, but when it hits close to home, we are reminded of the commitment we have to teach people about the harms of drug abuse and to be a place of spiritual healing for those who are recovering.”

Ms. Jackie Walker, member of MCC Detroit, said, “MCC national and local leaders are responding in every responsible and appropriate way to learn what happened and to care for the congregation.  Our Elders are working with the church board and members and are offering assistance and pastoral care.”

Church officials received notice late on September 27 that Pastor Bidwell was with Mr. Fitch on September 21 when illegal drugs were allegedly in use.  In less than a day, Rev. Bidwell was suspended from duties until all the facts could be ascertained.  Rev. Bidwell has since resigned as pastor of MCC Detroit.

Rev. Wilson said, “MCC Detroit’s forty-year ministry is extraordinary.  We have asked our whole denomination and partners in faith to pray for this congregation as they deal with the shock and pain from these events.  We know that God is with them and will be with them as they face this crisis with courage and faith.”

Press Contact:
The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderator
Metropolitan Community Churches

Support MCC’s programing with your Fellowship Sunday Offering

MCC

 

 

Tearing Down Walls.

Building Up Hope.

 

 


2011 Fellowship Sunday 

Pacesetters

1.   Church of the Trinity MCC
(Sarasota, Florida) – Rev.
Charles Tigard, Pastor

 

2.   Cornerstone MCC (Mobile,
Alabama) – Open Pulpit

 

3.   Emerald City MCC (Seattle,
Washington) – Rev. Ray
Neal, Pastor

 

4.   Exodus MCC (Abilene,
Texas) – Rev. Margaret
Walker, Pastor

 

5.   FirstCoast MCC (St.
Augustine, Florida) – Rev.
Ruth Jensen-Forbell, Pastor

 

6.   Gentle Shepherd MCC
(Phoenix, Arizona) – Rev.
Gale Rawson, Pastor

 

7.   Heartland MCC (Springfield,
Illinois) – Rev. Dr. Tony
Thieman-Somora
8.   Holy Covenant MCC
(Brookfield, Illinois) – Rev. Dr.
Danny Spears, Pastor

 

9.   Holy Cross MCC
(Pensacola, Florida) – Rev.
Sandy O’Steen, Pastor

 

10. Imago Dei MCC (Glen Mills,
Pennsylvania) – Rev. Janice
Bowker, Intentional Interim
Pastor
11. Joy MCC (Orlando, Florida) –
Rev. Lisa Heilig, Interim Pastor

 

12. King of Peace MCC (St.
Petersburg, Florida) – Rev.
Dr. Candace Shultis, Pastor

 

13. Living Springs MCC (Bath,
England) – Rev. Kieren
Bourne, Pastor

 

14. MCC Brisbane (Australia) –
Rev. Dr. Leigh Neighbour,
Pastor

 

15. MCC Charlotte (North
Carolina) – Rev. Catherine
Houchins, Pastor

 

16. MCC Elizabethtown
(Kentucky) – Rev. Cathy
Porter, Pastor

 

17. MCC Los Angeles
(California) – Rev. Dr. Neil
Thomas, Pastor

 

18. MCC Lubbock (Texas) –
Rev. Renae Phillips, Pastor

 

19. MCC of Baton Rouge
(Louisiana) – Rev. Keith
Mozingo, Pastor

 

20. MCC of Greater St. Louis
(Missouri) – Rev. Dr. Carol
Trissell, Pastor

 

21. MCC of New York (New
York) – Rev. Pat
Bumgardner, Pastor

 

22. MCC of Paducah (Kentucky)
– Rev. Lillian Ferguson, Pastor
23. MCC of San Diego
(California) – Rev. Dan
Koeshall, Pastor

 

24. MCC of the Blue Ridge
(Roanoke, Virginia) – Rev. Joe
Cobb, Pastor

 

25. MCC of the Spirit
(Harrisburg, Pennsylvania) –
Rev. Lori Rivera, Pastor

 

26. MCC of Topeka (Kansas) –
Rev. Dr. Ty Sweeting, Pastor

 

27. MCC of Winston-Salem
(North Carolina) – Rev. Ron
LaRocque, Pastor

 

28. MCC Portland (Oregon) –
Rev. Nathan Meckley, Pastor

 

29. MCC Pueblo (Colorado) –
Rev. John Mark Hild, Pastor

 

30. MCC Quezon City
(Philippines) – Rev. Ceejay
Agbayani, Pastor

 

31. MCC Richmond (Virginia) –
Rev. Dr. Robin Gorsline,
Pastor

 

32. MCC San Antonio (Texas) –
Rev. Mick Hinson, Pastor

 

33. MCC Sydney (Australia) –
Rev. Greg Smith, Pastor

 

34. New Creation MCC
(Columbus, Ohio) – Rev.
Margaret Hawk, Pastor

 

35. New Spirit Community
Church (Berkeley,
California) – Rev. Elder Jim
Mitulski, Pastor

 

36. New Spirit MCC (Cincinnati,
Ohio) – Open Pulpit

 

37. Open Arms MCC (Rochester,
New York) – Rev. Jim Mulcahy,
Pastor

 

38. Open Circle at The Villages
MCC (Oxford, Florida) – Rev.
Carol Rawlings-Chambers,
Pastor

 

39. Resurrection MCC (Houston,
Texas) – Rev. Elder Lillie Brock,
Consulting Pastor

 

40. River of Life MCC
(Dorchester, England) – Rev.
Catherine Dearlove, Pastor

 

41. River of Life MCC
(Kennewick, Washington) –
Rev. Janet Pierce, Pastor

 

42. Spirit of Life MCC (New Port
Richey, Florida) – Rev.
Dexter Brecht, Interim Pastor

 

43. SunCoast Cathedral MCC
(Venice, Florida) – Rev. Dr.
Sherry Kennedy, Pastor

 

44. Trinity MCC (Gainesville,
Florida) – Rev. Dr. Jim Merritt,
Pastor

 

45. Water of Life MCC (Tucson,
Arizona) – Rev. Elder Dr.
Charlie Arehart, Pastor

 

 

An Important Message

from Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson

Moderator, Metropolitan Community Churches

Nancy 200px

________________________________________

 

“..having made a good start,

finish this work.”

– 2 Corinthians chapter 8 verse 6

________________________________________

 

 

Dear MCC Friend:

 

Here’s a question for you today:

 

Has your congregation become a 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetter Church?

 

You can check the list in the left-hand column to see if your church has signed up.

 

If your church is not yet listed, I am extending a warm invitation today for your congregation to become a 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetter Church!

 

Here’s how to participate:

 

1.     2011 Pacesetter Churches agree to receive a special,

voluntary offering as part of our denomination’s 43rd anniversary in October on a Sunday of your choosing. These offerings will support the important work of MCC’s International Task Force and strengthen MCC’s growing international ministry for decades to come.

 

2.     Simply write to me and let me know

your church will participate in the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign.

 

3.     When you write, be sure to include your church’s name

and location, your pastor’s name, and the date you will receive your special Fellowship Sunday Offering.

 

4.     As soon as I hear from you, I’ll add your church and

pastor to our 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetters list — recognizing their leadership in “setting the pace” for the future of MCC’s ministry to our world.

 

______________________________________________________

 

When your church says “Yes,”

you’re taking a powerful step to invest

in the future of MCC’s ministry to our world.

______________________________________________________

 

 

Will your church participate in the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign by receiving a special, designated offering during October?

 

If so, I invite you to write to me and let me know your congregation will participate in this year’s 43rd anniversary campaign to support the vital work of MCC’s International Task Force.

 

May I look for your response this week?

 

Grace and peace,

 

Nancy

 

Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson

MCC Moderator

 

ITF 2011 chart

 

P.S.  Over the next several days, we’ll be posting support materials to promote your participation in the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign, including special anniversary prayers, a press release you can send to your local media, and a downloadable bulletin insert for your weekly worship folder. Please visit the 2011 Fellowship Sunday webpage regularly this week for these helpful materials.

 

P.P.S.  This year’s Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign is a wonderful opportunity for MCC congregations around the globe to join hearts and hands to celebrate MCC’s 43rd anniversary during the month of October. Won’t you write to me today and tell me your congregation will observe this milestone by receiving a special, voluntary Fellowship Sunday Offering as part of your anniversary observance?

 

Remember: When you write to me, I’ll add your church to the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetters List — churches that are leading the way in support of MCC’s emerging international work.

 

2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign

 

Donate Now

Opportunity to Serve on the Board of Pensions, USA

Current BOP members: Jeremiah Nelson, Rev. Mark Bidwell, Rev. Carolyn Mobley,
Rev. Wes Mullins, Chuck Phelan, Bill Hooper (Administrator), Devon Avery,
Rev. Tom Emmett (Not shown: Hank Hueber)

Opportunity to Serve on the Board of Pensions, USA

Our MCC clergy are the lifeblood of our community. The MCC Pension Plan is one way we show them we care about their future. The Board of Pensions is an active board which not only oversees the clergy pension plan, but strives to improve and expand it as well.

We have 1 opening on our National Board, which carries a four-year term. The current opening is a non-clergy position. Investment knowledge, marketing, communication and/or technological skills would perfectly complement our Board make up. Please contact us for more information. The successful candidate will be appointed by the Governing Board and Moderator.

Our deadline to receive resumes/references is 5 October 2011. Please send to Devon Avery, President, UFMCC BOP: .

Equality Forum 2012 – Submissions for Program Ideas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Help shape programming at Equality Forum 2012, April 30 to May 6, by sharing your suggestions with their Board.

The annual Equality Forum is the largest national and international LGBT civil rights summit. Equality Forum 2012 has no registration fee and all substantive programs are free. To learn more about Equality Forum, visit www.equalityforum.com.

Equality Forum wants to hear from you. If you would like to share your programming ideas click here and you will be directed to the Equality Forum’s programming submission page.

About Equality Forum

Equality Forum is a national and international LGBT civil rights organization with an educational focus. Equality Forum presents annually the largest and premier national and international LGBT civil rights summit. More

www.equalityforum.com (215) 732-3378

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