By Conference Minister Diane Weible
Earlier this week NCNC UCC Ministers gathered for our annual Authorized Ministers Retreat. The theme was “Awakening Spirit” and we did this through worship, conversation, creative and thought-provoking workshops and just being together.
As I often am at these kinds of events, I was reminded how good it is for us to gather together to breathe and to be. Our planning team, led by Rev. Lois Mueller, wanted to create space to breathe and include opportunities to create and to share. All of that happened and more.
Out of our conversations together some ideas emerged for ways we can better network and share with one another. I’ll not go into detail now but as these ideas are put into action, I hope that you are reminded of how much we need one another in times such as these—something I feel deeply.
One idea that was offered that we will implement immediately was a name for the “deep conversations” initiative we introduced at Annual Gathering. The name that was suggested that I love is: “Deep Conversations for Deep Concerns.” Our leaders on Conference Council, Committee on Ministry and the staff are beginning these conversations soon and this will be expanded to others in the coming months. Regular opportunities for authorized ministers in our Conference to “dial” in for a video conversation with me to chat about how we can better support one another in our work ahead will be both part of this initiative and separate from it, so look for more information soon.
Deep Conversations for Deep Concerns requires Deep Relationships. My vision and hope and goal and effort for this Conference is around building these relationships of support, accountability and care for our ministers and for our churches.