This summer I will be receiving a new appointment in the East Ohio Conference from Bishop Hopkins that will be effective July 1. I will be one of four pastors appointed to serve three churches in a new and innovative ministry. The new ministry is the West Akron Regional Ministry. It will involve three churches: Akron First UMC, Christ UMC and Montrose Zion UMC. The three churches are located along a ten mile stretch that moves from downtown Akron and to the west. Think of each church building and congregation not as self-contained entities doing their own thing in ministry, but instead imagine three campuses (for lack of a better term) where regional ministry takes place. All the ministries are supported and resourced by all three churches, regardless of where the particular ministries take place. My location, meaning where my office will be and where my primary preaching duties will take place each Sunday, will be Akron First UMC. I am not appointed to that particular church alone-- all four pastors will be appointed to the regional ministry in which the three churches participate.
It will probably take a year to get this new model organized and implemented, but when it is fully functional the four of us will have areas of focus in ministry that will best utilize our particular gifts and graces. More on that as time goes on.
I am extremely excited about this opportunity.
But we will certainly miss the good folks at Cambridge First UMC. We will be sad to leave.
Congratulations -- and welcome to circuit ministry!
Sounds like an exciting new venture. God be with you.
Wow! Welcome to the neighborhood! That initiative is really exciting. Let us know when you arrive in the area. Maybe we can off you a meal before you get too busy.
"offer" even! LOL
This sounds fascinating. I look forward to hearing how it works and what new possibilities it raises for our connection.
Congrats, Allan. This sounds like an awesome and innovative ministry.
This promises to be a great challenge. I would be interested in knowing what each member of this team brings in terms of spiritual gifts and how the four will balance the load.
This especially points out that the church's ministry is the community.
Sounds like the best model of Circuit ministry - similar to what we used to have here before 'sections' which effectively shrinks a circuit back to a particular congregation's concern and 'Regrouping for misssion' - which is the British steal of the UMC 'District' and makes circuits massive (for us) - confused? so are we.
Wishing you well in your new appointment. On a purely selfish note - please please please make sure you also make time to teach and blog as you are just too good to lose.
Congratulations, Allan. Prayers and best wishes for a good and healthy ending in the current appointment.
Sounds interesting. Is there one senior pastor and three associates or is this a completely new model for cooperative ministry?
Welcome to my neck of thee woods. Sounds like sn exciting opportunity with some great potential. We'll have to grab a cup of coffee this summer.
Thanks for all the good wishes from everyone. And, yes... to those of you who will be near, let's get together for coffee or a meal or both.
And my teaching and blogging will continue.
Congrats on the new appointment and may your goodbyes and your hellos both be a blessing.
I have heard more and more about this cooperative style of ministry. I'll be interested to see how it pans out.
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