By unanimous vote, Rev. June Boutwell was elected Designated Conference Minister for a period of three years by church representatives from across the Southeast Conference at a special called meeting on Saturday, February 1st at Victory for the World at Stone Mountain, Georgia. The day included a time for Rev. June to introduce herself, for folks to ask questions, and for a celebratory worship following the vote.
Playing on the iPhone marketing and her love for tea, Rev. June proclaimed, “There’s a cup for that!” She led members of the Conference through her journey of ministry with cups and mugs she had collected along the way, demonstrating her breadth of different locations around the country, her passion for youth and camp ministry, her call to be a connector for people, and her dedication to the United Church of Christ. She closed with lifting up a communion chalice and talking about the common cup that we are called to share in the church and in the Conference.
Rev. June answered a wide variety of questions discussing geographic issues we face as a Conference, the role of Associations in the Conference, strategies for new church development, and interests and hobbies she has outside of the ministry. Throughout these answers, Rev. June stressed that her style of entering a new ministry is to begin with deep listening and then to begin building bridges between people, rather than starting with her own agenda. Her answers also highlighted her experience with each of these areas, and a willingness to bring this experience to bear on the ministry of the Conference.
Taking call and vocation seriously, Rev. June proclaimed that we all have a call from God, as well as a vocation – meaningful work that we want to be engaged in. She hopes to help churches and individuals find this meaningful work through connection with one another and the Conference.
Rev. June also highlighted a broad range of personal interests from her deep personal contemplative and meditative practice to her fun-loving side that makes her a baseball and NASCAR fan and video gamer on one end and an omnivorous reader, and enjoying the theater, opera, and fine dining on the other.
Rev. June will begin serving the Conference at the end of February. In the meantime, you can send her your congratulations, thoughts for the Conference, and other communications through her new email address: [email protected]. She will answer her email when she hits the ground running in the coming weeks. Please join us in welcoming her to the Southeast!