Moderator’s Message: December 15, 2016

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”  Galatians 6:9 (NIV)

This year has flown by. Christmas is just around the corner. The New Year of 2017 is upon us. Where did the time go? As always, still so much to do and so little time to get it done.

A great many of us have or are experiencing these feelings, not just because of this season but simply because our lives are just so busy.  Yet, in spite of all that’s on our plates, there are many who remain committed to serving our Southeast Conference and its local churches by remaining faithful to the encouragement of Galatians 6:9.  Without their contributions of time, talent and resources, our local churches and our conference could not meet the challenges and to do the ministry to which we are called.  So as we approach the celebration of the birth of the Christ Child and the end of 2016, I want to take this opportunity to once again say Thank You!  Being the moderator, I’m aware and very grateful for the contributions and lifeline so many are to the work of God in our conference.

I want to thank my SEC Board partners: Vice Chair-Dennie Kelly, Secretary-Amber Kirkendoll, Treasurer-Salome As-Salaam, Commission on Ministry Chair-Valerie Coe-Lowder, Nominating Committee Chair-Gary Myers, Personnel Committee Chair-Rebecca Seldomridge, Stewardship and Finance Committee Chair-Cindy Crocker, Members at Large-Vanessa Robbs, Scott Williamson, Tony England, Debora Murray & Larry Gipson  for their dedication and willingness to serve the Conference during this time of transition, change and challenge.

Once again, thank you to our wonderful dedicated conference staff: Rev. June Boutwell – Designated Conference Minister,  Rev. Dr. Sarah Kim – Executive Director of Theological Education/Dean of PATHWAYS,  Debbie Spearman – Generosity Coordinator, Don Harris – Director of Communications,  Rev. Chris Lyman Waldron – Information Technology Specialist, and newest staff person, Heather Bardole – Registrar and Conference Administrator.

Thank you to those who serve on the Commission on Ministry and the Nominating, Stewardship & Finance, and Personnel Committees.  And of course, thank you to all the clergy and volunteers that serve our local churches.

As we approach 2017, with all the changes and transitions, challenges and opportunities it will bring; please know that we need you more than ever before.  So I offer the encouragement of Galatians 6:9 as an unconventional invitation to not grow weary in doing the ministry to which we are called. In 2017 help the Southeast Conference and its leaders to continue being a voice of hope that “God is still Speaking.”

On behalf of Southeast Conference of the United Church of Christ, its Board of Directors, Designated Conference Minister and Staff:

We wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Blessed Happy New Year of 2017!