Bishop Ward discusses the appointment-making process and asks for prayers for locations which will be experiencing transition in the upcoming months.
Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ.
In this week, the eight district superintendents and I are working on pastoral appointments, and on Sunday, pastoral appointments will be announced in churches where there are pastoral transitions. We give thanks for our life together.
We do this work with much prayer. This prayer baton is constantly with us. It was created several years ago and was passed, literally, from district to district, as we gathered in all the counties in our annual conference. As we gather for cabinet meetings, we pray for one district every day, naming every clergy and every local church and praying for any specific needs or hopes of which we are aware. Prayer undergirds this work of appointment-making.
Also in the center of our life as a cabinet is frequent communion. We often use this very special paten and chalice created by a young person in the Beacon district for our Annual Conference. You’ll notice eight symbols of each of the districts on both the paten and on the chalice. As we commune using these beautiful pottery pieces, we give thanks for the unity we share in Christ.
All clergy take vows to be appointed to serve in the place to which they are assigned. As we do this work, we covet your prayers. On Sunday, let us all pray for every place where there is transition, where a season of pastoral ministry is coming to an end and where a new season is being announced and anticipated. Pastor-Parish chairpersons in congregations will make these announcements. Then later this month, on April 21, we will gather for a transition seminar at Garner United Methodist Church. On that day, two members of every Pastor-Parish committee of churches in transition and all clergy who are moving will be present. It’s a great day and we look forward to this joyful time together. In this gathering each year, we feel the connectional spirit which is ours in The United Methodist Church.
Thank you for your prayers as we move forward together, all faithful to God’s call, and anticipating all that God will do among us, with us, and through us. We indeed want to make disciples of Jesus Christ in all the world, and as United Methodists, we do this together.