Change itself may be a constant, but the pace of change is rarely constant. UCUCC is in a period of increased pace of change, especially relative to its leadership staff. Pastor Peter Ilgenfritz retired a year ago and Church Administrator David Anderson will retire on Feb. 2.
After Pastor Peter’s retirement, the Church Council authorized a Futures Task Force to consider what might be emerging in UCUCC’s future. Their report was delivered for our Congregational Meeting in November. We will continue to benefit from consulting their report as our future unfolds in the coming months and years. Thank you, FTF members!
One of their recommendations was a change in the way we organize our Leadership Team (Appendix 7 of the report). While this version of the recommendation did receive solid support, the presence of a significant dissenting group of voices has led the Council to ask for a process of revision. A Staffing Proposal Committee (SPC) has been doing just that since early December. Given feedback from the congregation during our recent futures process and from leadership consultants over the course of 15 years, the goals guiding the re-organization of our Leadership Team are: increased clarity of responsibilities and efficiency of decisions, increased focus on living out our vision and on equitable and meaningful accountability.
In sum, here’s what we know so far:
- The Leadership Team will move forward with our three pastors (David’s replacement will not be on that team, but will be supported and supervised by one of the Leadership Team).
- It is necessary to finalize proposed revisions to Leadership Team structure and process before making decisions about the nature and timing of any search for a new pastor.
- The Staffing Proposal Committee is actively working on these revisions and hopes to return a
proposal to the Church Council soon.
We are moving and have covered a significant distance in our transition journey. Since Pastor Peter’s announcement of his departure, we have searched for and hired a Bridge Minister (Pastor Todd), have completed an involved process to compile a comprehensive Futures Report and are poised to propose and implement needed leadership changes in 2020.
Meanwhile, ministry goes on—worship, small groups, justice advocacy, pastoral care, community building, spiritual learning.
The Staffing Proposal Committee roster:
Ellen Naden (Chair), Pastor Todd Smiedendorf, Beth Bartholomew, Tim Croll, Jan Von Lehe, Mary Sue
Galvin, and Ed Coleman