God is doing a new thing: Pastoral Transition at CUCC

With gratitude we celebrate the ministry of the Rev. Jenny Shultz-Thomas with us at CUCC.  We send her with our love to her new congregation and pray for God's blessings on their ministry together.  We send her family to new friendships and community, and pray that they will grow and thrive in their new home.

This lamp will shine on
our communion table,
reminding us to pray
for our new pastor and
search committee.
Meanwhile, CUCC continues to be in ministry together:  a caring community nurturing spiritual growth and working for social justice.  We are thankful that the still speaking God is active among us, calling us to embody love within and beyond our gathered community.  

While we continue to worship and welcome and learn and serve and play, some among us work on our behalf to discern whom God is calling to minister with us into the future.  We pray for those considering whether to join us as our settled pastor. 

We look forward to welcoming and working alongside a bridge pastor during the time of transition.

God is doing a new thing at CUCC.  Thanks be to God!

Follow the links below to read the most recent updates on
the transition from Pastor Jenny to our new bridge pastor
to our new settled pastor.

January 15, 2020 Transition Update

December 9, 2019 Transition Update

October 1, 2019 Transition Update

September 4, 2019 Transition Update

June 8, 2019 Transition Update

May 21, 2019 Transition Update

April 28, 2019 Transition Update 

Pastoral Search Committee

Please pray for the members of the Pastoral Search Committee as they work on our behalf.  You are welcome to contact them (especially to convey your support and thanks), but keep in mind that much of their work must be done confidentially.  Their contact information is in Breeze, our online directory.

*We send Louise Slate to her new home in Virginia, asking God's blessing on her in her new life there.  Lei Covington resigned from the search committee in early October.

Transition Timeline

June 2:  The congregation is invited to bring their stories to our storytelling circles.  These stories will assist the Pastoral Search Committee to capture the flavor as CUCC as they write our Local Church Profile (the document which describes us to potential pastoral candidates).  Congregational Meeting, June 2, noon

May 21:  CUCC's Council mailed to the congregation the following:  a letter providing an update on the transition process, a description of the June 2 storytelling circles, and an invitation to participate in the farewell events for Pastor Jenny.

May 5:  The Pastoral Search Committee was commissioned during 10:30 worship.  We support in prayer Paul Atkinson, Lei Covington, Mike Cline, Michael Gilbert-Singletary, Dawn Koonce, Paul Kiel, Marty Lamb, Anita Sawhney, Louise Slate and Jake Langenderfer (youth advisor) is serving as Youth Advisor.
Pastoral Search Committee commissioned May 5
(some members absent)
Also on May 5, the Deacons posted the job description for the bridge pastor who will serve in the interim between settled pastors.

April 28:  A pastoral transition bulletin board makes its first appearance with updates on the transition  process and plans to express gratitude for Pastor Jenny's time with us.

April 23:  Council receives a report from Deacons Chair Louise Slate on progress toward forming the search committee; Council approves a slate of nominees.  The search committee will be finalized in the days ahead, announced to the congregation, and commissioned May 5.
Council receives a report on a conversation with the Rev. Eddie Weathers (Associate Conference Minister for the Eastern North Carolina Association of the UCC)  on the new form for the Local Church Profile.  Louise reported for Deacons that they will begin searching for a bridge pastor to serve from July 1 until the arrival of the settled pastor; a bridge pastor is a short-term position which includes pastoral care and worship leadership.  Moderator Ellen Beidler will collect contact information of those contacting CUCC with interest in serving as the bridge pastor and pass that information to the Deacons Ministry.

April 6/7:  The Deacons invite the congregation to submit nominations for the pastoral search committee by April 10 to Deacons Chair Louise Slate or Search Committee Chair Paul Atkinson.  (Email April 6; announcement in worship April 7)

April 4:  The Deacons meet to initiate the search for a new settled pastor as per CUCC's Constitution (Article VII.  Section 2B1.)  Paul Atkinson, Chair-Elect of the Deacons, is selected to serve as the chair of the Search Committee.

April 3:  Two letters are sent to the congregation both in print and in the CUCC Weekly eNews:  Pastor Jenny's announcement and a letter from Moderator Ellen Beidler on behalf of the Moderating Team reporting on the Council's actions toward the transition of pastoral leadership.

April 1:  Council meets to begin planning the transition of pastoral leadership.  Council passed this motion:  “As our church moves forward, the Deacons and church council are actively engaged in establishing a plan and timeline for calling a settled pastor and providing a seamless transition for the church, while maintaining the positive work of Community UCC.  We envision a streamlined process including, but not limited to reviewing and updating the CUCC Church Profile to reflect our church’s current work and vision and organizing a search team.”

March 31:  Pastor Jenny sends an email to the congregation announcing that she has accepted a call to First Plymouth Congregational Church in Denver, Colorado.