General Synod 2019
Your pulpit or mine?
by Rev. Dr. Carole R. Barner
In June and July this summer, four clergy and six congregations in St. Louis are spicing things up with a round-robin pulpit swap. Rev. Mike Krewson of St. Philips UCC hatched the brainstorm, inviting colleagues to participate in order to strengthen the congregational connections and have some fun through Sunday morning worship. Summer tends to be a more flexible program time for some congregations. Rev. Tom Ressler of St. Paul UCC, Rev. Brad Urban of Carondelet UCC and Prince of Peace UCC, and Rev. Dr. Carole Barner of Grace UCC and Mount Tabor UCC round out the list of roving preachers in this swap. July 14 and 28 are the next dates when these pastors will be in different territory.
In a time calling for creative ministry, two of these pastors serve one congregation and two share their time and energy between two congregations. The round-robin event offers these congregations an opportunity to hear the Good News in new voices, as it affords time for pastors and congregations to become better acquainted with colleagues in ministry. This is one more way congregations and their leaders can develop collaborative ministry in our Conference. While these would all be considered urban congregations, another helpful swap might be between urban and rural settings of ministry. Rev. Dr. Jimmy Watson of Immanuel UCC in Ferguson traded places with Rev. Michael Kasevich of St. Paul UCC in Old Monroe earlier this summer. On Facebook, Watson shared that he had served at Old Monroe years ago, and both Watson and Kasevich enjoyed this exchange.
What is the Spirit calling you to do to strengthen the relationships in our Missouri Mid-South Conference? We ARE the Conference, you know!