October 11, 2022

A Note from the ACM

Good people, 

This past week I had the chance to see the debut of the Resiliency Time Capsule Project. It was marvelous.
Through a series of interviews and 4, 15-minute videos, the project paints a portrait of how some of your sister congregations in the SNEUCC showed resiliency in the face of the twin pandemics of racism and COVID-19. This is not to suggest that either pandemic is “over” or “past” but rather that good and faithful ministry has happened over the past few years, and marking that for the future, and inviting us to begin processing it, is good and holy.
I want to invite you to keep your eye on this page as the videos are launched. One is already available; the rest will be available in the coming weeks. You will certainly see yourself and your congregation in the testimony of others. Some of it will hopefully inspire you. However, my main hope in encouraging you to watch these videos is so that you might begin to understand that you – yes, even those of you not in this video – have done incredible ministry over the past few years. You have been the Church in such a way that lives have been touched, transformed, and even saved. If you haven’t made space to begin processing any of that, I invite you to let these videos offer you that window.
Set up a time to watch them as a congregation, or small group, and use the accompanying guides to discuss.
I’m so grateful for each of you and all the ways in which you live the love and justice of Jesus.
You can find everything here:

I’m praying for you this season, as always.

Rev. Alex Shea Will
Area Conference Minister
Northeast Region (Metropolitan Boston and Northeast Associations)
Rev. Shea Will can be reached at or call/text: 508-244-4769.  

ACM Availability

Siblings in Christ: Thank you for the invitations to worship with you! I’m currently scheduled through February 2023, and I’d love to continue scheduling for 2023. I am eager to visit with each of you, join you for life together, and even preach if you would like. Please reach out and let me know a few options of what might work for you and your congregation.  
Regardless of whether you’ve yet to meet in person, or have been meeting in person for months, we are all dealing with the ramifications of this pandemic in one way or another. I am praying for each of you and our congregations as you navigate how best to love, care for, and be present with one another. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.

Association Events

Metropolitan Boston Association

First Congregational Church in Winchester, Stephen Kiernan - Author Reading and Book Signing with Integrated Organ Concert, October 14, 2022 at 7:30pm.  More information here. 

The Melrose Highlands Congregational Church and the Wakefield Human Rights Commission are collaborating to co-host two free events in October to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day.  The first event is the Turtle Island Art Project to be held Sunday, October 16 from 11:30am to 1:30pm in the Heritage Room at the Civic Center in Wakefield.  The second event will be a discussion with Claudia Fox Tree (Arawak) on Decolonizing Contributions by Indigenous People.  This free event will be in-person and live streamed on Wednesday, October 26 from 7:00 to 8:00pm at the Melrose Highlands Congregational Church 355 Franklin Street in Melrose. More information and registration for both of these events here

Installation - Rev. Emelia Attridge, First Congregational Church, UCC of Reading, Nov. 6, 2022 at 3:00pm in person and livestreamed

Chapel in the Pines, A Wild Church Worship Service, Third Sunday of the Month at 3pm, McKinnon Park, Wellesley. More information.

Northeast Association

TONIGHT!  Ecclesiastical Council, Renee Manning, South Church in Andover, UCC,  October 11, 2022 at 7:00pm on Zoom.  Register here.


Conference and Partner Events


Clergy Revivals 

October 25, 7pm in Milton, MA & October 27, 7pm in Hartford, CT

Collectively we have been through some turbulent times, struggling to get a firm footing in what seems like constantly shifting sand. These revivals are a place for Authorized Ministers to lay down all that God is longing to unburden from us, and let our spirit be lifted through word, song, prayer, and ritual. The Rev. Yvette Flunder, Presiding Bishop of the Fellowship of Affirming Ministries and SNEUCC Theologian-in-Virtual-Residence will be the guest preacher. Register now!  

An Evening with Diana Butler Bass
Wednesday, October 12, 2022 at 8:00 PM, via Zoom
The Barnstable, Old Colony, Pilgrim and Rhode Island Associations (Southeast Region) are inviting everyone in the SNEUCC to an evening with Diana Butler Bass.  Come discover the new and unfolding biblical scholarship about Mary Magdalene! 

For more information and to register, click here.

Proportional Giving to Our Church’s Wider Mission

Wednesday, October 12, 2022
7:00 PM to 8:00 PM

When the SNEUCC was formed in 2020, its Board of Directors embraced Proportional Giving to Our Church’s Wider Mission (PG to OCWM) as an appropriate giving model for providing the financial resources to enable us, the SNEUCC, to fulfill our mission and ministry as Jesus’ disciples. The SNEUCC continues to encourage churches to adopt this giving model if they have not yet done so. Rev. Dr. David Cleaver-Bartholomew will host a webinar giving guidance and answering questions about why and how to make the transition to PG to OCWM.

Quarterly Racial Justice Training for all:
October 22, 2022

8:30AM -12:00PM
Both clergy and lay people are welcome to join us for this 3-1/2 hour, on-line racial justice training facilitated by Rev. James D. Ross II, Minister for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.  Sessions are being offered via Zoom. The cost to attend is $10. Scholarships are available; contact Karen Methot.  Please click here to register.


October is Clergy Appreciation Month  

Listen to this 3-minute video where Rev. Darrell Goodwin thanks the Authorized Ministers and Ministers in Discernment for their work and talks about upcoming events for Clergy Appreciation Month.

The Southern New England Conference is blessed with over 1400 Authorized Minister and a host of MID's. We are grateful for their service to the faithful and want to find ways to invest in our pastor leaders this October for Clergy Appreciation Month.  Read more here

Committees on Ministry

The Member in Discernment Process:  Best Practices, New Ideas, Challenges

with Rev. Dr. Renee Jackson
Saturday October 15, 2022
9am - 12pm

This zoom workshop is appropriate for all Committee on Ministry members.  We heard your concerns about the five-hour length of the workshop and have shortened it to three hours, leaving everyone time for a free autumn afternoon.

Topics to be covered include:

  • Developing and using a Marks Portfolio for each member in discernment
  • Developing a Preparation and Formation Plan
  • Using this plan as a tool during the time in discernment
  • Assessing MID progress using the Marks
  • Case studies in break out rooms with time for discussion and support from Committee on Ministry peers

The workshop will assume that all participants have familiarity with the Marks of Faithful and Effective Authorized Ministers and with the section of the Manual on Ministry that relates to the discernment process (Section 2.1)   Here is a link to those resources.   Information on the Marks begins on page 10.     

THIS WORKSHOP IS APPROPRIATE FOR ALL COM MEMBERS.  This is also a great time to make sure that you have submitted all of your COM Members to your Area Conference Member (ACM) or Program Support Associate (PSA) for your region. REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED AND ENDS OCTOBER 13, 2022.

Stewardship: An Epiphany, Part I

Thursday, October 27, 2022
12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Rev. Dr. Sarah Sarchet Butter, Senior Pastor, Wellesley Village Church, introduces the option of conducting your church’s stewardship/generosity campaign during the season of Epiphany instead of the traditional fall season.  Click here to learn more & to register.

UCC History & Polity Classes

Exploring the history, polity and theology of the United Church of Christ through Convergence.  Online and on demand.  Use the code POLITYONDEMAND to get 15% off.  More information here

Faith and Lead from Luther Seminary

Another Seeds Fellowship is being launched! Here’s what you need to know:  Seeds is a 10-month, fully-funded fellowship for entrepreneurial leaders who are:

  • passionate about the Gospel;
  • eager to grow;
  • and creative in their approach to developing new ways of being church in a changing world.

The deadline to apply is November 1, 2022.  Apply here.

The Center for Career Development and Ministry
Support for the Heavy Lifting of Ministry
Wednesdays, Oct. 19th through Nov. 16th
1:00pm-2:30pm via Zoom

A free partner resource for a clergy support opportunity being facilitated by Rev. Kenneth Reeves, Ph.D. More information here

Lunch and Learn for Leaders 2022-2023 is a monthly series hosted by the Center for Transformational Leadership. Every third Thursday, join us at noon for an hour-long session of learning and discussion. Each month we will offer a bite-size opportunity to learn valuable concepts and practices from a subject expert. Our wide-ranging topics are relevant to areas of mission and ministry that you, our authorized ministers and lay leaders, have indicated are timely for your congregations.

October 20 - Coaching Services: Are you or your church envisioning something new? 
Session Presenter: Rev. Heather Ramsey Mabrouk, Director for the Center for Transformational Leadership and Program Director for Together We Thrive, an ecumenical initiative funded by the Lilly Endowment.

November 17 - Introduction to Christian Contemplative Practices: What does “contemplation” mean? 
Session Presenter: Rev. Matt Carriker, Agape Spiritual Community 


UCC Minister and President to Help Celebrate 400+ Years of Pilgrimage in Plymouth
October 29-30, 2022
Church of the Pilgrimage, UCC - Plymouth, MA
Concerts, talks, a community exchange with local organizations, tours of nearby points of historic interest, and a free box lunch by reservation with be some of the ways Plymouth will be celebrating 400+ Years of Pilgrimage -- and the UCC will be front and center. 


Do You Need a Day Away?
Edwards House is now offering Complimentary
Retreat Days to SNEUCC Lay and Clergy Leadership
Click here for the November & December schedule.

Becoming WISE -

What is a WISE Congregation? A WISE congregation has joined the mission to being Welcoming, Inclusive, Supportive, and Engaged in the Mental Health of the community and the wider world.
Learn more here:

Offerings from our partner Practical Resources for Churches:

Awkward Silence: Practical Ways to Confront Racism
Thursday, Oct 13, 2022
2:00 - 3:00 PM EDT

Leader - Shani McIlwain
In this webinar/workshop Shani uses her S.H.A.R.E. acronym to teach audiences the power of sharing your stories as one of the easiest ways to break down stereotypes and biases. Using the scripture Revelation 12:11 as a catalyst for hope, and transformation, Shani's goal is to use biblical principles to create impact and change.

Social Media Strategy & Scheduling for Churches
Thursday, October 20, 2022
2:00 - 3:00 PM EDT
Leader - Jo Nygard Owens

Learn about how to create a social media strategy for your church, and how to use free scheduling apps to post your content across multiple platforms.

Raising Race-Wise Families in a Race-Challenged World
Thursday, October 27, 2022
2:00 - 3:00 PM EDT
Leader - Helen Lee

Times continue to be turbulent in our nation around the topic of race. This can be true in our churches as well as in the broader culture. How do we apply biblical principles to discipling our parents and children so that they can navigate the issue of race in a Christ-honoring way?

The Life Saving Church: Faith Communities and Suicide Prevention
Tuesday, November 1, 2022
2:00 - 3:00 PM EDT
Leader - Rachael Keefe

Suicide is one of the last taboos of faith communities. It’s time we shatter the stigma and end the silence surrounding suicide in worshiping communities. It is possible for us to respond with love and grace in a way that saves lives and brings hope and healing.
Building a Collective Youth Ministry
Thursday, November 17, 2022
7:00 - 8:00 PM EST

Leader - Chris Dela Cruz
Your church has a few teenagers. Your neighboring churches each have a few teenagers. On your own, some of you either have small youth groups or no separate gatherings for young people. What could it possibly look like to come together and collaborate?

Save the date for Upcoming Racial Justice Trainings

Racial Justice Training for Authorized Clery and MIDs: Wednesday, Jan. 18, 9 AM-12:30 PM
Racial Justice Training for All:  Wednesday, April 12, 7-9 PM AND Thursday, April 13, 7-8:30 PM

Conference Launches Justice Leadership Program

If you feel called to work for justice or are eager to integrate faith and justice work into your life in meaningful and transformative ways, apply now for the Southern New England cohort of the Jubilee programwhich will launch this fall.
Read more about this program here.         



Register your group for a facilitated retreat in 2022-2023! Chose from seven dates and three great locations.

Pastors are uniquely positioned to help people contemplating suicide
By offering honest talk, a sense of belonging and hope, clergy can help prevent suicides. New research and resources debunk assumptions and point to actions that address this growing problem.

The PATHWAYS Theological Education Board of Directors invites all questioning, curious people of faith
to join us for our 6-week courses beginning Fall II (late September) (see website for details and registration links). There is a 12-week UCC Polity course running January 11 and May 17, 2023.  Enroll now at PATHWAYS Theological Education, Inc.


Center for Transformational Leadership


Sign up here to receive the Center for Transformational Leadership's monthly newsletter, Innovation Now!  Read newsletter issues  here.

  • Time Capsule Teaser:  A Conversation with Pastor Chris Solimene - Reflecting on the Pandemic (Read more here)

Discipleship Opportunities

Faith Formation 101: Practices for a Sustainable Ministry - Faith Formation Leadership Program

Saturday, October 29, 2022 at 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Explore the nuts and bolts of organizing and implementing faith formation programs in the  local church: recruiting, nurturing, and supporting volunteers; leadership skills, and working on a church staff.

Faith Formation Resources

Several of the Faith Formation team's resource pages/lists have been updated with new and current material. These updated resources include Safe Conduct and Church SafetyTalking with Children and Teens about Tough Issues (including the war in Ukraine).

God's World in Community: a new resource from PA's GenOn Ministries that emphasizes intergenerational gathering and activities based on the Book of Acts. Fully available online!

Outdoor Ministries

The Southern New England Conference engages in Outdoor & Retreat Ministry with these sites: 

Edwards House Meeting & Retreat Center, Framingham, MA 

Irons Homestead, Glocester, RI

Pilgrim Day Camp, Framingham, MA

Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon, CT 

Please click here to view all SNEUCC obituaries. 


October Anniversaries

15 Years

Rev. Judith Swanberg, October 21, 2007

55 Years

Rev. Richard Weisenbach, October 8, 1967

Please contact Lynn Varney if we have missed your anniversary.  Anniversaries are listed from 5 years and forward in increments of 5.  If your church is celebrating a milestone anniversary, please let us know so that the Northeast Region can celebrate with you!

Let us know!

You are doing great ministry! Let us help make sure others know about it. Tell us about your stories, news and event information. Don’t be modest!  We’re waiting to hear from you. Email Lynn at

Do we have your church leaders listed correctly?

Please have your church administrator (or whoever handles your church's email account) visit the Church Dashboard (part of the Southern New England Conference's data base) to make sure we're connecting with all the current leaders in your church.

Called to Serve

UCC Opportunities 
Find opportunities online.
Search by keyword, Conference, or type of position:
Volunteer - Missionary - Musician - Summer camp staff - Pastorate - Chaplaincy. The Spirit moves in many directions! 
This week we pray for: 

United Church of Christ, Burlington:  Rev. Edward Koonz

First Church in Cambridge:  Revs. Daniel Smith, Alexandra Boudreaux and Karen McArthur

First Parish Church, Congregational, Manchester:  the congregation

First Church of Christ in Marblehead:  Revs. Don Remick and Lindsay Popperson

Find out more about Conference and Association transitions here:





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