Area Conference Minister, The Rev. Liz Garrigan-Byerly and Program Support Associate, Deb Holmes have new phone numbers!

Rev. Garrigan-Byerly: 508-244-4311

Deb Holmes: 508-244-4399

The conference has a new comprehensive phone system. You can call 1-866-367-2822 and be in touch with any staff member.
Both of the above numbers are now active, please update your phone contacts. Their old numbers will no longer work after 1/31/22.



Dear Siblings in Christ,
“How long have you been in this role?” a local church leader asked me recently as we chatted for the first time. I looked at the calendar and said, “1 year and 11 days.” What a year and 11 days it has been! In my (and many of our leadership’) first week, our nation faced an insurrection; what a blessing it was to gather in prayer in response. It has felt like each subsequent week has brought some new challenge or crisis, from Covid complications to local acts of hatred to international humanitarian disasters. Yet as I reflect back on the last year what stands out to me most are:

~ the holy conversations I’ve had with church leaders as they discern their future
~the radical hospitality I’ve seen churches extend in mediums new and old
~the ways clergy have dug deep, over and over again, to make the beauty and hope of our faith tangible in this strange time
~the deep and humbling work of congregations committed to becoming anti-racist  
~hearing chaplains and spiritual directors and counselors describe the lengths to which they have gone to connect with those most in need of care and comfort
~the new ministries that continue to spring up within and through the church.

I could go on. Church (you, the Body of Christ), have been a blessing to me this past year, just as surely as you have been a blessing to each and every person who encounters you, whether within the 4 walls of your sanctuary, on a digital platform, at the food pantry or local protest, or in a simple yet profound act of one of your members. I am grateful that we get to move into this next year together; challenges and crises will continue but so too will Christian community, and faith and love in action.
I love cyclical rhythms and the invitation they provide to reset intentions, expectations, practices and the like. So as we begin this new year, I want to remind you of a number of key things:

  1. Care & Connection of the ministries and ministers of the North Central Region is a core part of my role. Here are just some of the ways to help me connect with you:
    1. Invite me to worship with you! I can but do not need to preach. Especially in the next few weeks, if you are worshipping virtually, let me know so I can join you. Please email me directly to schedule worship presence.
    2. I have set aside time every week for 1-1 appointments. You can click here to schedule those through Calendly. If none of the times work for you, please contact Deb Holmes.
    3. Monthly Clergy Gatherings continue on the 2nd Tuesday from 1-2:30pm. This is open to all clergy in the North Central Region. The link is the same month to month and we send a reminder email the day before.
    4. I have a new phone number: 508-244-4311. After the end of January, my old number will not work. This is part of the Conference’s new, comprehensive phone system that will help you access all staff. It can be reached at 1-866-367-2822 
  2. Conference resources: we are blessed with an abundance of resources, so many in fact that it can be hard to keep track of all of them! I strongly encourage you to sign up for SNEUCC newsletters so you can access as much of that as possible. We are now sending out a Sunday night “Digest” email that includes upcoming events and news so you can easily share information in your own church newsletters.
  3. Nurturing Covenantal Partnership: “what a covenant, what a joy divine!” One of the ways local churches nurture and maintain their covenantal partnership to other churches is by submitting information to the UCC Yearbook. This can feel like a tedious task but it is a vital way the wider church has a sense of trends and needs of the local church. This is also the way that we at the Conference collect the contact information for your lay leaders, allowing us to more effectively share resources. And, when you are at the point of searching for a new pastor, we provide you a report from all the data you submitted. All the instructions you need can be found here.
  4. Share your good news! We love to hear how you are living and experiencing the Gospel in your midst. Please share that with us so we can share it with others! 

Local Churches Living the Love and Justice of Jesus
Center Village Congregational Church, CT ~ This tiny church, which averages 10 in worship, served about 6,500 meals at their weekly lunches in 2020!

Rev. Elizabeth Garrigan-Byerly (she/her)
Area Conference Minister, North Central Region (Central, MA & Windham, CT Associations)
Cell: 508-244-4311

Connect with your ACM

Whether you are a pastor, lay leader, MID or covenantal partner, I welcome the chance to meet with you virtually one on one. To schedule a time, click here and follow the instructions. If none of the times work for you, then please email Deb Holmes ( 

(Central MA & Windham CT)

Worcester Area Mission Society (WAMS) is seeking a new Director of Programs

Attached is a letter from Karen Ludington, Executive Director, of WAMS that has a job description and ways to apply and/or to contact her with questions. Letter


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. If you have difficulty logging into your account please contact Nancy Stubbs at


Please go to to see all posted events

North Central Region Justice
Organizing Gathering

Saturday, January 29th at 1:00PM
First Congregational Church
1 Washburn Square
Leicester, MA

Are you a justice leader in your community? Are you wondering how to deepen your commitment to social justice? This gathering is a chance to ground our justice work in faith, build relationships with others in the North Central region, consider how power operates in systems of injustice and justice, and develop skills to support justice work. Money is available to offset travel costs. A snow date is set for Feb.12.
Please click here to register



Observance of
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Monday, January 17, 2022 at 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM

Join us for a time of worship, reflection, and facilitated conversation led by one of the 2022 SNEUCC Theologians in Residence, Rev. Dr. Diane Schmitz.  Let us honor the legacy of Rev. Dr. of Martin Luther King, Jr. by rededicating ourselves to building up the beloved community. Click here for more information


Faith and Food: Stewarding Creation for Healthier Communities

Thursday, February 17, 2022 at 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM

This free, online workshop will be hosted by Health and Wellness Ministry and the Environmental Ministries Team to help congregations participate in National Nutrition Month during March. The workshop will explore how faith informs our relationship with food as well as our relationship to others and to Creation, and is offered as part of the SNEUCC Health and Wellness Quarterly Webinar series.
Click here for more information and to register.



New Lunch & Learn Programs being offered!

January 20 “Why Does My Church Need an Interim Minister?”
Is your congregation about to have a pastoral change? Did you have one recently? If so, are you curious or anxious about what to expect from pastoral leadership during this transitional time?  Is hiring an interim minister beneficial? How might you assess that?
Presenter: Rev. Dr. James H. Latimer, PCC Coach and Founder, Coaching for Interims.
Thursday, January 20, at 12 noon.  Here is the Registration link.

February 12th: Rev. Dr. Ruth Shaver on Polity (Part 1)
February 17th: Rev. Elizabeth Dilley on Behavorial Covenants




Visit the Faith Formation webpage for more information.


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

Edwards House Meeting & Retreat Center, Framingham, MA

Irons Homestead, Glocester, RI

Pilgrim Day Camp, Framingham, MA

Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon, CT.

The 2022 Silver Lake summer camp brochure is available online now & will be in mailboxes in January!

View and download the brochure

Check out all the exciting programs available and start getting excited for summer!


Fueling Inclusion, Voice, and
Opportunity for All

WAMS Works with individuals and community partners to inspire economic and education equity through social change. Click here to learn more about WAMS. 

Worcester Fellowship

Please check their website for updated information.




Please email Deb Holmes at for an updated copy of the regional pulpit supply list. 

If you are interested in being included on the North Central region pulpit supply list please contact Deb Holmes.


The attached list is an updated list of churches in the North Central Region that currently have active food pantries and outreach meals for people in need. Please email Deb Holmes at to have your church information included or updated. North Central Region List.



Please click here to view all of the SNEUCC Transitions.



January Anniversaries

50 Years
The Rev. Dr. James Harrison

20 Years
The Rev. Dr. Karen Nell Smith

15 Years
The Rev. Gail Wright

Please contact Deb Holmes if we have missed your anniversary. 
Anniversaries are listed from 5 years and forward in increments of 5.

If your church is celebrating a mile anniversary please let Deb Holmes know so that entire North Central Region can celebrate with you!



The Rev. James E. Chase, longtime Pastor of the Federated Church of Charlton, passed away on Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022, in his home from complications of colon cancer.  He leaves his wife of 35 years, Diane Chase, and his daughter, Valerie Chase and her husband David Pinsonneault of Providence, RI.  He was predeceased by his sister, Nancy (Chase) Cunningham. 
The funeral service will be held on Saturday, Jan. 15, 2022 at 10:00am in St. Joseph’s Church, 10 H. Putnam Road Ext., Charlton, MA.  Burial will follow in West Ridge Cemetery, Charlton, MA.  Calling hours in the Daniel T. Morrill Funeral Home, 130 Hamilton St., Southbridge, MA, will be held on Friday, Jan. 14, 2022, from 4:00 to 7:00pm.  In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Federated Church of Charlton, P.O. Box 70, Charlton, MA 01507.
Please click here to read more.

Please click here to view all SNEUCC obituaries.



Part-Time Church Administrative Assistant - Acton, MA

Christian Education Director - Part Time Position - Ashland, MA

Music Director - Northborough, MA

Church Treasurer - Paxton, MA

Church Musician (Part time) - Worcester, MA

Please click here to view all SNEUCC Classifieds




Central Mass Association Meeting Information:

The Committee on Authorized Ministry:
Meets the 3rd Thursday of each month at 9:30 AM.
The Board of Director's:
Meets the 3rd Thursday of each month at 2:30 PM

Windham Association Meeting Information:

Monthly Council meeting:
Is held on the 4th Thursday of each month at 2:30 PM.


North Central Region of
The Southern New England Conference, United Church of Christ


Office Hours: 
Monday: 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Tuesday-Thursday: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday: Closed