Pastoral Ministry and Licensing

Report to the 2017 US National Conference

Gary Gates
Director of Ministerial Licensing

It has been my privilege to chair the PMLT the past two years, and to serve with a great group of elders. The Pastoral Ministry Leadership Team oversees the licensing and ordination process for the US National Conference and gives leadership to the professional development of the members of the United Brethren in Christ Ministerial Association.

Four Regions

We have four regions to which responsibility for licensing interviews has been delegated.

The East Region is served by Jim Bolich (Prince Street UB church, Shippensburg, Pa.) We were saddened by the sudden death of Chris Little (Mount Pleasant UB church, Chambersburg, Pa.), who was the other Eastern Region representative. With a new bishop and Jim willing to provide direction in the East, it was decided to wait until the new conference year to replace Chris. I do want to express special thanks to Greg Helman (Blue Rock UB, Waynesboro, Pa.). who assisted in the East Region to a great extent.

The Central Region is served in the north by Terry Smith (Bethel Church, Elmore, Ohio), and in the south by Mike Brown (Franklin UB church, New Albany, Ohio).

The North Region is served by Randy Carpenter (Sunfield UB church, Sunfield, Mich.) and Lee Rhodes (Countryside UB church, Brickenridge, Mich.).

The West Region is served by Robert Bruce (Emmanuel UB church, Fort Wayne, Ind.) and Craig Burkholder (Hudson UB church, Hudson, Ind.).

Bishop Todd Fetters is a member of our team, and his administrative assistant, Cathy Reich, has served as a recording secretary for our meetings. A special thanks to Cathy for the great contribution she has made to the whole team by getting the information to and from candidates and to the team members. I cannot thank her enough for the way she has served me and the team.

Highlights of PMLT actions

  • Elders Orders were granted to 21 individuals during the past two years. Seven of these ordinations will be conducted at the 2017 US National Conference.
  • National Conference licenses were granted to 12 individuals.
  • Specialized Ministry licenses were approved for 10 individuals.
  • Provisional licenses were granted to 2 individuals.

Pastoral Ministry Handbook

One responsibility of the PMLT is the Pastoral Ministry Handbook. This year we revised one section of the handbook, chapter 12, “Requests for Exemption from Assignment.” It is included on the other side.

The handbook is a reference tool to help our ministerial staff with their ministry. We encourage you to read through it. We believe this will encourage and enhance the licensing process. We are asking candidates to submit their materials for credentialing prior to being appointed by the bishop. This, we believe, will assist both the appointee and the congregation.

UB History Course

Five UB History classes were been conducted in the last two years, with 27 people taking the class.

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