The latest news from the Montana-Northern Wyoming UCC Conference of the UCC
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A storm has blown by. This afternoon, the National Weather Service warned of inch-and-a-half-hail. The severe weather warning suggested that the storm might sneak between Billings and Laural. That might be good for Billings, but there was no comfort in knowing others might get roofs, cars, and crops damaged.  Soon after the storm passed by, I was out running a storm-delayed errand.  Down to the southeast glowed the end-sign of the storm, a most colorful rainbow.  It was vibrant. Though, for people not too far away, the rainbow might be a sign of hope as they looked out to see if there was any damage.  I hoped that I might still be able to see the vibrancy of creation if ever a storm blew into my life.
The past twelve months has felt like a storm has blown by.  Consider what our churches and leadership of our Association and Conference have weathered:
  • some significant disruptions of staffing,
  • the ending of our Partnership shared staffing, office, and missional relationship with the Montana Region Disciples of Christ,
  • tattered pieces of a MT-NWy Association and Conference vision and identity.

Our Board of Directors meeting this past weekend (June 12-13) was held a Butte.  I like to think that we had weathered enough to be able to see for ourselves the hope and life ahead.  But there was no doubt about it when Karen-Georgia Thompson, our national UCC ecumenical officer, led us in a morning devotional that opened our eyes and hearts to the continually re-creating purposes of God.  Karen-Georgia then worked with the Board to help us name some constructive learning and to recognize our abilities to renew Conference life.
A storm has blown by.  Our financial operation is sound, and is tracked by a dedicated team: Treasurer Terri Goodsell, Accountant Sonya Greef, Bookkeeper Elaine Black and the Board Financial Task Force.  Bylaw revisions to be brought to the Conference Annual Meeting were proposed.  A new Personnel Policy was affirmed.  The Conference Minister position was increased from ¾ time to fulltime.  We also reported out on the nine “Listening Sessions” in which over 140 people participated.  Every “Listening Session” provided similar hopes and visions.  These helped us focus on the vibrancy of the faith life as we see ourselves, our churches, and our Association and Conference as:
  •             open and accepting of others,
  •             involved in the community,
  •             wanting to be visible,
  •             seeking stronger connections and relationship
  •             committed to mission outreach
  •             caring to grow in the faith with others.
Follow the rainbow sign, for a storm has blown by.  A celebration for all will be held in Billings, August 21-23.  Our Conference Annual Meeting being hosted at First Church in Billings will be a time of focusing on the vibrancy of our hope and life, with celebrations of our connections, and being all the stronger for whatever yet might come by.

June 21, Service of Leave-taking for Cathy Barker and Dick Weaver from Plymouth UCC Helena

June 24, Birthday blessings and many more to Bill Hawk at 80 y/o

June 25-30, UCC General Synod, Cleveland, OH

July 2, Camp Mimanagish free-will Movie (The Goonies) Night fundraiser, Mayflower UCC Billings, 8 PM and on

Aug 21st - 23rd, Conference Annual Meeting, Billings

General Synod

Six Conference members are attending UCC General Synod in Cleveland, June 26-30.  Elaine Black, Lacey Spencer, and Rick Thompson are our official Synod  delegates.  Carol Shipley is a delegate as a national UCC Board Member.  Marc Stewart will be an associate delegate.  Our Conference Moderator, Trudi Downer, will be attending conference moderator sessions.  Trudi will posting updates from our delegation on our Conference Facebook page, and also on the WEB page.  To see what is going on check out these links:

The MT-NWy Conference Annual Meeting has a wonderful theme: Get Found in Montana & N.Wyoming: You are Standing on Holy Ground.  Look for registration materials in the Registration Tab of the Conference Web site:
Register on or before July 21st and receive a discounted registration cost of $75 ($90 after July 22nd).  

Communications Task Force

The Board of Directors asks your assistance in providing names of church members who can help with our Conference Communications Task Force.  This is a short term task force that has been charged with:
    1. Producing a new conference directory
    2. Writing a Communications Policy Handbook
    3. Providing creative input in the design of our Web communications
    4. Providing creative input in the design of a new MNWC logo.
Please email vice-moderator, Gus Byrom,  by July 8 with the contact information of your recommendations:

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