TJ Harper to End Time as Racial Justice Associate

The following is a message from Connecticut Conference Minister The Rev. Kent J. Siladi, Massachusetts Transitional Interim Conference Minister The Rev. Don Remick and Rhode Island Transitional Conference Minister The Rev. Marilyn Kendrix:

Three years ago we initiated a focus on racial justice ministry within our Conferences.  We hired Toyan Harper as our Racial Justice Associate.  In the time he has been with us Toyan, or TJ as he is called, has done exceptional work.

The funding for the Racial Justice position comes to an end in August of 2019.  And TJ is following his plan for the next chapter in his life.

We are also keenly concerned that we not lose this focus and momentum during this transitional time as we shape and develop our new Together, As One Conference. 

Read the full announcement 

Super Saturday Registration Closes Friday

The deadline to register for Super Saturday, being held March 16 at Minnechaug Regional High School in Wilbraham, MA, is this Friday, March 8. Registration will shut down at 11:59 PM.

The event features a full day of worship, workshops and networking. 

Read more and register 

Three Conference Ministers Respond to United Methodist Vote

Connecticut Conference Minister The Rev. Kent J. Siladi, Massachusetts Transitional Interim Conference Minister The Rev. Don Remick and Rhode Island Transitional Conference Minister The Rev. Marilyn Kendrix issued a letter yesterday which reads, in part:

We stand in love: a decision, a choice, not just an emotion.  

And emotions are running high for many right now in response and reaction to the decision of the special session of the General Synod of the United Methodist Church ...  So our hearts go out to our siblings within the United Methodist Church.  There are many whose wounds are being freshly opened.  There are many who are even less certain of their safety and place within their treasured spiritual homes.

Read the full letter

Many Voices, One Mission: There Are No Easy Answers

By Tiffany Vail, ihe Associate Conference Minister of Communication for the CT, MA, and RI Conferences, UCC

It’s never easy to admit you don’t have the answers. In fact, it may be harder than ever, since we’re so accustomed to having answers at our fingertips.  Just Google it, right?

But more and more I’m witnessing the staff and lay leaders of our three – soon to be one – conferences acknowledge that we don’t have all the answers. And let me just say that leaves all of us feeling off-balance and insecure.

Some of the questions are ones that we know will get answers at some point in the not-too-distant future. What will we call the new conference? Will there be one central office? Where?  We don’t have the answers to those questions yet, but we know we will, sooner rather than later.

Some of the questions loom much, much larger.  How will this conference effectively carry out its ministry? How can we, as a newly formed conference, make more disciples?  How can we more visibly and tangibly make God’s love and justice real to the people of southern New England?

Read the full post


Many Voices, One Mission is a regular series highlighting the ministries of the CT, MA and RI Conference of the United Church of Christ.

Conference Events

Theories of Religious Education
March 9, 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Edwards Church, Northampton, MA

A Christian Education Certification class, open to all.

Climate Change, Extreme Weather, and Vulnerability
March 10, 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Old South Church, Boston

This summit will focus on the role of faith communities in helping their community members prepare for future climate impacts such as floods, extreme heat, and severe storms.

Active Threat (Active Shooter) Training
March 16, 9:30 AM
Second Congregational Church, Beverly, MA

Training is presented by Blue-U Defense. 

Youth Retreat: A Spiritually Healthy Relationship with Technology
March 22 - 24
Craigville Retreat Center, Cape Cod, MA

 A retreat for youth grades 7 and up facilitated by Rev. Matt Carriker and Rev. Sarah Buteux.  Through spiritual practices, reflection, and Sabbath-filled rest, we’ll explore how we can have a spiritually healthy relationship with technology.

Preparing for the Search & Call Process
March 30, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Wellesley Hills Congregational Church, UCC

The morning session is the UCC Profile Workshop for all clergy.  The afternoon focuses on Members-in-Discernment or others who interested in learning about the search & call process.

Church Treasurer Gathering for Metro Boston/ Northeast Area
March 30, 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM
First Congregational Church, UCC, Reading, MA

Please join us for a cup of coffee and conversation that will help define your role as church treasurer and answer all those questions you might have.

Theories of Religious Education
March 30, 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Centre Congregational Church, Lynnfield

A Christian Education Certification class, open to all.

How Does a Christian Manage a Bully?
April 6, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Edwards House, Framingham, MA

Claire Bamberg will look at at several key dynamics that have to be present in a system that tolerates a bully - and how to disempower both the dynamics and the offending member.

Human and Faith Development
April 6, 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Edwards Church, Northampton

A Christian Education Certification class, open to all.

Environmental Justice for All! Retreat
May 17 - 19
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon CT

For youth in grades 8 - 12 to explore how faith and justice intersect, learn about current issues in environmental justice and find their talents to make change.

Application Deadline: June 3
Writer's Workshop - The Art of the Personal Essay: Make A Point. Change the World
Nov, 11 - 17
Warren Conference Center, 
Ashland, MA

With the Rev. John Hudson. Good non-fiction spiritual writing makes a point, tells a story, shares a memory, constructs an argument and always gives life to an idea.


Save the Date: The first Annual Meeting of new unified conference (Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island) will be Nov. 1 - 2, 2019, in Worcester, MA


The Rev. Ms. Julie Olmsted called to First Congregational Church, Westfield as Interim Minister, effective: March 4, 2019; Leaving Trinitarian Congregational Church, Northfield, as Settled Pastor,? Effective: March 3, 2019.

The Rev. Ms. Patricia Fox called to West Stockbridge Congregational Church, UCC, as Part-Time Pastor, ?effective: March 6, 2019.



Other Events of Interest

Peace Works: Silver Lake Summer Camp
June - August, 2019
Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon CT

Registration is now open for campers in grades 4 - 12 to encounter God's love in creation; and to learn how to bring that love and justice into the world.

Soul Care: Caring for the Most Important Part of Your Ministry.
March 11, 9:30 AM to 3:00 PM
Edwards House, Framingham, MA

A one-day Lenten retreat by The Center for Career Development and Ministry

Traci Blackmon Program at Wenham Church
March 24, 1:30 PM
First Church in Wenham, MA

The Rev. Dr. Traci Blackmon, UCC Executive Minister of Justice & Local Church Ministries, will present a program and Q&A.

Longing for Belonging
March 28 - 30, 2018
Barbara Harris Camp and Conference Center,
Greenfield, NH

Explore radical hospitality through fellowship, worship, faith formation and outreach. Participants will leave with a specific plan for how to engage the rest of the congregation in this work and how to get started.

Letting Go: An NESC Stewardship Event
April 6, 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM
Faith Community Church, Hopkinton, MA

This one-day program will feature TED-like talks with guided small group discussion, workshops on practical stewardship topics, a panel discussion on real-world experiences, meaningful worship, and fellowship.

"Generosity Transformed" Conference
 April 30 - May 3
Indianapolis, IN

Need to energize and revitalize your church’s strategies for faithful generosity? Does your church find it hard to talk about money? UCC Church Building & Loan Fund would like to make you aware of this ecumenical stewardship conference.

Simply Smiles Mission Trip - Oaxaca, Mexico
April 13 - 20
Spend a week helping the kids who live at the Simply Smiles home for children in the mountains of Oaxaca, Mexico

48th Annual NEAUCE Conference
April 30 - May 2
Pilgrim Pines, Swanzey, NH

Join Christian Education colleagues for worship, fellowship, and rich discussions. 

Simply Smiles Mission Trip - South Dakota
May 11 - 18
Spend at week Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation working to restore hope for a better future.

51st Annual Ecumenical Office Managers, Administrators and Secretaries Gathering
June 9 - 11
Craigville Retreat Center

We will focus on learning how to communicate effectively within our workplace as well as how to resolve conflicts.  


The Massachusetts Conference, United Church of Christ

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