Many Voices One Mission: Where Two or Three Are Gathered

By Karen Ziel, Minister of Faith Formation and Leadership for the CT Conference, UCC

It began with an invitation from my long-time friend and colleague, Ms. Debbie Gline Allen, the Consultant for Christian Education and Youth Ministry at the MA Conference, UCC.  Come along, she invited, and join me in creating an event I imagine will offer local church leaders for faith formation an opportunity to “summit”! (I’m aware I have used a verb here.)

The idea of a summit intrigued me. Imagine the possibilities! She explained that she envisioned an opportunity to gather those from our local churches who are committed to Christian formation and education.  We’ll summit for conversation, learning, mutual support and sharing. 

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Many Voices, One Mission: Love Knows No Borders

By The Rev. Kelly Gallagher, Associate Conference Minister for the MA Conference, UCC

The line of 400 or more people walked quietly down the beach, 4 by 4 in a strange and fascinating procession. On a cool December day in San Diego, with signs and birds, in stoles and clergy collars, robes and bright t-shirts, this mixed posada moved slowly and deliberately toward the border between Mexico and the United States. There were people of many races, many colors, many traditions, ages, abilities and backgrounds from all over the US – people of faith gathering at this wall to bring witness and word: Love Knows No Borders.
In that group of so many were people from the Tri-Conference, in San Diego for the Authorizing Ministry for the 21st Century Conference offered every other year for ACMs and Conference Ministers to discuss common issues and best practices around Search and Call, church vitality and such. There was something powerful about sharing this time together in this place – at this border. In Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts we are seeking to break open our borders, to challenge boundaries and walls that have separated us for hundreds of years.

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


Churches in the News

The Day: After 183 years, Congregational church is dissolving

Waterford — Following its move out of New London in 2013 and the cessation of independent worship services in September, the Second Congregational Church — more recently known as Waterford Congregational United Church of Christ — is dissolving on Monday.

From July 2013 through Sept. 30, 2018, Waterford Congregational had its home at Crossroads Presbyterian Church, where it held a weekly Sunday service following the Presbyterian service.

The congregation voted on Sept. 16 to discontinue separate services, and on Oct. 21 to officially dissolve the church effective at the end of the year.

"The congregation had kind of reached the end of its life, which happens in our churches, so they made a very careful, conscious, faithful decision to dissolve the congregation," said Matt McCaffrey, pastor for the past seven years.

Read the full story at TheDay.Com

Starting With Scripture: Arise! Shine in the Darkness!


By The Rev. Frank Basler, coach, therapist, spiritual companion, and facilitator of clergy groups

You’ve probably seen youngsters bringing gold and frankincense up to the chancel as they follow a sparkling star during Epiphany Sunday pageants.  What happens after the service or pageant?  The star on its wooden pole is put away for another year.  It’s light has come, and back into storage its light goes.
Arise, shine.  In these dark days when hundreds of millions of people are homeless world-wide in places like Yemen, The Tijuana border, and Paradise, California – in these dark days the light seems to be back in storage.

Read the full post

Starting with Scripture is a weekly devotional written by current and former clergy and church leaders of the Connecticut Conference, UCC. Subscribe to receive the reflection each Monday at:

Upcoming Conference Events

Webinar: Acting on Faith: Climate Action in 2019
Jan. 11, 1:00 PM to 1:30 PM

Join Connecticut Conference Minister The Rev. Kent Siladi live online as he talks to Pam Arifian, Director of the Northeast Environmental Justice Center at Silver Lake. This conversation is a follow-up to the UCC Council for Climate Justice webinar From Climate Reports to Moral Imperatives, which will be held on January 9th, 2019 at 1 PM EST.

Tools for a Sustainable Ministry
Jan. 24, 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM
First Congregational Church of Southington, CT

Come and explore suggested best practices offered by the folks at Ministry Architects.  Join colleagues and peers for dinner, fellowship, learning and sharing!

Faith Formation Summit
Feb. 2, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Niantic Community Church, Niantic, CT

The Faith Formation staff of the three southern New England Conferences invite you to join peers and colleagues to "summit" together on this all important work of our congregations, making disciples.

2019 Women Clergy Event: Food for the Journey
Feb. 5, 9:30 AM to 2:00 PM
South Congregational Church, 
East Hartford, CT

Clergy women are invited to a day of relaxation and prayer. Explore the indoor labyrinth, relax with kinetic sand and soulful music, find time to create in the art space or find silence in the prayer corn

CTUCC Confirmation Retreats
Feb. 8 - 10
March 1 - 3
April 5 - 7

Silver Lake Conference Center, Sharon CT

Join us for a great experience with activities, worship, and fellowship appropriate for youth in grades 7-9 during their Confirmation year.

Celebrating Faith Milestones: Connecting Generations in Joy
Feb. 28, 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM
First Congregational Church of Southington, CT

Come and explore ways to incorporate this meaningful faith formation activity into your ministry.

Super Saturday
March 16, 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Minnechaug Regional High School, Wilbraham, MA

A full day of worship, workshops and networking.

Interfaith Exploration
March 31, 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM
Hartford Seminary, Hartford, CT

An exploration of the three Abrahamic Religions - Christianity, Islam and Judaism - designed for confirmation classes and youth groups


Administrator at Silver Lake Conference Center - Sharon, CT

Our Administrator has primary responsibility for camp registration, from talking families through their choices to ensuring all their paperwork has been filed correctly. Our Administrator is the face of Silver Lake, the first person to greet you when you call or walk into camp. We are looking for someone who thrives in the fast-paced summer camp environment, who can manage multiple tasks simultaneously, and who has a passion for growing leaders in Outdoor Ministry. Camp experience preferred.


Other Events of Interest

Non-Directive Coaching Skills Basics for Busy Pastors
Jan. 29, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Edwards House Meeting Center, Framingham, MA

Led by Rev. Todd Weir and Rev. Jim Latimer, who teach how to listen powerfully and not give advice. 


Connecticut Conference, UCC
125 Sherman Street, Hartford, CT 06105
Toll Free in CT: 866.367.2822 | 860.233.5564