It is the first day of the new year, and today I am experiencing excitement as we begin our work together. I’m reminded of God’s word to God’s people in Isaiah:
Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
Every New Year, we have a chance to consider what God has been doing: the things we have been aware of and the things we haven’t noticed. We have this chance today to consider what God is up to.
I’ve been thinking of the ways I want to work alongside you. I’m grateful to inherit the good foundation and leadership of Bishop Hagiya. And upon that foundation, I’d like us to consider some new ways of operating in the years to come. Some will work; and some will fail. But either way, we will do our best to follow God out onto the new land of living together in Christ.
One of the hopes I have is to create channels of communication from the ground, from the center, where ministry happens in real time. And today I am thinking of this in terms of appointments. This month the Cabinet will be considering the churches and pastors’ needs as we look at appointments. I know that (on the ground) many appointments are made when you talk to each other about who would be best suited for different churches. I have made appointments in my imagination many times when I wasn’t on Cabinet. And I am aware that some of your ideas are valuable, but unheard. So, I would like to ask you to give us feedback on your ideas for appointments by answering this question via the link below:
What creative suggestions do you have for appointments in your area?
You can choose to answer these questions anonymously or not. I want you to know your ideas will be considered with value and respect.
The appointment work of the Cabinet is foundational work. It would be a dream that each of us are in churches and ministries where we are growing, challenged, and suited to the setting. I’ve been in appointments that “fit” well, and ones that did not. I learned something every time, and I hope you will be able to feed ideas while at the same time trusting God as the Cabinet looks at the overall picture of the Church.
So, please take a moment to answer the question, and provide your input to this part of the appointment process. As has been done before, we will also post Clear Openings when they are available. I appreciate your taking the time, and considering what gifts you have seen in fellow clergy and in local churches.
God be with us as we begin to work together in caring for God’s world, and God’s people. I am holding each of you in my prayers.
Grace y paz,
Bishop Dottie Escobedo-Frank
Los Angeles Area Resident Bishop
California-Pacific Conference of The United Methodist Church