As the Bishop and Appointive Cabinet of the California-Pacific Conference, we would like to continue the practice of posting our clear appointment openings. We have received positive feedback from this process, and people feel there is a stronger sense of transparency and collaboration in the appointment process.
As we begin the appointment process, we usually start with those churches in need of a new pastor through a retirement, ending of an interim period, or a change in status of the previous pastor. We know that a set group of churches will need a new appointment. We have listed below those churches with brief descriptions of their ministry settings. Specific statistics about the churches are available through the Annual Conference Journal, and demographics of the surrounding communities are available through MissionInsite.
Clergy members interested in putting their names forward for specific openings should contact both their current District Superintendent and the District Superintendent of the district with the church opening. In some cases, it might be the same D.S. who supervises both appointments. As a courtesy, if the D.S. is not the same, notification to both is required. There is absolutely no guarantee that the clergy member will be selected for an appointment based solely on the request, but the Bishop and Cabinet will deeply discern the gifts and graces of the clergy members putting their names forward, and the needs of the mission fields and the local churches. We are committed to making appointments based on the match between what is needed in the local communities and churches, and the gifts and skill sets of the potential pastors.
All inquiries will be held in strict confidence. Pastors wishing to put their names forward are not to contact their own local churches, nor the pastors or laity of the churches in which they have interest, as this has the potential to harm their current church appointments. The Cabinet will not release any information regarding those who put their names forward.
We do ask that clergy who plan to put their names forward to enter into a deep and prayerful discernment before contacting the District Superintendents. One should only take part in the process after a careful consideration of where God is leading one to consider, and be affirmed by God that this is both realistic and a true calling.
For those the Cabinet eventually asks to move to new appointments, we are committed to providing the specific reasons why we are asking for this new opportunity. As mentioned earlier, the Cabinet will deeply discern the match between mission field and local church, and the gifts and graces of the pastor asked to serve. There will be the expectation of a complete rationale of why we believe this match is necessary. There is also the expectation of an open itinerancy, and if one cannot move because of grave family issues, we will enter into a “covenant of limited itineration,” whereby full time appointment may not be granted, as we see what is available in any given local area.
New this year as part of our collaborative work with Desert Southwest Conference, clear openings from the two Conferences will be shared in both Conferences.
We hope and pray that this way of appointment making will continue to be both liberating and helpful to our annual conference and God’s Kin-dom that we are pledged to serve.
Be the Hope,
Bishop Grant J. Hagiya
Los Angeles Area Resident Bishop
The United Methodist Church
St Matthew’s UMC of Hacienda Heights (Membership: 116; Average Worship: 85) – St Matthew’s UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. St Matthew’s UMC is an adaptive church. The work of this church is guided by Jesus’s principle to love our neighbors as ourselves. The congregation welcomes the challenges they face by adapting their methodology through evaluation and then pivot to new ways in order to touch the lives of others with the amazing life-changing love of Jesus. It has a strong connection with the neighbors through sharing the facility and partnering with other ministries in the community. Everyone is welcomed at this church. It cares for others, especially those who are vulnerable and marginalized.
Bell Memorial UMC, Rowland Heights (Membership: 345; Average Worship: 160) – Bell Memorial UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. Bell Memorial UMC functions under the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world through many different ministries in Korean and English languages. The Korean language ministry is the majority. The congregation is proud of having two different groups working together under the same roof and leadership. The members see themselves as being relevant in the surrounding community and to the world at large. They welcome all who walk through their doors and build relationships with them so they can become disciples of Jesus Christ.
San Gabriel First UMC (Membership: 220; Average Worship – Chinese congregation: 70, English congregation: 20) – San Gabriel First UMC is a Co-Pastor full time appointment for the English ministry. San Gabriel First UMC is a congregation made up of a large Chinese and smaller English language ministries. They are proud to work together under the same leadership. They define themselves as a warm, friendly Christ-centered community striving to grow spiritually. All are invited to become part of the family. Their mission is to grow spiritually by praying, preaching, teaching and reaching out. They see themselves as expanding the circle of community in new and creative ways as they share the love and grace of God to neighbors near and far.
Kilohana UMC (Membership: 185; Average Worship – English congregation: 40, Tongan congregation: 30) – Kilohana UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment for the English ministry. The church is located in Niu Valley, a suburb of Honolulu, and is comprised of English and Tongan congregations. This community requires a pastor who will lead the church to claim a new vision for mission and ministry.
Bardsdale UMC (Membership: 115; Average Worship: 50) – Bardsdale UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. The church is located in a rural community in Ventura County off highway 126. The church has a heart for outreach. The congregation values education, the arts and being welcoming and affirming. They seek a pastor who will work with them to create a vision and will connect to the growing population around the church. Many new homes and apartments are being built in surrounding areas.
Santa Clarita UMC (Membership: 300; Average Worship: 150) – Santa Clarita UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. The church is located in the middle of the growing Santa Clarita Valley. They are a congregation with a history of outreach and family ministries to the community. They value worship, outreach and being part of the community. Currently, they are in a time of visioning and retooling for a future connection to the vibrant neighborhoods of the Santa Clarita Valley. They have a thriving preschool.
Christ UMC of Santa Maria (Membership: 70; Average Worship: 34) – Christ UMC is a ¾ time Lead Pastor appointment. Christ UMC is located on the central coast in the city of Santa Maria. The congregation engages in numerous outreach projects serving the vulnerable in their community. Recently, they developed a growing online worshiping community. They are seeking a pastor who will help to grow their multi-cultural church community.
Friendly Valley Community UMC (Membership: 100; Average Worship: 50) – Friendly Valley Community UMC is a ¾ time Lead Pastor appointment. Friendly Valley Community UMC is located in the Friendly Valley Country Club’s private community for residents 55 and over. This church serves the active residents of this golf community. They also minister beyond the gates of this community, helping two homeless ministries in the Santa Clarita Valley.
First UMC of Canoga Park (Membership: 114; Average Worship: 60) – First UMC of Canoga Park is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. The church is in West Hills of the San Fernando Valley. The church values social justice, outreach and has a strong lay leadership. They seek to partner with their appointed clergy in learning new ways to connect with the community around the church, including the active senior adults.
Garden Grove UMC (Membership: 222; Average Worship: 189) – This is a full time Lead Pastor appointment for a pastor who is fluent in English and Vietnamese. This is an inclusive-seeking congregation, comprised of people from many racial/ethnic communities, with worship and education provided in English, Vietnamese, and Samoan. This congregation has a long-standing commitment to mission engagement, and there are countless opportunities to both expand and deepen missional partnerships. The surrounding community is growing and offers multiple opportunities for new ministries reaching new people. The congregation desires a senior pastor who is fluent in English and Vietnamese to continue to lead them into the surrounding community that is largely second- and third-generation Vietnamese families and can help guide them into an ongoing vibrant future.
Mission Hills UMC (Membership: 94; Average Worship: 45) – Mission Hills UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. Located in the Mission Hills neighborhood of San Diego, this small Reconciling Congregation, with a full community-activated facility, seeks to connect more deeply with its neighbors, truly living out what it means to proclaim, “All means all!” The congregation puts high value on worship and music and is rebuilding the children’s after-school music program. The congregational leadership has begun an Appreciative Inquiry process and is eager to work with their new pastor to deepen discipleship and connect more intentionally with the surrounding neighborhood. They are open to new forms of worship and desire to continue and grow.
Culver Palms UMC (Membership: 73; Average Worship: 53) – Culver Palms UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment. Culver Palms UMC has served the Culver City/Westside area of Los Angeles for over 134 years. The congregation has a passion for community, service, and faith that is empowered by caring and compassionate relationships. The church has a partnership with the Culver Palms YMCA and is currently working with a developer to build affordable housing on the church property.
West Los Angeles UMC (Membership: 344; Average Worship: 286) – West Los Angeles UMC is a full time Lead Pastor appointment for the English ministry. West Los Angeles UMC is located in the heart of “Sawtelle Japantown,” where it began in 1930. The congregation has become increasingly intergenerational over the years and reflects the growing racial/ethnic diversity of the community. There are educational ministries for all ages, and the congregation is actively involved in local missions through partnerships with groups such as Habitat For Humanity, Rise Against Hunger and 580 Café/UCLA Wesley Foundation. It is a Reconciling Congregation and welcomes persons from all backgrounds and orientations.