Paid for by your OCWM Contributions| June 16, 2021
Message to the Conference
Mission Statement: Proclaiming the wisdom of Jesus Christ and affirming our covenant with one another, the Penn Central Conference of the United Church of Christ guides and nurtures our clergy, congregations and covenanted ministries in discovering their God-inspired mission and a path for their future.

Vision: Establish a Christ-centered culture of accountability in all covenantal relationships, excellence in lay and clergy leadership, and adaptability to changing circumstances.

Members and friends of Penn Central Conference -

I am so excited about our new Strategic Plan which was recently finalized by the Board of Directors and shared with the conference. The Mission Statement and Vision, stated above, provides a framework as the spirit works within us and among us. This plan focuses on three main goals: accountability, excellent leadership, and adaptability. This strategic plan guides the work of our Board of Directors and staff as we meet the needs of our churches, clergy, and ministries of the Penn Central Conference. Please read the full strategic plan HERE

During the past week, the Board of Directors held a board meeting, and our Annual Meeting was held this past Saturday. I would like to take this opportunity to share some of our discussions and decisions.

With Gratitude: We are grateful for the work of the staff during the past year – a year in which all staff needed to pivot due to this unprecedented pandemic. Please check out the staff report on the website HERE to learn how staff are fulfilling their call in new and exciting ways. We are grateful to the Board of Directors who, despite a pandemic, revised the PCC Bylaws (Read HERE), developed a new strategic plan, provided guidance for the sale of Hartman Center and St. John’s, updated personnel policies, and much more! With gratitude, the board says GOODBYE to outgoing board members: Kendra Snyder, Bruce Weaver, Rev. Gloria McPherson, and Rev. Kelly Shifflet. And we welcome the Rev. Dr. Chris Rodkey as a new board member and look forward to the gifts he brings. We thank Phil Landers, Linda Vignati, and Rev. David Downer for agreeing to another term on the board.

At the board meeting, we recognized the exceptional and caring work of the Rev. Dr. Ronnette Comfort-Butler and wished her well as she ends her time with us.  The board decided to fill the position as soon as possible as this position has been critical to the support of our clergy, The Rev. Dr. Carrie Call will move forward with advertising and filling this position. In addition, the board agreed to enter into negotiations with Rock of Salvation Pentecostal church for purchase of St. John’s UCC in Lebanon. We are thrilled that this historic property will continue its life as a church.

On Saturday, June 12, the 59th Annual Meeting of the Penn Central Conference was held. Thank you to all who attended, both near and far, both in person and sitting in front of a computer screen. Please check out the meeting materials that can be found HERE for details about the meeting. Some highlights include:

1.      The Rev. Dr. Carrie Call provided a detailed State of the Conference report, including information about church attendance, church size, and comparisons to other UCC churches. While showing how much the PCC has changed over the last twenty years, she emphasized the strength of our conference and how we continue to live in the Spirit among us and with others. [editors note: copies of these statistics and the full State of the Conference video will be available soon]

2.      The Bylaws were approved. A copy of the new Bylaws can be found HERE

3.      A Nominations Report from The Rev. Dr. Galen Russell was approved.

4.      “Who Will Speak for the Trees?”  Penn Central Conference will! The conference approved a motion to support this General Synod Resolution which calls for a change in the relationship between humans and nations, from one of separation and exploitation to interdependence and becoming citizens of the web of life on earth. This resolution, if approved at General Synod, calls upon individual churches to respond to the Rights of Nature by taking action. Read more HERE.

5.      Hartman Center Property: See the full report HERE. The committee reports that marketing and promotion of the property is extensive. There have been serious inquiries and interest in the property to date. We anticipate that the property will be sold in 2021. 

6.      The conference blessed the Summer Camp Staffers who are serving as summer staff in the camping program at Kirchenwald, Nawakwa, and Mount Luther. We sent them out with love from the entire Penn Central Conference. 

7.      The Conference’s 2022 budget was approved. See the full budget HERE.

Throughout the annual meeting, we were blessed with times of remembrance, worship, and spirit-filled music. The closing of Annual Meeting included the Installation of The Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola into the full covenant of call into the Penn Central Conference as Associate Conference Minister for Congregational Transitions. We celebrated her ministry with us over this past year and look forward to all that she brings in years to come. The Rev. Lynn Bujnak, Vermont Conference Minister delivered the sermon.  
Thanks to all who make the annual meeting a success! Check out the website for additional information about the 59th Annual Meeting.

Shirley Keith Knox
Printable eNews are available. Pastors and secretaries, please feel free to share with your congregation members that don't get this weekly email. Download and print this PDF with the weekly message to the conference, prayers for Penn Central and brief list of events.
Scheduling notes:

June 20 - Church of the Redeemer UCC, Hershey - Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola preaching
June 27 - Starview UCC, Mt. Wolf - Rev. Dr. Carrie Call preaching
June 27 - St. John's UCC, Boalsburg - Rev. Nora Foust preaching
General Synod 33
"Rooted In Love"
July 11 – 18, 2021
Important links below

Prayers for Penn Central Conference
Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. Ephesians 6:18 (NLT)

This week, we pray for each other as we continue to live into God's calling...

Emmanuel UCC, New Berlin
Zion UCC, Newburg
St. John (New Chester) UCC, New Oxford
St. Pauls UCC, New Oxford
COVID-19 Resources

Penn Central Conference has added a special section on our website for COVID-19 resources, including the times and links for Zoom meetings. Find them here:
Penn Central Conference is once again accepting applications for the PCC Innovation Grants which is for PCC churches who are looking for funding for a bold & innovative approach to ministry. Application can be found here, please email completed forms to Paul.
Outdoor Ministries

The 2021 summer camp schedule is set! There are camps for all ages and interests at both Kirchenwald and Nawakwa. Check out what is offered online. Full brochure here. Special PCC discounts available on camp registrations! Read more here.

Calling all high school kids, college-age young adults, and adults interested in working at camp this summer! Lutheran Camping Corporation is recruiting now for this summer's camp season. Learn more here.

This will be a week of summer camp dedicated to carrying on the memorable and special experiences at Hartman Center. It will be a week for folks from Penn Central Conference and friends of Hartman Center to come together and celebrate outdoor ministry with familiar faces and through familiar traditions. There are a variety of camp options ranging from coming for a single day to staying the whole week, from bringing your own food to eating all the meals provided! The Conference has scholarships available - please reach out for more info.

Check out the all new Outdoor Ministries page on the PCC website here!
And a history of Hartman Center is hosted on the PCC website here.
Penn Central Conference Lectionary Discussion Group - This group is open to all clergy, meets weekly on Tuesdays at 1:00PM to discuss upcoming lectionary passages. Us this Zoom link here.
Northern Cluster Pig Roast and Concert
June 27
On Sunday, June 27, beginning at 5pm, the Northern Cluster of UCC Churches will host a free pig-roast and concert at MYO Park in Millersburg. The Seger Family from Shamokin will share the Gospel in Bluegrass, Southern Gospel, and Country-style music. Bring a covered-dish to share, and a lawn chair. A free-will offering will be received. All are welcome – come join us for great food, music, and fellowship! FYI we will keep things safe by having a single serving line, and the servers will all wear gloves.
Go Green Sunday
August 8, 2021
Mt. Zion UCC, York
St. Thomas UCC, Harrisburg
15th Annual Blueberry Sale
Order deadline June 30, 2021
UCC Webinars

These webinars are designed to help you enhance your local church ministries. Most are free to attend. Check out the calendar here.

Rural Congregations of the South/Southwest June 22, 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Synod Storytelling June 24, 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Sharing Leadership in UCC Community June 29. 3:30PM - 4:30 PM
UCC Musicians Association Conference 2021
July 8-10, 2021

Join us online for workshops, worship services, a wonderful concert, vendors and networking. We will be virtually hosted by the First Church of Christ, Congregational, UCC in the historic town of Glastonbury, Connecticut. From Thursday evening through the Saturday 4 pm closing worship service, we provide a plethora of activities that will enhance your music skills and give you resources and ideas for new ways of expressing God's Spirit in these pandemic times. We also provide glimpses of the historic scenery around the church in Glastonbury, which you would have enjoyed if you had come in person as originally planned. Join us instead online for a mental reset and spiritual refreshment with a taste of Connecticut. Learn more here.
From our Partners & Friends:
The Pennsylvania Academy of Ministry at Lancaster Seminary announces:

Ministry Job Search Toolkit: Bivocational and Beyond, instructor TBA, July–August 2021. Grant funding allows us to offer this 2.5 CEU class for $100 per participant (or $50 for auditors, no CEUs).
Mt. Gretna Tabernacle
Ecumenical Program
Friday Nights in June - 7:00PM

"GOD'S PRESENCE" is the common theme for Friday night worship services
during June at the historic Mt. Gretna Tabernacle. For speakers and more info, check out the full flyer here.

Parking GPS Address: 41 Boulevard St., Mt. Gretna, PA 17064
Join Insurance Board for our Live Webcast: Liability Lowdown for Your Ministry: Protecting Your Congregation from Sexual Misconduct.

Join Insurance Board on June 17th at 2 pm EST as attorney, James Abbott, offers considerations your ministry can take to provide a safe environment for everyone.

Join us on June 17th at 2:00 p.m. EST.
Parish Resource Center highlights their June webinars:
Mindful Families – June 17, 7-8:30pm
This workshop will lead you in several mindfulness/contemplative practices that foster connection and awareness, love and imagination, resilience and hope within your family.

Intro to Gmail – June 24, 7-8:30pm
Whether you already use Gmail, or if you want to transition, join us. This course will patiently walk you through the basic controls and functions of Gmail.
How has the Church made it this far? What are the current realities we church people need to know? Want some ideas for how to move forward? Looking for foundational, biblical hope for the future?
You're invited to join us for a special, free webinar
A New Day Dawning: Leading the Church Toward the Light.
Featuring presentations by Lancaster Seminary faculty including: Melvin Baber, Lee Barrett, Nathan Baxter, Greg Carey, Kathy Harvey-Nelson, Vanessa Lovelace, Julia O'Brien, Larry Peers, David Rowe, Myka Kennedy Stephens, Anne Thayer, Catherine Williams, and me. We'll also have time to begin important conversations!
Join us online
7-10 p.m. ET
Register here
Employment Opportunities

The Lebanon Valley Home, a continuing care retirement community affiliated with United Church of Christ Homes, is seeking a compassionate and resident focused team member for the position of Chaplain. This position is Part Time (15 hours per week).
The primary duty of the Chaplain is to provide spiritual support and comfort for the residents of the facility in coordination with the resident’s home congregation.

The chaplain will communicate a caring friendship with a tolerant attitude for multiple cultural traditions and a wide range of spiritual beliefs. The chaplain will offer encouragement and support to clergy and churches as they continue to minister to the needs of their members.
The chaplain will be available to offer comfort to the individual as well as the family. During difficult times, sensitivity and compassion are requisite for the spiritual support needed by all involved; the resident, family, and staff.
Providing comfort for the dying is a key part of the Chaplain's job as well as coordinating and conducting regularly scheduled religious services for residents.
Requirements – Must be an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ with a minimum of one year experience in a pastoral ministry as well as one unit Clinical Pastoral Education.
A resume and letter of interest should be submitted to:
Meredith Schell Fields
Executive Director
The Lebanon Valley Home
550 East Main Street
Annville PA, 17003
Fax (717) 867-7060
PT Church Office Administrator - Christ UCC, Elizabethtown, an ONA congregation, looking for PT Church Office Administrator—28 hrs/wk. The Office Administrator should have skills, education, and experience in church office administration which includes web site construction, word processing, office management, and inter-personal relationships. Send application letter, résumé, and two references to or mail to: Christ Church UCC, 247 So. Market Street, Elizabethtown, PA 17022 by May 13, 2021
Trinity United Church of Christ in Waynesboro, Pa. is looking for a Director of Faith Formation and Programming. The position is part-time (20-25 hours per week) and is open beginning August 1st, 2021. The Director position will be responsible for developing programs for youth, adults and children from pre-school age through fifth grade. The Director will engage children with exciting and relevant opportunities for learning, serving, and growing towards a meaningful relationship with God. Director will be responsible for providing leadership and effective communication for youth and adult Sunday School classes and other Christian Formation offerings (such as Vacation Bible School, book studies, outdoor education, etc.). The Director will engage all ages with exciting and relevant opportunities for learning, serving, and growing towards a meaningful relationship with God. Full description here.
PT Director of Music - Christ Church UCC, an ONA congregation in Elizabethtown, PA seeks a candidate to lead worship through music and oversee the church’s music program. The candidate will possess strong skills in music, leadership, cooperation, organization, and recruitment. A music degree or equivalent experience, broad knowledge of church music, and a willingness to grow the music program are required. Salary up to $19,975 depending on background and experience.
The responsibilities include:
  • Director of Music (Approx. 3-5 hours required/week)
Oversee and coordinate the overall music ministry of six choirs
Meet regularly with pastors to plan worship
Coordinate special music for worship services
  • Chancel Choir Director (Approx. 10 hours required/week)
Direct the adult choir (not during summer)
A letter of application, resumé and two references can be sent to by May 27, 2021.
PT Musician Position - We're looking for someone to assist with the casual service at St. Thomas UCC in Linglestown. This person would help to plan worship, coordinate musicians, and lead the music for Sunday services by playing (keyboard or guitar) and singing. This is a paid, part-time position; for more information, contact Dan Schmidt (
 The Administrative Assistant is an employee of St. Paul's United Church of Christ, hired by Consistory, working under the supervision of the Pastor and Consistory.
· The Administrative Assistant is responsible for assuring the timely and accurate completion of all assignments to effectively meet the needs of the church.  
· This on-site hourly position is responsible for providing administrative support services to St. Paul's for 35 hours per week. 
· The Administrative Assistant provides support for a variety of people such as the Director of Music, Director of Christian Education / Youth Pastor, various committees and members of St. Paul's, prioritizing the work of the Pastor. Read more here...
Rev. Dr. Carrie Call, Ph.D.
Conference Minister
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 12

Rev. Nora Driver Foust
Associate Conference Minister 
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex.13

Rev. Dr. Marisa Laviola, Ph.D.
Associate Conference Minister
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 15

Rev. Dr. Ronnette Comfort-Butler
Facilitator of Care to Clergy & Clergy Families
phone: 717-719-1895
Anne Rankin
Outdoor Ministries Liaison
phone: 717-945-4585
C. Paul Keller
Office Manager
Phone: 717-652-1560 ex. 14
If you have future eNews stories, please send them to C. Paul Keller
Contact information: C. Paul Keller | email: | phone: 717-652-1560