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Moderator Wendy Blight reports on Board news

In the midst of many preparations for the fall season, I hope you are able to take a quick look back at your summer and give thanks for the refreshment it provided.  I don’t have a favorite season of the year, but I do relax when autumn comes, knowing that the weather will cool, and the soft rains will begin.  It’s a time of coziness and a time when I can come inside after summer activities and take up the work that needs to be done.

Wendy Blight

In the last edition of the PNC News I reported on the five tasks that the Board of Directors intends to make progress on this year.  We’ll need your help in this endeavor.  Thank you to those who have already begun to lean in with their interest and expertise!  Here are some updates:

Communities of Practice: The Board affirmed the value of the CoP program and its importance in deepening relationships between clergy and other collegial groups. Thanks to the Committee on Ministry task force, the program is continuing this year!  Administrative tasks and funding issues have been addressed for the short term.  A subcommittee of CoM will continue to work on a long-term solution so that the program is sustainable for future years.

Missional Partner Churches: Working toward the goal of deepening relationships between churches, the Board identified a goal of creating Missional Partner Churches similar to our Sister Church program of some years ago.  Courtney Stange-Tregear has been working on a pilot program with Plymouth Church and Veradale UCC.  Both churches have a common interest in dismantling racism but they come at the issues from slightly different approaches.  This pairing is full of potential for enhancing ministry in both settings.

Bylaw Revisions: We will intensify our work this fall on updating our bylaws.  The Board will be putting a small subgroup together to work on suggested revisions.  If you have an interest in this work, email me at  One of our top priorities is to have our bylaws reflect our desire to dismantle racism in our institution.  We will be working with JWM’s Dismantling Racism group to incorporate people of color in this revised draft which we hope to have ready by this year’s Annual Meeting.

Database: We have done some work this summer related to a database for the Conference. We currently have an Excel spreadsheet of information about our churches and clergy that Arlene maintains.  Some of that information comes from the UCC Datahub, to which our churches submit data annually. Arlene maintains additional information such as birthdays and anniversaries. There will be a renewed effort toward maintaining and updating this information throughout the year. (Note from Arlene: The data hub was started a few years ago and the national office has slowly migrated that workload over to the conferences and local churches.)

Policy Updates: We have made some progress on policies this summer.  Kevin Peterson, Outdoor Ministries, has worked on a Safer Camp policy that is now in its final revision.  Our treasurer, Martha Baldwin and our accountant, Andy Warren, are reviewing and updating our Fiscal Policy Manual and preparing it for review by others.  Our Personnel Committee is just beginning its review of the Personnel Manual.

Much of this work is not inspiring in terms of ministry, but it is the work that I believe needs to be done so that the Conference can more effectively support churches and clergy in all settings.

More exciting are the conversations that will happen at the Fall Gathering when we will move beyond education to action!  Together we will identify a concern we all share and what steps we are ready to take to address it.  I encourage you to register at and join us at Shalom UCC in Richland on October 18 and 19. 

For information, call 425-213-9313 or email


Pacific NW United Church News copyright © Fall 2019


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