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Transitions announced

Gary Southerton, pastor of Broadview Community United Church of Christ, Seattle, has been appointed as the new PNC-UCC representative to the Horizon House of Board of Trustees. He replaces Kathy Turner who served in this position for the past 10 years. The UCC representative helps the board of trustees consider the values of the denomination in the governance of the Horizon House.

 Kathy also reported that Mike Ostrem is now the new CEO of Horizon House. Mike and Kris Ostrem have ties with Plymouth Church in Seattle, where Kris served as associate minister for several years.  Kris is now a spiritual director at

Many UCC church members live there and a UCC Pastor Linda Purdy, is the spiritual care director.

The PNC has historic and continuing connections with Horizon House.

Pilgrim Firs will assist vulnerable

Wade Zick, managing director of Pilgrim Firs Camp and Conference Center, announced on Facebook that the “pandemic just became a little more real” as Pilgrim Firs signed to be a county quarantine center.  Guests are expected to arrive by the end of next week.

He expects they will be serving the most vulnerable population in the community, those who are sick but have no place to be because hospital beds are for the most severe cases.

“We will provide beds and food, with the county doing direct care,” he said.

For information, visit

Singing on Facebook

Camp lovers on N-Sid-Sen (we love it, that we do) are sharing in a Camp Song Challenge.

Janet Malley and Erin Lys Jensen started it on a coronavirus lunch break by a backyard campfire, opening with “This Pretty Planet.” Margaret Johannesen posted family singing “Country Roads”; Amy Johnson, ‘Gum Chewing Song”; Brian Rapp, “Feeling Groovy.”

To join, go to


Google Group launched

Arlene Hobson, the PNC’s executive administrator, said that the conference launched the PNC-UCC Google Group because Yahoo Groups changed their rules.

“People could no longer join on their own, but had to be added by an administrator,” she said. 

The two clergy, who originally set up the group and were the administrators, were no longer continuing in that role and none of the staff were administrators, so they could not add people.

“Now the office is in control of the administration of the Google Group and we are able to add new people as they request membership,” she said.

There are currently 325 members.

It is intended for conference announcements, prayer requests, questions, reflections on gatherings, ideas or invitations to events.

It has been a center of conversations related to how churches might respond in the coronavirus crisis. Mike Denton, pastors and others sharing offered faith reflections to these times.  Mike has set the following guidelines for participating:

• Those posting are to assume that all the members on the Google Group will read the message, not just the one sending the message.  Those with a question about a post need to send a new email to the person who sent it.

• Arlene said those posting are to “treat the virtual space of the group “as a professional setting and a sanctuary of sorts.”

• “Chatter, banter and excessively long postings are inappropriate for this group,” she reported from the guidelines.  “If something upsets you on the list, please wait to respond or respond privately to the person in question.  Patience, generosity and good humor can go a long way.”

• The PNC-UCC also reserves the right to remove anyone’s ability to post on the list if that person consistently violates the guidelines after being reminded.

Arlene has directly added pastors and committee members with only occasional glitches.

Use of it has been particularly helpful as Mike Denton, conference minister, encouraged churches not to meet for worship and to livestream their services. 

That followed with pastors sharing their experiences with different technologies, such as Cameron Sharp sharing that ONE LICENSE would offer gratis licenses through April 15 to help congregations cope with COVID-19 challenges and be able to have licenses to use music and copyrighted materials.

Anyone who wants to be part of the Google Group can email her and request to be added.

For information, email


UCC Disaster grant given

UCC Disaster Ministries sent a $5,000 solidarity grant as part of the growing ecumenical response to the coronavirus emergency in China. Funds will go for the purchase and air shipment of medical standard masks and robes to the Amity Foundation, an independent Chinese social orgalization founded in 1985 by Chinese Christians.

It also granted $5,000 to fire survivors in Australia, $10,000 for typhoon and earthquake survivors in the Philippines, and $12,500 for winterization items for Syrians struggling from war, displacement and dire economic conditions.

Donations of $1 million from across the UCC have been used for relief and long-term recovery for disaster survivors in the U.S. and around the world.

 For information, visit


UCC to plant 50,000 trees

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day from April 17 to 22, the UCC is launching “Love Creation: Plant a Tree,” a campaign to plant 50,000 trees.

 For information, visit


OWL trainings announced

The Our Whole Lives in 2020 April 17 to 19 training in Spokane has been postponed.

Updates will be announced at

The UCC OWL training calendar at has information about the upcoming annual trainings at Pilgrim Firs November 13 to 15.

The new OWL quarterly newsletter here:  

Copyright@ March 2020 - Pacific NW United Church News



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