Search PNC News for stories of people and churches in our UCC Conference:

Conference moderator seeks feedback on report

By Kristine Zakarison - Conference
Moderator  and pastor of Community Congregational UCC in Pullman

As we engage in ministry and create community, we know communication is critical.  It’s not about “new news” but about the Christian community as “one body with many members,” as Paul said.  Only when they communicate and value one another do the individual members truly become the body of Christ. 

Kristine Zakarison
Kristine Zakarison - moderator

Kathleen Hosfeld’s report on “Technology and Communication in the Pacific Northwest Conference UCC” reminds me that communication is at the heart of everything—who we are, our strengths and weaknesses.  It is instrumental to living into a vision of who we are becoming as one body, gathered in the name of and doing the ministry of Jesus Christ.

Through surveys, interviews, observation and research, Kathleen brings an intriguing snapshot of who we are and how we are or are not using technology both to “get the word out” about who we understand ourselves to be, and to foster dialogue and enable us to effectively create “a new thing” in the Pacific Northwest.  

The report gives us concrete information to help us help congregations address their technology needs.  As a conference, we a can create a tangible path to enhance communication in congregations and communicate effectively on the conference level. 

With this information, our next step is to work with the Stewardship and Church Development Committees to offer resources and support to assure all our congregations have the ability to share their current ministries effectively and to link us more closely as we foster dialogue and create ministry together.

Some observations and findings of Kathleen’s report to the recent Conference Council meeting particularly intriqued me:

“There is a sense of overall vibrancy of the Conference: It doesn’t feel like the PNC is coming back, it feels like you’re BACK!”  Those working in leadership are enthusiastic about the work their committees are doing and want to share it.

• “Many individuals and congregations, however, lack knowledge about the resources available through committee work that could enhance their ministries.  It is not obvious to committees how to let congregations know what they are doing, or create communication that would help the committees assist congregations.

• The overall level of technology in the conference lags behind even the standard of equivalent  nonprofits.  Of our 84 churches, only 54 have websites.  Some lack access to email.  Of those with websites, many congregations find them hard to maintain, because they have been created with older technology that relies on a specialist.  Even more sophisticated church websites lack what is needed for the site to show up in a search engine, particularly if a searcher who knows nothing about the UCC.

• In reviewing church websites, she found many did not convey the character, uniqueness or “charism” of the churches.  Many are more geared to provide current members with information, than to excite someone searching for a church home about who we are and what we do.

Kathleen’s report is available at online.  After reading it, send responses to How can improving technology and communication enhance your ministry, local church or community “do a new thing,” or connect to the exciting conversation of the Pacific Northwest Conference?  What are your priorities and dreams?


Copyright Pacific Northwest Conference News © November-December 2010





Share this article on your favorite social media Bookmark and Share