An Update on the Bishop Transition Process from the BOA
Greetings from the Board of Administration (BOA)
Following the announcement from Bishop Cliff that he will not let his name stand for re-election as bishop at General Conference 2024, we are entering into a Bishop transition phase in the FMCiC. This communication piece is intended to keep everyone up to date on how the BOA envisions the process to proceed and where we are in it. The BOA and Personnel Team spent some time over the past couple of years on a more detailed bishop (re)election process than what currently exists in section 860 of the Manual. We will now proceed following the course laid out in the amended section 860, recently reviewed and approved by MEGAP.
The first step in the process is the appointment of a bishop search committee. The BOA spent several discernment days in assembling a list of potential members for a search committee, which will become a Bishop Leadership Task Force (BLTF). We are seeking 7 members, one of whom will be a BOA member. We were intentional about representation across gender, ethnicity, and region. The BOA will appoint the chair, and the BLTF will appoint a vice-chair and secretary.
Invitations to serve on the BLTF were sent out with the intention of selecting 4 persons from among clergy and 3 from among lay members who are not employees of the FMCiC. Our invitations sought assurances from potential BLTF participants of their membership and regular attendance at a Free Methodist church or of General Conference, of their willingness to prayerfully seek Spirit-led guidance, of their access to and proficiency in electronic communication platforms, and of their readiness to commit significant time and energy through the selection process.
Each of the invited persons is spending several days giving the invitation thoughtful and prayerful consideration. When that process is complete, we will have a 7-member BLTF in place. There will be a separate communication piece to introduce the BLTF to everyone. In the coming weeks, the BLTF will meet with the BOA to go over procedures and to receive guidance on suggested qualities required in a new bishop, based on BOA (and NLT) experiences, interactions, and observations in FMCiC governance matters.
The BLTF will then put out the general call for suggestions for bishop and begin the evaluation and vetting process. We will adopt the selection model that was used for the previous bishop transition, and that is used for Pastoral Leadership Task Forces, in that the BLTF will bring one name forward to the Conference for a confidence vote.
The rationale for bringing a single name forward for a confidence vote is based on the desire to have the selection decision based on comprehensive information regarding a person’s suitability for bishop, rather than a popularity vote. The BLTF will have access to all evaluation information from conversations, references, documents, and interviews. This BOA-appointed task force will then use a thorough and prayerful discernment process to bring forward the person who emerges as the most suitable for bishop.
The selected person’s biographic information will be presented to members of Conference for several weeks, and then an online confidence vote will be held at least one month prior to General Conference 2024.
The BOA commits to keeping everyone informed as the process unfolds, and to making every effort toward a smooth and successful transition. And we ask that you commit to praying with us for wisdom, guidance, and grace through it all.
A reminder to pastors about the upcoming Fall Ministers' Conference
For more information about the conference, please visit our website: https://fmcic.ca/ministers-conference-2023/
Noon Hour Prayer on Zoom
Do you know someone who would like to receive CliffsNotes? They can now sign up through the website at: https://www.fmcic.ca/cliffsnotes-signup/
Rev. Musa Daba (Ordained Minister-Anglican) – appointed as Lead Pastor at St. Joseph Island, Hilton Beach, ON, effective October 1
Rev. Dorian Powell – released from appointment as Lead Pastor at Dryden FMC, Dryden, ON and in transition, effective September 18
Pastor Nathanial Kraak – employed as Lead Pastor at Warkworth FMC, Warkworth, ON, effective May 14
September 17 at 2:30 pm CST – Pastor Michael Kluthe, Lakeland Community Church, Spiritwood, SK
October 15 at 4:00 pm ET – Pastor Sabrina Hinds, Kingsview FMC, Etobicoke, ON
Date and time TBA – Pastor Yves Anthonuel, Eglise Evangelique des Mille-Iles, Laval, QC
FOUNDATIONAL COURSES http://www.fmcic.ca/foundational-courses/
Register online through the link above (Tuition payment is not required when registering for a course. Payment is due 10 days before the course begins.)
Lay Ministers tracking for credentialed ministry and those transferring ordination credentials into the FMCIC need to take the following two courses for full credit – and if possible, the Heart course first and then Wesleyan Theology.
Heart of Canadian Free Methodism:
*NEW* – 6-week course via Zoom – 7:30-9:30 pm (ET) starting Wednesday, October 4
November 3-5, 2023 – location TBA*
- Tyndale University – https://www.tyndale.ca/seminary/wesley-studies/courses
- Free Methodist Church-USA NEW! Anytime on Pathwright (multiple instructor choices)
- Self-paced, up to 8 months to complete
- 16-week intensive version, select Instructor Vaughan (next session start date: Oct. 16)
- Central Christian College online, 6 weeks, asynchronous – deadlines to apply: Sept 18 (course runs Oct 2 to Nov 12) and Jan 1 (course runs Jan 9 to Feb 19)
- Northeastern Seminary at Roberts Wesleyan University
Ministerial Candidates tracking for Commissioned or Ordained Minister are required to take the following two courses for full credit. Those who are already commissioned or ordained are required to either audit these two courses for 1 Continuing Education Unit (CEU) each or take the two courses and complete the assignments for 3 CEUs each.
Culture and the Missional Church:
Date and location TBA*
5-week online course – Start Date TBA
(* These course locations are selected based on where the majority of the participants reside – so please register early!)
LEADERSHIP SCHOLARSHIP PLAN (LSP) [APPLY TWICE PER YEAR]:
[PLEASE NOTE: The FMCiC preference for LSP is for students to attend one of the approved schools on this list. However, if you decide to apply to a non-approved school, you must first send a request to the Credentialing Coordinator to determine whether the committee will approve funding for you to study at a non-approved school. Along with your request, please include a written explanation as to why you are choosing to study at a non-approved institution. It is strongly recommended that you do this before paying tuition, and well in advance of the LSP deadline. The Credentialing Coordinator, along with the LSP committee, will consider each request individually and according to LSP policy.]
The Leadership Scholarship Plan (LSP) provides financial assistance to candidates who are studying to meet the educational requirements for credentialed ministry, or for members of conference pursuing continuing education.
October 15 is the next deadline to apply for LSP for any courses taken during the spring, summer and/or fall semesters of 2023. The 2023 application forms and instructions are now available to download from the link above. Please use the application forms marked “rev 2023.”
SPECIAL SCHOLARSHIPS [APPLY ONCE PER YEAR]:
The Special Scholarships provide financial assistance to those who are members of a Free Methodist church pursuing post-secondary education to grow in their Christian faith, to those who are pursuing credentialed ministry, and to members of conference pursuing continuing education.
October 15 is the deadline to apply for the annual Special Scholarships for courses taken during the 2023 calendar year – apply online anytime from the link above. Special Scholarships are awarded in late November/early December each year.
CONTINUING EDUCATION UNITS (CEU’S) https://www.fmcic.ca/introduction-to-continuing-education/
Ordained and Commissioned Ministers (except retirees) are to annually report hours acquired during each year for Continuing Education Units (CEUs). Check the link above for information on CEUs, and a list of examples of many different types of life-long learning that can be applied as CEUs.
Send a report online anytime you have hours to submit for CEUs: https://fmcic.wufoo.com/forms/continuing-education-unit-ceu-report-form/
Note: For those who attend the fall Minister’s Conferences or the spring Regional Gatherings, attendance is now taken at these events so 6 hours of CEU credit for each event will automatically be recorded.
CHURCHES IN TRANSITION
Brampton, ON – Bramalea FM Church
Madoc, ON – Madoc Free Methodist/Wesleyan Church
Salmon Arm, BC – Lakeside Community Church
Church Profiles Available
To review the church profiles that are available, please go to our website at this link: church profiles or contact Davika Dotson in the Leadership Development Office – [email protected] [deadline to apply in brackets]
Bracebridge, ON – New Hope FM Church (part-time) [Sept 12]
Mississauga, ON – Grace Methodist Church (full-time) [Aug 29]
Once these church profiles become available, they will be listed above as “Church Profiles available” and also on our website at this link: church profiles
Brantford, ON – The Open Door Church
Campbellford, ON – Campbellford FM Church (Rev. Leonard Bruce – Interim Pastor)
Cloyne, ON – Pineview FM Church
Dryden, ON – Dryden FM Church
Dunnville, ON – Dunnville FM Church
Frankford, ON – Frankford Community Church
Godfrey, ON – Cole Lake FM Church
Kingston, ON – Kingscourt FM Church
Marmora, ON – Marmora FM Church (Pastor Keith Deyo – Interim Pastor)
Nepean, ON – Arlington Woods FM Church (Rev. Mike Hogeboom retiring May 31/24)
Orillia, ON – Church on the Hill (Pastor Velma Shewfelt – Interim Pastor)
Richmond Hill, ON – Richmond Hill FM Church (Rev. Louis Leung – Interim Pastor)
Seeley’s Bay, ON – Pine Grove Community Church
Sombra, ON – Zion FM Church (Rev. Terry Clyne retiring Aug 31/23)
Tillsonburg, ON – Open Arms Church
Wallaceburg, ON – Charlemont FM Church Charlemont FM Church