A Word on Appointments

This morning The Nashville Area Cabinet will begin in earnest the first of two appointive session cabinet meetings. We will begin praying for each pastoral family and each congregation seeking the wisdom of the Holy Spirit. We are far too mindful of our own human short comings as we do this work for we “see through a glass darkly.”

Still, it is the task for which we have been called and which we believe offers us the best opportunity to give the best leadership available to the congregations under our care. Over the last several weeks District Superintendents have been in consultation with pastors and congregations seeking wisdom and understanding for the work that is before us. We ask for your prayers.

Perhaps you will recall reading the covenant around which we order our lives. The following exert relates to our appointive work:

Remember that we belong to the Annual Conference and, so, our individual contribution to Cabinet Work is toward the economy of the whole. The mission of the Church is our first priority. In our appointive work, we hold these convictions in common and allow them to characterize our work: 

  • We cannot do enough consultation.  
  • It is better to make no appointment than to make the wrong appointment. 
  • We will only reward those who have been fruitful with the responsibility they have been given. 

In all our work, we will maintain the practice and spirit of confidentiality by adopting the following practices:

  • Hold all cabinet meeting conversations in strictest confidence unless/until permission is granted to share information with others. 
  • Hold all personal conversations between the bishop and cabinet members in strictest confidence unless/until permission is granted to share information with others. 
  • Ensure that Administrative Assistants hold conversations with the superintendents and communications between superintendents and episcopal office in strictest confidence. 
  • Embrace the most confidential use of technology for cabinet and district office communications. 

Always during this season I am reminded of God’s call to Abraham in Genesis 12.

Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.

From the beginning of the Methodist Movement pastors have been sent. It is one of the most distinguishing characteristics of the United Methodist Church. Since 1746 when John Wesley appointed lay preachers whom he called “helpers” to definitive circuits, we have followed this practice. I suspect that some time in the future, this practice will be modified to address the changes in life patterns of 21st century people. Until then, we continue to practice the gift of itinerancy.

To be reminded of our timeline:

March 17-18 Appointive Cabinet Session
March 31-April 3 Appointive Cabinet Session
April 4 Calls will be made to Pastors and Congregations informing them of moves.
April 6 Announcements of moves will be made in worship
April 6-May 31 Covenant Meetings with New Pastors and New Congregations

Transitions Seminar with moving pastors and PPR Committees:
April 26 Northside UMC, Jackson 9:30-12  Memphis event moved to May 10. More information to follow.
April 27 St. Marks UMC, Murfreesboro 3:00-5:00
May 17 Lone Oak, Paducah 9:30-12  This event cancelled.

June 24 Moving day

June 29 First Sunday in new Congregation

May each of you be a blessings in the places God has called you.

8 Comments on “A Word on Appointments”

  1. Kenneth R. Edmondson says:

    We began this month praying in our Worship services and Bible study times for the Spirit to be present during this tedious work of aligning Clergy and Congregations for the Kingdoms good.
    We are still holding you Bishop and each officer before the throne.
    Blessings and Peace

  2. Donald E. Spencer says:

    Greater things are being done in the United Methodist Church due to the willingness to “itinerant” to where God has called us to fruitfulness! God is at work through the Cabinet and pastors with the leading of the Holy Spirit. Let us be in prayerful discernment through the process!

  3. Ken Edwards says:

    Our prayers are with all of you!

  4. wmvaughan says:

    Praying for area cabinet and thanks for keeping us informed .

  5. Sandy Jackson says:

    Will be praying!

  6. Sharon B Austell says:

    Prayers are with you as you discern around God’s will for our conference. May your time together be fruitful and blessed!

  7. Kristin Clark-banks says:

    You all are in my prayers. May you experience wisdom from above as you discern, plan and make appointments. And may you know Christ’s peace and joy in your work.

    • Kay Dotson says:

      You all from the PPR Committees to the Cabinet are in my prayers. May the Holy Spirit fill you with wisdom and discernment on each appointment. May each pastor fill the calling of God as they enter their new congregations, and may we allow ourselves to move out of the way, and open our hearts, homes, friendships, and love to all who are sent. God Bless Ya’ll