By Tiffany Vail
Associate Conference Minister of Communications
The staffs of the three Southern New England conferences will shift into a new, transitional structure for 2020, working together on teams aligned around their ministry and program areas rather than being separated by geography.
“As we create a new conference together we are moving towards aligning a staff model around the core values that are critical to our future life as the Southern New England Conference,” said Connecticut Conference Minister The Rev. Kent Siladi. “Our new staff configuration will be a great way for us to learn from one another and to align our passions and gifts with the core values.”
The three current Conference Ministers will shift their roles and responsibilities so that they each oversee staff teams that are oriented around various aspects of the new conference’s Vision, Mission and Purpose Statement
. The three have agreed to stay on for a bridge year while a search is conducted for a new leader for the unified conference. (Related article: New Conference Will Have New Leader, April 23, 2019)
Their roles will be as follows:
- Marilyn Kendrix will become the Bridge Conference Minister of Discipleship. She will work with the staff team that is focused on assisting churches in their work to Make Disciples of Jesus Christ (one of the four main foci of the vision). This will include resourcing faith formation for all ages, outdoor ministries, communications, spiritual practice and spiritual care.
- Kent Siladi will become the Bridge Conference Minister of Love and Justice. He will work with the staff team that resources justice and witness ministries, lifted up in the Making God’s Love and Justice Real focus of the vision. He will also work with the staff team that oversees financial management and development, and will take the lead on Building Covenant Partnerships, another of the vision’s four core values.
- Don Remick will become the Bridge Conference Minister of Adaptive Change. He will work with the staff team that focuses on the piece of the vision that Seeks to Bring New Life as Agents of Change. This will include working with the staff currently serving the regions and associations. He will also work with the governance oversight of the new conference.
These changes will officially take effect on Jan. 1, 2020, when the Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island conferences are formally replaced by the Southern New England Conference (the name is pending approval by Annual Meeting
). No jobs will be eliminated on Jan. 1 when the transitional structure goes into effect; the staff will become employees of the new conference, which will be operating under a single budget.
This is a transitional plan; a subcommittee of the new conference board is developing a staffing plan for 2021. That team will make a recommendation to the board, and the board intends to present it for information purposes at the November Annual Meeting
. The new staffing model will be implemented over the course of 2020-2021.
“The development of the new conference will be an evolution, not a flipping of the switch,” said Massachusetts Interim Transitional Conference Minister The Rev. Don Remick.
There are no current plans to make changes to office locations. Staff members will continue to work out of their current offices, and their contact information will remain the same.