Thank you for your willingness to listen to the Spirit of our still speaking God, who may be calling you to serve as an Associate Conference Minister in Wisconsin. We are a hearty and joyful Conference, comprised of 218 congregations throughout four associations. We take seriously our covenant relationships, and cherish the connections among our diverse congregations and varied geographical landscape. We care deeply about our clergy, thus encourage lifelong learning, particularly through our vibrant Communities of Practice program. We also strive for congregational wellness, prioritizing support in times of transition and turmoil, and in opportunities for transformation. We also experience this covenantal connection through our amazing Outdoor Ministry settings and our thriving Lay Academy. The Wisconsin Conference is a place where people have a deep sense of pride and identity rooted in simple Midwestern values and the love of Jesus.
We seek a qualified UCC ordained Minister with a pastoral heart to serve as an Associate Conference Minister in the southern region of Wisconsin, based out of the Madison area. This ACM will have primary support and resource responsibilities for 75 congregations and will offer relational and ecclesiastical care to the authorized ministers in that region. The geographical scope of this position covers the Southwest Association and half of the Southeast Association (see map and landscape description).
This ACM will also resource and support Association Administrative Teams and Church and Ministry Committees. Additionally this ACM will have some programmatic and project responsibilities in collaboration with the staff. Scroll to see the full position description, information about the Wisconsin Conference and Application Details.
Title: Full-time Associate Conference Minister (accountability to the Conference Minister)
Scope of Ministry: This “Southern ACM” position will provide primary support, care and staff resourcing to 75 congregations and all authorized ministers in the Southwest Association and a portion of the Southeast Association (see map). The portfolio will also include some conference-wide programmatic and project responsibilities, in consultation with the Conference Minister and collaboration with staff.
Conference Snapshot: The Wisconsin Conference of the United Church of Christ (/) consists of four associations, 218 congregations and approximately 40,000 people. The Conference Staff is comprised of 11 talented team members. Our Conference office – the Trost Center – is located just north of Madison and provides a spacious and beautiful setting for ministry and Wider Church meetings. The congregations of the Wisconsin Conference are hearty, faithful and resilient. We savor our long and rich history from both the Congregational Christian and Evangelical and Reformed traditions, yet we also welcome new models for ministry and innovative ways to engage the world spiritually and prophetically.
The Churches of the Wisconsin Conferences continue to provide steady support to Our Church’s Wider Mission and to our UCC special offerings. Many of our congregations have cultivated thriving community-based ministries and active justice working groups. Our Outdoor Ministries inspire people of all generations through two incredible Camp and Retreat settings – Pilgrim Center (located on Green Lake) and Moon Beach Camp (located in the far north near Eagle River). We are also fortunate to have a thriving Lay Academy and newly launched Damascus Project (a shared theological education endeavor with the Minnesota Conference). Currently, the Conference is busy preparing to host General Synod 32 June 21-25, 2019 in Milwaukee.
Residential expectation: We anticipate this ACM will reside in the greater Madison area.
Compensation: The salary/housing range is 68-72K along with the full complement of benefits.
Application: Please direct your UCC profile to Susan Taylor at the Conference Office (email or 608-846-7880) and forward a cover letter that responds to these questions: 1) Why are you interested in judicatory work, and in particular, why this position? 2) What unique skills, gifts and experiences would you bring to this ministry?
Application Deadline: April 14, 2019
Anticipated start date: August 1, 2019
Contact Person: Rev. Franz Rigert, Conference Minister (email or 414-704-2625)
The geographic region served by this Associate Conference Minister includes all of the Southwest Association of the Wisconsin Conference as well as the western side of the Southeast Association (see map). The area stretches from just west of the Milwaukee metro area through small cities and rural areas, then through the Madison area, down to the Illinois border where there are some larger cities, and west to the Mississippi River.
The portion of the Southeast Association reaches down into the corner of the state where a huge technology company known as Foxconn is developing a manufacturing plant that likely will change the demographics of this area. There is a high-end resort area around Lake Geneva. But most of the geography is rural and small town, with a few cities like Oconomowoc and Watertown in the corridor between Milwaukee and Madison.
The University of Wisconsin is a dominant presence in Madison and also has significant campuses in Whitewater to the east and Platteville to the west. There are UCC congregations in all of those communities. Madison is also the seat of state government and has a rapidly growing technology sector, especially in the health care area. There are several vibrant UCC congregations, ranging in membership size from 75 to 550, in the greater Madison area.
To the southwest of Madison, Green County has the highest per capita number of UCC members in the nation. It has Swiss heritage and has one of the largest congregations in the state – St. John’s in Monroe with 728 members.
This is a predominantly white region of the country. With three exceptions, all of the counties in this region are over 90 per cent white. Even the exceptions are predominantly white – 88% in Kenosha County, 85% percent in Dane County (Madison) and 83% in Racine County.
The Southwest Association as a whole has 48 congregations. There are 19 Open and Affirming congregations. There are 26 congregations with more than 100 members, the others are smaller. There are 64 ordained ministers with their status in the Southwest and another 53 retired clergy. There are seven licensed ministers, two commissioned ministers and 3 members in discernment. While Madison is a dominant presence in this association, the communities served throughout the Southwest range widely in culture, theology and church practice.
The portion of the Southeast Association that will be served by this ACM includes 27 congregations. Among them are 8 open and affirming congregations. There are 18 congregations with more than 100 members, and the others are smaller. There are 21 ordained ministers serving in that portion of the Southeast Association and another 15 retired clergy.
There are vibrant and strong congregations all across the region, but there are also congregations that face the struggles common in an era of change. There is potential for the reshaping of some congregations. And there are networks throughout the region that cross congregational and denomination lines, offering opportunities for a wider field of ministry.