United Church of God

Council of Elders Retreat Builds Bonds of Peace

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Council of Elders Retreat Builds Bonds of Peace

Mount Sterling, Ohio—The Council of Elders concluded a two-and-a-half-day retreat at the Deer Creek Lodge and Conference Center in Mount Sterling, Ohio, on Friday afternoon, Aug. 13. This was the first Council retreat in many years and several men expressed that this is possibly the first time to conduct such an event without a crisis or pressing issue that would dominate the discussion. Ten of the men were physically present, with Randy Stiver and Paul Wasilkoff joining by videoconference.

This was truly a collegial environment, where every member of the Council spoke freely and openly, expressing where they believed God was working and directing the Church. One of the many responsibilities of the Council enumerated in our bylaws is “to direct and control, by policy, the affairs and activities of UCGIA.”

The meetings went from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. the first two days, but several men reconvened after dinner talking until 9 or 10 p.m. On Friday we ended at 1 p.m. so men could travel to various congregations for the Sabbath.

We ran out of time and were not able to address everything we wanted to, but we did address everything we needed to. The results of what we accomplished will be discussed with the administration, formally remanded to Council committees and ultimately developed into policies for the administration to then develop the Operating Plan and Budget. Once much of this is completed, more details will be shared to the ministry and the members.

On behalf of the entire Council of Elders, I’d like to thank everyone who prayed for the success of these meetings. God’s Spirit was evident in all that we were able to accomplish.