Resources for the members of the United Church of God

Updates from the Home Office: May 21, 2020

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Updates from the Home Office

May 21, 2020

From Frank Dunkle, ABC Coordinator

This past Sunday (May 17), Ambassador Bible College conducted its 21st graduation ceremony. Because of meeting size restrictions, the ceremony was done as a virtual, online program. Eighteen students graduated. They endured unique challenges, and they and the faculty feel that online instruction is a distant second best to being in the classroom. We are planning for the next academic year to return to the normal format. The class of 2021 will probably number between 25 and 30 students.

From Rick Shabi, Treasurer

Rick Shabi mentioned that his weekly report is like a “broken record.” But it’s a good record! Through last Friday, income for May continues to be strong. All the financial functions and processes continue to go on as scheduled (without any delay) even though many of them are being managed from home.

From Peter Eddington, Media and Communication Services

Some of our telecommuting staff really appreciate being a part of the Monday morning staff meetings. Perhaps we will keep inviting them to connect, even when we start back with face-to-face meetings at the home office later.

Feast registration continues to be strong with about 6,885 people registered. All U.S. Feast sites still have room for more attendees. Osoyoos Lake, British Columbia, is now full, but the other U.S. and Canadian sites are all still open.

Beyond Today TV recordings went well last week, even though we did not have a studio audience. We moved two of our main cameras forward so the teleprompter notes could be more easily read. This format was more like our old studio format, and despite this change, the presenters tended to be more spontaneous being on the new set. Our program “Eat Clean” by Steve Myers was our second-highest response program so far this fiscal year.

In Ohio, COVID-19 virus death numbers appear to have plateaued. We look forward to seeing the numbers start to go down soon. The hospital system has managed very well. As people go out and more things open up, we pray the measures in place will keep the virus at bay.

Josh Raudenbush’s last day will be next week. Josh works in international mail processing. Right now he is finishing training Caroline Boise who will be taking over his job in the international mailing area. Peter Eddington and Victor Kubik both expressed their thanks for Josh’s contributions and willingness to take on many tasks.

From Richard Kennebeck, Information Technology and Building Safety

Everything continues to go well at the home office and the work is being done. We have more staff coming in from time to time. All employees are asked to wear masks in the common areas and practice distancing. Twice a day we are sanitizing the common areas.

From Steve Myers, pastor of Cincinnati congregations

We recently had a meeting with our elders regarding resuming church services. We are looking to what guidelines for gatherings the governor will suggest in the coming weeks and consider them moving forward. Our members are keeping in touch and staying connected via our webcast for services. We are looking into other ways to expand how we keep in touch.

From Mark Welch, Ministerial and Member Services

The ABC graduation ceremony was enjoyed and appreciated very much; it was very well done.

We continue to look for ways to train speakers and improve the messages given in our church areas. We have received quite a bit of input from our pastors and elders regarding what they have been doing locally. We will be incorporating their input for our speaker training and development program.

A few of our smaller congregations have already met for Sabbath services in person, and several more will be doing so by Pentecost.

Nick and Megan Lamoureux will be joining us soon. Nick will be working with Steve Myers as a Ministerial Trainee and we look forward to their arrival in Cincinnati!