The final day of the 2017 Iowa Annual Conference Session opened with the Fixing of Appointments for the 2017-2018 Conference year. Newly appointed pastors were announced for each of the eight Iowa Annual Conference Districts.
Bishop Laurie Haller asked for prayers in her opening remarks, especially for those in new appointments.
Rev. Jackie Bradford, Superintendent Northeast District was Dean of the Appointive Cabinet this year and Bishop Laurie told the Annual Conference Session, “She has served very faithfully.”
The bishop reappointed Rev. Bradford to the Northeast District as Superintendent for her seventh year.
North Central District Superintendent Rev. Dr. Harlan Gillespie was appointed the new Dean of the Appointive Cabinet and reappointed to the North Central District as Superintendent.
After four years as Field Outreach Minister in the North Central District, Rev. Katharine Yarnell will now be Executive Director for the Iowa Annual Conference United Methodist Foundation.
Bishop Laurie commended Rev. Yarnell for her “fine work.”
Rev. Dr. Tom Carver, Superintendent Northwest District, was reappointed to the Northwest District and will serve as Secretary for the appointive Cabinet.
Rev. Kiboko Kiboko was reappointed as Superintendent of the East Central District, and Rev. Dr. Heecheon Jeon was reappointed as Superintendent for the Central District.
After more than 17 years in various roles for the East Central District, Rev. Dr. Jill Sanders will leave her most recent position there as Field Outreach Minister to become Lead Pastor for Collegiate Wesley United Methodist Church in Ames.
Rev. Dr. Lilian Gallo Seagren was reappointed as Superintendent of the Southeast District, and Rev. Paul Smith was reappointed Superintendent of the South Central District.
Rev. Terra Amundson was also reappointed Superintendent in the Southwest District.
Bishop Laurie called for recognition for all clergy of the next year’s appointments at the service’s conclusion, then affirming a commitment from clergy and laity for the coming year.
“We all need each other in the Conference to work as a team and as difference makers in Iowa and the whole world,” she said.
Rev. Bradford offered a message as Cabinet Dean, centering on answering the call one by one.
The work of the Cabinet is not a solo performance, Rev. Bradford said, it is a team effort.
She gave a comprehensive view of the various ministries in the Conference and how they are connected.
All are ministries that connects the local church, she said, “One by one, the field is gaining workers for Christ,” said Rev. Bradford. “One by one, change makers are sent into the field to serve.”
She spoke about the Appointment-making process, saying it is filled with tremendous responsibility, and affects a pastor’s life in a multiplicity of ways.
“The Appointment Cabinet process is bathed in prayer,” stated Rev. Bradford.
The Cabinet listens to the needs of everyone involved, she continued, and, “We depend upon the spirit of God.”
It’s not a perfect system, Rev. Bradford acknowledged, but she also said she honestly feels God leads the Cabinet in the discernment process.
She ran through some ministry statistics, illustrating how many souls in the Conference are answering the call to serve and labor for the Gospel.
Rev. Bradford also detailed some of the Cabinet’s functions, saying, “The work of the Cabinet is valued more than any one person’s viewpoint.”
She concluded by asking for God’s blessings on the work of the Appointive Cabinet, Bishop Laurie and each church community.
Rev. Bradford then told the Annual Conference Session, “And let us not forget the power of one. Amen.”
The offering during the Fixing of Appointments service was taken for Morningside College and Simpson College Nigerian Partnership.