Ten NCJ candidates introduced to delegates at the Episcopal Forum

Ten NCJ candidates introduced to delegates at the Episcopal Forum
Rev. Dr. Lanette Plambeck, episcopal candidate from Iowa, answers questions at the Episcopal Forum hosted by Black Methodists for Church Renewal on Tuesday, November 1, 2022

November 02, 2022

The North Central Jurisdictional Conference delegates and episcopal candidates landed in Fort Wayne, Indiana, to gather under the theme of We Press On (Philippians 4:13). Iowa's episcopal candidate is Rev. Dr. Lanette Plambeck. 

Voting clergy delegates from Iowa are Rev. Katie Dawson, Rev. Lanette Plambeck, Rev. LaTonya Calderon, Rev. Chad Jennings, Rev. Nate Nims, Rev. Frederick Lewis, Rev. Josh Steward, Rev. Melissa Warren, Rev. Barrie Tritle, Rev. Amy Johnson, Rev. Matt German, and Rev. Scott Kober. Clergy Alternate is Rev. Brian Oliver.

Voting lay delegates are Lindsay Drake, Erica Shannon Stueve, Angela Hansen-Abbas, Nitza Dovenspike, Alex Johnson, Jim Baty,  Kae Tritle, Kathi Mitchell, Anne Marie Webb, Prudence Klinger.
The following delegates were unable to attend:  Rev. Alejandro Alfaro Santiz, Rev. Andrea Kraushaar, Catherine Rohret, and Rebecca Nims

An Episcopal Forum hosted by Black Methodists for Church Renewal was held Tuesday evening to introduce the ten candidates to the delegates. The forum’s purpose was to interview episcopal candidates, one at a time, and gain insight into who or what shapes their understanding of racism in the church and how they will continue the work of dismantling and eradicating racism in their role as bishop.

Each candidate was asked slight variations of the same questions. One question asked candidates how they see racism in the church, “What are resistors to progress in becoming an antiracist church?” A related question inquired about hoped-for results: “How will you know it’s been achieved, that we’ve successfully eradicated and dismantled racism within the church?” Each candidate chose one wildcard question during the forum. The range of topics included the global nature of The United Methodist Church and emerging issues with the General Conference in view. A final question was more personal in nature: “As a member of the College of Bishops and the Council of Bishops, what unique perspective or gift would you bring to each setting that would help shape the future legacy of the UMC?”

So what is needed in an episcopal leader in this time?

Rev. Woojae Im from Minnesota said what he is looking for is a leader who is deeply committed to racial justice and equality; a spiritual leader who is committed to healing the brokenness, scars, and division within the system who work for unity; a bold leader dedicated to the full inclusion of LGBTQI persons and all other outcasts, least and lost; a pastoral leader who has a deep understanding of and passion for ministry and mission of local churches and a vision casting leader who can lead the denomination with integrity through this turbulent time.

Balloting begins on Wednesday afternoon.