CHHSM Prepares for General Synod

CHHSM ministries will engage the wider church when thousands of delegates travel to Cleveland for the United Church of Christ’s General Synod June 26-30.

Under the theme of “Unexpected Places,” delegates will explore where they hear God’s voice, encounter the Spirit and find the UCC’s witness in the world.

Darlene Sowell, president and CEO of CHHSM ministry Neighborhood Houses in St. Louis, will highlight tough questions facing the church during the biennial gathering’s Valerie Russell Lectureship.

Sowell will honor the legacy of Russell, who impacted countless victims of injustice as executive director of the United Church of Christ’s Office for Church in Society before her death in 1997.

Sowell’s presentation, “Every Generation’s Struggle,” will engage attendees in a dialogue about the church’s challenges.

“I think of the societal injustices today. Many are the same as they were 50 years ago,” Sowell says.

She plans to involve delegates in a discussion of what can be done now to address issues such as racism and sexism.

“It requires courage and servant leadership and sacrifice and patience and an understanding that there are prolific individuals out there that have the capacity to move people,” Sowell says. “But each of us has a task to do to break down the walls, whatever the circumstances are.”

In addition to worship and fellowship, General Synod 30 will include a gay pride parade, a first-ever Saturday night dance party, and a vote for the Rev. John Dorhaurer as the UCC’s ninth general minister and president.

CHHSM will highlight the work of members in its exhibit booth along with an interactive chalkboard activity for delegates to explore the UCC’s core values.

The association will also co-sponsor a luncheon on June 29 to celebrate the health and wholeness ministries of the United Church of Christ. The event’s co-sponsors include the Health and Wholeness Advocacy Office, the UCC HIV and AIDS Network, the UCC Faith Community Nurse Network and the UCC Mental Health Network. To attend the lunch, contact the Rev. Michael Schuenemeyer, the UCC’s executive for health and wholeness advocacy, at [email protected]

The full General Synod agenda can be found here.

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