Church Name: Aurora
Share any relevant background information including leadership experience both within the church and in other areas of your life.
I have experienced a career in Operations as upper management in both a mfging and a office environment. I have lead many training sessions both at work in my church for everything from Hospitality to Assertiveness. I fully believe that it's best to manage processes and lead people. I am a Lay Leader for the SW District, a leader in my local church; Recording Sec for Ad Council, lead Hospitality and Outreach teams. I am the Project Director for Project RISE ( under the umbrella of the Drew Lewis/Northwest Project Springfield MO) where I lead a team of of nine who work with ten families in poverty and by meeting weekly bring them up and out of poverty within our two year program. I am on Congregational Development Team. I sit on the Site Council of our Bright Futures program for the Intermediate School. I am Sec/Treasurer for Mobility Worldwide/PET in Mt. Vernon/Aurora. I teach a 5th & 6th grade program during our WNL church program. I teach in a rotation during our Child Church.
Describe your personal practices of intentional faith development that strengthen your spiritual engagement with God and your capacity for fruitful leadership in the church.
My day starts with homemade oatmeal, I sit in my recliner with my two maltese pups in my lap and I talk with God giving thanks for his involvement in my life, followed by payer request for those not as fortunate as I. Then it's time for me to listen for his response... I use the You Version app on my phone for a variety of plans depending on what's happening following my time with God. Then I read a daily email from Saddleback Church as a devotional. I read several news feeds on fb to keep up with current Methodist news. I recently read and facilitated a class using "Faithfully Living" as the resource. I fully believe the Holy Spirit is active in my day to day life and keep me grounded and using the gifts that God has given me one of which is leading and loving all of his people. I understand that I must keep myself full in order to give of myself and I do this by working in my yard and enjoying my horse & three burros.
I feel very close to God outside enjoying his amazing creation
Why do you seek election as a lay delegate representing the Missouri Conference?
I am a ten year Methodist, and being elected will give me an opportunity to give public witness to what it means to be in a church that loves diversity with an "open table". We are at a place & time where I know that God loves me and is calling me to stand up now. I have grown much on my faith walk, I, at one time believed being homosexual was a sin and now after much study and prayer feel that I had not done my research and didn't fully understand the context of some passages and just took on what I was told. As my journey goes there's much prayer and reflection and I now know I have lots to learn and lots to live and lots to share. I feel God calling me to say that as a Mother of a Gay son I have a perspective to offer that many do not.
While I understand being so transparent is risky, I also know this business of following Jesus with his commandment to Love is risky also! I so want to be a part of a future that be inclusive and I believe our Bishop when he says "it will be ok".
How will your involvement in General Conference 2020 support the church to fulfill the mission “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world”?
My involvement with GC 2020 will center on listening and learning to see how we can more forward to working together to find those in our local areas that need Jesus. I can bring witness of a God who brought us (my husband & I) back into church with the intention of helping others. My heart is in the local church and with those on the margins. I fully understand that decision must be made at this high level so that the unchurched have somewhere they are safe and can find a home for all. I can work with all people to find solutions and I can respect all who work for the common good.
I believe that we don't know what will happen at GC 2020, I am adaptable and open to change with a steady and true compass. What is for sure is that God will be there and my Holy Spirit will be there and I want to be a part of the solution of both GC and the local church so that others can have the love and the faith that all will be well in the end.
Since the primary focus for Jurisdictional Conference is to elect new bishops, what qualifications do you think the church needs in its future episcopal leaders?
There is great responsibility in this role; they need to have a deep love of Christ, a good business sense, above average communication skills, need to be assertive, to have willingness to put self aside when necessary, be able to make hard decisions, be honest and show integrity and finally someone who can see all sides of a situation.