Associates in Advocacy now has two sites on the internet. Our primary help site is at http://www.aiateam.org/. There AIA seeks to offer aid to troubled pastors, mainly those who face complaints and whose careers are on the line.

Help is also available to their advocates, their caregivers, Cabinets, and others trying to work in that context.

This site will be a blog. On it we will address issues and events that come up.

We have a point of view about ministry, personnel work, and authority. We intend to take the following very seriously:


Some of our denomination's personnel practices have real merit. Some are deeply flawed. To tell the difference, we go to these criteria to help us know the difference.

We also have a vision of what constitutes healthy leadership and authority. We believe it is in line with Scripture, up-to-date managerial practice, and law.

To our great sadness, some pastors who become part of the hierarchy of the church, particularly the Cabinet, have a vision based on their being in control as "kings of the hill," not accountable to anyone and not responsible to follow the Discipline or our faith and practice. They do not see that THE GOLDEN RULE applies to what they do.

If you are reading this, the chances are you are not that way. We hope what we say and do exemplify our own best vision and will help you fulfill yours. But we cannot just leave arrogance, incompetence, and ignorance to flourish. All of us have the responsibility to minimize those in our system.

We join you in fulfilling our individual vow of expecting to be perfect in love in this life and applying that vow to our corporate life in the United Methodist Church.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

If you have any questions or suggestions, direct them to Rev. Jerry Eckert. His e-mail address is aj_eckert@hotmail.com. His phone number is 941 743 0518. His address is 20487 Albury Drive, Port Charlotte, FL 33952.

Thank you.


Sunday, November 10, 2013

JCD 1247



South Carolina Annual Conference has been subject to restructuring for some time.  The Council was first approached about it in April of 2010 (JCD 1147).  This decision is the fourth in this series (JCDs 1147, 1204, 1222, and 1247)..

The persistence of the Council in following through on its concerns has minimized violations of connectionalism in the reorganization in South Carolina, one hopes.  The previous decision pointed out the flaw in the plan regarding the significance of the Board of Global Ministries (JCD 1222).  Although no details are supplied in the instant decision, the Council has approved whatever amendments the conference made.  

All reorganization plans that have been detailed in decisions by the Council tended to centralize authority in the episcopal office and downplay groups that tend to have a mind of their own, based on the realities which they serve.  I hope the acceptance by the Council minimizes those tendencies.  In my experience, church law has not changed the heart of those who want control.  Watchdogs, beware.

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