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.


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

April 22 - Orientation for International Delegates

April 22 – Orientation for International Delegates

After the bishop left, I realized I was dry. And I was hungry so I got out the Publix salad and ate it there. Then I went up to the ballroom for the orientation. I got there early, looked over the room, saw small packets of materials from one of the general boards at each chair around each table.

I guess I was looking for signs that one of the caucus groups was handing out materials but it looked pretty straight up.

I found a spot at the back of the room and in the center in front of what looked like translator’s booths. Leaving my travel case there, I walked over to the main entrance to the ballroom and met an older woman of short stature. Her name tag said “Iva Joyce.”

She told me quite a story as people began to come into the ballroom. I wrote it up in the following article for UM-Insight and this blog.

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