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.

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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

Lobbying - Plan B, C, and . . .

Being set does not take into account things that could happen. I needed no Plan B for myself until a couple days before General Conference. My friend called to say that something came up and he could not let me stay at his house.

Plan B? Cheapest motel would still have been over $80 a night. Friends who live in Clermont, FL, have invited us to use their house in case of emergency. But that was 80 miles away. My home was only a 100 miles and that made as much sense and in many ways would be a whole lot handier.

And then there was the weather…

And then came the problem of meeting the two African delegates. One had a roommate who only spoke Portuguese and a page told me I couldn’t send a message to the other because I was not a delegate!

And then Google bought Blogspot and changed the protocols so that I couldn’t format or copy and paste as I had been able to do just days before conference started.

Lobbying can strain one’s resources and creativity!

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