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.


Thursday, August 13, 2015

JCD 1282



Indiana Annual Conference is constricting like many other conferences, with churches merging and properties no longer needed.  The sale of urban propereties has a particular requirement under Paragraph 2549.7.  All of the proceeds of such sales are to be distributed among the other churches in the area to support their missional activities.  

The Conference Board of Trustees took out some of the proceeds to cover demolition costs.  That use was questioned at Annual Conference.

The Council ruled that was contrary to the Discipline.  The bishop’s main argument that the rest of the proceeds were being properly used did not sway the Council.

I’m not knowledgeable about property matters (watching the “Property Brothers” on HGTV does not qualify me).  However, the Trustees may have encountered the problem of selling the property with the old church building on it meaning a significant lowering of the sale price.  And negotiating a better sale price by including that the Conference would demolish the building left the Trustees with a better sale price but the obligation of the cost to demolish.  Unfornately Paragraph 2549.7 doesn’t allow the cost of demolition to come out of the sale price.  Trustees usually have contingency funds for such purposes but they need to find a way to increase them either from conference apportionments or from sales of other assets (mainly other closed churches).

This may be a job for General Conference.  The Trustees would need to send in a petition to resolve this dilemma.  

No comments: