VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 3/21/14)—Tasked with the work of seeking a new General Secretary for American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA), the search committee met for the first time on March 19-20 in Chicago. In June 2013, General Secretary A. Roy Medley, who began his position in 2002, was re-elected to serve a two-year term as General Secretary for the denomination. This term will end on December 31, 2015. The search committee will spend the coming months organizing its work by identifying critical issues, drafting a position description, setting a timetable and welcoming candidates to consider applying for the position.
“The state of the ABC denomination and the climate in our country in which American Baptists serve have changed dramatically since the last search for a General Secretary. We are living and serving Christ in a very different time today. With that in mind, the committee worked on identifying critical issues that are facing ABC and the necessary skill sets in a General Secretary for us to move faithfully forward,” said Don Ng, president of American Baptist Churches USA. “This inaugural meeting engaged all committee members with the commitment to dedicate time and energy that will help set directions with ABC partners for the denomination in the years to come. “
The significance of calling a new General Secretary is great. The General Secretary is the main spokesperson on behalf of the 1.3 million members in over 5,200 churches across the U.S. and Puerto Rico, along with the 33 regional mission organizations, national mission organizations and a host of other ABC-related institutions. The role of the committee will require focused and diligent work to hear from all corners of the ABC family. There will be regular updates on the progress of the committee, as well as opportunities for people to submit their suggestions and make nominations.
The members of the search committee are:
- Andy Arndt, Board of General Ministries (Indianapolis)
- Camille Brown, Board of General Ministries (Cleveland)
- Elisai Eschevarria, Board of General Ministries (Connecticut)
- Bill Frederickson, Board of General Ministries (New Jersey)
- Dianne Steelman, Board of General Ministries (Ohio)
- Koreen Villers, Board of General Ministries (West Virginia)
- Ruth Clark, Immediate Past President (Central)
- Kenneth Kho, Intercaucus President (Los Angeles)
- John Williams, Regional Executive Ministers Council (Central)
- James McJunkin, Jr., Regional Executive Ministers Council (Philadelphia)
- Samuel Chetti, Regional Executive Ministers Council (Los Angeles)
- Aidsand Wright-Riggins, American Baptist Home Mission Societies, International Ministries, and MMBB Financial Services
- Don Ng, President and Chair
Dianne Steelman serves as vice-chair and chaplain for the committee. Johnson Eapen of the ABCUSA Human Resources office serves as staff, and Marilyn Tyson of ABCUSA provides office support.
The committee will continue its organizing work on April 22-24. Please direct all questions to ABC President Don Ng, who chairs the committee, at email@example.com.
American Baptist Churches is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with over 5,200 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.