VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 5/4/16)—On April 16, Dr. Samuel Chetti, executive minister of the American Baptist Churches of Los Angeles, Southwest and Hawaii (ABCOFLASH), announced to the region Board of Directors his plans for retirement on December 31, 2017.
Mr. Steven A. Simons, Esq., president of ABCOFLASH, said, “Dr. Chetti has faithfully served our Region, in many capacities, since 1974. Since 1996 he has served as the Executive Minister/Chief Executive Officer with the full support of the Board of Directors. I am honored to report that, under his leadership, and subject to the Board’s supervision, God’s influence in the geographical area we serve has flourished and continues to be seen. Under Dr. Chetti’s leadership, with God’s guidance, we have moved from Operational Insolvency to a robust capacity in fiscal and ministry vibrancy. Further, we are strategically focused to continue to do so and for our ministry of The Kingdom Of God to thrive for many years to come.”
“Our blessings and best wishes to Sam Chetti, the longest serving Regional Executive Minister in American Baptist Churches. He has played an active role in denominational life and will be missed,” said Dr. Susan Gillies, interim general secretary of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA).
“We appreciate Dr. Chetti’s courageous leadership in bringing together American Baptists in this part of the country,” said Rev. Dr. C. Jeff Woods, associate general secretary for Regional Ministries, ABCUSA.
Chetti initially made the Board of Directors aware of his impending retirement in 2013. At that time, the Board requested that he continue to serve until the Board and the region’s member churches had completed the formation of the Region of ABCOFLASH. That was completed in October 2014, with the adoption of a new Constitution and Bylaws. The Board then asked that he continue to serve until we created a succession plan, which Chetti agreed to do.
The ABCOFLASH Board of Directors has established a succession committee, which will work over the next 18 months towards implementation of the succession plan. An announcement of the position opening is expected during the first quarter of 2017, when the position will be sent to the larger denomination and to regional distribution channels. ABCOFLASH will not be accepting any applications or resumes for this position until after the announcement is made.
“In December 2017, Rev. Dr. Chetti will have completed 45 years in ministry and 21years of that serving as the Executive Minister. We encourage each of you to join us in celebrating the years of service and sacrifice that both he and Carolyn have provided to our Region.”
ABCOFLASH is one of the most diverse Regions within American Baptist Churches USA. The Region enfolds more than 280 churches and missions, with over 104 countries represented within the congregations, with preaching and worship services conducted in 42 different languages.
American Baptist Churches USA 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.