December 6, 2017

1. December 6 – A Day of Remembrance

2. Conference Office Christmas Closure

3. M&P 101 – Save the Date

4. Saskatchewan Conference Archives and Presbytery Records

5. Help us evaluate the Saskatchewan Conference Affirming Sunday Program

6. Worship resources: Advent and Epiphany

7. UCW Campaign Against Child Poverty at Parliament Hill

8. Reminder: Youth Ministry webinar series continues January 9

9. Federal government apology to LGBT civil servants and veterans

10. South Saskatchewan Hospital Chaplaincy bulletin insert

11. 2017 ROP (Record of Proceedings)

12. Notice To All Ministry Personnel, Designated Lay Ministry (DLM) Applicants, Licenced Lay Worship Leaders (LLWLs), Candidates, Inquirers

13. Gifts with Vision 2018 now available

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1. December 6 – a Day of Remembrance 
Today we remember the deadliest mass shooting in Canadian history, December 6, 1989 at the Ecole Polytechnique in Montreal. We think of the vigils taking place today across the land. We remember that domestic violence rates have not changed substantially in the intervening years, and that violence continues to grip far too many of our homes, workplaces, and faith communities. We remember, we pray, we work for change.

2. Conference Office Christmas Closure
The Saskatchewan Conference will be closed from December 16 to January 1, 2018 inclusive. We will be back in the office on January 2, 2018.

3. M&P 101 – Save the Date
Calling all Ministry and Personnel Committee Members!
If you are a member of a Ministry and Personnel Committee, or someone who wants to find out more about the work of M&P Committees, please plan on attending the next M&P 101 Workshop!
M&P 101 is a workshop designed to assist Ministry and Personnel Committee members with understanding the UCC polity regarding the organization and responsibilities of an M&P Committee and to apply this to the particular context of participants’ pastoral charges/outreach ministries/other UCC communities of faith.
There have been several new UCC policies that came into effect July 1, 2017, that impact M&P Committees and the pastoral/employment relationship.  The upcoming M&P 101 workshop will include this information along with topics covering the roles and duties of M&P members, conflict resolution, support of ministry personnel and staff, annual reviews/ongoing feedback, employment legislation and UCC pastoral relations/workplace polity.

Workshop details: there will be limited number of spaces, so register soon
When:  Saturday, February 3, 2018 beginning at 10 a.m. (9:30 a.m. registration) to 4:00 p.m.
Where:  McClure United Church, Saskatoon      Cost: to be determined
To Register: email Bev Diebert at bdiebert@nullskconf.ca  with details: how many are coming, name of each person and their dietary concerns.

4. Saskatchewan Conference Archives and Presbytery Records
Do you have a basement, closet or cabinet full of presbytery records? Winter is a great archiving season and the Conference Archives has been working to make sure that our collections of presbytery minutes, reports, histories, photographs and other material (etc.) are complete and not forgotten, amid the everyday hustle and bustle.
A new guide, Presbytery Records and the Archives, is available from our webpage, to help anyone responsible for Presbytery records determine how long to keep them and which ones should go to the archives. There are also brochures, forms, guides and information sheets relating to congregational records, United Church privacy policies (for church records) and various other topics.
For more information, visit www.sk.united-church.ca/archives/ or e-mail us (archives@nullskconf.ca).

5. Help us evaluate the Saskatchewan Conference Affirming Sunday program
For the past number of years, SK Conference has held an annual Affirming Sunday.  An Affirming ministry chooses a Sunday and offers to the whole Conference liturgical and community resources that highlight being or becoming Affirming, and that support the full inclusion of sexual- and gender- diverse people. This program is unique in the country, and your Intercultural Network conveners feel we should take the time to evaluate how it’s going. Please take 10 minutes to do our survey!  Your comments will be very helpful as we plan, and we thank you in advance for taking the time to help us evaluate and learn.
And while we’re at it: 24 people have responded to the Intercultural Network’s check-in and future work survey.  Thank you!  The survey is still open and we’d love to hear from even more people; help guide our work by sharing your wisdom.

6. Worship resources: Advent and Epiphany
The current Advent/ Christmas/ Epiphany issue of Gathering shares worship materials that honour the diversity of sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions, and gender roles, and shares resources for speaking and acting inclusively in our worship and our congregations.  If you aren’t already a subscriber, you can purchase a downloadable RTF file of the prayers only for $4.95.  Or purchase a print edition of the full magazine for $10 plus shipping.

Advent Unwrapped will help you and your community of faith unwrap the reason for the season together; check it out for videos, stories, and liturgy.

The Advent Peace Box/ Unsettling Goods resource for supporting peace in Palestine and Israel and is back!  And it includes multigenerational workshop resources.  Consider ordering one for Advent; items can be given away after.

And if all that isn’t enough: KAIROS has just released a new worship and reflection resource for Epiphany, Year B. It shares stories on reconciliation and justice offered by newcomers and Indigenous people.

7. UCW campaign against child poverty at Parliament Hill
On November 21, 2017, 12 United Church delegates participated in an extraordinary day-long event on Parliament Hill, in recognition of the UN’s Universal Children’s Day.  They brought with them 360 handmade Dolls of Hope, sewn by UCW members and supporters across the country, and gathered by the Bread not Stones campaign. Senator Art Eggleton and MP Kate Young were instrumental in bringing this event to fruition, along with event partners Campaign 2000 and Citizens for Public Justice.  The full story and photos are posted on the Women of United Church Network blog.  
One child in poverty, one adult in poverty, one family in poverty—all are one too many. SK has one of the highest child poverty rates in Canada.  So the work continues.

8. Reminder: youth ministry webinar series continues January 9
Deepen youth ministry and your own skills without ever leaving your house or your PJs!  United in Learning resumes its youth webinar series January 9th with “the importance of play and games”. February 13th will focus on faith and sexuality.

9. Federal Government apology to LGBT civil servants and veterans 
As the United Church of Canada discerns its own Living Apology process, the federal government offered its own apology to civil servants and veterans, and those harmed by the power of state policies.  Longtime LGBTQ advocate Rachel Giese reminds us of a national history rapidly disappearing from public view: “For those who survived that era, this apology is a momentous acknowledgement of the routine surveillance and daily humiliations, the pathologizing and the criminalizing, and all the attendant terror of being caught or outed that marked queer life in the 1950s and 1960s.”  Many in our own church are survivors of this period; many more have already died, without an apology or acknowledgement.   Read the entire apology in English here.

10. South Saskatchewan Hospital Chaplaincy / Spiritual Care – bulletin insert
Since the closing of Spiritual Care Departments in Saskatchewan Hospitals, one of the only ways the United Church Hospital Chaplain will know that there are members or adherents in one of the larger center hospitals (Regina Hospitals: General, Pasqua and Wascana Rehabilitation Centre;) is if she is directly contacted by a pastoral charge.  Ministry personnel are encouraged to be vigilant about letting their congregants know that if they, or someone they know, is going to be in one of the Regina hospitals and would like a spiritual care visit, they can ask their minister to contact the Chaplain. The Chaplain in Regina is Val Cottrill at 306-551-7755. 

A bulletin insert for the South Saskatchewan Hospital Chaplaincy is here.

Please consider including an announcement like the following in your Sunday Bulletins on a regular basis:  If you or someone you know is going to be in a hospital or in the Wascana Rehabilitation Centre in Regina and would like a spiritual care visit from the hospital chaplain, please ask your minister to contact the chaplain, or contact her directly at (306) 551-7755.

11. 2017 ROP (Record of Proceedings)
Your staff at the Conference Office has been working on the 2017 Saskatchewan Conference Record of Proceedings (ROP). It was recently completed and has been put on the Saskatchewan Conference website under <Faith in Action> <Annual Meeting> and can found at the following link: ROP 2017

This year the ROP is 69 pages long. For each copy that might be printed, that would mean 57 – 2 sided pages. We know that in most cases paper copies of the ROP sit on a shelf and are never opened after the first browse through. As such, in the last 3 years, we have saved hundreds of trees, by not printing hard copies.  In this way, as we try to be good stewards of the environment, we have reduced our carbon footprint and we are encouraging everyone to rely upon the electronic copy.  For this reason, we will only print paper copies of the ROP if you specifically contact the Saskatchewan Conference Office and request a copy.

However, we will be happy to send you a paper copy if you want one and so, if you do want a paper copy, please contact Bev Diebert at the Conference office by phone at 306-721-3311 or by email at bdiebert@nullskconf.ca and let us know.  We look forward to hearing from you if you want a paper copy… and we thank you for your co-operation.

12. Notice To All Ministry Personnel, Designated Lay Ministry (DLMApplicants, Licenced Lay Worship Leaders (LLWLs), Candidates, Inquirers
The new Sexual Misconduct Prevention and Response Policy and Procedures policy statement was passed by the General Council Executive and came into effect on July 1, 2017.  This policy can be downloaded here .

Included with the approval of this new policy is the requirement that, along with any ministry personnel and DLM applicants who have yet to complete the mandatory boundary training, all Inquirers who are applying to the Conference Interview Board for a candidacy interview, all Candidates, and all LLWLs must have completed the mandatory boundary training.  Retired ministry personnel must also complete this training if they are planning on performing any of the functions of ministry in retirement.  Additionally, all of the above must complete a “refresher boundary training” workshop every five years.

The mandatory Boundaries for Church Leaders and the Boundaries: A Refresher for Church Leaders workshops can be accessed through the United In Learning website:  www.united-in-learning.com .  There will be an in-person Boundaries for Church Leaders training workshop April 26, 2018 in Saskatoon.  Further information will be sent out regarding this opportunity and others in the near future.

For further information, please contact Liz Mackenzie or Bev Diebert at the SK Conference Office.

13. Gifts with Vision 2018 now available
The United Church has launched the 2018 Gifts with Vision program and catalogue. Consider giving family and friends the gift of support: support for the awesome grassroots community programs detailed in the catalogue. From rural Canada to rural Guatemala, to inner cities around the world, your gift will support community leadership and anti-violence initiatives, send kids to camp, protect water, and even support honeybees. Have a look.

Check out upcoming events
Please remember to check the excellent events outlined in the attached Con-Ed Events listings.  Also remember to check out the communication sites on the website and the Conference events calendar.



No announcements at this time:


If you are interested in volunteering for the work of Saskatchewan Conference, please fill out our skills & abilities survey link. Further instructions can be found within this document.

For any questions contact Bev Kostichuk at 306-647-2679.

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