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Pro-Homosexuality Reconciling Pastor To Head UM Higher Education (Seminaries/Colleges) Agency

June 21, 2001

Dear Staff of the Board of Higher Education and Ministry,

The search committee is pleased to present Dr. Jerome King Del Pino as General Secretary Designate of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. His selection comes at the end of a seven month global search process characterized by openness, candor and grace.

In the course of its deliberations, the search committee met formally on seven occasions for one or more days. Over this period, the committee generated a pool of considerable strength. This pool consisted of over seventy candidates, from which a number were reference checked and six were selected as semi-finalists.

As you know, two finalists were selected and, following final interviews, Dr. Del Pino was selected. Based on this extensive search, it is our strong conviction that Dr. Del Pino possesses the qualities of leadership and integrity that the search committee considers vital to the future well being of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry.

The search committee is composed of the following persons: Bishop Janice Riggle Huie- Chair of search committee, President of GBHEM, and Resident Bishop Arkansas Area, SCJ William Haden- Vice-chair of search committee and President of West Virginia Wesleyan College, NEJ Thomas W. Cole, Jr.- President, Clark Atlanta University, SEJ Maggie Jackson- Chairperson, Department of Social Work, Cleveland State University, NCJ Charles L. Johnson, Sr.- Director, South Carolina Conference Council on Ministries, SEJ David Maldonado, Jr. - President, Iliff School of Theology, WJ Bishop Felton Edwin May- Resident Bishop Washington Area, NEJ Heinrich Meinhardt- Senior Pastor, Tegel/Wittenau United Methodist Church, Berlin, CJ Ruth Palmer- Executive Director, Wesley Community Center- Houston, SCJ Rhoda Peters- Provost of Kentucky Annual Conference, SEJ Erika Rohlfs- Office Administrator, Genesis Presbyterian Church, SCJ Robert Schnase- Senior Pastor, First United Methodist Church, McAllen Texas, SCJ Thomas V. Wolfe- Dean of Hendricks Chapel, Syracuse University, NEJ

We invite you to join us in prayer for Dr. Del Pino and his family, for the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry and for the United Methodist Church.

Grace and Peace, Janice Riggle Huie Chair, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry and Resident Bishop, Arkansas Area, United Methodist Church

Boston’s Oldest Black Methodist Church Plans Palm Sunday Celebration to Commemorate Becoming a Reconciling Congregation

On February 15, 2000, the Church Council of Union United Methodist Church voted to adopt a Statement as a Reconciling and Inclusive Congregation. The statement says that Union affirms “the full participation in all aspects of our church life of all who confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, regardless of their race, color, physical challenge, sexual orientation and/or affectional orientation.” The full text of the statement is attached. Union is planning a service of worship to take place on Palm Sunday, April 16, 2000 at 3:00PM. The service will celebrate this decision to make the church a sanctuary and a safe place for all of God’s children, “regardless of their race, color, physical challenge, sexual orientation and/or affectional orientation.” Scheduled participants include Bishop Susan Wolfe Hassinger, Metro-Boston South District Superintendent Rev. Jerome King Del Pino, and Rev. Charlotte Pridgen-Randolph of Wesley United Methodist Church in Dorchester. Also attending will be State Senator Dianne Wilkerson, State Representative Byron Rushing, Rev. Wesley Williams Executive Director of United Methodist Urban Services, Canon Ed Rodman of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, and Mr. Pat Cusick, Executive Director of South End Neighborhood Action Program, as well as clergy and laity from other churches in the Boston area.

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