February Update

By Alan Dicken - Thursday March 5, 2020

Hello and Happy March!

In January, I began a blog post to update folks with what I have been up to as the Regional Program Director and what I am hopeful for in the coming months in this role.  February came and went quickly, but here is a recap of what all has been happening with the Ohio Regional Program Director!

Firstly, I am hopeful that everyone is having a good and faithful start to their Lenten Season as we head into this month of preparation for the coming of Holy Week and Easter.  If you would like to receive Lenten Devotionals, many leaders from around the state have offered daily devotionals which can be found here - https://www.ccinoh.com/media/249177/lenten_devotional_booklet_2020.pdf

Most of February was spent visiting with different groups from around the state, and it has been such a joy!  I have been honored to join the District 8 Clergy at the University of Dayton for their monthly clergy gathering and a broader clergy group in the northeastern part of the state at Cuyahoga Falls Christian Church!  Together we engaged in good, difficult, healthy conversations about regional ministry moving forward in Ohio.

Jennie, Ted, Wendy, and I were able to hire our Camp Christian Summer Staff and we are excited for more young adults to serve at Camp this year!  Also, I was also able to participate in the Regional Elders’ meeting, pop in and out of the Spiritual Life Retreat at Camp Christian, and keynote the CYF midwinter retreat!  It is definitely a perk of the job to be able to spend so much time at Camp Christian.  It has also been such a blessing to be able to spend time with ministers, lay leaders, and young people from around the state.

The Ohio Reconciliation Ministry has sent a “Save the Date” posted for June 20, 2020’s Poor People’s Campaign (PPC) rally in Washington, D.C. We are working on coordinating with the buses from the PPC and with funds to help underwrite costs so that anyone who would like to go will be able to go.  If you are curious about this opportunity or have any questions for me, please feel free to reach out.  We are hopeful to see as many Ohio Disciples there as possible to help live out our gospel faith outside of our local church context and in the broader world! 

As an update to last month’s blog post, I am continuing to work with developing the regional calendar as well as the organizational flow chart that many have asked about.  Many ministries are already planning events for this fall and we are gaining in our internal understanding of how our different ministries, committees, and groups relate to and with one another. 

Looking ahead to the rest of March, I will be happy to win my family’s NCAA March Madness Bracket, though that is entirely unrelated to Regional Program work. 

In all seriousness, I am looking forward to working with Rev. Dr. Jack Sullivan and the Ohio Council of Churches to represent the Disciples at a “Faith in Action” event in Columbus on March 11th and 12th at Trinity Episcopal Church.  The events are centered around Economic Justice as it relates to our faith.  All are invited to attend and if you're interested in more information, please feel free to reach out to myself or to Rev. Dr. Jack Sullivan. 

Also, I am very much looking forward to the Disciples Connect luncheon on March 28th at Camp.  If you’re interested in learning more about the Cleveland Christian Home, Church World Service, Hiram Farms, Disciples Home Missions, Week of Compassion, and other ministries that you and/or your congregation can participate in, this is a fantastic opportunity for you!  More information and registration can be found at  https://www.ccinoh.com/regional-calendar.aspx?events=8819&action=details.

For those who may be looking for ways to contribute financially to Camp Christian, there is an amazing opportunity from the Camp Christian Committee (special thanks to the Rule Family) for you and/or your congregation to sponsor a Green Chair for Camp!  More information can be found here – /camp-christian/camp-christian-committee/green-chair-fundraiser.aspx

Mostly, I look forward to another month of meeting and connecting with Disciples from around the state to listen to their hopes and passions for how we can engage in effective and meaningful ministry together.  There is a lot of work to be done, but there are many good and faithful people ready to do the hard and prayerful work.  If you ever feel like reaching out, my email is adicken@ccinoh.org and my phone number is 513-406-3426.  I am happy to listen and to engage with anyone about how we can make our region healthy and faithful to our calling as Disciples.

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