I had an enjoyable visit with Jim Pierce, the new pastor at the College United Methodist Church, a few days ago and finally found some time to sit down and write the story this morning (to be published in Wednesday's edition).
Curious about how the church selects its pastors for the various churches, Rev. Pierce went into the process with me and he shared an interesting story that I’ll pass on.
“Back in the old days, maybe in the ’40s or ’50s, you did not know if you were going back or if you were being moved until your name was read at an annual conference once a year,” Piece said. “They had a big annual conference and all of the pastors were there and the bishop stands up and reads — the bishop still stands up and reads the names at the annual conference but you know by then, but before they didn’t really announce the decisions.”
In other words, the pastors didn’t know for sure if they would be returning to their church or if they’d need to pack up and move elsewhere.
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“I heard the story of one Methodist pastor that slipped out of annual conference early with his kids to go on vacation and at that time in Arkansas, it was such a big deal that they played that on the radio,” Pierce said. “He was listening on the radio and they called his name and said he was moving, so he had to turn around and drive back and start packing. We don’t do it way that much anymore.
“I’m glad we don’t because I think I’d be dragging my wife out of Philomath kicking and screaming,” he added. “She is thrilled to death and she told me we’re not moving ever.”
Welcome to the community, Rev. Jim and Lisa Pierce.