Pastor’s Corner: A UCC President from an Island

March 1, 2023

The nominee for the next General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ was announced this week. To my delight, she is someone we know – she has preached here at Church of the Holy Cross UCC – the Rev. Dr. Karen Georgia Thompson, who currently serves as Associate General Minister for Wider Church Ministries and Co-Executive for Wider Church Ministries. In a letter to the church, Search Committee Chair the Rev. Emma Brewer-Wallin praised Dr. Thompson’s pastoral presence, theological depth, bold vision, collaborative leadership, bridge-building skills, and management expertise.

“The church has repeatedly affirmed Karen Georgia Thompson’s ministry throughout her tenure in multiple roles of progressive responsibility in the National Setting,” wrote Rev. Brewer-Wallin. “With equal confidence in her capabilities as a minister, theologian, and spiritual leader for our church, our Search Committee enthusiastically recommends her as our nominee for General Minister and President.”

The search committee’s recommendation goes next to the United Church of Christ Board for their consideration this week. With their approval, the nomination will be presented to General Synod delegates in Indianapolis, Indiana, in early July. If elected, Rev. Thompson will be the first woman and the first woman of African-American ancestry to lead the denomination. Born in Jamaica, she will also be the first islander to serve as General Minister and President.

I have known Dr. Thompson for some years. I admire and respect her, and I like her enormously as a person. The day she preached at Church of the Holy Cross, June 12, 2016, was the morning after fifty people died in the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida. She threw out her prepared sermon, spoke from the heart, and brought the Gospel to us on that sad day.

God has been good to us in Karen Georgia Thompson.

Blessings to you,

Pastor Eric

2019 photo of Karen Georgia Thompson by Eric Anderson.

Categories Pastor's Corner Reflections | Tags: | Posted on March 1, 2023

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