If you are a church leader at a congregation without a pastor, or where the pastor has announced plans to leave, contact Associate Conference Minister, Rev. Kevin McLemore at firstname.lastname@example.org or 484-949-8774 ext. 302.
Times of transition can be especially trying for church members. With recent changes to the search process and to the UCC Local Church Profile, whether its been a few years or a few decades since your congregation has gone through a search, this search will need to be structured differently than your last one.
Thanks to your contribution to Our Church’s Wider Mission, the Pennsylvania Southeast Conference can offer you resources to make the transition easier, help connecting with pastoral care (whether it’s interim pastors, bridge pastors, Sunday Supply), guide your Consistory in the logistics of transition, train your Search Committee on how to find a candidate that meets the specific needs of your congregation, and much more.
Visit the Search and Call Resources page for materials to help along the way.
For searching pastors:
Are you being called to…
create new ministries in a small city where the neighborhood has changed faster than the neighborhood church?
bring hope to a town that was built around a coal mine that will never reopen?
guide the adventure for a small church looking to weave together their ministry with a similar church nearby?
minister and mentor to a community that feels they have been abandoned by their denomination as they continue to process the United Church of Christ’s more liberal views?
dream new dreams and provide comfort to a congregation after a beloved pastor’s retirement following three decades in that pulpit?
Nearly a quarter of the conference’s churches are at some point in the search and call process. Additionally, more than half of our churches are being served by a pastor who is currently eligible for retirement or will be in the next five years. Our churches will be looking for new ideas and renewed energy as they advance to new stages in their ministries. For younger clergy looking to permanently settle in one region, Pennsylvania Southeast Conference’s church-dense environment could offer an opportunity to serve several churches over decades within the same region. There are sections of the conference where you can find 30 full-time churches within a 30 minute drive from a central location.
If you are a pastor interested in serving a church in PSEC, please indicate your willingness to serve in Pennsylvania Southeast on the UCC Profiles Portal. Our churches are instructed to accept profiles or equivalent resumes only through our Conference office.
For more information about searching in PSEC, visit our Search and Call Resources page and make sure you read Search and Call Ministry in Southeastern Pennsylvania.
If you have an active UCC profile and have selected Pennsylvania Southeast Conference under your availability, you will receive periodic emails from us about current openings in our conference. The most recent email is included below.
August 31, 2023
We wanted to let you know about new ministry opportunities in the Pennsylvania Southeast Conference. We’ve recently posted several new opportunities and have even more coming soon.
For the most information, including Local Church Profiles, check out our current Ministry Opportunities on the UCC page. Today we wanted to share a few churches with you that might appeal to your specific gifts, skills, and callings. If you’re open to discerning a call to:
- Settled senior pastor of a vibrant multi-staff church – consider Pleasantville UCC in Chalfont (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5818). This 700+ member congregation has very active youth and adult ministries. The senior pastor of 20+ years retired last year and the church has worked through an intentional interim period, focusing on re-engagement and re-connection.
- Full-time intentional interim following the retirement of a long-serving pastor – think about Trinity UCC in Mt. Penn, Reading (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5869). The church is looking for a biblically-focused experienced interim to help the church discern next steps following the retirement of their pastor who had served the church for 40 years.
- Quarter-time ministry in an historic country church – look at Tinicum UCC in Pipersville (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5816). This church is looking for a way to better connect with a more diverse, multigenerational segment of their community.
- Union (UCC/ELCA) ministry is a growing suburban area – check out Zion’s Union Church in Maxatawny (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5462). This is an active, multi-generational congregation off a well-traveled highway in Berks County, looking for a full-time settled pastor. You can learn a lot about the church by watching this video about their search: https://youtu.be/e9CthnBVpyI.
- Half-time ministry with a small core of people doing big work in their community – take a look at Peace in Zion UCC in Zieglerville (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5769). This Christ-centered community is in a rural setting just one hour outside of Philadelphia. The church is very active in the wider church and in their community.
- Complete the ONA process with a historic congregation – check out Trinity Reformed Church of the UCC in Pottstown (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5751). They’re looking for a designated-term pastor to guide them through the ONA process, help them reach out to the community, and become a stronger church. Earlier this year, the congregation was thrilled to welcome a pastor into this position, but after only a few weeks, he needed to resign unexpectedly do to health concerns.
- Multiple parish ministry in a suburban area – then you might consider Linfield UCC in Linfield (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5429) and First UCC in Royersford (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5430). The churches are willing to work together to form a full-time call. They are also considering candidates separately if you would prefer a part-time position with one of the congregations. Linfield UCC is a welcoming congregation in a small, suburban community. They are looking for a half-time designated pastor to help them further their spiritual growth and bring energy into the congregation. First UCC is an ONA congregation looking for a part-time designated-term pastor to help the congregation reach beyond the church walls and engage the community.
- Continuing momentum with a congregation that just began an outreach/community engagement program – consider First Reformed UCC in Hamburg (http://oppsearch.ucc.org/id/5572). The church is looking for a full-time designated-term pastor to continue discernment and action around community outreach. The congregation was excited by this work that the settled pastor started shortly before he moved to another part of the country. They are looking for a leader to help them take next steps and grow new ministries.
I hope you’ll consider submitting your profile to one or more of our churches. If you’d like your profile sent, please email that request to email@example.com. If you’d like to talk about your discernment or our conference, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can set up a meeting.
Blessings on your search,
Rev. Kevin McLemore