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    United Methodists of Upper New YorkLiving the Gospel. Being God's Love.


    Appointment-Making Values and Practices

    In The United Methodist Church, the responsibility for appointment-making is given to the resident bishop and district superintendents of the annual conference. All appointments are prayerfully made to continue moving forward The Church’s mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

    While appointment-making is a sacred task that happens year-round, most appointments are made from January through May 1 and then finalized at the regular session of annual conference.

    The following values guide the Upper New York (UNY) Cabinet in their discernment process for appointment-making:

    • Pursue God’s vision for congregations and their communities
    • Match gifts, graces, and strengths
    • Acknowledge and honor our diversity
    • Connectionalism and itinerancy
    • Interpersonal relationships and conflict resolution
    • Pursue equity in the appointment process and decisions
    • Excellence, effectiveness, and fruitfulness

    During the appointment discernment process, the cabinet pays special attention to the ethnic, cultural, and theological makeup of the congregation. The personal needs of pastors are also important to the superintendents and the bishop.

    Guided by the Holy Spirit, the cabinet base appointments on

    1. God’s vision for the congregation, and the missional needs/opportunities in the community, the congregation, and the UNY Conference.
    2. A congregation’s willingness, passion, and track record of collaborating with pastoral leadership to faithfully move forward the mission and God’s vision for their community.
    3. A pastor’s willingness, passion, ability, and track record engaging a congregation and the community in faithful and fruitful collaborative ministry.

    The cabinet and the bishop also consider

    • The conflict level of the congregation and other sensitive issue(s) that might be impacting the congregation’s health and fruitfulness
    • The congregation’s ability and track record of paying apportionments, pension, and health benefits. As needed, the Cabinet will “right-size” the appointment or align the congregation with another congregation to ensure long-term sustainability.

    When discerning appointments, the cabinet prayerfully considers the following three missional-critical questions:

    1. Is the potential pastor’s character and personality good for the congregation and the community?
    2. Do the potential pastor's spiritual gifts, skills, and experiences intersect with the congregation's needs, hopes, aspirations, and the community?
    3. Will this appointment maximize disciple-making in the unique context of the congregation?

    When the cabinet makes appointments, they consider full-time appointments first, then work on less than full-time appointments.

    Open Churches
    During the regular appointment season, on Wednesdays, the cabinet will post on the UNY website a list of the open churches that are currently being considered. Clergy who are interested in being considered for one of these churches are to let their superintendent know exclusively via email by Thursday at 3 p.m. and share why you believe you would serve the congregation well. The Cabinet will prayerfully consider these requests during their discernment process.

    Clergy communicating their interest in an open church,

    • Must understand that requesting to be considered for an appointment is advisory in nature and does not guarantee you will be appointed to the open church.
    • Cannot, in any way, communicate with the members or the pastor of the open church to advocate on their behalf.
    • Can be assured that their request to the cabinet will remain confidential, will not affect their current appointment, and will not be shared with your current church’s Staff-Parish Relations Committee (SPRC).


    Pastors and congregations may ask for reconsideration of an introduced appointment if there are serious concerns based on missional reasons (pastor’s or congregation’s ability to spread personal and social holiness and lead the congregation in growing the five core ministries of worship, evangelism, faith formation, hands-on missions, and generosity). The following will not be considered: race, ethnic origin, gender, color, disability, marital status, age, or educational achievement of a pastor or congregation, as well as the location and size of a congregation. Based on the reflections and prayer by the pastor, the SPRC, and the superintendents, the bishop will make the final decision on a request for reconsideration based on missional reasons.

    New Appointments
    Each Wednesday, at 1 p.m., the official announcement of new appointments are posted on the UNY website.

    With more than 100,000 members, United Methodists of Upper New York comprises of more than 675 local churches and New Faith Communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our vision is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."