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

    news article

    Realignment for Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding and Rev. Dr. Aaron Bouwens

    February 22, 2023 / By UNY Communications

    Over the past six weeks, Upper New York (UNY) Area Resident Bishop, Héctor A. Burgos Núñez, has assessed the UNY executive staff structure and portfolios. After much prayer and discernment, Bishop Héctor is excited to announce two realignments in the executive team, effective March 1, 2023.

    1. The Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding will be appointed as Assistant to the Bishop of the Upper New York Area of The United Methodist Church. In this updated role, Rev. Gottschalk-Fielding will lead as the Chief of Staff for the Upper New York Area, where he will facilitate the work of the resident bishop, oversee the UNY strategic plan, and lead the episcopal office, executive staff, administrative Conference teams, and leaders in support of UNY’s mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

    About his realigned role, Rev. Gottschalk-Fielding said, “Serving as Upper New York’s first Director of Connectional Ministries has been an incredible honor. I’ve learned and grown in ways I could not have imagined 12 years ago when Bishop Matthews invited me to serve in that role. The changes Bishop Héctor initiates with my new appointment will allow me to deepen and broaden my work as Assistant to the Bishop and position the Rev. Dr. Aaron Bouwens to leverage his considerable gifts in leadership development.”

    1. The Rev. Dr. Aaron Bouwens will be appointed to serve in a new position as Director of Missional Excellence, where he will head the leadership development, congregational development, and missional engagement ministries throughout UNY. In this new role, Rev. Dr. Bouwens will develop, organize, oversee, and evaluate the programs and initiatives to increase leadership capacity, congregational health and fruitfulness, missional engagement, and the effectiveness of all programmatic boards, agencies, and teams in support of UNY’s mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

    About his realigned role, Rev. Dr. Bouwens said, “It is an honor to be invited into this new role in the life of the Conference. These are exciting times to share in leadership, and it is a joy to serve in this season. Over the next several months, I look forward to times of listening and learning so we can take the next faithful steps of resourcing leaders and congregations around the Conference.”

    Click here to view the job description for Assistant to the Bishop.

    Click here to view the job description for Director of Missional Excellence.

    “Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding and Rev. Dr. Aaron Bouwens have effectively led UNY in their current positions. In this new configuration, which leverages their combined spiritual gifts, skills, and experiences, they will collaborate with the Cabinet and me in leading UNY toward further clarity, alignment, and focus in all areas of the Conference so that we can continue moving forward with the mission during these liminal times with excellence and deepen our work of equipping and resourcing our leaders and congregations for world-changing ministry,” said Bishop Héctor. “Please join me in congratulating Bill and Aaron on this new missional assignment and in praying for them during this transition,” Bishop Burgos added.

    In the coming days, Rev. Gottschalk-Fielding and Rev. Dr. Bouwens will begin transitioning into their new roles and working with the appropriate individuals, teams, and staff.

    TAGGED / Communications / Connectional Ministries / Episcopal Office / Vital Congregations / Bishop Burgos

    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."