United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands



Council Meeting – January 21, 2023

The Cayman Islands Regional Mission Council met on Saturday, January 21, 2023, in the Elmslie Memorial United Church Hall. All Charges were represented.


All Congregations provided Council with an update.

i. Robert Young Memorial Mission Station

• Continuing concern and prayers for Lay Pastor Macmillan and his family.
• Church membership remains small.
• Parking remains a great challenge.

ii. John Gray- South Sound Charge
• There are positive interactions between the two congregations.
• A joint training event for worship planners and leaders was held in September 2022 and the next one is planned for the end of January 2023.
• In-person  Sunday School resumed in both congregations.
• Local Mission: the Charge supports the Bethesda Counselling Centre, the Elmslie Soup Kitchen, the Francis Bodden Children’s Home, and the Crisis Centre. JGMC has recently introduced the Young Families Outreach Programme. JGMC also has a soup kitchen, pantry ministry, and afterschool programme. They also started a community garden.
• Overseas Mission: the Charge is involved with Pringle Home and the Mount Olivet Boys’ Home and Wycliffe Bible Translators.

iii. Elmslie Memorial Charge
Five youths will be baptized in February. Two families are in the process of transferring their membership from overseas.
• The Evangelism Committee is planning for ‘community saturation’ in the neighbourhood, one community at a time.
• A new worship format is being introduced.
• Youth Ministry is growing. The Friday night meetings are attended by over 30 people. There is a plan for an After-School programme to begin in February.
• Sunday Worship Streaming is far-reaching, and the number of viewers is increasing. In 2022 the services had approximately 15,000 views and 138 new subscribers on YouTube alone. On average there are 200 views each week.
• Local outreach ministry includes the Elmslie Emergency Assistance Programme and pantry ministry, (weekly distribution of meals, medication, and Foster’s Supermarket cards). About 80 people are served weekly.
• Global Mission: the Congregation continues to be engaged with mission partners around the world. The Marlie Hill UC in Jamaica received assistance towards building their new sanctuary (a contribution was made toward the tiling of the sanctuary floor).

iv. Bodden Town - Savannah Charge
• The first joined service of the new Charge will be held on the 5th Sunday in January 2023.
• The first joined Board meeting to evaluate the realignment will be in April 2023.
• The steady increase in worship attendance continues.
• Youth ministry is vibrant and strong.
• Evangelism and outreach include a Community Care Programme (meals, gift packages, and food deliveries three times a week). The Youth Ministry is also very active in community outreach (special events, engagements with schools).
• Six new members were received in December 2022.

v. North-East Charge
• The three Congregations of the new Charge are committed to working together.
• Small congregations with mostly elderly members.
• Grateful for the financial assistance received in 2022.
• The finances of the William Pouchie Memorial Church are strong.
• Repairs to the EEUC Hall are completed.
• The WPMC will seek to identify a replacement for the Music Director/Youth Minister Mr Garth Webster who will be leaving in March 2023.


Moderator Elect
Rt Rev. Gary Harriott is the Moderator Elect and will be inducted for his second term during the Opening Service of the 43rd Synod of the UCJCI, held on April 23, 2023.

Two surveys were distributed among the Council Members, one regarding House Church Liturgy and another on the subject of the Preaching Themes. Council Members completed and submitted them at the end of the Council Meeting.

43rd Synod of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands
Theme: Rooted and Resilient: Reignited by the Spirit
Hosted by the Cayman Islands Regional Mission Council

• Each Charge is expected to identify a contact person to coordinate with the CIRMC-Synod Planning Team regarding accommodation, transportation, and food.
• The Honoree of the Public Lecture is Mr J. Bryan Bothwell MBE and Rev Dr Collin Cowan is the Guest Lecturer. The Elmslie Memorial Church is the venue for the Public Lecture at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, April 26, 2023.
Mr Heber Arch MBE is a Special Synod Honoree, and he will be duly recognized during the Service of Life and Witness on Tuesday, April 25, 2023, at 6:30 pm. The Elmslie Memorial Church is the venue for the Service.
Mrs Aliceann Kirchman Mr Lewin Handel Whittaker are the Lay Awardees from this Council. Their awards will be presented at the Service of Life and Witness.
• The Registration Portal for Delegates is opened, and Council Delegates and Observers are encouraged to register. The reMr Edmund King and Mrs Debra Humphreygistration fee is CI$135. The deadline for registration is February 15, 2023.
• The Men’s Fellowship can identify an Observer and the fees will be covered by the Discipleship MAT budget.
• Substitute Delegates can be identified and registered by the Congregations where necessary. In that case, the Synod Delegate must be named on the Synod Roll, but the Substitute Delegate is to be registered on the Portal.
Mr Edmund King and Mrs Debra Humphreys are the  Examiners of Records.
Ms Melody McLean will serve on the Listening Team.
Rev. Donovan Myers will sit on the Synod Resolution Committee.
Synod Bible Study: each day at 6:00 AM a pre-recorded Bible Study will be available online, hopefully, the day before. At 8:30 AM a Bible Study discussion will be held. Each Regional Mission Council will be represented on the discussion panel daily.
• There will be a Cayman Immersion on Friday, April 28, 2023, for the Members of Synod.
• Synod closes on Sunday, April 30, 2023, at 4:00 pm. The service will be held at the Elmslie Memorial Church.
• Persons are required to serve as hosts and drivers. Please contact the Council Office or your local Congregation for more information.

RDGS Report
Based on the theme for the Synodical period, Rooted and Resilient: Reignited by the Spirit, and the Strategic Direction of the Synod, each Regional Mission Council has been assigned a specific focus. The focus for the CIRMC is REALIGN.
The RDGS called to the Council Members’ attention to the following interpretation and development of the acronym REALIGN
• R - Renew our Covenant         
• E - Enabled by the Holy Spirit       
• A - Attend to the Children and Youth                              
• L - Lead people to Christ                                                  
• I - Increase the response to the needs of others           
• G - Grow in Grace                                                            
• N - Nourished by the Spirit                                               

Highlights of the Preliminary Results of 2022
• Preliminary results for the Council Office as of December 31, 2022, show a net surplus of approximately $364 which is about $3,900 less than the $4,300 surplus budgeted originally.
• Total income was $11,000 less than budgeted.
• Total expenses were $7,000 less than budgeted.
• The results of 2022 are a significant improvement over the 2021 budget, which showed a $79,000 deficit. The improved position is due to an increase in revenue of approximately $41,000 and reduced expenses of approximately $38,900.
• The Council maintained a positive cash flow throughout 2022 and had a reconciled closing cash balance of approx. $12,800.
• There were no receivables from Congregations at the end of 2022, and every Congregation provided its assessments to the Council Office in a timely manner.
• Every Treasurer has received the updated Consolidated Workbook and a detailed checklist for submission of returns and all supporting documentation, including the complete details of bank statements. The deadline for submission is February 10, 2023.


Rev. Mason updated Council Members on the plans for the Ash Wednesday Gathering, on February 22, 2023
Theme: Healed and Restored- Body, Mind and Spirit
Venue: Prospect Youth Centre – beach
Time: 6:30 am to 9:00 am
Features: Worship and Prayers, Reflection on Healing, Sacrament of Holy Communion, Fellowship Meal


Cayman United Church Corporation (CUCC)
The Leadership MAT brought to the Council two proposals. One was made for the replacement of Mr Bryan Bothwell and Mr Leonard Ebanks on the Cayman United Church Corporation (CUCC) by Mr Donnell Dixon and Mr Bernard McGrath. This proposal also included that Mr Dixon and Mr McGrath would be added to the NPO registration as Senior Officers and also as Signatories to the bank accounts.
Council Members voted in the affirmative for the new members of the CUCC.

The other proposal from the MAT was made for adding Mr Clive Hinds as a Co-Chair to the Property Committee. All Members voted in favour of this proposal.


Peace Initiative
The engagement with the Cayman Islands Crisis Centre, as the Peace Initiative project of the CIRMC, was a great success in December 2022. A cheque of CI$3050.00 and CI$200.00 in grocery gift cards were presented to the Crisis Center in December. Further donations will be made to the Crisis Centre in April, July and December 2023.

A Strategic Planning Session of the CPHS Board of Governors and Senior Management Team was held recently to address the matters of possible expansion and how to respond to the needs and demands of the time. Remaining accessible to the wider segment of the local population is also a goal. A Diversity and Inclusion Workshop will be conducted on January 26-27, 2023 for the leadership, staff, students and parents of the school.

Posted by: Administrator Friday Feb 10, 2023 16:01
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United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands