United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands

UCJCI Update

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Synodical Ash Wednesday Convocation!!

Wednesday Jan 22, 2020

On February 26, 2020, all Regions of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands will host their Synodical Ash Wednesday Convocation, under the theme, “#Evangelism:The  Heartbeat of the Church"!!
In each location, the event will be rich with inspiring worship, a message from our Moderator, the Rt. Rev. Dr. Gordon Cowans, communion celebration, special programmes for children, youth, men and women, break out groups discussions on evangelism to the said categories of persons, and a sermon. 

LEADERSHIP CORNER: From Perks to Price 
I’ve met a lot of people who desire to become leaders. I often ask them why they want to be leaders. Sometimes their answers reveal that their motivation is really about the perks of leading. They want to be in control. They want others to do what they say. They want a nicer office. They want a higher income. They want a better parking place.
When I started out as a young leader, my thoughts were similar. I was enamored with my title of pastor. It conveyed to me that I was the shepherd of the flock, and I thought people would automatically follow me because they needed me. They would rely on me for direction and be grateful for everything I did for them. It seemed simple.

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2020: The Year of Evangelism

Wednesday Jan 15, 2020
The United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands has declared 2020, “The Year of Evangelism”!  In doing so, we have committed to strengthening our focus on this area of ministry, to fulfil Christ’s G r e a t Commission to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you”. 

LEADERSHIP CORNER  -Lead Yourself Exceptionally Well 
Leading yourself is where leadership starts. If you wouldn’t follow yourself, why should anyone else? 
Have you ever worked with people who didn’t lead themselves well? Have you ever worked for people in leadership positions who couldn’t lead themselves? Consider the crow in this fable.
The crow was sitting in a tree, doing nothing all day. A small rabbit saw the crow and asked him, “Can I also sit like you and do nothing all day long?” “Sure,” answered the crow, “why not?” So the rabbit sat on the ground below the crow, following his example. All of a sudden a fox appeared, pounced on the rabbit, and ate him. The key to leading yourself well is to learn self-management. I have observed that most people put too much emphasis on decision making and too little on decision managing. As a result, they lack focus, discipline, intentionality, and purpose.

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The Pringle Home for Children: A Beacon of Hope

Wednesday Jan 08, 2020
The UCJCI’s Pringle Home for Children represents a beacon of hope in the lives its twentyfive (25) girls in residence, and many who have received care in the hands of its able management and staff. Situated in the hills of Carron Hall, St Mary, the Home was established in 1922 by Rev. and Mrs. James McNee and their daughter, Kathie. The construction of the building was undertaken through the monetary donation of then Custos Dr. John Pringle, in whose honour the Home was named.  

Leadership Corner:Leadership and the Influence Challenge
Most good leaders believe in themselves and their leadership. They are confident that if others would follow them, then the team would benefit and accomplish its goals. So why doesn’t that always happen? Why don’t people who report to them line up to follow? Because they don’t have to. Leadership is influence. That’s why good leaders work to change their thinking from “I want a position that will make people follow me” to, “I want to become a person whom people will want to follow”.

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SRMC Kidsquake 2019

Wednesday Dec 18, 2019
The UCJCI’s Southern Regional Mission Council (SRMC) hosted their ninth (9th) annual Kidsquake and Reading Competition on November 16, 2019 at Ridgemount United Church!

The one hundred and forty-eight (148) Church School students who registered for the event participated in the areas of music, speech, dance, reading and poster competitions.

Twelve (12) church schools across the Region participated. They included: Blue Mountain, Sunbury, Mineral Heights, Bryce, Ridgemount, Andrews Memorial, Happy Grove, Ebenezer, Salem, Hyde Park, first time entrant Longville Park Mission, and Lowe River United Churches.

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Moderator’s Visit to NERMC (Cluster 3)

Wednesday Dec 11, 2019
The Moderator of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, the Rt. Rev. Dr. Gordon Cowans, paid his first official visit to Cluster 3 of the NorthEastern Regional Mission Council (NERMC) on September 29, 2019. This was part of a schedule of ten (10) visits being paid by the Moderator across our four (4) Regions during his two-year term in office.  This visit to our congregations in Portland was comprised of a worship service at Buff Bay United Church, led by Pastor Clyde Shaw. All UCJCI congregations in the Cluster were represented,  amounting to a capacity-audience. 

LEADERSHIP CORNER -Leadershift from Pleasing People to Challenging People
You cannot lead people if you need people. Pleasing people is not the same as leading people. You might have, at some point, defined leadership as, “Make people happy and they will follow you.” You might have continually asked yourself one  question: “Is everybody happy?” But if you’re a leader, the answer is no. You can never make everyone happy. And wanting to do so is a setup for disappointment or failure.  

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Lucea United Church Hosts Public Lecture on Good Parenting

Wednesday Dec 04, 2019
Scores of residents in Hanover were engaged in a public lecture on good parenting, hosted by Lucea United Church  on November 19, 2019! The event, held at Bioprist in Lucea, was organized by the church’s Family Life Ministries in celebration of National Parent Month (November), under the theme, “ Be the Positive Influence :Saving the Youth of Your Community”. 
LEADERSHIP CORNER -Walk Slowly Through the Halls 
One of the greatest mistakes leaders make is spending too much time in their offices and not enough time out among the people. Leaders are often agenda-driven, taskfocussed, and action-oriented because they like to get things done. But leadership is a people business. 
If you forget the people, you’re undermining your leadership, and you run the risk of having it erode away. Then one day when you think you’re leading, you’ll turn around and discover that nobody is following and you’re only taking a walk.

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UCJCI Launches New Training for Lay Leaders

Wednesday Nov 27, 2019
The United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands has launched a newly designed and reenergized training for lay leaders , to equip members for kingdombuilding.  All members of the UCJCI who perform voluntarily in leadership roles in various ministries are lay leaders. 

LEADERSHIP CORNER -From Soloist to Conductor
One of the first and most important shifts anyone must make to become a leader is from soloist to conductor. You can be a successful person on your own, but not a successful leader.
Zig Ziglar said, “You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” It may require a focus shift from wanting the entire orchestra to serve you and your agenda, to acting like a conductor who works to bring out the best in everyone around you. You will find that the increased effort to first focus on others and add value to them increases the energy of those you lead—and it will increase your energy while you are leading them. You will discover that it is wonderful when the people help their leader, but it’s even more wonderful when the leader helps the people 

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The UCJCI’s Ordination Service 2019

Wednesday Nov 20, 2019
Thursday, November 14, 2019 was a memorable day in the life of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. Two (2) of our young people, Laddia D. Young and Alex D.C. Hayden were ordained to the Ministry of Word and Sacraments at Ridgemount United Church, Mandeville, Manchester! A moving service it was, that challenged Revds. Laddia and Alex - with the exuberance, freshness and vigour of the young - to a life of dedicated service in the mission of Christ. 

LEADERSHIP CORNER -Why Every Leader Needs to Leadershift 
Good leaders adapt. They shift. They don’t remain static because they know the world around them does not remain static. As leaders we can’t drag our feet or take loo long making assessments. We have to change, reread our situation, and change again. And continue changing.
How does a leader do more than just hang on and survive in such an environment? The key is to learn how to continually make leadershifts. What is a leadershift ?  It is an ability and willingness to make a leadership change that will positively enhance organizational and personal growth.

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The Chetolah Mel Nathan Education Centre Gains Ground

Wednesday Nov 13, 2019
Built by The Scott Foundation in 1994, in collaboration with then Minister of St. John’s United Church, Rev. Dr. Maitland Evans, and his team, the UCJCI’s Mel Nathan Preparatory School (the first inner city preparatory school in Jamaica) merged, on September 1, 2018, with Chetolah Park Infant and Primary School, to become The Chetolah Mel Nathan Education Centre, and the institution beams with promise!  

LEADERSHIP CORNER -The Vision Challenge
What would you rather do? See your own vision put into action and come to fruition? Or help others fulfil theirs? 
For people who want to lead, the answer is usually the former. Leaders see possibilities and they want to seize them. Most of the time they would rather work to fulfil their own vision than someone else’s—unless that other leader’s vision is really compelling and captivating. Leading from the middle, however, means that you will be asked to become a champion for a vision other than your own. In fact, the reality is that all the people in an organization other than the top leader are going to be asked to fulfil a vision they didn’t generate.

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We Celebrate Church School Month!!

Wednesday Nov 06, 2019
We celebrate Church School’s Month in November, under the theme, “Transformers for Christ — The Mission is Possible!”
Through this theme, the Children’s Ministry Commission sought to combine the theme of this year’s Vacation Bible School, “Transformers for Christ”, with the Synodical sub-theme for this Quarter, “The Disciple in Mission”.  This theme combination was chosen as a way of assisting and encouraging our church school children to engage in evangelistic mission among their family members, neighbours, classmates, friends, and even those who may be considered their enemies. 

The Fulfilment Challenge of Leadership

Wherever people find themselves in life, they usually possess the natural desire to move up. They want greater recognition. They want to make more money. They want to live in a better home. They want to advance and improve. 
Leaders are no different. They want to move up rather than stay put. They want to make a greater impact. They want to be at the front of a pack or the top of an organization, especially early in their lives and careers. But is being out front really all that’s it’s cracked up to be? I think the answer is yes and no. 

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United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands