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Board Summary Letter

By

Dear Co-Laborer for Christ,

The Board of Directors of The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) met before and at the end of Council in Columbus, Ohio, on May 29–30 and June 4, 2017. Board meetings that coincide with Council have an abbreviated duration and agenda as well as a change in composition due to elections during Council. The following summarizes the Board proceedings to the extent allowed by the duty of confidentiality owed on various issues.

The meeting started on Monday afternoon with a devotional time led by John Thomas. In summary, John challenged us to remain forcefully aware of God’s provision in our lives as we have all faced many and varied challenges which originally felt unsurmountable but which God eventually worked out. This awareness brings God’s peace to our lives, which we can’t explain but can experience in a profound way.

Our president, John Stumbo, made some opening remarks and shared his heart for Council week. There was much shared anticipation for the coming week! Pre-registration was the highest in almost 30 years, and the Spirit-fueled enthusiasm of the previous Council was still with us. John shared his pre-Council conversations with Convention Center staff which highlighted that our gathering is not about any particular product or performance on stage. It is about people, family gathering together, and the very special and most important person to us, Jesus. A recurring conversation regarding anger and forgiveness ran through our meetings, describing forgiveness as a process which can only be completed when our gaze and faith are placed on Jesus. There was an extended time of prayer for Council, that God would give us attitudes of humility and gratefulness, ears to hear the Word preached, and the Spirit’s assistance to receive that Word.

During an executive session, John shared his plans for his second term and the emphasis he will be placing on different initiatives and his plans for re-shaping the Office of Church Ministries.

Michael G. Scales gave a report on the financial challenges being faced by Nyack/Alliance Theological Seminary (ATS) and the strategy implemented to determine a path forward. Several Board members who are also on the Nyack/ATS board shared their thoughts with the Board.

On Tuesday morning, the Board received mainly positive reports regarding the C&MA retirement centers: Chapel Pointe at Carlisle; The Christian and Missionary Alliance Foundation (includes both Shell Point and the Alliance Community for Retirement Living); and Town and Country Manor. The Board also acted upon nominations to the board of directors of Nyack College/ATS, Town and Country Manor, and The Alliance Development Fund.

The Board received and acted upon reports from International Ministries, Operations/Finance, Church Ministries, and Development. Notably, the Board approved the appointment of six international workers for service with the C&MA in various locations, bringing the total for the year to 19. We are all grateful for their disposition to serve and will continue working hard to provide all the support and assistance they, along with all of our international workers, need and depend on us to provide.

On Sunday morning, the Board met and welcomed the new members elected at Council and thanked those members whose terms had expired for their service and dedication. Jonathan G. Schaeffer was elected as Board chairperson, and Terry D. Smith was elected as Board vice chairperson. Both Stephen D. Fowler and Jessie L. Ritchey were elected to the Executive Committee.

Comments on Council were shared, many on minor details and possible improvements but generally very favorable and enthusiastic. A renewed openness to the Spirit is among us. There was anticipation and expectation regarding the four regional events scheduled for 2018, a non-Council year, which focus on the deeper life. The meeting adjourned so that Board members could attend the last session of Council. The mood was uplifting and exciting.

In Christ’s love,

Steven C. Lausell
Corporate Secretary

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