Summary of 5/17 Meeting with PVUMC Lay Leaders/Select Staff/Pastor Dave/Bishop Bob Hoshibata
On Wednesday, May 18, Bishop Bob Hoshibata from the Desert Southwest Conference met with a group of PVUMC lay leaders to discuss the letter they had sent to him requesting reconsideration of his decision to appoint the Rev. Eve Williams, PVUMC’s current Associate Pastor, to Advent United Methodist Church in Las Vegas. The Bishop explained that he had prayerfully considered the letter and wanted to meet with the group in person to better understand concerns before he gave them his final decision.
The Bishop listened to and acknowledged the group’s concerns regarding recent fragility and lost relationships. After a lengthy discussion, Bishop Bob requested that the group break for a few minutes to allow time for him to pray in the Chapel before making a decision. Upon his return, the Bishop shared the process surrounding the appointment of Pastor Eve, explaining that this year has been an especially difficult one for clergy placements. In the end, he said that after weighing all the options and considering all the extenuating circumstances, both personal and professional, he chose to stand by his decision to appoint Pastor Eve to Advent UMC. He said that the gifts God gave her and the training she received here at PVUMC will help the congregation regain its footing and grow. He also said that the Conference would make sure Eve and her son, William, would be cared for in Las Vegas.
The Bishop explained that appointment of clergy was one of his most important responsibilities and, while he did not change the decision to move Eve, he took full responsibility for the process of Eve’s appointment and apologized for the lack of consultation with laity of the church. He then committed to reviewing the process of appointments with his cabinet and ensuring improvement of the process going forward. He also shared faith in the potential for PVUMC to strengthen and grow, reaffirming that we had made the right decision with our welcoming statement and that it would help us reach our future potential.
He also heard the concerns and reluctance around reducing our pastoral staff to one elder and asked the lay leaders to put together a list of qualifications PVUMC would like to see in an associate pastor. The Finance Ministry Team will be looking at ways to support two elders, considering half, three-quarter and full-time options. The Bishop pledged the Cabinet’s support to find PVUMC just the right person to fill our associate position after he receives PSPRC’s recommendation for what type of person would be best, and what the church can afford. He gave a strong pledge that he and the cabinet will work with PVUMC laity to provide the assistance we need as we determine the skill sets necessary for us to move forward with renewed faith for our programs.
While the decision was not what the group hoped for, they recognized through discussion that the strength of the church lies in the relationships that we as members have with each other. While we love and cherish our clergy, and will miss Eve very much, we understand that the appointment system necessarily brings about change. It is up to us to unite and create our future. As the Bishop and his cabinet seek clergy assistance for Senior Pastor Dave Summers, we must step up to what the church needs. In doing so, we realize that the experience has taught us an important lesson in decision making, and we will commit to clear, concise, and transparent communication in all that we do. We will support Pastor Eve and William in their new journey. We will support and assist Pastor Dave. And we ask for the support of all members as we hopefully look to the future and seek to live out our Mission. Let’s once again become “Alive with the Spirit.” Let’s continue to be God’s love in action. And let’s ignite faith, transform lives, and create community.
— Pat Bacon, on behalf of the Pastor/Staff/Parish Relations Committee
Love Gift for Pastor Eve and Reception
The PSPRC invites you to give Pastor Eve a love gift in thanks for all she has done here as PVUMC’s Associate Pastor and help her and her son, William, on their journey to Las Vegas. Visit GIVE NOW online and include “love gift for Pastor Eve” in the comments section. Join us for a farewell reception Sunday, June 11 after all services.