General Synod

Synod - A Powerful Experience

Cleo Graham


This year I attended my second General Synod or National meeting of the United Church of Christ delegates, visitors and guests from throughout the church. Synod is held every two years at a location in the United States. Synod 2017 in Baltimore officially began June 30 and ended July 4, 2017. However, I also attended pre and post Synod events, therefore, I arrived in Baltimore on June 28 and I returned home on July 5. To learn about Synod go to for sixteen minutes ...

Synod Opened My Eyes and Heart

Patricia Safstrom


WOW!  Imagine worshiping with 2,700 hundred people.  Quite an image for me coming from a small congregation with a membership of 42 and average Sunday attendance of about 15.  You can’t help but feel the Holy Spirit within you. Not that I haven’t had this feeling in our church but this was a Holy Spirit saying you can do this and bring it all back to the Moosup Valley Congregational Church community. I was wishing I could have bottled up the feeling and experience that would ensure I was able to...

Synod: Together as One Body

Linda Hartley


This being my first General Synod, I wasn’t sure what to expect. From my “pre-Synod” preparation I did know that my time in Baltimore would be filled with worship experiences, plenary sessions, and workshops. And I had heard that Synod was like a big family reunion. As a Member in Discernment with the Rhode Island Conference I attended as a visitor, exploring as many of these experiences as possible. What impressed me the most was the dedication with which the delegates undertook their ...

United Church of Christ Declares a New Moral Era

James Antal


It was a big claim: “Imperatives for a New Moral Era.”    It was a big ask: to “resist all expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure and demand new sources of renewable energy that are accessible to all communities” and to write a new story for America – “a story that is not dependent on fossil fuel or on wealth for the few and misery for the many.”   It demands that the church itself “bear witness.”  Unlike so many resolutions passed at Church gatherings, instead of criticizing the injustice of ...

#UCCGS: We Try SO Hard. We Still Make Mistakes

Tiffany Vail


I don't often write blog posts about my personal experiences. In the 20 years I've been doing Conference communication work, I've put most of my energy into telling the stories of others, or empowering them to tell their own stories. But I am on the train returning from my first United Church of Christ General Synod, and I feel the need to share my own perspective. What struck me the most at Synod was how hard everyone tries to live out what it means to be a multicultural, ...

Synod, Here We Come!

Barbara Libby


We are quickly coming up on the United Church of Christ’s Synod in Baltimore, Md. which begins this Friday, June 30th and runs through July 4th. Thousands from across the country – both lay and authorized ministers from every Conference as well as the National setting - will gather for General Synod 31.