Most of you will recall the Abbot and Costello comedy entitled, “Who’s on First?” While reflecting on the changes in our Leadership Team at EFC-MAYM during the past several years, it feels a bit like that. As you are aware by now, David and Carol Williams are in the process of moving into a new season of ministry at Malone College, in Canton, OH.
With their departure this has left two big holes to fill in our EFC-MAYM leadership structure. Upon receiving word of David Williams resignation as Lead Superintendent, the EFC-MAYM Elders met to discuss next steps. After a brief time of discussion, they asked me to move into a full-time position as our General Superintendent for the remainder of 2022. After considering this request, I proposed increasing Tony/Stacey Wheeler from ½ time to ¾ time and working toward a similar arrangement as David and I have operated under during the past couple of years. I would continue to focus primarily on the missional side of our ministry, while Tony and Stacey would continue in their role as Directors of Pastoral and Church Health while taking on oversight of the formational side of EFC-MAYM as David Williams has done. I would also assume the overall administrative leadership of EFC-MAYM.
Our Elders approved continuing this team form of leadership for the remainder of 2022, pending the approval of the Representatives at our annual Ministry Conference in July. At the end of 2022 these roles will be reassessed to determine whether to continue with this model or move in a different direction.
Due to the significant demands upon any one individual as General Superintendent, I believe the team approach David and I have operated under for the past couple of years makes a lot of sense. By having two “superintendents”, each focusing on their areas of greatest strength, our Yearly meeting benefits from two people fulfilling the responsibilities of the job while working in areas closest tied to their calling.
In light of these changes, Tony and my titles will change slightly. I will take on the title of “Lead Superintendent” while Tony’s title will change slightly to “Superintendent of Pastoral and Church Health.”
Stacey will remain as “Co-Director of Pastoral and Church Health”. During the pastor’s gathering before Ministry Conference, we will be sharing more of our vision with the pastors. Both of us will also be available during Ministry Conference to converse one-on-one regarding our new roles.
I am also happy to announce that Janet Penna has once again assumed the position of Office Administrator, in addition to her role as our bookkeeper. Janet brings invaluable knowledge and skill to the EFC-MAYM office. We are glad to have her with us in this capacity again. The office will officially be open M-F from 8:30 -11:30 a.m. If you need in the office at other times, please contact Janet (firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you have questions, or concerns, regarding our plan moving forward, please don’t hesitate to contact me or your Area Elder. We believe the conclusion of our Sesquicentennial Year is just the beginning of something new God is doing within Evangelical Friends Church-Mid America.
Thayne Thompson, DMin
EFC-MAYM Lead Superintendent