The United Church of Canada’s People in Partnership program has set receiving global partners as Co-workers and Companions into communities of faith across the United Church as a priority for 2018. We are extending an invitation to interested United Church communities of faith to enter into a discernment process of hosting such global partners. There is opportunity for one to two placements in 2018.
To get started, consider:
- Who are you?
- What would your community of faith be able to offer as a host?
- How will a global partnership be a mutually enriching experience for the global partner and the community of faith?
- Will the ministry setting allow for our global partners to engage the work of the denomination?
- How are you able to offer pastoral accompaniment/social accompaniment/placement supervision?
Global partner placements exist through shared funding with the People in Partnership program and the community of faith. The deadline to submit proposals is May 31, 2017, with a formal decision-making and selection process to be completed by June 30, 2017.
It is important to remember that this process will take time; it requires formal invitations, partner search processes, interviews, visas, and so on. Upon acceptance as a Co-worker or Companion placement site, it is expected that one to two members of the community will take part in a Deepening Understanding for Intercultural Ministry (DUIM) program (funding available from the General Council Office) before the partner arrives.
To assist your community of faith in the discernment process, please find a helpful workbook available for download at the bottom of the page. Once you have completed this process, your community should have an affirmed decision of whether hosting a co-worker or companion stream appointment is the right fit. If you have discerned that hosting is right for you, please continue to the online survey to let the People in Partnership team know of your interest.
If you have discerned that a Pilgrim stream would be a better fit, please visit Pilgrims in Mission and contact pip [at] united-church.ca for more information. If you are unsure if this is an opportunity for you, or you are left with more questions, or need our assistance, please reach out to pip [at] united-church.ca
As you begin to reflect on the questions, you are invited to do so prayerfully, with a Faith Community Connection Group and with the support of your council or equivalent. A Faith Community Connection Group is a small team of people whose mandate is to support and connect their faith community and those individuals or groups who are journeying as part of a global people exchange. In order to create the best support team possible, we recommend such a group include
- 3 to 6 people
- at least one member with experience in the related global issues and context;
- at least one member with experience in pastoral support
- at least one member from the broader United Church of Canada, not a member of the faith community
- possibly one member from the local outreach community
- one person who has completed the DUIM training
The roles and goals of a Faith Community Connection Group are to
- be a safe space of support and encouragement for the global partner
- accompany the global partner in transformative learning
- connect and engage their faith community with the experiences of the global partner
- connect and engage the global partner in social experiences within the broader community
The downloadable document below is a discernment tool. It is helpful for your Faith Community Connection Group p to work through it together before responding to the online proposal process. You may wish to do this in one meeting or over several meetings, depending on your timeline. At the end of the discernment process, you may find that you are not currently in a place to host a global partner. Or you may discover an even deeper call for your community of faith to get engaged. If at any time you need assistance, please reach out to the People in Partnership team at pip [at] united-church.ca .