Fiona as Moderator

By Rev Fiona Bennett (From Seeds October 2021)

Much to my surprise, I have been elected to serve as the Moderator of the URC General Assembly, 2022 to 2023, beginning in July next year.

This will involve moderating the meetings of the General Assembly and Assembly Executive, visiting local churches across Wales, England and Scotland, representing the URC on some occasions and being available to committees and people within the URC to offer support where it is useful.

I feel very privileged to be offered the opportunity to meet such a broad range of people across the URC and beyond, and to hear their stories of joy and challenge as disciples and pilgrims in our time. I hope to particularly meet communities who celebrate the experience of people who are LGBTQI+, black and people of colour, and those who are adventuring into the new world of being church digitally.

This year (July 2021—2022) I am Moderator Elect, which means I have a year to try and get up to speed on the URC and work out what I will be doing next year. And from July 2023, I will be the immediate past General Assembly Moderator for a year, and so available to support the new Moderator for that year.

This means that to varying extents, for the next three years my calling is to serve our broad URC community in a new way alongside serving the communities of AUC and the Synod of Scotland. A significant part of the planning which I am involved with now is to work out with AUC what support needs to be in place so that the next three years are enriching for the whole AUC community.

There will undoubtedly be change, but life is always a constant process of change. The gift we have to face change in the church and in life is the knowledge that we are surrounded and supported by a living God of love who can turn each change into an experience of new and abundant life. All we have to do is open our minds and hearts to perceive it and trust in our very creative God.