ABHMS holds virtual first gathering for members of American Baptist National Network of Chaplains, Pastoral Counselors, Specialized Ministers

VALLEY FORGE, PA (6/24/20)—Thirty-four chaplains, pastoral counselors and other specialized ministers who serve in all parts of the world participated in a virtual first meeting of the newly formed American Baptist National Network of Chaplains, Pastoral Counselors & Specialized Ministers on Friday, June 12, via American Baptist Home Mission Societies’ (ABHMS) ministrElife social media platform.

The purpose of the casual evening gathering was to serve as a meet and greet. Participants enjoyed their favorite beverages and snacks as they connected with each other for a high-spirited evening of fellowship. Smooth jazz music played in the background. Network liaisons the Rev. Angel Sullivan and life coach Elaine Cody kept the group engaged with ice breakers in a warm and inviting space.

“Having served in campus ministry, I have personally experienced the ministry of presence with others, including offering a listening ear and empathic heart,” said ABHMS Executive Director Dr. Jeffrey Haggray, who brought greetings and shared his experiences as a student campus minister, pastor and former regional executive. “I am pleased to see this vision for a network of chaplains, pastoral counselors and specialized ministry professionals come to life and grow to 103 members since its inception in January 2020.”

Dr. Patricia Murphy, BCC, ecclesiastical endorser and national coordinator for ABHMS’ Chaplaincy and Specialized Ministries, expressed her appreciation and shared her vision for network membership and future opportunities for connecting.

“Tonight I celebrate convening an amazing network of ministry professionals who endeavor to meet the needs of humanity during these challenging times in a complex world,” she said.

The Rev. Greta Wagner, ACPE educator and network liaison, shared her gratitude.

“Thanks so much! Very helpful!,” she said. “Thank you, Dr. Pat, for leading us to this amazing new moment of connection!”

Fire Chaplain Rob MacReynolds added, “Thank you for the opportunity to be part of this uplifting meet and greet in Christ.”

Network membership remains open. If you are a certified, noncertified, active or retired American Baptist chaplain, pastoral counselor, licensed counselor, spiritual director, specialized minister, other clergy in a nontraditional setting, seminarian or volunteer in the aforementioned fields, you can join today for the extended new member rate of $49 until September 2020. The rate increases to $69 on October 1, 2020.

To apply for membership, visit ABHMS’ Chaplaincy & Specialized Ministries web page and click “Join Today.”

American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.