Equipping, connecting, and celebrating the churches of the Michigan Conference

Michigan Conference of the United Church of Christ
No matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey – you are welcome here.

Calendar Monthly Newsletter Church Finder

Welcome to the Michigan Conference

Welcome to the wonderful world of the Michigan Conference, where, when you’ve seen one church, you’ve seen one church.  We have churches by cherry orchards, rust belts, tourist towns of fudge shops and food deserts without grocery stores, vacation mansions alongside a serious shortage of affordable housing, and pure recreational lakes down the road from cities whose drinking water is dirty. From city apartments, farmhouses, lake cottages, vacation mansions and, we make our spiritual homes together in 135 churches that include all the rich contrasts of our beautiful state.

Since becoming Conference Minister in 2022, you can see from my speaking schedule that I have spent most weekends visiting them. I can testify that no matter the size or setting, you will find a fascinating and faithful spiritual home here, whether you are looking for a place to worship or a place to preach. We can have the oldest congregation in a small town and be the first in that same town to welcome the queer community. We have new church starts without the burden of a building, meeting online or in coffee shops. We have historic churches whose stained glass windows, woodwork and masonry are a blessing of art and transcendence to their communities. We have congregations that are unapologetically black and congregations that have Alpine festivals. 

In large cities, rural villages, sprawling suburbs and fertile forests, our churches bear witness to the God who is still speaking, who desires justice and who welcomes all, no matter what, no matter who, no matter where you are on life’s journey. In the Michigan Conference, our Christian tradition may be two thousand years old but our thinking is not. If that sounds like you, come join us. 

Peace and Blessings, 

The Rev. Dr. Lillian Daniel

Leadership Lunch with Lillian Daniel – Widening the Welcome with Pronouns in Church

For Pride Month our discussion is about widening the welcome in churches with pronoun use. Join Conference Minister Lillian Daniel in conversation with Rev JM Richardson, Social Services Education and Facilitation Manager for the Ruth Ellis Institute, as they talk professionally and personally about the importance of pronouns as a welcoming and life saving need inside and outside the church.

WATCH the Leadership Lunch RECORDING

Caring Clergy Conference Communities

Conference Staff offers four monthly drop in groups on Zoom

Groups meet on Wednesdays from 12:00noon – 1:00pm

Pastors and MIDs may join these Caring Clergy Communities on Zoom any time.

First Wednesday Leadership Lunch with Lillian Daniel

Second Wednesday Book of the Month with Jenn Ringgold

Third Wednesday Clergy Cafe with Cheryl Burke

Fourth Wednesday Spiritual Practices for Pastors with Lawrence Richardson

Member in Discernment (Second Thursday and Third Monday) and Retired Clergy Cafe (First Thursday starting May 2) are also available for drop in.

Find Zoom Links on the Conference Calendar

2024 Solar Faithful Webinar

The Prophetic Integrity Mission Area Team invites you into learning and conversation about Solar Energy for local churches.  This webinar was recorded from a live event on May 23, 2024

Michigan Conference UCC churches with Solar Panel experience include:

  • Plymouth UCC, Grand Rapids
  • Edgewood UCC, East Lansing
  • Haslett Community Church, Haslett
  • Congregational Church of Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills

The fastest path to get a proposal from Solar Faithful is: Complete the Interest Form

Watch Webinar Recording HERE

Your Outward Facing Conference – by Lillian Daniel Michigan Conference Minister

As you read this, I am returning from the second annual, four-day, Michigan Conference Clergy Preaching retreat at beautiful Tower Hill Camp on the dunes of Lake Michigan. We are grateful to United Church Funds and their generosity to Conferences.  For this event all clergy participants received generous scholarships to reduce the cost of the event through a Brown grant, and Rev Penny Lowes, board member, was on site to share with us about UCF.  In addition to grant funding for the clergy retreat, most of the work of caring for clergy in the Michigan Conference is funded by what your local churches give through the “Basic Support” designation of “Our Church’s Wider Mission.” (OCWM)

There are many ways to support the denomination within OCWM. Through special envelope offerings such as the Christmas Fund (which the Michigan Conference sends straight to the national Pension Board to help retired clergy in need) or One Great Hour of Sharing (that we send straight to the National Setting of the UCC for their ministry of disaster relief.) But it is your “Basic Support” gift within OCWM that stays most local and allows us to equip, encourage and connect the churches and clergy of the Michigan Conference, responding to real needs, right here and right now.

READ FULL Conference Minister Message

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