“I [we] can do all things through Christ who strengthens me [us].”
Philippians 4:13, par
Dear siblings in Christ,
May the grace and peace of God be with you in the New Year!
I thank God for the honor of serving United Methodists of Upper New York as your new episcopal leader. My family and I are grateful for the many expressions of hospitality we have received from clergy, laity, and staff as we transition into a new missional assignment, home, and community. We look forward to getting to know you better and doing life and ministry together in the coming years. You can learn more about our journey thus far here. You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram @BishopHectorABurgos.
During the month of December, I transitioned out of my previous role as District Superintendent. I also had the opportunity to meet with Bishop Mark Webb, the appointive cabinet, and the executive staff team several times to learn the ways you are already living into God’s vision of living the Gospel of Jesus Christ and being God’s love with our neighbors in all places. I have also learned about your focus on growing the leadership capacity for fruitful ministry through Upper New York congregations, launching New Faith Communities, and ending the sin of racism. I am inspired by the progress being made, the new learnings, and the many stories of faithful mission and service in the community.
In the weeks to come, I will continue working with the cabinet, preparing for the 2023 appointment season, and organizing our ministry together in 2023 and beyond.
During February and March, I will visit all UNY regions to meet with clergy and congregational leaders to learn about your ministries and hopes for The Upper New York Conference. I hope to see you there. You can learn about dates, times, and locations here.
We are living in unprecedented times in the Church and the world – a global pandemic, extreme weather, the war in Ukraine, political polarization in the US, decline in congregational engagement, disaffiliations, and uncertainty about the future of our denomination, amongst others. In this challenging context, God is calling us to shine brightly with the light of Christ, sharing faith, love, mercy, and justice with all people and in all places – and that’s exactly what we will do TOGETHER.
As we begin a new year and season of ministry, I pray for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit over all UNY leaders and congregations that lead us outwardly into our communities to be God’s love with all people.
I am looking forward to the journey,
Bishop Héctor A. Burgos Núñez
Upper New York Area