Conference, First Somerville launch Queer Pastoral Residency

Conference, First Somerville launch Queer Pastoral Residency

The Southern New England Conference and First Church Somerville (MA) begin accepting applications today for the new Queer Pastoral Residency, a pilot initiative that will provide a “first call” opportunity for an LGBTQIA+ (queer) ordination candidate.

The resident will serve three-quarter time at First Church Somerville and one-quarter time with the Conference. The congregation and Conference are jointly funding the position.
“I could not be more delighted about the launch of this innovative program,” said Rev. James D. Ross II, SNEUCC Minister for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. “Both the Southern New England Conference and First Somerville will meet critically important staffing needs as we simultaneously expand our welcome and diversity. I believe this will move us closer to who we seek to be and is an invitation to us all to be transformed as the pastor called to this position lives into their call in supportive, affirming environments.”
Many queer candidates struggle to obtain a first call due to their identity. The residency particularly seeks to call someone with a marginalized queer identity that would make it difficult for them to thrive in their first call in another setting due to the lack of systemic support in the local church community. This could include individuals who are transgender or nonbinary, queer people of color, queer people with disabilities, queer people of age, or people who identify as same-gender loving, two-spirit, or polyamorous, among other possibilities.
“This residency program grew out of watching talented, brilliant, and called queer seminary graduates who didn’t fit the ‘traditional mold’ struggle to get their first call in the local church,” said Rev. Jenn Macy, Pastor at First Church Somerville. “Many local UCC churches are comfortable with my brand of queer - I’m a cisgender, white, monogamous, parent - but struggle to see all the sacredness they are missing out on by not embracing folx who have more marginalized queer identities. The church needs these folx we’ve sent to the margins. We need these pastors to have rich opportunities to hone their pastoral identity in spaces that accept all of who they are. We will not be the church that exists in the dreams of God without embracing all the people God has called to service.”
The two-year residency will provide the newly ordained pastor with experience in worship leadership, preaching, faith formation, and transformative community engagement in an affirming church at First Church Somerville. At the Conference, the resident will learn about the role of the judicatory while engaging in issues of community engagement, advocacy, and training.
Application materials will be reviewed on a rolling basis,and interested candidates should apply ASAP. The Queer Pastoral Resident is anticipated to be in place on or after September 1.

Find application details here.

Contact Information

Karen Methot

Click to email

Subscribe to our emails
Framingham, MA Office

1 Badger Road
Framingham, MA 01702

Hartford, CT Office

125 Sherman Street
Hartford, CT 06105

Toll Free Phone: 866-367-2822
Fax: 866-367-0860
General Email: