Convocation 2019


Saturday, April 6, 2019 
Harraseeket Inn, Freeport, Maine
A collaboration of the Maine Conference UCCthe Maine Council of Churches, and The BTS Center
“God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
"Brave Change: Courageous Churches" was a one-day gathering for those who want to bravely lead change in their church with prayer and planning. 
We talked about grief, hope, and the reality that discerning a way forward often means needing to let go of some things that are holding us back. We heard from some exciting bright spots of change, thought about the ways in which our context needs to shift, and began to consider concrete steps for what might come next.

If the “Brave Change” theme and content of this Convocation resonates with what is going on in your ministry setting, you may interested in applying for one of our “Brave Change Planning Mini-Grants,” a funding initiative designed to encourage experimentation and transformation in organizations and faith communities.

To learn more about the planning grants, and how to apply, go to our Brave Change page.

Overview of Convocation 2019

Please note: Video recordings of the morning and afternoon presentations, including Pecha Kuchas shared by several communities negotiating significant change, are available at You may also access handouts for the morning session and afternoon sessions by clicking the links below.

Change & Human Systems Visual PDF
from morning session 

Obstacles to Brave Change PDF
from afternoon session

We hope that these recordings and documents will be useful for generating fresh (or re-freshed) thinking about change in your ministry setting. Please feel free to share them in your ministry context, or with colleagues who may benefit from viewing them.

Meet Our Facilitators

Callid Keefe-Perry

Rev. Jenn Macy

Callid Keefe-Perry is a traveling minister within The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). He is an organizational consultant, retreat leader, and teacher of discernment deeply influenced by both Quakerism and Ignatian spirituality. He is the author of Way to Water: A Theopoetics Primer, numerous articles on trauma-informed care in religious life, and was the co-founder of a community theater in Rochester, NY.  He currently serves as the Executive Director of ARC: Arts | Religion | Culture, an organization committed to supporting individuals and organizations whose work is at the intersection of spiritual and creative practices, especially as those practices are done for community-building and work towards justice. Academically, he work at the intersection of public theology and education. Organizationally, he focuses on helping groups clarify their goals and make sure that their commitments to justice and equity become more than just aspirations and good intentions.

Rev. Jenn Macy is a member and ordained minister of the United Church of Christ. She has served as an urban community minister, small church solo pastor, and in a new church start. Currently, Jenn serves as a consultant for Christian Education and Safe Church policy and is the vice-moderator of the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ. In addition to church ministry, Jenn is also a foster parent and works for justice alongside those who have experienced foster care. 

Thank you to our Partners!

Thank you to our organizational partners for their role in planning and implementing Convocation 2019 -- Brave Change: Courageous Churches. And thank you to the planning team: Deborah Blood, Jane Field, AbbyLynn Haskell, Annette Mott, Jeff MacDonald, Pam Shellberg, Kay Ahmed, Jenn Macy, Callid Keefe-Perry, and Bob Grove-Markwood.

Learn more about past Convocation events:

Convocation 2018

Convocation 2017

Convocation 2016

Convocation 2015


  • 5/8/19 — (Deadline Extended) We are excited to announce an opportunity designed to encourage experimentation and transformation in organizations and faith communities. Through June 28, 2019 The BTS Center will be taking applications for one of our “Brave Change Planning Mini-Grants,” a funding initiative for communities and/or organizations looking to take a small-scale and concrete next step in their growth. Learn more here.
  • 4/29/19 — The BTS Center Board of Trustees announces the selection of The Rev. Allen Ewing-Merrill as our new Executive Director, following a national search. He will begin his work with the Center on July 1, succeeding The Rev. Dr. Robert Grove-Markwood who will retire at the end of June. Read more …
  • 5/1/19 – The Board of Trustees of The BTS Center invites you to join us on Saturday, June 8, 2019 from 4-6 pm at the Harraseeket Inn, 162 Main St., Freeport, ME 04032 to celebrate the Rev. Dr. Robert Grove-Markwood’s ministry as our inaugural Executive Director, and to express our gratitude for Bob’s eight years of leadership and service to Bangor Theological Seminary and The BTS Center. RSVP and learn more here.


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In this e-newsletter, our new Executive Director, @RevAllenEM, writes: "It’s my third day on the job! As I begin, let me express my gratitude and joy to be stepping into this role as Executive Director of The BTS Center." Read on at the link >>

Jaime Wright contemplates the experience of his mother’s battle with cancer as he studies the correlation between religion, God and women fighting cancer. Check out “Returning the Call” here: