[from the CACC-UCC Tidings newsletter and Facebook page]
Sunday, June 16, 2019 has become a historic day for our congregation as we voted to Call Rev. Michael T. Bush by a 100% majority as our new settled Senior Minister. He comes to us with 25 years’ experience as a UCC senior pastor having served in four other churches on both coasts. He anticipates being relocated to Tucson and in the office in early September. Over 100 members and friends attended the afternoon Meet and Greet session with Rev. Bush on Saturday, July 15th.
Pastor Michael comes to us from the United Church of Christ in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, which he has led for the past eight years. Prior to that he served as senior pastor of UCC churches in Connecticut, Michigan and Washington. He is committed to a ministry of renewal among the Body of Christ through Biblical literacy, theological reflection, and spiritual practices. He co-authored “Chaos and The Kingdom” and has two other books in the works on spiritual renewal.
Rev. Bush has worked with churches in discerning their congregational identity, ministry and mission, helping them commit to developing deeper roots in the Spirit and wider reach into the world. He has mentored seminarians and new clergy, coached clergy and non-profit leaders, and is an affiliate coach with the Center for Progressive Renewal.
Michael and Martha Parrish Bush are the proud parents of son Joshua, who recently graduated from the School of International Service at American University in Washington, D.C. As part of sabbath time, Rev. Bush especially enjoys exploring the outdoors while hiking and kayaking.
He anticipates being relocated to Tucson in time to assume his new responsibilities in early September.
The Membership Committee provided a lovely spread of refreshments. This session allowed everyone an opportunity to meet with him at their table and to ask questions publicly that he answered for the entire audience. On Sunday morning Rev. Bush, along with members of the Search Committee led the service and he shared a sermon entitled Speaking Creatively. A Congregational Meeting followed and was called to order by our Moderator Tom Goslin. A quorum was quickly determined and a motion from Search was read to call Rev. Bush as our next Senior Minister. The motion was seconded and discussed from the floor. Charlotte Marshall called the question by saying, “as a charter member she believed her father [Rev. George Vance] and all the ministers that followed, would be proud to have Rev. Bush as our next settled Senior Minister”. Paper ballots and proxies were collected, and a decision from the counters was soon returned indicating the vote to call him was unanimous. While the votes were being counted, the congregation spontaneously broke into song and it was a truly Spirit-filled, electrifying moment.
The congregation was still celebrating the decision with many teary faces when Rev. Bush returned with the Search Team Co-Chairs to officially receive and accept our call. When he reached the altar and the clapping slowed he asked, “Did you vote yes?” When the laughter ceased, Pastor Michael said “Thank you so much for trusting and seeing God at work, firstly with the wonderful Search and Call Team, and [secondly] you have an amazing staff team. Thank you just for being the beautiful people of God that you are, and I am so delighted to walk with you and see what amazing things God will do with this community. So, thank you and blessings.”
This is a major event in the life of our church, and we look forward to welcoming and working with our marvelous new settled pastor.