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Welcoming Bishop Schwerin to the Northern Illinois Conference

Posted: January 23 2023 at 01:28 PM
Bishop Dan And Julie

Bishop Dan Schwerin and spouse Julie

Bishop Dan Schwerin’s first day serving as episcopal leader in the Northern Illinois Annual Conference was January 3. Bishop Schwerin grew up just north of us in Wisconsin, where he heard his call at Concord UMC, in the small town of Sullivan, near Waukesha. Prior to his election, he served in the Wisconsin Annual Conference office as Assistant to the Bishop.
Bishop Schwerin shares deep gratitude for the baptism that sustains our call forward. When he first learned he would be appointed to the Northern Illinois Conference, he remarked “I look forward to learning about your ministry and hearing about how you are transforming the communities God has given you to love. I look forward to this next season to get to know you and for us to be in ministry together.”
For 35 years, Bishop Schwerin (rhymes with tangerine) has served in many ministry contexts, including urban and rural churches, a new church plant, and a multi-staff downtown setting that became a reconciling congregation. He loves the local church and looks forward to working together with the leadership of the laity and clergy colleagues in the ministry of the baptized. He believes we are all witnesses, bringing gifts to the body of Christ, and that we need each other to help make Christ known. During his daily scripture and prayer time, he has been praying for our lives of discipleship, ministry vitality, and the shared ministry of justice and mercy.

2023 Cabinet Crop

The 2023 Cabinet with Bishop Schwerin at their annual retreat.

Bishop Schwerin’s first few weeks in the office have been full. After the first few days in Chicago, he met with the cabinet at their annual retreat. The cabinet used this time to build relationships, sharing about our conference, start discussions about appointment setting, and learn from one another as they develop best practices for Cabinet life and work. The next week, he was off to meet with all the newly assigned bishops. The bishops will learn about the role they play in the connectional church, their responsibilities in legal matters, and best practices for staying balanced in the work. This time will be followed by the North Central Jurisdictional College of Bishops meeting. This gathering includes the serving and retired bishops of the NCJ who meet twice a year for coordination of our ministries.

In February, Bishop Schwerin’s time is no less busy.  The District Superintendents have planned the Bishop’s Days on the District which will provide time for introductions, reflection, and conversation in each of our 5 districts. These events will provide an opportunity to get to know Bishop Schwerin as he begins serving, as well as for him to get to know our people and districts.
There will be separate meetings with clergy and laity for these conversations. Clergy will assemble starting at 9:30 am with fellowship, worship, bible study, and dialogue together. Their time will conclude with breaking bread together in the sharing of lunch. During the afternoon, the District Superintendents will give the Bishop a brief tour of their areas. The day will end with a laity gathering, including an evening conversation.
You are encouraged to join in the gathering for your district, but should the one planned for your district not work for you, any gathering can be attended. Bishop Schwerin looks forward to meeting as many brothers and sisters as possible as he travels through the different areas. Registration is not needed for the laity gathering.
Bishop Schwerin will also be sharing a message at the Laity Convocation on February 11.
On Sunday, February 26, the Episcopacy Committee of the Northern Illinois Conference invites you to a Service of Installation for Bishop Schwerin at First United Methodist Church in Elgin. The service will start at 3:00 pm. The service will be followed by a time of hospitality.

More Information on Bishop's Days on the District

More Information on Laity Convocation

More Information on Bishop Schwerin's Installation

Get to know Bishop Schwerin in his Reporter Column here

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