Category Archives: Announcements

Update from the Leadership Chair: Transitions and Volunteer Opportunity

Hello Friends!

As we move towards Ascension Day, the Progressive Christian Alliance is also moving forward. We have a lot of goals we are looking to accomplish in the next few months, and the behind the scenes work is still going strong.

One bit of sad news is that Matt Self, who has been our interim and elected Treasurer since 2017 has to step down from this role. Matt has worked hard to make sure our organization’s legal paperwork and banking was in good order. I thank him for stepping up, taking on this role, and helping in the work to make the ProgCA better. Thank you Matt for all your hard work and years of service!

While we are all sad about Matt’s departure, we are pleased to announce that Helen Drivick has stepped up to be interim Treasurer for the rest of Matt’s term, and we welcome Helen to the Leadership Council and look forward to working with her!

Marie, our Ordination Chair, is still asking for all previously ordained ProgCA Clergy to please email her ( with their current information and copies of ordination credentials so we can rebuild our database. Again, we are asking for this so a) we can be able to provide you duplicates in the future if you happen to lose them, and b) so we can be able to make ProgCA clergy referrals when people ask us about clergy in their area.

Work on the new version of the website is continuing. One of the many ways we hope to make your life easier as clergy with the ProgCA with the site update is providing a member’s area where people can access documents and forms, and, if we can make it work, a place where you can possibly re-download your certificates and letters to be reprinted in case you lose your paper copy.

To that end, we are looking for a volunteer to be our WordPress Webmaster. We would like someone who knows WordPress very well, especially someone who has worked with plugins that are useful to non-profits (eg: directories, membership portal plugins, etc.), and knows how to work with and manage templates. This won’t require any server side work, although, you will probably work with the server owners on occasion. Please contact me at if you are interested. We could use someone in this capacity ASAP, as we have a lot of website changes we would like to roll out this summer.

Again, thank you all for your grace and patience as we continue to work on these projects!

May you be blessed during this summer season,

Rev. Gina

Leadership Chair Updates: Changes are Coming!

Hello Friends!

I hope that this season of Lent has been good for everyone! The Leadership Council has been working very hard this Lenten season on making our organization more streamlined and to document and solidify our processes.

Our Council Co-chair Alaina and the Ordination Committee have been working hard on documenting and streamlining our ordination and affiliation processes. This project, as most of you know, is a huge undertaking because it includes not only doing our own internal documentation, but also revising all of our application forms in order to be able to move them from paper to online.

Speaking of moving things online, our website will be moving to a new server in the next few months, and with that we will be re-launching our website with a new template, and, what I hope, will be many improvements!

Marie, our Ordination Chair, is also asking for all previously ordained ProgCA Clergy to please email her ( with their current information and copies of ordination credentials so we can rebuild our database. We are asking for this so a) we can be able to provide you duplicates in the future if you happen to lose them, and b) so we can be able to make ProgCA clergy referrals when people ask us about clergy in their area.

We hope to have these projects completed by the end of the Summer (if not sooner), and when they are complete, we will start implementing membership, clergy, and church dues. Membership and dues will not only support the organization financially, but include the right to vote in officer and policy elections and the right to run for organizational positions. PLEASE DO NOT SEND ANY MONEY FOR DUES NOW!! We will let you know when when we are ready to accept everyone’s payments, with all relevant instructions. (Although, if you feel like donating, you can certainly do so! And it’s tax deductible!)

If you’ve been wanting to volunteer with the ProgCA, we could certainly use help with these projects! If you have experience with Google forms and WordPress and have the time to help us, please let me or one of the other board members know. We could also use someone who knows WordPress really well to volunteer to not only help with the site transfer, but also with an eye to being an additional webmaster in the future. If that is something you would like to volunteer for, please contact me.

In addition to our website, we will also be reorganising our main Facebook page and groups a bit. Our Member At Large, Rob, will be implementing the following updates:

First, the ProgCA Facebook page will be set up so that all news and announcements from the website will be available on that page, and will be one of the ways you can connect directly with the Leadership Council.

Second, the private ProgCA group will be converted to a closed group for ProgCA Clergy and those in the process of ordination or affiliation. Clergy will be able to connect, share information, and find mutual support. We feel that having this specific space for clergy is incredibly important, since it can help clergy not to feel alone in their callings, mitigate burn out, and help each other find resources that can sometimes be hard to find on one’s own.

We thank you all for your patience and grace as we roll these changes out through the next few months. While we understand that change is hard, we will strive to make things as easy for everyone all as possible!

May your Easter be full of life and light, and the hope that change can bring will be present for you in this season!

Many Blessings,

Rev. Gina

Leadership Chair

PCA Leadership Council Voting Results

Hello Friends!

I’m pleased to announce that the following members have been elected to serve in the following positions for the 2019-2021 term to start on January 1, 2019:

Co-chair: Alaina Cobb

Secretary: Jenny Howard

Member-at-Large: Rob Ponsford

The numerical totals are below:

Thank you to all of the candidates for stepping up, and I look forward to working with Alaina, Jenny, and Rob for the remainder of my term!


Rev. Gina Pond

Leadership Chair

Reminder: Voting Open for Co-chair, Secretary, and Member-at-Large Leadership Council Positions!

Hi Friends!

This a reminder that voting will be open until Midnight Pacific time November 15, 2018! Click here to read the information on the nominees and to vote:

Please Vote! Voting now open for Co-chair, Secretary, and Member-at-Large!

Update: Voting is now closed!


Hello Friends!

From now and until midnight US Pacific Time on November 15, 2018, the ballot for electing the new Co-chair, Secretary, and Member-at-Large for the 2019-2021 term will be open.

The following are statements from each of the nominees about their qualifications. Please read through them, then use the form at the end of this blog post to cast your vote. This form requires a valid email address in order to vote. We only ask for your email address in order to ensure that only one vote per person is cast. Your email addresses will not be used for any other purpose, and will be discarded after the election.

The winners will be announced on November 16, 2018, and the new board members will be required to attend the December 2, 2018 Leadership Council meeting. (Winners will receive an email from me prior to the public announcement of the winners.) Their term of office will officially begin on January 1, 2019. 

We thank all the nominees for volunteering, and we are grateful for everyone’s participation in this process!

Good luck to all of our nominees!

Rev. Gina Pond

Leadership Council Chair


Nominees for Co-Chair:


Alaina Cobb

“I am running for this office because I believe in the work of the Progressive Christian Alliance and the need for its continued success, growth, and visibility. I was ordained in the PCA for two reasons: the first reason is that as a transgender woman called to ministry I decided to only work toward ordination in a tradition that fully celebrates the image of God that I bear, and the second reason of equal importance was that I found the freedom to explore the diversity of belief intrinsic to our identity as the PCA utterly beautiful and nourishing. I wish to see that freedom explored by more of our brothers, sisters, and siblings in Christ.

As for my qualifications, I am currently the pastor of Mercy Junction Justice and Peace Center in Chattanooga TN an active and expanding ministry, a Tri-Chair for the TN Poor People’s Campaign,  the founder of the Trans Crisis Ministry Network and a Mom.”


Helen Drivick

“A few years ago, I was looking for a tribe. My tribe. A group of Christians who were inclusive, questioning, full of doubt and secure in the knowledge that none of this was “bad.” On the contrary, that doubt, questioning and inclusivity are the hallmarks of a holy journey.

As I searched the internet, I found PCA and joined with the intent of becoming a chaplain. During this time, I met Beth Abbott (who encouraged me to apply for co-chair) and began to explore what the PCA had to offer. It was also during this time that I began to pursue a long delayed undergraduate degree, as a first step in working toward an M. Div. and eventual hospice chaplaincy. I didn’t want to apply for ordination until I had at least completed my undergrad degree (Dec. ’17) and was unsure how I could be involved with PCA until that goal was achieved. It was also during this time that my family and I moved from northern New Jersey to Virginia for financial reasons. Having somewhat established myself and my family in our new surroundings, and having completed my undergraduate degree, I feel that I am in a position to direct some of my energy to the PCA administration to help support the group which has supported my journey through these last few years. I also have a selfish agenda. I would like to know more about the organization and its leadership before I fully commit to the ordination process. What better way than to become part of the administration.

I respectfully submit my application for co-chair. I freely offer my time, talents and treasures. I hope to engage in meaningful dialogue to support the PCA as it is, and vision with others to establish ways that it can be.”


Nominee for Secretary:

Jenny Howard

“First, I’m qualified because I’ve been doing the job for several months as Acting Secretary. I’m running because I believe in the Progressive Christian Alliance. We are doing good work, and good works, in the world. In my time as Secretary, I’ve learned that there’s more to keeping this work going than is always publicly visible, and for that we need a committed volunteer Leadership Council. As a 7-year member of the PCA, I’ve seen the challenges of maintaining continuity of leadership with turnover on the Council. As Secretary, I’ll be making a positive contribution by maintaining accurate, well-organized records that can be referred to not just in the present, but through the coming years, as leadership passes to other members.”


Nominees for Member-at-Large:

Rob Ponsford

“I am running due to my commitment to the work of the PCA, including in my own church and in my own pursuit of calling to ordained ministry (also within the PCA). I am also a current an active member on the PCA Facebook group, as well as being familiar with the online world, being a fromer IT tutor. In regards to practical faith experience I am also a member of my own Church’s PCC (Church Council) A regional Ambassador for the organisation Inclusive Church, and currently privately study through many free programs for Christian education including the Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, Christian Leaders Institute, Church of England’s online Safeguarding courses.”


William V. Johnson

“I’m sure it seems a bit forward to nominate myself for a position, but my motives are in the spirit of volunteerism.  We all have to help with the work of the PCA if we want it to thrive. I believe in the goals of the PCA. I want to help in our progress as best I can, using whatever I might bring to our collective table of faith and ministry. Growing membership and being instrumental in increasing communication to and from leadership and membership.  In my daily work life, I am a police trainer (primarily in firearms and the use of force) and communication is vital to what I do. I hope to bring that skill to this particular role in PCA leadership.”


Nominations for Co-Chair, Secretary, and Member-at-Large are now open!


Hello Friends!

It’s board election time again! This year we are holding elections for Co-chair, Secretary, and Member-at-Large to serve a 3 year term (2019-2021).

For all positions: It is important that all nominees are able to work within the Google ecosystem, particularly Gmail, Google Docs, and Google Drive. The majority of our work is done through these systems since we are an international organization with members all over the world (e.g.: the Leadership Chair lives in Switzerland!). Familiarity with WordPress is also helpful for all positions, and is really desired for the Secretary position (or a strong commitment to learn these systems) so that the Secretary can post minutes and other documents to the website. All nominees will be required to fill out a Membership Form if they haven’t done so in the last year, which will be sent to them by the current Co-chair, Beth Abbott when they send in their nomination.

All potential nominees are reminded that this is a 3 year commitment. Communication is critical in the work that we do! Only 3 unexcused absences from Board meetings are allowed according to our Constitution and Canons. Planned absences can be arranged with the Leadership Chair, but must be communicated in advance. Please consider carefully your ability to maintain your commitment if you do get elected to the Leadership Council. There is a lot of work to be done, and we need committed volunteers! 

Please review the positions below, and if you are interested in running for office, fill out the nomination form below or email your responses to

Co-Chair Responsibilities:
  1. Performs the Chair’s responsibilities when the Chair cannot be available
  2. Reports to and works closely with the Chair and other LC members.
  3. Performs other responsibilities assigned by the Council.
  4. Responsible for the oversight of the financial aspects of the Progressive Christian Alliance along with the Chair.
  5. Oversees endorsement for specialized ministry.
  6. Serves a three (3) year term and may not self-succeed into the same position.
Secretary Responsibilities:
  1. Maintains records of the council and ensures effective management of the organization’s records.
  2. Creates and manages minutes of council meetings.
  3. Ensures minutes are distributed to members of the Progressive Christian Alliance and the Leadership Council within five (5) business days of the Leadership Council Meeting or Convocation Meeting.
  4. Is able to research and obtain legal documents (articles, by-laws, IRS letters, etc.) to note applicability during meetings.
  5. Serves a three (3) year term and may not self-succeed into same position. Cannot concurrently chair another committee. In the event the Secretary is unable to fulfill their duties for a period of time, they will notify the Chair as soon as possible so a replacement can be identified.

**In addition to the above, the Secretary should have a strong familiarity with Google Docs, Google Drive, and WordPress, or a strong commitment to learning these systems. Extra special bonus if the nominee has experience with Google Forms!

Member-at-Large Responsibilities:
  1. Acts as a liaison between the council and the membership of PCA as a whole.
  2. Stays in regular connection and communication with the membership of PCA.
  3. Fills in for other leadership council roles in the case of vacancies.
  4. Serves a three year term and may not self-succeed into same position. Cannot concurrently chair another committee.

**In addition to the above, the Member-at-Large will also be the main contact for the Facebook Admins for our online groups, and so should be familiar with how Facebook groups work, preferably know how to be an Admin, or have a strong commitment to learn.

Nominations are open from now until Midnight US Pacific Time on October 31. Voting will begin on November 1 for two weeks.

Any nominations sent on any other platform other than this form, or in an email to the Co-Chair, WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED. Comments will be closed for this post. If you have any questions about the process, please use our contact form.

Winners of the election will be announced on November 16th, and the newly elected officers will be required to attend the December Leadership Council meeting on December 2, 2018 at 5 PM Eastern/ 4 PM Central/ 2 PM Pacific/ 11 PM Central European Time.

Thank you in advance for volunteering your time to the Progressive Christian Alliance, and I look forward to working with you!

Rev. Gina Pond

Leadership Chair

Progressive Christian Alliance Statement on the Immigration Crisis and Plea to All Christians

We, the Progressive Christian Alliance, are appalled by the systemic, amoral, and unethical treatment of immigrants by the current administration. What started with a ban on Muslim immigrants coming in from specific countries has now become full-out incarceration and abuse of People of Color from other countries who came to seek asylum. We are disgusted and appalled that children, babies, and toddlers are not only being abused, but are being ripped from their families and forced to face the grown-up legal system alone and entirely without representation.

We absolutely condemn these actions by this administration. These actions do not in any way fix the so-called problems that the administration claims to be caused by immigrants. They are inhumane and go against the teachings of Jesus and scripture.

In Matthew 25:37-40, Jesus tells us:

“‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’”

and Jesus also tells us that the greatest commandment is (Luke 10:27):

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.”

For those of us in the Progressive Christian Alliance, there are no exceptions to these rules. We love our Muslim neighbor, our LGBTQIA+ neighbor, our neighbors from Latin America, South America, Africa, Asia, Europe, and any other place and religion on this planet. Radical inclusion dictates that there should be a place for EVERYONE at the table. This doesn’t mean that those who do harm aren’t accountable for their actions, but it does mean that even if someone has committed a crime, they are still treated as a human being.

The Progressive Christian Alliance, its clergy and laity, stand in opposition to these inhumane, racist, and exclusionary policies and will fight against them wherever and however we can.

We also call on all Christians, progressive and otherwise, to reflect on the history and role of Christianity in general, and extremist Christianity in particular, in bringing us to this point. We must work, in all our denominations, churches, and groups to root out racism, sexism, ageism, homophobia, and all other extremism. While we, individually, may not have had a hand in creating the policies created by those who have perverted Christianity’s ethos to their own ends,  we each have a responsibility to own up to Christianity’s dark history and be a part of cleaning up our own house. Until we accept that Christianity has been used for evil throughout its history, own up to it, and atone collectively for it, we will never be able to change the future.

We ask, in Jesus’s name, and in the name of the One who is called Goddess, Godde, God, and many other names, that all of God’s people will return to compassion, to love, and to bringing  justice and care to those who are in need. That we will do the reflection necessary as individuals, groups, and organizations in order to bring about the radical inclusion and hospitality that Jesus taught us to create and emulate.

Amen and May It Be So,

Rev. Gina Pond

Leadership Chair

New Interim Secretary and Member-At-Large!

Hello Friends!

As you all know, we’ve been looking for an Interim Secretary and Member-at-Large to round out the Leadership Council I’m very pleased to announce that we have filled our interim positions on the Leadership Council!

Rev. Jenny Howard is now our Interim Secretary and Rev. Nate Sprott is our Interim Member-at-Large. 

Thank you Jenny and Nate for agreeing to take on these positions and I, and the rest of the Leadership Council, look forward to working with you!

Thank you for joining the team!

Rev. Gina Pond

Leadership Chair

Call for Volunteers from our Co-Chair

Welcome home!

Do you remember hearing or knowing that The Progressive Christian Alliance was a part of your spiritual family? Those words still hold great meaning for me. Before PCA, I felt adrift. Like I was alone in a world of conservative Christians who were simply on a very different page when it comes to following Christ. And I had to be invisible or I was judged “not Christian.” Here I found like-minded rebels. Freedom!

PCA is a very different organization for a lot of reasons. We are not a top down organization, our members set our goals and then entrust the Leadership Council to fulfill them. And having served on the LC now for almost 3 years, it is an honor to be given that trust. And it has been a joy to work alongside others called to be on the LC and make those goals manifest. It is our passion to bring those ideals into existence. And we are growing so quickly, that it amazes us how short we’ve even been an organization. Our founders were truly Spirit led.

And now, we come to a crossroads once again. Due to health limitations, we’ve had three resignations from the LC over the past year. And the next election is on the horizon. We are trusting the Godde is calling those who are prepared to take the next step on the journey as leaders of PCA, but without your answering that call, PCA cannot survive. When an organization is run by people who are paid, it is easy to fill positions, but to maintain its integrity, our Constitution and Canons require all leadership positions be volunteer.

Right now, we need interim members (until January) for the Secretary and Member at Large. And at the next election, we will vote for those two positions and Co-Chair for a 3 year term. PCA NEEDS YOU if we are to continue to spread the good news and welcome others home. One doesn’t have to be ordained to serve, lay persons who wish to serve are also welcome to do so! Please listen for Godde’s leading. And if you know of someone you feel should be on the leadership council, talk to them. Encourage them. With Spirit leading, we will take the next step into the future. We are now placing our trust in you.

Rev. Beth Beyer Abbott, Co-Chair

PS: If you are interested in volunteering, please let one of the LC members know, or email us at

New Interim Secretary Needed

Hello Friends!

The Leadership Council is sad to announce that Fred-Allen Self is resigning as Secretary due to ongoing health reasons. Fred-Allen has been a wonderful asset to the leadership team over the last two and half years on the board, especially in helping with revamping the website and as a Facebook admin.  He will still continue in his role as Facebook group admin, and will be helping with the website from time to time. We will miss his presence on the board greatly.

This does mean we need an interim Secretary to serve out the last of Fred-Allen’s term, which ends on December 31, 2018. Fred-Allen is graciously staying on until we find an interim Secretary, and will train whoever fills the post.

The main duties of the Secretary are as follows (from our Constitution and Canons):

1)    Maintains records of the council and ensures effective management of the organization’s
2)    Creates and manages minutes of council meetings.
3)    Ensures minutes are distributed to members of the Progressive Christian Alliance and the
Leadership Council within five (5) business days of the Leadership Council Meeting or Convocation
4)    Is able to research and obtain legal documents (articles, by-laws, IRS letters, etc.) to note
applicability during meetings.

Also, because of our transition to the new Membership Policy and the updates we will need to make to our website, it would also be helpful if the new Secretary is familiar with the Google ecosystem (Docs, Drive, and Email) and WordPress (or willing to learn both).

The interim Secretary will be eligible to run for the next term (2019-2021) in November, when we will be holding elections for Co-chair, Secretary, and Councilor-At-Large.

If you are interested in being the interim Secretary, please send a brief statement about why you want the position and qualifications to

Again, we thank Fred-Allen for his service, and we thank all of you for your patience while we go through this transition.


Rev. Gina

Leadership Chair