2015 Ethical Education Training Opportunities

A Message from RMC Ethical Education Task Force Chair, Rev. Steve Easterday-McPadden, January 2015

Dear Colleagues in Ministry in the Rocky Mountain Conference,

In the Spring of 2008, then Denver Area Bishop Warner Brown, established two teams to engage in the important matter of the prevention of and response to violations of ethical boundaries in our ministerial settings.

The Ethical Education Task Force, or EETF, currently chaired by Rev. Steve Easterday-McPadden, was the team established to address the prevention of such violations through developing and offering relevant educational workshops in each District to keep the subject of appropriate ministerial relationships before the clergy and lay ministry leaders of the Conference. Since the work of the EETF is associated with ongoing formation of clergy and laity and the healthy practice of ministry, it is supervised by and accountable to the Board of Ordained Ministry.

The Response Team, currently chaired by Rev. Merlene Barner, was the group established to respond with care and sensitivity and the ministry of healing for all involved when the ethical standards of ministry are violated. Since the work of the Response Team is associated with the problematic practice of ministry, it is supervised and accountable to the RMC Cabinet.


The work of the EETF is established by legislative action of the RMC. The legislative history is documented in the Journals of the Rocky Mountain Conference; however, the foundational piece of legislation is Petition AC07-1999 “Conference Church Ethics and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Training”, which established the requirement that all RMC clergy under appointment by the Bishop or assignment by a District Superintendent attend Ethics and Sexual Misconduct Prevention Training “once every four years”.

With the passage of Petition AC12-2009, the requirements for Ethical Education for clergy serving under appointment in the RMC changed from "once every four years" to "once per quadrennium", with quadrennium being defined by the 4-year period between General Conferences. (Technically, it's the 4-year period marked out by our Annual Conference sessions following a General Conference.)

The significance of this is that the Ethical Education Task Force no longer has to offer workshops every year. Under the old rule, some group of us were faced with falling out of compliance every year depending upon when we last participated in a workshop. Under the new rule, as long as we get our training in any time within the quadrennium, we are in compliance.

Taking advantage of the 2009 rule, the EETF undertook in 2013 and 2014 a complete revision of the 2008-2012 Ethical Education workshop curriculum with the goals being:

  1. More discussion than “lecture” along with greater interaction among participants
  2. More consistent quality among workshops and workshop leaders,
  3. Less hassle (and expense) with the procurement of materials for the workshops, and
  4. Less administrative overhead for EETF members and District Administrative Assistants.

In our Internet-age, with the emphasis on so much work taking place online, we remain committed to the value of having face-to-face workshops and will not be going to an online, "read-and-take-the-quiz" format. The RMC Cabinet and the EETF feel that there is great value in discussing ethics and best practices in ministry where we learn from each other's experiences and not just listen to a presentation on the subject.

2012-2016 Quadrennium Workshops / Training Opportunities

To that end, the EETF is proud to offer this quadrennium’s series of workshops. The schedule for these is as contained in this document: 2015 EETF Workshop Schedule

If you see a workshop you would like to attend, please take the following actions:

  1. Get in touch with the “Contact” person listed at the Host Site to register and learn about any logistical particularities for that workshop.
  2. Download these four files, and read through them well ahead of time to be prepared on the day of the workshop.
    It is ESSENTIAL that you have these documents with you for the workshop. In contrast to last quadrennium’s approach, there will be NO pre-printed binders of materials provided for you. You are responsible for bringing these materials with you; the workshop facilitators and Host Church sites will not provide you with copies of the materials.
  3. Attend with the intentions of sharing, learning, listening, and having a good time doing so. We are very energized by the new curriculum and by the evaluative comments we have received from the first workshops offered on a “beta test” basis.

Hosting and Facilitating

If your church or ministry setting would like to host a workshop, please do the following:

  1. Read this document to familiarize yourself with the details of providing this necessary and appreciated service to the Conference: Host Site Letter and Facilitator Instructions
  2. Contact Rev. Steve Easterday-McPadden ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) to set a preliminary date, receive the necessary workshop DVD, and coordinate with your District Superintendent and District Office re: communicating this event in your District.

Facilitator Documents for Downloading

If you are interested in being a Facilitator of an EETF workshop, please download these files and contact Rev. Steve Easterday-McPadden ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) to discuss the process.

I would like to thank those on the EETF this quadrennium for their strong participation and invaluable contributions to our work: Rev. Dr. Andy Dunning, Rev. Linda Cheek, Rev. Dr. Val Jackson, Candace Gordon, Chris Wilterdink, Rev. Don Sperber, and Rev. Amy Strader. This work could not have been completed without them.

God’s blessings to you all in the year ahead. I hope you find the new EETF workshop valuable, enjoyable, and helpful in keeping your ministry settings places that are safe and healthy for all and that glorify God in Jesus Christ, whose disciples we are and are becoming moment by moment that the world might be transformed!

Rev. Steve Easterday-McPadden, Chair
RMC Ethical Education Task Force



Conference Safe Sanctuary Policy and Documentation

  • Title Page and Overview for Rocky Mountain Conference Safe Sanctuary Policy (PDF)
  • Rocky Mountain Conference Safe Sanctuary Policy (PDF)
  • Rocky Mountain Conference Safe Sanctuary Policy - Legal Issues (PDF)
  • Safe Sanctuary Policy Sample Forms (PDF)
  • Safe Sanctuary Policy Supporting Documents (PDF)
  • Model of Local Church Safe Sanctuary Policy including Safe Practices (PDF)
  • Survey of State Child Protection Laws (PDF)