Ministers Council
of the Greater Bay Area

The Ministers Council of the Greater Bay Area is an association of individuals in ministry in the San Francisco Bay Area. We are affiliated with The Ministers Council of the American Baptist Churches, USA.
[Brochure (pdf)]


To fulfill the Gospel mission, the American Baptist Ministers Council of the Greater Bay Area gathers as an inclusive community of persons in Christian ministry for support, nurture and accountability.


We encourage, develop, and support peer groups for mutual support, professional growth and accountability, and offer events for information, skills development, and theological reflection on issues that shape the unique ministry in the Bay Area.

We hold two regular gatherings each year, one in the Fall and one in the Spring, as well as supporting and promoting other educational events for individuals in ministry offered by the American Baptist Seminary of the West, The American Baptist Churches of the West, the Pacific Coast Baptist Association, the East Bay.

MCGBA gatherings have included:

  • Collegiality, Centeredness & Competence (Retreat)
    Rev. Dr. Debora Jackson
    Executive Director of Ministers Council ABC/USA 
    (January 2014)
  • Exploring transitions and boundaries
    in Congregational Practice

    A Dinner with Peter Yuichi Clark
    (November 2013)
  • Following the Call Without Losing the Soul:
    Discerning the Business from the Busyness of Ministry
    Rev. Patricia P. Hernandez
    National Director for Transition Ministries
    and American Baptist Women in Ministry
    (January 2013)
  • Lunch with Rev. Patricia Hernandez,
    National Director of American Baptist Women in Ministry
    (May 2012)
  • Creating a Sabbath Lifestyle (Retreat)
    The Rev. Dr. Heather Entrekin
    Professor of Congregational Health,
    Central Baptist Theological Seminary, Kansas City, KS
    Special guest, the Rev. Joe Kutter,
    Executive Director of ABCUSA Ministers Council
    (January 2012)
  • Retired Clergy Luncheon
    (December 2011)
  • Perils and Wisdom of Practicing Radical Hospitality-
    What it means to live out radical hospitality in various ministry settings
    Panelists: Rev. Mary Fleming, Rev. Dr. H. James Hopkins, Rev. Dr. Liliana Da Valle, and Mr. Jonathan Zingkhai.
    (October 2011)
  • Leaders Who Last: Sustaining Yourself and Your Ministry” (Retreat)
    Rev. Margaret Marcuson, Author
    (January, 2011)
  • The Importance of Relationships in Ministry
    Rev. Steve Bils, Executive Minister
    American Baptist Churches of Oregon
    (Nov. 2010)
  • Money Matters in Ministry
    Dr. Robert Wilkins, Executive President of the Oakland YMCA
    (April 2010)
  • Where Do We Go from Here?
    (October 2009)
  • Communicating Your Ministry
    Rev. D. Andrew Kille on websites and more
    (April 2009)
  • California Academy of Science "Free Day" & Luncheon
    (November 2008)
  • Ministry to Victims of Abuse: A Pastoral Response
    Jennifer Joslyn-Siemiatkoski, M.Div. Community Educator of STAND! Against Domestic Violence
    (April 2008)
  • Church Agility: Strength, Speed & Balance
    with Dr. C. Jeff Woods, Associate General Secretary for Regions of the American Baptist Churches, USA.
    (October 2007)
  • Isolation in Ministry
    with Rev. J. Alfred Smith
    (April 2007)
  • Welcoming the Stranger:
    Theological Reflections on Immigration Legislation

    (October 2006)
  • A Conversation with Dr. A. Roy Medley, General Secretary, ABC/USA
    (March 2006)
  • Emerging Ministry Resources in the Greater Bay Area
    (October 2005)
  • Generational Shift:Future or End of the Church?
    (April 2005)
  • How to Get Along: Living with Differences in the Church
    Workshop with James Dunn, Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs (April 2005)
  • What Keeps You Going in Ministry?
    (September 2004)
  • Covenantal Collegial Groups: Mutual Support for Ministry
    (April 2004)

Since our beginnings, MCGBA has participated actively in the Together in Ministry peer ministry group program sponsored through the ABC Ministers Council, and in 2005 developed nine TIM groups, more than any other local Ministers Council except New York. In 2006, we sponsored twelve groups, more than any other Council.[Listing of TIM groups]

We also provide two communications resources for sharing about events and resources, this website (, and our e-mail group at Yahoo (to subscribe to the list, write to:


Membership in MCGBA is open to individuals in ministry (ordained, commissioned, lay, or seminary students) who are eligible for inclusion in the Directory of Ministerial Leaders of the ABC/USA. Other individuals may become members by special consideration. If you would like to become a member, or have questions about membership, contact us. [Membership Application Form]


MCGBA arose out of conversations about the need for an inclusive and diverse Ministers Council that would address the unique challenges of ministry in the San Francisco Bay Area. Several gatherings in the Fall of 2003 led to the formation of the Ministers Council of the Greater Bay Area and the election of a Steering Committee. The Bylaws were adopted in April of 2004.

The Ministers Council
of the American Baptist Churches, USA

The Ministers Council of the ABC/USA

. . . is an autonomous, professional, multi-cultural organization of ordained, commissioned and lay Christian leaders within the American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A. We are women and men who advocate for and covenant with each other to deepen our spiritual journey and to increase our effectiveness, as persons who are accepting the call of God and church for the advancement of the Gospel mission of the church of Jesus Christ and to proclaim His truth in a prophetic voice as led by the Holy Spirit.

Members of the Ministers Council of the Greater Bay Area are also members of the Ministers Council of the ABC/USA.