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The Rev. Melford (Bud) Holland retires

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[Episcopal News Service] The Rev. Melford (Bud) Holland, program officer for ordained ministry and leadership development at the Episcopal Church Center in New York, will retire as of April 1. 

He arrived at Church Center in 1998 and has been involved in creating initiatives in theological education, leadership development, ministry development and employment practices and policies. He has also undertaken collaborative work with many offices and groups throughout the church in education, formation, and ministry development efforts. In the course of this work, he said, "I have frequent contact with clergy in assisting them to strengthen their vocation, plan for the future, and deal with issues arising out of their life journeys."

In a retirement celebration on March 27 at the Church Center, colleagues paid tribute to Holland's gifts as a mentor and leader. Several people used the word "compassionate" to describe him.

He was part of the development of Fresh Start, a program for parishes and newly appointed clergy and congregational leaders. He also worked on "Cultural Diversity in the Ordination Process:  Meeting on New Ground," a report and a work method to promote cultural diversity in the ordination process.  He also helped create a handbook for commissions on ministry.

In addition, he helped initiate and staff the groundbreaking work of PEALL (Proclaiming Education for All), a strategic review and visioning of education and formation in The Episcopal Church. Most recently, he has chaired the Employment Policies and Practices Task Force for the Episcopal Church, which along with the Church Pension Group has done significant work on gathering data about lay employees and encouraging the support for lay employees and their benefits.

Currently, he serves on the faculty of CREDO, a program of the Credo Institute, a Memphis, Tennessee-based organization that organizes leadership and wellness conferences. Holland serves as a conference leader for retired clergy. He also serves to certify participants of the Education for Ministry program, a theological education-at-a-distance course of the School of Theology of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee.

Before coming to New York, Holland worked as deployment officer and bishop's assistant for ministry at the Diocese of Pennsylvania from 1994 to 1998. He was rector of St. James Church in Perkiomen, Pennsylvania, from 1982 to 1993.

He also served as executive director of the Mountain Area Hospice in Asheville, North Carolina, and coordinator of program for the Diocese of Western North Carolina.

Holland holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Wake Forest University, a Master of Divinity from General Theological Seminary and a Master of Theology and Doctor of Ministry from Princeton Theological Seminary. He is married to Martha Ann Henkle Holland, and they have three children and five grandchildren.

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