Endings and beginnings

The NCC celebrates—and regroups

The National Council of Churches, its existence threatened by persistent deficits, inept financial management and denominational apathy, approved plans at a November 9-12 meeting to eliminate 34 staff positions, mandated a gaunt new structure, and OK'd the framework for a balanced year 2000 budget that would include a built-in 10 percent surplus.

The New York-based council of 35 Protestant and Orthodox bodies also elected a new general secretary to a four-year term. Robert W. Edgar, 56, is a minister in the United Methodist Church and a seminary president with a reputation for rescuing institutions in distress—most recently Claremont School of Theology in California. He succeeds Joan Brown Campbell, 68, who became the target of sharp criticism for the council's woes in the latter years of her nine-year tenure.


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