United Methodist Church Ecumenical Staff Officer to Retire


March 31, 2016



Washington, D.C.: Bishop Warner H. Brown, Jr., President of the Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church, announced today the retirement of Rev. Dr. Stephen J. Sidorak, Jr., Ecumenical Staff Officer for the OCUIR (Office of Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships) of the Council of Bishops, effective July 1, 2016.


Beginning immediately, Dr. Sidorak will take a leave of absence in order to address medical issues.


“The Council is appreciative of Dr. Sidorak’s leadership which has been instrumental in strengthening our ecumenical relationships and working towards greater unity,” said Bishop Brown. “We thank him for his dedicated efforts.”


During his tenure, Dr. Sidorak guided the restructuring of the former GCCUIC (General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns) into the new OCUIR under the Council of Bishops. He resourced the organization of the Committee on Faith and Order. Dr. Sidorak played a key role in facilitating the Full Communion Agreement with the Pan-Methodist family at the 2012 General Conference. At that same General Conference, he worked on the adoption of the resolution: Healing Relationships with Indigenous Persons. He also held membership and Leadership on Joint Study Committee on the Sand Creek Massacre Study Project. Dr. Sidorak was a co-lead staff person on the Organization of Joint Commission on Full Communion with the ELCA and implementation of its work, and provided key leadership with various ecumenical bodies, including but not limited to WCC, NCCUSA, CCT, etc.