“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language, and next year’s words await another voice.”
–T.S. Eliot

The HMA Board of Directors wants to send their greetings to each of you and wishes for a healthy, happy and hope filled New Year. 2015 was an outstanding year for the Health Ministries Association with many impactful accomplishments in the faith and health arena. We achieved these results by pursuing a clear strategic vision, maintaining a disciplined viewpoint and having a team with enduring values that has no equal in talent, professionalism and excellence. HMA could not have reached these achievements without the support of our dedicated members and faith/health partners.

Innovation has been core to our success. We have been focused on keeping up with the changing world, so that we can meet the needs, wants and desires of our members, now and into the future. Our goal is to move forward from a mission-driven perspective. Last year we introduced several projects and opportunities, all calling us to innovative, adaptive and forward thinking.

With the adoption of new Bylaws, we are called to serve in new ways. The Board of Directors will be tapping into their gifts and talents as they work collectively to develop a board with a focus on the individual strengths of each member. I can wholeheartedly say that the new process in place with adoption of the Bylaws will complement and align individual strengths, leadership and passion. Working through this new process will foster camaraderie and create a stronger sense of unity among the members, and in essence, a stronger association.

Our partnership with ANA/ANCC has offered many opportunities for sharing expertise and insights of the professional role and development of the faith community nurse and beyond. The ANCC is very pleased with the success of the certification process to date, and we continue to have dialogue with them regularly on many topics relating to the faith community nursing practice. In those conversations, we strive to find common ground on ways to increase the nurse’s roles and visibility in various community settings. Many of those specific issues are being addressed by the Scope and Standards Workgroup, as they explore our current practice issues and trends.

Exceptional performance begins with exceptional people, and we attract the best and the brightest faith leaders. HMA has created a diverse environment that supports the professional development of our members, their practices and the reach they have in communities nationwide. I want to thank each and every one of you who have served in any capacity for HMA throughout the year. You are the effective ambassadors for the mission and vision of HMA, and the faith and health movement at the local, regional and national levels.

We have been very busy over the winter and I want to share the latest news!

Call for Nominations – The call for nominations for the HMA Board of Directors is open. For HMA to continue to be the association for faith and health leaders requires a fully engaged membership, including professionals from all backgrounds. We need representation from across our membership. It is important to engage our newer members into leadership roles as well as our long term members or those who have served in previous capacities.

I encourage you to read through the Board of Director position description and consider serving. Or, think about those HMA members who you know have outstanding leadership qualities, talk with them about serving, and nominate them! You just might be the impetus they need to get them to bring their servant leadership to HMA.

Partnerships – HMA has partnered with the Center for Disease Control on the 2016 TIPS From Former Smokers campaign. The CDC has released new ads to raise awareness about chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), depression and anxiety, dual use of both cigarettes and electronic cigarettes, smokers’ risk for heart disease (with military focus) and a cancer survivor that includes a gain-framed message focusing on the benefits of smoking. The ads will air for 20 weeks nationally on TV, radio, magazine, and online.

HMA will be running articles from the CDC throughout 2016 in each on-line publication. Additionally, there will be opportunities for you to submit smoking cessation stories and projects that you have been involved with in your communities. There will also be further educational opportunities for HMA members with special incentives for participation. These items/benefits will begin in the March Eblast and will have specific details on ways you can get involved. You can check out the 2016 TIPS From Former Smokers campaign and the CDC Feature Article: “Smoker’s Stories: Five Reasons to Quit for Good”.

The Health Ministries Association is pleased to have been chosen by the CDC to partner in this important campaign. We will continue to bring you updated details of the resources, and educational opportunities as they become available.

Events – Make sure that you have marked your calendar for the HMA 2016 Annual Meeting and Conference being held in sunny Chandler, AZ, Sept. 12 – 14, 2016. Not only are we in a spectacular location this year, we have listened to you, via your conference evaluations. Therefore, you will be experiencing inspired changes in many aspects of this year’s event.

One of the main suggestions from last year’s attendees was for more time for networking, time to talk and exchange ideas. In response to those comments, we have done a re-design of the conference schedule, building in more time for you to have those desired face-to-face encounters. In lieu of pre-conferences, there will be a nontraditional format on Monday morning for networking or a “personal enhancement” opportunity; it will be completely your choice. This year’s conference will allow you to experience meeting content that engages, but will give you time to “mix and mingle” at a more relaxed pace.

I am truly excited and impressed to be working with this year’s conference planning committee, with Karen MacDonald as Conference Chair. It is also a pleasure to welcome back Carol Story in an HMA leadership role as Chair of the Local Host Committee. They are an active and animated group bringing many exciting ideas to showcase their region to the table.

One highlight of the conference will be the roll out of the 2016 Faith Community Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, Third Edition from HMA and the ANA, along with The Health Minister Role: Guidelines and Foundational Elements, Second Edition, from HMA. We are excited to have both of these great publications updated this year.

It is critical for HMA to be aware and to keep up with the changing world, so we can meet the needs, wants and desires of our members now and into the future. I know that all attendees will have an experience that will enhance their professional practice and spiritual journey in new and innovative ways. Follow our countdown to the conference via our e-marketing, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter. Either way, we want to see you at the conference in Arizona!

I want to thank our members for their trust and confidence in HMA and its leadership as we move into a new year. We have an extraordinary team with relentless commitment to this organization that provides expertise and wisdom to guide our decisions. We will continue to work for you, our members, as we strengthen and grow HMA’s mission and vision, locally, regionally, nationally and beyond.

Peace, Marlene