Bishop Cedrick D. Bridgeforth has announced his intention to appoint the Rev. Kristin McGuire as Conference Superintendent for the Alaska United Methodist Conference, effective July 1, 2024.
“Throughout her ministry, Kristi has lived out our faith through the deep love and care she has offered to those she has served. As a faithful United Methodist, she seeks justice and equity in every situation,” offered Bishop Bridgeforth. “The gifts she has shared in Juneau will now bless all the ministries across Alaska and our Greater Northwest Area. I know Kristi will be a strong asset as we move forward in ministry together.”
McGuire will replace the Rev. Christina DowlingSoka, who has served as Conference Superintendent since 2022. In July, she expects to retire after 40-plus years of ministry, many alongside her husband, Joe-d.
“Christina has been a gift to the conference over the last 18 months, offering steady leadership grounded in her ministerial experience and the relationships she has nurtured with others across the conference,” shared Bishop Bridgeforth. “I am grateful for her service in this important role and wish her and Joe-d the best as they look toward this retirement.”
Rev. Kristi McGuire is an ordained elder and member of the Missouri Conference who serves as pastor of Aldersgate UMC in Juneau, Alaska. She previously served as associate pastor of Ḵunéix̱ Hídi Northern Light United Church. She graduated from Eden Theological Seminary and has served bi-vocationally in ministry for the last ten years, specializing in brewing, innovation, strategy, and technology. Kristi is a perpetual student with a passion for the advocacy of children. She lives joyfully and abundantly with her husband, Brian and their four amazing children.
“I am grateful to serve in the Alaska Conference and am humbled that Bishop Cedrick is entrusting me with this role and with the ministry of the superintendency during this season,” said Rev. McGuire. “As our local churches continue the work of decolonization and living into connectionalism in new ways, it is a privilege to equip, collaborate with, and advocate for my fellow lay and pastoral leaders. I look forward to this new expression of my service and call with deep respect and admiration for my colleagues and the shared hope of a unifying culture in the ministry of discipleship making. Please pray for my family, my local church, and for the many tasks ahead as I partner with Rev. DowlingSoka and Rev. Talbott to transition into this opportunity.”
McGuire’s appointment to the superintendency comes as the Alaska Conference considers how best to move into the future. A special called session on December 4 will allow members to revisit a previous request to be released from missionary conference status to become a mission district of the Pacific Northwest Conference. Several changes since 2020 and positive developments within The United Methodist Church prompted a request among conference leaders, including Rev. McGuire, for this reconsideration.