The Rev. Mienda Uriarte named as World Mission’s acting director

The Rev. Mienda Uriarte

(PNS) — The Rev. Mienda Uriarte has been named as World Mission’s acting director.

She succeeds Sara Lisherness, who has served as World Mission’s interim director for the past two years. Recently, Lisherness was named Deputy Executive Director for Mission Program, focusing on deepening the collaboration among four ministry areas: Theology, Formation & EvangelismRacial Equity and Women’s Intercultural MinistriesCompassion Peace & Justice; and World Mission.

Uriarte has served with the Presbyterian Mission Agency since 2001. She began her duties as coordinator of Youth & Young Adult Ministries and joined World Mission in 2011 as coordinator for the Office of Asia and the Pacific.

“Mienda has a deep understanding and commitment to mission and is respected among her colleagues,” said Lisherness. “Too often we look outside and ignore the talent we already have within the organization. Mienda has a unique set of gifts and strengths. She is responsive, not reactive. She has a peaceful way of building relationships.”

Uriarte was born in Goose Rocks Beach, Maine, and her family moved all over the United States as she was growing up. She is a member of the Presbytery of the Pacific.

Before joining PMA, she served with Woodland Hills Presbyterian Church in Woodland Hills, California; First Presbyterian Church of Granada Hills in Granada Hills, California; Calvin Crest Conference Center northeast of Fresno, California; and the Synod of Southern California and Hawaii.

“I’m honored to be invited and to say ‘yes’ to the invitation to fill this role,” said Uriarte. “World Mission has grown in significant ways under Sara’s leadership, and I look forward to continuing that trend.  As the PMA leans into the Vision Implementation Plan with rebuilding and moving the organization into the described generational changes, it will be important for World Mission to move and change in ways that are integral and that reflect all that God calls us to do and to be.”

Currently World Mission has 78 mission co-workers spread throughout the world, working in over 80 countries. There are four area offices: Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and Europe, Africa, and Asia and the Pacific. The Young Adult Volunteer Program and the Jinishian Memorial Program are also part of the ministry area.

Presbyterians doing mission in partnership are guided by the Matthew 25 vision. World Mission works alongside global partners and nurtures faith-filled relationships “based in equity, mutuality and justice rooted in God’s love and the Gospel of Jesus.”

by Kathy Melvin, Presbyterian News Service