At some later point, the amount allowed to be claimed by reading was expanded to 26 contact hours (out of 40). Those are the standards I've been applying in my annual CE reports.
But now, I discover that the Indiana Annual Conference (successor to South and North Indiana Conferences) only requires 25 contact hours (or 2.5 CEUs) of CE for full-time clergy, and only 20 contact hours (2.0 CEUs) for part-time clergy. No guidelines are currently given for how much CE credit one can claim for reading, but given the cluttered and confusing jumble that is the Conference website, one can't claim absolutely that such guidelines no longer exist. At the same time, our clergy have in recent years been encouraged to do things like travel for personal enrichment for continuing education.
Anyway, I got a question on this from a parishioner (the first, I think, I've ever had by a parishioner). So, I looked up how many contact hours of CE I've reported each year since 2008. Remember, I've been laboring under the assumption that 40 hours was required, whereas 25 hours is the actual current standard.
In 2008, I reported 95 contact hours.
In 2009, I reported 58 contact hours.
In 2010, I reported 40 contact hours.
In 2011, I reported 47 contact hours.
In 2012, I reported 59 contact hours.
In 2013, I reported 58 contact hours.
In 2014, I reported 286 contact hours (100 hours of that was travel to UK)
In 2015, I reported 260 contact hours (200 hours of that was travel to DRC)
My predecessor here at EFUMC used to be one of those charged by the Board of Ordained Ministry with reviewing CE reports. Many clergy do NO continuing education, he said; meanwhile, I'm sure others are claiming reading and events on the level of Chicken Soup for the Clergy Soul. He said the panel always looked forward to reading my reports, since I took continuing education seriously. I continue to challenge myself and to learn in all kinds of ways.
The parishioner's question took the form of a challenge to me that I should do some real CE and bring the results back to the congregation. So, next time the Church Council meets, I will be sharing this year's CE report, as well as the contents of this blog post. I'm glad somebody actually cares, I suppose, but to be accused of being a CE slouch by somebody who has no clue is a bit much. So, we'll see if Jesting Pilate will stay for an answer this time.