Statement of Identity

We are the people of the Illinois South Congregations of the United Church of Christ, and we believe that God has called and uniquely gifted us to embody the Gospel of Jesus Christ for such a time as this.

We believe in Jesus Christ, risen Savior, and sole head of the church. We seek to do the work of Christ on earth through our shared missions of healing, mercy, and justice. We rely on the Holy Spirit to guide us, comfort us, challenge us, empower us, and to bind us together in a loving, covenantal relationship as the Illinois South Conference. As a family of faith communities:

  • We strive to enrich the faith formation and spiritual lives of all our congregations and members.
  • We challenge one another to engage, nurture, and learn from our youth and young adults.
  • We gather together to worship, celebrate and strengthen our congregations.
  • We encourage one another to practice new forms of evangelism for new times.
  • We unite with our brothers and sisters across the wider church, and ecumenically, in the pursuit of justice and peace.
  • We promote a diverse, loving, welcoming Christian presence in our communities.
  • We work together to identify, train, authorize and call faith-filled leaders, both lay and clergy.
  • We encourage generous giving of our financial resources, as well as the other gifts God has afforded us, and we encourage participation in all our mission outreach.
  • We learn from one another and share our experiences and resources.
  • We care for and share the resources God has entrusted to us.
  • We support and assist our congregations in good times and challenging times.

We are the people of the Illinois South Congregations of the United Church of Christ, and we believe that God is still speaking.

Conference Staff


Rev. Shana Johnson

Designated Conference Minister

Shana received her Bachelor of Arts in Pastoral Ministries from Greenville College. She was the first woman to enter the pastoral ministries program at Greenville College and received the Wilson King religion award upon graduation. After graduating from Greenville in 1993, Shana began her seminary training at Eden Theological Seminary where she earned her Master of Divinity degree in 1997. Shana has served UCC churches in southern Illinois, central Illinois, Missouri, and northern Illinois.

Email Rev. Johnson


Lynnette Schuepbach

Communication Coordinator

Lynnette began working with Illinois South Conference in 2008. She devotes her time to the Weekly Connection and other communications throughout southern Illinois. She is an author and illustrator of children's books and enjoys anything creative.


Shirley Asmussen

Director of Outdoor Ministries

Shirley began as Director of Outdoor Ministries in 2009. She manages the DuBois Center summer camps and retreats, as well as Winter Weekend, Festival of Faith, and Confirmation Retreats for Illinois South Conference. She is a great proponent of camps with lots of hands-on experience.


Christy Pursell

Office Support Coordinator

Christy takes care of the registrations for all Illinois South Conference events and  DuBois Center camps as well as managing the office in Highland. She has a Masters in Social Work as well as being a mom of three young men.

Email Christy Pursell


Shirley Bergmann

Finance Coordinator

Shirley Bergmann came out of retirement to handle the financial aspects of Illinois South Conference. She has great knowledge of the history of the Conference and DuBois Center and has been a great addition to the Illinois South Conference Team.