Rev. Dr. Eddie Rivera is one of the two Episcopal Candidates putting his name forth from the New Mexico Annual Conference. Over the past few weeks, they’ve been asked many questions by the various Conference Delegations in the Jurisdiction in anticipation of the SCJ Conference during which these delegations will elect three bishops.

We thought we’d ask them a few questions they may not have been asked by the delegations in hopes of getting to know them better. Here are Eddie’s responses.

Calvin and Hobbes or Winnie the Pooh & Piglet and why? My answer to this question will have to be El Zorro and Luke Skywalker. Beyond the obvious ethnic cultural reference there is a generational cultural aspect to these iconic characters: God calls us to be in ministry with people from all generations. On a personal level, El Zorro represents my foundational heritage while Luke Skywalker represents my ability to see the big picture: a vision to infinity and beyond! (Wait! I think that’s from another movie character).

What are your hopes for the UMC? As Bishop, how would you help lead churches and the denomination forward? In this post-pandemic world, I hope that the UMC continues to connect to the spiritual DNA of the resurrection power of Christ (Philippians 3:10). What the Pandemic tried to bring to the Church was a spirit of death. As Bishop, I will do my best to keep my temporal stewardship and spiritual leadership of the Church connected to that spiritual DNA so that our Denomination becomes once again a movement that spreads scriptural holiness across the land.

Mary or Martha and why? Mary. Not just because Jesus seemed to have praised her attitude of spending time in contemplation of his amazing presence, but also because I need to strengthen that kind of disposition in my own life. I feel sometimes I spend my days like Martha: chasing after the many duties and responsibilities of my ministry without giving myself more time to be in contemplation of the One who called me to this ministry. Lord, help me be like Mary!