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News from the Virginia Conference – March 18, 2010

United Methodists joining 'March for America' on March 21
On Sunday, March 21, Justice for our Neighbors (JFON), the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) immigration program, will join more than 500 United Methodists from Texas, at least one busload of United Methodists from Virginia and tens of thousands of people of all faiths expected to march in Washington, D.C., in support of fair, humane immigration reform. Under the banner, "March for America: Change Takes Courage and Faith," the march will be from 2 to 5 p.m. on the National Mall. The march is part of Ecumenical Advocacy Days, which will be held in Washington, D.C., March 19-22, and will focus on immigrants, refugees, and displaced peoples. Click here for more … For more information about JFON's immigration ministry, visit the JFON Web site. For more information about immigration reform and the position of The United Methodist Church, see the April issue of The Virginia United Methodist Advocate. (Click here to subscribe online.)

United Methodists urged to ‘Change the World’ April 24-25
April 24-25 will be a weekend that could change the world. All 11 million United Methodists are being urged to come together that weekend to work in their local communities and also unite to fight malaria. Join these Virginia Conference churches that will be participating: Jetersville UMC (Farmville District), Thrift Store Ministry; Centenary UMC (Lynchburg District), Habitat for Humanity; Sherbourne UMC (Richmond District), Health Clinic and Food Pantry; Waverly UMC (Portsmouth District), 12-church cooperativeMission Ministries; Accotink UMC (Alexandria District), Free desserts to community; Floris UMC (Arlington District), Full Circle Band concert for Mercy Hospital in Bo, Sierra Leone, andRebuilding Together; Emmanuel UMC (Charlottesville District), Need-a-Prayer Drive Thru. What will your church do? For more information about Change the World, go to www.rethinkchurch.org/changetheworld.

Board of Global Ministries seeks 100 Mission Mentors
The Virginia Conference Board of Global Ministries is accepting nominations for 100 Mission Mentors to be trained in United Methodist theology of mission. The board seeks both laity and clergy, diverse in age, gender, ethnicity and background, who will mentor congregations to increase involvement in mission locally, nationally and internationally. These 100 Mission Mentors will embody characteristics including, but not limited to: a sense of call to God's mission; passionate about God's mission; involved in mission locally, nationally, and/or internationally; involved in United Methodist mission projects; gifted communicator and/or comfortable speaking in front of groups; thoughtful, active listener; grounded in spiritual disciplines; vision of mission beyond one's own local congregation; supportive of involving in mission those who are not part of a faith community; able to see the "big picture" of God's mission, i.e., not just concerned about one pet project; willing to participate in an ongoing mentoring relationship with one or more congregations; and willing to serve according to the guidelines and training of the Conference Board of Global Ministries. Submit nominations for Mission Mentors to Courtney Joyner at cacjoyner@gmail.com or (434) 591-0005 by April 15. Along with the name of the nominee(s), please include their e-mail address, phone number and district.

2010 Annual Conference News:

·   Offering to fund leader development in Brazil, Mozambique, VA
Bishop Charlene Kammerer has announced that the 2010 Annual Conference offering goal is $300,000 and will benefit three leadership development projects: Brazil: $100,000 — curriculum and teacher training materials for “Shade and Fresh Water” centers and other children’s centers sponsored by the Brazil Methodist Church; Mozambique: $100,000 — education and training for Sunday school teachers, lay preachers and pastors in the United Methodist Church in Mozambique, which is growing rapidly and needs leadership for the hundreds of new United Methodist churches being established throughout this southeastern African nation; Virginia: $100,000 — job training programs at Grace Ministries,a community outreach program of the Arlington District that addresses the most pressing material and spiritual needs of low-income immigrants in northern Virginia and empowers immigrants to become community leaders. More …

·   Holy Rollers to ride across Virginia to Annual Conference
Each June, the Holy Rollers go on a group bicycle ride of approximately 200 miles over three days through the beautiful back roads of Virginia and ending at the site of the Annual Conference. For 2010, the ride will begin early Friday, June 11, at Mountain View UMC in Forest, near Lynchburg, and end Sunday, June 13, at the Norfolk Scope.Purpose of the journey is to raise money for and awareness of the Virginia Annual Conference offering; encourage fellowship and build Christian collegiality among clergy and laity through cycling; and offer opportunities for clergy and laity to increase fitness and well-being. Those who cannot participate in the full three-day ride can join any portion of the journey. For more information or to register, call Ray Stearns at (757) 871-1243 (c)or (757) 380-7678 (w), or e-mail sterno49@hotmail.com.Or register online at www.holyrollers.us.

·   Annual Conference members asked to bag potatoes June 15
The Virginia Conference Board of Global Ministries and the Society of St. Andrew are co-sponsoring the 13th Annual Conference Potato Drop during this year’s Annual Conference. The “drop” will take place at 5:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 15, in the parking lot of Ghent UMC, 531 Raleigh Ave. in Norfolk. More …

·   Jim Gulley to speak at three Annual Conference events
The Rev. Jim Gulley, a United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) consultant who was trapped with Sam Dixon, Clint Rabb and three other colleagues in the rubble of the Hotel Montana after the Haiti earthquake, will speak three times during this year’s Annual Conference session: Mission Breakfast, Monday morning, June 14; Laity Banquet, Monday evening, June 14; and Tuesday evening plenary session, June 15. More information about the 2010 Annual Conference, to be held in Norfolk June 13-16, is available on the conference Web site at www.vaumc.org/2010AC.

·   Annual Conference members to pack Stop Hunger Now meals
This year, members of Annual Conference will be invited to participate in preparation of 100,000 meals through Stop Hunger Now. Meal preparation will take place in the exhibit hall on Monday, June 14, and Tuesday, June 15. Stop Hunger Now meals are filled with dried vegetables, chicken broth tablet, soy, rice, and 21 nutrients. Each packaged and sealed meal, able to feed six people, is shipped to those in need around the globe. Cost of the meals will be $25,000. Churches and individuals willing to assist with the cost of preparing the meals are invited to contact Marc Brown, Director of Connectional Ministries, at MarcBrown@vaumc.org.

·   2010 Annual Conference parking passes for sale online
Parking passes are now on sale for the 2010 Annual Conference. If you are planning to drive to Norfolk Scope from your home or a hotel not in downtown Norfolk, passes may be purchased for the Scope Garage, Brambleton Parking Lot and MacArthur North Garage (garage closest to Chrysler Hall). A parking pass will provide unlimited access Sunday through Wednesday of Annual Conference at one of these selected parking areas. The pass does not guarantee you a parking space, but it does prevent you from having to pay every time you enter one of these lots.You may purchase a parking pass for $21 through April 23. Click here to purchase the pass. Parking passes will be mailed in mid-May. Parking passes are only available for purchase online. No passes will be available after April 23. Because complimentary parking and daily bus service will be provided for persons who are staying in downtown Norfolk hotels, it is suggested that only commuters and persons who are staying at other hotels purchase a parking pass to assist with the availability of parking for all Annual Conference members.

·   Banquet schedule for 2010 Annual Conference now on Web
The first draft of the Annual Conference Banquet schedule is now available on the conference Web site at www.vaumc.org/2010AC. If your group has a banquet or luncheon planned during Annual Conference and you would like it added to this schedule, send your information to Michael Reaves at mbreaves@charter.net.

April 18 is Native American Ministries Sunday
Sunday, April 18, is designated as Native American Ministries Sunday in United Methodist churches. The observance, approved by the 1988 General Conference, is one of six special churchwide Sunday offerings. Without help from Native American Ministries Sunday, Ray deZafra never would have found his way to the Third Sunday Native American Fellowship. For the first time in his life, the Potawatomi Indian feels that he belongs, not just to a tribe, but also to a community of Christians. The offering on this Special Sunday educates Native American seminarians, plants Native American churches and cultivates Native American outreach to seekers like Ray. Call 1-888-346-3862 today to order envelopes and other resources so your congregation can participate in this churchwide offering. They will be sent at no cost to your church. Find more at umcgiving.org/specialsundays or click here.

Conference offers e-mail network for church musicians
The Virginia Conference has set up another e-mail group – this time for church musicians – VaUMC_Musicians. This is a group for musicians in the Virginia Conference, including, but not limited to choir directors, pianists, organists, choir members, contemporary bands, worship planners and any other interested persons. To subscribe send a blank e-mail to: VaUMC_Musicians-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. To post a message send e-mail to: VaUMC_Musicians@yahoogroups.com. To unsubscribe: VaUMC_Musicians-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com. If you have difficulty subscribing, contact Communications@vaumc.org. To see all the e-mail groups the conference sponsors, visit the conference Web site at www.vaumc.org/emailgroups.

‘Real Change for Real People’ training to be offered April 17
The Conference Board of Church and Society, in partnership with Interfaith Center for Public Policy, will sponsor a workshop to train regional facilitators for future workshops titled “Real Change for Real People: Moving Beyond Broke.” Training will be 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 17, at the Virginia United Methodist Conference Center in Glen Allen. A light lunch will be provided. The first regional workshop is scheduled for 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturday, May 1, at Calvary UMC, 1637 Williamsburg Rd., Richmond. This workshop will address controversial issues of unemployment insurance, living wage and predatory lending. The Social Principles, Scripture and living testimonies are integrated in the content to address the injustices of poverty. Click here for more info or e-mail Marilyn Heckstall at mheckstall@comcast.net. For lunch reservations, e-mail Carla Sterns at revcarla3@yahoo.com by April 9.

Christian Education Fellowship training event to be April 19-21
Friday, March 19, is early bird registration deadline for the Virginia Christian Education Fellowship (VA CEF) Professional Development Training Event to be held April 19-21 at Shalom House Retreat Center in Montpelier. Theme is “Unlock the Secrets to More Time and Creativity in Your Ministry.” Training leader and keynote speaker is the Rev. Doug Forrester. Workshops include: “Christian Education 101 for New Christian Educators,” “Picking Curriculum that is a Theological Fit,” “Digital Technology” and “Praying the Labyrinth.” All persons serving the local church in education, formation and age-level ministries are welcome. Click here for more information. Click here for online registration. For more information about the event or CEF, contact MaryKaye Cochran, VA CEF president, at mcochran@woodlakeumc.org or (804) 739-4535, ext. 33.

Ted Campbell to present ‘Wesleyan Perspective on Sacraments’
The Society for Wesleyan Studies will sponsor “A Wesleyan Perspective on the Sacraments,” presented by Dr. Ted A. Campbell, Associate Professor of Church History at Perkins School of Theology and one of the world's premier Wesleyan scholars, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, April 26, at Duncan Memorial UMC, Ashland. Cost is $40 which includes lunch.The Board of Ordained Ministry has approved .5 CEU for attendance at this event. All laity and clergy are invited. For more information, contact the Rev. Carl Ulrich at carlulrich@aol.com or (804) 592-5962. Click here for more information.

Workshop for living with Alzheimer’s set for May 7 in Virginia Beach
“Living with Alzheimer’s Disease: You are NOT Alone,” a dual-track workshop for family caregivers, clergy and church leaders, will be held Friday, May 7, at Virginia Beach UMC, 212 19th St., Virginia Beach. This conference offers current, relevant strategies for caregivers, with a special track for clergy and church leaders involved in ministry with families experiencing Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Stephen Sapp, professor and chair of Religious Studies at the University of Miami and author of When Alzheimer’s Disease Strikes! Registration fee is $10. Registration deadline is April 12 for clergy with CEU request and April 26 for clergy and church leaders without CEU request. Click here for more information or contact Janice Cagle at (757) 428-7727 or jcagle@vbumc.org. Sponsors are Alzheimer’s Association, Southeastern Virginia Chapter; Virginia Beach UMC; Virginia Conference Commission on Disabilities; Virginia Beach Department of Human Services; and Virginia Wesleyan College.

May 8 will be United Methodist Day at King’s Dominion
Saturday, May 8, will be Virginia Conference Family Fun Day at King’s Dominion amusement park, with discounted tickets to the park available for United Methodists. A special picnic will be held from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Group Catering Pavilion. To purchase tickets online, go to www.kingsdominion.com, click on “Tickets,” then “Corporate Partners,” and enter company code UMC4.

‘Extreme Makeover: Worship Edition’ will revitalize your worship
Whether your worship needs a remodel, renovation, rehab or completely new construction, this event will give you the tools to design, develop and deliver powerful, authentic worship that is true to the risen Christ. The design team – Len Wilson and Jason Moore of Midnight Oil and the Rev. Chris Hughes of Pneumanaut Ministries – will help you clarify your blueprint for worship, overcome obstacles and explore new methods and techniques. The same program will be offered in two separate locations on two different days: Tuesday, May 11, at Calvary UMC in Stuarts Draft, and Wednesday, May 12, at Shady Grove UMC in Mechanicsville. Choose either location. Deadline to register is April 30. Click here for more information or to register for May 11. Click here for more information or to register for May 12.

School for Children’s Ministry to be May 21-22 at VUMAC
School for Children’s Ministry will be May 21-22 at the Virginia United Methodist Assembly Center (VUMAC) in Blackstone. Friday evening guest speakers will be Bradford Hulcher from the Autism Society, Central VA, speaking on “Including Children with Disabilities in the Church Community,” and Ellen Heatwole, pastor at Forest Grove UMC in the Ashland District, speaking on “Experimental Worship.” Six different workshops will be offered: Children in Mission, Got Volunteers?, Sponsored by the Children’s Ministry Team, “Show me” a Children’s Message, How to Build an Effective Nursery Ministry and Children’s Ministry 101. Registration deadline is May 14. Click here for more information and to register.

PAUMCS Spring Retreat to be May 23-24 in Orkney Springs
“Living Abundantly in Times of Scarcity” will be the theme for the Professional Association of United Methodist Church Secretaries (PAUMCS) Spring Retreat May 23-24 at the Shrine Mont Retreat Center in Orkney Springs, Va. Leader will be the Rev. Rhonda Van Dyke Colby. PAUMCS invites all church administrative staff, full-time, part-time, paid and volunteer, including, but not limited to, administrative assistants, financial secretaries, office managers and newsletter editors. Click here to download a brochure.

Children offered two chances to experience ‘Helping Hands’ mission
“Helping Hands,” a two-day hands-on mission experience for children, will be held July 8-9 at Main Street UMC in Waynesboro and again July 22-23 at Woodlake UMC, Midlothian. All rising fourth- through sixth-graders, parents and adult leaders of Virginia Conference churches are invited to participate in one of these events and learn about mission opportunities and the importance of being a caring Christian. Cost is $35 per person and includes a T-shirt, meals, snacks and overnight stay. Registration begins May 1. Click here for more information about July 8-9. Click here for more information about July 22-23.

Applications due for new Culture of Call Church Award
The Foundation for Evangelism announced the new Culture of the Call Church Award. Each year, this award will recognize one local congregation of The United Methodist Church with a history of supporting young people in answering their call into full-time Christian service. Award-winning churches will have ordained clergy, deacons, campus ministers, youth ministers and others who credit the teaching, nurturing and sustaining support of the congregation among their greatest assets in beginning their professional journey.The award highlights churches that are helping to raise up generations of leaders with a passion for evangelism. For more information or to be considered for this award, visit www.FoundationForEvangelism.org or call 1-800-737-8333. Deadline for applications is April 10.


For in-depth news and features about United Methodist mission and ministry, subscribe to the Virginia United Methodist Advocate, the Virginia Conference’s award-winning monthly newsmagazine. Click here to subscribe online. Or call Peggy Cribbs at 1-800-768-6040, ext. 110, or (804) 521-1110. Or e-mail Advocate@vaumc.org.


 

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