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Dec. 23, 2010
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Nov. 18, 2010
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Oct. 28, 2010
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Aug. 26, 2010
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July 28, 2010
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News from the Virginia Conference – Dec. 10, 2010

Conference invited
to fast, pray

Bishop Charlene Kammerer invites Virginia Conference United Methodists to join her in weekly fasting and prayer, through Dec. 31, to ask God to work within us for the future of the church. More …

Bergdoll to retire as Foundation executive director
James R. Bergdoll, president and executive director of the United Methodist Foundation of the Virginia Conference, announced at the Dec. 9 meeting of the board of directors that he will retire in the spring of 2011. Bergdoll has served as Foundation president and executive director since July 1999. The board has formed a search committee, and the process is under way to hire a new executive director. Lorilei Roberts of Purcellville, Va., board chairperson, said the board hopes to name a successor by its May 2011 meeting. Resumes may be sent via e-mail to More …

December issue of Laity E-News now available
Click here to read the latest edition of the Virginia Conference Laity E-News. If you have trouble with the link, go to the Conference Web site,, select "Ministries," then "Laity," followed by "Laity Newsletters." You are encouraged to print, copy, and share the publication with others, especially those in leadership positions in your church. Comments may be shared with Martha Stokes, conference director of Leadership and Inclusivity, at

Human Relations Day is Sunday, Jan. 16
Human Relations Day is Sunday, Jan. 16. This day of social action and raising awareness aims to heal social ills at the national level. It supports Community Developers, United Methodist Voluntary Service, and the Youth Offender Rehabilitation Program. In The United Methodist Church calendar, Human Relations Day is the Sunday immediately following the observance of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday. However, you can observe Human Relations Day at anytime of the year. The United Methodist Book of Discipline describes the purpose of Human Relations Day as a call to "the Church to recognize the right of all God's children in realizing their potential as human beings in relationship with each other." More …

Jan. 18-25 is Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is Jan. 18-25. The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity invites the whole Christian community throughout the world to pray in communion with the prayer of Jesus “that they all may be one” (John 17:21). The 2011 theme is One in the Apostles’ Teaching, Fellowship, Breaking of Bread and Prayer (Acts 2:42). Click here for resources. More …

GBOD offers online training for local church leaders
The General Board of Discipleship (GBOD) is hosting two online one-hour, live job training events with follow-up resources: Training for local church Pastor/Staff Relations Committees will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 20, hosted by Betsey Heavner of GBOD Leadership Ministries. Training for local church finance chairs, treasurers and financial secretaries at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 27, hosted by Betsey Heavner of GBOD Leadership Ministries. For more information or to sign up, contact Heavner at

Second annual Change the World event to be May 14-15
The second annual church-wide Change the World event, planned for May 14-15, is a call for United Methodists to make a positive difference locally and globally. Modeling last year’s success when 100,000 people from over 1,000 churches rolled up their sleeves to feed the hungry, aid the homeless, visit the lonely, and more, organizers expect 2011’s Change the World activities to feature at least 3,500 events that will mobilize a half million volunteers. The Change the World event was originally created as part of the Rethink Church campaign by United Methodist Communications in partnership with the United Methodist Publishing House, based on a concept originated by the Rev. Mike Slaughter, who authored a book by the same name. Rethink Church seeks to utilize outreach events that embrace the concept of outbound church to make a positive difference in the world beyond the church doors. For more information go to

2011 ‘Calling 21’ helps college students discern God’s call
"Calling 21" is a conference-wide, grass roots, congregation-based, youth-focused approach to the Virginia Conference's emerging culture of call. During the summer, college students are placed in church internships and spend the summer immersed in the life of a local church, not their own, discerning God's call into church leadership. Calling 21 interns will both learn and lead. The host church will be a church that has been noticed and named for its potential to help young people hear God's call upon their lives. The intern's stipend will be $2500. Applicants shall be college students and interested in exploring their call to church leadership. Calling 21 partners include: The Institute for Church Professions of Shenandoah University, Virginia Conference Board of Ordained Ministry, The Fund for Theological Education, Virginia Conference Cabinet, and Calling 21 Host Congregations. More ... 

Conference seeks three 2011 summer interns
Virginia Conference offices of Congregational Development & Evangelism, Leadership & Inclusivity,and Mission & Global Justice are each seeking a summer intern for 2011. Applicants for all three positions should desire to pursue a career in a ministry setting, have experience in and passion for the area of interest, and familiarity with The United Methodist Church. Intern salary is $250 a week (with a minimum of 10 weeks). Click here for application and guidelines. Deadline for submission of applications is Feb. 1. Applications should be e-mailed to Becky Tate at

Voices of Youth accepting applications for 2011 tour participants
Voices of Youth (VOY), a mission program of the Virginia Conference designed to connect high school youths with those in need through music and mission, has a new Web site, It includes information about the program, the VOY 2011 tour, information and applications for churches interested in hosting a concert in 2011 and participant applications. Applications are being accepted for new youths, returning youths, college students and adult staff. The VOY 2011 tour will be July 13-Aug. 5. The choir will travel to Haiti/Dominican Republic before returning to the Virginia Conference for its annual concert tour. Applications for youth and college students are being accepted through Jan. 3. The group is still looking for a few adult staff members and an accompanist. For more information, contact Voices of Youth coordinator, Rachel Hundley, at or the 2011 Team Leader, Chad Hrbek, at

Consecration of Ashland District Heart Havens home is Dec. 12
Consecration and Open House celebration for the new Ashland District Heart Havens is 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 12. The house is located at 320 North Snead Street, Ashland 23005. For more information, go to

2011 Ministers’ Convocation registration is open
Register now for the Jan. 18-20 Ministers’ Convocation. Theme is “Shaping God’s People: A Study of Exodus,” addressing the question “How does the story of Exodus help us to live into a future that is different from the past?” Keynote presenters will be Dr. Gil Rendle, senior consultant for the Texas Methodist Foundation for Clergy and Congregational Excellence, and Dr. Joel LeMon, assistant professor of Old Testament, Candler School of Theology, Emory University. Preaching during the week will be Bishop Charlene Kammerer and the Rev. Lisa Yebuah, newly ordained elder in the North Carolina Conference and Minister of Community Witness at Edenton Street UMC, Raleigh, N.C. A variety of workshops will be held on Wednesday, and district reflection groups will be led by younger clergy in the conference. Click here to register online or to download registration form.

Ted Hart to speak at 5 Talent Academy teaching event Feb. 19
Ted Hart, CEO of Hart Philanthropic Services and author of several books including People to People Fundraising: Social Networking and Web 2.0 for Charities, will be featured speaker at the 5 Talent Academy teaching event on Stewardship 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 19, at Floris United Methodist Church, 13600 Frying Pan Road, Herndon. More …

Lay Servants Academy to be Feb. 25-27 at VUMAC
All laity are invited to the first Lay Servants Academy — and the 33rd annual Lay Speakers Training — to be held at the Virginia United Methodist Assembly Center (VUMAC) in Blackstone Feb. 25-27. You do not need to be on track to become a Local Lay Speaker or Certified Lay Speaker to attend, although these programs are developed to challenge the Lay Speaker to become skilled to the level of certification and offer continuing training for re-certification. Every chairperson, committee member, teacher, or congregational leader is encouraged to take the introductory course and overview of United Methodism. Registration deadline is Feb. 11. Click here for more information, including brochure and registration form.

Clergy Spouse Retreat to be March 3-5 at VUMAC
The 49th Annual Clergy Spouse Retreat will be March 3-5 at the Virginia United Methodist Assembly Center (VUMAC) in Blackstone. The Rev. Dr. Lynne Caldwell will speak on "Rx Laughter, the Best Medicine." Activities will include Zumba exercise class, Quilt for the Homeless, Strength to Minister workshop, Simplicity/Simple Living discussion, Tai Chi class, book review/discussion of Preacher Creature Strikes on Sunday, nature walk and knitting class. More information will be available on either or after the New Year. Registration forms will be sent. (If you haven't received one by the end of January, contact your district office.) For more information, contact Bill Moore, 2011 Clergy Spouse Retreat chair, at

GCORR urges United Methodists to ‘Drop the I-Word’
The General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) is urging United Methodists to join a national campaign to eliminate the use of the word “illegal” as part of the conversation on immigration reform. GCORR has signed on to endorse the “Drop the I-Word” public education campaign launched by the Applied Research Center, a racial justice think tank urging media outlets and other organizations across the country to stop using the term “illegals” and its derivatives. On the agency’s Web site,, United Methodists can take the pledge to Drop the I-Word, and find resources including teaching tools and Bible study designed to start conversations about immigration.

UMCOR receives Peacebuilder Award
The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), the denomination's disaster-relief agency, was awarded the Peacebuilder Award, "For seeing what needs to be done and then doing it with love, respect, and humility." The award, announced Nov. 23, was given by Peace X Peace, a global network of peace builders that specifically advocates for women.

SEJ UMVIM office moves to Birmingham
The Southeastern Jurisdiction (SEJ) office of United Methodist Volunteers In Mission (UMVIM) has moved. Effective Dec. 15, UMVIM will be located at 100 Centerview Drive, Suite 210, Birmingham, AL 35216. Phone will be 1-800-659-0609. E-mail will be Click here for more information.

Children’s Ministry Forum to be Feb. 22-24 in San Antonio
Children’s Ministry leaders in large United Methodist churches will receive new skills, fresh understandings and revived energy at the 2011 Children’s Ministry Forum on Feb. 22-24 in San Antonio, Tex. Sponsored by the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD), the event, “Remembering Our Story,” will focus on remembering, rejoicing, renewing and responding as participants experience the biblical stories in new ways and develop multiple tactics to teach the stories to children. Although the event is designed for children’s ministry leaders in large United Methodist congregations with more than 250 people in worship, representatives from smaller congregations also are welcome to attend. More …

2011 Caring for Creation Conference to be March 31-April 3
One More Generation, a nonprofit founded by Carter and Olivia Ries (ages 9 and 8, respectively), will be featured presenters at the 2011 Caring for Creation at Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center March 31–April 3. One More Generation (OMG) is dedicated to the preservation of endangered species. Reduced registration fee is available until Jan. 1. For registration, scholarship request forms and more information, visit or call (828) 454-6656.

SEJ Clergywomen’s Consultation is April 4-7 in Atlanta
The Southeastern Jurisdiction Clergywomen’s Consultation will be held April 4-7 at the Emory Conference Center and Hotel, Atlanta, Ga. Cost is $150. (A $65 special fee for students includes all workshops, plenaries, worship services, but only one meal — the banquet on Wednesday night.) Click here for more information and to register.

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



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