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Dec. 16, 2011
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News from the Virginia Conference – July 15, 2011

Virginia Conference awarded $10,000 for VocationCARE program
The Fund for Theological Education (FTE) awarded the Virginia Conference a $10,000 grant to fund conference-wide use of VocationCARE, a program designed to help individuals and congregations discern their call. The project is part of the conference’s commitment to nurture vocation and leadership in young people and encourage congregations to support youths and young adults in exploring their call. Initially, the mentor-candidate relationship of the ordination process, 10 initially targeted congregations, and several conference board leadership teams will use VocationCARE. Two-day training by FTE/VocationCARE is being supplemented by coaching in each district for candidacy mentoring and the engagement of mentoring relationships for young people in conference and congregational ministries. For more information, contact Beth Downs, director of Ministerial Services, or Angie Williams, director of Children, Youth, Young Adult, and Higher Education Ministries.

Observers invited to first delegation meeting
The 2012 General and Jurisdictional Conference delegation will hold its first meeting 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, July 16, at the United Methodist Center in Glen Allen. The meeting is open to members of the Virginia Conference who would like to observe. Those attending who are not on the delegation are invited to sit in the gallery section of the meeting room and provide their own lunch. Agenda items will include organizing the delegation, choosing General Conference legislation committees, and beginning the process of discernment related to episcopal candidacy. For more information, contact Shirley Cauffman at shirley.cauffman@comcast.net.

Special Program and Sustaining Grant applications due Aug. 1
Applications for Special Program Grants and Sustaining Grants for 2012 are due in the office of Connectional Ministries by Aug. 1. Special Program Grants are designed for programs outside of normal conference and local church funding processes. They are intended to provide funding for the first three years of innovative programs of tangible and caring outreach that is beyond a local church's current financial resources. They are for churches of all ethnic groups and should help the church requesting the funding to relate to the ethnic groups within its community. Sustaining Grants are designed for programs outside of normal conference and local church funding processes. They are intended to provide funding to sustain innovative programs of tangible and caring outreach that is beyond a local church's current financial resources. They are for churches of all ethnic groups and should help the church requesting the funding to relate to the ethnic groups within its community. For more information on these grants, and access  to applications, go to www.vaumc.org/specialprogramgrants

Training scheduled for volunteers to teach Disciple in prisons
The Virginia Conference has established Disciple Bible Outreach Ministries (DBOM) of Virginia, an affiliate ministry of DBOM National, Inc. DBOM recruits, trains and equips local church volunteers for ministry in prisons, jails and youth development centers. All DBOM prison volunteers must be trained and certified for this ministry. The first two trainings for Virginia will be Saturday, Sept. 17, and Sunday, Sept. 18, at the Virginia Conference Center in Glen Allen. Click here for more information or to register, or contact Gene Mims at gene.mims@comcast.net or (804) 733-8632.

Virginia Tech student receives EYA summer internship in D.C.
Minoka Gunesekera, a 20-year-old Asian-American from Blacksburg, is one of 14 young adults who began work in Washington, D.C., early in June as part of the Ethnic Young Adult (EYA) Summer Internship program of the United Methodist General Board of Church & Society. The interns work in nonprofit and nongovernmental social justice organizations in the nation’s capital for two months. Gunesekera is a student at Virginia Tech, studying Public & Urban Affairs, with a concentration in Public Policy and Non-Profit Management. She worships at Blacksburg United Methodist Church. She is an intern with Faith & Politics Institute, which has served hundreds of members of Congress and congressional staff by offering pilgrimages, reflection groups, retreats and public forums consisting of bipartisan, interfaith dialogues.

August Advocate recaps 2011 Annual Conference
The August issue of the award-winning Virginia United Methodist Advocate monthly newsmagazine highlights the preaching, music, reports and voting of the 229th Virginia Annual Conference session held last month in Roanoke. The issue contains a complete list of General and Jurisdictional Conference delegates, retirees and those ordained for ministry. The issue also includes the 2011-2012 Virginia Conference Mission Opportunities booklet, a guide to mission activities supported by our conference that helps congregations find new ways to demonstrate love of God and love of neighbor. To subscribe to the Advocate, call (804) 521-1110 or 1-800-768-6040, ext. 110; e-mail Advocate@vaumc.org; or click here.

Three dates set for ‘All God’s Children Camp’
“All God’s Children Camp” provides a week of fun and sanctuary for children, ages 7 to 12, who have an incarcerated mother or father. Camp dates and locations are July 31-Aug. 5 Camp Highroad in Middleburg; Aug. 7-12 Westview on the James in Goochland; Aug. 14-19 Occohannock on the Bay in Belle Haven. Click here to find out how you can support All God’s Children Camp by sending a child to camp, providing supplies, mentoring, volunteering, etc. For more information, contact Casey Torrence, director of All God’s Children Camp, at (804) 521-1138 or 1-800-768-6040, ext. 138, or e-mail caseytorrence@vaumc.org.

LEAD training for youth will be Aug. 5-14 in Roanoke
Registration deadline is Aug. 3 for LEAD, the new leadership training event for Virginia Conference youth that will replace the former YAC/VUMDYLA. LEAD will be Aug. 5-14 at the Salvation Army in Roanoke. More ….

Middle School Mission Weekends set for Aug. 19-21, Oct. 14-16
Middle School Mission Weekends will be Aug. 19-21 and Oct. 14-16 at Westview on the James, United Methodist camp in Goochland. Click here for more information or to register for August event. Registration deadline is Aug. 8. Click here for more information or to register for October event. Registration deadline is Oct. 3.

‘Launch’ offers weekend of rafting, hiking while exploring call to ministry
There is still time for high School sophomores, juniors and seniors to apply to participate in “Launch,” a weekend of rafting and hiking in the Appalachian Mountains while exploring a call to ministry Friday, Sept. 30 – Sunday, Oct. 2. Cost is $80 (includes rafting, lodging, food, and transportation during the event) payable upon selection to participate. Application deadline is Aug.1. Sponsored by the Spiritual Life Office at Shenandoah University and the Virginia Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. Click here for application form, informational flyer and more details.

Kid’s Work Camp to be Sept. 30-Oct. 2 at Westview on James
Kid's Work Camp at Westview on the James will be Sept. 30-Oct. 2. This weekend camp for 2nd- through 6th- graders focuses on outreach and mission opportunities designed just for kids and their leaders. Some projects occur on-site, but most groups will head out into the Goochland area to assist with home repair, yard work, visits to the elderly and more. Campers will worship together, play together and, of course, work together. For more information and registration form, go to www.westviewonthejames.org.

UMCOR needs more school kits
The latest shipment of school kits to Haiti has “seriously depleted” the stockpile kept by the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), which is encouraging congregations to use kit-making as a group project or activity. The kits, which cost about $11 each to assemble, provide children with basic supplies such as paper, pencils and other items. Learn more about assembling school kits or make a gift toward the purchase of materials.

Sermon starter series focuses on back-to-school season
"A Fresh Start," the latest sermon-starter series and multimedia bundle from United Methodist Communications, encourages congregations to look at the back-to-school season as a chance for all persons to begin anew and as a time of refocus for the church. The four-week sermon-starter series features a preaching focus, liturgical content, challenges to live the message in community, and ideas for using social media to engage persons online. Click here to download sermon starters. The accompanying multimedia bundle includes five videos (for worship or small groups), worship graphics and graphics to help churches “Rethink Church” and reach beyond their walls. Click here to purchase.

GBOD offers free webinars for nominating committees, finance leaders
A free webinar on basic training for members of church nominating committees will be offered Thursday, Aug. 4, at 7:30 p.m. (Eastern time) by the Leadership Ministries division of the United Methodist General Board of Discipleship (GBOD). A two-part webinar for church finance leaders will be offered Thursday, Aug. 18, and Thursday, Aug. 25, at 7:30 p.m. (Eastern time). Register for these free webinars at www.gbod.org/committee_resources.


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. 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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