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To view a 2011 issue of the Virginia Conference e-Advocate, click on the date below:

Dec. 16, 2011
Dec. 9, 2011
Dec. 1, 2011

Nov. 18, 2011
Nov. 11, 2011
Nov. 4, 2011

Oct. 28, 2011
Oct. 14, 2011
Oct. 7, 2011

Sept. 29, 2011
Sept. 23, 2011
Sept. 15, 2011
Sept. 9, 2011
Sept. 2, 2011

Aug. 26, 2011
Aug. 19, 2011
Aug. 11, 2011
Aug. 4, 2011

July 28, 2011
July 21, 2011
July 15, 2011
July 8, 2011

June 29, 2011
June 20, 2011
June 14, 2011
June 9, 2011
June 3, 2011 - Special Annual Conference Edition

May 27, 2011
May 20, 2011
May 11, 2011
May 6, 2011

April 26, 2011
April 18, 2011
April 8, 2011

March 31, 2011
March 25, 2011
March 17, 2011
March 9, 2011
March 2, 2011

Feb. 25, 2011
Feb. 17, 2011
Feb. 10, 2011
Feb. 3, 2011

Jan. 28, 2011
Jan. 20, 2011
Jan. 12, 2011
Jan. 6, 2011

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News from the Virginia Conference – July 21, 2011

Advocate subscription promotional materials to be e-mailed to churches
This year, in order to save on mailing expenses, all lists of names of local church Virginia United Methodist Advocate newsmagazine subscribers and Advocate subscription promotional materials will be e-mailed to churches for use in the late summer Advocate subscription campaign. Please e-mail or Peggy Cribbs in the conference Communications office with notification of the e-mail address to which these materials should be sent.

Printed copies of Journal must be purchased by Aug. 15
This year Annual Conference approved making the 2011 Virginia Annual Conference Journal available by posting it on the conference Web site,, as a pdf file. The Journal will be available on CD at a cost of $10. A printed copy of the Journal may be purchased for $25. Requests for printed copies must be made by Aug. 15, and payment must be made at the time the order is placed. Only a small quantity of Journals will be printed and distributed in compliance with the Book of Discipline, to district offices, conference offices and those purchasing copies before the Aug. 15 deadline. To order a CD or printed copy, contact Peggy Cribbs in the conference Communications office at, 1-800-768-6040, ext. 110, or (804) 521-1110.

Special Program and Sustaining Grant applications due Aug. 1
Applications for Special Program Grants and Sustaining Grants for 2011 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

Virginia Conference delegation holds organizational meeting
The Virginia Conference delegation to 2012 General and Jurisdictional conferences held its first meeting on July 16 at the United Methodist Center in Glen Allen. More …

UMFS seeks full-time chaplain
A full-time chaplain position is available at UMFS (formerly United Methodist Family Services) in Richmond. The chaplain develops and coordinates spiritual life programming for UMFS and Guardian Place; and develops and implements a church relations program to increase the visibility of UMFS throughout The United Methodist Church and other faith-based organizations while cultivating key churches, clergy and laity. For details, visit the Virginia Conference Web site at and scroll down to “Other.”

UMCOR still needs more school kits
United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) has issued an urgent call for more school kits because the latest shipment of school kits to Haiti has “seriously depleted” UMCOR’s stockpile. UMCOR is encouraging congregations to use kit-making as a group project or activity. Because the demand is so great, UMCOR indicated that even with the 15,352 school kits recently collected at the Virginia Annual Conference, more kits are needed. The kits, which cost about $11 each to assemble, provide children with basic supplies such as paper, pencils and other items. Click here to learn more about assembling school kits or make a gift toward the purchase of materials. Because there is not a collection site for the kits in the Virginia Conference, congregations are asked to ship the assembled kits directly to UMCOR Sager Brown Depot, P.O. Box 850, 131 Sager Brown Road, Baldwin, LA 70514-0850. DO NOT bring the kits to the Virginia United Methodist Center in Glen Allen. For more information, call 1-800-814-8765.

New Web site offers tools to help churches become ‘vital’ congregations
A new Web site,, offers tools to equip local churches to become vital and healthy congregations. is designed to help churches move through a process of evaluation and assessment as they begin to set goals, and then find key resources to help them achieve those goals. The Vital Congregations project was authorized by the Council of Bishops and the Connectional Table in response to the Call to Action research, which indicated a lack of measures and accountability within The United Methodist Church.


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

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 …

Disaster response ‘Care Team’ training to be held Aug. 13
Training for disaster response spiritual and emotional “Care Team” members will be offered 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 13, at Baylake UMC in Norfolk. Cost is $35 to cover materials, background check, lunch and snacks. Disaster response “Care Teams” are faith-based, ongoing teams with standardized United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) training that provide spiritual and emotional care following disasters. Deployed through their conference disaster response, Care Teams provide support, information and referral for a holistic disaster recovery and help disaster survivors connect with their personal, community, spiritual, emotional and basic life resources. United Methodist Care Teams comply with standards set by National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster. For more information, contact Michele Michaelian, Virginia Conference Early Response Teams (ERT) coordinator, at or (757) 642-1571.

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.

Training scheduled for volunteers to teach Disciple in prisons
The Virginia Conference has partnered with the Holston Conference to establish 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 or (804) 733-8632.

‘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. “Launch” is 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.

Kid’s Work Camp to be Sept. 30-Oct. 2 at Westview on James
Kid's Work Camp at Westview on the James in Goochland 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 work together. For more information and registration form, go to

Clergywomen invited to join Clergywomen’s Collective
All Virginia Conference women clergy are invited to be part of the Clergywomen's Collective. Its purpose is to encourage collegiality and empower women of every background, as they serve God through The United Methodist Church. The collective will gather at the Virginia United Methodist Center in Glen Allen from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 11; Jan. 11, 2012; April 12, 2012; and July 10, 2012. For more information, contact ReNe'e R. Teague at, (540) 659-2461, or (804) 357-4435.

It’s not too late to get ready to walk or run ‘The Good Race’
Clergy and laity are invited to join other United Methodists in “The Good Race,” a day of participation and celebration that includes walking or running the Richmond 8K, half-marathon, or marathon, on Saturday, Nov. 12. Most training programs take 16 weeks of preparation, so it is not too late to start. Contact Allie Rosner ( or Steve Jones ( to join the group. Remember: this is not a competition – these are clergy and laity who want to encourage one another in exercise and wellness. 

Number of storms across U.S. in 2011 challenges UMCOR
For more than 70 years, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) has helped victims of disaster. The agency has faced significant challenges in 2011 because of an unprecedented number of serious storms across the United States. More …

Interreligious vigils pray for ‘faithful budget’
The front lawn of the United Methodist Building on Capitol Hill is the site of daily prayer vigils to “call on God to move in the hearts of policy makers to preserve robust assistance for people in poverty.” An informal network of faith-based offices that work together on common concerns of social justice, peace and creation care, are sponsoring the vigils to pray that elected officials will agree on a just, compassionate federal budget that does not discriminate against society’s most vulnerable. The 15- to 20-minute prayer vigils began July 11 and will be held each weekday at 12:30 p.m. through July 22. The United Methodist Building faces the U.S. Capitol. More …

Music, worship arts group offers free student memberships
The Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts offers free online membership for students. The fellowship, an affiliate of the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, serves as a resource organization. More …

New vitality reflected at annual conferences
Membership and attendance numbers provided during the recent annual conferences in the United States did not reverse the declines of past years, but those numbers and other reports indicated something different afoot. For the most part, the trend of decline continues in the three measured categories — membership, worship and Sunday school attendance. However, activity within and aside from those categories shows that conferences are trying new initiatives to connect with unreached communities. More …

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. (EDT) 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. (EDT). Register for these free webinars at

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



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The Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church
10330 Staples Mill Road, Glen Allen, VA 23060
P.O. Box 5606, Glen Allen, VA 23058-5606
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