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 Dec. 15, 2016
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Nov. 17, 2016
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Oct. 27, 2016
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News from 2016 General Conference (May 10-20)
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March 30, 2016
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March 21, 2016 - Annual Conference Special Offering
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News from the Virginia Conference - April 27, 2016

Volunteer skilled in ProPresenter needed for Annual Conference
The Virginia Conference Information Technology office seeks a volunteer skilled in ProPresenter software to assist with presentations at this year's Annual Conference session which will be June 17-19 at the Berglund Center in Roanoke. The volunteer will work as part of a two-person ProPresenter team to prepare and execute presentations for plenary and worship sessions at Annual Conference. If you have experience with Pro Presenter 6 and are available before and during Annual Conference, contact Bryan Compton in the United Methodist Center in Glen Allen at 1-800-768-6040, ext. 115, or

Randolph-Macon College seeks applicants for summer internship
Randolph-Macon College, a United Methodist-related school in Ashland, is seeking applicants for one summer internship position. The internship is a paid, live-in position. Candidates should be registered in a Master’s program in Higher Education, College Student Personnel or related field and should have completed at least one semester of study. He/she will work in the Office of Residence Life on the many projects that occur over the summer. Major responsibility will be to oversee the residence hall community of R-MC summer programs, including Student Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) research students, summer school students and supervision of student workers and Resident Assistants. Click here for a detailed job description (pdf).

Westview on the James to celebrate 50th anniversary May 1
Westview on the James, United Methodist campground in Goochland, will celebrate 50 years of ministry 1-5 p.m. Sunday, May 1. Open House celebration will include food, camp tours and a variety of activities such as canoeing, high ropes, zip-lining, crafts, archery and more. Learn about Westview's summer camp programs and see the changes and additions being made around the property, such as the bath house and bouldering wall. For more information, call (804) 457-4210, e-mail or visit

Contributions to honor Bishop Cho will fund 'Spiritual Leadership' training
Bishop Young Jin Cho will retire from active ministry on Aug. 31 of this year, after having served four years as the episcopal leader of the Virginia Conference. To honor his service, the conference Committee on Episcopacy is inviting Virginia United Methodists to make contributions to the Bishops Foundation endowment to fund training and leadership development for clergy and laity in the area of “Spiritual Leadership.” To make a donation to honor Bishop Cho, send a check payable to “Virginia United Methodist Conference,” earmarked for “Bishop Cho donation,” to Treasurer, Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 5605, Glen Allen, VA 23058. Or, click here to make a donation online using a credit card. More ...

Two UMC-related groups seek contributions during Give Local 757 on May 3
Two United Methodist-related organizations — Wesley Community Service Center in Portsmouth and Respite Care of Williamsburg United Methodist Church — are participating in this year's Give Local 757, a day of philanthropic giving created by the Peninsula Community Foundation in 2014 to to help local nonprofits serving the Hampton Roads region raise funds and increase awareness for their causes. For 24 hours, from 12 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, everyone can be a philanthropist by donating online or at any Langley Federal Credit Union branch to one of the 200 registered Give Local 757 nonprofits. For more information and to support one of the United Methodist organizations, visit Minimum donation is only $10.

May 1 is Older Adult Recognition Sunday
Older Adult Recognition Sunday is May 1. The 2008 General Conference adopted legislation inviting congregations to celebrate Older Adult Recognition Day each year during the Month of May. The Virginia Conference was well ahead of the legislation when, in 2006, the first Sunday in May of each year was designated as Older Adult Recognition Sunday. Through an Older Adult Recognition Sunday, United Methodists are invited to show appreciation and support for older adults who continue to enrich and strengthen our faith communities. This special Sunday also calls the church to action in addressing the needs of older adults in the congregation and community. Your congregation can choose the first Sunday in May or another date that best fits your needs. Click here for worship resources from United Methodist Discipleship Ministries focused on this year's theme, "Evergreen — Counting the Rings of Faithfulness." Click here for worship resources from the Virginia Conference Older Adult Council and Virginia United Methodist Homes, Inc.

May 22 is Peace with Justice Sunday
Peace with Justice Sunday is May 22. The offering received on this Special Sunday of The United Methodist Church makes possible our denomination's ongoing ministries of peace and reconciliation. When you give on Peace with Justice Sunday, your gift makes possible our critical kingdom work in the world. Because you give, United Methodists spearhead a peace ministry uniting Arizona border communities; United Methodists in Liberia are being equipped to implement the denomination’s Social Principles to address social-justice issues; Pennsylvania students are educating their community about sex-trafficking at home and abroad. These initiatives, and hundreds of other ones, are possible because you give. Click here to access a Pastor and Leader's Kit with promotional materials, information and worship resources.

Churches asked to take Samaritan Offering May 8-June 19
Churches in the Virginia Conference are asked to receive a special offering between Mother’s Day on May 8 and Father’s Day on June 19 for the 2016 Samaritan Offering to support the Samaritan Program of Virginia United Methodist Homes (VUMH), a benevolent fund which provides financial assistance to residents who have outlived their monetary resources and, through no fault of their own, can no longer afford the full cost of their care. VUMH mailed each charge a packet of promotional materials and giving envelopes. With the exception of the envelopes, all of the materials are available on the VUMH website at under the “Samaritan Program” section. The website also includes bulletin inserts for each Sunday during the offering emphasis. For help in telling the VUMH story within your congregation or extra copies of promotional materials, contact Martha Stokes, director of Church and Community Relations at Virginia United Methodist Homes, at or (804) 474-8718. More....

Tomorrow at 1 p.m., GCFA to lead live Twitter discussion on proposed UMC budget
At 1 p.m. Eastern Time Thursday, April 28, the United Methodist General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) will host a 1-hour live Twitter session to respond to questions delegates or others might have about the proposed UMC 2017-2020 budget. Moses Kumar, top GCFA executive, will receive messages through Twitter (#UMCbudget) or through emails submitted to Use hashtag #UMCbudget for questions or to follow the conversation. Landing page for information is Landing page to follow the live tweet online is Click here to read UMNS budget background.

Guide to 2016 General Conference available to download
The General Conference Guide provides a handy reference to The United Methodist Church’s top assembly, with an overview of the legislative process, highlights to expect and key topics that will be addressed. It is available for free download in English, French and Portuguese. Click here to download guide.

Every United Methodist can be part of 2016 General Conference
United Methodists who are not delegates still can participate in General Conference May 10-20 in Portland, Ore. General Conference is the denomination’s top policy-making body and meets once every four years. There are lots of ways United Methodists around the globe can stay connected and get involved. More ...

Bishop Talbert, Charlotte, N.C., pastor officiate at same-sex wedding
The Rev. Val Rosenquist, senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Charlotte, N.C., faces a formal complaint after she co-officiated a same-gender wedding with retired Bishop Melvin Talbert on April 23. More than 20 other United Methodist clergy also came to offer a blessing at the first such public same-sex wedding at a United Methodist congregation in the southern U.S. Bishop Larry Goodpaster leads the Western North Carolina Conference and will follow the process outlined in church law, according to conference staff. Most of that process is confidential. More ...

Eight bishops living in North Carolina call on state to repeal House Bill 2
Eight United Methodist bishops who live in North Carolina are calling on the state’s legislators to repeal House Bill 2. The law makes it illegal for cities to expand upon state laws related to workplace discrimination, use of public accommodations and the minimum wage. The law has gotten significant pushback from business leaders. “We urge all United Methodists to engage in prayer, in study of the issues, in patient listening and persevering conversation with others who hold differing opinion,” the bishops’ statement said. Signers include former Virginia Conference bishops Charlene Kammerer and Thomas Stockton, and Ray Chamberlain and C. P. Minnick Jr., bishops elected from the Virginia Conference. Click here to read bishops’ statement. Click here to read Charlotte Observer article about the law.

South Central Jurisdiction bishops launch #WeAreMore campaign
The bishops of the South Central Jurisdiction have joined together to produce a campaign focused on stories that connect people and proclaim that #WeAreMore when united through Jesus Christ. Click here to see We Are More website. “Sharing stories of how God uses ordinary people and works through ordinary congregations each and every day reminds us not to forget the kingdom work needed in the days following General Conference,” said Missouri Area Bishop Robert Schnase. More ...

♦ Early Response Team Recertification Class - April 30
If you are a Certified Early Response Team member (ERT) and your ERT badge is expired or in need of renewal, there is still time to enroll in Early Response Team Recertification training that will be offered 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at Sterling United Methodist Church, Sterling. A $40 registration fee includes background check, badge and manual. Checks should be made out to the Virginia Conference and brought the day of training. In addition to recertification, a specialist in the field will conduct a session on mold remediation and potential hazards to disaster survivors and responders. To register, e-mail Michele Michaelian at as soon as possible, and copy Steve Barham at Sterling UMC at so enough materials can be prepared. More ...

♦ PAUMCS Spring Retreat - May 15-16
May 2 is registration deadline for the Virginia Chapter of Professional Association of United Methodist Secretaries (PAUMCS) Spring Retreat to be held May 15-16 at Camp Overlook in Keezletown. Dr. Sandy Gramling, associate professor in Clinical Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she teaches “Stress and Its Management,” will discuss how to stay centered in Christ while meeting the needs of congregation and community members. This event is an opportunity for church secretaries and administrators to learn, network, fellowship and relax. Breakfast and lunch on Monday are included in the cost of registration. Fee for this event is $88 for PAUMCS members; $98 for non-members. More ...

♦ Early Response Team basic training - May 21
The Conference Disaster Response Team invites you to participate in a training event for anyone interested in disaster relief ministries. Early Response Team (ERT) certification training will be held 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, May 21, at Centerville UMC, Centreville. Cost is $55 (includes background check, t-shirt, manual and lunch). Checks should be made out to the Virginia Conference and brought the day of training. For more information, contact Linda Cooper at register, e-mail Michele Michaelian at More ...

♦ Early Response Team basic training - May 21
The Conference Disaster Response Team invites you to participate in a training event for anyone interested in disaster relief ministries. Early Response Team (ERT) certification training will be held 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, May 21, at Braddock Street United Methodist Church, Winchester. Cost is $55 (includes background check, t-shirt, manual and lunch). Checks should be made out to the Virginia Conference and brought the day of training. To register, e-mail Michele Michaelian at More ...

♦ Historical Society day trip to Tangier Island - May 21
The Virginia Conference Historical Society is sponsoring a spring travel experience to Tangier Island Saturday, May 21, to celebrate the ministry of the Rev. Joshua Thomas, known as “Parson to the Islands.” Day trip includes embarkation from Reedville at 9:45 a.m., one-and-a-half-hour cruise to the island, historical portrayal of Thomas and a walk to Swain Memorial UMC where a recently-erected marker honors Thomas. Tour of significant sites will be guided by the Rev. Kirk Mariner. Return at 4:15 p.m. Cost for the cruise is $27 per person. Lunch may be purchased or bring your own lunch basket and drinks. Registration deadline is April 30. To register, send check for $27 per person, payable to Catherine Morgan, to Morgan at 14016 Redhills Rd., Beaverdam, VA 23015. On check memo line, indicate “Tangier Cruise” along with your phone number. Cancellation refunds cannot be made after May 10. For those traveling a long distance, overnight accommodations can be found in Warsaw and other surrounding communities.

♦ Clergy Spouse Luncheon at Annual Conference - June 18
The Annual Clergy Spouse Luncheon at Annual Conference will be held at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, June 18, at Greene Memorial UMC, Roanoke. Speaker will be from Rescue Mission Ministries. Event will be catered by 2nd Helpings. Cost is $12 for adult, $7 for child. RSVP to Lydia Weeks at (540) 886-1460 or Deadline to register is June 9.

♦ Helping Hands mission experience for children - June 22-23, July 21-22
Helping Hands, an exciting two-day mission experience for rising 4th-6th graders, parents and adult leaders, will be June 22-23 at St. Paul’s UMC in Staunton and July 21-22 at Woodlake UMC in Midlothian. Come and learn about mission opportunities and the importance of being a caring Christian. Cost is $36 per person and includes a t-shirt, meals, snacks and overnight stay. The event will include worship, fellowship and mission experiences in the community. Registration forms for each site can be found at

♦ Mission Encounter - July 29-31
Mission Encounter, the only conference-wide mission education and interpretation event, will be July 29-31 at Randolph-Macon College, Ashland. Mission Encounter is an opportunity for clergy and laity to learn about being partners in God’s global mission and to grow spiritually through study and worship. It is open to men, women and youths. Participants may attend one of three workshops: spiritual growth study on "The Bible and Human Sexuality" led by the Rev. Dr. Rob Vaughn, the Rev. Myrtle Frances Hatcher and Prof. Esther Barkat; issue study on "Climate Justice" led by the Rev. Pat Watkins and the Rev. Dottie Yunger; or geographic study on "Latin America-People and Faith" led by Don Edwards. For more information, contact Dennis Lipke, dean of the Mission Encounter Committee, at or (804) 262-8651. More ...

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 magazine — now available in both print and digital formats. Click here to subscribe. Or call the Communications office at 1-800-768-6040, ext. 110, or (804) 521-1110. Or e-mail For information about the Virginia Conference and resources for ministry, visit the Virginia Conference website at






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