The Latest Edition of E-News - Phase Three Guidelines, Prayers for Artsakh, Antiracism Ethics Training, and more

 

E-News - October 7, 2020

E-News is an email newsletter sent out by the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church. It contains important news, stories, and events from around our conference. Submit articles for the next e-news. Submit events.


NEWS

Phase Three Guidelines for In-Person Worship & Ministry During COVID-19

As faithful disciples of Jesus Christ in the midst of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain committed to our Biblical mandate to "love our neighbors as ourselves" and our Wesleyan call to “do no harm.” In doing so, we seek ways to engage faithfully in worship, study, and ministry while ensuring the health and safety of our members and communities. We advise that all churches continue following CDC, state and local guidelines for indoor and outdoor gatherings, including handwashing, wearing masks, and observing physical distancing rules and group size limits.

Pray for Project Agape Armenia and Artsakh

For over 27 years, United Methodists of North Carolina have been helping our sisters and brothers in Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh through Project AGAPE. The COVID-19 pandemic has made the distributions more difficult and the economic toll on families has been increased. Now the war between the Republic of Artsakh and Azerbaijan has made the distributions even harder. All lights have been ordered to be turned off at night, families have been in the basements of their homes, the essentials of life will be harder to come by in the next several months.

May we in the Western North Carolina Conference lift up in prayer our sisters and brothers in Artsakh during this time of hostility and war. May we pray for the families who will struggle to provide food, clothing, and possibly safe shelter during this time. And may we also pray for a lasting peace for this entire region.

Ordination service postponed until June 2021

In an effort to “Do No Harm” as well as to ensure that the Ordering of Ministry Service be the high and holy moment that we all desire it to be, the Bishop and Extended Cabinet have made the difficult decision to cancel the service planned on October 11, 2020. Both the 2020 and 2021 classes will be commissioned and ordained next June at Lake Junaluska.

Antiracism Clergy Ethics Training
ALL clergy under appointment in WNC and all certified lay ministers/lay supply pastors under assignment in the WNCC are required to attend a two-day session by June 2024. Clergy are strongly encouraged to bring a lay person from their ministry setting to the training with them.

Means of Grace: Building Effective, Sustainable Partnerships Between Schools and Churches

In this episode of Means of Grace, Brian Mateer is joined by Camille Roddy, the chair of the Western North Carolina Conference Congregations 4 Children initiative and the Rev. Ed Jones, pastor of Trinity United Methodist in Houston, Texas for a conversation how churches can partner with schools in their communities to meet the needs of students and families during the pandemic and beyond.

Online Early Response Team Training - November 7, 2020

An online ERT Training will take place Saturday, November 7, 2020 from 10am - 12pm. Trainers will be Steve Cheyney and Frank Greene. The cost of the training is $30; payment is due upon registration. A background check is required prior to training if you have not completed a background check or if it has been over 2 years since your last one.

Sacred Ale

Sometimes the best way to let others know the God you serve isn’t what they may think is to get out of the walls of your church and into the spaces where those who have been hurt by the church congregate.

Resource Roundup - Week of October 5, 2020

We scanned the internet for resources that will be of interest and value to you and your ministries. This week's roundup includes: Pandemic-proof ways to celebrate Pastor Appreciation Sunday, ideas for building and maintaining relationships with virtual worshippers, resources for Advent planning & marketing, and more.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Journeying Together

Join a small group of colleagues (6 or 7 total) in an ongoing, facilitated colleague conversation to share and grieve, find balance, learn, and grow. Lean in and get messy, human, honest (or not) and experience the grace of navigating the journey of ministry together, at this time.

Hurricane Sally Response

The last weekend of September the WNC Conference delivered about 400 UMCOR Cleaning Kits to Dauphin Island, Alabama to fill a shortage of buckets caused by other recent hurricanes.

Spiritual Renewal Grant Available Now!

COVID has been hard on leaders and many are exhausted, discouraged, and in need of time away. The Leadership Development Team wants to help nurture your spirit in order to be renewed and restored in life and in ministry. This could be possible through a private, renewal retreat or by engaging with a spiritual director. Ministry leaders (clergy and lay professionals) who sign up for an offering and pay a personal investment of $50, are eligible for up to $500. Funds are available because of the generosity of churches who pay their apportionments.
 

Retiree Health Plan Informational Video

Watch this video from Humana discussing the benefits of the retiree healthcare plan, including information on Medicare, details of the plan, enrollment steps, and what to expect after you enroll.

 

UPCOMING WEBINARS:

 
The Generous Church Leadership Course

Course Opens October 19
A collaborative work of four general agencies of The United Methodist Church, the hope for the course is that participants will grow in their understanding of their leadership role in local church finances and will be able to connect and articulate generosity as a key component of a growing, authentic disciple of Jesus Christ.

Racial Healing and the Gospel of Reconciliation
The first conversation will be Wednesday, October 21. 

A Workshop on the Ministry of Reconciliation Rooted in 2 Cor. 5:16-20, this workshop will teach reconciliation as spirituality, highlighting biblical examples of reconciliation and our call to be ministers of reconciliation as followers of Christ. With this theological foundation, participants will learn practical strategies for the Church to live out our role in the reconciliation process.

Blessed are the Poor: Engaging the Community Towards Social Transformation
First session Thursday, October 22

Blessed are the Poor, is a webinar series designed to help church leaders engage with the people in their communities and reflect on the different ways in which people experience poverty. Discipleship Ministries and Path 1 will be exploring the many experiences of poverty in two-hour sessions that will take place once a month for five months, from October 2020 through February 2021.

Virtual Homecoming Celebrates United Methodist Higher Education & Scholars
Tuesday, October 27, 11 a.m. EST

On Tuesday, October 27 the United Methodist Higher Education Foundation will host a virtual “homecoming” to celebrate Methodism and higher education, UMHEF scholars, and more. Festivities will include messages from United Methodist students, spotlights of UM-related institutions of higher education, interactive activities, messages from prominent leaders, and more.

Fulfillment of Faith Women's Retreat
Friday, November 6 - Saturday, November 7

Prepare yourself for the Advent season with this special, one-night retreat November 6th – November 7th hosted by the Catholic Conference Center.


 
Director of Communications: Melissa McGill

Communications Ministry Assistant: Aimee Yeager

Resources for Vital Congregations

 

CHURCH LEADERSHIP

Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources

eLEAD

Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church

Englewood Book Review

Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations

Ted Talks: The Golden Circle

Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability

Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability

Design Thinking

Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians

DISCIPLE FORMATION:

Be A Disciple

A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network

Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations

WESLEYAN STUDIES:

Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology

REACHING PEOPLE:

Get Their Name

Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit

Canoeing the Mountains

Fresh Expressions

Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People

Community: The Structure of Belonging

RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:

Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children

GRANTS:

The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment

OTHER:

The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
 
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:

  • Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
  • Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.

 
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at hfleming@wnccumc.net.
 

 

  • Resources
Follow Jesus. Make Disciples. Transform the World.