WEEKLY DIGEST- Week of November 30, 2014


weeklydigestThe Digest is an easy way to catch up on all of the stories that have been published in the last week. Each story is linked to the original, and there is a short excerpt. You may want to share this digest on your church's website so that they know what has been happening in our conference and beyond.  (This edition includes stories from November 24- December 4) UMC #GIVINGTUESDAY SHOWS THE STRENGTH OF A DENOMINATION UNITED December 4, 2014 United Methodists once again responded with extravagant generosity on UMC #GivingTuesday. On December 2, 2014, more than $2.5 million was donated online through The Advance to support mission and ministries around the world.   TV WEATHERMAN PASTOR December 3, 2014 Steve McKay is a weatherman in Maine, and a United Methodist pastor. This video story is from UMTV.   TAKE THE ADVENT QUIZ! December 3, 2014 Test your knowledge of the season with this feature from UMC.ORG. Share the page with others and keep up through the four weeks of Advent.   LIVE NATIVITY BRINGS THE CHRISTMAS STORY TO LIFE IN TRINITY, NC December 1, 2014 The Live Nativity will be held December 13th from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. Mt. Zion is located at 2354 Finch Farm Road in Trinity, NC (Randolph County). The Walk to Bethlehem Live Nativity Event is presented by Mt. Zion in partnership Trinity UMC in Thomasville, and other local churches in the Yadkin Valley District. The event is made possible through a Congregational Vitality Grant.   MAKING MOBILITY POSSIBLE December 1, 2014 Roshan Johan, a 30-year-old polio patient who has spent most of her life crawling on the floor like, in her words, a small child, can move without pain thanks to the PET Cart, a three-wheel vehicle, she received through the Rural Health and Community Development Project (RHCDP) of the Clara Swain Hospital in Faridpur, India.That’s just one of the things donations through The Advance on #GivingTuesday can make possible. (The articles below have not been moved to the new website) IN RESPONSE TO FERGUSON, MO November 26, 2014 A Collection of excerpts and articles related to the shooting and grand jury process in Ferguson, Missouri.   ORDER OF ELDERS RETREAT RECAP November 24, 2014 On November 11, St. Luke's UMC in Hickory hosted the WNCC Order of Elders for a Day Apart featuring Rev. Dr. Warren Smith from Duke Divinity School. The day-long retreat featured times of worship, fellowship, lecture, and discussion based around Professor Smith's forthcoming book on the Lord's Prayer.   EASY WAYS TO SHARE GRATITUDE THIS THANKSGIVING November 24, 2014 Thanksgiving Day elicits a bounty of wonderful memories for many people in the U.S. The crisp air. The smell of a turkey roasting and a pumpkin pie baking. The sound of a cheering crowd at a football game. All these can create warm feelings during this special time of year.  

Resources for Vital Congregations



Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources


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


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


Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

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

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology


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


Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children


The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment


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.