Bishop Leeland and the Committee on Relief- Hurricanes Harvey and Irma


As United Methodists, let us stand together in prayer and support of all of those who have been affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The state of North Carolina isn’t in the clear as we anticipate tropical force winds and rains to impact Western North Carolina. Hurricane Jose also looms behind, reminding us that storms are never far away. We are especially aware of Bishop Carter, one of our own, who leads the Florida Conference in the midst of the disaster.  We also remember Bishop Lawson Bryan who is working closely with his churches in the South Georgia Conference as they serve evacuees from Florida.

READY YOURSELF Ensure that you and your congregations prepare for potential natural disasters. Know your evacuation routes, secure necessary documents, and review your congregation’s emergency response plans.  Read- Local Church Checklist: Are you ready for a disaster?  It is also advisable to designate a church member to remain vigilant on the actions of the Western North Carolina Conference. Please take a moment and visit Ready NC to learn more ways to plan and prepare.
DONATE TODAY & THROUGH SUNDAY SPECIAL OFFERINGS Your donations make it possible for Early Response Teams and others aiding in disaster to help survivors immediately. Beyond this, your donation dollars contribute to funding all aspects of disaster response and relief.
  • Donations may be made payable to the Western North Carolina Conference, marked “Disaster Response.” PO Box 18005, Charlotte NC 28218
  • You may also donate online now.
  • Please continue to take special offerings this Sunday and next within your regular times of worship.
COLLECT SUPPLIES   As partners with UMCOR, we have been tasked with the collection and shipment of cleaning buckets and hygiene kits. Instructions on flood bucket and hygiene kit assembly, as well as information regarding collection sites throughout our conference, are available on our website:

VOLUNTEER There are several ways to volunteer in Western North Carolina and areas more significantly impacted. Not all volunteers need training. DON’T BURDEN THE DISASTER ZONE Collecting and sending supplies that are not requested burdens impacted communities. The most efficient method of supporting is through donating funds, volunteering, and collecting items that have been specifically requested. Also, please do not arrive on the scene without proper Early Response certification and invitation.

WHEN DISASTER STRIKES If a disaster impacts your church or surrounding community, please follow the seven steps outlined in this document. These 12x18 posters are available at the Western North Carolina Conference Center and will be available at your district offices after September 15.

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


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