Annual Conference offerings already assisting seminary students


By Rev. Laura Alexander Elliott,
Ministry Education Funds (MEF) Coordinator
WNCC Board of Ordained Ministry

Just like education costs in general, tuition expenditures for attending seminary are ever on the increase for those pursuing ordained ministry as their vocation.  Yet this fall, our WNCC certified clergy candidates enrolled in seminaries across the connection, received a little extra funding thanks to everyone who gave to the Special Offering designated for Ministry Education Funds (MEF) during Annual Conference last June.

This AC2017 Special Offering designated for MEF resulted in more than $15,000 being added to the WNCC coffers from which monies are distributed twice a year, in the Fall and Spring Semesters, to about 40 of our seminary students at nearly a dozen approved graduate institutions of higher learning.  The schools include Duke Divinity School, Candler School of Theology @Emory University, Asbury Theological Seminary, Hood Theological Seminary, Boston University School of Theology, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Union Presbyterian Seminary and Union’s Extension Location in Charlotte, and the Pfeiffer University, Wesley Theological Seminary and collaborative combination programs of Wesley-Pfeiffer.

The Special Offering collected provided an additional one-time supplement of $375 per seminary student for the current Fall semester; for full-time students, that was a nearly 20% increase over the normal funding provided, and for part-timers, a more than 35% increase.  On behalf of these certified clergy candidates, seminary students, and our future ministry leaders of the Western N.C. Annual Conference of the UMC, the Board of Ordained Ministry for the Conference would like to extend our deep appreciation for such generosity on the part of this year’s Annual Conference Laity and Clergy Delegates, as well as family members and visitors, who made this MEF expansion possible.
We strive to provide as much financial support to students in seminary as possible so that when the time comes for them to stand before the Bishop and the Annual Conference and respond to the Historic Wesley Questions, they can answer the query about personal debt with as much integrity as possible!

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.