Butler District News

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Butler District Superintendent Rev Eric Park to Serve Christ Church, NYC: On September 18, 2022, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi announced a new appointment for current Butler District superintendent
Rev. Dr. Eric Park. Effective February 1, 2023, he will serve Christ Church, United Methodist in New York City. Read more

Clergy Mandatory Training: All clergy who are currently serving in an appointment are required to participate in a 2-hour online training entitled Connecting Neighbors:
A ‘Disaster Ready Congregations’ Curriculum of the United Methodist Church.
 The online Zoom training will be conducted by consultants from United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR).
There are only three more training dates available, so register today


The WPA CBOP (Conference Board of Pensions) approved the 2023 health insurance billing rate to the local church. Effective January 1, 2023, the rate will be $1493.00 a month.  This rate includes medical, vision, and dental coverage.  The new rate represents a $12.00 a month increase from the 2022 rates.  Member cost share remains the same for 2023 at:

$20.00 single / $35.00 two persons / $70.00 family

The information contained in this email is for all active clergy and laity enrolled in our WPA conference-sponsored UPMC Health Plan.

You can view this information on our benefits page at:


Butler District Lay Servant Ministry Fall Classes     Brochure

2022 Clergy Spouse Retreat

Click for full details and to register!      Spouse Retreat


Clergy Dashboard Updates: Pastors need to update their clergy dashboards  Contact the District Office if you need help with your Username and Password at Butler.office@wpaumc.org or 724-252-3198
A link was sent from the WPA Conference this past week with a link to easily update your contact information.

The Butler District Bugle-Fall 2022 Spreading the joys and responsibilities of the Butler District United Women in Faith

UMW - Save the Date
Dates to Remember in 2022 September 24, 2022...Butler District Fall Meeting @ New Castle Grace UMC
Program: Karen Jameson, Director of Women’s Ministry from City Rescue Mission
October 22, 2022…...WPA Conference United Women in Faith Annual meeting. Dutilh UMC, Cranberry Twp.
also an online option Program: “Knit Together for God’s Good Work” 

Installation Service on October 23 for Kane D.S. Rev. Dr. Sang Kong Choi at Kane First UMC at 2:30 pm.
All are welcome. Reception in Bartlett Hall following the service.

Clergy Family Christmas Party - December 11, 2022  4:00 - 7:00 PM
Shakespeare's Restaurant

 Employment Opportunities

Conference Coordinator of Ministerial Services/Board of Ordained Ministry Registrar: In accordance with The Book of Discipline (2016) P635.3, the Coordinator of Ministerial Services will function as the Registrar for the Board of Ordained Ministry, and will be responsible for member candidacy, including giving leadership to the training and guidance of mentors in each district.  Applicants are to send resume and cover letter to the chair of the Conference Personnel Committee at personnelteam@wpaumc.org by end of business day, Monday, September 19, 2022. See job description

Conference Visual Communication and Social Media Coordinator: The primary role of the coordinator is to manage WPAUMC social media messaging, handle layout and design of print communication, help to develop online and training video, and assist with webpage design and maintenance. Applicants are to send resume and cover letter to the chair of the Conference Personnel Committee at personnelteam@wpaumc.org by end of business day, Monday, September 19, 2022. See job description

Local Church Employment: There are a number of employment opportunities posted on the Conference classifieds webpage, including postings for a youth leader, worship leader and communications coordinator. 

Postings for other Conference staff positions, as well as some local church positions, were added to the Conference website this week at wpaumc.org/classifieds


Happy Birthday



10  Rev Glenn Kohlhepp
12  Rev Beverly Roscoe
15  Rev Jay Sterling
15  Rev Joseph Patterson
16  Rev Larry Wilson
18  Rev Steve Soltis
28  Rev  Anette Gerber


1     Janice Magargee
1     John Roscoe
16   Nancy Domineck
19   Cheryl Brooks
21   Cathy Dykes
31   Patricia Mould

Happy Anniversary




17  Greg & Christine Spencer



Prayer Concerns and Joys

Please send us your prayer concerns and joys, to Butler.Office@wpaumc.org

Prayers for Florida: Join us in prayer as Hurricane Ian makes landfall in Florida. This hurricane has the potential to be catastrophic and reports show mass flooding and property damage. You can support those affected by this and other disasters by donating to UMCOR or helping to replenish Cleaning Kits  for the Mission Barn. For more information on kits, contact missionbarn@gmail.com or 724-856-8241.

Rev Diane Randolph continues to recover at home.
Nancy Domineck - recovering following knee replacement surgery
Rev Becky Rosengarth - recovering following knee replacement surgery
Rev David Wilson - recovering following knee surgery
Rev Bruce Merritt - Bruce has had a series of medical setbacks in recent months. Please keep Bruce, Glenda, and the entire Merritt family in prayer.

-Communities and people suffering from violence and lost loved ones

  • Ukraine and Russia, Countries helping the Ukrainian refugees
  • -Our world, our Country, and our leaders 
  • All who are suffering from the effects of Covid.
  • Our military and military families.
  • Those awaiting test results, surgery, and medical treatment.
  • Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi and the WPA Cabinet
  • Those in the midst of appointment transition                                                               
  • Rev. Eric Park, DS, as he cares for the churches and pastors of the district
  • The United Methodist Church


Clergy Community of Practice

UMC/ELCA Shared CCOP Pilot Project: A new shared opportunity  is being launched this fall for clergy who are serving in the United Methodist Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. Group participation requires 2-4 hours per month in addition to the assigned reading for the sessions.  Both in-person and Zoom options are available.  Each meeting will be led by a trained facilitator who is a clergy peer. Learn more or register.

Clergy Communities of Practice: CCOPs are a type of covenant group meant to support development and focus on engagement with peers, helping to reverse trends of isolation among clergy. Meetings invite participants to share in prayer and fellowship, as well as a time of learning and application with an emphasis is on bringing learning into practice. Learn more or register.

Camps and Retreat Center Updates

WPA Camp Registrations are now open
Jumonville: www.jumonville.org/summer-camp
Camp Allegheny: www.campallegheny.org
Wesley Woods: www.wesleywoods.com



In May, the Deeply Rooted, Upward Reaching campaign released a report on what's been raised, what's been done and what's to come. See the report. Feeling inspired to give? Donate here

Promotional materials for churches conducting a campaign are available for pick-up at the District Office during office hours. If possible, run a Camping Campaign Appeal before Advent 2022. Questions? Contact Rev. Dean Ziegler at deandziegler@gmail.com. Help support our conference camping and retreat ministries!

Cherry Run Camp Meeting Association

Sponsor an item to bless Cherry Run Camp Meeting Association! Select any items you wish to sponsor and it will be sent directly to Kayla Burke who will take them to the camp. Keep checking for updates. Sponsor an item
Donate to Cherry Run Camp. It is a non-profit organization and is completely dependent on donations from individuals and churches. It takes approximately $60,000 annually to keep the camp up and running. You can help! Make checks payable to: Cherry Run Camp Meeting Association. Mail to the camp treasurer: Don Shaffer, 4765 Ramsaytown Road, Brookville, PA 15825. Online donations may be made at CherryRunCamp.com.

OLMSTED MANOR RETREAT CENTER- Stay in our modern hotel-style lodge or the historic Tudor-style manor house as you enjoy the peace and beauty of the Allegheny National Forest. Learn more. Call us today at (814) 945-6512. Calendar of Events:
CANCELEDTIIMSA Training at Olmsted Manor: Transitional Intentional Interim Ministry Specialists Association trained leaders seek to lower congregational anxiety and promote healthy decision-making processes. The first of three phases begins on September 26-28 at Olmsted Manor. Learn more and register




Calendar Items

Creative Models for Community Ministry

Tuesday, September 6, 2022 to October 18

This seven-session webinar series will guide you through seven models to offer a glimpse of what will work best in your context and the resources to help get you started so your congregation’s goals for community engagement can be met. Each weekly session is an hour long and will provide an opportunity for questions, feedback, and sharing ideas with participants and panelists. These sessions will also be recorded if you are unable to attend and will be available to registered participants afterward. The cost for the series is $50. Questions? Contact Bryan Tener at btener@umcdiscipleship.org.

October is Pastor Appreciation Month

Saturday, October 1, 2022 to October 31

Are You Prepared? The #IGiveUMC campaign is designed to help you treasure your spiritual leaders while funding the ministry of your local church. Find resources specifically designed to appreciate clergy and all the blessings they share in our churches. #iGive in Clergy Appreciation

World Communion Sunday

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Supports World Communion Scholarships, the Ethnic Scholarship Program, and the Ethnic In-Service Training Program. UMC Giving has resources.

PA Pastor’s Conference on Human Trafficking

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

October 4 at University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown, John P Murtha Center, 450 Schoolhouse Road, Johnstown, PA 15904. Bringing Pennsylvania pastors together, with renowned speakers, to form a coherent anti-human trafficking strategy for our Commonwealth. Keynote Speaker: Pastor Jo Lembo. Registration Required • Cost: $15.00 (Includes Lunch) Purchase tickets


United Methodist Appalachian Ministry Network

Where: Oglebay Resort in Wheeling, W VA.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022 to October 7

This retreat is for clergy and laity who are interested in joining God in becoming agents of reconciliation. Consultants from CCW Transformation Ministries will guide this training. More Information  

new Writing the Final Chapter: End of Life Choices (added 9/29/2022)

Thursday, October 6, 2022

October 6 at 6:30 pm at Heckathorn UMC, 369 Heckathorn Church Road, Seneca, PA. It will help you think through some of the choices you can make now that will impact your last chapter when it comes. Free and all are welcome. Contact person

Sacred Conversations to End Racism

Where: Olmsted Manor

Sunday, October 9, 2022 to October 11

. At this contemplative retreat we will explore practical ways to have "sacred conversations to end racism" and engage with Biblical texts regarding equitable treatment of all God's people. This retreat is for clergy and laity who are interested in joining God in becoming agents of reconciliation. Consultants from CCW Transformation Ministries will guide this training. More Information  

new - Film Screening: Pushout (added 9/29/2022)

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

8 pm-10 pm. Honor the International Day of the Girl Child and the National Week of Action Against School Pushout with a special screening of the film Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools. This event is hosted by United Women in Faith. All are welcome. No cost but space is limited and registration is accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Register here.

Natural Disaster Awareness for Community Leaders

Thursday, October 13, 2022

This course is for community leaders, appointed and elected officials, businesses, school administrators, etc. Increase your understanding of disasters, risk assessment in the context of disaster management, prevailing emergency management procedures, and the different vulnerability factors that exist within your local community. Become familiar with the available resources for natural disaster preparedness and planning. Learn how to recognize and define the roles and responsibilities that may be expected to be assumed by a community leader. Understand the roles that first responders and support personnel are likely to assume to ensure assistance in the response and recovery phase of an emergency event.

 October 13, 2022: 1PM to 5PM Flyer

Photography for Everyone

Where: Olmsted Manor

Monday, October 17, 2022 to October 19

All you need is your camera of choice - even a cell phone - and a love of taking photos. You will have a chance to meet others with a photography hobby, enjoy capturing images of the beautiful retreat center and surrounding area, and learn some new tips and tricks to create your best photos yet. Retreat Leader: Rev. Dr. Jeffrey Sterling. Pricing includes two-night stay (private hotel style room with linens), six meals, and course tuition. Discount for those selecting or willing to be assigned a roommate. $175/person. Please contact Olmsted for commuter rates. Register online, print and mail the registration form, or call to register at (814) 945-6512.

2022 Biennial Pre-Retirement Event  (more info )

Tuesday, October 18, 2022 to October 19

Registration open-  This biennial event at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Mars is open to all clergy and strongly encouraged for clergy who are considering retirement in the next 5-10 years. Registration costs of $60 single attendee/ $100 attendee plus spouse provide meals, refreshments and materials. There is a discounted room rate of $124 per night if booked by September 26. Visit this booking link or call 1-800-222-8733 or local hotel number 724-776-690, press zero, and reference the group name, “WPAUMC Pre-Retirement Seminar.” Registration opens September 1. Contact Alexis.Soohy@wpaumc.org with questions.

Building with Strengths for Small Congregations

Tuesday, October 18, 2022 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Participants receive a certificate for 1-hour CEU following the online class. Small congregations are not miniaturized big congregations. They have different challenges. Fortunately, they also have different strengths–ones that are deeply forming, urgently needed, and generally unavailable in big settings. Learn how to build with these strengths and stop imitating models that never fit to begin with. Register


new Active Shooter Symposium (added 9/28/2022)

Thursday, October 20, 2022

Active Shooter Symposium
For Churches, Businesses and Offices
 “Prepare, Prevent and Respond”      flier


Antiracism Summit

Thursday, October 20, 2022 to October 22

Updated: Antiracism Summit from October 20-22 will offer workshops, Bible study, panels, self-care, action and more. This event will connect with United Women in Faith. A one-day Youth Summit will be held on Saturday. Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi will lead opening worship. Register today


Saturday, October 22, 2022

Are you beginning to become involved in anti-racism?  Are you a seasoned ally and want to stretch? Then the SUMMIT ON RACE AND FAITH gathering on October 20-22, 2022 is for YOU??!!  The intersection of race and faith will be engaged so that we may become a conference of anti-racist congregations.
This summit organized by the Conference Commission of Religion and Race in collaboration with other groups will feature Bible Study, worship, panel presentations, and table talks.  You will be able to name your next action steps as you depart.
Sessions will be both in person and virtual. Registration coming soon - Check the event page for up-to-date information. https://www.wpaumc.org/eventdetail/16538538 

Fall Women's Retreat

Sunday, October 23, 2022 to October 25

at Olmsted Manor. Come away this fall and immerse yourself in rich study and seeking with a cohort of other Christian women. Olmsted's women's retreats offer inspirational speaking, encouraging group discussions, quiet time with God, opportunities to enjoy stillness and nature, and Christian hospitality that will make you feel welcome and cared for. Come and attend to your mental, emotional, and spiritual health. Retreat Leader: Rev. Dawn Hand. Pricing includes two-night stay (private hotel style room with linens), six meals, and course tuition. Discount for those selecting or willing to be assigned a roommate. $200/person. Contact Olmsted for commuter rates. Register Online, print and mail the registration form, or call to register at (814) 945-6512

Exploring the Practice of Sabbath and Spiritual Direction

Thursday, October 27, 2022 to November 17

The Conference Discipleship Team is hosting two online events from 12-1 p.m. on Thursdays, October 27 and November 17. The sessions will include times of teaching, prayer practice, and provide an opportunity to ask questions.  Register today

new Prayer Retreat (added 9/29/2022)

Friday, October 28, 2022 to October 29

Pastor Wanick Fayette (Beulah UMC in Johnstown, PA) on Friday, October 28 starting at 1:00 p.m. It will wrap up around 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 29. Are you looking for a spiritual retreat? Do you need peace and quiet to focus on your relationship with Jesus? On this retreat, you'll enjoy daily prayer classes, workshops, meditation and journaling, and one-on-one prayer coaching. Pastor Wanick is the pastor of. The location of the retreat is at the Ligonier Camp & Conference Center, 188 Macartney Ln, Ligonier, PA 15658. The cost is $150 per person and includes spacious cabin lodging, amazing food and snacks, and use of all campground facilities. Access wanickfayette.com to review all the Prayer Retreat information. Register for the retreat.

Fall Lay Servant Ministry Classes for the Franklin District

Friday, November 4, 2022 to November 5

Fall Lay Servant Ministry Classes for the Franklin District will be on Friday, November 4, from 6-9 pm and Saturday, November 5, from 8 am-5 pm at Barkeyville UM Church, 5420 Pittsburgh Road, Harrisville, PA. ADVANCE REGISTRATION REQUIRED.  $10.00 before Monday, October 17Note the change in fee as participants will need to order their own books from Amazon, Christian Book, etc. Registration brochure attached
      Courses offered:

  • Ministry With the Forgotten:  Dementia through Spiritual Lens – Leader: Pastor Melissa Whitling
  • Soul Reset- Relearning the Rhythms of Grace through Daily Life with God – Leader: Rev. Jodie Smith
  • Teaching Biblical Faith:  Leading Small Group Bible Studies – Leader: Pastor Dan Miller
  • Transforming Evangelism – Leader: Pastor Gene Lenk
Barb Dittman, Lay School Director, will assist in procuring books, if help is needed. gwdittman@atlanticbb.net

Youth Service Fund Sunday

Sunday, November 6, 2022

For supporting youth missions in our annual conference. Local churches are urged to use this day to celebrate their youth and encourage youth involvement in missions through their church, district, and conference.

Wespath's Clergy Benefits Academy

Monday, November 14, 2022 to November 16

November 14-16, 2022 at The Omni Interlocken in Broomfield, Colorado. The WPA Conference Board of Pensions is sponsoring up to 10 scholarships for active clergy of all ages appointed to a local church in the WPA conference who wish to attend the Academy. The scholarships will be awarded on a first come, first served basis to first-time participants and will be processed as an expense reimbursement for airfare, lodging, and/or registration fees for the clergyperson only. Clergy spouses are encouraged to attend but not eligible for CBOP scholarships. The Clergy Benefits Academy welcomes clergy in all stages of ministry—new ordinands, early-career clergy, mid-career clergy, ready-to-retire clergy, district superintendents, clergy in extension ministries—and spouses are welcome, as well. There is something for everyone!  Register by October 1, 2022 and receive a $50 resort credit when you arrive at the hotel. Click here for detailed information and registration for Clergy Benefits Academy. If you would like to attend and would be interested in the CBOP reimbursement scholarship, please contact Alexis.Soohy@wpaumc.org for details.
Any other pension or benefits questions? Please email Alexis.Soohy@wpaumc.org or Kathleen.Lasky@wpaumc.org and remember to frequent the benefits page at www.wpaumc.org/benefits

Facing the Future Virtual Conference

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

The "Be Still as a Spiritual Practice: Online Event" is for pastors serving in cross-racial, cross-cultural, and multicultural contexts and anyone engaged with or discerning cross-racial/cross-cultural/multicultural ministry. Participants learn skills to support the CRCC ministry context, personal self-care, and professional development. November 16, 2022, 1-7 pm. Learn more


SPARK 2023

Where: Pitsburgh Station Square

Friday, January 27, 2023 to January 29

A weekend retreat for youth in 6th-12th grade and their leaders! Contact amanda.mitchell@wpaumc.org.

2023 Annual Conference

Where: Erie Bayfront Convention Center

Thursday, June 15, 2023 to June 17

Clergy: Plan your vacation, weddings, mission trips, etc. around these dates and plan to attend

News Articles

Postponed until 2022-General Conference (read more )


Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi today addressed the postponement of the General Conference of the United Methodist Church and what it means for the denomination. The Bishop's remarks came after the Council of Bishops (COB), in response to the Commission on the General Conference's announcement that the postponed 2020 General Conference could not be held until 2022, called a Special Session of the General Conference to be convened online on May 8, 2021.   According to the call letter signed by COB ... read more

Conference News

Below you will find some conference news relevant to Butler District. To see all conference news, go to the News section at the very top of this page.
Park to Serve Christ Church, United Methodist in New York City (read more )


On September 18, 2022, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi announced a new appointment for current Butler District superintendent Rev. Dr. Eric Park. "It is with mixed emotions that I announce the appointment of Rev. Dr. Eric Park to the Christ Church, United Methodist in New York City effective February 1, 2023," wrote Bishop Moore-Koikoi. "Several months ago Bishop Thomas Bickerton called me to ask permission to contact Rev. Park in order to invite him into the discernment process. Bishop Bickerton ... read more

Jesus Christ is Our Anchor (read more )


We have this hope, a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus, a forerunner on our behalf has entered, having become a high priest for ever according to the order of Melchizedek.  Hebrews 6:19-20 Siblings in Christ,   I pray that all our souls are anchored in Christ, who is our hope.    This past summer I had the opportunity to rest and relax with my husband and fur baby, be educated around leadership and my African American ... read more


Resources for Responding to Racism    more info

30 Days of Anti-racism: Join CORR this September for 30 days of anti-racism. Each day participants will engage in an activity that helps them to become more anti-racist in the ways they think and act. Join in

Facing the Future Virtual Conference: The "Be Still as a Spiritual Practice: Online Event" is for pastors serving in cross-racial, cross-cultural, and multicultural contexts and anyone engaged with or discerning cross-racial/cross-cultural/multicultural ministry. Participants learn skills to support the CRCC ministry context, personal self-care, and professional development. November 16, 2022, 1-7 pm. Learn more

Racial Justice Prayer Service Outline: The General Commission on Religion and Race recently released a a prayer service outline aimed at helping churches host a racial justice prayer service in their ministry context. Download the prayer service outline

Sacred Conversations to End Racism: This October 9-11, Olmsted Manor Retreat Center in Ludlow, PA, will partner with CCW Transformation Ministries to offer Sacred Conversations to End Racism, a contemplative retreat on the equitable treatment of all God’s people. This event is for both clergy and laity who hunger for a deep spiritual experience and who are interested in joining God in becoming agents of reconciliation. Leaders Claire Cox-Woodlief and Latercha McKnight will teach participants practical ways to have sacred and brave conversations towards ending racism. Learn more and register.

Save the Date: Antiracism Summit: Hosted by the Conference Commission on Religion and Race and scheduled for October 20-22, 2022, this summit will offer workshops, Bible study, panels, self-care, action and more. This event will also include a youth antiracism component and will connect with United Women in Faith. Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi will lead opening worship. More information and registration to be announced soon.

Resources to Address Racist Shootings:  As people in the U.S. struggle to understand deadly shootings at a New York grocery store and a California church, United Methodist Discipleship Ministries is suggesting resources to help leaders undo the work of racism. Among the recommendations are videos on decolonizing the church, a book edited by prominent United Methodist pastor the Rev. Rudy Rasmus and an online anti-racism course from the United Methodist Commission on Religion and Race. See the resources herehttps://www.umcdiscipleship.org/articles/resources-for-responding-to-systemic-racism
Read Churches condemn hate, urge action after shootings here https://www.umnews.org/en/news/churches-condemn-hate-urge-action-after-shootings

Report on Indian Boarding Schools: The United States operated 408 boarding schools for Indigenous children across 37 states or then-territories between 1819 and 1969 — half of them most likely supported by religious institutions including United Methodist predecessors. Emily McFarlan Miller reports for Religion News Service on the first volume of an investigative report by the U.S. Department of the Interior. Read story here https://religionnews.com/2022/05/11/department-of-interior-releases-first-report-detailing-u-s-indian-boarding-schools/
See UM News story: Pastor reflects on abuses at Indian boarding schools here https://www.umnews.org/en/news/pastor-reflects-on-dark-days-at-indian-boarding-schools

Asking the Hard Questions About Race: The Rev. Giovanni Arroyo poses a difficult question to white United Methodists who say they want an end to racism. “Do you want racial justice enough to voluntarily relinquish some of your power?” A native of Puerto Rico, he knows firsthand what it’s like to be a minority in America, and that experience informs the way he pursues his mission as The United Methodist Church’s point person on inclusion. Read UM News story.  here https://www.umnews.org/en/news/asking-the-hard-questions-about-race
Listen to Our Conexión podcast with Arroyo on racism and Christianity here https://www.resourceumc.org/en/content/our-conexion-episode-1

Racial Justice Prayer and Action Challenge: The General Commission on Religion and Race will launch its Racial Justice Prayer and Action Challenge on Juneteenth, but now’s the time to sign up. Rev. Debbie Hills has submitted one of the prayers. You and your congregation are invited to join in the challenge. Learn more  here https://www.r2hub.org/racial-justice-prayer-action-challenge

African American Methodist Heritage Center: The African American Methodist Heritage Center in Madison, NJ needs money and attention so it can continue to preserve the history of African American Methodists. The center is prioritizing fundraising in 2022 and considering a name change. See UM News story. here https://www.umnews.org/en/news/preserving-black-church-history

Risky Discipleship: Watch a video to learn the story of The Village at Glencliff, a unique respite care community for persons experiencing homelessness, and the risky discipleship required by the
United Methodists who made it happen. Watch  here https://www.umc.org/en/content/risky-discipleship-the-village-at-glencliff

Tips for Building Relationships: Elizabeth Mae Magill wanted to create a food ministry that wasn’t a charity, but a demonstration of Christ’s radical welcome. For months, she did street ministry to get to know food-insecure neighbors, hear their stories, and build relationships. In Leading Ideas, she shares nine practical tips for meeting people and learning their needs. Learn more. 

Discipleship and Anti-Racism: Realize the connection and learn how to have courageous conversations on a difficult topic through a new online course from Discipleship Ministries. There’s no cost. See video and learn more 

Resources - Helpful Links

Laity Sunday Observed on October 16: Laity Sunday celebrates the ministry of all Christians to love God and neighbor. As we (the people) grow in grace to become “all love” disciples in community, we gather with others and connect all to God’s love in Jesus Christ. Download a worship planning guide and graphics for social media. 


Help for Welcoming a Woman Pastor: The United Methodist Commission on the Status and Role of Women is marking its 50th anniversary with the release of the Welcoming a Woman Pastor online resource. The self-paced learning module guides local churches through the orientation process when introducing a female pastor appointed to serve their congregations. Read more or access resource.
Christmas Event Kit- Merry Mania is a downloadable party kit for your whole church, with fun activities that people of all ages will be sure to enjoy! Join Dr. OOPS in his lab as he takes your church on a journey to find The Good News of Christmas! Sign up today to be the first to know when Merry Mania is available for download!

 Celebrate discipleship: Our United Methodist traditions of prayer, studying the Bible, worship, fellowship, sharing the sacraments and serving draw us close to God and one another. Watch all the ways we grow our faith.

Helping kids understand baptism: Baptism is a big deal but may be difficult to explain to young ones. Simply put, the holy sacrament means we all belong to God's family. Tips for starting conversations

 Bishop Addresses Disinformation: At a time when churches are discerning whether to disaffiliate from the United Methodist Church and the Western PA Conference, disinformation about who we are as United Methodists has spread. In this video, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi addresses some of that disinformation. Bishop Moore-Koikoi also committed to sharing frequent communication in the upcoming weeks and months to equip leaders with the tools to talk to others with accurate information. The video is located on the Conference homepage.

Ministries with Persons with Dementia and Their Caregivers: How can congregations support persons with dementia and their caregivers? Jessica Anschutz interviews Elizabeth Shulman, who offers an organic, three-part program to aid congregations in creating ministries to meet the needs of persons with dementia and their caregivers. Read more now.


New- UM News

Bishops Push Back Against Recruitment Tactics: As churches weigh disaffiliation, bishops are trying to set the record straight on misinformation being spread about The United Methodist Church’s future. They also are working toward building a church where traditionalists, centrists and progressives will all feel they belong. Meanwhile, a recent church court decision could have an impact on disaffiliation lawsuits in civil court. Read report
Bishops Ask for Donations: The Council of Bishops is appealing for donations for Puerto Rico after receiving a letter from the Methodist Church in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Fiona's devastation. Council of Bishops President Thomas J. Bickerton urged all Methodists to support the recovery efforts, which are being done in conjunction with the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Read press release.
The Recap: Photos of mission work done by WPAUMC youth was recently featured in “The Recap,” a brand new short video news segment produced by United Methodist Communications. The news segments help United Methodists have a better understanding of what is going on in the denomination, find inspiration in stories of ministry and learn how the denomination is transforming the world. Watch the first episode



Youth Resources

Passing on Faith: What determines whether children will carry on the faith of their parents? Ann Michel of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership interviews noted sociologist Christian Smith about new research examining how parents shape their children’s faith. Watch iWatch interview or Read transcript

Empowering Parents to Raise God-Connected Children: Rachel Turner, author of It Takes a Church to Raise a Parent, began her keynote address at the Children’s Spirituality Summit with a question: “How can churches become centers for empowering parents to raise God-connected children?” Some shift changes are required. Learn more from Discipleship Ministries

Crash Courses in Youth Ministry: Complete Series Now Available! This set of 10 e-books are easy to read and simple to put into practice, equipping you with the knowledge and ideas necessary to create an effective youth ministry. The newest additions to the bunch are Speaking Adolescent, Discipleship, and Digital Youth Ministry. Learn more and download

A Christian Teenager’s Guide to Surviving High School by Ashley Conner. This guide was born from a
private blog Ashley Conner created to help her younger brother navigate high school as an incoming freshman. There were hundreds of posts from big sister to little brother, like "Who pays for the date" and “How to get along with THAT teacher." Much of what she shared with her brother is found in this book. Download free chapter

Benefits of Conducting an HR Assessment for Your Ministry: Improving the basic functions of your ministry will help you improve the effectiveness of your work. Performing a Human Resources assessment will help your ministry identify areas of improvement and growth. Benefit #1 is....

Connecting Faith and Justice: A new curriculum to help junior and senior high students actively engage the intersection of faith and justice and explore why our faith compels us toward justice. It is available to download today for free. Learn more and download

Connecting with Young Adults: In this week’s Leading Ideas, Discipleship Ministries’ Chris Wilterdink says a critical strategy for engaging young adults is to create discipleship opportunities and build relationships in the online communities where they are active. Within these spaces, the church can provide young adults an opportunity to explore identity, belonging, and purpose. Read more.

50 Ways to Strengthen Your Ministry with Youth: This resource sheet from the Lewis Center for Church Leadership is available to read or download in PDF. 

Join the Youth Ministry Team: Let your youth know that there’s still time to apply to be part of the 2020-2021 Conference Youth Ministry Team. Watch video. Fill out the online YMT application

10 Youth Ministry Lessons: SMU's Perkins School of Youth Ministry offers free youth ministry lessons that make it easy to stay connected with youth during the COVID-19 pandemic. Download the curriculum  

YOUTH INFORMATION: on the web at https://www.wpaumc.org/youthevents

  • Resources for Youth Workers
  • Explore weekly updates, devotions, games, and lessons on the Youth Worker Collective. Some of the top UM youth workers offer free resources from their real-world ministries. 
  • Check out all of the Youth news at https://www.wpaumc.org/Youth
YSF Grants!
Your church can apply for a Youth Service Fund grant! Need some money to help run or launch a youth-led program or mission trip?
Apply at  www.wpaumc.org/ysfapplication.
Applications are accepted all year long.

Looking to connect with other UM Youth Leaders?
Be on the lookout for upcoming Youth Leader Networks! A small group regional program for you as a youth leader to grow and live life in
community with others who “get it.”
More info?     https://www.wpaumc.org/youth        On Facebook: Western Pa UMC Youth Leaders

Quick Links

WPA Facebook Page
Diversity Development
Mission Barn

The Eastbrook Mission Barn is one of six UMCOR Relief Supply Network depots across the United States.

Scholarships and Grants

There are a variety of scholarships available at www.umc.org/resources/scholarships and at www.wpaumc.org/scholarshipforms.