Greensburg District News

District Superintendent: Rev. Pat Nelson 724-461-7178 greensburg.ds@wpaumc.org
District Administrative Assistant: Mrs. Joyce Shaffer 724-461-7178 greensburg.office@wpaumc.org
District Lay Leader: Mr. Paul Huey 724-787-7629 gbhue52@outlook.com
District Director of Lay Servant Ministries: Miss Sherri Gambrill 412-823-4446 yeslove1@verizon.net

Events   |   News   |   Resources   |   Quick Links

Announcements

Luke 1:78-79

“Because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

The Good News: Even in the dark times, even when death draws near, the mercy of God is always available to comfort us and grant us peace.


District Conference


***NEW***
The 2020 Greensburg District Conference of the WPAUMC will go down in the history books as a new experience for everyone! The September 13, 2020  time of celebration of our ministries was a virtual event with 65 clergy and laity in attendance. A special thanks to Joyce Shaffer (District Administrative Assistant) for taking minutes for the meeting, and to Amanda Gilligan (Director of Youth and Young People's Ministries) for handing the screen sharing responsibilities. We shared "yay God's" and new learning as a result of COVID-19 and celebrated how the district churches are moving out of the building and extending ministry into their communities. Documents from the District Conference, and the "Signs of Joy and Hope" responses will be posted on the district webpage. During the course of our time together, Rev. Seth McPherson shared the "Funding for Ministry" presentation which reported on the 2021 Conference Budget, we celebrated those churches who contributed at least 100% of their connectional apportionments for 2019, and Miss Sandra Matoushayo (Director of Missions) updated us with a report, pictures, and a video about the partnership between the Greensburg District and the Harare West District in Zimbabwe. You can see those pictures and video on our webpage. We will be extending a financial challenge to all of the churches on the district to help us in the partnership complete the work at both the Kojakoto and Kariba churches. We will give you the total amount of the goal for our financial challenge; but are hoping to reach that goal before Thanksgiving!! One high-point of the day was to hear of the effective and ongoing ministries of all of our district committees. We elected persons to serve on the committees (and are still taking of volunteers to participate in this district leadership). We elected persons to serve as equalization delegates from the district for Annual Conference 2020. We celebrated our new appointments and the work of all of the clergy in the district and the DS shared a few reflections on Jesus' mandate in Matthew 28:18-20 before closing with prayer. It was a very good afternoon together. Please let us know if you have questions or need additional information about anything discussed. 


2020 General Conference Dates Announced

Dates set for General Conference: August 29 - September 7, 2021, at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Learn more.
 
 
General Conference to move to 2021 Read the news release
 


Matthew 7:1-5 

7 1  Judge not, that ye be not judged. 2  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. 3  And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? 4  Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? 5  Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.


2021 Pension Calculation Worksheet


Click Here https://www.wpaumc.org/benefits
 
Drop down to misc files and it can be found there.

Please note, there is a slight increase from 2020 in that the Benefit Reserve is changing from .1% to .5% for 2021.

 


DISTRICT OFFICE HOURS and SAVE THE DATES

Our regular office hours are as listed: 
Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Hours can vary from time to time. Be sure and call before stopping by to make sure someone is here to meet your needs.
 
The district phone at 724-461-7178 is always on and available for messages if we are unable to answer directly; and of course, your emails are always welcome. Joyce can be reached at: greensburg.office@ wpaumc.org and Pat can be reached at: greensburg.ds@wpaumc.org. 
 
September 20 - 5 p.m. Clergy Family Picnic at home of Rev. Chris and Carla Livermore (more information coming)  ***CANCELLED***
October 3 - Annual Conference - A VIRTUAL TIME OF WORSHIP AND CELEBRATION
November 7 - 1 p.m. Ordination Service at New Stanton UMC for Greensburg, Connellsville, and Washington Districts ***CANCELLED***
 


Laity Announcements


As Director of the Greensburg District School for Lay Servant Development, and after conversation with our District Superintendent, I have come to the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Lay School which was scheduled for the FALL of this year.  We are indeed facing challenging days, but I recognize that God is still in control and knows all and sees all.  Thank you to those who were willing to act as facilitators for this year’s School.  I pray that I can reach out to you again when school resumes, hopefully in the Fall of 2021.  I will keep you abreast as plans are being made for Fall 2021 Lay School, and you can always feel free to reach out to me directly @ 412.823.4446.  I pray you and your families are safe and healthy.  Please know I am keeping you all in prayer and looking forward to the day when we can greet each other in person as we continue to do the work of the Lord.  In the meantime, remain encouraged, determined and faithful remembering God said He will never leave us or forsake us. May your days be filled with the purposeful pursuit of God’s love flowing through your life, and may your hearts be filled with love and hopefulness even in the midst of all that is going on in the world, may peace abound in you all.



                                                         ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________





Dear Greensburg District Laity: 

 
Prayers that all is well with you and your families.
 
I am asking that you take the time to read this attached (click on letter) letter from the UMC's Association of Annual Conference Lay Leaders executive team (AACLL) asking for a commitment to "love one another'' and work together to foster meaningful social change in our nation.
 
I know that in this time of separation from our church families that it is difficult to envision how we can be proactive in the mission of fostering social change in our communities, but this is too important to wait.  You are encouraged to be creative in how you can carry out this calling at this time of isolation.
 
It is my prayer that you will share this letter with all in your congregation and your leadership and have open and honest dialog as to how you can be part of this important call.
 
Blessings and thank you for all that you do. 

Paul Huey
District Lay Leader



                                                          _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________                                                             



 


Online Worship Services - Updated 9/14/2020


Clergy Communities of Practice - A covenant-learning group


We are again offering Clergy Communities of Practice—a type of covenant-learning group for pastors in various locations around our Conference. This year we’ve even offered added an online group which will meet in the evening so that more clergy can be involved. The groups meet together monthly beginning in September. Each meeting includes worship, conversation, learning and accountability. Now is a great time to be involved, as pastors can connect with other clergy and hear new ideas, while supporting one another! Each meeting focuses on a different topic such as:  worship, leadership, mission, diversity, etc. Questions can be directed to Susan Moudry:  susan.moudry@wpaumc.org.
For more information and to register visit:  https://wpa-reg.brtapp.com/CCOP2020
 
 


Prayer Requests - Updated 9/14/2020

Would you like us to pray for you or your loved ones? Please keep the following people in your prayers.

All of the district church and clergy families as we partner in ministry together reaching those who are in need of the love, presence, and grace of Jesus.

Kevin Haley will be undergoing a gamma knife radiation procedure on a brain tumor on September 17, and his medical team is also suspecting a return of some cancerous thyroid cells (his thyroid was removed due to a malignancy back in 2006).  

Please feel free to share your prayer requests and "yay God" celebrations by sending them to those who are subscribed to the Greensburg District Connector.

***NEW***
St Paul Youngwood, took to heart to, love our neighbor.  

Our next door neighbor lives in a house that borders our parking lot.  Many times I have said hi to our neighbor and then started conversing a bit more.  She shared she was taking full-time care of her dad, and emotionally told the story of her moms passing unexpectedly last year from an aneurysm.  Her yard was terribly over grown and she was apologizing for how terrible it looked.  So we decided to clean it up for her.  It looks so great now and we just lifted a burden and made the day a little less complicated.  I just purchased two great big mums from a fundraiser and put them in her garden.  Planting seeds and flowers.  
Pamela Ramsey

 


Our Deepest Condolences - Updated 9/14/2020

Praise to the God of All Comfort

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).
 
Join us in prayer as we lift up families of the following who have gone home to be with the Lord. Click here to view complete obituary information. 

Catherine Hallman passed away on September 2, 2020. She was the surviving spouse of the late Rev. Franklin Hallman who passed away in 2007.

Retired Rev. Raymond Graham passed away on August 31, 2020.

Dorothy Hockensmith passed away on April 21, 2020.. Dorothy was the surviving spouse of the late retired Rev. Darrell Hockensmith who passed away in 2003.

John Hickman passed away on August 6, 2020. John was a part time local pastor serving along with his wife Carol Hickman in the Johnstown District.



 


District Birthdays and Anniversaries






 

September Birthdays
16- Miss Elisha Schoeneck
19- Miss Emma Peterman
20- Rev. Randy Landman
26- Mrs. Jayne Sweet
28- Rev. Hyung-Suk Joe
29- Rev. Scott Gallagher

September Anniversaries
20- Rev. Scott & Sharon Gallagher

October Birthdays
6- Rev. Ron Wanless
7- Rev. Bruce Judy
15- Mr. Doran Check
25- Mr. James Falcsik
26- Mrs. Paula Bossart
28- Miss Mollie Landman

October Anniversaries
10- Rev. William & Delores Meekins
10-  Mr. James & Rev. Tammy Falcsik
23-  Mr. R. Duwane & Rev. Sharon Waltenbaugh

 


Help Wanted - North Huntingdon Area - Cook


Head Start that meets at Circleville Church in North Huntingdon PA is looking for a cook.  Meals would be breakfast and lunch. 35 hours a week at $10/hour plus benefits.  
 
 If you are interested or know someone that is, please call Westmoreland Community Action at 724-834-1260 or go to Westmorelandca.org and you can fill out an application on line.

                                              Any additional questions can be directed to Grace at Circleville Church in North Huntingdon, PA by calling (724) 864-1581.


Virtual Itineration

Due to the Corona Virus, Global Ministries is encouraging us to reach out to supporting churches and individuals - virtually.   Each week - 3-4 missionaries from around the world are sharing their stories.   

My assigned day and time is November 12 at 1pm.      

I'll be sharing how the Joy of Missions has and continues to be with me through East brook Mission Barn - UMCOR relief Supply Network and ramp ministries.   

I'll be sending out the connection information through zoom within the week before November 12.   Please share this information with your local UMW units, small groups and congregation.   

Thank you for your continued prayers and support for me as your Deaconess, Church and Community Worker.   

Katie Peterson
Global Ministries advance 982942 
 


2020 Pre-Retirement Event, Tuesday, October 20 - Wednesday, October 21, 2020.

THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CHANGED ON A VIRTUAL MEETING! CONTACT KATHLEEN LASKY AT THE CONFERENCE CENTER FOR MORE INFORMATION.

DoubleTree by Hilton, Pittsburgh Cranberry: 910 Sheraton Drive, Mars PA 16046 (formerly the Sheraton).
Tuesday, October 20 - Wednesday, October 21, 2020. 

We are still hoping and planning to provide our WPA biennial Pre-Retirement Event in an in-person format. We are closely monitoring Covid-19 and will be following all safety recommendations and regulations enacted by the CDC, conference leadership and the PA Governor’s office. The DoubleTree is also carefully following all orders and safety recommendations and is committed to partnering with us to provide a clean and safe environment for our participants.

Your registration will help us plan accordingly. Please be aware if the event is postponed, cancelled, or reformatted to a virtual event your registration costs will be refunded.

Registration costs for the event are as follows: $80 for single participant / $120 for participant plus spouse/guest. Your payment will assist the Conference Board of Pensions in covering the costs of your meals, refreshments, and materials. Spouses are highly encouraged to attend!
Tentatively, this event will run from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm both days with meals provided. A schedule will be released closer to the event. 
Guests and topics will include: Wespath/Pensions and retirement, EY Financial Services/Financial wellness, Medicare, Social Security, Health Insurance in Ministry and Retirement, Clergy taxes and more! Wespath will be providing personal one-on-one pension projections that will be scheduled closer to the event. These appointments will be scheduled in the order of registration- so don’t delay!

Please note: this event is open to any Clergy! You do not need to be planning your retirement in the upcoming year or two to attend. Clergy who may be 5-10 or even more years away from their retirement are still welcome and encouraged to attend. 
 If you wish to stay at the Doubletree: A special room rate is available of $119 per night if booked by October 5, 2020. If there is a change of plans, room reservations must be cancelled 48 hours prior to your stay. For link to room block, please register.

Registration link: https://wpa-reg.brtapp.com/2020PreRetirementEvent
 


The United Methodists Stand Against Racism

 
As United Methodists, we promise to stand against evil and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves. Here are some resources you are welcome to use in your work and ministry to fight against racism. Our Greensburg District Anti-Racism Team (DART) is working diligently to provide resources and support for our churches to have practical tools in order to begin to stand together. If you have questions, contact Rev. Jeff Conn, Greensburg DART chair. Please also explore and utilize the resources on the WPAUMC.org website for additional contacts, resources, and helps.

 To view the Bishops' announcement of this denominational focus, please click here: 
https://www.umc.org/en/how-we-serve/advocating-for-justice/racial-justice/united-against-racism 
 
United Methodists Stand Against Racism
We recognize racism as a sin.
We commit to challenging unjust systems of power and access.
We will work for equal and equitable opportunities in employment and promotion, education and training; in voting, access to public accommodations, and housing; to credit, loans, venture capital, and insurance; to positions of leadership and power in all elements of our life together; and to full participation in the Church and society.
 
What can you do?

Pray

We listen for the voice of Jesus in our private acts of devotion and our public acts of worship. 

Connect

We begin our work by joining hands and hearts to journey side by side. 

Act

Jesus calls us not only to speak, but to join in the work of liberating the oppressed.  

New Online Course for Christians on Race & Racism
Enroll today!

 You Are Here: First Steps for White Christians on Race and Racism is an online course for Christians who want to acquire a fundamental understanding of race and racism from a biblical perspective. This four-part self-directed course offers videos featuring Robin DiAngelo and Rev. Dr. Anderson Hooker, reflections, and activities to help people of faith to recognize racism and begin to challenge it in their lives.
 
Enroll today
 

 
 


Greensburg District UMW - HELP......In need of a Treasurer

IN NEED OF A TREASURER - "The Greensburg District United Methodist Women Executive Board is desperately in need of a treasurer.  Our past treasurer held her post a full year past her term while trying to recruit a replacement with no luck.  She would be willing to mentor someone who is willing to step up to help us out.  We all lead busy lives, but we all need to give back a little of our time to help further God's work.  Maybe you are just the one God has in mind for this position.  If you are curious and need more information, please call Pat Wolfgang 724-468-4800 and leave a message.  I will be happy to talk with you.
 
Pat Wolfgang,
Secretary, Greensburg District UMW"

___________________________________________________________________________________

Dear United Methodist Women and All Clergy: 
 
Because of the Corona 19 Pandemic, the Greensburg District United Methodist Women meetings have been curtailed ****CANCELLED****
 
Please keep our local church units, and our district UMW in your prayers, as we continue to explore the ways and means to do the work of ministry in this new season of our life together.
 
Pat Wolfgang,
Secretary, Greensburg District UMW


___________________________________________________________________________________



 
 


News from the General Council on Finance and Administration:

Like many of you, GCFA is staring at the stark reality of our nation attempting to flatten the curve and spread of Covid-19 by engaging in social distancing. For many of us, that may mean your weekly worship services are going to look a bit different than they have in the past. To support our United Methodist churches as we continue to make disciples, we have pulled out relevant articles that we feel may help during this time. We invite you to look through these, and we pray they may be of some help as we all face this uncertainty.
 
EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT eGIVING: In response to Covid-19 and social distancing, many churches many close as they put the health of their congregation first. This may lead to stress around the collection plate. Check out this handy guide to understanding electronic, text, and other forms of online giving.
 
UNDERSTAND LIVE STREAMING NOW TO BENEFIT YOUR CONGREGATION: As churches, theatres, and sporting events all press the pause button, churches across the nation will turn to live streaming to give their churches an option to worship. Download this guide to understanding different components of live streaming.
 


IN FOCUS Newsletters

IN FOCUS Newsletters

In Focus is designed with the church leader in mind. Revived and expanded in January 2019, each month In Focus brings news and feature stories from around Western PA, messages from our Bishop and other leaders, and information on upcoming events. The content relates to our Five Areas of Focus: Leadership Development; Abundant Health; Ministry with the Poor; New Places for New People and Dismantling Racism. Most articles are written by volunteer writer/reporters in each district. The goal is to equip church leaders with information and resources to make a difference for Christ in their churches, communities, the Western Pennsylvania Conference and beyond.

Click here to view previous and current newsletters
 


Older Adult Ministries

SPOTLIGHT  ON OLDER ADULT MINISTRIES 


Welcome to this new resource provided by the Greensburg District Older Adult Ministry Team to
 ‘shine a light’ on some of the meaningful ministries taking place throughout the Greensburg District.  We hope to provide you with basic information on a particular vital ministry as well as contact information if you would like to consider a that program to nurture and support your congregation and community.  All articles will be archived to draw from at any future time.

 Our first featured ministry article follows:
 
1. A Ministry for All Who Grieve
Grief is an experience that none of us can escape…it knows no age, gender, color, race or religion.  We know it as part of the ministry of pastors and church leaders, but you can be supported in this work by others in your congregation.    Although we are highlighting this as an Older Adult Ministry, this simple, yet powerful program provides a great opportunity for service BY, WITH and FOR older adults (and others) in your congregation.  The Journeying through Grief program at Monroeville UMC has been led for many years by older adults within the congregation.  Once the program coordinator is equipped with a supply of books and postage, this ministry can be handled from home when convenient for the coordinator(s).  What a great opportunity to serve even if a church member is home-bound.

2. Faces of Faith
In the summer/fall of 2018, DS Pat Nelson established a team of individuals interested in the spiritual well-being of older adults. This grew out of a two-day conference meeting on this topic held in April at Delmont Faith UMC. The OAM team sent out a survey questionnaire to the district churches to ascertain the needs and contributions of our older adults.

In the beginning of 2019, we began our first project; to obtain nominations of church parishioners over 85 whose lives exemplified service to Christ. This resulted in a "Faces of Faith" Recognition dinner held on May 3rd at Antonelli's in Irwin. All enjoyed good food, joyous singing and fellowship. The best was being in the company of six precious souls from our district and hearing their stories. They were John Bales (N. Huntington Christ);Dee Coleman (Leechburg First); Louise Cupcheck (Delmont Faith); Raymond Justham (Arnold); Jean Martin (Ligonier Heritage); Rich Rosenberger(New Kensington First).

The OAM team encourages all district churches to have a recognition dinner for their older adults. Leechburg has already done so and is willing to share their expertise. Contact Terry Snyder, Administrative Assistant at 724-845-8761.

Click here to view the "2019 Faces of Faith" honorees!

***NEW***
3. FACES OF FAITH 2020 - Please use the nomination form attached and determine those persons (85+ years) from your congregation who exemplify what it means to serve Jesus! We are requesting all nominations be submitted by December 1, 2020. Please contact Lori Hughes at musicnotes@comcast.net with questions. 
 

Click here to access the "2020 Faces of Faith Interview Guide".



Youth News

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



Conference News

Below you will find some conference news relevant to Greensburg District. To see all conference news, go to the News section at the very top of this page.
WPA COVID-19 Updates (read more )

6/5/2020

Conference Announcements Updated June 12, 2020.  Read Bishop's Update on Reopening Churches See What's Next for Churches video with Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi and Dr. Jessica Price. Download our Guidelines for Church Reopening  Download Green Phase Guidelines    Get take-aways and other info from our twice weekly Covid-19 Clergy Conversations. See our Coronavirus Stimulus and Relief Package information for churches. Check our Covid-19 Church Planning Resources page on Facebook. Due to ... read more


Clergy Coaching Sessions Offered (read more )

5/6/2020

To assist clergy as they strive to meet the on-going challenges of ministry in the age of the novel coronavirus, the Western PA Conference is offering Coaching on Demand.  Trained coaches in the Conference are offering their skills at no charge as a ministry to their colleagues. "Right now, we are each navigating personal and professional challenges, new realities, and unexpected ministry opportunities," said the Rev. Amy Wagner, who took a lead role in organizing the Coaching on Demand ... read more


Conference Call to Prayer (read more )

4/13/2020

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?   (Psalm 27:1, NRSV)   As our world has become encased in fear and uncertainty because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Western Pennsylvania Conference calls all laity and clergy to an intentional, daily time of prayer.  In the midst of the chaos, we need to stand in the power of prayer.   On March 24, 2020, Rev. Randall Bain, senior pastor at the Oakland United Methodist ... read more


Resources

WPAUMC Mission News

The Cove **Newsletter** click here to review 

The Cove is an arts-based youth drop-in center at Greenstone UMC in Avalon. It is an accessible, magnetically designed space for youth to experiment with various art expressions, all within an environment that cultivates discipleship. 

Area young people, ages 12 to 18 are welcomed into the space Monday - Friday, 3pm to 6pm, by artists-in-residence that reside at Greenstone UMC's Home of the Nomad. The Home of the Nomad is an artistic hub for touring musicians & artisans as well, which has facilitated growth in Greenstone's young adult ministry. 

Young people continue to be engaged through The Cove's ministry called "Skill Share."  These are individual lessons in visual & performing arts that seeks to build disciple-making relationships between a young person and artist.  

I am excited to announce that The Cove has a WPAUMC Advance Special Number. To support The Cove, checks can be made out to WPAUMC with the advance special "COVE" or "The COVE Art Center" in the memo line. Mail to 1204 Freedom Road, Cranberry Twp, PA 16066.

Follow the cove on Facebook and Instagram.



Eastbrook Mission Barn Resources click here

The Eastbrook Mission Barn is one of six UMCOR Relief Supply Network depots across the United States. Our WPAUMC has supported the Mission Barn, in New Castle, with UMCOR kits, a ramp ministry, and on-site tours and assembling of materials for use as needed. 

In 2000, Eastbrook United Methodist Church acquired a former dairy barn as part of its purchase of a new parsonage. In 2008, the church began using the heated office space to store UMCOR cleaning buckets. Today, it is dedicated to storing relief supplies year-round, as well as to providing a work space for volunteers.

Teams of volunteers show up every week at the barn to verify kits, make kits from scratch, sew tiny nightgowns for infants or school bags for children in some far off place. There are teen-agers, elderly women and men. Sitting and sewing or checking kits is something easily done by even those with handicapping conditions.

The facility has also served as a center for building UMVIM-designed modular handicap-access ramps for residents of Lawrence and Mercer counties.

Mission Barn Address:

  • 226 Church Lane,  New Castle, PA 16105    

  724-856-8241                         Directions to the



 


Western Pennsylvania Prison Outreach Ministry***NEWSLETTER***





MISSION STATEMENT
Our mission is to empower inmates to grow in discipleship and accountability through an interactive Bible study, and to provide the opportunity to build healthy relationships through God's Word as they prepare to re-enter society.
 
The intention is to have our Missionary make presentations of this ministry in the local churches in Western PA asking for prayer, leadership, and financial support.
 
The goal is to eventually have the ministry primarily funded by the local churches as we move out into the many prisons in Western PA.
   
New Ministries
We continue collaboration with Prison Fellowship Ministry in order to help provide after-care for the inmates who have completed our program and are being released.
 
Another aspect of the ministry is to provide supplies for children and youth leaving shelters or detention centers in Western PA including a backpack with a puzzle book, toiletries, and a prayer bear.
 
We are also striving to find nursing home placement for the elderly inmates who have completed their sentences and need special care.
 
We have discovered a need for clothing for men and women leaving the PA state facilities
Matthew 25:36
 
THE VISION
1. To provide interactive prison ministry throughout Western Pennsylvania
2. To help come against the detrimental forces that the men, women and youth in prison have to deal with, and to help them grow spiritually and in accountability.
3. To continue working on designing shorter term study programs for the County, State and Youth prisons.
4. To gain access to even more facilities for Women, Juveniles and Hispanics in Western PA.
5. To involve more trained laity, pastors and inmates as Volunteer Leaders in the prisons.
6. To address the literacy and language issues in the choice of Bibles and study materials.
7. To involve Districts, local churches and individuals in prayer, financial support, and in providing volunteers to enter the prisons on a weekly basis to study and pray together with the inmates.
8. To continue to assist in providing relational after-care and clothing and information on churches for inmates preparing for release .
9. To train inmates in leadership skills to lead Bible study classes in their prisons.
10. To collect bags, crayons, craft supplies and clothing and puzzles for youth, children and women in detention centers in Western PA.

Click here to view the most recent Western Pennsylvania Prison Outreach Ministry ***NEWSLETTER***


Resources for Responding to Racism    more info

Racism and Faith: Three theologians from across the U.S. wrestled with how Christianity can overcome racism at a time when polls show that many white Christians don’t see racial injustice as a problem. Heather Hahn reports on the most recent online panel in the UMC series on dismantling racism. Read story 

New Online Course for Christians on Race & Racism: You Are Here: First Steps for White Christians on Race and Racism is an online course for Christians who want to acquire a fundamental understanding of race and racism from a biblical perspective. This four-part self-directed course offers videos featuring Robin DiAngelo and Rev. Dr. Anderson Hooker, reflections, and activities to help people of faith to recognize racism and begin to challenge it in their lives. Enroll here.

Seminary Dean Discusses Racial Justice: Leah Gunning Francis, author and dean of the faculty at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, bases her anti-racism work on the concept of imago dei — that all beings are created in the image of God. In the latest episode of the "Get Your Spirit in Shape" podcast, she and the Rev. Joe Iovino discuss where The United Methodist Church is already at work in the area of racial justice and what more needs to be done. Listen to episode.

Wake Up Call for White Christian America: By confronting their faith’s legacy of racism, white Christians can build a better future for themselves, and their fellow Americans, writes Robert F.  Jones, author of White Too Long: The Legacy of White Supremacy in American Christianity. Read more. 


The Conference Anti-Racism Team (ART) compiled a list of suggestions for Western PA churches to address racism. Download it from the Conference's Responding to Racism page.


Listen First! As congregations work toward equality for all, it may be helpful to hear from some local church experts on how to improve communication with people from different racial and ethnic groups. Here are some tips about listening, language choices and more. Read story


Bishops Vow This Time Will Be Different! Watch and learn more about the official launch of the UMC’s renewed effort to dismantle racism and press on to freedom. Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi is one of five bishops in the video announcement on Juneteenth. See video and story

Talking About Race: No matter where you are on your journey of understanding, the resources on the Smithsonian National Museum of African-American History and Culture can help. Explore Talking About Race

Be Part of the Change! How can the church reach out with sensitivity about race and injustice? To effectively communicate beyond your congregation and culture, try to forge a true, interpersonal connection with those you want to reach. It would help to also do some homework, says John Coleman, Communications Director in the Eastern PA Conference. Read more.

United Methodists stand against racism: A new campaign is uniting the denomination against racism. Church leaders can turn to ResourceUMC.org to find the latest diversity and inclusiveness information and tools, including downloadable campaign graphics. Resources to engage members as they listen, act, speak and pray are available at UMC.org/EndRacism.

Learn how United Methodists are taking a stand against racism at UMC.org/EndRacism

Race and Protest: Two relevant resources regarding race and protest for young people: How to Acknowledge Hurt in Youth Ministry  and Tools for Processing Protests with Teens

Racial Justice Conversations: GCORR offers excellent resources to help churches discuss and learn more about racial justice. See Racial Justice Conversations Guide.  


Quick Links

Mission Barn

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

Mission Barn & UMCOR Supplies- Due to Annual Conference in June being cancelled and therefore the UMCOR collection, Mission Barn Director Katie Peterson is looking for a church willing to be the collection point for their district for UMCOR supplies, cleaning buckets, and hygiene kits on a one or two time basis this summer.  Preferably they can keep track of what church brought the donations and then store the kits and supplies in a secure location. People can bring the kits and supplies from the collection directly to the barn or the conference center, or she can arrange to send a truck or trailer to pick them up. Contact: Katie Peterson

 

Scholarships and Grants

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