News from the Pittsburgh District

Dates to Remember



9 Open House at East End Cooperative Ministries
15 Evaluations due (Clergy, SPRC & Congregational)
15 Clergy Continuing Education Report due (via Clergy Dashboard)
15 Annual Parsonage Inspection Report due
18 Deaf Ministry Boot Camp @ Trinity UMC, McMurray
18 2019 Faith and Politics Conference, Harrisburg
27 Memorial Day - District Office Closed


1 Pastoral Transitions Seminar @ Ingomar UMC
6 - 8 Annual Conference @ Grove City College

Upcoming Events & Information

Pastoral Transitions Seminar

For all pastors experiencing a change in ministry setting this year.  Saturday, June 1 2019, 9:00 am-3:00 pm
Registration will begin at 8:30am, lunch will be provided.  Register by going here.
Where:  Ingomar UMC, 1501 W. Ingomar Rd. Pittsburgh, PA (in the community life center - the “old” side of the church)
Hosted by the WPAUMC Cabinet, Office of Clergy Excellence, and Office of Congregational Development and Revitalization

East End Cooperative Ministry Open House

Thursday, May 9, 5 - 8 pm.  We will be opening our doors to the community for one night, to celebrate the doors we open for all of our clients. Come to mingle, learn how we support the community, and get an inside look at what makes EECM special.  Located at 6140 Station Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206.  RSVP online at or call 412-345-7139.

From Paris to Pittsburgh

First United Methodist Church of Pittsburgh is hosting a showing of the National Geographic documentary From Paris to Pittsburgh, a film “celebrating Americans taking action against climate change into their own hands” on Tuesday, May 7 @ 7 pm.  The film is presented in partnership with PA Interfaith Power and Light, a community of congregations, faith-based organizations, and individuals of faith responding to climate change as an ethical and moral issue.  Please help spread the word by using the attached flyer and bulletin insert.  
Please feel free to contact Jeff Miller ( and Claudia Detwiler ( with any questions.

Faith Night at PNC Park

7th Annual Faith Night is Saturday, June 22. It will be a 4:05 pm game vs. the San Diego Padres. With it being an earlier presentation and on a Saturday, we’re expecting the largest turnout we’ve ever had. Group reservations of 10 or more are on sale now. It is highly recommended making your group reservation as soon as possible do to the popularity of this event. You don’t need to know the number of tickets right now. They are just taking deposits towards a block of seats (10 or more seats). You’ll have until Friday, May 17 to let them know your final number, at which point you’ll also pay the balance. For group reservations: Chad Glover 412-325-4756.

Deaf Ministry Boot Camp

Saturday, May 18, 9:30 AM – 1:30 PM @ Trinity United Methodist Church (530 Center Church Rd, McMurray, PA 15317)
Deaf Ministry: Boot Camp is an interactive workshop designed to provide participants who are new to Deaf ministry in a Christian context. Interpreters and others interested in learning about Deaf ministry will be oriented to (1) Deaf history, (2) an introduction to American Sign Language, (3) cultural consideration, (4) best practices, (5) accessibility, (6) ministry coordination, (7) the implementation of a new Deaf ministry, and (8) features of an interpreting ministry. This will be a working lunch. Handouts will be disseminated, while books will be available for purchase ($10 ea) on the day of the event.  The presenter, Rev. Leo Yates, is a deacon in full connection and a certified interpreter serving in Deaf ministry for over 20 years.  Target audience: interpreters, church leaders, ministers, and students at the beginning level.  The workshop is sponsored by Global Ministries and Trinity United Methodist Church. It will be presented in spoken English. If you will need ASL interpretation or if you require any other reasonable accommodations or diet restrictions for lunch, please contact Gail Brunson by May 1, 2019.  Here is a flyer you may post.  Admission is free; however, Registration is required at  (search deaf ministry in McMurray).

2019 Bike-A-Thon

If you're not busy from Sept. 30 - Oct. 6, save the dates to ride in the 2nd Annual Bike-A-Thon from Pittsburgh to Washington, DC. It raises money to send children and youth to our three WAPUMC camps! This year’s itinerary includes worship in a multi-ethnic church in Georgetown and the African American Heritage Museum. Watch for details.  Here's a video from last year.

Mission u 2019

Mission u 2019 offers opportunities for adults, youth and children to learn, explore, grow spiritually, enjoy fellowship, and participate in hands-on mission work.  Adult & family Mission u runs Thursday, July 18 to Sunday, July 21, 2019.  Youth Mission u is Tuesday, July 16 to Sunday, July 21.  For more information click here.

Recommended Clergy Reading

A new mini-edition of our clergy recommended reading list is focused specifically on leadership books because this year's continuing education focus area is leadership.  Both business classics, as well as church specific readings, are highlighted. Pick out one and make a commitment to read it.  Let’s pray that our collective reading strengthens our work in ministry. Here's the list.

Resources for Responding to Racism

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

2019 Olmstead Events

Here's a listing of upcoming events at Omstead Manor Retreat Center:

  • May 10 – 12 Spring Women’s Retreat w/ Jennifer Phillips
  • May 13 – 15 Pastors’ Academy w/ Dr. Timothy Slemmons
  • Jun 23 – 27 Church Music Workshop “Come Sing to the Lord”
  • Jul 21 – 23 Church Professionals’ Retreat w/ Donna Doutt
  • Aug 9 – 23 Discover Olmsted Days w/ Olmsted Staff
  • Aug 25-27 Writing Workshop w/ Rev. Bill Kemp
  • Sept 29-Oct 1 Fall Women’s Retreat w/ Michele Huey
  • Oct 4 – 6 Beginner Fly-Fishing School w/ Gary Kell
  • Nov 10 – 12 Rest & Renewal Retreat w/ Rev. Kim Barker-Brugman
  • Nov 15 – 17 Youth Ministry Training w/ Perkins School of Theology
  • Dec 1 & 8 Christmas Open House: “Olmsted Fashioned Christmas”

Come join us as we celebrate 50 years of Olmstead Retreats!  Space is available throughout the year for personal or group retreats, meetings, and events. Click here to register for an event.  OLMSTEDMANOR.ORG | 814-945-6512

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary Library

All clergy are invited to visit the Barbour Library at PTS and complete the form to become a member of the library.  The $15 fee is waived for 2019.  Learn more about the library at their website, calling 412-924-1354 or emailing  PTS is located at 616 North Highland Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206.

WPAUMC Facebook Page for Church Communicators

Liz Lennox, Visual Communications & Social Media Coordinator at the Conference Center, created a Facebook group on the WPAUMC Facebook page specifically for church communicators (social media managers, newsletter writers, admins, media directors, etc). The purpose of the group is to connect communicators and to share resources and advice and to give a place for communicators to ask questions and connect with one another: 

Clergy Book Study

The Pittsburgh District hosts a Clergy Book Study that is open to any pastor who wishes to join.  The study meets on the first & third Thursdays of the month, from September to May.  The study meets at Baldwin UMC (5001 Baptist Rd, Pittsburgh).  Dale Reese is the current coordinator of the study.  Our simple plan of study is to gather between 11 - 11:30 am, then start the study at 11:30 am.  We finish with prayer at 12:30 pm.  For the months of February, March, April & May, will complete a study on "Poet and Peasant and Through Peasant Eyes: A Literary-Cultural Approach to the Parables in Luke," by Kenneth E. Bailey.  Please consider joining the group.

Each month, January through May, there will be 5 prayer gatherings near the 5 “centers” of our Annual Conference. The five centers (St. Marys, Oakdale, Punxsutawney, Saegertown and Somerset) are all areas that everyone in our AC can reach in an hour (or an hour and half) of driving. Would you please plan on coming out to one of our prayer gatherings as we "Hear from God through Prayer"? Each night begins at 6:30 and will run about an hour and a half (6:30-8). The churches in bold are the closest to the Pittsburgh District.


  • 7 - Grace UMC Somerset, 6:30pm
  • 8 - Summit UMC, 6:30pm tentative
  • 14 - Crossroads main, 6:30pm (1000 Crossroads Dr., Oakdale)
  • 15 - First UMC St. Marys, 6:30pm
  • 21 - Grace UMC Punxsutawney, 6:30pm

If you have any questions, please contact Chris Kindle @ 724.630.3965 or Adam Stump @ 412.855.6920

Mission Opportunities in East Ohio

There are mission opportunities in east Ohio with the Epworth Mission Center (in the Appalachian area around Bethesda, OH), The Nehemiah Mission of Cleveland, and Urban Mission Ministries (in Steubenville, just 40 minutes from Pittsburgh).  Click here from more details.  

Western Pennsylvania Prison Outreach Ministry

Click here to see the Winter 2019 Western PA Prison Outreach Ministry Newsletter.

2019 Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference will be Thursday, June 6 - Saturday, June 8, 2019.

The United Methodist Church Handbook

The new United Methodist Church Handbook, for 2017 - 2020, is available, providing a detailed overview of the denomination’s beliefs, mission, structure, and history. The handbook is a free, go-to resource for anyone in search of information about the church and is helpful for leaders and new members. Click here to order.

Mission Vision

Do you have old eyeglasses at home? Donate them to Mission Vision, a non-profit based in Cranberry Twp. that equips mission volunteers to offer eyeglass clinics where people can be fitted and get glasses matching their prescriptions. Volunteers from Zion UMC in Sarver clean and categorize the used glasses. Teams from that church take them to Haiti and other locations. Others go with The Nyadire Connection teams to Zimbabwe. Used glasses are now being collected at the United Methodist Center in Cranberry and the Eastbrook Mission Barn. Learn more at

Circles Sharpsburg

Roots of Faith (800 Main Street, Sharpsburg) hosts this anti-poverty campaign that surrounds and empowers families living in poverty with positive relationships of accountability on Tuesdays at 6 pm.  This program is part of Circles Greater Pittsburgh.

Sharpsburg Rocks   

Join us as we paint rocks, make new friends, and help spread joy in Sharpsburg. Mondays, 10:30 am at Roots of Faith, 800 Main Street, Sharpsburg.   Sharpsburg Rocks is a group that paints rocks with inspirational phrases and hides them around Sharpsburg. Residents find them and can connect with Roots of Faith. We encourage people to re-hide them, and we’ve had a few rocks travel long distance – Kenya, Switzerland, across the US. You can see more about it here:

Due to a broad staff realignment, Baldwin Community UMC in the South Hills seeks to hire a Discipleship and Youth Coordinator (20 hours/week), Tech and Media Coordinator (12 hours/week), Office Administrator and Assistant to the Pastors (34 hours/week), and Financial Administrator (20 hours/week).  For full job descriptions and instructions for applying, visit here.

Preschool Director

Baldwin Community United Methodist Church is seeking a full-time Preschool Director to oversee the operation of a multiple option Christian preschool program in the South Hills of Pittsburgh.  Find a full job description here.  To apply please email a cover letter and resume to

Children's Ministry Director Needed

McKnight UMC is looking for a part-time Children's Ministry Director.  Click here to see a blurb about the job, and here for a fuller job description.  If you can refer people our way, it would be greatly appreciated!  Yours in collegiality, Bruce Stollings


The Neighborhood Table

Roots of Faith (800 Main Street, Sharpsburg), invites everyone to a free community dinner the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Thursdays of each month at 6 pm.  A free legal clinic is available on the 1st Thursday and free health clinic on the 3rd Thursday.