Conference Blogs

12/21/2021

One of my aunts on my Dad’s side, Rev. Christine Moore, died last week. She had a short bout with cancer and was responding well to treatment, but then took a turn for the worse and died rather suddenly. She was an African Methodist Episcopal pastor who had served faithfully for 30 some years after leaving a career in education. Upon her retirement from the AME church, she began worshipping and helping in ministry at Emory Fellowship, a United Methodist Church in Washington, D.C. The celebration...


11/22/2021

As the COVID-19 pandemic lingers at the close of 2021, we continue to experience division over mask-wearing.  Every day news is shared about the latest disagreement in school districts, government offices and businesses over whether to follow government mask mandates or not.  Our churches are not exempt from the conversation – disagreement has prevailed across our pews, stirring up frustration, uncertainty and even anger among God’s people. At the heart of the mask debate is whether or not a ...


10/26/2021

As the Coordinator of Discipleship and Spiritual Formation for the Conference, I have been doing Safe Sanctuary and Mandated Reporter training for the last eight years. I have enjoyed traveling throughout Western Pennsylvania and being able to share how we can keep our children, youth and vulnerable adults safe.   This year, the quadrennial training for Western PA clergy focused on Safe Sanctuaries and Mandated Reporting. It was provided by Safe Gatherings.  Safe Gatherings was formed in 2012 ...


10/14/2021

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to attend the National Young People’s Ministry Staff gathering in Charleston, South Carolina. This is an annual gathering of conference staff who work with young people as part of their job portfolios. It is always a refreshing time to learn, laugh, and update each other on what is happening in our conferences and lives. We conversed about denominational realities, conference youth ministry structures and events, and the needs of local church youth ...


9/13/2021

 “Waiting is essential to the spiritual life. But waiting as a disciple of Jesus is not an empty waiting. It is a waiting with a promise in our hearts that makes already present what we are waiting for.” --Henry Nouwen   “Waiting for God is an active, alert – yes, joyful – waiting. As we wait we remember him for whom we are waiting, and as we remember him we create a community ready to welcome him when he comes.” -- Henri Nouwen     Henri Nouwen was a Catholic priest and prolific theological ...


7/26/2021

By Rev. B.T. Gilligan for the Abundant Health Team The most obvious statement of the decade is this: “Healthcare is expensive.” Even with insurance it can be very expensive. Deductibles, copays, and prescriptions can take up a significant portion of our income. Add in  costs associated with an unhealthy lifestyle and we are paying even more money to exist while unhealthy. For example, according to UPMC Health Plan statistics on all covered subscribers and groups, in 2020 the average cost for ...


7/19/2021

I am thankful for the warm expressions of support and encouragement as I step into the role of Advocacy Coordinator for the United Methodist Church in Pennsylvania, helping to ensure that the values of our church impact all aspects of society and governmental affairs.   The voices of our clergy and laity can have a profound influence as elected officials enact laws, formulate regulations and decide on everything from school funding to street repairs.  The Social Principles of the United ...


6/29/2021

By the Rev. Lynette Moran for the Abundant Health Team We know that God breathes life into us, that the imagery of the Holy Spirit often involves filling us mere mortals via breath. The air we breathe and other exposure in our environment also impact our lived experience. While asbestos and lead were banned from use in the 1970s (some states addressed this issue earlier), the impact of its previous use is still a challenge. (Worldwide a social justice issue emerges as an estimated 60 countries...


6/29/2021

3: “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” 2 a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; 3 a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 a time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 a time to seek, and a time to ...


6/29/2021

Earlier this month, the General Commission on the Status and Role of Women, offered the first in a series of lunch and learn gatherings. Hosted on zoom, participants heard from Dr. Larine Cowan who drew on her deep experience to offer 10 Top Principles for women’s success at work. Dr. Cowan is retired after a distinguished career, including service as Assistant Chancellor and Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access at the University of Illinois.   Her wisdom focused on praying ...


Page 1 of 31 1 2 3 4 5 ... 31 next