Annual Conference Offers Hope

published 6/13/2018
Update: ​More photos and videos have been added since this story was originally posted. See links at the end. --By Jackie Campbell-- Western PA United Methodists gathered from June 7-9 at Grove City College for the 2018 Annual Conference session heard Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi assure them that despite disagreements, the United Methodist Church in the region "is doing well and each day is being perfected in love."   “We have much to smile about because in the midst of the distractions and ...

Conference Celebrates Ministry of 26 Retiring Clergy

published 6/11/2018
Western PA clergy and laity celebrated the ministry of 26 retiring clergy with an evening worship service at the 2018 Annual Conference session at Grove City College. The service was highlighted by the engaging, enthusiastic, spirit-filled preaching of the Rev. Paul D. Taylor, who is retiring as Pittsburgh District Superintendent effective June 30.   Rev. Paul Taylor's Message   The clergy retiring from active ministry in 2018 represent a combined total of 774 years of ministry. Most ...

Table of Grace Shares Blessings

published 5/23/2018
Each year the people of Table of Grace in Erie give their observance of Mothers Day an outward focus. Rather than honoring the women of their congregation with gifts, they find a way to make the day special for women in the area who may not otherwise be celebrating.   This year was especially wonderful, said Mary Alice McGinnis, who spearheaded an effort to collect gently used clothing for Dress for Success. The organization provides interview outfits and a beginning wardrobe for women ...

WPA Leaders React to UMC Amendment Votes

published 5/9/2018
5/11/18 UPDATE: An error discovered in the ballot wording of Amendment #1 led to the May 10 announcement of a re-vote that will take place this year.  When results of denomination-wide voting on five constitutional amendments were announced on Monday, some Western PA Conference leaders offered their thoughts on the results. Two  amendments addressing gender equality failed to receive enough votes from annual conference members across the denomination to be ratified.    “My sister bishops and I ...

Get Involved in Older Adult Ministry!

published 5/7/2018
Leaders in the Greensburg District are inviting clergy and laity from across Western PA to help explore ways to be in ministry "by, with, and for" older adults."     About 20 people from around the Conference, along with a pastor from the Susquehanna Conference of  met at the Delmont: Faith UMC in Delmont, PA to learn about Older Adult Ministry in the local church from the Rev. Dr. William Randolph, who for several years focusing on older adult ministries for Discipleship Ministries. "In order ...

Bishops Recommend One Church Plan

published 5/4/2018
United Methodist bishops, meeting in Chicago this week, engaged in a prayerful process to discern a way forward for the denomination. At the conclusion of the discernment process, the Council of Bishops strongly approved the following motion and rationale: Motion: Having received and considered the extensive work of the Commission on a Way Forward, the Council of Bishops will submit a report to the Special Session of the General Conference in 2019 that includes: All three plans (The ...

Join in May 24 Prayer Walk

published 4/25/2018
Western Pennsylvania United Methodists are invited to join in prayer on Thursday, May 24 (Aldersgate Day) to lift up our Camping and Retreat Ministries and everyone involved in them. A Prayer Walk, with two-hour segments scheduled consecutively at the camps and ministry sites, is planned so that those in each area  have an opportunity to visit and join in. Others are encouraged to pray wherever they are throughout the day. “Prayer matters! We want to lift up everyone who makes these ministries ...

Shoebox Ministry with a Twist

published 4/25/2018
After leading her congregations in filling and sending shoeboxes filled with goodies to children around the world through Samaritan's Purse, Rev. Katrina Laude and the people of Homer City UMC did something different. "I got in touch with the Committee on Native American Ministries through the North Carolina Conference of the UMC. Members of the Lumbee Tribe live in Pembroke, NC and the surrounding area, struggling in poverty," she said. Pastor Laude and a few others from Homer City delivered ...

Amendments, Way Forward on Bishops' Agenda

published 4/24/2018
The Bishops of The United Methodist Church will meet in Chicago from April 29-May 4 to celebrate leadership through the passing of the gavel, certify constitutional amendments and finalize their recommendations to the 2019 Special Session of the General Conference. The April/May meeting of the Council of Bishops will also hear leadership reports regarding immigration, ecumenical relations, racism, disaster relief and other mission and ministry work around the global denomination. “As leaders ...

Out of Adversity, Church Finds Hope

published 4/18/2018
The people of Trinity United Methodist Church in Brackenridge are emerging from a cold winter of disruption, anxiety and adversity with renewed hope and energy.  Trouble started around mid-day on Sunday, Jan. 7, when the key drive pump impeller for the church's heating system failed dramatically, separating from its secure mountings and shaking the entire boiler system. As the temperature dropped, alarms went off. Texts were sent, and an emergency plumber was dispatched. Within 15 hours, a ...

Wanted: The Strong and Courageous

published 4/5/2018
                           At a service honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on the 50th anniversary of his assassination, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi said that strong and courageous leaders like Dr. King are needed today to usher God’s people into the promised land.   “It has been 50 years and we are still dreaming about the promise,” she said. “We are still dreaming and hoping for - we are still crying about and yearning for, we are still protesting about and working for the promise. The ...

The Importance of Holy Week, Easter

published 3/30/2018
On Good Friday morning, Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi was interviewed on KDKA Newsradio 1020 by host John Shumway, who asked what was the most important time of the year for Christians – Christmas or Easter. Referring to Ecclesiastes 7:8, which says the finish is better than the beginning, the Bishop said Easter time is most important.  “It marks the finish of the work of salvation in Jesus Christ,” she explained. “The most important day is Good Friday because Jesus finished the work God set ...

Roger White Selected for Treasurer Post

published 3/28/2018
After a five-month nationwide search for a new Treasurer and Director of Administrative Services, Bishop Cynthia Moore Koikoi has announced that Roger S. White has been selected and will be recommended for election as Conference Treasurer and DAS at the 2018 Annual Conference session in June. Roger White White joined the WPAUMC finance staff in September 2014 after a 30-year career in the financial services industry in the U.S. and abroad. He currently serves as the assistant treasurer and ...

Church Shelters Fire Survivors

published 3/23/2018
--By Jackie Campbell, Communications Director-- When they heard sirens and saw first responders rushing past New Virginia United Methodist Church to a fire, people gathering for their regular Faith and Fitness session immediately mobilized to offer help.   Two of them walked up to where first responders were stationed told them they were more than welcome to use the church building for anyone who needed to come inside, said Marcia Grim, an active member of the church and the Faith and Fitness ...

Evangelism Team Seeks Denman Nominations

published 2/28/2018
  The Western PA Conference Evangelism Team is seeking nominations of clergy or laypersons to receive a Denman Award for Evangelism. The awards honor those who consistently reach others with the good news of God's love.  Three nominees will be selected for an award in 2018 -- one clergy person, one lay person and one youth.  The WPAUMC Evangelism Team encourages pastors, congregations or individuals to submit nominations. An award winner's ministry should be innovative or exceptional for the ...

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