Conference News

A Prayer for the New Year

December 30, 2020
Greetings to the People Called “Methodist” in Eastern Germany and Western Pennsylvania:   What challenges we have seen in the year that is past! Many times we have thought of one another, and prayed for one another, as we have heard of the events in each other’s countries. Our prayers are with each other as we begin this New Year of 2021 in the strength of our trans-Atlantic partnership. For our New Year’s Prayer, we offer the words of the famous German-American minister and theologian Walter ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Dec. 23, 2020

December 24, 2020
As we celebrate the birth of our Savior in new ways this year, look for opportunities to share the hope and joy with all who need assurance that God is with us.  Reimagining Christmas: More than half of our churches have moved to virtual services to guard against the spread of coronavirus in their congregations and communities. Some also will offer parking lot services. Others have chosen to offer in-person worship, some by reservation. As Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi put it in a Pittsburgh ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Dec. 16, 2020

December 17, 2020
Rejoice! Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi has some hopeful words for us this week in an Advent message. Read it. Don’t Lose Sight of Joy! Rev. Susan Moudry invites you to leave the disorienting fog that has hung in the air since Easter. “Do not let yourself be pulled down into thinking this Christmas is any less than it should be,” she writes in a blog post. “This Christmas is what we need, exactly as it is.” Read her post Need Resources for Online Services? The increased community spread of ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Dec. 9, 2020

December 10, 2020
Reflections on Lament: In this difficult season, Rev. Amy Wagner offers reflections on lament and some suggestions for leading a congregation in the practice of lament. They could be used during a traditional Blue Christmas or Longest Night service, at the end of a particularly challenging year, following a community or national tragedy, or any time a congregation and community faces corporate grief. See her blog post Frustrated? Breathe! "COVID has messed up everything -- our life, our mental ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Dec. 2, 2020

December 3, 2020
Harbor of Hope Training: The final online training of the year for Harbor of Hope, an easy-to-implement addiction recovery Bible Study developed by Rev. John and Christine Zimmerman, is scheduled for Thursday, December 17 from 7-8:30 p.m. The training is free and participants will receive free resources thanks to support from the WPAUMC Evangelism Team. Get details and register. Advent Devotional for Disability Awareness: The Conference Disability Awareness Team compiled an Advent devotional to... read more

WPAUMC enews, Nov. 25, 2020

November 26, 2020
As we prepare to celebrate a different kind of Thanksgiving than most of us are used to, we are grateful for the faithfulness of God and our United Methodist clergy, laity and churches in Western PA.  This week, we wish you a blessed Thanksgiving and offer a few items related to this season.  A Pandemic Thanksgiving: Like most everything about our lives in 2020, we need to make some alterations to stay safe during the holiday season. Here are some suggestions. The First Thanksgiving: The origin ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Nov. 18, 2020

November 19, 2020
COVID Updates: With the resurgence of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania bringing a record high number of new cases daily in several counties, the following actions were taken this week: State officials announced new initiatives to mitigate the spread, including mandating masks be worn anytime someone leaves their home.  See details Allegheny County health officials issued a stay-at-home advisory in hopes of avoiding an order requiring enforcement. Read more. Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi sent an email ... read more

Wesley Woods Storm Clean-Up

November 17, 2020
Sunday windstorms swept through Wesley Woods camp in Grand Valley, PA, knocking down a row of large pines that lined the parking lot of the camp store and office.  There was minor damage to a few buildings and power outages from the storms, said Shane Hinderliter, coordinator of camping and retreat ministries for the Western PA Conference.  A workday to help remove the trees and generally clean up after the storms was planned for Saturday, Nov. 21, he said. Lunch will be provided.  Those ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Nov. 11, 2020

November 12, 2020
Advent Prayer Initiative: Members of the Coordinating Cabinet invite laity and clergy to join them in daily devotions using d365, an online devotional that speaks to a broad audience, including youth and young adults. Cabinet Dean Pat Lenox said the hope is that using the same devotional material will help us all grow deeper in our relationship with Jesus Christ, which in turn will make us more available to be used by God to share God’s love and the joy of salvation through Jesus Christ with ... read more

Reimagining the Christmas Angel Tree

November 11, 2020
Christ United Methodist Church in Bethel Park is in full holiday prep mode as Advent approaches, and that includes reinventing their traditional Angel Tree gift collection to keep people safe during the pandemic. In years past, congregation members could select a white angel from various trees in the church hallways that listed a ministry agency and an item on its wish list. After the gift was purchased, it was wrapped in white to be presented at the altar in early December. The white paper ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Nov. 4, 2020

November 5, 2020
Prayers for the Kim Family: Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi today called for prayers for the family of Rev. Hae-Jong Kim, who served as Bishop in the Western PA Conference from 2000-2004. He passed away at age 90 on Nov. 3, just seven weeks after the death of his beloved wife of 57 years, Wha Sei Park Kim. Read more UMW Videos Posted: Videos from the Conference United Methodist Women's 2020 Annual Meeting -- Self Care, Soul Care and Caring for Others -- are posted on the Conference website in a UMW... read more

Partnership Offers 2020 Advent Devotional

November 4, 2020
United Methodists in Western Pennsylvania and Eastern Germany have completed their 2020 Advent Devotional in English and German, which can be downloaded and copied.  Advent begins on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. The entries for each day contain scripture and the devotional thoughts in both English and German. Several Western PA clergy and laity, as well as Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi and Pittsburgh DS Dawn Hand, are among those who contributed meditations. The partnership between the United ... read more

A Word About the Election

October 30, 2020
Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi, in an October 30th email to Western Pennsylvania United Methodist leaders, stressed the importance of voting in the 2020 General Election, but emphasized that regardless of the outcome, the people of God must make sure that God wins. That will happen, she said, if "we treat each other with love and compassion ... engage in civil discussion..and respect diverse opinions when we encounter them."  The Bishop put it this way: As disciples of Jesus Christ, United ... read more

WPAUMC enews, Oct. 28, 2020

October 29, 2020
What Time is It? Be sure you know the correct answer on Sunday morning! Daylight Saving Time ends at 2 a.m. Sunday in PA and most other states. It’s time to Fall Back! See why in Farmers’ Almanac Join in Prayer Prayers for Peace and Unity:  As we approach the 2020 General Election, congregations are organizing opportunities to pray for a just and peaceful exercise of our civic responsibilities. WPAUMC’s Rev. Chad Bogdewicz will represent Protestants at a virtual Interfaith Vigil for Faith and ... read more

Bishop, DS to Speak at Advocacy Seminar

October 26, 2020
Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi and Connellsville District Superintendent Robert Zilhaver will be among the speakers during the Associates in Advocacy online seminar scheduled for November 9, 2020.  Associates in Advocacy, which started in the civil rights era when clergy were often accused of violations of church law in order to stop their civil rights work, includes clergy and laity working in a variety of areas assisting those caught in unfamiliar disciplinary processes. In one workshop ... read more

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