See All the People: You can still register for one of this weekend’s #SeeAllthePeople events with Jorge Acevedo. Choose from Friday, Sept. 28 at Glenwood UMC in Erie or Saturday, Sept. 29 at Crossroads UMC’s North Fayette Campus. Click the session/date on the calendar at wpaumc.org/events for details or to register.
PREACH Gets Good Reviews: Thanks to Dutilh UMC for hosting WPAUMC’s PREACH event this week. Check out the photos and comments on our Facebook page.
Erie-Meadville DS Installation: Seventh Day, a bluegrass worship band made up of United Methodists from Saegertown and Hamlin Chapel UMCs, will help lead worship and praise at Erie-Meadville District Superintendent Dennis Swineford's installation service on Sunday, Sept. 30. The service is scheduled for Sunday, September 30 at 3 p.m. at Edinboro UMC.
Long Lost and Found: Do you know a woman who was looking for a little black zippered case with two epi-pens and other items in the Prayer Room at annual conference in June? The bag has been found. The owner can contact Jaye Beatty at email@example.com.
Mandated Reporter Training: Adults who have contact with children through work or a volunteer position are among those mandated to report suspected child abuse under the PA Child Protective Services Law. The Conference will host a training for mandated reporters on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at the UM Center in Cranberry Twp. Get details and register.
Moved Recently? If you have changed your address and work or volunteer in a job that requires clearances (this includes pastors, church staff and volunteers who have contact with children), you must get new clearances using your new address. Learn more about clearances at wpaumc.org/safesanctuaries.
Seminary Interns Bring Blessings: Three seminary interns served in Western PA churches over the summer. One is exploring ministry as a deacon, and two were international students. Read more.
Camping Campaign Update: The Deeply Rooted, Upward Reaching campaign to support our camping and retreat ministries is moving into high gear. Nearly all of the boards, teams and Cabinet members have donated or made a commitment to give. Pilot congregations of all sizes have completed successful campaigns. Now its time for all local churches to join in. Expect a mailing this with an invitation to send a leader to a training session. Register for a leader training session here.
If you’d like a volunteer visitor to attend a meeting of your church council to talk about the campaign, request someone here.
Update from UMCOR: In the Carolinas UMCOR and its partners are currently assessing damage and responding to immediate needs in the wake of Hurricane Florence. In the Northeast, partners are responding to a series of gas explosions in the Merrimack Valley area. The work of partners, Emergency Response Teams and disaster response coordinators are sustaining the relief efforts. You can help by continuing to pray for those affected by these disasters, and by making a donation. Learn more at umcor.org/response
UMCOR Bulletin Insert: Use UMCOR’s 5 Things You Can Do For Disaster Response bulletin insert to share how your congregations can assist in response to disasters like Hurricane Florence or Typhoon Mangkhut. It includes the Text to Give info. Text UMCOR to 91999 for a preview! Download bulletin insert
Thanks for Help in Maria Recovery! In the year since Hurricane Maria swept across Puerto Rico on Sept. 20, 2017, The United Methodist Church has been sending prayers and support. The United Methodist Committee on Relief has contributed more than $20 million, allowing the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico to establish the Renew, Rebuild and Reconstruct (Rehace) program. Bishop Hector Ortiz of the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico expresses his gratitude. See videos
Erie VIM Team Puts Faith into Action: The Erie Times-News had a feature story on 10 volunteers from four United Methodist churches who were in Puerto Rico earlier this month to help in HUrricane Maria recovery. See story on GoErie.com
Be a Global Mission Fellow: If you’re a young adult who wants to make a difference, consider serving as a Global Mission Fellow. The two-year program is open to adults age 20-30 and the application period for the 2019 cohort just opened. Learn more.
Youth Mission u: Registration is open for the July 16-21 sessions of Mission u at California U of PA. Get brochure with details and register at wpaumc.org/youthmissionu.
SPARK Registration Open! Bring your youth in 6th-12 grades for our Conference youth retreat Jan. 11-13, 2019 at the Sheraton Station Square. Early bird registration runs until Nov. 2. Learn more at wpaumc.org/spark
Side by Side: Christian Associates of SWPA is joining with the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh and the Muslim Women's Association of Pittsburgh to co-sponsor Side by Side, a program for Christian, Jewish, and Muslim youth in grades 8-10. Meeting for one evening each month from November-May, participants will engage in dialogue, art, games, and service to learn about each others' faith traditions and make new friends. To apply, please fill out this form.
GYP Unity Statement: United Methodist youth and young adults attending the Global Young People’s Convocation adopted a statement of unity declaring their love of the church, “the unity it offers and how it welcomes all people, regardless of who they are and what they do in life.” The convocation’s voting delegates also indicated which of the Commission on Way Forward plans they support. Delegates had the option of selecting more than one plan. Read press release
Read unity statement
Africa Bishops Support Unity: As the special session of the UMC General Conference approaches, Bishops in Africa issued a statement Monday saying they have resolved “not to support any proposed legislation that calls for splitting The United Methodist Church over the issue of human sexuality. Read more.
Clergy Age Trends: Elders under age 35 continue to be rare in The United Methodist Church. And the number of young women elders has dropped for the past three years. Those are two findings of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership's 2018 clergy age trends study of the denomination. Read UMNS story
Fishing with a Large Net: Francis Asbury wrote often about preaching at camp meetings, with many conversions. He saw these revivals as vital to evangelistic ministry and many United Methodists today still treasure this tradition. Read UMC.org feature on why camp meetings matter
Methodists in Cambodia: The Methodist Church of Cambodia officially came into being in early September, the result of years of collaboration among five mission agencies, their missionaries and the work of indigenous leaders. Read story
We Need Clean Air! United Methodist Women representatives, along with other faith leaders and clergy, delivered a letter to Ford on Wednesday, asking the car company to not abandon its Clean Car Standards. UMW members and friends have tirelessly signed petitions, submitted public comments and participated in the EPA’s public hearings. Get details.
Dismantling Racism Seminar: Roxbury St. Paul’s UMC in Johnstown will host a seminar on Saturday, October 13 with Rev. Sylvia King, a local city council member and pastor; a Racism 101 presentation by Rev. Diane Glave, WPAUMC coordinator of Diversity Development; and an Implicit Bias training led by members of the WPAUMC Anti-Racism Team. Get flyer with details.
White Fragility: Are you put off by the idea that because you’re white you are privileged? Like author Robin, perhaps the mainstream definition of a racist set you up beautifully “to not only deny any impact of racial socialization, but also to receive any suggestion of racially problematic behavior as a personal blow.” This might help explain why.
ReCall Summit: Created last year as an outgrowth of the Northeastern Jurisdiction’s Call to Action on Racial Justice, the reCall Summit will be held Friday and Saturday, Oct. 26-27, at the DoubleTree Hotel by the Baltimore Washington International Airport. Get details and register
Internal Church Communications: UM Communications offers an online course for church leaders to give them the tools and techniques needed to create a holistic communication plan tailored for their congregation. The cost is $19; participants have six months from date of enrollment to complete the course, and continuing education for ministry credit is offered. Get details and register
YouTube for Churches: With its 1.5 billion users, YouTube is a valuable social media tool for churches. Learn more about how your church can use it from this recording of a UMCOM webinar.
Bullying in the Church: Stop making excuses for bullies and take a stand for the well-being of your church, writes Julia Wallace, a UMC laywoman and author, in a post that give some examples of bullying and what was done to address them. Read it
Bishop to Speak at Prayer Breakfast: Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi will speak at a Women’s Prayer Breakfast on Saturday Oct. 6 from 9 a.m. to noon at Garden City UMC in Monroeville. Some tickets are still available. Call by Oct. 1. Get details.
Faithful Response to Migrant Children: The Southwestern PA Synod ELCA is offers informational sessions for people of all faiths to learn more about migrants, especially children arriving in the USA (or already here). Speakers will be from Lutheran Immigrant and Refugee Services, and local people knowledgeable about the issue. Choose one of two 7 p.m. sessions: Wednesday, October 10, at Hope Lutheran Church, 8070 Rowan Road, Cranberry Township, PA 16066, or Thursday, October 11 at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 4503 Old William Penn Highway, Monroeville, PA 15146.
Created by God! Monroeville UMC is offering, for the 18th year, Created by God, a church-based learning experience on human sexuality for 5th, 6th and 7th graders and their parents. It is offered to all families in the area, whatever their faith, and will run from November 8-11. Enrollment is limited to 30 youth. Get details
Messiah Sing-Along Concert: Tickets are available now for this popular annual event at historic Calvary UMC on Pittsburgh’s North Side. The concert will be offered twice: on Saturday, Dec. 1 and Sunday, Dec. 9. Both performances are at 4 p.m. Note: You are not required to sing along! Get poster with details.