WPAUMC enews --August 14, 2019


Dutilh Preschoolers Raise Money for Orphans in Zimbabwe: When a group of preschoolers at Dutilh United Methodist Church learned of the long distance that orphans at the Nyadire Mission’s Home of Hope were traveling to school, they agreed to hop into action. In a display of unconditional love for children they had never met, the 3- and 4-year-olds participated in a hop-a-thon titled “Hop for Hope.” They raised enough money to buy seven bicycles, worth $175 each, for the orphaned children. Read the full story.

Zimbabwe Lay Leader Dies at 63: United Methodists all over the world mourn the loss of Betty Spiwe Katiyo, a United Methodist laywoman from Zimbabwe who held many leadership positions throughout the global church. Katiyo died suddenly Aug. 10 after leaving the Commission on General Conference meeting in Lexington, Kentucky. Read more.

Deacons: Showing Up and Getting Things Done:  Rev. Janet Lord, a Deacon serving as the Coordinator of Ministerial Services for our conference, published an article about the role of deacons in ministry and their unique gifts. Read the article.

Wesley England Tour: A limited number of spaces are available for individuals to join the March 30-April 7, 2020 tour of John Wesley’s England with Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi and members of the 2020 ordination class. Get brochure.

Social Justice

New Hymns for Justice Workshop: Salem UMC & United Methodist Church Union are cosponsoring the workshop “Singing with the Bible in One Hand and the Newspaper in the Other: New Hymns for Justice” with Carolyn Winfrey Gillette. This workshop will be held September 30, 2019 from 9:30-4:00 p.m. at Salem UMC in Wexford, PA. Carolyn is an ordained minister whose hymns for justice have been sung by congregations in both the US and abroad. More information and registration.

A Christian Calling: Save Water, Save Lives: During the summer months, many United Methodists in the United States and elsewhere spend time near water. We camp by a lake, vacation at the beach, or lounge by a pool. Water is so readily accessible we can take it for granted. For much of the world, however, the search for clean, safe water is an everyday chore that never takes a holiday. While water access issues can seem overwhelming, there are easy steps we can take to become better stewards of God’s precious gift of water. Read more.

Tools for Dealing with Racism: The General Commission on Religion and Race compiled a collection of resources for United Methodists to address the influence of white supremacist rhetoric, racist terrorism and extremist hate speech. Access this resource.  

General Conference News

Unauthorized Voting: General Conference organizers have determined enough improper voting likely took place at the 2019 special session to nullify a key vote on how congregations can leave The United Methodist Church. Read the story.

New Registration and Credentialing Procedures: The Commission on the General Conference voted this week to implement new registration and credentialing procedures for General Conference delegates to safeguard against the possibility of unauthorized voting. Read the story.

Biblical Comparison Shapes GC2020 Theme General Conference organizers chose "… and know that I am God" as the theme for the gathering in May. Along the way, they discovered the psalm's words and even its verse numbers vary significantly by translation. UM News story.


Interested in New Ideas and Fresh Perspectives? Register now for Navigating Change with New Ministry Models. The group begins on September 12 and will meet monthly to share ideas, support one another and grow. A mix of podcasts and readings will be used to foster discussion.  If you’re curious, check out this podcast with Kendra Casey Dean which the group will discuss in their opening session.   

Exploration 2019 will be at Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL on Friday, November 1 - Sunday, November 3, 2019.  The event is open to anyone ages 18-26 who is in any way considering a call to ministry.  The cost of the event and travel is covered by the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry.  If you or someone you know, is interested please contact Rev. J.R. Virgin at 814-244-5654.  Registration is open until Sunday, September 1, 2019. Visit website for more information.  

Bright Hope for Tomorrow: The Future of the United Methodist Church: The United Methodist Church is at a crossroads. For forty-eight years United Methodists have been in conflict over the official position of the denomination regarding God’s welcome of, and how the church will be in ministry with, LGBTQ persons. 2020 will be a defining year for the UMC as General Conference seeks to come to a resolution of the conflict. What will this mean for your church? For the future of United Methodism?

Leadership Institute 2019 is aimed at helping United Methodist leaders navigate and lead through the next steps for the denomination. Register.


Back-to-School Resources:  Students and teachers are returning to the classroom in the next few weeks. As preparations for the back-to-school process begin, our congregations will be blessing backpacks, collecting and distributing school supplies, hosting seasonal events, offering support for teachers and other staff and beginning or continuing partnerships with schools. Resource UMC has provided a guide for back-to-school preparation and ministry.

Safe Sanctuaries Training at Saegertown UMC: Saegertown U.M. Church, located at 620 Euclid Ave, Saegertown, PA 16433, will host Safe Sanctuaries Training on Saturday, October 12, 2019 from 9 am - 12 pm.  Please register for this event by the end of the day, Wednesday, October 9th.  Register by emailing saegertownumc@gmail.com or calling 814-763-6685.  

Retreat Opportunities

Olmsted A number of retreats are scheduled this fall at Olmsted Manor.

Writing WorkshopAugust 25-27, 2019   Retreating to Olmsted is a great way to replenish one’s creativity. This workshop is for anyone who feels that they have a book, poem, or play inside them that needs to be published.
Fall Women’s RetreatSept. 29 – Oct. 1, 2019    As women, we often wear many hats and over-schedule and overdo - but we are called to so much more!  Leader Michele Huey will walk us through a meaningful time of focus on the boundaries and balance of life with Christ.

For information about retreats later this fall, visit the Olmsted Manor website.
Back Porch Retreat: Ladies are invited to join the first "Back Porch Retreat" at Olmsted Manor, which offers a unique environment to Renew, Refresh, Reconnect and Recommit.  This retreat will be facilitated by Rev. Donna Doutt who will guide the ladies through the retreat and walk in the light of God's Word together.  This retreat will be held October 13 - 15, 2019 in the Olmsted Manor Home. See brochure.