WPAUMC enews --Oct. 23, 2019



Methodist Tower Mural: Methodist Towers, Inc., a non-profit corporation founded by the First United Methodist Church in downtown Erie, is the canvas for a spectacular 8-story-tall mural portraying resident Rudy Daniels, 71. The work by renowned Miami-based street artist Evoca2 (Elio Mercado) was completed recently. Read more and see photos

Health Insurance Rates: The 2020 cost of health insurance for clergy appointed full-time to the local church will be $1413.00 per month or $16,956.00. That’s a 2 percent increase over the current year. The rate includes vision, medical and dental care. Details at wpaumc.org/benefits

Hurdle Speaker for UMM: The Conference United Methodist Men and Butler First UMC are sponsoring an All-In Men’s event with former Pittsburgh Pirate Manager Clint Hurdle from 6-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, November 7 at the Crossfire Campus of Butler First, at the corner of Route 8 north and Mercer Road. It’s open to all men and boys. The $20 cost includes dinner and the program. Make reservations at teamcsi.org. 

Active Shooter Preparedness Training: On Saturday, November 9, from 9 a.m. - noon, Ingomar Church and the Pittsburgh District are offering Active Shooter Training in the sanctuary of Ingomar Church. Jason Venturella, a Franklin Park police officer with an extensive military security background, will present information on Active Shooter preparedness and response. Learn more and register 

Synagogue To Be Symbol Against Hate: Sunday, October 27 marks one year since 11 people were shot to death at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. Jewish community leaders last Friday announced their intention to re-envision the space. The building will be renovated into a multi-use space for worship, a memorial, exhibits, educational and social activities. Leaders want the building to be seen as a symbol against hate. Learn more

Leadership Development

Dismantling Racism Lay Servant Class: The Pittsburgh District Lay Servant Ministry Team offers a class open to anyone who wants to learn more about Dismantling Racism and leave thinking they can do something about it. The class is scheduled for Friday evening, Nov. 1 and Saturday, Nov. 2 at Roots of Faith in Sharpsburg. Get flyer with details.
To register, use the link at wpaumc.org/pittsburgh

Year-End Giving Webinar: The UM Foundation of Western PA will present a free webinar "Top Ten Tips for Year-End Giving" on November 6, 2019 from 10 to 11 a.m. The webinar will offer practical skills for pastors and church leaders to help other followers of Jesus make year-end gifts. Register

Church Executive Webinar: In Horizon’s free webinar at 1 p.m., Oct. 31, Joe Park and Tony Morgan will dive into three areas of local church ministry that leaders can't afford to get wrong: Strategy, Funding and Communications. Learn more


Mission Trips to Zimbabwe: The Nyadire Connection, a group which partners with the Nyadire UM Mission Centre in Zimbabwe, has scheduled informational meetings for anyone interested in joining a mission team. Various skills are needed, including teaching, building projects, computer skills, working with the hearing-Impaired, medical, video and audio recording, and tackling energy and water issues. Two informational meetings are scheduled: Tuesday, Nov. 5 from 7-8:15 p.m., at St. Paul’s UMC in Allison Park, and Thursday, November 7 from 7-8:15, at Christ UMC in Bethel Park.  Questions? Contact Mary Beth Zollars at mbzollars@aol.com or 412-498-2281.

Give Love, Joy, Hope! UMC Global Ministries invites you to give love, joy, hope and peace through the agency’s year-end giving campaign. Between November 1 and December 31, they’ll share stories of the ways gifts to Global Ministries and UMCOR transform the lives of people around the world. Learn more

Become a Champion! In addition to making a gift, you’re also encouraged to become a champion for your favorite Global Ministries mission project through peer-to-peer fundraising program. Learn how to create a cause 

UMC/Religion News

Surprise Bequest: When a member of Immanuel United Methodist Church in Ripon, WI told his pastor how he planned to divide his estate, the pastor thought it was a joke. It wasn’t. Read more

U.S. Religious Landscape Changing: Christians Still Majority in U.S. Christians are still in the majority in the United States, but a shrinking one. Pew Research Center telephone surveys in 2018 and 2019 found 65% of U.S. adults identify as Christian, down from 77% a decade ago. Meanwhile, the percentage of the religiously unaffiliated continues to rise. Learn more

Clergyman Charged with Misconduct: Four women have brought formal accusations of sexual misconduct and abuse against a United Methodist clergyman who is prominent in interfaith work. The West Ohio Conference confirmed a church trial is likely. Read story

Why Women Clergy? The many Christian denominations that ordain women as clergy do so for sound biblical, historical, and theological reasons — even though there are traditions that still prohibit the ordination of women, according to the Rev. Dr. Steve Harper.  His work was shared by the Lewis Center for Church Leadership. Read it.

#SayHerName Faith Talk: join United Methodist Women tomorrow, 10/24, at 6pm EST for a webinar panel discussion about #SayHerName and what Christian women can do in the pursuit of justice. Get details

Pastor Appreciation: Although the “semi-official” month will soon be over, there’s never a bad time to show appreciation to a pastor. See what the pastor might wish you knew about Pastor Appreciation month. 

General Conference

GC2020 Logo Unveiled: The Commission on the General Conference has unveiled the logo for the 2020 General Conference. It accompanies the theme "…and know that I am God," based on Psalm 46:10. The denomination's top lawmaking body will meet May 5-15. Read press release and see logo 
Read more about the GC2020 theme 

GC2020 Volunteers: Volunteers are needed for a variety of roles during the 2020 General Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota from May 5-15, 2020. At this time, volunteers are needed for the following positions: recorders, channel “B” identifiers and verbatim transcribers/copy editors. The deadline to apply is Nov. 21. Get details

Revised Social Principles: Legislation for the revised UMC Social Principles has been submitted to the 2020 General Conference and is online in seven languages for review and discussion. A writing team of more than 50 church members — from the central conferences in the Philippines, Congo, West Africa, Central and Southern Europe, Northern Europe and Eurasia and the five U.S. jurisdictions — worked on the document. Read press release

Planning Ahead

UM Student Sunday: United Methodist Student Day Sunday celebration is November 24 this year. UMCGiving has resources -- sermon starters, talking points, bulletin inserts, and videos-- to help educate and encourage your congregation to support this churchwide special Sunday with offering. Get resources

Advent Devotional: Reclaim the spiritual dimensions of Advent with Written in the Stars, a free resource from the Society of St. Andrew, which fights hunger through gleaning, food rescue and distribution. Lean more at endhunger.org/advent.