WPAUMC enews, July 22, 2020



Church Reopening Tips: On Wednesday, Rev. Alyce Weaver Dunn, our Director of Connectional Ministries, had a chance to sit in on a Zoom conversation about Church Reopening with a nationally known expert from Harvard’s School of Public Health. In a blog post, she shares some of the takeaways from the conversation with Dr. Joseph Allen. See what they are.

Clergy Pre-Retirement Seminar: If it can be done safely, the biennial Clergy Pre-Retirement Seminar will be held in person on Oct. 21-22 at the Doubletree by Hilton (formerly a Sheraton) near the Cranberry exit of I-79 North. The event is open to clergy and spouses, whether planning to retire in the next year or two -- or later. Get details.

Classifieds: Asbury UMC is Erie is seeking a full-time children and youth ministry leader. Learn more and see other job postings at wpaumc.org/classifieds.

Boomerang Giving: An Indiana, PA couple’s generous spirit lives on and continues to bless residents of the Ruth M. Smith Center in Sheffield, PA through a legacy gift. Learn more. 

Dismantling Poverty

Help End Homelessness: Support the Erie United Methodist Alliance ministries through the annual shoe drive this summer or a golf outing on Monday, August 3.  Learn more


Reflect on Generosity: Invite a spirit of giving into your church with the Selah Generosity Pastor and Leaders’ Kit. The collection of resources will help you find ways to “press pause” and reflect on God’s presence and our denominational connection. Download the Bible study guide, offering talk, sermon starter and prayers from Resource UMC here.

Need Help with Online Ministry? UM Communications has seen demand for online church leader training double amid COVID-19 and they’ve stepped up to launch a new set of courses to assist leaders with creating and maintaining engaging online worship experiences in a socially distanced world. Check out what’s offered.

You Really ARE Doing an Amazing Job! BUT if you're shocked by how many people are “attending” your worship service on Facebook Live, be aware that Facebook tends to inflate numbers. They count anyone who scrolls by your post. You have to drill down a bit to see whether the passers-by stick around. And for how long. Here’s how. 

UMM Prayers: United Methodist Men has published a free collection of prayers, "United Methodist Men Pray for Peace With Justice." The Southeastern Jurisdiction UMM also will host a virtual day of prayer 1-4 p.m. Eastern time July 25.
Download prayer book
Watch prayer service

UMC News

Triple Whammy for Pastors: Pastors are working longer hours dealing with the coronavirus, economic hard times and racial issues. Four of them talked to UM News about the pressures of their jobs and the progress they are making. Read story

Pandemic Challenges Music Ministers, Choirs: “None of us thought the thing we love to do would become a lethal activity,” says the Rev. Leigh Anne Taylor, president of the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts. COVID-19 has done a number on choir singing, causing music ministers to scramble to keep music going and keep sidelined choir members engaged. Read story

UMC Film Wins Telly Award: A documentary about a United Methodist pastor working to help a neighborhood in Germany won a prestigious award and is making the film festival circuit. "On The Brühl," directed by Steve Horswill-Johnston of Discipleship Ministries, won a Telly Award.
Read press release
Watch documentary

Paycheck Protection Helps UMC: Despite its flaws, the Paycheck Protection Program supplied a financial lifeline to hundreds of United Methodist ministries in the early days of the pandemic. Among them were local churches, agencies and organizations, including some in Western PA. See how they helped.

Dismantling Racism

Join Faith Talks Thursday, July 23 at 6 p.m. EDT for a discussion on the United Methodist Church’s Dismantling Racism: Pressing On to Freedom initiative. Panelists will include Bishop Cynthia Harvey, Erin M. Hawkins of General Commission on Religion and Race, Rev. Dr. Susan Henry-Crowe of the General Board of Church and Society, and UMWs own CEO Harriett J. Olson and Transformation Officer Sally Vonner. To receive a zoom link to join, register in advance for this webinar

Faith Can Save a Nation: The Revs. John Lewis and Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian were models of authentic religion who proved that people of faith can change a nation, said the Rev. James Lawson, a United Methodist pastor who worked side-by-side with both men in the early days of the civil rights movement. Lewis and Vivian both died on July 17. Read more

WPA Anti-Racism Team Challenge: The Conference Anti-Racism Team has issued a statement and a challenge to Western PA United Methodists. It suggests action steps to take in our churches and communities.  Read it 

Pledge to Act Against Racism:There’s only about a week remaining to sign the “Now, Action Pledge” and commit to a year-long journey toward dismantling racism in our churches, Conference and communities. More than 400 people have already registered to receive a monthly email beginning in August with suggested education and action steps. Each person will decide what to complete.There will be no monitoring. Get details and register

Upcoming Events

Leadership Institute: Registration is now open for Leadership Institute 2020, offered online September 24-25 by The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection.  Relevant, actionable leadership development content will be live-streamed during the event and registrants will get on-demand bonus material spanning across all ministry areas. Individual tickets are $49 through September 1.Get details at li.cor.org/