WPAUMC enews - September 28, 2022



Bishop Addresses Disinformation: As churches discern whether to disaffiliate from the United Methodist Church, disinformation has spread about who we are as United Methodists. Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi addresses some of that disinformation. Watch video

Prayers for Florida: Join us in prayer as Hurricane Ian makes landfall in Florida. This hurricane has potential to be catastrophic and reports show mass flooding and property damage. You can support those affected by this and other disasters by donating to UMCOR or helping to replenish cleaning buckets for the Mission Barn. 

Clergy Mandatory Training: All clergy who are currently serving in an appointment are required to participate in a 2-hour online training entitled Connecting Neighbors: A ‘Disaster Ready Congregations’ Curriculum of the United Methodist Church. The online Zoom training will be conducted by consultants from United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). There are only three more training dates available, so register today

SPARK: Registration for the annual conference youth event is now open! SPARK 2023 will be held January 27-29 at the Sheraton Station Square in Pittsburgh. Learn more and register groups before November 4th for the early bird price. 

UM News

Bishops Push Back Against Recruitment Tactics: As churches weigh disaffiliation, bishops are trying to set the record straight on misinformation being spread about The United Methodist Church’s future. They also are working toward building a church where traditionalists, centrists and progressives will all feel they belong. Meanwhile, a recent church court decision could have an impact on disaffiliation lawsuits in civil court. Read report from Heather Hahn, UM News Service.

Bishops Ask for Donations: The Council of Bishops urges churchgoers not to forget the needs in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Fiona's devastation. The Council of Bishops is appealing for donations for Puerto Rico after receiving a letter from the Methodist Church in Puerto Rico. Council of Bishops President Thomas J. Bickerton urged all Methodists to support the recovery efforts, which are being done in conjunction with the United Methodist Committee on Relief. Read press release.

The Recap: Photos of mission work done by WPAUMC youth was recently featured in “The Recap,” a brand new short video news segment produced by United Methodist Communications. These news segments help United Methodists have a better understanding of what is going on in the denomination, find inspiration in stories of ministry and learn how the denomination is transforming the world. Watch the first episode


UM News Shares Commentary on Abortion: United Methodist News Service published two opinion pieces focusing on the issue of abortion in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling. The first piece was written by Western PA Conference member Holly Fugate, who writes that the Dobbs vs. Jackson decision should be supported by United Methodists based on a careful reading of the United Methodist Social Principles. Read Fugate's commentary. Rev. Duane Anders takes an opposing viewpoint and speaks out against the Dobbs vs. Jackson ruling. Read Ander's commentary. However, both Fugate and Anders agree that more needs to be done to support mothers and children. 

A Plan to Re-church Rural America: Many of the our WPA churches are in rural communications. In his article, The Rev. Mel West acknowledges that something significant must happen to reverse United Methodist declines in the U.S. The retired pastor traces the historical trajectory of the denomination and outlines a “plan to re-church rural America.” Read more


Laity Sunday Observed on October 16: Laity Sunday celebrates the ministry of all Christians to love God and neighbor. As we (the people) grow in grace to become “all love” disciples in community, we gather with others and connect all to God’s love in Jesus Christ. Download a worship planning guide and graphics for social media. 

Help for Welcoming a Woman Pastor: The United Methodist Commission on the Status and Role of Women is marking its 50th anniversary with the release of the Welcoming a Woman Pastor online resource. The self-paced learning module guides local churches through the orientation process when introducing a female pastor appointed to serve their congregations. Read more or access resource.

Upcoming Events

UWF Annual Meeting: The conference United Women in Faith annual meeting is scheduled for October 22 and will be held both in person and virtual. This event will be held from 9:30 am until 3:00 pm. All are invited to attend. See flyer

Justice, Healing for Native Children: From Sept. 30 through Oct. 6, United Methodists are invited to observe a special time of prayer and action in remembrance of the atrocities against Native American children in boarding schools. "Justice for Our Children: Healing for Our Communities" is the theme of this year's observance. United Women in Faith is offering a two-hour virtual event on Oct. 6 that will include prayer, an educational program and reflection in small groups about the abuses suffered by Native American children in the schools. Register for the virtual event.