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Features
Tuesday - April 15, 2014
One $10 net is one life saved in Africa

The Michigan Area, along with the global United Methodist Church, is helping climb toward the Imagine No Malaria goal of $75 million by 2015

Monday - April 14, 2014
Laypersons called to connectional leadership

This month's Burning Question opens a dialogue on the political, theological and spiritual dimensions of participation in the life of the annual conference.

Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Bridget Nelson named to Conference Staff

The Personnel Committee of the Conference Leadership Team announces the hiring of Bridget Nelson to the position of Coordinator of Youth and Young Adult Ministries. "Bridget has a deep passion for developing young people in their faith and leadership skills," says Connectional Ministries Director, Jerome (Jerry) DeVine.

Monday - April 14, 2014
Bishop Schnase offers 7 Levers of Change

Detroit Conference Lay Leader, Wayne Bank, was in Kansas City last month. He and other Lay Leaders were there to seek ways to help their conferences change for the better

News
Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Alliance files brief on clergy housing exclusion

The Church Alliance—a coalition of the chief executive officers of 38 denominational benefit programs—has filed an amicus curiae brief in the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Chicago) in the case challenging the constitutionality of the clergy housing exclusion under Section 107(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (Code).

The case is Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc., et al. v. Jacob Lew, et al. (FFRF v. Lew). The U.S. government is appealing a decision by Judge Barbara Crabb, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin (November 2013) that Code §107(2) is unconstitutional.

Code §107(2), commonly called “clergy housing exclusion” or “clergy housing allowance,” excludes from income taxation the cash compensation provided to “ministers of the gospel” toward the cost of their housing. This section of the Code essentially excludes the value of clergy-owned housing from income taxation.

It is related to Code §107(1), which excludes from a minister’s taxable income the value of church-provided housing (commonly called a parsonage, vicarage or manse). The FFRF v. Lew appeal does not involve a challenge to Code §107(1).

Judge Crabb ruled that Code §107(2) is unconstitutional because it violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Under the Establishment Clause, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion… .” Judge Crabb stayed the effect of her ruling until all appeals are exhausted. The government’s opening brief was filed on April 2, 2014.

The Church Alliance brief adds a perspective not duplicated in the government’s brief, focusing on the jurisprudential history of permitted legislative accommodations of religion. The brief argues that Code §107(2) is a constitutionally permitted accommodation of religion when viewed in the context of Code §107(1), the parsonage exclusion, and Code §119, which excludes employer-provided housing from employees’ incomes in numerous secular circumstances.

Barbara Boigegrain, chief executive of the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits of The United Methodist Church and chair of the Church Alliance, said, “The Church Alliance has a substantial interest in the validity of Code §107(2) because of the immediate impact on compensation and housing of active clergy in the benefit plans of its member denominations, and also because of the indirect impact on retirement benefits.”

The members of the Church Alliance stand with other religious organizations in their vested interest in the outcome of this litigation. The clergy housing exclusion is important to millions of active and retired clergy from the 38 Church Alliance-represented denominations, including, among others, American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A., Church of the Nazarene, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Christian Brothers Services, Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Joint Retirement Board for Conservative Judaism, Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Reform Pension Board, Southern Baptist Convention, United Church of Christ, and The United Methodist Church.

Numerous other churches, associations or conventions of churches, and other religious organizations with religious leaders eligible for the clergy housing exclusion under Code §107(2) are additional signers of the brief, supporting the filing of the Church Alliance’s brief and the positions advocated in it. They include the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Central Conference of American Rabbis, General Council on Finance and Administration of The United Methodist Church, Moravian Church, Rabbinical Assembly, Salvation Army, Union for Reform Judaism, United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, and Wisconsin Council of Churches, among others.

~photo courtesy of phanlop88/FreeDisitalPhotos.net
Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Area invited to a Day of Learning in Adrian


Are you ready for some in-depth theological exploration? Clergy and laity, spouses and friends across the Michigan Area are invited to a first-ever experience hosted by Adrian College on Wednesdy, May 14. The Continuing Education Learning Day promises be be a time of intellectual and spiritual growth.

"For a long time, Adrian College has been happy to host the Detroit Annual Conference, but we've been working hard to contribute toward the intellectual life of the church, too," says Dr. Chris Momany, Chaplain and Director of Church Relations. "We are very excited about this inaugural event."

The time together begins with gathering and refreshments in Valade Hall at 1 p.m. Then the afternoon is given to two conversations and a panel discussion, all in Knight Auditorium.

  • Who Does Paul Think He Is? 1:30 p.m. Dr. Scott Elliott will share a presentation on Clergy Identity and Self-Understanding in a Changing Culture based on the Letter to the Philippians. Using autobiographical statements by Paul, Elliott will offer an alternative story of self in Christ counter to the dominant cultural of the day.
     
  • Why Ideas Matter in the Fight against Human Trafficking. 2:45 p.m. Today's slavery will be examined by Dr. Chris Momany, who will explore how assumptions about the issue get in the way of justice. He will provide alternative views that inspire hope.
     
  • Connections of the Mind and Spirit: the Academy at the Church. 3:45 p.m. A panel discussion by Dr. Melissa Stewart, Dr. Scott Elliott, and Dr. Chris Momany.

Dinner at 5 p.m. provides a time for fellowhsip and a discussion on continuing education in the Detroit Conference facilitated by the Rev. Paul Perez. Fee is $30 per person, which includes dinner and snacks. If you are attending Annual Conference, you may include this event with your online registration. Those not attending Conference should email the Rev. Chris Momany at cmomany@adrian.edu.


 

 

Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Board addresses seminary indebtedness

VICKI BROWN
Bd. Higher Education and Ministry

Proposals to address seminarian debt include making sure seminary students understand the debt they are taking on, whether the master of divinity should be the normal path to ministry, and how more money could be raised in the denomination to alleviate seminarian debt.

The findings and proposals by the indebtedness advisory group gathered in Nashville, April 3-4, will be compiled by the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry Seminary Indebtedness Task Force. A report will be made to General Conference 2016 on how to address seminarian debt, said Allyson Collinsworth, executive director of GBHEM’s Office of Loans and Scholarships. Legislation approved at General Conference 2012 recommended that GBHEM form a task force to address financial assistance and seminary debt.

The group talked about programs in United Methodist annual conferences that have proved successful, including the Stegall Seminary Scholarship Endowment Foundation, which in January reached its goal of providing $10,000 a year in financial assistance for all UM seminary students in the Alabama-West Florida Conference. The Rev. June Jernigan, director of the Office of Ministerial Services for the conference, said the foundation was started by a retired pastor, the Rev. Dr. Karl K. Stegall.

The Rev. Wade Giffin, director the West Ohio Conference’s Office of Ministry, asked if the classic three-year master of divinity was the “normative path” to commissioning and ordination in the UMC.

Giffin said the West Ohio Conference has a college internship program that assigns students to a church at a cost of about $4,400 per student. “Sixty-seven percent of our college interns are in seminary or on their way,” he said. He added that a stronger work-study path might help solve a frequent complaint of churches that classic M.Div. graduates are not prepared to lead a church.

The Rev. Meg Lassiat, GBHEM’s director of Candidacy, Mentoring, and Conference Relations, noted that deacons can be ordained after getting a master’s degree in a specialized area of ministry such as social work or music, then taking 27 hours of the Basic Graduate Theological Study.

Other paths include Course of Study and Advanced Course of Study for local pastors, and some at the meeting suggested that a Bachelor of Divinity with some additional training might be another path.

The task force reviewed research that GBHEM had collected, including annual surveys by the Association of Theological Schools, which found that support from the UMC was an important source of income for 28 percent of UM seminarians, compared to 9 percent of students from other denominations who reported denominational support.

In April 2013, GBHEM surveyed UM-related colleges and universities, seminaries, annual conferences and scholarship recipients on questions concerning educational debt. That survey found 60 percent to 75 percent of UM students entering ordained ministry had educational debt averaging between $26,513 and $34,782.

Financial literacy for candidates for ministry and for clergy already serving had solid support from members of the task force, who thought classes on financial literacy should be required by seminaries and through the annual conference. Wei Li Tan, president of the Florida United Methodist Foundation, said Florida has incorporated financial literacy into group candidacy mentoring sessions.

Task force members suggested that pastors be encouraged to take advantage of free financial planning offered through the General Board of Pensions and Health Benefits. They also proposed creation of a curriculum or tool to educate children and youth about personal finances. Other proposals included requiring that schools which receive Ministerial Education Funds mandate financial literacy training for students, and that financial literacy cover stewardship so candidates for ministry will understand how to talk to their churches about giving.

Seven UM seminaries were among 67 across the U.S. that received money from the Lilly Endowment as part of its initiative to address economic issues facing future ministers.

Brenda Hicks, director of financial aid at Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas, said financial literacy needs to start with college students since many begin borrowing money for undergraduate degrees.

Joe Arnold, research manager for the Lewis Center for Church Leadership at Wesley Theological Seminary, said that pastors who don’t feel comfortable about their own debt levels are less comfortable talking about church finances.

Annual conference staff at the meeting said they are seeing some elders surrendering their credentials in order to go work for a non-denominational church that pays more.

The Rev. Tom Choi, district superintendent in Hawaii, said there is something to be learned from non-Western cultures. “Korean and Tongan seminarians have little or no debt. Their churches are supportive of them,” Choi said.

In dreaming of how to fix the problem of seminary debt, the group figured that raising $500 million would provide funds for all UM candidates to go to seminary for free, but others raised the question of whether paying all the bills for seminarians was a good thing since it would mean candidates had little personal investment. There was also a recognition that annual conference foundations would not want to share their donor bases for a national campaign, so encouraging conference foundations to provide support for seminarians might be one approach.

Collinsworth said one proposal her office would look into is refinancing debt for seminarians at a lower rate.

Jonathan Strandjord, director for seminaries of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, said the ECLA’s studies of debt have found that pastors who are worried about debt are more passive.

“Even more important than debt is concern about debt,” Strandjord said.

Collinsworth said the GBHEM Seminary Indebtedness Task Force, made up of staff, will continue conversations on the issue with annual conferences, foundations, UM-related undergraduate institutions and seminaries.

“The hope is together we will form a holistic denominational plan that will create a culture of stewardship around the cost of seminary education with training and input from all levels of the connection that will reduce clergy debt and the fear that is often associated with that debt.”

 

Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Golden Cross Sunday is May 4

Golden Cross Sunday is observed in The United Methodist Church each year on a date determined by the annual conference. The observance focuses on the work of health and welfare ministries and institutions in the annual conference. If the annual conference so directs, an offering may be received for the support of the health and welfare ministries.

May 4 is the traditional Golden Cross Sunday, but you are welcome to celebrate Golden Cross on the Sunday of your choice.

In the Detroit Conference Golden Cross Sunday provides an offering opportunity to support special needs camperships, children who have been abused or neglected, and seniors who have outlived their savings. The organizations represented are United Methodist Outdoor and Retreat Ministries, Methodist Children’s Home Society, and United Methodist Retirement Communities.

Congregations in the Detroit Conference can help promote Golden Cross Sunday by distributing offering envelopes, placing an insert in the bulletin, and/or including information in the monthly newsletter.

To download bulletin inserts or make a Golden Cross donation online, please click here. To request Golden Cross offering envelopes, please contact Amy Craig, UMRC Foundation Executive Assistant, at 734-433-1000734-433-1000 ext. 7502 or by e-mail at acraig@umrc.com.

For more information, please contact:

  • Lisa French, United Methodist Retirement Communities (UMRC) Foundation, 734-433-1000734-433-1000 ext. 7426, lfrench@umrc.com.
  • Kelly Kirkpatrick, Methodist Children’s Home Society, 313-531-9464313-531-9464, kkirk@mchsmi.org
  • Jim Parkhurst, United Methodist Outdoor & Retreat Ministries, 800-334-0544800-334-0544 ext. 337, jparkhurst@detroitconference.org.

In the West Michigan Conference the Golden Cross Sunday Offering supports the Methodist Children's Home Society, Clark Retirement Community and Bronson Methodist Hospital.

  • The Children's Home Society provides for children who are emotionally troubled and homeless. Some are abused, others deserted, but all are having difficulty coping. Although adoption is now a secondary program, it is still a major concern. The Society believes we have no throw-away children and it serve as a redemptive arm of the Church.
     
  • Clark Retirement Community seeks to provide quality care in a Christian atrmosphere of love and concern in addition to comfortable shelter, nutritious meals and on-going nursing care for those who need it. Clark seeks to meet the physical, spiritual and psychosocial needs of residents.
     
  • Bronson Methodist Hospital is a major regional center seeking to provide quality care for sick and injured persons. Concern for the whole person is expressed not only through physical care, but also mental, spiritual and social welfare of people. The pastoral care department is concerned with an in-house chaplaincy as well sa the training of clergy for this ministry.

West Michigan congregations retain half of the offering to support ministries in their church that serve persons with disabilities. Such ministries include: large print bulletins; ramps; ministries to foster residents; day care programs; latch key activities; community counseling; meals on wheels; rides to the doctor; and respite care for caregivers. Download and print a bulletin insert here.

Thank you very much for your support of these ministries and the vulnerable populations they serve

Tuesday - April 15, 2014
New staffer for youth and young adults named

The Detroit Conference Leadership Team Personnel Committee announces their choice for the staff position of Coordinator of Youth and Young Adult Ministries.

After a thorough interview of candidates they welcome Bridget Nelson to this position.

Bridget has a Bachelor's and Master's Degree in Social Work. She has extensive work experience in training, teaching and client interaction. She brings 11 years of youth ministry planning and oversight in two different United Methodist churches in the Detroit Conference.

Bridget is a member of Redford Aldersgate UMC, where her husband, the Rev. Jeff Nelson, is the pastor. She has also been serving for several months as the new Adult Co-Coordinator of the Detroit Conference Council on Youth Ministries as they seek to rebuild their membership and focus.

Rev. Dr. Jerome (Jerry) DeVine, Director of Connectional Ministries, says, "Bridget has a deep passion for developing young people in their faith and leadership skills. She exhibited a clear understanding expectations, with specific ideas on how to implement the vision within the next year, especially for developing adult workers with youth in our local churches." He also praises her "solid Wesleyan understanding of grace and how it fits into this arena of ministry."

Bridget  is excited to begin this ministry. "I am grateful for the opportunity to be part of the Detroit Annual Conference staff. I hope to meet many of the people working with youth and young adults around our conference, whether they are full time, part time or volunteers, whether they are new or been at this awhile."  She shares a  hope to create "a network of support, encouragement and learning." She intends to help make the Conference more aware of who is doing this important work with youth and young adults and what support they need."

Please keep this ministry in prayer.

 

Tuesday - April 15, 2014
Summer Camp ministry develops young leaders

 


Camp Kinawind and Judson Collins Center seek capable, diverse young adults to spend a summer in ministry as camp staff. Counselor and support positions are both available. Tangible benefits include a salary as well as room and board. Intangibles include new friendships that last a lifetime, a chance to learn and develop leadership and ministry skills, and the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of many young people this summer.
 
Clergy and other church leaders are asked to help us make contact with young adults who show great leadership potential and who may be exploring a call to ministry. A summer on camp staff gives them nearly two weeks of training, and a summer of hands-on ministry experience while in a mentored relationship with one of our camp directors.

For more information:

 Information and applications are also available at www.umccamps.org

 

Events
Monday - April 21, 2014
Appointive Cabinet
Monday - April 21, 2014
Michigan Area Haiti Task Force
Tuesday - April 22, 2014
BWUMFS Board Meeting

Blue Water United Methodist Free Store (BWUMFS) Board Meeting

 

Wednesday - April 23, 2014
Wednesday Night Dinner & Program
Join us for our weekly catered meal on Wednesday nights at 5:30 p.m.,
Cost is $7 for ages 12 & up
$3.50 for ages 5-11
Free for under age 5

Immediately following dinner at 6:15 p.m. you are invited to stay for our program. The topics vary weekly
Please RSVP for dinner at 989-871-3489 NO need to RSVP for the program
Thursday - April 24, 2014
Protection Policy Training
Thursday - April 24, 2014
UMW Assembly 2014

April 24-27 (Friday-Sunday)

UMW Assembly 2014

Kentucky International Convention Center

221 S 4th Street

Louisville, KY  40202

Blogs
Monday - April 14, 2014
Calling all laypersons to leadership

I received an interesting Burning Question recently which was not about appointments or the Bishop. It was about Districts and Superintendents and the Annual Conference, and it came from an old friend and clergy person. It read: “What are the Conference and Disciplinary guidelines for election of District Lay Members to Annual Conference?”

To properly answer that question, we must refer to both the 2012 Book of Discipline and the Rules of Order for the two Annual Conferences as listed in their most recent Conference Journals. The Disciplinary Paragraph is ¶602. The Detroit Journal Rule is IIA. Equalization of lay and clergy members beginning on page 549. The West Michigan Journal Rule is 8C. Equalization of lay and clergy members beginning on page 253. You are welcome and encouraged to check my answers by doing your own research, but I will try to give a summary here which will work for both Annual Conference sessions.

Lay members of an Annual Conference are chosen in several categories each with its own criteria. First, there is one lay member for each charge, unless the charge has more than one appointed clergy person, who is elected by the membership of the charge.

Secondly, there is a whole list of lay persons who, by virtue of their office or responsibility within the Annual Conference, are given voice and vote (membership) in the Conference Session. These include, but are not limited to, Conference Presidents of the United Methodist Women and the United Methodist Men, the conference lay leader(s), district lay leaders, the presidents (or equivalent) of the conference young adult organization, the conference youth organization, and a representative youth and young adult from each district.

It is this list which has the most variation between the two conferences. Each conference has developed its own criteria for naming lay representation beyond those elected by the local church. Finally, there is provision for the possible inclusion of lay persons if the total number in the conference’s first and second categories are less than the number of active and retired clergy members. These names come from the district conference or the district council on ministries following a nominations process. In summary, then, lay members are either members of conference by virtue of their election by their local church, their office or responsibility in the Annual Conference, or their nomination and election by the district body given that authority by the Conference Rules of Order.

The person who asked the question added an observation that some churches seem to have more representation at Annual Conference than others and they wondered if there should be more equal distribution of participation from local churches across the district. The implied comment seemed to be that there were too many voices from one particular perspective and it caused those who saw things from a different point of view to disrespect the Annual Conference leadership.

There are several responses that I might give to my colleague’s comment. I would like to think that those who are elected by their local churches were, for the most part, representative of the congregation. Even as I write that, however, I know that many of our congregations have very different perspectives on a variety of issues among their members and it would be impossible for one person to represent all points of view when it came to casting their vote on the floor of the conference session. But I believe that, taken together, the lay members elected by local churches represent the wide variety of opinions pretty well.

As to those in the second category, I have found that many of those people come from churches with a long history of participation in the life of the conference where individuals are encouraged by their fellow members and their clergy to volunteer their time or say yes when approached by the Conference Committee on Nominations. Those churches do not always represent every theological or political perspective equally, but there are persons from many different backgrounds in conference leadership at the moment. I know that the good people from the Nominations Committee try their best to find people from all the districts so as to achieve equal district representation, but that is not always possible, and some districts have far less representation on the boards and agencies of the conference than others. This is more often because of geography than theological or political persuasion. People who live at great distances from the Conference offices are less likely to participate in the life of the Conference.

When it comes to the third category, the District Lay Members, both Annual Conference Rules of Order contain directives which say, in essence, that consideration should be given for the election of members which takes into account the full diversity of the conference. This diversity could include theological diversity, socio-economic diversity, age and gender diversity, as well as others. But I also know, from personal experience, that District Nominating Committees do not always know all the people of the district, and so they tend to ask those whose names they know or have been given – usually by the pastors of the district. And not every pastor provide names to the Annual Conference or District Nominating Committees. Again, my own experience would suggest that some churches and some pastors go out of their way to avoid any participation in the life of the Annual Conference, and those churches are then the least represented in the leadership on either the Annual Conference or district level.

Bottom line: If you are a lay person in the Michigan Area, step up, volunteer your time and energy as a leader or member of a district or conference committee, board or agency. Ask your pastor or Lay Member to Annual Conference to share your name with Nominations. We are always looking for persons to help us Make Disciples for Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World.

Monday - March 17, 2014
The eyes and the ears of appointment-making


This is the second part of my answer to a whole series of Burning Questions which were prompted by this being the season of appointment-making and appointment-receiving for United Methodist clergy in the Michigan Area.

“Why should I move? I like it where I am!” And “Who decides when our pastor is to leave or where they are to go? How much is the Bishop involved in this process?” are both examples of questions we have received in our office this Spring. And this: “What does it mean when someone asks for re-consideration of an appointment?”

Initially, appointments or clergy assignments to mission fields were made by John Wesley.

Clergy would gather (in England) to report back on how their work was going – how many disciples had been added to the work and how many new preaching stations or Sunday Schools had been started – and then Brother Wesley would, after giving careful thought to the needs of each of the areas of work (he called them “fields of labor”) and the gifts of each of the preachers who had reported to be sent out, assign/appoint or send each preacher to the area which was, in the opinion of Mr. Wesley, the best match between needs and gifts. That is still a good summary of what our appointment process is like today.

Bishops and their district superintendents – the Bishop’s eyes and ears in the several districts with the best knowledge of the churches and the pastors - gather to consider the needs of the several congregations and the gifts of the available clergy.

Then, after prayer and discernment which can take several hours or even several days, the Bishop appoints or sends clergy to minister to congregations by leading them in the work of disciple-making and transformation. In exchange for the assurance of an appointment, clergy covenant together to offer themselves to go where they are sent in the belief that they will be sent where their unique gifts are the best available match for the needs of the congregation and community.

Bishop Deb is directly involved in each appointment, but she could not begin to know all the churches and pastors of the Michigan Area as well as the twelve District Superintendents. Appointment-making is a consultative process of discernment, including consultation with the clergy during their one-on-one with the Superintendent and consultation with the local church both in the annual meeting with the Superintendent and the submission of annual reports which attempt to give an accurate picture of the current state of the congregation. The Superintendents all share what they know and what they have observed with one another and with the Bishop. However, in the end, it is still the Bishop who makes each appointment and is accountable for the sending.

The “why” question is an important part of any answer to either of the questions posed above. The answer of why one should accept any appointment, aside from the universal covenant commitment to go where sent, is as varied as each pastor and each appointment. But I can give a general response which has proven accurate for each of the appointment decisions I have been an active participant in, either as pastor or superintendent. Even when the then current appointment was comfortable, fruitful and reasonable free from controversy, and neither the pastor or the congregation had requested a change, the several concerned participants, given time to distance themselves from the trauma of unexpected change which was initiated by the Bishop or Cabinet, could look back and name the “why” of the appointment change.

Case in point: a pastor with God-given gifts in conflict resolution and congregational healing was moved after only a few years from one formerly wounded congregation to another currently troubled congregation. The pastor had not requested the move. The SPRC members had not requested the move. They were just getting healthy and were looking forward to fruitful ministry together. But two things happened which helped everyone see the “why” of the change: first, the pastoral gifts were clearly needed in the new appointment, and second, the follow pastor had even better gifts for leading healthy congregations to find their mission and ministry focus. The abiding hope of Bishop and Superintendents in every conference is that this will be the outcome of all episcopally-initiated appointment changes.

Even as I write these words, however, I am aware of situations where there are missional reasons for discerned changes to be reconsidered. Missional reasons are things which enhance the disciple-making and world-transforming mission of the church. There are times when missional things are taking place in a congregation which are unknown to the Superintendent, information which, when added to the other information about the pastor and the current appointment might lead to a different conclusion. When a pastor is approached about a change of appointment and it seems clear to them that the Bishop and/or the Superintendent might not have all the facts, then the pastor is obligated to share the missional reasons why the Bishop should reconsider her previous discernment. It may not change the Bishop’s decision, but it will assure everyone that all the information has been considered. I would like to say that each pastor should try to keep their Superintendent informed about what is happening missionally in their congregation at all times, not just during appointment season. But I also know that sometimes things happen so quickly that you don’t have time to share it with your Superintendent.

It should be noted here that this is not the same request for reconsideration as one which is based on the tethers mentioned in my last blog post. A pastor’s tethers should be shared with the Superintendent at the time of the annual one-on-one and not after one has received a new appointment. When known before the appointment is discerned, all tethers will be given every consideration and honored if at all possible. But when they come at the last minute as a surprise for the Bishop and Superintendent, they are often not able to be given the same place in the discernment process. As an example: if, as a pastor, I have determined that my tether to my family’s need to stay in one place is taking precedence at this time in my life, I need to inform my superintendent. He or she will discuss my tether and appointment availability and give me the opportunity to sign a limited itinerancy form which will release the bishop and cabinet from the need to treat my covenant availability for any full-time appointment as their top priority. This, in turn, may mean that I will receive an appointment which is less-than-full-time, which does not have the same compensation, or which does not completely match my ministry gifts so that I can remain within the bounds of my tether if at all possible. It will not necessarily mean that I may stay in my current appointment as long as my tether is in place.

So, in summary, as a pastor I need to be sure that my superintendent knows about my gifts for ministry and my goals and dreams. As a member of a congregation’s Staff Parish Relations Committee, I need to be sure that I have joined with other members of the committee in an honest appraisal of our congregation’s pastoral needs as well as the state of our church which we have shared with our District Superintendent. And all of us, clergy and laity, need to remember that the itinerant system is, at its heart, intended for the fulfillment of the church’s mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

I hope these answers to your Burning Questions will help you understand some of the factors which enter into the appointment-making process at this time of year.

Wednesday - February 26, 2014
Lenten Revelations

I can hardly believe it, but saw my first robins last week! I hadn't even begun to think about them yet, but driving on South Hannah Street on the campus of Albion College, I looked out my car window - and there they were! In the midst of snow and sleet and howling wind, a group of robins sat huddled together on top of a snowdrift! Six, fluffed up symbols of spring! 

Now - even though meteorologists say we are only about three weeks away from the official start of Spring, it certainly doesn’t feel or look like it! I think we can all agree … it has been a long, cold, snowy winter.

And - even though I'm always disappointed in the month of March (because no, it's not spring, yet!) ... And - even though I know we'll still see more snow ... Even with all these things in mind - I know spring is near. 

Faith is a strange thing:

It sometimes stands in direct opposition to what seems realistic.

It shouts "YES!" in the face of a host of "NOs!".

It believes in goodness when all around is wickedness.

It sings of life in the midst of death. 

So, yes, even in the midst of what still feels like the depths of winter, I believe Spring is about to be revealed. I believe in spring. Just as I believe in new life, new hope, new dreams.

That's what faith is all about.

Let me share with you one of my favorite scripture passages: Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. I John 3:2a

One of the reasons I like this passage so well is that I find it incredibly hopeful. Our lives are journeys - of faith, of wisdom, of experience. And along that journey we are constantly learning - and re-learning - what it is God is calling us to do and be. It’s a journey of revelation.

We want to do the right thing, but we still make mistakes. We try, but we still fall short. We listen, but we still misunderstand.

And then we read these words: Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed.

Rather than getting discouraged, the author of I John is reminding us that we are still in the process of becoming the kind of people God wants us to be. With each new day we discover more about God, more about ourselves, and more about our relationship with God.

What we will be has not yet been revealed.

And thank goodness.

Friends, we are just beginning the Holy Season of Lent. For many, this is a time when they consider “giving up something” for Lent. For others, it is the reminder that winter is losing its grip and spring is just over the horizon. For others Lent has little meaning until Easter itself, with its Easter baskets and new clothes for church.

But this season ought to be a time of revealing – of revelation.

  A time of walking alongside Christ through the final Holy days of his life;

  A time in which we experience what he experienced – hatred, misunderstanding, betrayal, and death;

 A time that ends on a cross in Jerusalem.

It’s a difficult journey, and yet one we walk in complete faith … because it is through this journey that we find revealed all the goodness, all the hope, all the possibilities of what God sees - within us, for us, and for our world.

So yes, it may still feel like winter – both in our world and within our hearts. But we know that if we open ourselves to message revealed in this season of Lent, God can reveal the hope that lies before us – and within us, and we can move ever closer to becoming the people God calls us to be.

Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed.

With you in the work of Christ,

Bishop Deb

 

 

Tuesday - February 18, 2014
A sending church with a traveling clergy

It’s that time of year when a United Methodist pastor’s thoughts turn to Burning Questions about moving and the itinerancy of pastors in The United Methodist Church. There have been several this month and I will try to answer each one of them over the course of the next two editions of this blog.

In order to answer these questions, I would like to begin by restating the historical practice of our church: we are a “sending” church which was built, in large part, on the idea of a traveling clergy who were sent where they were needed as the church grew. Clergy in the United States moved frequently in response to a rapidly changing population and growing communities. Many of the early Methodist clergy were “circuit riders” who were, for the most part, single and able to be reassigned to new circuits several times a year. When clergy no longer wished to itinerate, they were located in a community, honorably, to be employed for the work of growing the kingdom, but not as a traveling elder of the church.

We are no longer in the context of colonial America, but our appointment system still resembles those early practices. And, unlike those denominations which seek their own pastor and “call” their clergy, our system does try to insure that most, if not all, of our pastors have employment and that our churches are not without a pastor. As a denomination we do our best to match pastoral gifts with congregational needs while adjusting to changing communities and cultural diversities. But we also know that communities and clergy are changing – sometimes faster than the system which they have covenanted to be a part of – and creating stresses for the Church which are painful for all.Against this backdrop of a slowly changing church in a rapidly evolving context come these burning questions: “I have served as a licensed local pastor for several years but I do not currently have an appointment. What am I?” “I overheard my pastor talking with her DS. What is a tether?

Traveling elders are still the “norm” for pastors in our United Methodist denomination. We still tend to think of persons who have come through a college and seminary and the ordination process of our church as pastors – persons whose gifts, evidence of God’s grace, and promise of future usefulness are affirmed by the community, and who respond to God’s call by offering themselves in leadership (¶301.2). But this has never been the whole story. In every age of our church – past and present – persons who meet all of the criteria listed above have served our church as pastors without being ordained. For a wide variety of mostly personal reasons, people who have not been through the ordination process of our church have offered themselves for leadership and have been licensed by the denomination as a pastor. The only difference has been the tenure of their license and the scope of their authority.

When a person is properly credentialed by the Board of Ordained Ministry, they may be appointed and licensed by the Bishop to serve as a pastor in a specific setting or congregation. Their annual license is connected and limited to that congregation, while it may be renewed every year, when they no longer serve that congregation, they are no longer licensed as a pastor. They can be appointed again to a different place and receive a license for that setting, but without an appointment they do not keep their license and return to the much more universal role of the continuing ministry of the laity. In this role, even though they have been functioning as pastor for several years, their authority is the same as it would be for any other Christian lay person. They can officiate at a funeral, they can teach and, if invited, preach in a United Methodist church pulpit, and even, in an emergency, baptize. But, without an appointment, they cannot conduct weddings in the state of Michigan and they are not permitted to consecrate the Sacrament of Holy Communion. And this extends into retirement. Without a current license, no former licensed local pastor retains their “clergy” status. They may be recognized as a retired local pastor and may be appointed and licensed in retirement, but the license follows and requires an appointment.

Please permit me a moment of personal privilege: I have served as a licensed local pastor. I have assigned licensed local pastors within the Heartland District when I served them as Superintendent. And I have worshipped under the preaching and teaching of licensed local pastors. Like any other Christians, they have had a variety of gifts – some better than others. But, in my opinion, licensed local pastors are not “junior” pastors or “second-class” pastors. They have responded to their call by following a different path, and they will, at some future point in time, step away from their pulpit and their license and return to the ranks of the laity. But they are no less called than any Elder of the Church and they deserve no less respect as a pastor.

In response to the second question, all ordained Elders are, by definition, itinerate. We serve as the Bishop directs one year at a time. That is part of the covenant we make at our ordination. In exchange for the assurance of an appointment (tenure) we agree to go where we are sent by the Bishop. But life has a way of impacting the ease with which we can move at any given point in our lives. Some things make it more difficult for us to move – not impossible, just more difficult. Things like spouse’s employment (especially when they are the principle income provider in the home or find it difficult to move themselves!) or children in school. Those things which make it difficult for us to move are called “tethers” by the Cabinet, and this Bishop and Cabinet try to take those tethers into consideration whenever they are discerning an appointment for someone. They are not the only factors to be considered, of course, but they are important.

Some Elders are so “tethered” that they are willing to take a less-than-full-time appointment in order to remain in the area where they are tethered, and the Bishop will do her very best to honor those tethers. However there are some ordained Elders who, for a variety of personal reasons, are no longer willing to be itinerate. This is not new to the church; it has been true since the time of the Circuit Riders. Those Elders do have options: they can surrender their ordination credentials and continue to serve as a licensed local pastor without the assurance of an appointment, they can move to honorable location and live out their call as a located clergyperson or they can request a leave of absence if their tether is of a more temporary nature. They can also transfer their credentials to a different denomination which uses a different method of pastoral deployment. We hope they won’t choose that option, of course, but we do understand how strong those tethers can be for some clergy.

Next time, we will look at some of the reasons for moving and why the current practices are, in the opinion of some, still the best method of deploying our pastoral resources. We will also talk about the Bishop’s role in the discernment process and how pastors can be sure that their concerns will be heard in the discernment process.

Till then…Shalom!

Bill

Wednesday - January 22, 2014
To remain silent is not an option

 

This week many Michiganians gathered across the state to celebrate the legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with worship services, concerts, lectures, paneldiscussions, and acts of community service.  

Unfortunately what made national news was the hurtful and disturbing statements made by Oakland Country Executive L. Brooks Patterson in a New Yorker article entitled, “Drop Dead, Detroit.”
 
While I am told that Mr. Patterson has a history of hyperbole, his most recent statements are deeply divisive and seriously undermine his recent strides toward regional cooperation. Records show that recently the executive demonstrated solid leadership by supporting regional transit, collaboration on Cobo Hall, and the creation of regional tax to support the Detroit Institute of Arts.
 
Mr. Patterson has now taken a step in the wrong direction and is displaying the type of leadership that is disastrous for Southeastern Michigan and the entire state.
 
Political misstep aside, the content of the statements themselves are painful. The most hurtful being his suggestion
 that Detroit be turned into a reservation for Native Americans –
I made a prediction a long time ago, and it’s come to pass. I said,
‘What we’re going to do is turn Detroit into an Indian reservation, where we herd all the Indians into the city, build a fence around it, and then throw in the blankets and corn.'

Mr. Patterson, in one quote, has managed to connect the dots between the violent and oppressive treatment of Native Americans and the abandonment of state’s cities due to white flight. This type of thinking is destructive and racist.
 
Most alarming for me are the public comments that have appeared in response to the online coverage. Many online commentators seem to applaud Mr. Patterson’s comments and support his “truth-telling.” Something is deeply wrong.   Thankfully some alternative prophetic voices are now coming forth.
 
In light of Dr. King’s legacy, the legacy of many unnamed men and women who fought for civil rights, and, most importantly, the demands of the gospel, I feel convicted to act.
 
I believe that Mr. Patterson’s statements, while most likely only a flash in the pan for this media cycle, are symptomatic of larger issues of race and class that face our State and point to the deep need for a spirit-led and grace-filled United Methodist response and witness.
 
Therefore, in response:
1.        I will be asking our Conference Committee on Native American Ministries, Commission on Religion and Race and Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships to explore how we might, in the Detroit Conference, engage in acts of repentance for all manner of past violence and neglect of native people inspired by the 2012 General Conference “Act of Repentance Toward Healing Relationships with Indigenous People.” This will be done in full consultation with our West Michigan Conference partners.
 
2.       I am leading a group of Conference leaders, selected by Bishop Kiesey, to participate in the General Commission on Religion and Race Vital Conversations Learning Lab for the North Central Jurisdiction so that we might create a movement of congregations and leaders committed to sharing and living the gospel of grace and reconciliation in multicultural contexts.
 
3.       I encourage every congregation to be in prayer about how they might participate in these efforts and how they might in their local contexts provide witness to Christ’s gospel of love, justice, peace, and reconciliation.
 
I close with these challenging words from Dr. King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail:”
 
“More and more I feel that the people of ill will have used time much more effectively than have the people of good will. We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the hateful words and actions of the bad people but for the appalling silence of the good people. Human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability; it comes through the tireless efforts of men willing to be co workers with God, and without this hard work, time itself becomes an ally of the forces of social stagnation.”
 
In Christ’s Circle of Grace,
Jerome (Jerry) DeVine
Director of Connectional Ministries
Detroit Conference

 

Tuesday - January 21, 2014
A "new thing" is taking shape

 

Last week’s blog by Bishop Deb prompted several similar Burning Questions which can be summarized by asking, “I read the Bishop’s blog and can’t help asking, “Is this the same old issue all over again – same song, 3rd verse?”One of you even started out by paraphrasing President Ronald Reagan: “Here we go again!” Please allow me to offer a point of view from my vantage point, even as I assure you that this is not meant to stop or stifle your point of view if it is different from mine.

When Bishop Deb and I first began to get to know one another, she told me that “merger” was off the table for her. She had been told that this was a painful subject for people in the Michigan Area and she didn’t want to open old wounds. I believed her then and I still do. I do not think she came to Michigan with an agenda, apart from being the best Bishop she could be for the people of our Area. But for Bishop Deb, a large part of being the best Bishop she can be involves listening.

Listening and paying attention to what people are saying to her and in her presence. And I can tell you that everywhere we went during her first year in Michigan, from the first public appearance in the Upper Peninsula to the last meeting before her renewal leave, the question was always the same: “When will we be one?” And that was the way it was phrased. Not, “When will we merge?” or “When will we stop having two separate conferences?”, but “When will we be one?”

Here, in the interest of full disclosure, I should remind you that I have had a personal involvement and interest in this question since the mid-nineties. So, when I heard the questions beginning to come her way almost from day one, I was not surprised. But even I was not prepared for how often the question was repeated.

And Bishop Deb, from day one, has been careful to say that she came here to work on healing old wounds and making new disciples! And that is what she did time and time again, from Kalamazoo to Detroit to Saginaw to Traverse City. Day after day, Bishop Deb was listening and responding, challenging and inviting us all to continue working collaboratively and thinking creatively about new possibilities. Those of you who experienced her leadership at either session of Annual Conference know that collaboration and cooperation are the hallmarks of her approach to leadership. As we enter the second year of her tenure as our resident bishop, she has not changed, either in manner or method. She is still listening and she is still calling us to collaborate for the sake of our shared ministry in the name of the Christ.

When Bishop Deb returned from her time away – and she really was away – she began saying that she was wondering if the question, so often repeated in so many different places, might not be a nudging from God’s Spirit.  She was open to that possibility, of course, but she did not jump quickly to that conclusion. Instead, she began to ask the people in leadership, on both sides of the state, to reflect with her on that possibility. Could this be the time? Could she be the bishop called “for just such a time as this?” I watched her with fascination as she listened and prayed her way to a new awareness and a new appreciation for who we are as people on a journey in ministry and disciple-making. She became convinced that she needed to ask the question on a larger scale, to invite more people into the dialogue about what God might be doing to change us and equip us for ministry in new and exciting ways. I do not believe that she has any particular idea about how that ministry will look, except that she is certain that it will be collaborative and connected.

And I can tell you, from my vantage point, it does not feel like “the same song, third or even fourth verse.” It feels like a new thing is beginning to take shape. I don’t know what it will look like when all is said and done, but I am impressed by Bishop’s openness to ideas from a variety of people and her willingness to hear from a great many people before she makes up her mind. She is certainly better than I am in that regard. As I have watched and listened to her, especially in these weeks since she returned to Michigan from her time in Minnesota, I have become convinced of three things which give me hope and encouragement:

1)      There is no hidden agenda about this Bishop. She does not have a plan for Michigan’s Area hidden away in a drawer some place just waiting for the right moment to spring it on us. I believe that her assurances are genuine and that she is open to whatever will grow out of the cooperation we are already experiencing and the conversations we will be having.
 
2)      She is anxious to follow God and willing to be used of God to lead us in discovering that which God has prepared us for – whatever that turns out to be. She is patient and willing to wait upon God’s timing, but she is not afraid to step out in faith if she senses that the time is now.
 
3)      She genuinely wants to hear from you, the people of the Michigan Area. She reads every response, pro or con, to her blog and every letter we receive in the office. She wants to know what you are thinking. She believes that your opinion has value, that what you think matters to the outcome of this conversation we have entered into.
 

So, in response to the Burning Questions which her article may or may not have inspired in you, I want to assure you that the invitation to share your thoughts, both with Bishop Deb and with each other, was genuine. And I, for one, am looking forward, with more than a little interest, to hearing the conversation and learning what will be the outcome. I think it’s an exciting time to be a United Methodist in Michigan. New things are happening, new disciples are being invited to follow Jesus Christ in churches all over the state and the world is being transformed into a better and healthier place because United Methodists in Michigan have stepped out in faith and dared to dream of a world without Malaria!

Thanks be to God! 

Bill
 

Classifieds
Friday - April 11, 2014
Ann Arbor West Side UMC Director of Music Ministries

For Complete details CLICK HERE

Tuesday - April 8, 2014
Central UMC Muskegon, MI Director of Youth Ministries

We are a downtown church seeking a responsible, energetic, flexible, and mature Christian to serve as a full time Youth Director.  The Director will coordinate, develop, and help rebuild a relational ministry of Christian education, fellowship, and community service for the youth and families of our congregation and community. This position requires someone who is able to positively influence, engage, motivate, and involve individuals in this ministry for the sake of Jesus Christ. The ideal candidate will exude strong leadership, administrative, and recruitment characteristics while functioning as a vital and creative part of the leadership team. Candidates should have an understanding of Wesleyan theology and be able to share this perspective in leadership of the program. A degree in Christian Ministries and experience is a plus. Interested individuals should electronically send a cover letter, a resume, and the names and contact information for 3 professional references to Rev. Mark D. Miller, imyouryouthdirector@gmail.com by May 1, 2014.

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Tuesday - April 8, 2014
Director of Music for Northville First United Methodist Church

Develop and lead the worship music ministry for our church, in consultation with the senior pastor and other team members, in a way that is consistent with our mission, values, and theology which is to help people find, experience, and share Gods love through Jesus Christ.

Click Here for more details

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Thursday - April 3, 2014
United Methodist Communications / Strategic Marketing Team

Position Title:  Manager, Strategic Marketing

Basic Purpose:  Works with the Strategic Marketing team to develop and execute annual strategic marketing plans.  Provides leadership in the overall management of the implementation cycle. Must stay abreast of marketing trends. Must seek out ways to promote the agency’s programs, resources and services. Participates in research, identification and integration of best practices in marketing, advertising and branding communication using various channels. Develops measurement strategy and implements return-on-investment reporting systems.  Participants in the development of long-term plans to innovate local church marketing strategies.  Works with vendors/designers on assigned campaign deliverables.

To apply or for more information contact:

UMCom / Human Resources
P. O. Box 320 (810-12th Ave. S., Nash. 37203)
Nashville, TN 37202-0320

Phone: 615-742-5137    Fax: 615-742-5428, Email: hr@umcom.org

 
To apply please provide the following:

    Cover Letter → Resume → Complete Application Form → References

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Thursday - April 3, 2014
United Methodist Communications /UMC.org: Website Content Manager

A General Agency of the United Methodist Church

External Posting Deadline:  April 1 - 29, 2014

United Methodist Communications /UMC.org

Position Title:  UMC.org Website Content Manager

To apply or for more information contact:

UMCom/Human Resources
P. O. Box 320 (810-12th Ave. S.Nash. 37203)
Nashville, TN 37202-0320


Phone: 615-742-5137    Fax: 615-742-5428,  Email:hr@umcom.org

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Monday - March 24, 2014
Crossroads District Christian Education Consultant

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY (4.16.2014). The Christian Education Consultant position for the Crossroads District has an immediate vacancy. 

Please send your resume, letter of intent outlining ministry call, previous job experience, and proficiencies for consideration to ATTN: Dr. Sutton at CrossroadsDistUMC@gmail.com . Job description Link: Employment Application Form  Application and Resume are due by June 1, 2014.

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Obituaries
Saturday - April 5, 2014
Koski - Rev. David K.

Rev. David K. Koski [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Saturday, April 5, 2014. 

ARRANGEMENTS:
A Memorial Service will take place at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, May 10, 2014 at University United Methodist Church, located at 1120 S. Harrison Road; East Lansing, MI 49221 [517-351-7030]. There will be a time of visitation with the family at 1:00 p.m. prior to the service.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO [Friends]:

The Forest Family
University UMC
1120 S. Harrison Road
E. Lansing, MI 49221
 

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE GIVEN TO:

University UMC - Good Samaritan Fund

Wednesday - April 2, 2014
Amick - Constance (Connie)

Mrs. Constance (Connie) Amick, former director of Chelsea Retirement Community and mother of Rev. John H. Amick [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy - UMCOR Assistant General Secretary for International Disaster Response], died Wednesday, April 2, 2014.

ARRANGEMENTS:

A Memorial Service will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, April 7, 2014 at Dixboro UMC, located at 5221 Church Rd; Ann Arbor, MI 48105 [734-665-5632]. 

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

The Amick Family
C/O Rev. Jack Amick
260 Maple Road
Valley Cottage, NY 10989

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE GIVEN TO:

  • U of M Martha Cook Bldg Annual Fund #302061 - Attn. Marion Law, 906 South University, Ann Arbor, MI 48109
  • Chelsea Retirement Community Benevolent Fund - 805 W. Middle Street, Chelsea, MI 48118
  • Michigan Alzheimer's Disease Center - University of Michigan Health System Office of Development, 1000 Oakbrook, Suite 100, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Tuesday - April 1, 2014
Fegan - Mrs. Dorothy

Mrs. Dorothy Fegan, spouse of Rev. James A. Fegan [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Tuesday, April 1, 2014.

A Memorial Service will be held at 11:00am on Friday, April 4, 2014 at Ishpeming: Wesley UMC, located at 801 Hemlock; Ishpeming, MI 49849 [906-486-4681]. There will be a time of visitation with the family from 10:00am until the start of the service.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

Rev. James Fegan
278 County Rd CNA - W
Champion, MI 49814


 

Wednesday - March 26, 2014
Hutchinson - Marilyn

Mrs. Marilyn Hutchinson, mother of Rev. Ronald G. Hutchinson [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Wednesday, March 26, 2014.

ARRANGEMENTS:

Visitation will be held on Friday, March 28, 2014 from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Blackburn Chapel-Martin Funeral Home located at 4216 Huron Street; North Branch, MI 48461 [810-688-3232]. 

Funeral Service will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 29, 2014 at Silverwood UMC located at 2750 Clifford Rd; Silverwood, MI 48760 [989-761-7599]. An additional time of visitation will start at 10:00 a.m. prior to the service.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

Rev. & Mrs. Ronald Hutchinson
3049 Burnside Road
North Branch, MI 48461

Tuesday - March 11, 2014
Daws - Zoe Ann

Mrs. Zoe Ann Daws, spouse of Rev. Donald J. Daws [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Tuesday, March 11, 2014.

ARRANGEMENTS:
Visitation will be held Saturday, March 15, 2014 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and also from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Buresh Funeral Home located at 416 Whittemore Street; Tawas City, MI 48471 [989-362-8191].

The funeral service will take place at 2 p.m., Sunday, March 16, 2014 at Tawas UMC located at 20 East M-55; Tawas City, MI 48763 [989-362-4288]. A time of visitation will start at 12:30 p.m. prior to the service.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:


Rev. Donald Daws
23661 Wilmarth Avenue
Farmington, MI 48335

 

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE SENT TO:


Glennie United Methodist Church
5094 Bamfield Road
Glennie, MI 48737

 

Thursday - March 6, 2014
Woodard, Mrs. Wilma

Mrs. Wilma Woodard, mother of Rev. Debra K. Brown [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Thursday, March 6, 2014.

ARRANGEMENTS:
Visitation will be held Sunday, March 9, 2014 from 1pm to 8pm and Monday, March 10, 2014 from 12pm to 1pm at Marsh Funeral Chapel. The Chapel is located at 396 S. Sandusky Road; Sandusky, MI 48471 [810-648-2244].

Memorial Service will take place at 1:00pm, Monday, March 11, 2014 at Marsh Funeral Chapel.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:
Rev. Debra & Mr. Dennis Brown
P.O. Box 243
Kingston, MI 48741

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE SENT TO:
Autumnwood of Deckerville
3387 Ella
Deckerville, MI 48427

Appointments
Friday - April 4, 2014
Miles, Kevin
FROM Oxford TO Davison
Sunday - April 13, 2014
Fraser Soots, Bea Barbara
FROM Pontiac Grace and Peace and Waterford Four Towns TO Garden City First
Sunday - April 13, 2014
Nagy, Julius
FROM First Appointment TO Springville 1/2 time
Sunday - April 13, 2014
Jue, Jennifer
FROM Wayne First TO Oxford
Sunday - April 13, 2014
Osweiler, Larry
FROM Pickford TO Sault Ste Marie: Central and Algonquin UMCs
Sunday - April 13, 2014
Cleland, William
FROM First Appointment TO Gagetown/Owendale
eNewsletters
Wednesday - May 29, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - May 29, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - May 29, 2013

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
Perez named to Detroit Conference program staff
The Rev. Paul Perez, a deacon currently serving at Livonia: Newburg UMC and as the regional coordinator for Justice For Our Neighbors - Southeastern Michigan, has been named the Conference Director for Mission and Justice Engagement and Leadership Recruitment. Perez will begin his duties on July 1, 2013.
 
West Michigan Annual Conference session opens today
The 45th annual session of the West Michigan Conference opens today (May 29) on the campus of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich. The opening worship service begins at 7:00 p.m. Watch live
 
BLOG: In the Same Boat…or Pup Tent
In his latest Monday Memo e-newsletter, the Rev. Dr. John Harnish, senior pastor at Birmingham: First UMC, writes about how "Methodists and Boy Scouts just seem to go together," and explores the similarities between The United Methodist Church and the Boy Scouts of America in regards to inclusion. Read article 
 
Last edition of the Conference Connection ...
Since November 2009, the Detroit Conference Connection has been the weekly resource for churches and leaders in the Detroit Conference to stay up-to-date on Conference, Area, and denominational news. This edition will be the final edition of the Detroit Conference Connection. As part of the ongoing transition from two separate conference communications offices into one Michigan Area Communications Team, a new weekly Michigan Area e-newsletter will debut in July. Watch for information about the new e-publication in the coming weeks. 
 
Bob Miller honored at MTSO Closing Convocation
Graduating seminarian Bob Miller, from the Detroit Conference, was honored at the Closing Convocation of Methodist Theological School in Ohio May 7. Miller, appointed to Milan Marble Memorial United Methodist Church, received the David Wilcox Leadership Award. The award honors the service and leadership of the Rev. Dr. David Wilcox within the United Methodist Church and as a trustee of MTSO.  The recipient must reflect characteristics of servant-leadership within the MTSO community and in church ministry, and show promise to become a leader in judicatory connections. Miller received a Master of Divinity degree at MTSO’s commencement May 18.

TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

Parish Paper - Informed Decisions
The June issue of The Parish Paper - Ideas and Insights for Active Congregations - is now available for downloading on the conference Web site. The edition addresses the topic - "Making Informed Decisions during Times of Change." To download the issue, please visit www.detroitconference.org/parishpaper.
 
Michigan Cokesbury Resource Consultant
Cokesbury would like to provide you with the information you and those within your conference need. To help meet your needs they have placed a Community Resource Consultant in the Michigan Area. Community Resource Consultants (CRCs) are a team of highly trained individuals providing personalized response and trusted, relevant resources to support your ministry. They are equipped to make personal visits at a time convenient for your hectic schedule. The CRC in the Michigan Area is Scott Woolum (swoolum@cokesbury.com, 248-330-5163).
 
Save the date - Circuit Rider Town and Country Workshop/Retreat
The 38th annual Circuit Rider Town and Country Workshop/Retreat will take place on Wednesday-Friday, Nov. 6-8, 2013, at the West Branch Quality Inn in West Branch, Mich. Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey will be the guest speaker, addressing the theme "Life in the Glass Bowl: managing privacy and boundaries as the preacher/spouse." More information 
 
Online market benefits local churches
The Office of Corporate Responsibility at the General Council on Finance and Administration, the denomination’s finance agency, is announcing a new program. UMCmarket will allow United Methodists the opportunity to shop online at some of their favorite places while generating a donation to their local church.  Read news release  |  Sign up for UMCmarket
 
Conference on kids’ faith development
Church leaders and workers who are engaged in ministry with children can celebrate their work and discuss ways to help children grow in faith at the 2013 United Methodist Conference on Ministry with Children. The conference, “Make a Joyful Noise to the Lord,” is set for July 23-26 at Buncombe Street United Methodist Church in Greenville. The United Methodist Board of Discipleship is the sponsor.  Read news release  |  To register

CAMP AND RETREAT NEWS

The Values of Being Accredited
Judson Collins Center, Camp Kinawind, and Lake Huron Retreat Center are accredited by The American Camp Association, as is Camp Michigamme in the Marquette District. When you see the ACA sign at a camp, know that it is trusted sign. The ACA-Accredited Camp sign has 50 years of parent trust behind it. For a very busy and preoccupied public, it is a way to presort among camp options.  Accreditation identifies those programs which offer a solid foundation of health, safety, and program quality. It offers assurance that camps comply with up to 300 health, safety, and program quality standards. It is solid proof of our accountability, credibility, and commitment.  It is evidence that we care. It demonstrates that we have gone to great lengths, have been evaluated, and have passed the test!  It shows that we continually seek expert counsel. Experts from many fields, including The American Academy of Pediatrics, American Red Cross, etc., continually work with ACA to improve their camp standards program. Serving the children and youth of our Conference through camp and retreat ministries is a great privilege, and a great responsibility. Being accredited helps us provide an even greater experience to your young people!
 
Open House and Groundbreaking at Judson Collins Center - June 8
Join us for a great day at Judson Collins Center on Saturday, June 8!  It will be a day of camp fun and celebration.  The day begins at 2:00 p.m. with a variety of camp activities, including hayrides, canoeing and kayaking, and ga-ga ball.  At 4:00 p.m., we’ll have a special time of worship with Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey as we break ground for the Acorn Lodge, a new retreat center that will serve up to 50 people.  At 5:30 p.m., we’ll enjoy a Barbecue dinner, followed by more fun and a closing campfire. For more information and to make dinner reservations, please visit www.umccamps.org.
 
Golf Scramble for Camperships - June 14
The Joanne Liles Memorial Golf Scramble for camperships will be Friday, June 14 at the Chemung Hills Golf Course in Howell, Mich. The cost of $85 for individuals or $320 for a foursome covers 18 holes, carts, lunch, great fellowship and prizes! The scramble is a great way to help young people attend church camp this summer while have a fun day out with friends. For more information and online registration, visit www.umccamps.org.

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey has announced the following appointment for the Detroit Conference.
  • Dr. Frederick Sampson, III to Bloomfield Hills: St. Paul UMC (Detroit Renaissance District), effective July 1, 2013. He is currently serving as a staff member at Redford Aldersgate UMC (Detroit Renaissance District). Sampson is the campus pastor for the West Outer Drive campus.
For all appointment announcements, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments.

DEATH NOTICES

The following death notices were received by the Conference Office over the last week. To view all of the death notices, please visit www.detroitconference.org/obituaries.
  • Cynthia Hall, sister of Rev. Jan Brown [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy] died Monday, May 20, 2013.

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

 
Inseparably tied by the tornado
MOORE, Okla. (UMNS) — “We need to embrace that, sometimes, the right thing to say is nothing, and simply share the embrace and the tears,” writes the Rev. Adam Shahan, associate pastor of First United Methodist Church, in The Huffington Post. Shahan, age 12 when the 1999 EF5 tornado hit Oklahoma City, has been there twice.  Read commentary  |  Support U.S. disaster relief  |  How to volunteer  |  Dealing with disaster
 
Boy Scouts lift ban on gay members
GRAPEVINE, Texas (UMNS) — Boy Scouts of America leaders voted by a substantial margin today, May 23, to lift the organization’s longstanding ban on openly gay youth in the Scouting movement. The change could affect ministries at 6,700 United Methodist churches in the United States. The discussion also has helped re-energize a longtime debate about human sexuality within The United Methodist Church.  Read story and post a comment
 
Bishop: Time to lobby senators over immigration reform
WASHINGTON (UMNS) —The Senate Judiciary Committee will send an amended immigration reform bill to the full Senate when it reconvenes in June. United Methodist Bishop Minerva Carcaño is calling for bishops and other United Methodists to use this crucial time to contact their senators because the bill has “weaknesses that would keep it from being the just and humane comprehensive immigration reform that we have all worked so hard for,” she said. Carcaño, of the California-Pacific Annual (regional) Conference, along with the other active bishops of The United Methodist Church, went to the U.S.-Mexican border.  Read more  |  View slideshow
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • Inspiration Saturday, June 1 — Event featuring Michigan Area Bishop Deborah Lieder Kiesey and the Rev. Lovett H. Weems of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT at Calvin College Covenant Fine Arts Center, Grand Rapids, Mich. Details.
  • Free webinar “The New Senior: Boomers,” June 20 — 6:30 p.m. CT, tips on ministering to this large generation from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.
  • “Inside Out for the Glory of God,” July 12-14 — Eleventh national gathering of United Methodist Men at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Aug. 15-18 — Hosted at Denver Marriott Tech Center, sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, Path1 and Board of Global Ministries. Theme is “Encountering God at the Edge.” Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Satellite Experience, Aug. 17 — Offsite participation is available from satellite congregations within the five U.S. jurisdictions. Registrants will participate remotely through live and tape-delayed interactive live streaming. Details.
  • Exploration 2013, Nov. 15-17 — Event for young adults, ages 18-26, considering ordained ministry, Marriott Denver Tech Center, sponsored by United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Speakers include Louisiana Area Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey and the Rev. Jorge Acevedo, senior pastor of the multicampus Grace Church in Southwest Florida. Details.

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
  • Worship Leader - Bay City: Grace UMC
  • Music Director - Bay City: Grace UMC
  • Director of Youth Ministry - Clarkston UMC
  • Youth Leader for Junior and Senior High Students - Holly: Calvary UMC
  • Part-time Custodian - Goodrich UMC
  • Part-time Communications Director - Clarkston UMC
  • Part-time Clerical Assistant - Detroit: Central UMC
  • Nursery Attendant - Detroit: Metropolitan UMC
  • Part-time Youth Director - Crossroads District
  • Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC
  • Church Secretary/Treasurer - Brown City UMC

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

Detroit Conference on facebook: www.facebook.com/detroitconference
Detroit Conference on Twitter: www.twitter.com/umcdetroitconf
Wednesday - May 22, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - May 22, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - May 22, 2013

Editor's note: The Detroit Conference Connection will cease publication following next week's edition (May 29). A new Michigan Area e-newsletter will debut in early July. For news and information during June, please visit www.detroitconference.org.

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
Bishop Kiesey calls for prayer for tornado victims
Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey is calling on Michigan United Methodists to "join our prayers together" for the people affected by the devastating tornados in recent days. Read more  
 
2013 Detroit Annual Conference session review
Beginning a quadrennial theme of "Disciples: Made in Michigan," the 2013 session of the Detroit Annual Conference focused on leadership as it met from May 16-19 in Adrian, Mich. For the 45th consecutive year, the conference took place on the campus of Adrian College, a United Methodist-affiliated institution. Read more 
 
Oklahoma Conference asks collaborative response
“I know you are seeing and hearing news reports about the devastation and want to assist. … Do not self-deploy. Best practices in times of crises call for a collaborative response, so people who can help are directed to where that help and those skills are most needed and will be most effective,” wrote the Rev. Richard Norman, disaster response coordinator for the Oklahoma Conference. The confirmed death toll was at 51 with hundreds injured after a second round of devastating storms hit the state Monday. Here is what the Oklahoma Conference is asking people to do
 
How to give in response to disasters
The United Methodist Church is well situated to respond to disasters because of its churches in almost every county and community across the United States and the worldwide Methodist connection with annual conferences, central conferences and autonomous partner churches on five continents.  Here is how giving works  |  Cash donations encouraged over clothing, other items  |  Volunteers urged to be patient
 
Opening worship "Remembers" Detroit Annual Conference
The 2013 session of the Detroit Annual Conference opened on Thursday, May 16, with an opening worship that featured a time of remembrance, a baptism, and a sermon from Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey. Read more
 
Hamilton brings Leadership Institute to Detroit Conference
The Rev. Adam Hamilton, senior pastor at The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, gave three talks during the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session, teaching leaders about leadership, worship, preaching, and missional outreach. Read more
 
"Through Death Comes Resurrection," conference preacher reminds
The Rev. Dottie Escobedo-Frank offered two challenging sermons during the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session, focusing on revitalizing congregations and individuals. Read more


TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

Mission u (formerly the School of Christian Mission) 
The handout at Annual Conference and the insert in the Detroit Conference News (the Conference United Methodist Women newsletter) reversed the listing of two of the study leaders.  Rev. Dr. Jerry DeVine will be the study leader for the study "The Call:Living Sacramentally, Walking Justly".  Rev. Dr. Sherry Parker will be the study leader for the study "The Roma of Europe".   Mission u Events are happening Saturday, July 20 at Livonia:Newburg UMC; Thursday, August 15 and Friday-Saturday, August 16-17 at the Lake Huron Retreat Center.   Registration information can also be found on the United Methodist Women conference website http://www.gbgm-umc.org/detcumw
 
How the new Facebook news feed affects your church
On March 7, 2013, Facebook announced a major update to the news feed. Learn about the changes and takeaways to implement immediately. Read more
 
Aldersgate Day: Celebrating Wesley’s experience
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — May 24 is Aldersgate Day. This celebrates our founder John Wesley's life-changing experience at a meeting on Aldersgate Street, London, May 24, 1738. He wrote extensively of that experience in his journal for that day. Read Wesley’s words at Interpreter Online  |  What a Georgia church plans
 
Easily find and engage local communities via social media
Even if you're doing everything possible to promote your church and make it easy for new visitors to find you, it may not be enough. So find them. Read more
 
Resources for graduation, commencement, and baccalaureate
The General Board of Discipleship has compiled free resources to aid in worship during the graduation season. View resources 
 
It's time! Put your sermon audio online: Best hosting plans
Among any church’s most easily shared resources is the weekly sermon. New Web technologies and digital recorders make it easy to capture and upload sermons. What are you waiting for? It's time! Read more

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • May 26 - Peace with Justice Sunday
  • May 27 - Conference office closed in observance of Memorial Day
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

For all appointment announcements, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments. To view the document that was handed out at the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session containing all appointments as of May 20, 2013, click here.

DEATH NOTICES

The following death notices were received by the Conference Office over the last week. To view all of the death notices, please visit www.detroitconference.org/obituaries.
  • Rev. John Miller [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy] died Sunday, May 19, 2013.

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

Click here to view the latest stories from the United Methodist News service. 
 
Church begins 3,175 new worship places worldwide
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — The United Methodist Church established 3,175 new places for new people to worship God around the world during the past quadrennium, according to a new report. The Worldwide Church Plant Update includes 684 new churches started by annual conferences in the United States, 574 new churches and cell groups initiated by Global Mission Initiatives, and 1,917 new missions, churches, circuits and preaching points in the Central Conferences. Read more
 
Saying farewell to United Methodist Reporter
DALLAS (UMNS) — United Methodists across the United States are sharing a sense of loss following the news that UMR Communications, publisher of the United Methodist Reporter, will shut its doors May 31. After years of financial struggles, the board of UMR Communications unanimously voted May 16 to shutter the Dallas-based nonprofit, ceasing a publication that has been covering Methodism since 1847. Read story and post a comment
 
Garrett-Evangelical selects new president
EVANSTON, Ill. (UMNS) – The Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary Board of Trustees selected Lallene J. Rector to be the next president of Garrett-Evangelical. Now the seminary’s vice president for academic affairs and academic dean, Rector will succeed Philip A. Amerson, who will retire on Dec. 31 after nearly eight years as president. Read story 
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • Peace with Justice Sunday, May 26 — One of the churchwide special Sundays, it provides financial support programs that advocate for peace and justice in annual (regional) conferences and around the globe. Resources.
  • Inspiration Saturday, June 1 — Event featuring Michigan Area Bishop Deborah Lieder Kiesey and the Rev. Lovett H. Weems of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT at Calvin College Covenant Fine Arts Center, Grand Rapids, Mich. Details.
  • Free webinar “The New Senior: Boomers,” June 20 — 6:30 p.m. CT, tips on ministering to this large generation from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.
  • “Inside Out for the Glory of God,” July 12-14 — Eleventh national gathering of United Methodist Men at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Aug. 15-18 — Hosted at Denver Marriott Tech Center, sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, Path1 and Board of Global Ministries. Theme is “Encountering God at the Edge.” Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Satellite Experience, Aug. 17 — Offsite participation is available from satellite congregations within the five U.S. jurisdictions. Registrants will participate remotely through live and tape-delayed interactive live streaming. Details.
  • Exploration 2013, Nov. 15-17 — Event for young adults, ages 18-26, considering ordained ministry, Marriott Denver Tech Center, sponsored by United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Speakers include Louisiana Area Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey and the Rev. Jorge Acevedo, senior pastor of the multicampus Grace Church in Southwest Florida. Details.

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the United Methodist connection:
  • Youth Director - East Lake UMC (Florida)
  • Worship Music Director - Bowling Green First UMC (Ohio)
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
  • Youth Leader for Junior and Senior High Students - Holly: Calvary UMC
  • Part-time Custodian - Goodrich UMC
  • Part-time Communications Director - Clarkston UMC
  • Clerical Assistant - Detroit: Central UMC
  • Nursery Attendant - Detroit: Metropolitan UMC
  • Part-time Youth Director - Crossroads District
  • Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC
  • Church Secretary/Treasurer - Brown City UMC

About the Detroit Conference Connection

The Detroit Conference Connection is the weekly e-newsletter of the Detroit Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Every local church is encouraged to have their leaders subscribe to the Connection so that they can receive the latest news from the conference and general church. To subscribe to the Connection, please visit www.detroitconference.org/site/stayconnected. To submit news items for the Detroit Conference Connection, please send stories to Paul Thomas, Director of Communications

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

Detroit Conference on facebook: www.facebook.com/detroitconference
Detroit Conference on Twitter: www.twitter.com/umcdetroitconf
Wednesday - May 8, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - May 8, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - May 8, 2013

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
Amendments to UMC Constitution to be considered at annual conference session
As part of the business of the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session, members of the conference will consider four amendments to the Constitution of The United Methodist Church. These proposed amendments were passed by a two-thirds margin during the 2012 General Conference session in Tampa, Fla. Read story 
 
Liberia missionary visiting Detroit Conference in May
Princess Jusu, a missionary with the General Board of Global Minsistries serving in Monrovia, Liberia, will be visiting the Detroit Conference during the next two weeks. Read more 
 
Michigan Area Ministry Center proposal
For the past 15 years, the Michigan Area has rented 3,500 square feet in Okemos, Mich., for use as the Episcopal office. A proposal from the Trustees of the Detroit and West Michigan Conferences will be considered at the 2013 annual conference session to locate and jointly purchase property and structure for a Michigan Area Ministry Center. Watch video 
 
Collections to benefit Haiti, Liberia, and malaria to take place at annual conference session
A number of special collections will take place during the annual conference session, including offerings for ministries in Haiti and Liberia, Imagine No Malaria, and collections of new underwear for community agencies as part of the Bishop's Seat Cover Project. View all of the opportunities for you and your church to give 
 
Join Bishop Deb in urging funding to prevent malaria-related deaths
In conjunction with the Imagine No Malaria campaign, the General Board of Church and Society is asking mothers (and others) to sign the "Moms for Moms" petition to preserve U.S. global health funding to fight malaria and other diseases of poverty. Due to across-the-board U.S. spending cuts related to the sequester, global health funding is being cut by 4.8%. These cuts will significantly impact treatment, prevention and care related to malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. Join Bishop Deb and sign the petition 
 
New website powers United Methodist young adults
A collaboration among United Methodist agencies and local ministries has produced a new website, revgo.org, to help connect young adults in "spiritual discernment through missional engagement." United Methodist-connected ministries that engage young adults as interns, missionaries, staff and ministry leadership teams can use REVGO as a platform for fundraising, story sharing and recruitment. For more information
 
Updated malaria documentary now airing on NBC
United Methodist Communications is releasing an updated version of the Imagine No Malaria documentary, “Killer in the Dark: An Extraordinary Effort to Combat Malaria,” in collaboration with the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission. This sequel, set to air on NBC affiliates through Nov. 3, reflects new research and scientific advancements in the fight against malaria. More information
 
May edition of Michigan Area Reporter now online
The May edition of the Michigan Area Reporter, the newspaper of the Detroit and West Michigan Conferences, has arrived at local churches across the state and can now be viewed online. Read the paper 

2013 ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION

The 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will take place on Thursday-Sunday, May 16-19, on the campus of Adrian College in Adrian, Mich. Information about the annual event can be found at www.detroitconference.org/annualconference.
 
Health Screening to take place during annual conference session
As part of its wellness initiatives, the Conference Board of Pension and Health Benefits will offer a health screening during the 2013 annual conference session. The screening will again be conducted by Personal Health Partners (PHP) who provides health screening opportunities for many annual conferences. The screenings will take place on campus from 6:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. on Friday-Saturday, May 17-18. The cost of the screening for all active clergy, lay employees, spouses, and dependents age 18 or older that are enrolled in the conference group health insurance plan is being subsidized by the Board of Pension and Health Benefits. All others may receive the screening at a cost of $120, which is payable to PHP at the time of the screening. As part of the screening, fasting for eight hours is preferred but not required. A patient-friendly interpretation of the screening results with explanation of significant findings will be mailed to the participating within two weeks of the screenings, which the participant is encouraged to share with his/her primary physician. Results from the previous year are also included in the report for comparison and reference. Results are completely confidential. The laboratory panel being offered contains a comprehensive array of tests based on those done annually for the physical exam of the President of the United States. Significant findings may indicate the presence or risk of serious, acute, and chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, and cancer.
 
Committee on Nominations seeks to fill vacancies
There are a variety of vacancies in the Report of the Committee on Nominations, 2013, that require special passions and skills, which the Committee on Nominations does not have the knowledge to fill.  For this reason, the Committee on Nominations encourages all members of the Detroit Annual Conference session to examine the Report of the Committee on Nominations, 2013, identify agencies which have a blank line (_______), and look up the nature of each agency in the Agency Description center. If you know a person who has the passions, skills and time to fill the job, please submit a Nominee Application, which is available at the same website. An individual who has the necessary qualifications is encouraged to “self nominate,” which can be a rich talent source, or you can nominate a fellow member, especially if you have discussed the position with the individual and know that the person will accept. Important jobs, as chairs or members, include the Committee on Disability Concerns, Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministries, Commission on the Status and Role of Women, Protection Policy Committee, Board of Global Ministries, Committee on Ethnic Local Church Concerns, and Board of Pension and Health Benefits, as well as the other agencies. In addition, the Committee on Nominations requests At-Large Nominee Applications for its five open positions (one clergy, two laymen and two laywomen) which are to be nominated by the Annual Conference. All Nominee Applications should include the nominee’s initials in the “acceptance” box at the bottom of the first page and be emailed to Michelle Walkup (michellewalkup@sbcglobal.net) by Tuesday, May 14, or be delivered to Michelle at the Detroit Annual Conference session before 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 18. 
 
United Alumni meal - Saturday. May 18
All alumni and friends of United Theological Seminary are invited to a lunch at 12:15 p.m. on Saturday, May 18, at the WOW Cafe on the campus of Adrian College. United President Wendy J. Deichmann will be present to share exciting news about United's growth and new programs for prospective students. Contact the Rev. Dr. J.D. Landis at 989-835-7877 to RSVP. The WOW Cafe is located in the Arrington Ice Arena. 
 
Clergy choir being formed for Service of Ordination and Commissioning
A choir made up of active and retired clergy (including deacons, elders, and local pastors) is being formed for the Service of Ordination and Commissioning, which will take place at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 19. Clergy interested in singing with the choir are asked to bring their robes and a red stole to wear during the service. The Rev. David Gladstone will be directing the choir.
 
2013 session to be live-streamed
All plenary sessions and worship services during the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will be streamed live on the conference website.

TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

Rethinking Church… might mean live video streaming your weekly worship to your mobile app!
TechShop launches these two new services at discount prices for local churches. Use discount code: Techshop. Want to know more? Go to: www.myUMCapp.com and www.myUMClive.com
 
Sign up now for Techshop’s email
Keep up with the latest product releases! TechShop e-cards give you the rundown on new products, along with access to exclusive promotional codes to save on purchases! TechShop e-cards are published once every three to four weeks. Sign up today: umcom.org/subscribe_techshop.

CAMP AND RETREAT MINISTRIES NEWS

Hospitality Tent at Annual Conference
Camp and Retreat Ministries will be back at Annual Conference again this year with our Hospitality Tent.  Be sure to stop by and enjoy some coffee, cookies, popcorn , fruit and fellowship!  We’ll again have coffee travel mugs and water bottles for sale, along with other camp store goodies.   Proceeds go to support our campership fund, so plan to eat heartily and give generously!
 
Open House and Groundbreaking at Judson Collins Center - June 8
Join us for a great day at Judson Collins Center on Saturday, June 8!  It will be a day of camp fun and celebration.  The day begins at 2 PM with a variety of camp activities, including hayrides, canoeing and kayaking, and ga-ga ball.  At 4 PM, we’ll have a special time of worship with Bishop Kiesey as we break ground for the Acorn Lodge, a new retreat center that will serve up to 50 people.  At 5:30 PM, we’ll enjoy a Barbeque dinner, followed by more fun and a closing campfire.  
For more information and to make dinner reservations, please visit www.umccamps.org.
 
Golf Scramble for Camperships - June 14
The Joanne Liles Memorial Golf Scramble for camperships will be Friday, June 14 at the Chemung Hills Golf Course in Howell, Michigan.  The cost of $85 for individuals or $320 for a foursome covers 18 holes, carts, lunch, great fellowship and prizes!  The scramble is a great way to help young people attend church camp this summer while have a fun day out with friends.  For more information and online registration, visit www.umccamps.org .

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • May 16-19 - 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session - Adrian, Mich.
  • May 26 - Peace with Justice Sunday
  • May 27 - Conference office closed in observance of Memorial Day
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey has announced the following appointment for the Detroit Conference:
  • Carol Blair-Bouse to Flint: Hope UMC (Crossroads District), effective July 1, 2013. She is currently providing pastoral leadership to Bay City: Christ UMC (Saginaw Bay District).
Editor's note: In last week's Connection it was announced that Lee Sayer was appointed to New Lothrup UMC (Crossroads District) as a district superintendent assignment, 1/2-time, effective July 1, 2013. We mistakenly referenced Lee as a male and sincerely apologize for the error. This will be her first assignment.
 
To view appointment updates, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments

DEATH NOTICES

The following death notices were received by the Conference Office over the last week. To view all of the death notices, please visit www.detroitconference.org/obituaries.
  • Rev. Roy Syme [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy] died Tuesday, April 30, 2013.

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

 
Theologian faces charges for same-sex wedding
NEW YORK (UMNS) — A United Methodist theologian and retired elder is facing formal charges under church law and a potential trial for officiating at the same-sex wedding of his son. The Rev. Thomas Ogletree, a retired seminary dean noted for his work on Christian ethics, presided over the wedding of Thomas Rimbey Ogletree to Nicholas Haddad on Oct. 20. In a statement, Ogletree, 79, described the ceremony as “one of the most significant ritual acts of my life as a pastor.” Read story and post a comment
 
United Methodist bishops work toward common goals
SAN DIEGO (UMNS) — “Exploring leadership for an emerging church” will be the theme of the first meeting of the Forum of Residential Bishops, scheduled on May 5-9. Read news release
 
‘By all means, save some!’
TRENTON, N.J. (UMNS) — Amid recent tragedies in Boston and West, Texas, retired United Methodist Bishop Felton May points to the failure of the U.S. Senate to pass a bill on gun safety as potential for future tragedy and violence. In a commentary, May cites disappointment in politicians “who broke the hearts of gun victims’ families everywhere and also broke their vow to represent the interests of voters, an overwhelming majority of whom support universal background checks for gun purchases.” Read full story and comment
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • Older Adult Recognition Sunday, any Sunday in MayResources compiled by the Virginia Annual (regional) Conference.
  • Free webinar “Has God Been Invited to the Conversation?” May 9 — 6:30 p.m. CT, help with church and community prayer from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Ascension Day, May 9 — Celebrate Christ’s Ascension with resources from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship.
  • Mother’s Day, May 12 — Imagine No Malaria provides offering envelopes, posters and bulletin inserts to prepare for special offerings on Mother’s Day to benefit the campaign, which has significant impact on the lives of mothers and children. Details.
  • Free webinar “Gen2Gen: Sharing Jesus Across the Generations,” May 14 — 6:30 p.m. CT, from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Free webinar “Committed to Christ: Six Steps to a Generous Life,” May 16 — 6:30 p.m. CT, help with stewardship from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Change the World, May 18-19 — Join the United Methodist Rethink Church event that helps build community locally and fight malaria globally. Details.
  • Pentecost, May 19 — Celebrate the birthday of the Christian church with resources from the Board of Discipleship and the United Methodist Publishing House’s Ministry Matters
  • Free webinar “Spiritual Development in the Early Years,” May 22 — 10 a.m. CT, tips on the spiritual development of children from birth to 5 from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register.
  • Peace with Justice Sunday, May 26 — One of the churchwide special Sundays, it provides financial support programs that advocate for peace and justice in annual (regional) conferences and around the globe. Resources.
  • “Inside Out for the Glory of God,” July 12-14 — Eleventh national gathering of United Methodist Men at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Aug. 15-18 — Hosted at Denver Marriott Tech Center, sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, Path1 and Board of Global Ministries. Theme is “Encountering God at the Edge.” Details

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the United Methodist connection:
Worship Music Director - First UMC - Bowling Green, Ohio
 
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
Director of Youth and Family Ministry - Flint: Lincoln Park UMC
Nursery Attendance - Detroit: Metropolitan UMC
Associate Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries - Detroit: Central UMC
Conference Director for Mission and Justice Engagement and Leadership Recruitment - Detroit Conference
Youth Director (part-time) - Crossroads District
Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC

About the Detroit Conference Connection

The Detroit Conference Connection is the weekly e-newsletter of the Detroit Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Every local church is encouraged to have their leaders subscribe to the Connection so that they can receive the latest news from the conference and general church. To subscribe to the Connection, please visit www.detroitconference.org/site/stayconnected. To submit news items for the Detroit Conference Connection, please send stories to Paul Thomas, Director of Communications.

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

Detroit Conference on facebook: www.facebook.com/detroitconference
Detroit Conference on Twitter: www.twitter.com/umcdetroitconf

 

Wednesday - May 1, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - May 1, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - May 1, 2013

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
Collection for UMCOR Cleaning Buckets to take place on May 29
A conference-wide collection of UMCOR Cleaning Buckets will take place on Wednesday, May 29, to help alleviate the high demand in the Midwest for the disaster response materials. Learn more 
 
Parish Paper - Important conversations
The May issue of The Parish Paper - Ideas and Insights for Active Congregations - is now available for downloading on the conference Web site. The edition addresses the topic - "Important Conversations: How to Avoid the Sand Traps." To download the issue, please visit www.detroitconference.org/parishpaper.
 
Last chance to register for annual conference
This Friday, May 2, is the final day to register for the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session. After Friday, the only way to register for the conference will be on site at Adrian College. Register now
 
Bishops work toward common goals
“Exploring leadership for an emerging church” will be the theme of the first meeting of the Forum of Residential Bishops, scheduled on May 5-9, 2013 in San Diego. Read more 
 
United Methodists to Change the World in May
On May 18-19, United Methodists around the globe will unite in service with their local communities for the fourth annual Change the World weekend. Change the World was observed in more than 1,500 locations internationally in 2012. United Methodist Communications has created several free planning resources including a sermon series and ideas for service projects. To locate an event in your area, go to RethinkChurch.org. Join the Change the World conversation online on Facebook, or on Twitter and Instagram using #changetheworld and #rethinkchurch. Resources  Learn more
 
Chuck Knows Church: Communion
“Chuck Knows Church” leads viewers through communion, one of two sacraments (along with baptism) in The United Methodist Church. This is the first of a three-part series about communion.  Read and watch

2013 ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION

The 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will take place on Thursday-Sunday, May 16-19, on the campus of Adrian College in Adrian, Mich. Information about the annual event can be found at www.detroitconference.org/annualconference.
 
United Alumni meal - Saturday. May 18
All alumni and friends of United Theological Seminary are invited to a lunch at 12:15 p.m. on Saturday, May 18, at the WOW Cafe on the campus of Adrian College. United President Wendy J. Deichmann will be present to share exciting news about United's growth and new programs for prospective students. Contact the Rev. Dr. J.D. Landis at 989-835-7877 to RSVP. The WOW Cafe is located in the Arrington Ice Arena. 
 
Clergy choir being formed for Service of Ordination and Commissioning
A choir made up of active and retired clergy (including deacons, elders, and local pastors) is being formed for the Service of Ordination and Commissioning, which will take place at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 19. Clergy interested in singing with the choir are asked to bring their robes and a red stole to wear during the service. The Rev. David Gladstone will be directing the choir.
 
#dac13
For Twitter users that will be attending or watching the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session: if you are going to be tweeting during the conference, please use the hashtag #dac13.
 
2013 session to be live-streamed
All plenary sessions and worship services during the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will be streamed live on the conference website at www.detroitconference.org/aclive.
 
iPad Giveaway at the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference by the Called to Ministry Team of the Board of Ordained Ministry
If you have had a Called to Ministry Sunday since the 2012 Detroit Annual Conference, you may enter our iPad giveaway which will take place during Annual Conference. You may enter by emailing the Board of Ordained Ministry Recruitment Team at enteringministry@gmail.com with (1) your name, (2) church or ministry setting, (3) when you had your Called to Ministry Sunday, and (4) names of anyone who responded to God's call to ministry. If you do not know what a Called to Ministry Sunday is, in it's simplest form is to have at least one moment during your worship service to ask if anyone may feel called to ministry and to speak with clergy of the church or ministry setting to discuss his/her call to ministry and to pursue the next steps.  For more information and resources on having a Called to Ministry Sunday, please email us at enteringministry@gmail.com and we will send you more information.  Please also visitwww.detroitconference.org/calledtoministry to learn more and to share our website and resources with someone who feels call to ministry.  The website includes BOM Recruitment Team members to contact with any questions and/or for guidance.


TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

Keep your church connected with live video streaming for as little as $79/month
Introducing live video streaming from TechShop! For as little as $79/month your church can have worship services streamed live over the Internet, connecting your church with younger, more diverse parts of your community as well as homebound and traveling members of your congregation. Anyone with Internet connection can experience your worship services via your website, Facebook fan page or mobile app. They can sing with the music, hear the Scriptures and listen to the sermon, just like they were there in-person. To get live streaming for your church, visit myUMClive.com and use the discount code: TechShop or call 1-888-346-3862.
 
Pastors Moving to New Churches Need the Right Start
Are you a pastor preparing to begin ministry in a new setting? With The Right Start DVD/CD Resource, you’ll learn how to end your current ministry well, develop a personal transition plan, and make the most of your first days, weeks, and months in your new congregation. Learn more
 
Learn 50 Ways to Welcome a New Pastor
If a new pastor or associate pastor is in your congregation’s future, be sure to check out the updated 50 Ways resource from the Lewis Center. This free handout shares how to say goodbye to your current pastor in a healthy way and offers helpful advice on how to welcome your new pastor. Download the PDF now

CAMP AND RETREAT MINISTRIES NEWS

September Retreat for Singers and Choirs
Individual singers and choirs are invited to the Adult Choir Retreat at Lake Huron Retreat Center Septermber 6-7.  Make plans now to attend before church choirs take their summer break. Join us for a weekend of music education and worship at an opportunity for all adults who love music. Arrive Friday evening and jump right into rehearsals and fellowship! Rehearsals, Bible Study and fellowship continue through Saturday. Take home some new music to use with your church choir!  The weekend concludes with a special benefit concert.  Participants may commute or stay at our wonderful retreat center just north of Port Huron.  Register online at www.umccamps.org/eventsessions .
 
Register Now for Summer Camp
Summer camp registrations have been pouring in this past week!  Parents recognize that a week of church camp gives their young people a week in God’s amazing creation making new friends, growing faith, learning new skills, building self-confidence, encountering new role models, and having loads of fun.  Secure your young person’s place at camp this summer, and register them online today at www.umccamps.org
 
Church Retreats at Myers Lake Campground
A growing number of United Methodist Churches are discovering Myers Lake Campground as a great place to have a retreat that is low in cost and high in enjoyment!  Myers Lake offers newly renovated group campsites, as well as camper cabins that can be combined with campsites  to serve your group’s needs.    Centrally located near Byron, Myers Lake also offers options for day away events for your church.  For more information, visit www.myerslake.org , or call (810)266-4511.
 
Upcoming Events:
  • Prayer Shawl Retreat at Judson Collins Center, May 3-4
  • Memorial Weekend Camping at Judson Collins Center and Myers Lake Campground, May 25 - 27
  • Memorial Weekend Camping at Judson Collins Center and Myers Lake Campground, May 25 - 27
  • Camp Kinawind Volunteer Work Camp , May 29 – June 4
  • Open House and Groundbreaking at Judson Collins Center, June 8
  • Golf Scramble for Camperships, Chemung Hills Golf Course, Howell, June 14

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • May 5 - Golden Cross Sunday
  • May 16-19 - 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session - Adrian, Mich.
  • May 26 - Peace with Justice Sunday
  • May 27 - Conference office closed in observance of Memorial Day
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey has announced the following appointments for the Detroit Conference:
  • Nancy Bitterling to Port Austin and Pinnebog-Grindstone UMCs (Blue Water District), effective July 1, 2013. She is currently providing pastoral leadership to Nashville UMC in the West Michigan Conference.
  • Danny Bledsoe to Juddville UMC (Crossroads District) as a district superintendent assignment, 1/4-time, effective July 1, 2013. This is his first assignment.
  • Benjamin Bower to Trenton: First UMC (Detroit Renaissance District) as a full-time local pastor, effective July 1, 2013. This is his first appointment.
  • Esther Irish to Columbiaville UMC (Crossroads District) as a full-time local pastor, effective July 1, 2013. She is currently providing pastoral leadership to Flint: Dimond UMC (Crossroads District).
  • Eric Johnson to Gaines and Duffield UMCs (Crossroads District), effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Sandusky: First UMC (Blue Water District).
  • Keith Lenard to Wyandotte: Glenwood UMC (Detroit Renaissance District) as a district superintendent assignment, 1/2-time, effective July 1, 2013. This is his first assignment.
  • Elizabeth Macaulay to medical leave of absence, effective April 15, 2013. She was providing pastoral leadership Trenton: First UMC (Detroit Renaissance District).
  • Lee Sayer to New Lothrup UMC (Crossroads District) as a district superintendent assignment, 1/2-time, effective July 1, 2013. This is his first assignment. 
To view appointment updates, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments

DEATH NOTICES

The following death notices were received by the Conference Office over the last week. To view all of the death notices, please visit www.detroitconference.org/obituaries.
  • Mr. Douglas Guibord, brother-in-law to Rev. Jerry D. Griggs [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Friday, April 26, 2013.

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

 
Church vitality: How do you define it?
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Leaders across the denomination are pondering that question even as they seek to increase the number of highly vital churches. This is the first in an ongoing series of reports. Read story and post a comment
 
How old is too old to join the clergy?
HOUSTON (UMNS) — A proposal from the Texas Annual (regional) Conference to discourage people over 45 from becoming candidates for ordination and people over 60 from licensed local pastors is igniting debate across the denomination. Read story and post a comment
 
George W. Bush Presidential Center dedication at SMU
DALLAS (UMNS) — The dedication was — to no small degree — a United Methodist event, given that former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura, are active United Methodists; that they chose to put the facility at a United Methodist school (Laura Bush’s alma mater); and that their pastor, the Rev. Mark Craig of Highland Park United Methodist Church, delivered a prayer. Sam Hodges of the United Methodist Reporter offers an overview of the new presidential center. Read story  Read Craig’s prayer
 
United Methodists mourn passing of Bob Edgar
WASHINGTON (UMNS) — The Rev. Bob Edgar, a United Methodist pastor and a “tireless defender of the poor and an advocate for justice” died unexpectedly April 23 of a heart attack at his home. He was 69. Edgar, who was the top executive of Common Cause, is the former top executive of the National Council of Churches and a former six-term congressman from Pennsylvania. He was president of Claremont (Calif.) School of Theology from 1990 to 2000. Read story
 
HBO movie raises needed malaria awareness
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — “Programs like The United Methodist Church’s Imagine No Malaria initiative and its partner organizations are making a difference, producing life-saving results,” writes the Rev. Larry Hollon, top executive of United Methodist Communications, as World Malaria Day approaches. “Malaria’s impact has been cut in half in just a few short years, but the battle is still far from over.” Read full commentary  Learn about the HBO movie  Imagine No Malaria
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • Deadline to register for Welcoming Ministry 100, May 1 — Online course from May 8 to June 19, sponsored by United Methodist Communications, $29. To register
  • Free webinar “Leadership in Small Churches,” May 2 — 6:30 p.m. CT, especially for churches with 100 or fewer in worship attendance from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • National Day of Prayer, May 2 — Resources for U.S. event from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship.
  • Older Adult Recognition Sunday, any Sunday in May — Resources compiled by the Virginia Annual (regional) Conference.
  • Free webinar “Tell of God’s Love; the Small Church Story on a Shoestring,” May 7 — 6:30 p.m. CT, help for small churches to get the word out from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Free webinar “Has God Been Invited to the Conversation?” May 9 — 6:30 p.m. CT, help with church and community prayer from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Ascension Day, May 9 — Celebrate Christ’s Ascension with resources from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship.
  • Mother’s Day, May 12 — Imagine No Malaria provides offering envelopes, posters and bulletin inserts to prepare for special offerings on Mother’s Day to benefit the campaign, which has significant impact on the lives of mothers and children. Details.
  • Free webinar “Gen2Gen: Sharing Jesus Across the Generations,” May 14 — 6:30 p.m. CT, from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Free webinar “Committed to Christ: Six Steps to a Generous Life,” May 16 — 6:30 p.m. CT, help with stewardship from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship. To register
  • Change the World, May 18-19 — Join the United Methodist Rethink Church event that helps build community locally and fight malaria globally. Details.
  • Pentecost, May 19 — Celebrate the birthday of the Christian church with resources from the Board of Discipleship and the United Methodist Publishing House’s Ministry Matters
  • “Inside Out for the Glory of God,” July 12-14 — Eleventh national gathering of United Methodist Men at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Details
  • School of Congregational Development, Aug. 15-18 — Hosted at Denver Marriott Tech Center, sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, Path1 and Board of Global Ministries. Theme is “Encountering God at the Edge.” Details

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the United Methodist connection:
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
  • Nursery Attendance - Detroit: Metropolitan UMC
  • Associate Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries - Detroit: Central UMC
  • Conference Director for Mission and Justice Engagement and Leadership Recruitment - Detroit Conference
  • Youth Director (part-time) - Crossroads District
  • Office Manager (part-time) - Byron UMC
  • Youth Director - Asbury UMC, Rochester, N.Y.
  • Part-time Children's Choir Director - Northville: First UMC
  • Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC
Other job openings:

About the Detroit Conference Connection

The Detroit Conference Connection is the weekly e-newsletter of the Detroit Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Every local church is encouraged to have their leaders subscribe to the Connection so that they can receive the latest news from the conference and general church. To subscribe to the Connection, please visit www.detroitconference.org/site/stayconnected. To submit news items for the Detroit Conference Connection, please send stories to Paul Thomas, Director of Communications

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

Detroit Conference on facebook: www.facebook.com/detroitconference
Detroit Conference on Twitter: www.twitter.com/umcdetroitconf
Wednesday - April 24, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - April 24, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - April 24, 2013

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
BLOG: A Faith for Hard Times
Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey, in her latest Michigan Meanderings article, writes about the recent difficult days for our country, our state, and our world. Read article and comment 
 
Committee on Nominations introduces new process
The Detroit Conference Committee on Nominations is seeking interested individuals for several at-large members prior to the 2013 annual conference session as a way to improve the nominations process. Read more 
 
Bishop Kiesey speaks on Michigan flooding
Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey issued a statement on the recent flooding in the Michigan Area after visiting the flooding that has affected Lowell, Mich. Read statement and find out how you can help 
 
Love crosses the finish line
Kimberly Grauer was in Boston on April 15 fulfilling a promise to her dad. She was among the runners stopped by police at Mile 25. “I got three medals," she says, “when I saw the faces of my mom, brother and friend that evening.” Kay DeMoss of the West Michigan Conference shares the story of Grauer and her family.  Read story

2013 ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION

The 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will take place on Thursday-Sunday, May 16-19, on the campus of Adrian College in Adrian, Mich. Information about the annual event can be found at www.detroitconference.org/annualconference.
 
Clergy choir being formed for Service of Ordination and Commissioning
A choir made up of active and retired clergy (including deacons, elders, and local pastors) is being formed for the Service of Ordination and Commissioning, which will take place at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 19. Clergy interested in singing with the choir are asked to bring their robes and a red stole to wear during the service. The Rev. David Gladstone will be directing the choir.
 
iPad Giveaway at the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference by the CALLED TO MINISTRY Team of the Board of Ordained Ministry
If you have had a Called to Ministry Sunday since the 2012 Detroit Annual Conference, you may enter the iPad giveaway which will take place during Annual Conference. You may enter by emailing the Board of Ordained Ministry Recruitment Team at enteringministry@gmail.com with (1) your name, (2) church or ministry setting, (3) when you had your Called to Ministry Sunday, and (4) names of anyone who responded to God's call to ministry. If you do not know what a Called to Ministry Sunday is, it is to have at least one moment during your worship service to ask if anyone may feel called to ministry and to speak with clergy of the church or ministry setting to discuss his/her call to ministry and to pursue the next steps. For more information and resources on having a Called to Ministry Sunday, please email enteringministry@gmail.com and more information will be sent to you. Please also visit www.detroitconference.org/calledtoministry to learn more and to share our website and resources with someone who feels call to ministry. The website includes BOM Recruitment Team members to contact with any questions and/or for guidance.
 
2013 session to be live-streamed
All plenary sessions and worship services during the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will be streamed live on the conference website. 

TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

Jan Thomas Receives National Award
Jan Thomas, former Director of Outdoor and Retreat Ministries for the Detroit Conference, recently received the Legacy of Leadership Award from the National Camp and Retreat Leaders of the United Methodist Church. The award recognizes leaders who have given years of exemplary service to camp and retreat ministries. Jan was one of the first female leaders in camping ministry, paving the way for many more. Jan will be stepping back into service this summer as she provides interim leadership to a United Methodist Camp in Alabama.
 
Prayer Shawl Retreat at Judson Collins Center
Come to Judson Collins Center May 3 and 4 to learn about Prayer Shawl Ministry!  Beginners as well as veterans are welcome! Share your experiences and ideas for prayer shawl ministry, or learn how to get one started. There will be time for instruction, worship, rest and growth as together we explore the amazing gifts that go into our crafts. Enjoy a weekend of being nurtured by Judson Collins Center’s gracious hospitality.  Guests are invited to come for the whole event or just part. For more information, visit www.judsoncollinscenter.org , or call (517) 467-7711.
 
The Power of Camp
The Christian Camping Association reports that the average American child spends 7.5 hours a day on electronic media:  television, video games, phones and ipods, and computers and tablets—totaling nearly 113 days a year!  16% of young people age 6 -19 are obese, and only 33% of our young people get enough exercise.  The average child spends 3.5 minutes of meaningful conversation with a parent every day. A week of church camp provides young people with caring, Christian adult role models, time to think without distractions, and high adventure all in the beauty of God’s creation.  A young person that spends a week at camp is there more waking hours than if they attended an entire year of Sunday school or youth group.  They form lifelong friendships that provide positive peer pressure.  It gives them a chance to be known and loved.   Adolescents gain the tools they need to make the tough decisions they face. Help the young people in your church and in your community experience the power of camp!  Register online today at www.umccamps.org .

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • April 25 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • April 27 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • May 5 - Golden Cross Sunday
  • May 16-19 - 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session - Adrian, Mich.
  • May 26 - Peace with Justice Sunday
  • May 27 - Conference office closed in observance of Memorial Day
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Administrative Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey has announced the following appointments for the Detroit Conference:
  • Michael Sawicki to Midland: Aldersgate UMC (Saginaw Bay District), effective July 1, 2013. He is currently appointed to FaithWay UMC (Saginaw Bay District)
  • Ted Whitely, Sr., to Birmingham: Embury, Troy: Fellowship, and Waterford: Trinity UMCs (Detroit Renaissance District), effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Detroit: Calvary UMC (Detroit Renaissance District).
To view appointment updates, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

 
Judicial Council splits East Africa decision
SEATTLE (UMNS) — A 10-year financial dispute between the Western Pennsylvania Annual (regional) Conference and the East Africa Annual Conference that wound up before The United Methodist Church’s top court has ended with a split decision that likely will not please everyone. Neill Caldwell, editor of the Virginia United Methodist Advocate and a correspondent for United Methodist News Service, reports on the council meeting. Read story and post a comment
 
‘Home Run’ hit for recovery ministries
TULSA, Okla. (UMNS) — “Home Run” is a movie about addiction — a story of a professional baseball player whose life spirals out of control because of ego and alcohol. Premiering today, April 19, the inspirational feature film highlights the recovery ministries offered by thousands of United Methodist churches.  Read news release
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • April 25 — World Malaria Day. Help fight the disease at imaginenomalaria.org.
  • May 1 — Deadline to register for Web Ministry 100 — Online course from May 8 to June 19, sponsored by United Methodist Communications, $49. To register.
  • May 1 — Deadline to register for Welcoming Ministry 100 — Online course from May 8 to June 19, sponsored by United Methodist Communications, $29. To register.
  • May 7-9 — RENEW retreat for United Methodist single clergy, Selah Inn at the Ranch, Mount Vernon, Texas. Details.
  • May 12 —  Mother's Day. Imagine No Malaria provides offering envelopes, posters and bulletin inserts to prepare for special offerings on Mother’s Day to benefit the campaign, which has significant impact on the lives of mothers and children. Details.
  • May 18-19 — Change the World. Join the United Methodist Rethink Church event that helps build community locally and fight malaria globally. Details.
  • July 12-14 — “Inside Out for the Glory of God.” Eleventh national gathering of United Methodist Men at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Details
  • Aug. 15-18 — School for Congregational Development. Hosted at Denver Marriott Tech Center, sponsored by the United Methodist Board of Discipleship, Path1 and Board of Global Ministries. Theme is “Encountering God at the Edge.” Details

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the United Methodist connection:
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
  • Associate Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries - Detroit: Central UMC
  • Administrative Secretary - Plymouth: First UMC
  • Conference Director for Mission and Justice Engagement and Leadership Recruitment - Detroit Conference
  • Youth Director (part-time) - Crossroads District
  • Office Manager (part-time) - Byron UMC
  • Youth Director - Asbury UMC, Rochester, N.Y.
  • Director of Children's Ministries (part-time) - Holly: Calvary UMC
  • Office Manager/Financial Secretary - Lake Louise Christian Community, Camp and Retreat Center
  • Part-time Children's Choir Director - Northville: First UMC
  • Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC
  • Coordinator of Youth Ministries - Auburn UMC

About the Detroit Conference Connection

The Detroit Conference Connection is the weekly e-newsletter of the Detroit Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Every local church is encouraged to have their leaders subscribe to the Connection so that they can receive the latest news from the conference and general church. To subscribe to the Connection, please visit www.detroitconference.org/site/stayconnected. To submit news items for the Detroit Conference Connection, please send stories to Paul Thomas, Director of Communications.

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

Detroit Conference on facebook: www.facebook.com/detroitconference
Detroit Conference on Twitter: www.twitter.com/umcdetroitconf
Wednesday - April 17, 2013
Detroit Conference Connection - April 17, 2013

Detroit Conference Connection - April 17, 2013

CONFERENCE NEWS

For the latest news from the Detroit Conference, please visit www.detroitconference.org/news.
 
Last Chance! Registration Deadline for 2013 Annual Conference session is Friday!
The registration deadline for the 2013 annual conference session is April 19. After the registration deadline passes, those individuals registering will not be able to register for special meals and a $30 late fee will be charged. Register for the conference today at www.detroitconference.org/annualconference.
 
Bishop Deb offers statement on Boston bombings
Michigan Area Bishop Deborah Kiesey said "our hears and prayers are with the people of Boston," in a statement released on Monday, April 15. Read statement and comment
 
Host a movie party to fight malaria
Throw a party to save lives. That’s the message The United Methodist Church is sharing in preparation for World Malaria Day, April 25. United Methodist advocates for Imagine No Malaria can raise awareness by hosting screening parties of HBO’s new movie, “Mary and Martha,” starring Oscar® winner Hilary Swank and Oscar® nominee Brenda Blethyn. The movie follows the journey of two women who meet in Africa and work to raise awareness of malaria, a preventable and treatable disease that claims a life every 60 seconds. Learn how to participate 
 
United Methodists offer prayer and comfort after Boston bombings
As investigators search for answers, the people of The United Methodist Church offer prayer, comfort and resources for healing in the aftermath of Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon.God in action after Boston bombing. Read story and view resources 
 
Bishop urges peace in Korea
United Methodist Bishop Hee-Soo Jung has issued a letter urging “North and South Korea to negotiate directly through their government leaders to forge an agreement ending the nuclear threat in the Korean peninsula” for the sake of the world community. Read story and post a comment  Read letter

2013 ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION

The 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session will take place on Thursday-Sunday, May 16-19, on the campus of Adrian College in Adrian, Mich. Information about the annual event can be found at www.detroitconference.org/annualconference.
 
Conference choir members, ushers needed
The annual conference session worship committee is inviting any interested persons to participate in the choir, brass choir, or serve as an usher during worship services. DOWNLOAD THIS FORM and submit it by April 19 if you are interested in serving in any of these areas.
 
Images needed for annual conference worship services
The worship committee for the Detroit Annual Conference session would like to invite people to participate in a pictorial collection of people celebrating ministry. They are looking for people to send in pictures of people participating in ministry activities in local churches so that they can celebrate the goodness that is being done in communities across the conference. They are looking for all sorts of different activities from baptisms to choirs to vacation Bible schools to softball games. Anything that you could share where people are enjoying being a part of ministry in some fashion is welcome. A collage of these pictures will be presented as a part of the Saturday (May 18) morning worship. If you have some good pictures that you would like to share, please send them to Brian Kelley at bkelley@umc-sc.org by May 1.
 
Voting items available for download
The voting items for members of the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session are now available online at www.detroitconference.org. Voting items will not be mailed or available in print. It is the responsibility of every member to print or download the materials, and for local churches to make sure their members have the necessary materials. 
 
Special collections during the conference session
A number of special collections will take place during the annual conference session, including offerings for Haiti and Liberia, and collections of new underwear for community agencies as part of the Bishop's Seat Cover Project. Click here to view all of the collection opportunities for your church. 
 
Guest speakers to visit annual conference session for special meals
Several groups will be having guest speakers during their special meals at the 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session. The Rev. Amy DeLong, executive director of Kairos CoMotion, will speak at the Board of Church and Society dinner on Friday, May 17, while Princess Jusu, a missionary with the General Board of Global Ministries serving in Liberia, will be the keynote speaker at the Board of Global Ministries dinner that evening. On Saturday, May 18, the Rev. Kris Kappler, a Detroit Conference clergy member serving as a missionary in Kazakhstan, will speak at the IMPACT breakfast. Dr. Philip Amerson, president of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, will speak at the Garrett Alumni dinner. Friday, April 19 is the final day to register for special meals. View all special meal opportunities

TIDBITS AND OTHER INFORMATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW …

New Beginnings Workshops
The Conference Board of Ordained Ministry is offering workshops to insure a healthy transition for those churches that are changing pastors this summer. The workshops are free of charge, and there are separate workshops for staff-parish relations committee members and pastors, program staff, and administrative assistants/secretaries. View the flyer and registration form 
 
Michigan Area Haiti Task Force newsletter
The Michigan Area Haiti Task Force has begun producing a newsletter, which can be viewed here
 
5 signs your church needs social media training
You have a website. You tweet. You're on Facebook. You blog. You may think this article doesn’t apply to you. Not so fast. There is always room for improvement. read more »
 
8 ways to connect young adults to the church
During the coming summer, young adults in your church, as well as their friends, may have time – and skills – to share. Create opportunities for young adults to engage with the church and community. Read more
 
Putting Your Passions and Skills to Work
In an effort to more effectively identify, nurture, and utilize the passions and skills of United Methodists, the Detroit Conference Nominations Committee, has developed a new Passions and Skills Inventory. This tool, available online is a quick, easy way for clergy and laity to better connect with the many ministries of the Detroit Conference, and for the committee to better utilize the United Methodist connection to strengthen the Conference's ministries by enabling people to serve in ways and areas best suited to their God-given talents. Take the survey 

CAMP AND RETREAT MINISTRIES NEWS

Presenters Available to Local Churches to Promote Camping
One characteristic of vital congregations is that they offer many options for children, youth, and families.  A visitor from the Conference's camp and retreat ministries can help families in your church understand and take advantage of this valuable ministry that is available to them. They can tailor their time with you to help meet the needs of your particular setting, whether it is providing a Sunday morning message, visiting with classes or youth meetings, a mid-week program, a home based “tupperware party” with parents, summer opportunity fair, or other setting. To learn more and schedule a presenter, please call Jim Parkhurst in the Camp and Retreat Ministries office at (800) 334-0544 x337, or e-mail jparkhurst@detroitconference.org.
 
Ride the Bus to Camp Kinawind this Summer
Bus transportation to and from Camp Kinawind will be offered for several weeks of camp this summer, with pickup and drop off points in Pontiac and Flint. Camp Kinawind is our wonderful north woods Christian camp that is your camper’s base for rustic and adventure camping. For more information, visit www.umccamps.org.
 
Enjoy RV and Tent Camping at a Christian Campground This Summer
Myers Lake Campground, centrally located near Byron, Michigan, offers RV and tent camping to you and your family in a safe, clean, alcohol-free lakeside setting. A sandy beach with paddle boats and other rentals are available for your enjoyment. Join them for worship by the lake every Sunday morning. Myers Lake also offers camper cabins to rent. Church groups may be interested in visiting Myers Lake together for a time and retreat and fellowship, using one of their newly upgraded group sites. Many special themed events happen throughout the summer for your family’s enjoyment. Volunteer and stay free on their work week, April 24-28! To learn more and to make a reservation request, visit www.myerslake.org.
 
Correction
The dates for the Teddy Bear camp at Lake Louise were listed in correctly in the Camp and Retreat brochure. The correct dates are July 14-16 for Terry Bear 1 and August 4-6 for Teddy Bear 2. For more information visit www.lakelouisecommunity.org.

UPCOMING EVENTS

To view the conference calendar and submit events, please visit www.detroitconference.org/events. For events happening in local churches across the conference, please visit http://www.detroitconference.org/events/index?mode=church. Local churches may submit events through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
  • April 25 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Admin. Assistants, Staff) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • April 27 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • May 5 - Golden Cross Sunday
  • May 16-19 - 2013 Detroit Annual Conference session - Adrian, Mich.
  • May 26 - Peace with Justice Sunday
  • May 27 - Conference office closed in observance of Memorial Day
  • May 30 - New Beginnings (Pastors, Admin. Assistants, Staff) - Frankenmuth UMC
  • June 1 - New Beginnings (Staff/Pastor-Parish Relations Committee members) - Troy: Big Beaver UMC
  • July 4 - Conference office closed in observance of Independence Day
  • July 8-16 - Wesley Heritage Tour with Bill Dobbs
  • July 12-14 - 11th National Gathering of United Methodist Men
  • July 21-26 - Michigan Area School for License as a Local Pastor
  • August 20-22 - Michigan Area School for Pastoral Ministry

APPOINTMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Michigan Area Bishop Deborah L. Kiesey has announced the following appointments for the Detroit Conference:
  • John Amick to UMCOR as Assistant General Secretary, International Disaster Response, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Flint: Hope UMC (Crossroads District).
  • Jeremy Benton to the Wesley Foundation of Greenville, N.C., as campus minister, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Ortonville UMC (Crossroads District).
  • Tim Callow to Newberry and Engadine UMCs (Marquette District) as a full-time local pastor, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently attending Duke Divinity School.
  • Patricia Green to retirement, effective July 1, 2013. She is currently providing pastoral leadership Milan: Marble Memorial UMC (Ann Arbor District).
  • Carolyn Harris to retirement, effective July 1, 2013. She is currently providing pastoral leadership to Salem Grove UMC (Ann Arbor District) as a part-time local pastor and will continue to serve Salem Grove UMC in retirement.
  • Jennifer Jue to Wayne: First UMC (Detroit Renaissance District), effective July 1, 2013. She is currently serving Napoleon UMC in the West Michigan Conference.
  • Lisa Kelley to Hillman and Spratt UMCs (Saginaw Bay District) as a full-time local pastor, effective July 1, 2013. This will be her first appointment. 
  • Mark D. Miller to Muskegon Central UMC (West Michigan Conference) as senior pastor, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Midland: Aldersgate UMC (Saginaw Bay District).
  • In Boem Oh to Troy: Korean UMC (Detroit Renaissance District) as associate pastor, effective July 1, 2013. This is his first appointment.
  • Matthew Osborne to Sandusky: First UMC (Blue Water District) as a full-time local pastor, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Algonac: Trinity and Marine City UMCs (Blue Water District).
  • Kristin Parks to Blissfield: First UMC (Ann Arbor District), effective July 1. She is currently serving as the youth director for the Crossroads District.
  • William Sanders to Fairgrove and Watrousville UMCs (Saginaw Bay District), effective July 1, 2013. He is a retired elder from the West Michigan Conference and has most recently served Standish: Community UMC and Saganing Indian Church (Saginaw Bay District).
  • Norma Taylor to Sterling Heights UMC (Detroit Renaissance District) as a district superintendent assignment (DSA), effective July 1, 2013. This is her first assignment.
  • Alonzo Vincent to retirement, effective July 1, 2013. He is currently providing pastoral leadership to Mt. Morris UMC (Crossroads District).
To view appointment updates, please visit www.detroitconference.org/appointments

DEATH NOTICES

The following death notices were received by the Conference Office over the last week. To view all of the death notices, please visit www.detroitconference.org/obituaries.
  • Mrs. Marjorie Stone, mother-in-law to Rev. Dr. John E. Harnish [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Saturday, April 13, 2013. 

CONNECTIONAL NEWS 

 
God in action after Boston bombing
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Evil struck Monday, but by Tuesday it was clear evil did not have the last word. United Methodists in Boston and around the globe testified to the ways they saw God in action after two explosions shattered the peace of the Boston Marathon, claiming at least three lives and leaving more than 170 injured. Read story and post a comment
 
Judicial Council starts spring meeting
SEATTLE (UMNS) — The United Methodist Judicial Council begins its spring meeting April 17 in Seattle. In addition to the April docket, the council will consider an item deferred from the council’s October 2012 meeting on how United Methodist church funds are handled in East AfricaView April docket
 
Cokesbury consultants now available
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) — Cokesbury is building a staff of community resource consultants across the United States to offer customers personal support, even as its stores close their doors. So far, the United Methodist Publishing House’s retail arm has hired 43 consultants and ultimately plans to have 50 on call. Many will work near the locations of former stores. “Because it is less expensive to place a community resource consultant in a market than a store, we took the opportunity to significantly expand the personal support we can provide touching more markets than we could hope to do with stores,” said Amy Smith of the United Methodist Publishing House.  To find a consultant near you
 
‘Pastors are human, too’
INDIANAPOLIS (UMNS) — Indiana Area Bishop Mike Coyner reflects on the suicide of the son of the Rev. Rick Warren, Saddleback Church pastor and best-selling author. Coyner is saddened that in Warren's time of grief, others have used the tragedy to condemn both him and the Christian faith. “Perhaps this sad situation with the Warren family can remind all of us that clergy and their families are human, too,” he writes. Read blog 
 
Looking ahead
Here are some of the activities ahead for United Methodists across the connection. 
  • April 18-19 — “Light the Fire! Divine Healing,” church renewal conference — Ginghamsburg Church, Tipp City, Ohio. Details.
  • April 21 — Festival of God's Creation/Earth Day Sunday is April 21. The United Methodist Board of Church and Society offers resources.
  • April 25 — World Malaria Day. Help fight the disease at imaginenomalaria.org.
  • May 1 — Deadline to register for Web Ministry 100 — Online course from May 8 to June 19, sponsored by United Methodist Communications, $49. To register.
  • May 1 — Deadline to register for Welcoming Ministry 100 — Online course from May 8 to June 19, sponsored by United Methodist Communications, $29. To register.
  • May 7-9 — RENEW retreat for United Methodist single clergy, Selah Inn at the Ranch, Mount Vernon, Texas. Details.
  • May 18-19 — Change the World. Join the United Methodist Rethink Church event that helps build community locally and fight malaria globally. Details.

CLASSIFIEDS/JOB OPPORTUNITIES

To view and submit classifieds, please visit www.detroitconference.org/classifieds. Local churches may enter a classified through the Church Dashboard at www.detroitconference.org/churchdashboard.
 
Current job openings within the Detroit Conference:
  • Youth Director (part-time) - Crossroads District
  • Office Manager (part-time) - Byron UMC
  • Youth Director - Asbury UMC, Rochester, N.Y.
  • Administrative Secretary - Plymouth: First UMC
  • Director of Children's Ministries (part-time) - Holly: Calvary UMC
  • Office Manager/Financial Secretary - Lake Louise Christian Community, Camp and Retreat Center
  • Part-time Children's Choir Director - Northville: First UMC
  • Custodian - Detroit: Trinity-Faith UMC
  • Coordinator of Youth Ministries - Auburn UMC

About the Detroit Conference Connection

The Detroit Conference Connection is the weekly e-newsletter of the Detroit Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Every local church is encouraged to have their leaders subscribe to the Connection so that they can receive the latest news from the conference and general church. To subscribe to the Connection, please visit www.detroitconference.org/site/stayconnected. To submit news items for the Detroit Conference Connection, please send stories to Paul Thomas, Director of Communications.

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