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Features
Tuesday - April 21, 2015
Adrian students bring past to life

The Core experience for first-year students at Adrian College helps young people consider the similarities and the differences between slavery old and new, and develops strategies to fight injustice....  read more

 


Monday - April 27, 2015
Massive emergency response underway in Nepal

Your dollars and your prayers are needed in the global mobilization to aid victims and first responders in Nepal. UMCOR assistance will be funded through International Disaster Response Advance: 982450.

Tuesday - April 21, 2015
UM Night at Comerica Park July 17

The Detroit Tigers meet the Baltimore Orioles July 17 for the 3rd Annual Renaissance in the D. Buy your tickets now for nine innings of great baseball and fellowship with United Methodists from across the state of Michigan.    read more>>


Monday - April 27, 2015
Kalamazoo Wesley is on the move

Five years after an offer was made by Western Michigan University, the Kalamazoo Wesley Foundation broke ground for a new student center on April 21st.

News
Monday - April 27, 2015
Coalition mounts massive emergency response to quake

The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25, the most powerful quake in 81 years to hit the region, caused significant damage in Patan Durbar Square in Kathmandu.~ ACT Alliance/DCA

LINDA BLOOM
United Methodist News Service

United Methodists joined Christians around the world in a prayerful response to the earthquake that has claimed thousands of lives in Nepal and neighboring China and India.

BBC News reported the death toll at 4,000 people, with at least 7,000 injuries by Monday evening as the Nepalese army and police undertook massive search and rescue operations.  Many were living in “vast tent cities” in the capital of Kathmandu as aftershocks from the 7.8-magnitude earthquake continued.

Five missionaries working in Nepal for the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries were reported safe.

In a joint statement, the World Council of Churches and the Christian Conference of Asia called churches around the world to pray for those affected by the earthquake and “extend every possible support for humanitarian aid assistance in Nepal and other affected areas in the neighboring countries.” The World Methodist Council also offered its prayers for the people of Nepal.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief is planning to offer assistance through international and local partners, including the United Mission to Nepal, a longtime church partner. UMCOR approved a $90,000 grant April 27 to GlobalMedic, which will help earthquake survivors access clean water by providing household and public water-filtration units.

Coalition begins work

UMCOR is part of the ACT Alliance, a coalition of more than 140 churches and affiliated organizations associated with the WCC or Lutheran World Federation, some of whom already have a presence in Nepal.

The Lutheran World Federation, for example, has an emergency team on the ground and is coordinating its efforts through the ACT Alliance Nepal forum with the Nepalese government and the United Nations.

Over the weekend, the federation distributed tarpaulins, hygiene kits and ready-made food to about 400 families in Kathmandu and is working on emergency shelter and water, sanitation and hygiene materials.

DanChurchAid, which has a local office in Kathmandu, is building a temporary tent camp where survivors could safely stay. 

The United Nations refugee agency is sending plastic sheets, 4,000 solar lanterns and tarpaulins for shelter, while UNICEF, the U.N. Children’s Fund, is mobilizing to help children and families affected by the earthquake.

Missionaries survey damage

Dr. Mark Zimmerman, a United Methodist missionary and medical doctor serving in Kathmandu as director of the Nick Simons Institute, which trains rural health care workers, was with his family in church when the earthquake struck at noon Saturday Nepal time.

At first, he said, the damage seemed minimal. But Zimmerman and his wife, Deirdre Zimmerman, a missionary who serves as advisor for nutrition programs, soon learned that was not the case.

The more serious concern is in the rural areas, where communication and relief support are sparse,” he wrote in an April 26 letter. “No one knows the extent of the loss of life and the hardship out there.”

Missionary Katherine T. Parker expressed appreciation for the outpouring of concern by church members and made specific prayer requests as the earthquake recovery began. Parker deals with issues of water, sanitation and hygiene as a member of the health team of United Mission to Nepal.

“Our relief focus will be primarily in Dhading and planning for this has started,” she wrote about the mission’s plans in a Facebook post. “Two doctors from Tansen left from Pokhara this morning to go to Gorkha. We are coordinating all of our efforts with other local partners.”

Thousands of homes and most schools reportedly were destroyed in Gorkha, one of the closest districts to the earthquake’s epicenter.

No damage was reported at Tansen in western Nepal, where a hospital related to the United Mission to Nepal was established in 1954 as a partnership between the people of Nepal and a coalition of 20 Christian organizations on four continents.

A United Methodist missionary couple has worked at Tansen hospital since 2012. Dr. Lester Dornon is a senior physician and Deborah Dornon is coordinator of expatriate services. They also served in Nepal and Tansen from 1990 to 2002.

Your gifts needed

Donations to support the response to the earthquake in Nepal and other international disasters can be made through UMCOR Advance # 982450. Checks can be made out to your local United Methodist church. Write UMCOR Advance #982450 on the memo line and put in the offering plate.

The Board of Global Ministries asks that people NOT self deploy to the disaster area. The situation remains one of search and rescue and is not a place for untrained volunteers.

Do not self-deploy to the disaster area. The situation in Nepal remains one of search and rescue and not a time for volunteers. - See more at: http://www.umcmission.org/learn-about-us/news-and-stories/2015/april/0427unitedmethodistsrespond#sthash.WnxhD3JP.dpuf
Do not self-deploy to the disaster area. The situation in Nepal remains one of search and rescue and not a time for volunteers. - See more at: http://www.umcmission.org/learn-about-us/news-and-stories/2015/april/0427unitedmethodistsrespond#sthash.WnxhD3JP.dpuf

~home page photo from General Board of Global Ministries courtesy REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

Photo: REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar
Monday - April 27, 2015
Future General Conference sites determined

DIANE DEGNAN
United Methodist Communications

Meeting in Portland, Oregon this week for their final meeting before General Conference 2016, the Commission on the General Conference voted to take the quadrennial legislative gathering out of the U.S. for the first time in 2024 – and again in 2028.

Manila, Philippines was chosen as the site for the 2024 General Conference. The Commission also voted to hold the 2028 conference in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Judi Kenaston, chairperson of the Commission on the General Conference, said that the Commission has been considering holding the assembly outside the U.S. for some time. Bishop Rodolfo Alfonso Juan of the Manila Episcopal Area and Bishop Eben K. Nhiwatiwa of the Zimbabwe Episcopal Area both extended invitations for the General Conference to meet in their respective areas, an important consideration in choosing those areas. 

"The Commission wanted to set these locations now to allow plenty of time for all involved to make the necessary preparations," said Kenaston.

“Meeting outside the U.S. is an important statement to say that we're a worldwide denomination,” said Sara Hotchkiss, business manager of the General Conference. “The enthusiasm and hospitality in the two host countries has been remarkable.”

The meeting is expected to cost more than the 2016 General Conference, but pricing is not available at this early date. Hotchkiss said there are two convention centers in Manila to be considered and that the University of Zimbabwe would be a potential location in Harare, but it is too soon to make any definite decisions.

The Commission also took steps to help delegates from outside the U.S. participate more fully in the 2016 General Conference. They voted to provide tablets to Central Conference delegates so they would be able to receive documents electronically.

"We want to utilize technology to improve communication and provide opportunities for discussion for non-U.S. delegates ahead of time," said the Rev. Gere Reist, secretary of the General Conference. "It will enable us to ensure delivery of the Advance Edition Daily Christian Advocate to delegates who have the tablets in a more timely way ... they could get the information at the same time as delegates in the U.S. and participate more fully."

Reist said the General Conference had specifically charged the Commission to look at "greater use of technology before General Conference to inform our debate, let dialogue between delegates begin before arriving at the session and to prioritize petitions."

The staff at United Methodist Communications evaluated a variety of tablets to see which would work best, looking at pricing, ease of use, size, weight, battery life and durability in harsh environments, and chose the Samsung GalaxyTab 4.

Sherri Thiel, interim General Secretary of United Methodist Communications, said her agency would distribute the tablets beginning in October and would also be responsible for training delegates how to use the tablets and coordinating help-desk support during the 10-day event. 

"It's an exciting opportunity," said Thiel. "This is just one of the ways that technology is transforming the way the church communicates. We want the delegates to have the tablets in advance so they will be able to get familiar with the technology."

She said the tablets would also include an electronic version of the Bible and the United Methodist Book of Discipline.

"We think this is a good opportunity to see how the tablets work to test whether they might move towards going to an electronic state for all delegates in 2020 in Minneapolis," said Hotchkiss. “We’d love to avoid the bulk of the paper and lessen our environmental impact.” 

Monday - April 27, 2015
SE Michigan JFON receives Peace with Justice Grant

The United Methodist General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) has awarded $41,400 to 15 Peace with Justice ministries around the world. The grants are in conjunction with the denomination’s Peace with Justice Sunday, which witnesses to God's demand for a faithful, just, disarmed and secure world.

Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON) — Southeastern Michigan, a ministry of the Detroit Conference based at Beverly Hills United Methodist Church, was among the recipients. JFON provides free or low-cost legal services to persons with immigration issues. The ministry also includes education and advocacy. The grant of $2,500 will further that work.

Peace with Justice Sunday, May 31, this year, is one of the six United Methodist Special Sundays with offering. Established by the 1988 General Conference, the denomination’s highest policy-making body, Peace with Justice Sunday supports programs that advocate peace and justice at home and around the world.

Half of the Special Sunday offering is retained in annual conferences to fund local Peace with Justice programs. Half is remitted to GBCS to help fund U.S. and global work in social action, public-policy education and advocacy.

Grant awards are determined by GBCS’s Board of Directors during its spring meeting.

A special toolkit contains all you need to lead your congregation to promote peace and justice.

Access your Pastor and Leader's Kit now!

Monday - April 27, 2015
UM missionary reports from Kathmandu

Global Ministries Missionary Mark Zimmerman serving in Kathmandu, Nepal, shares an update following the 7.8-magnitude earthquake which struck the region, Saturday, April 25. Mark serves as a medical doctor serving in Kathmandu, Nepal, as director of the Nick Simons Institute (NSI) and his wife Deirdre Zimmerman serves as an advisor to the Nutrition Promotion and Consultancy Services, through the Nutrition Project for Urban Communities, which works to enrich the lives of Nepalis with better nutrition through education and training.

Dear Friends,

This is a quick note to keep you informed in the aftermath of Saturday’s Nepal earthquake. My family and I are well and are thankful for your thoughts and prayers.

We were in church when the earthquake hit on Saturday (April 25) at 12 noon, Nepal time. Its length and force was far beyond anything anyone of us had experienced before and we fully expected the buildings to come down.

Thankfully, this did not happen. In fact, on the street, the main overt damage was two flimsy compound walls and old temples. Our first impression was of minimal damage. Our apartment only experienced some things falling from the shelves; 95 percent was left standing and intact.

However, as news filtered in from all sources, it became apparent that many were not so fortunate. The iconic Bhimsen Tower (Dharahara) was leveled to a single, one story shard with 80 lives lost in that incident alone. Reports continued to put the numbers into the hundreds, and now have crossed 2,000 dead. Patan Hospital remained standing (as did most modern structures) and saw 30 people dead, most of the rest were ‘walking wounded.’

The more serious concern is in the rural areas, where communication and relief support are sparse. No one knows the extent of the loss of life and the hardship out there. We, in NSI (Nick Simons Institute, an organization working in Nepal with a mission to train and support rural health care workers), are in touch with the government about how we can help respond. I think this will be in Sindhupalchowk District, which we’ll visit tomorrow. The other badly hit area is Gorkha, the epicenter of the quake.

In the 32 hours since the quake, we have experienced aftershocks significant enough to shake us up. I’d guess that 80 percent of folks in the valley continue to camp out on their front lawns, rather than go inside their houses. The power has been completely cut, which has begun to affect water supply, because most people here have to pump it. Only 10 percent of shops are open. With roads all intact, there is every reason to hope that food will not become short.

To reiterate, my family and the folks in NSI are well. We thank God. All of us in Nepal thank you for your thoughts and prayers over the coming days and weeks.

Warmly,

Mark Zimmerman
Nick Simons Institute, Nepal

Monday - April 27, 2015
Virtual teamwork benefits church leaders

CLAY MORGAN
United Methodist Communications

Once upon a time, team members had to be located together, usually in the same place. The Internet changed everything. Collaborators and companies all over the world fundamentally shifted the ways they work and thrived as they spanned distance and time with virtual teams.

Church leaders can also benefit from virtually connected teams by leading more effectively and saving valuable time for members.

What are virtual teams?

Good virtual teams include individuals who understand the benefits of project management. They share project goals and objectives and work together from dispersed geographic locations through telecommunications. Interaction can be live or asynchronous (not occurring at the same time).

Effectively using mediated communication such as the Internet requires a different communication skill set. Before we get to the best ways to set up and manage your group virtually, consider a few reasons you might want to experiment more with this model.

Advantages of working virtually

1. Overcome time restrictions. You probably don't know many church leaders with too much time on their hands. We all want more hours in the day. You probably know someone who struggles to attend physical meetings but could answer a video call.

2. Overcome geographic barriers. You don't have to run a multi-site church in order for distance to be challenging. It can be tough to make even a 20- to 30-minute drive to a meeting site. What about individuals who need child care for every meeting? Working virtually can be a stress-relieving money saver.

3. Be culturally relevant. Technology is only increasing, so we do well to learn the tools. Students use virtual groups throughout their educational careers and more people than ever work remotely. Virtual interaction is second nature to future leaders. 

4. Encourage more voices to be heard. In a virtual meeting, perceptions about rank and differences often decrease. People who are shy or intimidated in face-to-face conversation are often more comfortable voicing their opinions in computer-mediated interaction. We are all the same size on computer monitors.

Potential challenges for virtual teams

To establish a collaborative climate in any medium, group members need to trust and support one another. This is sometimes difficult. Be realistic about obstacles to establishing an ideal group dynamic. Here are some potential drawbacks in virtual interaction.

  • It is harder to pick up on body language or other nonverbal cues.
  • Tone is harder to read in electronically written communication.
  • Someone may not take the time to express something in writing that they would state quickly in a face-to-face setting.
  • It can take longer to reach consensus in virtual groups (although more deliberation may be a good thing).
  • Some people will struggle to work virtually. Individual members need a level of self-sufficiency and independence.

How to manage a virtual team

Successful leaders set clear goals and make communication an integral part of the church’s mission. Here are ways to do both in a virtual setting.

  • Choose the right technology to foster communication. Virtual teams can work through live conference calls or video calls as well as written communication such as emails, texting and social media. Cloud-based file-sharing apps such as Dropbox are also great. In our next issue we'll cover various tools available to help run virtual teams.
  • Establish ground rules. For example, remind everyone to have a good environment free of distractions and noises. Let people know to join quietly if they call in after a meeting has begun.
  • Establish a rhythm. Everyone should prepare early with time to set up their tech and get settled. Create a consistent pattern to keep everything moving forward consistently.
  • Remind everyone that they're members of a team. Make sure everyone knows the schedule and the deliverables. Show team members how their tasks fit into the larger goal. What do other team members need and why?
  • Look for opportunities to socialize. Get the team together at times for work or play.

If you're not using the Internet to communicate with your team, try it. You might find unexpected value like saving resources or seeing a typically passive contributor emerge.

Tuesday - April 21, 2015
Adrian first-year students relive abolitionist history
Adrian College student Gregory Roy prepares to enter the debate in the game used to teach students about history. Photo Mike Neal

CHRIS MOMANY
Chaplain-Professor, Adrian College  

Aging former president John Quincy Adams steps to the podium. He is troubled. It is 1845, and a man named Frederick Douglass has just released an autobiography.

Several in the room attack the memoir. Its elegant style, clarity and powerful arguments could not have been written by Douglass, a former slave, they insist. The conversation is thick with presumption, racist attitudes and, thankfully, insightful affirmations of Douglass and his work.

Adams has resisted slavery for some time and even defended the Amistad captives before the U.S. Supreme Court. How long? How long will it take for all Americans to be free? Douglass is there, too, enduring the arrogant insults of those who hold his intellect in contempt. It is a tense meeting, and there is a lot to sort out.

This tense meeting is not really a gathering in 1845, but a dramatic portrayal undertaken by Adrian College’s first-year students in 2015. Adrian College is a United Methodist-related school.

“The Frederick Douglass Game,” uses the teaching method termed “Reacting to the Past.” The drama was written by historians Mark Higbee, a professor at Eastern Michigan University; James Stewart, a professor emeritus at Macalester College; and Deborah Field, a professor at Adrian College. The “game” is designed to confront college students with our nation’s history around race, gender, class, and other issues.

Some unsavory characters take part in this debate, figures from history who did not believe in equality.

“The game is definitely challenging when it comes to remembering that these aren’t really our own opinions and that we really aren’t getting upset or angry at each other. These opinions are from people in history, and we are trying to portray them accurately,” said Ashley Bruce, a first-year student who played John Quincy Adams.

The students note that the person who would become Adrian College’s first president is also in the room. Asa Mahan is a fierce advocate for love and justice, and he intends to speak his mind.

The “Frederick Douglass Game” is just one component of a first-year experience course taught by Adrian College faculty. Many colleges and universities have such first-year experience courses that help students transition from high school to college life.

Adrian College does that, too. The course is called “Core,” and much of the curriculum covers the practices of close reading, writing, speaking and research.

But Adrian, started by anti-slavery advocates in 1859, has a twist.

Most of the college’s founders were veteran abolitionists and activists on the Underground Railroad. They came from places like Syracuse, New York, and Oberlin, Ohio. President Mahan was widely published in philosophy and ethics. He was known for his writing on Christian perfection or holiness.

The Adrian College program draws upon this unique heritage when helping students learn today. Part of the curriculum includes reading David Batstone’s book, “Not for Sale,” an exposé of human trafficking — otherwise known as modern-day slavery. Then, of course, there is the Douglass game.

Melissa Stewart, Adrian College professor of religion, said: “The first-year experience courses give students a chance to find their voice. Adrian College is uniquely poised, given its abolitionist history, to help students connect their young passions, school pride and academic studies so that they can envision themselves as future citizens concerned for greater justice.”

Recently, the National Association of Schools and Colleges of The United Methodist Church challenged member institutions to develop programs on behalf of social justice and human dignity. Core is one way we at Adrian are already doing that. Our students learn to step back in time and grapple with difficult issues. They learn to speak up for the intrinsic worth of people. They learn that as many as 27 million people are enslaved today. They consider the similarities and the differences between slavery old and new, and they develop creative and courageous ways to fight injustice.

The core program began one year ago with a pilot course. This year half of the first year class is involved (260 students). Next fall the entire entering class will participate.

History harbors both good and bad. The past is not automatically worse than the present, nor is it a time of pristine example. But it is immensely instructive.

We were abolitionists more than 150 years ago, and we remain abolitionists today. Moreover, this is not simply some initiative on the margins of campus culture, shoved in around the edges of academic life. This is at the center of our pedagogy. Being who we are is hard work, and we take that very seriously.

 

 

 

Events
Thursday - April 30, 2015
April 30, 2015 SPRC 101 Class
Thursday - April 30, 2015
New Beginnings for Pastors and Support Staff

 

Free seminar for Clergy and Churches with new appointments in the Detroit Conference.

Pastor's seminar from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Support staff seminar from 9:30 - 3:00 p.m.

To register, email your name, church, email contact, and role (Pastor, support clergy/staff, P/SPRC, Admin)

to Nancy Arnold: narnold@detroitconference.org

 

PLEASE NOTE LOCATION CHANGE TO SAGINAW: STATE STREET UMC

Saturday - May 2, 2015
BWD UMW Prayer Breakfast

Rev. Linda Fuller, pastor of Caseville UMC, is the speaker. Special Music by Debi Ackerman and her daughter, Lora Aldrich. The reservation deadline is by April 25, 2015.

Saturday - May 2, 2015
Christian Unity & Interreligious Relations

 T.B.D. 

Saturday - May 2, 2015
Cinco De Mayo - Taco Dinner - Yale UMC

The 1st Saturday of the month, A Dinner will be served from 5-7pm. This month will be Cinco De Mayo - Taco Dinner. This is a fundraiser. The cost of Each Homemade TACO is $3 which includes beans, rice, & cinnamon crisps if you like!

Come and enjoy some great food!

Saturday - May 2, 2015
New Beginnings for Staff Parish Members

Free seminar for members of Pastor/Staff Parish Relations Committee who will have a change in pastors this year.  

To register, email your name, church, email contact, and role (Pastor, support clergy/staff, P/SPRC, Admin) to

Nancy Arnold: narnold@detroitconference.org

 

PLEASE NOTE THE CHANGE OF LOCATION TO SAGINAW: STATE STREET UMC

Blogs
Tuesday - April 14, 2015
Will the church be left behind?

 

Just got back from a lovely one mile walk in the sunshine and I don’t have to tell you that, after this long, long winter, I enjoyed every step! The temptation was to keep on walking, but duty called and my computer was waiting. But when I’m finished here, the sun is still shining and the road is beckoning!
 
The Burning Question for this month comes as two sides of the same coin. I first saw it on a blog post by a layperson, but I have heard it since from lay and clergy alike. “When considering the decision to move forward with the creation of one new conference, what are the compelling reasons for change and what are the compelling reasons for remaining as we are now, with two separate conferences?”

As I begin to think about the answer for this two-sided question, I am very much aware that what would be compelling for one person might not be compelling or ‘as’ compelling for another. There is something of the personal in each answer, so let me share something of my compelling reasons even as I invite you to consider what will be compelling for you.
 
One advantage of being in ministry for 43 years is that I have seen a lot of changes in the ways that we do our work. Some have been easy changes but most – like any change - have not been without their challenges.
 
When I started out we were doing bulletins on typewriters and mimeograph machines – with stencils and correction fluid. We had no (or very few) conflicting demands for people’s time on Sunday mornings, and businesses still closed for church holidays. And we had no cell phones. I remember the first cell phones I ever saw. They were “bag” phones or car phones and it was a major production to carry one around reserved, for the most part, for the well-to-do.
 
So I had a pager in my pre-cell phone days. All it did was beep to ask me to call my office or my home to find out what it was that I needed to know. It worked wonders. There were at least two occasions when I beat the family to the hospital. But it also wreaked havoc on our family dinners. On more than one occasion, the pager would sound off in the middle of the main course and we all know that strident beeper tones or ringing cell phones are not be denied. But in the end we adjusted to the change because it enabled us to be more effective in ministry. We had to learn how to live with it and when to turn it off, but we also had to admit that, in the end, we were better for the change.
 
Our culture and our context for ministry have changed dramatically over the last 40 years. Change is coming much more rapidly and those who cling to the past are often left behind by those who embrace the change for the sake of the desired end goal. This is not to say that change is ever easy. It makes me very uncomfortable when I am not sure what is happening or where we are going, and I don’t think I am the only one. And not all change produces the desired outcome, whatever that outcome may be, early in the process. It can take repeated trial and error attempts before we get to the place we want to be. But if we don’t make the effort, if we don’t at least try, we will never achieve the goal we seek.
 
For me personally, that is both the compelling reason to change and the answer when someone is looking for a compelling reason to remain where we are. The structures we have become comfortable with, the ones we know backwards and forwards, are no longer producing the growth outcomes we desire and we are fast approaching a place where those embracing change are going to leave us, if they haven’t already. My comfort, or more accurately, my dis-comfort with change and the unknown are not compelling reasons for me to vote to resist change. And just working harder at doing what we have been doing is not the answer.
 
Cell phones are better than pagers and computers are more productive than typewriters in the hands of the right person. We have an opportunity to design a conference that is more nimble and more responsive to changing populations and a changing state. We have a chance to create a structure which is able to care for those who have gone before all while having the wherewithal to seek and save those who have not yet heard the Good News of grace and salvation. We have a chance, if the people of both annual conferences agree, to build something tailored to the demands of the next generation and the next after that. Of course, we must be careful not to forget our past or our promises to generations of pastors and laity who have toiled in this harvest before we every started. But we cannot, we must not be so tied to our past that we cannot adjust to the present or adapt for the future.
 
Brothers and Sisters, the world will not end if you all decide not to embark on this new venture. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow; and Christ’s kingdom, already begun, will come in its own time. But I believe that we have an opportunity here to do a new thing in Michigan which can and will, by God’s grace, help us all do ministry more effectively and fruitfully in the days and weeks and years to come!
 
Till next time – Shalom!

 

Tuesday - March 17, 2015
Moving toward a decision point

I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am for the early signs of spring and the returning warmth in Michigan. I know that I am not alone in thinking that the last two winters have been harder to bear than earlier ones, and I don’t think it is only old age and approaching retirement causing me to think that way. Come on spring!

I have been hearing the same question from a number of people lately, and, even though it has been addressed in a variety of other forums over the course of the last year, I would like to share myperspective.  The Burning Question for this month is this: Why aren’t we seeing more information about what this “new conference” in the Michigan Area will look like before we are asked to vote on it? I’m not comfortable voting for something until I know what it will look like!”

One very good friend even said to me that they would not buy a house without a building inspection and didn’t think we should be asked to “buy” an annual conference without knowing what it would look like.
 
I absolutely agree that we should not buy property without being absolutely clear what it is that we are buying. And in the past two votes on this question that was the approach we took. We were offered a plan for an annual conference which had enough detail to determine whether or not we wanted to “buy in” to a new conference.  Many, on both sides of the conference divide, said “yes,” but enough said “no” that the new conference did not happen and now we are back to a decision point in the lives of our two conferences. However, this time the decision is being presented in a different way.

In my opinion, this is a better way to move forward. Before we expend all the time, energy and dollars to develop a plan for one conference, let’s decide whether or not we want to be “one conference” for the entire State of Michigan. Let’s decide whether or not the idea has merit. Let’s vote on the concept before we vote on any specific plan. If a majority of us believe that we can be better together as one unified conference than we are as two separate conferences and we make a commitment to make that happen, then we believe it will. We have the intelligence and the experience to fashion a new thing that will reflect our shared vision on
how best to make disciples for Jesus Christ and transform our world as the image of God’s Creation for the 21st Century. Of that I have no doubt!
 
But if we, as your conference leadership teams, have been reading you wrong and this is not what you want for Michigan, then this is the time to know that. And, in my opinion, this is really the fundamental question we have to decide. Do we want to be one? Or do we believe that we can be better by continuing down the same paths we have followed in the past?
 
Make no mistake; this is not a vote about change. Some of you think that the vote is “will we change or won’t we? As someone who has seen the numbers and taken the toll of the empty and shuttered buildings which used to be United Methodist churches, I know that we have to change! We cannot continue to do “conference” and “church” the way we have always done them. It would be insane to think otherwise. The question on the ballot at annual conference this year is deciding whether we can make these changes better by working together, or by continuing to go our separate ways.
 
Whatever we decide, there will be years of hard work ahead. There are difficult challenges which have already presented themselves to your cabinets and conference leadership teams relating to changes in our Michigan Area and the communities contained within the boundaries of our two conferences. How will we do more with less? How will we fish for people when there are fewer people and they are located in different places that we found them in the past? How will we address the problems of aging buildings and shrinking resources and fewer young people in our pews?
 
And, if the vote is affirmative, how will we design a structure that enables mission and strengthens local churches without becoming an even greater burden to lay and clergy across the state?
 
These are the Burning Questions for all of us that I leave you with this month. And I do so with great confidence because I believe that with God’s help and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit we can find answers to these questions - and others not yet asked - as we seek to serve Jesus Christ together! 
Sunday - March 15, 2015
Perspectives: "Breaking News...": Are you listening or tuning out?

“Nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known.  Therefore whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be proclaimed from the housetops.”    Luke 12:2-3, NRSV


Perhaps you thought it would go away, or even hoped it would go away.  Let it retreat back to the shadows where light won’t reveal it.  It is more comfortable for you that way, and the light can be fearful if you do not know how to move forward. 

On the other hand, maybe you instead feared that it would be allowed to become hidden and out of sight once again, while all of the underlying pain, tension and systemic patterns remain unresolved. 

Hope and transformation can only be found in the spaces where darkness and light meet.  This is the place of relationship.  To move beyond the divide we are compelled to move into relationships.  This is especially true as we consider issues of race, racism, multicultural complexity, power and community here in the United States.

On April 25th you are invited to Beyond the Divide: Building Relationships for a New Tomorrow. Click for details. 
 
On a cold December evening several key leaders from our Detroit Conference came together in a conference call to prayerfully determine how we as United Methodist Christians in this time and place could respond to the tensions, tragedies and pain unfolding over circumstances in Ferguson, Missouri, and shortly thereafter in New York City and elsewhere across the nation. 

Each time the secular news media has begun to drop the underlying issues from their coverage a new situation has emerged, even to this day.  That which is often kept in darkness for many is now continually being brought into the light.  Christ compels us to step into that place and build for a new tomorrow.

This day of listening, discovery and exploring is being sponsored by our Detroit Conference Commission on Religion and Race and Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships.  Input from the chairs of our Board of Justice—Advocacy—and Equity, Michigan Area Black Methodists For Church Renewal, Michigan Area Black Clergy Association, Spiritual Transformation Ministry for the African American Community, cabinet and conference staff have given shape to a place of sacred sanctuary for difficult issues to be named and brought into the light. 
 
Of special note is our keynote speaker, Rev. F. Willis Johnson of Wellspring UMC in Ferguson, MO.  In a United Methodist News Service article Heather Hahn writes of Rev. Willis:
 
The Rev. F. Willis Johnson runs toward death to ponder life. Before worship most Sundays, the pastor of Wellspring Church in Ferguson, Missouri, races more than 2 miles to the spot where Michael Brown lost his life. As his feet pound the pavement, Johnson prays. “I run to the place where a relationship was ruptured to be reminded that such relationships can be redeemed,” the United Methodist pastor said. “I go to a place of pain and hurt to be reminded that is the point at which forgiveness is initiated. That is what happened at Calvary.” 
 
[Editor's note: the Rev. F. Willis Johnson will not be able to be present for this workshop. Stay tuned for announcement of additional leadership.]
 
If you are someone that hoped the complexities of race, racism, power and control in this country would slip back out of the limelight, I invite you to instead walk into the light of this conversation.  If you are one that simply has not known how to move forward, I invite you to trust God’s grace to help you learn how to build new relationships while having your understanding opened up in this light.  If you are one that has feared that these tensions, patterns and pain will once again slip into the darkness then I invite you to come so that together we United Methodists in Michigan can build relationships for a new tomorrow
 
In Christ’s circle,
Rev. Dr. Jerome (Jerry) DeVine
Director of Connectional Ministries
Monday - February 23, 2015
Reflections on "becoming one"

 

I find it interesting, as I approach retirement, that most of the questions directed my way over the last several months have more to do with what I will be doing after I retire than what we will be doing from now until then. I suspect that most people who ask the “what next” question are genuinely curious and interested about where we (Janice and I) will be living and what we will be doing with this next portion of our journey.
 
I also think that some are thinking about what they will do with the reality of having freedom to choose how they will spend each day without a sermon to prepare. I think that many of us do struggle as we try to come to grips with the fact that a major portion of our “to do” list will now be finished by someone else.
               
I have had two questions that have come my way over the last month. Both of them happened while I was on an EO (Educational Opportunities) trip to Israel early in February.
 
The first concerned Bishop Deb. Someone wanted to know what the Bishop would do if the “becoming one” motions failed at one or both annual conferences. As we talked, it became clear that the questioner did not think the motions would be turned down, but that they were concerned about how Bishop Deb would deal with defeat if it happened.
 
First of all, I need to say that I don’t believe Bishop Deb would consider a “no” vote by either conference as a defeat. She has been saying all along that she wants to know if the conferences will confirm what she believes she has been hearing from lay and clergy across the Michigan Area ever since she was assigned here. I believe that, while she thinks that she has heard you correctly, she is truly open to whatever the outcome of this vote will be.
 
And, secondly, if the answer is once again a “not at this time or not in this way” response to the question of whether we should become one conference in the Michigan Area, I don’t believe it will change her conviction that we are better together than we are separately or her commitment to working collaboratively whenever possible. That sense of valuing cooperation is a part of who she was before she came to Michigan and will continue to be an important part of how she approaches the work of the Bishop. She will continue to encourage people to work together for the larger task of making disciples for Jesus Christ and the transformation of the world which we all share.
 
Don’t get me wrong. I am sure that Bishop Deb desires a new and more fruitful conference in the Michigan Area and I am confident that, if the Detroit and West Michigan conferences make the decision to take this next step into the future of The United Methodist Church in Michigan, she will be prepared to lead us all in discovering what the new conference will look like. But regardless of the outcome of the votes in May and June, Bishop Deb is committed to leading us into more productive and efficient ways of being faithful disciples.
               
The second question was over a very strong cup of coffee one night: “What’s the best and worst advice you ever received about how to be a pastor?” What struck me about the question was that I had an almost immediate response come to mind. I didn’t have to think a long time or try to dredge up some long lost memory to come up with an answer. Both pieces of advice were given to me during my first year of ministry and both were given with the very best of intentions.
 
The first and best advice came from a colleague when I asked him how someone with as little experience as I had could ever hope to be an effective pastor. I have never forgotten his brief answer. “Just love them” he said. Just love the people that God has called you to serve and care for. “Do your best to care for them as you believe Jesus would care for them,” he said. I still remember where we were standing when he said it. And I can tell you that his words have echoed in my memory time and time again when I wondered how I was going to approach a difficult situation or a congregation which was undergoing a time of trial. “Just love them!” became my goal. Not to “like” them. Sometimes that is too difficult for mortal flesh. But to love them as Jesus loves them. That was, and is, great advice.
               
The worst advice came from a District Superintendent in that same first appointment, but I did not recognize it for what it was until years later. When asked what advice he would give a first-year pastor, the DS said, “Just pay your apportionments and stay out of trouble!” What he went on to say was advice to not attract the attention of the DS.
 
Looking back, I’m not sure whether he meant it the way I heard it, but it was advice I took to heart. For 40+ years I worked hard at following his advice. I did my very best to help the congregations I served understand the value and importance of our apportionments or Ministry Shares. And I tried not to attract the attention of the DS for anything negative I might have done.
 
But as I look back at those years and the churches I have been blessed to serve, I have come to believe that I wish he had given different advice. I wish that he had said, “Hold on to your passion for making disciples and do everything in your power to share that passion with others!” I really do believe that we need more passion for disciple-making, and if I had it to do over, that’s what I would be focused on.
 
If you are asking what good advice I would hope to give to the next generation, that’s it: Love God, love all people and be passionate about making disciples!
 
Shalom!

Bill

Monday - February 9, 2015
Reflections on "The Journey"
Bishop Deb listening in Midland. Please click here for Frequently Asked Questions on Conversations on the Journey.

 

 

Where are you going? I asked,
To places I have never been, was the answer.
What do you plan to do? I asked.
My purpose will be evident at journey's end.
Who has planned your itinerary? I asked.
Its plan will be revealed at times most unlikely.
Why would you consent to such a vague plan? I saId.
I accepted the challenge when I accepted life, was the answer.

                           ("The Journey" by Mary Eleanor Rice)
 



I love this poem! It’s one my mother shared with me, and I have shared it in several places here in Michigan – most recently in my ordination service at Annual Conference last year.
 
But I have to confess that even though I love the poem, its message is a challenge for me. 
 
Those of you who know me, know I like to know what’s coming. 
  • When I travel, I like to know all the details of the trip from start to finish.
  • When I go into a meeting, I like to know when we start, when we finish and what’s on the agenda. 
  • When I go places to preach I like to know not only the order of worship, but what else might be expected of me. 
There is a comfort level for me in knowing what’s ahead. So it is very hard for me to step into something totally unknown – totally new – and totally open-ended. 
 
And I would guess I’m not the only one who feels that way.
 
Perhaps that’s why I have enjoyed these “Conversations on the Journey” so much. For not only have I thoroughly enjoyed meeting so many people and seeing new places across the Michigan Area, but our conversations have lifted my spirits and helped me have a sense of excitement about what “Something New” might be like. As you have shared your hopes and dreams and fears, you have begun to help form what a future together might look like.
 
I have been impressed with all the gatherings across the state. And I have been pleased that the general tone of these conversations has been overwhelmingly positive. Even when fears or concerns were raised, they were done in a manner that wasn’t critical or harmful, but with an honesty that I would have expected from fellow Christians.  
 
Some of those fears/concerns were:
  •  loss of identity
  • how this will affect the local church
  • financial concerns – especially around retiree health and Wesley Foundations
  • appointments of clergy to new and unfamiliar regions of Michigan
  • why now and what will be gained from trying to do this again?
These comments have been heard. They are legitimate questions. And they will not be lost if the annual conferences choose to move forward.
 
But the majority of responses have been positive, with clergy and laity alike sharing their hopes of what it would mean for them to come together. I have heard:
  •  a desire for each conference to know more about the “other” – their cultures, their ministries, their structures, their people
  • an excitement about drawing from the strengths of each conference to create a more effective annual conference
  • a belief that together we can be stronger – with a stronger voice and more resources to share and stronger mission emphasis
  • a hope that a larger pool of clergy will allow the cabinet to match gifts and graces with needs of churches even better
  • a desire to erase the artificial lines between us
  • many voices saying, “It’s just time for us to do this.”
These comments, too, have been heard.
 
Friends, I don’t know what will happen when we take a vote in our individual annual conferences later this spring as we decide whether or not it IS time to come together. But I have a deep trust in the wisdom of the people of the United Methodist Church in Michigan. And whatever decision we make, I believe we will be stronger for having talked together, dreamed together, and shared together in honesty and Christian love.
 
As I said earlier, I don’t like “not knowing”. I don’t like uncertainty. I don’t like the chaos that comes from the possibility of major change. But what I do know is that no matter what the outcome – God is with us.
 
In a new hymn sung at several of our gatherings is this verse:
            “Trust the goodness of creation;
trust the spirit strong within.
            Dare to dream the vision promised
 sprung from seed of what has been.
                        Let us bring the gifts that differ
and in splendid , varied ways
                        Sing a new church into being,
one in faith and love and praise.
            (Words: Delores Dufner; Tune: Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing)
 
In the words of I John 3:2:
“Beloved, we are God’s children now. What we will be has not yet been revealed.”
           
We are, indeed, God’s children. May we walk in that faith, and may we trust in whatever future God has placed before us! 
 
 
With you in the exciting, challenging and life-changing work of Christ,
 
Bishop Deb

 

 

Monday - January 19, 2015
Time to step out in faith


What a great time we have had traveling across Michigan. The weather was not always the best, but the people who came out to each of the first four events made the Bishop’s Conversations on a Journey truly exciting.

It was great to hear people’s questions and comments about the possibility of creating a new conference for Michigan. It was especially exciting to be part of the “live” webcast from Cornerstone Church in Grand Rapids.

If you go to either conference website, you will find the notes which were taken at each on the events and you can even find an archived copy of the webcast. They will give you a much better sense of what we heard than I can in these few lines.

However, there were some Burning Questions which came my way during our time on the road which I would like to try and answer here for the benefit of everyone.

The first question came from a clergy person: “Does everyone who is appointed in the Detroit Conference have to go to the city of Detroit or the Upper Peninsula at least once? That’s what I heard last week at our clergy forum.” The second question, this time from a lay person, was actually heard in several variations: I know we are talking about Annual Conference, but that is way “down there” and I never see any of that at my local church. What’s a good reason for me and our church to support this idea? How will this change affect us?” And finally, at every session: “What would be a missional reason for doing this?”

I should start off by saying that neither the Bishop nor Mark Doyal nor I ever heard anything that could be characterized as negative about the “other” conference. Questions, to be sure, but nothing from either side which would lead anyone to believe that we were anything but sisters and brothers in the faith. Separated by miles and isolated by years of little or no communication, people were still not hateful or unkind. Even my clergy colleague was not being deliberately unkind. He just didn’t know enough about the Detroit Conference or the ministry locations mentioned in the question.

And my answer to this question is relatively easy: First of all, appointments in the Detroit Conference are made just like the appointments in West Michigan; by a bishop and cabinet who are committed to making disciples for Jesus Christ and transforming the world. They understand that their critical part of that process is the appointing of clergy who will do everything in their power to accomplish the same goal in the place where they are appointed. There are no pre-determined rules about where one must be appointed in either conference. The bishop and cabinet do not sit down and say to themselves, “Who hasn’t been to the UP yet? or “Who hasn’t done time in Detroit yet?” any more than they say “Who hasn’t been to a two-point charge or a really small town yet?”

Appointments are discerned on the basis of the gifts of the pastor and the needs of the congregation. There are some tethers attached to some pastors, but most of those are related to spouse or family concerns and are most often expressed as places we want to stay near rather than places we don’t want to go. And I can tell any pastor who asks that every church is unique and all people are similar in regard to their faith needs, regardless of where they live. There are some fantastic ministries happening in the cities of Detroit and Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo and Flint and there are equally fantastic ministries going on in the small congregations of the Heartland or Blue Water districts and across the Upper Peninsula.

Not every pastor will have an opportunity to reap where another has sown, but every pastor will have the opportunity to bloom where they are appointed. It’s true that some of us do not have the same gifts or skills and so we may not be equally effective in every location. But based on my personal life experience, I will say that we should not assume that there are only certain places where we can serve. I’ve been in open country and inner city and county seat settings and have found opportunities to do ministry in each place where I’ve been appointed. That is less a reflection on my gifts and more on my willingness to love the people wherever I get the opportunity to serve. And I can truthfully say that I have found people to love in every area of this state – regardless of the conference or district boundaries.

Secondly, the “will” in the second question is easier to speak to than the “how.” I can say with confidence that, if this creation of a new conference is done right, it will affect everyone. If we become more fruitful and dynamic as a conference and begin to support the work of local congregations with excellence in leadership and a shared expectation of effective missional congregations that are making disciples for Jesus Christ who are transforming the world, then every local church member will see and experience the kind of life-changing movement of the Holy Spirit which cannot help but change us.

But “how” we are going to do that and what that new conference will look like is impossible to say at this point. It is too early to speak with any certainty about retiree health care or the place of campus ministry in the life of the conference. We are a little like the Israelites who must have asked Moses exactly where they were going and how long it would take before they would set one foot in the wilderness. The biblical record seems clear. There were many who were very uncomfortable with the lack of certainty. They were, I think, good people who simply preferred the certainty of the way they had always done things to the uncertainty of an unclear destination or an unknown path, even though they had be praying for just such a “next step” in their nation’s future.

Like the children of Israel, we are at a stepping-off point on our life’s journey. We are poised at the precipice of an unseen future and we are about to decide if we will step out in faith or not. The good news in all of this is that we will get to decide what our next destination, our new conference will look like. The outcome is not pre-determined and it will not be decided by the infamous “them.” It will be all of us – clergy and lay alike – who will pool our resources and talents to create something uniquely able to respond to the circumstances we will face in the days and weeks and years to come! 

Finally, and this is my favorite question, the compelling missional reason to do this is summed up in the word “opportunity.” The creation of a new conference represents an opportunity to make necessary course corrections and even wholesale course reversals in order to deliberately go in new directions as we fulfill our mission to make disciples and transform the world. We have a long history as a denomination and as local churches in our communities of making a difference in the lives of people and communities. We have done fantastic work – in the past. And we are doing fantastic work in the present in some unique and isolated places.
 
Our denomination is still saving lives and changing the world. But as church right here in Michigan and, perhaps, as a church in the community where you live, we have lost, in my opinion, much of our sense of direction and purpose. We still talk a good game but we are losing ground and we are losing souls and we find ourselves unable to change or adapt quickly to a new and rapidly changing world. As long as we persist in trying to work harder at doing things the way we have always done things, we will continue to grow more and more fatigued with fewer faith communities to show for it.
 
This new conference has the opportunity to be a new way of doing things, with a new perspective and younger, fresher voices. To be the church in the 21st century for the people still on the horizon! I am convinced that the creation of a new conference in and for the State of Michigan is an opportunity to be in mission in this evolving mission field. It is not a guarantee, but it certainly is a possibility and an opportunity.

 

 

Classifieds
Wednesday - April 22, 2015
Nursery Attendant

Help Wanted - Nursery Attendant

Metropolitan United Methodist Church has openings for Nursery Attendants effective immediately.  The
person(s) hired will be expected to be in the Nursery during morning services
for three hours per Sunday. Nursery Attendants must become certified according to the United Methodist Safe Sanctuaries Policy. 
Those interested should send mail their resume to the Staff Parish Relations Committee, Metropolitan
United Methodist Church, 8000 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48202, or email it to serving@metroumc.org

 

 

Wednesday - April 15, 2015
Youth/Young adult ministry position

Part-time youth/young adult ministry position at First United Methodist Church, Northville, MI (a suburban church of 1100 members).  Degree and/or experience in youth ministry or related field required. 20 hrs/week with $20,000 annually. 

Please send resume to Carmen Markstrom fumc@fumcnorthville.org  .

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Wednesday - April 8, 2015
Marketing Director, Bay Shore Camp and Family Ministries

The Marketing Director develops, plans, implements, and organizes sales and marketing efforts to increase the usage of children’s youth and family camps, guest groups and special ministries.  The Marketing Director oversees all marketing, advertising, and promotional activities on and offsite.

Essential responsibilities include developing, implementing and managing marketing strategies including print, radio, tv and direct mail advertising campaigns for Bay Shore Camp. This position is responsible for maintaining the camp website, increasing presence on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and for E-marketing.  This position designs and publishes all print promotional materials.  The Marketing Director recruits, trains and supervises summer multimedia interns to take photos and videos of each camp event during the summer.  The Marketing Director serves on the camp’s management team.

This position requires a person with a servant’s heart and a commitment to the Bay Shore Camp ministry.  It requires a person who possesses an evangelical Christian commitment and a lifestyle consistent with the organization’s goals.  The ideal candidate will be fluent in verbal, written and electronic communication skills and have previous marketing/promotions/communications experience and training preferably in a camp and retreat ministry setting.  Desire a person experienced in web design and creation (Wordpress,) maintenance, SEO and analytics as well as video production.  Experience with data analysis, social media, e-marketing, direct mail, print media, radio and tv, and google adwords will be helpful. This person will be able to work without direct supervision and will be able to undertake the essential responsibilities in a timely, friendly, respectful and detail-oriented manner.

The qualified candidate maintains a viable and growing relationship with Jesus Christ and exemplifies that relationship in daily life.  They will work well with others, be self-motivated, anticipate the needs of guests and staff, have the ability to multi-task, interact extremely well with the public and exhibit entrepreneurial enthusiasm.  The qualified candidate must have post high school education with a bachelor’s degree preferred.  Proficiency in Adobe Creative Suite will be helpful.

 This is a full time, year round management position, eligible for the camp’s benefit package, including salary, health insurance, 401K, meals and paid vacation/sick/holiday.

 To apply for this position, please send a letter of application detailing why you would be the perfect person for this position, compensation requirements and a resume via email to: director@bayshorecamp.org.  Email the same for a complete job description.  No phone calls, please.

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Tuesday - April 7, 2015
Director of Youth Ministries (Youth Pastor), Highland United Methodist Church

Director of Youth Ministries (Youth Pastor), Highland United Methodist Church

The Highland United Methodist Church is looking for a committed and spirited individual to continue the exciting growth of our Middle and High School Youth Ministry.  Were flexible in that we are open to either a full time or part-time person.  The part-time position is unique in that it would allow you to work with our current Director of Youth Ministries for a year while you assimilate into the role.  

The Job Description Summary

The Director of Youth Ministries plays a vital role in the exciting and expanding ministry at Highland United Methodist Church.  The Director of Youth Ministries will focus leadership and development efforts in the area of youth ministry and will have an opportunity to play a key role in the lives of our youth and adult volunteers.  We are looking for someone who is devoted to their individual faith and to the growth and spiritual development of young people.  Salary Commensurate with experience.

  Qualifications

  •          Commitment to Jesus as your personal Savior.
  •          Bachelors degree, minimum (2) years experience in youth ministry or equivalent.
  •          Passion for the spiritual growth of middle and high school students.
  •          Comfortable, energetic, self-motivated person with good communication skills.
  •          Be able to work with other people of varying ages and backgrounds. 

 To Apply:

Please email your resume and cover letter to: John Welch / Staff Parish Relations Committee   info@humc.us.     You may also mail your resume to: Highland United Methodist Church, 680 W. Livingston Rd. Highland, MI 48357 .

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Friday - March 20, 2015
Youth Pastor - Full Time, Okemos Community Church

We are not the perfect church looking for the the perfect youth pastor, but God is doing some exciting things around here and were looking another team member to join us in reaching out in the greater Okemos area.

The Opportunity

God is calling Okemos Community Church to go to the next level in reaching high school, college and young adults. Our staff team is solid, dedicated and enjoys working together; now were searching for the right person to lead our children and student ministries to that next level, to help us launch post high ministries, and to build our connections with young adults and families.

 We desire a person with a deep commitment to Christ, an outgoing personality, a drive to connect kids to Christ and to strengthen their faith, along with the proven ability to recruit, motivate, organize and lead volunteers. Organizational skills will be critical, as will a team player attitude.

 We are open to clergy or laity for this full time salaried position. Those who are headed toward ordination, or are trained as local pastors, are encouraged to apply. As an independent congregation, that affiliates with The United Methodist Church, we are open to persons from different denominations. We are a main-line congregation with a progressive theology that is deeply committed to social and mission ministries.

 Were located 2 miles from Michigan State University and all that has to offer. The Okemos, Haslett, and East Lansing school districts consistently rank highly in the school systems in the state. We currently worship 170, and are growing. Our single worship service is traditional in style; we plan to add a distinctly different service that will connect with younger people.

The Youth Minister

  • You love Christ and are committed to the church as a place to make disciples and deepen faith

  • You love to work with children, youth, college and young adults

  • You have a great sense of humor, an engaging personality, and plenty of energy, enthusiasm and drive

  • You are a leader, called to lead youth, youth leaders, and parents

  • You are self-motivated, with a bias toward action and have solid organizational skills

  • You have experience leading youth groups, motivating and managing volunteers, and launching new ministries

 The Job Description Overview (see link to full job description)

The Associate Pastor for Children, Youth and Young Adults reports directly to the Senior Pastor and is responsible for the development and oversight of leadership teams and ministry with children, youth, post-high/college students and young families (those 0-30 years old). If clergy, the Associate Pastor will assist with pastoral duties beside the Senior Pastor (preaching, worship leadership, pastoral care, etc.) The position is full time, with a total compensation package of up to $50,000, depending on experience. For a complete job description, go to http://bit.ly/OkemosAssocPastorJobDescript. We are anxious to begin the position as soon as the right person is found. Applications will be continually reviewed as received.

 To Apply:

Please email a complete resume (including a list of 4-6 personal references) to occjobs1@gmail.com. You may also mail your resume to: Okemos Community Church, P.O. Box 680, Okemos, MI 48805.

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Friday - February 13, 2015
Bay Shore Camp: Workcampers

Bay Shore Camp and Family Ministries, a United Methodist affiliated ministry, located in Sebewaing, Michigan, on the shore of Saginaw Bay, has spots available for couples or individuals for the 2015 summer season.  Our workampers have the opportunity to invest in the lives of young people and see lives transformed before their very eyes.  

Duties may include: serving meals, helping with camper check in/check out, running mini-golf or helping with the zipline, working in our camp store and light duties with Housekeeping, Maintenance and Grounds.  

Compensation: full hook up for RVs or housing, laundry facilities, Wi-Fi, and meals while working provided in exchange for 24 hours/week/couple or individual.  3 days on, 4 off with couples together.  Additional hours paid at $8.15/hour.  Position starts May 12 and runs through Labor Day Weekend.  (Extended dates, before and after, may be possible.)  

Background check required.  Send resume and photos to director@bayshorecamp.org. Phone: 989-883-2501. Web: www.bayshorecamp.org

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Obituaries
Sunday - April 19, 2015
Price - Rev. Jack

Rev. Jack E. Price (Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy), died Sunday, April 19, 2015.

ARRANGEMENTS:

A Celebration of Life Memorial Service will take place at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, May 30, 2015 at Court Street UMC, located at 225 W. Court Street; Flint, MI 48502 (810-235-4651).

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO (Spouse):

Mrs. Martha Price
4287 Mt. Vernon Pass
Swartz Creek, MI 48473

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE GIVEN TO:

Court Street United Methodist Church 
or 
The American Parkinson Disease Association, Inc. 
135 Parkinson Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10305

https://org2.salsalabs.com/o/5693/donate_page/donate

 

Friday - April 10, 2015
Stout - Mrs. Margaret

Mrs. Margaret Stout, surviving spouse of Rev. Dr. Samuel F. Stout [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Friday, April 10, 2015.

ARRANGEMENTS:

The Funeral Service was held Thursday, April 16, 2015 at 11:00 a.m.  at Birmingham: First UMC, 1589 W. Maple Road; Birmingham, MI 48009.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO [Son]:

Mr. John Stout
139 Windemere
Royal Oak, MI 48073

GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE SENT TO:

Methodist Children's Home Society
Development Office
26645 W. Six Mile Road
Redford, MI 48240
Thursday - April 9, 2015
Houlihan - Thomas

Mr. Thomas Houlihan, father-in-law of Rev. Brian K. Johnson [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Thursday, April 9, 2015. 

ARRANGEMENTS:

Visitation will take place today, April 13, 2015, from 2:00pm to 8:00pm at Snow Funeral Home located at 3775 N. Center Road; Saginaw, MI 48603 (989-791-4515).

Funeral Service will take place at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at St. Stephen Catholic Church which is located at 2711 Mackinaw Street; Saginaw, MI 48602 (989-799-2334). There will be a time of visitation with the family at 9:00 a.m., prior to the service.

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

Rev. Brian and Mrs. Jennifer Johnson
838 Second Street
Bay Port, MI 48720
 
 
Wednesday - April 1, 2015
Smith - Mark

Rev. Mark K. Smith [Retired Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Wednesday, April 1, 2015. 


ARRANGEMENTS:

Visitation will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Friday, April 3, 2015 at the Merkle Funeral Service, located at 9156 Summit Street; Erie, MI 48133 [734-848-5185].

Funeral Service will be held at 1:00 p.m.  Saturday, April 4, 2015 at Erie UMC, located at 1100 E. Samaria Road; Erie, MI 48113 [734-856-1453].

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO [Spouse]:

Mrs. Diana Smith
10275 Strasburg Road
Erie, MI 48133

 

Friday - March 27, 2015
Kim - Rev. Ki Han

 ì‚¬ë§ ì•Œë¦¼

 

김원동 목사님의(디트로이트 연회 성직자부친 김기한 ëª©ì‚¬ë‹˜ì´ 3ì›” 27일 2015년에 별세하셨습니다.

 

아래 ì£¼ì†Œë¥¼ í†µí•˜ì—¬ ì• ë„의 ëœ»ì„ ë³´ë‚´ ì‹¤ìˆ˜ ìžˆìŠµë‹ˆë‹¤:

 

Rev. and Mrs. Won Dong Kim

4131 April Lane

Sterling Heights, MI   48310

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Rev. Ki Han Kim, father of Rev. Won Dong Kim [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Friday, March 27, 2015. 

 

CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

 

Rev and Mrs Won Dong Kim

4131 April Lane

Sterling Heights, MI   48310

 


Wednesday - March 25, 2015
Fleming - Lucille

Mrs. Lucille Fleming , mother of Rev. Nancy J. Bitterling [Detroit Annual Conference Clergy], died Wednesday, March 25, 2015. 

ARRANGEMENTS:

Visitation will be held from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, March 27, 2015 at Marsh Funeral Chapel, located at 2675 Main Street; Marlette, MI 48453 [989-635-3658].  
Funeral Service will be held at 1 p.m., Saturday, March 28, 2015 at Marsh Funeral Chapel. There will be a time of visitation at 12 p.m. until the start of the service.
 
CONDOLENCES MAY BE SENT TO:

Rev. Nancy & Mr. Curtis Bitterling
P.O. Box 129
Port Austin, MI   48467
 
GIFTS IN MEMORY MAY BE GIVEN TO:

United Hospice Service - 2770 Main St; Marlette, MI 48453
Or
First Presbyterian Church - 6590 W. Marlette Rd; Marlette, MI 48453
Appointments
Sunday - April 12, 2015
Boyd, Gordon B.
FROM Integrative Mental Health Center (Extension Ministry) TO Honorable Location
Sunday - April 12, 2015
Baek, Andy
FROM Union City / Athens - Albion District WMC TO Dundee UMC
Sunday - March 29, 2015
Plum, Janine
Sunday - March 1, 2015
Brown, Debra K.
FROM Local Pastor Without Appointment TO Retirement
Sunday - March 15, 2015
Schippert, Ellen o.
FROM Forester TO Local Pastor Without Appointment
Sunday - March 22, 2015
VanMarter, Dianne H.
FROM New Haven: Faith (1/2) TO Retirement
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.

Detroit Conference Social Media Links

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