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2012 Annual Conference
The Civic Center
2012 Annual Conference offering will benefit Mozambique, Brazil, Cambodia, Shalom Farms
$171,696 collected to date for Annual Conference Offering
As of July 10, $171,696.66 has been collected toward the $200,000 goal for the 2012 Annual Conference Offering which will support four projects: the Shade and Fresh Water Project in Brazil; materials and training for theological and biblical education in Mozambique; outreach to young people by the church in Cambodia that is working to become an autonomous Methodist Church in 2016; and Shalom Farms in the Richmond District. Contributions may still be sent to the Conference Treasurer's office, P.O. Box 5605, Glen Allen, VA 23058. Designate “Fund #5500 – Annual Conference Offering” on your check or at the bottom of your apportionment statement.
Click here to download Annual Conference Offering Bulletin Insert (pdf) (Checks may be made payable to "Va. Conf.of the UMC" with "Conference Offering" in the memo line.)
Each year members of local churches are encouraged to help raise money for global mission projects designated by the bishop. The pastor or lay representative of each church will take that money to Annual Conference where it will be collected during a special time of the session.
Bishop Charlene Kammerer has announced that the 2012 Annual Conference offering goal is $200,000 and will benefit the following projects:
Brazil — Shade and Fresh Water Expansion: $50,000 — Studies show that the religious beliefs and values that a person develops by age 13 are pretty much those that they will maintain throughout life. For 20 years the Methodist Church of Brazil has provided safe centers of spiritual, physical and emotional nurture to at-risk children through the nationwide Shade and Fresh Water program with the goal of developing good citizens with strong Christian values.
Funds from this year’s conference offering will go for training, materials and start-up costs to enable these seeds of hope to be sown in new locations in Brazil, Mozambique, and other parts of Latin America as the Shade and Fresh Water model is adapted and implemented for use in new settings. Through the Virginia Conference partnership with the Methodist Church of Brazil, good seed will be planted on fertile soil, resulting in a bountiful harvest which transforms lives and makes disciples. Click here to watch a video about The Shade and Fresh Water Project.
Mozambique — Leadership Development/Shade and Fresh Water: $50,000 — Offering seeds of growth and life to laity and clergy by providing opportunities for training and leadership development continues to be a top priority for The United Methodist Church in Mozambique. A portion of this year’s Annual Conference Offering will go to provide materials and training in theological and biblical education by extension across the two annual conferences in Mozambique.
A second focus of the Mozambican UMC’s request for funding this year focuses on the combined program with Brazil of Shade and Fresh Water. This program provides opportunities for seeds to be planted within the hearts and minds of at-risk children to know the love of God and to grow and be nurtured by the body of Christ in their communities and villages.
Our conference has a wonderful opportunity to participate in the growth and development of this nurturing program across oceans and cultures. Click here to watch a video about Mozambique.
Cambodia — Church Growth: $50,000 — The Virginia Conference is being called to a unique opportunity to join the church in Cambodia as it is watering the seeds of church growth and working to become an autonomous Methodist Church in 2016. Our conference Initiatives of Hope mission focus has added Cambodia this past year. We have chosen to support them in their efforts to reach a population that is young and enthusiastic in their witness to the transforming power of Jesus Christ in many areas of the country.
Their request for offering support is in three areas:
1. Pastoral ministry, church growth and lay leadership development through ongoing training workshops as they learn to serve and witness to their faith;
2. Scholarships for youths attending university and continuing education of pastors. Education in general was destroyed during the reign of the Khmer rouge. Now all educational institutions are trying to build from scratch. Our gifts can support the effort to bring their pastors and youth to improve their level of studies.
3. Purchase of land in pioneer areas, building new churches and repairing old facilities. Their churches are designed as multi-purpose centers for worship and as gathering places for all ages. From the centers the people move into the villages and begin new communities of believers and disciples of Jesus Christ.
Virginia — Shalom Farms: $50,000 — Shalom Farms is literally and spiritually planting seeds and celebrating the harvest of feeding the least of these in Christ’s name!
Begun by United Methodist Urban Ministries of Richmond (UMUMR) in the fall of 2008, Shalom Farms is a nonprofit community farm project with the overarching goal of increasing access to healthy food in the Richmond region, particularly in low-income urban neighborhoods. UMUMR’s Shalom Farms attains its goal by:
1. providing fresh and healthy produce to underserved communities;
2. providing educational training to children and adults on growing food, nutrition, and food-based entrepreneurship;
3. linking community groups to a wide range of food security resources and partners.
In 2011, with the help of almost 2000 volunteers, Shalom Farms grew and distributed 35,000 lbs of fresh organic produce to the children and families in Richmond most in need. In the “food deserts” in which UMUMR operates the nearest grocery store is often more than four miles away with more than 50% of residents lacking access to their own transportation. The produce, grown with the help of many partners including the recipients, is distributed at food pantries, served in meals at soup kitchens and after school programs, used in cooking classes, and sold at youth-run farm, stands. Click here to visit the Shalom Farms Web site.