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AMENDing Through Faith
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November 2021 * Volume 22, Issue 10

President's Message by Albert Weal, Jr.

Where are the Nine?

Good Morning,

Then as He entered a certain village, there met Him ten men who were lepers, who stood afar off. And they lifted up their voices and said, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” So when He saw them, He said to them, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And so it was that as they went, they were cleansed.
And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks. And he was a Samaritan. So, Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” (Luke 17:12-18)

When we consider and thank God for our lives, communities, churches, brothers, and sisters in Christ, do we also praise and give glory to God?

I give glory to God for Bishop Sharma Lewis who challenged us in her Love, Learn, and Lead webinar to bond together, love together, and trust each other to do ministry for the kingdom of God and be a model for the Virginia Conference and the UMC connection. I encourage you to watch the Bishop’s remarks and help us implement her vision.

I praise God for the General Commission on United Methodist Men’s selection of Greg Arnold to be its chief executive. Greg was one of our speakers at the 2019 Spiritual Advance. Please congratulate Greg and welcome his leadership. Thank you as well to all who contributed to GCUMM’s Give Day 2021. I can’t wait to see how God will lead both GCUMM and our Virginia Conference in reaching out to men in our communities.

Please join us tonight, November 9, for a Love, Learn, and Lead webinar with Steve Schaefer on AMENDing Through Faith, a study developed by GCUMM and AMEND Together, a program of the YWCA Nashville and Middle Tennessee. AMENDING Through Faith is for men who want to make the world a better place, strengthen relationships, end violence against women, and bond together as a healthy community of Godly men.

Praise and give glory to God this Thanksgiving. Follow the example of the one, not the nine!

Albert Weal, Jr., President
[email protected]

AMENDing Through Faith

Love, Learn, and Lead Webinar Tonight at 6:30 PM

Please join us tonight, Tuesday evening, November 9, 2021 at 6:30 PM EST for a Love, Learn, and Lead webinar on AMENDING Through Faith, a program that encourages men and boys to challenge a culture that supports violence against women.

Steve Schaefer, VACUMM advocate for AMENDING Through Faith and co-team leader of the Elizabeth River District UMM, will share how the AMENDING Through Faith study trains men to recognize, respond to, and prevent violence against women. The study is for men who want to make the world a better place.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 898 2460 7164
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New Leadership for GCUMM

Men’s Commission Selects Greg Arnold as Top Executive

Greg Arnold at the 2019 VA Conference UMM
Spiritual Advance in Virginia Beach
The General Commission on United Methodist Men selected Greg Arnold, a deployed staff member of the commission, to serve as general secretary. A 12-year Mississippi-based staff member, Arnold succeeds Gil Hanke who retired from the post in October.

“The Search Committee selected Greg for the general secretary position because he is a true man of God,” said Dan Ramsey, chair of the Search Committee. “He has the energy and strong desire to spread the good news of Christ to all men, young and old, throughout the world.” Ramsey, a retired Houston police officer who served as president of the National Association of Conference Presidents of UM Men from 2013 to 2016, said Arnold was especially qualified for the position because of his extensive experience in the business world and ministry to men. “We are in a new beginning of leadership at the commission, and Greg is the right man to lead us forward in a new era in the life of the church.”

In the business community, Arnold founded and presides over healthcare companies with more than 300 employees spanning multiple states. In addition, he has a long track record of creating successful organizations and empowering leaders.

As a deployed staff member of the commission, Arnold developed resources and led workshops in each of the five U.S. jurisdictions. He also helped with national gatherings and worked with the commission to give birth to Strength for Service, Inc. “It was never a burden to take time away from my company to serve as a staff member,” said Arnold. “God blessed my family with a thriving company; it was my pleasure to serve any way possible.”

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Arnold also operates the Live Bold App for Christian Men, a free resource and the top app for Christian men with more than 38,000 members and 100,000 downloads. The app reaches men in 160 countries with devotions, prayer support, small group resources, podcasts, and coaching support.

Arnold has experience at the local level as well. At age 15, he helped establish a Boy Scout troop and credits this experience as valuable lessons in leadership and to his success throughout his adult career. He has been an active participant in men’s ministry and leadership roles in his local church, St. Paul UMC of Ocean Springs, Miss. It was at St. Paul UMC where he piloted a modern version of UM Men which eventually gave birth to the Adventure Men discipleship model and men’s ministry program resource endorsed by the commission.

“Regardless of whether a man officially belongs to a church or has found himself to be unchurched, de-churched, or faith curious––he is searching for wholeness,” said Arnold. “There are too many men struggling with worry, isolation, and shame. It’s our mission to help them grow their relationship with Christ, find their way back to Christ, or introduce them to Christ for the first time.”

“Greg is a gifted author, presenter and has a proven history with the commission,” said Gil Hanke, retired top staff executive of the commission. “He brings many new gifts to the ministry.”

In announcing the appointment, Mississippi Bishop James E. Swanson Sr., president of the commission, said, “Greg Arnold’s natural ability to lean towards innovation enhances The United Methodist Church’s ability to reach men and offers opportunities for men to grow into strong disciples of Jesus Christ that will change this world.”

Editor’s Note: Adapted from

VA UMM Cabinet Meets on December 11

The Virginia Conference UMM Cabinet will meet on Saturday, December 11 from 9am to 2pm EST at the Virginia United Methodist Center in Glen Allen and also virtually. More details will be sent to the Virginia Conference UMM Cabinet members before the meeting.

The Virginia Conference UMM Cabinet consists of elected officers, past presidents, the Virginia Conference Lay Leader, the Virginia Conference representative, ministry advocates, and UMM district presidents/team leaders.

Where the Homeless Will Sleep Tonight

Arlington and Alexandria Districts UMM Meet on December 4

Rev. Kameron Wilds
The Alexandria District UMM Leadership invites you and UMM fellowships in the Arlington and Alexandria Districts to a gathering at Fairfax United Methodist Church (10300 Stratford Ave, Fairfax, VA 22030) on Saturday morning December 4 at 9:00 AM.

Please come to fellowship and hear our guest speaker, Reverend Kameron Wilds, pastor of Rising Hope Mission Church, a United Methodist congregation, speak on "Where the Homeless Will Sleep Tonight."

Founded in 1996, Rising Hope Mission Church strives to be a community that reflects life in the Kingdom of God and believes that Jesus came to proclaim a message of radical welcome, inclusion, and love for all of God’s children. Rising Hope builds relationships among the least, lost, lonely, and forgotten in the Route 1 corridor south of Alexandria in Fairfax County.

This event is very casual and is meant to get to know one another through fellowship and hearing Reverend Kameron’s message. Weather permitting, refreshments and snacks will be served outdoors. Masks are required for those not fully COVID-19 vaccinated.

Please invite the men of your church to participate.

Please RSVP and let us know how many men will be participating from your fellowship.

Jim Conklin
Alexandria District UMM Leadership Team

Holiday Shopping at the Virginia Conference UMM Store

Weekly Specials

All purchases from the Virginia Conference UMM Wearables Store directly contribute to Virginia Conference UMM ministries.

Specials are offered every week. Pricing shown is retail; discounts are shown at checkout.

There is no limit to how much you can save. Every dollar helps to support ministries of the VA Conference United Methodist Men including:
  • Heart Havens
  • All God’s Children
  • Camp Rainbow
  • Scouting
  • Society of St. Andrew

Responding to God’s Call

250 Years After Asbury’s Crossing

Portrait of Francis Asbury by John Paradise.
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons
“Whither am I going? To the New World. What to do? To gain honour? No, if I know my own heart. To get money? No: I am going to live to God, and to bring others so to do.”
Journal of Francis Asbury, Sept. 12, 1771

God calls us to a new life that can lead to unknown places and people. Jonah did not want to visit Nineveh. The disciples left their homes to share news about the living Jesus with the world. Paul could not have imagined that he would reach Rome. And so it was with Francis Asbury (1745-1816) when he boarded a ship in England bound for America on September 4, 1771.

A few weeks earlier, Asbury had answered an appeal from John Wesley for preachers to go to America. After landing in Philadelphia on October 27, 1771, Asbury would never return to England, dying in Spotsylvania County, Virginia in 1816. When he arrived in America, there were hundreds aligned with the Methodist movement. Never having a home of his own, Asbury preached daily throughout his life traveling approximately 250,000 miles by horseback and crossing the Appalachian Mountains 60 times.

The American Revolution forced John Wesley’s and Francis Asbury’s hands as Methodist could only receive the Lord’s Supper in Anglican churches which were few and did not necessarily support American independence. By 1784, Asbury founded the Methodist Episcopal Church, separate from the Church of England, and established the structure and system of itineracy that remains as part of The United Methodist Church today.

Celebrations of Asbury’s departure from England and his arrival at Philadelphia are available for viewing. The Francis Asbury Archival Exhibit is open at Historic St. George’s UMC in Philadelphia until December 31, 2021.

For more information, please visit

Words to Live By …


A Prayer for Thanksgiving

Thanks be to thee, O Lord Jesus Christ,
For all the benefits which thou hast given us,
For all the pains and insults which thou hast borne for us.
O most merciful Redeemer, friend, and brother,
May we know thee more clearly, love thee more dearly,
Follow thee more nearly, for thine own sake. Amen.

Richard of Chichester, England, 13th cent.
Three Things We Pray
United Methodist Hymnal, Copyright 1989, #493

Recommended Reading: Colossians 3:16 (NRSV)
In continued efforts to fulfill the Virginia Conference goal of having Connectional Ministries become a greater resource to districts, laity and clergy, United Methodist Men are now partnered with Virginia UM clergy. Clergy, you are receiving the Beacon newsletter as part of your Virginia Conference connection.