August 2021 * Volume 22, Issue 7

President's Message by Albert Weal, Jr.

With Thanksgiving

Good Morning,

Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)
I am thankful for the many opportunities to partner with and minister to the men of the Virginia Annual Conference. Thank you for your votes and your election of the Virginia Conference UMM Cabinet. Together we will work with you to bring men closer to Christ and to each other.

I am grateful to Gil Hanke for both his service to GCUMM and for speaking with us at the Virginia Conference UMM Annual Meeting in June. Gil has provided exceptional leadership and shared that one of his goals is to engage men more in missions.

I am very excited to announce that our Love, Learn, and Lead webinars are returning this fall with a conversation about mission opportunities with Rev. RJ Jun, Associate Director of Service. Please plan to join us on Tuesday, September 7.

Please register and participate in the 2021 Virtual National Men’s Gathering on August 28. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn and share with each other. GCUMM holds national gatherings of men every four years. If you have not been to a National Gathering, please take advantage of this opportunity to learn, share, and serve.

More details about these opportunities and more are below.

Giving thanks for you,

Albert Weal, Jr., President
[email protected]

AGCC Virtual 5K | Saturday, August 21

Break the Cycle of Incarceration

agc 5k
It's that time again! Join for All God's Children Camp for the 2nd annual Virtual 5k fundraiser. You can run/walk this race anytime on August 21 or any date and time that suits you! Don't forget to take a picture of yourself and share it on our All God's Children Camp Facebook page with the hashtag #agcc5k.

Click below to register and help All God’s Children break the cycle of incarceration! For more information contact Lori Smith at [email protected]

Please register:

National Men's Gathering | August 28

Register at

3 - National Gathering 21

Mission Opportunities | Tuesday, September 7

Love, Learn, and Lead Webinars Return

Love, Learn, and Lead webinars are back! Mark your calendars now for Tuesday, September 7 at 6:30PM EDT for a conversation with Seungsoo “RJ” Jun, Associate Director of Serving, about mission opportunities and ways you can serve in the Virginia Conference.

The Serving Ministries office of the Virginia Conference focuses primarily on mission and justice opportunities but also oversees All God’s Children Camp and the Camp Rainbow Connection, ministries that the VA Conference UMM supports.

Please contact the Rev. Seungsoo “RJ” Jun at (804) 521-1137 or [email protected] with questions you may have about missions in the Virginia Conference prior to the webinar.

Please join us on Tuesday evening, September 7 at 6:30 PM EDT.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 898 2460 7164

Webinar recordings from past Love, Learn, and Lead webinars are posted on our website

VA UMM Cabinet for 2021-2022

Thank You for Voting

Thank you for voting and your show of support for the Virginia Conference UMMen. Please congratulate and reach out to the officers below elected for the 2021-2022 term of office with your questions, comments, and ideas about ministering to men in your church and community. Officers were installed at the 2021 Annual Meeting on June 26. The Cabinet wants to hear from you.
Albert Weal, Jr.
Church: St. Paul’s UMC (Chesapeake)
District: Elizabeth River
Email: [email protected]
Vice President, Spiritual Life
David Collins
Church: Community UMC (Virginia Beach)
District: Elizabeth River
Email: [email protected]
Bob Longworth
Vice President, Membership & Development
Bob Longworth
Church: Nimmo UMC (Virginia Beach)
District: Elizabeth River
Email: [email protected]
Mark McKinney
Mark McKinney
Church: Thalia UMC (Virginia Beach)
District: Elizabeth River
Email: [email protected]
Gary Lupton
Gary Lupton, Sr.
Church: Community UMC (Virginia Beach)
District: Elizabeth River
Email: [email protected]
Paul Smith
Paul Smith
Church: Hopewell UMC (Chesterfield)
District: James River
Email: [email protected]

Gil Hanke | VA Conference UMM Annual Meeting

Thanks to Gil for Many Years of Service

Read Gil Hanke’s Thank You from GCUMM Reflections, August 2021

The Virginia Conference UMM thanks Gil Hanke, general secretary of the General Commission on United Methodist Men, for speaking at the VA Conference UMM Annual Meeting on Saturday, June 26 and wishes him the best as he prepares to retire before the end of the year. The GCUMM Board is recruiting Gil’s replacement, and we look forward to ministering with GCUMM in the years ahead.

Gill thanks the Virginia Conference for endless support. Highlights of his conversation with us at the Annual Meeting are below.
  • Incredible journey leading GCUMM since 2010
    • 6 full-time staff
    • 3 deployed staff
    • Budget of $1 Million
    • Guidelines for affiliate partners completed
    • Early adopters of video conferencing
    • Stronger ties with Boy Scouts of America
  • GCUMM Financing
    • 2004: Legacy Builders and EMS launched
    • 2019: First Give Day ($20,000 raised)
    • 2020: Give Day ($46,500 raised)
    • 2021: Give Day on October 18. Need to double funding from 2020
    • Future: Plan to be self-sustaining. GCUMM historically has received 25% funding from World Services)
  • GCUMM Board
    • 20 total members including
      • SEJ Presidents
      • 8 at-large members selected by GCUMM
      • Bishops (US (2); Africa, Europe, Philippines)
    • Four-year terms with a 2-term maximum
    • Youngest member is 19-years old
  • Need men transforming into the image of Christ
    • Class Meeting small group discussions launched
    • AMEND (small group discussions) seeks ways to change the culture that promotes violence against women.
    • Important for men to be engaged in mission

Scouting News | Celebrating 100 Years of Scouting

Chesterfield County’s First Female Eagle Scout

Celebrating 100 Years of Scouting at Philmont, NM
Photo by Philmont Training Center photographer

Scouts from across the country gathered in Philmont, New Mexico in July to celebrate the centennial of the partnership between The United Methodist Church and Scouting. Fifty-five participated in the celebration including five from the Virginia Conference.

Celebrate Shady Grove UMC’s Newest Eagle Scout

Congratulations to Emelia Delaporte who is Chesterfield County’s first female Eagle Scout.

Watch a wonderful tribute to Emily from the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors.

For questions or more information about scouting, please contact Bill Chaffin, UMC Virginia Conference - Director of Scouting Ministries, at 804-356-6075 or [email protected].

Words to Live By …

“But now thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.”

Isaiah 43:1

Recommended Reading: Isaiah 43
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.