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October 19, 2021

How can you take part in learning, influencing, and serving this week?

  • How can you be a lifelong learner?

Looking for a simple, creative way to engage young families in the life of your congregation? Jessica Anschutz explains how providing a gathering space for young parents and their children can be a high-impact, low-budget way to build a supportive, nurturing community for young families. Coffee, Kids, and Chaos may be a great way to reach new people in your community if there are stay-at-home/work-from-home parents, nannies, or grandparents caring for young children. Learn more...
  • How can you be an influencer?
Influence is about meeting people where they are, and coming alongside them. Rev. Matt Hall, a "trail chaplain" in the Holston Conference, shares his journey in Guideposts. His story reminds us that we can share the gospel with others right where we are, doing what we do every day. Read story
  • How can you serve?

How is your church planning to serve your community during the time of Thanksgiving? Do you host a community meal? Do you invite first responders for a mini-Thanksgiving meal since many won't celebrate the holiday with their families? Share how you serve the community and send your ideas to [email protected]. The Serving Ministries office is also planning a small give-thanks event to assist the Afghan Allies. More information to come soon.

Virginia News


Invitation to a Celebration of All Saints Day, Oct. 24, 6 p.m., via Zoom

In preparation for All Saints Day, all clergy and laity of the Virginia Conference are invited to this service of healing. We will sing together, hear the Scripture, grieve together as we light candles for the saints we have loved and lost, and boldly claim the promise of the Resurrection through Jesus Christ our Lord. This service is virtual (via Zoom) and you are invited to bring candles to light for all the saints that you would like to remember this year. The Rev. Dana Trent, author of Dessert First: Preparing for Death While Savoring Life will be our preacher and will stay on after the service for a time of encouragement and visioning about best practices to offer pastoral care during this season. More...

Update on Virginia Conference aid to Haiti

The Virginia Conference was able to send $21,866.20 to assist the earthquake recovery effort in Haiti. Total sent to Haiti after the earthquake is now $34,866.20

Eglise Methodiste d’Haiti (EMH), the Methodist Church in Haiti, is providing food and medicine to the people who were effected by this disaster. Continue to join the effort to support EMH by sharing your donations to the VAUMC Haiti Disaster Relief Fund

Also remember to pray for the 17 missionaries who were captured and are being held hostage. Remember to pray for stability in the nation, which is under chaos.

To join in this effort to serve Haiti, please email [email protected].

Latino Thanksgiving Worship Service in Spanish invitation extended

All are invited to join in a Latino Thanksgiving Worship Service in Spanish on November 13 at 7 p.m. by Zoom. The service will feature testimonies, prayers, music and praise! Topic: Culto de Alabanza y Adoracion. More details...

Open Enrollment now available

Open enrollment for the Virginia Conference medical plans began on October 11 and will run through October 29. CLICK HERE for the link to visit the open enrollment system. If assistance or additional information is needed, please call Melissa Wahlberg at (804) 521-1131.

Free Dillard Forum at Trinity UMC, Richmond, Oct. 24-25

Trinity United Methodist Church, 903 Forest Avenue, Richmond, VA 23229, presents the 2021 Dillard Forum: Theology & Theater, on October 24 and 25, 2021. The arts are important. They captivate and inspire. The 2021 Dillard Forum will feature Dr. Charles A. Gillespie, assistant professor of Catholic Studies at Sacred Heart University, Fairfield, CT. With a background in performing arts as well as in theology, Dr. Gillespie is uniquely positioned to offer an engaging and thought provoking look at both our faith and belief as well as popular expression and art.
  • Session One, Sunday, October 24, 7 pm - “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” Spectacles and Christian Theology
  • Session Two, Monday, October 25, 7 pm - “You Will Be Found." Thinking about God on Broadway
The Dillard Forum is free, open to the public, and will be in-person in Trinity's sanctuary as well as streamed through the Trinity website ( All in-person attendees must wear a mask. At 12 noon on Monday, October 25, a Zoom session with Dr. Gillespie will be offered. To be a part of this, persons should email the church to request the link ([email protected]). For more information and to register, visit

Sensing a call to ministry? Bailey Pre-Ministerial program can help

For students who sense a calling to full-time Christian ministry, the A. Purnell Bailey Pre-Ministerial Program at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland offers encouragement through a weekly vocational discernment group, two internships, and financial support. Applications are currently being accepted. Interviews for selected applicants may take place in person or by video conferencing this year. The A. Purnell Bailey Pre-Ministerial Program offers half-tuition during a student’s freshman/sophomore years; full tuition during the junior/senior years; two internships in ministry settings. Join in a cohort of peers who are also discerning a call while working on your college degree. Find out more and apply at The deadline for 2022-2023 Bailey Scholar applications is January 10, 2022.

Take Time For You in 2022 with a J-Term Class at Wesley!

With another year just around the corner, are you feeling the need for some time away and spritual and intellectual refreshment? If so, Wesley Theological Seminary invites you to join us for J-Term 2022, a series of intense, 1- or 2-week courses in January that enable a time of focused class learning (online or in person) with the remainder of the coursework completed individually later in the term. Many clergy and ministry leaders take these courses for both CEUs and as a time of retreat following a busy Advent/Christmas season. Registration opens October 18, 2021 - December 13, 2001 For more information, go to

Make it Matter One-Day Youth Rally will replace Youth Retreat; registration is open

The Youth Rally on Saturday, December 4, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA, is filling up fast. Learn more...
Click here to register by November 29.

General Church News

Eight-month-old Kelani, whose mother fled gang violence in Honduras, has her bath in a plastic bucket at a camp for migrants at the El Chaparral border crossing in Tijuana.

Photo essay: ‘I was a stranger …’

TIJUANA, Mexico (UM News) — In September 2021, a UM News team accompanied leaders from The United Methodist Church and the Methodist Church of Mexico on visits to growing migrant communities in multiple towns on the U.S.-Mexico border. While policymakers in Washington struggle to find solutions, the response from faith leaders has been simple: Welcome the strangers, as Jesus instructed. UM News photographer Mike DuBose documented the ministry in a photo essay. View photos
Josephine Kwamboka, 12, fetches water from a tap installed by First United Methodist Church of Moheto, Kenya. Prior to the installation of the well, children traveled great distances each day to find water in streams and ponds. Waterborne illnesses have decreased significantly since the well was drilled. Photo by Gad Maiga, UM News.

Kenyan church provides clean, safe water

A borehole project in rural Kenya is transforming lives, and United Methodists are playing a significant role.
For years, residents in Migori County were forced to gather contaminated water from a dying stream littered with paper, plastic and heaps of garbage. Spending up to one-third of their day collecting water in the scorching heat, women and children were vulnerable to water-borne illnesses and predator attack.
In December 2019, the 280-member First United Methodist Church in Moheto, Kenya, devised a plan to provide safe, clean water for the community. Read more...


UM Global Ministries Launches New Effort to Raise Funds for Equitable Distribution of COVID-19 Vaccine Around the World

United Methodist Global Ministries is launching a new initiative and joining interfaith partners in an effort to increase the equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine around the world. Funds donated to a new Advance giving project will support “Love Beyond Borders: The Interfaith Movement to End the Pandemic” campaign supporting UNICEF’s global vaccine distribution efforts.

Proposed to Global Ministries by First United Methodist Church of Boise, Idaho’s, missions team, “Love Beyond Borders: The Interfaith Movement to End the Pandemic” seeks to engage The United Methodist Church in supporting UNICEF’s global COVID-19 response, including distributing safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX facility, diagnostics and treatments.

Through this initiative, members of The United Methodist Church will contribute to UNICEF’s historic efforts in leading the procurement and supply of 1.4 billion COVID-19 vaccines to approximately 196 participating COVAX countries and economies by the end of 2021. For just $37 dollars, members can help provide 10 people with two doses of the vaccine. Global Ministries has created Advance #3022671 for this effort to ensure that 100% of donations go directly to UNICEF USA for this project. More...

One Last Word

Please send any issues or concerns to [email protected]. If you have issues with the formatting trying to forward (especially in Outlook), you can use the following link. More...
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