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October 18, 2022

To submit news items, events, or corrections, email the conference Communications Office at [email protected].
Events (1)
  • November 2-4- Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference at Lake Junaluska, N.C.
To view local church events, visit the Virginia Conference website at To submit an event for inclusion submit this form.
skunk on the table

Resource Spotlight: Learn more about upcoming SEJ, Nov. 2-4

Could the Virginia Conference get a new bishop in November 2022? What is the Southeastern Jurisdiction? Check out the first episode of Skunk on the Table now at

Skunk on the Table is a new video/podcast/article series presented by the Virginia Conference Communications Office to explore those issues that are present but may be hard to talk about. Let’s throw the Skunk on the Table and explore the next topic!

Find additional information about the Southeastern Jurisdiction and the upcoming Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference at

October Challenge: Share your Bright Spots

OCTOBER CHALLENGE: Have you ever noticed that when you focus on the negative, all you can see are more negative things around you? But when you focus on the positive things in your life, it makes you more aware and open to other 'bright spots' in your life. The conference Communications Office challenges every clergyperson, every lay leader, every mission chair, every church to look around this month and to submit a good news story to the Communications Office to share.

From personal stories of connection, to ministry events to community outreach, the Communications Office wants to hear from you! How many of these ministries and stories of connection could lift and inspire other United Methodists around the Virginia Conference and connection?

Send emails to [email protected]. Your story may be featured in an upcoming newsletter or video.

A Bright Spot: NOVA church gets chartered

On Sunday, October 16, Kingstowne Communion, Alexandria, VA, celebrated their sixth birthday and officially chartered as a United Methodist church.
kingstowne communion charter

Virginia News

mt olivet worship

Arlington church suffers fire damage, continues church witness in community

Mount Olivet UMC in Arlington, VA, suffered an attic fire early on Friday, October 14. The fire began in the attic above the music and education wing. No one was in the building at the time and there were no injuries.
For the foreseeable future, the church will meet at a local United Methoidst church. On Sunday Oct.16, the church worshipped outside their church and their witness in light of the damage was noted and shared though a number of stories in the media over the weekend. During Sunday's worship, the Rev. Sara Keeling said, "In many ways, we are prepared to remember that the church is not just the , building, that it’s the community that however and wherever we are gathered. It’s a lesson we are going to take with us.” Learn more...
roanoke umvim

United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) team travels to North Carolina

A team of 19 people from churches in the Valley Ridge District, traveled on Sunday, Oct. 16, to North Carolina and is working with Carolina Rebuilding Ministries, a partner of UMVIM in Plymouth, NC. Most of the team will be there until Saturday. Since they left from various locations, the district superintendent prepared a commissioning blessing for them for when they were together on the site. While there, the team will tear our and replace joists to laying laminate and vinyl flooring as well as ceiling demo, drywall replacement, light plumbing and lighting fixture replacement.
news update

Information released for October 29 Called Annual Conferences

October 14--On Saturday, October 29, 2022, two Special Annual Conferences will be held. Further information, including an agenda, disaffiliation FAQ, and a list of churches seeking disaffiliation were shared conference-wide on October 14. will be shared concerning the Special Annual Conferences as well as an upcoming webinar opportunity (prior to October 29) to submit questions concerning the Annual Conferences. You can find this information on the conference website.
A webinar for those who have questions about the Special Annual Conferences on October 29 will be held on Monday, October 24 at 7 p.m. All questions should be pre-submitted through this Google form by Friday, October 21. A recording of the webinar will be shared after the event. Follow this link to register for webinar:

Additionally, other Special Annual Conferences are now scheduled so that any churches seeking approval to disaffiliate through Paragraph 2553 will have enough time to be considered for ratification by the Annual Conference body before the 2553 legislation lapses on December 31, 2023 . The upcoming Special Annual Conferences solely focused on disaffiliation using Paragraph 2553 will be held:
Saturday, February 18, 2023 at 9 a.m.
Saturday, May 6, 2023 at 9 a.m.
Saturday, October 7, 2023 at 9 a.m.
Further information will be forthcoming about these upcoming dates.
foundation logo

Foundation offering grants

Grant applications for the 2022-2023 VAUMF grants cycle are due on October 31, 2022. For applications and grant guidelines, go to The grants program is designed for ministries and entities associated with the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church.
Questions? Send an email to [email protected].

Check presented for military chaplaincy scholarship

Representatives from the VAUMC presented a $100,000 scholarship check, a combination of the Annual Conference Offering and Floris UMC’s effort to support the military chaplains. This scholarship supports Wesley Theological Seminary’s effort to provide 100 percent tuition scholarships for the chaplains enrolled in this program. Learn more in blog...

UMM to host webinar on Healing Circles

The Virginia Conference United Methodist Men (UMM) will host on Tuesday, November 15 at 6:30 p.m. a Love, Learn, and Lead webinar on Healing Circles with the Rev. Dr. Rick Vance of the General Commission on United Methodist Men.

Healing Circles are a tool for working toward inclusion and equity. Healing Circles offers the opportunity for communities to build relationships and engage in authentic, honest conversations about racism, the cruelties of slavery, and ways to recognize and remedy present injustices.

Join Zoom Meeting
Tuesday, November 15 at 6:30 PM EST
Meeting ID: 898 2460 7164

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Webinar recordings from previous Love, Learn, and Lead webinars are posted on our website
cleaning buckets

Join the Cleaning Kit Conference Challenge

In a September 8 letter, Bishop Lewis shared that VAUMC Disaster Coordinator, the Rev. Bob Pihlcrantz, had received an urgent call from the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) requesting cleaning kits. UMCOR Supply Depots are already close to disbursing all their stored cleaning kits to impacted areas. In 2017, the Virginia Conference responded to a similar call and collected 4,676 cleaning kits, estimated at $350,700.

Lewis challenged the conference in her letter sharing, "Together, as the Virginia Conference, let us once again step up as the church. The VAUMC Annual Conference Kit team proposes to hold another event on November 10, 2022, with our goal to collect 4,677 Cleaning Kits by November.

"This is one more kit from our previous collection in 2017. Our goal can be easily reached if every church contributes four (4) kits or 585 kits per district. We ask all churches in the Virginia Conference to be “United as One” in this opportunity to share the hope of Jesus Christ."

For more information, please visit, or contact Serving Ministries at [email protected].

You may also make a financial donation by visiting
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Send in your Cleaning Kit stories!

As your church joins the Virginia Conference Cleaning Kit Challenge, be sure to share your progress and your story of collecting Cleaning kits to [email protected].

We look forward to celebrating and showing the work and effort the Virginia Conference has achieved together to help in future disaster relief recovery.

You can view the 'Share Your Bucket Story" page HERE.
Open Enrollment concept. White lightbox on a gray office desk

Open Enrollment runs Oct. 10-31

The open enrollment period for 2023 elections in the Conference-sponsored benefit plans began on Monday, October 10, and ends on Monday, October 31. During this period, a new Unity Web online benefits enrollment system is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for eligible clergy and lay employees to make 2023 plan elections. To access the information page for open enrollment, which includes a brief video and instructions for the open enrollment system, CLICK HERE.
tumcu logo

Credit Union introduces 'AdoptionAssist'

The upfront expenses in the adoption process itself keep a lot of people from even considering adoption from the potential legal expenses, travel, lodging, agency fees, medical costs, and counseling during the adoption process can sometimes cost thousands of dollars.

"AdoptionAssist" is an innovative, low-interest line-of-credit (LOC) that prospective adoptive parents can use to fund many adoption expenses (Current Rate – 6.95%). During the adoption phase and for a full year after - no payments are required. After that, AdoptionAssist will convert to a simple, low-interest fixed loan.
CEO Jim Eads said about the program, "As the father of two adopted children myself, I'm particularly gratified that the credit union has the opportunity to offer this kind of assistance. We also feel it’s part of our Christian mission to help any of our Members that may be considering adoption." Learn more...
rmc logo

Bailey Scholars application is open at R-MC

Young people are searching for meaningful vocations as they make plans after high school. Do you know someone considering a call to Christian ministry? Whether it’s a call to preach, mission work, faith-based non-profit leadership, music ministry, youth ministry, chaplaincy... the Church needs young leaders who are prepared to guide us into the future.

Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA is the oldest continuously operating Methodist College in the U.S. and is committed to nurturing a new generation of church leaders. Our Bailey Scholars program awards a half-tuition scholarship for the first two years followed by a full tuition scholarship for a student’s final two years at R-MC. Bailey Scholars also benefit from two internships (one for academic credit and one for a $3,000 stipend) and a weekly meeting with other pre-ministerial students.

Please share this information with young people and youth ministers whom you know. Learn more at The application deadline for next year’s incoming class is March 1, 2023. Contact R-MC Chaplain and Pre-Ministerial Program Director the Rev. Kendra Grimes at [email protected] for more information.
dillard forum

Free Richmond church event focuses on food issues in U.S.

The 2022 Dillard Forum is excited to bring Dr. Norbert Wilson to Trinity UMC, 903 Forest Avenue, Richmond, VA 23229 on November 6-7. This Forum will focus on food issues in our country and will address equity in access to food, food waste, and the ramifications of our choices in what we eat. This event is free to attend, and all are welcome.

Dr. Wilson is the Professor of Food, Economics, and Community at Duke Divinity School and is an ordained vocational deacon in the Episcopal Church USA. With several degrees in agricultural economics, he has spent his career involved in food policy with the underlying premise that food is a basic human right. Mark your calendars now for this important event!

  • Sunday, November 6 @ 7 p.m. in Trinity’s Sanctuary: U.S. Food Security: We Must Do Better
  • Monday, November 7 @ 12 noon via ZOOM: Discussion and Q & A

    Register in advance for this meeting being held on Monday, November 7 @ 12 noon:
    After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
  • Monday, November 7 @ 7 p.m. in Trinity’s Sanctuary: Charity and Justice: Old Ways to Address Contemporary Food Insecurity
Professor Wilson’s research touches on several food issues, such as access, choice, and food waste. He continues to work on food safety and quality issues in international trade and domestic food systems. Wilson is an ordained vocational deacon in the Episcopal Church USA. Additionally, his work is moving to explore equity in food access. He has published in AEA Papers and Proceedings, World Development, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Journal of Public Health, Food Policy, Agricultural Economics, and other publications. Before joining Duke Divinity School, Wilson was a professor of food policy at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy (2017-2020). He was also a professor of agricultural economics at Auburn University (1999-2016). While at Auburn, Wilson served as a deacon at St. Dunstan’s, the Episcopal Student Center of Auburn University (2011-2016). He was an economist/policy analyst in the Trade Directorate (2004-2006) and the Agriculture Directorate (2001-2002) of the Organization of Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD) in Paris, France.
UMFS Offering_Mackenzie

UMFS December Offering supports high-risk children

United Methodist Family Services (UMFS) is grateful for the faithful support of local churches in the Virginia Conference. Your generous gifts help children in foster care, children struggling with mental health challenges, and special education students get the support they need to thrive.

Your support through the UMFS offering has helped children like Mackenzie. Mackenzie experienced severe trauma as a young child. Her behavioral and mental health challenges continued to escalate. When she was 13, Mackenzie came to UMFS and began a healing journey that would change her life. Today she has a stable home and a job she enjoys. Mackenzie shared that “I never would have thought I’d be where I am today.” Your support through the UMFS December offering will help more children like Mackenzie get the help they need to achieve a brighter future. You can access UMFS bulletin inserts, short videos, images, and more at Please contact Jill Gaynor ([email protected] or 804-254-9463) with any questions. Thank you for your support!
rmc logo

October 25 Continuing Education event to be held at Randolph-Macon College

Who Cares? We do! Clergy are invited to Randolph-Macon College for a half-day retreat to explore the theme of Caring on Tuesday, October 25, 2022. Dr. Maria Fleshood (LPC, MDiv, DMin, and former international missionary) will lead the event. Presentations will include Clergy Self Care, Caring for your Congregation, and Congregations Caring for their Community. The third presentation is free and open to the public as R-MC and DMUMC’s annual Ira Andrews Lecture. Registration for this in-person retreat is $20 and .5 CEUs are available through the Virginia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. More details and registration information can be found at
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How can your church help during disasters?

With disasters like the summer flooding in Kentucky, Virginia Conference clergy and laity want to help. Learn more in a recent blog post on what is needed following these disasters. Learn more...
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VAUMC invited to be in partnership with missionary

Some churches are already in a covenant relationship with a Global Ministries missionary. Other churches have not yet found a way to include any level of “ends of the earth” support in their budgets. What about your church? Have you found that personal connection with a missionary, where your congregation can get excited about supporting God’s mission “to the ends of the earth”? The Virginia Conference currently partners with seven missionaries serving various parts of the world. You can find a list of them on the Serving Ministries Missionaries page. A good way to connect with a missionary is to find a common area of ministry concern and service.

Churches in the Virginia Conference have the opportunity to be in a relationship with Global Ministries missionary Jennifer Moore. She serves in the Balkan country of North Macedonia. Moore is responsible for leadership and program development for ministries with children and youth in the Macedonian District. Does your church work with children and youth (in your church or in your community)? If so, this is a connection to which you can relate!

Moore will be in the United States and available to speak in your congregation from November 5 through December 20. (She will also be available for online Zoom visits and presentations from October 1 through 15 and January 14 through February 28.) Learn more...
race relations

2022-2023 grant program releases from GCORR

The General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) is proud to announce a new cycle of the CORR Action Fund (CAF) grant program that will support creative initiatives that will transform the United Methodist Church (UMC) and the world. The 2022-2023 grant program will provide up to $10,000 to fund projects that increase intercultural competency and support vital conversations about race, cultural diversity, and systemic equity leading to action.
UMC churches and other UMC entities are invited to apply for funding by submitting a proposal that:
• demonstrates bold and innovative thinking,
• reaches more people, younger people, and more diverse people,
• results in long-term change that could be replicated in other local churches, districts, conferences, or other entities within the UMC, and
• utilizes existing GCORR resources.
The CAF grant program was established by the General Conference of The United Methodist Church for the empowerment of diversity, inclusion, and racial justice work both inside and outside the Church.
Applications are now open. This grant application cycle closes November 15, 2022. Learn more...
Grants from around the connection can be found at the conference website. Learn more...
facing the future

Online event for pastors serving cross-racial, cross-cultural, and multicultural contexts

After a brief hiatus during the pandemic, “Facing the Future” is returning. Facing the Future is the premier conference for anyone engaged with or discerning cross-racial/cross-cultural ministry. You will learn skills to support the CRCC ministry context, personal self-care, and professional development. You will experience meaningful worship and workshops from sought-after leaders and professionals. We are looking forward to seeing you there.

Early Registration (August 1-31): $45.00
Standard Registration (September 1 - October 15): $50.00
Late Registration (October 16-31): $60.00
Learn more...

General Church News

native peoples

Native American leader discusses threatened cultures

UM NEWS-- The Rev. Glen “Chebon” Kernell, executive director of the United Methodist Native American Comprehensive Plan, discusses the realities for Native peoples and the need to promote climate justice. Read more...

What is The UMC's view of Halloween?

For many, Halloween means costumes, trick-or-treating and big parties. Is there a different way to look at this holiday and how we celebrate it as a church? Ask The UMC explores the historic roots of Halloween, or All Hallows Eve, and how United Methodists might take the opportunity to give back and proclaim our hope for a new creation. Learn more...
ukraine refugees

Church helps Ukrainian refugees start business

The United Methodist Church in Romania runs a hotel that hosts a variety of ministries. They helped two Ukrainian women begin a sewing business on site. The women said their work is a helpful distraction from the bad memories of fleeing the war. They sew “everything you need” for babies, from blankets and linens for cribs to toys and hanging baskets. Learn more...

Church of the Resurrection releases #ProudtobeUMC videos

Since the spring, United Methodist Church members have increasingly received incorrect and harmful information from those recruiting members to join the Global Methodist Church, a new traditionalist denomination organized by the Wesleyan Covenant Association that began operations in May.
The largest United Methodist church in the denomination, Church of the Resurrection, and its pastor, the Rev. Adam Hamilton, recently shared a number of videos covering why the church and its community will remain a part of The United Methodist Church. Learn more...

Bishops push back against recruitment tactics

UM NEWS-- As churches weigh exiting the denomination, bishops are trying to set the record straight on misinformation being spread about The United Methodist Church’s future. They also are working toward building a church where traditionalists, centrists and progressives will all feel at home. Meanwhile, a recent decision by The United Methodist Church’s top court limits how churches can exit with property and may make it harder for some lawsuits demanding disaffiliation to succeed in civil courts. Learn more...

Is The United Methodist Church really...?

UM NEWS--Ask The UMC, a ministry of United Methodist Communications, has received many questions from congregations wondering about the future of the denomination and whether they should consider disaffiliating from it. These have included recurrent questions that reflect misperceptions or misinformation that congregations are receiving as they discern their next steps. This is the first of a series of articles offering accurate responses to such misperceptions or misinformation. Learn more...

Join the denomination in sharing why you are #BeUMC

#BeUMC honors the core values that connect the people of The United Methodist Church (The UMC). This grassroots campaign, built upon powerful stories of congregations and people living their faith, celebrates what draws us to The UMC and what we aspire to be.

The UMC is founded on a Wesleyan theology of grace, anchored in Scripture, and based in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ and the continuing movement of the Holy Spirit.

The full story of The UMC reflects all of our interwoven experiences. Consider our common roots and your answer to the question, “Why am I United Methodist?” Then, post a video, photo or written testimony on your preferred social media platform – don’t forget to use the hashtag #BeUMC. Download the campaign guide...

One Last Word

praise god
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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