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May 2, 2023

To submit news items, stories, or corrections, email the conference Communications Office at [email protected].
Events (1)
To view conference and local church events, visit the Virginia Conference website at

To submit an local church event for inclusion, submit this form.

Virginia News


Information shared about May 6 Special Annual Conference

On Saturday, May 6, 2023, a Special Annual Conference via Zoom Webinar will be held. At 8:30 a.m., an optional Q&A will be held for any members who have questions concerning the Special Annual Conference. At 9 a.m., the Annual Conference session will convene to consider the ratification of 64 local churches that seek to disaffiliate from The United Methodist Church over matters of human sexuality using Paragraph 2553 of the Book of Discipline. AC members have received information about this session via email and it can be found at
May 4 at 4:30 p.m. is the deadline for AC lay and clergy members to ensure they have received their credentials to their preferred and/or correct email address from the Zoom Webinar platform for the May 6 Special Annual Conference.
Credentials allowing members to both log on to the May 6 Annual Conference and fully participate were emailed on Thursday, April 27. Please contact Chris Malak at [email protected] between now and May 4 at 4:30 p.m. for assistance. After the deadline, requests to troubleshoot credential issues will not be processed.
Questions concerning the Special Annual Conference may be directed to the Rev. Dr. Steve Summers at [email protected].
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Become a volunteer at AC 2023

Volunteers are needed before, during and after (from June 13-17) the in-person Annual Conference at the Berglund Center in Roanoke in June. Please prayerfully consider volunteering. Volunteers will be contacted by their area coordinator and receive any necessary training or instructions. Click below for the links to the Sign Up Genius pages:
If you need assistance signing up, please contact Donna Desper, Valley Ridge District, at [email protected].
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Update on funds given at AC 2022 for children, youth ministry

At the June 2022 session of the annual conference, the Holy Spirit moved the members to pledge funds to support children's and youth ministry at the conference level. Over $65,000 in pledges came from districts and churches across our conference. To date, the conference office has received $34,983.72. Learn more...

ac 2023 game night

2023 AC event encourages fellowship

This year at Annual Conference, Bishop Sue has encouraged fellowship and catching up with friends as the AC schedule will have no business or worship sessions in the evenings, a departure from years past. A recently announced Game Night event will provide a great way to live into fellowship. Tables will be set up with board games galore on June 16 in Berglund Hall at 7 p.m. More information will be forthcoming.

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Giving Day for UMFS is May 3

United Methodist Family Services (UMFS) Giving Day for Foster Care is tomorrow, May 3. There are 5,117 children in foster care in Virginia. More than 400 of these children are waiting for a foster family. The need is critical. Your caring donation will help provide the loving home these children deserve. Visit to learn more.

Learn more about UM missionaries in Zoom conversation

Are you interested in learning more about United Methodist missionaries? Do you wonder what day-to-day life is like in mission? #STILLINMISSION is a monthly Zoom event where you can hear first-hand experience from missionaries about their call to mission and the communities they serve. Join to see how missionaries share God’s love in partnership with communities around the world.
The next episode of #StillInMission is Thursday, May 4, 12 p.m. (ET) for conversations with missionaries:
Fatuma Kutela, Angola
Anna Troy, United States
Dan Randall, United States
Courtney Randall, United States
Gaston Ntambo, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Register now...
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2023 Annual Conference Offering #NurturingTogether

The Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church is one of the largest annual conferences of The United Methodist Church. We can significantly impact the world when we all come together around a purpose. The groups and ministries supported by the offering change each year, but the goal remains the same: to assist people and ministries, both domestic and international.
The goal of the offering for 2023 is $150,000. This year, you are invited to the initiative to #nurture leadership worldwide! The Virginia Conference will support Refugee Resettlement, Food Insecurity in the Commonwealth, and Partnerships of Hope’s leadership programs in Brazil, Mozambique, Cambodia, Native Americans, Haiti, and Vietnam through this offering. The offering will be collected on June 15, 2023, during the Opening Worship at 10 a.m. Thank you for being part of the effort to #nurturingtogether! Learn more...

Connect students with campus ministries

The Virginia Conference supports 13 campus ministries at colleges and universities across the Commonwealth, and additionally, four United Methodist colleges and universities. Our campus ministers provide opportunities for students to worship, to study, to serve, and to grow as leaders. You can find information for each campus here:
To help our campus ministers connect with your students, please complete this form as soon as you know where students will attend: If you prefer to email a spreadsheet that includes an entire list of students, their contact information, and the college or university they will attend, please email it to [email protected].

For clergy, completing this form fulfills the requirement of ¶232 of the Book of Discipline that you must notify the chair of the conference Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministry (that paragraph also requires notifying the district superintendent and the charge conference, which this form does not accomplish). This form also fulfills ¶256.3d, which requires local church youth coordinators to provide student information to the chaplains and campus ministers.

Projected Appointments shared conference-wide

April 23-- Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson and the Virginia Conference Cabinet shared the April 2023 Projected Appointments conference-wide on April 23. View appointments...
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Seminarians discuss in podcast their ministry, hopes for Church

Looking for content to listen to as you drive home, work out, or cook dinner? The Connectional Ministries office has several podcasts including the Audio Advocate that shares news and ministries. Listen on "The VAUMC Connection" now on Apple, Spotify or the conference website. The April Audio Advocate episode shares a conversation with Rev. Crystal Sygeel, Associate Director for Call & Candidacy for the Center of Clergy Excellence, and two seminarians: Bayo Ogungbade at Union Presbyterian Seminary and Meredith Webb at Candler School of Theology as they reflect on call, the status of the church as they discern a call to ministry, and hopes for the church. Listen now to episode...

Deadline for The Servant Sister Scholarship is July 1

The Virginia Conference has deployed clergywomen in a variety of ministries since 1961. The Servant Sister Scholarship capitalizes on this legacy by supporting the theological training of future clergywomen. If you are a woman enrolled in an accredited United Methodist Seminary, the Servant Sister Scholarship is accepting applications from now until July 1. Contact Co-Chairs Rev. Joanna Paysour and Rev. Lindsey B. Freeman for more details.
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Join upcoming ERT training events

The Virginia Conference Disaster Response Committee invites members of the Conference to prepare and train to be part of future ERT (Early Response Team) Training. Early Response Teams respond during the first phase of disaster relief, providing a Christian presence. Your church and community could also be faced with a disaster. Train to be ready to respond and know the first steps to help. Find upcoming trainings...
rmc convergence

R-MC Convergence registration open now

Applications for Convergence 2023 are open! Randolph-Macon College's summer Youth Theology Institute on Faith and Science will be held July 18-23 this year. The event is open to students who are finishing their 9th, 10th, or 11th grade year in the next few months.
The '23 Convergence theme is Food, Faith and Farming. We have a lot of exciting activities and experiences planned including:
• Field trips to Sophia Farm, Fitrah Farm, Shalom Farm and Babylon MicroFarm
• A special project with the Ashland Farmer’s market
• The Theology of Soul Food, a speech and cooking demonstration with author, James Beard award winner, and certified barbeque judge Adrian Miller
• Workshops on campus
• Planning and helping to lead worship at Duncan Memorial United Methodist Church on the R-MC campus.
Cost to attend is $350. Financial Assistance is available if needed. All Convergence campers receive a $1,000 scholarship if they attend R-MC for college. You can find more information and the link to apply here. For questions, email [email protected].
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Candidates sought for open positions in Connectional Ministries Office

April 5-- Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson and the Virginia Annual Conference Common Table announced plans for a reorganization in the conference Connectional Ministries Office.
In the reorganization, the current offices of Learning, Influencing, and Serving will become the offices of Missional Engagement, under the leadership of the Director of Missional Engagement (to be hired), and the Office of Discipleship and Congregational Vitality under the leadership of Mr. Dwayne Stinson, Director of Connectional Ministries for Discipleship and Congregational Vitality. Mr. Stinson and Rev. Dr. Jonathan Page, Director of Connectional Ministries for Innovation and Creativity, will share the role of Director of Connectional Ministries. Read more...

The new, open positions in the Connectional Ministries Office will better meet the needs of the Virginia Conference in mission and ministry and have intended start dates of May 2023. The positions are:
-Director of Missional Engagement (View job posting) (Apply for job)
-Assistant Director of Missional Engagement (View job posting) (Apply for job)
-Assistant Director of Discipleship and Congregational Vitality (View job posting) (Apply for job)

Another open position in the conference, reporting to the Bishop and Assistant to the Bishop, is:
-Director of Advocacy (title TBD) (View job posting) (Apply for job)

Please visit this website to apply. Questions about the jobs may be sent to [email protected]. Read more...
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Videos share resources for 2023 AC members

The Conference Lay Leader Martha Stokes and the conference Communications Office created video resources for Annual Conference members prior to the 2023 Annual Conference session. Four videos have now been released:
Video 1: Welcome from Bishop Sue
Video 2: Welcome and music from AC Conference co-directors and a chance to meet the band
Video 3: Martha shares responsibilities for lay members and reporting back to local churches.
Video 4: Conference Secretary Rev. Joshua King shares information about motions and more.
Watch videos...
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Opt-in for physical copy of 2023 Book of Reports; learn more about AC 2023

The 241st Session of the Virginia Annual Conference will be held in-person from Thursday, June 15 – Saturday, June 17, 2023, at the Berglund Center in Roanoke, Va. Hotel registration opened on Monday, March 6, 2023.

The Book of Reports will be available online in early May. You can request a physical copy until April 28 to be delivered by mid-May. Fill out this form to get a physical copy. Limited printed copies will be available at the June AC in Roanoke for purchase.

The link for registration and the Annual Conference agenda are now available. Information about displays is forthcoming.
green church award

Submit nominations for Green Church Award

The Virginia Board of Church and Society are accepting nominations for the 2023 Virginia Annual Conference Green Church Award and Sustaining Green Church Award. Applications should be completed by May 14.

In 2009, the Virginia Annual Conference established the Green Church Initiative and called churches to "green" their ministries. To recognize the continuing work of creation care in the Virginia Annual Conference, the board is asking for nominations to receive the Green Church and Sustaining Green Church Award during the Virginia Annual Conference during June 15-17, 2023 session.

Recipients of these awards strive to affirm the importance of healing and defending God's creation in their mission as local congregations. They are engaged in this ministry in worship, learning and teaching, individual and congregational lifestyle and community, national, and global advocacy/involvement.

Send any questions to Brian Christoffersen at [email protected].

VAUMC Board of Church and Society Green Church Award Application

VAUMC Board of Church and Society Sustaining Green Church Award Application

General Church News


Amid rupture, bishops called to renew church

UM NEWS— In his presidential address to the first in-person Council of Bishops meeting in three years, Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton urged his episcopal colleagues to take time to grieve disaffiliations but then work for renewal. Read more...
gushee ethics

Ethicist speaks to disaffiliation struggle

UM NEWS— The Rev. Dr. David P. Gushee, a Baptist and author of many works on Christian ethics, says clergy and churches leaving The United Methodist Church and those staying should strive to “let each other go in peace.” Read more...

Where churches spend too much and where they spend too little

LEWIS CENTER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIPIn working with more than 500 churches, The Unstuck Group identified certain expenditure areas where churches commonly invest too little and those where churches tend to invest too much. Their findings may offer clues to bringing a better balance to your church’s budget. Read more...

One Last Word: Pray during graduation season

April 26: Senior worship at Wesley at Virginia Tech.

As our seniors at campus ministries gear up for graduation, keep them in your prayers as they take steps into their future!
vt campus students
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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