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June 20, 2023

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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


2023 Annual Conference wrap-up

The 241st session of Annual Conference has wrapped!

You can still give to Annual Conference Offering

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. You can mail offering to: P.O. Box 5605 Glen Allen, VA 23058 (Memo: AC 2023 Offering) or give online.

Joint Statement released on Just Resolution

June 8--A Just Resolution was reached in the complaint pending against Rev. Andrew Stanton Ensz and an agreement was signed by all parties on June 5, 2023. The complaint against Rev. Ensz was made after he performed a same-gender wedding on September 21, 2019, a ministerial act prohibited by Book of Discipline Paragraph 341.6.
Parties to this process were the Rev. Clark Cundiff, Church Counsel, representative of The Virginia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church; Complainant Rev. Amanda Miller Garber; Respondent Rev. Ensz; and Counsel for the Respondent Rev. Lauren Lobenhofer. on | VAUMC
Read statement...

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.
lewis center certificate program

Learn more: Lewis Center Church Leadership Certificate Program

The Lewis Center at Wesley Theological Seminary is opening up a second cohort of their new Certificate Program in Church Leadership. They are looking for pastors who are committed to two years in place in their current setting who are looking to hone next-level skills for the sake of their congregations and communities.
If you are interested for more information or to register, please contact Craig Meek at [email protected] or 202-664-5709. You will need a recommendation from your District Superintendent and The Center for Clergy Excellence has clergy development funding available. Learn more...
Bible Study Videoconference

Sign up for virtual August Lay Servant Academy

The next Virginia Annual Conference Lay Servant Academy will occur virtually on August 18-19, 2023. Online course offerings will be:
• United Methodist Heritage (Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson, instructor)
• Basic Course (Richard Speirs, instructor)
• Spiritual Gifts (Joseph Plemmons, instructor)
• Leading Well in Conflict Transformation (Sarah Calvert, instructor)
• Called to Preach! (Nathan Decker, instructor)
• Introduction to Simplified Accountable Structure (Instructor TBD)
• Certified Lay Minister Orientation (Joanna Dietz and Jennifer Robinson-O'Brien, instructors).
Cost is $35 for all courses except CLM Orientation, which is $15. For more information, follow this link.
To register, click here. Contact Tianna Durbin, Lay Servant Academy Director ([email protected]) if you have questions.

Upcoming events, deadlines from Clergy Excellence

Seminary and CPE Funding Available: Application Deadline, July 1
If you are a certified candidate and in need of funding for theological requirements visit this link for a variety of scholarship opportunities from the VAUMC and General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. For questions, please contact [email protected].

Candidacy Summit, In Person, July 7-8, Open to All, Required for Candidates
The Candidacy Summit is an overnight retreat which gives participants an opportunity to explore their call to ministry. While the Summit is open to anyone over 18 years of age, it is required for all candidates in the VAUMC process. The Candidacy Summit on Friday, July 7 and Saturday, July 8 will take place at Roslyn Retreat Center in Richmond, Va. To register, click here.

Lay Servant Ministries offers July course

VAUMC Lay Servant Ministries is pleased to share an upcoming course offering from Discipleship Ministries for current Certified Lay Ministers who would like to specialize in Congregational Care Ministry from July 21-22, 2023.
The healing ministry of Jesus gives us the example that care is at the heart of the church. As a Certified Lay Minister you can receive training for a specialization through the Discipleship Ministries of the UMC in Congregational Care which can help you create and revitalize your care ministry. This two day training gives you tools and resources for your care ministry no matter what size the church including prayer ministry, boundaries, spiritual guidance, visitation, death/dying and care team development. During the webinar, you will experience uplifting worship and renewal for your soul. Learn more...

Become a clergy mentor

Do you have a passion for walking with Certified Candidates and Licensed Local Pastors in their call? Have you been previously trained but need a refresher in the process for candidates? Mentor Matters is a training event for first time and returning mentors. Participants will explore a theological vision for VAUMC mentoring, receive practical training, and spend time reviewing the roles for mentors and dCOM Coordinators. Mentor Matters will take place in person at the Conference Center in Glen Allen Thursday, August 10 from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. For questions, email [email protected] A link to register can be found here.
NEXT STEPS logo_Color

'Next Steps' campaign seeks to address needs of members seeking to stay UMC during local church disaffiliations

For those whose congregations have voted to disaffiliate, but who wish to remain United Methodist, the Virginia Annual Conference and the Cabinet offer Next Steps, a website with resources to remain connected as they discern where God is calling them. At Next Steps, individuals and churches may
access resources for small group gathering and other means of discipleship.
As part of this Bridge Churches offer one possible next step for persons who choose to remain United Methodist after their church disaffiliates, providing pastoral care, assistance in gathering, and invitations to share in ministry opportunities with their congregations. These churches are not recruiting members; they offer a safe space of support, nurture, and opportunities for connection during this time of transition. Individuals may choose to join Bridge churches, on their terms and at their own pace of discernment; or they may choose to join elsewhere. Learn more...

General Church News

Trying to heal after church disaffiliation votes

UM NEWS— The United Methodist Church’s splintering has left many churchgoers feeling wounded.
Churchgoers, pastors and even seminary professors are finding different ways to mend after bruising battles over church exits. As the founders of one recently chartered United Methodist congregation discovered, sometimes the best way to renew is to build something new. Read more...

Woman builds new life after 3 years in sanctuary

UM NEWS— Care and support from Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church has helped Guatemalan mother reach her goals, including reuniting with her children, working and learning to drive. Read more...

One Last Word

where are gathered
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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