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July 11, 2023

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Events (1)
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Virginia News

news update

Additional Just Resolution reached in June 2023

A Just Resolution was reached in the complaint pending against Rev. Dr. Rhonda VanDyke and an agreement was signed by all parties on June 14, 2023. In an effort to promote ongoing dialogue and broader reconciliation and healing within the body of Christ, the parties agreed to the public sharing of this resolution. Read more...
VAUMC AC logo 2023_COLOR

Bishop Sue follows up on topics introduced at AC 2023 session

Following the 2023 Annual Conference session, Bishop Sue would like to follow through on some assurances on topics raised during the event.

Ruling of Law: A Ruling of Law will be submitted on due process length of time on behalf of the Annual Conference. Bishop Sue is currently in consultation with the conference chancellor, and the Ruling of Law will be submitted soon.

Work Group on Housing Allowance: A motion was made and approved by the 2023 Annual Conference body for a Work Group to be formed to “study housing allowances for clergy and make recommendations to create consistent and equitable practices for setting the allowances, further suggest that conference commissions related to advocacy, Clergy Excellence/Board of Ordained Ministry, Equitable Compensation, CFA (and other as deemed necessary) be included in the study.” The formation of this Work Group is currently underway.

2022 Legal Fees: During the Treasurer’s Report at the 2023 Annual Conference session, a slide showing the 2022 Legal Expenditures was shared. Further clarification is now available on the fees associated with the Declaratory Decision fees ($44,261) as presented in that report. This amount can be further broken down into three categories:
  • Research and review: $23,205.42
  • Written Documents: $17,863.42
  • Consultation: $3,192.17
As background information, a Declaratory Decision was submitted to the Judicial Council on July 11, 2022. View decision… The Judicial Council shared a memorandum on the request for Declaratory Decision on March 7, 2023. View memo…

Annual Conference Feedback: Annual Conference clergy and lay members received an email from “VAUMC Surveys” on Friday, June 30 to share their feedback on the 2023 Annual Conference session. An additional email was sent this morning, Tuesday, July 11 to clergy and lay members. Members are encouraged to share their feedback, ideas for future AC sessions, and how Annual Conference can be a more relevant, educational, and inspiring event for all. The survey will remain open until Friday, July 14.
hope springs eternal

Virginia pastors to be feature in Holston podcast about UMC

A video podcast in the Holston Conference, Hope Springs Eternal: Positive Conversations about the United Methodist Church, is filled with conversations with clergy and Rev. Natalie Justice, focused on positive conversation within and about The United Methodist Church. Upcoming episodes in July will feature Virginia pastors the Rev. Pete Moon (premieres July 17) and Rev. Tim Ward (premieres July 24). View past videos...

Learn more about Dominion Energy Efficiency Program

Contractors in Dominion Energy's Energy Conservation Program can perform energy efficiency work for Dominion customers throughout Virginia to try to help them use less electricity, a service that has been provided to many United Methodist churches across Virginia. The service consists of identifying and sealing all leaks in the ductwork of a building's HVAC system and performing a tune up on the units so that the system uses less electricity. This service does not cost any money to have done and our clients do NOT get a bill.
The funds for this program have already been collected by Dominion through clean energy fees and are allocated for this work. A building's electric bill is typically reduced by between 7 and 30 percent once work is completed. The work is fully insured with COI available and full liability assumed. Learn more...

If interested or you wish for more information, please contact Alex Babaie, Energy Efficiency Consultant
Star Energy, at 703-463-7294 or [email protected].

VAUMC AC logo 2023_Black & Red

2023 Annual Conference wrap-up: Fill out AC Survey, Find COSROW report

The 241st session of Annual Conference has wrapped!

Is your church interested in 5G Business Internet?

It was announced in the Board of Communications report at the 2023 Annual Conference session that the board has partnered with T-Mobile to offer access to 5G Business Internet. They are excited to offer this opportunity for both rural and urban churches in this conference to have internet access.

All churches are encouraged (whether you think you are in a good location or not) to fill out our interest form. This will allow board members to cross reference churches with the list from T-Mobile, and send the information to get churches set up with T-Mobile.

Even if you already have internet this could be an opportunity to save some money, or evaluate your current internet service provider. If your location is not serviced by T-Mobile (or you don’t think it is) please still fill out the interest form as they are continuing to expand their 5G service, and the board is looking forward to work with Verizon toward the end of this year for a similar deal. Fill out interest form...
global ministries earthkeepers

Join next EarthKeepers training

Global Ministries seeks U.S.-based United Methodists to lead grassroots environmental projects that are action-oriented, antiracist, bold and entrepreneurial. Global Ministries EarthKeepers is a training program that equips US-based United Methodists to launch and grow environmental projects in their communities. Topics include eco-theology, antiracism, community organizing and project planning. All participants plan a project during the training. The next EarthKeepers training events will be held Oct. 5-8, 2023 in Birmingham, AL; Denver, CO; Hartford, CT.
Attend the training closest you to minimize travel emissions, while still engaging with other with people attending trainings being held in other locations. This strategy is designed to support Global Ministries commitment to just and equitable net-zero emissions. 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.

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...
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

Planting churches in war-torn Ukraine

UM NEWS— Being helpful in the middle of a war is a tricky business, but it’s the role that the Rev. Fred Vanderwerf is taking on as coordinator for In Mission Together: Ukraine. Bishop Christian Alsted, who leads the Nordic-Baltic-Ukraine Episcopal Area, says Ukrainians are suffering terribly because of the invasion by Russia. Vanderwerf has already reached out to prominent churches such as Resurrection, a United Methodist Church in Leawood, Kansas, for support. Learn more...

4 Tips for Experimenting with Change This Summer

LEWIS CENTER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIP— Lewis Center Director F. Douglas Powe says that the summer is the perfect time for a congregation to test possible changes through short-term experiments. He offers four considerations to guide an experimental approach to implementing new ideas. Learn more...

One Last Word

"Within you is the spring of life. In your light, we see light." - Psalm 36:9 CEB
(Photo by Steven Adair, United Methodist Communications.)
your light
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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