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The Latest Edition of E-News - WNCC Disaster Response Efforts Continue, Meet Bishop Ken Carter, and more

Wednesday, August 25, 2021
News

E-News - August 25, 2021

E-News is an email newsletter sent out by the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church. It contains important news, stories, and events from around our conference. Submit articles for the next e-news. Submit events.


NEWS 

WNCC Disaster Response Efforts
WNCC Mission Engagement and the Committee on Relief are working to provide relief for those affected by last week's earthquake in Haiti, the evacuation crisis in Afghanistan, and catastrophic flooding and mudslides in the Western NC mountains from Tropical Storm Fred. Learn how you can support each of these efforts below.

Learn more about the flooding in the Western NC mountains and how you can support the WNCC Disaster Response efforts in that area.

Join us in prayer and financial support for the victims of the Haiti earthquake.

Read Bishop Paul L. Leeland's pastoral letter on the crisis in Afghanistan and download a Week of Prayer for Afghanistan, which can be distributed for use in your congregations and communities.

WNCC Clergy Meetings with Bishop Ken Carter
Bishop Ken Carter will begin his episcopal ministry in the Western North Carolina Conference on September 1. He has scheduled four opportunities to meet with clergy. Please choose the location and time most convenient for you. These gatherings are open to active and retired clergy in the Conference. Registration is encouraged.
Apply now for clergy debt reduction loans
Clergy in the Western North Carolina Conference have a place to turn for help in paying off loan debt. Applications are due by Aug. 31 for the Foundation's Clergy Debt Reduction Loan Program, which allows a typical participant to save $350 per month by consolidating debt at an interest rate of 1.5 percent.
Antiracism Ethics Training Has Gone Virtual
Due to rising COVID delta variant cases, Antiracism Ethics Training will be virtual this fall. The objectives and the content of the virtual workshop will be the same as the in-person model. However, the structure, delivery, and length of the virtual workshop are tailored to meet the needs of a variety of learners while utilizing the opportunities and diminishing the restrictions associated with an online learning environment.

Both/And Grant Updates
The current BOTH/AND Grant cycle has closed. We will be offering another grant cycle at the end of the year that will have Cohorts starting again in January.

Also, be on the lookout for BOTH/AND Worship Resources! To further equip churches to use BOTH/AND concepts, we will offer worship resources for Advent (Released in Oct) and Lent (End of Jan). This resource will include a worship theme, digital media, and specific ways to apply BOTH/AND concepts through a worship series that connect with BOTH In-Person AND Online participants.

Explore Summer Ministry Intern Highlight: Tyler Smith, Intern at Metropolitan UMC, Greensboro
Meet another of our 2021 WNCC Explore: Summer Ministry Interns, Tyler Smith, a senior at Greensboro College, interned at Metropolitan United Methodist Church in Greensboro, NC, with the pastor, Rev. Diron Chloe, as his clergy mentor for the summer.

This internship is for young adults, ages 18-25, interested in exploring ordained ministry through 10-week summer internships in United Methodist settings within the Conference. If you would like to learn more about the WNCC Explore: Summer Ministry Internship and how you might support the ministry please contact Rev. Annalee Allen, Associate Director of Ministerial Service.

Mission Spotlight: WithALL
In the July Mission Engagement blog post, Rev. Rob Parsons wrote about how he and his congregation, WithALL, live into Luke 10. In Luke 10, when Jesus sends out the seventy-two, he tells them to go in pairs and be vulnerable and immediately after getting up from finishing writing his blog post, Rev. Parsons did just that.

An Update from the 2021 Missional Collective
“People can grow towards each other; It’s a decision we have to make.” These were the words used by Rev. Nelson Johnson to challenge the Missional Collective participants upon their recent visit to the Beloved Community Center in Greensboro, NC.  Johnson and his wife, Joyce, serve as the Executive Directors of the Beloved Community and took time to share stories of their commitment to justice, reconciliation, and with particular emphasis on the work of truth.

Disposable Face Masks & Hand Sanitizer Available
The Committee On Relief has received a large quantity of disposable face masks and hand sanitizers through the local non-profit Restore Global. Masks can either be picked up on Tuesdays from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at the Mission Response Center or will be mailed out on Wednesdays (Distribution will begin August 31st).

Youth, we need you on the Conference Council for Youth Ministries!
Calling all youth, 9th-12th grade! We need you to join the Conference Council on Youth Ministries! CCYM is a leadership team of youth and adults from all over the Conference who come together to share and develop resources/events for youth ministries. The CCYM mission is to find ways to encourage young people to follow Jesus, make disciples, and to transform the world. If this sounds like something you would like to be a part of, apply today! Applications are due September 1.

Duke Endowment: Giving New Life to Churches
"By the time Calvary United Methodist Church made the difficult decision to close its doors for worship in 2018, the congregation had dwindled to about 20 people. Most members of the Asheboro, N.C., church were more than 70 years old, and maintaining the building and its property was a struggle. Today, however, that same structure is being transformed into a much-needed shelter for women and children. The rebirth was helped through a partnership with Wesley Community Development, an affiliate ministry of the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church. Supported by The Duke Endowment, Wesley helps faith communities repurpose their real estate and match local needs with church resources." Read more...

2022 Clergy Health Insurance Memo
The Conference Board of Pension and Health Benefits upon recommendation from the Health Benefits Subcommittee of the Board has approved the 2022 rate schedule for our Conference Active and Retiree Health Plans.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Council on Finance & Administration to offer grants for churches serving as COVID-19 community stations
The WNCC Council on Finance & Administration has additional funds for churches that are assisting their community with COVID-19 strategies, principally testing and vaccine administration. Our congregations are being called upon to assist as stations for COVID-19 needs and there is a cost to such in both setup, as well as cleaning afterward.
Means of Grace: Guided Prayers for Back-to-School with Dr. Melanie Dobson
In this episode of Means of Grace, Dr. Melanie Dobson joins us again to share a series of visualization prayers for adults and children during another stressful back-to-school season for families. 
Spiritual Renewal Grants for Clergy and Ministry Professionals
This season of ministry has been hard on leaders and many are exhausted, discouraged, and in need of time away.  The WNCC Leadership Development Team wants to help nurture your own spiritual growth, as you nurture the spiritual walks of others. This could be through a renewal retreat or by engaging with a Spiritual Director.  Ministry leaders (clergy and lay professionals) who sign up for a Spiritual Renewal offering, and pay a personal investment of $50 toward the experience, are eligible for up to $500 to cover the cost of registration, fees, and lodging/travel expenses.  Funds are available because of the generosity of churches who pay their apportionments.

2021 Project Agape Christmas Boxes
Fall 2021 collections for Project AGAPE will be held from Monday, September 27th through Friday, October 1st. Learn more about items needed, packing instructions, and drop-off locations. You can bring Christmas joy to a child in Armenia this year!

UPCOMING WEBINARS & EVENTS: 

Join the Fresh Expressions Clubhouse
Most Wednesdays, 2 p.m.
Most Wednesdays at 2pm a group of fresh expressions practitioners join up for a conversation on the clubhouse app. We cover a variety of topics around leading fresh expressions. Email Luke Edwards for an invite.
Carolinas Black Clergy Leadership Retreat
August 30 - September 3, 2021
We are planning an awesome time of worship, praise, fellowship, fun, rest, and renewal - all while we gain tools for growth in our lives and our ministry amid the shifting in our culture. and our denomination—not to mention surviving a pandemic! Our focus will be “Crossroads:  Where Faith and Innovation Meet." You don't want to miss this. All clergy are invited. Register at UMCSC.org.
Learn more about WNCC Creation Care and Justice in the WNCC
Tuesdays in September, 12-1 p.m.
All clergy members in the WNCC are invited to join in a conversation with Rev. Jonathan Brake, an ordained elder serving Mount Pleasant UMC (Sherrills Ford), and Kim Richmond, a lay member and organizer of Creation Care Ministry at Maple Springs UMC (Winston Salem), as they discuss The Mission of Creation Care and Creation Justice in the WNCC. These conversations will take place via Zoom on three consecutive Tuesdays during the Season of Creation – September 14th, 21st, and 28th – from noon to 1pm, so bring your lunch and eat, relax and listen, then share comments and questions after each presentation.
Professional Administrators Fall Retreat
Friday-Saturday, October 29-30, 2021
Are you ready to learn more about Leaving Your Professional Legacy? The WNCC Chapter of PAUMCS invites you to learn more at this year's Fall Retreat in beautiful Laurel Ridge!
Director of Communications: Melissa McGill

Associate Director of Communications: Aimee Yeager

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