News

Below are news stories published by the Western North Carolina Conference.  We recommend that you also subscribe to ENews and bookmark the United Methodist News Service to be more aware of what is going on in the conference and denomination. 

Articles for the news can be submitted here.

Come, Holy Ghost: A Wesleyan perspective on the Spirit

5/22/2015
A UMC.org Feature by Joe Iovino* While most United Methodists can articulate what they believe about Jesus and are reasonably comfortable talking about God, our confidence might waver when talking about the Holy Spirit. Maybe that is because we can relate to Jesus as a human being and understand God through personified imagery like “Heavenly Father.” The symbols we use to talk about the Holy Spirit, on the other hand, are far less human. At Pentecost we read about the Spirit as fire and wind.In ...

The Potter’s Touch Focuses on Spiritual Direction

5/21/2015
The Potter's Touch Board recently made a transition in the services offered to churches in the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountain Districts. Potter's Touch is now a Network of Spiritual Directors. The objective is to encourage and support clergy and laity in the tending of their spiritual lives in order to become more effective as leaders. Clergy and laity are encouraged to consider the ancient practice of Spiritual Direction—reflecting on one’s life of prayer, one’s longing for God, and speaking of ...

Convocation and Pastors' School Set for October 12-13

5/19/2015
Duke Divinity School announces that the 2015 Convocation and Pastors' School will be October 12-13, 2015. This year's theme is: Body and Belonging: Nurturing Wholeness in Christian Community. Join professor John Swinton, Episcopal priest Claire Wimbush, pastors Debra Richardson-Moore and William Lee and others as we explore the difference Christ’s body makes for the way that we care for our communities and ourselves.   The annual Convocation & Pastors’ School is an intensive, two-day conference ...

Sam Herring to Receive Eagle Scout Honors at Aldersgate UMC

5/18/2015
Samuel Herring, a member of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Shelby, NC will celebrate the highest honor of achievement in the Boy Scouts of America when he receives his Eagle Scout Award on May 31, 2015. Sam has been a member of Pack and Troop 107 (sponsored by Aldersgate UMC) since 2004. He is a junior at Crest High School in Cleveland County and has been active in his church youth group and served as a youth representative to the Administrative Council. He and a group of four from Shelby...

FlameBuilders Accepting Applications for Class 2

5/18/2015
FlameBuilders is accepting applications for Class 2! We are excited to expand our scope to include all 8 districts of the Western North Carolina Conference (WNCC) of the United Methodist Church. Applicants should be young adults between the ages of 21-35 who are interested in global leadership and spiritual development, and who are living or attending school in one of the 8 WNCC districts. FlameBuilders is designed to help participants learn more about their unique gifts, strengths, and talents,...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 051515

5/15/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Pew Study Perspectives 5 Ways to Better Equip Vital Congregations U.S. Tornado Losses Include Two from Texas Church Resources for Aldersgate Day and Peace with Justice Sunday Order of the Long Leaf Pine Presented to Rev. Joe Ervin LATEST CAREERS Director of Music Ministries Director of Children’s Music Director of Music Ministry Preschool Director Administrative Assistant Director of ...

Pew Study Perspectives

5/14/2015
The Pew Research Centers released its latest report on religion in America, “America’s Changing Religious Landscape,” on Tuesday May 12. Since then, the news and religious media have been full of commentary and opinion. Below are three excerpts that have ties to United Methodism, and to the Western North Carolina Conference: Christians lose ground, ‘nones’ soar in new portrait of US religion (Religion News Service) This article was written by Cathy Lynn Grossman who specializes on stories drawn...

5 Ways to Better Equip Vital Congregations

5/13/2015
This is the May 2015 issue from DISCIPLESHIP MINISTRIES. How is your church offering H.O.P.E.? Making disciples for the transformation of the world means offering the hope of Jesus Christ in all aspects of life. At Discipleship Ministries, H.O.P.E. is an acronym that helps us remember the core process of making disciples found in The Book of Discipline: Hospitality, Opportunity, Purpose and Engagement. Tell the world how is your congregation making disciples and offering hope to your ...

U.S. Tornado Losses Include Two from Texas Church

5/12/2015
By Sam Hodges and Linda Bloom May 11, 2015 | UMNS The council chair of a United Methodist Church and his wife, a former secretary of the church, died in likely tornadoes that roared through Van, Texas, May 10. The Rev. Mark McClanahan, pastor of Van United Methodist Church, confirmed the deaths of David and Brenda Tapley, who he understood had died in their home. David Tapley was a certified lay minister in the denomination. Other church members suffered property damage and the church’s youth ...

Resources for Aldersgate Day and Peace with Justice Sunday

5/11/2015
Aldersgate Day is May 24th (also known as Heritage Sunday) On May 24, 1738, 277 years ago, John Wesley received an experience that changed his life and ultimately lead to the development of the Methodist movement in Britain, Ireland, and America. His “Aldersgate” experience is often called his “conversion.” Here are some resources that can be used in worship and preparation: "I felt my heart strangely warmed" "I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone for my salvation" Hearts Strangely Warmed ...

Order of the Long Leaf Pine Presented to Rev. Joe Ervin

5/8/2015
[This article appeared in the Lincoln Times-News on May 4, 2015. Writer/Photographer: Phil Perry] Pastor recognized for humanitarian work through state’s highest honor The Order of The Long Leaf Pine Society recognizes North Carolinians who demonstrate exemplary service or make exceptional contributions to the state or their communities. It is the most prestigious honor that can be bestowed upon a citizen of North Carolina. Reverend Joe Lane Ervin is now a member of this distinguished roster. ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 050815

5/8/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS News from the Council of Bishops Meeting Celebrate Golden Cross Sunday Gathering of the Laity- August 7-8, 2015 Children’s Ministry Cohort Taking Applications FlameBuilders Graduates Pilot Cohort – May 2, 2015 LATEST CAREERS Director of Stewardship Director of Missional Discipleship Office Administrator Director of Children’s Ministry Director of Children’s Ministries Nursery Attendant Director...

News from the Council of Bishops Meeting

5/7/2015
United Methodist bishops from Africa, Europe, Asia and the United States will gather in Berlin at Hotel Palace Berlin for the Council of Bishops meeting, from May 1-7. Main topics on the agenda include the development of vital congregations, the implementation of the four Areas of Focus, preparation for the 2016 General Conference of The United Methodist Church, and the role of bishops in helping to maintain the unity and faithfulness of the church in the face of many significant challenges and ...

Celebrate Golden Cross Sunday

5/6/2015
(PLEASE NOTE THAT GOLDEN CROSS WAS DISSOLVED IN 2017) Golden Cross is a ministry that reaches out in love to the laity in our Annual Conference who are experiencing financial difficulty due to excessive medical expenses. Each year, Golden Cross has impacted the lives of numbers of families in the NC Conference. Each outreach effort represented someone active in his or her local church - people just like each of us - who in a moment of struggle found means of grace and love coming from “their”...

Gathering of the Laity- August 7-8, 2015

5/4/2015
The 50th Gathering of the Laity is scheduled for August 7-8, 2015 at Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center in Lake Junaluska, NC. Featured speakers at this year's event include Bishop Jonathan Holston of the South Carolina Conference (last year's Annual Conference preacher). He will be the keynote speaker for the Friday evening service with communion, and Saturday morning address. The laity address on Saturday morning will be given by David Michael Farmer of the Catawba Valley District. ...

Children's Ministry Cohort Taking Applications

5/4/2015
Children’s Ministry Cohort The Children’s Ministry Cohort is a covenantal learning group for educators seeking to be well equipped leaders in transforming the world in the area of children’s ministry in the local church. Overview The Children’s Ministry Cohort is a covenantal learning group for educators seeking to be well-equipped leaders in transforming the world in the area of children’s ministry in the local church. Participants will dialogue and engage with one another; collaborating how ...

FlameBuilders Graduates Pilot Cohort - May 2, 2015

5/4/2015
In response to the growing number of young adults leaving the church, Boundless Impact, a nonprofit organization fostering global connections in North Carolina, partnered with the Western North Carolina Conference (WNCC) of The United Methodist Church, Center for Creative Leadership and UMC-affiliated higher education institutions, to launch a program called FlameBuilders. The name “FlameBuilders” is inspired by 1 Thes. 5:19 – Do not put out the Spirit’s fire. This global leadership and ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 050115

5/1/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Guilford West Missional Network – In the News United Methodists Respond to Baltimore Riots Deacon Studies Program Is Life Changing for Student United Methodists Respond to Nepal Quake Technology Will Bridge Languages at 2016 General Conference Ken Anderson Named Interim Disaster Response Coordinator LATEST CAREERS Director of Christian Education Organist/Accompanist Music Associate – Organist ...

Guilford West Missional Network - In the News

4/30/2015
[This article appeared in the Greensboro News and Record, April 29, 2015. Writer/Photographer: Alice Owens] Churches make ‘Feeding the 5000’ reality By Alice Owens Special to News & Record A crowd was gathered outside at Muir’s Chapel United Methodist Church in the early morning drizzle on Good Friday. They were waiting to get a box of food. The official start time for “Feeding the 5000,” a community event hosted by the Guilford West Missional Network was 9 a.m., but when volunteers saw ...

United Methodists Respond to Baltimore Riots

4/29/2015
[caption id="attachment_2522" align="alignright" width="300"] The Rev. Cynthia Moore-Koikoi, left, superintendent of the Baltimore Metropolitan District, speaks with the Rev. Cordell Hunter, Presiding Elder of the Eastern District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, at Bethel AME in Baltimore. Photo by Erik Alsgaard[/caption] By Melissa Lauber and Erik Alsgaard Baltimore-Washington Conference Fire from burning cars lit some of Baltimore’s streets Monday night, April 27. Looters seemed to ...

Deacon Studies Program Is Life Changing for Student

4/28/2015
Meet Merit Wolff, Director of Connecting Ministries at Biltmore United Methodist Church in Asheville, North Carolina. “This program is life-changing,” said Merit Wolff. Wolff has worn many hats, including working in management in a variety of settings, retail, corporate trainer, weight-loss industry representative, elementary school computer teacher and stay-at-home mom. She feels God has called her to help people, encourage people and to help them find their passions and serve the body of ...

United Methodists Respond to Nepal Quake

4/27/2015
People survey a site damaged by an earthquake in Kathmandu, Nepal, April 25, 2015. The shallow earthquake measuring 7.9 magnitude struck west of the ancient Nepali capital of Kathmandu on Saturday; killing more than 100 people, injuring hundreds and leaving a pall over the valley, doctors and witnesses said. Photo: REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar April 27, 2015—The General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church, through its disaster-relief arm and in conjunction with ...

Technology Will Bridge Languages at 2016 General Conference

4/27/2015
By Greg Nelson April 24, 2015 | PORTLAND, Ore. (UMNS) When the United Methodist General Conference meets in Portland, Oregon, in 2016, the planning committee wants to ensure that language differences are dealt with as fairly as possible.That means providing simultaneous translation in eight languages for the delegates, bishops, staff, official observers, reserve delegates and guests to the plenary sessions at the church’s top lawmaking assembly. In past conferences, English-speaking delegates ...

Ken Anderson Named Interim Disaster Response Coordinator

4/27/2015
Ken Anderson, the Pastor of the Toe Valley Charge (Mount Zion, Pine Grove and Vance Memorial) in the Appalachian District, has been named the Interim Conference Disaster Response Coordinator for the Western North Carolina Conference. Ken has been a pastor for over 12 years. He has served as a District Disaster Response Coordinator for over four years and has attended four Southeastern Jurisdiction Disaster Response Academies. Currently he is a Early Response Team member. Prior to serving in ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 042415

4/24/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Project Agape Sunday Reminder (Drop Off Schedule and Locations) John Wesley Coming to Granite Falls Broadband, Rural Ministry and Social Justice LATEST CAREERS Associate Director of Student Ministries Campus Minister and Executive Director Director of Youth Ministry Pianist LATEST EVENTS Updated Events- Creative Worship Seminar- May 30th SpiritUs August 8-10 | August 14-16 Added: Latest ...

Project Agape Sunday Reminder (Drop Off Schedule and Locations)

4/22/2015
Reminder: Project Agape Sunday is April 26th- more information THE NEXT HUMANITARIAN AID AND CHRISTMAS SHOE BOX PICK-UP FOR ARMENIA To help you, please download the 2015 Instructions which includes priority items, instructions for packing, the drop-off points listed above, and the specific hours the drop-off points will be open to collect these items. Please encourage your churches to support this United Methodist ministry of humanitarian aid for the children, women, and men of Armenia. For ...

John Wesley Coming to Granite Falls

4/22/2015
First United Methodist Church of Granite Falls will host a special presentation of The Man from Aldersgate with B.J. Johnston on Sunday, May 24 at 9:30 AM – 12N in the church sanctuary. Written by playwright Brad L. Smith, The Man from Aldersgate is a one-man play taken directly from the journals of John Wesley. Through the powerful medium of drama, Wesley and his dynamic ministry are brought to life. During the performance, Wesley shares how his transformation through faith in Jesus Christ ...

Broadband, Rural Ministry and Social Justice

4/21/2015
[caption id="attachment_2436" align="alignright" width="300"] Photo courtesy of Project Community Computers Whether it is helping bring broadbend access to the community or inviting people to use church-owned computers, providing digital access can be a vital ministry. Summerfield United Methodist Church in Milwaukee is among churches that have adopted it.[/caption] by Jeremy Steele (From Interpreter- January-February 2015) Seventeen million children in the United States do not have access to ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 041715

4/17/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss?   LATEST NEWS SpiritUS Registration is Open for 2015 Communications Tips from MyCom Loans and Scholarships for United Methodist Students Mission Connection Canceled 5 Ways to Better Equip Vital Congregations Bishop and Cabinet Announce New Superintendents Deep Blue Kids Curriculum Previews in Smoky Mountain District LATEST CAREERS Director of Worship Arts Ministries Contemporary Worship Leader Director of ...

SpiritUS Registration is Open for 2015

4/16/2015
SpiritUS is a Western North Carolina UMC event for 6th-12th grade youth hosted at Fort Caswell in Oak Island, NC. We will have two great weekends of SpiritUs 2015: August 8-10 & 14-16. You will not want to miss it!! Super Early Bird Registration will be April 16th-May 4th Perks of Registering Early- $16 deposit per person holds spots – balance due June 30th Youth leader receives a signed copy of Marko’s newest book. Youth leader receives SpiritUS training session book from Youth Cartel ...

Communications Tips from MyCom

4/15/2015
The April edition of MyCom from UM Communications is available. Here are the stories from that edition: Bridging the digital divide: Connect seniors to technology Find great books for little or no cost How virtual teams can change everything for church leaders How the top social media sites use hashtags 5 benefits of project management for the work of the church View Entire Newsletter Subscribe to MyCom  

Loans and Scholarships for United Methodist Students

4/15/2015
Students who are confirmed United Methodists may be eligible for loans from the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. Here are the eligibility requirements: Borrower must be an active, full member of a United Methodist Church for at least one year prior to application. Borrower must be at least 18 to complete the application process. Borrower must be enrolled in an accredited school at least half-time. Borrower must have a cosigner for this loan. The cosigner will be contacted and ...

Mission Connection Canceled

4/14/2015
Due to many circumstances, we have canceled the 2015 Mission Connection scheduled for April 25th. We are looking into the possibilities of other events in the coming year to share our mission connection in our conference. Thanks for your interest, and we look forward to working with you in the future! Jaylynn Byassee Katie Lineberger MET (Mission Engagement Team of the WNCC)

5 Ways to Better Equip Vital Congregations

4/14/2015
April 2015 Issue from Discipleship Ministries Equip the church for African-American new church starts. Candace Lewis, New Church Starts (Path 1) executive director, will lead a team of successful United Methodist Church pastors in a special session on African-American church planting. The session will be April 27 at Exponential East, a four-day conference of inspiration, encouragement and equipping for church planters, in Tampa. For more information and to register, go to http://bit.ly/1ENe9mS. ...

Bishop and Cabinet Announce New Superintendents

4/13/2015
Today, Bishop Goodpaster and the Cabinet begin another week of prayerful discernment in the process of appointing clergy to churches for the 2015-2016 conference year. This has been an on-going process since the first of the year and has included many conversations and consultations with both the clergy and the Pastor (Staff) Parish Relations Committees in our churches. As expressed in paragraph 425.1 of the Book of Discipline, it is “through appointment-making [that] the connectional nature of...

Deep Blue Kids Curriculum Previews in Smoky Mountain District

4/13/2015
There are four preview events scheduled for the Smoky Mountain District scheduled in April and May for the new "Deep Blue Kids" curriculum that is scheduled to begin in September 2015. Thursday, April 23, First UMC, Franklin, NC 6-8 PM Facilitator: Beth Bowser, Curriculum Field Rep/Consultant, The UMPH/Cokesbury Sunday, April 26, Central UMC, Canton, NC 3-5 PM Facilitators: Beth Bowser and Matthew Jones, Cokesbury Community Resource Consultant Saturday, May 2, First UMC, Hayesville, NC 10AM-12 ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 041015

4/10/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS The Power of Positivity Native American Offering Enriches Heritage, Outreach National Stories of Interest The School of Immersion is May 10-15 General Conference Petitions, Volunteers and More UMAR Luncheon- May 7th in Greensboro Primetimers Event Coming in May! LATEST CAREERS Communications Specialist Director of Children and Youth Ministry LATEST EVENTS UMAR Luncheon- May 7 Chrysalis ...

The Power of Positivity

4/9/2015
by Kim Shockley My husband was telling me the other day about a podcast he listened to that was talking about the natural tendency of our minds to go to negative thoughts when we let our minds wander. I’ve experienced this! I can’t count the times that I’ve been going to a consultation and realize as I’m traveling that I’m actually thinking about how awful the experience might be. Whether I feel I’m unprepared, or the people I’m going to meet won’t be receptive, or something equally terrible ...

Native American Offering Enriches Heritage, Outreach

4/9/2015
by Heather Peck Travis For the past two years – thanks to the Native American Ministries Sunday offering – Carson Jones and his daughter, Sade, have attended summer conferences of the Southeast Jurisdiction Association for Native American Ministries at the United Methodist Center at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. Carson and Sade, 12, are members of Triad Native American United Methodist Church in Greensboro, North Carolina.Administrative Council chair Daphine Locklear Strickland, notes, "To the...

National Stories of Interest

4/8/2015
Tim Moore, WNCC Clergy, Writes for UM Collegiate Ministry A Conventional Change Easter morning dawns with the two Marys traveling together to finish the work begun on Friday. Here, the most traditional characters perform the most traditional of tasks with the greatest regard for tradition. As convention dictated, it was the job of the Marys—as women connected with the deceased—to prepare the body for its final burial. The Marys were playing their assigned part in the story, fulfilling their ...

The School of Immersion is May 10-15

4/7/2015
Immersion is a five night event designed for college students that will redefine their understanding of faith, the Bible, God and your purpose. It is scheduled for May 10-15, 2015 at St. Francis Springs Retreat Center in Stoneville, NC (just north of Greensboro). Plus, Immersion will build leadership skills, help with problem solving, communicating and making decisions. It’s like a five day M.Div. (Master of Divinity) and MBA (Master of Business Administration). There’s nothing like it. The cost...

General Conference Petitions, Volunteers and More

4/7/2015
Petitions for General Conference Being Accepted Petitions for consideration by the 2016 General Conference may be submitted to the Petitions Secretary beginning April 1 and continuing through October 13, 2015. According to church law, "Any organization, clergy member, or lay member of The United Methodist Church may petition the General Conference..." Detailed instructions for submitting a petition are available on the General Conference website atgc2016.umc.org. Petitions must be typed and may ...

UMAR Luncheon- May 7th in Greensboro

4/6/2015
[caption id="attachment_2251" align="aligncenter" width="400"] "Snowy Hearts" by Merri Nanney[/caption] You are cordially invited to the Inaugural UMAR Luncheon Thursday, May 7, 2015 at Christ United Methodist Church 410 North Holden Road, Greensboro Program begins promptly at 12:15 p.m. Please RSVP by Wednesday, April 30, 2015 to Cameron Hunter at CameronH@UMARinfo.com or 704-659-7624. Artwork from UMAR artists will be available for purchase and through silent auction beginning at 11 a.m. The ...

Primetimers Event Coming in May!

4/6/2015
Henderson Settlement is hosting an educational ministry event for older adults (50+). This year, Henderson Settlement will be hosting a Primetimers event April 26th-May 2nd, 2015, and the cost is $600. Henderson Settlement has been “at the heart of poverty” since 1925 when it was organized to provide loving assistance to those living in the area and struggling with ongoing lifestyle of poverty. The Settlement brings together the incredible faith of this Appalachian community and the harsh ...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 040315

4/3/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. Yes, it is Holy Week, so I am sure you might have missed something. LATEST NEWS FYI- Items of Note on the Website Volunteers Needed for General Conference Honor a Phenomenal Woman, Nonprofit Organization or Business! Poverty Events in the Catawba Valley District LATEST CAREERS Church Secretary Assistant to the Archivist Gleaning Coordinator- Triad Gleaning Coordinator- Asheville Director of Student Ministries LATEST EVENTS ...

FYI- Items of Note on the Website

4/2/2015
CEF updated its page and invites you to join http://wnccumc.org/cef/ Central Congo Partners has published its March 2015 Newsletter: March 2015 Newsletter There have been two new articles posted at the VITAL page: Death and Resurrection of an Urban Church SHIFT from Membership to Discipleship – Now What? Several new careers have been added this week as well as several calendar items. You can always keep up with the latest updates to the website by going to this link: http://wnccumc.org/categ...

Volunteers Needed for General Conference

4/1/2015
Nashville, Tenn.: Volunteers are needed for a variety of roles during the 2016 General Conference, The United Methodist Church’s top legislative assembly, which will meet in Portland, Oregon from May 10-20, 2016. At this time, volunteers are needed for the following positions: 28 recorders, 10 channel “B” identifiers and 20 verbatim transcribers/copy editors. Recorders will serve as members of the staff of the secretary of the General Conference and work in direct support of their assigned ...

Honor a Phenomenal Woman, Nonprofit Organization or Business!

3/31/2015
Here’s your opportunity to recognize phenomenal women, nonprofit organizations and businesses by nominating them for one of the “Phenomenal Woman: That’s Me” awards. These awards will be presented at Scarritt Bennett Center’s first annual “Phenomenal Woman: That’s Me” gala on April 7, 2016. In honor of our core values, Scarritt Bennett Center is looking for breadth of nominations as we seek to identify women, organizations and businesses who are deserving of recognition. In keeping with Scarritt...

Poverty Events in the Catawba Valley District

3/30/2015
Congregations4Children (C4C) and the Catawba Valley District have scheduled three Poverty Simulation events in the district during April and May. These events are open to anyone from the conference who would like to attend. The dates and locations are below. Click on the links to get more information: Poverty Seminar Cleveland County-Aldersgate UMC, Shelby- April 18 Poverty Seminar Lincoln County-Marvin UMC, Lincolnton- April 21 Poverty Simulation Lincoln County- First UMC, Lincolnton- May 8 C...

WEEKLY UPDATE- 032715

3/27/2015
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. Did you miss anything? LATEST NEWS Project AGAPE Updates- March 2015 Looking Deeply Building Teams Announces Changes and Revisions Pfeiffer Hosts Wesley President for Three Events in April Amena Brown to Speak at New July 4 Event at LJA Praying Without Ceasing LATEST CAREERS Pianist Organist/Accompanist Music Director Church Secretary Director of Children and Intergenerational Learning Communications Administrative Assistant...
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