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.

New Staff Changes and Directions Announced

4/26/2016
Bishop Goodpaster and the Cabinet announced several changes in the conference staff, including new positions and new directions for our shared mission. “We continue to move toward resourcing and supporting local churches in alignment with our core purpose which is to increase the number of vital churches fully engaged in God’s mission in the world,” explained Bishop Goodpaster. Vital Discipleship John Boggs will be appointed to serve as the Conference Director of Vital Discipleship. As we have ...

Follow-up Statement to First UMC, Charlotte Story

4/26/2016
Multiple media outlets have reported that Rev. Dr. Val Rosenquist at First United Methodist Church in Charlotte performed a same sex wedding, which would be in violation of Paragraph 341.6 in The 2012 Book of Discipline, and that Bishop Melvin Talbert was in attendance at the service. A formal complaint was filed with Bishop Goodpaster over the weekend, after the press deadlines for Monday’s paper. In response to the filed complaint, Bishop Goodpaster has begun the process outlined in paragraph ...

A More Excellent Way

4/25/2016
April 25, 2016 Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ. We write to you to express our deep gratitude for life together in the United Methodist Church here in the state of North Carolina. With you, we love our state and yearn for our lives to reflect the more excellent way described by Paul in I Corinthians 13. We share your deep concern in regard to the increasingly divisive nature of life in North Carolina. We urge United Methodist people to cultivate community that is welcoming ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 042216

4/22/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS 10 fascinating facts about John Wesley and United Methodism GC2016: “What does it mean?” and “High-Tech Hymnal” Duke Chapel Posts Over 2500 Sermons Online Registration is Open for Festival of Wisdom and Grace at Lake Junaluska LATEST CAREERS Weekday Preschool Director Director of Youth Ministries Student Pastor Youth Director Director of Children’s Ministry Senior Director of Finance Director ...

10 fascinating facts about John Wesley and United Methodism

4/21/2016
By Jeremy Steele (UMCom) History is more than facts and figures. It is full of real people with real stories. Connecting with those people and stories helps us understand our lives and discern God’s direction for our future. That is why it is important constantly to connect our teaching back to the important people in our history. To help you do that, we have gathered some interesting, and maybe even surprising, facts about John Wesley to help you connect United Methodist history to your next ...

GC2016: "What does it mean?" and "High-Tech Hymnal"

4/20/2016
What will General Conference mean to my United Methodist church? A UMC.org Feature by Joe Iovino* As a United Methodist, you are probably aware that General Conference, the once-every-four-years official meeting of the church is happening in Portland, Oregon, May 10-20, 2016. What may be far less clear, however, is what happens there and what it means to your local congregation. Work The best-known aspect of General Conference is thelegislation. General Conference is the body that determines ...

Duke Chapel Posts Over 2500 Sermons Online

4/19/2016
Duke Divinity School, Duke Chapel, and Duke University Libraries have announced that the first stage of an initiative to digitize Duke Chapel sermons is complete with the release of more than 2,500 sermons online. The Duke University Chapel Recordings Digital Collection website collects audio and video recordings as well as manuscript sermons produced at the chapel between 1946 and 2002. Drawn from a collection held in the Duke University Archives, the sermons were selected by Divinity School ...

Registration is Open for Festival of Wisdom and Grace at Lake Junaluska

4/19/2016
LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C.- Adults in the second half of life are invited to attend the Festival of Wisdom and Grace at Lake Junaluska, Aug. 1-4, 2016. The conference will provide renewal and inspiration through worship, Bible studies, workshops, professional training and fellowship. Dr. Tony Campolo, Dr. Mickey Efird and Dr. James H. Pace will lead the conference. This year’s theme is “come to the water,” in reference to a Bible verse from the book of Isaiah: “Come, you who are thirsty, come to the ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 041516

4/15/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss?   LATEST NEWS Hike the Asbury Trail on April 23 WNCC Delegation Prepares for General Conference Two New District Superintendents Announced Prayer Emphasis Focuses on Discernment on May 1 LATEST CAREERS Director of Contemporary Music Preschool Director Youth Missioner- Summit Student Ministry Administrative Assistant Director of Youth Ministries Youth Director Director of Youth and Family Ministries Praise ...

Hike the Asbury Trail on April 23

4/12/2016
The World Methodist Museum invites hikers to join in hiking a segment of the Francis Asbury Trail on Saturday, April 23. From Mount Sterling Gap along a ridge of Scottish Mountain, up to about 4300 ft., this section ends at Cataloochee Creek, for a total of approximately 3.5 miles. Free and open to the public, registration is required by contacting the Museum. Classified as a moderate hike, those participating need to bring a trail lunch and water for the hike. Comfortable dress with hiking ...

WNCC Delegation Prepares for General Conference

4/12/2016
Delegates from the Western North Carolina Conference to the 2016 General Conference met on Saturday, April 9 at First United Methodist Church in Gastonia. This was the final meeting of the group prior to the May 10-20 meeting in Portland. Our delegation of 10 lay and 10 clergy will meet with the 864 delegates from across the world for 10 days for worship, business and discernment for the denomination. [Check out this guide to General Conference from United Methodist Communications] At the ...

Two New District Superintendents Announced

4/11/2016
Bishop Goodpaster and the Cabinet announce two additional District Superintendent changes effective July 1. Lyn Sorrells and Sally Langford will both be receiving new appointments at that time. Angela Pleasants and Mark Andrews will be appointed to serve as District Superintendents. Bishop Goodpaster remarked, “Both Lyn and Sally have been very effective superintendents and I have been privileged to serve with both of them. Lyn was one of the first new DS appointments I made when I arrived in ...

Prayer Emphasis Focuses on Discernment on May 1

4/11/2016
General Conference is a month away. Our delegation will be in Portland May 10-20 and they continue to seek your prayers. Since February, each first Sunday of the month we have asked United Methodists across Western North Carolina to pray for the bishops of the church, the general agencies and their leaders, our own delegation, and on May 1st we focus on the "Spirit of Discernment." Below is a bulletin insert prepared by Dr. Jeff Patterson, the Yadkin Valley District superientendent, and General ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 040816

4/8/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS In the News: Unity United Methodist, Thomasville First UMC in Hickory Hosts Older Adult Conference May 6 & 7 Slashed Church Budget Heads to GC2016 First Responder Recognition Day Set for September 11th LATEST CAREERS Nursery Worker Children’s Church Leader Gleaning Coordinator Children and Youth Ministries Coordinator Office Coordinator Director of Youth Discipleship Director of Youth & Family ...

In the News: Unity United Methodist, Thomasville

4/8/2016
[By Elaina O'Connell- Time Warner Cable News- Triad] Community Computer Lab Opens in Thomasville THOMASVILLE, N.C. -- Students in Thomasville are getting some much needed help with homework from a new computer lab. The Thomasville United Computer Center opened this week equipped with 14 computers. Maya Walker, a junior at Thomasville High School, took advantage of the community's new computer lab the day it opened. "I'm here to work on a class project for my AP biology class," said Walker. She...

First UMC in Hickory Hosts Older Adult Conference May 6 & 7

4/7/2016
First UMC in Hickory is hosting - Evergreen: Always Growing, Always Living- May 6 & 7. The Rev. Dr. William Randolph will lead us in worship as we explore new and exciting ways to Live and Grow in our faith. A native of North Carolina,Randolph is the current Director of Aging and Older Adult Ministries at the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD) which is a part of The United Methodist Church. Dr. Randolph works with annual conference leaders and leaders in congregations to identify the needs of ...

Slashed Church Budget Heads to GC2016

4/5/2016
By Heather Hahn NASHVILLE, Tenn. (UMNS) The United Methodist Church’s lowest general church budget proposal in 16 years is now heading for a vote at the 2016 General Conference. Two denominational leadership bodies in the past week have agreed to propose a bottom-line budget of $599 million for general church funds in 2017-2020. General Conference — the denomination’s top policymaking body — establishes the total amount of money needed to support churchwide ministries. That amount is then ...

First Responder Recognition Day Set for September 11th

4/4/2016
Please join us in the 2016 Strength for Service Initiative by helping to provide 100,000 SFS devotional books to members of our military and first responders as we mark the 15th anniversary of 9/11 and the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Strength for Service to God and Country devotionals provide a daily reminder of God’s presence to law enforcement, fire fighters and EMS personnel, those unsung heroes of our local communities who place their lives at risk on every call. Strength...

WEEKLY UPDATE 040116

4/1/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Get Ready for General Conference Carolina Black Clergy Leadership Retreat WNC Priorities Survey Beth Crissman Named New District Superintendent LATEST CAREERS Administrative Assistant Director of Recruitment and Admissions Children’s Ministry Music Director LATEST EVENTS Emotional Intelligence-Human Relations Workshop May 9-13 Second Annual Conference On Including LGBT People And Their ...

Get Ready for General Conference

3/31/2016
We are now at 40 days from General Conference in Portland. As we move closer to the May 10-20 quadrennial meeting of the denomination, news and information will be coming in a steady stream. Already we have a page on this website dedicated to General Conference news and reports. Currently, the page has all of the pre-conference materials that you can study and share with members of your congregation: http://wnccumc.org/general-conference-2016/ (Reminder: April 3rd is our Conference's day of ...

Carolina Black Clergy Leadership Retreat

3/29/2016
The South Carolina Conference, in partnership with North Carolina and Western North Carolina Conferences, will host the Carolina Black Clergy Leadership Retreat focused on leadership development emphasizing social justice advocacy at the Kingston Plantation Resort in Myrtle Beach, SC May 23-27, 2016. This 5-day leadership retreat’s theme is “Ubuntu: The Beloved Community Rooted in Christ” based on John 15:12 to include passionate worship; practical and theological leadership plenary sessions; ...

WNC Priorities Survey

3/28/2016
The Southeastern Jurisdiction Committee on the Episcopacy has asked each conference to identify the top three unique leadership needs in WNC for 2016-2020. These will be utilized in assigning the next bishop in Western North Carolina, following Bishop Larry Goodpaster’s retirement this summer. The Western North Carolina Conference Committee on Episcopacy offers this survey, seeking the input of lay and clergy members in Western North Carolina. The deadline to participate in this survey is ...

Beth Crissman Named New District Superintendent

3/28/2016
Bishop Goodpaster and the Cabinet announce that the Rev. Beth Crissman will become the new superintendent of the Blue Ridge District, effective July 1, 2016. She will replace the Rev. Dr. John Boggs who is the current superintendent. Bishop Goodpaster commented, “John has completed eight very effective years as a superintendent and it has been a joy to work with him. According to the Discipline he has reached the maximum number of years he can serve as a superintendent and will be receiving ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 032516

3/24/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? (This was published early because of Good Friday holiday. May this Easter be a blessing to all!) LATEST NEWS The Children’s Home Sets a New Course 2014 Vitality Report Jennifer Burton Resigns as Director of Treasury Services LATEST CAREERS Music Director Child Care Coordinator Administrative Assistant PAGE CHANGES Added to Justice and Reconiliation: Upcoming Events of Interest Resolution to Expand ...

The Children’s Home Sets a New Course

3/23/2016
In February this year, the Trustees of the Children’s Home moved toward the future with two significant decisions. One, they approved their affiliation with The Crossnore School, a residential foster care program located in Avery County; and two, they selected Brett A. Loftis, JD, the Chief Executive Officer of The Crossnore School to assume executive leadership over the new partnership between The Children’s Home and The Crossnore School. This combined effort of these two 100 year old agencies ...

2014 Vitality Report

3/23/2016
This study of denominational statistics was done by the Greater New Jersey Conference of The United Methodist Church and was offered for reflection and analysis. Highly vital congregations are focused on growing their vitality by making and maturing disciples, not achieving numbers. Highly vital congregations grow and support disciples and leaders through worship, small groups, lay and clergy leadership development and ministry and mission engagement. Highly vital congregations are in every ...

Jennifer Burton Resigns as Director of Treasury Services

3/21/2016
It was announced last week that Jennifer Burton has resigned from her position as Director of Treasury Services for the Western North Carolina Conference. Burton began her work with the Conference in June 2011, and she has resigned to pursue other opportunities. The Conference Staff, Council on Finance and Administration, Board of Trustees and the Board of Pensions were all informed last week prior to this announcement. In their announcement to the CF&A and Trustees, Laurie Guy, Chair of CF&A ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 031816

3/19/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Nearing a Malaria Goal before GC2016 Project Agape Director to Itinerate in WNCC 24 Hour Prayer Vigil Scheduled for April 3 LATEST CAREERS Choral Director Community Outreach and Children/Youth Ministry Residency with Blackburn House Intentional Community Praise and Worship Leader Organist and Music Director Director of Children’s Ministries and Congregational Discipleship Student Ministry ...

Nearing a Malaria Goal before GC2016

3/17/2016
[caption id="attachment_5220" align="aligncenter" width="535"] File photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS[/caption] By Linda Bloom (UMNS) As the denomination’s roving ambassador for malaria prevention, United Methodist Bishop Thomas Bickerton has heard “story after story” about people energized around a cause where they can make a difference. He also has personally witnessed the results while in Africa. “I’ve had a mother put a baby in my arms who had malaria who died while I was there. I’ve also had ...

Project Agape Director to Itinerate in WNCC

3/14/2016
Project AGAPE’s Country Director Nara Melkonyan will itinerate in the Western North Carolina Conference mid-May until Annual Conference in mid-June. Churches are invited to schedule Nara for presentations on Project AGAPE Sunday School, worship, youth, mission or any other group that would be interested in learning more about this joint mission project with the Armenian Apostolic Church in Armenia. If you wish to schedule Nara, please contact the coordinator for your section of the conference. ...

24 Hour Prayer Vigil Scheduled for April 3

3/14/2016
We are excited about the upcoming 24 Hour Prayer Vigil in Western North Carolina as part of the preparation for the 2016 General Conference session. We are joining with 130 other annual conferences who are each adopting a day during the 131 days prior to General Conference (beginning on January 1, 2016) to pray for the gathering which takes place every 4 years. General Conference will be held May 10-20 in Portland Oregon at the Oregon Convention Center. We invite you to be in prayer with United ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 031116

3/11/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Youth Groups Invited to Lake Junaluska for Unforgettable Summer Retreats GC2016: Should the general church budget go up? Auditions Open for NC United Methodist All-State Youth Choir Neil Brown and WNC UMM Men Receive National Awards LATEST CAREERS Organist/Pianist Writer/Editor Church Secretary Summer Interns Prison Chaplain Youth Director Director of Youth Ministries Organist LATEST EVENTS ...

Youth Groups Invited to Lake Junaluska for Unforgettable Summer Retreats

3/10/2016
LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. – This summer Lake Junaluska is hosting four youth group retreats for sixth through 12th graders. Youth groups of all denominations are invited to attend. The retreats include high energy worship, guest preachers, mission components and special meals. Afternoons are free for groups to plan rafting trips, zip line adventures, hikes, additional service projects or enjoy the swimming pool or boats at Lake Junaluska. Lake Junaluska Summer Youth Event speakers and worship bands ...

GC2016: Should the general church budget go up?

3/9/2016
by Heather Hahn (UMNS) A proposed modest increase to the general church budget is heading to the 2016 General Conference. However, a number of United Methodists say that in the wake of the continuing decline in U.S. worship attendance the general church needs to tighten its belt. The General Council on Finance and Administration board and Connectional Table each reaffirmed a projected budget of $611 million for general church funds in 2017-2020. Both bodies are responsible for developing the ...

Auditions Open for NC United Methodist All-State Youth Choir

3/8/2016
Greensboro College is pleased to announce auditions for the annual North Carolina United Methodist All-State Youth Choir. Now in its twenty-first year, the Youth Choir is comprised of students from United Methodist Churches across the State. This is an exciting opportunity for rising ninth graders through high school seniors to participate in a high-quality, Christian music camp sponsored by Greensboro College, a United Methodist Church affiliated institution. Those chosen to participate will be...

Neil Brown and WNC UMM Men Receive National Awards

3/7/2016
[caption id="attachment_5127" align="alignright" width="300"] Ed Shytle, president of the United Methodist Men Foundation presents a John Wesley Society Award to Neil Brown, president of the Western North Carolina Conference UM Men.[/caption] Neil Brown, president of the Conference United Methodist Men was awarded a John Wesley Society Award at the United Methodist Men's Conference President's Meeting March 3-6, in Nashville, Tennessee. To be named a fellow in the John Wesley Society is the ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 030416

3/4/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Celebrate Easter at Lake Junaluska Haywood Street Hosts A Welcoming Table Workshop May 1-3 in Asheville Remembering the Deaths of Wesley, Asbury Givens Awarded $4 Million Grant from The Duke Endowment LATEST CAREERS Director – After School Care Ministry Production Specialist Administrative Assistant Director of Student Ministries Pianist/Organist Director of Music Director of Music Ministries ...

Celebrate Easter at Lake Junaluska

3/3/2016
LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. – All are invited to attend Lake Junaluska's Easter weekend events. The conference and retreat center offers a number of family-friendly activities, including a children’s Easter egg hunt, a sunrise service overlooking the lake and a 5K road race and walk. Easter weekend lodging is also available at The Terrace, a hotel at Lake Junaluska. Friends of the Lake 5K Road Race and Walk The Easter festivities kick off with a 5K road race and walk at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 26. ...

Haywood Street Hosts A Welcoming Table Workshop May 1-3 in Asheville

3/3/2016
Are you interested in expanding your church mission and ministries? Haywood Street Congregation, a UMC mission congregation of the Blue Ridge District in Asheville, North Carolina, invites you to “A Welcoming Table,” a Ministry WITH the Poor experiential training workshop on May 1-3 in Asheville. Clergy and lay leaders will hear from church and ministry leaders and engage in core ministries like the Downtown Welcome Table, Haywood Street Respite, God’s Outfitter Clothing Closet, welcoming and ...

Remembering the Deaths of Wesley, Asbury

3/2/2016
[caption id="attachment_5076" align="aligncenter" width="535"] John Wesley stands at the outset of the Methodist movement, as represented in the upper left corner of this new mission mural that emerged from a dialogue on Wesleyan history among staff at the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries. Wesley hands God’s Word, represented by the Bible, to those who carry the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth. Lisa Katzenstein, the artist, is the board’s executive secretary for ...

Givens Awarded $4 Million Grant from The Duke Endowment

2/29/2016
Givens has been awarded a $4 million grant from The Duke Endowment to support housing for seniors in Asheville, North Carolina. This grant, along with a $700,000 grant from the Endowment (December 2014), is enabling Givens to construct Givens Gerber Park, an affordable senior living community in south Asheville. Givens Gerber Park will be built in three phases. When completed, it will be a rental community that will pair housing with supportive services for low to moderate income seniors. The ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 022616

2/26/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Praying for GC2016: What will happen? Healthy Conversations Resources Available Online NCCC Programs in Health and Wholeness Available LATEST CAREERS Director of Student Ministry District Administrative Assistant Administrator Conference Treasurer and Benefits Officer Director of Student Ministries Student Pastor Choir Director LATEST EVENTS Understanding Islam- Matthews UMC- March 7 Vital ...

Praying for GC2016: What will happen?

2/25/2016
By Kathy L. Gilbert (UMNS) Pray, breathe, repeat. When the 864 delegates arrive for the 2016 United Methodist General Conference, each one of them comes blanketed in prayer. From every corner of the world, people are speaking their names and praying for The United Methodist Church as the denomination’s top policy-making body prepares to meet at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland on May 10-20. In addition to stirring music, inspiring sermons and those once-every-four-years opportunities to ...

Healthy Conversations Resources Available Online

2/22/2016
The Healthy Conversations Forum that was live-streamed from Mill Grove UMC in Indian Trail, N.C. on Sunday, February 21, is now available for viewing online. Nearly 55 minutes of video, plus some study documents can be viewed and downloaded from this page: http://wnccumc.org/healthy-conversations-resources/ Below is a list of the documents available at that page: Some Guidelines for Healthy Conversations Small Group Study on Finding Our Way Discussion Guide for Small Groups Resources for Holy ...

NCCC Programs in Health and Wholeness Available

2/22/2016
PHW 2016 Certification The Partners in Health and Wholeness 2016 Certification Program is now open! Congregations must certify each calendar year and can apply anytime between now and October 31, 2016. Once completed, your congregation will receive recognition from the Council and may be eligible to apply for a mini-grant. Currently, there is no limit to the number of years congregations are able to participate in the program. If you have any questions, please contact our Program Coordinator ...

WEEKLY UPDATE 021916

2/19/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Duke Offers Retreat for Pastors in Ministry with Hispanic/Latino Community News You Can Use- February 2016 Young Preachers Festival Opens Registration LATEST CAREERS Children and Youth Director Director of Music Ministries Organist Assistant Director of Children’s Ministry Director of Youth Ministries Minister of Family Life Preschool Director Director of Family Ministries LATEST EVENTS ...

Duke Offers Retreat for Pastors in Ministry with Hispanic/Latino Community

2/19/2016
The Duke Divinity School Hispanic House of Studies in partnership with The Duke Endowment, the North Carolina and Western North Carolina Conferences of The United Methodist Church will hold its annual event, Sumérgete: A Retreat for Pastors in Ministry with the Hispanic and Latino Community. This retreat will take place at Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center in Lake Junaluska, North Carolina from April 4 to April 6, 2016. At this retreat, participants will immerse themselves into the ...

News You Can Use- February 2016

2/18/2016
Webinar “Financial Tips for Clergy: Take the Bite Out of Income Taxes” REGISTER FOR THE WEBINAR DATE: Monday, February 22, 2016 TIME: 10:30 am Central Standard Time PRESENTERS: Ken Sloane and Rev. Don Joiner Clergy face some unique challenges when it comes to things like social security payments, estimated tax payments, housing allowances or exclusions, and reimbursed expenses. It is important to know the rules, but also the way to minimize the impact of your tax liability. Not every tax ...

Young Preachers Festival Opens Registration

2/17/2016
The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection announced that registration is now open for the second annual Young Preachers Festival and Conference (YPF), being held July 21 and 22, 2016 at the Leawood, Kansas campus. The Church of the Resurrection has partnered with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry to encourage and equip the next generation of leaders for the United Methodist Church. The gathering is designed specifically to engage and empower young people across the country...

WEEKLY UPDATE 021216

2/12/2016
PAST UPDATES Here are this past week’s major changes to the website. What did you miss? LATEST NEWS Prayers and Condolences for Deborah Goodpaster and Family Leadership Development Grants Awarded March Bulletin Insert Available for Prayer Initiative Carolina Pounds to Victory in Food Drive James Howell Endorsed as Episcopal Nominee LATEST CAREERS Contemporary Worship Director Director of Youth Ministries Creation Express Director Youth Leader / Contemporary Music Leader Director of Young ...
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