#Giving Tuesday, Dec. 3
In this week’s Connections, Bishop Ward speaks of generosity and invites everyone to support a mission project or missionary on Dec. 3, #Giving Tuesday. All gifts up to $10,000 will be matched on that day by the General Board of Global Ministries. Go to #Giving Tuesday to read more about how this program will work.
Cokesbury Seasonal Catalog Online
Take time to look through the October Cokesbury catalog, and check out the seasonal and new resources featured. The Conference Media Center is an authorized “Virtual Cokesbury Store” and receives a five percent rebate on all sales made through its portal. Shop through this portal and the rebate funds will be used to purchase new resources for the Media Center.
Two books Bishop Ward has mentioned during Annual Conference and the district gatherings are available from Cokesbury with very good discounts: “The Leading Causes of Life” by Gary Gunderson and “Living into Community: Cultivating Practices that Sustain Us” by Christine D. Pohl. If you have questions or need advice on other resources, the Cokesbury representative for the NC Conference is Michael Boone, firstname.lastname@example.org or (919) 672-1739.
Specifically for Local Church Pastors and PPR/SPRC Chairs
Each year, the Cabinet asks clergy and PPR/SPRC teams to take time to discern and submit the significant information contained in clergy and charge profiles. This year’s forms are now available and should be completed online using the links provided. Only pastors and PPR/SPRC chairs should complete these forms. Please give them the careful attention they merit. Both are of significant value to the Bishop and Cabinet as pastoral deployments are considered. The submission deadline is Feb. 1. Church/Charge Profile and Pastor Profile
MTF Annual Letters are in the Mail
The annual contribution letters have been mailed to Ministers’ Transition Fund (MTF) members. These letters detail each member’s 2013 contribution payment due by Jan. 31, 2014. Failure to pay the contribution may result in either forfeiture of this year’s dividend and/or lack of credit towards future dividends. Members who have elected the monthly billing option will not receive a letter. Instead, they are encouraged to verify with their church treasurer that the appropriate amount has been withheld from their paychecks and remitted along with the pension billing each month this year. It’s not too late to join the MTF this year. To find out more about the benefits of this retirement savings plan, visit the Conference Treasurer’s Office Pensions website or call JoAnna Ezuka, Program Administrator, at 1-800-849-4433 x 225.
Connect to the NC Council of Churches
The NC Conference is a member of the NC Council of Churches. The Council supports a wide range of efforts to advance Christian principles of care for our neighbors and for God’s creation. To be kept up to date on those efforts, pastors and local church members are invited to subscribe to the Council’s weekly email newsletter, see their Facebook page or follow the Council on Twitter. Links to all can be found at www.ncchurches.org/. The email news also covers specific areas of interest and subscribers may choose to receive information about health and wholeness, faith and immigration, legislative matters and worship resources. For some, the RSS Feed will be of interest, as well. Pastors are asked to share the information as appropriate in their congregation.
Pastor and Parish Study to be Available in November
Combining videos, workbook content, guided discussion and complementary readings,
Pastor and Parish, is a six-session series for United Methodist staff-parish relations committees that ties the committee’s responsibilities back to their spiritual beginnings. It is a joint effort of the Clergy Health Initiative, the Duke Endowment and Duke Divinity School. Introduced at Annual Conference, Bishop Ward has encouraged local SPRC’s to use this tool to strengthen their work and their covenant life together. The hope was that SPRC’s could begin to use this material this fall but the release date has been delayed. The expected release date is now November 2013. More information will be shared as it becomes available. A current update on the material is available here.