Ward named bishop of the NC Conference
Hope Morgan Ward has been assigned as the resident bishop of the Raleigh Area (North Carolina Conference), effective Sept. 1. The assignment was announced by the Episcopacy Committee of the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference and approved by the conference at the end of the July 18-20 meeting at Lake Junaluska. Bishop Al Gwinn, resident bishop of the NC Conference for the past eight years, is retiring and will reside in his home state of Kentucky and in Florida. Bishop Ward was elected to the episcopacy in 2004 and is completing her eighth year as resident bishop of the Mississippi Conference.
Time to begin planning for Pilgrimage 2012 November 9-11
Fayetteville, NC If Not Us, Who? If Not Now, When? This year’s Event Speaker will be the Rev. Andy Lambert and the Saturday Night featured guest will be Zach Hunter. Visit: www.nccpilgrimage.org for a promotional poster and to get involved through a personal testimony, House Band participation, or a group song, dance, skit or video. Deadline for all participation submissions is Sept. 1.
Pastors, please update your contact information
The Conference Benefits Team reminds all clergypersons who have changed appointments to update their mailing address and contact information for the following entities: Conference Health Plan – update addresses with Blue Cross Blue Shield. Participants log in using their user ID and password established at Open Enrollment. General Board of Pension and Health Benefits – contact their customer service department at 1-800-851-2201 or log into your Benefits Access account. Amazing Pace Walking Program – log in and click on My Account to update your address and phone number. All participants need to update their District Team to the new names. Clergy serving a new appointment also need to complete a new 2012 Pension Worksheet and a new Contributions Agreement to the United Methodist Personal Investment Plan found on the Treasurer’s Office Downloads page. Church treasurers need a copy of these forms to compare them to the pension bills. Any billing discrepancies should be reported immediately to JoAnna Ezuka (pensions) at 1-800-849-4433 ext 225 or Caroline Thornton (insurance) at ext 228. Visit the Treasurer’s Office FAQ page for more details about how clergy benefits are impacted by appointment changes.
Take the anxiety out of welcoming visitors
How does your church welcome and greet visitors? Give them red ribbons to wear so members can identify them and greet them? Make them stand during the welcome and announcement time? Maybe your church needs some new ideas about how to make visitors comfortable without smothering them. Go to visitors for an article on the dos and don’ts of hospitality with visitors.