NC Conference clergy to discuss Prison Ministry on Public Television
Bruce Pate, retired member of the NC Annual Conference and long-time prison ministry leader and volunteer will be interviewed by Dr. Bill Friday on his Public TV series, North Carolina People. The focus will be on Yokefellow Prison Ministry of NC, the longest continuous prison ministry in North Carolina, celebrating 40 years in our state’s prisons. Yokefellow Prison Ministry is currently active in 54 state prisons with 800 active volunteers. Bruce is a member of the State Yokefellow Board of Directors, representing the N.C. Conference. The interview will be shown on WUNC-TV on Friday, April 10 at 9 p.m. and Sunday, April 12 at 5:30 p.m. The program will also be available on digital cable or service with Time-Warner over UNC-TV Monday, April 13 at 7:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. and Wednesday, April 15 at 8:00 a.m., 12 p.m., 4:30 p.m. 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m.
Board of Laity seeking nominations for ACTS II churches
The Acts II Congregation Selection Criteria and Nomination Request Form can be found at ACTS 2 criteria and nominations form. Please note April 15 is the date when the local church should have their form to the District Office. May 5 is the date for the District Office to turn in their selected forms and photographs to Bill Norton at the Methodist Building in Raleigh.
AC Briefing Sessions have been scheduled
2009 Annual Conference Briefing sessions will be held Saturday, May 16, 10 a.m.- noon at Queen Street UMC in Kinston and 2:30-4:30 p.m. at Hay Street UMC in Fayetteville. Another session is scheduled for Sunday, May 17, 3-5 p.m. at Highland UMC in Raleigh. Clergy, please provide this information to local church lay members of Annual Conference. Both clergy and lay members of Annual Conference should attend one of the three sessions.
Four Areas of Ministry – Self-Directed On-line Course Available
A free online course is available on The United Methodist Church’s four key areas of ministry. The self-directed course, “Four Areas of Focus,” is offered by United Methodist Communications through Dec. 31. The four areas address developing principled Christian leaders for the church and the world; creating new places for new people and revitalizing existing congregations; engaging in ministry with the poor; and combating the diseases of poverty by improving health globally. To register, go to Online Learning Center. Select “Four Areas of Focus” from the United Methodist Basics category.
Conference UMM golf tournament to benefit MERCI
The NC Conference United Methodist Men announce a Golf Tournament to benefit MERCI, May 14 at Lane Tree Country Club, Goldsboro. Register by noon for the 1 p.m. shotgun start. The Tournament is open for four-person Superball (Captain’s Choice) teams. The cost is $65 per person or $260 per team, which includes a barbeque meal and prizes. Registration is made through MERCI, 888-440-9167.
Lay Staff of United Methodist Churches in the Raleigh and Durham Districts
A presentation on The United Methodist Personal Investment Plan (UMPIP) will be given by Peter Hang, benefits educator for The General Board of Pension and Health Benefits, on Tuesday, April 21, 10 a.m. – 12 noon at Hayes Barton UMC in Raleigh. The presentation was organized for local church lay employees who participate in the UMPIP. Anyone planning to attend should call Russell Wilcox at Hayes Barton UMC, 919-832-6435, so he will know the number of seats needed. Details will be presented about the 403(b) retirement plan including 1) the different funds available at The General Board Of Pension; 2) how to check on individual personal investment elections (fund allocation); 3) what individual distributions options are available; 4) how to access and navigate OASIS (Online Account Services Information System); 5) how to access a UMPIP account through Hardship Loan; 6) how to check on individual risk tolerance for LifeStage Investment Management Service (free service offered by General Board of Pension.) Peter Hang will also be available to meet privately to discuss any individual pension-related questions you might have.
ZOE VBS Mission Moments ready in April
Designed as a daily VBS mission supplement, the ZOE VBS material consists of five sessions lasting five minutes each. It features pictures and videos of children in our ZOE Ministry programs and enables children here in the United States to share their love and resources with children in Africa. Packets go out the week of April 14. If you would like to receive one and have not contacted ZOE, please send the following information to ZOE: name and email, mailing address plus zip, telephone, and name of church.
Duke Divinity School Clergy Health Initiative
Duke Divinity School will begin a pilot-test program in June 2009 that offers a customizable wellness plan for individual pastors. The program seeks to support the physical, spiritual, and emotional health of participants. Two key features are the use of trained health coaches who can assist pastors to identify and reach their personal wellness goals; plus the availability of small cash grants to support the costs of the wellness plans. In the NC conference, this pilot-test program is available exclusively to the Goldsboro District’s elders in full connection and local pastors. The pilot phase of the program is anticipated to be conducted through 2010. Upon completion of this phase and evaluation, additional districts will be invited to enroll. Participation requires physical examinations, lab work, and willingness to be a part of the research project for 7 to 12 months. For more information, please contact Amanda Wallace at 919.613.5353, or Amanda Wallace.
Calling all musicians, dancers, singers, organists
The Annual Conference Worship Committee is responsible for the worship services at Annual Conference. Elise Eslinger will be serving as the Worship Leader and is helping to design the services for Annual Conference. In order to provide exciting, passionate music for the services, anyone interested in participating in the worship services through music ministry is invited to submit a video or audio tape of their musical talent. Please submit tapes by April 10 to Andrew Wheeler (Director of Music, Centenary UMC, Smithfield), President of the Fellowship of United Methodist in Music and Worship Arts; PO Box 592; Benson, NC 27504; 919-915-0224.) Questions can be addressed to Andrew Wheeler.
Special Meals scheduled during Annual Conference
Please note that the special group meals are now being posted on the conference secretary’s web page. Go to Special Meals to see what has been added. Notice that there is a registration form to be printed and sent in for the Clergy Spouses’ meal on June 12.
Registration for Summer Camp 2009 is well underway
Extra Summer Camp 2009 brochures are available on request from Dail Ballard, camps development director (Dail Ballard.) The summer sessions are steadily filling. Registration packets can be sent to a church or to an individual or family if desired. Be aware that there are camperships (scholarships) available as well. If a church supports a camper from the congregation or community, camping ministries will match it up to $150.00. But working together, anyone who wants to go to camp can have the opportunity.
Young Adult Resource Guide
Leaders of local churches interested in considering young adult ministry are invited to read the resource guide on the Young Adults web page Young Adults. This resource guide was written by a young adult with input and feedback from the Conference Young Adult Ministries team so it comes from a young adult perspective. Comments and feedback are welcomed as this is meant to be a living resource guide and not set in stone – in fact, we will be posting a revised version very soon.
High School Students and UM Campus Ministry
Many high school seniors know where they will be attending college in the fall by now. Pastors and youth leaders are encouraged to make these high school students aware of the United Methodist campus ministry available to them. In many universities there are Wesley Foundations or Wesley Fellowships that are the United Methodist ministry to, with and among college students on those campuses. In some cases, United Methodists are in partnership with other denominations (such as Presbyterian or Lutheran) for a United Christian Campus Ministry. Many private schools will have a Chaplain and religious life programs. For colleges/universities in NC – this campus ministry information is listed on the website: Campus Ministries
Native American Ministries Sunday is April 26
On Native American Ministries Sunday, United Methodists cultivate and support urban missions with Native Americans and fund scholarships for Native American seminarians. The North Carolina annual conference retains 50 percent of the offering to strengthen and develop Native American ministries within our conference. The remaining 50 percent of the offering expands mission work with the Native American Urban Initiative and provides scholarships for Native Americans attending United Methodist and other approved schools of theology. For resources and promotional materials, go to UMC Giving.
Conference Youth Rally Day
Youth Rally Day will be Sunday, April 26 at NC Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount. Rally Day begins at 3:00 p.m. with recreation and fellowship. At 4:45 p.m., a worship service will be held. The Rally Day event should conclude about 6:00pm. There is no need to pre-register for Rally Day and there is no cost to Rally Day although snacks and YSF items will be available for purchase and an offering for Youth Service Fund will be taken. For further details about Rally Day – see the “Events” page at Youth.
Pastors and laity receiving News Briefs: please feel free to make copies and pass along to other persons in the congregation, other staff members, or persons who do not have access to a computer. Make copies for the church bulletin boards. Pastors, forward this e-mail to the church secretary/ administrative assistant so items may be included in the church newsletter. Pastors can request that the e-mail address for the church secretary or others in leadership positions be added to the listserv. Send a message to Bill Norton with e-mail of addresses to be added or addresses that should be removed