Celebrating Ministry with all God’s Children
Bishop Ward is joined by the Rev. Terry Williams in this week’s edition of Connections, as they share the church’s directive to be in ministry with persons of all ages, nations, and races and highlight the work of the conference Multicultural Ministries Team.
Financial Donations for Typhoon Haiyan Needed
Typhoon Haiyan caused extensive damage, destroying about 41,000 homes, displacing at least 670,000 people, and affecting a total of 11.3 million people. On Nov. 11, The United Methodist Committee on Relief announced a $97,000 grant to provide emergency food, water and water purification tablets to 7,500 individuals (or 1,500 families) in Tacloban City. The funding also will help local UMCOR staff and volunteers build capacity to meet emergency needs. The relief and recovery work in the Philippines will be ongoing for years. United Methodist pastors are encouraged to download and share this church bulletin insert, offering church members the opportunity to support UMCOR’s emergency relief efforts. Ways donors can give to UMCOR is by check to a local United Methodist Church marked for Typhoon Haiyan, by texting “UMCOR” to 80888 for an immediate $10 donation, or going online to Typhoon Haiyan and making a credit card donation. One hundred percent of all gifts will go to for Typhoon Haiyan response and relief.
Planning for Retirement Seminar in January
The Planning for Your 2014 Retirement seminar will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 22 at the Conference building in Garner. At this seminar, clergy retiring in 2014 will be provided an overview of their retirement benefits and will learn about the decisions ahead of them. Both clergy who know they will retire in the 2014 calendar year and clergy who are still in that decision-making process are encouraged to attend. There is no event fee, but pre-registration is required by Jan. 8 and can be submitted online at the Treasurer’s Office website.
Peace with Justice Grant Applications Due in January
Peace with Justice grants, awarded through the General Board of Church and Society, are funded through the Peace with Justice Sunday special offerings. The offering and the grant program seek to help churches witness “to God’s demands for a faithful, just, disarmed, and secure world.” Deadline for churches and United Methodist organizations to apply for a PwJ grant is Jan. 10. To read the entire criteria and access an application, go to grants.
Year-end Giving Brochure Available
The United Methodist Foundation has created a 2013 Year-End Giving Opportunities brochure for churches to use to encourage year-end gifts that will benefit the needs of the local church. The end of the year is a time when people tend to feel more philanthropic. It is also a time when some people assess their tax situation and seek tax-wise ways of giving. Please use this resource as a bulletin insert or as a direct mail appeal with your own personal cover letter. This is the Foundation’s gift to each church. Click here for more information.
2014 Online Pension-Related Forms due Dec. 9
The 2014 Pension Worksheet and the Contribution to Personal Investment Plan (PIP) forms on the Online Data Collection System are due to be completed by Monday, Dec. 9. All pastors serving an appointment to a local church, regardless of retired or pension plan enrollment status, must complete the Pension Worksheet online. Any active pastor who wants to contribute their personal monies towards their retirement savings may do so by completing the Contribution to PIP form also online. Don’t miss out on the new 1% matching contribution to the PIP that starts on Jan. 1. On the Contribution to PIP form, be sure to enter the date(s) as 01/01/2014 to ensure that the 2014 contribution election is captured and billed correctly. For assistance or questions, contact JoAnna Ezuka at 1-800-849-4433 ext 225