In this edition:
THIS WEEK'S NEWS
Podcast features Dotson, Spencer considering response to racism
Voices of African American clergy is focus of webinar this Saturday
More news in the stand against racism from beyond the Great Plains
Despite pandemic, GP camps find ways to connect with youth
Great Plains' Tapley tells of taking her own coronavirus test
More about coronavirus pandemic from the Great Plains and beyond
Supreme Court's DACA decision brings joy for pastor
Death is subject of next week's webinar/podcast, ‘Threshold’
College offers virtual training about ‘Compassion Fatigue’
United Methodist Youth Institute goes virtual for summer of 2020
Camp Fontanelle gets fundraising challenge for its new retreat center
UMMen 100 Club announces its 2020 scholarship recipients
Foundations of coaching course to begin next month
Connect incoming college students with campus ministries
Share your faith stories with rest of Great Plains through daily devotions
LSM director: We are God's hands, arms to care for other's needs
MERCY & JUSTICE
Anti-racism education grants are available from conference
Committee on Native American Ministries making grants available
GBCS seeking applications for Just and Resilient Communities Grant
GBHEM hosting virtual book club about financial stewardship practices
Deadline application is next week for NUMF's local pastor scholarships
Tuesday is application deadline for Nebraska UM Foundation scholarship
Training available from UMCom on remote worship, video recording
ACROSS THE CONNECTION
Bakely honored for six years on Kansas Health Foundation board
Church friends, family help celebrate woman’s 108th birthday
In other news
Blogs and commentaries
Podcast features Dotson, Spencer
considering response to racism
In the aftermath of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis — and following the previous episode titled “Black Lives Matter” -- the “In Layman’s Terms” podcast explores how people can respond to help end racism. In this episode, we talk openly about what white people can do to help, and we explore what it means when we say “white privilege,” how to educate ourselves and other ways to help bring about change — from stopping racist chatter at the water cooler to speaking up to casting ballots on Election Day.
Host Todd Seifert, conference communications director, speaks with featured guests the Rev. Junius Dotson and the Rev. Steve Spencer. He also speaks with the Revs. Kyle Reynolds, Portia Cavitt, Dee Williamston and Pastor Ronda Kingwood.
Download the podcast.
Voices of African American clergy
is focus of webinar this Saturday
A webinar, “A Time to Listen: Voices of African American Clergy in the Great Plains Conference,” is scheduled for 10 a.m. to noon CDT Saturday, June 27.
The Rev. Dr. Rose Booker-Jones, a retired district superintendent from the Illinois Great Rivers Conference who now lives near Wichita, will be the facilitator.
Panelists are Pastor Ronda Kingwood, Wichita Heart of Christ UMC; Rev. Darryl Burton, Church of the Resurrection; Rev. Harry Christian, Topeka Asbury Mount Olive UMC; Rev. Dr. Wayne Reynolds, Crete Grace UMC; Rev. Dr. Charlotte Abram, retired in Omaha; and Rev. Cynthia Smart, Kansas City Mason Memorial UMC.
The webinar is coordinated by the Rev. Dee Williamston, Salina-Hutchinson District superintendent; and the Rev. Nicole Conard, congregational excellence.
The link to register for the webinar is here. Laity and clergy are encouraged to register and attend.
Download the flyer here.
VIDEO: Bishop Saenz invites conference to action in fight against racism.
Our new racial justice page includes ways to pray, connect and act against injustice.
Watch "Dismantling Racism: A Service of Lament, Repentance, Communion and Commitment," which debuted earlier today, and follow the bulletin.
More news in the stand against
racism from beyond the Great Plains
Despite pandemic, GP camps
find ways to connect with youth
Just because the camps are closed, it doesn't mean the mission has stopped.
That's the philosophy with several of the camps in the Great Plains Conference, which have had to invent new forms of outreach to keep youth and families connected during the time of pandemic.
Read about Camp Chippewa staff working with teens from Topeka First UMC.
Watch a video from their afternoon together.
Great Plains' Tapley tells of
taking her own coronavirus test
She’s been trying to help the Great Plains Conference fight the coronavirus pandemic for the past few months, but it all hit home for the Rev. Hollie Tapley, disaster response coordinator, when she was told by doctors she had to take a COVID-19 test.
In her own words, Tapley tells of how doctors wanted her to take the test as a precautionary measure and takes us step by step through the test and the care medical personnel took.
Read her account here.
More about the coronavirus pandemic from the Great Plains and beyond
Our coronavirus page is constantly updated with news and recommendations for reopening houses of worship.
Supreme Court's DACA
decision brings joy for pastor
The Rev. Orlando Gallardo Parra, who was ordained in the Great Plains Conference and now serves across the state line in Drexel, Missouri, was among the 650,000 Dreamers celebrating last week’s decision upholding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.
“DACA has made it possible for me to be ordained in The United Methodist Church, to get a job as a pastor, to get a driver’s license, to get a Social Security number, to build credit and to buy a house,” Gallardo Parra told United Methodist News.
Read more in this story from UMNS, as well as a 2017 article with Gallardo’s life story.
Death is subject of next week's
"Death in the Time of COVID" will be subject of the next webinar/podcast, “At the Threshold: Ministry in Liminal Time,” at 10:30 a.m. CDT Thursday, July 2.
Hosts the Rev. Ashlee Alley Crawford and the Rev. Shelly Petz will feature three different voices and perspectives of death during this challenging season: Dr. Steve Short, a physician in Manhattan who served for a couple of weeks in Brooklyn during the height of the coronavirus crisis; Rev. Shelly McNaughton-Lawrence, pastor of Aldersgate UMC in Olathe; and Rev. Becky Johnson, chaplain at University of Kansas Medical Center. You can register here.
A new page for the webinar/podcasts is available here.
College offers virtual training
about ‘Compassion Fatigue’
Northeast Community College in Norfolk, Nebraska, is offering virtual training in “Compassion Fatigue” in a three-week session from July 8-22.
Compassion fatigue is a condition that plagues many healthcare workers, first responders and other helping professions and is known to most as the “cost of caring.”
In this three-part virtual series, Denis McCarville, founder and senior consultant for Quality Treatment Institute, will discuss various components of compassion fatigue and develop a plan to help you personally combat it. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers. The course is free.
More information is in this flyer.
United Methodist Youth Institute
goes virtual for summer of 2020
With a heritage of more than 100 years, United Methodist Youth Institute will live on this year online.
Virtual Institute 2020 will continue in the scheduled time of July 20-25, with morning, afternoon and evening content, as well as daily opportunities to connect with the Youth Coordinating Team, hear devotions from Institute alumni, share in a worship experience and connect with a virtual Care Group.
Although the Virtual Institute is free, there is an option to give a sustainability donation to Camp Chippewa.
Camp Fontanelle gets fundraising
challenge for its new retreat center
Camp Fontanelle has received a fundraising challenge from the Rupert Dunklau Foundation to be used towards the construction of its planned retreat center.
The foundation will match new donations 2-to-1 to the retreat center up to $40,000. The result will be an $120,000 investment towards the ministry at Camp Fontanelle, with the camp raising $80,000 in “new money” and the foundation matching.
Read more here, as well as more about its summer outreach.
UMMen 100 Club announces
its 2020 scholarship recipients
The United Methodist Men’s 100 Club has announced the recipients of its 2020 scholarships.
The 100 Club scholarship winners are Cameron Miller and Karissa Heckens, St. Paul School of Theology; Shayla Jordan, Perkins School of Theology; Rebecca Borgman, United Theological Seminary; and Danielle Rouse, Colorado Christian University. All receive $1,250.
The Fleming Family Foundation scholarship recipients are Cameron Miller and Karissa Heckens, St. Paul; Shayla Jordan, Perkins; Rebecca Borgman, United; and Danielle Rouse, Colorado Christian. All receive $600.
Dean, Jean and Randy Fleming scholarship winners are Karissa Heckens, St. Paul; and Shayla Jordan, Perkins. Both receive $500.
The Nichole Spiegel-Wheeler scholarship recipient is Karissa Heckens, St. Paul. She receives $500.
The Merv and Bev Schliefert scholarship winner is Cameron Miller, St. Paul. He receives $300.
The Fleming-Humphrey Goff scholarship recipient is Karissa Heckens, St. Paul. She receives $400.
The Joe Meehan 32nd Degree Master Mason scholarship winner is Karissa Heckens, St. Paul. She receives $300.
The scholarships will be presented during the annual scholarship dinner and auction, at 5 p.m. Oct. 1 at Grand Island Trinity UMC.
More information in this flyer.
Foundations of coaching
course to begin next month
Would you like to make a discovery and learn the foundations of coaching? The new coaching foundations course aims to equip laity with the skills and methods for successful leadership and coaching practice.
The virtual coaching foundations course will be from 6-9 p.m. CDT Friday, July 31, and 9 a.m. to noon and 2-5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 1. The cost is $20 per-person which includes online learning, nine hours of training, coaching relationships, and a book.
Registration is now open at this link.
Watch this video on coaching.
If you have questions, email Shane Warta, lay leadership coordinator, at email@example.com.
Connect incoming college
students with campus ministries
For pastors and amazing youth mentors, if you have high school graduates and college who have been connected to your congregation who are heading to college in the fall, give them the gift of connection by connecting them with the United Methodist Campus Pastor and ministry at their school. While the school year has been different help them live into the next chapter of their lives, you can help give a gift of connection to a student’s life this fall.
Simply enter their name(s) at www.greatplainsumc.org/studentcontact to receive a direct personal connection with a campus minister.
If you prefer to connect them directly with the campus minister with an email or conversation with information at www.greatplainsumc.org/campusministries.
Thank you for your ministry and work in investing in youth and giving them the gift of the United Methodist connection throughout the Great Plains.
For more information, check out the list of campus ministries in our Great Plains Conference at www.greatplainsumc.org/campusministries.
Share your faith stories with rest of
Great Plains through daily devotions
Want to start your day with some inspiration? Get our daily devotions delivered to your email!
Do you want to share your story of faith with others in the Great Plains Conference? Join our talented group of writers from among the clergy, laity and staff of the conference in writing the daily devotions.
Daily lectionary verses are available for inspiration, but if there is a verse that is on your heart, please feel free to use it instead. Write a meditation on the scripture of about 300 words and a two-sentence prayer for reflection.
We welcome a variety of experiences and viewpoints -- you do not have to be a seminary scholar to share your view of God's grace and Christ's love!
Use this link to sign up.
LSM director: We are God's
hands, arms to care for other's needs
God is, indeed, in charge, reminds Mary Feit, CLSp, director of Lay Servant Ministries for the Great Plains Conference.
But "we must not forget that we are His hands and arms to be used to care for other’s needs. We are His legs and feet for helping our neighbors as they journey through perilous times. We are His mouthpiece to witness His love for all people and His ears for listening to the marginalized," she writes in the latest LSM blog.
Read more here.
Mercy & Justice
Anti-racism education grants
are available from conference
As we lament the racism in our country that is hurting so many of our sisters and brothers, the Great Plains Mercy & Justice Team is offering small grants of up to $300 to help congregations and networks learn about white privilege and structural racism and develop strategies to overcoming these.
The revised UM Social Principles call on congregations, on pastors and on laity in leadership positions “to educate themselves about the root causes and manifestations of racism, ethnocentrism, and tribalism within communities of faith and to develop strategies for overcoming these kinds of social divisions.” (UM Revised Social Principles, Other Social Issues, L, p. 29)
Apply here: www.greatplainsumc.org/serving-with-others-grant.
Committee on Native American
Ministries making grants available
The Committee on Native American Ministries (CONAM) is offering grants to support an existing ministry or starting a new ministry targeting Native American people in the Great Plains Conference. The ministry could include an outreach project/event of a United Methodist Native American Congregation. The grants are not intended to be used as ongoing funding of a ministry program. Grants will be made as one-time awards and subsequent requests for the same ministry will require a new grant application. The funding for this grant program comes from the contributions to Native American Awareness Sunday in the Great Plains Conference.
Examples of grant purposes include but are not limited to lay leadership training events for Native American ministries; honoraria for speakers/presenters/native musicians for Native American events; and other opportunities to reach Native Americans in the Great Plains Conference.
A grant application can be found on the Great Plains Conference website at greatplainsumc.org/nativeamericanministry. Applications for 2020 are due by July 31. CONAM expects to make funding decisions by Sept. 15.
GBCS seeking applications for
Just and Resilient Communities Grant
As part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial justice, Church and Society is offering a special cycle of funding called Just and Resilient Communities grants. Please spread the word to those you think might be interested in this opportunity.
The public health, economic, and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have affected communities everywhere. These impacts, coupled with discriminatory, violent practices and policies targeting marginalized and vulnerable communities, have compounded injustice and inequity on a range of issues -- access to healthcare, criminal justice reform, food security, human dignity and rights, and free and fair elections, to name just a few.
Given the scope and urgency of the crises, Church and Society is awarding grants to support United Methodists in building more just and resilient communities. While the goal of each proposal should address structural inequities, the design of the projects should reflect the contextual needs and assets of the community.
Apply now for a Just and Resilient Communities Grant. Applications are being accepted through June 26.
GBHEM hosting virtual book club
about financial stewardship practices
The Global Board of Higher Education Ministries will host its first virtual book club with Bonnie Marden, author of “Church Finances for Missional Leaders: Best Practices for Faithful Stewardship.” Viewers are encouraged to order Marden’s book prior to the discussion and to ask questions during the event about how to manage church finances in this uniquely challenging time.
“Church Finances: How to stay afloat and thrive – even in 2020!” will be at 11 a.m. CDT Thursday, July 9. The free event will be streamed live on GBHEM’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. Viewers will be able to pose their questions through the comments section of either platform. There is no need to preregister.
Marden will address important issues:
- The positive impact of talking about money – even during a pandemic
- Setting up and promoting online giving
- Surprising areas for funding opportunities
- Handling budget shortfalls and changes in staffing
Bonnie Ives Marden is a leadership consultant and financial stewardship practitioner. She offers stewardship education through multiple United Methodist Foundations, and also served as the Imagine No Malaria Campaign Coordinator for the New England Conference of The United Methodist Church.
“Church Finances for Missional Leaders” is available for purchase through Cokesbury and Amazon.
Deadline application is next week
for NUMF's local pastor scholarships
The Nebraska United Methodist Foundation is pleased to announce a new scholarship program to support local pastors. Applications are available online for at www.numf.org. Application deadline is June 30.
Through this new and young program, the Foundation has $5,500 available in scholarship funds for the 2020-2021 academic year. The following is a list of scholarships available:
- Frederick and Esther Paulus Local Pastor Scholarship (three scholarships, $1,500 each)
- NUMF Gifts from The Heart Local Pastor Scholarship (1 scholarship for $1,000)
The Nebraska United Methodist Foundation would like to acknowledge the generous gifts donors have made to make these scholarships possible. Mr. Paulus and his late wife have had a passion through the years for supporting post-secondary education. By setting up an endowment fund at the Foundation, they have been able to fulfill this dream of supporting students. Thank you for being our partner in ministry.
The Foundation’s own Gifts from The Heart Program continues to support five areas: Missions, Youth & Camping, Pastoral Education & Support, New Start/New Faith Communities, and Greatest Needs. We are honored to put the good work and generosity of United Methodists in action through this new scholarship opportunity.
If you are interested in learning more about Gifts From The Heart, we would be honored to partner with you and continue to grow these funds as added resources for our churches. Please call the Foundation at 877-495-5545 or visit our website at www.numf.org.
Tuesday is application deadline for
Nebraska UM Foundation scholarship
The Nebraska United Methodist Foundation has scholarship applications available online for seminary students, undergraduate students, pursuing a career in church leadership at www.numf.org. Application deadline is June 30.
Through this program, the Foundation has over $30,000 available in scholarship funds for the 2020-2021 academic year. The following is a list of scholarships available:
- Albert R. Murdoch Ministerial Scholarship
- Alice Kruse Ministerial Scholarship
- Alice Kruse Seminary Scholarship
- Alva Clark Seminary Scholarship
- Andrew & Nevabelle Howe Scholarship
- Baldwin F. & Amy L. Kruse Scholarship
- Ben & Martha Simmons Scholarship
- Charles & Marilyn Humphrey Seminary Scholarship
- Cowles United Methodist Church Memorial Scholarship
- Floma Taylor Ministerial Scholarship
- Harlan & Mabelle Wyrick Memorial Scholarship
- Murdock Ebenezer UMC Professional Church Leader Scholarship
- Myrtle E. Williams Seminary Scholarship
- Scahill Family Scholarship
- Verl & Sylvia Miller Memorial Scholarship
- Tither’s Scholarship
- Women in Ministry Scholarship
Those students applying for the scholarships listed above will also subsequently be considered for the following scholarships: Cal Leeds Scholarship, Darrell & Joyce Pickett Scholarship, Rev. Albert W. Winseman Scholarship and Atherton Memorial Scholarship. Please read the criteria and guidelines for each scholarship carefully prior to applying.
The Nebraska United Methodist Foundation would like to acknowledge the generous gifts donors have made to make these scholarships possible. Thank you for being our partner in ministry. If you would like to talk to someone about how you can honor the memory of a loved one through a named scholarship or provide further financial assistance for a seminary student, call the Foundation at 877-495-5545.
Training available from UMCom
on remote worship, video recording
United Methodist Communications has launched two free learning series. "Leading Remote Worship" delves into how to provide meaningful worship across great distances. "Recording Great Video" will teach about how to use technology many people already own and a few accessories.
Register for Leading Remote Worship
Register for Recording Great Videos
Across the Connection
Bakely honored for six years on
Kansas Health Foundation board
The Rev. Claudia Bakely, retiring this month as Flint Hills District superintendent, was thanked by the Kansas Health Foundation for her six years on its board of directors.
Bakely approved 79 grants totaling more than $81 million and served on the Governance Committee, Strategic Planning Committee and CEO Search Committee, which she chaired.
In honor of Bakely’s years of service to the board, she and another outgoing board member were each provided with a $25,000 grant to give to their organization of their choice.
Read more from the Kansas Health Foundation.
Church friends, family help
celebrate woman’s 108th birthday
A member of the Verdigre UMC in Nebraska, Lottie Randa, got a parade for her recent 108th birthday.
A resident of Alpine Village Nursing Home who must stay inside because of pandemic precautions, she was treated with visits from family and friends, many with animals, celebrating the event.
Randa is the third-oldest person in Nebraska and the oldest female in the state.
Read more from the Knox County News.
In other news
- Discipleship Ministries: Young people’s ministry, June 24, 2020
- Communication Essentials, June 24, 2020
- Leading Ideas, June 24, 2020
- A sermon for every Sunday, June 23, 2020
- MyCom, June 23, 2020
- Discipleship Ministries: Generous living, June 22, 2020
- Discipleship Ministries: Worship planning, June 22, 2020
- Leading Ideas Talks, June 20, 2020
- GBHEM Resources, June 18, 2020
- #IGiveUMC, June 18, 2020
- UMCOMtigo (in Spanish), June 18, 2020
- Ministry Matters, June 17, 2020
Blogs and commentaries
- Black father prepares sons for racial injustice: "As a black father, from the moment my son was born, there was a stark reality: I could not insulate him from racial injustice, therefore he needed to be equipped and prepared for it," writes the Rev. Byron Thomas, senior pastor of Ben Hill United Methodist Church in Atlanta. Thomas, the father of two sons, also calls on white fathers to teach their children about racial injustice.
- DNA of good neighboring: Michelle Hettmann, community curator at Neighborhood Church in Atlanta, recalls her first visit to a predominantly Black church to be a transformative experience, even if she was initially uncomfortable about feeling out of place. That experience drove her belief that in order to minister in the community, you must first get to know your neighbors.