Dear Friends:
At our Annual Conference Session in Las Cruces, I encouraged us to lean into what it means to be conferring together, to share together, to bear together.  Also in Las Cruces, we learned from Rev. Jorge Acevedo of the critical work of the Commission on a Way Forward.  These are challenging times to be the Church, and I anticipate that over the next few months and years, every pastor, every local church, and every faithful layperson will struggle with any number of challenges (large and small) in our shared ministry and witness.  All the more reason for us to work together, to listen together, and to come together.
As part of Bishop Bledsoe's Fall Itineration, we will be sharing and discussing with each other what our common, shared mission is - what are we called to do and be together?  We'll also share and discuss the challenges each of us faces in ministry at the local level, and what a hopeful future - a "way forward" might look like in our context.  This is an incredible opportunity to come together, to share with our episcopal leader, Bishop Bledsoe, and to bear together our hopes and fears as we strengthen our connection and our conversations for mission and ministry.
I hope to see you there!  Randall Partin, Provost
Commission on a Way Forward Issues Status Report
Rev. Jorge Acevedo addresses questions about the Commission's Work at Annual Conference 
     WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Commission on a Way Forward has released a status report to the Council of Bishops and the entire United Methodist Church (UMC), updating the church and the leaders on the faithful work of the Commission after four meetings.
     The 32-member commission is accountable to the Council of Bishops, which named the members following a mandate from the 2016 General Conference. The charge from the General Conference was for the bishops to find a way forward and for unity in the UMC on issues related to human sexuality.
     In releasing the status report, the Commission moderators Bishops David Yemba, Sandra Steiner Ball and Ken Carter said the status report was available in video and PDF form and can be shared electronically, in worship and in print.  
     "We encourage all United Methodists to view this, to use it in worship. We encourage you to offer us feedback and prayer," the moderators said. 
     The Commission has five more meetings to complete, with two of the meetings coming prior to the November meeting of the Council of Bishops.
     The final report will be issued to the Council of Bishops, who will then present the report to the 2019 Special Session of General Conference for action. 

Click here for the full report

Small Business Loans Empower Malawi Women
Story by Kathy L. Gilbert, photos by Mike DuBose
     In the village of Nkhafi, in the Dowa District of Malawi, a small, empty hut sits in a place of honor.
     The women of the village built the hut for their "sister," Mercy Chikhosi, because she has changed their lives. It is only occupied when she visits.  
     The four chiefs from the Dowa District come to greet her and sing her praises for her work with the village.
     "Every time I come they greet me in this hut," she said, pointing out the traditional thatch roof supported by poles.
     "The mud plastering was all done by hand," she said, rubbing her hand along the interior's smooth surface. "You can feel the warmth of the village through this house."
     Chikhosi has made these women and others in the Dowa District her personal mission, arranging for United Methodist donations to provide the women with small business loans.
     Chikhosi believes in empowering, not charity.
     She graduated from United Methodist Africa University in Zimbabwe with a degree in nursing. She first came to this district in 2011 as a community health coordinator with Malawi United Methodist Church.
     The women pull her into their circle and insist she dance with them. Her smile gets broader and she laughs while dancing.
     She loves these women and they love her.
Click to read the full article

Reaching Out to your College Freshmen

Students will be going off to college in a few short weeks.  Before your soon-to-be college freshmen go off to school, get their emails, cell phone numbers and their campus boxes (if they have them yet). There are several ways that you can help them adjust to the changes and possible homesickness that comes with transitioning to college life. 
  • Ask the student if it is ok if they share their contact information with the Wesley Director or College Minister, so that they can reach out to the incoming student right away.   
  • If there are upper classmen in the same college or other colleges in your congregation, ask them to check-in with the freshman every week or so to see if they have any questions or worries. 
  • Create a care package ministry. 
  • If you know churches in the area, link the student with a ministry or a particular contact at a local church. If they loved working in your church nursery, see if a church needs help with children's ministries. If they loved mission trips, find a church that is active in mission work. 
  • Before college breaks, send a postcard to the college freshman saying that you look forward to seeing them at church again. 

Some students transition fairly easily but others struggle with the rigor and being away from everything they have known.  It might seem like you are doing the work for them in connecting them to a college ministry or a church but it might be the extra encouragement or connection they need to get involved.  Reminders that their church family is thinking of them and wants to help can be a game changer.   


Big Changes at McCurdy Ministries

Click here for the McCurdy Ministries Newsletter

Job Posting:  McCurdy Ministries Community Center 
Associate Director of Development
The Associate Director of Development will report to the Director of Development/Church Relations and will work hand in hand with the Development Director and Executive Director as this 105 year old faith based nonprofit transitions to a Community Center that will provide educational programming for adults, children, youth and families as well as Nonprofit Hub programming to support the nonprofits of the Espanola Valley. Our mission is to help "students and families in the EspaƱola Valley succeed in school and in life." This full time position with benefits will have primary responsibility for grant writing and will support the Development Director in event planning, cultivating donor prospects, managing the development communications process and the donor database (Donor Perfect). McCurdy Ministries Community Center will be entering a nationwide capital funds campaign this fall so the person hired for this position will gain experience in dealing with grant writing, grant management, the daily development task, donor cultivation and the workings of a capital campaign.
Excellent writing and research skills are mandatory and grant writing experience is preferred. Communications skills, sensitivity to the culture of Northern New Mexico and an appreciation of faith based nonprofit work are necessary for this position. A bachelor's or associate degree in a related field are preferred but ALL candidates with the skills outlined will be considered. Spanish language skills are a bonus. Salary will be commensurate with education and experience. For more information on McCurdy Ministries go to our website at .
Application deadline: September 1
To apply send application letter and resume with three references to . No phone inquiries please.

Thaxton Grants Available for the Fall!
Granted for the care of the elderly poor and/or impoverished children of New Mexico.  Application deadline is Sept. 15th. 

Ecumenical Institute for Ministry
Workshop on September 9th 

The Global Leadership Summit

August 10-11, 2017
On-Site at Willow Creek Church in South Barrington, IL
Local Satellite Locations: ABQ, Rio Rancho, Las Cruces, Roswell, Ruidoso, NM and
El Paso, Monahans, Odessa and Andrews, TX.  Contact the church near you. The registration fee varies. Call the NM Conference Office for information on financial assistance: 505-255-8786, ext. 111
Click here for more info

Summer Fun Memory Book Photos Needed!
It is always fun & informative to see what other churches are doing during the summer with VBS, at Sacramento Camp & Conference Center, summer mission projects, youth programs, etc.  We are accumulating photos that we find on Facebook so that we can create a NM Conference Summer Fun Memory Book.  If your church does not participate on Facebook, please email me you photos:  Thanks so much!

Upcoming Events

July 31-Aug. 4 - Camp Sunshine - Sacramento

Aug 11-12 - Lay Servant School - FUMC-ABQ
August 18-19 - Lay Servant School - St. Paul's UMC-El Paso
Sept.8-9 - CLM Training - Asbury-Odessa
Sept. 22-23 - CLM Training - University-Las Cruces
Sept. 23 - CLM Cont Ed - Coach Approach - Christ UMC-ABQ
Sept. 27-29 - Leadership Institute - Leawood, KS
Oct. 1-4 - Fall Clergy Retreat - Sacramento
Oct. 14-15 - CLM Training - Asbury-Odessa
Oct. 14-15 - CLM Training - University-Las Cruces
Oct. 27-29 - Connect Rest - Sacramento
Nov. 3-5 - Explore Calling - Portland, OR
Nov. 7 - Be Strong & of Good Courage Workshop - FUMC-Roswell 
Nov. 10-11- CLM Training - Asbury-Odessa
Nov. 10-11 - CLM Training - University-Las Cruces
Nov. 17-19 - CCYM Fall Retreat - Sacramento 
Fall Itineration Schedule
Sept 16 - Roswell, First UMC 2:00 pm
Sept 23 - Tucumcari, Center Street 3:00 pm
Oct 14 - Odessa First UMC 10:00 am (Central Time)
Oct 21 - Farmington, First UMC 10:00 am
Oct 22 - Albuquerque, St. John's 2:00 pm
Nov 18 - El Paso, Trinity-First 2:00 pm
Click here for the Conference Calendar

Conference Calendar
UMC website


New Mexico Annual Conference  

11816 Lomas Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM 87112

Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Receptionist Hours: 9:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.

(800) 678-8786 toll free; (505) 255-8786; (505) 265-6184 fax

 Click here to view our staff listing  



Please send photos, articles, events, etc. to Alli Costello, Communications Director at  Send classified ads to