eNews - February 1, 2023
February is Black History Month! The General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) created a list of 29 Ways You Can Participate in Black History Month. The list includes small and big things you and your church can do.

There are also many resources available throughout the United Methodist denomination for you to use. Click here to find more resources.
Clergy will gather with their district for fellowship at 9:30 am, with the program beginning at 10:00 am. Concluding with lunch. Laity will gather with their district for an evening conversation from 7:00 to 8:30 pm (unless otherwise noted).
  • Prairie North - Wed., Feb. 8 - Clergy: Rockford UMC: Christ, Laity: Freeport: Harmony UMC (6:00 pm)
  • Prairie Central - Thurs., Feb. 9 - Clergy: Naperville: Grace UMC, Laity: Elgin: Journey of Hope UMC
  • Lake North - Mon., Feb. 13 - Clergy: Chicago: St Matthew UMC*, Laity: Glenview UMC
  • Prairie South - Wed., Feb. 15 - Clergy and Laity: Sycamore UMC
  • Lake South - Thurs., Feb. 16 - Clergy: Hinsdale UMC, Laity: Morgan Park UMC *
* New Location
Registration closes Fri., Feb. 3
Communicator's Corner
We have seen an increase in email scams with people pretending to be the new Bishop. If you receive emails from the conference that are not from @umcnic.org, it is a spam email. To be clear, the conference will NOT contact you or solicit anything via generic email. All financial gifts always go through the conference's regular collections process. If you ever get an email or phone call that seems strange or odd, contact your district administrative assistant to check it out before responding to such a request.
Connect with Spanish, Portuguese and Korean Resources
Ministry involves constant support and encouragement. Find that support, encouragement and so much more with language-specific e-newsletters! You’ll receive insightful ideas, stories and resources to help support your local church ministry. Subscribe to UMComitigo for the latest resources in Spanish and Portuguese. Subscribe to DuruAllimi for Korean-language content.
Lent starts on February 22. There are many resources available around from around the denomination. Click here for a sample of the resources.

It’s that time of year again when each local church gathers its attendance, program, and financial records and submits its statistical report to the Conference. The NIC office uses the statistics you report to asses how your church is doing, to report to the larger denomination, and to calculate apportionments for your church. It’s very important that we have accurate, up-to-date information. This way, your apportionments accurately reflect your church’s ability to contribute to the conference’s connection. 2022 statistics can be entered at umctables.org. The deadline is February 28, 2023. For resources and more information, click here. If you have questions, contact David Quinn at dquinn@umcnic.org.
Click here to get started.

The United Methodist Foundation of Northern Illinois Conference and Horizons Stewardship are partnering to provide on-demand generosity coaching to Northern Illinois United Methodist Churches at no cost and no obligation to you or your church. Click here to learn more and connect with Horizons.

Scholarship Applications are now being accepted for the following UMC-based scholarships:

The Ethnic Young Adult (EYA) program, through the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society (GBCS), is for young justice seekers willing to unpack their faith and identity and develop a deeper understanding of justice. Applications for the 2023 Summer Co-hort are due by March 6th, 2023. To learn more and apply, visit the internship page.
Mission Around the Denomination
United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) is the official short-term sending agency of the United Methodist Church. UMVIM is a grassroots movement of United Methodists who seek to put their “Christian Love in Action.” Since the 1970s, UMVIM has offered a framework through which disciples can engage in short-term mission locally, nationally, and globally.
The North Central Jurisdiction of UMVIM recently released its 2022 Impact Report. In 2022, the North Central Jurisdiction teams served in education, construction, health, disaster response and recovery, virtual missions, and local outreach. These teams served in 13 US states, 1 US territory, 7 African countries, and 7 Latin American countries. Click here to read the whole report.
Mark your calendar
  • Bishop's Days on the District - Clergy 10:00 am, Laity 7:00 pm unless otherwise noted. Click here for locations and more details.
  • Prairie North - Wed., Feb. 8 (Laity at 6:00 pm)
  • Prairie Central - Thurs., Feb. 9
  • Lake North - Mon., Feb. 13
  • Prairie South - Wed., Feb. 15
  • Lake South - Thurs., Feb. 16
  • Laity Convocation - Sat., Feb. 11 from 9 am - 12:30 pm Available online and at three in-person locations (Barrington UMC, Disciples UMC in Mt. Morris, IL, and Faith UMC in Orland Park, IL *Location Change). This year's theme is Thinking outside the Church: Making Community Ministry Happen. The guest speaker is David Teel, Director of Laity & Leadership at Discipleship Ministries. Registration is open until Fri., Feb 3! Click here for details and to register.
  • Order of Elders - Tues., Feb. 28, 9:30 am - 1:00 pm at Sycamore UMC, 160 Johnson Ave, Sycamore. Pastoral colleagues will speak in a TED Talk platform (short presentations) to share their ministry, followed by group conversations with a couple of questions. The Bishop will share a message about his vision with a short Q&A afterward. Cost $15. Click here for details and to register.
  • Formal Installation for Bishop Dan Schwerin to Northern Illinois Conference - Sun., Feb. 26 at 3:00 pm at First UMC in Elgin at 216 E. Highland Ave., Elgin. Hospitality to follow service.
  • Black Healing Collective Workshop - Sat., March 11 from 9 am - 1 pm at St. Mark UMC, 8441 S. St. Lawrence Ave., Chicago. This 4-hour workshop is for people of Black African descent and will define racial trauma, discuss the significant impact that racial trauma has historically had and continues to have within the Black community, including the UMC, and discuss coping strategies that have been used within the Black community for healing our trauma. Cost: $25 (includes lunch). Learn more and register here.
  • NIC 2023 Civil Rights Pilgrimage - Wed., April 26 - Mon., May 1 A historical and educational tour designed with intent and discernment to help journey-goers take action against racism. Each day will include a debriefing session, and advocacy training sessions will be conducted. The cost will is $999 for a single room ($599 per person for double occupancy) for an inclusive 6-day, 5-night trip that will cover transportation, accommodations, entrance fees, and meals as we visit Nashville, Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma, and Memphis sites. Other occupancy options are available. Please contact Amania Drane at adrane@umcnic.org for questions and more information. Pre-registrations are being accepted now. Click here to find out more and fill out an interest form

Around the Connection
  • Global Ministries Still in Mission Zoom Call: Episode #51 - Thurs., Feb. 2 at 11:00 am online. Explore the transforming work of United Methodist missionaries serving around the world. Featured in this episode is NIC's own Young Seon Kim, director of Next Generation Ministries, Tanzania Annual Conference in Tanzania. Click here to learn more and register.
  • United Methodist Rural Advocates Webinar - Sat., Feb. 11 at 11:00 am online. The United Methodist Rural Advocates (UMRA) is a United Methodist lay and clergy association that deals directly with issues that relate to small membership churches, rural communities, and local pastors. The UMRA Grant recipients have been invited to participate in a webinar in which they will offer information on the ministry/outreach they are doing within their communities.NIC's own Dakota-Rock Grove UMC will talk about how they help low-income families in their community with basic hygiene and household needs. Click here to learn more and register.
Lent is coming quickly. The United Media Resource Center has several DVD and book Lenten titles to share with children and Youth. Check out this listing of over 45 titles!

Resources include:
  • Easter Promise / The Witness (DVD) - includes two 44 minute video (elementary age)
  • Story of Lent: Speed Sketch Bible Stories (DVD) - includes 6 different stories (all ages)
  • Easter-rific! (book) - Author: Houser, Tina - Idea book for the time between Palm Sunday and Assertion
  • Make Room: A Child’s Guide to Lent and Easter (book) - Author: Alary, Laura. (elementary age)

Find the online catalog here. The UMRC email address is umrc@igrc.org. 
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