eNews -March 1, 2023
The sunlight shone through the elegant stained-glass windows at First UMC in Elgin, Ill., on Sunday, February 26, 2023, for the Installation Service of Bishop Dan Schwerin. The installation service was a celebration of the diversity of the conference and included performances by multiple choirs and readings in different languages.

Committee members continue to plan for the 184th session of the Northern Illinois Annual Conference that will be held June 6-8, 2023 at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center at 1551 N. Thoreau Dr., Schaumburg, Ill.

Things to Know:
  • Online registration begins Monday, April 3, and will close Sunday, May 28. There will be no on-site registration
  • April 3 - April 28 - Early bird registration $100/person
  • April 29 - May 28 - $125/person
  • Clergy session will be held on May 23.
  • Services:
  • Ordination: Evening, Tues. June 6
  • Retirement: Morning, Wed. June 7
  • Memorial: Morning, Thurs. June 8

A few things to note:
  • ALL historical documents and proposed legislation for the conference must be submitted by April 3, 2023, to JoAnn Ray through an online submission form. The new form will help streamline submissions, and a link to the form is available here. No exceptions, please. Legislation will be posted online by May 5.
  • Requests for presentations, including media and videos to be projected on the screens, will need to be submitted and preapproved. Most presentations will be pre-recorded video. The presentation request form is available here. Videos and Media are due May 9.

More updates and details will be posted in the NIC eNews and on the website at umcnic.org/AC2023.
Join Kids Above All at their new Better Life Distribution Center facility that will further support kids and families and provide year-round volunteer opportunities for the public and our partners. They will be providing tours of the center as well as continental breakfast on Mon., March 20 at 10:00 am at the Better Life Distribution Center, 1801 E. Oakton St, Des Plaines, IL. Questions and RSVP to Deaconess Catherine Inserra, cinserra@kidsaboveall.org
The latest episode of "The Recap" looks at how United Methodists are taking action to address gun violence and racial injustice. Other stories include five diverse congregations coming together for worship and fellowship, and an update on an African agricultural initiative named in honor of late Sierra Leone Bishop John Yambasu. "The Recap" is a video series from United Methodist Communications providing a snapshot of stories from throughout the United Methodist connection. Watch the episode here.
Two weeks of 24/7 prayer, confession, and worship in February went on at Asbury University, a campus of around 1600 students in Wilmore, Kentucky. This Lent, let us in Northern Illinois join with these students in prayer and worship. Let’s pray for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit on our churches in the Northern Illinois Conference. Click here to learn more about what happened in Asbury and for the NIC prayer opportunities.
The 2023 Anti-RacismFilm Series is focused on increasing cultural competency and dialogue as a means to increase advocacy and participation in the spaces around the contexts, causes, and impacts of racism. It will consist consists of viewing a documentary film or movie each quarter, followed by expert-led discussions. Find out more about the Film series here.

For the first quarter event, the Anti-Racism Series Team will be hosting a docent-led tour of The Negro Motorist Green Book exhibit at the Illinois Holocaust Museum. The event will occur on Saturday, March 25 at 10:00 am and include lunch and a discussion afterward with Dr. Richard Guzman. Find more information and register here.

As part of the 2023 Film Series, the task force is looking for local churches in each district to host sessions for the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quarter events. The host churches will receive a small stipend to purchase food for the location that is related to the theme of the quarter. The events are planned to last from 6:00 to 8:30 pm on a weekday evening. Interested churches may reach out to Tim Alexander, Tim@osumc.org, for more in-depth details.
For the April issue of The Reporter - we would like your input.

"What is the most meaningful or most moving part of your Lent observance or Easter celebration? Why?" Share your answers with communications@umcnic.org and get featured on the website or in The Reporter.

We are also looking for churches that are doing something different than past years. If your church, your cluster or a church you know is doing something different this year - please share with communications@umcnic.org.

Send your submissions (50-100 words) in by March 10.
Communicator's Corner
In celebration of Women’s History Month 2023, The General Commission on the Status and Role of Women (GCSRW) will be publishing eight blog articles written by the Rev. Emily Nelms Chastain in order to highlight the newly elected women bishops by The United Methodist Church. This blog series will follow the national theme of “Celebrating Women who tell our Stories.” Additionally, they encourage you to document your own celebrations of women in leadership and that you share these stories with your Annual Conference COSROWs through social media using the #GCSRW. Learn more and read the current article here.

Scholarship Applications are now being accepted for the following UMC-based scholarships:
  • Archives and History Grants/Awards - for students and researchers to in a number of fields of study, including United Methodist history, particularly as it relates to women and ethnic groups and archival science. Deadline for applications is March 17, 2023. For the complete list, along with details about applying, click here.
  • General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) - for United Methodist students pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees. Scholarship applications are open until March 30th, 2023. To learn more and apply, click here.
  • United Methodist Foundation - for students to empower them to continue their education. This scholarship is designed to assist minority United Methodist students to attend a trade school, community college, college, or university. Applications are due April 30, 2023. Click here for more information and to apply.

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.

Church archivists worry that congregations disaffiliating from The United Methodist Church will fail to make arrangements to preserve the papers that tell their story. Records maintained by the denomination are accessible to anybody, not just United Methodists. Learn more here.
Mission Around the Denomination
Funding from United Women in Faith has helped Colegio Sara Alarcón, a Methodist bilingual school in Mexico City purchase five humanoid robots that the students are learning to program. United Women in Faith’s Mission Giving continues to support operations and programming at the school. Learn more and watch a video by clicking here.
Mark your calendar

Around the Connection

The United Media Resource Center has 10 new books available to borrow. Check out the listing here.

Resources include:
  • Digital Ministry and Leadership in Today’s Church by John Roberto
  • For a Dollar and a Dream: State Lotteries in Modern America by Jonathan Cohen
  • For the Common Good: Discovering and Using Your Spiritual Gifts by Christine Harman
  • Power of Group Prayer: How Intercession Transforms Us and the World by Carolyn Carney

Find the online catalog here. The UMRC email address is umrc@igrc.org. 
Quick Links 
Connect With Us
*Please note unsubscribing from this eNews will remove you from all notices from the Conference, including messages from the Bishop, appointments and sympathy announcements.