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News & Updates

March 23, 2022

** Note ** You are receiving the district eNews because your name is in our Lay Leadership Database as a leader in your local church. If you are no longer interested in receiving the District eNews, please click the Update Profile link at the bottom of the email. (Clicking UnSubscribe means you will not receive ANY emails from the conference including appointment announcements, sympathy notices and weekly eNews)

April Reporter Available Online

The April Reporter is now available to read online and will be delivered to mailboxes soon.

In this issue, we focus on highlighting Lent and Holy Week traditions in local churches as well as readers' reflections on the season. In their columns, both Bishop Schwerin and Rev. Arlene Christopherson share thoughts on the mid-term address by Bishop Bickerton. Learn about the historical display that highlighted our conference, the Black Teens Matter event, and the Annual Conference Speakers.

Also, in local church news, read about the Tri-City Methodists reconnecting the connection, Valentine's baskets from Hannover UMC, and a welcoming space at Bolingbrook: Friendship UMC.

Click here to read all this and more.

Welcome New NIC Director of Communications

Rev. Victoria Rebeck joined the Northern Illinois Conference staff as Director of Communications, effective March 15, 2023. She will oversee the communications strategy and execution for the conference.

Victoria was ordained a deacon in the Northern Illinois Conference in 2001. (She is now a member of the Minnesota Conference.)

“I am very pleased to be back in the Northern Illinois Conference and to be able to put my ministry gifts to work for Northern Illinois,” she said. “I share the conference’s priorities and mission. I am grateful to be part of making those a reality."

Read more about Victoria here.

You may reach her by email at or

Upcoming Events.png

Click on the event title below to find out more information

2023 Film Series - The Green Book

March 25

Palm/Passion Sunday

April 2

Annual Conference Registration Opens

April 3

Annual Conference Legislation and Documents Due

April 3

Maundy Thursday

April 6

Good Friday

April 7

Easter Sunday

April 9

Earth Day

April 22

Native American Ministries Sunday

April 23

Admin Assistants Day

April 26

Changeover Zone Transitions Workshop

April 29

AC Early Bird Registration Closes

April 29

United Voices for Children Sunday April 30

Prairie Central Informal Gatherings with the District Superintendent

Informational gatherings will be Today, on the second Thursday, March 9. 

Zoom Links (The links will stay the same for all meetings, though clergy links and lay links will be different)

Clergy Gathering 9:00 am link.

Lay Gathering 7:00 pm link.

Lay persons: This is NOT for Lay Leaders only. It is intended for all lay persons who want to know more about what is going on and be connected.

Next meeting will be April 13, 2022

Apportionments allow us to do together what no church, district, or annual conference could do alone.

Did you know UM World Service Funds address poverty and ministry with the poor?

Apportioned giving through the World Service Fund enables the people called United Methodists to engage in at least 400 partnerships that focus on ministry with poor people and communities. As United Methodists, we will challenge and transform broken systems and structures that create and perpetuate poverty. Leveraging connections and partnerships within and beyond The United Methodist Church, we can transform communities and open doors for children to a more promising future.

The World Service Fund provides basic financial support to general agencies, which are especially important to the common vision, mission, and ministry of The United Methodist Church. Through World Service funding, agencies support annual conferences and local congregations in living out God's mission for the worldwide Church. General agencies also provide essential services and ministries beyond the scope of individual local congregations and annual conferences through services and ministries that are highly focused, flexible, and capable of rapid response.


Online Opportunity Open for Film Series Museum Discussion

In-person participation for the 2023 Anti-Racism Task Force Film Discussion Series: The Green Book is full. However, additional participants may join by Zoom. Log in on Sat., March 25, at 11:15 am for a presentation by Dr. Richard Guzman, followed by a discussion with NIC and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary panelists. Online participation is free, and no registration is needed. Click here for the Zoom link. Learn more about the event here.

NICUMM 2023 Annual Meeting

Join the Northern Illinois Conference United Methodist Men for their annual meeting and communion service on Sat., March 25 at 8:30 at Kingswood UMC, 401 W. Dundee Rd., Buffalo Grove, IL. Breakfast will be served, followed by the UMMen annual meeting, worship service, and communion. The event will also be live-streamed. Click here to register and for more information.

Prayer and Fasting for Good Friday 2023

The Discipleship Task Force invites you to pray and fast with them on Good Friday, April 7, 2023. Lent is a wonderful time to practice this means of grace. It is a way of humbling ourselves before God. Fasting helps us hunger for God. Fasting reveals things that control us. In fasting we realize that we are sustained “by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). Learn more here.

Conference-wide UMVIM Leader Mission Journey Training 

Join the NIC Volunteers in Mission for their training on Sat., April 22 at 9:00 am to noon at Freeport: Harmony UMC, 2600 W Pearl City Road, Freeport, IL. This training is available to anyone leading a mission or going on a mission journey across town or across the world. A light breakfast and lunch will be served. A free-will offering will be taken. More information to come.

Becoming the Beloved Community Special Youth Leaders Presentation 

The Discipling Anti-Racism Youth (DAY) group will be holding its 2nd quarter event on Sat., 4/29, 9a – 12p at Community UMC in Naperville. The workshop will be facilitated by the Becoming the Beloved Community (BBC) team led by Dr. Richard Guzman. The discussion will engage participants and get their feedback on ways to talk to youth about racial justice and equity work. All conference youth leaders are encouraged to attend. Please click here to register. Questions? contact Deacon Sharon Rice at More information on the Becoming Beloved Community available here.


Holy Week House Party 2023

Discipleship Ministries has designed a Holy Week Scavenger Hunt/Easter Egg Hunt activity for families to provide a continuation of conversations around the events that led up to Easter morning. The activity can be used in a variety of ways, the activities could be done throughout Holy Week or in their entirety on Easter Sunday. This resource is designed with flexibility in mind, encouraging finding creative ways for your families to celebrate this Easter Season. Learn more and access the resource here.

Women’s history in the Methodist movement

March is Women’s History Month, and the Methodist Church has a rich history of women’s leadership. Many different organizations across the denomination have wonderful resources. offers this helpful Timeline of Women in Methodism. The General Commission on Religion and Race celebrates women of color in our Methodist lineage with a great infographic along with a litany of thanks for women of color leaders. They also offer ideas for worship, Sunday school, mission, outreach, and advocacy. Ask the UMC highlighted the stories of groundbreaking Black women in U.S. Methodist history including Ida Bell Wells-Barnett, Mary McLeod Bethune, Rev. Sallie Crenshaw, and Bishop Leontine T.C. Kelly. Find more resources here.

Native American Ministries Special Sunday approaching

On April 23 we will be celebrating and collecting money for the Native American Ministries Special Sunday. The day serves to remind United Methodists of the gifts and contributions made by Native Americans to our society and in our communities. Donations support vital ministries and churches in the Native American communities and allow The UMC to partner with existing native ministries to develop new programs on behalf of Native Americans. Half of the donations collected remain within the Annual Conference to provide hope to children and youth, hope for a brighter future in impoverished communities, and a voice to those who have felt voiceless for years. Pastor and Leader resources are available here.

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

  • June 6
  • 9:00 am - Laity Convocation
  • 10:30 am - Opening Session
  • Evening, Ordination Service
  • June 7 - Morning, Retirement Service
  • June 8 - Morning, Memorial Service

More updates and details will be posted in the NIC eNews and on the website at

NIC Prayer Network Monthly Zoom Meetings

The NIC Prayer Network is an entryway for joining in common prayer for the ministries of the Northern Illinois Conference. You’re welcome to join in praying for the upcoming events of our conference.  The next meeting is Friday, April 14 at 10:00 am. All are invited to join.  No preparation is necessary, just log in. The Zoom link is available here. Meeting ID: 897 7835 0821 Passcode: 152529

If you’d like to pray but have other appointments at that time, email us and request the agenda or add to the agenda. Also, pray along each week for clergy, churches, leaders, and NIC Advances by visiting the Prayer Network website.

Other Resources

  • #BeUMC Resources -Tool Kits, Social Media Kits, Graphics, and more.
  • Social Media Shareables - Free graphics for social media for different events, months, and ministries. (Through Outreach, log-in is needed, but resources are free)
  • UMC Giving Resources - Mission Moments, Special Sunday Info, Leader Kits, Pew Cards, and more.
  • United Media Resource Center - Lending library of Christian materials for local churches, small groups, pastors, children, and individuals.

Like Us on Facebook: Prairie Central District

Rev. Jeffry Bross

Prairie Central District Superintendent

312-346-9766 ext. 783

Leola Tucker

Administrative Assistant

312-346-9766 ext. 733

Facebook  Instagram  Twitter  YouTube  Web

Do you have news to share?

We are always looking for stories of what is happening in your church.  We welcome articles from churches highlighting ministries, outreach, and missions that tell the story of being vital Christians. Events considered should be of conference-wide appeal and United Methodist-related. 

District eNews are sent out the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month. Please submit stories and events by end of business on the 2nd and 4th Mondays. Space is limited. Stories of fewer than 250 words are preferred. Submissions will be edited at the discretion of Communications staff. Information can be emailed to

Check out our Submit News page for more details. 

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