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News & Updates

May 26, 2022


Grieving, praying after attack on school

“Our hearts are broken for the people of Uvalde, Texas. We are devastated over the multiple lives lost during the tragic shooting at Robb Elementary School... We are grateful for those who care for the wounded and care for the families... we know more will need to be done, but for now the grief is indescribable and deeply painful. Lord have mercy; hear our prayers.”

Robert Schnase,

Bishop, Rio Texas Annual Conference on May 24, 2022

United Methodists are stepping up to provide prayer and support after a shooting at an elementary school that took the lives of at least 19 children and two teachers. Read more and find more responses for responding.

Read a message from the Council of Bishops.

Related Links:

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United Voices for Children Sunday

May 29

2022 NIC Annual Conference Registration Closes


May 29

2022 AC Pre-Conference Briefings

June 1 & 2


June 5

2022 Annual Conference

(See Full Schedule)

June 8-10

Peace with Justice Sunday

June 12  


June 19

Father's Day

June 19

John Wesley's Birthday

June 28

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Annual Conference is happening soon!

Any guests planning on visiting should register!

There is no cost to register as a guest. It gives us the ability to make sure we have the correct seating for both special services and plenary. Guest registration will be open until Monday, June 6.

Registration for Lay Members and Clergy for 2022 Annual Conference Ends Sunday, May 29!

Note: No New Registrations will be taken on-site.

In case of emergency or illness, the Alternate Lay Member can be sent to replace the already registered attendee. Alternates will need to check in at the Information Desk prior to the start of the Conference.

AC Mission Challenge

The NIC Board of Global Ministries is coordinating with the Midwest Mission Distribution Center (MMDC) to organize its fill-the-truck collection drive for the most needed items at this time. The truck will be parked at the Schaumburg Convention Center on Wed., June 8, 11 am - 4 pm and Thurs., June 9, 7 am - 2 pm. to take in your donations. Click here for items needed. Download flyer.

Annual Conference Registration
Annual Conference Updates

2022 Bishop's Appeal for Ukraine Assistance


The 2022 Northern Illinois Annual Conference Bishop's Appeal special offering will go toward Ukraine assistance. While immediate needs are great, we know the people of Ukraine will need assistance in the long term. For more details on fundraiser ideas and bringing your collective offering to Annual Conference, visit


Save the Date:

Prairie Central Picnic in the Park

All clergy and church lay leaders and their families are invited to a special Fall celebration for the district. 

Date: August 28, 2022

Time: 4:00pm - 6:00pm 

A brief worship will kick us off at 4:00

Location: Peg Bond Center, Batavia, IL

Cost: $10 per person/ $25 maximum per family - covers a meal, snacks and location rental. 

Come and join the clergy and elected lay leaders of the district and meet their families. There is no agenda, other than a brief time of worship, fun and fellowship for all. Let's celebrate the love of God, the love of each other and our love of being connected through the United Methodist Church. 

A sandwich lunch from Jimmy John's will be provided (gluten free and vegetarian options will be available). 

If you or your church would like to provide music, we will have a stage for open microphone opportunities. Contact DS Jeffry if you or other musicians are interested in playing. 

Bring a chair to sit on, a water bottle (to save the environment) for lemonade, tea and water, and possibly a lawn game to play. 

A registration form will be sent out to clergy and lay leaders later this summer.

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June Reporter Available Online

The June Reporter is now available online and is heading to the post office. Read more about how United Methodists are responding and taking action against recent racially motivated, deadly attacks.

Bishop Hopkins asks in his monthly column, "Will our hope be stronger than our memory?" Learn more about the Board of Pensions initiative to collect stories of Difference Makers among us and to raise funds for future clergy pensions.

Also, find out how local churches are continuing to support Ukraine refugees through mission and service. Read the full issue here.


2nd Annual Rally Against Racism

With recent racially motivated violence and deadly attacks in the news, once again we come together in solidarity to stand against hate and racism.

Last summer, the NIC Annual Conference Shepherding Team (ACST) and the Anti-racism Task Force (ARTF) joined together to spearhead a way for churches to visibly show their commitment “to live out the conviction that racism is incompatible with Christian teaching.”

Several churches participated by holding rallies in a variety of different ways. Churches were encouraged to be creative and hold Do-it-Yourself or DIY rallies. Click here to watch a video from last summer's rallies.

Join with churches across the Northern Illinois Conference this summer (May through September) to Rally Against Racism. Learn more and sign up today.


Summer Camp Registration Open

Good News…staff are back on-site at Wesley Woods and Camp Reynoldswood after seasonal layoffs due to the pandemic and several summer camps are scheduled for 2022!

  • J.O.Y Camp at Camp Reynoldswood 6/19 - 6/24
  • Family Camp - Multi-generational at Wesley Woods Retreat Center 7/03 - 7/08
  • Woodland Camp at Camp Reynoldswood 7/24 - 7/29

For pricing and registration, visit

Lifeguards, counselors, and kitchen staff are needed at both camps. If interested, visit

Urgent Masonry Work Needed at Reynoldswood


A crew installing a new pool liner at Camp Reynoldswood in Dixon, Ill., arrived Monday and determined that work needs to be done to fill holes and hollows (voids) behind the existing, aged concrete walls so it's solid enough to hold the anchors that will hold the liner.

NIC Outdoor and Retreat Ministries Director Jeff Casey says they urgently need a skilled mason who can either perform the work or provide guidance to staff who has masonry experience but not around pools.

The first summer campers arrive for J.O.Y. Camp starting June 19, so timing is extremely critical.

Please text or call Jeff Casey at 815-494-3877 or John Rocke at 815-494-4315. (John is on-site at Reynoldswood, but Jeff may be more accessible).

Thank you for any and all help that you can provide.

Apportionment Highlight - Black College Fund

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The United Methodist Church supports 11 fully accredited Historically Black Colleges and Universities, more than any other religious denomination in the U.S.


A graduate of Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina, Josefa Bethea Wall followed the path set by her mother, grandmother and others in her family. Her father attended another historically Black college: Claflin University, Orangeburg, South Carolina. Josefa studied accounting and business administration.

“My college experience,” Josefa said, “helped me discern my interests and turn them into my life’s work in nonprofit management. A small, liberal arts, church-related institution provided me opportunities to develop meaningful relationships with my peers and those with the charge of pushing and pulling us to be our best selves. Many professors and staff members were members of the church I attended, so our interactions were not limited to campus and the classroom. We are still connected more than 30 years later.”

Josefa became a Black College Fund ambassador in 1984, visiting United Methodist congregations, sharing her dreams for the future and saying, “Thank you.” She still loves telling the Black College Fund story.

“As part of a connectional church,” she said, “each member played a part in my education. I represent a return on their investment. I am one of many students who have benefited from their giving. 

Through the Apportionments given to the Black College Fund, United Methodist congregations support more than 15,000 students attend institutions, pursuing degrees in agriculture, engineering, social work, forensics, environmental science and more.

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Global Ministries Features Northern Illinois Conference Elder

Rev. Jin Kim, an elder in the Northern Illinois Conference, will be featured in the General Board of Global Ministries #StillInMission Episode 43. on on June 2 at 11 am CST. Register here. Rev. Jin Kim serves as the Coordinator of Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace with the World Council of Churches in SwitzerlandRegister here. You will have the opportunity to meet in a small group to hear a presentation from each missionary during the call. Registration is limited.


Peace with Justice Resources available

Peace with Justice Sunday celebration is June 12, 2022. This offering is collected the first Sunday after Pentecost and it supports peace with justice ministries through the General Board of Church and Society and the annual conferences. Half of money donated on Peace with Justice Sunday stays within our conference. Read more about Peace with Justice Sunday and download the resources.

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The Northern Illinois Conference is offering 6 training options to help meet our goal of ensuring safe spaces in our churches.

The trainings are being offered both on-line via zoom and in-person.

The dates offered are:

  • Thursday, June 23 - 6:30 pm - Plainfield UMC
  • Wednesday, June 29 - 6:30 pm - Plainfield UMC
  • Saturday, July 16 - 1:00 pm - Des Plaines: First UMC
  • Saturday, July 30 - 10:00 am - Rockford: Christ UMC
  • Saturday, August 6 - 10:00 am - Rockford: Christ UMC
  • Saturday, August 20 - 1:00 pm - Des Plaines: First UMC

Find more information and register here.

**This free training is an alternative for those who cannot participate in other training options and does not include a background check.

Also, we have redone our NIC Safe Sanctuaries Website. Check out the site for videos, policies, FAQ, downloads and more resources.

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Speaker Series: Race, America, and the Church

The Northern Illinois Conference, in partnership with the Indiana Conference and other groups, is pleased to announce a 2022 Speaker Series.

The second event will be held June 23.

Unafraid: Stand up for Social Justice

Thursday, June 23, 2022, 12:00 -1:30 PM

via Zoom

Speakers: Rev. Derrek Belase, Rev. David Lagos-Fonseca, Rev. Dana Neuhasuer, Rev. Brian Tillman, & Rev. Kathy L. Williams Moderator: Rev. Pamela Pirtle

Representatives from different conferences discuss what the local church and their conferences are doing to address racism.

Register and Learn More

Do you have news to share?

We are always looking for stories of what is happening in the local church.  We welcome articles from churches highlighting ministries, outreach, and missions which 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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Resources for the Local Church

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Rev. Jeffry Bross

Prairie Central District Superintendent

312-346-9766 ext. 783

Leola Tucker

Administrative Assistant

312-346-9766 ext. 733

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