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eNews · January 10, 2024

First Korean UMC Cared for Neighbors on Christmas

Taking Christmas beyond the church walls, members of the First Korean UMC in Wheeling celebrated Christmas as “Love Your Neighbor Day.” FKUMC took the celebration beyond the church walls and spent part of the day assisting the Chicago Sanctuary Church Network by packing hundreds of care packages and gathering warm clothing refugees.

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Bishop Schwerin Urges Us to ‘Yield’

Many Methodists observe the Wesley covenant renewal service on New Year’s Eve. The prayer at the heart of the service vows, “I freely and heartily yield all things to thy pleasure and disposal.” Yielding opens us to disruption, which allows opportunity, Bishop Schwerin explains.

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Do You Need Childcare at Annual Conference?

The annual conference committee is exploring different childcare arrangements, including the possibility of offering on-site care. Those who need childcare should complete a short survey so that the committee knows parents’ preferences.

Responses are due on Jan. 31. 

Take the survey

Our Connection Makes Us Stronger

Rev. Fabiola Grandon-Mayer, NIC’s director of connectional ministries, sees the power of connectionalism in many places around the conference. When we support each other, we make possible ministries to Hispanic/Lantinx and Asian-American communities, enable conference members to strengthen mission practices, learn how to confront racism in ourselves and our society, and much more. “We can do so much more together,” Rev. Grandon-Mayer explains.

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Apportionments Due Jan. 12

In sharing through apportionment giving, we help each other obtain health insurance and pensions for our clergy, receive guidance in shaping our ministries, and strengthen our United Methodist witness around the world. All United Methodists depend on it. Please complete your church’s 2023 apportionment payments by this Friday, Jan. 12. (Mailed payments must be postmarked by Jan. 12.)

Learn more about apportionments

Check your Prosper account or pay online


Make the #BeUMC Toolkit a part of your everyday essentials 

The #BeUMC Toolkit is full of digital resources to help your congregation be the Christ-centered, grace-filled, committed people of God they desire to be. The #BeUMC campaign reminds us of the best version of who we say we are, faithful followers of Jesus Christ seeking a better world. Explore messaging and share success stories to sustain the #BeUMC campaign at your conference or local church.


Looking for scholarships?   

The UMC provides several scholarships for UM students, both undergraduate and graduate. Both the UM Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) and the UM Higher Education Foundation (UMHEF) offer financial aid, and they are accepting applications now. Midwest Methodist Foundation (MMF) also offers scholarships. Be sure to let students and parents know about this opportunity. 

Learn more about GBHEM scholarships. Applications due March 13.

Learn more about UMHEF scholarships. Applications due March 1.

Learn more about MMF scholarships. Applications are due April 30.

Human Relations Day grants help keep students fed

Students at seven colleges have access to free or low-cost food and hygiene products thanks to grants from the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries. Food insecurity on college campuses is often a hidden problem because students do not want to admit they are in need. Read the story.

The grants were made possible by offerings on Human Relations Day, which is this Sunday, Jan. 14. It’s an opportunity to stand with other UM churches to build the beloved community envisioned by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Your gifts support ministries of social justice and outreach to at-risk youth. By participating in the Human Relations Day offering, we embrace the power of relationships, the strength of community, and the good news that all of God’s children are of sacred value.

Learn more about Human Relations Day

Give to Human Relations Day through Mission Link giving

Around the Conference

  • Every Wednesday at noon: Weekly Methodist Liaison Office update and virtual prayer meeting. Participants will hear from a Palestinian speaker and meet in small groups for prayer. Methodists and others from around the world participate. Send an email message to the MLO for instructions on how to join the online meeting.

Clergy will meet from 9:30 a.m. through lunch.

Lay will meet from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Information for all locations can be found here.

  • Lake North, Feb. 1: Clergy meet at Trinity UMC, Mt. Prospect. Laypeople meet at First UMC, Park Ridge.
  • Prairie South, Feb. 7: Both gatherings will meet at First UMC, DeKalb.
  • Prairie North, Feb. 8: Both gatherings will meet at First UMC, Freeport.
  • Lake South, Feb. 12: Both gatherings will meet at New Lenox UMC.
  • Prairie Central: Feb. 13: Clergy will meet at First UMC, Elmhurst. Laypeople will meet at First UMC, Lombard.

  • Lay Convocation, Feb. 10, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at First UMC, Belvidere. Theme: "Growing Together in Love: Learning to Have Courageous/Respectful Conversations."

Around the Connection

Keith Loy’s ‘Celebrate Video Bible Studies’

The United Media Resource Center has many of Keith Loy's “Celebrate Video Bible Studies” DVDs available to borrow. Each set consists of a DVD with 12-video teaching sessions (approximately eight minutes long) in an easy-to-use format. A sample participant guide is also included.

Some of the Resource Center offerings that you can borrow:

  • Celebrate James
  • Celebrate Philippians
  • Celebrate Titus

List of more selected resources

Find the online catalog here.

To contact the center, send them an email message.

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