September 29, 2021
2021 Annual Conference Fall Session
this Friday & Saturday
Last-minute details:

Oct. 1 at Noon: Need a refresher on Zoom features, voting guides, and how to get recognized? GNTV will hold an online training session. Click here for the Zoom link.

Oct. 1: Ordination and Commissioning Service for the 2021 class at 6 pm. Preacher: Bishop Tracy S. Malone from the East Ohio Conference. Limited in-person attendance (invite only). It will be livestreamed on the NIC Facebook page and YouTube channel. Both links may be found at

To follow the service, download the bulletin. Also, we suggest placing a small bowl of water by your side to participate in the recognition of baptism.

Special Offering: If you'd like to donate to the Ministerial Education Fund (MEF), you can text the word GIVE to 844-563-0429 or click here to give online (choose MEF from the dropdown list).

Oct. 2: Fall Session of AC2021 starting at 9 am will be held via Zoom videoconferencing with GNTV assistance. Registered AC members should watch for Voter IDs and Zoom instructions sent to your email inbox by Sept. 29 from [email protected]. If you do not receive it, please contact Laura Lopez at [email protected].

If you missed the Pre-Conference briefings, recordings are available at

Conference Day of Prayer and Fasting - Oct. 1
Join on Zoom anytime during the day on Friday, Oct. 1 from 6 am - 5 pm to pray for the Annual Conference Shepherding Team's three Task Forces (Anti-Racism, Discipleship, Vital Congregations) and the 2021 Ordination and Commissioning Class, who will be ordained and commissioned that evening at 6 pm.

Prayer leaders will be on the hour for devotions and time for silent prayer. A church in each district will also be open for in-person prayer at different times that day with limited capacity. Click here for all the details, including the Zoom link.
Communicator's Corner
Afghan Refugee Assistance
After the evacuation of U.S. troops from Afghanistan in August, World Relief Chicagoland immediately began accessing the needs for the number of Afghan refugees expected to resettle in the Chicagoland area. Not soon after, the Northern Illinois Conference Board of Global Ministries voted to donate $10,000 from the 2018 Bishop's Appeal offering, which raised money for Global Migration, to World Relief Chicagoland to help assist a family of four arriving from the war-torn country. World Relief anticipates welcoming 150 Afghans in the weeks and months ahead. More details will be coming together soon. If your church would like to help, reach out to NIC's Refugee Coordinators, Rev. Jonathan and Rhodalyne Crail at [email protected], and visit World Relief for volunteer and donation resources at

Justice for Our Children: Call for Remembrance
The Native American International Caucus of The United Methodist Church is encouraging churches to create a day of remembrance on Oct. 6 for the hundreds of thousands of tribal children who were taken from their families and placed in boarding schools, often violently, between 1869 and the 1960s. In particular, the caucus calls us to remember those who died while at the schools, and whose bodies were buried far from their homes. Read the Call to Action. Click here for details on ways to organize your event.

25 Children's Books to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
The United States’ National Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15 until October 15. During this month-long observance, we take time to honor the contributions, history, and culture of Americans whose ancestors are from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. The General Board of Church and Society put together a list of stories by Latine and Hispanic authors and illustrators as one way to celebrate this year. Choose a few books to read with the children in your life! These books depict traditional and new stories, biographies and unique characters, and celebrate family, community, and culture. Read more.
Mark your calendar
Click here for event information on the Conference calendar and check back often for updates.

Around the Conference

  • Free Organ Concert - (Oct. 8) at 7:30 pm. First United Methodist Church of Evanston, 516 Church St., Evanston, is hosting world-class organist Eric Plutz featuring music by Louis Vierne, who was organist at Notre Dame in Paris at the beginning of the 20th century. The concert, presented on the composer's birthday, features two of his organ symphonies. Admission to the concert is free and masks are required. Click for details.
  • Free Video Webinar, "The Dangerous Truth About Today's Marijuana" - (Oct. 12) 11 am to Noon. Sponsored by Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems (ICAAAP). Featuring Laura Stack, a Hall of Fame Speaker, author, and founder of Johnny's Ambassadors, Inc. Her mission is to educate parents, teens, and others about the danger of today's high potency marijuana on adolescent brain development, mental illness, and suicide. Laura's 19-year-old son, Johnny, suffered from marijuana-induced psychosis and ended his life on November 20, 2019. Click here for details. 
  • Prairie North Lay Academy - (Oct. 16, 8:30 am - 5 pm and Oct. 17, 1 pm - 4:30 pm) at Harvard: First, 1100 N. Division Street, Harvard, IL. Cost: $25/per person. For course descriptions and registration, click here.
  • Hunger Crop Walk - (Oct. 16) If you don’t have a local CROP Hunger Walk in your community, join Church World Service to walk to end hunger in the U.S. and around the world! Walk on your treadmill, in your neighborhood, in a park with friends – you choose the location and the experience. Walk one day - 3.7 miles (the average distance a woman walks for water) or take the Weekend Challenge and walk 11.1 miles (3.7 miles for 3 days). Every step you take, every dollar you raise makes the walk shorter for neighbors in need by providing clean water, emergency food as well as livelihoods, and access to education. Sign-up and start raising funds TODAY at Contact [email protected] for more info.
  • NIC UMW Annual Virtual Celebration - (Oct. 23) 9:30 - 11 am. The theme will be "Leaning on the Everlasting Arms; Listening, Transforming, Reaching Out." The keynote speaker will be Rev. Megan Dean Tobola, Lead Pastor at Naperville: Wesley. Megan was a 2010 UMW Scholarship recipient, and she will bring a message to remind us to "Lean on God" for inner peace and strength during these hectic, stressful, and trying times of our lives. Click here for the flyer.
  • 5th Sunday Appeal - (Oct. 31) United Voices for Children (UVC) would like to thank Northern Illinois congregations for their faithful support through 5th Sunday Appeal offerings in 2021. Your generosity helps UVC and its partners' Kids Above AllMYSI, and Rosecrance as they serve at-risk children, youth and families in our communities. Sunday, Oct. 31 is the final 5th Sunday Appal of the year. You may either write a check payable to the church with "5th Sunday Appeal" in the memo line or simply donate online at
  • Save the Date: All-Conference Worship Service - (Nov. 14) 3:30 pm at Our Saviour's UMC in Schaumburg. Guest preacher will be Rev. Olu Brown, Senior Pastor Impact Church in Atlanta, GA with the theme "Tending to the Harvest." Livestream will be available. More details coming soon.
  • Prairie Central Lay Academy - (Nov. 6 & 13) 8 am - 4 pm. at Plainfield UMC. Cost: $40. Click here for details and registration.

Around the Connection

  • Webinars to Help Reinvigorate Black Churches - (Thursdays at 6:30 pm from Sept. 30 to Oct. 21) Sponsored by Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century (SBC21). This month-long series of webinars will give Black clergy and ministry leaders tips on growing and transforming their congregations and communities. The webinars will kick off the 25th-anniversary celebration of SBC21. The celebration will include a national conference. Registration is required. Click for details.
  • World Communion Sunday - (Oct. 3) United Methodists will join Christians around the globe on this day to recognize oneness in Christ and celebrate World Communion Sunday. In The United Methodist Church, donations to the World Communion Special Sunday support scholarships to equip U.S. students of color and international students to transform the church and their communities as both laity and clergy. Click for resources and how to give.
  • Online Lay Servant Ministries course: Rediscovering Our Spiritual Gifts - (Oct. 4 - 15) Cost $75. Participants will interact via online discussions, journals, and videos throughout the two weeks. Participants are also expected to read the Discipleship Resources book, "Each One a Minister," by William J. Carter, and "Spirit Gifts," by Patricia Brown. Click here to register.
  • Discussion Series Explores What it Means to be United Methodist - (Oct. 5 - Dec. 21) “Tuesdays at the Table: Should I stay? Or should I go?” is a new discussion series for United Methodists, presented by the Connectional Table (CT) in cooperation with general agencies and contributors. Weekly segments will explore topics aimed at helping viewers better understand their faith, their church and themselves. The sessions will premiere every Tuesday at 10:00 am CT on Facebook, and will also be available for later viewing at and the UMC YouTube channel. For details, click here.
  • United Methodist Men Give Day - (Oct. 18) The General Commission on United Methodist Men receives less than 25% of its yearly budget funding from World Service Funds. Give Day is an essential funding source that enables the commission to provide resources and support to United Methodist Men in your conference and local churches. Click here for more information and ways to give.
United Media Resource Center
Click here for a list of leadership resources that can be mailed to your church or home address.

Go to to access the online catalog.

Questions, comments? Contact UMRC Director Jill Stone at [email protected].
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