A weekly news update from The Alaska United Methodist Conference
Annual Conference
This year's Annual Conference will be held June 2-3 at UMC of Chugiak.  There will be a day of workshops on June 1, prior to the Annual Conference.

Read more about the theme and logo.

Annual Conference Registration
Housing/Transportation Registration
Child Care Registration

Pre-Conference workshops are still being finalized.  Please stay tuned for the pre-conference workshop registration in the near future.

Here are links to various information that pertains to the upcoming Annual Conference.  Please note the due dates if you wish to submit anything for consideration.

PETITIONS - due April 15
Western Bishops Share Messages of Lent
The bishops in the Western Jurisdiction will offer messages of faith each week of Lent, with the prayer that God will strengthen the Church for its mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

This week Retired Bishop Roy Sano offers the Lenten message from the Western Jurisdiction College of Bishops.  For Palm Sunday he reflects on Matthew 21:1-5 and the journey that Christianity has taken since Palm Sunday to spread the word to Rome and the entire world and the humble beginning that came from riding on a donkey to enter the city.  Read his full message here.

Retired Bishop Melvin Talbert shared his reflections for the sixth message.  Read his full reflection here.

Bishop Karen Oliveto shared the fifth message.  Read Bishop Oliveto's Lenten message here.

Bishop Robert Hoshibata shared the fourth message in the series. Read his thoughts on quenching thirst and looking beyond ourselves.

Bishop Minerva Carcaño offered the third in the series of Lenten messages.  Read her Lenten message: The Lord is Your Keeper.
The second message came from Bishop Grant Hagiya.  Read his reflection on the Western Jurisdiction website.

The first message came from our very own, Bishop Elaine Stanovsky.  You can read her message here.
Alaska Conference Appointments
All the new appointments have been made for the Alaska Conference.  If you missed any of the announcements, you can read them here.  There was a bad email link yesterday for Christina DowlingSoka.  Please use this new one instead if you would like to send welcome greetings to her.

March 20 - Robert Jones Jr.
March 27 - Dan Wilcox
April 3 - Jason Cornish
April 10 - Christina DowlingSoka, Erin Day, Autumn Krueger
WJ Commission on Archives & History Event
Archives & History
Alaska Conference Historian and Archivist, Larry Hayden, would like to invite everyone to attend the Western Jurisdiction on Archives and History Bi-Annual Meeting and the Historical Society of The United Methodist Church.  The event will take place June 26-29, 2017.  You can view the letter of invitation, program agenda, and the registration form on the conference website.  If you have any questions, please contact Larry at 222-1938 or lhaydennjuno@gmail.com.
Prayer Vigil for the Judicial Council and Bishop Karen Oliveto of the Mountain Sky Area
The Mountain Sky Area of the United Methodist Church is inviting Western Jurisdiction Churches to join them in a prayer vigil from April 23rd through April 30th for the Judicial Council and Bishop Karen Oliveto. If you or your church would like more information, you can find it on the Alaska Conference website HERE.
Birchwood's Women's Psalms Retreat
In this fast paced world of family responsibilities, career demands and social media, take a break to relax, slow, and grow at the Women's Psalm Retreat at Psalm Lake on Birchwood Camp.  We will be digging deeper into Psalms along the shores of Psalm Lake; the perfect place for God to speak peace and joy into our crazy busy lives!  Starting on Friday, April 28th at 7pm with welcoming and a restful evening; followed by Saturday, April 29th sunrise beside Psalm Lake praise, worship, meditation, prayer walk and much more! Leave around 8pm refreshed and renewed.  Visit www.birchwoodcamp.org for registration.
Seeking Photos that Depict Signs of Abundant Life in our Local Church and Ministry Settings
During the shared Oregon-Idaho and Pacific Northwest Annual Conference Session, which will be held June 14 - 17, those planning the gathering intend to highlight abundant life enhancing ministries taking place in local church and ministry settings.  They want to include some from the Alaska Conference as well since Alaska is part of the same Episcopal area (we share the same Bishop). Because they do expect to have a large number of submissions, a selection committee will make the final decision on which photos will be used.
If you would like to submit a digital photograph (and we hope you do as we would like to have the Alaska Conference represented), please:
  • Ensure that you have a completed and signed photo release form on file in your church for each person in the photo
  • Provide a short written description of the ministry depicted in the photo
  • Provide your name and contact information
  • Send the photo in the largest .jpeg file you have available
  • Send the digital photo with the other information requested to:  photos@greaternw.org and copy hayden@alaskan.net 
If you have any further questions please email Jo Anne Hayden at   hayden@alaskan.net.
All complete submissions received by May 1st will be considered.
Workshop: Make the Most of Retired Life - Together!
Recently retired? Retiring soon?  Join author and speaker Nora Hall on Saturday, May 6, for a workshop designed to help couples make the transition from work to retirement, peacefully!

From personal experience and research, Nora has identified the issues couples face when both retire-like sharing the home, privacy, creating an identity outside of work-and discovered positive solutions that not only keep the peace but actually enhance the relationship.

The workshop will be held at St. John UMC May 6th from 9:30 am-3:30 pm.  The workshop is free of charge and open to anyone.  A lunch will be available on site for purchase.

For more information or to register, phone Connie Quinley at 907-632-8045 or St. John UMC at 907-344-3025.  View the updated flier here
United Methodist Now Member E-Newsletter Unveiled
A new e-newsletter marks the launch of a denomination-wide effort to streamline and customize communications for United Methodist members, leaders and seekers. A reflection of UMC.org, United Methodist Now is the first publication to carry the voice of the denomination directly to members by delivering inspirational and informational content specifically designed for them.

Sent twice per month, United Methodist Now includes stories, articles, videos, quizzes, links and other multimedia content. Subscribers can anticipate learning about:
  • What it means to be United Methodist
  • Christian living/your daily journey
  • Church beliefs and history
  • Motivation, inspiration and things worth watching
Members can subscribe to the free e-newsletter and view the most recent articles at  UMC.org/newsletter. Local church leaders are encouraged to help spread the word about the publication so that all church members have an opportunity to be part of the United Methodist Now community.

United Methodists who would like to share their inspiring stories in the e-newsletter can send ideas to UMNow@UMC.org for consideration.
Commission on a Way Forward Optimistic of Future, Delves into Tough Task
Members of the Commission on a Way Forward have expressed optimism at reaching consensus on a plan or plans to guide the Council of Bishops in leading The United Methodist Church into the future.

During the three-day meeting, April 6-8, at the United Methodist Building in Washington, D.C., the Commission members began discussing possible outcomes and timelines on accomplishing their task of examining paragraphs in the Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and exploring options to strengthen the unity of the church.

Read the rest of the press release here
April is National Financial Literacy Month
April is National Financial Literacy Month.  United Methodist Federal Credit Union has financial literacy tools for you and your  congregation.  The Financial Education tab of  www.umfcu.org  offers a variety of savings and lending calculators in addition to educational articles and other financial literacy resources.

Here are direct links to two items:
 3 Steps to Financial Freedom - paper copies can be requested for free from UMFCU
 Budgeting Worksheet - it does the math for you!
Pastor's Limo Helps Kids Arrive in Style
When you see a stretch limo cruise by, you probably wonder who is inside. A celebrity, a CEO of a large company, a foreign dignitary? But in this Missouri town, people are more likely to think, "Probably some kids going to youth group at their church." The Missouri Conference reports on this peculiar ministry of Peculiar United Methodist Church.

Read the story 
Native American Ministries Sunday - April 30
There are so many reasons to celebrate Native American Ministries Sunday on April 30.

On this day, United Methodists focus on the gifts and contributions made by Native Americans, both in the church and in communities.

The special offering received during the celebration supports Native American outreach ministries and provides scholarships for United Methodist Native American seminarians.

When our churches support Native American Ministries Sunday, we empower Native American congregations to minister to their communities with the love of Christ.

Download the  Native American Ministries Sunday Pastor and Leader's Kit.

Let's all do our part to support the gifts and contributions of our Native American brothers and sisters. 
Heritage Sunday is May 21
Heritage Sunday
This year's theme is: "MILESTONES - Calling Local Churches to Discover and Celebrate Their History." Resources to guide and assist planning your local church Heritage Sunday celebration are available on the GCAH website. Heritage Sunday (para. 262, 264.1) calls every congregation to remember United Methodist heritage as a source of inspiration for ministry in the present and shaping vision for the future.
16: Easter
18-20: GNW Cabinet meeting in Portland - Carlo attending
20-22: GBGM Board Meeting in Atlanta - Carlo attending

6: Leadership Team meeting
14: Mother's Day
21: Heritage Sunday
22-25: GNW Cabinet meeting in Seattle - Carlo attending
29: Memorial Day - Office Closed

1: Pre-Conference Workshops, TBD
2-3: Annual Conference session at UMC of Chugiak
15-17: PNW-OI Joint Annual Conference in Oregon - Carlo attending
26-29: Western Jurisdiction Commission on Archives & History/Historical Society of the United Methodist Church meeting at Alaska Pacific University
Conference Office Email Address has Changed
We have changed the conference office email from umc@gci.net to alaskaumc@gmail.com.  For workflow ease, we are consolidating everything to the Google platform (email, calendar, etc.).  Please update your address books/contacts lists and start using alaskaumc@gmail.com for your emails to the conference. Carlo's email ( carlorapanut@gmail.com) will remain the same.
Clergy Birthdays
April 12: Robert Hicks
April 22: Melissa Engel
April 23: Karen Martin Tichenor

Conference Office

Superintendent Carlo
Submissions - If you have an article or event that you would like to share with the rest of the conference, submit it to the conference office by Monday evening for consideration.
AUMC Logo Mission Statement:
The mission of the United Methodist Church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ.  Held and supported by the transforming relationship with God through Christ, we of the Alaska United Methodist Conference seek to be a community that creates a home for all peoples, finds our hope through grace and journeys together into God's preferred future.
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