e~Aurora
A weekly news update from The Alaska United Methodist Conference
AUMC Winter Rendezvous and Special Called Session
February 20-22, 2020
Call for Special Session

Materials
Click here for the  Resource Page .

Schedule and Registration
As announced, the special called session will be held in conjunction with the Winter Rendezvous Meetings February 20-22, 2020. The Rendezvous will be a pre-conference creative time of visioning, dreaming and discerning what God is calling us to be beyond 2020. Here’s a general schedule for purposes of travel planning:
Thursday, February 20 - Rendezvous Sessions 10 am to 8 pm
Friday, February 21- Rendezvous Sessions 9 am to 3 pm; Committee Meetings 3:30 to 8:30 pm
Saturday, February 22 - Special Called Session 10 am to 2 pm

Clergy and Deaconesses are required  to attend the pre-conference sessions beginning February 20. Please contact the Superintendent if you cannot attend. Understanding schedule challenges due to work, Lay members to Annual Conference are NOT required but highly encouraged to attend the pre-conference sessions beginning February 20.

Committee members, please check with your committee chairs about the schedule of your committee meetings.

The Conference will only pay for the travel expenses (airfare/mileage) of the clergy person, deaconesses and the lay members to Annual Conference.

With the upcoming meetings a week away, we are still looking for housing and transportation volunteers. This is such a crucial part in making everything run smoothly. If you are able to help with either of these tasks, please contact the conference office ASAP! Thank you so much!
We are looking for someone or a group to cook dinner on Thursday, February 20. If you are interested, please contact the conference office or by phone: 333-5050
Conference News
Clear Appointment Openings
The appointive cabinets of the Greater Northwest Area and the Bishop are continuing the practice of sharing “clear openings,” those church appointments that are open due to retirements and other changes, as the appointment process unfolds.

On the Greater Northwest Area website you'll find a current list of clear openings which will be updated as new openings are created by announced appointments. You will also find instructions regarding the process. Please read these instructions carefully as it is expected that clergy will follow them as described.

First UMC Anchorage offering grants
The First United Methodist Church Foundation is accepting applications for grants to be used as educational benefits, scholarships, out-reach to the community and the world, and capital projects of First United Methodist Church, Anchorage. Applications should be a concise request using the form provided by First United Methodist Church, Anchorage and can be found on the FUMC website or the church office. Submissions must be received by February 21, 2020 at the street address given below. Award recipients will be notified in March 2020.
 
FUMC Foundation - Grants
725 W 9th Ave
Anchorage, AK 99501

907-272-2112
National News
Mission agency CEO will not stand for reelection
Thomas Kemper will not stand for reelection as chief executive of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries. Kemper — who has led the worldwide mission and humanitarian service agency for the last 10 years — said in a memo to staff that he and his wife, Barbara, planned to relocate to their native Germany.

UMCOR joins coronavirus fight
Working to support the efforts of local partners in China dealing with the coronavirus crisis, the United Methodist Committee on Relief is sending an emergency grant to Amity Foundation in Nanjing, China. The grant will immediately enable infection, prevention and control measures to limit the spread of respiratory diseases such as the new virus.

Conferences to vote on forwarding protocol legislation
At least two United Methodist annual conferences plan to vote next month on whether to forward legislation to the 2020 General Conference for the Protocol of Reconciliation & Grace Through Separation. Though the protocol itself made international news with its announcement in early January, the legislation to enact it has just been released.

New effort starts for same-sex weddings
A new group called Marriage Rites is seeking to connect LGBTQ couples with United Methodist clergy willing to officiate at their weddings. This effort across the U.S. comes as new mandatory penalties for performing such unions take effect.

Church helps train marginalized women, youth
The United Methodist Church in East Congo has collaborated with the Congolese government to open a vocational training center for women and youth. Bishop Gabriel Yemba Unda said he sought out the partnership to help the faithful in his episcopal area — many of whom are women who cannot read or write or are victims of sexual violence — provide a better life for themselves.

Methodist Scouting celebrates 100th birthday
The Methodist Episcopal Church officially recognized Scouting in February 1920. This month, as the 100th anniversary is celebrated, 3,111 United Methodist congregations charter 9,611 Scout units. Those serve 309,739 young people. United Methodist churches provide home base for more Scouts than any other denomination in America.

Theological e-Academy is 'game changer' in East Africa
United Methodist theological colleges in East Africa now can deliver education at a distance. Launched in December, the new United Methodist e-Academy aims to equip people for ordained and lay leadership in rural communities.

Pre-General Conference presentations online
Now online are videos and related materials for each of the presentations at the Pre-General Conference Briefing on Jan. 23-24. The gathering offered an overview of various proposals heading to the 2020 General Conference.

Agency offers to administer conference loans, scholarships
Annual conferences can now farm out administration of student loans and scholarships to the United Methodist Board of Higher Education and Ministry. The North Carolina Conference was one of the first to utilize the service.

United Methodist Black History quiz
As Black History Month begins in the U.S. and elsewhere, we invite you to take a short quiz about African American history in the U.S. and in The United Methodist Church. A great way to learn something new!

UMCOM: Church Leader Guide
United Methodist Communications has released a guidebook for church leaders collating all of the resources they offer to local churches. The PDF is divided into four sections offering information on marketing support, online presence, educational opportunities, and efforts to keep United Methodists informed.

Inspiring Gernerosity: It's almost Valentine's Day - love your people
There’s a lot of history around Valnetine’s Day and there’s a lot of Hallmark sappiness to the holiday as well.

But Cesie Delve Scheuermann argues it’s a pretty good excuse to celebrate those in your church who give to your ministry with their whole hearts. In this week’s blog she offers some creative tips on how to show the love.

Read more of Cesie’s blog on the OR-ID Conference website.
Conference Calendar
10-12: GNW Cabinet - Carlo attending
11: Pre-Special Session Information Gathering 3
14: Valentine's Day
17: Presidents' Day
20-22: Winter Rendezvous and Special Session
6-13: Carlo on vacation
7: Leadership Team meeting
8: Daylight Savings Time begins
15-17: GNW Cabinet - Carlo attending
17: St. Patrick's Day
18-20: NLI - Carlo attending
19-21: GBGM Board Meeting - Carlo attending
Upcoming Clergy Birthdays

February 19 -
Steve Fisher

March 23 -
Bob Jones
Conference Office
907-333-5050

Superintendent Carlo
907-854-8340

The NEW Conference Office hours are:

Monday - Friday: 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
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 Tuesday at 9:00 am for consideration.
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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 in God's preferred future.
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