Weekly news & updates: September 17, 2021
Worship Sunday, 10am

Join us for Worship Sunday morning.

Rev. Ryan will be leading Sunday’s worship service and delivering the message.

If you cannot join us in person, you can join us for online worship. See below for more information.
In-Person Worship*


Where? Our worship services are currently being held in our sanctuary. Please use the sanctuary entrance that faces Stockley Gardens.

*COVID-19 Mitigation Plan (Updated Aug. 2021)
  • When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted.
  • When outside, those who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear a mask, while everyone else must wear masks that are well-fitted.  
  • 6 feet of physical distancing must be maintained by everyone, except for those who are in the same household group. Hugs and handshakes are not allowed.
  • All are required to stay home when sick, and we ask everyone to self-check in at each entrance with our health acknowledgement poster.
Online Worship
Instructions

*There are 3 different ways you can access our Facebook Live service:
  1. Click here to go to our Facebook page, then scroll down until you see the video of worship
  2. Or click here to go to our Facebook page, then click on "More" on the page menu, then click on "Live"
  3. Or click here to go directly to our "Live" page

*The link and video are viewable even if you don't have a Facebook account.

*Please complete a Connection Card or write your name in the comments so we know you are worshiping with us.

Streaming licenses: Ghent UMC is licensed to stream our FB Live worship services with permission under CCLI #20175590 and One License A-727358. All rights reserved.
Masks Are Required
When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted. 

Remember that our call is to love our neighbors and to do no harm.

For more details, go to the bottom of this newsletter or the block above.
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Invitation to Ask COVID-19 Questions of Dr. David B. Agus
Over a year later, questions still abound about COVID-19 and its impact on our way of life. Bishop Sharma Lewis is hosting a second round of questions and answers with Dr. David B. Agus, professor of medicine and engineering at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine and Viterbi School of Engineering; and the Founding Director of the Ellison Institute.

You are invited to submit questions you would like answered by Dr. Agus.   
Please submit your COVID-19 questions to terribiggins@vaumc.org by Sunday, Sept. 19, and every effort will be made to address them all. 

You may re-watch the first sit-down interview with Bishop Lewis and Dr. Agus here.
United Methodist Bishops Remember Victims of September 11
The Bishops of The United Methodist Church are payed homage to those who were lost and injured during the 9/11 terrorist attacks 20 years ago in the United States.

Changed forever on that day, we witnessed unprecedented pain, anger, frustration and utmost sadness. That day 20 years ago, the world watched in horror as more than 3,000 lives were lost through the acts of terrorism in New York City, Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and at the Pentagon. Click here to read the Bishops' words.

In a video reflection, Bishop Tom Bickerton, who serves the New York Area, talked about the plane that went down in Shanksville near where he calls home and, how three years later, he would become the bishop of Western Pennsylvania and then of New York. Click the image to watch his video.
Sunday Adult Bible Discussion: Location Change
Our weekly, in-person, Bible discussion, which meets Sundays at 9am, is changing meeting locations. Please join us in the sanctuary lobby. Members can easily use the GUMC ramp to enter through the Stockley Garden door.

This group reviews the Bible using the Standard Lesson Quarterly series. To read this discipleship material or for more information, contact Peter Griffin.
Please Stay on Your Toes
Please be wary of any emails or similar communication from Pastor Ryan with financial requests. Most likely this is fake (phishing or spoofing.) If you receive a request, do not respond. Instead, please contact the church office to report/ verify.  
Our Used Book Sale is Back

Our Used Book Sale will be during the Stockley Gardens Arts Festival on Saturday, Oct. 16, 10am - 5pm on our front porch and in the sanctuary lobby.
Hardcover books are $1.50. Paperback books are 75₵.

We will also host paid parking on that Saturday and Sunday. Proceeds from the book sale and festival parking will benefit missions and church programs.

In order to actually have the fundraiser, we need to have enough volunteers committed ahead of time.  This is not simply a fundraiser, but it is a chance to interact with hundreds of people from the community and a fun time of fellowship with others who are volunteering. All ages are welcome to help, but parents must accompany children. Click here to learn more and volunteer.

For more details please email Steve Vegh or Lisa King.
Messy Church at GUMC: Thank You from Melanie Cramer
Thanks so much to everybody who helped this time. Messy Church was wonderful! We had 28 participants and 11 of those were children. We also collected lots of school supplies for Taylor Elementary School.


Mark your calendar for the next Messy Church on Sunday, October 24th.
GUMP Fall Kid’s Consignment Sale, October 16 - 18
Mark your calendar. The 2021 Fall GUMP Consignment Sale is ON for October 16 - 18.
To sign up as a seller and/or volunteer, click here. This year, we will not offer our no-hassle consigning option, so all sellers will be expected to tag their own items.

As we've gone a whole year (and a half) without a sale, we are also rebuilding our volunteer base. Please consider volunteering to help with sale setup, sale days, or cleanup. If you volunteer, you get to shop the sale early, on Thursday evening October 14, before the crowd!  

Click here for more information about our sale, including full dates and deadlines, seller information, and a copy of our seller contract. Please know that some things may change, depending on COVID-19 requirements. We'll be sure to keep you updated.  
For questions, contact the GUMP Consignment team. We can't wait to welcome you back!
TIE Your Harris Teeter VIC Card
It's that time of the year again! 
 
It's time to re-link your Harris Teeter Grocery VIC card to Ghent Preschool. Thanks to people who designate GUMP as their recipient, we have received as much as $200 per year from the Together In Education program.
 
Click here to learn more about the program and to link your Harris Teeter VIC card to GUMP's account, #5347. You may also link your card in the stores!
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Daily Prayer Starter
Please set aside time each day to pray for 2-3 minutes.

"God of all children, keep me humble and trusting in your path for me..."

For prayer requests, contact Pastor Ryan.
Priscilla Shirer
On September 25. 9:30am - 5pm, there will be a local simulcast of Priscilla Shirer's presentation. The event will be hosted at New Creation UMC. For more information, click here.
United Methodists have been pitching in with the Afghan resettlement. Efforts range from collecting personal care items and clothes to furnishing apartments. United Methodists are part of the massive effort to help the Afghans make a fresh start. Read what's happening across the country by clicking here.
Lynn Haven United Methodist Church of Florida had one campus wiped out and another badly damaged by 2018’s Hurricane Michael. Then came the COVID-19 pandemic. The church held Comeback Sunday services on Sept. 12 to celebrate having survived so much trauma. 
The Greater New Jersey Conference and Eastern Pennsylvania Conference have announced Hurricane Ida relief efforts and welcome financial support. The storm flooded a handful of United Methodist churches in the conferences, as well as a parsonage, and caused major damage in many local communities.
Anti-racism campaign marked one year
The anti-racism work of The United Methodist Church is just getting started after the first year of the Dismantling Racism Campaign, say bishops and others. Upcoming initiatives include an anti-racism social justice agenda, more educational materials and an Advent devotional series. Jim Patterson reports. Read the story.
The United Methodist Church has stated that we will no longer remain silent nor complicit about racist acts against African Americans but we must act now to become anti-racist individuals and churches! We are asked to pray for Dismantling Racism efforts, as well as, all persons of color who suffer at the hands of injustice, oppression, and white supremacy.

PLEASE PRAY
Drawing on history, public opinion surveys, and personal experience, Robert P. Jones delivers a provocative examination of the unholy relationship between American Christianity and supremacy of whites. In the link below, he highlights his book "White Too Long."

Did you know that the terms “equity” and “equality” do not mean the same thing? Click on the image above to find out why they are not the same.
The First United Methodist Church of Franklin, NC held a campaign, Burn the Burden, to help eliminate medical debt for families in its region. Through the fundraising, the congregation was able to help 2,837 families in North Carolina, northeastern Georgia and eastern Tennessee! Click here to read the awe inspiring details.
Pay attention to what makes you cry. Although society encourages us to hide our tears, crying helps us discover our authentic selves and connects us with God. Read Jesus wept. So should we.
In a released statement, the UMW said it opposes the new Texas abortion law. "The Texas law banning abortions after the sixth week of pregnancy will harm poor and marginalized women," United Methodist Women said in a statement. Women and families should have “access to the full range of reproductive health care, with the guidance the church provides." Read the entire statement.
Rev. Ry is asking for help during Worship
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Rev. Ry has again invited everyone to help on Sundays. Each Sunday, there are several opportunities for adults, youth, and children to participate in our worship service.

Just put your name or your child's name on the sign up sheet sitting on the Welcome Center table in the back of the sanctuary or on the bulletin board in the hallway across from the church office.

Or you can click on the link below to sign up and see the opportunities.


If you have any questions, please contact the church office at office@ghentumc.org or call 757-622-2843.
Calling Hands for the Altar Guild
Wanted – those who can help with the altar. Regular duties include keeping the candles filled and making sure communion is set up monthly. During special events, we make sure the silver is polished, and we also make sure the hangings are proper for the liturgical year. If you are interested, please get in touch with the
church office. There will be training—but it really does not take much to do the work. Just a commitment to make sure things are taken care of, and the schedule is very flexible. Thanks!
Altar Flowers In the worship setting, one or two flower arrangements may be placed by the altar. They are given in thanksgiving to God, and often, they are dedicated in memory of a loved one or in honor of a special event or person. To learn about flower arrangement options and/or to sign up for a Sunday, please contact the church office or click here to sign up.
Congregational Care In response to Christ's call to love one another, we want the members of our congregation to care for one another. In-person visits are limited currently, however, prayers, phone calls, and mail from the care team are continuing.
 
For more information, prayer requests, or if you are feeling called to get more involved or become a member of Ghent UMC, contact Pastor Ryan.
Pastor Ryan Schaeffer

Rev. Ryan Schaeffer was appointed to our church effective July 1st. Rev. Ryan Schaeffer, who refers to himself as Rev. Ry, comes to us from Fieldstone and Asbury UMC in Christiansburg, Virginia. He loves Bible Studies, his family, and hockey. Rev. Ryan is looking forward to getting to know everyone at Ghent and growing together in faith.

Pastor Ryan and the church office staff are available by appointment only in order to help keep the preschool healthy from Covid-19. If the appointment is during preschool hours, members and guests may enter, fully masked, through the Raleigh Ave. entrance and go directly to the church or pastor's office. To enter, please ring the bell on our Raleigh Ave. door or call the church office, 757-622-2843.

For an appointment with Pastor Ryan, email him at ryanschaeffer@vaumc.org or by phone. Please contact the church office for Rev. Ryan's phone number.
The Open Table

GUMC is licensed to host The Open Table which is a model in which an at-risk person creates relationships with a small group community volunteers to help meet their goals. It is a transformative process for all involved.  

Ghent UMC's first table has finished its work. Our second table is about to be assigned a person to be in relationship with. And we will be forming a 3rd table to begin in January 2022!
  

For more information or to volunteer, leave a message for Faye Joseph at the church office at (757) 622-2843.
Update: Tent Shelter at the former Greyhound Bus Station
The temporary shelter at the old Greyhound Bus Station has a future INDOOR home! During the middle of October, the shelter guests will be moved to a motel near the Tidewater Dr. and VA Beach Blvd. intersection.

In the meantime, First Presbyterian's Urban Renewal Center is still hosting a shelter at the old Greyhound Bus Station, 701 Monticello Avenue in Norfolk. In partnership with the city of Norfolk, eighty tents are available in the parking lot, while gathering space, services, and meals are served inside. It is open 24/7. And volunteers are needed.

1. Any volunteers under 18 must be accompanied by a parent and closely supervised. Please make a note on the Sign Up Genius for any volunteers under age 18, so we can follow up to get you the information you need.

2. All volunteers must complete a background check form. Click here for that form. Please send the completed form to shelby@fpcnorfolk.org or drop it off at First Presbyterian Church of Norfolk, as soon as possible.


Contact Jordan Brown, 757-746-6522 or jordan@theurcnorfolk.com, for more information.

~ Donations ~
There is a HUGE need for men's underwear, undershirts, laundry cards and bus passes.
Monetary donations are also needed. Food items must be individually wrapped and sealed.

Groups & Leadership
Children and Youth 
Pastor Ryan delivers a brief Children’s Message each week immediately prior to the Scripture and the adult sermon.

For more information about children and youth discipleship material and activities, contact Pastor Ryan Schaeffer.
Choir Rehearsal will begin again on September 22, 7:00 - 8:30pm. Choir rehearsals are Wednesdays at 7pm in the sanctuary and everyone is invited to join the choir!

Let Nellwyn Beamon know that you will be attending, so she knows to let you in the building and can order you a singer's mask. 

*We will be rehearsing with singer’s masks. Also bring your calendars to help plan the year.*

*COVID-19 Mitigation Plan: When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted. Read the rest of the Plan in FAQ below.
Ghent Inspire Book Club meets one day each month at 7:30pm.

On Monday, Sep. 20, we will discuss From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death by Caitlin Doughty.

For those who don’t have time to read the books, we will have a few general questions in each discussion so that everyone will be able to participate.

For more information or to join the Zoom or in-person meetings, contact the church office or visit our Facebook page.
Anyone can play during the Gathering Jam.
Once a month, usually on 2nd Sundays, all ages are invited to bring an instrument and play along during the gathering part of our service at 9:45am. For more info, contact music director, Nellwyn Beamon.

The next Gathering Jam is on Sun., Sept. 12.
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The next Leadership Team meeting* is Sunday, September 19, in the sanctuary after Worship.

Past minutes and reports are posted on our website. Go to www.ghentumc.org/leadership/

Also, please mark your calendars for Sunday, October 10, 4:30-6 p.m. for our charge conference. Everyone on the leadership team will need to be present please, if able. It will be held virtually on Zoom. Contact the church office for link information.

*COVID-19 Mitigation Plan: When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted. Read the rest of the Plan in FAQ below.
The Homeless Task Force is a group of people from a number of Ghent faith communities and community organizations who meet regularly online to share resources and ideas for serving those who are homeless. A few people from Ghent UMC are actively involved in this group, but more are always welcome. The next meeting of the Homeless Task Force is on Zoom, Wed., Oct. 20 at noon. For more information or if you feel led to answer this calling to help those in need, please contact Faye Joseph at office@ghentumc.org.

Ghent Church Homeless Committee This committee spearheads the church's ministry to those experiencing homelessness. The last meeting of the Homeless Committee was Tuesday, Sept. 7th. The next meeting is TBA. For more information or to help, please contact the church office.
Sunday Adult Bible Discussion*

Weekly, in-person, discussions are Sundays, 9 - 9:45am. Meet in the sanctuary lobby. Please enter through the Stockley Gardens door.

This group reviews the Bible using the Standard Lesson Quarterly series. To read this discipleship material or for more information, contact Peter Griffin.

*COVID-19 Mitigation Plan: When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted. Read the rest of the Plan in FAQ below.
Ghent UMC Preschool operates safely as teachers and students follow the recommendations of the CDC, Dept. of Social Services, and VA UMC Covid-19 protocol.

GUMP had a great first full week back to school! Please keep the director, teachers, children and parents in your prayers.

If you or someone know is interested in a GUMP substitute teacher, email the Director Ann Robertson. Background checks will be completed prior to substituting.
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We want to update the plants and shrubs in our memorial garden and along Raleigh Ave. We are planning for the memorial garden to be a tranquil respite; exploring ideas like a prayer tree and Biblical Herb garden for the Raleigh Ave. side. Improvements need to be made to our garden gating, as well. If you want to be a part of the planning, planting, and/or implementation, please contact Debbie Bonnewell.
Christ & St. Luke’s has a community garden on their property which is on the other side of our playground fence. The community is welcome to lend a hand with the garden which provides produce for those who are in need. For more information or if you are interested in helping with the garden, please contact Nicole Pabst.
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Frequently Asked Questions related to COVID-19 restrictions
Are we able to gather and worship in person? We are able to gather and worship in person, however, our guests are required to follow our COVID-19 Mitigation Plan.

Due to rising COVID cases in Virginia and in the Norfolk area, we have updated our Plan.

When inside the building, everyone, whether vaccinated or not, must wear masks that are well-fitted. When outside, those who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear a mask, while everyone else must wear masks that are well-fitted. 6 feet of physical distancing must be maintained by everyone, except for those who are in the same household group. Hugs and handshakes are not allowed. All are required to stay home when sick, and we ask everyone to self-check in at each entrance with our health acknowledgement poster.
How can I get in touch with church staff and the Pastor? You may click here to access their email addresses, or call the church office at 757-622-2843 and leave a message.

Pastor Ryan and the church office staff are available by appointment only in order to help keep the preschool healthy from Covid-19. If the appointment is during preschool hours, members and guests may enter, fully masked, through the Raleigh Ave. entrance and go directly to the church or pastor's office.

To enter, please ring the bell on our Raleigh Ave. door or call the church office, 757-622-2843.

For an appointment with Pastor Ryan, email him at ryanschaeffer@vaumc.org.

For an appointment with the church office staff, email office@ghentumc.org or leave a message at the church office 757-622-2843. Our voice mail is monitored, in general, Monday through Friday. Messages will be returned as soon as possible.
How may I offer a tithe or gift? We understand that these are uncertain times for most of us financially, but we want to offer the opportunity for us all to continue to fully participate in worship through the offering of a tithe or gift. Click here to learn of the various ways to give, including access to our online giving portal and instructions on online giving from your bank. Also, you may drop off checks through the mail slot at our Raleigh Ave. entrance. For assistance, contact the church office.
Jesus is for everyone. No exceptions.
A Word of Welcome from Ghent UMC 

Ghent United Methodist Church is called to the affirmation of the sacred worth of all people. We embrace as a gift the diversity of our neighborhood and the world. We acknowledge our human family's diversity in sexual orientation, gender identity, race, ethnicity, language, age, faith history, theological orientation, economic status, education, marital status, abilities, and any other defining feature, real or perceived. Click here to read the message in its entirety.

Click here to read former Pastor's, Melody Tanner, special message for our church and community.
UMCmarket, powered by iGive, helps you generate a donation to Ghent United Methodist Church when you shop online at thousands of retailers. It's win-win-win! 

Shop by starting with OUR LINK at smile.amazon.com/ch/54-0599700 and AmazonSmile will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to Ghent United Methodist Church, at no cost to you. Or activate AmazonSmile in the Amazon Shopping app for iOS or Android phones (found under settings on your app).