March 2019                                                                                                      Volume 20, Issue 2 

President's Message | Andrew Kissell
Bed, Bathsheba, and Beyond | Lead Us Not into Temptation
Good Morning,  
The Rev. Mark Miller of Virginia Beach UMC once taught the men attending Annual Conference that it's easier to avoid temptation than to resist it. To illustrate, Pastor Miller shared the story of how Jr. Sample of Hee Haw fame was telling Doc that he'd broken his arm in two places. Doc wryly advised Jr. to avoid those two places.
At our annual Spiritual Advance years ago, the Rev. Dr. Bill Bouknight taught us how easy it is for the Devil to tempt us. Power, money, sex, or drugs are the bait he uses, and at least one is bound to catch us!
Why did Lot's daughters get
him drunk? Genesis 19:30-38  
Why did King David have Uriah killed?
2 Samuel 11:1-18, 26-27  
Why did Pontius Pilate ask Jesus, "What is truth?" John 18:37-38  
Why did the rich young rule r ask Jesus how to "inherit eternal life"?  
If we don't keep God front and center, it is easy to see how evil thoughts can fill the God-shaped hole in our hearts and lead us to sinful deeds. All we have to do is look at the daily news (or the Bible) to see how the mighty fall. So how do we avoid temptation since it's so hard to resist? Paul, in his letter to the Philippians, tells us to keep our minds on Godly things:
"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things and the God of peace will be with you." Philippians 4:8 
For me, keeping my eyes on Jesus while my thoughts are on whatever is noble (and thereby avoiding temptation) requires daily prayer and Bible meditation, a weekly accountability group, weekly worship, and serving others. All of which are God's gracious gifts leading us not into temptation!
Grace and Peace,
Andrew Kissell, President

All God's Children 
Mentors Needed for Camps This Summer

All God's NEW  
All God's Children Camp is looking for mentors, age 17 and up to spend a week in ministry at camp. All God's Children Camp is a week-long overnight camp for children ages 7-12 who have an incarcerated parent.  
Come hang out with some pretty awesome kids spending time in the outdoors participating in activities that they would be unable to do at home. Activities includes biking, hiking, archery, a ropes course, zip lines and of course water activities! 
We are in need of men (women, too!) who will mentor a child at camp and participate with a child along the journey at camp. We need 22 mentors to attend Camp Chanco on the James, June 16-21 and/or August 11-16.   
Please contact VA Conference UMMen Chaplain Dann Ladd by email , or call anytime 804-625-2693.  Men! We are needed! They hope to see US at camp! 

Camp Rainbow Connection 
Male Counselors Needed for Camps This Summer
Camp Rainbow Connection has two week-long camps each summer for individuals with intellectual disabilities. 2019 camps are June 22-28 and July 27-August 2 at Richard Bland College near Petersburg.
New counselors must attend a training session on March 30, and returning counselors may attend either the March 30 session or an April 13 session. Training is at the United Methodist Conference Center in Glen Allen.
Male counselors are especially needed! Interested in being a counselor? Please email Stacy Roberts at  
2019 Spiritual Advance |  Transforming Grace 
Information on Church Sponsorships and Registration Coming in June

Transforming Grace
2019 Spiritual Advance
September 27-28, 2019
Baylake UMC, Virginia Beach
"Good show ... Impressive ... This was a great two days!"
"Outstanding group of speakers!"
"Great Location ... Nice Facility ... Facility very welcoming."
Comments from the 2018 Spiritual Advance
Not long ago, the Spiritual Advance really was a retreat in quiet and peaceful Blackstone at the VUMAC, which closed in 2016.
The 2018 Spiritual Advance in Virginia Beach was a success, providing both restoration of some ministry funds and all needed operating funds for 2019 with attendance over 90.
Si gnificantly, the Spiritual Advance was and remains the only source for Conference UMM operational funding. Both donations at the event and registration fees help support ye arly VAUMM operating budget and support of missions.
At the 2019 Spiritual Advance, Bishop Sharma Lewis an d Rev. Dr. Kevi n Watson will speak on the theme "Transforming Grace".
Sponsoring churches will have a great opportunity to develop, support, make contacts, and promote the Spiritual Advance.  
Sponsoring churches
  • will receive up to 12 registrations with three registrations designated for adults under 40,
  • will be listed and acknowledged in all Spiritual Advance communications, and
  • will be available to all churches with a special focus on churches without UMM fellowships.
Discounts for pastors, spouses, early-bird and Buy One Get One (for first timers) will be available.
Information about sponsoring and registering for the 2019 Spiritual Advance is coming in June.
2019 Spiritual Advance Hotel Reservations 
Reserve Rooms Now at a Special Rate
Looking for a place to stay for the 2019 Spiritual Advance at a great vacation spot with off-season rates? Look no farther!
A special money-saving agreement for 2019 Spiritual Advance guests has been made with the two area hotels that are 6 miles from Baylake UMC. The cost of your room is only  $109/night ... so be sure to reserve your room now to take advantage of this special offer.
1570 North M ilitary Highway
Norfolk, Virginia 23502
Phone: 757-213-2231
Note : Select the dates 09/27/2019 - 09/29/2019 to book the special rate.
1500 North Military Highway
Norfolk, VA 23502
Phone: 757-466-8000

Heart Havens/VA Conference UMM Golf Tournament 
Registration Now Open | Sign Up Today!

You are invited to participate in our second annual Heart Havens/VA Conference UMM Golf Tournament. This tournament is being sponsored by the Virginia Conference United Methodist Men of the Elizabeth River District and will support the ministries of Heart Havens, Inc.
The tournament begins with a shotgun start at 10:00 AM on Friday, September 27, 2019, at Honey Bee Golf Course. All women and men players are welcome to come and enjoy an afternoon of great golf, fun, & fellowship! Cost is $60 per individual or $200 per team. For more information, please call Steve Schaefer at (757) 285-8047. 
Heart Havens empowers adults with a developmental disability to live full and vibrant lives with as much independence as possible. This non-profit ministry began in 1996 as an outreach of the Virginia Conference United Methodist Church's Commission on Disabilities and has strong ties to the United Methodist Men. 

United Methodist Men in Ministry  
Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar
2019 Spiritual Advance
September 27-28 
Baylake UMC (Virginia Beach)
All God's Children
June 16-21  
Camp Chanco on the James  
(Richmond Area)
July 28 - August 2  
Occohannock on the Bay  
(Eastern Shore)
July 29 - August 3     
Camp Chanco on the James  
(Richmond Area)
August 11-16 
Camp Chanco on the James  
(Richmond Area)
Annual Conference UMM Breakfast
June 22 (6am)
Thrasher Memorial UMC (Vinton)
Camp Rainbow Connection 
March 30
United Methodist Center (Glen Allen)
April 13 (Training)
United Methodist Center (Glen Allen)
June 22-28       
Richard Bland College (Petersburg)
July 27 - August 2 
Richard Bland College (Petersburg)
Southeast Jurisdiction Meeting
October 4-5          
Lake Junaluska
VA UMM Cabinet Meetings
May 5, 9am-2pm
United Methodist Center (Glen Allen)
Sept 8, 9am-2pm
United Methodist Center (Glen Allen)
November 8-9  
Visioning Retreat (Location TBD)
Words to Live By . . .

 What is the nature of love?
"It is the nature of love to unite us together..."
- John Wesley 

Recommended Reading:  John 15:17 (NIV)