November 6, 2019
Welcome to the weekly update of the Rappahannock River District of the UMC 
A Word from our DS...
Active Servants

Servants can either be active or passive. An active servant is one who is involved, committed, and enthusiastic about what she or he is called to do. She or he is assertive and is ready to work at a moment’s notice. Active servants are those who are willing to make sacrifices; they are brave and adventurous.

When I think about active servants , I am often reminded of the men and women who continue to protect the homeland. Their sacrifices are enormous, and they need to be commended. Many of them leave their families and friends behind and go into harm’s way. While some are blessed to return home, others are brought back in caskets, wrapped with the national colors. To all of you, active and former military personnel, I want to wish you a wonderful Veterans’ Day. To those whose sons and daughters have been separated from you while bearing arms, I pray for peace as you continue to mourn their passing. Your sons and daughters actively participated in the service to this nation in particular and to humanity in general. Thank you for sharing them with us.

Conversely, passive servants project an unreceptive and usually reactive behavior. These are folks who would like to see changes made, but they are reluctant to engage in any life changing endeavors. Rather than advocating for change, they tend to do the same things repeatedly. They are oversensitive to new ideas and would rather maintain the status quo.
Our two district lay leaders, Dave Berry and Terry Bain, joined me over the past few weeks to conduct charge conferences. We traveled across the district and listened to emotional testimonies and witnessed the movement of God’s Spirit in the lives of our churches. We met some church veterans, matriarchs, and patriarchs, who grieved the conditions of their churches. However, although feeble, many of them are relentless–they desire to be active servants so that they can leave a legacy for those who will follow them.

During a season of agitation in our beloved UMC, have you considered what you are called to do or be? I wonder whether you have been called to be an active servant in the life of your local congregation. I wonder whether you are asking the relevant questions. I wonder whether you are asking, rather than waiting to be asked. To serve is an honor. So, be a willing participant of God’s kingdom, here and now. There is an urgency, and I hope and pray that you will take this call seriously.

I want to take this opportunity to summon us together around our missional objective–to be the hands and feet of Jesus on the Rappahannock River District by making more disciples. I hope we can agree to be the agent for change in the Virginia Annual Conference, a movement that will lead the way in stopping the mass exodus of people from our beloved UMC. I believe that we can succeed in obtaining our objective because Jesus promised to be with us (Matthew 28:20). The above objective will require us to love one another and be accountable to one another. It will also require us to remain focused on the things that are important and necessary. Would you consider being a part of this movement? I hope so.

May the peace of Christ be with us all.

Blessings to you!

Join us for an exciting District Training Event (following District Conference on November 16) at Wright's Chapel UMC
David C. Teel  is Director of Laity and Spiritual Leadership and a writer, editor, and Christian educator in Nashville, Tennessee. A graduate Trevecca Nazarene University and Vanderbilt Divinity School, he served United Methodist Churches for 15 years before joining Abingdon Press as the Covenant Bible Study project manager and senior academic book editor. David also serves on the board of the Vanderbilt Wesley Foundation. Through research and consultation, David creates, manages, and plans resource development for ongoing lay leadership training opportunities in conferences, districts, and congregations. Enthusiastic about creatively equipping lay leaders for engaged ministry within and beyond the local church, David is driven by a passion for intentional and relational discipleship. A fan of the Tennessee Titans, eclectic Spotify playlists, and indie filmmaking, David is married to Alecia Krisle Teel and has two daughters, Anastasia and Eliana (and a yellow Labrador Retriever named Digby). 
Free downloadable PDFs of the two books and the Study Guide for  Discipleship Begins With Relationship :
See All the People:  Engaging Discipleship with a Plan to See
David C. Teel, Director of Laity and Spiritual Leadership at Discipleship Ministries, will share key ideas in Rev. Junius Dotson’s work on creating intentional discipleship systems and engaging the community by building authentic, organic, and consistent relationships with people near/beyond your church campus.

Specifically, our time together will focus on Remembering and Rediscovering Discipleship – themes extended and expressed in the online teaching and discussion series,  Discipleship Begins with Relationship ( ):

  1. Follow to Lead: Lead others by first following Jesus,
  2. Stop fixing your church and start planning growth opportunities, and
  3. Engage/partner with your community beyond the walls of the church.
Saturday November 16 Schedule
Wright's Chapel (8063 Ladysmith Road, Ruther Glen)

9:00-9:30 Gather
9:30-10:30 District Conference
10 min break
10:40-12:30 Training Class
12:30 End

Please feel free to continue discussion at local restaurants. A list of local restaurants with directions will be available at the information desk.
Please join us!
New Lay Servant Training Offered
To become a Lay Servant or to complete continuing education requirement:

10 hour training will be held over 3- 3.5 hour sessions.
January 4 th , 18 th and February 1 st . 8:30am-noon. at Mount Horeb UMC 10867 Elk Run Road, Catlett.

To register contact Rev. Gayle Porias at or 540.788.9838

To become a Lay Servant you must take the Basic course. The following book is required for participants and may be purchased
from the or Amazon:
Lay Servant Ministries by Sandy Zeigler Jackson and Brian Jackson
Participant’s Book DR626 • 9780881776263 • $11.00
(also available in Kindle and ePub formats)

Two advanced courses will be offered for continuing education of Lay
Preaching: The following book is required for participants:   From
Pew to Pulpit. Clifton F. Guthries.  9780687066605 or Amazon

God’s Mission, Our Journey: The following book is required for
participants: A Mission Journey- A Handbook for Volunteers.   9780835817868
Available at or Amazon. Also available in Kindle and ePub formats.
Volunteers Needed Once a Month for Food Pantry
Looking For Volunteers For Wicomico Church Food Pantry in Northumberland County on the third Wednesday of each month from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  We serve about 75 families with over 215 people most months. We are hoping to find a couple of folks who are willing to serve in this vital community ministry. Please contact Pastor Donna Blythe for more information.
Fall “Wills” Seminar sponsored by Virgina United Methodist Foundation
One will be offered on our district!

October 26, 2019 – Ivey Memorial UMC – 10:00 A.M. Address – 17120 Jefferson Davis Highway, South Chesterfield, VA.

November 23, 2019 – Eastland UMC – 10:00 A.M.
Address – 10718 Courthouse Road, Fredericksburg, VA, 22407

If you’re interested, here’s what you need to do :
1.       Call The Law Office of Douglas Crockett – 804-328-6500
2.       Request a Wills Questionnaire. They will email, fax or mail one to you.
3.       Fill out the Questionnaire and a return to Law office – email, scan or mail
4.       They will give you a time to show up for your time with one of the lawyers.
5.       Address all questions to either Doug Crockett or Brianna Penfold

Wills are done on an individual basis – not as a couple .

Individual Will - $200 
A spouse or family member is only $100 each. So couples can get two wills for $300.
Medical Directives – Advanced Medical Directive and Power of Attorney documents are an additional $25 per person
Disclaimer: The information and services provided in these Seminars are offered by Rev. Doug Crockett and Brianna Penfold, licensed attorneys in the Commonwealth of Virginia. This service is not offered on behalf of the Foundation nor is it a solicitation of business by the Foundation. Your attendance at the seminar does not obligate you to obtain a will or any other documentation. The choice of an attorney to represent you in any matter is your choice.
PPR Committee ALERT
Attention S/PPR Chairs: Joint Preference Forms were emailed out this week. These are due January 10, 2020. If you didn't receive the email please check with your pastor - they received a copy of the same email.


Part time salaried position: Director of Music, responsible for overall leadership of the music program at Dahlgren United Methodist Church, to include traditional, contemporary, and children’s music. Candidate should be a Christian with a strong commitment to Jesus Christ, have a demonstrated capability or experience in directing a music program, be able to maintain a positive, professional atmosphere in all aspects of the music program, be able to work well with others, exhibit good communication skills, and have an ability to read music, as well as an understanding of the function of music within the overall worship program and life of the congregation.
Please mail resumes to Dahlgren United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 1797, Dahlgren VA 22448 or emailed to by 15 November 2019.

Emmanuel UMC

Emmanuel UMC is searching for a pianist for their 9:30 am service. The pianist would play hymns and lead the choir anthem. 

There is no choir practice during the week. 
All those who are interested in may contact us via and 804-462-7376 (Geri Vick, Worship committee chair) 
Liberty UMC

Seeking a Pianist/keyboardist (Organ too if possible) to play at Sunday morning church service. Part time position for small vibrant church. Opportunity for growth in the position.
To find out more details, please call 540-439-0267 or message us through our facebook page: Liberty UMC-Bealeton
Regester Chapel UMC

Regester Chapel UMC is seeking applications for a Music Accompanist . The Music Accompanist shall be qualified to play both the organ and piano for worship. The Music Accompanist shall be skilled in music, including performance and interpretation. This shall include a good knowledge of the function of music in the church service and ability to demonstrate its suitable interpretation. The Music Accompanist should be willing to keep abreast of modern trends in church music and participate in workshops and training events. Contact Barry Dillon at (540) 850-5865 or Ethan Murphy at  for more information and a copy of the position description.
Youth Council Meetings
The Youth meetings occur on the second Sunday of every month. We usually meet at Hillcrest UMC starting at 2 pm unless otherwise indicated below. We have Melrose as a satellite site. If someone is seeking to join Melrose site, please contact me.

Through December the dates are:
November 17th (location & time TBD)
December 8th

Follow us on Facebook for up to the minute news and announcements: Rappahannock River District Youth

T.J. Oliver, District Youth Coordinator    
Upcoming Meetings
November 7 Statistics Training, 7:00pm, St. Matthias UMC, 426 Deacon Road, Fredericksburg

November 16 District Conference & Training, 9:00am, Wright's Chapel UMC

November 17 District Youth Council

November 19 Ordained Ministry, 9:00am, District Office

November 19 Board of Missions, 7:00pm, Tabernacle UMC


District Superintendent: Rev. Charles Bates, Ph.D.

2019 District Co-Lay Lay Leader:

2019 District Co-Lay Leader:

Lay Servant Director: Rev. Kevin Elmore
Heartwood Director: Rev. Gayle Porias
Crossroads Minister: Rev. Mark Roscoe
Youth Coordinator: TJ Oliver,
Office Manager: Lynn Manley
Administrative Assistant Connie Devenport

Mailing Address: PO BOX 100, Ladysmith, VA 22501 Phone   804.448.8326     FAX        804.448.8328 
Office Location: Inside Wright’s Chapel UMC at 8063 Ladysmith Road, Ruther Glen, VA (do not use for mail)