Welcome to The Bridge, a weekly update of the Rappahannock River District of the United Methodist Church! 
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Go Deeper! Grow Deeper!

“So keep these words deep in your heart and in your soul, and have them fixed on your hand for a sign and marked on your brow;” Deuteronomy 11:18 (Basic English Bible)

The lessons I learned and the experiences will remain with me forever! Having had the experience twice now, I long for more. I want (literally) to go deeper and grow deeper in my knowledge and wisdom. I could be referring to any number of amazing experiences, but I’m actually talking about my two experiences of sea diving. The first dive was on the coast of Cancun and the second was in the Florida coastal waters. Both were about 35 foot dives and both were amazing. “Swimming with the fishes” is for me a calming zin like experience that helps me feel connected to nature and sea life in ways that are difficult to describe. The quiet, the sea life around me, the trust that I had all the air I’d need, and the stunning views were just what I needed to feel encouraged to go deeper and grow deeper through the experiences.

From the moment I began to read the Bible, I’ve felt the same desire to go deeper in my reading and grow deeper in my knowledge. In my opinion, nothing tops what’s found in the Old and New Testaments of the Bible, not even Hollywood. The stories, the poetry, the wisdom, the power, and the inspiration are just a few of the things I enjoy reading and re-reading in the Bible. However, I’ve come to understand how important it is to go beyond reading the Bible.

I’ve come to understand that the Bible was given to us for reading, for hearing, for recall after reading, for applying to our lives, and for sharing with others.  I’m sure this is why Bishop Lewis has invited each of us to join her in daily Bible reading. Our Conference web page and Virginia Advocate publication are making it easy to join the Bishop in Bible reading by posting the daily reading in those to sources. 

Can we possibly get from the Bible all God intends for us to get if we don’t read it, listen to the message of it, practice recalling what we read, apply what we read to change our lives to grow in faith, and last, but not least, share what we’ve read far and wide?  You may never choose to engage in a high adventure sport like sea diving, but my hope is that you take every opportunity to go deep in your Bible reading and grow deeper in your faith. I’m looking forward to continued Bible reading and also hoping my sea diving days are not over.

Pastor Ted
The Virginia Conference and the Rappahannock River District are responding to Hurricane Harvey. 

We have several collection points for Flood Buckets. Our deadline to have them to the Conference Office is September 20. Please look for a separate email entitled "Flood Bucket Update" for the latest info on Packing Events and Drop Off Locations.

If you have any questions, please contact Pastor Penny Rasnake, our District Disaster Coordinator.
Yard Sale
Join us at Eastland United Methodist Church  September 8 th  and 9 th , 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.  for our yard sale - part of the 208 Trail Sale! Enjoy shopping or sell from your own space. Contact  Bill Todd at  540-898-5045   with any questions or to donate items for the sale.

Lay Servant Training Offered
T here are several training opportunities for Lay Servants available.

 The District will offer training at Regester Chapel UMC in Stafford on September 15 & 16. There are also On Demand opportunities and an Online Learning Ministry. See links below for more information.  
Please Contact Greg Sokolowski at   121falcon@msn.com or Debbie Dietrich at debbiedietrich6@gmail.com
Call for Nominations for At-Large Delegates at Annual Conference 2018
At our District Conference at Wright's Chapel UMC on Saturday, November 18, 2017 the District will elect At-Large Delegates for next year's Annual Conference in Hampton (June 15 - 17, 2018). 

We need to elect 28 At-Large Delegates and 9 reserve delegates.  In order to be on the ballot, you need to complete a nomination form and return it to the District Office by November 1.   You can nominate yourself or someone else (with their permission). Please click on the links below for either a PDF or Word version of the nomination form and return it to:

Rappahannock River District Office  
Mail: PO BOX 100, Ladysmith, VA 22501 
FAX  804.448.8328 (call to confirm receipt)
The Rappahannock River District is one of the fastest growing districts in the Virginia Conference. We have been given a staggering opportunity to reach new people with the Good News of God’s love in Jesus. One of the ways we do this on our district is through the Builder's Club.

The Builder’s Club is a group of Laity and Clergy from across the Rappahannock River District whose members have pledged financial support for building new churches and renovating or expanding existing church facilities on the district.

The Club raises money by issuing a call to its members two or three times a year. When members receive a call letter, they will receive information about the church, the location and information about the project. Members are then asked to respond with a donation to the Club. In the past, the Club has raised between $5,000 and $11,000 per call. There is no minimum or maximum pledge amount.
All donations are tax exempt and you decide the amount you wish to give for each call. No more than three calls will be asked of you during any given year You can opt out of the Builder’s Club any time if your circumstances change.
You are invited to prayerfully consider becoming a part of the growing ministry of our district by enrolling today! Simply click the button below to send your contact information to the District Office.
Come experience the blessing! 

Nehemiah 2:18
I told them how the hand of my God had been favorable to me and also about the king's words which he had spoken to me. Then they said, "Let us arise and build." So they put their hands to the good work.
You are invited to join us for...
RSVP to  zionumc @historiczionumc.org  ; or  540-582-6532  by September 11, 2017
Book of Esther Bible Study
Led by Rev. Kimberly Barker-Brugman
Saturday, September 16, 2017

Zion UMC Fellowship Hall
8700 Courthouse Rd., 
Spotsylvania, VA 22553

·  Read the Book of Esther(any translation),
·  Bring a Bible, journal and pen or pencil ...
·  Salad with various toppings will be provided... tea and lemonade will be served.

Registration is now open for the  Live Your Faith Bold and Brave  Women's Conference to be held on our district at Ebenezer UMC in Stafford on Saturday, September 30, 2017 featuring Nicole Unice, Author of  Brave Enough  and Ministry Director at Hope Church.

Sessions include:
  • Created With a Purpose
  • Navigating Life’s Up’s & Down’s
  • Scheduling Time for God
  • Be Bold & Brave with Healthy Habits
Registration: $20.00 includes breakfast and lunch
Onsite child care available, $5.00 per child and includes lunch (max $20 per family)

Please click below for links to information on the event:

Live Your Faith Bold and Brave Women's Conference links:
 You are invited to attend the Matsiko World Orphan Choir  performance in the Regester Chapel sanctuary, located at 85 Bells Hill Road, Stafford, VA on Tuesday, September 12, at 7:00 p.m. 

The kids’ ages range from 7-14 years. The choir children come from Liberia, East Africa, Peru, Nepal, and India. The choir’s mission is to make known the plight of the many orphaned children of the world. The children are all orphans or labeled at risk because some of their parents have given up on them. Others have been rescued from human trafficking. The choir’s performance features an uplifting and inspirational array of songs and dances native to their respective cultures. At the performances, the kids experience the love, support and encouragement of those in attendance.

 There is no charge for this event, though a love offering is welcome. 
Contemporary Worship Leader Needed
Fredericksburg UMC is searching for a Contemporary Worship Leader to oversee the ministry of Fredericksburg UMC as it relates to leading and organizing the music for contemporary worship.
Part time, 20 Hours/week
Click below for more information.

Carol Draper from the Conference Treasurer’s Office will be with us to discuss the annual statistical data required by the General Church. This includes how you record membership, ethnic diversity, small group participation, community outreach, as well as church assets and liabilities, income and expenses. She will provide line by line detail for you to take back to your church. Since apportionments are based on the data entered in these statistical tables, it is important that we categorize expenses, members, etc. correctly. This will be useful information for anyone who enters your statistics - whether it’s your pastor, treasurer, membership secretary or anyone else. 
Statistics Training
Two Statistics Training Classes will be offered on our District this fall:

Thursday, October 12 at 7:00pm at St. Matthias UMC, Fredericksburg
(426 Deacon Road, Fredericksburg, VA 22405)
Tuesday, October 24 at 7:00pm at Warsaw UMC, Warsaw
(287 Main Street, Warsaw, VA 22572)

Please register by contacting the District Office at rappahannockriverdistrict@vaumc.org or
calling 804.448.8326 so we have plenty of handouts.
Save the Dates: 

Sept. 15—16 LAY SERVANT TRAINING      Regester Chapel
Oct. 12      STATISTICS TRAINING                St. Matthias
Oct. 24      STATISTICS TRAINING                Warsaw
Nov. 18     DISTRICT CONFERENCE  & TRAINING     Wright’s Chapel UMC
District Superintendent: Rev. Dr. Theodore Smith
District Lay Leader:
Ms. Debbie Dietrich      debbiedietrich6@gmail.com
District Associate Lay Leaders:
District Lay Servant Ministry Director Greg Sokolowski  Gregory.sokolowski@navy.mil
Heartwood Director: Rev. Gayle Porias gayleporias@vaumc.org
District Secretary: Ms. Lynn Manley rappahannockriverdistrict@vaumc.org
Administrative Assistant: Ms. Pam Blalock pamblalock@vaumc.org
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)
District Calendar
Sept. 14 Church Location & Building
Sept. 15 - 16 Lay Servant Training
Sept. 19 Ordained Ministry
Sept. 23 District UMW Annual Mtg.
Sept. 26 -27 District Clergy Retreat
Sept. 27 Clergy Officers Meeting